Friday, July 27, 2012

Movie night

Another gem by W. Bruce Cameron. I love movie time with my kids, it's good bonding and we all appreciate the times spent together.

From time to time my kids and I will have "Movie Night," a bonding experience in which we all get together and argue about what movie we will watch if we ever stop arguing.

Tonight's Movie Night has ended in a compromise: My son will watch his movie in my bedroom, my daughters will watch theirs in the living room, and I will pay for the pizza.

My kids all agree this is fair.

I start off watching with my son. His movie begins with a chase scene involving cars that have the ability to jump over everything in their paths, and as they do, the cars they jump over explode. So many automobiles crash I begin to wonder if maybe this whole film wasn't just a clever way for General Motors to burn off excess inventory. "Are there any people in this movie?" I demand. My son makes a shushing motion—to keep track of what is going on he apparently needs to be able to hear the metal crunching.

I wander into the living room. My daughters are each clutching a box of tissues, as if anticipating that their movie will give them allergies. A young woman is sitting on a park bench. "What did I miss?" I ask.

"The credits," my older daughter murmurs.

"I mean, in the movie."

"Nothing has happened yet."

"What? It's been ten minutes. In your brother's movie they've already managed to dismantle the entire military-industrial complex."

"Would you be quiet?" my younger daughter hisses.

Back to the bedroom. The car chase has given way to a gun battle. Two men, each armed with over seven tons of ammunition hidden in their pockets, are shooting at everything but each other. Stuntmen in paramilitary garb fall like hailstones, glass shatters, and cars, of course, explode. Neither of the shooters seems to have grasped the concept that in order to hit someone you need at least to point your weapon in his general direction.

"Which one is the bad guy?"

"We don't know yet."

In the living room, my daughters are in distress. "She can't decide which one she loves," my younger daughter explains.

"That's silly; why doesn't she just ask her father?" The young woman is sitting on the same bench. "Didn't they have a budget for any other furniture in this movie?"

"She's going to pick the wrong guy," my older daughter pronounces flatly.

"How do you know which one is the wrong guy?" I ask curiously. They both give me pitying expressions. "Wait, let me guess: It will be the one she picks."

They refuse to look at me, so I know I'm right.

In what I suppose passes for an action sequence, the young woman stands up from the bench, then sits back down. My daughters reach for their tissues.

In my son's movie, the two combatants have exhausted the earth's supply of ammunition and are chasing each other over city rooftops. On motorcycles.

"Any sense yet of why these guys want to kill each other?" I ask.

"This is the coolest movie ever," he breathes.

"I thought not." The motorcycles land on the roof of a speeding train, which immediately collides with a gas truck stalled on the tracks. Both motorcycles sail unscorched through the ensuing fireball, exactly as would happen in real life.

My daughters are weeping. "Why didn't he just go to her and tell her he loves her?" my younger daughter laments.

I nod my head in agreement. "After all, it's not like she's hard to find; she's always on that bench."

They give me sour expressions. "Now he's going to go off and join the army," my older daughter informs me, as if it is all my fault.

"Good, maybe he'll wind up in your brother's movie; they need more men over there."

Oddly, both films end the same way, with a man sailing away on a boat. In my daughters' movie, the young woman runs to the dock, waving, but the young soldier doesn't see her, and my daughters sob. In my son's film, the boat is sunk by a surface-to-surface missile, and he cheers.

Best part of movie night: the pizza.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Why We Shout In Anger

A Hindu saint who was visiting river Ganges to take bath found a group of family members on the banks, shouting in anger at each other. He turned to his disciples smiled and asked.

'Why do people in anger shout at each other?'

Disciples thought for a while, one of them said, 'Because we lose our calm, we shout.'

'But, why should you shout when the other person is just next to you? You can as well tell him what you have to say in a soft manner.' asked the saint

Disciples gave some other answers but none satisfied the other disciples.

