Monthly Archives: November 2012

My 4 year-old son as Big Jack

You want me on that iPad, you need me on that iPad!

Despite the proliferation of these flash-in-the-pan phenomenons called the internet, youtube, Kindl and IOIOIO, I, the utter luddite, still watch TV quite often. So I was doing exactly that the other night, enjoying the film A Few Good Men for the upteempth time, and captivated once again by the great scene at the end when Daniel Kaffee (Tom Cruise) was cross-examining Colonel Nathan Jessup (Jack Nicholson).

It then occurred to me that that Jack Nicholson character could easily have been my 4 year-old son, C, particularly when I catch him doing something he’s not suppose to do. For example: Continue reading

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For the long run

Mention the words “a long run”, people either conjure up an image of messy struggles in the restroom after an exotic meal, or one of tortuous struggles out in the open, endlessly pounding the pavement. In either case, the reaction usually involves a moan followed by a groan. Even for an enthusiast like myself, heading out for a 90-120 minute jog requires a certain fortitude – the lack of which I compensate through my sheer love of the activity … and some artificial assistance.

Nothing like a Fat Boy Slim beat to make my Torpid Heart Pump!

MUSIC. This is the reason why I would never be welcomed into any hardcore running cliques. I enjoy listening to music while I’m on a long run. Not only does it drip feed the occasional boost to my pace with inspiring beats, but it also acts as a comforting companion while I mentally negotiate the long stretches of solitude.

I am, of course, aware of those purists extolling the benefits of running and learning to listen to your breathing at the same time. But I would rather not listen to my heavy breathing, especially when I’m on my own and engaged in something which does not lead to the kind of climax that usually follows such heavy breathing! Continue reading

Things my boys do that make me laugh

Over the past 5 months, I have had the great fortune of spending a considerable amount of quality time with my sons L and C. While the nature of that quality has not been all pleasant all the time (frequent arguments, occasional tantrums, random mayhems), I am very proud to say that they have been extremely well-behaved most of the time.

“L, I know you said they are ninjas, but which one is the REAL ninja? Tell me, tell me”!!!

What I have also learnt is that whenever I need some comic relief, all I need to do is closely watch my two sons as they go about their usual business. Without ever intending to, they can genuinely make me burst out laughing with their indiosyncracies, mannerisms and just the way they interact with each other. Continue reading

Those tranquil moments after a run

Last Sunday, I ran in a 10km fun run around Sydney Olympic Park, the home of the 2000 Sydney Olympics (yes, we Sydneysiders still cling onto that fainting good memory). The thing that I enjoyed as much as the actual race itself was the quiet moment after it, sitting there by myself with icy cold drinks nursing my sticky hot sweats.

This … what do YOU do to get this in your mind?

To me, very few moments in life rival those just after a run (casual or race) in terms of the zen-like serenity that washes over me. In those moments, I find I am completely at one with myself, as well as with the present – a rather unique feeling for a mind that normally wonders off in thousand different directions. As anyone who is taking up meditation for the first time would appreciate, sitting still and focusing solely on one’s breathing is a surprisingly difficult exercise. The sudden silence is deafening and all sorts of random jibbering thoughts begin doing their best to pierce that uncomfortable silence. In addition, after only few minutes, the mind (and the body) starts to exhibit withdrawal symptoms from not having checked email, voicemail, text or Facebook, increasingly anxious about what earth-shattering news it is missing out on. Continue reading

Unforgivable gifts

My elder son L had his 6th birthday party back in September while my younger son C enjoyed his 4th last month. Children’s birthday parties are always fun to be involved in and fun to watch. Unlike adult gatherings, there is no pretension in kids’ actions, nor tension in their conversations. It is just unadulterated pleasure of going absolutely crazy over simple little things like lolly treasure hunt or bashing the proverbial out of pinata – and all without any alcoholic assistance!

This will take longer than a marathon.

There is, however, one thing I dread about my boys’ birthday parties. It is the gifts they get. Teddy bears and Ice Age DVDs I don’t mind. But whenever my boys tear open the wraps to unveil a 500-piece Optimus Prime Transformer lego set or a 200-piece science laboratory extravaganza, my heart skips a beat while my chin drops a bit. The boxes from which these toys materialise from may say they are suitable for kids aged 4 to 8. However, they are only suitable after parents aged 30 to 40 have spent countless hours on the toys analysing and assembling. Continue reading