Saturday, January 19, 2013

A Treasonous Prime Minister?

The run up to the 13th general election also see the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Illegal Immigrants in Sabah being conducted to uncover any nefarious scheme of giving out free citizenship under the guise of importing foreigners of Muslim background to change the demography of Sabah. Up till now some very senior former heads of the state registration department and recipients of the national identity card, MyKad, which entitles them the right to vote, have come forward to admit of such frauds which are of a treasonous nature because these acts are tantamount to re-engineering the society of a nation with evil intention of subverting the minority races.

A very scathing attack on a former PM under whose tenure such a scheme was started as reported HERE made him the target for investigation. Has he committed a treason? If so what are the punishments? Would anyone dare to take him to court?

I remember early in his premiership he said he wanted to increase the population of Malaysia to 70 million. It was then around 20 million I think. I thought this guy was really visionary, that he foresaw the great labour need of a growing industrializing nation, and that he had the larger good for the nation at heart. Now I'm not so sure. I suppose time will tell what the next act will be.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

China One-child Policy is Dangerously Flawed

THIS may be old news but ongoing debate on pros and cons of manipulating with population growth may have dire consequences.

However THIS latest news confirms the one-child policy will stay. Personally I find this a dangerous decision even though the National Population and Family Planning Commission of the P.R. of China may have valid arguments why they are not relaxing this ruling.

According to Wikipedia article HERE, this policy was introduced in 1978 and applied the following year. It wasn't applied across the country. Urban families were made to comply whereas in the rural areas families could still have several children, perhaps needed to meet the labor intensive agricultural and backyard industries. The report also said that as of 2007, 35.9% of the population were subject to a strict one-child limit. 52.9% were permitted to have a second child if their first was a daughter; 9.6% of Chinese couples were permitted two children regardless of their genders; and 1.6% - mainly Tibetans - had no limit at all.

The one-child policy was enforced to prevent a population explosion. At the time it was introduced, China was economically poor and an over-populated China could potentially give rise to food shortage and civil uprising. However China has seen a dramatic economic transformation over the past 15 years or so. The one-child policy in the meantime created social problems not anticipated. As reported, some parents may over-indulge their only child. The media referred to the indulged children in one-child families as "little emperors". Since the 1990s, some people have worried that this will result in a higher tendency toward poor social communication and cooperation skills among the new generation, as they have no siblings at home. No social studies have investigated the ratio of these over-indulged children and to what extent they are indulged. With the first generation of children born under the policy (which initially became a requirement for most couples with first children born starting in 1979 and extending into 1980s) reaching adulthood, such worries were reduced. However, the "little emperor syndrome" and additional expressions, describing the generation of Chinese singletons are very abundant in the Chinese media, Chinese academy and popular discussions. Being over-indulged, lacking self-discipline and having no adaptive capabilities are adjectives which are highly associated with Chinese singletons.

China could be making a tragic mistake like what Singapore has done. Out of fear of overpopulating the island, Kuan Yew likewise control population growth much like China. But Singapore became an economic powerhouse much sooner and being an almost pure urban society the impact of slow down in childbirth is more severe. Presently Singapore is in a panic state. Young people are not marrying, or prioritizing career over marriage to marry late, which for the female, reduces conception opportunities. The outcome is declining Singaporean population, exacerbated by migration of young professionals to nearby Australia. Incentivizing marriage and early child birth isn't working as expected. To keep business running the government has allowed foreign workers to arrive the shores, or airport, of this tiny island nation. Currently the foreigners predominantly from PR of China seems to have taken over the country. Singaporeans felt they have been invaded, no, violated.

Will China face a semblance like Singapore, say, 25-30 years from now? If the Chinese in mainland get use to having NO children as well when they discover the appetite of wealth and pleasure, yes a similar scenario can occur. The new generation Chinese may not bother about history and the struggles of their forefathers. While China remains the most populous nation ramming up birth rate at will is not possible when mindset of the newer generation change. Secretly many young adults choose NOT to marry but enjoy casual no commitment relationship applying easy birth control methods. Singlehood will dictate future lifestyle and when the new leaders emerge 10-20 years from now and decide China is ready to end its one child policy I'm afraid the young Chinese will not listen. Thing may not be universally this bad but just notice that prosperity tend to equate to freedom from long term commitment. If really lonely they can always adopt a child from a poor nation. If they don't mind they can have a dog, a cat, a fish, even a bird to keep them company. Wealth? When they die their names live on through trusts in their own names. No need to give away.

