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Bedoor Bluemoon

Everyday writing to expose the soul

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Decision Day

Pursue

A Re-post
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He stood by his desk thinking of the decision he just made and finally followed through after being so reluctant for the past 15 years.  It took him 15 years to take this step and when he finally did, it didn’t feel the way it should.  He wasn’t happy, he was ecstatic.

He looked at the picture of his wife and two boys and wondered how they would take the news.  He didn’t know that today was the day.  He didn’t know that today he would set himself free to pursue his dreams.  He didn’t know that on his way to the water cooler he would deviate and pass by his boss’s office to inform him.

He stood by the glass door of the office knowing exactly what he wanted.  Everything was clear to him.  Everything he did up to this point in his life was clear in his head and he saw exactly where he needs to be next.  He wasn’t emotional and he didn’t have a plan.  Nothing specific happened to trigger the decision, it was just time.

Time.  Oh how much time he wasted doing something he didn’t enjoy.

He had enough.  He had enough with putting on his suit every morning and driving the same route.  He had enough of thinking “what if” and “when will I?’  It was enough procrastination.  He procrastinated his life for the past 15 years and it was time for it to end.

He always knew what he wanted to be and do at an early age.  His passion for the kitchen led him to come back from work everyday and cook, regardless of the workload he carried.  He only felt alive with the chef’s knife in his hand, cutting vegetables and stirring pots on the stove.  He had a calling yet ignored it for so long thinking that his pay was more important than his dream.  He planned to start a small restaurant when he retires but couldn’t go on one more day.  This was it.  This was the day he chose to change his life.  This was decision day.

He knocked on the door and waited for the answer.  He walked in and very calmly explained his decision.  The boss nodded, stood up, and gave him a hug.  The boss knew him too well.  He saw him in the company’s last barbecue dinner and how his eyes lit when he was grilling the burgers, how laid back and comfortable he looked in the apron. He knew he would be losing one of his best employees soon and he was right.

He walked back to his desk and saw he didn’t have many “personal belongings” to pack.  He took the photo frame, his keys, and mobile phone and started walking.  He was never one of the team, he was always a guest that never clicked in.  One step, two steps, three steps, he smiled.  Four steps, five steps, six steps, he turned and looked at the office, everyone was busy working on their computers or talking on their phones. He grinned. Seven steps, he started removing his tie thinking how cliche.  Eight steps, nine steps, 10 steps, he throws the tie in the bin and reaches the elevator.  He presses the down button and waits.

The elevator arrives, he walks in and turns.  This would be the last time he walks into a corporate building and he gladly presses “G”.  He knew that this was the best decision he ever made.

Choosing a Linkedin Photo

linkedin

Linkedin is a a business oriented social networking service.  People use it to display their CVs and have recruiters (or headhunters) approach them for employment opportunities or even to network with people in similar fields.  Companies also can create their page and share news, articles, and any other important issues.  Some people use it to share their experiences and post articles they wrote in hope someone might listen to them.  Like any other social networking service, Linkedin gives the opportunity to post a photo of yourself.

Being a member of the Linkedin community for a few years, I have come across many photos of people I know (and people I don’t know) that make me wonder what they were thinking when they chose to upload their photo.  Well, I then decided to scroll down the list of People You May Know and be struck with disbelief.  Since this is a professional social networking site, I thought that people would care about their image; I mean, their profiles are open for recruiters and maybe their future bosses.

I came up with the following tips:

1- Selfies using any Snapchat filters are not acceptable.  Do not, under any circumstances, believe that anyone would recruit you if you have dog ears or a flower halo above your head. Even if you think you look cute, this is not the right picture.  I could even say that selfies are not acceptable because the angle is all wrong and shows that you did not take the time nor effort to have a professional picture taken.

2- A cartoon drawing of yourself is not OK unless you are the artist and are trying to show your talent.

