I Say, Son, This Is Damn Fxxking Good!
我说 “ 孩儿们，他妈那个 B…这简直是棒极了！”
Abstract: Occasionally sharing our own life experiences with our children can be exhilarating and humorous. The form of delivery must have some impact to leave them some lasting impression. Telling a tall tale or hyping our own stories to inspire them will only make them bore. This is one of the many episodes with my three kids.
For the Mandarin version please scroll down.
Several years ago, we had a family dinner at one of the local Thai restaurant. There were the usual five in the family, my Excellency, Marilyna, my eldest daughter, Calvin and William. I flew back from Yangon, Myanmar a few days ago, while the two boys came back from a scouts camping trip. We were famishing, as the boys were on canned food of sardines, vegetable pickles and baked beans for the past five days while I too missed the local food for the past three months.
Marilyna was about to finish her high school and the two boys were quite closed behind. Marilyna wanted to become a lawyer, as she had shown to have the gift of the gap and at her age she could talk the hind legs off a donkey. Calvin wanted to be a pilot, and I said that was a boring job, piloting an aircraft in mid-air for hours, though one could travel widely. William was always very circumspect and kept his ambition in check.
It was time to think about their education prospect when the opportunity just presented itself during our dinner.
It was an excellent spread of Thai food, as my Excellency loved good food and when we wanted to dine out she was always the one to decide on when to eat, what to eat and where to eat.
The boys were tucking in, enjoying the Thai fare thoroughly and getting a second helping of rice. Marilyna was done with whatever she could fill in and was immersed in one of her favourite Chinese philosophy book.
Dad had gone ballistic
Just then Calvin remarked, “Mmm …this is not too bad.”
My reaction was swift. I immediately dropped my fork and spoon, not too lightly, and glared at Calvin. My face suddenly turned dark and menacing. The three kids sensed my belligerence and raised their head slightly to look at me with wide saucer eyes. Calvin’s demeanour went ashen, his face pale with fright. His Dad was always a mild mannered man and had never even given them a slap on their wrist when their school report books were red with failure marks nor raised his voice when they were caught playing truant.
What did he said that sent his old Dad ballistic?
My eyes continued to bore him with a piercing look. If looks could kill, Calvin would be dead meat by now.
I pointed my fore finger at the food. With stern emphasis I raised my voice slightly and said, “This is not too bad!”
I let my remark sank in for a moment, then continued with my tirade. “I say, son, this is damn fxxking good!”
By my sudden irrational outburst, the atmosphere became tense. The three kids immediately bowed their heads and pretend to look at their left over dinner plate. My Excellency was puzzled and dumb stuck that I flew into a rage and had used the F-bomb on such a trivial remark by Calvin.
Just as fast as my anger shot up many notches on the temperature barometer, it subsided and vaporised in a blink.
“I say, there is a big difference in the way an Englander talks and an American talks.” I said, by then my countenance had changed to a benign look and there was a smirk on my lips.
“Generally speaking, an English man always like to de-emphasize a situation, giving in to a modest attitude, whether its humility or otherwise. While an American is bashful, straight to the point and at times it can be interpreted as downright blunt.”
I could see the relief on the faces of the three kids. They grinned at me. This would be another session of sharing with them my past experiences, perhaps on the attitude of Englanders and Americans, as I was the product of both the English and the American system of education. I obtained my GIA Graduate Gemologist in New York City and an MBA in England.
King Rat – the Book and the Movie
“I read a book, entitled “King Rat” by James Clavell. The setting was in early 1945 in Changi Prison during the occupation of the Japanese in Singapore in World War II. The novel describes the struggle for survival of Americans, Australians, British, Dutch and New Zealand’s Prisoners-of-War (POW) in a Japanese POW camp.” I said, with an air of authority, like I was a history professor at an Ivy League university.
The three kids were all ears now. I continued my narrative with a summary of the relevant section on which I wanted them to listen.