For long term survival of China and the Chinese race, tradition and culture, China must dismantle its one-child policy gradually over the next 10 years.

Election is Nigh! Plan Your Leave.

THIS news is new to me. However it is what Malaysians are looking forward to after nearly a year of intense speculation. Reported in The Star, a government linked newspaper, the new is probably accurate. Although the actual voting date has not been decided, voters must plan to be at home. Do not travel overseas unless you've already planned months ahead and cannot be cancelled. That unfortunately apply for me so I hope and pray I will be home for election. I've never been this fervent before.

Since the general election must be held no later than two months in West Malaysia and three months for East Malaysia (Sabah and Sarawak) after the dissolution of the Parliament, taking the dissolution date of February 20 we are looking at Election Day of March 20 to April 20. Someone cheekily suggest Najib may want to fix the actual polling date as March 31, 2013 which is the last day of school holiday, a Sunday. The reason, 31.3.13 is an auspicious number which may bring 'luck' to Najib. This may not happen as luck will not come in with the serious matter of choosing our next government. The January 12 mammoth rally nicknamed KL112 was a massive show of public protest against his administration and massive blow to his confidence of getting more support the longer he delays calling the election. I guess a March election is most likely. Apparently the choicest date in September last year was missed. Since then scandals and growing impatience have eroded his popularity. There is even rumour of an internal coup, that he may be toppled by his own deputy! That will be international news headline.

Whatever the outcome of this election we are all promised it will be finger nail biting and a neck-to-neck race to watch. Thank goodness for the Internet and live reporting we will be able to track the results as they emerge. Better than watching football I assure you.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


The event that sparks the above videos.

But I very much enjoy the other Listen video below.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Nothing Expires, Part 2

It is hilarious and I just think great ideas can still come forth from hardwired brain cells. Here are a few more sparkling ideas. Don't write us off yet.

You've probably seen this before but most likely write off the idea as crazy or unworkable. Why not? Toilet paper rolls are great organizers, free and environmentally friendly. Plus they won't be of any value as a recyclable item. Helps you locate the cable easily without hurting your back.

CDs are great but of what use is their cases? Lots if you think hard. Similar to the toilet paper rolls (for shorter cables) CD cases are ideal for long cables and you can easily label them outside. Plus they are stackable and transparent so readily identified.

OK I won't touch this one but if you have a good taste for antique stuff why not? Most suitcases are worn out inside but the bodies are strong and sturdy. Many of us use them to keep seldom used items like curtains and blankets. This new idea will blow your mind but think of it, if your contemporary friends visit these suitcases will surely become conversation topics. Hey, I remember you use this one on our holidays together on that cruise to the Greek islands. Remember? Besides serving as soft stool you can even store stuffs inside. Just make sure the legs are sturdy though.

Reading was a popular past time for people my age. In those early years without TV and computers and going to cinemas was expensive, we buy books and tend to junk them now for lack of space. But this idea is great. You get to keep them for sweet remembrance sake and create a nice coffee or work table out of them. But after you're gone chances are they will go too as kids nowadays find real book alien. e-books, OK.

Paperclips should be renamed cable hangers. They help keep the cables untangled and easily accessible. Maybe someone should design more colorful clips that can be labeled.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

And the Winner is .....

The People's Uprising Rally at Stadium Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur just ended, peacefully. No shots, no tear gas, no laced water sprays, no injuries, no lost businesses, no violence, and no losers.

I couldn't attend for personal reasons but my prayers and my interest in tracking the development shows my heart is with the participants. Although only about 100,000 people came, they gathered orderly at 8 separate assembly points peripheral to the stadium and march peacefully toward the venue, well short of the targeted 1 million (which could well be a psychologically created number) the objective set by the organizers have been met, that is to present to the nation and the world that they have valid reasons to congregate, and that they can do so without getting physical or in any uncivilized manner.

