Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Plane in the Undergrowth

Plane in the Undergrowth, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

So, I'm thinking with the upcoming new year it should be time to start blogging regularly again. A friend of mine made a joke about blogging. I said that social network sites like Twitter or Plurk were no place to air your personal problems. He agreed and said that should be left to blogs because no one reads them... It's probably true. I mean, who wants to read boring real life crap? Still, maybe it's kind of a therapy to put things in words and maybe people read it and maybe they don't. I wonder if I care? I probably do, truth be known. Ah, raving already...

So this year. It's been a pretty awful one really. I am trying to think of something nice to say. I met a very good friend this year. Once her blog is up and running, I will post a link here. You all have to go over there and marvel at what amazing things she will write about. Thanks for everything Bre!

Of course, Heather has always been supportive. I haven't been a good friend to you recently and for that I am really sorry. I promise to be better in the new year.

Chère Cergie! Je veux écrire en francais en ton blog mais j'ai besoin de apprendre plus! Merci beaucoup!

And to the others who still check in every once in a while. Thanks a lot. Hopefully there will be something here worth looking at?

I have a bunch of ideas running around in my head about how to get this thing kickstarted again. We'll see what happens... Still, stay tuned.


Thursday, December 04, 2008

I've Been Memed

Auckland Museum and Sky Tower, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

From Eileen, I've taken the 6th photo from the 6th page of my Flickr account and here it is.

It's my weekly walking route from my French class to my carpark. With Summer here, it's a really nice walk in the evening.

I don't know who still reads this blog!

I would like to "meme" Breanne and Matt. I'll take volunteers too :)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Back Blogging More

Auckland Waterfront, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Yes, it's been a really long time.

I need to get back to blogging.

In my hiatus, I have been thinking of so many things to write. My life and has been in rollercoaster state... first it was right at the top. Things were amazing, I was so so happy. Then however, things got really really bad. Things aren't so great right now.

I am trying to sort through what has happened and what can happen.

In the meantime, maybe blogging again will help me in some way. We shall see I guess.

There's always pretty pictures to keep you coming :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

One Day

Mangaia Kingfisher, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I need to blog! Is anyone out there still?

Thursday, July 03, 2008


Aitutaki Lagoon, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

San Nakji has been away. He has missed you all! Blogging shall commence shortly.

Love to you all.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Death and Taxes

Praying Mantis, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Morbid text to come

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Lion Fish

Lion Fish, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Ain't got nothing but

dreams, hopes and some junky toys...

I'm coming!!

I mean... It's coming!!

Tokyo Circus

Now or never...

Life is a circus

It's not about winning or losing

Let's just live fully

From Tokyo Circus


North Head, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

A teacher from my son's school is leaving. She is an Indian and I have found her nothing but helpful and good to my son. The problem for her is that she has a thick Indian accent which can be difficult to understand.

I was talking to a fellow parent yesterday who was so happy that she was leaving. He complained that he couldn't understand her and he was angry that she hadn't made an effort to try to speak properly.

It took a lot of self control to stop myself from leaping on him and beating him to death with my bare hands. It was truly an ignorant statement and something that I constantly have to battle with.

I think the thing I hate most in this world is racism. It is a deep seeded instinct I feel, but as intelligent human beings it is something that can be overcome. There is no excuse for it.

It really frustrates me that people have to be so ignorant. I mean to believe, and he truly believes this, that she is purposely talking in her accent makes me so angry.

It is even more frustrating when people that I have to deal with on a daily basis or even friends have these attitudes about people who look different from themselves. I mean I could chew them out and beat them down, but I need to keep a good relationship with them. Just like this parent. Damn, it makes me so angry. Anger that could consume me inside.

Monday, March 17, 2008


North Head, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I am going to see the Smashing Pumpkins on Saturday night. Although the band is now only a shadow of its' former self, I was unlucky to miss them at their prime. This is my only chance to hear the music that shaped my younger years.

Everyone has music that takes them back to a different time. I am always amazed by how songs do this to me. Whether it be 'Dont' Dream It's Over' by Crowded House which reminds me of school discos and young love or 'Cold Contagious' by Bush which reminds me of my time in Korea, songs and music have this power.

