Tag Archives: Role Models

The Wall of Victory

Translated…

Every time I’d gone to my old friend, Hong’s place, I’d always visited the “walls of victory” in his study, and, it’d given me a ton of awakening.

Hong was my classmate from college, he is very skilled at calligraphy, as well as painting, from his elementary years up to now, he’d entered into numerous art and calligraphy competitions, and won a ton of awards too.  The countless awards, certificates, hung all over the four walls of his study, which I called, the “walls of victory”.

And, he’d told me, “I did not get too egotistical about it, instead, I’d used this wall, to keep myself alert: to always remember the hard working origin I’d started on, to recall the blood, sweat AND tears that went in, to achieve all of these awards, so I can keep on improving myself for the better.”

His words made me blush, because I also had several “walls of victory” inside my house, in my study, as well as in my living room too, and, they’d only had the certificates, the awards I won from writing and on the job.  I’d often looked at these walls, felt a ton of achievements and pride, and, I’d gotten intoxicated in the past moments of my glory, no wonder that recently, when I entered into writing competitions, I never won anything, turns out, it was, because I didn’t do what Hong had done, “stood on the point of my origins”, to “not forget why I’d started in the first place”, to remember, that back then, I just wrote, for pure enjoyment, not for the purpose of winning any awards at all.

Thinking here, my mind drifted to Hong, who’s already a high school principal now, with his own salaries, not counting the bonuses he’d received, he could’ve switched that thirty-year-old desk out already, but he’d insisted on keep using it, it’d made me wonder.  He’d told me, that that, was because he’d insisted on “standing on the point where he’d started from”, to keep himself on guard: back then, he’d used the desk to write calligraphy, to draw, that, was how he was able to have the small achievements that he has today!

This had, once again, made me ashamed, because I’d used the money I’d earned, spent $25,000N.T. to buy a brand new desk and chair, to replace the one that I’d only used for eight years, it seems, that I should model after Hong’s “spirit of point of origin” then!

And, this man did NOT allow all his award-winning work get to his head, instead, he’d kept to the center of who he was back then, kept everything he’d used from before, as a reminder, to his humble beginnings, to keep reminding him, that everything he’d achieved, he did it, from hard work, that it shouldn’t be taken lightly, or easily.

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Filed under Awareness, Expectations, Life, Observations, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Wake Up Calls

The Instructors & the Students of Yong-Ping High School Bent Down, and Scrubbed the Toilets, to Touch Other Faculty Members’ as Well as Other Students’ Hearts

The humbleness of man, is being MODELED after here, from the Newspapers, translated…

A lot of knowledge goes into cleaning up the toilets, the Taiwan Beautification Organization with the Yongping High School in Yonghe District held the learning opportunities of “Cleaning Up the Hearts, Washing Everything Clean” Activities yesterday, the faculties and the students was under the instructions of a Japanese cleaning expert, who led them to scrub, and wipe, get “intimate” with the toilets and the urinals, to learn the attitude of “bending over”.

How hard is it, to bend over and scrub the toilets?  Even the school teachers said, that the very first time they’d had to do it, they were all, a bit scared, they’d discarded what they’d normally used, the long scrubbing brushes, the pipes, the mops, instead, they used the sponges, the scrubbing pieces, and dish rags, first, they’d bent over, soaked up all the remaining water that was in the urinals, then, scrubbed down the urinals by hand, but, as they’d gotten closer to the urinals, the smell was bad, “it truly made us want to run away!”

“It was the VERY first time we’d had to do something like this”, a member of the middle school class 706 shared this unique experience, at first, it was, not at all easy, but, with the Japanese lady, leading him, later on, he felt, that it became, a fun experience instead, after he’d cleaned up the toilet, he felt very much achieved, and wanted to share this hard-to-come-by experience with his own parents too.

The process of cleaning up the toilets and the urinals continued for one and a half hours, yesterday, there were, close to six hundred participants in the activities, other than the school principal, Liu who led the way, bending down with her students, there were another 132 cleaning experts, as well as the employees and owners of various enterprises from Japan who had helped out with the activities, alongside the over four hundred members of the beautification committee here, and, among them, were big name enterprise owners too.