Who is the winner in today's rally? My vote goes to Malaysians in general for having clear heads, not to be emotionally swayed, but level headed in dealing with a potentially explosive situation like this. And especially to those who sacrificed the weekend to attend, and be the voice for those like myself who cannot be there in person. Credit goes to the organizers and the security patrols (not the police) who marshaled the participants into the stadium and out. Yes, the police deserve an accolade too, for being human for once, not raising their batons or punch innocent civilians like they did in April last year (many videoclips prove they did it). And for the police heads for listening to the voice of their fellow Malaysians. It isn't that they are battling any external threats so the show of solidarity this afternoon is a healthy sign that we have matured through our political struggles and differences.

Politicians may want to claim credit too but they are just incidental. If any, I would credit non-government societies instead. Bersih top my list for paving the way for a more civilized and accountable government. The tipping point must be when they decide to go headlong against the Elections Commission and the government for trying to intimidate them and the people.

Tonight I believe many will sleep well and be thankful that KL112 enters our history book on a better record than Bersih 2.0 or Bersih 3.0. May KL112 pave the way for a trouble-free 13th general election. After which the real healing of damages and wrongs done to society must begin to make Malaysians proud to be Malaysians again.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Mother of All Rallies

The Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat or People's Uprising Rally will be the biggest mass rally the nation will ever see thus far. It will comprise the accumulated display of public displeasure against the ruling government by civil society movements of BERSIH 2.0 (electoral reforms), Himpunan Hijau (anti-LYNAS), Himpunan Oren (anti-FGVH), pro-oil royalty group and free education group. PUR will march from 8 meeting points and gather at the Merdeka Stadium in the heart of downtown Kuala Lumpur from 2-5pm on January 12, 2013, that is tomorrow.

The event organizers estimated a turnout of 1 million participants and promised it will be a peaceful gathering and seeks the police cooperation to ensure no untoward incident. This mass rally is endorsed by the opposition pact, Pakatan Rakyat, and is seen to be its proxy to pressure the Barisan Nasional government to expedite reforms before the upcoming 13th general election due to be called by the latest end of April this year. This rally may be the last attempt to convince the government that if no change is forth-coming they may be taken down unceremoniously through the polling stations.

Will this rally be as peaceful as hoped? Or will it be disastrous like the July 9, 2011 Bersih 2.0 rally or the April 28, 2012 Bersih 3.0 rally? Should the mass turn up of one million or even half of that number flood Kuala Lumpur, anything can happen. Malaysian police have had no experience in dealing with popular protests except through the use of force. Stay tuned for updates.

Organisers of Saturday's rally adamant about gathering at checkpoints
News 2013-01-11 16:39
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 11 (Bernama) -- Though advised not to gather at certain points, the organisers of tomorrow's rally in the city appear to be adamant about proceeding with this.

PAS deputy Mohamad Sabu hinted at a new conference here today that they would not heed the police's advice and go ahead and gather at these check points before proceeding to the rally's venue, Stadium Merdeka.

According to him, the locations were identified to make it easier for the participants to head to the venue.

Prior to this, police had asked the opposition, which is organising the rally, to get the participants to only gather at Stadium Negara and not elsewhere in the city.

Snippets from
Crowd beginning to build up in KL ahead of rally
10:08AM Jan 12, 2013
Downtown Kuala Lumpur is expected to be swamped with thousands of Pakatan Rakyat supporters as part of the coalition's final show of force ahead of a crucial general election.

Organisers are hoping that big turnout at the rally - dubbed the People's Uprising Rally - would sway fence-sitters who are likely to vote based on who will likely to form the next federal government.

The Najib government however appeared to be bending over backwards to ensure that there are no untoward incidents, even if the rally theme itself is brazenly revolutionary.

Not only have the authorities allowed Pakatan to rally at the historic and highly symbolic Stadium Merdeka, the police have stated that its target was for "zero casualty" and have pledge to do without the notorious Federal Reserve Unit (riot police).

Rally organisers are putting the authorities' new attitude to the test, with plans to hold multiple street processions ahead of the three-hour rally, which is scheduled to begin at 2pm.

The weather forecast for today is cloudy with a slight chance of showers.

The Star/Asia News Network
Saturday, Jan 12, 2013
KUALA LUMPUR - The organisers of Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat have pledged to ensure that their rally at Stadium Merdeka will be a peaceful one.

Not only have they agreed to adhere to the 27 conditions set by the police, they said they would deploy about 10,000 people to secure the safety of the participants as they make their way to the stadium.

