CPF and the idea of suddenly coming to $

May 31, 2014

Some people. Not all. But there’s certainly no denying ‘some’ people should never be trusted to manage large sums of money. As they lack wisdom and can easily be swayed by the many temptations that wealth brings with it. Instead of them managing money. Money is likely to go right up to their head faster than alcohol and usually it exerts such a strong influence over them, it turns their lives upside down and when they’re in this delusional gyre – they will just blow their largesse on women, horses and meaningless distractions…till they end up with nothing.

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‘The story of the trials and tribulations of Odysseus is a theme that has always resonated with me – I do identify with the epic travails of the main protagonist…or maybe it’s just my conceited way of amplifying the challenges I regularly have to face as a farmer.

But I do make it a point to keep a copy by my camp bed table whenever I am out in the field….as very often whenever things don’t go my way or I encounter roadblocks…I find that it’s a source of comfort as it can always be relied on to put many of my problems in the right scale and context.

Many people would probably say the classics is boring and the stuff of toffee nosed privileged boarding school upbringing. I disagree, as when one strips the Iliad right down to it’s chassis…it’s really just another pulp fiction action cum adventure comic book – the prototypal Starwars minus the CGI. Nonetheless, the sort where the pace and the action just never let up’s and keeps the reader riveted.

There are a few notable action scenes in the Iliad. The face off with the mythical club weilding Cyclops. Thereafter the deadly brush with a troupe of Sirens which the main protagonist just manages to escape from…and how can one forget the close shave of Scylla and Charybdis. But the scene that sent shivers down my spine isn’t any of this – not even the action finale where where Odysseus returns to find his house overrun by parvenu suitors who had taken up camp in his household to bully his wife Penelope into marriage to which he responds no less by wasting all of them Al Pacino ‘scarface’ style.

The scene that terrifies me most is when Odysseus finds himself trapped on an placid paradise island by the nymph Calypso. Calypso’s secret weapon comes in the form of seduction, not brute force. The goddess sex appeal kept Odysseus and his men literally in a narcotic stupor where they lived a life of dissipation as their resolve to continue their journey home slowly corroded away.

To me this is Homer’s way of saying beware of good thing…as too much of it can really be as good as poison….very recently I won an air conditioner in a beer raffle in the village kopitiam. I took a long look at this contraption of La Dolce Vita and all I could see was Calypso….in one of her many forms…in this case she lurked somewhere in a Japanese inverter controlled one and half horse power air conditioner….I remember saying to myself…how nice it is to be able to sleep without pesky mosquitoes and creepy crawlies…but as soon as that thought took hold the terrifying image of a spend Odysseus and his listless men lying around shook me out of my reveries. So I donated it to the nearby Kun Yin temple for one of their new libraries.

As since I have to regularly sleep in the field. How can I continue to do so when my body and mind is so accustomed to a restful sleep only in the artificially created ambient of twenty four degrees Celsius! Or maybe I just don’t trust myself enough. Yes, perhaps I don’t trust myself….that may well be something that I rather choose to hide from the world….but my gut feel tells me…sometimes it’s best to mistrust oneself slightly and if possible to even say to oneself from time to time…. maybe this ‘good’ thing may not be so good for me after all. To me there is no shame in a man admitting to himself that he may have a weakness in character and preferring not to open Pandora’s box….it is wisdom….the wisdom the Iliad imparts to the perceptive reader. ‘

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