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the simple life

"One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words." Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Monday, February 28, 2005

Meaningful rituals

Some of my friends took the extra mile in attending my baptism. It was early, it was far and it was a Sunday.

I'm truly grateful.

Makes me reflect on the weddings of friends I've missed, where I could have been there if I had tried harder.

I never took their rituals seriously, preferring to think that my presence was unnecessary. But as I speak, there are 3 weddings this year that I have committed to attend.

I do wish weddings are more simpler and minimalist affairs. Easy to organise, less stressful, small guest list, cheaper and more meaningful.

For my baptism, I invited only special friends to witness my baptism; Christians who would hold me accountable to my Christian walk as well as non-Christians who I wanted to share God's love with. It was meaningful for me, although I don't know how it was for them. I guess it's up to me to remind them why they were there.

For my wedding, if it has to come to that, I want to be absolutely clear on why I'm inviting people. In any case, barring violent protests from significant half, it will be a simple, spiritual and small ceremony.

So help me God.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Baptism: Wednesday

"For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake" Philippians 1:29

My mother asked whether she should bring flowers for my baptism on Sunday. I told her to buy funeral wreaths. A joke, of course.

Yes, some Christians do buy flowers for friends who get baptised. Fittingly, it is a day of celebration and rejoicing. Baptism is an identification with Jesus' resurrection, which means victory over sin and death; freedom from guilt and shame; abundant life and purpose.

It is also identifies with Jesus' suffering. And that is no joke.

I can't say I have suffered for Jesus. My mom, at one point, forbade me to go to church and told me off severely for converting. I was told by a friend that somebody wanted to beat me up for starting a prayer meeting in my army camp and talking about Jesus. That didn't happen. I was asked to resign from my first job as I refused to edit religious material that was contrary to my beliefs.

Thats about it. The people who sniggered, mocked and ridiculed me for my faith don't really count. Their opinions don't matter.

I'm glad that my faith doesn't require me to suffer for suffering sake, but to suffer for His sake. In the history of the faith, there have been many many martyrs. People were and are still being killed, simply because they believe. Countless others suffered threats, exiles and all sorts of mental and physical anguish for their faith. Till this day.

I have no doubts that people in other faiths suffer for their religion. But my faith is unique in that my Savior, my God Himself, suffered and died for the sins of the world. And for my sins.

Even when I understand, in my head, the heritage and the identity of the suffering Christian, I am afraid to be found wanting, when it comes to the crunch. I am a coward, in more ways than one. I am not a fan of physical pain. I seek comfort, not sorrow.

But I'm speculating, because I have not faced mortal danger for my faith yet. The Christian life is a mystery. I am grateful for God the Holy Spirit who comforts me and gives me strength. by His grace, I might do the right thing in fearful circumstances. Or I might fail. Miserably. Acutely. Feelingly.

God, I know I'm called to suffer. I'm not ready yet.

Make me ready.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Baptism: Tuesday

You'll need to fill in a form when you apply for baptism. There's a section where they require you to desribe how you became a Christian.

Here's my story (longer version):

My parents were Buddhists. My dad was not very religious but my mom was. Her branch of Buddhism wasn't very ritualistic and superstitious, the way many Singaporeans practise it. She understood the fundamentals of Buddhism and practise it as a way of life. I grew up influenced by that. Looking back, my childhood memories are dominated by images of chanting, visiting temples, vegetarian food and religious stories. I spent so much time at the Singapore Buddhist Lodge that I finished reading all the children's books at the library. My mom was very proud and happy that I could chant and read scriptures when I was very young.

When I was a teenager, I was very proud of Buddhism's philosophical leanings, especially after attending Buddhist classes in school. It all make sense to me then. We live in a cause and effect world. We do something wrong, we pay for it. There is no free lunch. You don't have to pander or submit to a fearful and all-powerful Creator. It's about doing the right things, applying rules to your life and making sure you follow the Middle Path.

And meditation was damm cool.

And for some reason, I wasn't very impressed with Christianity. Always thought that Christians were wimpy. I even told my Malay friends that I would rather convert to Islam than become a Christian.

But one day I became a wimp myself.

I walked into a bookstore and saw a New International Version of the Bible. I was curious so I bought it.

