Friday 1 September 2017

Difference Between Being Frugal And Miserly

In my family, I am considered the "frugal" one.

During my early days, I had to be careful with money due to low pay.

Imagine this.

At 16, I was earning $450 per month. Minus away 25% CPF contribution, and after giving mom 1/2 of my take home pay, there isn't much left, is there?

Yes, that was the "glorious" days of 25% employee and 25% employer contributions to CPF. Those who love voluntary CPF contributions must be foaming at the mouths now...


CPF contributions are great for those who earn more. I remember there were quite a few desparate workers at that time who "colluded" with their employers not to declare CPF.

These workers get 100% of their take home pay; while their employer "saved" on the 25% not contributed to CPF. (Don't follow OK? It's illegal)

Of course those of you who earned more will cry stupid!

Well, what do you think of those who don't earn more but voluntarily contribute to CPF today?

Back to my small means.

I remember there was a time where I will let aircon buses pass so I can take the next non-aircon bus - just to save that few cents...

And lunch at Orchard Road not cheap. Fast food was out of the question; too expensive. Thankfully, there was this staff canteen at Goodwood Park Hotel near Metro Orchard and that's where I took most of my meals.

Why am I sharing this?

Its to give you the context and perspective before I go poking at others.

And to show I've been there, done it too.

A frugal person loves to spend less on himself; but when it comes to people that matter, he does not mind spending money on them.

A miser will not spend money on himself and others.

And yes, I stay away from miserly people. They are no fun. Especially on overseas trips!

Girls, trust what your mother says, "Don't marry a miser!"

Don't believe a word he says its because he wants to achieve financial freedom or independence earlier (for the both of you)...

What's the point if he's not going to spend a single cent from his millions on you? 


  1. Not easy to differentiate between frugal and miser. Any quick test kit?

    1. CW,

      I thought I've been quite crystal.

      Buy me a drink; you frugal.

      Never buy me a drink, you miser!


    2. Hahahaha, I laughed until I nearly feel off my chair. You were basically saying: "look in the mirror", but in a more eloquent way. Lololol.

    3. Laurece,

      CW and I go way back. We like to push each other's button like housewives buying fish.

      Poke, poke.

      I've been caught with my pants down at my ankles by CW. That's how I improve.

      Steel gets stronger between the poundings of hammer and anvil ;)

      If you caught me taking rubbish, must poke me OK!?

  2. SMOL,

    A man of wisom and insight. Uou are the role model with deep zen.



    1. Ben,

      Paiseh. Its just that I've eaten more "salt" during my 50 years on Earth ;)

      I do enjoy Zen.

      Love to "mind-fxxx" myself :)

    2. SMOL,

      I believe that you have built yourself a frugal character after half a century of salt taking. That's a magnificent feat of avoiding the "miser" path. Your employment with Ikea as well as other companies in overseas also played a major part in shaping your character.

      Kudos to you.


    3. Ben,

      I now working on minimalism.

      Not because its "fashionable" or to save money; but I've noticed there are books and clothes I've never read or wore for the past 24 months!?

      Got 3 more years to "let it go" before my flat comes.

      I got too much stuffs!

  3. On second thought; at your 16 you were more like being poor rather than frugal.

    1. CW,

      Wow! Call me poor?


      Lucky you and I have a "relationship"; I understand what you mean.

      Don't say this to people you don't know well.

      Most people would rather be called "frugal" than to be called "poor"...


      Being a miser is a desease of the mind. You don't change even when become rich.

      I've served my share of rich but miserly customers. They make the encounter as unpleasant as possible.

      Sometimes I don't even want to do the sale. Especially now that I don't need the sale. I can walk away.

      I prefer to serve ladies and gentlemen.

      Misers have no friends; think everyone after their money.

      Frgual people have no problem giving to charities and helping people they hardly knew. They are people persons :)

    2. SMOL,

      This is the essence of financial independence. One works because he/she wants to do so and not need to so so.

      I believe that you must be enjoying your part-time work with the "want to" option and mindset.