The prison camp at Changi was a brutal environment for POWs. The Japanese gave them the barest minimum of food to survive and filthy huts to stay in. The chief concern of every of the POWs was to obtain enough food to stay alive day to day.
The two main characters, who were the POWs in Changi Prison, of the novel were:
- The King, an American corporal, was the major influence in the closed society of the POW camp. Through his charisma and intelligence, he rose to a position of power over his military and social superiors, manipulating those around him and controlling the prison’s black market. Trading with Korean guards, local Malay villagers and other prisoners for food, clothing and information, and what few luxuries were available, the King kept himself and his fellow American prisoners alive,
- Peter Marlowe was a British RAF Lieutenant who had been a POW since 1942. He came to the attention of the King when the King saw him conversing in Malay, and King attempted to involve him in black market deals.
I went into some of the details of the story plot and the harsh living conditions inside a POW camp where lack of proper food and medical care had sent many men close to losing their humanity and the will to live.
Then King saw that there were many rats scampering around. An idea struck him and he decided to breed rats to sell for food. He knew that most of the POWs were repulsed by the idea of eating rat’s meat. So King came out with a brilliant plan to sell the meat to officers without telling them the true source.
One day, the King invited Peter for a meal, barbequed meat without telling him that it was rat’s meat.
Peter ate the roasted meat with great gusto, and he, being a polished British RAF lieutenant with some refined mannerism befitting a British officer of the British Empire, exclaimed, “Mmm…This is not too bad.”
I then said aloud, “King was quite furious. He retorted and almost shouted at him. This is not too bad, this is …”. I let my sentence hung in mid-air and looked at Calvin with a straight face.
“I say, this is damn fxxking good!” Calvin interjected with his fore finger pointing at the almost cleaned up dinner plate.
I burst out laughing, joined by the other two kids. My Excellency watched the whole scenario with amusement, just stopped short of reprimanding me with my earlier F-bomb.
Bravo Calvin! Blessed these three smart kids, I said a prayer to myself.
Graduate Gemologist – Graduating at 18
Addressing the three kids, I said, “Now all of you have been to the United Kingdom and the good old US of A. What is your preference to further your education after your high school? Do your degree locally, or in England or in USA?”
In unison they replied, “Good Old US of A!” with a heavy emphasis on A. When did they learned to speak in synchronicity, I wondered?
I thought about their answer for a while. Then with the pomposity and fanfare like the great medieval King Arthur, I sat up straight and swept my right arm high with the fore finger pointing heavenwards and decreed:
“Then let it be said and let it be done!”
The three kids clapped their hands and almost gave me a standing ovation.
But what was left unsaid was, that would cost me an arm and a leg, maybe both arms and both legs as the cost of studying in USA for three was colossal and their age difference was small. So I had to bring in more bread, or perhaps I have to hock myself up to the eyeball with bank loans or to uncle every possession I ever had, just so as to finance their education.
So be it.
Finally, it had come to pass that the three kids did obtain their Graduate Gemologist at GIA in New York City at the age of early 18. They were the youngest in their class. I did mine when I was 42 years and I was the oldest in the class. The kids continued their education with a bachelor’s degree at the Big Apple, New York City. I did not have to lose an arm and a leg as the kids were street smart and they did well, earning their own keeps, by selling jade, diamonds, colored stones, jewelry and bric-a-brac items on ebay or working part time as diamond graders in a gemological laboratory.
Three cheers to the three kids!