The organisers agreed with Dang Wangi police chief Asst Comm Zainuddin Ahmad that the participants would not be provocative or stir up trouble, not bring weapons or dangerous items, not take along children below 15 and not damage public property. Other conditions include requirements that placards and banners must not carry messages that are hateful or seditious.


KUALA LUMPUR: Thousands of people have started to stream into the nation’s federal capital to participate in the Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat rally at Stadium Merdeka this afternoon.

By noon, eye-witnesses claim that more than 50,000 people have gathered at various spots, all heading towards Stadium Merdeka.

Supporters started gathering as early 4am this morning in anticipation of a police shutdown of the city.

However, there were no police roadblocks anywhere, and in fact the police are helping the people, mostly from out-of-state, giving them directions to where they are supposed to gather.

From Malaysiakini
2.51pm: According to a Twitter update from the police, the stadium has been filled with about 80,000 people as at 2.45pm.

2.55pm: A lot of people can't get into the stadium and are hanging around the carpark.

The stadium is filled to the rafters. Many resort to climbing on the ticket stands, fence and walls to witness the proceedings.

2.55pm: Jalan Maharajalela – Participants outside the stadium are having a carnival playing on their vuvuzuela trumpets while the cars passing by honk to show support.

3.04pm: The first part programme of the rally has ended. Popular singer Ito from the rock group Blues Gang sings a song called ‘Ubah ini kali lah’ (Let's change this time), followed by a poetry reading by national laureate A Samad Said.

He jokes that he had never expected his poetry could be used as a weapon in this country.

“Even poems have become weapons,” he says in a short speech before reciting his poem ‘On the field of history’.

He adds that he has always wanted to witness a ‘sea of humanity’.

“In my life... I am already 80, I have always dreamed of witnessing a sea of souls. This is it. Change now,” he said.

Below is the picture at the fully packed Stadium at 2.45pm. Notice how peaceful? No riots and no police. Makes you wonder who caused the rampages in previous rallies?

Snippets from Malaysiakini

1.45pm: Outside Stadium Merdeka - Business has been brisk for hawkers in the vicinity of the stadium. Mansur Ahmad, 56, says he has sold over 500 kebabs.

"Today, I made RM1,000," he beams.

Mansur has also set up a stall at the Kelab Sultan Sulaiman yesterday, where there was pre-rally gathering.

His daughter, Faeza Mansor, 28, who operates a soup noodle business besides Mansur’s kebab stall, says business has been unusually good.

She estimates about 1,000 bowls of soup noodle sold so far.

"My sister doesn't even want to mince the beef anymore. She is too tired to do it!" she joked.

Faeza is being helped by six of her siblings.

3.30pm: Outside the stadium, some participants are seen shaking hands with the police in appreciation of their service. One attendee from Sungai Petani is spotted thanking the police before rushing off to take a bus home. The police replies with a warm smile.

“The police were good today. They did not disrupt our rally compared to the past,” he says.


4.20pm – Anwar Ibrahim takes centrestage and begins his speech to a packed Stadium Merdeka.

Meanwhile, Bar Council president Lim Chee Wee observes the rally to be very peaceful, even "festival-like", he tells MD photojournalist SM Amin when met outside the stadium. "This is proof that a rally can be peaceful if there is no interference from the police," he says.

When put to him that previous rallies were held in the streets, Lim says: "Maybe the method needs to be changed. I guess it is better to hold rallies in stadiums than in the streets."

Praising the police for a job well done, Lim calls for the government to not hinder the public their right to gather like this again.

5pm – Organizers thank the crowd for their attendance and participation. "We will meet again in Putrajaya," pledges the organizer, as its song "Ubah Sekarang" plays over the stadium tannoy while the crowd make their way outside the stadium.

Post Update Note:
Thank God for a peaceful rally. It shows that if properly managed nothing untoward will go wrong. The use of water cannon and tear gas is totally unnecessary. Today's event prove that Malaysians abide by the law of peace, given the chance. The 1 million target wasn't met, the best estimates is around 100,000. Nonetheless the message is clear. Never in the history of Malaysia has so many people deliberately voice their displeasure against the incumbent government.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Nothing Expires, Just Think Creatively

A friend emailed me a bunch of pictures about how creative some senior people are in turning expired household items into something superbly useful, if you don't mind their ugliness. They say senior people, because they are so free, tend to apply their talents to make good what are written off as useless. This also help them stay interesting and fend off senility. However some people may find them odd or even weird. But if you look deeper they do have something to contribute to make the world a better place, teaching us to look outside the box and become interesting and hideously funny. I am not saying so because I am also a senior person but I like to give credit wherever it is due. Here are three I like a lot.