    3. Ben,

      I do look forward to my weekend gig ;)

      With the "right" customers, I'll do my song and dance routine. Make the mei-meis and jie-jies laugh.

      Sometimes lucky can meet investors buying home appliances for their rentail properties.

      I never pass on the chance to get first hand information on their experiences!

      From the mix of appliance purchases for new homes versus replacements for existing homes, I can get a feel of the property market and consumer durable sales situation in Singapore.

      On the selling floor research a la Peter Lynch ;)

    4. Quote: With the "right" customers, I'll do my song and dance routine. Make the mei-meis and jie-jies laugh.

      This reminds me of Kit-Kat's Panda advertisement. Lol.

    5. Laurence,

      LOL! Triple confirm we belong to the same generation ;)

      Thanks for the walk down memory lane!

  4. This reminds me of my stint as a sales promoter at SOGO! Worked from 10am to 7pm selling 'handy hangers' for $24 a day with measly sales commission. I know what you mean. Fast food was too atas. I remember my reluctance to go for breaks cos that would mean potentially missing out on sales. :(

    I also worked a few months as a hawker assistant. I mean every day, not just my usual weekend gig. My mum paid me $10 on weekday and $15 on weekend for a half day job. I would leave the house at 6.20am and finish work around 2.30pm. Lui pai tan!

    Then I discovered that I could make more money giving tuition and did that to support myself. Subsequently, I held a sales job in the day and gave tuition at night when I started working. That's double engine for income growth mah!

    Guess what happened to the money? It went into the stock market. Plunged headlong into CLOB shares with the promise of a quick buck. Came out bloody and broke. LOL.

    Life is indeed an adventure. And what's money? Just a means to an end. I bought adventure and lessons with the money lost and now buy happiness with the money earned and future financial security with the money invested. Possible to be frugal and hedonistic at the same time? :P

    1. Endrene,

      You can study; I can't.

      Yet we both are beneficiaries of Singapore's meritocracy system ;)

      Maybe luck, maybe its in our genes, or perhaps karma or destiny - who knows!?

      We had some adventure, didn't we?

      Being frugal on ourselves is OK. But do buy that new iPhone or Xbox for your hubby - and see the joy in his eyes!

      And if he golfs, buying him that new set of golf clubs will put him in ecstasy land!

      But good luck trying to "train" him to buy that pair of Jimmy Choo for you!

      He not stingy; men are just clueless on buying gifts.

      That's why we rather give you that supplement credit card ;)

    2. I'm not too sure if I would buy into the story of meritocracy. Some folks are born more equal than others. Any small successes I have, I attribute it to my mum. If she had the opportunities that I have, I'm pretty sure her achievements would well overshadow mine. Am always grateful to her for imbuing in us the importance of grit and playing our best hand despite the cards we are dealt. In this way, the 'meritocratic' system worked for me. ;)

      Heng I'm just as clueless as my hubby about Jimmy Choos! If I can pay $55 for a pair of $360 Raoul shoes when on sale, why should I fork out more than $1000 for something of similar quality? I'm hedonistic in a frugal way. LOL. Anyway, I don't celebrate anniversaries and birthdays. So nobody has to waste time cracking their head what to buy for me. And I have 'amassed' a truckload of things to last me half a lifetime oredi. :P

      You know what? My hubby is exactly what you described in this post. He never bats an eyelid spending money on me and my boys. New handphone? He's only excited about buying it for me! Haha.

      You have a great day at work. Hope no miserly customer for you today! :D

    3. Endrene,

      You got a good catch girl! Hug him thight thight tonight ;)

      Of course no one is born equal.

      But in Singapore, there are a few professions like sales, entrepreneurship, trading, investing, speculation, gambling where its pure meritocracy - no one cares about our academic qualifications or family backgrounds.

      2 persons walk into the thunderdrome; one gets out.

      I consider that meritocracy ;)

    4. Wait till you lose your sales to that long legged mei mei in tight skirt with pouty lips who is selling the same car/insurance (and what not that you are also selling)! ROFL.