This year, the cleaning theme was, “Cleaning Off the Hearts, Making it Brand New”, this stemmed from how the last year’s representative world being “Darkness”.  The Secretary of the Taiwan Beautification Organization, Lee claimed, that when everybody puts in her/his share, then, the smallest changes can become huge, if everybody could experience the disgust from cleaning up the toilets, then, in the process, empathy may be formed, and, through changes in the individuals, expanding into changes in the community.

So, this, is a lesson in moral education, I suppose, because the children need to be started younger, to LEARN about the difficulties of others’ lives, and, by making them learn to clean up the toilets, they are gaining that empathy, and now, as they go to the toilets, they may not be as careless in using the urinals, instead, they would start to consider, the person, having to clean up the mess they’d left behind, so, they wouldn’t leave ANY mess behind, this, is a great program that’s initiated here.

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Filed under Attitude, Early Exposures, Expectations, Lessons, Life, Moral Responsibilities, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Socialization

When Children Became Mirrors

Heads UP, all you parents!!!

When children became mirrors, and, they reflected you back to you, and, you don’t like what you see, what, would you do???  Oh yeah, you’d send them innocent KIDDIES into the CORNER, for misbehaving, right?  After all, the kid needs some DOWN time, let’s face it, there’s NO doubt.  And, you may NOT even LOOK at yourselves, to realize, hey, maybe my kid is behaving the way s/he did, because s/he was modeling after me, betcha didn’t consider that, did ya?  Of course N-O-T!

When children became mirrors, they’re bound, to reflect the truth of the things, and, because in the adult world, we are less perceptive, less aware, of our own mistakes and faults, I mean, c’mon, WHO here had admitted when s/he’s done something wrong, before anybody EVER notices?  Not very many would be MY guess.

When children became mirrors, they’re NOT just a reflection of your teachings, but also, your behaviors, as their adult counterparts, who do you think, that your son and daughter learns to “hump” one another?  By watching the two of you, having sex, of course, and, who do you think, that taught that son of yours, to swear and cuss as he’d RAMMED those toy cars against each other, creating a HUGE traffic accident?

When children became mirrors, take, a look into those smaller, but very REAL mirrors in your lives, and, tell me, IF you see something that you don’t want to see, is there, anything that’s currently ongoing, in your kids’ behaviors that are, raising an alarm?  If no, then, good for you, but, if yes, then, WHAT can you do about it?  Oh, I know, you’ll tell that kid, when your daddy gets home, you’re gonna GET it, right???

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Filed under Awareness, Cost of Living, Expectations, Parent-Child Interactions, Parenting/Parenthood, Socialization, Wake Up Calls

The Best Example

Show them H-O-W, translated…

The biggest trouble of working in a distant elementary school is the lack of personnel, the children must shoulder OVER their shares of cleaning up the school grounds.

As the kids in my class reached the higher grade levels, they’d learned that their cleaning duties are all the restrooms in the school, they’re all screaming, and howling in pain, the work of cleaning up the restrooms, everybody wishes s/he could dodge, and, it’d become a next-to-impossible task, for me, to persuade them, that this, is what needed to be done, to keep our environment clean.

On the first day the kids reported to their newly assigned areas of cleaning, I’d gone to the bathrooms, to see how the kids are doing, and, when they saw me, they’d started complaining of how the restrooms stunk, how people wouldn’t flush the toilets after they used them, and showed a desire, that they wanted to switch to a less messy cleaning area, like sweeping the grounds.

Even though, in psychology, the behaviorist approach showed that you can get immediate results from giving rewards, but I believed, that the kids should not rely solely on the extrinsic motivations, that it should be from the inside, and so, I’d decided, to become their role model, hoped that the kids can change their views about cleaning up the toilets.

That day, I’d gone to the restrooms, and, just as usual, I’d heard complaints from the children, I’d smiled and nodded, and heard the kids emotional outbursts, then, I’d taken the toilet brush from one of the girls’ hands, squatted down, worked hard, scrubbing the toilets.  At which time, the little girl looked at me with such admiration, “Teacher, you’re so very brave!”

I’d said, “See!  A lot of the things, so long as we’re willing to put some efforts into, it’s actually not that difficult at all, it’s no longer as scary, if I scrubbed alongside you guys, isn’t it?”