Don't junk that fridge just yet. Unplug it, deodorize the interior and dry it out, then use it for the purpose shown. Maybe even hide your valuables where burgulars are most unlikely to search.

Too old to play tennis, squash or badminton, and moaning where to dispose them racquets? No worry. Get them de-strung and fitted with mirrors and hang them all over the house. You need them too, to keep you company as well as check the status of your receding hairline. Plus they remind you that they, like yourself, are still useful in whatever new life form. Cheers.

Ah ha, I love this one except that because I've given up playing guitars decades ago I won't need them picks anymore. Hmmm, maybe I can sell them for 10 cent each to the school kids outside the school gates and make some money for a lemonade or just to pass time. Crazy but terrific idea. Tip: you can save money by not buying the PickMaster. Just get a heavy duty scissor.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Be A World Vision Sponsor

Today I received a letter from World Vision Malaysia advising me that one of my sponsored child, a Cambodian boy, has 'graduated'. Deep inside I felt a sense of pride that I've helped in a small way to build his life and career. Piseth comes from a very poor village in Bati, Cambodia, where basic infrastructure, sanitation, and community life were non-existent. Bati is located south west of Phnom Penh near the border with Vietnam. In October 1997 World Vision set up the Bati Area Development Programme to help the villagers establish a structured and sustainable society by introducing and implementing development activities such as canal renovation, health education, silk weaving training, constructing protected wells and filtration system, introducing proper and balanced diet, building health centres and providing schools for the children. The 14 year old programme has successfully lifted the residents of Bati out of poverty and place them on a level field to etch out their own living. Piseth is one of the many beneficiaries in Bati through the generous and kind assistance from sponsors.

When I started out sponsoring 2 children in 2003 I paid just RM50 per child per month. It was a small sum then and even now but meant hope to those living in a hopeless situation. From this year, due to rising cost and inflation, the sponsorship rate is revised to RM65 per child per month for children from Asian countries, and RM80 from Non-Asian countries. It is still a small sum to place out to 'buy' a child a future.

World Vision is an international Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. If you are interested please visit its website for more information.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Andrew First Days in Kindy

Against our expectation Andrew didn't adapt as well to the pre-nursery class yesterday. His father had to accompany him almost the whole 3 hours of orientation. As expected he was the tallest in the class but also among the oldest since he is a January child. When he came back he didn't cry but we could see he was happy to be in familiar environment. I guess he prefer more privacy and dislike big groups.

This morning he surprisingly romped into the kindergarten gate holding his sister's hand. Both parents were pleasantly surprised and decided to stay out to watch if he cries or come running out. He didn't. I arrived shortly to relieve them. We peeked into the class. Andrew was quietly playing with his sister beside. But soon she has to leave for her own class upstairs. That was when Andrew lost his confidence. He cried for his 'jie jie' and ran up, but a teacher carried him back. He tried to run out to look for me but the door was closed. Although he cried a bit, he stopped and later remembered he really missed his sister, the one he used to 'bully' at home but all in jest really. He tried to connect with her but finding it futile he settled down. Although he didn't socialize much this morning, nor take part in singing and dancing, the principal later told us when we arrived to pick him up, that he has 'horns' which we took it to means he has started to become a bit aggressive or bold with other kids. That's our Andrew alright. He's found his turf and I quickly cautioned the principal Andrew is fond of ripping apart mechanical toys. Just to make sure the kindy are prepared for some repairs.

In the car he drank his milk contentedly and played with the iPad until his sister finishes her class half hour later. Tomorrow we expect Andrew to assimilate into the class environment and not look around for his sister or us. With that we hope he will tip a new milestone of learning to play and share.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

A Beautiful Sunday

Today marks the first Sunday Pastor Ronald took over the church officially following the transfer of our former pastor Paul who served for 8 years.

