It's now ten am on Monday morning, and I think I'm sufficiently recovered from my lack of coherence to give a better account of my weekend. So, hereeeeeeeeeeeee goes...
Friday night! It was Tiffany's birthday party, and we had dinner at Maison du Fontaine (some French restaurant in a converted colonial bungalow along Scotts Road.) The food was good, although the guests and waiters were mutally horrifying (the waiters by the *non-cultured* way in which we ate our food, probably!) mwahahahahaha.
Scenario: A tiny cup no larger than your soup spoon in front of you.. the stuff in the cup's reported to be asparagus SOUP. What to do if you're impatient, don't-care-about-image old me? Why, lift the cup to your lips and down the whole thing! Wonder inside why they are so 'kiam' with soup - hey, when i say a tiny cup it's really tiny! AND then, see a bowl full of the *real thing* (vege n mushroom soup) arrive, and realise that what's just gone down your gullet is the BREAD DIP. Oh man....
Anyway. I was initially reserved about attending, because Tiff is, what, 16? and so are all her friends.. and I know none of them because I'm her *tuition teacher*, for gossakes! and in turn i over-react and underdress to the point that no one believes I'm 25. But OH! by the way! I bought new silvery shimmery shoes from Isetan at Wisma. Lookie all:
MY BEAUTIFUL NEW SILVERY SHIMMERY BLUE SHOES!
and all for only $13.00! mwahahahahahahaha...
After.. went over to Goodwood Park. Oh, dear blogders! Did you know Goodwood Park is Liang2 Mu4 Yuan2 hotel in Chinese?? oh my goodness! It's a literal translation! mwahahahahahaha! Saw the initial stages of the Preparation to Zheng3 Ah Cheks, and lent my hands and feet to the task. We ended up eating supper at Fong Seng (oh gosh, I haven't been there in AGES!) and getting rained in (you know, angmohs get snowed in) till nearly 1am. UGGGGHHH.
But God is gracious.. I've managed to survive a more-or-less mad weekend!
Truly, His grace is sufficient for us - my deadline for marking keeps on getting pushed back and back and back - it really gives me time to attend to urgent things.
Even in the little things, too, God has shown me His grace. At 2.30 am, driving home after a long and exhausting Sunday (and Saturday anf Friday too for that matter) I would normallu end up parking on the 4th of 5th floor. But today, as I drove past a lot on the second floor, a car just turned out. Like that! at 2.30am ~ wow~ and so I was able to park there and get my weary body n feet home fast. Amen!
I was browsing through some friends' blogs that I hadn't been keeping up with for a while. Saw an article on Keeve's blog that he entitled "What about me?" It is a post that certainly touches a chord in many people's hearts. I have to admit, I do feel that way at times - it's a familiar seesaw I ride on once in a while - and I'm sure many of us do, too.
Grow up, Ming! I know where Jesus is.. I know where my calling is.. I know where my loves lie. I no longer need anyone to lead me on to all these. It is a human failing to require human love and human recognition all the time; it isn't necessary because we have God's incomparable love above all. At the end of the day, it is He who will reward us with the good-and-faithful-servant appellation. The lesson is two-fold too; we know where He is; will we lead others on to Him?
Take on the challenge this December, dear blogders.. to grow up and out of dependence on others and build your own altar; and begin to lead those who are lost and weary into His house.
Yes, indeedy! I melt in sweetness! Thank you Jas, Cindy, Gill n Shuting for e cookie.. yummy.. It's part of the get-Miss-Wang-Fatter conspiracy is it? hee.. Thanks all the more for your sweet note! Enjoy your after-exams euphoria.. =)
I ripped my plastic flower earstud out of my newest earhole while towelling my hair dry just now. Owieeeee... but worse, the backing of my earstud flew off into some remote corner of the Master Bedroom Toilet! Argh! It's my fave earring! How how how am I going to wear my Purple Plastic Flower Earstud without the backing! Argh!
