Archive for December, 2014

looking back on the year

A review of what I did in 2014……!!! (Text in italics were the aims I had set for this year at the end of the last.)

Continue reading ‘looking back on the year’

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you learn something new every day

After being bombarded by a particular Christmas carol everywhere this festive season, I finally went to google ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ to find out what it exactly was. And turns out…… its definition isn’t fixed! Do check out the relevant Wikipedia article, which is quite interesting.

biscuit versus cookie

Once upon a time, I was tucking into fried chicken at Popeyes, when I heard a teenaged boy at a neighbouring table proclaim, to his friend, something to the effect of, ‘So dumb for them to call these biscuits!’ He was, of course, referring to those light fluffy things that Popeyes serves with their meals (which we Singaporeans would probably call scones).

On hearing that, I could not help but marvel at his ignorance. Did he not know different things could share the same name in different places? Or that the same thing could have different names in different places?

Much later, I came across this interesting article which discusses the meanings of biscuit and cookie in British English and American English respectively.

In my book, a biscuit is thinner and crisper, and often served unadorned, whereas a cookie is chunkier and chewier, and often contains something extra (like chocolate chips). In that respect, my definitions are closer to the British English ones!

christmas

Merry Christmas, world!!! :D

the more things change

The more things change, the more they stay the same…… this Brewster Rockit: Space Guy! (14 December 2014) comic strip says it all……

br 141214

from here

destiny

When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.

Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

瓜瓜瓜瓜

为什么只有南瓜和西瓜,却没有东瓜和北瓜?

rhetorical reasons that slogans stick

Slogan is an ancient Gaelic word. It means, or at least it meant, battle cry.

When medieval Scotsmen were charging their enemies in remote and warlike glens, they would shout the name of their clan or their chieftain again and again and again. “Campbell! Campbell! Campbell!” or “McDonald! McDonald! McDonald!”

These days, in the battles of global corporations, there’s slightly less killing, and certainly fewer kilts. But otherwise it’s pretty much the same clamoring to be heard above the competitive fray.

Imagine an army of Apple employees, brandishing iPhone 6s and bellowing “Bigger than bigger!” as they storm a counterattacking legion of Samsung smartphone reps wielding Galaxy S5s and urging one another onward with “The next big thing is here!”

A slogan, a good one at least, is at the heart of a company. It doesn’t just face outward to the consumer, but inward to the employees. One sentence becomes the company identity, the corporate motto and the battle cry. So it had better be a cracking good sentence.

Click here for ‘Rhetorical Reasons That Slogans Stick’ by Mark Forsyth, which I found a very entertaining read!

winter morning

Was walking towards my office this morning……

winter morning

tree-lined avenue:
light breeze tickles, gentle rain
of yellow petals

(Incidentally, where I live, there is no winter, but then……)

you learn something new every day

Armscye is another name for armhole, or the fabric edge to which the sleeve is sewn. Apparently, the word itself has a pretty interesting etymology too!

five little birds

After lunch this afternoon, while walking back to the office, I passed the swimming pool. Noticed four mynahs frolicking happily in the water at a corner, while a fifth remained a short distance away, on the tiled border, resolutely staying on dry ground.

you learn something new every day

Went to see the animated film Big Hero 6 on Friday evening. It’s a hilarious and heartwarming story of a teenage boy, Hiro Hamada, and his giant inflatable robot, Baymax, against a backdrop of love and loss. The way Hiro dealt with his grief moved me to tears a few times. Definitely worth a watch!

Anyway, when I got home, I browsed the discussion topics about the movie on IMDb. In one of the discussions, I came across the term uncanny valley. A rather interesting concept indeed!

wind and rain

The massive downpour this morning made me think of this poem by Song Dynasty female poet Li Qingzhao:

《如梦令》
李清照

昨夜雨疏风骤,浓睡不消残酒。试问卷帘人,却道海棠依旧。知否?知否?应是绿肥红瘦。

I think that this is a nice English translation. Incidentally, while the poem notes strong winds (‘风骤’),  the rain mentioned in the poem is actually light (‘雨疏’). So it was probably completely unlike the deluge I experienced!

you learn something new every day

Contumelious looks contumelious indeed!

you learn something new every day

Abecedarian is a cuter way of saying ‘alphabetical’.


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