Archives for the month of: August, 2011

We’ve always been conditioned that “growing up” constituted finding a partner and getting married.  We buy into the whole fairy tale or myth of social conditioning that we might sometimes let the pertinent details fall the on the wayside–we get swept up with the whole merry-go-round we forget to consider whether we are doing everything for the right reasons.

Why are we doing the things we are doing? When we decide to commit, is it to prove something to ourselves or to other people? Is it because we need to find solace or escape from something? Is it because we think that it is the solution to all our problems? Or, is it because we truly think that it is the right thing to do, from the bottom of our hearts.

As much as marriage is enveloped in romance and roses, before we take the first crucial step towards “permanent commitment” as we know it, we must get right to heart of the matter–even if it means being pragmatic because “an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.”

(c) Niconica 2011*

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So it’s that feeling once again, the feeling of having butterflies in one’s stomach at the most unexpected of instances.  It could either be excitement or anxiety–I’m not really sure.  Is it supposed to be a sign of trouble when it’s for one’s ex?  Can it be possible that there is too much water under the bridge for things to ever be sorted out properly?

Is it a case of “It’s a break-up because it’s broken” or of “Love is better the second time around” ? It’s hard to say which cliché applies.  In most cases though, I would suspect this to be a sign of trouble because there is such a thing as “irreconcilable differences” as history does tend to repeat itself, and we would be remiss to ignore this piece of wisdom.

Sometimes, it’s better to leave well enough alone.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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What do we do when we fall for someone who belongs to another? In this instance, I am specifically referring to someone who is not married, but in a committed relationship. There seems to be a clear taboo against going for a married person but it seems to be that it could be that prior to saying the big “I do” the saying that “it’s all fair in love and war” might apply more so than after a or the person is married.

After all, there is a widely held belief that marriage is supposed to be permanent–though we know that this is not always the case, we’d like to think so. So going forward with this belief, it is said that it’s better to change one’s mind about one’s partner before rather than after someone is permanently yoked–however there’s something about this which can be distasteful–since acquiring someone who belongs to someone else seems in a sense like a violation.

It would be better to find and fall for someone who was available in the first place and not invite the unique complications which falling for an unavailable person and not feel guilty for taking something which does not rightfully belong to us. Of course, if this situation happens to someone else, a friend for instance, the answer is straightforward: Don’t go there.

However, when we find ourselves in this situation, it’s another matter entirely. It becomes an inner battle where we end up asking ourselves the tough questions which were so easy to answer when it did not apply to us. It’s a matter of wrestling with our inner demon and wondering whether we should give in and pursue what might construe as our heart’s desire.

I had asked myself this question when I found myself in the situation where I was developing feelings for someone who was on a “cool off” from a committed relationship. (And for that matter, what is a cool off really? Can someone define that? A break-up by any other name…) After some serious thinking about the nature of cool-offs and break-ups with the result that they are almost one and the same thing, albeit one is sugar-coated, I felt that it might not be “so wrong” to explore possibilities with this person.

Enjoying the getting to know stage was heady, however, questions still had to be asked since it could not be denied that a cool off might mean that there was still the other person in the picture. However, it was hard to not notice the speed bumps along the way and some resistance to the process of getting to know each other better, and with much resistance, I was compelled to ask the hard questions as to whether the said person was indeed truly available.

As the flirting was fun and made me feel special, I was reluctant for this experience to potentially end through ascertaining whether the coast was clear and whether the other person was out of the picture, but I thought that it might be better to find out earlier before more time is expended. I eventually found out that they were “back together” and “better than ever.” Alarm bells started ringing in my head, and as much as there was much encouragement on the other person’s part to keep up the playful banter, I had to put my foot down and beg off.

Now, I did not know whether I owe this to the sprouting of newfound morals or to a sense of self-preservation, but it did not seem right to be in an ambiguous situation when the person is unavailable. In a sense it felt like folding too early but at the same time it also felt right because I did not want to be the person who wonders what it would be like to gain someone fairly and squarely. Of course, life isn’t as clear cut as that and I could easily have gone the other way–which is why it boggles me that I’ve chosen this path.