*mourns for lost Earstud Backing*
Being the clever and innovative woman I am, I immediately thought of a solution.
I pulled the backing off the matching earstud and stuck it onto my ear! Tah dah! I managed to keep my plastic flower earstud in my ear. But it means that the matching earstud's going to languish evermore in my earring case. Sob.
*brightly* Not that it matters anyway, because I am the kind of siao zarbor who keeps five different earrings in her five different earholes. But *wails* I MISS my little nubby piece of plastic!
It's probably languishing in the toilet bowl / sucked up by my mother's vacumm cleaner / covered by my father's newspapers by now, but if you happen to see a nubby little piece of plastic with a hole through it lying somewhere in the vicinity, please do tell it that there's a matching earring and a bleedy, pus-sy earhole waiting for it in Yew Tee.
Introduction The ability to empathize is one of the most essential skills for leading a fulfilling and meaningful life. Empathy is defined as the ability to identify with and understand the feelings, cicumstances, and motives of another person. People who are empathetic are able to see things from another's perspective and figure out what makes people tick. Empathetic people also are better at reacting appropriately in varied social situations, and because of this others tend to be very comfortable in their presence.
If you don't believe that being empathetic is extremely important, take a moment to consider the opposite. Not being empathetic would mean not being accepting of other's opinions, not being understanding about the hardships of others, and generally being in the dark about the way other people feel. Would you want to be friends, colleagues, a partner, or otherwise associate with someone who could not understand where you were coming from, or was constantly judging you for acting in a way different from his or her own? The resounding answer the vast majority of people would give is "NO!"
Human beings have an innate desire to feel socially accepted and understood. That is where we derive our confidence, sense of self, and feeling of being connected. Empathy is to thank for such positive connections. The following is an interpretation of your Empathy Quotient. Graphic Results
score = 96
Your Empathy Quotient is extremely high. Individuals in this range are able to recognize the emotions of others very well and understand the underlying motivation behind their actions. You are capable of putting yourself in other people's shoes and seeing their particular perspectives, which is an essential skill for creating satisfying and meaningful human interaction. Your friends and family count on you to understand where they are coming from and this creates a kind of unspoken bond. You are able to get along with people from all different backgrounds and your friend base likely reflects this. You are open-minded when it comes to other's actions - you don't fall victim to making snap judgments. You tend to see both sides of a story and the shades of gray in between, and as a result, are able to give people a sense of perspective when they can't understand a situation.
Your high level of empathy likely makes you a magnet to those seeking advice. They know that you are always there to lend an ear and that you have insight into problems and possible solutions. You are very flexible in your thinking and don't resort to dogma when considering the ways of another culture or group of people. Your open-mindedness and ability to empathize are truly outstanding. If you ever feel yourself slipping in this respect, refer to the advice section below for helpful reminders.
Advice & Tips
Empathy Advice, Tips, and Exercises
Here are some ways anyone can increase their empathy quotient:
Pay attention to how others are reacting, and what they are communicating to you. Putting in the extra effort to really listen and observe can teach you a lot about human interaction and emotions.
While you certainly can't fake empathy, you can increase your connection to other people by truly listening and trying to put yourself in their shoes.
Build meaningful relationships that teach you about human nature.
If you're not sure how someone is feeling, ask for clarification (if it's appropriate); a simple "How are you feeling?" or "Could you explain your perspective to me?" might do the trick.
Put aside your own preoccupations to consider what might be going through other people's minds in different situations. Ask yourself how you would feel in that person's place. In every situation, there are several perspectives. Try to identify at least 2 or 3 different ways to look at it.
Put empathy in action. Get involved in helping people in some way (e.g. volunteering); the closer you get to a situation, the more you should realize the difficulties others might be facing.
Pay close attention to body language and facial expressions. Although there are some bodily cues nearly everyone gives to show an emotion, every individual has their own particular ways to express certain feelings. It may feel overwhelming to learn to interpret everyone's idiosyncrasies in your life, so start off slow and observe each person when you can.
