Monday, June 28, 2010

How life should be lived

The mere lapse of years is not life. To eat, to drink, and sleep; to be exposed to darkness and the light; to pace around in the mill of habit, and turn thought into an instrument of trade-this is not life. Knowledge, truth, love, beauty, goodness, faith, alone can give vitality to the mechanism of existence.

-- James Martineau

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Stand Tall

I like the poems from Cynthia Groopman.
This particular one is relevant to me because I just started my own business. Which is TOUGH.
You crack your head every day figuring out how to bring in more revenue, while you know you have to make enough to take care of your employees and YOU.
Take a good read and see for yourself why you have to stand tall.

Stand tall with your head up high,

Do not ruminate, wince or cry.

Despite bereavement, misfortune, disappointment, failure or despair,

Always remember that we commune with God sharing our concerns,

fears,hurts and sorrows and embraced by His tender loving compassionate care.

Stand tall and look at the rainbow,

For that is the eternal symbol that despite the storms of life,

the sun will forever shine and warm our souls with its warm golden reassuring radiant glow.

Stand tall, and never retreat,

For the victories of life are won by those who are strong and have faith,

courage and tenacity and never submit to failure or defeat.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Lately, I've had encounters with people who aren't so kind.
Yes, I understand that there's plenty of them around in this world, but never expected them to be relatives.

What is kindness?

I believe Albert Schweitzer says it best:

Kindness works simply and perseveringly; it produces no strained relations which prejudice its working; strained relations which already exist it relaxes.
Mistrust and misunderstanding it puts to flight, and it strengthens itself by calling forth answering kindness.

Hence it is the furthest reaching and the most effective of all forces.

-- Albert Schweitzer

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Walk A Little Plainer Daddy

To my kids, Ethan, Ewan and Estelle.
I can only hope to bring you up the way that your Grandad and Grandmom did with me.
So that you can walk straight.
The road is already paved, the only most important thing is that you know how to "walk".

Here's a poem for you three:

Walk a little plainer daddy

Said a little boy so frail,

I'm following your footsteps and

I don't want to fail.

Sometimes your steps are plain

Sometimes they are hard to see,

So walk a little plainer Daddy.

For you are leading me."

I know that once you walked

This way many years ago,

What you did along the way

I'd really like to know

For sometimes when I'm tempted

I don't know what to do

So walk a little plainer, Daddy,

For I must follow you.

Someday when I'm grown up.

You are like I want to be,

Then I will have a little boy

Who will want to follow me

And I want to lead him right.

And help him to be true

So walk a little plainer, Daddy

For we must follow you.

Happy Father's Day everyone!

I'm a father of three, and it's suppose to be "my day" today, but I'm working so I don't really feel it.
Instead, I'd like to repost this which is a tribute to my mom:

Message from a mom to her child...

I gave you life, but cannot live it for you.

I can give you directions, but I cannot be there to lead you.

I can take you to church, but I cannot make you believe.

I can buy you beautiful clothes,but I cannot make you beautiful inside.

I can give you love, but I cannot force it upon you.

I can teach you to share, but I cannot make you unselfish.
I can teach you respect, but I cannot force you to show honor.
I can advise you about friends, but cannot choose them for you.
I can advise you about sex, but I cannot keep you pure.
I can tell you about alcohol & drugs,but I cannot say "no" for you.
I can tell you about lofty goals, but I cannot achieve them for you.
I can teach you about kindness, but I cannot force you to be gracious.

I can pray for you, but I cannot make you walk with God.
I can tell you how to live, but I cannot give you eternal life.
I can love you with unconditional love all of my life....and I will.
I miss you, Mummy.

Proverb for the day

I will charge thee nothing but the promise that thee will help the next man thee finds in trouble.

--Mennonite Proverb

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The issue with the Malaysian education system, AND the SOLUTION

For those who know me, I've just started my own business.
It's retail, so the job will be labor intensive.
My ex-boss, Tan Sri Gnanalingam, recently wrote an article in the NST about how we should place more local workers in our local businesses, fairly and equitably.
I have the highest respect for this man, and I totally agree with his views.

So, I have placed utmost priority on hiring local Malaysians.

First snag, the communication skills.

I was schooled in King Edward VII in Taiping. For the boys who went there, they will tell you that's the best school they could have possibly gone to.
We were taught to speak and write well in BM and English, and we were also encouraged to take up sports such as rugby and football, hence KE's reputation as a sports school.

I do not know what has transpired in the past 15 years since I left school, but I believe the standard of education in our country is possibly down in the dumps.

I hired recent school leavers with a take home pay that is decent.
However, they cannot speak a word of English. That's fine. I don't expect Shakespeare lovers to be salespersons in my business.

But, are you telling me that it's ok for them to go through life without knowing an international language, especially English?

Let's just start at BM. They cannot even write in BAHASA MALAYSIA with proper grammar when they're filling up the job application forms.

What are we doing for the education of the next generation Malaysians?

Imagine my surprise when a 49 year old man came looking for work.

Spoke to me in good English.

I asked him, why is it that you haven't had a job in 6 months?
He answered that at his age, no one wants to take a person who can only work another 5-6 more years before retiring. But that's a story for the next post.

I said, I don't care about creed, colour or even age.

All I want is a worker who's HONEST, HARD-WORKING and with GOOD MANNERS.

He had all of the above.

I hired him on the spot.

After giving him the offer, I asked, where did you manage to learn such good English?