Finally the saint explained, 'When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other to cover that great distance. What happens when two people fall in love? They don't shout at each other but talk softly, Because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is either nonexistent or very small...'

The saint continued, 'When they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper 'n they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other 'n that's all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.'

He looked at his disciples and said, 'So when you argue do not let your hearts get distant, Do not say words that distance each other more, Or else there will come a day when the distance is so great that you will not find the path to return.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Holding hands with your kids

I can relate to this story because my boys are growing fast. 
Just last month, I held on to Ethan's hand, and he was like,"Do I have to hold your hand?"
So, I said,"Well, I like to hold on to you, but it's up to you whether you want to still hold your daddy's hand".
He was like,"It's ok, daddy, I'll hold your hand".

Last dance at the bus barW. Bruce Cameron
When my son was a toddler, he used to love riding in his car seat because it gave him a stable platform from which to pitch things at the back of my head. His giggly joy when he managed to nail me with a soggy chunk of Pop Tart was so full of delight I couldn’t find it in my heart to get mad at him, though I hated it when my boss would interrupt a meeting to ask me if I realized I had pastry crumbs in my hair.
When he wasn’t filling the air with projectiles he would be singing out landmarks as we passed them. “Bus Bar!” he always cried when we drove by the outbuilding where the county kept the school busses corralled—the “bus barn.” In the summer the busses baked under the sun like large beasts napping in a field, but during the school year the busses were sometimes out on their rounds, inspiring a conversation like this:

“No bus Daddy?”

“No, no busses today.”

“No bus?”

“No bus.”

“No bus?”

“No bus.”

“No bus?”

“Okay, fine. Yes. Yes, there was a bus.”

“No bus?”

I’m not sure when it was decided that it was no longer necessary for him to be strapped into a child safety seat whenever we went for a car ride, though I am fairly certain it was before he got his driver’s license. And I don’t remember the last time he thought the lack of busses at the bus barn was a topic worthy of debate.

What I do remember is the last time he held my hand. We were downtown on a crisp fall afternoon, navigating on foot through the impatient rush-hour traffic on our way to the bookstore. This is a kid who grew up in the mountains and who had always regarded automobiles as solitary hunters; confronted with so many of them on the prowl at once, their tires barking angrily at stoplights, he became very nervous. He might have been aged eight, then—certainly old enough that my instinctive, parental reach for him whenever we crossed a street was always shaken off with a shrug of annoyance. But the very real danger posed by all that hurtling metal caused him to seek reassurance, and I felt his hand curl up into mine as we stepped off the curb.

It was the size of it that struck me, how much his fist had grown since the last time I’d held it. That, in turn, led me to reflect on the fact that we just didn’t hold hands any more.

Safely across the street, he released me, and we left the episode un-remarked. For me, though, it was a rare milestone in the otherwise shockingly swift transformation of my little boy into man.

Parents are not often afforded the opportunity to specifically remember and treasure the last time our kids perform some childlike act. I can’t recall the final bedtime story I read my children, or the last time any of them needed to be carried anywhere. I didn’t notice when it was no longer necessary for me to kiss every one of their dolls goodnight when I tucked my daughters in, or even the last time I tucked them in. There’s no warning that a treasured ritual is having its curtain call; if there were, perhaps we’d do something special to record the occasion, in memory if not on paper or video tape, so that maybe we could relive that precious moment.

Nowadays whenever I pass the bus barn and the yellow behemoths are out on their routes, I note it for the record. “No busses,” I murmur, even if I am by myself. If my son is in the car with me he gives me a bland look, registering my observation but clearly feeling the matter doesn’t call for further conversation. He doesn’t remember.

But I do remember, just as clearly as I can remember the wet smack of a partially chewed pop tart catching me behind the right ear, and the last time he held my hand, crossing a busy street on an autumn afternoon.

From The Cameron Column, a free Internet newsletter:
"W. Bruce Cameron is the author of the NY Times bestselling novels A Dog's Purpose and the sequel, A Dog's Journey."

