Wednesday, October 26, 2011

So beautiful. Welcome home.

Sleep don't visit, so I choke on sun
And the days blur into one
And the backs of my eyes hum with things I've never done
Sheets are swaying from an old clothesline
Like a row of captured ghosts over old dead grass
Was never much but we made the most
Welcome home
Ships are launching from my chest
Some have names but most do not
If you find one, please let me know what piece I've lost
Heal the scars from off my back
I don't need them anymore
You can throw them out or keep them in your mason jars
I've come home
All my nightmares escaped my head
Bar the door, please don't let them in
You were never supposed to leave
Now my head's splitting at the seams
And I don't know if I can
Here, beneath my lungs, I feel your thumbs press into my skin again

Monday, October 24, 2011


I have to post this here and RT it.  Because I just. love. the. film. so. much.

Epic moment at 0:57s ;)

And view the making of here. Powerful powerful human stories that spark that bullseye connection with people and brand.  I think I'm in love with Nikon ;)


Beware of the 'Attack of the Giant Jellyfish' even when you're not in the sea.

Attack of the Giant Jellyfish : Programs : Discovery Channel : Discovery Press Web

You need to watch this and understand why we absolutely absolutely absolutely need to protect and breed our turtles. We've been saying no to illegal turtle poaching - eggs and all, without really understanding how important this sea creature is in balancing our ecosystem.

Jellyfish multiplies despite global warming. If at all, warmer sea temperature increases the breeding of these deadly sea-blobs. You may think they are harmless, but to those who have been stung before (and divers) would know how deadly some could be in paralysing one's nervous system, from severe blistering to immediate cardiac arrest. Passively, we're affected when they attack our food supply which is really all our seafood. It's not just about 'aww, I miss my fish for dinner', but we're talking about the possible loss of billion dollars in marine food industry as well as putting the livelihood of millions (tourism, fisheries, etc) at stake because of the imbalance caused by these seemingly innocent heartless, brainless and boneless creatures. Our turtles are one key solution to the possible destruction of marine life. Now you know how important these ninja turtles are and let's do our part in both spreading awareness and advocating actions to protect them. Because they are essentially protecting us without us even realizing all these while.

The Coral Triangle campaign by WWF will be launched on November 3rd. And if you can, buy a plot of the Coral Triangle today and help support them do all they can to protect our sea guardians, above many other things in that area.

If you need any more convincing, watch this:

Friday, October 21, 2011

We're experiencing exponential growth. Or are we really?

Yes, our OS is constantly changing.  Improvements on (some) platforms and products are growing in such an explosive rate, those who are slow are no longer even in the picture.  Can we afford for this?  Can digital outgrow human advancement?  Or are we being left behind by the very thing which we created?  Hmm...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Operation Christmas - the best campaign ever!

This is one of if not the best campaign I've ever seen and been moved.  My highest salute goes to you guys, Lowe-SSP3 Bogotá, Colombia.  You’ve proven to be a solutions agency.  Not an ad agency.  You moved people from death to life, from lost to hope - the ultimate desired consumer action!

Wow.  You deserve beyond the Gold Outdoor Lion at Cannes 2011.  You deserve a medal for sheer bravery, in both literal and figurative speak.  My hats off to you.

And to whomever who wrote this copy, I just wanna let you know... you're amazing :)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I am ashamed.

We have all the resources we need.  Yet every day, we hear ourselves complaining about the most trivial problems.  Yet these geniuses who have no access to the resources that are so readily available to us, are clearly making a huge difference in people's lives and more importantly, making them sustainable.  They are touching everyone who matter to them - not just friends and families, but their neighbours and communities.

I.  Am.  Truly.  Ashamed.

And it makes me quite hot-faced to hear another complain from people who allow one problem to cloud over their entire vision, blocking out any possibility of solutions.

To quote Bunker, "You don’t have to look for solutions outside.  Look for solutions within and listen to people that have the solutions who are in front of you.  They are all over the world."

Here's Bunker Roy with his Barefoot College movement:

And to end with Gandhi's quote, "First they ignore you. They they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win"


Don't give up.  Even if it's the most unconventional thing you've ever done.  Don't give up.

