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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. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

4/27/2005 06:39:00 pm - Moving

I'm moving tomorrow morning. Took leave today. Here's a record of what I did today:

  1. Cleared the masterbed room of my stuff, which involved the following:
    • moving my TV and DVD player from the Masterbed room to my mum's room
    • moving the sofa down the stairs alone
    • emptying the wardrobe of my clothes.
  2. Moved best friend's TV, DVD and VCD player from my mum's room to the Masterbed room
  3. Packed clothes into a box
  4. Got the grass cut (way way long overdue).
    • Was quite satisfied with the service.
    • If anyone is interested, I can pass you the contact.
    • I tried advertising on Craig's list for a grass cutter/gardener some months back but to no avail.
  5. Got the contractor next door to fill the patch of sunken ground next to the garage with soil
    • My next action is to call him one month from now for him to plaster that patch of sunken ground, repair the garage shed and remove the fence.
  6. Got rid of old newspapers and clothes.
  7. Redirected my credit card mail from Standard Chartered Bank to my Clementi address
  8. Confirmed the time of move tomorrow and the price with the mover.
How I wish I have someone to help me. Doing items 4 and 5 together today was a good call because it means I save a trip down to Dunearn Road from Clementi.

I miss my camera, I want to take pictures of Dunearn Road before I move, capture how the house looks like with all the boxes below (I'm in the study now).

I also managed to buy two books today: David Ogilvy's Confessions of an Advertising Man and Michael Ondaatje's The Collected Works of Billy The Kid.

I managed to read a bit of the Ogilvy book. He has an amazing ability to tell good stories that keep you engaged. I wanna be a storyteller too! Here's an amusing excerpt from the Background chapter of Ogilvy's book:
Max Beerbohm once told S.N. Behrman, "If I was endowed with wealth I should start a great advertising campaign in all the principal newspapers. The advertisements would consist of one short sentence, printed in huge block letters - a sentenced that I once heard spoken by a husband to a wife: 'My dear, nothing in this world is worth buying.' "
Another interesting story from when Ogilvy used to work as a chef at the Hotel Majestic in Paris:
Our chef patissier was equally eccentric. Every night he left the kitchen with a chicken concealed in the crown of his Homburg hat. When he went on vacation he made me stuff two dozen peaches into the legs of his long underwear. But when the King and Queen of England were given a state dinner at Versailles, this roguish genius was chosen from all the patissiers in France to prepare the ornamental baskets of sugar and the petits fours glaces.
Got to dash off to meet girlfriend now.

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Friday, April 22, 2005

4/22/2005 10:15:00 pm - Dashing Boon

In the name of "blog first, think later", I want to record down the 12 % or $217 discount I got from my electrician. From my mum's account, the work of the painter and electrician is quite good. I'll be verifying it tomorrow when I go to see the flat and pay the electrician. For those who don't know, I'm moving back to my humble Clementi HDB flat. I look forward to spending time there with my girlfriend, playing the guitar and reading my books. And being able to buy food downstairs. Woohoo!

Been dashing about so much lately and doing way too much (compared to the very little I used to do) in very little time. I'm so aware of all my time being spent. You know time, unlike money, can't be kept, it just slips away from you whether you want it to or not, and there's nothing you can do about it. Which brings me to the topic of time management, something I've been trying to learn lately. But more of that another day cos I digress.

I also had lunch with Irwin and Janice today. I described my conversion from anti-relationship and anti-committment Boon to being a Boon who is in a committed and monogamous relationship. Janice was shocked when I told her that I would have regretted her not being able to introduce her Japanese girlfriends to me if I was single but I don't feel that way now because "One is enough for me" and what I described was a counterfactual situation where I was single, which is not applicable in the actual world. See here for an obituary of David Lewis, a philosopher who believed in and defended real possible worlds.

She said that I don't sound like myself anymore (How is that possible? That sounds like the Persistence Question of Identity) and that I no longer live in a "spontaneous" manner. But she was impressed. I had compared my recent conversion to that of Saul to Paul.

I also had a hectic day at work. After work I rushed off for my bike lesson. I just finished my third bike lesson, which had two parts. The first part was going up and down a slope and the second part was riding through a figure of 8 course and a crank course. Surprisingly, being as blur as I was, I passed the first part of the practical lesson. Riding a bike is fun!

Now, I have to dash off to meet my girlfriend. I should start calling myself "dashing boon". And I still owe her something, she's gonna think I'm so free to put up this post but not free to do her stuff..It's coming soon Honey....

Dinner here I come!!!

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Thursday, April 21, 2005

4/21/2005 12:59:00 am - Open Source Yoga?