Friday, July 13, 2012

Thought for the Day

And this is for especially people who see a crime victim and do not do anything, hello, get yourself righted Malaysia!

You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, July 12, 2012

7 choices

An excerpt from Seven Choices for Success and Significance by Dr. Nido R. Qubein

What is success? Only you can define it in your own life. In my own life, I have attempted to define both Success and Significance.
To me, Success is secular. Significance is spiritual.
It doesn’t matter how you define your own spirituality. Spiritual matters are always finer, deeper, and longer lasting than secular matters.

Success focuses on three Fs:
• Fans
• Fame
• Fortune
Success is focused on tasks, even goals.

Significance also focuses on three Fs:
• Faith
• Family
• Friends

But, significance focuses on purpose. Why am I here? What do I do with the talents, experiences and skills that I have? How can I make the world a better place? How do I plant seeds of greatness in the lives of those around me? How do I make an impact in the circles of influence where I find or place myself?

To choose success and significance, you must be a strategic thinker who:

• Has a clear vision of what you want to accomplish
• Develops a solid strategy that answers three questions:
- Who or what are we today?
- Who do we want to become?
- How do we get there?
• Employs practical systems to achieve your goals
• Commits to consistent execution because in consistency, success

When implementing your strategic plan for success, it really comes down to three “Ds”:

Decide what you want most to achieve
Determine the first step to getting what you want
Do the first thing that will start you moving toward your goal.

Using these seven keys, you can choose success and significance. But keep this in mind: success is not a matter of luck, not an accident of birth, not a reward for virtue. The most successful people I know are the ones who have something to do, somewhere to be and someone to love.
No one is responsible for your success or your joy. You must search for it and be in a continual state of earning it.
To merely succeed is not an end in itself. You must use your success to impact other people…to impact the world…to Live Life from the Inside Out.
It all starts with the choices you make – they determine the person you will become.

Monday, July 09, 2012

The 5 Ps

The following is from Charging the Human Battery:  50 Ways to Motivate Yourself by Mac Anderson

“He who has health has hope. And he who has hope has everything.”
~Arabian Proverb

Abraham Heschel said, “Self-respect is the root of discipline; the sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.” More than anything, good health is the result of discipline and your ability to say “no” when you need to. Saying no to sleeping in when you could be exercising, saying no to the cheeseburger when it could be a salad, saying no to something that will add more stress to your life. No question about it…good health and discipline are joined at the hip.
In Brian Tracy’s personal development seminars, he teaches the five “Ps” of excellent health. Read them often as a reminder of what it takes to stay healthy.

The 5 Ps for Good Health

1. Proper Exercise
The most important exercise for a long life is aerobic exercise. Walk, run, swim, etc., to get your heart rate up to a high level for at least thirty minutes three times a week.

2. Proper Diet
As Ben Franklin said, “Eat to live rather than live to eat.” The keys, according to Tracy, are lean sources of protein, a variety of fruits and vegetables, and lots of water.

3. Proper Weight
You’ll look good, feel good and feel more in control of your life when you’re at a healthy weight.

4. Proper Rest
More than 60 percent of adults do not get enough sleep. Most people need eight hours a night. You also need regular breaks from work, both weekends and vacations.

5. Proper Attitude
This, according to Tracy, is perhaps the most important of all. The quality that is most predictive of health, happiness and long life is “optimism.” The more optimistic you are about yourself and your life, the better your health in all areas.

So focus on the five “Ps” to stay healthy, stay happy and to stay motivated.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

What is permanence?

Nothing in the world is permanent, 
and we're foolish when we ask anything to last,
but surely we're still more foolish not to take delight in it while we have it.
If change is of the essence of existence one would have thought it
only sensible to make it the premise of our philosophy.

