Thursday, June 28, 2012
Sunday, June 24, 2012
The past week just slipped away, silently as it came,
I tell you:
Those seven days had not been easy, to say the least.
Let’s say that when you are happy, you pass a day.
And if you are miserable, you also pass a day.
So the obvious choice is to be happy and pass a happy day, come what may.
Heck, unless you really try, would you ever know?
We either make ourselves wretched,
Or we gear up to make ourselves strong.
The amount of work will always be the same.
So folks, brace yourselves and say “Carpe Diem”,
SEIZE THE DAY!
Saturday, June 23, 2012
ANDREW NGO, Vietnamese SuperModel tells me:
“Being happy doesn’t mean that everything has to be perfect.
It means that you have decided to look beyond the imperfections.
I have known this a long, long time ago, that good things seldom ever last.
Happiness comes in fleeting moments.
It is transient.
It’s here one moment, gone the next.
I strive to work hard and hope for the best.
Family and friends are important.
I treasure them, I hope they love me too.
I nurture my conscience to embrace each new day.
As long as there is life, there is hope.
I try not to take things for granted.”
Now, here’s one catty issue:
I have a carefree, hazy friend, who, citing “health reasons”, enjoys sleeping in the buff. No joke.
“It’s just a hygienic habit,” he preens. “My skin gotta breathe.”
And every morning, promptly without fail, his pet cat TOTO would wake him up with a nudging “meow”.
“Come Play with Me”, TOTO purrs.
This is TOTO’s lovable nature:
“Look into my
that see so much,
My paws have
the quiet touch.
I purr to signal
“all is well”
and I am able to show more love
than words can tell.
I practice movements
touched with pride,
and I am a calming presence
by your side.
Ours is a friendship
that will last and grow,
It’s small wonder
why you love me so.”
TOTO has an uncanny gift of knowing, when people are talking, whether what they say is right or wrong.
If people should say more than what they should say, then this sensitive cat would mew in disagreement.
Isn’t this swell?
Thursday, June 21, 2012
“ABRAHAM LINCOLN : VAMPIRE HUNTER”
FACT or FICTION?
We’ve to thank quirky producer Tim Burton and film director Timur Bekmambetov who had jointly redressed the image of ABRAHAM LINCOLN, the notable 16th President of the United States in shocking hues for our viewing pleasure.
Aesthetics-wise, he is portrayed here as a die-hard vampire slayer welding a mighty axe, who’s out on a vengeance streak, to bludgeon those ferocious, blood-sucking creatures of the night as his mark in meting out justice.
Or is it really so?
ABRAHAM LINCOLN is a dedicated vampire hunter.
He kills them with gusto and relish.
You see … his grandfather and mother were both slayed by vampires and he vows vengeance.
His mentor HENRY STURGES is a good vampire and he educates ABRAHAM on the dark forces of supernaturalism and the art of tracking and killing vampires.
So much for this extended myth as we are randomly ushered to share the innermost self of this charasmatic US president who’s been dramatized here for living a double life as a hunter of the undead.
To delve deeper into this incredible tale, you just have to brush aside skepticism and enjoy illogical revelations with a pinch of salt, because this is one movie that challenges your beliefs, an art piece that defies you not to take itself too seriously.
Of course, figuratively, any potent vampire can lurk within the darkest recess of your mind.
In real life?
“ABRAHAM LINCOLN : VAMPIRE HUNTER” is one such morbid fable.
Let this be a creative indulgence that takes you through a world of arty bleakness.
This is a psychological fantasy thriller about a late statesman who, as the advertising headline proclaims, is “a president by day and hunter by night”. You’ll be transported to a sinister, spooky vacuum created to enhance pure aesthetic enjoyment.
In the acting department BENJAMIN WALTER who looks like a younger version of action actor LIAM NEESON delivers his acting chops well and good.
The 3D cinematography is brilliant.
The competent visual effects highlight scenes that expound on the grim and relentless chase between ABRAHAM LINCOLN and a vampire in the face of an oncoming horse stampede.
Also, bate your breath as you witness the breathtaking motion visuals of perilous death defying stunts atop a runaway train heading towards a flaming bridge.
Notwithstanding the historical Battle of Gettysburg reinvented with armies of vampires going to war.
AREN’T THESE ENOUGH REASONS TO GET YOU TO THE CINEMA ON TIME?
Saturday, June 16, 2012
“BRAVE” (in 3D) Movie Review. Typically Old-School Farce, nonetheless a Hilarious, Feel-Good and Entertaining Ride.
“BRAVE” 3D ANIMATION FILM
To those who truly understand, dabble or ever work in the stupendous visual effects and animation industry, the name PIXAR is certainly a big deal.
This award winning brand is fondly known for producing outstanding classics over the years such as the TOY STORY series, MONSTERS INC., FINDING NEMOS and THE INCREDIBLES, to cite a few.
Therefore this season’s much anticipated 3D animated fantasy has to be BRAVE from the distinguished PIXAR ANIMATION STUDIOS in collaboration with WALT DISNEY PICTURES as the principal distributor.
