Friday, May 10, 2019

* "I Call B***S***"

...that a 12 year old child goes to school, a supposedly safe haven and is thrust into a situation where he ends up holding on to a baseball bat in the event that he will go down fighting, I call B***S***

...when American leadership can offer nothing but thoughts and prayers over the last few decades every time there is a mass shooting, I CALL B***S***

...when the American political system has been corrupted by big money lobbyists, I call B***S***

...when the small vocal minority and big money lobbyists prevent common sense gun laws from being enacted, I call B***S***

*this phrase was popularized by Parkland High School school student Emma Gonzales at a rally where she called out the hypocrisy and political shenanigans surrounding attempts to enact common sense gun laws

Monday, March 11, 2019


I've just realized that I haven't posted at all this year.  And last year's posts numbered a measly FIVE.  I attribute it  purely to laziness.

I sometimes blog in my head, making commentaries about various subjects in my mind, thinking that I'll write them down when I get home or when I next turn on the computer but end up not doing it at all.  Much of the commentary involves US politics, the stupidity of Trump, his sycophants, and the messed up political system of America.  Sometimes, it's about our boys, their lives and career paths.  Oftentimes, it's about my current life of splitting time between three countries visiting aging parents, keeping hubby company and visiting the boys.  And I wonder about the what-ifs - what if I had taken a different more traditional path, similar to that of my peers.  What if I had met and married a local guy and stayed in Singapore to raise a family.  What if I had continued practicing clinical medicine.

It's probably part of getting older and conversations with friends have changed from how old our kids are and where they are going to school, to what ones' retirement plans are.  I dug up old pictures recently - pictures from secondary school and junior college.  How little we knew then!  I can see the naivete and innocence in our faces.

As I approach my 55th birthday in a few weeks,  I am thankful for this life and path I have been presented with and followed.  What a life it has been.  It hasn't been the most conventional, and I remain fairly rootless at this ripe old age.  But I have no regrets and look forward to the coming decades and to see what they will bring.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Bah Humbug

This year is probably the least Christmas-sy one in recent memory for us.  We spend the morning working out at the gym, followed by a very non-Christmas-sy lunch of dim sum, followed by an afternoon watching YouTube videos and Netflix then a dinner of Spanish tapas.

My Christmas ornaments have remained in their boxes for the 3rd year in a row....

It's hard to feel Christmas-sy when the rest of the family is not around.  It's times like this that one misses the good ol' days before our nest emptied out...

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

Free-Range Kids

I read this article today encouraging free play and independence in kids today.  It reminded me of my childhood days of biking through our neighborhood with my sister and our friend S who also lived in the same neighborhood.  Such care-free days they were.  We were fearless and imagined ourselves conquering mountains as we rode our bikes at high speed over humps of a short cut trail we took to get home.  We were inspired by Enid Blyton books like the Secret Seven and the Famous Five, searching for adventure in our rather tame environs.  We got our fair share of scrapes and bruises but they did not stop us at all. 

I see the kids in Singapore today, stuck at home or in tuition centers, doing homework or enrichment exercises.  I suspect much of their free time is spent with eyes glued on to a smart phone or tablet either playing games or watching videos.  I bet the optometrists are making good money.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Crazy Rich Asians

There’s been a lot of hype surrounding the release of the movie “Crazy Rich Asians”.  I’ve read the various viewpoints – Asian-American, Singaporean, Malaysian.   I went into the cinema with an open mind, intending to watch it as a RomCom that happens to be set in Singapore.

I was surprised to find myself almost moved to tears when the movie opened with the big band sounding track by Jasmine Chen “Waiting For Your Return”.  I am not sure why it affected me so.  Maybe because I never thought I would see Chinese music being featured so prominently in a Hollywood studio production.

The rest of the movie was enjoyable, with surprisingly good performances from Singapore actors Koh Chieng Mun, Selena Tan, and especially Tan Kheng Hua.  They certainly deserved their roles, and what a refreshing change from the melodramatic performances  we see from them in  MediaCorp productions!

Whether or not one agrees with how good the movie is, it IS breaking box offices records .  But what I see as most impactful that has come out of this production are the conversations about Race and Diversity that has arisen. 

About time, I say

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Social Media - Love it or Hate it?

So, Facebook has been in the news lately, because of data privacy (or lack thereof).  Stolen data, fake news, bots, election has certainly shook up the world and given us all a wake up call that data on the internet is not really private unless you are tech-savvy enough to put up walls of all kinds to prevent your data from being stolen.

Facebook is now in the center of all this because of how big it's grown and how many users are using this platform.  Through it all, I have been amused by those who criticize it (ironically, on Facebook!) because ultimately, the user needs to share responsibility as well.  My philosophy when it comes to using Facebook has always been that whatever data I put in there is not confidential.  If in doubt, just don't put it in or share it.  Period.

For me, FB has always been an important way for me to remain connected with my family and friends.  For those of us who are world travelers, and global nomads, it is difficult when we miss out on birthdays and anniversaries, reunions and celebrations, and social media is the only way for us to feel like, in some small way, we are part of the happenings that go on at "home".

Does Facebook need to take responsibility for its lapses?  Absolutely.  But we should also take responsibility for what we put on the internet.  In the era of fake news and internet "trolls"*, we should also be smart about what we see and read on dubious websites.  Do we need regulation?  I certainly think so.  I also think those who spread fake news or impersonate celebrities should be held liable.  This, I think, will be the only way to stop the divisiveness that is spreading alarmingly throughout not just the USA, but also the world.

*definition from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary: "a person who intentionally antagonizes others online by posting inflammatory, irrelevant, or offensive comments or other disruptive content" 

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Re-empty Nesting

They have come and now have gone again.  Z & W came for a month's visit with their parental units over the Christmas and New Year holidays.  Time spent as a family unit is much treasured these days, given the geographical distance between us.  Even more precious was time spent with their grandparents during a short getaway to Taipei, as due to various circumstances, visiting them in Singapore is not an option.

I loved simply just listening to and being a part of conversations between us.  Nothing beats face to face interactions.  Facetime is a blessing to be had for sure, but I do miss the physical togetherness of being a family, extended or otherwise.

Having said that, now that they have returned home, A says he is happy to be back to our usual grind and day to day schedule.  We love them dearly, but there is something to be said to be just the two of us once more.