W. Somerset Maugham
The Razor's Edge, 1943

Monday, July 02, 2012

Every parent/guardian and all the children in our modern society should read this

Every parent/guardian and all the children in our modern society should read this

young academically excellent person went to apply for a managerial position in a big company.

He passed the first interview, the director did the last interview, made the last decision.

The director discovered from the CV that the youth's academic achievements were excellent all the way, from the secondary school until the postgraduate research, never had a year when he did not score.

The director asked, 
"Did you obtain any scholarships in school?" the youth answered , "none."

The director asked, 
" Was it your father who paid for your school fees?" 

The youth answered, 
"My father passed away when I was one year old, it was my mother who paid for my school fees."

The director asked, 
" Where did your mother work?"

The youth answered, "My mother worked as clothes cleaner.".
The director requested the youth to show his hands.

The youth showed a pair of hands that were smooth and perfect.

The director asked, 
" Have you ever helped your mother wash the clothes before?"
The youth answered, "Never, my mother always wanted me to study and read more books.  Furthermore, my mother can wash clothes faster than me."

The director said, 
"I have a request. When you go back today, go and clean your mother's hands, and then see me tomorrow morning."

The youth felt that his chance of landing the job was high.

When he went back, he happily requested his mother to let him clean her hands.
His mother felt strange, happy but with mixed feelings, she showed her hands to the kid.

The youth cleaned his mother's hands slowly. His tear fell as he did that. It was the first time he noticed that his mother's hands were so wrinkled, and there were so many bruises in her hands. Some bruises were so painful that his mother shivered when they were cleaned with water.

This was the first time the youth realized that ...

1. It was this pair of hands that washed the clothes everyday to enable him to pay the school fees.
2. The bruises in the mother's hands were the price that the mother had to pay for his graduation, academic excellence and his future.

After finishing the cleaning of his mother hands, the youth quietly washed  all the remaining clothes for his mother.

That night, mother and son talked for a very long time.

Next morning, the youth went to the director's office.

The Director noticed the tears in the youth's eyes, asked: 
" Can you tell me what have you done and learned yesterday in your house?"

The youth answered, 
" I cleaned my mother's hand, and also finished cleaning all the remaining clothes."

The Director asked, 
" please tell me your feelings."

The youth said.....

Number  1,
 I know now what is appreciation. Without my mother, I would not  be successful  today. 
Number 2,
 by working together and helping my mother, only now do I realize how difficult and tough it is to get something done. 
Number 3,
 I have come to appreciate the importance and value of family relationship.

The director said, 
" This is what I am looking for in my Manager".
1. I want to recruit a person who can appreciate the help of others;
2. A person who knows the sufferings of others to get things done;
3. And a person who would not put money as his only goal in life.
The director said, "You are hired".

Later on, this young person worked very hard...

1. and received the respect of his subordinates.
2. Every employee worked diligently and as a team.
3. The company's performance improved tremendously.

A child, who has been protected and habitually given whatever he wanted, would 

1. develop "entitlement mentality" and would always put himself first.
2. He would be ignorant of his parent's efforts.
3. When he starts work, he assumes that every person must listen to him, and when he becomes a manager,
4. he would never know the sufferings of his employees and would always blame others. 

The people who may be good academically 

1. may be successful for a while, but eventually would not feel  a sense of achievement.
2. They will grumble and be full of hatred and fight for more.
If we are like this kind of protective parents, are we really showing loveor are we destroying the kid instead?

You can let your kid ...

1. live in a big house, eat a good meal, learn piano, watch a big screen TV. 

But when you are cutting grass,
please let them experience it. 
After a meal
let them wash their plates and bowl together with their brothers and sisters 

It is not because you do not have money to hire a maid, but it is because...

1. you want to love them in the right way.
2. You want them to understand, no matter how rich their parents are, 
one day, their hair will grow gray, same as the mother of that young person.

The most important thing is your ...

1. kid learns how to appreciate the effort and
2. experience the difficulty
3. and learns the ability to work with others to get things done