Read more about the movement at: Barefoot College.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Books: Tate Artist Timeline by Sara Franelli for Tate.

A very comprehensive yet simple pointer of what's what and who's who in which year starting from the 1900s in the art world.  Names of artists are strategically placed to give you an idea of how the periods are engaging and overlapping one another.  This is truly a great reference (and collectible) to those who have an appreciation of art.

Unfortunately, you can only purchase this at Tate's museum shop but I do have a copy here if you wanna borrow.  Just make sure you cross your heart to take extremely good care of it.  Always remember to enjoy the history behind every piece of art :)

Learn more about Sparks' Open Library Project!

Friday, October 14, 2011

The world's award winning honey has just arrived on Malaysian shores.

If you're not a honey person, it's time for you to really consider making it part of your everyday diet.  Why?  Because honey can help weight loss by increasing your metabolism and providing better digestion (no more sluggish days!).  Also if you don't already know, it is a natural alternative remedy to health problems like asthma, bad breath (yup, that's right!  Gargle with honey because it has anti-bacterial property), cholesterol, heatiness (what I'm feeling now :( sigh... ), sleeplessness and insomnia (milk + honey = yummi), stomach ulcers, arthritis (honey + cider vinegar), burns (yup, while you do your thang in the kitchen, it may come handy), cough, and the most evil problem of them all... STRESS (1 tablespoon of honey + 4 tablespoons of warm water = wow, I'm feeling happy already).

But there are so many varieties out there, off the shelves in supermarkets alone.  As we increasingly appreciate the additional health benefits of honey and not just as an indulging sauce to be put on our pancakes and waffles, it's time to look for some honey experts to get the best quality and not to mention the best deal.

Welcome to Yummi House, which recently launched in SS2, PJ.  It is 100% unprocessed with no artificial sweetening, colouring and whatever-ing they put into your jars outside.  It's really the closest natural honey you can get from the beehive in the wild jungle without going through a life-threatening battle (isn't it great to know that someone else did that for you already?).

So come along now to:

And experience real yummi goodness in a jar.

Meanwhile, here's something to perk you up.  A teaspoon of honey honey is enough to put a smile :)

When do you call it plagiarism?

Sometimes it's really hard to tell if our idea is truly original anymore.  Same idea different execution?  Different idea same creative strategy?  What we think of here today, is also thought by someone else somewhere else.  When the world was divided (read: world without the wide web), it was much more difficult to aggregate creative work.  Maybe it has been happening all this while, with or without the internet. It's just gotten a lot more in your face to watch your idea being executed with the most uncanny similarities on YouTube.

Watch this (Subaru, Japan, Dentsu Kansai, 2010):

And then compare with this (Audi, London, BBHLondon, 2011):

What if two different teams in two different parts of the world have the same idea.  Upon client approval, started executing it and at the end, one produced faster than the other.  If you were the one in the midst of production and so happened on a beautiful hummingbird chirping morning clicked, and watched in horror the same idea being executed in another part of the world.  What would you do?  Would you stop the commercial and burn the money?  Or would you proceed and bear industry mockery after you launch the campaign, even though you could have been the one who conceived the idea wayyyyyy before the other team?  It's such a subjective and grey area.  So if this was the scenario, and the team which was able to launch the commercial faster, subsequently submit it for awards, will of course stand a higher chance of scoring it.  Do you see the fundamental problem here?  What this essentially means is, the metal is awarded to the team who executed the campaign first.  It has nothing to do with WHO conceived it first.  It's based on speed that kinda stems from a lot of luck.  Would this be an industry problem?  Do we close one eye and pretend this is not happening?  What is the implication on us anyway?  And more importantly what is the implication of this on intellectual property and creative thinking?

Good question.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Social performance management for HR 2.0.

Do you or your organisation/team/department feel like this?

Rypple Intro from Rypple on Vimeo.

Then you probably need a solution like this.

Facebook Story from Rypple on Vimeo.

Hmm, Rypple - the new way to monitor employees performance and coaching needs.  It's quite true you know, especially when they say how a manager is always torn between the job he/she has to complete and the coaching time needed to be invested on his/her team.

