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Bad dream

So it’s 3ish in the morning and I woke up in a panic from a nightmare. I am breathing heavily and the area where my heart resides feels vulnerable and exposed.

Why? Glad you asked.

I dreamt that someone tried to rob me while I was asleep because I sleep with a $56-million fortune in bed. (Don’t ask me why).

When I woke up from the noises, the robber shot me a few times! HE FREAKING FIRED A FEW ROUNDS OF BULLETS AT ME.

The fear felt so real and the pain felt so acute that I woke up panting. I think I saw myself as the third person looking down on me as blood seeped onto my pyjamas shirt in that few seconds before I woke up IRL (in real life).

All he had to do was threaten me and I’d give him the money. But no, violence was the answer in my dream.

And since I can’t sleep now, I’ve decided to ask Google to interpret my dream for me so I can analyse it with hindsight.

Sleeping
To dream that you are sleeping denotes peace of mind. Alternatively, it means you are ignorant of the circumstances around you. Sleeping may also be synonymous with death in that it beckons renewal and new beginnings.

Me: Definitely true.

Wealth
To dream that you are wealthy indicates you have accomplished what you set out to do. The dream represents your achievements and the rewards you reap for your hard work.

Me: Quite true if I consider my new beginning as the end-goal for now.

Robbery
To dream that you have been robbed indicates you are experiencing an identity crisis or are suffering from some sort of loss in your life. Alternatively, the dream means someone has stolen your success or has taken credit for something you did. Perhaps you feel that you have been treated unfairly.

Me: This made me laugh. When has anyone not felt that they could have been treated better? True, I guess.

Shooting
To dream that someone is shooting you with a gun suggests you are experiencing some confrontation in your waking life. You may be feeling victimised in some situation.

Me: Quite possibly true. See my explanation above.

Shot
To dream that you are shot represents a form of self-punishment you may be unconsciously imposing on yourself. You may have done something that you are ashamed of or are not proud of.

Me: I was thinking “hahaha” by the time I got to this explanation. Who hasn’t done something they were ashamed of or not proud of? So yes, true.

Optional:

Blood
I thought I should just include this anyway since I couldn’t quite remember the ending.

To see blood in your dream represents life, love, and passion as well as disappointments.

To dream that you are bleeding or losing blood signifies that you are suffering from exhaustion or that you are feeling emotionally drained.

Me: SO BLOODY TRUE. Pun unintended.

That’s it from me tonight. Sweet dreams.

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Halloween

Few days before Halloween…

Me: “I can go as an overworked employee. I hear it’s very popular these days.”

Friend: “Hahaha! Can I go as Agyness Deyne?”

Me: “You can go as Agyness Deyne’s armpit.”

Friend: “I wonder what Agyness Deyne’s armpit looks like.”

Me: “It’s a wonderland.”

Friend: “Hahaha! There are a couple of parties on Saturday. We could do that or we can just find a bar to sit at and laugh at people.”

Me: “We can party-hop and MOCK at people at the same time. We have safety in numbers.”

Friend: “You do realise we can mock each other. Haha!”

Me: “I don’t think I’d look scary enough.”

Friend: “I can give you dark rings and wrinkles. I can give you eye bags too.”

Me: “I am going for a scary look, not trying to look old here. I already have my natural dark rings and wrinkles! I don’t need any more eye bags on top of my natural ones!!”

Friend: “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!”

On Saturday night itself…

Me (in costume): “There is a bunch of girls walking towards me and they are all in costume. There is Catwoman, Slutty Nerd, Slutty Zorro and other assorted slutty people. I feel very self-conscious for them and myself.”

Friend: “Hahaha! Take a pic with them.”

Me: “No, it’s embarrassing enough.”

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Sorry, Steve

This was too long for twitter but too precious to not record it down for posterity’s sake.

It happened the day after Steve Jobs passed away. I had come home from work and was picking at the food on the dining table. My mum looked at me and started grinning.

Me: “What?” [suspiciously]

Mum: “You said you wanted the new iPhone 5 in December?”

Me: “Yes… Why?”

Mum: “But the man who made the iPhone died yesterday?”

Me: “Uh huh…”

[I still couldn’t see where this was going.]

Mum: “Then you don’t need to get it anymore! That man died. No one to make the iPhone 5.”