      And when you are betting not against the bloke next to you but with the dealer. :P

      Nevermind, somewhere fate will have 'meritocracy' play out the way it should. Nothing we do or not do will change the course of life the way it is meant no matter how much we may love to think we have a hand in it. ;)

    5. Endrene,

      I don't have to outrun the bear, just the clueless bloke beside me ;)

      Meritocracy is not being no.1 all the time.

      If I'm beaten by a better man or woman, I'll bend the knees. I make a good sellsword ;)

      That's why after a while, we learn to be shepherds - leverage on other people's time/talent. Eh? I sound like MLM? LOL!

      That mei-mei in tight skirts? I'll be her pimp. And I'll recruit more like her in my harlem and collect the overriding commissions ;)

      Land owners always lament good shepherds are hard to find. Good shepherds are easily poached by other land owners, or they will aspire to become land owners themselves.

      Idiot! Why did I become a cat now?


  5. Hi SMOL,

    I like this quote that you shared "A frugal person loves to spend less on himself; but when it comes to people that matter, he does not mind spending money on them."

    Reminds me of these two quotes:

    "Those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind"

    as well as:

    "We buy things we don't need with money we don't have to impress people we don't like"

    1. Unintelligent Nerd,

      A few weeks ago, there was this discussion whether we should wear fake luxury pieces to impress others and arouse jealousy in others - just for the fun of it!?

      Being a miser is bad enough. But a miser with an ostentatious hole in his heart?

      Too cheap even to buy the real stuffs to show off???

      It does not take much to bring a smile to strangers. Just look at what the fisherman has done by buying coffee and bread for the auntie in the washroom.

      If we can treat strangers nice, what more to say about people that mattered to us?

    2. Hi SMOL,

      I'm not a bleeding heart. I'm generous to my loved ones, good friends, and those who deserve it. Like what Temperament shared on CW's blog, must see the person's attitude first.

      Oops, later I get hunted for saying such politically incorrect stuff!

    3. Unintelligent Nerd,

      Sometimes I would buy drinks for a select few promoters during the weekends.

      Some clowns will comment why I never buy for them? I just smile.

      I'm not the type where buy must buy for EVERYONE to avoid upsetting "others".

      The most demoralising company I've worked in is where they treated everyone "equal" - even the low performers. I quickly leave such companies.

      I much prefer companies where if we perform, we get rewarded over and above the "others" ;)

      If people can't see the difference I treat people that mattered to me, what's the point again?


    4. Hi SMOL,

      Tell me about it! Heng my bosses reward their subordinates based on performance.

      On a similar topic, I think I managed to plug the hole in my heart liao. I'm starting to admire the sons and daughters of elites in my field. Though born to wealth and having connections and privileges, quite a few of them have strong work ethic and a positive attitude in the face of challenges.

      Compare the above to my current colleagues who love to skive, cheat the company, and behave in an entitled manner. I assist whenever I could afford to do so, but their shitty attitude made me less and less inclined to help them.

      Some may call me arrogant and elitist, but their ungratefulness and negative attitude really make me think that I'm casting pearls before swines.

      I'll gladly help some of the elite princes and princesses though. They are teachable, unassuming, polite, respectful, and positive individuals who are fun to be with!

    5. Unintelligent Nerd,

      Only we can 把心安好 our own hole in the heart.

      We can't choose our parents and relatives; we can choose who we want to associate with in life.

      Glad you can see people beyond "labels". Just like wedding photos, its better to be a bit "soft focus" than so "precision sharp" as to see every pimple and wart ;)

  6. Something I observed in the investment and financial blogophere on reading blog posts; few frugal bloggers expressed their joy when receiving free gifts.

    Gifts made people smile!

    1. CW,


      That's why we give gifts to the women in our lives ;)

      And the reason why I wrote the blog post on:

      TIP - To Insure Performance

      Think when was the last time we gave anything to a miser we knew?


  7. Smol,

    Frugal is better than miserly, but how about being generous to yourself and others. Maybe that is a spendthrift.

    My bad, I asking too much

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      That would make one a HAPPY person :)

      Provided the "others" meant people that mattered to you.