I can feel myself turning into my parents. I know that one day my son will laugh that I love Radiohead. He will crack up when I talk about 2008 and the time I saw my idols, Smashing Pumpkins. And you know what? I don't care! Music is deeply personal. And these are things that are important to me.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Going Punk

Going Punk, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I am imagination.

Dream I must.

I was tagged by CERGIE to write a six word memoir. That's right; only six words and what comes to mind is perfect simplicity.

Here are the rules:

1. Write your own six word memoir.

2. Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you’d like.

3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post.

4. Tag more blogs with links.

5. Enjoy

My faithful blog visitors! I tag thee... Ori, Ashley, Amy, Aaron, Clint and Matt

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Secret of the Shadow

DSC05034, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Feel the Fear
The Secret of the Shadow
The Breakthrough Experience
Living the 7 Habits
The Success Principle
You Can Heal Your Life
The Master Key System

As I looked through the self-help books, these were the kinds of titles I saw. It strikes me that it is all about the title. Look beyond this, I can't really see why these people are qualified to tell me how to live my life. It's true that I am wondering that at the moment, but I believe more and more this lies in self-discovery, and not the messy kind.

I laughed as I saw that Donald Trump had a book out telling us how we could be rich. A man who comes from money... I think that's the general state of these people.

The Self-Help book industy must be worth a lot of money. Maybe our society, the 'Western' one, has been trained to believe that our lives need to be fixed. This is particularly apparent in the US if you watch things like Oprah or Dr Phil. People are lining up to talk about their problems and get solutions. A lot of times I wonder if these problems are really problems. And does anyone else need to know? Is it, in fact, a badge of honour to have a self-help book and show others that you are 'improving' yourself?

All I know is that I am taking a wide berth of that section of Borders from now on...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


DSC05078, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

My last post has me thinking a lot about where I am going.

The first thing I need to explain is that when I talked about 'payoff', I don't mean money. What I mean is more 'life satisfaction'. Family, I am happy with. Self, not so. That's why I am waiting for the 'payoff'. Something that, to paraphrase Jerry Maguire "completes me". The question is "should I wait? Should I actively seek it out?"

Yesterday, I went to the local bookshop to have a look at self help books. The image in my mind about said books is one of Dr Phil McGraw doing anything he can to show that by reading his crappy book your life will be perfect. As I scanned through the hundreds of books including Dr Phil's, I knew this was an image I wouldn't be able to shake. I just couldn't bring myself to even touch these books.

I even looked at philosophy books. For Aaron, I almost bought a Wittgenstein... Almost.

I will have to carry on my search...

Monday, March 10, 2008


DSC05077, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I was thinking a lot yesterday about 'why?'.

Given that I don't believe in an 'afterlife' I have to wonder what I am waiting for. I like to justify my existence for two reasons. One is my son. He needs me. Therefore I have a reason to exist. However I also need to make my own existence worthwhile. I don't need to validate my existence for others, but rather I need to justify this to myself. I thought about this a lot yesterday. I am not sure why. My life, as far as I am concerned, is lived for travel. It's the reason I turn up to my job everyday and do all the mundane things I do. I do these as I wait for the few weeks a year where I get to leave this island and experience somewhere else.

I am not sure whether I am articulating this well. Sometimes the thoughts I have up here (pointing to my head) work best up there I suppose. I was thinking about people who just sit at home on the computer all day. Living vicariously through their computer. People who maybe don't even work. How do they justify their existence. Do they even need to? I guess that's the real point. As long as you are happy with the way you are living, then it shouldn't matter what others think.

One feeling I thought about yesterday was this feeling of 'waiting'. Sometimes I feel like I am waiting for something to happen. What am I waiting for? Is it the ultimate job opportunity? Is it a lottery win? What is this thing I am waiting for? Do other people have this feeling too? Do I need to stop waiting and get out there and go to this thing?

I am a strong believer in time. That is, I feel that given time, things will happen. I guess the real question for me is, how much time should be given?

Does any of this make sense? Maybe not...

