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Reflective thoughts on Marriage

Marriage picMarriage is an interesting concept.
8 letters full of complexity and entailing a lifetime commitment.
Does length equate to length of commitment?
Car is three letters and goes into about 5 years or so.
House is five letters and goes into 25 years.

Marriage could top them all, though Mistress is also eight characters and …

People marry for lots of reasons, and almost every instance ends up in a marriage.
Some marry for money, some marry for fame, some marry because it’s time, while others marry due to parental pressure.
The best reason to marry for me, is to marry for love.

While I was going through marriage counselling, our marriage counsellor told us, it’s not love that sustains the marriage, but the marriage that sustains the love.
I can be quite dense sometimes, especially when it comes to love, relationships and marriage.
I know the concept of marriage intellectually, but I feel that marriage having emotional components, it’s something that my mind cannot fully fathom.

Men and marriage sometimes are like chalk and cheese.
Not because we don’t respect the institution of marriage, but because it may be less ‘task-oriented’ than work.
At work, we know we clock in the 9-to-5 workday (more often it’s a 9-to-9 workday), but with marriage, there are no official marriage rules, there is no martial handbook.

Sure there might be the bible, popular bestsellers like The Rules, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.
But what do they really know about the intricacies of marriage?

And for what matter what do I REALLY know about marriage (compared to what I THINK I know about marriage).

Buddhist monk Adjahn Brahmavisimo said “To know and not do is not to know.”

Marriage for me is a long learning journey, being sensitive and knowing that the marriage was the first step in the process.
Marriage is a process where we begin as marital newbies, get used to how each other is REALLY like, as opposed to our pre-martial perception of each other.

When you wake up one day and realize the other person either doesn’t leave the toilet seat down, or leaves the toothpaste uncapped, you will then see their ‘intra-marriage’ persona. Some may run screaming, thinking their soulmate has metamorphosised into some sort of alien creature shortly after the marriage ceremony. Still others may wonder about the mysteries of marriage, whether it’s meant to be, whether they’re destined not to access membership to the married people’s club.

For me, there’s no question about it.
Marriage is a journey of exploration and discovery, it ‘marries’ the best of two people into a combination that’s greater than the sum of the parts.

this week’s goals

this week is gonna be a stretch.

I committed to the people over at Internet Marketing Singapore’s forums that i’d boost up the content count of the following:

  • update this blog regularly, going from 12 posts before to 25 by Saturday.
  • InternetMarketingCookbook.com to hit 45 pages of content from 20 now
  • BizExcellerator.com to hit 45 pages of content from 20 now.
  • BiancaWee.com, my daughter’s blog to go up with 5 pages of content
  • WarcraftTanks.com, my new game domain to go up with 5 pages of content and a forum!

At stake? I’m gonna fork out $150 worth of refreshments at the next event on 24th July. If you’re interested in the programme details, drop a comment below and I’ll post the details.
Phew! It’s gonna be a busy week. I guess I better not touch Gunbound anymore this week!


how much time left?

1) Take your current age, multiple it by fifty two.
2) Take 4000 and deduct the figure you got from step (1).

Ok, do it now.

I’ll wait for you.

No, really, you need to do it.

Yes. now.

Ok, if you haven’t done it yet, you can do it later.

But you’re missing out.

Ladies and gentlemen, the number you have is the number of weeks you can expect to live!

No one lives forever, but the problem is that when you’re young, you think you’ll live forever. You feel invincible, you can do another and probably live till 150.

But as you grow older, you put on the pounds, you go through the daily grind of the job (if you’re unemployed), you worry about finding a job (if you’re unemployed), you worry about the next project/contract (if you run your own business), you worry about competitors (if you’re successful). So worry starts to dominate, more and more.

Added to that is the fact that the sands of the hourglass seem to be ticking faster and faster, or maybe it’s just because there doesn’t seem to be that many grains left in the upper chamber.

Regardless of the fact, most of us will live about 78 years. Maybe 90, maybe 120 if we’re lucky.

But beyond just the number, the quantity of time that’s left, there’s the quality as well.

Few people think about the legacy, the mark they left behind when they go. Maybe during the last few weeks, there’ll be a period of reflection, a moment of regret? a moment of satisfaction.

But it doesn’t have to be that way, does it?

Can’t reflection begin much earlier?

Reflection can begin during the prime of our lives (the only thing most teenagers seem to reflect in, is a mirror)

By seeing what we are doing today and more importantly, ensuring that what we’re doing is something we’d be proud of doing, it’ll ensure that our week is well spent.

To do that may mean that we methodically plan our schedule. Business guru Tom Hopkins, asks himself constantly asks himself what the most significant thing he could be doing at that moment in time to keep himself in check.

After all our initial 4,000 weeks isn’t a lot to begin with. And if we look at the amount of time we have left, isn’t it time to take stock and make a change now?

life online

for those of us who spend a lot of time online, whether by choice or by necessity, there’s a dual existence that’s created.

think about it for a moment, is the ‘you’ in your emails, in your web postings, really you?

Or is it another you?

I’ve encountered people who wrote long voluminous postings on the net, who go into IRC and type much faster than me (and trust me i type pretty fast) and they’re like the equivalent of a verbal machine gun, firing off opinions and repartees faster than you can say ‘i told you so’.

And yet, at our real world meet ups, you go there and ask, hey, where’s that girl with the machine gun mouth. and someone points to a meek little girl in the corner. standing all alone. staring at her hands or her mobile phone.

you go up to her, chatting up a conversation.