      If not, generous to everyone and anyone meant you are looking to "buy" affection and friendship. It's a hole in the heart thing...

      Don't spend time seeking affirmation from others. Listen to your heart.

      If you do something and that makes you happy, why worry when others call you "spendthrift"?

      If you never spend money on yourself and others, and that gives you pleasure, why should you care when a man-whore like me pokes you for being a miser?

      Be happy (without causing harm to others).

    2. Hi SMOL,

      Life is short. Be happy always. No matter one is happy or sad, the day still passes.

      One can choose to be happy or say. Regardless of all various circumstances, it is more worthwhile to be happy.


    3. Ben,

      Yes, I choose to be HAPPY :)

      (Easy to say... That took years to figure out by staring at the ceiling...)

    4. SMOL,

      You may have discovered some form of deep insights by staring at the ceiling. The Zen Grandmaster indeed!


    5. SMOL,
      Looks like we could be connected on a same frequency just like hit K-Drama detective series "Signal". Two comments you wrote above sync with two messages that I Whatsapped to a few friends. And I think both messages would feel at home here on this thread.

      Quote SMOL@09:35 : "Don't spend time seeking affirmation from others. Listen to your heart."

      My Whatsapp:
      Out of nowhere, suddenly this poem came to my mind:
      Am I homesick?
      But where is home?
      Found my answer.
      So East meets West and therein lies the answer. The western idiom states: Home Is Where The Heart Is.
      So I must go with my heart.

      Quote SMOL@11:17: "Yes, I choose to be HAPPY :)"

      My Whatsapp:
      In this world, no one loves us more than we love ourselves. And no want wants us to be happy more than we want ourselves to be happy. Hoping others to love us more than they love themselves, and want us to be happy more than they want themselves to be hapoy is akin to visiting a casino hoping to get a Royal Flush with every bet.

    6. Ben,

      I wish!

      If I Zen grandmaster I would start my own prosperity cult! Some temples and monks one look already so crytal they embrace materialism...

      I'm just naughty.

      Like to throw stones ;)

    7. Laurence,


      You working abroad too!

      Yes, follow you heart :)

      Long long time ago, I shared the similar sentiments like you:

      Going Home 


    8. temperament,

      I'll sing for kopi!

      What you want to listen?

      I do England, China, Hokkien songs. Cantonese boleh but you'll fall off your chair laughing at my pronounciation...


      Cheh! You didn't mean my singing :(



      We got a few man of leisures here. Why don't we start a poetry club? You know? Pretend, pretend to tell stories over kopi?

      But what we really do is to flirt with beer promoter mei-meis ;)


      Is that a good cover? We can even hop to Batam or Bangkok for our "poetry retreat"!

  8. Hi SMOL,

    I think I started off being a miser. But when my bank account grew, I also grew more and more generous. I also had the fortune to meet a few friends honest enough to kok my head when I do stupid things. That, I'm forever grateful for.

    I have another definition to distinguish miserly and frugality. A miser puts money above all else, whereas a frugal person efficient allocation of resources above all else. Hence, a frugal person will compare spending 2 hrs to save $50, and choose to save the 2hrs if his time is worth more than 25/hr. But a miserly person will just save the $50 and spend 2 hrs.

    1. LP,

      That's the beauty of having friends that mattered right?

      Those who never think twice about "koking" our heads!


      Yup, penny wise pound foolish. Time is the only "wealth" we can never recover if we lose it...

      I've got customers who come to the store I've worked in 5 to 6 times still cannot make buying decision!?

      And that's not counting visits to other competitor retailers!

      All for a home appliance that cost around $500?

      I mean even if they saved $100, after minus the man-hours wasted... I'm not sure its really worth it?

      I'm pretty sure these are the same "misers" who will only spend 5 minutes on their stock picks and wonder why their portfolios in the red with STI above 3200!

      Humans are most irrational :)

  9. As we get older, we tend to be more sentimental.


    1. Ben and temperament,

      I like women, tight skirts, stockings, and heels.


