Colourful Dresses & Colourful Flowers – A 2020 Mother’s Day Poem by Kempton Lam

Sunday, 10 May, 2020

Colourful Dresses & Colourful Flowers – A 2020 Mother’s Day Poem
by Kempton Lam

(彩裙 彩花 – 2020 母親節詩 – 錦堂 敬給 偉大的母親 – 中文版見下)

Mom loves colourful dresses and colourful flowers
I love colourful shirts and colourful flowers

Mom makes friends with restaurant helpers, store keepers, neighbours and strangers
I make friends with restaurant helpers, store keepers, neighbours, and strangers

Mom is stubborn and steadfast with friends
I am stubborn and steadfast with friends

Mom has taught me many things by her actions and by her words
I listen, I filter, and I learn. And sometimes I do

Mom hasn’t often heard the Chinese word for “LOVE” 愛 because my generation of HongKonger parents and children don’t say “LOVE” 愛 to each other
I changed and learned to be better. And I made sure I told mom I “LOVE” 愛 her Read the rest of this entry »


Being happy isn’t getting what you want, it’s wanting what you have. – New Quotes I Love

Sunday, 29 December, 2019

7 Quotes from Star Wars Great Carrie Fisher That Will Inspire You to Push Forward Through the Galaxy - with book cover - Screen Cap

New additions to my collection of Quotes I Love. I and these are all from the wise and insightful late Carrie Fisher (1956 – 2016). All quotes found from this Inc. post so I seriously hope they fact-checked them all.

“I haven’t ever changed who I am. I’ve just gotten more accepting of it. Being happy isn’t getting what you want, it’s wanting what you have.” – Carrie Fisher (1956 – 2016)

“Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” – Carrie Fisher (note: I fact-checked this one via Google books search with hep from this 2017 Quote Investigator post)

“Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.” – Carrie Fisher

“Going through challenging things can teach you a lot, and they also make you appreciate the times that aren’t so challenging.” – Carrie Fisher

“No motive is pure. No one is good or bad — but a hearty mix of both. And sometimes life actually gives to you by taking away.” – Carrie Fisher

“It’s the most amazing thing to be able to forgive.” – Carrie Fisher

“I heard someone say once that many of us only seem able to find heaven by backing away from hell. And while the place that I’ve arrived at in my life may not precisely be everyone’s idea of heavenly, I could swear sometimes — I hear angels sing.” – Carrie Fisher


Happy Green Balls from Paris

Friday, 31 May, 2019
Green Balls from Play | Alexander Ekman & Ballet de l'Opéra de Paris | Palais Garnier 2017

Green Balls from Play | Alexander Ekman & Ballet de l’Opéra de Paris | Palais Garnier 2017

Respect and help others, even total strangers. This is one of the many lessons my dad taught me by example.

You see. one year our family traveled to Thailand and there were performances (dancing and singing) at lunch. As our tour group finished our meals, people were getting ready to leave. All except our table.

Dad convinced our fellow travellers to stay seated for a few more minutes to allow the singer to finish her song before we left. The singer noticed and appreciated it. She was someone we would never meet again. I guess in some sense even she didn’t mind people leaving en masse mid-song as she must have come to expect and have seen happened many times. But our small gestures made a small difference to her that day.

Dad didn’t intend to teach me any lessons. He was just being himself. Respectful and polite (and be firm with reasons when needed) to everyone including strangers. I in turn got a lesson for life. By example.

So back to my green balls which signify playfulness and happiness to me thanks to the epic ballet Play in Paris (see trailer video below). It just so happened that while watching Play in Paris during an intermission, I was posting stuff on Facebook and saw a friend’s post which I saw as a “cry for help”. Long story short, after getting my hands on a few of the magical green balls at the end of the performance, I snapped a photo and sent it to my friend and promised to arrange a coffee meetup to give the friend one of my treasured green balls. We had a good talk. And the friend felt better.