I’ll vouch for this piece of cinematic gem.
It’s pure wholesome family entertainment, nonetheless a feel-good, emotive and hilarious farce that I’d recommend to anybody.
Here’s a quick preamble on the plot:
The pretty heroine is Princess Merida, the daughter of King Fergus and Queen Elinor.
She lives in the Scottish kingdom of DunBroch with her three brothers (behold the very cute triplets).
Merida grows up to be a skilled archer who loves to romp and hunt in the wilds.
She has a non-conforming and rebellious streak that we see from the start will get her into more trouble than she’d ever bargain for.
She will be betrothed to one of the sons of the three Lords: Dingwall, Macintosh, and MacGuffin but no – the princess is defiant against the idea of being tied down into a loveless marriage.
She is fiercely determined to control her own destiny and pursue her own happiness.
When Merida defies one of the kingdom’s taboos by sabotaging an archery contest between the three lords, the end result is : she has inadvertently created a pandemonium that has spinned the kingdom into a chaotic mayhem.
Merida then seeks solace in the woods and encounters an old witch to help her change her hapless fate.
She buys a devil’s concoction from the witch and uses this as an ingredient for a cake she bakes for her mother in an attempt to reconcile their differences.
Unknowing to her, a curse is inflicted when the queen eats the contaminated cake and is immediately transformed into a big black bear.
Merida has only two days to undo her mistake before the change becomes permanent. So in order not to lose her mother, it’s Merida’s race against time to right a wrong she has committed.
“BRAVE” is essentially a heart-warming tale about breaking traditions and the love between a mother and her daughter.
It’s an immensely enjoyable film with superb imagery, painstaking, focused editing and awesome animation, clearly paving the way to be a classic wannabe.
Emotively old-school and a brilliant one at that.
To sum it all, it’s a great piece of work.
Don’t miss it for the world.
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
WHAT ARE FRIENDS FOR?
For starters, a really helpful pal recently stumbled upon an online article titled STOP CHASING THE WRONG THINGS and emailed me this to swipe mutual opinions, cajoling that the contents can do wonders to pep up any sad guy’s deflated soul.
Of course, he’s darn right. Upon reading, the thunderous dark clouds quickly disperse and a brand new world appears to shimmer in my mind. (gasp)
Being the creative idiot that I am, I envisage rainbow hues, I see rain… at least for that one brief moment, and I thought it’d be nice if I broach a little about the “poetic magic” here.
I am thankful to the the anonymous author for such a lovely reminder.
Sound advice from an experienced smartie, because in life, all of us are too busy + starry-eyed to take heed of little deeds.
NO, life ain’t easy. Nobody says it’s going to be.
We get edgy over the slightest mistakes and punish ourselves as though doomsday is around the corner.
Again, LIFE ain’t sweet as well, but we still have to let go and plod on with as much positivism as we can muster.
You may begrudge a smiling face as you may never know what harbors behind that emotive facade.
We need to spruce up our appearance, action and speech because first impressions count. Always.
Again everything is easier said than done during depressing times, but we’ve just got to look at a different rebound.
Let’s pause for a moment to read this:
When you stop chasing the wrong things you give
the right things a chance to catch you.
As Maria Robinson once said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.” Nothing could be closer to the truth. But before you can begin this process of transformation you have to stop doing the things that have been holding you back.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
Stop spending time with the wrong people. – Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you. If someone wants you in their life, they’ll make room for you. You shouldn’t have to fight for a spot. Never, ever insist yourself to someone who continuously overlooks your worth. And remember, it’s not the people that stand by your side when you’re at your best, but the ones who stand beside you when you’re at your worst that are your true friends.
Stop running from your problems. – Face them head on. No, it won’t be easy. There is no person in the world capable of flawlessly handling every punch thrown at them. We aren’t supposed to be able to instantly solve problems. That’s not how we’re made. In fact, we’re made to get upset, sad, hurt, stumble and fall. Because that’s the whole purpose of living – to face problems, learn, adapt, and solve them over the course of time. This is what ultimately molds us into the person we become.
Stop lying to yourself. – You can lie to anyone else in the world, but you can’t lie to yourself. Our lives improve only when we take chances, and the first and most difficult chance we can take is to be honest with ourselves. Read The Road Less Traveled.
Stop putting your own needs on the back burner. – The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too. Yes, help others; but help yourself too. If there was ever a moment to follow your passion and do something that matters to you, that moment is now.
Stop trying to be someone you’re not. – One of the greatest challenges in life is being yourself in a world that’s trying to make you likeeveryone else. Someone will always be prettier, someone will always be smarter, someone will always be younger, but they will never be you. Don’t change so people will like you. Be yourself and the right people will love the real you.
Stop trying to hold onto the past. – You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading your last one.
Stop being scared to make a mistake. – Doing something and getting it wrong is at least ten times more productive than doing nothing. Every success has a trail of failures behind it, and every failure is leading towards success. You end up regretting the things you did NOT do far more than the things you did.
