Mono no aware (物の哀れ)

Mono no aware (物の哀れ), literally “the pathos of things”, and also translated as “an empathy toward things”, or “a sensitivity to ephemera”, is a Japanese term used to describe the awareness of impermanence (無常 mujō), or transience of things, and a gentle sadness (or wistfulness) at their passing.

The word is derived from the Japanese word mono (物), which means “thing”, and aware (哀れ), which was a Heian period expression of measured surprise (similar to “ah” or “oh”), translating roughly as “pathos”, “poignancy”, “deep feeling”, or “sensitivity”, or “aware”. Thus, mono no aware has frequently been translated as “the ‘ahh-ness’ of things”, life, and love. Awareness of the transience of all things heightens appreciation of their beauty, and evokes a gentle sadness at their passing.

One Silversea, Hong Kong, where I used to live in 2010-2011

Flo Rida – Wild Ones ft. Sia

Sia Kate Isobelle Furler (born 18 December 1975), better known as Sia, is an Australian downtempo, pop, and jazz singer and songwriter. She is vegetarian and participated in an advertisement with her dog Pantera, for PETA Asia-Pacific to encourage pet neutering.

In June 2010, Furler’s official website announced that all scheduled promotional events and shows had been cancelled due to her poor health. She cited extreme lethargy and panic attacks and considered retiring permanently from performing and touring. According to her Twitter account she was diagnosed with Graves’ disease – an autoimmune disorder with an over-active thyroid. Four months later, in an ARIA Awards interview Furler said her health was improving after rest and thyroid hormone replacement therapy. Furler has said she will release an album in the summer of 2012 and will refrain from touring temporarily.

Investment guru settles out of court with dentist

Terms of settlement, reached after mediation session, not revealed

By Bryna Sim

INVESTMENT guru Jim Rogers has reached an out-of-court settlement with dental surgeon Ernest Rex Tan over ceramic bondings on his teeth that fell off.

But both sides declined to give details of the terms of the settlement, which was reached after a mediation session at the Singapore Mediation Centre last month. Mr Rogers’ lawyer, Mr Jonathan Yuen, told The Straits Times yesterday that the settlement “was satisfactory to Mr Rogers”. Dr Tan said both parties had dropped their claims against each other.

In his suit, Mr Rogers, 69, a permanent resident in Singapore, had wanted to be reimbursed the $48,150 he spent on the ceramic enhancements to his teeth.

He had sued Dr Tan of Smile Inc Dental for negligence, alleging the dental surgeon had recommended treatments that were unsuitable for his teeth, The Straits Times reported in June.

Dr Tan, 43, counter-claimed for alleged defamation.

Mr Rogers claimed that in August 2009, he had consulted Dr Tan about his temporomandibular joint disorder, which was causing neck and shoulder pains.

He alleged that Dr Tan suggested partial coverage bonded ceramic restoration.

Court papers said that within a year, six of the enhancements done on 20 of his teeth had fallen off.

Mr Rogers then asked for a reimbursement of the $48,150 he had spent on the enhancements, as well as an unspecified amount of compensation.

When contacted yesterday, Dr Tan said it was the first time in his 21 years of dental practice that he had been sued for such a matter.

“It wasn’t a negligence issue. The matter could have been easily solved. I could have just bonded it back for him. Bringing the matter to court was totally unnecessary,” he told The Straits Times.

Reiterating a point he made in his affidavit, he said Mr Rogers suffered “no permanent injury”.

Dr Tan, in the June newspaper report, said Mr Rogers had wanted cosmetic enhancements to his teeth, and not treatment for the joint disorder.

He added yesterday: “All necessary steps were taken to ensure success, and besides, patient compliance is important.”

Mr Rogers had reportedly ignored his advice to wear a dental splint after the treatment.

Dr Tan said he was glad the matter could be “amicably resolved”.

When contacted, Mr Rogers declined to comment on the matter.

Lawyer censured for overcharging client

Lawyer censured for overcharging client

By selina lum

A LAWYER who billed a client $120,800 for work worth $48,000 was censured in court yesterday.

Mr Anand Kumar Toofani Beldar, 45, had in 2010 admitted to overcharging before an independent disciplinary tribunal, which found that his case was serious enough to go before the Court of Three Judges. This court has the power to censure, suspend, or strike lawyers off the roll for professional misconduct.

Mr Anand, a Singaporean who has about 10 years’ experience, is now working in Dubai as an in-house legal officer. He is not allowed to practise law here as he was made a bankrupt in 2010 after one of his partners, Zulkifli Mohd Amin, skipped town three years earlier with more than $10 million of clients’ money.

Mr Anand and Mr Sadique Marican, another partner in their firm Sadique Marican & ZM Amin (SMZA), were hired by Ms Irene Tan in April 2007 to enforce her rights to buy a property. They told her that they would charge $12,000 a day for an anticipated eight-day trial. By June 2008, she had paid $96,000. Meanwhile, Mr Anand and Mr Marican later moved to Frontier Law Corporation (FLC), where they continued to represent Ms Tan. The trial started on Oct 13 in 2008 and ended in two days.

Ms Tan wanted to get a refund of $72,000. Instead she got a $8,000 bill from SMZA and a $112,800 bill from FLC. She complained to the Law Society in June 2009. The case was heard before the tribunal a year later, in November and December 2010. The tribunal issued their report in February last year.

Mr Anand told the tribunal the bill should have amounted to $48,000 “at most”, taking into account two trial days and two days of settlement talks. Mr Marican has been struck off the rolls for grossly failing to supervise the accounts at SMZA. Zulkifli Amin is still at large.

Public service is no private sector

Forum, Straits Times Sep 02, 2012

Managing editor Han Fook Kwang was too generous in assuming that hardcore mathematical analyses by civil servants led to the conclusions that $2,200 bikes and $600 chairs were good buys (“The trouble with $2,200 bikes and $600 chairs”; last Sunday).

I suspect the reason was simpler. More than two decades of strong economic growth, budget expansions, opulent new buildings and generous salary enhancements have created a generation of public service leaders whose spending instincts are markedly different from those of their predecessors.

There is a tendency to benchmark facilities against the best available in the private sector. If Shell can have it, why not us? If Baker & McKenzie uses those, surely we are not inferior to them? After all, we are, or are striving to be, world class.

This is not helped, or shall I say helped, by a new generation of leaders who are sympathetic to such sentiment and are prepared to defend it politically.

Well, the public service is no private sector because it uses the people’s, not shareholders’, money.

As Mr Han noted, quite apart from the ability to offer rigorous quantitative justifications, one of the hallmarks of a good public service leader must be a deep understanding of the context in which the service operates.

Cheng Shoong Tat