What is it I am waiting for?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Sparrow, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I had this idea to start writing a diary.

Why does one write a diary? I guess it's to talk to your inner self. It's a chance to reflect on what you are thinking in words. It seems to me that women are better at diaries than men. Is that just a sexist observation by me or is it true? I guess, if it is true, it is because women tend to be more in touch with themselves. I think that's a really good thing. If you become detatched from what and who you are then you can lose sight of where you need to be.

I started writing my diary and it really only lasted a few days. I just didn't want to talk to myself very much. I mean, I know what I am thinking anyway... Or do I?

When I was a kid I went on a round the world trip with my mum and sister. My friend gave me a travel diary to record where I went and what I saw. I can quote the contents of the diary word for word.

"Today we arrived in Japan"

After that I must have lost interest...

So I am going to try again. This time I am going to write to someone. I will impart the wealth of my knowledge to my son. Then on the second day I will write complete garbage instead. I hope my son appreciated what I will tell him

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Namdaemun - Seoul

Namdaemun - Seoul, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Namdaemun - Seoul, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Namdaemun - Seoul, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Namdaemun - Seoul, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I had some devastating news yesterday when I found out that this amazing gate, Namdaemun or Sungnemun, in downtown Seoul had been burned to the ground. This place has a special importance to me and is somewhere I seek out each time I return to Korea. It was 600 years old and was one of the few monuments in Seoul to survive Japanese occupation. It turns out that some freak deliberately lit the fire as he was embroiled in a land dispute. Not sure why that gives him the right to destroy a national treasure? Anyway, the news has me very sad...

These ancient monuments are our connection with the past. We should cherish them and protect them. When America was bombing Japan during WWII, academics from across the world demanded that Kyoto and Nara be spared. Thankfully the US Military listened and many amazing buildings were spared.

Without these connections to the past, our cities, our nations, would be colourless and dull. This is why Egypt is such a huge tourist draw. People want to feel apart of the past. To be with history. It is truly one of the joys of life.

Back in 2001, the Taliban of Afghanistan decided with their less than sterling intelligence that they would destroy the Bamyan Buddhas. These huge statues of Buddha carved into cliff walls had stood unmolested for 1500 years. It took only a month for them to be destroyed. This was the last straw for me. To me, this was a crime against humanity. This UNESCO listed treasure was something owned by us all. Yet a small bunch of people decided that they could go ahead and destroy this treasure.

When the US supported the Northern Alliance later on that year in the war against the Taliban I was fully behind this. The total lack of respect the Taliban had shown the people of Bamyan, and the people of the world was too much. I continue to support what is going on in Afghanistan.

It's kind of sad that rather than the outrage of human rights abuses, it was the destruction of ancient structures got me really mad. The way I see it, our lives are but a moment, when we are gone this is what we leave. We need these things to prove our humanity.

RIP Namdaemun

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sky Tower

Sky Tower, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

I'm always on the lookout to do something heroic.

As I walk down the street I look around imagining people in trouble who need my help. Perhaps the passing woman will have her handbag snatched and I will chase the perp (that's what we call them in the biz) down and kick his arse. Maybe that guy walking down that alley will be set upon by thugs and I will rush in and beat them down. Of course, none of that happens. Never does.

On Friday as I got off the bus, I saw a group of 'youths' hanging out at the bus stop who looked like they were up to no good. I started walking slowly looking over my shoulder to see what they would do. They didn't do a damn thing. I was dying to rush over and save someone from them. But I didn't get the chance.

A couple of brushes of actual heroism spring to mind. Both of them took place in Korea.

The first one was one night when I was walking my girlfriend home one night. As we walked through a district filled with bars and restaurants, I heard a scream. I looked towards the scream and saw a guy standing over a woman hitting her with an umbrella. People were standing around watching, but no one was doing anything. I ran over and yelled at him to stop. He swore at me and swung the umbrella at me. Being as drunk as he was, his swing was pathetic. Suddenly the girl sprang up and grabbed her boyfriend and told him to stop. A friend of his who had been watching came over and told me that I should leave. The girl didn't seem to be that happy that I had helped her and I left feeling that my intervening had been a waste of time.