Realistically speaking, my chances weren’t so bad but I really chafed at the idea of having to “win” someone’s love in this manner when there is a rival whose had a huge head start. I wondered whether it was really worth it to go about it in this manner? And I think when it got right to the heart of it, I doubted how much I really want this person in the first place.

Did I want this person enough to go for it? I could not answer the question. If he is happy with his current partner, who am I to mess with something good, especially since I cannot guarantee that I would be able to provide the same level of affection.  If he isn’t [happy with his current partner], the same question still stands as to whether I would be able to meet my own expectations in being a “good partner” (whatever that means).

All this logic is well and good until I see them together and the melee of emotions come rushing in, and once again, I find myself wondering: What do I do? Was it right to have taken myself out of “the game” early? And I wish that I had the “right” answer for this but I don’t. It’s really never that easy when we deal with “messy” emotions, and I suspect that we won’t ever really know what the right thing is and we’ll just have to wing it–as we do much of life.  Shall we just roll the dice?

(c) Niconica 2011*

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If only there were such a sign which would warn us that what lies ahead in the process of getting to know certain people involves increasingly convoluted mind games in one form or another.  It would start relatively simple with the excitement of making a new acquaintance which signified uncharted territories and the exciting getting-to-know phase, and gradually it would get to the point where one would wonder whether one was doing something wrong or whether the other party was passive aggressive… sooner or later (and this is usually later) it becomes painfully clear that mind games are being employed by the other and as much as one would want to keep up, the situation reaches a tipping point where there is no going back–when it cannot be denied that mind games are indeed being played.

Why would people want to play mind games in the first place when employing such tactics entails a very cruel mind?  People who play mind games think that they are getting ahead of the other or securing a certain perceived advantage, but what they don’t understand is the mere fact that they had to resort to such methods shows that they are lacking in the ability to find decent means of achieving their end–and what’s more, it betrays the fact that their underhandedness stems deeper than they would care to admit.

Finding the right people to care about and be friends with, or even to love, is an essential life skill. Once the mind games start, the emotional land mines signify a danger to one’s own well-being and mental health and we must learn to protect ourselves and evacuate at the first sign of danger–or stick around and suffer the consequences, because no worthwhile good results come from playing this game.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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WhatsApp Messenger Icon

WhatsApp-ing–a combination of IM-ing and SMS-ing–is a pretty good application.

It makes life that much more convenient.

For the level of connectedness it provides citizens of the global village who are glued to their phones, it is worth mentioning.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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There comes a point in any relationship when that line is crossed, and there’s no going back. Negotiating relationships is more complicated these days since there is the appearance that there is no more ‘hard and fast rules’ people seem to think there is a license to act however they please with impunity.  With more people possessing weaker or damaged moral compasses, it’s no wonder that relationships are a minefield.

With what is becoming a more and more popular trend for relationships to be more on the “It’s complicated” side rather than the cut and dried relationships, there is more room for error and miscommunication.  With the so-called evolution of human beings, the patterns and trends for relationships seem to be splitting into a myriad number of manifestations–and not always for the better.

Surviving the gray area takes a lot more emotional acumen than most and there comes a point during the dance that something is said or done, and there is no turning back, and as the saying goes, “It’s all downhill from here.” No matter how we want to cling to the way things are or the way we want to maintain our impression or feelings towards our ‘partner’ it’s never the same–it’s the proverbial crack in the glass, sooner or later we are left with shards–and possibly bleeding.

As much as a cavalier attitude towards relationships is admired or propagated by mass media in more ways than one, we must be vigilant and responsible with our thoughts, words, and actions.  Before jumping to conclusions which may damage the delicate balance of the relationship or pseudo-relationship, we must always remind ourselves that there is a more diplomatic way to communicate and phrase things–a way to be able to communicate and resolve differences without ruining everything.

Once that point is crossed, barring the sudden invention, appearance, and/or access to a time machine, there’s no taking it back.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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While it’s easy for people to grasp the idea that actions can do damage. It is often overlooked that words carry weight and incur consequences.  And this so-called “harmless flirting” falls into the same category since words and/or actions are employed in doing so.

