Youth and Their Future In Our Hands

In our society today, due to COVID-19 pandemic, there began many unease and crimes. Starting from bullying in schools and corporate bullying at workplaces, in Japan there is a “copycat” attacks following a rampage by a man dressed as ‘The Joker‘. He is only 24. Last month in Korea, police officer accused of fleeing a crime scene and leaving two victims alone with a knife-wielding attacker in Incheon. The issue is not simply the crime but the aftermath of how the society is responding to it. The blame, that it was the policewoman’s failure to intervene in a stabbing incident has re-ignited a debate over passive policing in South Korea.

I started to recall when was the first time in my life to begin to be aware about dangers that could be imposed on me as a person. It was during a trip to Hong Kong, when I was on my headsets, traveling on a tourist coach and a local resident tapped on my shoulders and said “Don’t you know? There is a bomb nearby!” All said in the localised Cantonese. I couldn’t speak too much Cantonese at that time.

Now I rewind back to the time when I was in the first years living in Budapest Hungary, there was a big commotion about the life of an American exchange student in Italy, who spent almost four years in an Italian prison following her wrongful conviction of the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher, whom she shared an apartment in Perugia.

Now she became what is known as Exoneree, a person who was convicted of a crime and later officially declared innocent of that crime, or relieved of all legal consequences of the conviction because evidence of innocence that was not presented at trial required reconsideration of the case. She is married now and using Podcasts, Labyrinths, Amanda Knox and her partner Christopher Robinson delve into stories of getting lost and found again through compassionate interviews.

Many times, I feel there is this underestimation of what someone did could be as small as an act of ‘sneering’, or a force, coercion, hurtful teasing or threat, to abuse, aggressively dominate or intimidate. I am a person who deems PARENTING as a very important role and responsibility. That said, teachers and adults (seniors or mentors), anyone in the guardian or leadership roles is also very important. The result of our youths and next generations, their quality greatly depends on how we act on what we should do.

We need to teach our children the right thing to do.

Youth and Their Future In Our Hands

d’Cinnamon Rolls

d’Slurpy Rolls (Cinnamon Rolls by Deelish Recipes)

The best part about making my own Cinnamon Rolls is that I can control the amount of sugar added. I prefer not-too-sweet Cinnamon Rolls if I can have it my way. I like this recipe as it is really soft and fluffy in the inside as I am using Bread flour. I am absolutely happy with the results:

INGREDIENTS:

Dough:

  • 4 cups of bread flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 cup lukewarm milk
  • 7g instant yeast
  • 3 eggs

Filling:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 17g cinnamon powder
  • 1/3 cup butter

Glaze:

  • 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 Tbsp milk

INSTRUCTIONS:

Method:

  1. In a large mixer bowl, whisk together bread flour, granulated sugar, and fine sea salt.
  2. Add in softened unsalted butter. Blend in using a spatula
  3. In a separate container, whisk together lukewarm milk and instant yeast.
  4. Add in yeast mixture, eggs, mix for 3 minutes.
  5. On a lightly floured work surface and knead for 1 minute. Plop into a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap, let rise for 1.5 hour.
  6. Once dough is ready, mix together sugar and cinnamon.
  7. Place dough out onto a lightly floured surface flattening it into a large rectangle.
  8. Spread softened unsalted butter across the whole rectangle then sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly across the whole dough.
  9. Tightly roll from the bottom all the way to the top. Slice into 2” thick segments
  10. Grease a baking dish or round pan, line the bottom of the pan the rolls and cover with a damp cloth. Let rise at room temperature for 45 minutes.
  11. Bake in a 190 Degree Celsius preheated oven for 20 minutes. Let cool in the container for 15 minutes.
  12. For the filling, powdered sugar and milk blend with a mini whisk until smooth.
  13. Drizzle the glaze on top of the cinnamon rolls and serve.

Death

Where do you come from? When you die, where do you go?

This question your beliefs on whether there is such a thing called ‘reincarnation’.

What is your belief?

Do you have a religion?

How many gods and goddesses are there?

Is there really a heaven and hell?

If you believe in reincarnation, most likely you are into this thing called ‘karma’ as well. And you believe what is like ‘a bank’ which you deposit good deeds and score points to determine if you deserve to go heaven or hell after death.

My hairstylist presently revealed about his journey of 3 decades in discovering his past lives. Yes, with past lives means you can derive from your memories which past lives you were what. Previously he was raised as a Christian, however when he reaches college times, he started his search for the truth and realised his true beliefs is Buddhism. Yes, it took him 30 over years.

He shared all these in Mandarin only – the truest form of Chinese language as he was “Chinese Educated” so he is from a Chinese school, we called it 华校。

I am like Mr Lee Kuan Yew in particular this side about belief systems. I feel I am an agnostic. Agnosticism is the view that the existence of God, the divine, or the supernatural is not known or knowable with any certainty. If the question is “Does God exist?”, “yes” would imply theism, “no” would imply atheism, and “I’m not sure” would imply agnosticism—that God possibly can or cannot exist.

If there is a religion call ‘Romanticism’, I would be rather more like “a romantic”. Any list of particular characteristics of the literature of romanticism includes subjectivity and an emphasis on individualism; spontaneity; freedom from rules; solitary life rather than life in society; the beliefs that imagination is superior to reason and devotion to beauty; love of and worship of nature; and …”

Romanticism is a philosophy of freedom that is manifested in Literature, Fine Arts, Music and painting of the 19th Century in Europe and America.