Stop berating yourself for old mistakes. – We may love the wrong person and cry about the wrong things, but no matter how things go wrong, one thing is for sure, mistakes help us find the person and things that are right for us. We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past. But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power to shape your day and your future. Every single thing that has ever happened in your life is preparing you for a moment that is yet to come.
Stop trying to buy happiness. – Many of the things we desire are expensive. But the truth is, the things that really satisfy us are totally free – love, laughter and working on our passions.
Stop exclusively looking to others for happiness. – If you’re not happy with who you are on the inside, you won’t be happy in a long-term relationship with anyone else either. You have to create stability in your own life first before you can share it with someone else. Read Stumbling on Happiness.
Stop being idle. – Don’t think too much or you’ll create a problem that wasn’t even there in the first place. Evaluate situations and take decisive action. You cannot change what you refuse to confront. Making progress involves risk. Period! You can’t make it to second base with your foot on first.
Stop thinking you’re not ready. – Nobody ever feels 100% ready when an opportunity arises. Because most great opportunities in life force us to grow beyond our comfort zones, which means we won’t feel totally comfortable at first.
Stop getting involved in relationships for the wrong reasons. – Relationships must be chosen wisely. It’s better to be alone than to be in bad company. There’s no need to rush. If something is meant to be, it will happen – in the right time, with the right person, and for the best reason. Fall in love when you’re ready, not when you’re lonely.
Stop rejecting new relationships just because old ones didn’t work. – In life you’ll realize that there is a purpose for everyone you meet. Some will test you, some will use you and some will teach you. But most importantly, some will bring out the best in you.
Stop trying to compete against everyone else. – Don’t worry about what others are doing better than you. Concentrate on beating your own records every day. Success is a battle between YOU and YOURSELF only.
Stop being jealous of others. – Jealousy is the art of counting someone else’s blessings instead of your own. Ask yourself this: “What’s something I have that everyone wants?”
Stop complaining and feeling sorry for yourself. – Life’s curveballs are thrown for a reason – to shift your path in a direction that is meant for you. You may not see or understand everything the moment it happens, and it may be tough. But reflect back on those negative curveballs thrown at you in the past. You’ll often see that eventually they led you to a better place, person, state of mind, or situation. So smile! Let everyone know that today you are a lot stronger than you were yesterday, and you will be.
Stop holding grudges. – Don’t live your life with hate in your heart. You will end up hurting yourself more than the people you hate. Forgiveness is not saying, “What you did to me is okay.” It is saying, “I’m not going to let what you did to me ruin my happiness forever.” Forgiveness is the answer… let go, find peace, liberate yourself! And remember, forgiveness is not just for other people, it’s for you too. If you must, forgive yourself, move on and try to do better next time.
Stop letting others bring you down to their level. – Refuse to lower your standards to accommodate those who refuse to raise theirs.
Stop wasting time explaining yourself to others. – Your friends don’t need it and your enemies won’t believe it anyway. Just do what you know in your heart is right.
Stop doing the same things over and over without taking a break. – The time to take a deep breath is when you don’t have time for it. If you keep doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep getting what you’re getting. Sometimes you need to distance yourself to see things clearly.
Stop overlooking the beauty of small moments. – Enjoy the little things, because one day you may look back and discover they were the big things. The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you.
Stop trying to make things perfect. – The real world doesn’t reward perfectionists, it rewards people who get things done. Read Getting Things Done.
Stop following the path of least resistance. – Life is not easy, especially when you plan on achieving something worthwhile. Don’t take the easy way out. Do something extraordinary.
Stop acting like everything is fine if it isn’t. – It’s okay to fall apart for a little while. You don’t always have to pretend to be strong, and there is no need to constantly prove that everything is going well. You shouldn’t be concerned with what other people are thinking either – cry if you need to – it’s healthy to shed your tears. The sooner you do, the sooner you will be able to smile again.
Stop blaming others for your troubles. – The extent to which you can achieve your dreams depends on the extent to which you take responsibility for your life. When you blame others for what you’re going through, you deny responsibility – you give others power over that part of your life.
Stop trying to be everything to everyone. – Doing so is impossible, and trying will only burn you out. But making one person smile CAN change the world. Maybe not the whole world, but their world. So narrow your focus.
Stop worrying so much. – Worry will not strip tomorrow of its burdens, it will strip today of its joy. One way to check if something is worth mulling over is to ask yourself this question: “Will this matter in one year’s time? Three years? Five years?” If not, then it’s not worth worrying about.
Stop focusing on what you don’t want to happen. – Focus on what you do want to happen. Positive thinking is at the forefront of every great success story. If you awake every morning with the thought that something wonderful will happen in your life today, and you pay close attention, you’ll often find that you’re right.
Stop being ungrateful. – No matter how good or bad you have it, wake up each day thankful for your life. Someone somewhere else is desperately fighting for theirs. Instead of thinking about what you’re missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing.
ANYONE CAN TRY TO BE A BETTER MAN, ONLY IF HE WILLS HIMSELF TO BE.