      You guys not sharing our fetishes, are you?



  10. Life is amazing. Enjoy the journey. The logic of a miser or frugal person continues.


    1. Ben,

      Life is indeed amazing!

      So many things to mind-fuxx myself with...

      I am alive; plants are alive.

      I have consciousness; do plants have consciousness too?



  11. temperament,

    Well, some cultures still try to bring it with them when they go...

    As a single, my resolve is not to die in my flat alone only to have my body discovered weeks later...

    That's sad.

    How? I got incentive to flirt with jie-jies to get them to live-in-sin with me?

    Yes, still "frisky" even in my 80s?


  12. SMOL,

    All living things have consciousness.


    1. Ben,


      You are standing on thin ice... But I like the way you it out loud without batting an eyelash. LOL!

      What you say is not backed up by science ;)

      And those religious people who believe in life AFTER death will have problem with you ;)

    2. SMOL,

      You can't blame your readers. It's movies such as Avatar that sold audiences the idea of Pandora, where all living things there have consciousness and are all inter-connected to a biological neural network.

      Anyway, as I mentioned in an earlier comment, we both seem to be on a same frequency. Below is part of a Whatsapp message I sent to friends a few days ago (which another part of that I had posted on CW's comment box yesterday). This is yet another short part of that extremely long original Whatsapp message:

      Seems some old parents hope their continuous spoon-feeding of their grownup children, including bestowing financial legacy upon leaving this world would reward them with a happy afterlife where they continue to see their kids and grandchildren continuously pray to them. The sad truth is --- the latter hardly happens nowadays. Offsprings will cry a little during the wake and funeral. But when only ashes remain, they will all go back to their life like nothing had happened. If they bother to do more, it's all about wrangling and paperwork to get hold of the assets left behind. Praying and burning joss paper and whatnots? Most people don't bother nowadays. Offsprings with different religion will say they can't hold joss sticks nor burn joss paper. Many will not perform any of the rites and ceremonies that's different from their religion. In any case, most children will have all sorts of good excuses not to attend any prayer session henceforth.
      As for myself, I don't even believe in Afterlife. If there's a phrase that fits me when I die, its "Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, The End, Fullstop".

      My views above are what I witnessed multiple times, so they are not my hallucinations. So please don't send me to IMH. Thank you.

    3. temperament,

      I'll share this quote I learnt from Dale Carnegie's book "How to Stop Worrying and Start Living":

      For every ailment under the sun, there is a remedy, or there is none.

      If there be one, try to find it; if there be none, never mind it.

      I was reading self-help books during secondary school!?

      Guess it was better than reading financial freedom books ;)

      Without discovering and developing the "Self" or "Mind" part first, how to outrun the hunter beside you?


    4. Laurence,

      If people throw stones at you, please don't tell them you know me ;)


      Consciousness is a big subject of interest since the beginning of men.

      Religions, metaphysics, and science have all tried their hand in coming up with an explanation.

      Yes, I saw what you wrote at CW's blog.

      There is a reason why wealth do not pass beyond 3 generations... I think I'll stop at that ;)

  13. A free thinker is the best. No restriction at all.

    Free thought with no restriction.


    1. Ben,

      I know theist, atheist, and agnostic.

      Yes, thinking is free. (Misers would love free!)

      Yet there are people who prefer to pay others to do the "thinking" for them... (Great for those who don't want to take responsibility)

      Which is better?

      Don't look at me!

      P.S. Here's a free Zen combat poke if you are game for hammer and anvil:

      The phrase - we are limited by our own thinking. What do you say to this?

  14. Quote: The phrase - we are limited by our own thinking. What do you say to this? Unquote

    答案远在天边, 近在眼前 :

    SMOL@ 18 Aug 2017: OVERTHINKING will destroy your mood. Breath and let it go.

    CW8888@ 5 Sep 2017: Less analyzing. More Investing.


    (having problem clicking the correct Reply tag.)

    1. Laurence,

      I don't call it mind-fxxxing myself for nothing!