Now I'm curious...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Looxcie - capture everything you see (and more).

Remember the premonition talk we had awhile back about how perhaps one day, social media and human will somehow biologically merge?  Well, it's not gonna be soon but it sure looks like there are some really smart brains already working on the idea, placing it on the highway to crystallization.

Introducing Looxcie - the world's first, 'wear and share' device.  From security reasons (think Egypt, or closer to home, the Bersih rally for unaccounted police brutality) to narcissistic excuses (well I'm sure you can draw some examples) to unforgettable moments (e.g wedding proposal, birth of your child), you can now record your life and in real-time, share it on social networks and soon, you can even opt to stream it live.  Well, there you go, your life...  All of your life... on your Facebook wall staring back at you.  Good or bad, you figure.

Here's an example of a clip recorded using Looxcie (look-see, geddit? ;)).  Just remember to be careful of where you're looking when you hit the record button.  You don't want people to get the wrong idea now, do you?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Feedback loop changes human behaviour.

On WIRED, July issue:

The signs leverage what's called a feedback loop, a profoundly effective tool for changing behaviour.  The basic premise is simple.  Provide people with information about their actions in real time (or something close to it), then give them an opportunity to change those actions, pushing them toward better behaviours.  Action, information, reaction.  It's the operating principle behind a home thermostat, which fires the furnace to maintain a specific temperature, or the consumption display in a Toyota Prius, which tends to turn drivers into so-called hypermilers trying to wring every last mile from the gas tank.  But the simplicity of feedback loops is deceptive.  They are in fact powerful tools that can help people change bad behaviour patterns, even those that seem intractable.  Just as important, they can be used to encourage good habits, turning progress itself into a reward.  In other words, feedback loops change human behaviour.  And thanks to an explosion of new technology, the opportunity to put them into action in nearly every part of our lives is quickly becoming a reality.


Which explains why, people who are keen to improve themselves constantly and consistently look for feedbacks even knowing that sometimes it may come as criticism.


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Once upon a mid-day in Venice.

In sooth, I know not why I am so sad:
It wearies me; you say it wearies you;
But how I caught it, found it, or came by it,
What stuff 'tis made of, whereof it is born, I am to learn;
And such a want-wit sadness makes of me,
That I have much ado to know myself.

Our mind is tossing on the ocean;
There, where your argosies with portly sail,
Like signiors and rich burghers on the flood,
Or, as it were, the pageants of the sea,
Do overpeer the petty traffickers,
That curtsy to them, do them reverence,
As they fly by them with their woven wings.

Believe me, sir, had I such venture forth,
The better part of my affections would
Be with my hopes abroad. I should be still
Plucking the grass, to know where sits the wind,
Peering in maps for ports and piers and roads;
And every object that might make me fear
Misfortune to my ventures, out of doubt
Would make me sad.

My wind cooling my broth
Would blow me to an ague, when I thought
What harm a wind too great at sea might do.
I should not see the sandy hour-glass run,
But I should think of shallows and of flats,
And see my wealthy Andrew dock'd in sand,
Vailing her high-top lower than her ribs
To kiss her burial.
Should I go to church
And see the holy edifice of stone,
And not bethink me straight of dangerous rocks,
Which touching but my gentle vessel's side,
Would scatter all her spices on the stream,
Enrobe the roaring waters with my silks,
And, in a word, but even now worth this,
And now worth nothing?
Shall I have the thought
To think on this, and shall I lack the thought
That such a thing bechanced would make me sad?
But tell not me; I know, Antonio
Is sad to think upon his merchandise.

Believe me, no:
I thank my fortune for it,
My ventures are not in one bottom trusted,
Nor to one place; nor is my whole estate
Upon the fortune of this present year:
Therefore my merchandise makes me not sad.

Why, then you are in love.

Friday, October 7, 2011

I'm coming home, coming home.

Haven't been away for that long but it sure feels so.  Here I am, recharged, rewired, re-inspired, motivated, understood the direction, ready to get the ball rolling.  You know it's one of those times when you 'happy happy joy joy' had a lot of discussions with many people on various business possibilities and then you go home and it strikes you that, wow.  That's a lot to do yo.  Shaits, what did I promise who?!