3- A picture of yourself sitting behind a huge desk just makes you seem desperate.  Don’t top it off acting like you’re busy writing something either.  It’s so obvious.

4- A picture of you caught in mid-laugh.  This is not Facebook and it may be one of your favorite but keep it for your social group only.

5- Do not post a picture of yourself behind a billiard table.  Do not post a picture of yourself with any weird background such as the kitchen (unless you’re a chef), or in a party, or on vacation with the beach behind you.  You want to seem like you are at work, wearing work clothes, and getting work done.  If your work is associated with healthy living and yoga, for example, a picture with some tress in the background may be alright.  But if you have nothing to do with nature, stay away from it.

6-  Look approachable.  Post a picture that makes you look approachable.  A nice smile goes a long way.  You don’t want your picture to resemble a mug shot nor an adult dating service profile pic.

7- Do not post a picture with you wearing a cowboy hat (or any kind of hat).  Do not post a picture with sunglasses, people want to see your face.

8- I’m not 100% sure of this point as it may go either way.  I have seem a few pictures with the person holding a camera and another listening in his headset.  I think it’s a smart thing to be done, that is, showing people what you do; but some recruiters might not appreciate the obviousness.  This should be taken carefully, I wouldn’t feel so keen about a  bank teller holding money in his hands.

9- Make sure the picture is clear and your face shows: stay away from shadows.  Don’t use a picture with you covering your face with your arm, nor a picture with you looking away.

10- Do not use your children’s pictures.  Again, this is a professional networking site, people will want to see what you are doing not how old your child is.  You are NOT trying to get your children employed so keep them out.

11- If you choose to post a picture with something that identifies your current job, go ahead but know that you are not your job.  You have a set of knowledge, skills, and abilities that are deeper than any job can provide.  Plus, when or if you leave your job, you don’t want to forget to change your picture or you’ll end up looking desperate.  Don’t wear your uniform in your picture either (for those who have uniforms in their jobs).

12- Do not post yourself bowling, ice skating, playing soccer, playing with your pet tiger, eating out with your friends, or doing what you do in your spare time.  You are supposed to portray how you are at work, not out of work.  People want to employ you, not date you.

13-  Keep your image right side up.  Yes, some people have their pictures sideways.  Would you ever submit your CV with your picture printed sideways?

14- Don’t just crop your face from a group picture and settle for that.  This just shows that you’re lazy.  Also, don’t post yourself with someone else, it confuses people as to which one you are.

15- Make sure your image isn’t so much of a close up nor too far to be unidentifiable.  You want people to recognize you, half a face is not identifiable.

16- Do not post a picture of a logo unless you are a company.  Do not post a picture of your shoes, bag, sunglasses, or cup of coffee.  Again, this is not Snapchat.

These are just a few pointers I came up with after paying attention to the different Linkedin profile pictures, you can also go through your list of friends and can easily identify the best pictures that portray strength, confidence, and reliability.  Stay away from photoshopped images that look nothing like you and try to present yourself professionally.

Remember, you don’t want to resemble any funny high school yearbook pictures, you should know better now than what you knew at 18.

My profile pic?  I still didn’t find one that I’m happy with so wish me luck.

Roald Dahl: Simple or Complex?

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After watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory over 70 times in the past 3 months and memorizing it by heart, I have come to question reality as I saw it.  Things are no longer as simple as they once were and, interestingly enough, I have come to believe that chocolate is made by oompa loompas.

Dahl’s amazing creativity is evident in his children books (of which I read just a few) and come to question whether the books were written as a good fiction or do they carry in their pages something of a deeper nature?  Although Dhal isn’t a psychologist, I must respect the fact that his experience does give him validity to be an observer and storyteller.  How so?  Firstly, Dahl portrays five children and their respective parents in the book.  I found out that Dahl had up to 9 different children who were to enter the chocolate factory with Charlie.  By choosing to stick with five, Dahl decided to shine light on the gluttonous Augustus Gloop, the competitive Violet, the spoiled Veruca, and the television addict Mike Teavee.  It could be safe to say that Dahl chose these five characters and personalities because he saw them as the most destructive to children.  It could also be safe to say that Dahl may have encountered people in his childhood (or later life) and got so shocked by their personalities that he believed they should be punished.

