Friday, October 19, 2007

Who Inspired Me

[This post is a response to PeterAtLarge’s question: Who inspired you?]

I live in Malaysia, a conservative country with limited freedom of speech. Throughout my schooling years, I learned that conforming is virtuous. Today, I consider myself a person who likes to think out of the box, and is occasionally outspoken. In my MBA class, I am the student who keeps asking questions. In one subject, we learned Blue Ocean Strategy. Soon I wrote two posts (here and here) to critique the best-selling book.

How did the change come along? I gather that this has to do with the year I spent in the U.S.

I remember, when I was in the States, a guy told me that “Americans like to challenge the authorities.” (I met this guy in a temple, and no longer remember his name.) He was right in saying so. Americans often poke fun at their presidents. I also learned, in one of the MBA subjects, that Americans are creative and the nation has one of the highest levels of entrepreneurial activities. I believe Americans’ dominance of science and business has to do with their altitude of constantly questioning and challenging the existing knowledge and systems.

Back to Peter’s question: Who inspired you. I find it difficult to pin-point specific people. Perhaps I will simply say:

American culture has inspired me - in this context.

P/S American values are not without flaws, and I am not accepting them blindly. In particular, I find Americans' penchant for guns illogical.


  1. Thanks for this surprising response. It's certainly good to hear, and I get the point. Looking back on it, I think that I, an expatriate Englishman, had a similar experience--hence my surprise...I hope your other readers might find the inspiration to write about their best teachers. Blessings, Peter

  2. Thanks Peter.
    I didn't know you were an expatriate English. Guess it's good to learn from people from across the globe.

  3. Who am I inspired? I hope I would inspire ppl instead... No need to be a big thing, just maybe something simple but as long as positive.

  4. Unless I can go back to the past, then I would knew exactly who really did inspired me. Dramas and books also inspired me a lot. This question really need plenty of time to recall all the bits and pieces in my memory!

  5. princess,
    Perhaps you have already inspired lots of people, but they haven't told you.

    In fact, you did try to inspire me to be optimistic. Just that my bad mental states don't go away easily. Maybe 10 years later I will write another post, telling everyone that "Princess Eileen has inspired me!" :)

    Perhaps you can say that the authors of the books have inspired you.

    Peter, the person who asked this question, was trying to get us to 'honor' the teachers, who otherwise might be anonymous. That's his purpose.

  6. maybe one day I will write about the author, dramas, and my teachers. I wonder would anyone in the future say that I'm one of the inspiration? haha!

  7. kai,
    You are a teacher. You might have inspired your 'children' :P

  8. hahaha... I think I am actually a bit flattered when you say that. Hmmm... maybe hor... just maybe, you need to find the root of your "not-that-optimistic' and then easier for you to be happy :D

  9. princess,
    I think I was born with 'not-that-optimistic' mind :(

    People say laughter is contagious. Perhaps I should read your 'wakakaka' more :P