Today, another Facebook friend from overseas seemed to be having a bad day so I took the above green balls photo and sent it to the friend with a few words of encouragement and care. Giving the friend my balls (photo of them) and keeping them. My version of “having my cake and eat it too“.   ;)

At the end of the day, I believe love and care are like that, the more you give, the more you have. We are all on this earth for the blink of an eye and may be gone tomorrow. Might as well be good and caring to our loved ones, friends, acquaintances, and even strangers. We may not be able to be good all the time, but try we can. A new thought just came into my mind as I typed this paragraph. You see, if you think about it carefully, we are that “strangers” to others we don’t know. And the world and we ourselves would be better if we are all a bit nicer and kinder to that strangers as our world seem to fall into a darker period in our recent years.

Thanks dad. Thinking of you. OK, here are those balls, lots and lots and lots of balls! Enjoy!

Play trailer | Alexander Ekman & Ballet de l’Opéra de Paris | Palais Garnier 2017

xxx


I. M. Pei – Great minds of our time

Friday, 17 May, 2019

I M Pei - Pix 01.jpg

RIP I. M. Pei 貝聿銘 (2017 – 2019). I picked up my copy of “I.M. Pei: A Profile in American Architecture” in the early 90s as I began my lifelong love of beautiful architectures. So thanks to Mr. Pei for your inspirations.

I like to remember the recently passed with their own words if I can, here he talked about the various challenges and ideas in redoing the Louvre.

I. M. Pei at MIT – Tech Day 1994

American Architecture Now: I.M. Pei, 1980

I. M. Pei: A Centennial Celebration – Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD)

Video description: //The GSD is proud to celebrate the 100th birthday of Ieoh Ming Pei, MArch ’46. Both I. M. and his wife Eileen Pei GSD ’44 studied at the GSD, as did their sons Chien Chung (Didi) Pei, MArch ’72, and Li Chung (Sandi) Pei, MArch ’76. Pei was also an assistant professor of architecture at the GSD. This event, with guests including Harry Cobb AB ’47 MArch ’49, moderated by Mohsen Mostafavi, dean of Harvard GSD and Alexander and Victoria Wiley Professor of Design, will focus on the formative years of I. M. Pei’s career as well as some of his special friendships, influences, and projects.//

P.S. There are some archival news footage of the building of Louvre in this clip.

(Hopefully more to be added later.)


Keanu Reeves & Warren Buffett have Love in common

Wednesday, 15 May, 2019

Keanu Reeves left Stephen Colbert speechless

Keanu Reeves left Stephen Colbert speechless on Friday night when the subject of death came up as he promoted two of his upcoming projects (third “John Wick” movie & third instalment of the “Bill and Ted” film series).

“After the late-night host asked him what happens if they aren’t able to write the song, Reeves responded: “Well it’s the end of the universe, it’s the end of the time and space continuum. It’s all over.”

“So you’re facing your own mortality and the mortality of all existence?” Colbert asked.

“Yeah,” Reeves nodded his head.

Colbert quickly followed up by asking Reeves what he thinks happens when we die.

The “John Wick” star thought about it for a moment before giving the profound response: “I know that the ones who love us will miss us.

As the audience said “Awwww,” Colbert appeared stunned. As a smile spread across his face, the late-night host said, “Wow,” before he shook Reeves’ hand for a moment and ended the segment.

Reeves is no stranger to tragedy. According to People, the actor lost his best friend to a drug overdose in 1993 and his girlfriend Jennifer Syme died in a car crash in 2001. Syme and Reeves previously had a child who was born stillborn in 1999.” [source text of this quote: Fox]

Watching Keanu’s insightful answer reminded me of a relevant Warren Buffett quote I read in his biography “The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life” by Alice Schroeder which also comes down to LOVE:

“Basically, when you get to my age, you’ll really measure your success in life by how many of the people you want to have love you actually do love you.

I know many people who have a lot of money, and they get testimonial dinners and they get hospital wings named after them. But the truth is that nobody in the world loves them.

That’s the ultimate test of how you have lived your life. The trouble with love is that you can’t buy it. You can buy sex. You can buy testimonial dinners. But the only way to get love is to be lovable. It’s very irritating if you have a lot of money. You’d like to think you could write a check: I’ll buy a million dollars’ worth of love. But it doesn’t work that way. The more you give love away, the more you get.