Ask people for clarification. If can't tell whether your friend is expressing disbelief or distaste when s/he rolls his or her eyes, just ask.
Give your time to others. It is impossible to increase your ability to empathize if you're totally self-absorbed. The best way to learn is to spend time with others and practice active listening.
Take your time when deciding how to respond to emotional topics. Don't allow yourself to 'fly off the handle' or make a snide remark when someone says something you don't agree with. Think about what led this person to have a different opinion than you, and respond only after taking time to figure out how others are likely to interpret your words and actions.
Play devil's advocate to your own beliefs. This exercise can be initially emotionally painful, but will help your empathy grow immensely. Take time to think about what it is you believe in. Now think about people that you very much disagree with or dislike. Write down why it is that you and these people are in disharmony. For each point you make, write an explanation for why this person or group of people would feel differently than you do. Try your best not to resort to juvenile explanations like "This person feels this way because s/he is an idiot" or "These people do this because they are immoral." Making such statements discourages empathy and encourages blind prejudice.
Go out on a limb and ask questions of people that you think you know the answers to. You will likely be surprised at what you find.
Cultivate the golden rule - don't do anything to others that you would not want them to do to you.
If you are having a hard time figuring out what makes someone act a certain way, engage in a little mental role-playing. Assume you are this person, connect all the pieces that you know about him or her, and see if you can rationalize their behavior. If you can't do this, you likely don't know enough about him or her to know why s/he is acting a certain way. Give people the benefit of the doubt that they act on their reasons and beliefs, not out of taking pleasure in perversity.
Expose yourself to a viewpoint or situation that you've been hesitant to explore or have been purposefully ignoring. If issues such as the AIDS crisis, global warming, animal cruelty, or world hunger (just to name a few), has you running the other direction, swallow your pride and fear and educate yourself about an issue. Take one at a time and explore them. You will no doubt come out of the experience more aware and empathetic than when you began.
Above all else, keep in mind that increasing your ability to empathize will add great richness and meaning to your life. Being able to connect yourself to and understand the emotions of others will add depth and insight to your relationships to others, as well as give you a better grasp on overall human nature.
It's one of the things I hate about being at home for extended periods. My ever-well meaning parents will keep on coming in, every five minutes, to ask me things they have asked me TEN times before, if not more. ARGH! And when I've gotten my concentration back and begin to start work again, the OTHER parent comes in and offers food / asks another question / starts to talk / tells me something that i already know / etc etc etc. ARGH!
There goes the scene of happy domestic felicity that's supposed to reign in the holiday season. It's nice being at home, but I would LIKE to be able to do work, for once, WITHOUT interruption. And so, I leave my beloved computer and escape to Juan's house for some peace and quiet. How ironic. ARGH! farewell, world and computer, till I get my work done!
This post was taken off my group blog, oddperspectives. Have a look - see what zookeeper's said about genetic engineering and my response below:
I think the crucial difference is enhancement versus determination. if not enhancement, then why do we bother to dress well, even? The slippery-slope idea of enhancement can be extended all the way down. There's no paranoia for me here though.. haha.. I have become something of a clotheshorse in the past year. *winks*
as a biologist, and seeing the things that genetic engineering makes possible, I am both excited and scared. Genetically engineered bacteria are already extant and have been, and in use, for decades. Do we accept their use? For the most part, yes. Would you and I be willing to do without decontaminated soils, oil-polluted oceans and cheap animal feed? Hm... not a particularly strong agreement, even from me. Let's take it a step closer to home. How about genetically engineered plants? We all pay less for our vegetables simply because they have been genetically engineered to be pest-resistant, frost-resistant and more succulent; to ripen faster on the stalk and carry more nutritional value. Rice can and has had an entire biochemical pathway knocked-in for the production of Vitamin A; this rice saves the lives of millions in poorer countries who would not otherwise be able to avoid Vitamin A deficiency. Would you do without these?
