Thursday, July 31, 2014

Morgan Freeman

Some quotes I wrote down from this wise man in a 10-minute interview.

- If you're gonna have a box office hit, you're gonna depend on word of mouth. Word of mouth is what sells anything.

- People want me to do everything for them, but what they don't realise is, they have the power. You want a miracle son, be the miracle.

- He can win an election, but can be run a country.

That's deep.

Wen Xin

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Just About Everything

I was in my gym gear, and decided to skip the initial intention for a book launch event to have a workout. But a familiar voice lured me to the event room where it is filled with people, both sitting and standing. I was cracking my head to figure where did I meet this man before. It took me a minute or so, he is Bob Gregory, who gave a special lecture last semester.

At the corner of the room, a studious middle school girl, Maddie with her name written on her jersey is finishing up her homework, while her dad and brother listened attentively to the Bob who made a great introduction, citing great names from the ANU. The audience is dressed in suits, in a stark contrast to myself. People are clutching onto the same book, the title said 'The Economics of Just About Everything' by Andrew Leigh. I've heard about this politician, and now I can say I heard him speak.

He addressed the crowd with snippets of his book, from the idea of incentive, to the cost benefit analysis involving dating, to the correlation between labour market and height of a person, to the false statement of 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder'. I placed a request for this book in my local library yesterday, and found out I was placed 11th person. Oh come on!

I remembered I was fascinated about Economics when I first read Freakonomics. And it went on to Superfreakonomics to the Undercover Economist, to the one who started the buzz of social economics, The Armchair Economist. I remembered when I was first introduced to Economics as a subject, I failed my first quiz. It was interesting how the interest developed, after my future cousin brother in law introduced Freakonomics, things were never the same.

I was good, but never excellent in Economics. But like the 15 economists who raised their hands when Leigh asked them to, there is always a huge amount of curiosity in me. But unlike the 15 economists, I was never the one with good intuition. Sometimes it really does take the right opportunity to inspire or tell you what you want, and this book launch event is one of them.

Thank you Andrew Leigh for reminding me of what got me started things at the first place. Thank you Bob Gregory and Rabee Tourky for the second special lecture.

Wen Xin

Wednesday, July 9, 2014


It was the first birthday in a foreign country, without the family and the gathering of my girlfriends.Celebrations on the previous years had been elaborated, but 21 should be the last elaborated birthday I had. Two things remained were the annual iconoclasm of not using Facebook and doing the things I liked on this special day of mine. 

Though a small part of me suspected and expected some sort of surprise, I had two wishes for this year's birthday. I wanted to spend it in Canberra and I wanted it be small. I woke up when the morning sunlight pervaded my room and was surprised by a text. After whispering Happy Birthday to myself, a 40 minutes yoga flagged off the day. Interestingly, a skype call followed suit. A 90 minutes chat reminded me how much I missed this dearest friend who was thousand miles away.

Hit the mall with no companion, and allowed myself to go wherever I want and spent as much time as I wanted. Was mainly shopping for an upcoming project and some good deals on sale for myself. Thinking back of how the first half of the year has evolved, I smiled primly at why I put myself through pain and tears. But when I looked back, the pain and tears weren't so much of the focus, but on how fulfilling it was. While Nike had well advertised, I risked everything, everything I had. I did wonder if the stronghold of righteousness was worth it after all. But the sense of appeasement had proven that the intuition was worth following after all even though a couple of priorities are at stakes. 

I wandered around the mall and got the items I needed. I journeyed home and immersed in a 30 minutes of gym workout, one of the few moments I can get my mind shut from thoughts. I came back to two dear friends who pampered me like a queen with scrumptious dinner and heavenly desserts. Watched a light-hearted movie and called it a day.

The annual notes of appreciation go to:
  • The dearest family members, I miss all of you dearly.
  • Mun Nyee and Shao Qi who spent so much time and effort in making the day extra special.
  • Joanne for the skype call and being the good friend one could ever ask for.
  • The 10 friends who wished me via text and Whatsapp, for these wishes had added some personal touches to the day since Facebook was off-bound.
  • The 69 friends who took time to post the wishes and pictures on Facebook.
I am grateful for the people around me and for how things had worked out from July 2013 to now. Thanks to all of you. Here's to a great second half of the year where dreams and projects take place.

Wen Xin