Over the following months, I would read it often. Much of the Old Testament, I treated as good story-telling. Proverbs was good wisdom. The New Testament, I had much skepticism but the teachings of Jesus was great.

My absolute favourite was Psalms. It was incredibly uplifting.

" The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. " 18:2

" The LORD is my light and my salvation-
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life-
of whom shall I be afraid? " 27:1

" Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
forever. " 23:6

" Lift up your heads, O you gates;
lift them up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in. " 24:9

" Praise the LORD , O my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the LORD , O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. " 101:1-5

I remembered spending many wonderful nights reading the Psalms. It was very different from what I have been exposed to. You don't have the same equivalent of salvation, God and sin, among other things.

One night, I heard the Gospel message at a Christmas play. I didn't come forward during the invitation. But I went home and I prayed to invite God into my life.

Thats it.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Baptism: Monday

After 10 years of disobedience, I am finally getting baptised this Sunday. I thought I'll blog about my personal reflections on baptism this week. I want to be prepared on Sunday. I want to participate fully and meaningfully. I want to fully understand the significance of baptism.

I am grateful that some of you will be able to come as witnesses.

For the rest of you, witness my thoughts.

"Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." Romans 6:3-4.

What is happening this Sunday is that I will be prayed for by a pastor and he will baptise me in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. I will stand in the pool, bend backwards until my body is submerged fully in water and then they will help me up (hopefully).

There are 2 elements here: the immersion ("buried with him") and the coming up from the waters ("raised up from the dead").

Funny enough, I'm actually nervous about the physical part of being immersed. I'm not the most flexible person around so I am hoping not to give the pastors a hard time.

In the spiritual sense, I'm facing the same problems. Being buried with Him is a lot harder than begin raised up from the dead.

Being buried with Him means to me
1) being God-centered rather than self-centered
2) my values, convictions, and behavior in word and deed being governed by the Bible
3) and to suffer for doing good.

As I reflect on my 16 years as a Christian, there are many things I have done that I'm not proud of. I know I will never be perfect on this earth. But there is no escaping of personal responsibility. I fall so short in the exercise of love and self-control, among other things.

But as I come to be baptised and I stand before the cross, I'm glad that I do not come to God with my successes, my abilities, my holiness and my righteousness. Instead, I come with brokenness, pain, struggles and fears. It is as Jesus has said. He has not come for the righteous but to call sinners to repentance.

I'm really glad for those of you who are coming to be my witnesses. I hope that you will be an active witness, whether you're Christian or not. As you see me immersing and coming out of the water, remind me, in the days of my life, that I identify with the death and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

To remind me that it is no longer I that lives, but Jesus that lives in me.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Big Ang Mos, Big Dogs

I'm been running in my estate. And I'm seeing many big ang mos (Hokkien for 'red-hair'. A pejorative term used to describe Caucasians, from the Coxford Singlish Dictionary) with big dogs.

So I'm asking why big ang mos have big dogs? I did see a small ang mo with a chihuahua, a la Paris Hilton, but I'm not going to ask that question today. Ditto for - why small rich ang mos make sex videos?

Back to the question.

Why big ang mos have big dogs?

Possible answers:

1) People like their pets to have similar characteristics with them. Active people like active dogs. Lazy people like lazy dogs. Ugly people like poodles. So - Big people like big pets. Small people like small pets. And since Big Ang Mo usually live in big houses (my estate, at least) so they can have big dogs. Big Cheena/Mat/Mama usually live in smaller flats so cannot afford to have big dogs. Instead, some keep their pets, usually exotic birds, at places like Geylang and Deskar Road.

2) Big Ang Mos live in big house, need watchdog that can bite and kill foreign invaders.

3) Big Ang Mos stay in small country short time. Must have dog with resale value so can profit from it when leaving. Small dog hard to sell and low price. Big dog can sell to security companies and revocationalized to become guard dogs.

4) Big Ang Mos use big dogs to impress small local chicks which generally like them big.

5) Big Ang Mos miss their big countries very much, hug these big fellas to sleep when their (hairy) wives not around.

