One man’s meat is another man’s poison

Random thoughts of this week:

1. My good friend in Sydney is someone who … likes balls to spurt in her mouth …
Lycee flavoured balls.

2. Read a book. The chapter on “Build the brand of you” defines “your brand” as “Your brand is what people think about when they hear your name”. What is your brand? Based on what I hear from other people, mine is probably “piano player and teacher, auditor with E&Y, Bermuda, Singapore, funny accent, been all over the world (not true though), random, odd (in the Singapore context), palmistry, a blessing to someone (obviously this is from a very biased friend), best brother (obviously this is from my very biased sister), etc” The author introduced the concept of “your brand” to get people to start building their reputation in something. Very useful in anything that involves the external world i.e. people around you, employers, businesses. Say, if my ambition in life is to be the best music educator in the world, do my current brand help me towards that direction? Possibly a weak yes. Because when people think of “Joseph Hong”, they are more likely to associate my name with “accountant, auditor” rather than a top notch music educator. I think the concept of “your brand” is helpful as a measure of one’s progress towards their goals. Of course, if one was to live in a vacuum, the concept of “your brand” isn’t necessarily important.

3. I walked past the kitchen. Housemate was watching the telly. He said it’s a documentary on someone who established a tranny bar in Thailand. I replied wow, it’s incredulous that there are people who are into that. He said “whatever floats your boat, mate”. Again and again, I am struck by and am reminded of how unique the human species is.  For example:

  • cannibals. Human meat is yummy?  Perhaps, it is not so much of them preferring the taste of human meat. Rather, they perform it as a ritual or ? (just guessing and trying to rationalise).
  • people who drink urine (search for urine therapy) and eat poop (I had a vague recollection of brides in certain tribal villages being presented with gifts of poop on their big day. Unfortunately I could not locate a source for that. Although I did come across this webpage – “5 cultures with the most WTF wedding rituals”.)
  • the items above relate to food but it can extend to anything – lifestyle, rituals, mindsets, etc. The list is endless.

I have finally found the idiom that I was looking for – one man’s meat is another man’s poison. I think the tendency of quite a lot of people is to instantly reject something that is unconventional or unheard of to them. “Because I don’t do that, nobody that I know of does that, this must be wrong and sick”. That my friend, is what fits into my personal definition of being close-minded – “when presented with a new situation, fact, etc, the tendency to reject the new concept without considering the possibility of the validity of the new concept presented”. For instance, pet owners marrying their pets is ridiculous? Why is it ridiculous? Because … no one has done it before? Because … marriage that I know of is between a man and woman? Because … you can’t fuck your pet (not so sure about that since some people are into bestiality. And (drumroll), online tabloid Daily Mail has an article on “Bestiality brothels are ‘spreading through Germany’ warns campaigner as abusers turn to sex with animals as ‘lifestyle choice'”). And oh yes, how about the Wright brothers when they want to invent something that flies in the air? And Colombus who discovered that the world isn’t flat? And a person marrying someone from the netherworld? (I got this idea from watching this supernatural telly series during my teens when I was in Singapore).

I consider myself a pretty open-minded person. Even for me, I find myself being close-minded about a lot of stuff. For example, people have to work all the time to earn their keep. Receiving the dough is leeching on taxpayers. Welfare systems in the world have absolutely no merits to them. To be happy, there is only one way around it – get an university degree, buy a property and be financial secure. Going forward, I have decided to challenge my assumptions when presented with a new concept/idea. Hopefully. Old habits die hard.

To continue with my fleeting love for idioms:

  • one man’s meat is another man’s poison
  • whatever floats your boat
  • different strokes for different folks

Sure, you can have your opinions on concepts that are new (and revolting) to you. But you can be open-minded and yet have an opinion on it. Be open-minded, my readers.

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