‘hi, nice to finally meet you in person’


‘hey, what’ve you been up to?’


‘you were writing about wakeboarding and swallowing lots of sea water. ha ha ha. are you still doing it? it sounds quite intense’


‘oh. ok. how was your day?’


almost every question is met with a monosyllabic answer.

gee. and i’m left wondering if this is the person whose online personality fills up every virtual rooms she ‘walks’ into.


sociologists say that introverted individuals find the internet liberating. in there they’re the life of the party. they’re the ‘party girl’ or ‘party boy’ of every group chat. they’re the ones that dominate every online discussion, they must have the last word.

but offline, it’s a whole different story.

perhaps it’s something to do with the impersonality of the internet. where you can be anyone you want to be, to adopt an online persona, take up the moniker, Mistress Kat, or Love Goddess and play up that role. while in real life, they might be Mary the Librarian, or Tom the Gardener.

Online can be liberating, but for some who spend almost every waking hour outside of work being ‘online, all the time’. the intangible internet can be yet another illusory world, providing a respite from the rigours of daily life.

Doing the important stuff

Seems like I’m putting up a whole bunch of school-related posts

My colleague, Angie, related an incident while she was knocking on doors to solicit properties to sell in one of the HDB (housing development board) estates.

As she was walking around with her partner, an  elderly lady shooed her granddaughter away from the door.

“Hey, if you don’t study, see?” pointing at my colleague, “You will end up having to knock on doors and go begging to people!” she said as she started to close the door.

Angie’s colleague nudged her and said “hey, why don’t you let the lady know you have a college degree?”

Angie looked at her and said ‘never mind, forget it’

It’s strange isn’t it? society’s expectations. Is it an Asian thing? or a societal thing?

Does a high education mean you will necessarily take a white collar position, that you’ll join a corporation and become a suit? Is it ideal for every young boy and girl to aspire to become a doctor, surgeon, dentist, lawyer or banker?

Then who’ll clean our toilets, build our houses,  cook the food?

Society is a mix of all type of people. And social status is not merely reflected by one’s paycheck. If that were so, it’d merely mean that one’s self-esteem and self-worth is inextricably tied to one’s income earning ability.

That’s it, our value to society reflected in a string of numbers, preceded by a $ sign.

Unfortunately, many have bought into this idea, setting up a list of ‘things’ they must own and buy.

Recently, in preparation for my daughter’s arrival, i did a round of house cleaning. i sold and gave away a lot of items i accumilated over the years. That set of Nikon SLR camera equipment which i’d spent about $2,000 i gave away to my church. A whole bunch of books which I’d painstakingly starved during break time at school to save enough to buy those books, i’d also given away. For the items I sold, I barely recouped 10% of what I’d originally paid for them. In short, everything went for close to nothing.

But at the end of the day, I believe a better metric to determine one’s value and contribution during the time on this earth is measured by the relationships one has whether with family or friends.

On the deathbed, it’s rare that anyone says, i wish i bought a bigger car, or i wish i spent more hours in the office. Rather the refrain you often hear is ‘I should’ve spent more time with my family’ ‘I wish I was there when my son was growing up’

It may be too late for those who have passed, but for those who are here now, there is still time.

I want…

It’s a strange thing. You meet lots of people who say they want to be a millionaire.

“What will you do with a million”, I ask.

“First I’ll buy a car, then the entire collection of movies I’ve always want, then take a year-long vacation to Europe, I’ll eat in the finest restaurants,” they said.

“And then?”

“Then I’ll… I’ll….Hmm” and they look confused.

“Ok, I’ll put the rest in the bank”

“Sounds like you need about $100,000. Why not work towards it then?”

“Well, I would like to. But it’s too much work”.

From what I see there’s two issues.

First, if you don’t know why you’re doing something, then you’re not likely to achieve it.

If my friend only needed $100,000, why’d he wish for $1 million?

On that note, why not wish for $10 million or $100 million.

Second, if you’re not committed to achieving something, and you’re not motivated to achieve it, guess what? If a goal/dream/hope true, it’s only because of:

  • your direct effort
  • luck

Luck, in this case, refers to scenarios like winning the lottery, having a distant relative leave you something from their estate, have something truly miraculous happen that makes your wish come true. You’re looking at odds of one in a million, or one in a billion. Not impossible, but highly, highly unlikely.
On the other hand, direct effort leads directly to the goal. However, between what you’re doing and what you plan to achieve, there’s a monster of a time navigating through obstacles, setbacks and disappointment.

Chances are you’ll be push against the wall, and more than once you’ll want to give up. You’ll also question your sanity in wanting to achieve the goal, you’ll also be asking yourself whether it’s worth the sacrifice in your family time, time you could’ve be watching a rerun, gaming on the net, sleeping or simply doing nothing.

the one reason why some people succeed and others don’t is because the ones who succeed sometimes do because they have no choice. They’re dead broke, out of a job, and making that next sale is the key to putting food on the table. That’s the situation, the “World’s Greatest Salesman’ Joe Girard found himself in many years ago. And in relating the story, this strive towards personal excellence has remained with him.

Another way is to make a commitment to someone whom you can trust to be ruthlessly committed to helping you achieve your goals. Give them all your cash and ask them to hold it for you. If you fail to achieve the tasks for the week, they can then donate the entire amount to charity. Rinse and repeat. See how far you are along within 2 months. I guarantee you’ll see a difference.
If you’re left with no choice but to go up, there’s only one direction you can move in.