My face froze midway. Well, twisted to be exact. I didn’t know to laugh or cry or do both at the time.

Long pause.

“It doesn’t matter. There will still be a new iPhone. I still want to get it.”

“You sure? The man died. It won’t be as good. You better get another phone.”

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Big fish

If you conduct a google search for this phrase “Big fish in a small pond”, this website will give you this meaning:

“People who are important but only within their limited circle of influence.”

The converse phrase is “small fish in a big pond”.

The phrases are often used to convey the degree of ambition a person has – if they are content to stay in a small place or seek out a chance to grow into a “big fish”.

I remember someone asking me about this “big fish versus big pond” conundrum once because she thought I was wasting my talent in a small firm when I could probably grow and fulfill my ambitions in a larger organisation. I think I kept quiet then but to be honest, I had been mulling over it and biding my time since 2009.

Anyway, recently I blogged that I have made a big decision more than a month ago after much discussions with my close friends. Then on 20 September, I had an insightful chat with a mentor of sorts. He gave me so much useful career advice that I was trying to type as much as I can remember down after we parted.

What he said to me that day reaffirmed and validated my initial decision. But I think what was more important (and what made me felt better) was that he said the things I wanted to hear. Yet he was right in many ways.

Ok, there’s a tangent here. He also said I look very young and he thought I was only 26 years old. He is the seventh or eighth person who said I look young in the past two months. The sixth person had called me a young kid few weekends and someone I met at a party thought I was only 23.

Have I taken a youth elixir I didn’t know?! Maybe it’s my longish floppy rockstar hair that has been creating the youthful aura. Bet you want to be in my funky shoes now. If only my good looks can help me grow a bit taller.

SO. Guess this is it. I’ll be starting afresh and hopefully I have made the right choice for my future. I am fearful of the changes I have to adapt, and yet I am optimistic because I am confident that I will thrive no matter where I am. I am that good at what I do after all.

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Lamb chops

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Bet you couldn’t resist saying “play along” after the headline and now you’ve got an ear-worm in your head as the song keeps playing over and over and over again.

But just look at the heavenly ambrosia-like plate of nice juicy lamb cutlets and hot crispy potato wedges with a side of crunchy salad in the picture above. Even the brown gravy to complement the lamb was delicious down to the last drop.

Tell me you can resist that and I will show you a human who has yet tasted the best lamb cutlets ever.

I had it for supper on Saturday for the second time in my life and I can’t stop thinking about it until now. To think I only ate it for the first time a few weeks ago. My life was nothing before I met this dish. Nothing, I tell you.

Seriously. Everything about this dish is just so awesome. Look at it. If you were not a meat lover before, you ought to be now.

The meat is tender, with the right amount of juicy fats lacing the sides of the bone. You dip a piece of the meat into the succulent brown gravy. There is a slight tinge of smoky crispiness as you chew into it, letting the gravy swirl around.

I just made myself hungry.

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The peeking sun

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The next day after I had blogged about the beautiful sunset I saw last week, Mother Nature decided to give me another treat.

I was walking my usual route to work and I saw sun rays peeking out from some fluffy clouds. It was gorgeous and I didn’t even have to run the picture through any filter. Amazing, huh?

As I stood there admiring the natural beauty, I thought to myself: Wow, I’m lucky.

It’s moments like this that lets you appreciate the simple things in life.

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Crazy, stupid love

“You’re the perfect combination of sexy and cute.”

Staying awake all night talking about themselves.

Finding the pillow that forms perfectly to the shape of their heads.

Talking and laughing for hours lying in bed and drinking wine.

Asking each other personal questions and answering truthfully.

Continue talking for hours until someone finally falls asleep.

Pulling the cover over them, tucking them in and kissing them goodnight and falling asleep next to each other.

Spending a huge amount of time together shopping, eating, dining, playing.

Ignoring others to spend more time with each other.

Laughing non-stop.

Making silly dance moves in the middle of nowhere.

Grinning stupidly at each other. Smiling stupidly at the phone in public.

Falling in love with each other.

They spend their entire lives looking at other people in love and thinking that those people must live on another planet and that love is something elusive.

Turns out they just want to be like those people who are in love.

Now that they have met each other, they really believe that there is one true love for everyone.

