Friday, August 31, 2007

My Interview with Mike

Hey guys! I was interviewed by Mike Thomas for his blog. It is a great blog because it introduces you to other blogs and bloggers.

Thank you Mike, it was fun!

When I saw his mail I had gone for my brother-in-law's wedding and so I did the interview when I got back. He posted it a couple of days ago, but I didn't get a chance to blog about it

It would be really cool if you guys checked it out. And I think there is a voting thing on it.
I couldn't post about it earlier as my mom-in-law is over for a week and I have been out with her all day.
The interview can be found here.

P.S.: And a note
Also, we suggest that you ask your readers to vote for your blog as
the top three will receive $50, $35, and $15 respectively at the end
of the month.

For more info visit:

Thanks again,

Mike Thomas

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Misadventures of 2 Women & 2 Girls

To forewarn you dear reader the title is the most glamorous of the entire post, the more appropriate name for it should have been 'Blame it on the Wino. But I couldn't resist.

I will not start at the beginning but with a digression as I usually do, my new blogmate Sandip introduced me to this site where you can make postcards. So yesterday being an insomniac and not a little crazy, I stayed up all night checking out the site. Browsing my photo gallery for pictures to make an introductory postcard, I thought why not capture a mid-day-going-into-early night madness at my best friend's friends house.

She had her sister & sister-in-law over, during college holidays, so I thought we'd spend time together as they were leaving in a week's time. She picked me up Saturday before last and I took two bottles of wine thinking we'd cook and eat. Her mom and kid had gone to her brother's house so we had the house to ourselves. Well, the evening started innocently enough with her cooking and trying to teach me as well. She's an excellent cook and I, well I, just manage to get by.

We sat in her kitchen, the light was excellent, we thought we'd take some pictures. Not realizing I had not eaten the whole day, actually none of us had, we merrily sipped away at our wine as if there was no tomorrow. Very soon mild inebriation was setting in but we were still composed so to speak. Her younger brother who doesn't drink, came in gave us a disgusted look and left, because by now grown women were screaming and doing obscene things and laughing maniacally.

From the kitchen we went into the bathroom to smoke as there is no smoking in her house. Very soon my hubby [who was working on a Saturday] and hers [who had gone Scuba Diving] came back, mine before his. We insisted we wanted more wine, they desisted but could not say no.

Now drunk, food was forgotten, a lot of merriment ensued, but then her mom came back. Being wise and clever, the girls stayed in the room. I don't know what got into me [I have a problem I always think I have more control than I usually do] I actually had the nerve to go out and make polite conversation, at least try.

What a conversation, this was certainly like no less than the out of body experience that Quasar9 wrote about, when you are watching yourself make a fool of yourself and a voice inside is saying get out, get out now, yet you persist, you sit. I don't know what I was talking about so passionately and incoherently I might add, but I could see through the haze, the slightly pained expression on my husband's face, which signifies that I was just babbling.

Anyway the evening came to an end and I woke up in the morning with a hangover.

I wonder what happened to all that delicious food we cooked. And of course I have not gone to her house in two will I face her mom again, I'm beyond mortified. But ahh! what fun was had by all!

If you want to see the postcard more clearly you can check it out the site, this was just a picture I took of it, as the posting to blog feature is not there yet - the postcard pictures


Monday, August 27, 2007

Seven ingredients of me!

Mariuca tagged me for this meme called the 7 P's, which was created by WVB to learn more about the blogs they read on a regular basis. So here are My 7 Ps.



Keep Evolving



Trying to ascend

My Laziness & procrastination [at least trying to]

Progress: S....l.... o.... w...

Friendly but slightly aloof [Like a cat]

P.S.: HollyGl, I promise your meme is the next one, I want to make it pretty like this one so give me a little more time as that one is more extensive than this one.
See one of my P's is laziness and procrastination ;-D

Why I love Blogging

I was thinking about what an amazing experience this has been. I never thought when I first started, that blogging would become such an important part of my life and would be so instrumental in teaching me to be aware of me, of other people and my relation in respect to them.

Without thinking about it consciously, I found myself imbibing the things learnt from blogging, the lessons others generously taught me by sharing their stories and opening their hearts. I learnt that sometimes we have to make the first move and initiate a conversation, and that perhaps the other person is just as shy as we are.

