Thursday, July 30, 2020

Random thoughts: Happiness Inflation

Why do we invest? The most common reason I hear is to keep the scrounge of inflation at bay. Personally, I invest because I find the whole process cognitively and emotionally stimulating. Inflation is relative mild in Singapore, we could lose more in investment than inflation, so I didn't really bother about Inflation.

How much money does it cost to buy u happiness then? How long does it lasts? What quality of happiness does it give.

I personally again, feel that as I man whore, I feel money does buy some happiness for me. I quite enjoy having a good meal at a restaurant before Covid. I really appreciate the convenience of a car. 

For people who felt that money can't buy any happiness at all, my contact is at the right corner of the blog, I can help u spend some. 

But, I think we do have to keep our emotional state healthy, just like keeping the economy healthy. There should not be hyperinflation of happiness. 

A good tasting fishball noodles still buy some happiness. Having made a right call at stock and making some money still give me the kick. 

I would say inflation is rather manageable, but compared to being a student, happiness is costing much more now.

I dun need a basketball, someone else in the community center will have it, just go there and play. There is some "law" to follow, but there is no need for sports shoes or a ball. 

I do envy my friend who has the latest game console, but that is more than offset by the joy of playing romance of the three kingdoms at his house. I envy my friend, but never really thought of getting a console myself.

When I earn my allowance during NS and bought my first PlayStation, hell ya, money bought my happiness for months. Enjoying every moment of final fantasy 7, and the best part, my girlfriend and now wife don't mind watching me play game and say the storyline is nice. (Don't think she is lying then hahaha) 

During Uni days, having work part time, I can afford to assembly my own personal PC and play my romance of 3 kingdoms late into the night in the hostel without any nagging. Happiness is bought, and it is really rather worthwhile because it lasted months or even year. 

When I envy others as I grow older, I wanted the same thing. I wanted high pay, big portfolio. Inflation is high. Overseas trip is damn expensive but it is only as good as it lasts. Happiness undergoes runaway inflation. Expectations are high, and sadly due to my incompetence, reality has a gap. They say happiness = reality minus expectations. My late twenties to thirties are the years where the gap is largest 

As I approach my 40s, I allowed my happines to be bought, but I am mindful to control my inflation. I am not as frugal, and I don't thrashed myself after a spending spree. 

I spend quite freely, i like to buy food for my pupils. My colleagues said it's bribery. Well, I am just happy to see them happy, they all leave me and forget me after a year, I dun know what returns I get from them, except happiness in seeing their excited eyes. So nope, it's not bribery, and I will continue to buy "happiness".

Every year, I will spend hundreds on dictionaries for the pupils who have difficulty getting them. I never told anyone as I hear that is a "wrong" thing to do, as there are funds to tap. Nevermind, I buy "convenience" and I don't like to fill forms and ask for other particulars. I was rather upset 2 years ago, when my pupil just smashed it after a few weeks though..

I hope I can continue to afford to buy happiness. How much is your happiness. If it is not expensive, maybe one of these days, I can treat u to your happiness. 


  1. New happiness index is to leave home without a mask and breathe freely.

    1. Yup CW, tell me about it. Just active teaching for 40 min and my mask is full of my salavia

      Smell horrible ... Hahahah

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  2. Hi all,

    Be happy always. This is the way in which life is about as per my perspective.


    1. Hi WTK,

      Thank you for dropping by. Indeed, if we not happiness, we do we pursuit? But Happiness do not exists by itself, it is a feeling tagged to something. That something need not be material or tangible. But few people can reach having happiness tag to nothingness.

      SOme tag it to purpose, power, goods, relationships, whatever

      Just make sure it is the right thing that keep your happiness inflation in check


  3. Hi Mike,

    It's very kind of you to spend hundreds on dictionaries for needy students.

    One way to buy cheap e-dictionaries approved by school use is to buy second-hand on Carousell. The approved e-dictionaries are expensive.

    I personally install Chinese dictionaries on my Android phone. The one I use is called Pleco. Wonderful app for people who read Chinese text on the phone.

