Tag Archives: food for thoughts

the diminishing value of being punctual

 I chanced upon the ‘template’ folder as I meddled with my wife’s brand new touch screen LG KF600 mobile phone, and came across the canned message which says “I am late.  I will be there at ____.”

 

So I looked up the list of canned messages in my two-year-old Nokia model, and voila! there it is, the same message.

 

This must be a frequently sent message for phone manufacturers to include it in the template. 

 

Has being late become the norm?  Or worse, are the societies starting to view punctuality as an outdated and irrelevant value?  I certainly feel it is increasingly the case.

 

The conservative few who still make the effort to be on time think that they do so out of respect and consideration.  Therefore to them, those others, by carelessly turning up late, do so at the expense of their (the punctual fellows’) time, convenience and goodwill.

 

 

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a man’s spirit sustains him

 Just this recent Sunday, my wife and I noticed this lady coming out of the driver’s side of a nice car, well made-up, sporting attire, bounce in her stride.

 

But for the knitted headwear covering a balded head, we did not guess that she is recovering from cancer. 

 

Her will to live out her life is inspiring.  My wife and I could not help but affirm the notion that a cheerful outlook and an appropriate fighting spirit would positively affect the outcome of any given trial.

 

The Bible confirms as much in Proverbs 18:14:

“A man’s spirit sustains him in sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear?”

count your blessings

 Humans being humans spend too much time worrying over things that usually will not turn out quite as bad, if at all.

 

We fail to be be thankful for blessings we already enjoy.

 

As John Lennon puts it, “You don’t know what you’ve got until you lose it.”

message of the humble potato chips can

 Pringles potato chip cans look humble enough.  I learn only today that it is a patented item.  The Straits Times carries an article about its inventor Fredric Baur’s cremated remains being stored and buried in one such cans.

 

Everyone has good ideas which unfortunately remain unharnessed.  We either lack the money, time, experience, courage or motivation to bring them to fruition.

 

I for example, also worry about what others think.  Will they find my ideas ridiculous?

 

Consider the Pringles potato chip cans again.  If Fredric Baur had worried about being ridiculous when patenting a can, he would have missed it all.  That he had requested to be buried in a Pringles can conveys how much he valued the piece as being the defining achievement in his life.

 

The point is that we worry too much, and think too little of our personal creativity. 

 

We have all heard from Nike – Just Do It.  Maybe it makes perfect sense – we’d never know except in retrospect.

 

 

 

 

the rose

 I like Bette Midler’s ‘The Rose’, but did not pay attention to the lyrics until recently. 

 

These lyrics are worth pondering over..

 

The heart that’s afraid of trying never learns to dance

The dream that’s afraid of waking never takes a chance

The one who’s afraid of being taken never learns to give

The soul afraid of dying never learns to live

the myth

 Why was the world outraged at Myanmar government’s refusal to accept outside aid to relieve Nargis’ victims?  They (ie the world) could have conveniently shrugged the rejection off.  After all, they had done their part by offering to help.

 

And why did the world warm up to Beijing’s request for assistance in the wake of the Sichuan quake?

 

These contrasting reactions are a manifestation of the human being’s propensity to want to reach out to others in distress.

 

The popular belief is that everyone minds his own business.  That, along with pride, causes people in distress to feel completely isolated and overwhelmed.  Sometimes, they decide to end it all. 

 

The reality, however, is more like the Myanmar scenario:  There are many around who would gladly help, if only they were given the opportunity. 

things you never say to your wife

 Don’t you pass any such remark to your wife:

 

“Did you put on just a little weight?”  Don’t even imply this.

 

“Is the weighing machine working right?  It says I am lighter these days.”  Not unless you want to trigger her disproportionate concern on the correctness of the scale’s report about her.

 

“Carol still looks good, doesn’t she?”  Especially if Carol was your ex.  Even if she wasn’t,  refrain from uttering anything like this anyway.

 

And the ultimate one: 

 

“These can’t be my kids.”  Never ever say this, even when your kids are performing way better than you did.  Or even when you mean it as a compliment to her family.

 

Of course, it is perfectly OK for your wife to say the same.  That’s the way life is.