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Showing posts from October, 2012

One Hundred Days of Solitude 百日孤寂

Tung Chee-Hwa, Hong Kong’s first chief executive, had a tough term in office. And it wasn’t for lack of trying. When he took the job in 1997, the ex-shipping tycoon was full of lofty ideas. He tried to rein in property prices by building more public housing. He created Cyberport and proposed a West Kowloon revamp to make Hong Kong the region’s high-tech and cultural hub. One after another, however, his policies fell flat on their faces. Then came the SARS outbreak in 2003 and the collapse of the property market in the same year. His political downfall was so spectacular that paramount leader Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) made a point to dress him down in public. In 2005, Tung stepped down, citing an arthritic leg. Career bureaucrat Donald Tsang took over and began an administration based on a time-tested motto: do nothing, do no harm.

Seven years after Tung Chee-Hwa fell from grace, C.Y. Leung finds himself in eerily familiar territories. The only difference between the two beleaguered chief execu…

Calling it Quits - Part 1 劈炮唔撈-上卷

It’s 9:30 on a Monday night. You are waiting for the bus to take you home after another long, dreary day in the office. Your head droops to the side, your shoulders slump, and your leather briefcase sags with the weight of existential angst. The woman in front of you pulls a soggy pastry out of a wrinkled Starbucks bag and takes a bite. You think to yourself: I can make a better one and sell it for half the price. The dream of running your own bakery and wallowing in patisserie bliss once again rushes to your head. No more 14-hour days, no more suits and ties, no more crowded buses and microwave dinners. Leather briefcase be damned!

What you just read is a familiar scene to many salaried men and women. Tired of the ball and chain of a desk job, you fantasize about a “Plan B” to take you out of the rat race and put your God-given talent to use. If baking is not your thing, then it may be designing jewelry, becoming a wedding photographer or running an event planning service from home.…