I’ve added Reeves’ quote and an excerpt of Warren’s quote to my long list of Quotes I Love.


Goodbye Agnès Varda (1928–2019)

Friday, 29 March, 2019

Goodbye Agnès Varda (1928–2019). In memory and honour of her passing (France24 video report), I’m watching her “Cléo from 5 to 7″ (Kanopy). Here are some reviews of her last film “Varda by Agnes“.

Cleo from 5 to 7 / Cléo de 5 à 7 (1962) – Trailer

Agnès Varda in her own words at TEDxVeniceBeach. //Inspiration and good mood: THAT’S CINEMA!//

Agnès Varda. Cléo from 5 to 7. 2004 (via European Graduate School Video Lectures) Read the rest of this entry »


Stone Garden of Love and the dot dot dot

Thursday, 28 March, 2019

20190328 - DSC_6318 - ATON & LYVM ... (small) (built in 2017 Sept)

Love written in stones.
Love is hard work in life (and when written in stones & landscaping fabric).
Love creates beauty (and, yes, beauty is everywhere).
Love takes two to foster (and constant tender loving care).
Love is endless (just like the “…”).

It took literally thousands of stones to create this Stone Garden of Love (SGL) in September 2017. The SGL (made with stones & landscaping fabric) serves a functional purpose of stopping weed from growing on those ground. The creative genesis came to me when I realized I could use stones of two colours to write or draw things! And soon the name ATON was decided (a combination of my better half’s and my names). And the LYVM was easily decided as the second half. And then I have always tried to find a use for a bag of tiny coloured decorative stones sitting idle in the garage thus the idea for dot dot dot “…” was born. Because of the tiny size of the coloured stones used in the three dots after LYVM, they themselves numbered in the thousands! (Statistically, 2,000+ at least!) And if you ask me, the “…” are one of the best feature the garden as they are the most fragile and delicate to care for (removing leaves and tree branches, etc). Just like Love. I have my temper and sometimes I can act like a bull in a China shop. Luckily, my better half and I agree on many major issues but our smaller differences (and sometime really trivial stuffs) can lead to fierce arguments. But we have a rule. We don’t let our grievances or anger live pass 12 midnight each day. Anyway, as you have read this far, let me wish you lots of love in your life and give lots of TLC to your own Stone Garden of Love!


Designing the Canadian Flag

Wednesday, 13 March, 2019

I recently watched the documentary “Design Canada – The History of Graphic Design in Canada” via online streaming service Kanopy (free thanks Calgary Public Library) and LOVE it! Especially loving the segment about the design history of the Canadian flag! I love that Canadian flag segment so much that I looked up more online and found some extra cool info produced by CBC News in 2015 to celebrate the 50th birthday of our lovely flag!

CBC News, Feb 16, 2015, “The real story behind the Canadian Flag

Have a read of the lovely historical and insightful four-page document “Dr. George F.G. Stanley’s Flag Memorandum – “the genesis of the Canadian flag”” as shown in the above CBC News report.

Here is a trailer of “Design Canada – The History of Graphic Design in Canada

P.S. I love Canada and the Canadian flag and I’ve requested a Peace Tower flag that has flown on Parliament Hill in Ottawa and hoping to receive it around the year 2060, hopefully I’ll still be alive to receive it!

I like the Greek proverb (?), “A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they shall never sit.” In requesting the Peace Tower flag that had a waiting list of 46 years at the time, I made myself a commitment/promise of sort to love, cherish, and to try to make Canada a little bit better than I found her!


2017 November Random

Wednesday, 1 November, 2017

* CBC News, 2017 Nov 7, “Party crasher – Donald Trump delivered Republicans the presidency and both houses of Congress. That gift may prove fatal to the GOP” (very insightful and worth a read)

* Say this often and with love: “DRIVE CAREFULLY ME.” – Joanne Woodward (1930 -) (ref: 2017 Oct WaPo, “Paul Newman’s Rolex — with a telling message from his wife — fetches record $17.8 million“) (Just added this to my long list of Quotes I Love as we need a good dose of love in our crazy world.)

