Foolish Heart

Wednesday, 29 August, 2012 - Leave a Response

One of my favourite songs.

I first heard this song from one of those David Copperfield specials I saw on TV when I was a little kid.

Love this song.

Never grows old.

Foolish Heart
I need a love that grows
I don’t want it unless I know
With each passing hour
Someone somehow
Will be there
Ready to share

I need a love that’s strong
I’m so tired of being alone
But will my lonely heart
Play the part
Of the fool again
Before I begin

Foolish heart
Hear me callin’
Stop before
You start fallin’
Foolish heart
Heed my warnin’
You’ve been wrong before
Don’t be wrong anymore

Feelin’ that feelin’ again
I’m playin’ a game I can’t win
Love’s knockin’ on the door
Of my heart once more
Think I’ll let her in
Before I begin

Foolish Heart
Hear me callin’
Stop before
You start fallin’
Foolish heart
Heed my warnin’
You’ve been wrong before
Don’t be wrong anymore
Foolish heart

Foolish, foolish heart
You’ve been wrong before

Foolish heart
Hear me callin’
Stop before
You start fallin’
Foolish heart
Heed my warnin’
You’ve been wrong before
Don’t be wrong anymore
Foolish heart

Oh foolish, foolish heart
You’ve been wrong before

Foolish, foolish heart
Foolish heart

Some Fun Facts About “Buttons”

Saturday, 25 August, 2012 - 2 Responses
  • I decided on the name “Buttons in the Bread” in probably less than an hour. (I don’t believe in spending too much time deciding on a name.)
  • The name “Buttons in the Bread” comes from a lyric in Stephen Sondheim’s “Every Day A Little Death”, which is a song from the musical “A Little Night Music”.
  • I was particularly obsessed with this song when starting the blog, and I thought these four words had a nice ring to it.
  • The full line is actually “In the curtains, in the silver, in the buttons, in the bread”.
  • Sometimes I get embarrassed at having to say the name of my own blog, but I notice the name is starting to catch on.
  • I almost wanted to name the blog “One Enormous Chair”. Yep, it was between “Buttons in the Bread” and “One Enormous Chair”.
  • Both have five syllables, but Buttons had the alliteration going for it. (Plus, the domain was still available.)
  • Make a guess where “One Enormous Chair” comes from? Yup, from the song “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly?” from one of my favourite musicals “My Fair Lady”.
  • So now you know. =)

“You Don’t Know Me”

Tuesday, 21 August, 2012 - 2 Responses

Let it be said that “My Best Friend’s Wedding” is an excellent romantic comedy, but somehow I would hesitate to put it amongst my top three of all time.

I mean, it’s got a fantastic premise, and I love the whole sentiment of the movie, but there are just some things about it that just didn’t truly work for me.

But that is a discussion for another day.

One great song from the movie is the song “You Don’t Know Me”, sung in this instance by Jann Arden, who, incidentally, sang another of my favourite songs called “Insensitive”.

Anyway, “You Don’t Know Me” is a wonderful song which captures a particular sentiment very well.

It’s all rather self-explanatory, and you can see why it was used in “My Best Friend’s Wedding”.

Some truly great lines in this song.

I especially like the second verse.

YOU DON’T KNOW ME
You give your hand to me
And then you say hello
And I can hardly speak
My heart is beating so
And anyone can tell
You think you know me well
But you don’t know me

No, you don’t know the one
Who dreams of you at night
And longs to kiss your lips
And longs to hold you tight
Oh I am just a friend
That’s all I’ve ever been
‘Cause you don’t know me

I never knew the art of making love
Though my heart aches with love for you
Afraid and shy I let my chance go by
The chance that you might love me too

You give your hand to me
And then you say good-bye
I watch you walk away
Beside the lucky guy
Oh you will never never know
The one who loves you so
Well, you don’t know me

You give your hand to me
And then you say good-bye
I watch you walk away
Beside the lucky guy
Oh you will never ever know
The one who loves you so
‘Cause you don’t know me

“Okay To Read His E-Mail?” by Sumiko Tan

Monday, 20 August, 2012 - 3 Responses

Not going to spend too many words on this, but I just couldn’t help but notice Sumiko Tan’s column in the Sunday Times today entitled “Okay To Read His E-Mail?”.

I’ve really got nothing against Sumiko Tan, but it’s just that her columns sometimes make for very good food for thought and reflection.

She has a knack for hitting a raw nerve or whatever you might want to call it.

She’s not Singapore’s most well-known columnist for nothing.

Well, it goes without saying that I don’t always agree with what she writes, as can be seen from some of my previous posts.

So anyway, in today’s column she prefaced it by describing how her mum used to open and read all her dad’s mails.

(This was back in the day before email was even invented.)

