24 March 2008

Ten years to start with ...

I started my work life ten years ago, on March 23 1998. It's so much like the literal blink of an eye ! Without much drama, the first decade of working has passed me by.

I must say that if you've told me ten years back I'll be doing what I do now, I'll probably laugh at your face and tell you to pull the other leg too. No way I'd think I'll be doing this. I wouldn't have believed I'd be even in this line I'm in !!!

Not bad for ten years of working - it's afforded me down payment for my current house, it's given me my current car, it's helped my parents live a more stable life, it's seen me traveling all over the globe and it's helped put some sense into my head.

I'm thankful for the opportunities I've been given, I will continue to work hard so that I can get lucky. And when luck comes my way, I'll work even harder to make the best of it. I have been taught early on in my work life by some very good friends of mine that you create luck by working hard - and your reward for luck is hard work.

As I write this, I am humbled by the experience of work, but at the same time thankful for what it has provided me with. There are plenty of ups, and equally as many downs. Sometimes, it feels like a major grind when the only constant in your entire work life is hard work. However, whenever I step back to assess what little I've been able to achieve, I think I stand before you a better person now than ten years past - and that's all that matters.

Nowadays, we young turks (I hope no one takes offense that I'm calling myself a young turk still) get so much opportunities, it'll be a crying shame if we don't embrace it and use them for personal advancement. To my bosses, past and present, I want to thank you all for your patience and kind coaching. Each of you have left in me some lessons that will stay with me for a long time yet.

Ten years is a long time, ten years is a short time. Ten years is but a blink, ten years is an eternity. Ten years is past, I hope for a better next ten years.

19 March 2008

Top Ten New Cabinet Surprises

Well, in the aftermath of a historic General Elections, the new Malaysian cabinet was revealed earlier yesterday. Besides the expected down sizing, there were a few obvious surprises. However, not many media pundit pointed out the real surprises.

So, as a community service to Malaysians at large, I'm going to point out the Top Ten New Cabinet Surprises :

  • What? Only 2 Finance Ministers?
  • No Special Adviser with Full Ministerial ranking to advise on how to stay awake ? Disappointing !
  • Many were relieved to hear that Mawi wasn't appointed as Minister to boost popularity amongst young voters.
  • How the PM steadfastly refused to rename the Energy, Water and Communications Ministry as the Earth, Wind and Fire Ministry despite impassioned pleas from the other cabinet members.
  • Samy's toupee wasn't appointed even as a deputy minister ! How can ??!??
  • To try and connect with younger voters, the PM now starts each sentence with : "Yo, Dawg !"
  • In yet another effort to appeal to younger voters, a new cabinet post is created to look for all the missing Edison Chen photos.
  • What happened to the Minister in the PM Department In-Charge of Searching for Hidden Cameras?
  • To keep BN relevant, Malaysians will vote out a cabinet member each week ... opps ... that's American Idol. Wrong channel ... :P
  • Where's Kementerian Mat Rempit ?

So, there you go people ... the Top Ten New Cabinet Surprises ! Now, let's sit back, relax and see how the country either fall apart spectacularly or improves dramatically in the next few years !

17 March 2008

Even less time for this now ...

"Congratulations ..."

With that email, the realisation hit me that now, more than ever, I'm going to have less and less time for personal things.

Sometimes, it's strange how people ask for things without thinking about what it means. I guess sometimes, you ask for it without understanding that everything you get, you have to give up something too. It's an equilibrium - a way things balances themselves out.

Getting more salary usually means you get more work. Getting more staff usually means you have more responsibility. I guess it's good for me - I have wanted it, and now I've got it.

I'll be on a 12 month program now, hopefully at the end of which I'll have better things in store for myself in terms of career. At my age, if it doesn't happen soon, it won't happen. I'm just happy to be given a stab at it.

So, here's to putting my heads down and concentrating on doing a good job for the next 12 months !

09 March 2008

Enough !

I'm glad I voted.

I'm happy with change. The only constant in change anyways.

You had your run, you failed us. Now let others give it a go.

The people should not be afraid of the government. The government should be afraid of the people !

You asked for 5 years. We have given you that 5 years. Now show us all you can do something better. Else you know, change will come again.

Ironic isn't it, my 400th blog post will be on such a momentous ocassion !

06 March 2008

Woohooo !!!! Sawadee Krub ... !

Sawadee Krab !!!

Ow khao neau ma muang krab !!


Will be in Bangkok next week. Hope to catch up with some really dear friends from those days when Bangkok was home to me.

In my heart, Bangkok is always a second home. I'd like to see if I can meet up with Dee and Nuclear ... hope to see how they are now. And to reminisce the older days. And get some coffee at Black Canyon. I miss Black Canyon Coffee. And funky colored Toyota cabs ... who wants a shocking pink cab ?

I miss the water splashes in Songkran. I miss the wais when I pay my food bills. I miss the randomness of Chatuchak. I miss the walk from Chitlom to Siam Square. I miss the noise in Chinatown. I miss the small meals they call lunch.

I miss Bangkok.

I'm so glad I'm getting a fix of Bangkok, even for a few days.

04 March 2008

With power, comes responsibility

With power, comes responsibility.

Those are the famous words Peter Parker, aka Spiderman utters all the time.

We are responsible for the government we vote for. No use berating the fact after that we have a system that rots us from inside.

Last week, while I was driving around, I realised what choices do to you. When parking was hard to find, just any spot would do. When there were plenty of spots, I became picky - this spot wasn't aligned in the wrong way, that one wasn't close enough to the lift, and the other one didn't have any shade.

Choices can be hard to make. But I will make my choice. And come what may, I won't regret it.

I can't guarantee myself if I vote one way or the other my future will be better. No one can. Promises are easier made than kept. And things aren't always what they seem.

My investment manager tells me that past performance cannot be used as the sole basis of future performance indication. Meaning: Don't look back and use it to predict the future.

We had our good times. Now we're moving into an era of increased collaboration and openness, where competition will squeeze us from every possible angle. And here we are happily practising the divide and conquer politics we accuse our former British masters of practicing.

We see roads tarred up before elections and by elections. All our developments fast track around election time, and just die down to their normal leisurely pace thereafters. We do improve, but if our pace of improvement is slower compared to the people we're competing against - Singapore, Hong Kong - the other economies I think we should benchmark ourselves against - wouldn't that really mean we're not improving at all?

Bottomline: I have made my choice. I will not regret it. I will take responsibility for it. I will stand up for my believe.

01 March 2008

Shamelessly plugging again ...

Just added a new post on my photoblog. It's a series on a very intersting cloud formation I chanced upon while flying over Java island. The last photo is what I consider a once in a lifetime sort of photo.

Do visit it and give your comments.