DRIVE CAREFULLY ME.

P.S. No idea Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward would get married later in life when I watched “The Long, Hot Summer” (trailer) but I thought their chemistry in the film were awesome!

The Life and Legacy of Chief Justice Earl Warren (Earl Warren)

*


Heritage Minutes: “Boat People” Refugees

Tuesday, 20 June, 2017

Today is World Refugee Day and I want to say I just LOVE this Heritage Minutes: “Boat People” Refugees

Saw the news story last night on CBC National (more info)

P.S. I’ve fond memories of my late Choi Uncle who also played the role of the elderly Chinese man in the Heritage Minutes: Nitro. Instead of being paid for his role, he asked for a commissioned painting from CBC instead.


Love this Heineken Ad: Worlds Apart #OpenYourWorld

Thursday, 27 April, 2017

LOVE this ad. #OpenYourWorld “Heineken Just Put Out The Antidote to That Pepsi Kendall Jenner Ad” (Fast Company) [HT Sarah]

Heineken | Worlds Apart | #OpenYourWorld

Have a read!“Heineken Just Put Out The Antidote to That Pepsi Kendall Jenner Ad” (Fast Company)

//WHAT: “World’s Apart,” a new Heineken ad that involves some frank conversations between people with differing views.

WHO: Agency Publicis London

WHY WE CARE: Earlier this month, Pepsi tried to walk in step with the #Resistance, and ended up falling on its face. Hard. The company’s tone-deaf ad–which used Black Lives Matter iconography and Kendall Jenner to suggest that carbonated beverages can heal America’s wounds–inspired such a seething backlash it was pulled almost instantly, and savagely parodied. It would’ve been a fine time for Coca-Cola to step up and deliver a perfectly calibrated topical ad, thereby eating Pepsi’s lunch. In truth, though, Coke had to do absolutely nothing to achieve the same result. Instead, Heineken has come along a couple weeks later with an ad that gets to the heart of political engagement in a straightforward way that makes Pepsi’s self-congratulatory ad seem even more embarrassing.//

Update: This ad is cool too!

Heineken | The Cliché


Wedding gift: “An Old Sweetheart of Mine” stanza translation by Andrew W.F. Wong 黃宏發

Tuesday, 20 January, 2015

 

A stanza from An Old Sweetheart of Mine - by James Whitcomb Riley translation by Andrew W.F. Wong (Huang Hongfa) 譯者: 黃宏發

A stanza from An Old Sweetheart of Mine – by James Whitcomb Riley
translation by Andrew W.F. Wong (Huang Hongfa) 譯者: 黃宏發

My wife and I want to say a special thank you to Mr. Andrew W.F. Wong 黃宏發 (Andrew was the last President of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong during British rule) for taking time to translate the special stanza from “An Old Sweetheart of Mine” I used in my marriage proposal and wedding announcement (of which I only shared the first line).

Here is Andrew’s translation (which he humbly calls “hastily attempted … translation”, borrowing 同心, 情依依, 異路, 相…時 from Lin Yu-tang 林語堂‘s attempt) of the same stanza in four 7-character lines (七言絕句):-

同心永結情依依
青絲成雪愛不移
陰陽異路難言笑
仍待天國相擁時

credit: translated by Andrew W.F. Wong (Huang Hongfa) 譯者: 黃宏發

Notes:

“An Old Sweetheart of Mine” stanza by James Whitcomb Riley (1902)

When I should be her lover
forever and a day,
And she my faithful sweetheart
till the golden hair was gray;
And we should be so happy
that when either’s lips were dumb
They would not smile in Heaven
till the other’s kiss had come.