She then went on to say that she reads H’s snail mails, emails and smses as well.

As in, reading them sometimes even when he’s not aware of it.

She says she’s not even sure why she does it.

“It’s not as if I’m checking up on him. I’m quite certain he’s not doing anything to hurt our marriage…Could it be I’m worried not so much about him but other women? Maybe I’m checking to make sure he’s not on the receiving end of saucy mail that could lead him astray?”

Whoa.

She then attributes her intrusion of privacy to the fact that maybe she’s “just a natural busybody”, like that immediately absolves her of everything.

Or, she even goes on to rationalise, it could be because “she loves him and wants to be a part of everything in his life”.

Right.

But here’s the kicker.

She ends off the column by saying that she would be shocked – annoyed even – if H were to go through her messages or emails without asking her first, not because she has anything to hide, but because it is her nature to be jealously private.

While I do not wish to comment too much on the affairs of others, I thought I’d just share a bit of my thoughts after reading her column.

I understand that it might be natural for some spouses to want to control and monitor every single aspect of their other half’s life.

Moreover, in light of so many cases of cheating being reported in the news nowadays, it is understandable for a wife to be highly worried about her husband possibly going astray.

However, I feel that at some point one has to exercise a decent level of respect for the other party’s privacy.

I mean, how can a marriage possibly survive if there is no trust?

Do you only feel safe after you’ve screened through every single one of his emails and smses behind his back?

Does that make you sleep well at night?

Do you not think that if a man wants to go astray, he can always find other ingenious ways and means to fool around behind your back?

And what’s up with the “I’m worried about other women trying to lead him astray” rhetoric?

Do you not trust a grown man to make his own decisions in life?

But the thing that really gets me is the double standards being practised.

I suppose the “Do Unto Others” maxim doesn’t seem to come into play here, for whatever reason.

So anyway, I feel that trust is always going to be a major component in any marriage, and if there is no trust then there is no happiness.

After all, wasn’t it Elvis who sang: “We can’t go on together with suspicious minds, and we can’t build our dreams on suspicious minds”?

The Lord Bless You And Keep You

Sunday, 19 August, 2012 - One Response

“The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”
~Numbers 6:24-26

My friend recently asked me how come I had stopped writing songs lately.

And it kinda got me thinking.

Yes, it’s quite true, I actually haven’t written a song since the Good Friday song I wrote for church this year.

I kinda enjoy the fact that I consider myself someone who dabbles both in the art of songwriting and playwriting.

(I hesistate to call myself a “songwriter” or a “playwright”, cos that implies having actual quality, ha!)

These are two artforms which I am very fond of, although songwriting came much earlier to me, and I always enjoy being able to switch between the two crafts throughout the year.

Anyway, back to my main thrust.

I’ve always been rather fascinated with the verses above.

I’ve always felt that there is some very poetic quality to these verses.

I’ve always felt that they’d make good lyrics to a song.

(As a songwriter, uh, I mean someone who does songwriting, you can usually sniff out a good lyric when you see one.)

I am aware that John Rutter has a rather famous version of the above verses.

To me the lyrics signify peace, calm, warmth, hope, prayer, and blessing.

Wonderful ingredients to set to music.

And of course, I had to tailor the music accordingly.

So anyway, I’ve always wanted to put the above verses to song, and in the past few weeks, I had actually come up with a satisfactory tune to the above verses.

The tune has been simmering in my mind for many weeks now, and I think it’s time to finally put pen to paper.

So therefore, this shall be my next song, and after working out the arrangements, I’ve decided that I’m going to pair it with the well-known Christian song “The Steadfast Love of the Lord”.

Looking forward to it and hope it goes well.

May the Lord’s name be glorified.

“Back To The Future” Trilogy

Sunday, 19 August, 2012 - 2 Responses

I was recently on holiday and one of the channels on TV was showing a back-to-back-to-back screening of the entire “Back to the Future” trilogy.

Some of you might know that “Back to the Future” is my favourite trilogy of all time, and I’ve been a huge fan of the franchise ever since I was a kid.

It had so many things going for it – fantastic premise and storylines, great actors in Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, Robert Zemeckis as director, the incredible soundtrack by Alan Silvestri (featuring one of the most recognisable movie themes in film history), and so on.

Now I’ve actually not watched the films for quite a long time, so it was nice to revisit them after so many years.

(The trilogy DVD is lying in my room but I’ve never found the time to do a proper screening of it.)

So anyway, I sat in my room and watched most of the trilogy on TV.

I watched a bit of Part 1, went out, came back at the mid-way point of Part 2 and watched all the way to the end of Part 3.

For the record, I would rank Part 3 as my favourite part, with Part 1 being a very close second only because it was the film which started it all.

Part 2 was a bit hit-and-miss in my opinion, and the only real redeeming quality about Part 2 was the introduction of the legendary hoverboards and the futuristic scenes of 2015.