If the title does not suffice to make the point, I’ll say it again: There is no such thing as harmless flirting.  When one gets rejected, caught out, or stuck in a tight spot in one way or another, it’s easy to chalk things off as “harmless” but know that saying it does not cause harm, does not mean that it doesn’t, especially when there are feelings involved.

Toying with people’s emotions in a flippant manner does not only show a blatant disregard for others but also manifests poor emotional discipline.This manner of operation leaves a trail of broken hearts on all fronts and should not be condoned.  Of course, it is easier said than done when we are caught in the pangs of infatuation.

The phrase “harmless flirting” is also often employed by people who are in committed relationships when they want to excuse their inexcusable behavior when they indulge in dalliances on the side.  It’s only “harmless” until someone gets hurt–and sooner or later, someone always does.

The next time someone brings this up as a “reason” for their selfish and self-indulgent behavior as an excuse to feed their egos and consciously or unconsciously break hearts… be very aware of the kind of person one is dealing with… It’s definitely not someone worth wasting more precious time and energy on.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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Don’t get me wrong, as a general rule, I enjoy chick flicks, but I thought that Something Borrowed would be another one of those shallow but enjoyable chick flicks with the added dose of dealing with a rather sensitive topic: falling for one’s best friend’s fiancee. Usually these sort of topics run the risk of being handled poorly and resulting in something that was not only uncomfortable but tasteless.  However, Something Borrowed is not only charming, it is unpredictable as well as poignant.

Considering how the plot unfolded, the title was wonderfully apt too.  Yes, it was about betrayal in a sense, if we were to look at the situation in a black and white manner and were prone to generalizing (which can be dangerous during the best of times); however, life is not two dimensional and is infinitely more complex than how we might imagine it to be and Something Borrowed touches wonderfully on the nuances of the situation.

As much as there’s something horrifying about the idea of weddings being cancelled, we might come to the realization that this side of the wedding date is the better time for being honest with ourselves than on the other side of it.  As insensitive as it might sound, the truth is that as difficult as the situation may be, these things happen, and people are more “up for grabs” before they say “I do” than they would be after the fact.  And it is on this side of the wedding that serious questions have to be asked and answered, before it’s too late.

It’s in our thirties when we realize that as much as we wanted to think that life was simple and that we would never find ourselves in what we might consider as tricky situations, we know better that life usually has quite a few surprises in store and a few tricks up its sleeve.  It’s wonderful to watch a movie which contains the ample balance of drama and comedy–not too heavy, and not too light.

Aside from the kudos to the usual suspects of what makes Something Borrowed a lovely movie, the director Luke Greenfield, and the stars Ginnifer Goodwin, Kate HudsonColin Egglesfield, and John Krasinski. I’d like to give kudos so the writer of the novel, Emily Griffin, and the writer of the screenplay, Jennie Snyder for a wonderful job.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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The Good Wife is surprisingly a good show, and going with the title alone, I mistakenly thought that it was going to be some sort of family drama–and I’m not a big fan of such shows.   When I heard that it was “a lawyer show” my ears perked up.

I enjoyed L.A. Law and The Practice way back when and I miss them.  It has been quite a while since there have been good “lawyer shows” and I am pleased that I have come across The Good Wife, it’s got just the right mix of law, drama, and mind games.

There is a certain joy in  following personal lives of the main characters as they navigate and meet the challenges of each case as they come up, and as the story unravels.

(c) Niconica 2011*

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"Murder Most Foul..." --Shakespeare "Hamlet"

The rampant and popular shows on the television involving the crime genre reflects our preoccupation with the morbid and the macabre–psychologically and not in the more overt sense, which would tiptoe towards the horror genre.

There is something intriguing and captivating about the idea of unimaginable murder and the implied psychological state of the people who commit them.

Humans are explorers by nature and the murder/crime mystery genre offers an avenue to explore one of the last frontiers–the darkness of the human mind.  This genre offers a vicarious indulgence in the taboo of killing and the circumstances which surround it.

Murder mysteries touch upon the primal urge towards the other end of the spectrum: death; and the ever-present human proclivity for curiosity and the draw towards the unknown.  It is through the crime genre that we witness and become part of something which both fascinates and horrifies us…

(c) Niconica 2011*

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