“Calendars are for careful people, not passionate ones.” – Author Chuck Sigars
True story: I received the year’s first Christmas card from a public relations company two weeks ago. This was in October. The unassuming greeting card landed on my desk before the country had a chance to celebrate the Hindu festival of Deepavali, the Muslim pilgrimage featival of Hari Raya Haji, and my second-favourite holiday, Halloween. My occupied psyche didn’t welcome the generous glitter that accompanied the card’s message. The glitter came off the card onto my fingers, and is now happily, irretrievably embedded in my keyboard. The wording on the card seemed precious, affected and entirely out of place and mood in October, a month where everyone was scrambling for final quarter numbers, evaluating promotions and budgets, and frantically (and soullessly) planning year-end getaways.
You must be thinking: “What’s the fuss, Tommy? Why are you so effing hard to please? It’s a Christmas card, not a swarm of locusts. Read it, stick it on the wall, and get on with life.” I don’t deny the sensibility that comes with that argument. It’s all a matter of perspective. But the card-sender was definitely making a statement. The Christmas cards he sent to dozens of media editors, journalists and trade partners were — what I assume at least — something he had to check off a long to-do list of pleasantries. You know, send those cards off along now to beat the crowd, and skirt the additional charges of peak delivery season. So what if the card arrives two holidays early? It’s DONE. One less chore. The Christmas mood will eventually reach the receiver. (That, or the card was an extremely late holiday greeting that got lost in the mail 10 months ago, and was only recently retrieved by a hardworking Vietnamese immigrant who decided to clean behind the tables in the mail sorting room. I can’t be sure as the written message was pleasantly generic, vague, and the signature was dateless.)
Is that competent time-management? Or thoughtless efficiency?
Some things are worth investigating. Even though some say the $8 billion Marina Bay Sands resemble a bratwurst impaled by the tines of a giant fork, it has been celebrated as Southeast Asia’s hottest leisure, hospitality and retail destination. But casual visitors are clueless as to what — besides the gaming tables — lies within the cavernous halls of this architectural behemoth. Fortunately, the August Man team is curious enough to spend a week investigating every spectacular store to bring you the tasteful insiders’ guide to Marina Bay Sands, a place where, if you’re enjoying a drink at Ku De Ta and appreciating the vast skyline of one of Asia’s most successful countries, holds a mirror up to aspiration. Keep the guide. It’s meant for modern hedonists who lounge, dine, cruise and generally spend a small fortune in the name of pleasure.
Enjoy the issue.