One of the issues that Dahl was criticized over was the fact the the antagonists are the “bad” children.  Although the children were portrayed as stereotypes of how-kids-should-not-act, their parents were also portrayed as reasons behind their characters.  So whose fault is it that Augustus keeps getting chocolate whenever he feels like it?  Is Dhal trying to enforce parents into taking responsibility over their children’s negative personality traits or is he placing the blame on Willy Wonka.  Also, who gave Willy Wonka the right to discipline these children (and their parents) by using different sadistic punishments such as being blown up into a blueberry and getting the juice squeezed out or by being pulled in the toffee maker after being shrunk in size?  Yes, the children should have learned their lessons but does Dahl really tell readers (and viewers) how to best act?

Is Roald Dahl Charlie or Willie Wonka?

The five golden tickets that were sent out to people around the world were sent to find an heir for Willy Wonka’s factory.  In the story, the children didn’t know what the prize was but were happy just to enter the factory.  What about you?  Where would your golden ticket take you and what would be the grand prize?  Many people work hard to go on vacations but how can that vacation be turned into a prize (and thus a lifestyle?)  The golden ticket takes you to two places: one is temporary and is a test and the other is the grand prize.  We should strive to make sure that we do not get sidetracked by the “chocolate” along the way and concentrate on getting the real deal.

But did Charlie even get sidetracked or did he live his experience vicariously through the other four and was just lucky enough to be the last man standing?  So is that the way Dahl thinks we should win life?

Is Willy Wonka’s factory a representation of life?

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Johnny Depp’s sarcastic comments gives it a little more humor for adults while children watch the plot unknowingly, nodding at Johnny Depp explaining that “everything in this room is eatable, even I’m eatable! But that is called “cannibalism,” my dear children, and is in fact frowned upon in most societies.”  Is this a Dahl  comment or Tim Burton’s twist on things?  So, just as the movie has a different perceptive level suitable for adults, Dahl may have entrusted his book to hold some philosophy over children personalities, dealing with the antagonist within us, and the best way to fix bad children is through punishment.

What I prefer to question is where my golden ticket would take me and would I be the end winner of the grand prize.

Simple?  No, Roald Dhal was more complex than a few children’s books and would surely get his philosophies and life wisdom and ideas into children’s books.

 