:@ ahhhhhhh...

But that's okay, 'challenge' is a way of life anyway.  Though I know a lot of people who are just happy with their laurels.  Well, there's nothing wrong with that I suppose.  To each man his own.  But yea, you can continue sleeping on them while the world moves on.

Anyway, I really need a good partner.  A mid-weight integrated marketing planner.  If you know anyone, please send word?  Here's a rough JD:

1) Preferably T-enabled: Experience in a breadth of fields but specialized in one or two areas to be able to design integrated communication plans that are based on strategic consumer touch points with strong logical thinking, and at the same time able to drill down in specialized areas.
2) Extract insights to inspire big ideas and creative thinking, lead brainstorm sessions.
3) Write strong and relevant brand stories for stakeholders' inspiration.
4) Adept in research and data analysis.
5) Carry strategic business discussions independently with clients at managerial and director level.
6) Part-producer: Key gatekeeper of the big idea to ensure its integrity is adhered to by all parts of the team, and that includes the client.

Please let me know if you've got a good lead.  Help! :)


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Today our world got a little dimmer.

I was walking on the streets of Ginza today when I saw a crowd consists of passers-by and media in front of the Ginza Apple store.  I got news from my social feed today that Steve Jobs has passed away.  I suppose... experiencing the solemn atmosphere in the otherwise energetic and high-buzz Apple flagship store in Tokyo really made the fact sink in.  That today, we lost one of our history's most brilliant inventor, innovator and thinker.

I don't know Steve Jobs.  I know he made a lot of money.  But that's besides the point.  I admire him as a person.  A person who respects and fully puts priority on human experience and simplicity.  A person who when the world zigs, zags.  I think everyone can think different.  You and I by virtue of being you and I are already different.  But it really takes someone with a lot of perseverance, courage and faith to make 'think different' mean something.  He built an empire, his influence can be valued in cash, he changed the way people lived, he created a whole new spectrum of possibilities and I'm sure along the way, he had faced many criticism, self-doubting moments, opportunities to be consumed by arrogance and pride, the temptation of being 'enough' and retire to 'enjoy life'.  He literally worked till his death - his retirement from Apple was already an early indication that his health was going through a tough ordeal.  But did he really work?  As in, the way we view work?  A salary-paying 9-5 job?  That's what above his brilliance in both creative and business thinking, I admire this person for.  It was because his work and life was in total balance.  It was one.  I don't know how many of his Facebook friends are really his true friends.  I don't know what he did on weekends.  I don't know if he hung out with his buds over beer.  I don't know if he went clubbing or had beach vacations.  I don't know anything about his family.  But I know that when you make it a point to make the world a better place, you will make the world a better place.  And it becomes more than a job, it's your life mission.  When that happens, I suppose you never have to work for money.  Because money will come work for you.  Somehow.

Well rest in peace, Steve.  Like Einstein, you're never really gone.  But you will be deeply missed.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Japan: After the quake.

A short thought about Japan:

It's been more than 6 months since I was last in Japan and definitely, not since the dreadful quake followed by the near Armageddon-ish nuclear meltdown incident.  And it's great to see everything back in full swing.  The neon lights may have deemed a little but not the people's spirit.  It is unbroken.  One thing for sure, Japan did not and will never give up on fashion :) Just walking on the streets today is a serious breath of fresh air - being fully immersed in design, art and creativity - everywhere.  I'm glad to be back.  Besides, which other Asian country can you find more blondes than perhaps some Western country?  It has to be Japan.

If there was anything that was truly distinctive that I noticed was a new found sense of nationalism amongst the community here.  JAL has a new in-flight song that's composed specifically to stir the spirit, everywhere you go, you see shops selling merchandises to support the speedy recovery of Japan, commercials promoting this country is back in full swing, inviting support from its global neighbours near and far.  I suppose, if there's a silver lining at all in this dark cloud that hovered (and perhaps is still hovering) on top of this land, it would be the true binding spirit that is holding everyone together.  I wish we needn't have to go through such disastrous hardship to find kinship amongst our own kind.  I pray for no such incident in Malaysia.  I wish we could learn to appreciate each other and our country without having to go through the same ordeal.  Really.