I've run out of reasons so if you have one, let me know. I apologize for my grammar today. Visiting the Coxford Dictionary is not a good idea before writing.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Sleep in Peace

"Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake."
- Victor Hugo

God grant me patience for the small tasks and you, my friend, peaceful sleep.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Pollinate Chain Reaction 2004

Click the link below, if you're looking for inspiration.


You'll need Quicktime and preferably a broadband connection.

Highly recommended for anyone who wants to create, in ANY profession.

Check it out.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Standing Docs

I just saw something that I don't usually see.

It was on a program on women's cancer on Channel News Asia.

A doctor in a government hospital clinic standing up to greet a patient.


I have my fair share of experiences visiting public clinics, having to bring my dad as well as my friend's mother and grandma. Let me tell you, a doctor standing up to greet a patient, it never happens.

Except once, when I met a doctor at the SGH's Ear, Throat and Nose Clinic. He was great and very courteous to my dad. He greeted my dad warmly, made him feel comfortable and even made sure that charges was minimal as he knew my dad had cancer.

Even for the private clinics, they don't stand up to greet you. And they seem to be scribbling and writing all the time.

Anyhow, I think the women in the program deserve a standing ovation. Thanks for sharing with us your experiences and lessons. It takes a lot of courage to expose yourselves like this in a country so small.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Sick Anthony

Is it just me or does Marc Anthony look sick all the time?

I'm watching him now on the Grammys. He looks scruffy. And sick. Just like he did in Man on Fire with Denzel Washington and Dakota Fanning.

He's probably sick cos he and his lovely wife just pulled off a really crummy performance. Suitable for Broadway. Shitty for the Grammys.

I think the Grammys lost the plot this year. Instead of keeping it real and simple, they got too many acts with different styles jamming together. Variety was the name of the game but I guess losers already know what shit's called.

It's ironical cos the Grammys just committed the greatest sin in rock and roll.

Trying too hard.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Pirates of the Estate

Almost all the shops in my estate were closed during the Chinese New Year holidays.

The few that remained open, on the 3rd day of the new year were McDonald's, 7-Eleven, a discount store and the pirated software shop in the corner.


The pirates has been around in their cozy corner for at least 6 months. It has been peaceful for them and I'm sure they have not been harassed by the strong arm of the law.


But it is remarkable.

I am very proud of my estate, for not ratting out to the authorities the existence of this small entrepreneurial enterprise.

Long may it live.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Numb3rs is the latest CSI-inspired show to hit television. I spent part of my CNY break watching the first 3 episodes. It's pretty good. Here's a introduction of the show:

"Rob Morrow stars as FBI agent Don Eppes, who recruits his mathematical genius brother, Charlie (David Krumholtz), to help the Bureau solve a wide range of challenging crimes in Los Angeles. From two very different perspectives, the brothers take on the most confounding criminal cases, aided by Don's partner, Terry Lake (Sabrina Lloyd), and new FBI recruit David Sinclair (Alimi Ballard). Although their father, Alan (Judd Hirsch), is pleased to see his sons working together, he fears their competitive nature will lead to trouble. Charlie's colleague, physicist Dr. Larry Fleinhardt (Peter MacNicol), urges Charlie to focus more on his university studies than on FBI business. Inspired by actual events, NUMB3RS depicts how the confluence of police work and mathematics provides unexpected revelations and answers to the most perplexing criminal questions."

There are quite a few reasons why I like this show. But one of the key factors is Charlie, the mathematical genius. It inspires me to see someone so passionate about his craft and on top of his game. It puts me to shame when I consider my own passion and skills.

I saw a similar passion in the work of Claude Lelouch, after seeing his Un homme et une femme during the break as well. The film won the Palme d'or at Cannes. I watched his interviews on DVD and he is very inspiring. There is a just a wonderful sense of urgency and authority about him.

Recommended watching. I love this reviewer's comments:

"In the end, it's an interesting piece of film history. I fear it's lost much of its luster over the years, though the terminally romantic (emphasis on terminal) will find it endlessly endearing."

Endlessly Endearing indeed.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Responsible for Relationships

I have recently been talking to a friend about her problems with her boyfriend.

Since last week, she hasn't spoken to me.

But I don't imagine her problems to be over.

She must have taken my advice because I said to her last week,

"I think when you confide in me, you're doing it more because you need a listening ear rather than have someone lecture you. But I'm afraid I cannot be a good listener. Or rather I choose not to be."