And afterwards, I’d gone to scrub the toilets every single day with the kids, and, had heart-to-heart talks with them while we cleaned.  A week later, I’d found, that the kids in my class are no longer so against having to clean up the restrooms, and sometimes, as they’d cleaned, I’d even heard humming too.  Seeing this, I felt so moved and glad.

When I was still a rookie instructor, didn’t know the ways, I’d once just opened up my lips, and told the kids, go clean this and go wipe that, back then, I couldn’t understand, HOW is it, that I’d given such clear AND precise directions, some of the students still can’t manage.  Later on, I’d discovered, that doing it myself, IS the best way to teach, turns out, that NO amount of verbal demands can beat out just one actions.

Sometimes, when the kids are against something, it is merely their fears of the unknown, at which time, if the adults around them can take their hands, and do the deed alongside them, I believe, that all kids can show potential, and handle what they’re supposed to very well.

And because this teacher didn’t have anybody giving her instructions on how to teach the children, she’d cleaned the bathrooms, and, as the children saw, that the teacher can do it, they felt, that they could do, and that still just shows, how important it is, to be a role model to the younger generations, and, this teacher managed to make cleaning up the bathrooms an easier-to-manage thing, because she’d shown the kids how easy it is, to clean…

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Filed under Communications, Lessons, Maturation, Observations, The Observer Effect, Values

The Pros & Cons of the Violin Lessons

Did the child show an interest in the instrument, or, were you, the parents, pushing him to take it up???  Translated…

Taking up violin, would be considered, my biggest breakthrough ever for this past year.

One day, I’d had the thought, of having my son, take up violin, and so, I’d wanted to become a role model for him, I’d picked it up first, so, when he has difficulties playing in the future, I can show him how.  Back then, I was calculating, that my son was still in kindergarten, and, he still has two more years until he’s fitting to learn the violin.  Two years should be enough, to see some results if I played, right?  Even if my son has great learning abilities, my head start of two years, that should be okay.

But, I’d never imagined, that after I’d started learning violin, within ten minutes into playing, I’d felt that my shoulder is screaming out in pain, I couldn’t even hold up my violin, and, my arm was so sore, that it just couldn’t move the bow anymore, and I’d apologized to my son on the inside through the entire class session, “I’m sorry I had the thought of making you take up the violin…”, in the end, with the instructor, helping me to pull the bow, I’d ended this first session of hardship.

The very next day when I woke, there’s this continuous odd feeling in my neck, could it be, the aftermath of having the violin between my neck and shoulders?  A little bit after my pains and discomfort felt much better, time for my second session, and, I’d forgotten how, to place the shoulder pad, the very next day, I took a blank mind, back to class.

For every class following, I’d had my instructor’s help, and, I’d rarely practiced, I only had the time of after work and before my son goes to bed.  And, even though I’d often hollered that I don’t want to take lessons anymore, but, if I’d given up so easily, how, will I be an example to my own child?  And so, I’d become a pendulum, swaying between giving up and keeping at it, until one day, because I got really stressed out, pulling the extra hours at the office, I’d taken my violin out to play, and, I’d realized that music has this stress-relief quality to it.  I couldn’t imagine, that for my son, I’d picked up the violin, and, it’d become the most special kind of reward to myself.

And so, you’d had it hard, at the start, but, after a hard day’s work, you’d picked up your musical instrument, and, strangely enough, you feel, ALL your stresses, relieved, out the window, just like that.  That, is the extra you’d gained, from taking up those lessons, isn’t it?

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Filed under Hobbies/Pasttimes, Lessons, Parenting/Parenthood, Perspectives, Properties of Life

My Second Father, Love in the World

Translated…

When I was younger, my father wasn’t around, as I went into high school, I met an ophthalmologist, that was once when I had eye troubles, and had gone to a clinic close to my school, the moment I walked into the clinic, I saw a poster that said, “I will donate what you will”, a fundraising program to help the less fortunate.

When it came my turn, the doctor asked me if I needed a packet of rice, because my health insurance card said that we were among the low income populations, I’d replied, “my aunt owns a cafeteria, give it to someone who needs it more!”

As I’d walked out of the office, I kept thinking about the fundraising project, and, a few days later, I’d gotten involved in a recycle volunteer opportunity and made $200 N.T.s, I’d wanted to donate it right away, but, to what cause?

I ran straight to the clinic, gave the money to the doctor, he’d asked me, “where did you get it?”