I answered to my hairstylist that I think I believe more in the Science of life, how it comes about and moving forward, how it will become in the future. My hairstylist added that the beginning of life then according to this line of thoughts would be the Big Bang. The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological model explaining the existence of the observable universe from the earliest known periods through its subsequent large-scale evolution. The model describes how the universe expanded from an initial state of high density and temperature, and offers a comprehensive explanation for a broad range of observed phenomena, including the abundance of light elements, the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation, and large-scale structure.

And so he said “to where you come from, is cells, you inherited from your parents and ancestors and it goes on like this…”

In my mind, it is a mixed of this as well as human was the result of an evolution including, the evolutionary process within the history of primates that led to the emergence of Homo sapiens as a distinct species of the hominid family, which includes the great apes. This process involved the gradual development of traits such as human bipedalism and language, as well as interbreeding with other homininis, which indicate that human evolution was not linear but a web.

There is a quote by Maya Angelou — ‘I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’

I think this is true in my whole life.

This post is dedicated to my uncle who had passed away recently. May he rest in peace.

Painting

Lately, I am addicted to Negative Space Painting.

Negative Space Painting Technique

It’s so fun and addictive. I am basically a self-taught artist (if I may say so and call myself an artist) More like a hobbyist artist. My initial idea was just to explore this technique of painting using watercolour or aquarelle. I’ve bought two new palettes and would think MeiLiang is quite reasonably priced. Here are my swatches:

MeiLiang

Another 36 colours palette

Giorgione

Personally I love the colours in Mei Liang. There was however one missing colour which is Turquoise in the Giorgione. I was quite disappointed actually because it was one of the reasons why I bought this additional palette.

COVID-19 Killed 4.4 million

SOURCE: https://covid19.who.int/?fbclid=IwAR2qITb9wuSF57PDI_UZkhxUFgrUfu52FGErrmy_LgRUpORfkmA0Ct8UPt4

My friend sent out this link to this Dashboard by WHO. He wonders what can he do about people who didn’t understand what is the real issue.

Until today, 3 August 2021, we still do not know the origins of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic that has killed 4.4 million people worldwide.

The crazy thing is not about the actual killing, rather the before and aftermath.

When there is a surge of cases detected, the tendency is PCR testing of all the citizens. What one is afraid are the loopholes as livelihoods are impacted when a lockdown is ordered. Many small medium enterprises and businesses will DIE as nobody can afford to have no income. These numbers are real when compounded especially for large populations and regions like China. The recent resurgence and battling of the Delta outbreak is worrisome.

UNWELCOME EGO at Workplace

Ego is defined as a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance. … It can stop someone from finding the right job, prevent them from moving forward in a career or stop the success of their company. It can inhibit personal and professional growth.

First and foremost, win/win thinking and behaviour is truly important to create better team-working. We need to understand everyone makes a unique, albeit different contribution and everyone are part of the team and, therefore, valuable.

To create great conversations about our own experiences, inviting others to contribute their own.  Sticking to facts and not getting personal about others.  Discussing your own thoughts, feelings etc., without attributing or assuming what other people’s motives, thoughts or feelings might be, is a way to create better team-working

To speak your own truth but to do it in a way which respects everyone else’s too. I learned hard in my working life not to be a ‘Yes person’, so don’t be surprise when I firmly say ‘no’.

Finally, abiding by the policy to stick to the facts (not personal) with TACT! Tactfulness is a skill. The consideration in dealing with others and avoiding giving offence. tact. considerateness, thoughtfulness, consideration – kind and considerate regard for others; “he showed no consideration for her feelings” finesse, diplomacy, discreetness, delicacy – subtly skilful handling of a situation.

Control Freak

What’s going to happen if you found out in your first weeks of work, that your boss is a control freak?

What is wrong?

You are definitely sure it is not due to your own incompetence. Somehow, you realised your boss is a control freak. You do not want to offend him/her. So you can only rant.

What made someone become a ‘super controller’?

Bad experiences led your boss to become like this. He or she could have made a terrible mistake when he/she had “let go” and now it is traumatic to not do the necessary control measures. To me, this is a mental issue. As much as your boss need your help to empathise with him/her, it undermines your work performance as you do not dare to take any initiatives to help him/her to share the workload.

What can you do?

There are still several ways you can solve this puzzle. First option is to have a face-to-face open talk. You can ask your boss to let go when an opportunity arise. If this does not work, the second option is to give in and let him/her have all the control. The third option is help your boss overcome this ‘blind spot’.

For those who is crying for help, feel free to write your comments below.

Acrylic Trees Painting

Lately I have a certain addiction to painting. This time around, I am painting with Acrylic paints. Normally I am using watercolor paints. The subject is ‘trees’, single tree.

I like how sturdy and strong the tree trunk can look. I love the effects as it is only so simple strokes to create this natural woody trunk. The color is Burnt Umber (225) with a little bit of Noir (026). This 10 color box set is from DALER ROWNEY, and each tube is 38ml (or 1.28 fl. oz)

For the tree leaves, Phthalo Green (386) and I use it with a mix of Yellow Ochre (690). Besides Titanium White (011), I sometimes work between another Primary Yellow (603) and Cadmium Yellow (605). So this is how the tree looked like 🙂 How do you like it?

Songs

Song Festival
Laulupidu

One of the more interesting experience of living in Tallinn was to join and witness the world’s largest choral events. It is known as the Estonian Song Festival. This event is held every 5 years in the month of July. In Winter, we normally go to the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds to do sledding on the thick fluffy snow. But at the Song Festival (usually also simultaneously with the Estonian Dance Festival), the photos above are captured by me 🙂 We also took a video, Song Festival in Estonia — at Tallinna Lauluväljak. 

It is a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.