I went on to suggest this:

"Let's face the facts
1. Your problems are not going to magically disappear.
2. You need to come face to face with your problems.
3. You need to take personal responsibility (What can I do?).
If you cant do all these 3, no point reading more or talking to me."

Fierce huh?

I do recognize many people like to work out their problems by talking about it. Or bitching about it. Sometimes, the time taken to talk over the problem means the problem going away, e.g. boyfriend drops dead, etc. But rarely, I think, you can solve your problems by talking about it.

In the few conversations we had, she consistently talked about a few things:

1. How her boyfriend deliberately hurts her and her own needs
2. How her friends voice their misgivings about her
3. Her own misgivings in the past
4. Leaving her problems to God

There's a lot here and I don't feel it's good to air her dirty laundry in the public, even though you have no idea who she is.

But I do think that taking personal responsibility is the most important step. Blaming the other party is not going to help. Raking up the past is terrible. And talking to stupid friends basically messes up your life. (I think most friends mean well but they do give terrible advice. It's stupid to make definitive statements about the relationship when your friend is emotionally vulnerable. If you got such great advice, give it when she's sane, happy and in the best condition to make a decision.)

I do think that we need to be honest with ourselves, with our deepest fears. And even if we can't conquer them, we are at honest at the very least. Then we can stop pointing fingers and accept responsibility for the situation.

I do accept that the other person in this relationship has problems too. But you don't try to solve someone's else problems when yours are still lying around.

My pastor shared with us last year about how for the single and unattached, we are so obsessed with finding the right mate. He suggests to us that maybe we should spend our time and energy, getting ourselves to be the right person for our future mate.

I love that. It's not about the other person anymore. It's about you.

When Jack Canfield shares his 64 success principles in his books, taking 100% responsibility for your life is the first principle. I can't agree more.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life

An excerpt from The Success Principles

Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life

You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself.- Jim Rohn, America’s foremost business philosopher

One of the greatest myths that is pervasive in our culture today is that we are entitled to a great life—that somehow, somewhere, someone (certainly not us) is responsible for filling our lives with continual happiness, exciting career options, nurturing family time and blissful personal relationships simply because we exist.But the real truth—and the one lesson this whole book is based upon—is that there is only one person responsible for the quality of the life you live.That person is YOU.If you want to be successful, you have to take 100% responsibility for everything that you experience in your life. This includes the level of your achievements, the results you produce, the quality of your relationships, the state of your health and physical fitness, your income, your debts, your feelings—everything!

This is not easy.In fact, most of us have been conditioned to blame something outside of ourselves for the parts of our life we don’t like. We blame our parents, our bosses, our friends, the media, our co-workers, our clients, our spouse, the weather, the economy, our astrological chart, our lack of money—anyone or anything we can pin the blame on. We never want to look at where the real problem is—our self.

There is a wonderful story told about a man who is out walking one night and comes upon another man down on his knees looking for something under a street lamp. The passerby inquires as to what the other man is looking for. He answers that he is looking for his lost key. The passerby offers to help and gets down on his knees and helps him search for the key. After an hour of fruitless searching, he says, “We’ve looked everywhere for it and we haven’t found it. Are you sure that you lost it here?”The other man replies, “No, I lost it in my house, but there is more light out here under the streetlamp.”It is time to stop looking outside yourself for the answers to why you haven’t created the life and results you want, for it is you who creates the quality of the life you lead and the results you produce.You—no one else!In order to achieve major success in life—in order to achieve those things that are most important to you—you must assume 100% responsibility for your life. Nothing less will do.100% responsibility for everything.

