January 7, 2017
my wife’s niece is getting married later today.
The Filipino tradition (Hispanic in origin ) arras (13 coins) presented by the bridegroom to the bride was rightly scraped by the couple and didn’t make much sense in the Australian context. We shouldn’t be so beholden or precious with rituals and just welcome the nod to recognising heritage. This type of symbolism should be changed to suit (or eliminated entirely).
My view on marriage is it shouldn’t be an outdated institution but a living-breathing social construct (that’s not for everyone and should be an individual’s choice and not dictated by societal convention) that’s adaptable to present realities. In fairness, they did scrap “obey” from the vows. Legal divorce in the Philippines (if I’m not mistaken, we’re the last holdout country) is a seperate issue.
There’s even a proposal for 10-year terms instead of forever. This might not be the solution to the “high” rate of divorce but the conversation’s welcome. Silver, Golden and Diamond anniversaries seem to be unrealistic given wedding as teens is no longer the norm.
Do we now put to much emphasis on the day itself (encouraged by an entire industry) and not the upcoming unified life?
Full disclosure: Have been married now for a little over 14 years
December 8, 2013
we lost a great man in Nelson Mandela. Our generation did not live in Gandhi nor Martin Luther King, Jr.’s time – Tata Madiba was our example of peaceful resistance. That we lost him is sad – what saddens me more is that there is not enough like him.
Rolihlahla is the name his father gave him and is isiXhosa and colloquially means “troublemaker.” Until 2008, he was even branded a terrorist. Maybe he caused headaches to the Apartheid establishment but because you have always done something does not make it right. Forget tradition, he had right on his side. I think Australia was right to lead the boycott – they had witnessed first-hand the adverse effects on the Indigenous people.
He was given the English name of Nelson by his teacher – for reasons were not certain of. It reminds me of how in my “old” country you used to not be able to be baptized unless you had a “Christian” given name or how the Spanish had “forced” us to adapt last names that sounded like theirs. Why are people so afraid of the “other”?
My favourite quote of his is:
“I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.”
I think we should all endeavour to be the best that we can be.
July 30, 2013
my wife’s cousin’s husband helped (who am I kidding, he did it mostly himself) us put together our “new” exercise bike. Fortunately, he was around because we would not have much success assembling it without him. Ease to manufacture does not usually translate to ease of assembly. During the frustrating part of putting things together, the corporation’s bottom-line is far from the consumer’s mind. It reminds me of the question posed to the person sweeping and their answer of building God’s house. More often than not, we do not see how our simple roles contribute to the fruition of something greater that we cannot accomplish on our own – it’s not the actual task but how this fits in the “grander” scheme of things.
We, of course, thanked him for his help. It made me think of how this “small” act might “snowball” to something larger and what effect it will have. We often forget how mundane and inconsequential things can have a significant impact. Although there often is no direct causation, I can only guess at what flow on effects there will be. I am a big believer that we all make our own luck but lately I catch myself thinking the alignment of planets may have some part to play. I wonder what “dominoes” have been set in motion.
February 24, 2012
for the first time i forgot about Ash Wednesday – the beginning of Lent. i’m not a die-hard Catholic but i normally remember.
February 6, 2012
last Saturday was World Cancer Day – it seems nowadays everyone knows someone with the disease. a friend of mine was diagnosed with the condition and in spite of this i think his faith is stronger (if that’s at all possible) – i’m a firm believer that everyone needs to follow their own path.