قهوتي المُرّة

نحتسي القهوة ونحن نعلم بأن مرارة الأيام

ليست بلذة مرارة القهوة

فنعيش معها واقعنا المرير

نتذكر الآهات ودروس الحياة الصعبة

نتذكر مَن كانوا معنا يوماً

وابتعدوا بلا سبب

ونتذكر من كانوا معنا يوماً

وابتعدوا بعدألف سبب

وألف غصّة

وألف دمعة

ونحتسي القهوة المُرّة

نتذكر مرارة الفراق

ونغوص في احلامنا المتكسّرة

فنكاد نراها أمامنا خلال البُن الداكن

الا انها تتضح

سراب

فنأخذ رشفة أخرى نتعذب بالمرارة

قهوتنا: واقعنا المرير

وذكرياتنا المؤلمة

واحلامنا المتكسّرة

فربما (دلق) القهوة

يُبعد الشر فلا نتذكر

شر ذكرياتنا وافكارنا

وخيالنا الجامح

(وألف (لَو

خذيني يا قهوتي الى الماضي

واتركيني أسبح في جراحي

 وأذوب

لأشرب بعد مُر قهوتي

كوباً من الماء

يصفّي ذهني

ويعود بي الى اليوم

Fear, Terror, and Disbelief

Residents-in-Cebu-City

It was like any other day for Kevin as he sat at his desk entering the sales numbers with his mind wandering off to the weekend. He would sleep in for a couple of hours before taking the girls out to their friend’s birthday party.  He wanted to spend time with them since he gets home very late during the week and they’re already in bed, sleeping peacefully.  He knew that someday he would regret not being there.  He grew up in a home where his father was also never available, just trying to make a good life for the family.  Now he was doing the same and feels guilty because he knows the consequences.  He knows that they will forever wonder whether or not he loved them and will always come to the conclusion that their father loved his work more.  It was so sad to think of but he couldn’t do anything about it.  The company pays him well and without a college degree, he was thankful to have found a job like this.

What Kevin tries to do to compensate is spend as much time as he can with the girls during the weekends.  It was their time and he was always looking forward to hear about how their week was and what drastic and amazing things happened at school.  He needed to ask about the little boy who had chicken pox marks and whether or not the kids stopped calling him Leopard.  It wasn’t such a bad nickname, he thought to himself, it would actually be intriguing once he reaches high school.

Kevin was lost in thought when it happened.  It was surreal and totally unexpected.  He felt the table shake from under him for a split second.  That’s strange, he thought to himself.  He looked at his mug next to the keyboard and his mind went blank when he saw it shake.  It happened so quickly, he didn’t have the chance to digest the fact that an earthquake just hit the city.  He didn’t know what to think or feel when he saw the side of the building collapse.  It was just seconds ago when his colleague was sitting at his desk working and now the colleague, desk, and half the building was lost to nothingness.  He felt the sunlight shine through and take place of what was just florescent lights.

He froze.

Then everyone screamed.

It was mayhem.  Everyone was running around screaming like headless chickens, with their minds totally dysfunctional.  He stood in awe, frozen and blank.  Come on, Kevin, MOVE!  His friend said, pushing him towards the door.  He starting running.  Where should I go?  What just happened?  He wondered.  Stairs.  I must get to the stairs.  Yes, that’s where everyone seems to be going.

He followed the group to the stairs and started walking down.  They reached the third floor and the person in front halted suddenly.  There were no stairs.  Wreckage covered the steps and everyone was panicking.

“What shall we do?!”  Someone screamed.

We have to get out before the building collapses!  Half of it is already gone, I don’t think it can stay up with half of it gone.

Dan?  Have you seen Dan?  Dan! DAN!

Kevin was concentrating on finding a way around the rubble.  Help me up, try to push me up.  We don’t have to go around it, we can go over.

They started pushing each other over the wreckage.  Shoes were discarded, clothes were covered in dust, faces were distressed and alarmed, and Kevin had one thought on his mind: his family.

The people in the building barely made it out in time before they felt another earthquake.  The aftershock, he thought, I remember teaching Laura about it last year.

He started running towards the havoc that was once a very normal and fairly quiet street.  He looked up at the building, it was cracked open like an egg with one half on the ground.  He heard screams coming from under the rubble and he saw his coworker run towards the screams. Dan!  He heard her scream.  Dan! She was covered in grey dust but continued to look for Dan.

I must look for my family, Kevin thought.

He looked for his car keys and realized that he left them in the office.  He looked at the roads  and decided he couldn’t have used the car anyway.  Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.  The earthquake was over but the it was still the beginning for him.

He ran towards the school.  He didn’t want to think of the possibility that something happened to his wife.  He wanted to believe that she was fine and she was also thinking of their daughters.  She would be running to the school too.  He thought to himself.  Mindy’s fine, she’s a strong woman.  I’ll meet her there. 

The school was worse than his office building.  He heard the children cries from a distance and the teachers trying to calm them down with worried voices.  Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.  The paramedics were rushing in and trying to get everyone seated and teachers were counting and recounting the students.  Ms. Addison from the administration was running as fast as her little feet would take her with papers.  She went from one teacher to the next handing them out: they were the attendance sheet.  Great, Kevin thought, I can find my girls.

