Not Looking Good

Current mood: cranky with frequent mood swings. And unpredictable.

These are the kind of behaviour I exhibit for the past 4 months. Instead of letting up, they seem to intensify.

With a bad job, a horrible boss, a company with plenty of debts, and an uncertain outlook, things are really bleak.

I can’t bear to think beyond the next step. One foot at a time, I remind myself. My company is quick to pull the trigger on terminating staffs. No one is spared.

The culture here is, to use their exact word, flush. Any sense of incompetence in their eyes will result in sacking. Fair, justifiable or not, it doesn’t matter.

Turnover is sky high and now I understand why.

At the stroke of midnight, I received a text message from the CEO that altered my mood since. It was Sunday and the following day is a public holiday. Not only didn’t she respect the personal time and boundary, she did it multiple times already without remorse.

The tone of message is one of demand, with underlying anger and consequence to be bourn from this.

I’m grateful for having a job, but this is becoming too much. It’s affecting my life and that trickles to people around me. Mentally and physically, I’m totally drained.

I can only hope to endure and survive long enough before I hop off.

Reading through this post, it sounds like I’m wallowing in self pity. It probably is. But I’m also writing to reflect on my current state. It hightens my awareness and makes me even more determined to seek better life, for me and for the people I care about.

Specially-Designed Fork for Cup Noodle

The ergonomic of the fork designed by Nissin specifically for cup noodles is a beaut.

I’d love to have one, even though I’m not a huge fan of cup noodles. I can count with 2 hands the cup noodles I consumed in a year.

It would be nice if it’s included permanently in the cup, as opposed to a limited edition release.

(via: Spoon & Tamago)

JOMO

Instead of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), let’s embrace JOMO (Joy Of Missing Out).

In the modern world we are constantly comparing our lives to other peoples through social media and being bombarded by marketing messages that anything is possible – but is this healthy?

Svend Brinkmann, Professor of Psychology at Aalborg University and author of The Joy of Missing Out, argues that we should start accepting and embracing the limits in our life, and that could actually make us feel happier and more fulfilled.

(via: BBC Reel)

Takigawa Sushi Restaurant

At just 20 sq meters, Takigawa is a sushi restaurant that sits between a parking lot and an old factory.

Odd place to have an eating establishment, almost like a secluded hideout designed to be discrete.

From the pictures, they don’t seem to be too confined. Instead it feels like a small intimate premise to enjoy a meal.

I’m intrigued by how a small corner can turned out to be such an attractive (and pared-down) restaurant.

(via: Spoon & Tamago)

Strolling With Hope

I slipped on my flip-flops, still in my workwear of t-shirt and jeans, I headed down for a stroll.

The night was peaceful with a light breeze, punctuated only by over-zealous teens zooming past with loud speakers blasting music I’ve never heard of. The high humidity level makes me perspire, soaking my white tee wet. Still, I walked, at snail pace. Each stride was measured and precise.

To make my sleep easier, faster and better, I had to move. A few hours back, I went on a rare spontaneous ice cream date with my wife. A giant cone (they called it monster cone) with 3 equally huge scoops of ice cream. Well, it was lovely but it filled us up before we even had dinner. Since we almost never get the chance to be alone, this warranted some extra zest of good vibe.

I also wanted to wash away the worries, anxieties and bad encounters at work (I’m still feeling the burnout as I’m typing this, my mind is still wandering back to the countless unfinished tasks). Things haven’t been going too well at my new workplace. Bosses are harsh. Judgements were biased. Timelines are unrealistic. Workflow is a mess. The only good thing out of this – it pays the bill. Things can only get better, like they always do.

Hope is a powerful motivator. It keeps people going through tough times. And I lean on Liverpool’s FC anthem, You’ll Never Walk Alone, for hope.

When you walk through a storm
Hold your head up high
And don’t be afraid of the dark

At the end of a storm
There’s a golden sky
And the sweet silver song of a lark

Walk on through the wind
Walk on through the rain
Though your dreams be tossed and blown

Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone

Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone

Tiny Apartment

I’ve probably watched this video over 20 times and never got sick of it. Quite the contrary, it impresses even more with each viewing.

Some minimalistic homes come across as lifeless, unwelcoming, or even pretentious. Not here. You can tell it’s comfortable and it’s designed exactly for the owner. Every furniture, function and detail are considered.

The result? A highly liveable and lovely home that happens to be small enough to be called tiny.

Falling In Love With Magazines and Branding, Again

Magazines and branding. 2 things I really enjoy in life.

In the magazine B, I like the deep dive into a brand, starting with the brand philosophy, and how they have gather a loyal following (mostly) through their values.

Readers get a 360 view of the brand – from the top guy (the founder if he/she is still at the helm), to the employees, to its fans, to the public’s perception.

The brands that I admire – Apple, APC and Muji amongst others – have one singular trait weaving through them.

Simplicity.

This simplicity approach is apparent in everything they do – from the design, to the communication, to the marketing. It’s their dedication to remain steadfast in their principles that made me a fan.

Simplicity is hard to achieve when we are surrounded by clutter these days. Some decisions are driven by trends. Some are made because they don’t want to lag behind. And some choices are taken because everyone else is doing it.

Which makes these brands even more admirable, because they stood out by not standing out.

Going into any of their stores restores tranquilly in my hectic lifestyle and cluttered head.

Electronic devices, fashion, lifestyle products. Looks like I pretty much got them all covered with these 3 brands.

The Audi Ad That Made Me Fall In Love With Advertising

Some 10 years back, I was a wide-eyed guy, listening to lecture amongst the sea of marketing students.

Growing up, I adore Nike. The best basketball players in my school, or those who aspire to be the best, wore a pair of Air Jordan. The jumpman logo gives us belief. I was forever drawn to the power of branding and advertising. They can alter our perception. And perception is reality.

In one of the many short videos my lecturer used to play, one particular advertisement by Audi stood out. Never mind that I couldn’t afford to own one. Didn’t matter that I don’t know about much about cars. Without even test driving it, I knew I’m gonna own one in the future. I wasn’t drawn to the vehicle, I was drawn to the brand.

That is the power of subliminal advertising. Great advertising doesn’t reflect conscious desires so much as stir latent ones and subtly nudging the person towards that direction.

This was the ad that made me fell in love with Audi.