林語堂 (再遇幽默大師林語堂) 翻譯的同一節詩 Lin Yu-tang‘s translation of the stanza:

同心相牽掛,一縷情依依。
歲月如梭逝,銀絲鬢已稀。
幽冥倘異路,仙府應淒淒。
若欲開口笑,除非相見時。

An Old Sweetheart of Mine - by James Whitcomb Riley 20150120 with Lin Yu-tang 林語堂 translation

An Old Sweetheart of Mine – by James Whitcomb Riley
with Lin Yu-tang 林語堂 translation

P.S. I wish I had the opportunity to meet Andrew in person but I haven’t had the pleasure yet. Andrew’s fair minded and excellent work during his time as President of the Legislative Council of HK remind HKers the fond memories we miss these days in HK. My wife and I were really happily surprised to see Andrew taking time to translate the beautiful stanza for our wedding which we take as a special gift.

In recent years, it has been my pleasure to read Andrew’s poetry translation work at his fascinating blog “Classical Chinese Poems in English” once in a while to revisit some classic Chinese poems along with Andrew’s graceful English translations to relax my mind. Which is why I reached out to Andrew to ask him a translation question about“An Old Sweetheart of Mine”. Thanks again Andrew for your beautiful translation to help celebrate our wedding!

And yes Andrew, it is indeed been my (now “our”) ambitious plan to work hard on our marriage, love each other dearly, stay healthy for each other, etc etc so that I can present this stanza to my wife on our 50th Wedding Anniversary in 50 years time.

====

Sept 11th, 2018 Update: Facebook video, 國學大師林語堂的最後10年:一屋書,一棟房,一生只愛一人

//1966年在台北陽明山,林語堂親自設計建成了自己的小別墅,取名“有不為齋“,寓意君子有所為,有所不為。屋子裡有自己喜歡的書房、臥室和魚池,舒適自在。在這裡他與相伴一生的太太廖翠鳳,度過了他人生最後十年的時光。#林語堂 #設計

In 1966, Lin Yutang designed and constructed his own villa in Yangming Mountain, Taipei. He named it “Youbuwei House”, implying that a noble man should know what to do and what not to do. With his favorite study, bedroom, pond, and, most importantly, his wife Liao Tsui-feng, he spent the last 10 years of life there comfortably and cozily.//


Precious and Candid Bob Dylan interview (1986) posted by Christopher Sykes

Thursday, 28 February, 2013

Here are a few videos about Bob Dylan posted by Christopher Sykes. I LOVE interviews, masterful interviews done well are awesome to watch. These interviews are very cool. You get to see Bob drew Christopher LIVE on camera!

Bob Dylan, 1986 – Part 1 of 4

Bob Dylan, 1986 – Part 2 of 4 Read the rest of this entry »


I LOVE & adore Richard Simmons – epic Fox LA Hangout

Saturday, 16 February, 2013

Hangout with Richard Simmons at Fox LA

I LOVE & adore Richard Simmons especially after this #epic  hangout with him this week. It is a tragedy of our times that many people are unable/unwilling to see straight through to the heart of people like Richard, who has a heart of gold and truly kind hearted to his core despite a tough life he has lived!

People may look and act differently from us, but until & unless our society progress to love and care about others who may look & act different to us on the outside, the human race has a long way to learn and progress.

FOX 11 Google+ Hangout: Richard Simmons Cries, People In The Hangout Cry… INTENSE!

Thanks +Maria Quiban +Tony McEwing +Tshaka Armstrong at +FOX 11 Los Angeles for this treasured experience.

Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Simmons


Oreo Super Bowl Power Outage Twitter Ad campaign – Chat & Analysis

Tuesday, 5 February, 2013

Oreo Superbowl Twitter Ad

“This is an opportunity. The entire world is watching and there is nothing on. So  quickly, everyone pull together a design, a caption, the folks from Oreo were in the room, and we got something out in just a few minutes [kempton’s note: 360i was ready in only 5 mins after the power outage but waited for 5 more mins to confirm that people were safe before they tweeted]. – Sarah Hofstetter, president of 360i (WSJ Video interview, Feb 4th, 2013)

I LOVE smart Ad campaign . I especially love one of them during the Sunday surprised/not-so-surprised Super Bowl Power #fail. Great job @Oreo with its Super Bowl Power Outage Twitter Ad campaign! As I was telling a prospective client recently, the best ads are often the ones, once you paid to initially get it made, you pay very little or nothing to get it spread because people are sharing it as content!