Ms. Addison, he said, jogging by her side.  Would you happen to know which class my girls are in?  Where can I find them? She apologized for not being to help and muttered something that sounded like a little prayer under her breath.  He looked at the children’s faces just in case he sees someone he recognizes.  Then he saw them.  Two little girls huddled under a tree with their faces buried in a hug.  He knew it was them and ran.  Laura!! Stephanie!  He screamed but they didn’t hear him.  He screamed again and they lifted their heads.  He saw tears running down both of their identical faces and felt so helpless yet relieved.

He hugged them both tightly to stop the trembling.  It’s OK, you’re alright.  We’re all alright.

It took them a few minutes to calm down.  They didn’t share what they saw nor did they talk about what they felt. Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.  They just held onto one another while being carried by their dad.  Then Laura said, “is mommy OK?” ” I don’t know, I’m sure she is” Kevin answered and held onto hope.

They went over to the paramedics.  Sir, let me check the little girls, please.  The medic checked reflexes and asked them a few questions.  “All clear, sir

Could we have someone drop us home?”

“Sorry, sir, we are working as fast as we can but we can’t move any of our units, there are five kids missing.”

Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.

Laura and Stephanie started crying.  It took Kevin a while to figure out that the missing children were in their class.  Leopard was one of them.  Ms. Addison came back and assigned Kevin a few children to take care of and he gladly obliged.  He never knew she would be strong in difficult situations, never knew that a person so small in size can sum up enough courage to keep people calm.  He looked into her eyes and expected to see a hero.  Fear, terror, and disbelief.

Kevin tried calling his wife but the network wasn’t working.  He thought it would probably take a few days to get it up and running.  He looked at the time, his wife should have been here by now.  He knew that she would be worried about the girls.

Then he started getting worried about her.  Really worried.

He looked over at the children and wondered where their parents were at.  Then it hit him, some of their parents might not come to get them.  Some of them might be stuck in the rubble.  He recalled the screams, Dan! Dan!  Then realized that Dan was sitting on the Eastern side of the building, the side that fell.  He realized that Dan also had a family that was worried about him.  Where is Dan now?  Where is Mindy now?

He started praying.  Praying for the parents, praying for the five missing children, praying for the loved ones, praying for his wife, praying for Dan, praying for the young and old.  He thought of the hospital and the people there.  He hoped nothing happened to the hospital.  It was a normal day, doctors had operations scheduled and could have been in the operation rooms.  What happened!?  He wondered in shock.

He looked up at the sky.  It was late afternoon and people were still scurrying.  Children weren’t crying as much: some were taken home by their parents and some just gave up and went to sleep.  He looked at his two angels who were playing with some grass.  He thought of his wife, where are you!?

It was getting late and he had to go home.  He had to check on his wife.  She could have been home and had something fall on her!  She might have been stuck all that time while he was waiting for her.

The last of the children under his supervision were picked up and he went over to the medics.  She drove them home. Throughout the way, Kevin prayed and prayed.  Trees were fallen on the ground and parts of buildings and homes were scattered across the roads.  Some people were still walking around and Kevin could hear parts of their conversations.  Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.

They reached home.  The lights were on and the two girls were running towards the door as it was suddenly opened. He looked at the figure in the doorway and realized it wasn’t his wife.  Where’s mommy?! They asked, scared.

In the distance, he could still hear the cries of his coworker in his mind, Dan! Dan! Dan!

Fear, terror, and disbelief.  It wasn’t over.

Before It’s Too Late

beach heart

 

Find the person you love

the one you don’t see

the one who is always

been your given fate.

Tell him you love him

give it all that you’ve got

hold on to him close

before it’s too late.

 

Don’t think of the words

don’t mind broken hearts

the issue is your happiness,

your life, and your fate.

Tell him you love him

give it all that you’ve got

hold onto him close

before it’s too late.

 

Your mind will play tricks

It’s so hard to see

the path is so dark

take a leap of faith.