Today also mark the introduction of family worship on every first Sunday of the month which is a Communion Sunday. What this means is that on such a Sunday children who attend church school concurrently as the adult worship service now join the adult worship which is adapted to make the service more child friendly with a message they can understand. The reason for this change is to encourage family to worship together so that children grow up more emotionally and spiritually intact with both family and church.

Today also mark the introduction of paedo-communion which means that children who are baptized will now be able to receive Holy Communion elements of bread and juice and parents are encouraged to explain the significance of them to their children. It was indeed a beautiful sight, sitting where I was on the third pew from the front, to see young children with their parents, kneeling at the railings with hands clasped, receiving communion and, if they are too young or not baptized, receive blessings from the pastor.

Today is special in another way. Our former bishop, now honored to be bishop emeritus, returns to our church to resume worshiping with us. It is an honor to the congregation to have an eminent person of the Methodist church in our midst. Today we also have a former pastor who served from 1986-1989, and who was my first pastor when I joined this church, joined us in worship with his dear wife Stella who sang in the choir I attended 23 years ago. It was a very pleasant surprise to see them and they haven't age a bit! Must be the nice Perth weather.

Finally today is a beautiful day because God made it so. It falls upon us to want to see each day that way or the way we internalize our problems and spew them out to see the day less positively than it should. I hope you have had a beautiful Sunday and also every day of the week.

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Please Help Me I'm Falling ...

I'm reminded of this popular song of the 60s when I read the below article which I believe is very useful to older people. However the author suggested people age as young as 40 are also at risk. Do read on to learn how to avoid falling. Falling is one of the major causes of serious bodily injuries, including bone fractures, that can severely affect a person's mobility, self esteem and a major contribution to depression and poorer prognosis to healing and quality of life.

Increased Risk of Fall Accident Begins at Age 40
by: Junji Takano

One of the main health concerns of elderly people is falling, which is often related to poor balance. In fact, many studies show that people begin to have balance problems starting at the age of 40 years. The older you get, the weaker your physical body and sensory abilities will be, which are all factors in having poor balance.

In Japan, more than 7,000 people a year die from falling accidents, which already exceeds the number of traffic accidents. In this article, we'll examine in more details the cause of falling and why you lose balance as you age.

## Test Your Balance by Standing on One Leg
You can determine how good your balance is by measuring the length of time that you can stand on one leg.

The following table shows the average balance time by age group in a study conducted at a Japanese health institute.

Average time with eyes open
20-39 years old: 110 seconds
40-49: 64 seconds
50-59: 36 seconds
60-69: 25 seconds

Average time with eyes closed
20-39 years old: 12 seconds
40-49: 7 seconds
50-59: 5 seconds
60-69: less than 3 seconds

If your balance time is below average, then you'll have higher risk of falls, or slipping and tripping accidents.

In the above study, women tend to lose their balance more than men but only by a small margin (1-2%). From this study, it is also evident that there's a sudden significant decrease in the ability to maintain balance among middle-aged people (40 years and above).

Please take note that the numbers stated above are only average. There are people who were able to maintain balance much longer, and there are also those who were only able to maintain their balance at much shorter time regardless of age and gender. The reason why they vary is explained further below.

## The Soles of Your Feet Have Sensors
The skins all throughout your body have significant amount of tiny pressure sensors or mechanoreceptors. Some areas have few pressure sensors, while other areas have thousands, like on the soles of your feet.

The pressure sensors on the foot soles provide information to your brain to help balance your body. As you get older, the sensors will get weaker and your foot sole lose sensitivity. But there are also other factors that can lead to weaker pressure sensors.

## Poor Blood Circulation Can Disrupt the Pressure Sensors
In our study, people are almost twice as likely to be in a fall accident caused by poor blood circulation.

This can be simulated by soaking your feet into ice cold water for about 3 minutes. Because of the cold temperature, the pressure sensors on the foot sole begin to lose sensitivity.

## Pay Attention to Your Forward-Moving Foot
If your forward-moving foot hit something, your body will be off-balance causing you to fall or trip. Well, it's a matter of common sense to always have your eyes on path and watch where you are going. Remember the old adages - "Prevention is better than cure", "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", "Look before you leap", etc.?

But that's not the only problem. Here are the other two major reasons why you stumble while walking.

1. Your forward-moving foot is pointed down.
If your foot is pointed down while making a step, then you are more prone to falling. To avoid this, your forefoot or toes should be flexed upwards.

