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Layman Prediction of Worldcup

So, based on the performance in the groups stage so far, for the Semi-finals, I will pick The Netherlands vs. Argentina, and Brazil vs. either Germany or France.

Of course the road for Brazil is tough because both Chile and Colombia were doing quite well in the groups stage as well.

I have been a fan of The Netherlands since the era of Frank Rijkaard, van Basten, Ruud Gullit, and then Dennis Bergkamp, and then, Marc Overmars, Phillip Cocu, Edgar Davids, Frank de Boer, Ronald de Boer, and Patrick Kluivert.

Seriously I am not too attached to the recent stars Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie, but I still want them to beat MEX and then CRC and then ARG. Then they will face Brazil. I can’t say too much about that, but I know that it would be a good game to watch.

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American World Cup

Traditional Wisdom: If South American is the host, then South American has a higher chance in #WorldCup.

So far in #WorldCup2014, almost ALL teams from South American region go to the next round: Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Uruguay, except Ecuador, which is now 2nd in the group (but since they are facing France tonight, although they have equal points as the Swiss, their chances are slimmer).

You might say, what about Honduras? In geography, you are correct, but in FIFA, they are counted as the member of the North and Central American region, which is the same group with USA, Costa Rica and Mexico. And yes, most of them are in the next round (USA can proceed to next round as long as Klinsmann is able to at least get a draw from his motherland Germany).

South, North & Central American, combined 2 regions, out of the total 10 teams go to the World Cup, 7,8 or even 9 teams can make to the next round. Amazing.

How about other regions as a comparison? Europe seems bad, but they started with 13 teams, and still have Netherlands, France, Germany, Greece and Belgium. Swiss has a good chance, Russian needs to beat Algerian, and Portuguese has 2% chance. Nonetheless, it is still almost half of the region.

African and Asian are worse. Out of the 9 teams combined, it seems that the only reasonable hope is Algerian to beat Russian for one spot, and Iranian to fight the last spot with Nigerian (but they are not playing against each other).

Of course, the WORST region is the Oceania. There were 12 teams to fight for 0.5 spot. At the end New Zealand was the one, but they lost to Mexico at the play off game and so the region has zero presence in the Brazil 2014 (Australia is counted as Asian country now, just so that you know).

Turning 40 halfway to death_675

A Man Turning 40

Believe me. This is the 21st draft of the same article.

When you are asked to write a report about some other people / or company stuff, it is (relatively) easy. You just report it. Word by word. That’s it. You are done.

When you ask yourself to write something about your real self, for real, then it takes more than 30 drafts (I still got 9 spare) in order to get it close. Coz it is about YOU, coz it REALLY matters.

About ME. What is that latest about me? Within the past 4 months: I broke my leg. I travelled around the world (literally & physically) (and I’ve promised I will update you about that someday). I almost got killed by DVT. I quitted my job. I lost and then gained some weight. I’ve started a new venture. And I turned 40. All in an assorted order.

Depends on who you are, you might pick up a different focal point, all alarming. Say for example: turning 40. I still remember twelve years back when Jacky Cheung had that movie about Man Turning 40, and I was completely lost. Now I still don’t get those girls that he got in that movie, but I understand the feeling about that life stage.

Another point about quitting my job vs. gaining weight: I have to admit that I had proven the direct positive relationship between the relaxedness (without the crazy and nonsense job) and the weight.

But this is not the point. The point is… I don’t know… I just feel that it is all different now. It has to be different this time. A difficult time. Coz there is no other time. Coz this is 40.

What about 40 anyway? I know. you heard about 80/20 rules? You can apply this to anything. Everything. In this case, so, there is 20 something you can’t and you ain’t gonna control, so it leaves remaining 80 to you. 40 is exactly the half way. And if you draw a bell curve discarding that 20 outliner, then the point of “40” would end up to be placed at the peak.

So, what’s so wrong for being at the peak? Bad News. All things are going downhill from now on. What a shit feeling! So depressing. But you know what? I won’t settle with it. I won’t settle with this feeling. I am looking for something else. Something else from my family. I got my lovely wife, I got Jacob and Chester, and they are doing better than me. And it seems that it is meaningful to work towards them. So the curve goes up again, and again, and again, against the bell curve.