Tell him you love him

give it all that you’ve got

hold onto him close

before it’s too late.

ذكرى عاشق

old man

عذبيني، يا صغيرتي، عذبيني

فوجودك في حياتي يكفيني

عذبيني

واخبريني بأنك لا تعشقيني

وليس لديك الوقت لتفاهاتي

عذبيني بنظراتك البريئة

لا تجرحي برائتك بآهاتي

عذبيني بابتسامتك الخجولة

بعدم مبالاتك بسنيني

فالشيب الابيض في شعري

لا يذكر سواد السنين

والقلب حينما ينبض

لا ينفك يتذكر الحنين

عذبيني وذكريني بالحياة

فالذكرى تنفع المؤمنين

ابحثي عن ذرة من آمالي

وذكريني بحياة العاشقين

Decision Day

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He stood by his desk thinking of the decision he just made and finally followed through after being so reluctant for the past 15 years.  It took him 15 years to take this step and when he finally did, it didn’t feel the way it should.  He wasn’t happy, he was ecstatic.

He looked at the picture of his wife and two boys and wondered how they would take the news.  He didn’t know that today was the day.  He didn’t know that today he would set himself free to pursue his dreams.  He didn’t know that on his way to the water cooler he would deviate and pass by his boss’s office to inform him.

He stood by the glass door of the office knowing exactly what he wanted.  Everything was clear to him.  Everything he did up to this point in his life was clear in his head and he saw exactly where he needs to be next.  He wasn’t emotional and he didn’t have a plan.  Nothing specific happened to trigger the decision, it was just time.

Time.  Oh how much time he wasted doing something he didn’t enjoy.

He had enough.  He had enough with putting on his suit every morning and driving the same route.  He had enough of thinking “what if” and “when will I?’  It was enough procrastination.  He procrastinated his life for the past 15 years and it was time for it to end.

He always knew what he wanted to be and do at an early age.  His passion for the kitchen led him to come back from work everyday and cook, regardless of the workload he carried.  He only felt alive with the chef’s knife in his hand, cutting vegetables and stirring pots on the stove.  He had a calling yet ignored it for so long thinking that his pay was more important than his dream.  He planned to start a small restaurant when he retires but couldn’t go on one more day.  This was it.  This was the day he chose to change his life.  This was decision day.

He knocked on the door and waited for the answer.  He walked in and very calmly explained his decision.  The boss nodded, stood up, and gave him a hug.  The boss knew him too well.  He saw him in the company’s last barbecue dinner and how his eyes lit when he was grilling the burgers, how laid back and comfortable he looked in the apron. He knew he would be losing one of his best employees soon and he was right.

He walked back to his desk and saw he didn’t have many “personal belongings” to pack.  He took the photo frame, his keys, and mobile phone and started walking.  He was never one of the team, he was always a guest that never clicked in.  One step, two steps, three steps, he smiled.  Four steps, five steps, six steps, he turned and looked at the office, everyone was busy working on their computers or talking on their phones. He grinned. Seven steps, he started removing his tie thinking how cliche.  Eight steps, nine steps, 10 steps, he throws the tie in the bin and reaches the elevator.  He presses the down button and waits.

The elevator arrives, he walks in and turns.  This would be the last time he walks into a corporate building and he gladly presses “G”.  He knew that this was the best decision he ever made.

الأحلام

woman-happy-sleeping-pink-bed1

نعلّق آمالنا صباحا

عند طلوع الشمس

ونتأكد بأن أحلامنا

تبقى دافئة في أسرّتنا

لنبدأ يوم جميل جديد

نرى فيه أعين أحبتنا

نشتاق إلى مجالستهم ونحن معهم

نشتاق إلى محادثتهم ونحن نحادثهم

فلا نرتوي

وتمر الساعات كالدقائق

لنعود إلى أسرّتنا ليلا

ونلبس آمالنا المعلّقة

ونحتضن أحلامنا الدافئة.

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