  4. Hi Hyom,

    Yup, I taught my pupils how to use google translate, although like what you say, that will be a total translate, which defeat the purpose of learning Chinese, yet, it is something for them to keep the language alive. Most of my pupils are of mixed parentage or even Malay.

    one parent did try to buy from carousell, and she got conned as the price is as high as a brand new one, so sad right

  5. Hi Temp

    I agreed. Thats why I feel I am lucky to be a hawker son. I used to sleep on the floor in the one-room flat for years, and after we upgraded to a 3 room flat, i am still on the floor, since 3 of us share a room,. There is no table to study, and I study at the void deck, so sad that most new HDB void deck has no such stone tables and chairs now. IT is so mmuch easier for me to be contended as my life gets better. I remember lying on my new flat and touching the wall and TV console and feeling so bliss to own my own 5 room flat

    Charitable to family? I agreed. I myself is less patient with my son that my pupils. I remember vividly recently, I was concurrently coaching my son and replying whatsapp of my pupils to improve their oral conversation. I keep asking my son to wait, and skip what he doesnt know first.

    After a while, he sat beside me, and say very innocently "pa, you must have really like teaching" Well, I do like teaching, and I explained that I need to help them as they are weaker, and many of them are not as endowed as he is. Exactly, I know even if I teach a class of better SEC, I would still give priority to them

    Spritually at peace and happiness. Yes, indeed. Knowing what can be changed, and having the courage to change. Serenependity prayer. Yet, i have drifted further and further away from it. Nonetheless, life goes on. No time lamenting, just keep living

    stay safe and healthy

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  6. Hi SI,

    The charitable act of buying dictionaries, you clearly display the love and not for myself alone attitude. It is joyful and from the heart.

    Actually joy and happiness have a different in meaning. I wrote an article in 2016.

    Happiness depends on circumstances. A child can be happy when he or she has a new toy. But what happens when toys rust or the toy become old and not longer satisfies the child? The child is always looking for something new to satisfy him or herself.

    You can be happy during the moment when you are partying, eating and drinking excessive alcohol. However the next day, you may have a hangover, or stomach problems. And it may appear that you have found your Mr./Mrs. Right by outward appearance, only for time to let you discover how the inward self is the key for a long-term joyful relationship.

    Then there are things beyond your control that makes you really unhappy. You can be the most honest and person of integrity and dignity, but when things beyond your control take place, you will still feel extremely unhappy. For instance, health deteriorates, love ones die, money lost, and party is over?


    In contrast to happiness stands joy. Running deeper and stronger, joy is the quiet, confident assurance of love and work in our lives by a supernatural force. Joy is the abundance of love, care and comfort and it does not depend on what happens in this world. It is righteousness and being peaceful, and care not just for myself or my family, but be aware of poor and oppressed. It is also wisdom and anticipation coming knowledge we continuously acquired

    It is something inward. It is permanent and eternal expresses through our heart. A heart that is right! It is liken to be a gift to us. In contrast the so-called “happiness” we are chasing for, requires the constantly search new things or experiences to fulfill our desires, intellectual or emotions.

    1. Hi Rolf, thank you for your long post. I agree with u. Your joy is something what uncle temp says about spiritual peace.

      Hence there is happiness inflation index and not joy inflation.

      Indeed,like what I replied WTK, I am still tagging happiness to something. Your joy is the "nothingness" I talk about. Just that perhaps my "nothingness" is what "righteous peace" u have in mind.

      I admits I am further and further away from that, because there was a time I am relatively nearer. I feel less compassion for a lot of things nowsaday and harbour more sinful thoughts than in the past.

      So, maybe your intrinsic joy will drop by again one day, but now, u just keep happiness with what I have.

    2. Hehe cut and paste from my previous post.

      Frankly, I do think u are a very peaceful person but sometimes, we human being are distracted too much by things of the world.

      Of course Money can happiness. This is undeniable.

  7. Amen. Even during suffering, they are in joy in their hearts. How many people can suffer in joy? and you can only do that with God’s peace in u!


    - to humble us (H)
    - to let us depend on Him (D)
    - to build our faith (F)
    - to train us up like a Father train a child (T)
    - to make us strong (S)
    - to prepare us for the worst and good times (P)

    HDFTSP : Help Dear Father, Thou Shalt Pray

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