I’d told him I’d earned it from my recycling, and had wanted to learn to be a volunteer like the doctor, because I’d been looked after by others since I was growing up, and now that I’m able, I wanted to give what I can back to the world too.

I’d started volunteer with the doctor, he’d taken me to a lot of the activities, met a ton of people, allowed me to feel that there’s warmth in the world.  And now, I’m living and working in the midsection of the island, but the doctor who is in the south still showed his concerns toward me; for me, he’s just like a father, he’s my second dad.

And so, because of the kindness shown to you from this doctor, it’d initiated your desires to help others out too, and that, is how easily, kindness can roll around, and it will get passed down, because kindness too, IS infectious!

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Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Kindness Shown, Perspectives, Properties of Life, Values

It’s More Important to Be Empathic

Being a good role model for the younger generation here, translated…

On the way of driving my niece to the photo shop, as we passed by the lights, we saw an elderly woman, pushing her cart, slowly, walking across, even though the lights had turned green, I’d still braked my car.

My niece asked me, “Why won’t you go?”

I’d told her, “We all grow old one day, the elderly walks much slower, and I’m waiting for the elderly woman to cross.”

After my niece saw my behavior, she had a heartfelt sentiment, “Aunt, you’re such a nice person.”  Actually, in the moment I didn’t think too much about this, I was just going with my heart’s telling me what I’m supposed to do, and I’d used this as an opportunity, to teach my niece, “We must show empathy.”

Plus, I’m middle aged, and, I’m about to march into old age soon too, I’d wondered often, what, can I do for this society.  Currently, I’m unemployed, and I’d hunted for jobs, but, none was fruitful enough, and so, I’d especially empathized with the people from middle and late stages in their lives.

If my economics permitted, I’d placed some coins into the donation box, anywhere from $10N.T.s to $100N.T.s, I believe, that the smaller amounts will accumulate.  Even though I’m not rich, but, I feel blessed, to be able to give what I can, to help those children in the distant regions, along with elderly who lived alone.

Plus, I still have a roof over my head, I get my three meals, there are a lot of people less fortunate than I, and, whenever I’m able to, I’d hoped to put in my share, to give back to the world.

And, awhile ago, I took my clothes that needed altering, to an elderly gentleman who has trouble walking, seeing how his lonely face was filled with a glow, I’m really glad I’d gone to his shop.

The middle age and elderly population need a chance from the world, because they can create enormous values for the world too.

This, is empathy, at its best, the woman has a good heart, no doubt, and, she’d taught her lessons to the younger generations by setting a good example for them, and, even though, she’s still just one person, doing good things, those who received her kindness will feel like they have the whole world on their sides, and that, is the positive things that comes from helping out.

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Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Awareness, Kindness Shown, Life, Observations, Perspectives, Properties of Life, Values

A Last-Year High School Student Part-Timed to Make More Allowances for Herself, and Donated to Children in the Distant Regions

Kindness is, still, flowing around here, from the Newspapers, translated…

The last-year student, Lai from Zhudong High School maintained her grades as the top five in her class, she had regularly saved up on her allowances and the money from her part-time jobs, and in the two years’ time, she’d donated continually, to the elementary school students of Shin-Guan Elementary School, the department manager of the K-12 Education from the Department of Education, Wu yesterday, went to visit the school and heard what she’d done, he’d commended her, “Not only are you regularly studious, you also knew to take care of the less fortunate,” he’d given her affirmation of her kindness and encouragements too.

Lai is on the air gun shooting team, she’d often entered into national competitions, and had won the first place trophy for the ten meters air gun shooting competitions, along with the fourth place in the national phys ed cup.

She said, that as she’d gone to middle school in northern Hsinchu at Chenggong Middle School, she was introduced to air gun, her father who’s a retired media man, supported her hobby, and had taken her to the Da-Du Elementary School to practice every single day, where she’d met up with the archery coach there, Lin.

She said, after she and her father met Lin, he’d told them a TON of stories from the back mountains, and her father knew that it was hard, for the local children to get an education, and he’d asked the coach to take money to the school, to buy milk, cookies, to help enrich the children’s diets; and every time she’d scored top five in her quarterly exams, her father would give her money as reward, and, she’d followed in the footsteps of her father, donated it all to help the children in the distant regions.

