Perception and truth are seldom the same thing

One theme that runs through all of the training I do, is that what you see is almost never what it is. It is not that you are completely mistaken in what you see, and thus base your work upon. Rather, it is that you ought to obtain more points of view not necessarily from others, before you act upon the information.

We all know the phenomenon of a person changing his mind soon after he has articulated a set of business requirements that he wants to be automated. It is nothing new, and nothing to be considered unusual. It is just the way the human mind works. Therefore, make the effort to achieve different viewpoints before you decide what the “real” requirements and the real background are.

The pictures show the model of the Olympic torch in QingDao China taken from different angles. One is a straightforward cylinder, while another shows a double barrel shape.

Perception - a point of viewPerception - one point of view 1

No more cheap lunch, but if you look hard enough…

Inflation seems to be marching relentlessly all over the world. China is no exception. Each year, I have to reconsider my budget for my travels in China. So, I was thrilled to find this place in a mall, that could give me a meal for 12 Rmb. I think there must be cheaper meals around, but not in a mall.

The quantity may look small, but that was exactly what I needed for my lunch. Too much would have given me bloat. 4 dumplings (again a difficult thing to translate). I did ask for and got two different types of dumplings.

4 dumplingsPorridge of local grain2 types of fillings dumplings The full set of the 12rmb lunch. Dumplings and soup

Rice wine trying to go upmarket or tourist trap?

My favorite tipple is rice wine, or more exactly, glutinous rice wine. This is the traditional wines brewed by us southerners, and an essential part of childbirth. (No, we don’t bath the newborn baby in the wine. It is the the base fir the chicken soup given to help the new mother warm up and rebuild her health. Perhaps it was intended to bribe ladies to have more children – but this is just pure guessing and has no basis). Definitely not the same as the distilled firewater baijiu (not from rice, but usually sorghum) popular in China now.

Sad, rice wine has not taken off in the modern world. Maybe it’s because its so easy to make at home the commercial producers don’t make enough.

By the way, the thing on the left of the picture is chicken feet – a very popular snack.

Chicken feet snack and rice wine

Moral House?

One of the little thrills from travel is the frequent signs you see, that looks or sounds weird when translated. This is one that got me thinking what it was. IOS “Moral House” a place for religion? For developing moral? Or actually meant to be a place of immoral activities?

One of the mysteries and pleasures of language.

Moral House neon sign

Food style and presentation – fish.

My recent experience of eating fish, my favorite “meat” in PD Malaysia and in China. Although neither can be considered the only way the fish is prepared countrywide, it does give a very different “style” and preference to eating fish. Perhaps it is a difference between the southerners and the northers or the middle nears. In the following three pictures, guess which national type it belongs to. (Just to add more confusion, “national type” is getting to be a misnomer. You can eat food from many parts of the world, in most countries nowadays. Some of them adapted to local taste and presentation, and of course the ready availability of ingredients and local ideas of what is pretty and tasty.

Steam fish in MalaysiaVery hot fish freshly killed and cooked in lots of chili and other herbs.Japanese raw fish

Famous Foods and Breasts

Creativity. What will like be like without artistic license. This picture is one of a “pow” or “baozi”, depending on wich of the myriad Chinese dialects you hear.  包子bāozi. I just checked the dictionary and this is the current modern character and romanized version.

There’s some confusion in translating the name into English language, or any other. There is no equivalent in the other languages culture, so a near equivalent is used. To add to the problem, there is a standard size find item and smaller and larger ones.

The comon sioze one fits easily into a hand. Makes sense for a food item that was, and is, eaten hand held. The “tai pow”, “da bao”, whihever dialect you tend to hear, basically means “big” bao. Likely first started as a marketing gimmick to appeal to the more well heeled. (I’m just guessing, and defer to those who do research on this).  Some years back (within my adult life) there was a famouse show business personality with huge breasts. And some smart maker of bao, decided to make his/her/their products extra large, and named their breast shaped buns after this personality.

Large dumpling

Good looking side profile – how a body balance?

Somehow I like this picture. The side profile seem to have some natural aesthetic about it. I was going to crop out the right hand side of the picture, but decided to keep the “noise” because it seems to balance the weight that the mind attaches to the guards tummy, and the side it is facing.


Side profile of guard

What do we see depends on several things in our own mind

This is a simple picture. Quite boring. Unless you notice the hand on the head of the person and wonder why. Then you look around the picture for some clue. Is he puzzled by something? Is it something he is thinking of, or something he has just see or heard? You can probably write a whole page, or more, of the story from just this one picture.

picture story

Simple picture has a story

House for Sale Not to live in

When we see something, there is a context we apply, based on what we notice in the overall picture. In this case the words stand out. “Land for Sale” , not “House for Sale”.  Imagine you read this without seeing the picture. Will your mind visualise or imagine a different type of picture?

old house

Old house for sale