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The purpose of life

IMG_1768-1.JPG This is a pic of a birthday card that I thought was meaningful.

AND Whaaaaaat?! It’s August already?! I can’t believe it.

I had a long well-deserved vacation in July and in that time I learned so much about myself. Now I feel I know my likes and dislikes even better than before. I’m starting to grow into my own person and I no longer have that fear of not fitting in with others. Why? Because I no longer care whether I am socially awkward or if I’m going against the social norms or whether people like me!

The most important thing I’ve learned in July is that life is short and you have to do what YOU want NOW; waiting for others to either make up their mind to follow you or force you to do what they like is a pure waste of your time. Why? Because life is short! Every moment you are not enjoying in it is a moment of your life wasted. The right moment is now and this moment is the best time of your life.

Also, the best relationship you can have is with yourself. Love and nurture yourself, because you deserve the best. Agree?

“The purpose of life is to be happy.” — Dalai Lama

And before I sign off, this song has been on repeat in my playlist the past two (three?) weeks and I just love the music video and the energy. It’s one of the most romantic, bouncy songs ever. Hahaha! I’ve listened to it so many time and I still get the feels. It also helps that Taylor Swift looks hot in it. Mega feels. Try it and see if you get the feels too. I think you would just fall in love.

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Minnie the moocher

I love this song! This has been on my nighttime playlist for the past one week. I love the tune, the trumpet and the chorus — basically how the music is arranged. The 1930s were a great era for jazz music. While electronic genre is my all-time favourite, jazz is high up among my top three list. I used to buy jazz CDs back then when CDs were all the rage. How I wish I could travel back in time and visit The Cotton Club in all its pomp and glory. Ho de Ho de Ho! Hi de hi de Hi! He de he de he!

Wonderfully catchy. I still have no idea what the great Cab Calloway is singing about though. I’m too busy twirling around the room to this song to figure the lyrics out. It’s such a perfect ditty for Sunday (or any other day), isn’t it?

This reminds me of the Golden Age that Woody Allen featured in his movie Midnight in Paris. That’s one of my favourite films of all time too. It has great cinematography, lighting, music, a whimsical storyline and, most importantly, nearly all my favourite artists and writers of the era. It also has a killer soundtrack to boot.

I’ve always wanted to travel back in time to experience all the glories (or tragedies) and great moments that make history what it is today. Since young, I’ve always thought I belong to another era and would feel more at home in the olden days. I guess that’s why I love history and films about historic periods. And that’s why I love Midnight In Paris; it was as though Woody read my mind and brought my character as Gil to life.

All this nostalgia is making me wanna watch the film again. Be right back!

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Happy Mother’s Day from me to you


(Oscars 2014: Watch Jared Leto’s Amazing Acceptance Speech for Supporting Actor)

I’m about two months late, but I’ve been meaning to post this since the night I watched it. And it’s a happy coincidence, seeing as it’s Mother’s Day tomorrow, this is a wonderful dedication.

I first read about it on my social media feeds, then I went home to watch the video of Jared Leto accepting his award. I’m unabashed to say my eyes welled up when he looked at his mother.

Here’s an excerpt from Time.com:

In 1971, in Bossier City, Louisiana, there was a teenage girl who was pregnant with her second child. She was a high-school dropout and a single mom, but somehow she managed to make a better life for herself and her children. She encouraged her kids to be creative and work hard and do something special. That girl was my mother and she’s here tonight. I just want to say ‘I love you mom, thank you for teaching me to dream.’

I got goosebumps just reading his speech again. One day when I’m up on stage accepting an award, I would want to also dedicate it to an amazing woman who went through hardships and made sacrifices just so I would always have a roof over my head and a home to go back when I grew disillusioned with life outside. She did everything and asked for nothing in return, all because I was her child. Mothers are amazing, aren’t they?

I also like how Leto weaved social responsibility and political support for current events into his short, yet meaningful, speech.

To all the dreamers out there around the world watching this tonight in places like Ukraine and Venezuela, I want to to say we are here, and as you struggle to make your dreams happen and live the impossible, we are thinking of you tonight … This is for the 36 million people who have lost the battle to AIDS. And to those of you who have ever felt injustice because of who you are and who you love, I stand here in front of the world with you and for you.

I wonder if he had to pre-write a draft or it came naturally to him amid all the blood-rushing-to-head adrenaline and excitement of winning the first Oscar of that night. If it was the latter, then he must be damn intelligent and thoughtful! I am definitely going to model my acceptance speeches after him from now so they can be as amazing, thoughtful and heartfelt as his!