One step the closer - genetically engineered animals. Salmon, cows, mice, cats and sheep. Probably, at this point, many of us would begin to shake our heads in emphatic denial. No? What's the difference between animals and plants? The difference, may I postulate, is the ability to feel and to experience emotions, ie the indwelling of what some might term a 'soul'. We become uncomfortable when we imagine that the subject of our manipulations may actually have feelings about it, and yet no choice in the matter. This is piercingly close to the state of a human embryo if it were to undergo genetic manipulation. Cosmetic enhancements like makeup and plastic surgery are done at the choice and with the consent of the individual; they merely enhance what is already present and do not change the genetic constituents of the person. I am still who and what I am, before I take off my makeup. Thus, I am NOT a backer of genetic engineering, in the sense of tinkering with a human before birth. ie transforming the entire organism. The body is the seat of the soul and the temple of the Holy Spirit, and should NOT be tinkered with lightly, especially for cosmetic reasons alone.
Let me leave you with a final observation, from a commentary i once read in Reader's Digest about genetically manipulating embryos: Parents should not saddle their children with admission standards for birth. If we allow cosmetic GM to occur, is that not exactly what we are doing?
It is THE uluated hotspot of the universe. Beyond YT, the road ends and meanders off into army camps, factories, cemeteries and chicken farms.
WHY would anyone want to live here?? Argh! Argh! Argh!
In fact, it's so uluated that my cab driver this morning revealed that Yew Tee's one of the hottest spots for 'calls'. WHY? Because no taxi driver in his right mind would cruise past an end-of-the-road housing estate, that's why! No cabs will appear, therefore, unless you call for them. And so I *freaking* had to wait HALF AN HOUR at the MRT station, no less, to get to the head of a three-person long line. And it was 10-something am, nowhere near the peak hour! Wah biangz.
On the other hand, the number of empty cabs floating around increases dramatically after 10pm or so. Because Yew Tee's so far away from civilization that it takes at least an hour to get anywhere much further than Jurong East, that's why! URGH!
And oh! Pot shot at Singapore's urban planning: There are only two major roads that serve Choa Chu Kang, namely the KJE and Bukit Batok Road. Upper Bukit Timah Road doesn't count because it parallels the KJE and BKE, and gets hopelessly stuck anyway whenever there's a jam on the expressway - what do you expect from a two-lane wide artery that has to absorb the flow from the only expressway to serve Woodlands, Yew Tee, Bukit Panjang and Choa Chu Kang? so, whenever there's a jam, there are as good as NO alternative routes. ARGH!
*angst from a zit-tormented woman in the forgotten hinterlands of Singapore.*
My fellow SPAlestinians,
In Jan 2004, the MOEssad drove us out of our strip of land called "My free time". We threw stones at standardization last year, yet we got a standard reply – "Just DO it". Though President Booksh announced plans for SPAlestinian independence in 4 years, but for many of us, it'll be 1 year and 1 month more!
Do you really think that the reason we must be confined to special rooms just to mark SPA is simply on security grounds? Peleeeease! MOEssad wants fertility rates to increase, hence, they have introduced a morbid form of dating called SPA-dating. (Thank you MOEssad, that's so thoughtful of you, at the rate you're going, some may end up with 2 Bachelor Degrees after joining – talk about life-long learning!).
Gotta go now. SPA marking awaits and guard duty at exams. Being a Protest-Ant, I'm not attending xxJC's dinner. They can keep my staff money and have my share of dumplings. Just give me back my life. Hope you get yours soon too (with the dumplings).
i have a huge pimple in the middle of my forehead.
but it doesn't stop me from blogging at THREE AM in the morning! Hah!
This is so totally NOT helping my complexion.
i'm also in my constipated, no-appetite state due to it being that time of the month.
in case you have noticed, i am writing incoherently.. ill-befitting my status as the reigning queen of proper english *winks*
it's sheer frustration at not being able to get my new template up and running properly after six hours over two days.