  15. SMOL,

    It's all in the mind. Remove the limitations and one will soar freely into the sky.

    Adopt the open-minded approach. Accept changes and the only constant is change.

    One will soon reach another realm of "Zen" and the "Dao" is limitless.


  16. Hi Smol and all,

    Since we are at the morbid discussion of life and perhaps afterlife and funerals. I have this "IMH" calibre thoughts too.

    I think it's important to live the best possible life however one define it when our loved ones is alive. I just told my wife that all funeral rituals are more for the living than for the dead. If there is indeed such a thing as after-life, whatever one has done or not done is already the karmic forces that lead to wherever.

    The ritual is to calm the living, and perhaps console them. Why wait till someone pass away than keep crying and praying ? I am fine with the prayers etc, but if "forced to" attend due to elderly pressures or societial expectations, what use is there?

    I would rather my son thinks of me as and when he likes it

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      I did discuss with my Buddhist teacher regarding all these "rites and rituals" and was pleasantly surprised she agreed they were "meritless".

      Reminded me of that conversation betwee Damo and King of Wei...

      One of my neighbour is a "fake" monk. A guess he is one of those "chanters" in funeral rites... All he needed was to put on a monk's robe...

      How is this possible?

      Well, if "clients" just wants a "show" and have only a superfiicial understanding of Buddhism, then a "cosplay" show is what they'll get.

      You are not "IMH".

      I do the samw with labels like "Blue-Chips", "Defensive", "Passive", etc.

      Everyone says the Emperor's clothes very nice... I ask, "Got shadow or not?"


    2. Since "IMH" seems to be the flavour of the week here, I shall copy my comment in AK's blog here as well. Apparently, what we see is always what we imagine:

      According to our IMH: "A person who experiences five or more of these symptoms for more than two weeks may have a depressive illness". Clearly, Fatty Kim is an ideal candidate to check into Hotel IMH:

      Persistent sadness; or feeling down or gloomy (Fatty Kim persistently warns of doom and gloom tot he world)

      A loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed (Fatty Kim abandoned *** and now enjoys long, sharp objects..... I mean... missiles)

      Weight loss or weight gain; or decrease or increase in appetite (Fatty Kim is getting fatter by the day)

      Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep; or sleeping excessively (Fatty Kim spends all his time awake to build more missiles)

      Feeling agitated or restless (Fatty Kim constantly feel agitated and restless with the US)

      Feeling tired and lacking the energy

      Feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt

      Difficulty concentrating or having trouble thinking

      Frequent thoughts of death or suicide (Fatty Kim wants death for those who oppose him)

    3. Laurence,

      Can't say I blame him...

      Once upon a time, there were quite a few people who showed the "finger" to Uncle Sam.

      The Taleban got removed Afganistan, Sadam in Iraq, and Gaddafi in Libya. Assad hanging on by the skin of his teeth thanks to help from Russia.

      Only Iran is still standing tall thanks to...

      I would be paranoid too if I were Fatty Kim :(

    4. SMOL,

      Exactly why my message above is to show what we see is what we imagine based on our own perceptions. Some of us may see Kim as mad, but to him the ones who are mad are the rest of us living and existing the way we live and exist. Our visions and assessments almost always (maybe it's always always) skew towards what we want and what benefits ourselves.

    5. Laurence,

      Yup. I am of the belief that the majority of those "know-it-all Indian Chiefs" who like to exalt others to "invest" for retirement are the very ones who may wish they had never "invested" in the first place in time to come...

      There is a time and place for everything.

      Maybe the "fools" are the ones who are always thinking about accumulating more money than we can bring with us ;)

  17. Smol,

    Meritless is a surprise to me too! The sculpture did talk about passing merits to help people "get out"'of health.

    I guess it possible to pass merit, but not through rituals.

    Glad your answer is on the same freq. I ask the monk (real), know his temple and origin, who help with my mum chanting, very subtly. If we can pass merit through rituals, wouldn't we also be able to destroy other merits through "dark" rituals??

    Doesn't seem to gel with concept of karma with me.