Man is a social animal and he does best in interaction with others he can’t be an island. But for those of us who cannot be as socially accomplished as others, blogging is such a blessing. Because here every voice is translated into words and the distraction of a physical self is not there. It’s you and your reader in an intimate bond of focused intensity on what you are saying.

Of course sometimes it’s easier to be a touched up version of yourself while writing and edit your flaws and mute them into the background and you always have the time lag to put yourself in order.

But this freedom to be who you are or who you want to be is liberating and is in most cases treated with responsibility and truth.

I have read in many blogs questions and doubts about the friendships formed here but to that I would say that’s a lot like any friendship anywhere. Here we share our innermost secrets and in the real world we share a beer.

The one thing that you learn is that no matter what you have felt and what you have gone through you are not alone someone else has been through the same if not worse and when you see them dealing with it with grace you are tempted to do so as well.

This post was inspired by getting a lovely award from The Twisted Sisters whose blog is unique… it’s funny, it's sad at times, it’s honest and brave and I want to say I love your Blog!

In turn I present this award to EVERYONE on my blog roll. Some are very new additions which I recently discovered and others are blogs from when I started...
I love all your blogs that's why I visit everyday!

Thank you for being a part of my life

My Blogroll

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Jogging to Beethoven

I discovered something awesome today. I was in the gym upstairs and usually while exercising I have dance music on, to be able to jog intermittently and at the end of the 45 minutes I am dead. Since I am not really regular I always end up a pushing myself too hard and the result afterwards is body in trauma and head spinning. Of course the feeling of accomplishment is there and the endorphins are making their rounds but you come back to your apartment feeling anything but relaxed.

Today I was listening to WGBH's podcast of classical music on my iPod instead. They were playing Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 9 in A major, commonly known as the Kreutzer Sonata. One of his best-known sonatas written for piano and violin. After which more Beethoven followed. I can’t tell you how amazing the synchronicity between the mind and body that followed was. I was so taken by surprise. Jogging was easier it wasn't the frenetic pushing yourself to do 30 more seconds – it was as if the mind was orchestrating the body in perfect movements and there was a feeling of calm. I was so surprised because although my electronic selection for my exercise routine does give me the energy. It is a very different energy from the one that I felt today. That energy is like the artificial Red Bull effect, today it was organic flowing like good chi throughout my body. I exercised far longer than ever and far more intensely but felt no strain.

The entire day my state of mind had been like a disturbed ECG report with spikes of irritation and crankiness. But at the end of an hour of the treadmill today I felt what a very creased pair of trousers would feel, if it could have feelings, after a bout of thorough professional ironing. I was fascinated, of course it’s not the first time I had heard classical music, but it was the first time I had paired exercising with it. So I researched into sound waves, frequencies and our bodily reactions to it.

Low frequency sound waves make us uncomfortable. The lowest are called infrasound, sounds that emanate from machinery and stuff in the house like ventilation and cooling/heating systems. Low frequency waves can cause symptoms such as nausea, headaches, fatigue, insomnia, vibration of internal organs and a feeling of oppression.

This is what I found on the net in an ezine article by Tania Gabrielle French …

On the other hand, certain high frequency sounds literally energize your mind. Scientists have found that sounds from 5,000 to 8,000 hertz recharge your brain’s batteries.

If your CD collection includes music by Mozart, Baroque Music or even Tibetan Chants, keep listening. In numerous studies, these sounds have been found to charge the cortex of the brain and stimulate health and wellness.

At 120-125 hertz you begin to hear the kick drums and bass guitar common to rock music. These lower frequencies produce the opposite effect - they drain us.

Why is this?

Because they have wave-lengths longer than we are tall, which is why lower frequencies are FELT as well as heard. You can feel this low frequency full-body sensation at dance clubs and rock concerts. Or from listening to most FM radio stations.

Since we are mostly exposed to low frequency sounds in the media, I strongly suggest you balance your brain and body by listening to high frequency classical music at least once a day. It’s easy and effortless – and great for you.