While watching the second half of Part 2, it occurred to me that I remembered really little of Part 2.

I was watching it and kept wondering to myself: “Wait, why does all this seem so unfamilair?”

Honestly, I had forgotten a large portion of Part 2 already.

And after watching the second half of it, I realised that Part 2 really wasn’t all that great.

Part 3 was amazing, cos they brought you back to 1885 and the cowboy era and all that.

And I really liked that Alan Silvestri introduced a new “wild west” musical theme in Part 3.

Fantastic stuff.

“Back to the Future” has captured my imagination like no other film has ever done, and probably ever will.

I’ve never really watched that many movies in my lifetime, but as far as movies go the “Back to the Future” trilogy definitely holds a special place in my heart.

I will need to find a proper time one day in the future to give myself a proper screening of the entire trilogy.

Random Olympic Thoughts

Wednesday, 15 August, 2012 - 3 Responses

The Olympics are a great opportunity to appreciate the beauty of sports which we would otherwise not bother to watch outside of the Olympics.

I did not watch a whole lot of the Olympics, but sports that I enjoyed watching include the high jump, water polo, swimming, triple jump, long jump and volleyball (specifically women’s indoor).

There is something quite magnetic about watching the high jump.

Something about the way the athletes seem to be able to gracefully float so high up in the air at utterly unimaginable heights (we’re talking 2.20m++ here).

Insane stuff.

Majestic and poetic all at the same time.

I also enjoy the long jump and triple jump.

It’s human endeavour in its purest form.

I love in that in the triple jump the athletes seem to be able to float in the air during their first leap.

Notice how they seem to be able to do this extra “walking on air” step in their first leap.

It’s so unreal.

On the flip side, I personally feel that something just seems to be amiss with the sport of Taekwondo.

Yes, I’m merely an uninformed observer, but from my point of view, I find it very hard to appreciate watching the sport of Taekwondo even at the Olympic level.

I find it hard to appreciate the grace and beauty in the sport, as compared to how easily I can appreciate the grace and beauty in other sports such as volleyball or gymnastics or hockey or even weightlifting.

This is just my personal opinion, but the sport of Taekwondo just seems a bit haphazard to me, the way they seem to anyhow bounce and kick about.

I think the sports that suffer at the Olympics are the sports whereby there is already a very developed and lucrative professional scene.

I’m referring especially to big-time professional sports like basketball, tennis and football.

Olympic basketball gold is nowhere near the prestige of an NBA title, same goes for the tennis gold as compared to a Grand Slam, and a football gold as compared to a World Cup or a Euro.

You get what I mean.

People want to watch Olympic sports knowing that the athletes are giving their best, that this means the world to them, that the athletes have been training obsessively the past 4 years just for this one moment in time (yes, song reference alert!), that the athletes are all extremely hungry for the gold medal like their lives depended on it.

It’s hard to say that all world class NBA players, tennis players and football players would give their all at the Olympics the way the other Olympic athletes do.

I just don’t see that happening.

Swimming looks better than running.

I’ve come to the conclusion that swimming is probably the most telegenic sport in the entire Olympics, in terms of the way it’s presented and its look & feel and all that.

Very sleek, very cool, very hip, very all that.

And a bit more international too, I might add.

The problem with running is that the track is so huge, and it’s quite difficult to keep track of all runners from lane 1 to lane 8.

I was just watching the men’s 4 x 100m athletics relay a few days back (the one where Jamaica broke the WR), and everything was happening so fast I just didn’t know where to look.

And the other problem with track is that if they are running anything more than 100m, the rounded nature of the track is such that you never really know who is in the lead until the final 100m stretch, whereas in swimming everyone swims their laps in completely straight and parallel lines, so the standings are always extremely apparent, and this gives the viewer a better sense of perspective on the race as well.

Also, for some reason the blueness of the swimming pool is just such a treat for the eyes.

And swimming has probably the most different types of events of any sport (e.g. four different strokes plus IM over various distances), so it gives you much more variety to pick and choose which races you want to watch.

Yes, I may be biased because of my swimming background, but it would take a lot to convince me otherwise that swimming is not one of the most, if not THE most telegenic sports in the Olympics.

It certainly is more telegenic than track, in my view.

Water polo is a man’s game.

Man with a capital “M”.

It takes real manliness to play in a top-flight water polo game.

My sister happens to be a SEA Games water polo gold medallist, so I am privy to the finer points of this remarkable sport.

It seems the European men are really having a hold over the sport.

Definitely not an easy game to play, a lot of very rough stuff going on underneath the water surface, but a truly beautiful game when played at the highest level.

To the untrained eye it seems the players merely keep passing the ball back and forth around the periphery of their attack formation until one of them decides to shoot.