2. You walk like a pendulum.
The height of your step can greatly increase your risk of falling. To prevent this, your forward-moving foot must be higher off the ground (at least 5 cm) while the knee is raised high.

Actually, all the mechanoreceptors located throughout your body as well as the soles of your feet are sending information to the brain that include muscle contractions and joint angles. When this information is not transmitted well to your brain, which happens as you get older, then the movement will get weak or ineffective making it hard for you to maintain your foot higher off the ground.

## How to Prevent Yourself from a Fall, Trip, or Slip
1. Keep Your House Clean
There are a lot of things in your house that can contribute to clutters that can cause you to trip or fall. Always make sure to put away or store properly all personal belongings and other unnecessary things even if it is only a newspaper, remote control, and laundries scattered on the floor or carpet.

2. Stretch Your Feet and Ankles
You might think that your feet do not need exercise or stretching compared to other parts of your body, but in reality, feet stretching exercise can really help your feet maintain balance.

3. Keep Your House Warm and Ensure Adequate Lighting
Cold muscles and pressure sensors work less well and are less responsive to signals. A decreased temperature will also cause your muscles to have less strength and less flexible, which can lead to accidents.

Always try to keep your house warm or wear proper clothes and footwear, especially during winter. Since most falls occur indoors, make sure your house has adequate lighting.

Friday, January 04, 2013

2013 - Coming Events

Didn't know I'm loaded with things to do and prepare at the onset of the new year. Just to make sure I'm not overwhelm allow me to list them here but only for what will take place in the first half of 2013.

School holiday is finally over and new semester started on January 2 for Grace who is in her pre-school 2. This is her final year at a Seremban 2 kindergarten before she starts formal primary education in January 2014. She is registered to study at Chung Hua Primary School in Seremban town. It is a Chinese based school where Mandarin will be widely used. Grace adjusted well on her first days with her new classmates. Her class has 17 children, more than double her class last year. There is no classroom work this week, but work for me. On day 1 she brought home a shiny bag of 20 school books with instruction from the principal to wrap them up. On the way home I stopped by a gift shop and bought 2 rolls of PVC book wrappers. The next 48 hours I meticulously and methodically wrap them, with a little assistance from my wife and Grace herself. This work of love took me back to the days I did the very same work for my 3 children while they were in their primary schools. If there's a contest I think my wrapped books should emerge among the winners. Well ...

Andrew was registered for pre-nursery class. He is under 3 years even when he goes there next Monday, January 7. He will only turn 3 on January 27. I just wonder if he will be bored attending 4 years in kindergarten before his formal education begins in 2017. I enjoyed my freedom right until I enter school at the age of 7 in 1955.

In Petaling Jaya Victoria has started Standard 2 and William in pre-school 1. In the States, Joshua is heading towards his first birthday in April. So does Sharon in May. Time flies.

Andrew will turn 3 on January 27. We're wondering if we should get him a proper tricycle as he is riding on the gift meant for little sister Sharon. Maybe when he is a little older and starting to challenge older sister's tricycle. Right now he is shuffling rather than paddling.

April will see many family members celebrating their birthdays. I count at least 4 celebrations not including close relatives.

There will be a short holiday to the Philippines in March. None of us has even been there so it will be interesting.

General Elections
This is a guessing game of national importance. The outcome determines the path we take for the next 5 years. Will it be after Chinese New Year (on February 10-11) or will the Prime Minister wait until the 5 years current tenure expires towards end April? My guess is end March. But please not while we are overseas as I really want my vote to count.

Since I started this hobby in October I've built up a substantial block of interesting pins. Currently I'm heading towards the 14,000 pins hurdle.

Genealogy Project
I want to build a legacy for my family and siblings and others in the extended family. My late father gave me a booklet in 1998 before he passed on listing the names of his grandfather, grand uncles and grand aunties, cousins, children and grand children. Today I have the benefits of a nice software called Family Tree Builder from It is free to a certain usage level and very easy to apply.

This genealogy project will cover 6 generations and will be my gift to my family and relatives.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

New Year Greetings

Photo credit:

Here's wishing all my readers a very happy, prosperous and healthy 2013. May you start the new year in a positive note and end it the same way. May your days be filled with joy and whatever trials you face along the way you deal with them with perseverance and wisdom.


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