Archive for April, 2012


Simple Yoga Tricks: It’s The Subtle Things.

Azumi

Posted: April 29, 2012 in Photography
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Azumi

My faithful companion.

Be Kind…

Posted: April 27, 2012 in Blogs
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We really need to learn to be kind to each other and treat others with respect, love, compassion and kindness, in spite of our egos and insecurities.  We will be all the better for it.  The other alternative hurts every single one of us in some measure.

Prayer for Kindness

Be generous in prosperity, and thankful in adversity.

Be fair in thy judgment, and guarded in thy speech.

Be a lamp unto those who walk in darkness, and a home to the stranger.

Be eyes to the blind, and a guiding light unto the feet of the erring.

Be a breath of life to the body of humankind, a dew to the soil of the human heart, and a fruit upon the tree of humility.

 


I came across something I found insightful regarding the creative process on TED. Elizabeth Gilbert talks about being vulnerable as creative people often do. Ms Gilbert, if you have not heard of her, wrote the popular book “Eat Pray Love”. I read the book quite some time ago, when I found myself in the peculiar position of going through a difficult divorce. (Yes, and I watched the movie, too. And, needless to say, the book is far better than the movie as usual.)

She speaks about her own vulnerability as a result of her own success; she has to confront the expectations and pressures of writing something that has got to be as spectacularly successful as her previous work.

I will let her speak for herself, and I hope it will encourage us to respect our creative Djinn, Daemon or Muse, whatever we might call ours, and write in spite of its silence. I hope you’d find it as inspiring as I did, or more.

Elizabeth Gilbert on Nurturing Creativity

Reincarnation

Posted: April 15, 2012 in Blogs
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Over the past few years, I have tranformed from being in a fairly active gym-goer with a decent BMI to something like being a WTF thanks to a slightly herniated back. I have a tendency to go a little overboard with the gymming (5 times a week, 2-3 hours each), so I stayed away completely. I realised I shouldn’t have but I could have worked on isolation machines and keep the other healthy parts working and strengthen my core muscles.

Gymming takes discipline, like going to church when one doesn’t want to, and it is a meditative workout as well. I push myself to the max (which isn’t a lot!) and then beyond that I think of the people who have not been kind and I can lift a little more, run a little harder or longer.

The best things about gymming are probably that I replace a chronic need for massage with the healthier happier pain of muscle growth. It also kept me feeling younger and being more agile. My clothes fit better and I stood taller. My mind was alive and it felt happier, I substituted my love for Tiger with EAS and On supplements. My knowledge of  arcane biochemistry bloomed and the cheerful ones of  the ‘Best Happy Hours’ declined.

Today, the belly hunches over my belt and aching doughy shoulders and scapulae has replaced rippling deltoids (under the right lighting conditions) and a thick back that has worn out the hands of many experienced masseuses.

It’s definitely time for a change. Now here’s my plan.

1. Walk-a-jog I used to walk and run for an hour at least, a distance from Vivocity down to Middle Road or halfway to Clarke Quay and back. I get bored easily so it is easier to do with music. Sometimes, I bring my DSLR with me and allow myself to get distracted and get off the path to explore hidden lanes and alleys. I begin to appreciate buildings in a different light as the setting sun flatters the architectural features of old shophouses, skyscrapers and attractive women; the seedy neon lights of Club Street buzz alive in constrast with the striking blue of twilight. If you do notice a happy DSLR toting 40-ish man trotting by, do say “How’s it going, matey? Keep it up!”

2. Get back into the old gym (sheepishly) and start really light to ease the cells in my body into the new organisational goals and strategic plans for this corporation and retrench the fat cells.

3. Eat right. No white carbs (I love rice!) and go for brown low GI carbs. Eat white meat instead of red meat. Eat a kaleidoscope of fruit and vegetables.

4. Inject new ideologies and propaganda into an otherwise dystopic Derrida-esque manifesto that had insiduously sneaked into my psyche while studying critical theory and post-modernism. Derrida’s nihilism does nothing for post-modernists. Watch more Doctor Oz, Rocky and Rambo movies and pat myself for the things I am doing right.

5. Keep people who do not share the direction I have laid out for myself, no matter how good or well-meaning they are at a very healthy distance. I am not perfect and I can imagine that some people may even find me even toxic and that is okay. For the both of us.

6. Get involved. Send out resumes for a new path and energised life. Recognise my talents and honour them. Have faith my intuition that we are here for a purpose and it’s not for the latest episodes of  ‘A Minute to Win It ‘or the Net. I don’t want to Youtube and Facebook my life away. I need new stories for my blog and it won’t be found on a couch molded in heaven.

In  a nutshell,

exercise right;

eat right;

think right;

socialise right;

act right.

Sound somewhat Buddhist, doesn’t it?


This is one of those rainy days. It has been raining all afternoon, drenching me with lethargy.  I feel somewhat uninspired to do the things I really should, like writing a decent blog. Emulating all accomplished writers, I am writing this because I have to.

I would like to step out of the claustrophobic confines of my apartment.  Azumi, my cat, is curled up half-asleep on my bookcase, and drawls out a languid meow when  I stroke her and she slips back to sleep. Dejected, I return to the laptop, thinking where I could go and find a fresh insight into my current condition and perhaps a sliver of inspiration.

Where should I go and what should I do? I am currently reading Gladwell’s The Tipping Point and I could go somewhere with life teeming around me with their shopping and dating going on in a mall and disconnectedly read it. I have to recharge my DSLR’s battery, if I decide to play the part of the urban paparazzi on a hunt for that lucky kaleidoscope of pixels.

The sun is sliding down over the upright slabs of concrete people call home.  The full moon will dance and take centrestage. The air is cool and the club I call my apartment has dimmed with the ebbing sunlight. I do have to get out, and I will just get prepared. My tummy’s throwing a tantrum, and I will have to entertain it too.

Blog? But why?

Posted: April 6, 2012 in Blogs
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I do not know what to make of this blog. There are too many competiting voices inside my head; politics; humanity; creative writing; ideas for lessons, but the easiest one is probably to use this as an avenue to unburden my thoughts from clutter. After a long ‘meeting’ over a stream of lager with an ‘life-experienced’ ex-colleague and an amateur blogger of many years, this is what I derived:

1. I can look at things somewhat resigned and nihilistic and realise that the world will just be the same as it ever has, with its flaws and beauty, inhumanity and the victories of the human spirit against its travails.

2. I have a limited number of years, and I should know what matters, at the end of one’s day and life. I should choose what I want to be exasperated about enough to write about it.  I will need to bridle my curiosity, and I am a very curious invidivual. Life is transient, ephemeral, and departure is often sudden, as a recent bereavement has taught me.

3. Be true to myself and basically STW if they cannot accept my idiosyncrasies which I am entitled to as long as they do not  traumatise others.

4. I need to unprison my creativity, most of it hidden behind mental clutter.

5. I should give the alter-egos in my head some breathing space.

5.Finally, I shouldn’t really care if anyone does read this blog.  I am writing this because I like to write and because I think I can.