Lai had done all of her good deeds in silence, awhile ago, the principal, Hsu got an anonymous tip from a citizen, said that Lai had donated yet, another $10,000N.T. to Shinguang Elementary School, that, was when her good deeds were known about.

“We are living happily, just hoped to do something for the rest of the world.”  Lai told the press, humbly, that she’d saved her scholarship money, as well as her allowances, to help the aborigine children to buy their school supplies, “I just did something small to help them is all!”

And so, this, is an act of kindness, passed, from father to child, and, this young woman, even though, she’s just a high schooler, she’d still given what she could, to help out, and that, is a spirit we can all take from!

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Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Kindness Shown, Perspectives, Properties of Life

He Gazed Up at You, with Those Eyes So Curious

He gazed up at you, with those eyes so curious, and it never once occurred to you, that you are his role model.  He gazed up at you, with those eyes so curious, you’re his hero, someone who knows everything, about everything, there’s NOTHING you can’t do.

He gazed up at you, with those eyes so curious, with questions he wanted the answers to, and yet, you turned your head away from him?  Why?  Because he’s too young to comprehend?  Because he couldn’t understand your words, but he can understand the tone of voice you take with him.

He gazed up at you with those eyes so curious, wanting your time, but, you’re WAY too side-tracked, way too busy, way too stressed out, or way too WHATEVER, you failed to pay attention to your son, and he still grew up, just like you had, didn’t he???

He gazed up at you with those eyes so curious, and, those eyes, they searched for answers, and you can’t give it to him, because some things, he just has to experience by himself, on his own, because that, is just how life works, and, there’s NO explaining anything to anybody out there…

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Filed under Childhood, Life, Parent-Child Interactions, Socialization, Values

My Father’s Wisdom of Knowing When to Hold ‘Em and When to Fold ‘Em

On parent-child interactions, what the child took away from the father’s wisdoms, passing down the legacy, an ideal, translated…

My father is an experienced, older generation farmer, he’s elderly now, immobilized these days, and had stopped working the fields for over a decade, but his wisdom and experience were my consultant, as a farmer.

Recently when I’d asked him, if I needed to irrigate the land as the rice was about to become ripe, he’d told me the story of “knowing when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em”, it was an enlightening lesson.

He said, that over two decades ago, there was a family, Cheng, his rice grains are already ripened and ready for harvest, and, the machines were sent into the fields.  The operator of the machinery told Cheng that it would be best to harvest when the weather got better, then, a week’s worth of rain followed, causing him unable to go out and harvest, and, the plants all got blown over, soaked in water, and started budding, the four months worth of hard work was lost overnight.

My father told me, actually, the rain was still manageable, he couldn’t started the harvesting.  Later on, a lot of the villagers used this tale as a lesson to teach their children, as soon as the grains are ready for harvest, start harvesting.  But, this still relies on the conditions, like awhile ago, when the weather forecast foretold of strong rains, this caused panic in the older generations of farmers, and so, they’d harvested before the grains are fully grown, and they couldn’t get high enough prices for them, and the rice that got made, were easily crushed, and it didn’t taste that great either, the farmers lost a lot.

My father told me, that the weather in June and July is unpredictable, so, we should know when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em, without any hesitation.  He said, “The grains from the first planting season would be mature from the center to the side of the field, the second season’s, from the side to the center, and, it would be no problem, for the grains to grow completely, so, so long as the husks are hard when you bite down, that means that in three to four days, they would be ready.”

When I stood in front of the first season’s planting, with the golden field before me, all the hardships we’d had for the past couple of months had been forgotten, and, all the hard work paid off, I was filled with a sense of achievement.

When I sat in the living room, discussing with how the harvest will e ready with my father, both our hearts were filled with joy, he rarely went out to the fields to check anymore, but, as he’d talked of the business of planting, you’d see his eyes light up, as if he was returned to his younger days, when he was still able-bodied and working in the fields.

I will carry forth my father’s spirit in planting, to keep watch over my family’s farm, this, is my responsibility as his son.  And, this, made me, really proud, to call myself a “farmer” too.

And so, the son is affected by the father’s attitude, and the father managed to instill the right kinds of values in the son, which the son will carry forth in other aspects of his own life, not just in planting the rice grains too, I’m sure.

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Filed under Education, Expectations, Lessons, Life, Observations, Parenting/Parenthood, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Values