Yesterday,I read some witty remarks by Dato Seri Najib , our deputy PM when he officiated the Chess Festival.May I qoute,"Once you have made your move, you will have to live with the consequences..".
I could not have added more wisdom to it but here is what I wrote on chess some eight years ago...
"Checkmate!,thanks for the game,Dad".Ok,that is enough for to-night.I lost 2 to 1 to my 9 year-old son in three sets of chess game.
To me,it is only a game-just a board game to pass the time.It started two years ago when I bought a plastic chess set for RM17.00 and taught my 7 years old son then how to play chess. We continue to play the games just for the fun of it.Now,everyone of us (three children and one adult) in our house play chess except my wife.After two years,my nine years old son plays better chess than the rest of us,most of the time.A recent friendly chess tournment organised by Putrade at PWTC really motivate him to take up chess seriously.
For the past three weeks I have been 'managing' him to a friendly chess tournment at PWTC.He plays against his peers and persons even three times his age and won a few sets of game against his peers and a 15 years old girl.These few victories encouraged him to learn more about the game and he even asked me to buy chess books.Hopefully,this interest in chess may inculculate a reading habit in him.To me personally,chess is ONLY just a game to enjoy and pass the time.But,not to my son and many other people.He plays hard to win and when he loses to someone,his face gets longer- some 14 inches long.Now,it is almost an obsession.May be this is familiar to my friends who play golf and willing to wake up very early in the morning just to tee-off at 7:05 am.
For the last three weeks,every day,I HAD to be his 'sparring' partner.In one way,chess is like golf-it is a personal challenge to some! On one hand,I am grateful that he enjoys the *mind* games-a game that makes him plans and thinks before making the next move,but on the other hand I have to be "father-in-waiting" at the chess tournment.Quietly,I pray that when he grows up,he will remember to apply the principle of playing chess,i.e plan and think before making any move,every time.At the same time, quietly,he told his mother that he would like to be a chess champion for Malaysia!I hope my prayers and his wish are answered one way or the other.
Planning and thinking are very important in our everyday life.Just ask ourselves how many times we told ourselves that we should have done this instead of that.As in the game of chess,our opponent moves are beyond our control,in the same manner as the external factors in our everyday life. Nothing is static-everything is changing.In the digital world of to-day,things or environments moves with the speed of of light,some 186,000miles/sec. As in the case of Alice in the Wonderland,she keeps asking where she is because her surrounding keeps on changing.Bill Gates has been asking where do you want to go to-day?Now ,he knows where he is-fighting DoJ in anti-trust laws. Our present economic situation is also another example telling us where,who and what we are to-day and what we have been doing before.This is a very valuable lesson that all of should learn.I believe,a lot of personal and national mistakes can be avoided if all of us plan and think ,at the same time know what and who we are before we make the move,any move all the time.
As fathers,we sometimes are quite selfish without realising that our children need our support and attention to pursue their own interests.We have time for our friends,but neglect the attention needed by our own family members.Most of us parent will go all out helping our children to attend tuition classes,so that they can get all A's.I think that is WE want,not what the kids want.They need to develop and enjoy their personal talents as well,not just academic performance. Sadly,I know only a few who will scarifice their golf session(as an example,no offence to golfers out there) to attend to their kids hobbies like playing piano, riding BMX bikes etc.
Looking back more than a decade ago
when I was an engineer at PWD,we did a lot of planning for our projects
implementation.As far as I can recall,I did not do much planning for myself.Most
of the time,our work on government projects override our personal needs.(Sound
fimilar to some of you who are still in PWD).I don't remember seeing anybody
sitting down using CPA(critical path analysis) or PERT(program evaluation
and review techniques) to plan their career,family financial needs etc.When
other people are successful,we say they are lucky.However, when we are
stagnant in our office or our company is not growing,we blame it on our
Just ask:Did we really plan and think how to be successful? If the answer is no (most likely to most people),then be rest assured that 'lucky' people are those that had planned and prepared when the opportunity knocks on their doors.
Well,chess is only just
but life is not.