Source: Jared Leto’s amazing speech at the Oscars 2014

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You wear smug so well

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(Here’s an inspirational quote to let you feel like you’ve enriched your life somewhat from reading this blog post.)

Hang on, you mean it’s April already? You mean we just went through three months of the new year as quickly as a flick of wrist? That can’t be right, can it? Geez, what have I done with my life in 2014? So much for saying 2014 would be a year of change. Hahaha! Resolution, FAIL.

So my exams ended on 24 February and I’ve been chilling since then with no care or worry in the world. It was awesome! In the process of letting my brain turn to vegetable after putting it through three years of mental hardship, I discovered quite a few things about myself that surprised me. So the “proverb” (not an exact idiom so to speak but the general feeling people talk about as they mature) is true; the older you get, the better you know yourself and the things you like or want.

Disclaimer: The truth is many people may not think I am mature because someone recently said I have the mental age of a teenager. That made me laugh out loud because it was so true. I’m extremely childish… If you get to know me in real life. So I think it’s better that you and I remain online buddies. Ha!

Anyway, here are three things I’ve realised about myself:

1. I have an obsessive personality. Once I get hooked to something or someone, I go all out and immerse myself with everything about them. I become so intense and focused that I devote all my free hours and thinking time to finding out more of a particular thing or person I’m into during this obsessive period. I can’t stop (and won’t stop) until all my energy is spent or I finally get sick of it. My obsession can last for as short as two weeks or as long as a few months. And I let nothing get into my way, which is pretty unhealthy if you think about it, because that can scare normal people off (if they knew). So far, only a few close friends know of my addict-like behaviour. Thank god they still love me! Oops.

2. The thing is I don’t really care who knows or what others may think about me. Yes, they can assume I’m childish or selfish or insane and be totally judgemental about me (even though they do not know me well at all). I don’t give a fuck! Honestly, I just want to be happy and laugh a lot all the time. I want to do the things I like or enjoy every day. And if I’m obsessed with someone or something, so be it! My heart feels fluffy and I’m always on a natural high; that’s all that matters to me. Remember, what clever Dr Seuss once said?

Those who mind won’t matter and those who matter won’t mind.

3. I definitely do not like pop or country music. In fact, I’ve deleted many pop songs from my iPhone playlist because I have never listened to them. I enjoy certain indie music and jazz tunes at times. I love house, trance and dance tracks when I’m on the go because of the energy! But my topmost favourites are electronic and chill-out lounge tracks (nearly all the songs that I’ve featured on this blog over the years can attest to that). Like hello, sexy times and soothing feels! How can anyone resist?

Case in point: The latest song on repeat in my playlist this week

You’re pushing me away and then you’re pulling. You wear smug so very well. If you were in love with me, I could never tell. You ask me, you ask me just to leave you, but then the bow breaks and it’s all through.

So hot, right? Go on, enjoy it. You’re welcome.

Find out more of the band and lyrics here.

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The Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s Golden Globe show 2014

This year’s Golden Globes’ opening monologue by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler had me in stitches for nine whole minutes. They were so witty that my face was so scrunched up from laughing so hard. And now my right eye hurts. But it’s so good to laugh out loud for so long. Remember my last post on why laughing is good for you? 😀

If you thought Tina and Amy were hilarious last year (which I reviewed on this blog), you need to watch how they topped that performance with this year’s epic opening act. They are simply two of the funniest and seriously intelligent women in Hollywood right now. I can’t wait to watch the full show just to see what other hilarious antics Fey and Poehler got up to.

Here are some of my favourite one-liners from the dynamic comedic duo (Telegraph UK):

Tina: “The Wolf of Wall Street shocked viewers by using the F-word 506 times in three hours. Which is the new record. Unless you count my dad trying to hang some curtains rods in our living room.”

Tina: “Amy Poehler is nominated for her work on Parks and Recreation.”
Amy: “I believe Amy is here tonight. Can we get a shot of her?”
[Camera pans to Jennifer Lawrence with Amy Poehler’s name at the bottom of the screen]
Tina: “She looks fantastic!”
Amy: “She looks amazing! Wow, radiant! It is hard to believe she’s a 42-year-old mother of two!”

Tina: “Meryl Streep is so brilliant in August: Osage County, proving that there are still great parts in Hollywood for Meryl Streeps over 60.”

