Thursday, August 31, 2006

79. Halcyon Days

In Greek mythology, Alcyone was a demi-goddess, married to Ceyx, a king of Thessaly. She was the daughter of Aelous, King of the Winds. Her name itself meant Queen Who Wards Off Storms. Yet it was in a storm that she would face her greatest heartbreak.

Her love for her husband Ceyx was great and immeasurable, as the starlit heavens, and she was loathe to be ever parted from him, and him her. Yet there came a time when Ceyx had to make a long voyage across the sea, and Alcyone was much grieved to hear of this. She knew of the powerful winds that were upon the sea at that time of year, and pleaded Ceyx not to leave. Yet he was steadfast, for it was a journey he had to make. Then, she asked to be permitted to join him, for as long as they were together, they could endure anything.

This deeply moved Ceyx, but he would not risk her across such a long sea journey and parted that very night. And as fate would have it, scarcely had his voyage begun that the heavens opened and a fierce storm broke over the sea. The crew quivered with fear as they felt and saw the wrath of the gods, but Ceyx was unmoved and tranquil. His thoughts were only for his beloved Alcyone, and he rejoiced at her safety. And as the great waves broke upon his vessel, and as the waters closed upon him, her name was on his lips, and thus he perished and fell into the darkness yonder.

Alcyone was unaware of the tragedy that had befallen, and counted the days for the safe return of her husband. She prayed every day to the gods for his safe passage, and so touched was the goddess Juno by her plight that she made it known to her of her husband's dark fate, hoping that she would have peace at last.

But overcome with grief, Alcyone threw herself into the sea, for she would not live on without her love. Yet behold, the gods once again took pity upon her that as leapt into the seas, she was transformed into a halcyon bird, and united with her husband who was too transformed into the same bird.

And so their love endured, beyond death, and was everlasting so long as there were days left upon the world. And they bred on a floating nest when the waves of the sea came to be still for seven days in the winter, whence her father Aelous would rein in the wind and sea. And the calmness of sea during that time came to be known by sailors as halcyon days, and have since become regarded as days of peace and happiness, a symbol of tranquillity.

Thus for each of us, we have our own halcyon days, perhaps from those nostalgic summers of our youth, or those moments spent in the presence of our loved ones. They may or may not last, for such things are never meant too, but those memories will always remain till the end of days so long as we keep them in our hearts. J.M. Barrie, he who once wrote of a boy who would never grow up, once said that God gave us all memory so we would always have roses in December. And indeed, perhaps he's right.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

78. Stand

Sometimes, you just gotta do what you gotta do. Grit your teeth, suck it in, take the blows, and stand up and be counted. It's part of life. And we each of us have come to such situations when a little steel was necessary. Be it during those excruciating hours spent at work over the weekend chasing that impossible deadline with even more impossible team members. Or playing through the pain barrier for your team on the court or on the field 'cos everyone's counting on you. It can even be just getting on with life as usual after suffering a great loss...something as simple as that, yet it may be the hardest thing in the world. Say aye if you agree. Yes, you can stop nodding your head sagely as you read this (that sage nodding of yours is making you look like a moron to everyone else).

A man defines himself in his actions rather than his words. True. But you know, sometimes it ain't that easy eh. You have a little whinge about it, mope a bit. But then you get the shit done. No point feeling sorry for yourself and wallowing in useless self-pity. Don't play the blame game now. The time for making excuses should be consigned to your adolescence. Ah, might sound like typical machismo bravado, but it's true. There are no other options...except...

Whining like a girl in your blog, and writing posturing shit like the above to convince you to stand firm when the shit has truly hit the fan. My word, haven't we just got ourselves into a pickle. Dear oh dear. Speaking of pickles, check out the size of that mother below (I mean the pickle, not that random potential serial killer holding it). My, ain't she grand. Quite why the chubby dude holding her looks so happy is a mystery to ponder in the cold recesses of night...shiver...

Sunday, August 13, 2006

77. War

War. One man's terrorist may be another man's freedom fighter, but does it really matter anymore? In the end, all are punished.

Indeed, we are but the offspring of our thought. Yet in deed, we repeat the same mistakes over and over. This is the human condition. And it is irreversible.

76. Creakin'...

Bloody hell. Everything they say is true. Growing older is no fun man. You know why? I'll give you ten:

1. You can't act like a retard anymore...damn straight...somehow, it just doesn't seem right for anyone not in their twenties to scream and shout like stark-raving loonies in a club or bar, drink till your eyes bleed and howl at the moon after...piss in the wind...shoot moon-travellers into people's home or at your buddies...start mini-forest fires when camping...ah, you just get all misty-eyed thinking of the good ol days...

2. No more raves...yeah, more PvD...bummer...

3. You can't move like you used too...those days running 5 km was a, you're lucky if you make 500 metres...and you can't beat people like you used to on the football pitch...and you're out of breath after climbing a few flights of stars...and let's not get started on those extra pounds eh

4. You get overly picky in the films you watch...somehow watching Pirates 2 just doesn't do it for you anymore like how it may have in those days...come to think of it, the only thing worth watching this year was Lady in the Water...and even then, everyone else hated it...

5. All your freakin' friends are getting hitched...and don't wanna hang out anymore...thus forcing you to maybe re-assess your priorities in life...for the whole of 2 seconds at least

6. You're friends turn mellow...thus inevitably making you semi-mellow and just a bit world-weary?

7. You turn from an idealist to a realist...and in no good order...somehow going for political rallies or demonstrating on the streets like a firebrand gone loco just doesn't do it anymore...too much to lose?

8. You get too bogged down on work and other shit to do those little things that get you off, like say, writing in a blog or something...

9. You start questioning people's intentions...sincere or not...too much has been experienced that you just can't help yourself...

10. You never ever get round to finishing that epic novel you started when you were 16 and so far have written like 6 chapters on...but it shall be awesome when if it's ever finished, you just know it would be.

11. You forget things, like how to count...did I just say ten things or what?