Anyway, I've been awake for close to 24 hours now and am feeling a little floaty.  I shall blog more in due time, provided if work allows - it's a packed schedule.  So, am sending power, encouragement and love from Japan if you need em' for whatever reason. I hope you could catch it ;)

Cheers and goodnight.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Don't you wish.

Self-publishing has been around since the web was conceived.  From the first email we sent, a 'hi - testing testing' to an intimate recount of our daily life to strangers on mIRC to those Geocities homepages with sickening .midi files, we've been accustomed to tell the world who we are, what we've done and more importantly what we feel on the worldwide web.  Pretty much like what I'm doing right now.

Now that self-publishing is so second nature to us, don't you sometimes wish that we could just write into space and the 'universe' which is basically made up of people whom we don't know, respond to us instead of friends?  Oh, hey not that I'm complaining or wishing that my friends don't read my blog... but sometimes, just sometimes, don't you wish you could publish something that doesn't get judged by people you know?  Anything - I'm in love with my friend, I wish my neighbour was dead, I wish I was pregnant with twins, I think my boss sucks, my colleague is sexually harassing me and I wanna beat him up, I am power crazy, I'm envious of my siblings - I don't know, anything!  Anonymity seems like a distant history...

From my poor observation and humble opinion... social networks may have sometimes spurred a 'false sense of personality' - a sort of pretence, a projection of our aspired self, personal marketing, whatever you call it - could we have exaggerated our happiness, enjoyment, etc a little too much when we publish about ourselves so shamelessly online?  Could we have mistaken our narcissistic tendency for our true self?  We update our status when we're happy, angry and sad which subsequently engage our social circle to respond.  Could we already know how to instigate responses based on what we post?  Hmm.  I've learned not to read too much into people's status updates and tweet feeds.  And I wish people won't take mine too seriously as well.  Time and time again, I kept advising friends not to rely on SMSes and instant messages to decipher a person's intention because it's entirely absent of facial cues and body language, it's really to be taken with a pinch of salt.  Same goes for Facebook, Twitter and what not.  It's so strange... couple of months ago, I have advocated that social media made us more 'transparent' people.  And today, I seem to be shooting myself in the foot.  I suppose self-publishing is only kept real when you're not writing to please an audience or to achieve 'ratings' or for personal marketing.  If publishers have a tendency to 'fictionalize' their experience, then the audience could also be accustomed to perceive the presented content in such manner.  Hence, back to my SMS argument - this is where misunderstanding and misconception happens.  Which is why, sometimes I do wish I could type my thoughts into 'nothingness' online.  That way, my words are not chewed in ways they shouldn't be.  I'm not greater than who I am.  Nor am I any lesser.  I am simply just me.

So write in a physical diary that's dedicated to my one true self, you say.  I mean... who writes anymore!?  Kidding, well I do.  I scribble.  A lot. For all those times that I have no connectivity and typing furiously on my phone seems like a helluva of an inefficient way to capture my thoughts before they dissipate, I scribble.  In my notebook (the paper kind), on scraps of paper, napkins, receipts, whatever that holds ink.  I have long skipped the fancy shmancy stuff of 'Dear Diary' unless of course I'm writing a snail mail, then I'll keep the fancy shmancy stuff.  But come on!  I'm sure there are times which you feel like holding up a loudspeaker and scream your thoughts into the funnel - uncensored, unpretentious, unbiased, all jumbled up, not making sense - with the purpose that someone actually hears you.  Even if he or she or they may not respond.  The assurance of someone's there... on the other side of the screen, nodding knowingly to your passion is... quite reassuring.


Well I know you are there.  Whomever you are.  Thanks for reading.  I may have read your stuff too, somewhere in this great big virtual universe.  I may have liked it.  Or maybe not.  But more importantly, I understood it and I'm just here to read if you wish to tell.  Nothing more, nothing less.  If I'd really wanna know you... or even judge you, I would have met you in person and see you for myself.

So there.