    Well, his answer is correct but didn't answer directly.

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      Karma is karma.

      Another one is 放生. You capture animals from the wild and "release" them back for "merit"? Don't get bad karma already lucky!

      Like what you've said, its all for "show".

      Same for columbarium. Attas ones got air-con, face the Buddha, good location pay more; etc. Die already still got 分别心? For the dead or for the living?

      But then, without bei kambing lay Buddhists, who will pay for the upkeep of the temples?

      Very interesting to study the "monetising methods" of various religous organisations ;)

  18. SMOL,

    My personal take is that one should take life with ease. Don't harm others and let nature take its course. Stay true to own belief and do kind things. Cherish the moments and enjoy the beauty in the life journey.


    1. Ben,

      Relative to the 4.5 billion years of planet Earth, everything is just a blink of an eye.

      Since I've won the "ovarian lottery" to bear witness to this epoch, I'm not going to let it go to waste ;)

      Cherish this beautiful journey indeed!

    2. SMOL,

      Well said. We are the champion at lease once right from the start. If not, we won't be giving comments at this very moment.



  19. Hi smol

    Just my thinking... i might be wrong...

    I always think that 放生 is not good. Is like the people keep catching the birds then sell to people for 放生.
    Then the birds being catch again to sell for 放生... is like a cycle... so i dont really encourage people to do that...
    Some sacrifice will need to for the group of birds that already catched & still inside the cage... this group is the sacrifices 1... hope this group will get good karma from 菩萨 after they RIP...

    But some people because of certain pain they face, they desperate & listen or follow to some shifu suggestion to buy birds for 放生 ... is like a relieve for them & they feel better then is good for themselve cos they feel better after do this...

    I feel myself a bit 矛盾 here... to be good to the person themselve or to those birds... sigh

    What my own understand the meaning for 放生 for example like if 1 day i encounter a animal being trap or catch then do a small help to let them go then is a meaningful 放生... but if the people catch the birds to serve as their food then i feel bad myself... to 放生 or not bcos the people mighy be starving bcos of no food for them...

    A very difficult decision here... sigh

    1. 放生?

      May be 放生 birds is not good idea as these caged birds may have their wings trim off and can't fly far away. These birds will be caught again.

      If really must 放生; go to those kelongs and 放生 farmed fish.

      These 放生 fish may have chance of never being caught!

    2. Buy large Groupers and 放生. By nature; large groupers will hide in undersea rock and high chance of survival. But high cost to 放生!

    3. sy sy,

      Just speak your mind here. We poke a lot here, but we are gentle people with some flowers in our hair ;)

      I don't understand this "does not make sense" 放生 practice.

      My Buddhist teacher is not endorsing it either.

      Cigarettes are bad for us; big daddy knows it. But cannot ban them outright (got heavy political costs), so they came up with lots of measures to "discourage" smoking.

      Similarly, that's what some Buddhists temples are doing...

      They are also "discouraging" and "educating" the bei kambing "Buddhists" to reduce the excessive burning of incense papers and offerings during the Buddhist festivals ;)

      Many bei kambing "Buddhists" are mixing up folklore Taoism practices with Buddhist rituals...

      Typical Singaporeans, we like to "rojak" everything like Singlish!

    4. CW,

      Anyone who understand the law of cause and effect, karma, and not causing suffering to others would know whether 放生 makes sense or not.

      Its like the concept of Limbo in Christianity.

      Both the Eastern Orthodox Christians and Protestants share one view, while the Catholics think otherwise.

      I just felt its an unnecessary "suffering" to parents with infants who died before they were baptised...

  20. temperament,

    Its evident you are not a Catholic ;)

    Yes, its very applicable to investment too. I often challenge my own thesis and/or the "holy principles" of my trading school.

    For example, trend traders like to use systematic entry methods which I find most at odds with my intellect.

    Hence my preference for discretionary entries. But for exits, I use stop-orders - which is a nod to the systematic school - for I don't trust myself when it comes to exits ;)

    In the investment/trading arena, off-the-rack is not my style. I prefer bespoke :)

  21. Hi SMOL,
    I would have thought frugal is willing to buy necessities and saving when there's opportunity to save.

    Whereas miserly is rather, trying to save even when buying necessities.