The second time I was on a bus heading home for the afternoon. There was a lot of traffic as it was rush hour. The bus driver was trying to pull into a bus stop, but there was a car blocking it. The driver opened his door and yelled for the guy to move away. Quick as a flash the guy lept out of his car with a tire iron and climbed onto the bus. He started threatening the bus driver with it. He hurled abuse at him and it looked like something bad was going to go down. The bus driver was being all gung ho and yelling at him to go on and hit him. I looked around at the other people on the bus and everyone was trying to look the other way. I couldn't quite believe it. I lept up from my seat and ran over to the guy. I yelled as loud as I could for him to get of the damn bus! He looked at me for a second and then said 'ok' and got off... I couldn't quite believe what I had just done. He could have easily have clobbered me with that thing, but I think I caught him off guard. I went back to my seat and the bus moved off. I don't know what I was expecting from the driver, but when I got off the bus he didn't say anything and I felt quite hollow. Like my little piece of heroism had been for nothing. No appreciation.

I see in the movies that Spiderman has the same problem. No appreciation for the things he does to save the world.

What's my point? Heroism isn't all it's cracked up to be I guess...

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Tapapakanga Regional Park

Tapapakanga Regional Park, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

You act as though

You are a blind man who's crying

Crying `bout all the virgins that are dying

In your habitual dreams

You know, seems you need more sleep

But like a parrot in a flaming tree

I know, it's pretty hard to see

I'm beginning to wonder if it's time for a change

But still you try like a fat boy

Dancing Gershwin's blues

But you'd rather sit at home and watch the news

And I'm beginning to wonder if it's time for a change

I'm beginning to wonder if it's time for a change

Friday, February 01, 2008

Tawharanui Regional Park

Tawharanui Regional Park, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

If it's friday, it's time for another blog post.

I was watching some CI (Crime and Investigation Channel) last night and there was a show about cops in Britain dealing with drunk people. It was really scary to watch people out of control and it made me think a lot about things.

When I was younger I didn't really think about things like this. I didn't worry about being stabbed in the street or getting into a fight in a bar. I just didn't think it would happen. And probably for most people it doesn't.

Obviously NZ isn't like the UK when it comes to violence and drinking. (Why obviously? I don't know...) But we certainly have a really bad drinking culture. I don't know what it's like out there now. I have never really been into drinking at a bar, more into being with friends at home. I guess the idea of being with a bunch of strangers paying too much for a drink is just not what it's about.

But now I have a kid, I have started to think about things like this. One day things like this could happen to my son. He could get attacked in the street. He could be involved in a car crash. I never think these things could happen to me, but I think they could happen to him. How strange. I seem to be more aware of these things. I am not sure if this means that our society (meaning the world in general) is becoming worse; or if it's just that I have more to worry about.

I lean towards the idea that society, specifically developed nations, is becoming more unsafe. I think there seems to be a culture of disrespect to others growing. People don't seem to worry about others so much anymore. I wonder why that is?

As I write this, I realise that this may not make much sense. This is going to be a problem with my new blogging style. It may take some time to get into the swing of things.

Just remember to look at the purty pictures.

Tawharanui Regional Park

Tawharanui Regional Park, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Australia Day in the Viaduct

Australia Day in the Viaduct, originally uploaded by San Nakji.


What a stupid way to stop blogging again. So...

Everyday since I took my break from blogging I have been thinking about how to start again. I stated before that I wanted to take my blog back to where it started. I started with no photos and a lot of opinion. Somehow my blog slowly morphed into something else. Photos and no content. That's not where I want to be. That's not what this blog should be. I need it to be more me.

I was thinking about what I could start with. One thing that I have been dealing with a lot lately is religion. More precisely the lack of religion. I don't think it's a secret that I am an atheist. (I always spell this word wrongly!) My mother's side of the family is hard core brethren. They ostracised my grandmother when her husband left and told her that she would go to hell for some perceived wrongdoing that only they could see. Watching my grandmother racked with guilt every day of her life is not a pleasant thing. She has tried to make amends with her family, but there is always something between her and everyone else. Our family is the black sheep.

