Smack me for being cynical

Hi, good day. Please refer to the following article of Uncle Khoo for information vertification. Thank…

Posted by Jen Hong on Ahad, 12 Ogos 2018

Wife sent me this message with a general statement saying that old folks with kids all living abroad need more sympathy (or something of that nature). I mean pity the old man as he is probably feeling lonely now going through cancer. We then talked about this old lady nearby, whom kids are in US and Australia. She is bedridden and cared for by army of maids and caregivers paid for by the children living overseas. 

After a short sympathy, I started to ask who is really the one with the sad life? 

For one the article said old man still have relatives, and knowing how things work in Asian culture, news will get to his children to come back. I am sure the children know the news without FB posting asking to look for next of kin. There may be issues where they cannot make it back, who knows. 

Empathy is about putting my shoes in his. I see that he has successful kids loving overseas while we are still stuck here (depending on how you measure success). Old man probably told the kids that they should go overseas and not come back (advice taken). 

so question.. why need to be so kaypo.. people don’t need your help to forward this message.. kids are overseas, living THE life and I’m in hazy Penang with politicians from the NEW government talking about LGBT issues depressingly.  The kids are overseas, don’t have to worry about racial discrimination, don’t need to worry about passing Bahasa Malaysia, don’t have to worry about wearing proper attire to the simplest of government buildings. You worry about yourself. 

Facebook Engineer


Kisah Malaysia kekurangan Engineer. Bila baca artikel ini,saya geleng kepala. Saya juga bekas Engineer tapi berhenti…

Posted by Asraff Jeffery on Ahad, 22 Julai 2018

Tapi ada kawan-kawan Engineer yang lain lompat kerja lepas 2-3 tahun berkerja kerana tidak nampak masa depan.

Hidup seperti robot,bangun pagi,masuk kerja, buat perkara sama setiap hari dan gaji,bawah RM3k.

Hinggalah ada kawan-kawan bagitahu kerja di bahagian Customer Service lebih menguntungkan. Kerja reply email secara teknikal dan dalam masa sama sebagai penterjemah. Gaji dapat RM5k. Ada kawan yang dapat RM15k.

Percayalah,sekarang kita bukan kekurangan Engineer tapi kita kurang mereka yang sanggup jadi Engineer. Dan percayalah, isu ini Kerajaan boleh selesaikan.

  1. I do count my blessings everyday, need to see the light at the end of the tunnel. One of my blessings is to somehow being on the path to be in the job that I really love, and also with the wonderful company of colleagues. 
  2. We used to have a Russian expat as a manager and we complained a lot about how much we are getting paid, especially since “jumping ship” will mean that we get a huge increment and possibly less work. His response was “if you want money, don’t be an engineer – do sales”. Over the years, I begin to realise how much his advice make sense. If you want to be paid for your effort, work on commission. The harder you work, the more you are paid.. or you can choose to work just enough.
  3. I work with universities a lot as part of my work. When meeting students, I find that their grouses are almost the same as the FB posting. Low starting salary, no careers, other friends jumping higher in “position”, driving new cars. 
  4. Looking through the positive glass, I suppose we can say that engineers have the most possibility of career transitions, ie they can be an engineer one day and jump to customer support. Not many education or careers allow you to do that. 
  5. But I tell people most importantly to know why we become engineers (As Simon Sinek says, “Start with Why”). Be an engineer if you want to create the future. Engineering is complex and hard because creating the future is a very important job. 
  6. Remember that the “managers” were once engineers, that’s where we started. Along the way we moved on the other things that interest is, engineering allows for that. Have you heard of anyone in Business Management major managing a large technical company?

Soul Searching

New photo by Nee Shen Ho / Google Photos

It’s tragic to read that people who we think as successful will take their lives. In a way, I feel it’s a reflection of our lives on social media. We post nice things in facebook and we only see other people in their happy moments. Like social media, everyone has a dark side that is hidden beneath the surface of calm. 

I am always mindful that the lives people portray are carefully arranged to show what they want people to see. We see, what they want us to see. Before social media, we have to deal with the neighbours getting larger TV, better car.. With social media, we get to compare with more than just our neighbours. 