It was my pleasure the Monday morning after Superbowl to host an event to have an insightful chat with Kim Beasley and Trev Warth to specifically talk about the very successful Oreo’s “Power Out? No problem.” tweet campaign. Here is a video of our chat. See my reference notes below for more detailed research.

Oreo Super Bowl Power Outage Twitter Ad campaign – Chat & Analysis

References:

Official blog post post account by 360i: “How Oreo Won the Social Media Bowl with a Single Piece of Content

– WSJ Video interview, Feb 4th, 2013: ” How Oreo Stole the Super Bowl Spotlight – A quick response from Oreo’s social media turned a timely tweet about the power outage into the brand’s most successful social media message yet. Sarah Hofstetter, president of 360i, joins digits.

– Oreo’s “Power Out? No problem.” tweet

– 360i Company site

– 360i leadership

– Cool tweet by Adam Kerj, Chief Creative Officer of 360i


Interview with Yasmin Nakhuda, owner of Darwin (IKEA) Monkey, re upcoming court case

Tuesday, 22 January, 2013

Yasmin Nakhuda & Darwin (IKEA) Monkey

Late last night, I interviewed Ms. Yasmin Nakhuda, owner of Darwin (IKEA) Monkey over the phone. Have a listen to the extensive phone interview first before you leave any comments. If your comment don’t show you have actually listened to the interview, I reserve the right to not approve it. I have seen way too many comments on articles/posts about this issue that have gone totally out of control elsewhere (CBC and other media outlet) and I won’t let it happen here. So please keep your comments brief, to the point, and don’t make any personal insults or groundless attacks. Disagreement is fine, strong critique is ok, but pointless insults are decidedly NOT!

As the issue of Darwin (IKEA) Monkey is in front of a court (case is scheduled to appear in front of a judge on Jan 31, 2013) and hotly discussed/debated amongst Canadians, all the readers comments will be heavily screened & monitored me. We are civilized people and many of us are Canadians so we are better than those people who cannot ground their arguments in facts and reasons. Former Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau got it wrong with his so call “Reason before Passion (La Raison Avant la Passion)“, in our social media age where anyone and everyone can have their worldwide platform and LIVE video broadcast channel, we must aspire to have “Reason alongside Passion.

Have a listen to my extensive phone interview Ms. Yasmin Nakhuda, owner of Darwin (IKEA) Monkey

Research & reading materials

1) Have a read of Toronto’s animal control by-law.
Toronto-by-law 1184_349

2) Can anyone help me here? I like to find the court filings by Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary online. Have the Sanctuary or its lawyer posted these documents online? If you know where to find them, please leave a note in the comment as I would like to read them.

3) I found the court filings by Ms. Yasmin Nakhuda online here at her lawyer’s website and I found them useful to read. I suggest you read them to understand what were said under oath by Officiers Joseph Florillo and David Behan describing what exactly happened during the own process of them taking Darwin.

Highlighted Transcript of Officer Joseph Fiorillo Jan 17 2013
Summary of Transcript of Officer Joseph FiorilloJan17 2013

Highlighted Transcript of Officer David Behan Jan17 2013
Summary of Transcript of David Behan Jan17 2013

Concluding thoughts and Personal notes

After interviewing Yasmin for over 40 minutes last night, I cannot disagree more with people who hear or know about the case from reading a headline here and there and watching a minute or two of news clips and then went on to insult Yasmin, her family, and even her children. Lets ground our discussion and look at the facts and situation surround this specific case of the lovely Darwin (IKEA) Monkey.

On a very personal note, I hope and wish for wisdom in the judge for this case and that the best outcome for Darwin will be delivered. Yes, may be I’ve watched way too many episodes of Judge John Deed (especially loving the earlier seasons 4, 1, and 2), I hope the judge for this case is as wise or wiser than Judge Deed!

P.S. Thanks again to Yasmin for her time to be interviewed by me. And special thanks to Calgary Public Library for stocking great TV DVDs like Judge Deed. Not unlike pure mathematics, we sometimes learn a lot more about justice from a fictional drama than real life court cases that can be very messy at times.