*argh* [no strength for a loud exclamation]
forgive us while we redress, forgive my face while the keratinocytes multiply out of control and the neutrophils get killed and slowly molted down to pus inside my pimple. forgive my writing while no ideas run through my head. where have my *wink* incisive wit, *blink* sense of humour, and *squint* desire to sleep gone??
THIS IS JUST TOO CUTE!!!!!!!!! OH no! it's the Bu4 Shuang3 can ~ with me..attempting to match the 'seh' of the can by looking Bu4 Shuang3 as well. I'm posting it up, huge pimple and all, because I JUST CANNOT RESIST the silliness of this! Hah!
I'm sorry, I'm running late, but I just HAVE to blog this..
I hung out the window of my flat just now!
nothing remarkable, just that my flat's on the *23rd* floor and I was *whole-body out* on the window ledge.
The culprit: my mother's disobedient washing-hanging pole - it slipped from the metal bracket and was hanging precariously by one end. You can imagine the consequences of that pole slipping and falling 23 floors to the ground - not only an instant, life-taking projectile, but it would also knock 22 floors worth of laundry off their perches.
What on earth.
Enter ahming, the heroic she-man/he-woman to the rescue! With my mother gripping me tightly, and being more of a hindrance than anything else, I climbed onto the ledge and pulled the pole back.
The feeling was pure exhilaration. Having the wind blowing in your hair, watching the world go by without the hindrance of bars and window panes ~ wow.
I have, by the way, realised that there's a pretty good view from that ledge that you can't get from anywhere else in the house. Pictures taken from the ledge will come later after I'm back from my dratted excursion-to-school.
I did, by the by, get stuck on the way back in. *still as clumsy as ever* But that's inconsequential. I enjoyed hanging out the window. =)
i have realised it's such a bother to append snappy titles to a post ever since i made my titles visible. especially when i can never sustain a topic through a post. darn.
yes, indeedy, i have again wasted a day in front of the computer - this sedentary lifestyle i'm leading is going to be too much for me soon. it IS the teacher's life - to vacillate between complete boredom during the holidays to total burnout during the school daze *pun intended* and I am no different from most. I am not one of those happy people who can occupy their days knitting, baking, and being happily domestic day after day after day. I crave purpose. I crave activity. And I crave it all the time.
How am I going to cope with my next two months before school re-opens? School is not everything, but it does take up the most part of my time during term time; what, then, am I going to fill it up with? I have thought: and here are my resolutions for the six weeks that remain of 2004 -
1. To lose weight! Yes.. my eternal bugbear. I've always said that if i could take 5 kg off myself and put it onto various people (juan, mz, ivry et al) both parties would be perfectly happy. well, I'd rather take the fats and dispose of them through running.. ugh.. and gym-ming.. double ugh. But, by the end of 2004, I'd like to see a more lithe me!
2. To touch base with many people - including my ushers, my friends, my leaders and my CG members. That was in no order of merit, btw. =P Now that i've the time, i hope I can be a useful and serviceable person to those around me.
3. To know God deeper - many people say that it's during the toughest times that people turn to God; I'd like to remain constant and go on more.
4. To focus on my goals - to cut off all extraneous items - to put my heart and soul into what I want to achieve. I have been unfocused, at many times; let that change! Let me focus on being a better usher, a better servant, and a better leader. My one main distraction - the lack of a member of the male species in my life - WILL be relegated to the backstage. Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness - and all these things shall be added unto you - amen.
I feel so much better after penning that down! Okay, typing that out. =P i SHALL be purposeful. See you, world! I'm off to zip to my newly set tasks.
182 questions done and 82 to go! this had better be good!
So, I am a.. Giver
Your genuine concern for the people and community around you makes you the Giver. Your high moral standards and compassionate attitude do not allow you to stand idly by in the presence of any kind of injustice. You are a magnet, attracting those seeking direction, advice, and a role model. When people turn to you for help, you reflect thoughtfully on the issues at hand, and don't give up until you reach some kind of insight or creative solution. Your interactions with others are characterized by warmth and caring, and your empathy and altruism do not go unnoticed. Others find you quite pleasant to spend time with. Your emotional stability and ability to give to others are gifts.