The one about Meryl Streep is hilarious because few weeks ago Streep made an acceptance speech at Napalms Film Festival about how she’s grateful for the great roles she has received even though she’s over 60 years old and that there’s still opportunities for older women in Hollywood.

And this one below is my personal top favourite. Fey delivered it with enough deadpan aplomb. And the camera immediately panned to Sandra Bullock (George Clooney’s co-star in Gravity) who was laughing so hard she was slapping her knee. Priceless.

Tina: “Gravity is nominated for Best Film. It’s the story of how George Clooney would rather float away into space and die than spend one more minute with a woman his own age.”

Tina:”Matthew McConaughey did amazing work this year. For his role in Dallas Buyers Club, he lost 45 pounds. Or what actresses call being in a movie.”

Amy: “One of the most nominated films this year is 12 Years a Slave. I loved 12 Years a Slave and I can honestly say that after seeing that film, I will never look at slavery the same way again.”
Tina: “Wait, how were you—”
Amy: “And what a year for television!”

Amy: “Before earning a Golden Globe nomination for his first ever actinrole in Captain Phillips, Barkhad Abdi was working as a limousine driver in Minnesota. There’s such a beautiful life lesson here, everyone: Sleep with your limo driver tonight. Before he gets famous.”

Amy: “A lot of nominated shows this year are actually on Netflix. House of Cards. Orange Is the New Black. Enjoy it while it lasts, Netflix. Because you’re not going to be feeling so smug in a couple of years when SnapChat is up here accepting Best Drama.”

What a great way to chase away those Monday blues. Seriously, go click on the link above already.

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LOL every day to keep all illnesses away

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Photo credit: Distractify.com

The 28 Most Flawless Responses To A Wrong Number Text…LOL! (http://distractify.com/fun/fails/24-flawless-responses-to-wrong-number-texts/)

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Photo credit: Distractify.com

The 35 Naughtiest Dogs On The Planet. You’ll Laugh So Hard When You See What They Did! (http://distractify.com/fun/fails/dogs-who-are-shamelessly-proud-of-what-they-just-did/)

Above are some of the funniest photos I’ve read in December 2013 and they are still funny in 2014. Both webpages are still open as tabs on my FireFox page. I can’t bear to close them just yet, because I still laugh whenever I read them again. And I’d laugh so hard that my stomach aches and my eyes tear. And since I’m a generous person, I am sharing them with you today, because I want you to laugh as heartily as I did. Haven’t you heard? Laughing really hard is equivalent to doing crunches and it’s more fun too. Fun and beneficial for health; what more can a rather lazy person ask for?

From the Telegraph UK (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/7635143/Laughter-really-is-the-best-medicine-as-doctors-find-it-can-be-as-healthy-as-exercise.html):

“… the high you get from a giggling fit was similar to the endorphin rush from exercise. … it can reduce your risk of a heart attack and diabetes and generally regulate the body’s vital functions.”

From the Discovery channel (http://dsc.discovery.com/tv-shows/curiosity/topics/10-reasons-why-laughing-good-for-you.htm):

“… laughter improves blood flow, suppresses stress hormones and gives you a burst of exercise. … laughter has been shown to increase levels of salivary immunoglobulin A (IgA), an important antibody that fights bacteria and infections, especially those in the respiratory system.”

Enjoy and spread the laughter!

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How I made peace with 2013

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Happy New Year! Have you been nursing a hangover for the past few hours or has the first day of a brand new year been subdued? I’ve been feeling sluggish since I woke up, after having a late night out that had no alcohol involved. How amazing is that? Well, maybe just a few sips of muscato to match the festivity. But I don’t regret it at all, because I had one of the best and most memorable New Year’s Eve celebrations ever and my body is still paying for it. Unlike last year when 2012 was refusing to go away quietly without a fight (it was pouring heavily that day), today has been peaceful. I am so psyched that I can tell you confidently that the smell of optimism and change is in the air.

For this year’s round-up, I am going to do something a bit different. I am not going to write about the things I regret doing (or not doing) in the past 12 months, or whine about my losses and sadness, or grumble about not meeting my goals or career progress, because those are in the past and they should remain there. Why should I bring them back again? So I can make myself depressed again? IT would be far healthier if I just focus on what I can do from now on instead. Agree?