So next time you are exercising forget your usual disco/hip hop/dance/electro/techno collection and pick up Beethoven instead!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

A Bizarre Thought/Question!

I have been thinking about the things we cling to - the memories that have such an effect on us that they become the glasses that we view the world with. The shit that happened to us when we were young, the shit we did to ourselves. Reading various blogs on how people unconsciously or consciously make decisions that they know will bring them nothing but pain and degradation made me wonder why we all react the way we do.

The 'broken' do it out of a sense of self that insists that they deserve the worst of treatments and that every bad thing that happens to them is because of how they acted in the past and that they deserve nothing but the worst and that is all they can handle or ever want.

But what happens when something terrible happens to someone in their past but their brain just wipes it out, except for a few haunting traces? Take for example a hypothetical case of a person who might have been abused as a child or have had some other horrible thing happened to them but they don't recall or remember it clearly. Maybe they have buried it so deep inside that except for a few flashes they don't remember anything else. They don't talk about it or tell it to anyone and even if they ever did, it would be in a passing sentence.

So what happens then - when you don't consciously remember something. When you have no particular person to hate or blame categorically? Does it affect your behavior subconsciously? If one blanks out a certain period in one's life and remembers just very distant glimpses of it - does the past then count?

Think about it if you can't recall the memory of pain or recall it faintly... how much does it matter? As much as you recall it?

If you can't remember what happened.... does it then count?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Do you want to know a secret????

Ss...secret...The very word sounds so alluring. It's like being invited into a club where only very intimate friends are allowed to go. When someone tells you that they are about to tell you a secret - there is an immediate action. Both physical and mental. It's a visceral reaction.

Your heart starts to pound slightly and adrenaline makes its rounds, energizing your senses. The mental effect is of course more subtle and happens on many levels. There is pleasure at being a secret keeper as well as a certain apprehension.

In my previous post I had talked about how we assign a complete imagery and various connotations to words and the word secret is another that fits the category. It brings a plethora of images and meanings to our mind.

When I looked it up in I got the following result

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - Cite This Source

Secrecy is the practice of sharing information among a group of people, which can be as small as one person, while hiding it from others. That which is kept hidden is known as the secret. Secrecy is often controversial. Many people claim that, at least in some situations, it is better for everyone if everyone knows all the facts—there should be no secrets. The closely allied, perhaps even synonymous notions of confidentiality and privacy are often considered virtues. William Penn wrote, "It is wise not to seek a secret; and honest, not to reveal one."

Natural and sociological secrecy
Secrecy is built into biology. One reason for sexual reproduction a
nd speciation may be to allow members of a species to share genetic improvements without those improvements becoming available to competitors . Animals, including humans (in some cases), conceal the location of their den or nest from predators. Humans attempt to consciously conceal aspects of themselves from others due to shame, or from fear of rejection, loss of acceptance, or loss of employment. On a deeper level, humans attempt to conceal aspects of their own self which they are not capable of incorporating psychologically into their conscious being. Families sometimes maintain "family secrets", obliging family members never discuss disagreeable issues concerning the family, either with those outside the family and sometimes even within the family. Many "family secrets" are maintained by using a mutually agreed-upon construct (an official family story) when speaking with outside members. Agreement to maintain the secret is often coerced through "shaming" and reference to family honor. The information may even be something as trivial as a recipe.

There is nothing more decadent and appealing to the voyeur in us then to be invited to a secret... to glimpse into someone else's secret and share our own anonymously and that's exactly the brilliant idea Paisley has.

The Mode:
She has started a new blog called secret..secret...i've got a secret where you can anonymously drop off secrets all you have to do is just post an anonymous comment... it will be emailed to her and she will tell the whole world your secret!!!!!

I think its a great idea and it can be quite cathartic to let go of secrets in the cloak of anonymity. It's exciting because your secret is out there yet your identity still remains a secret. It's like you get to keep it and share it at the same time.
Kind of Cool. So hurry and email your secrets...
...we'll be the members of the club of secrets
Oh my how very glamorous!!

Of Tags, Memes and Awards

Let me start with an explanation and an apology - I have two deadly nemeses that follow me quite relentlessly [actually I have loads but these two are the ones who were the culprits in this case]... they are laziness and forgetfulness.