I believe that contribution of TIME to the community is essential to happiness. Time is an equalizer, everyone has the same, rich poor, old or young. Giving time to a cause you believe in makes you happy. 

But I also believe that hope brings happiness. I have many friends migrating to other countries for a better life, presumably a happier life. I see teenagers being sent oversees, posting pictures from far away places, because their parents can afford overseas education. 

I have no choice but to seek happiness where I am.. mostly through contributions to society. People think that I am trying to change the world, but in essence, I am trying to change myself. I hate being miserable, but this self realization is a journey. 

So I’ve been telling people, except for a few cases, it does not make sense to move to Singapore (I cannot comment on other countries) so that you can make more money due to the currency exchange. You can make a lot of money but there is a limit to how much money contribute to happiness. I guess this is a case where someone who crave money, thinks that it will solve all problems, till they have money. 

Embracing my fear

New photo by Nee Shen Ho / Google Photos

We are volunteers that only show up in force during major public holidays. In every speech and article, we are hailed for sacrificing our holiday to serve the people. For me, it’s so that I can touch my inner fear. 

Most of the people who called for our service are the needy and almost always we take the graveyard shift. Almost all our calls are to low cost flats and kampung houses. We hardly meet any middle class people or drive into manicured houses. The people that we respond to, have their own stories on what got them there. Mental illness and chronic disease at a young age coupled with cramped living condition, single parents… these people are living in a world very different from mine. 

Yet these people live day by day.. year after year..  

What drives them? what keeps the moving.. If it’s hope, I really want to know what they are hoping for because I can use some in my life. 

Did I make the wrong decision?

New photo by Nee Shen Ho / Google Photos

Seems like every year, I will lose a friend to migration. I hear friends leaving for greener pastures to another country.. Australia, United States, Singapore… 

And here I am consoling myself where I am, is not too bad after all. Decent quality of life, decent career, a job I don’t hate, volunteering community, great weather, beaches (that I hardly visit), great food.. family..

But I cannot help but wonder if I’ve made a conscious decision not to seek greener pastures because I am comfortable.. not embracing the notion of going out of the comfort zone. 

Sometimes I wonder if I am missing the boat. 

The thought will linger. 

But I believe the only reason I should leave is because of the unfair government policies of prioritizing a certain race for education and government benefits. I see that in students scoring well in form 6 but not getting a course they like. Although I now have a decent living, the impression of unfairness after my own form 6 experience still burns a deep scar in my being. 

I wonder when the regret, for fighting on to stay, will set in. Maybe when my own children have to go through my own demons, I will realise where I should be focusing my effort in the past 10 years. Maybe I’ll turn bitter… but then, maybe there’s hope. 


Like a rubber band

Image result for this too shall pass like a kidney stone meme

I have been feeling stressed and  worried at work over the past few months. The feeling of hopelessness, mainly on work issues.. the feeling that the balls I am jugging now will fall very soon.

Then people tell me, well I have to practice resilience, this is where you learn to bounce back after every setback. They keep saying, the bad time will pass.. and I found this quote very interesting.. 

The only thing I can remember from all the resilience classes is to look at things from a positive aspects and have some time out once in a while. 

In other words, you gotta roll with the punches. 


Remember the ones who walk with you

Image result for remember who help you quotes

I am very sure Einstein didn’t say this, any quote with Einstein must be true right?

I do know when it comes to people in the office, I generally categorize them into a those tho are there to build a wall and those who build bridges. 

Fortunately I can count the number of people who are in my first category with one hand. They are the ones who tell you the hoops that you have to jump through to get things done. They are the ones who say “according to the process, one have to get the approval from 5 people.. because it’s the process”. These are the people that can tell you what the process says.. and that’s that. 

Then there is the second type of people who looks at the process and say, let me talk you along for the ride. These are the people who will find ways to get the outcome, while still following the process. These are the people who make things happen

I understand that companies need people of the first type so to ensure regulatory, safety and adherence to rules. Those are all important.. but what about walking together to make sure that I am not alone?

Cold and Alone.. that’w how I feel when dealing with the first kind. 

Lucky for me, there are more of the second kind who will walk together and those are the people that I shall remember.