Bit by Bit, Putting it Together

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You Can Be Your Own Boss

I don’t really know what an entrepreneur is anymore. People whom I regard as entrepreneurs are now saying things like “I’m not an entrepreneur” and those who don’t seem to fit the bill are flaunting the label around their necks.
Today, we find many articles written about the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs, inspiring young ones who are keen to build a name for themselves in the business world, but very few are targeted at those in the workforce. Recently, Timothy Tiah (co-founder of Netccentric) wrote a rather compelling piece from a successful entrepreneur’s point of view of why some people should consider working for others than to start a business. You can read this rather well-written article here. READ MORE

Rush Hour

Some would call tomorrow D-day. The project team is racing against time to prepare every single detail to be presented to our stakeholders tomorrow for a milestone review. In less than 24 hours, we will know if we’re moving forward, making a U-turn or stop once and for all. During tough times like these in the oil & gas industry, everyone’s desperate to keep their project alive. Every tonne, every cent and every second count even more than before. READ MORE

Pulau Redang, April 2015

“Vern, the email is out! Jom!”
My would-be dive buddy Bib, who’s also sitting next to me at work called out when she received the email from our company sports club. We’ve been planning to dive together for awhile now, and since places are limited, we signed up within the same minute the email was shot out. I was partly nervous, as I haven’t been diving since I first got my license about a year and a half ago – I wasn’t sure if I still remember the basic skills. READ MORE

Get Up, and Try Again.

They say you ought to live amongst the bright lights at least once in your life. You know, those that never go out, no matter night or day. I can testify to that. I see the same ones when I wake, and they accompany me until I go home.  It’s as if they’re trying to make me feel less lonely after a long day.
And I’ve been having tons of long, long days. Those that would only leave me when my head hits the pillow filled with dreamless nights, and greet me again when I bat my eyelids for the first time the next morning. READ MORE

Up in the Air

5C. I seldom get seats this upfront, especially when I checked in just hours before the flight. Maybe many are not too comfortable with flying anymore, given all that has just happened last year. I find it a little odd that my biggest worry until now is just missing my flight. Anything that happens up there, is beyond my control.
But I’m wrong. The flight is almost full. I look for my seat and find a tall man in his 50’s, with his grey hair neatly combed behind as my companion. He’s reading a book on leadership principles by Lao Zi, lost in his own little world. That’s what I like about flying. We’re all lost in another world for awhile. Sometimes you get chatty strangers who make your flight interesting, and sometimes you just appreciate the peace and quiet, even if it’s just as short as 45 minutes. READ MORE

Start at Home

Mom and I chilling on the couch, busy with our phones. Dad came home from his daily hike, passed us and walked into the kitchen. As she was busily swiping colored candies, she asked nonchalantly.
Mom: What do you think dad is doing in the kitchen?
Me: Mm… Sounds like he’s cutting up something.
Mom: What is it ah?
Me: Doesn’t sound like durian…
Mom: Doesn’t smell like durian… It’s not even in season!
Me: Cannot be coconut… we just had it…
Mom: Doesn’t sound like he’s chopping something big..
Me: Can’t be papaya…
Mom: We still have leftover papaya from yesterday lah..
Me: Oooo maybe mango?
Mom: Ya meh? But we haven’t gone for dinner yet, he’s cutting fruits already?
Me: Aiyah dunno lah! READ MORE

An Open Letter to Dato’ Lee Chong Wei & Dato’ Nicol David

Dear Chong Wei and Nicol,
I play a little bit of badminton, and I know nothing about squash, which I think that holds true for many Malaysians. We know in reality that badminton has always been the more popular sport, and sometimes a loss in badminton is sung louder than a win in squash.
But we also know, though we often forget, that both of you have the same burden on your shoulders. Each time you don your sponsored gears and make your way into the arena, the weight of our national flag rests on you. And that weight is far heavier than the grams you carry in your racquets, and the results are louder than the cries of your fans. READ MORE


I wrote something earlier, but then I took it down. Something didn’t feel quite right. I was rushing through my words, I was being a tad preachy, and I forgot to stop and breathe. So I’d like to just stop for a moment and be thankful.
I want to thank all of those who have left me comments, emails and shared my article. When I wrote it, I honestly did not foresee it would get so big (big for me lah, because hardly anyone visits this blog). Even if it might be just a one-hit-wonder or a lucky strike, I’m just glad I got to connect with fellow Malaysians who feel the same way as I do. Some say my article protruded a sense of hope – well, for me, it’s your emails and comments that truly reflect what hope is. READ MORE

North Vietnam, June 2014

1. Hanoi
The first thing I notice about you is that you’re hot. Sweltering, unforgivingly hot. And humid too. Each time we walk outdoors we’re sweating like pigs. When we’re unlucky, we’re sweating indoors too (darn restaurants with no air-conditioning!).  Much like a woman’s wrath, your summer fury is no joke.
You’re ironic too.  You’re a lot like Malaysia, only maybe thirty or fourty years ago – but everywhere we went, there’s WiFi. You’re divided into two quarters – old and new – and each time we get lost, we return to Hoen Kiem Lake to readjust our bearings.  Scooters and taxis are always zipping by and to cross the road takes some skill, and a huge leap of faith. READ MORE

Bring Us Home Once More, MAS.

I was an airlines kid. To be specific, I was a MAS kid. My dad worked with the national carrier as a cashier (or an accountant without the degree, we like to call it), and I spent a lot of time (well, a lot more than kids my age back then) prancing around the Penang airport, slurping root beer from the old A&W outlet and playing with colorful plastic balls in KFC. READ MORE

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