A Lit Cigarette

I’m not a fan of cigarette. Although I don’t have any desire to ever be one of those cool people, who inhale and exhale puffs of smoke in the street; however, I do respect their rights to have this type of enjoyment.

What gets to me often is neither the act of smoking, nor the cigarette; but rather the smokers, who drag along their lit cigarette in between two fingers along the street with a crowd of non-smokers behind them, breathing in the toxic second-hand smoke.

To me, this is a prime example of being inconsiderate.

Although everyone has the rights to use public space for their own enjoyment; however, a little more consideration and common courtesy would not hurt either. Why be the one to pollute and cause deterioration of the air quality of an entire street with a lit cigarette?

Sexual Consent

Canadian national debate on the issues of sexual assault, sexual violence, and sexual consent is very much in the front and centre these days. Fallout from the disgraced Canadian radio personality Jian Ghomeshi’s sex scandal has galvanized the entire country.

As pointed out just yesterday on a Canadian talk show, a student from Harvard University has recently stated that sexual consent needs to be a continuous dialogue from the start to the midway and to the end of any sexual activity; rather than just be like a contract, which comes with the indisputable obligations to fulfill.

I totally agree with this student’s statement. Communication is key in any sexual activity that we are personally involved in. That being said, though having communicated clearly different messages is important; however, our collective social culture concerning the realm of dating and relationship still needs to be examined further.

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In the screenshot above, we can clearly see a tweet, which reads, “Maybe it’s the way some men were raised, to believe that “no” means maybe or playing hard to get.”

In my opinion, it is unfair to put blame solely on some of these men, who hold this kind of thinking. Some women also have a part to play in perpetuating game playing tactic in relationships.

In dating show, we often hear the experts offer their “wisdom” to single women, such as “Don’t give anything away so easily.” “Playing hard to get. Don’t go after a man. Let the man chase you, because it is in his nature to hunt an object.” Of course not every single woman believes in this type of “wisdom”, but the more we are all exposed to this type of social and collective brainwashing, the less conscious we are when it comes to our absorption of it.

To raise our awareness and understanding of the issue of sexual consent and other related matters, putting all the responsibilities on one gender to make a positive change is not enough. Both genders need to put in the work to change the culture at large, collectively.

Early November Morning

As I lie here in bed, enjoying the peace and quiet of the early November morning, the nothingness in the air intrigues me.

No more loud noises of the lawn mowers, raging back and forth incessantly outside of my apartment windows. The early November morning does bring with it not only fresher morning breeze, but also more lasting moments of tranquility that I have learned to truly appreciate.

To fit in with the crowd, I did try to become loud and showy, purposely, to attract public gaze in busy streets. In retrospect, I can’t help but ask myself, “Why did you want to be like that?”

Loudness doesn’t define me. But tranquility does.

Not Again

There are many instances in our lives that we are not particularly proud of. The jealousy that we have towards a particular friend, the animosity that we feel toward a colleague, who has done us wrong, and the egotistic bravado that we have displayed rudely in public, due to our own insecurities.

Although all these instances can serve as a catalyst for us to learn and grow; however, having learned the various lessons embedded in them doesn’t make us 100% immune to ever having all those self-destructive emotions again.

In my daily practice, I’ve discovered that one of the methods to increase our self-defense, in terms of the prevention of a possible takeover by self-destructive emotions is through being self-aware. By having the awareness or the memory of just how awful it felt, the last time around, to have been in a jealous, hostile, or insecure situation, most of us would surely refrain from engaging in a similar negative mindset again.

No one wants to feel discomfort and less than. In remembering how useless and self-deprecating it was to harbor those unhealthy emotions, I am sure that you will join me in saying that “ I don’t want to feel like that ever again!”