    Like, my child running a high fever, already 4 days, I still don't want to bring him see doctor. = miser
    If child running light fever, 36-37 degrees, now only 2nd day, I think, maybe one more day see if kid gets better first then see doctor.=frugal

    Or shoe already spoil. got holes liao. still not willing to replace = miser.
    Shoe is fairly worn out, already quite unpresentable. time to change = frugal enough.

    So i think not necessarily about spending on oneself or others. but rather, if need to spend, then spend. if can save then save is frugal.

    if everything also want to save, even stuff which are important also want to save, then i think is miserly.

    And ... love this comment. "Don't marry a miser!"
    Have seen it first hand.

    1. Early Retirement SG,

      Hey! Welcome to this watering-hole!

      Of course we can have our own interpretations of what is frugal and miserly :)

      I am NOT the Indian Chief ;)

      I am very people-centric.

      No one would call themselves "miserly".

      We would rather be called frugal, thrifty, smart with our money, etc.

      What we do to ourselves - by whatever "labels" - no one would give a damn.

      Its when we start to "influence", "educate", "guilt" others to follow us - now that's when others CARE and start using the MISERLY label ;)

      Love your examples!

      When we sick, do that to ourselves, who cares? Do that to your child... If I'm your neighbour, I'll call socal services or the police. Yeah, it borders on criminal neglect!

      A frugal husband will not interfere with his wife's purchases. Especially if the wife is spending her own money.

      A miser treats his wife's money as his own. Guilts and nags her all the time on little things that bring us pleasure. What's worst than a miser? A man that nags!!!

      Let's be honest. We would count ourselves lucky to get a frugal wife.

      But when its a miserly wife... We can't even drown our sorrows in beer...

      Wife said if we "saved" one beer a day, multiply by 30 years, we would have saved a big hill!

      As we offer our "condolences" to this friend, our hearts inside go, "Heng ah! My wife not like that!"


    2. Happy are those who survives after the miser.

    3. temperament,

      Trust a "bo-tak-cheh" to know misery comes from the word miser ;)

      No, a miser is not a miserable person. He/she is often very pleased with himself/herself. Giggle themselves to sleep knowing they just saved 20 cents by going to the toilet at McDonald's.

      A miser is the one who gives "misery" to their close ones :(

    4. CW,

      That's probably the only saving grace for a miser.

      What do long suffering love ones do when they inherit the "giant hills" of the miser?

      Spend it on wine, women, and song!


      Now that's what I call a good ending :)

    5. Ah that's true,
      no one calls themselves a miser. they always call themselves frugal, that's why the word miser always comes from others. Cos it affects others.
      no one would care if i suffer myself, but when I make others suffer, others would judge me. and yet "suffer" is relative to whoever is seeing it.

      maybe the chinese businessman already buy the wife 20 hermes liao. but she want another 10 more, so she complains he is a miser. cos her view is that another 10 more is nothing in relation to the millions that he has. whereas to him it is, you have 20 liao, need another 10 for what.

      LOL ya your blog really watering hole. So many ppl tcss.

    6. Early Retirement SG,

      Monitor markets very stress mah...

      So people come here to relax and shoot the breeze. Plus can talk "male chickehn" and sing song leh!

      Wow! You recently quite prolific! One post a day!?


  22. temperament,

    No choice. Sunk cost and "invested" too much oredi.

    Leave this miser now would benefit the next bitch gold digger.

    So bear with it lor!

    Pray the old miser can go "up lorry" sooner?

    I so bad!


  23. Wife always feel I am a miser. Last take expenses in 2019 is around 140k .... . Do you have a SOS help line for frugal me ..... 😭

    1. Cory,

      Ever consider having a mistress?

      That's will solve your "frugal" ways...


      You want powderful car, you want to save petrol, you want headlights big, big...

      Car "eat oil heavy heavy"?

      Switch to diesel or electric?



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