As I mentioned in the introduction, back in 1969—only one year out of graduate school—I had the good fortune to work for W. Clement Stone. He was a self-made multimillionaire worth 600 million dollars at the time—and that was long before all the dot-com millionaires came along in the nineties. Stone was also America’s premier success guru. He was the publisher of Success Magazine, author of The Success System that Never Fails, and co-author with Napoleon Hill of Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude.When I was completing my first week’s orientation, Mr. Stone asked me if I took 100% responsibility for my life.“I think so,” I responded.“This is a yes or no question, young man. You either do or you don’t.”“Well, I guess I’m not sure.”“Have you ever blamed anyone for any circumstance in your life? Have you ever complained about anything?”“Uh…yeah…I guess I have.”“Don’t guess. Think.”“Yes, I have.”“Okay, then. That means you don’t take 100% responsibility for your life. Taking 100% responsibility means you acknowledge that you create everything that happens to you. It means you understand that you are the cause of all of your experience. If you want to be really successful, and I know you do, then you will have to give up blaming and complaining and take total responsibility for your life—that means all your results, both your successes and your failures. That is the prerequisite for creating a life of success. It is only by acknowledging that you have created everything up until now that you can take charge of creating the future you want.“You see, Jack, if you realize that you have created your current conditions, then you can uncreate them and recreate them at will. Do you understand that?”“Yes, sir, I do.” “Are you willing to take 100% responsibility for your life?”“Yes, sir, I am!”And I did.

The Success Principles

Another book I'm going to read this year:
The Success Principles by Jack Canfield, co-authour of the Chicken Soup for the Soul® series.

Here's a list of the chapters:

Section 1: The Fundamentals of Success
1 Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life
2 Be Clear Why You’re Here
3 Decide What You Want
4 Believe It’s Possible
5 Believe in Yourself
6 Become an Inverse Paranoid
7 Unleash the Power of Goal Setting
8 Chunk It Down
9 Success Leaves Clues
10 Release the Brakes
11 See What You Want, Get What You See
12 Act As If
13 Take Action
14 Just Lean Into It
15 Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway
16 Be Willing to Pay the Price
17 Ask! Ask! Ask!
18 Reject Rejection!
19 Use Feedback to Your Advantage
20 Commit to Constant and Never-Ending Improvement
21 Keep Score for Success
22 Practice Persistence…Never Give Up!
23 Practice the Rule of 5
24 Exceed Expectations

Section 2: Transform Yourself for Success
25 Drop Out of the “Ain’t It Awful” Club
26 Acknowledge Your Positive Past
27 Keep Your Eye on the Prize
28 Clean Up Your Messes and Your Incompletes
29 Complete the Past to Embrace the Future
30 Face What Isn’t Working
31 Embrace Change
32 Transform Your Inner Critic into an Inner Coach
33 Transcend Your Limiting Beliefs
34 Develop Four New Success Habits a Year
35 99% Is a Bitch—100% Is a Breeze
36 Learn More to Earn More
37 Stay Motivated with the Masters
38 Fuel Your Success with Passion and Enthusiasm

Section 3: Build Your Success Team
39 Stay Focused on Your Core Genius
40 Redefine Time
41 Build a Powerful Support Team
42 Just Say No!
43 Say No to the Good, So You Can Say Yes to the Great
44 Find a Wong to Climb Under
45 Hire a Personal Coach
46 Mastermind Your Way to Success
47 Inquire Within

Section 4: Build Successful Relationships
48 Be Hear Now
49 Have a Heart Talk
50 Tell the Truth Faster
51 Speak With Impeccability
52 When In Doubt, Check It Out
53 Practice Uncommon Appreciation
54 Keep Your Agreements
55 Be a Class Act

Section 5: Success and Money
56 Develop a Positive Money Consciousness
57 You Get What You Focus On
58 Pay Yourself First
59 Master the Spending Game
60 To Spend More, First Make More
61 Give More to Get More
62 Find a Way to Serve

Section 6: Success Starts Now
63 Start Now…Just Do It!
64 Empower Others to Empower Yourself

Friday, February 04, 2005


"But whatever he says you have to listen because he is genuine. He is one of the most genuine people you can think of. History speaks for itself."
- Stephen Lue, on Nelson Mandela

Gee, I sure like to be called a Genuine person.

Job Interview

A friend of mine, who lives nearby, called me late last night.

Her PC was down. She has an iBook but didn't know the password for her dial-up account. And she needed to access her computer to get to her resume online. This was for her interview today at 930 in the morning.

So we agreed that she would come to my place early in the morning to access her mail. We should have just left it at that. But it was my mistake to start lecturing her on the finer points of job hunting.

Bad mistake.

She told me she submits 10 resumes a day. I thought that was crazy. She said that was because she was going for a different field that she had no experience in. And she also mentioned the tight job market.

