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Record My Mind: Banal Records of a Pedestrian Life

Suffering and evil overwhelm me and I stew in my own juice. 

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

3/08/2005 10:11:00 pm - An Afternoon with Sonny Lim

Despite having slept only 1.5 hours today, I went to meet Sonny. I sent him a text message last night and wanted to bail out on him today because I felt too tired. When he replied that he cancelled two appointments so he could meet me, I could not but change my mind and turn up for our appointment today. In his words "Friendship comes first" and he had missed the first rehearsal and a photoshoot for the next World-In-Theatre play so we could meet. I was honoured and touched. If he could sacrifice committments, I could also sacrifice rest.

Well, I was glad I met him. We relaxed, swam and chatted in the children's water playground area, jacuzzi and pool of his Tanjong Rhu condominium. I sought his views on some personal problems. No wonder he always seems so humourless with me in person but so humourous over email, I realised it was because I always brought up serious humourless topics during our conversations!

During the conversation, I found out that like me, Sonny realised late (later than me) that the world does not operate rationally and that rationality is not a value shared by the majority of the world.


I am suddenly reminded of a passage by Raymond Smullyan in his This Book Needs No Title:
A Paradoxical Rationalist

Once there was a man who was constantly and irritatingly rational. when asked, "Why are you so rational?" he replied: "Because it is irrational to be so rational. Basically I am irrational - I love irrationality; the more the better. The most irrational thing I can do is to be as rational as I am. That is the reason I am so rational."
Back to Sonny

Back to Sonny. He also told me a story about living for the moment. He knew a couple who waited till their kids were 18 years old before planning for their round the world trip. A few weeks before their kids turned 18, the wife died of an asthma attack. The moral of the story: Don't wait to do what you want to do.

We had mee siam after our swim and I showed Sonny how to set up a blog. It was really the good life: good conversation, exercise, and good food when hungry. Sonny's wife, Serena, is a wonderful cook. Thanks for sharing the good life with me, Sonny!

Some History

I met Sonny Lim in 1997 during an Asia In Theatre performance of Herman Hesse's Siddhartha. William Teo (who incidentally was also Lee Hsien Loong's barber) was the director of the play and Sonny Lim was the script writer. At that time, Siddhartha was my favourite book and I never had a favourite book till then. I had stayed back after the play to give my two cents on what I think about the play. That was one of the few times I was glad to have opened my mouth because that led to a friendship with Sonny.

The last time I met Sonny was on 31 May 2005, when he just moved to his new Tanjong Rhu condominium. I know the date because he wrote it on a book he gave me. It was a book on William Teo. Sonny did not want to give the book to someone whom it would be wasted on and he felt that the book would not be wasted on me and that I would understand it. Earlier on during dinner, we had a little intellectual exchange of views on what I felt was lacking in Asia In Theatre and World-In-Theatre performances and he wanted me to read the book to understand William's views better. I finished the book that night. It left an impression on me. Perhaps, I'll write more on the book another time...Just like I was supposed to watch a short film starring Sonny and write a review on it some years back...I still want to do that! The spirit is willing but I keep procrastinating.

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