But it can get really fascinating when you go deeper into the inner workings of the game.

But then again, I suppose the same could be said for most other sports (including Taekwondo).

I also wish to add that water polo goalies are probably the coolest sportsmen around.

Nothing seems to faze them.

This is probably the first time in history we are able to view all the official Olympic video highlights and full replays on YouTube.

I think it’s just so wonderful.

Gone are the days where you need to i) hope and pray that our local telly is televising that particular event, ii) prepare the VCR and be on alert so as to tape that night’s event, and iii) keep the video tape for posterity for future revisits.

Hey, that’s what I used to do for the swimming events in Sydney 2000, Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008 okay.

Those were the days.

Now you just go onto YouTube and within a few clicks you can watch any highlight or full replay of any event at this year’s London 2012 Olympics.

The wonders of technology.

Which also means people are moving away from watching the Olympics on television.

Hey, I probably watched 80%-90% of my Olympics on YouTube, to be honest.

But that’s just the way it is with the world right now.

It’s Just Like Songcraft All Over Again

Thursday, 2 August, 2012 - 5 Responses

So Ilsa and I held the inaugural “Buttons Hour” tonight and it was a resounding success.

Our little blog “Buttons in the Bread” has turned or is turning 2, and we wanted to think of a way to commemorate its 2nd anniversary.

(The precise date of the blog’s birth is indeterminate, but we generally like to take the 2010 staging of “Fried Rice Paradise” as the blog’s point of inception.)

We decided to hold a little get-together at a cosy cafe, and we invited fellow theatre bloggers, reviewers, writers and everyone else interested in local theatre to the event.

It was a good way to finally meet in person the bloggers whom we’d been reading about for the longest time, but have never met in person.

So tonight’s little event was remarkable in that we managed to meet up with so many online personalities in the flesh for the first time, and it was such a wonderful experience.

We met the whole gang from Inkpot, Naeem from Crystalwords, Jean from jtbeans, the folks from Urban Kulit and so many others.

It’s nice to be able to finally put a face to the names.

And in many ways, tonight stirred up feelings and emotions in me that I hadn’t felt in almost 3 years.

The feeling of nervousness right from the start of the day, the constant wondering if the attendees would turn up as promised, the fretting over what to say as host, the constant glancing at the watch when it’s 7pm already and yet nobody seems to have arrived, the indescribable sense of joy when the event seems to be going well and everyone seems to be having a good time, the mingling and socialising with new friends, the forgetting that I hadn’t even eaten dinner the entire night until the event is over and someone reminds me that it’s time to get food, etc.

It was oh so familiar.

Really, it’s the whole Songcraft thing all over again.

I used to go through this every time I organised a Songcraft session back in the day, and tonight certainly brought back a host of bittersweet memories for me.

As for the Buttons Hour, feedback was extremely positive tonight, and it’s time someone tried to do something to help bring the elements in the local theatre ecosystem that little bit closer to one another, at least at the grassroots level.

So, is the Buttons Hour going to be a one-off thing or is it here to stay?

I dunno.

We’ll have to see about it.

If there’s one thing Songcraft taught me, it’s to not make promises you can’t keep.

But as for now, we’ll just light the candles and say: “Happy second birthday, Buttons!”

You’ve come a long way.

Lighting Of The Flame

Thursday, 26 July, 2012 - Leave a Response

Barcelona 1992.

Still the most memorable moment in Olympic opening ceremony history.

Everyone remembers the archer and his shooting of the flame through the air, and up into the cauldron.

Breathtaking.

Some images just stay with you forever.

Apparently the arrow didn’t actually hit the target full on, but we shan’t go into that.

Looking forward to another great Olympics this year!

***

May I also add that for some reason, the Barcelona Olympics seems to be the one I remember the most.

For one, it had that defining moment as described above.

And I remember the swimming pool was really nice too.

And of course, who can forget the theme song “Amigos Para Siempre” (composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber, incidentally), which is in my opinion is one of the greatest Olympic theme songs in the past 30 years together with “One Moment In Time”.

The Moment In “The Dark Knight Rises”

Wednesday, 25 July, 2012 - One Response

Okay, so “The Dark Knight Rises” was 165 minutes worth of intense mind-blowing action, but did it have a “moment”?

Sure it did.

The “moment” was when Batman first appears with his Batcycle or whatever it’s called (super cool, by the way) while hunting down the villains on motorcycles who had just robbed the Stock Exchange.

Tell me if you didn’t let out an inaudible gasp the moment Batman dramatically appeared on screen, all dashing and heroic and all.

It’s the kind of moment which we watch superhero films for, the moment when just submit completely to him and go “My hero! He’s come to fight the bad guys! Hurrah!”

And I guess that’s what superhero films are all about really.

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