If I extend that logic to the outer world, the direction is that I am caring about the next generation in general . My mission is to enable + empower the next generation to do their best. (For example, let’s stop using Windows / Microsoft for the next generation…)

Suddenly, I feel so good about my future.

Hope you feel the same. Hope you will support me. Please. This is why I started KeptMe. Partly to help the next generation, and partly to save me from going down the depressing side of the bell curve. Tell me how you feel about this. Tell me if you buy in or not. And if you are, please send me your blessing. And if you don’t, please send me your comments. Appreciate it. Million Thanks.

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Day 2 — Din Tai Fung & Lufthansa

I promise the story for Day 2 would be shorter. After all, I don’t think there have been too many people who had finished my Day 1 story anyway, given it was a bit too long as a “first chapter”.

As you would imagine, after all these crazy fight, I managed to sleep till next morning 9:00 AM. Meetings and works as usual. But not much to look around as a tourist. Not that I knew Singapore inside out already, but just that there were more important things for me to crack which require my present in front of the screen.

I stayed the whole day indoor except lunch at Din Tai Fung at Raffles City, again. Yes I already had my dinner there at the previous night. I have to confess that I have an obsession with Din Tai Fung. Like a curse. So if I know there is a Din Tai Fung near by, then I have to go. I have to. No escape. I used to go to Taipei for a weekend just for this reason. Now I don’t have to. There are in Hong Kong, Singapore, California, Japan, Sydney and more. The only regret is that it just has no store in Melbourne yet that’s all.

Let’s cut the crap. I promised to stay short. So let’s jump on it. I did a late check out from the hotel at late afternoon and when towards the airport. There was a bus waiting outside going to the airport. The driver said 10 Sing Dollars. Fair enough. A taxi trip would cost me almost 30. But I told the guy I didn’t have cash, in Mandarin (yes, as the story in Day 1, I never had Singaporean cash). But he said “don’t worry, just get on the bus first.” It was just one more proof of how poor my Mandarin is: they must had heard me saying “no change” instead of “no cash”. I ended up paying the mainland China driver a HK$100 note. He was extremely happy, and I am still better off. Win win.

It was lucky that I was early at the airport. The KLM early check in counter just opened at 7:00 PM as I arrived. Perhaps I arrived too early, they decided to traded me away. You see, I bet there must be around 100,000 people going to Barcelona for the Mobile World Congress. Anything connected to Barcelona was overbooked. So as my fight (and my accommodation). They offered me USD 75 as the bait for me to say yes. I said yes, not because of that cash, but because of the fact that I was then with Lufthansa’s A380 (still economy) and was one hour earlier to leave Singapore and one hour short in transit waiting. I took it. It sounded good. But after all I wasn’t sure if this was the best idea. You see, midnight flight, early arrival in the airport, you knew the story, and it ain’t pretty.

Just to jump to the end of the story as promised. It turned out just fine. The only thing I missed on Day 2 was that I didn’t get the chance to taste Din Tai Fung again, as they are in Terminal 1 (so as KLM), but I got transferred to Lufthansa in Terminal 2. Damn. What a close miss.

So I Write

So I write.

I write because I feel that I need to remember my story.

How long should I write for? I don’t know. But I don’t get much time.

So I stopped.

I stopped. And I felt regret. I felt regret that I missed that memory. I missed that story. I missed the moment that was good, that was worthwhile to remember. I missed a good story for me to tell others. The Story that’s matter.

So I asked myself: How could I help. How could I improve the way of how we capture our memories and form our stories.

And you know what? That’s my story.


Happy New Year 2014

This is the moment. I am saying goodbye to my dear 2013, and diving into my 2014.

It has been an amazing year. We have done something great. We have started something greater. There were things that I would like to forget, and there are things that I have forgotten already.

My goal for 2014: Let’s make 2014 to be one of the most important year of our lives. And let’s remember the story of 2014 properly. I mean really properly.

Stay tuned. I promise I will tell you a story worth listening.

(Graphic credit: Doodle on Google.com on the New Year’s Eve/Day)

五師兄字 — Because memories should live forever.

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