P.P.S. I wrote a light hearted “funny” piece about Darwin “Top 10 Reasons why Monkey Darwin shops at Ikea & No charges by T.O. police!” on Dec 10th, 2012. Even it was meant to be a funny piece, I do insist on my thinking and comments to be solidly grounded. Compare to that time, I think my positions and views have now definitely changed given the new information I have come to learn about this case.


In a world full of Lance Armstrongs and Lance wannabe …

Saturday, 19 January, 2013
In a world full of Lance Armstrongs and Lance wannabe ...
In a world full of Lance Armstrongs and Lance wannabe where winning is everything, it is important to remember the true reason we compete in sports, paradoxically, is not JUST about winning. International sports competitions should be about building international friendship on a clean competing platform. (see note 2)

And sometimes, even during the toughest and highest competitions like the Olympics, there can be selfless acts! Here is one selfless act that I LOVE in 2006!

Norwegian coach Bjørnar Håkensmoen gave [Canadian] Sara Renner a ski pole after hers was broken when a competitor stepped on it during the cross-country team sprint at the 2006 Winter Olympics. Norway’s athlete ended up fourth, implying that this selfless act of sportsmanship may well have cost the Norwegian team a medal.[1] Renner gave Håkensmoen a bottle of wine as a thank you, while other Canadians responded with phone calls and letters to the Norwegian Embassy. Canadian businessman Michael Page donated 8,000 cans of Maple Syrup to the Norwegian Olympic Committee to show his gratitude.[2] The incident was immortalized in a 2010 Winter Olympics television commercial.[3]”

At the end of the day, winning must NOT be everything. Thank you Norway, thanks for helping us but more importantly, how to behave in a selfless manner. You guys rock! World class athletes don’t just set examples by how many medals they have or how many world records they’ve broken, the selfless-act by Norwegian coach Bjørnar Håkensmoen inspire us to rise up to be more, to be noble. Here is an ad capturing the essence.

Yesterday, on Reno KRNV News 4 Forum, I and others expressed some strong views about Lance’s actions. The discussion start at about 5:09 (click here to jump directly to the spot).

I will never want to leave someone without means to make a living and be destitute. But Lance has made enough money (I will leave the morality of how he made those money for you to judge) for him and his family to live comfortably for life, so I am safer to be blunt in saying I have enough of Lance and don’t want to see him compete ever again and him promoting/selling anything. I respect my friends who are deeply affected by his story of fight against and winning his battle with cancer. But for me, I know people with cancer who behaves totally honourably without needing to resort to and falling so low as to try to win at all cost.

Note 1: If you ask me, Lance’s latest strategically targeted & planned TV appearances is nothing other than an insincere attempt to win back our broken hearts. Yes, his battle against cancer, his great charitable work, his drugs-assisted wins, his bullying, and all his lies are paradoxically inspiring, hurtful and insulting all at once. And Lance has #fail to win me back.

Have a read of Forbes, “Lance Armstrong and Oprah: Destroying What Was Left of His Reputation

Note 2: Think of jousting, it was a sport that people from opposing groups “compete” in a manner that sometimes could result in deaths just to show who is “better” in the sport.


Falling in love with Bear 71 in its world & Interview with co-creator Leanne Allison

Wednesday, 16 January, 2013

bear 71 - interactive doc from NFB

I just watched & experienced my first ever award-winning first-person-documentary! It got me to play along and fall in love with Bear 71! The online experience/first-person-documentary is FREE thanks to National Film Board of Canada. And today, after a year long global competition, Bear 71 was selected as Site of The Year Winner amongst 12 Site of The Month finalists by 58 international judges in 2 rounds of voting! To see how amazing this honour is, you should know that the Site of The Month finalists were in turn selected from 365 Site of The Day Winners!