Still, 10 resumes a day is crazy. The HR people at this company that called her only told her about the interview in the late afternoon. And she agreed to go for the interview the next day, early in the morning.

That's crazy crazy. Cos that leaves her no time to prepare for her interview. And if you send 10 resumes a day, you probably don't know all these companies well in the first place. By the way, if you are in HR, calling someone for a job interview, for a professional position, and arranging it for the next day, is stupid, unprofessional and ridiculous. (Much has to say about the sad state of local hiring managers, but we'll leave that for another day.)

And she told me that she's just going for it so as to test out the market. And she added that there were times where an interviewer might even suggest an alternative opening elsewhere.

She has her point but I would measure that against the effects of going for multiple interviews on your morale, integrity and sense of professional pride.

As a professional, it's important to consider every job opening with the greatest of care. Whether it's the resume, the cover letter, the interview and the thank-you cards, we cannot afford to be sloppy.

My friend probably has a different opinion, but that's ok. We are responsible for our own lives. I do admire her though for 2 things. Her courage to change her field of work and her determination to land a job no matter what it takes.

Wrting this entry has also helped me think about what it means to be a professional. There are still many things I need to work on.

Thursday, February 03, 2005


I love Robinsons.

Despite their pathetic range of handkerchieves.

It's a name I trust, it's a place where I go to shop and it's a memory I cherish.

When I shopped with my dad, there's the only place I remember going. He used to know many of the people that worked there.

I remembered the tailors there, who always have tapes around their necks, tall and respectful of my dad.

I remembered the people in the crystal and china department where my dad would spend hours, going through the Swarovski range and sniffing around decanters and admiring the porcelain pieces.

My dad is no longer around. But the quality of service in Robinson's is still pretty amazing. I bet you will not find a departmental store in Singapore that offers better service.

Here, it's not the greet-everyone-nevertheless-and-at-the-top-of-your-voice attitude you'll see in Giordano or U2. Rather, it's the motherly and fatherly attitude of many of the old uncles and aunties that work here.

The funny thing is that I met and elderly salesman, who is not your conventionally customer-is-king kinda of guy. In fact, he was slightly stubborn but never in a superior or offensive way.

I enjoyed his service very much.

Despite all its warehouse sales and in-store promotions, Robinsons is still a classy place for me. A Robinsons' price tag is still a class apart from an Isetan, a Metro or even a Takashimaya. Like a popular football saying goes, "Form is temporary, class is permanent".

Having said that, I know this won't last forever. I will enjoy it while it lasts.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


"A man with a handkerchief? I didn't know they made those anymore."
- Jennifer Lopez, Shall We Dance

A quick survey.

How many of you men use a handkerchief?

Seems like us hankies men are the minority.

If you ask why I carry a hanky, I will tell you:

1. I sweat a lot
2. My dad carries one and so do I.

I have been faithfully carrying a hanky since I started primary school.

I probably would have carried it to kindergarten if in the first place, I have gone to kindergarten.

I always feel naked the few times I don't have a hanky with me. It's like not wearing panties.

Today I was at Robinson's with a friend. I was shocked to find that they carry a pathetic range of handkerchief. It was miserable. It wasn't even displayed properly, just scattered amongst a bin near the cashier.

Robinson's, the last standing bastion of classic men's fashion.

It's confirmed.

I belong to a dying breed.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Shall We Dance?

Shall We Dance?

I saw this on Sunday. Reluctantly, as my friend wanted to see it.

I thought it was ok. I didn't see the original, but heard it was funny.

Here's a line from the Hollywood version:

"We need a witness to our lives. There's a billion people on the planet... I mean, what does any one life really mean? But in a marriage, you're promising to care about everything. The good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things... all of it, all of the time, every day. You're saying 'Your life will not go unnoticed because I will notice it. Your life will not go un-witnessed because I will be your witness'."

This is great.

The foreign brides issue is pretty hot here in Singapore. I had some conversations with different people regarding this. It's complex and I know many people have strong views over this matter.

I have great sympathy for the many men who cannot find a wife here and resort to "buying" foreign brides. For some of them, it's not an issue of women's rights, money or society's norms.

They may simply be desperate for a witness to their lives.