So to sum up my life in 2013, it’s that I’ve learned to be grateful for the things I have, the people I have by my side, my good health, my good looks, my job, my intelligence, my earning power (that has kindly allowed me to splurge on ridiculously expensive branded shoes), my growing maturity and ability to trust my instincts better. I can also let you in on another secret: I have never loved myself more than this moment and I love me more every day. 😀

Showing gratitude and learning to love yourself more may sound simple, but it is not easy to do when you have discontent in your life or when you feel lost or if you keep harping on the past or worrying about the future. The one new useful skill I learned this year was meditation. And it has helped me greatly in being at ease with myself. Here’s a quote that I came across recently and I hope it gives you the encouragement to find peace within yourself:

‘If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present.’

Anyway, in other exciting news, I have compiled — without the help of WordPress — a decent round-up of my top five most popular posts on this blog from 1 Jan to today. I have even made little comments next to their links to encourage you to view them (hint!) again to see why they were so popular.

Top posts from 1 Jan 2013 – 31 Dec 2013

  1. Care for each other even when you’re angry (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/12/24/care-for-each-other-even-when-youre-angry/)
    — Recalling an argument I had with someone and how I realised I needed to grow up.
  2. I woke up wanting to kiss you (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/04/05/i-woke-up-wanting-to-kiss-you/) — I was missing the same person I fought with and looking at some artwork by Emin inspired me to blog about how much I wanted to kiss her again.
  3. It’s my 30th birthday (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/12/16/its-my-30th-birthday/) — Narrating about the major events before I hit a big milestone in my life in one of my longest blog posts ever.
  4. Lorax made me LOL (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/03/11/lorax-made-me-lol/) — This was one of the top posts of 2012 and I had never expected me gushing over how adorable the bears in the movie to be so popular.
  5. When you really matter to someone (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/02/25/when-you-really-matter-to-someone/) — One of my saddest entries of the year after I was frustrated and had my heart broken by the same person. Again.

The number of views in 2023 was nearly double from the previous year’s views. Amazingly, huh?! Hahaha!

And since you’ve been such loyal readers, here are two BONUS posts that would keep you coming back for more. What can I say? I’m like Santa Claus, only better-looking. Haha!

  1. Tom Ford and Richard Buckley Forever (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/10/06/tom-ford-and-richard-buckley-forever/) — A touching love story of how two stylish good-looking men met, fell in love, changed each others’ lives and adopted a baby together. What’s not to like?
  2. Talking to you makes my day (https://theimaginarator.wordpress.com/2012/04/21/you-totally-make-my-day/) — Another top post from 2012 and it was about how some of the happiest days in my life was texting with the same person.

Right, so I have no New Year resolutions to make, because stats in general have shown that most people tend to give up on their lists after three months. So, I am going to start on my work now. Yes, yes, my line between holidays and work has always been this blurry. I believe in being productive whenever I can, and not having my life being dictated by the calendar. You, on the other hand, have my blessing to remain horizontal in bed and enjoy the rest of your day. Have fun!

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The first step towards getting somewhere

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“The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.” —Unknown

Very true and wise, don’t you think? I’m been feeling so lazy recently it’s crazy how one can just lay in bed all day watching TV and playing on the iPhone. I’ve lost that bit of motivation somewhat in waking up early to have breakfast and get started on existing work or driving for more new business. I’ve been too … comfortable. And it scares me.

I recently attended a course on entrepreneurship, which discusses about the types of entrepreneurs, entrepreneurial traits and whether they are born with the qualities and if their circumstances that made them that way. It was a good module, because I finally learned how to spell “entrepreneur” correctly without struggling after the “p” part. Haha! But seriously, it taught me to look at myself — my behaviour in general, my attitude towards situations or people and my surroundings — and I have determined that I currently lack drive, because I’ve been too comfortable with life.

I still read a lot, but I’m not progressing any further with the new information and knowledge I’ve been absorbing like a sponge. I’m on a plateau and I need a push off it. I need to remind myself how thrilling it is to be filled with vigour in clinching new business, the pride in churning out quality work before the deadlines and (this is the most important bit) the joy in receiving that paycheque at the end of it.

Deep down, I know I’m born to do more with my time in this world. But the only way for me to do that is to stop sitting on (actually, it’s lying down most of the times) the plushy bed and get up (to work on the computer) to do stuff — useful things that will lift me up from the plateau to the peak of a menacing-looking mountain with a nice snowy cap. Perhaps I should take notes from a true entrepreneur, Richard Branson, who wanted more in life and dared to set up so many businesses and challenged the norm and was not afraid to fail and keep trying. In doing so, he became a knight for his bravery in the corporate world. Maybe if I ever falter and revert back to lazy mode, I should just keep asking myself: “WWRBD (What would Richard Branson do)?”