I never thought that yoga could be the subject of a copyright lawsuit.

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Wednesday, April 20, 2005

4/20/2005 11:26:00 pm - Is Your Illness All In the Mind?

Controversial and intriguing stuff via PsyBlog: Is Your Illness All In the Mind?

Nonetheless, this mind-body link is something that I would like to believe in, having seen more than one case of how stress and negative mindsets can lead to irreversible physical illness.

The HeartMath Report also seems interesting. It is "a journal devoted to developments in how thoughts and emotions affect our health, performance and relationships.".

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Saturday, April 16, 2005

4/16/2005 01:19:00 am - My blogshares value

Still don't really know what it means, but my blogshares value has risen, quite dramatically, to B$1,720.01.

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4/16/2005 12:39:00 am - Why I blog so little about my personal life

I'm listening to Hysteria from Def Leppard's Hysteria album. I'm gonna go into hiding. Oh boy, I never realised how dangerous it can be to talk to a blogger. Hmmm, now a certain group of people I've never met before are gonna have views of me and my girlfriend that I may not be entirely comfortable with. And I'm like too lazy to do anything about it at this moment.

Anyway, I met up with a good friend ABM last night. She said she read my blog and wondered why I never put up any of my personal stuff online. Instead, I only put up boring quotes from obscure people that make her put her hand to her mouth and yawn and fall asleep. The only post of mine that got her attention was my post on how to fall into a woman's arms without falling into her hands.

I told her that I'm not comfortable with the possibility of my boss, my colleague, my aunty, my cousin, my younger nephews and nieces reading about my personal life. Also not comfortable with not knowing how the information may end up, that it could be printed or forwarded in emails. I find that scary for someone who values his privacy. But then, I may just be paranoid in thinking that people would find me or show that kind of interest in my life. Still, everyone should know how to blog safely. And one way to do so is to be anonymous.

So, yah my personal life actually quite interesting one I guess. I started to realise that since I started recording my life in notebooks. Another source of this realisation was the attentive and rapt looks of my friends when I regale them with tales from my life, tales that I happen to remember, tales of blunders and misadventures and my skewed perspective of the world. All with my own unique dose of humour.

But since I never really got the chance to share with an interested audience the stuff that I really find interesting (ideas from philosophers and writers) in real life, I do it online and quote passages from writers and philosophers that I find interesting. I can just offload and no one will fall asleep on me...

In any case, I started another blog somewhere else and most of the more private stuff will be there with password protected posts.

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Thursday, April 07, 2005

4/07/2005 02:15:00 am - Seneca on time management and death

More stuff from Seneca that struck me:

But putting things off is the biggest waste of life: it snatches away each day as it comes, and denies us the present by promising the future. The greatest obstacle to living is expectancy, which hangs upon tomorrow and loses today. You are arranging what lies in Fortune's control and abandoning what lies in yours. What are you looking at? To what goal are you straining? The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately. Listen to the cry of our greatest poet, who as though inspired with divine utterance sings salutary verses:

Life's finest day for wretched mortals here
Is always first to flee.

Why do you linger?' he means. 'Why are you idle? If you don't grasp it first, it flees.' And even if you do grasp it, it will still flee. So you must match time's swiftness with your speed in using it, and you must drink quickly as though from a rapid stream that will not always flow.

This passage from Seneca reminds me of Pink Floyd's

The poet is telling you about the day - and about this very day that is escaping. So can it be doubted that for wretched mortals - that is, the preoccupied - the finest day is always the first to flee? Old age overtakes them while they are still mentally childish, and they face it unprepared and unarmed. For they have made no provision for it, stumbling upon it suddenly and unawares, and without realizing that is was approaching day by day. Just as travellers are beguiled by conversation or reading or some profound meditation, and find they have arrived at their destination before they knew they were approaching it; so it is with this unceasing and extremely fast-moving journey of life, which waking or sleeping we make at the same pace - the preoccupied become aware of it only when it is over.

His thoughts on death:
I ask you, wouldn't you say that anyone who took the view that a lamp was worse off when it was put out than when it was lit an utter idiot? We, too, are lit and put out. We suffer in the intervening period, but at either end of it there is deep tranquillity....We are wrong in holding that death follows after, when in fact it precedes as well as succeeds. Death is all that was before us. What does it matter, after all, whether you cease to be or
never begin, when the result of either is that you do not exist?
Seneca died a slow and painful death while remaining serene and dictating to secretaries. Here is an account of Seneca's death, which I decided to google after hearing Yang Yue talk about it over beer tonight.

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