I will watch & play with Bear 71 again for sure. (update: 3 times so far) Let me give you the permission to explore and to click and look at different things during the 20 minutes experience because there are endless ways and many interesting hidden surprise for people to “first-person” interact and discover within the documentary. I was imagining/hoping there was a “right” way to interact with the film but there isn’t one. At key moments, the gentle hands of the creators of the experiences will bring you right along into some memorable video that will hopefully stay with you. For me, the memorable experiences will stay with me and has reaffirm and be more aware of the beautiful environment we (and the animals) experience even things are changing rapidly (often in not so positive ways for the animals). Lets hope shows like Bear 71 will help us want to make our world a better place not only for us humans, but also for bears like Bear 71 and other wild animals before things are too late.

Bear 71 (Trailer without the fun of interactive hangout)

Jan 19th update: Here is my extensive video interview with co-creator Leanne Allison where we talk about the one million plus photos Leanne got to pick and choose to use. The raw & candid video footage of a variety of wild animals captured motion-triggered cameras. And down to a discussion of how best to protect bears from trains in high-speed. Leanne and I also got to chat about the awesome documentary Being Caribou (2004) which you can watch for free online.

Here are some selected praises from the 58 international judges which I whole heartedly agree with.

Tom Daly, The Coca-Cola Company:

“The team behind ‘Bear 71’ put interactive story telling at the new edge of how we should imagine things.”

Julie Campagna, Adobe:

“Innovative and memorable, yet disturbing.”

Steve Lemarquand, Resn:

“I felt emotionally compelled to trek the virtual landscape for Bear 71.”

Mathias Appelblad, BBDO:

“A beautiful experience that pulls you right in. A great example of how technology and interaction can tell a story in an innovative, engaging and emotional way.”

Wesley Ter Haar, MediaMonks:

A site that is steadfast, almost stubbornly interactive. It interweaves narrative with data in a way that creates something uniquely digital, while also managing to resonate far beyond the experience itself. I catch myself thinking of Bear 71 in the same way I do about books or movies that have made a lasting impression, it is proof that our industry can create compelling, emotive work and will be the standard-bearer (pun not intended) for years to come.”

Eric Jordan, 2Advanced Studios:

Bear 71 is masterful blending of documentary-style video and information graphics, which combine together to make the site deeply engaging and informative.”


Goodbye Aaron Swartz (1986 – 2013)

Sunday, 13 January, 2013

Aaron Swartz (1986-2013)

Hi Aaron,

I wish I had the opportunity to know you before you left us. In the words of George Bernard Shaw,

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.

You were one of the brightest & most unreasonable men we had. With your sad & tragic passing, it is up to us to carry on your work and do our part.

May the tears

in our collective eyes

help energize us

to clear our collective minds

to see injustice better &

to try to make progress in this world

for the limited time we have.

Goodbye, Aaron.

In the words of Aaron in “F2C2012: Aaron Swartz keynote – “How we stopped SOPA”“.

Note: This also my first post to tumblr and the reason I created my tumblr account.

For more, see articles & posts from Cory Doctorow, Larry Lessig, Guardian, TorStar, CBC, and “ongoing posts about Aaron, his memorial service, his death, and the malicious prosecution brought by the DoJ against him“.

2013 Jan 17 update re: Twitter #PDFTribute to Aaron:

– Washington Post video interview with Eva Vivalt, the woman behind the campaign, tells us why she launched it, “Aaron Swartz honored with #PDFTribute

– TechCrunch, “PDF Tribute to Aaron Swartz Attracts Roughly 1,500 Links To Copyright-Protected Research

– Fast Company, “Researchers, Academics Remember Aaron Swartz with #PDFTribute

– PC Magazine, “Twitter Campaign ‘#pdftribute’ Roars to Life In Tribute to Aaron Swartz


Howl’s Moving Castle – Call Me, Maybe?

Monday, 24 December, 2012

It all started with me trying to find a video clip from Howl’s Moving Castle to go with a cryptic FB Status, “Hello ATCO, Our fire demon is sick and waiting for your help.” It is not in my nature to let a good idea go wasted, so I did some research & search and found the wonderfully made HMC | Call Me, Maybe? ♡

Spoiler Warning: Do not watch clip if you want to watch the full film spoiler-free. Howl’s Moving Castle is a 2004 Japanese animated fantasy film. At heart, it is a most enchanted magical story about love.


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