Suddenly grand romantic gestures do not seem stupid anymore.

They are each other’s soul mate. Some would say they have found the love of their life.

They don’t know if things will work out, they don’t know what’s going to happen, but they will never give up. They will never stop trying. They will continue fighting for each other.

Because they have found their soul mate. And you never give up on your soul mate. And if you fought hard enough for that person, your one true love would always work out.

Remember, when you find the one, you never give up.

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Sunset boulevard

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Yesterday evening, I stepped out of my house, deeply immersed in choosing the next song on my playlist, just like any regular day. As I walked along the pathway towards the direction of my destination, I looked up and what I saw made me paused. The sky was covered with a pink glossy hue with streaks of blue and speckles of gold.

From where I stood, the view (pictured above) was breathtaking. And I spent the next few minutes, thinking how fortunate I was to be there at the right time to appreciate the beauty.

It also made me realised it was the first time in a long while that I finally saw a sunset again. I have been so busy lately with work and school that I haven’t taken time out to enjoy the simple pleasures in life.

Perhaps this was the universe’s way of reminding me to stop more often (and take a picture of the sunset and blog about it). As I spent the next few quiet moments walking on, I caught myself smiling.

It had been a good day. I made someone’s day because I surprised her with a little gift sent via snail mail. When she emailed and texted me to thank and tell me how happy she was, I kept grinning non-stop. Cheering someone up really does make you happy as well.

When I met up with my mates at our regular haunt later that night, it was a friend’s birthday and it was amazing how spontaneous how everyone was. When the cake arrived, we started clapping boisterously and singing “Happy Birthday” really REALLY LOUDLY and out of tune with one another. At a crowded cafe. Where there were living people present.

And we repeated that not once or twice but FIVE frigging times. Yes, we sang “Happy Birthday” six times in different languages. Someone even played the tune on a virtual piano on his iPad. The birthday girl sang along despite having so much difficulty trying not to faint from embarrassment. Another friend performed a solo in such a dramatic fashion (thrice) that we couldn’t from shaking from laughter.

And we kept laughing and laughing and laughing. I nearly keeled over from laughing so much. It was such an enjoyable night out that we went home later than expected and yet it was all worth it.

As I walked home that night, I couldn’t stop smiling. It had been such a great day.

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Your time is limited

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Four days ago when I read that Steve Jobs has passed away, my mind went blank for a bit. I had expected him to live on for a few more decades, especially since he had just stepped down from his CEO post at Apple in late August.

I had expected Jobs to create a few more revolutionary products that will wow my pants off until I hit old age. Throughout my life, Jobs had made me hanker after the iMac, iPod, iPhone and now iPad. And now, to think that there may never be another genius like him was a shock.

The irony was that I had written about him briefly in my editor’s letter for the October issue. In fact, it was probably the nth time I mentioned Apple in all my columns. It’s funny how life works.

Many tributes poured in for Jobs that entire day. Most of the updates found on social networks were some of Jobs’ quotes. Reading through them were inspiring. It was impressive how someone whom I have never met and who did not know of my existence made me reevaluate my life that day.

I texted a few friends that morning to share with them my thoughts and one of them managed to annoy me that with her comments. But one made me laughed so much that day because our conversation diverged into other unrelated topics.

Anyway, I just spent 15 minutes reading Jobs’ commencement address delivered in 2005 to the graduates of Stanford and his speech struck a poignant chord in me.

Here are a few quotes that stood out for me.

On trusting that life will somehow work out for you:

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

On finding what you love:

Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love… Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.

On living life as if each day were your last:

I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

And the quote that hit me the hardest that morning is the one in the image above.

What Jobs said was and still is true. I truly believe in the values he shared that day.

If you spent your life trying to live up to other people’s expectations or trying to please them, you lose sight of who you really are and what truly makes you happy. If you live in fear and constantly worrying about other people’s opinions of you, you will never be happy because you will always wonder about the “what ifs”.

Remember, your happiness comes first. Everything else is secondary.

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Laughing at Becks

I had so much fun laughing at David Beckham that I want to share this video with you. It’ll be worth every bit of those four minutes of your life to watch how Ellen DeGeneres (she’s one cool gay chick!) bullies Becks into doing silly things.

My face is still red and hot from laughing so much. I think I shall watch it again.