So I have been meaning to do this meme/tag I don't know the right phrase that Jean Chia from A Great Pleasure, tagged me with and it took a lot longer than I had anticipated.

So here goes... with apologies for the delay but the deadline was 26th August and at least I didn't miss that. I don't like to miss deadlines

The meme is about completing at least seventeen out of the following twenty seven sentences. For every completed meme before 26th August, Idham will contribute RM127.00 on your behalf to Darul Izzah Orphanage.

1. A person is only as good as ...

2. Friendship is always ... better if you work at it

3. To love is to ...let go of rationality

4. Money makes me ...

5. I miss ... my cats.

6. My way of saying I care is by ... doing something thoughtful

7. I try to spread love and happiness by ...

8. Pick the flowers when ...ever you want them

9. To love someone is to ... accept them

10. Beauty is ... vital.

11. When I was thirteen, what I remember ...

12. When I was twenty one, I remember ...

13. I am most happy when ... I have no obligations or deadlines

14. Nothing makes me happier than ...

15. If I can change one thing, I will change ...

16. If smiles were banned, ... the world wouldn't have nice looking people

17. Wouldn't it be nice if we could ... fly

18. If you want to ask me to smile while taking my picture ... you just have to point the camera in my direction;)

19. Money is not everything but ... it sure does make life easier

20. The most touching moments I have experienced is ...

21. I smile when ... I want to

22. When I am happy, I ... am great company

23. If only I don't have to ... then ... I'll do anything

24. The best thing I did yesterday was ...

25. If I ever write a book, I will give it this title ...

26. One thing I must do before I die is ... live [how utterly corny;)]

27. Doing this meme, I feel like ... I should've done it earlier


The second meme was not that long ago and I have a valid reason for the delay, I wasn't in town. Mariuca awarded me the opportunity to dream about the things I'd do if I had a million dollars.
Hmm! Very interesting

If I had a $1 million - I'd travel the world over with my friends in style, invest some, give some to people who needed it.

*** Start Copy ***
Instructions :
Proposition: If you Have $1,000,000.00…………………………
Requirements: continue above sentences
Tag Mode: 5 blogger

1st - You leave their blog and post link and add to the list below.
2nd - Let the blogger you want to tag know they been tagged by comment in their blog or etc.What They Do With Their $1 Million

What They Do With Their $1 Million


And now a special thanks to Mariuca who has two beautiful blogs and is a really sweet and caring person herself. She gave me a Nice Matters award and it came at the righ t moment when I was pondering over how sometimes in life it's the not-so-nice people who get ahead and how when you're nice people simply take advantage of your goodness. So thanks Marzie I needed to remember that sometimes its nice to be nice just because that's who you are...and some people do appreciate that

According to the originator of the Nice Matters award it is intended for “those that are just nice people, good blog friends, and those that inspire good feelings and inspiration! Those that care about others, that are there to lend support, or those that are just a positive influence in our blogging world!”

Monday, August 20, 2007

What's in a meaning?

Have you noticed how we have assigned negative meanings to some words which by their definition are not but the connotation we give them seem to make them 'not right'. I was having a conversation with one of my best friends and we were talking about God and one of my favorite books, 'Mister God this is Anna', and I was explaining her how it said that God had to be empty.

'Mister god was a bit different from a flower. A yellow flower that didn’t want yellow light was called yellow by us because that is what we saw. You couldn’t say that about Mister god. He wanted everything so he did not reflect anything back; we couldn’t possibly see him could we. So as far as we are concerned Mister God is empty. Not empty because there was truly nothing there but because he accepted everything. Of course you could cheat if you wanted to; you could wear a colored glass marked “MISTER GOD IS LOVING” or bit marked “MISTER GOD IS KIND”, but then of course you would miss the whole nature of Mister God”

While I was explaining this to her I didn't have the benefit of reproducing it like I have here, but in the span of my explaining there was a pause in which the word 'empty' seemed almost sacrilegious.

And then we went on to define 'empty' and we realized that somehow the word 'empty' connotes something else. It's meaning is is nothing bad but when we hear 'empty' we immediately envision things like 'sadness', 'barren' etc etc.