When I was a kid I decided I wanted to go to church with my first best friend. He was a baptist. The actual church thing held no interest for me. What I was really interested in was the activity books the kids got at Sunday school. They were great. You could do colouring in. Join the dots. Solve mazes. That's what I was in to. I can't remember ever thinking about why everyone was really there. I did ask a lot of questions. (nothing has changed) I asked so many difficult questions that the teacher asked my friend's parent to stop bringing me. So much for my dip in the waters of Christianity.

From an early age I was always impressed by Buddhism. Sometime in my late teens I decided that I would be Buddhist. I read a lot of books on the subject, visited temples. Did everything I thought I should do to be a Buddhist. However, I wasn't a Buddhist. I just couldn't believe in what Buddhists believe. It, like Christianity, didn't make any sense to me. What I really loved and still love today is ceremony. I love the old forms of Christianity the best for this very reason. Coptics, Orthodox and Catholic blow me away with their ceremony. That's what I love. It has nothing to do with the very heart of every religion. The belief in god, or gods.

I even thought about Islam for the briefest of times. Why? Because I thought it would be cool to go to Mecca.

So come university I had firmly decided that atheism was for me. I had no time to believe in god, because I wanted answers. I wanted to question. In my mind, you can only question religion so far before the answer is god. When that is the answer, then there is not enough proof for me.

In the past year I have received two books about atheism. One is The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins and the other is God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens. The God Delusion was the first I read and I have to tell you I couldn't finish it. It was extremely boring. I am currently reading the second book and while it is an easier read I just am not satisfied with it. I will tell you why.

I am comfortable in what I believe, or do not believe, as the case may be. I am not sure I need to read anything to tell me how I should defend my position or attack the position of others. That's what these books do. Much as many books written by religious people would put forward the position that their particular brand of religion was the best, so are these atheists, or probably more correctly, antitheists. I am comfortable in my decision and I am happy with others, many blogging friends of mine, who have come to different religious decisions in their own lives. Why do I need to attack them? I do not. They do not attack me or put me down. All is good.

Of course if the freedom to believe whatever I want is threatened or I am discriminated against on the basis of my choice of non-belief, then I will fight. So far, I have no need to fight.

For me, living in New Zealand has many annoying points. Sometimes I throw my arms in the air and just wish I were elsewhere, anywhere. One thing however that I am proud of is the fact that religion or what you believe is not an issue. Extremist religious groups exist of course, but they have no power. Our very own prime minister is an atheist, but that does not affect how people vote. It shouldn't. Her personal belief that there is no god is neither here nor there in the running of the country. One fringe Christian group tried to make it an issue, but it came to nothing. I was happy.

So that's where I am. My writing style is one of a flow of ideas with very little checking to see if it makes sense. I hope this does. I have thought a lot about this topic. I have been influenced by the people who comment on my blog. Many of them are Christian. I do not want to offend, but at the same time I want to be honest. I read their blogs and religion is an integral part of their lives. I admire this. I am not envious of it, I appreciate the differences. I hope you do too.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The End of ....

Thank you everyone for your support at this time of my blogging, or lack there of. I hope to get back into it soon. Just trying to figure what to write about. I need to visit all my supporters' blogs too! Thanks, Ori, Cergie, Amy, Friar, Buck, Ashley and everyone. You guys are great!

In the meantime, here is a video I just made with my new toy...

Aroha to all

San Nakji for President!

Monday, January 07, 2008

The Plan

Taranaki, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

So I have this new programme called Journler. It is basically a journal for the Mac. I have been writing thoughts in it and I plan to transfer those writings to my blog. I will experiment with this for a while and we shall see.

Thanks for your continued support!

San Nakji for President!

Friday, January 04, 2008

Happy New Year

Colours, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

Happy New Year to you all.

I have been thinking a bit about my blog and where it is going and I have come to the conclusion that I don't like what it has become. Therefore... I am going to make it multi layered. Photos for those who like photos and then I am actually going to blog with substance. Shocking I know, but I used to do that!

Stay tuned....

San Nakji for President!