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Can You Bribe Me To Celebrate Christmas This Year?

December 24th, 2007 by Wai Loong (1 Comment)

Dear friend, welcome to week 52 of year 2007!

Wow! I can’t believe that the year is almost gone in the blink of an eye… And it’s now less than 24hrs to Christmas! In any case, I’m not a Christian. And in case you’re like me too, will it be another ordinary Christmas for you and me?

Will you and I make a difference this year?

I haven’t pull in a lot of thought until a college friend of my texted me yesterday, inviting me to join his church for this year’s celebration at Singapore Expo.

My heart sank as this isn’t the first time I’ve been invited to Church. Politely, I rejected the offer as it seems inappropriate for me now as I have grown older?

Don’t get me wrong though… I’ve nothing against celebrating Christmas. In fact, I’ve gain a lot more understanding about Christianity through Christmas celebration with City Harvest Church, twice in the past. Interestingly, certain church celebrations are more elaborated than other groups and I believe it has something to do with age…


I’m sorry if that hurts… that word “age” I mean.

If you have, in any way, celebrated with a group as many as 2000++ young people (you’ll be surprise many are a lot younger!), then you’ll probably cherish those good old days…

Maybe not?

When was your most memorable Christmas (night)?

Maybe yours will have memories of candle light dinner with your loved one… in a warm restaurant?

Or perhaps in the wide open, cloudless night and the cold wind was whipping on your naked face?

Caught in a snow or blizzard storm?

Wait a minute…

We don’t get these exciting weathers like snowing here in tropical Singapore. The only most happening place for Christmas is Orchard Road, the heaven for shoppers and dinners… and many other young people, be it in the past present and future?

In case you’re not familiar with Singapore, it’s a little red dot located in the central of South East Asia, just a few degrees North off the equator. Orchard Road is strategically situated near the city central, boosting a stretch of world renowned hotels, shopping malls, retail outlets, restaurants with gourmets ranging from Western to Eastern cuisines – you name it!

Imagine some mouth watering French selection to spicy Thai pineapple rice! If you’re willing to spend, you’ll most likely be delighted and enjoy!

I rarely patronize Orchard Road on Christmas eve or on Christmas itself.

In fact, I’ve missed more of such Christmas lightings in the past…

Nor have I attended any Christmas parties.

The fact that I’ve always hated crowds – and I avoid them like plagues. How does that ever relates to you?



In fact I actually do like crowds only on certain occasions, such as those during Chinese/Lunar New Year!

Strange as it might sounds… but I can offer a very logical reason.

You see, Chinese New Year is a cultural celebration (vs Christmas) and all Chinese embraces it irregardless of religious and spiritual practices. I’ll always get to see the festive spirit of seing comrades twisting about the best bargains in Chinatown. And it’s a lot more meaningful to me given my family background.

If you’re Chinese ethnic, do you relate to that in any way? Maybe I believe that integrating our faith and spiritual practices into our mother culture is so vital to lifelong spiritual development.

So now can you still bribe me to work out Christmas this year?

Yes and no… actually.

Yes – because I plan to walk the streets of Orchard on Christmas eve (horray!)! Actually, I love to see how the lighting goes and not because of bargain or Christmas sale.

And now for the No…

As I’ve mentioned, I’m hate crowds and I’ll prefer to shut myself to some good coffee elsewhere, maybe in the city central.? Probably some of my favorite coffee hangouts would be Bugis Parco and City Link.

So… the truth is… and the real reason is… monetary.

Not because I’m broke, but because I think reckless spending is unwise. Again, I’ve nothing against spending on gifts for your loved ones, but watch your expenditure and brace for rainy/snowing days ahead. Furthermore, window shopping is already a great luxury to the eye and the soul itself!

A personal perception?

Maybe I’m speaking from a little self-contentment… and…

In case you’re wondering about my concern, here are some recent facts on the news:

  • Consumer spending spree for this Christmas has skyrocketed (compared to last year)! I wonder why that’s happening even in times of a serious inflation ahead…
  • Lack of drive in Singapore’s manufacturing sector. In other words, this may mean an world-wide economic slow down or demand in Singapore’s manufactured goods…
  • Service, property and financial sector in Singapore has performed well in Q3 and Q4… thanks to strategic economic plans laid by the government, especially property. With the rise in property prices and taxes, these may be clues to higher future inflation…
  • Productivity dropped compared to previous year, but more bonuses are paid to the majority workforce. Is this a sign of complacent?

After all, isn’t Christmas about spreading universal love and kindness to all your comrades? A little well-thought out greeting card or e-card may yet achieve similar, if not greater or same effects for close friends and work partners?

Of course, you’re always entitled to disagree with me on any or all of the above points… but do pen down your reasons in the comments area and see if we can find agreements within our disagreements. Fair?

Okay, I think that’s enough from me already. I’m signing off now and be heading towards Orchard Road in a couple of minutes from now. I’ll see you back at the end of this week and let’s see if we can discuss what the new year will be for us.

Thanks for reading this far and I wish you and your family, a very warm and bless Christmas season, and may there be peace in the world!

Live life with passion!

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One Response:

Yen Thim Wai on December 24th, 2007 at 7:57 pm

X’mas is a good time for friends gathering near year-end. Meeting up with good friends & taking a coffee break 🙂

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About Insights, Inspirations, Tranquility, Peace and Harmony

Ng Wai Loong

Wai Loong is an electronics engineer by profession. He currently resides in Singapore, a thriving hub at the heart of South-East Asia. When he is not so stress out on the computers or laboratory, he enjoys value reading, jogging at his own pace and blogging in his spare time. Other times, he likes to catch up with some close friends over a cup of latte or teh tarik. As a gift from this friend, you are invited to interact freely with him on his personal blog.

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