PS. i scored 80 for agreeableness!
right.. =P now i know why people always run to me for a listening ear!
i am tired. 'nuff said. a long and amazing weekend has passed.
have YOU got your calling and anointing yet? the calling is great but so is the grace that must accompany it.
randomness#1: my um theme song: ~yes you will go/where i want you to go/you will sit where i want you to sit/bulletin for you? yeah yeah.. yeah yeah..
randomness #2: i have decided: ~ to stand aside and do nothing; i will NOT betray confidence and trust. "greater love has no man than this: to lay down his life for his friends." your friendship means much; one day, perhaps, you will know the extent of this sacrifice.
randomess #3: my ear throbs i believe my 5th earhole is infected, or my body's reacting to the silver earstud. my ear is red, swollen and throbbing, and so is the nearest lymph node. i've pulled out the piercing stud (quite a painful operation, i assure you) and stuck in a plastic one. i hope it helps.
was talking w iYi yesterday on the bus.. about how different we are in terms of personality and approach. i do tend to agree with her that she is more of the 'xiao nu ren'.. and i am more of the 'strong tower' kind of woman, whom people tend to see as a friend (sexless, one might assume!) and not an object of affection. through my experiences, I have become a domineering, take-control and take-charge person who, i suppose, is viewed as more of a workhorse than anything else. Only those who know me well, who see beyond the authoritative, work-oriented and endless-capacity-for-work side of me will see that it is not all that I am, it is not all that I am. Yet it is an integral part of my character - and that is my greatest failing - that i have learnt to be too strong, too well - and it ends up that i am unapproachable and seen only as a teacher, worker and simply a friend (perhaps a friend closer than a brother even) but never anything more by the vast majority of people. i daresay many brothers have been 'scared off' or 'scared of' by me! iYi was right - she said it would take a really strong man to be able to stand me - haha! not physically strong (although the person would probably have to be in order to carry fat ole me around!) but strong in terms of character. 80's words are really prophetic.. i AM too D for my own good.. i will HAVE to learn to lay down my character and to be submissive at times. i struggled for the longest time with the "equality of males and females" debate - but I have come to realise that males and females ARE equal, just called to different roles - egomango blogged this sometime ago. while i learn, i hope i don't scare off too many people! =)
That's the phrase I intended to start my nanowrimo entry with. But after discovering that 1. no one actually reads what you've written~ 2. you don't actually need a plot for the novel~ 3. i have no idea what to write a novel on~
~i've realised that i probably will end up reproducing my blog posts on the novel, i have decided to Simply Continue Blogging and let my blog be the reflection of my life and my times. after all, i can't even sustain a topic through the length of a post without obvious and monumental effort; how on earth am i going to sustain the length of a 50,000 word novel? But do go visit the nanowrimo site - http://www.nanowrimo.com and have a peek at the novels-in-progress! Meanwhile, those of you who want to see MY novel in progress, check back this blog ba. =)
also - today is the day i celebrate a good friend's birthday - my dear, all i can give you is probably not what you want - i cannot give you that no matter how hard i try. let me try then, to make you happy in other ways; with a multitude of ku-niang and pinkie stuff for the oozing-with-honey sweetie hermione jasmine liyi! hey hey, a quarter of a century's come and gone, and you have enriched many lives for it. In the next year to come, may your life be a testimony and light to even more souls around you, and may all you desire be yours. I am so glad to have known you as a sister and a friend - and yes, I STILL owe you your ku-niang blog layout! eek! Have a great year ahead!
On the bus: from top left corner, clockwise; Jayce (the Mee Kia Princess), Li Yee (oozing with honey), me (Perpetual Bad Hair Day), Angela (Da Jie, Security Princess) A, E, and E's mum (Aunty.. who else!), Evelyn (Er Jie, Osim Princess..) and Esther (Xiao Mei Mei and Princessweiwei!) =)