我说 “ 孩儿们，他妈那个 B…这简直是棒极了！”
摘要：偶尔与孩子们分享我们自己的经历可能是会令人振奋和蛮风趣的。 结论上必须会产生一些影响，会给他们留下一些持久和深刻的印象。 如果只是讲述一个伟大的故事或者只是讲述我自己的故事来激励他们只会让他们厌烦。 这是我三个孩子的众多剧集之一。
几年前，我们在本地的一家泰国餐厅吃了一顿家庭晚餐。 在我们的家庭晚餐中通常都有五个人….前妻, 我 , 我的大女儿Marilyna，Calvin和William。几天前我刚从缅甸仰光飞回来，两个男孩也刚从童子军野营旅行回来。 我们都好相很饿似的，因为这些男孩在过去的五天里都只是吃罐头沙丁鱼，蔬菜泡菜和罐头烤豆，而过去三个月我也好想念本地的食物。
那时, Marilyna 即将完成她的高中，两个男孩也紧跟在她的后面。 Marilyna想成为一名律师，因为她在她那个年纪轻轻时已经证明了她的天分，口才挺棒的 ! 她可以甜甜的说服一个固执站立着的驴子坐下。 Calvin希望成为一名飞行员，我说这是一项无聊的工作，在半空中驾驶一架飞机数小时，尽管可以广泛旅行。 William总是非常谨慎，并不喜欢高谈他的野心。
就在这时, Calvin说…”嗯…..这个还不错. “
我的反应非常迅速, 我立刻放下叉子和勺子，不是轻轻的，然后瞪着凯文。我的脸突然变得黑黑的而具有威胁性. 这三个孩子感觉到了我的不欢，微微抬起头，眼睛睁的大大的看着我。 Calvin的风度变得苍白了，他的脸色惊恐万分似的苍白。 他的爸爸一路来都是一个温文尔雅的人，当他们拿回来的学校报告书上带着有红红失败标记的评注时，当他们被抓到逃学时，他甚至从未高声责骂或者给他们任何耳光。
我的眼睛继续以刺眼的眼神看着他。 看起来可以杀人似的，Calvin现在完蛋了 !
我让我的话沉了一会儿，然后继续我的长篇大论。 “我说，儿子，他妈那个 B….这简直是棒极了！”
我可以看到三个孩子的脸上已经浮出了缓和的表情。 他们对我笑了笑。 这将是与他们分享我过去经历的另一场会议，也许是关于英国人和美国人的态度，因为我是英国和美国教育系统的产物之一。 我是在美国纽约市获了GIA研究宝石学家，在英国获得了硕士学位。
1 ) 那个名称「国王」的美军伍長，是战俘营封闭社会的主要影响力。 通过他的魅力和智慧，他在美国军事和社会上层中都占据了一席之地，他操纵着他周围的人并控制着监狱的黑市场。 与韩国的警卫，当地马来村民和其他囚犯交换食物，衣物和信息，以及几乎没有什么奢侈品，美军伍長「国王」能够保持自己和他的美军同胞囚犯活着.
2 ) Peter Marlowe是英国皇家空军的中尉，自1942年以来一直是战俘。当美军伍長「国王」看到他在马来语中交谈时，他引起了「国王」的注意，「国王」试图让他参与黑市交易。
然后「国王」看到周围有许多老鼠蹦蹦跳跳。 突然, 他想出了一个主意，他决定养老鼠来卖去换取食物。 他知道大多数的战俘被都会对吃老鼠肉的想法做出反对。 所以他想出了一个出色的计划，将肉卖给官员而不告诉他们真正的来源。
然后我大声说，“ 「国王」非常生气。 他反驳道，几乎对他大声喊叫。 “嗯……这个还不错！这是……“。 我让我的句子挂在半空中，直面看着
宝石研究专家学位 – 18岁毕业
我对三个孩子说道，“现在你们每个人都有去过英国和棒极的美国。在高中毕业后，你们有什么继续升造的计划, 哪一个国家是你们的优先国？ 你们想要在本地，还是要在英国或美国攻读学位？“
最后，这三个孩子都在18岁初就在纽约市的GIA获得了研究宝石学家的学位。他们继续在这个人称「大苹果」的纽约市学院获得了他们的学士学位。 而我也不需要失去一只手臂和一条腿，因为孩子们够聪明能够适应环境，他们做得很好，通过在eBay销售玉石，钻石，彩色宝石，珠宝和小巧的物品, 和兼职运用他们的专业知识在宝石学实验室内做钻石分析员来赚取自己的钱。