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Susan Sontag

Monday, August 11th, 2014

Went to see Annie Leibovitz’s photography exhibition at the museum over the weekend.  Not only did I learn about the highly acclaimed photographer, I got to know a literary legend Susan Sontag.

Often I get to know people through associations and referrals.  I read a book which talks about someone, and I check it out.  I have made significant discoveries this way, of people towards whom I feel an affinity.  Even though they are mostly far away, they teach me so much and shed light on questions in my mind.  Indeed, they are kindred souls to me.

“A writer is first of all a reader. It is from reading that I derive the standards by which I measure my own work and according to which I fall lamentably short. It is from reading, even before writing, that I became part of the community – the community of literature – which includes more dead than living writers.” ~ Susan Sontag

I read this on the back cover of a book on Susan Sontag.  It brought a smile to my face =)

Her son described her with “avidity”.  She wanted to know everything and experience everything. She had many interests.  Her curiosity and passion for life did not diminish with the years.

I am very happy to meet Susan Sontag.  I always thought there is something “wrong” with me, why do I have so many interests.  I even suspect that I have ADHD.  Now I know I am not alone… Susan Sontag was so much more, only she called it “Attention Surplus Deficiency” as she had no problem at all paying attention to the world around her =)  

Magellan’s Travels

Saturday, August 9th, 2014

When I was younger and a student, I wrote a story drawing inspiration from Magellan’s Travels for English Literature class.  My teacher, a hot woman in her 20s, gave me a good grade and told me that she was impressed.

Looking back, I think the explorer streak is always in me even since young.  It is my innate nature. That’s why, I think there is a reason why I took certain paths and made certain decisions in my life although on the surface of it they seemed chaotic and reckless.  If I had made another decision or taken another path, that would not be the authentic me.

Like the great traveller Magellan, I have travelled quite a bit.  Not so much physically but more mentally. Magellan explored the physical world.  I explored my mental world.  With every venture, the boundaries are pushed further a bit more.

I am always excited to find out what more I will discover – about myself, about people and the world.  Setting sail gives us the opportunity to discover.  Upon discovery, what do you do with it? Do you sail around the world chasing infinite unknowns or drop anchor selectively in the lands which are fertile and hold potential for development?

Sinking roots in something which we love gives us deep satisfaction.  Setting sail and exploring the unknown enriches the human experience and gives us new ideas.

“Several times in my life, I have done utterly reckless things with so little motive, that I have found it difficult to explain them to myself afterwards.” ~ Arthur Conan Doyle

I feel the same way and am glad to meet a kindred soul in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Despite the agony and internal conflicts, he turned out well for the contribution made to literature and imagination.  It gives me hope that all will be good in due course.  It gets better =)

Another Earth

Monday, March 31st, 2014

If I see the other me on another Earth, what would I say? Would I know me? How different would we be?

One thing is for sure. The other me would have fewer psychological scars.  Have passion for life and live life to the fullest as we always wanted to.  Contribute in meaningful work.

Home is where the heart is

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Wrong planet, John Carter?  It’s alright, I suppose, as long as he found it at last.

The Wonders of Planet Earth

Monday, March 17th, 2014

When the time comes for me to leave, I will miss Earth. Not people, but nature.

Turn it around

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

Use naysayers as an inverse indicator.

Are there are people in your life who want for you things which you don’t want.  Are they are adamant to make you fit into their cozy box of conventions.  Do they support you only if you behave, act and live in a way which fits into their agenda. Do they tear you down when you go beyond the perimeter of their world.

I used to spend days and weeks getting upset and bashing myself over such people. I don’t do that anymore. I don’t want to waste a second more of my life on that.

Focusing on them is a waste of time and distracts you from what really needs to get done to live a better life.

We are better off being a success

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

We are no good being a failure. We are better off being a success.

A failure pulls people down by their negativity, disbelief, skepticism and mediocrity.  A successful person can lift people up.

Open our eyes and see clearly before taking advice from anyone. Don’t take advice because of who the person is. Don’t take advice merely because he is so and so or someone hiding behind some fancy title.

Take advice from people with track record of success in what we want to achieve.  It will be a disaster if we give up by listening to failures who themselves have given up and advise us to do so.

Failures want everyone else to be like them. It hurts their ego if we do better than them.

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