He showed me his MCE certificate, dated 1966.

Good grief, I thought. It's in English.

Wait, we had exam certificates in ENGLISH?

Where did the government, specifically the EDUCATION MINISTRY, go wrong?

I've asked my wife and mother in law to speak to my baby daughter in Hakka. Why?

I do not know how or why, but I've seen the effects of being at least bilingual.

People who know more than 1 language are generally SMARTER and more intuitive.

The solution is simple but not easily implemented.


This will in no way diminish BM as our national language, but it will do tons of good for the next generation.

I challenge the government. Prove to US, the people, that you want to do good.

Because if you do enough good, we will return you as the government in the next election.

We don't care about allocations for schools that you promised etc.

Because that is YOUR DUTY as the GOVERNMENT, to SERVE US.

YOU ARE THERE TO SERVE THE PEOPLE, regardless of who voted for you.

Now, it looks like I have to save up a lot of money to send my kids to private international schools for the time being...........................

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Easy Vs Difficult

Since I posted about what's hard, let's see what's easy.

Easy is to judge the mistakes of others

Difficult is to recognize our own mistakes

Easy is to talk without thinking

Difficult is to refrain the tongue

Easy is to hurt someone who loves us.

Difficult is to heal the wound...

Easy is to forgive others

Difficult is to ask for forgiveness

Easy is to set rules.

Difficult is to follow them...

Easy is to dream every night.

Difficult is to fight for a dream...

Easy is to show victory.

Difficult is to assume defeat with dignity...

Easy is to admire a full moon.

Difficult to see the other side...

Easy is to stumble with a stone.

Difficult is to get up...

Easy is to enjoy life every day.

Difficult to give its real value...

Easy is to promise something to someone.

Difficult is to fulfill that promise...

Easy is to say we love.

Difficult is to show it every day...

Easy is to criticize others.

Difficult is to improve oneself...

Easy is to make mistakes.

Difficult is to learn from them...

Easy is to weep for a lost love.

Difficult is to take care of it so not to lose it.

Easy is to think about improving.

Difficult is to stop thinking it and put it into action...

Easy is to think bad of others

Difficult is to give them the benefit of the doubt...

Easy is to receive

Difficult is to give

Easy to read this

Difficult to follow

Easy is keep the friendship with words

Difficult is to keep it with meanings

Life is not easy, but.........

Life is never easy, so you probably have to grit your teeth and do something that you wish you didn't have to do.

It's not easy,

To Apologize,

To begin over,

To be unselfish,

To take advice,

To admit error,

To face a sneer,

To be charitable,

To keep trying,

To be considerate,

To avoid mistakes,

To endure success,

To profit by mistake,


To think and then act,

To keep out of a rut,

To make the best of little,

To subdue an unruley temper,

To shoulder a deserved blame,

To recognize the silver lining....

But, do them anyway.

Lest you be judged too

I've always, ALWAYS refrained from passing ANY negative remarks about anyone.
Call me anything, but I always try to see the good in anyone I meet, unless they've already blown their chance or abused my trust.
I believe it's so important for us to judge gently, because you never know when your turn is coming.

Pray, don't find fault with the man that limps

Or stumbles along the road.

Unless you have worn the shoes he wears

Or struggled beneath his load.

There may be tacks in his shoes that hurt

Though hidden away from view.

Or the burden he bears placed on your back

Might cause you to stumble too.

Don't sneer at the man who's down today

Unless you have felt the blow

That caused his fall or felt the shame

That only the fallen know.

You may be strong but still the blows

That was his if dealt to you

In the selfsame way, at the selfsame time

Might cause you to stagger too.

Don't be too harsh with the man that sins

Or pelt him with word or stone

Unless you are sure - yea, doubly sure -

That you have no sins of your own.

For you know, perhaps,

If the tempter's voice should whisper as soft to you

As it did to him when he went astray

It might cause you to falter too.

Worry not

A short one by Cynthia Groopman.

Worry not, dear ones,

Do not rob yourself of joy and fun.

Life should be for rejoicing and for pleasure,

Savour each moment in mirthful measure.

Worry not, my dear ones,

Life battles with God's help you have successfully won.

Remember that worry will not be a solution but will cause lots of stress,

Weakening your spirit and denying you with quiet rest.

Just look at the rainbow of hope,

With prayers, and faith and courage, you will successfully overcome and cope.

Friday, June 04, 2010

A poem by Queen E the 1st

Never knew her to be a poet, but I really like this one.

On Monsieur's Departure
by Queen Elizabeth I

I grieve and dare not show my discontent,
I love and yet am forced to seem to hate,
I do, yet dare not say I ever meant,
I seem stark mute but inwardly do prate,
...I am and not, I freeze and yet am burned,
...Since from myself another self I turned.
My care is like my shadow in the sun,
Follows me flying, flies when I pursue it,
Stand and lies by me, doth what I have done.
His too familiar care doth make me rue it.
...No means I find to rid him from my breast,
...Till by the end of things it be supprest.
Some gentler passion slide into my mind,
For I am soft and made of melting snow;
Or be more cruel, love, and so be kind.
Let me or float or sink, be high or low.
...Or let me live with some more sweet content.
...Or die and so forget what love ere meant.

Thought Of The Day

Thought Of The Day

Who is wise? He that learns from every One.
Who is powerful? He that governs his Passions.
Who is rich? He that is content.
Who is that? Nobody.

Benjamin Franklin