Hey All

I'm back and its sooooo good to be back and I missed you all so much here's hoping you missed me a bit!!!!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Thank You & See You In 10 Days

There are moments when you are totally taken in by surprise but in a good way and this was one of them. I was reading Jean Chia's blog A Great Pleasure and I came across a really sweet post in which she was giving awards to bloggers - the special thing about this award is that it is personalized and one of the most unique ones I've seen. It's actually a smoochie and is personally created by her. So thank you so much for your kind words. I'm really touched {{a big hug and kisses}}
"Amber: I know of your existence through Woman: Gods Masterpiece. It was a great interview. From there, I've got to know that you are no ordinary woman. You are an inspiration to others. I've been wanting to know more about you. Glad that I have the chance now. :)"
I'm going to disappear for a week or ten days, will pop in occasionally but probably won't be able to post. Going for brother-in-law's wedding tomorrow morning and will be back in a week!

Will miss you all... muahh!!!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Johari Window

Hey! Sorry have been AWOL recently - was really busy with college, it was the week before summer vacations and a couple of other things were on my mind. The last course we had was quite fascinating really - it was called 'Sustaining Superior Performance', I know it sounds like a title out of a self-help book and the course was a lot like that, but it was great fun. The teacher was good and the classes quite unique, a mixture of practical exercises, games and just a little bit of lecture. I learnt a lot about myself, for example I learnt that I am really very critical about myself - my own harshest judge.

There was this exercise in which we had a questionnaire of around 40 questions and we had to fill it out, then we chose a partner and had a talk with them for 10 minutes, of course since we have been together for almost two years now we knew each other quite well. After that we had to fill the same questionnaire for our partners. In the end we had the two sets of questionnaire with us one in which we had assessed ourselves and one in which our partner had assessed us.

Almost all the class realized the point that I have been making for a long time i.e. 'What I think of me is not necessarily what others see me as'. I got proof in class

The concept of Johari Window is basically an exploration of the different personalities we have, the ones that others see and the one that is private to us.

Johari Window, named after the first names of its inventors, Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham, is a communication model that illustrates human interaction - it is a way of looking at how our personality expresses itself.

A four paned "window," divides personal awareness into four different types, as represented by its four quadrants: open, hidden, blind, and unknown. Each quadrant represents different kind of personal information. The Johari Window is called window because the lines dividing the four panes are like window shades, which can move as interaction progresses.

The quadrant that is called ‘Open’ is our public personality, this is the face we portray to people and we know about it. The obvious things like ‘extrovert’, ‘talkative’, etc things that are obvious to everyone, including of course the physical aspect of it all 'fat', 'thin', 'pretty' and so on. All information that is open – things I know about myself, and that you know about me. For example things about me that you can siphon of reading my blog, the comments I leave, and of course all that I reveal about my feelings and my likes and dislikes. As we get to know each other better this ‘Open’ personality becomes more accentuated.

Known to self, unknown to others is the ‘Hidden’ quadrant; this contains things that are known to only me, the stuff that I don’t reveal to anybody. All of us while writing in our blogs decide how much we want to share and what we don’t want others to know. Things that we might be ashamed of, things we might want others to never know about ourselves. This quadrant we share with very few if any and even then there are things that we keep only to ourselves. The process in which I shift things from this quadrant to the ‘Open’ quadrant is called Self-disclosure, the process of opening the window wider, which to many of us is a very scary process.

For me the most fascinating quadrant is the ‘Blind Spot’, because this is where others know things about me that I don’t know myself, thus the name, 'blind spot'. I might think I am very introverted or socially challenged or whatever but others might think the opposite. I might think I am not a very good listener or I am lazy but others may have a totally different opinion. This is the quadrant that made me realize that I am just too hard on myself. And since this is knowledge or information that we don’t know about ourselves it’s not something we are putting on as a show for others, its knowledge about ourselves that genuinely shocks us.

The last quadrant titled Unknown also called Grey Areas’ quite frankly doesn’t make any sense to me, as it is knowledge that I don’t have of myself and neither do you. Maybe this is the root of all our psychoses the secret behind our actions – the unconscious.

If you want to see an interactive model and practice it a partner check out this website interactive johari