Sounds like a great doable plan. I have a totally smug expression now. If only you could see me now.

Right, so it’s five minutes more before my alarm rings for me to get ready for one full day of work. I’m gonna head out there to try seizing the day for myself. I hope this blog post has sort of inspired you to do the same. Carpe diem!

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Laugh at dogs that photobomb

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Photo credit: REDDIT ELVENDUDE

I laughed, when I saw this pic last week, and I laughed again, when I saw it in my phone’s photo album today. The innocent expressions are so hilarious and I don’t think the dogs had any idea what was going on. Innocence is so adorable!

There’s a series of photos here that you can view and laugh to your heart’s content, though I have no idea how many of them were photoshopped (some you can blatantly see they are fake).

On Saturday, I was accosted by a McDonald’s in-house staff who was recruiting bystanders on the street to join the fast food giant. It was the company’s country-wide recruitment day and I happened to walk past the restaurant at 9:30am on my way to get coffee. Lucky me. She took my friendly smile and eye contact for consent to come forward to pitch to me how great working at McDonald’s would be for me.

Holding onto a piece of paper illustrating the hourly wages (which were not a lot) and the overtime pay (also not a lot) in one hand, while holding onto my arm with the other, she said it’s a fun environment and I would learn many things and it’d be a good way to occupy my time. In my mind, I was thinking I didn’t know I look so relaxed and unburdened by work stress. Or maybe I look jobless? Or in need of a distraction?

She added that if I join the company, I could easily rise up the career ladder to become a store manager of McDonald’s within one year, because I am young, plus I can read and write. She then gestured to her store manager who was standing nearby pitching to some middle-aged housewives, saying that she had learned the ropes and climbed up the ranks within a short time, so I shouldn’t be afraid to try the job out, because I look like I can achieve anything. Should I be flattered? Hahaha!

She then looked at me so earnestly that I nearly wanted to put my name down on her list to help her meet her target. She tried sweetening the deal by saying I could just put my name down on the list first and decline to come for the interview later. But I resisted, despite my overwhelming desire to help, because I know I shouldn’t waste anyone’s time if I’m not interested. Ahem. So take note, young job seekers out there.

I have to admit though, I’m keen to find out how McDonald’s recruits and selects its staff. So one day, I might just walk in to the restaurant to apply for a job to test its processes on fairness and effectiveness. So erm… Watch out! I might just “photobomb” your recruitment someday!

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Laughter is the best drug

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Two or three weeks ago, I happened to turn on the TV one morning and an episode from Sex And The City was already playing halfway. I immediately settled down to watch it, because I secretly adore the show, even though I won’t tell anyone about it!

It was the second episode of the first season, so everything looked retro, even though it was only 1998 then. But it was still hilarious. It was about beautiful people, aka models, and whether dating them is a privilege or a chore (more like death sentence the way how it was portrayed in the show). And how less beautiful people, aka 99% of ordinary average-looking human beings, behave differently (feel insecure?) when they are around models. Hence, the title Models and Mortals.

The ending was particularly sweet. It was a conversation between Carrie Bradshaw and her Mr Big at the usual cafe that she writes her columns at.

Carrie typing on her laptop (VoiceOver): “I began to realise that being beautiful is like having a rent-controlled apartment overlooking the park — Completely unfair and usually bestowed upon those who deserve it least.”

Mr Big [walks into the cafe and slides into the booth where Carrie is at]: “I’m not interrupting your work, am I?”

Carrie: “Hey, what a surprise.”

Mr Big: “I can’t stay. I’m late for a meeting, but I’ve been thinking about your article on men who date models.”

Carrie: “What about them?”

Mr Big: “First of all, there are so many goddamn gorgeous women in this city.”

Carrie: “What an amazing observation.”

Mr Big: “But the thing is this … after a while, you just wanna be with the one that makes you laugh. Know what I mean?”

And Carrie couldn’t stop smiling after that. I guess she knew what Big meant? I didn’t really get the reference Carrie used in the beginning of the scene about the rent-controlled apartment. Maybe it’s a New York thing.

Anyway, my takeaway from this is that laughter is good. Being with someone who makes you laugh is better. Being able to laugh at the same things with that someone is even better. Being able to laugh at each other all the time? Now that’s gold.