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Medium

Kind of like the interface and simplicity of Medium.

Can’t really find the time to sit myself down and stare at the blank computer screen, to think of what to write. At least, the tuition season is over, but the work is piling up. Threading through the unseen water alone is adding certain kick to it. But oh well.

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Weighing between health and wealth

I have been swept by these periodic waves of pain for the past 4 days. The pain lasts a few seconds everytime it hits, and subsides into oblivion as quickly as it appears. I didn’t pay much attention to it initially as I could continue with my runs, and the condition didn’t deteriorate over the past 4 days either. But it’s just getting slightly distracting, and I have finally decided to visit the clinic tomorrow morning because the hard-to-swallow yellow pills aren’t working.

This brings to my mind, how people choose to ignore the onset of their conditions, thinking that the ailments within their bodies will improve over time. After all if everyone were to visit the doctors on the slightest hint of discomfort, clinics would probably be swamped with minor cases and eventually the costs of healthcare would rise. Elderly are especially hard-hit in such situations, where they have to weigh between health or wealth. It’s always easy to say to go for the former, as health can be lost forever while wealth can be built up again. But again, if we look at the context of these elderly, their resources are probably finite and cannot be rebuilt over time. So they would have to learn to allocate their already-limited resources to live life to the fullest.

Oh well anyway, let’s just hope things will be fine by next Sunday, my first attempt at a half-marathon.

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Things that stuck with

The serenity of the night calms the soul, with occasional hustle of the students and the humming of the passing buses. It is probably more than half a year since I last stepped on the road of my school in my running shoes. New graduate students’ accommodations sprouted within this half a year when I was missing, new roundabouts caught me by surprise, and many areas fenced up for even more accommodations and research facilities. But still, the journey round the school remains the same, the air, the streetlights and the crickets. And all same things remind me of the same past.

We were taught the various methods of remembering physical concepts and biological pathways. Memory palace, mnemonics, repetition and even cramming. All works its magic in helping us store information and formulas in the long term memory, allowing us to recall the thoughts even after a long period of time. It is also what sports coaches advice athletes to do, to constantly repeat and practice a movement such that the body ‘remembers’ the motion, allowing the body to retain the ‘muscle memory’, so that the act comes naturally when necessary. Memory palace works by relating ideas with the locality of an object, and then navigating through the palace allows us to retrieve the ideas table by table, room by room.

The method that I can most relate to is probably this repetition. The repeating of an incident in fact, so much that it doesn’t go off even if I want it to. The memories still remain vivid in my mind, as though I’m reliving it everyday. Probably it serves as a reminder by the body, of what I told myself and failed to follow through. And whenever a similar situation occurs again, the memory seems to smack the back of my head, bringing up episodes of the past.

And thus, whenever I step back into familiar grounds, the smells, the sights and the sounds work in unison to trigger the reminiscence of the incidents, whether I like it or not. Up till now, I still believe I made the right choice, though history proves otherwise. Time will always move forward, leaving only trails of memories of what’s done along its way. Nobody will be able to retrace the steps taken by time, to reenact the exact same happenings as before. However, the smells, the sights and the sounds will persist, and they will not grow old and wither with time. The trio will always act in unison to provide the settings for the past to relive itself. Though, it will never happen again, because time took everything with him.

Alas, the roads may still be the same, but the footsteps will never be.

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Goodbye.

Indeed, like everyone else, without him, the world will never be the same again. And indeed, the many ways he changed people’s lives will live on for him, in his name.

And yes, pancreatic cancer is one of cancers with the poorest prognosis.

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Words are indeed, just words

How would you have understood if you’ve never been through the situation? How would you know how it feels like if you’ve never experienced it before?

And ya, no you won’t understand, that’s why it was so easy for you to let it go. And ya, you’ve never felt it before, that’s why you didn’t have tears welling up your eyes.

Some words are just so easy to say, when they don’t carry any meaning for you. When it weighs a future, a responsibility, a commitment, I’ll see what it means to you.

Words are indeed, you know, just words.

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Promises that you made

I haven’t been following the Presidential Election of Singapore lately, until the promise to donate half of a President’s salary caught my eye. The thought that crossed my mind wasn’t “is he out of his mind?” Rather it was “interesting, for the sake of the votes, though indeed he doesn’t need so much money anyway.”



While vying for a position, it’s no-brainer to speak of wanting to shine the light in the right direction, to be of exemplary and unique model as compared to the rest. You need not put the others down, just push yourself higher. With all the great plans as the playing cards in hand, one often miss out the point that things change. The situation, the environment and the playing field are often in motion. The plans of today may not work for tomorrow. And such plans, voiced out as promises to make life better, may backfire.

Job interviews are always intimidating, where the control is not in your hands. We always know to at least do a background check on what type of people the company is hiring, and then during the interview, momentarily changed into that specific type that the company is looking for. On top of that, displaying the arrays of achievements and abilities to impress those judges. On the other hand, denying the ugly weaknesses and sweeping all underachievement under the carpet, praying so damn hard they don’t flip it open. We are taught to say whatever it takes for us to fill up that vacancy, even if at the end, we might not deliver. The promises to pitch sales like Steve jobs, to be thirsty for scientific discovery, to achieve milestones. Well, you can’t predict the future, so don’t hold out the promises.

Committing into a relationship, where the “I’ll love you forever” are poured out of the mouth without serious consideration of the might-bes in the near future. Words, just so to keep the people by your sides. It’s still true that without pain, there won’t be gain. It still also hold true that if you don’t venture into risk, nothing would be earned from it. The promises that all things will be smooth sailing and conflicts resolved amicably, the promise that the two will be together due their dying days.

Relations do turn nasty when things don’t work out as per foreseen/planned. A part hiding truth, a part holding on to the pride, in addition to the lack of communication when things turn sour. Justifying your stand, defending yourself come next when everything starts to fall apart, fall away from the expected scenarios. And often, coupled with the slight inflexibility a.k.a. stubbornness, the whole belief starts to collapse into pieces. After all, plans are still plans.

Soured reputation, dismissal from work and fallout between couples. They all share a same underlying cause, that no one would spell out. Of the rosy picture painted before rising up to the position, how many can maintain that vibrancy of the painted picture. Promises that you made just to win the hearts of the people, promises prior to assuming the position. Sometimes, you can’t hold on simply because your heart faltered.

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On the other hand, the rugged altruists is quite an interesting read. It speaks of following your heart, it speaks of humanity. Some things are just that simple, you just have to follow it through.

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To understand

To understand someone, all you need to do is to ask. To go forth and ask, sometimes, even if it hurts that person. Do the things you think is best for that person, even if it hurts him. Well, at least that’s what I see of Wilson and House.

And don’t you dare tell me drama storyline is fictitious. Though fictitious, it does hold some truth.

Sweeping everything under the carpet and pray so damn hard that nobody flips it open to clean the floor. And all you can do is to pray, and hope that people will eventually forget about the carpet.

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