Self Reflection

Grant me three wishes

Reference: A Little Bit Of This

A couple of nights ago, I hand wrote an apology letter to Albert. Then I went to Benny’s house at 8pm and asked him if he could help me hand deliver it to him because I had a feeling Albert would rip up my letter if I had mailed it to him.

Two days went by and today, just suddenly out of the blue, I wanted to call him and apologize immediately. So I scoured my old emails, phone books, online phone directories and other places, looking for old contact numbers since my old phone directory no longer exist because I switched phones some years ago. After a couple of panicky hours, I found a Canfor contact number for Edmund. At first, I didn’t want to use it because the email was from 2008. However, after I called Gabe’s number and found out it’s no longer his, I finally called Ed’s old work number.

My original thought was “What’s the chance he’s still working there today?” Then I snickered and thought “Well, it is Ed. He’s a pretty stable guy. If anything, he’s probably a manager there by now.”

Someone with an unfamiliar voice picked up and I said, “Is this Edmund Wong?” and the guy on the other side said “Yes.”

At that split moment, a massive relief came over me and I asked, “Do you know who this is?” and he responded, “Is that you, Lee!?”

To cut our two conversations short, I basically told him that I would like to get in touch with Albert and apologize to him. He thought it was great, but I asked him if he thinks Albert would forgive me and he said Albert has changed over the years and he’s a reasonable person. However, it’s not whether he is reasonable or not that got me worried, but more so whether he would find our fallen friendship to be worth going back to.

I once called him in mid 2011 when I was drunk and I left a message for him. As you can see, he never called me back. So there will be a huge possibility nothing will come of this.

I told Ed in my second call to him to get his cell number which again did not change, that I miss them a lot. I told him I did some soul searching and lots of reflecting over the last few years. I asked him to help promote the idea of reconciliation to him with me and he said he will give it a shot.

In my haste, I also Facebook messaged Jenny and apologized to her as well.

They did a lot for me over the years before we fell out. When Cindy and I broke up, Albert spent a lot of time with me. We biked together a lot. We went to many walks at night all over the cities. We talked for countless hours on various things. We shared tears and laughter. We yelled at each other. We played together.

The thing is though, this will be the last time I do this because if it didn’t work the first time and it won’t work this time, then I think it’s enough of a message to me that it’s just not going to work. I just wish I could personally give him the Stone Stamp I had made when I was in Hong Kong in 2010, a year after us falling out.

I remember that last night we stopped talking to each other, we all went to Kristina’s Cosmic Bowling event in Vancouver. I got pissed drunk and I went to the washroom with Albert. After I finished and was washing my hands, he said, “I’m going to go out. It stinks in here.” There was that awkward moment where I wasn’t fast enough to stop him because if I was a second quicker, I would have said, “Albert. I’m sorry.”

Instead, because of that, the days went by and my anger got the better of me and that was that.

So ladies and gents, let this be a lesson for all: taking things for granted is the number one most common mistake people make. Allowing pride to get the better of you is even worst. Great friendships are extremely hard to come by. Don’t fuck it up.


Additional comments…

Since I’ve gotten a couple of people tell me that it couldn’t have been my fault entirely, I’ll explain what happened from late 2008 to mid 2009.

1) Albert went to the hospital for appendicitis
When Jenny called me that evening, I was out at a restaurant with Patrick, Christine and Ryan. I expressed my worry, but told Jenny to keep me informed. What I should have done was go to the hospital to keep his worries down. I called the next day and Albert picked up. He was cool with me. At the time, I didn’t even think there was a problem until Albert told me Jenny was angry I didn’t go to the hospital. I spoke with my mom later and she told me that appendicitis is a common thing that normally have people do the surgery and stay overnight once.

However, in hindsight, I figured it would make sense that I went regardless because Albert would have done the same for me.

2. Forgetting Jenny’s birthday
Jenny treated me like a brother and we were all pretty close for a long time. However, in my eyes, I always considered Jenny an extension to Albert, even though I treated her like my sister. In my mind, I thought that birthdays and Christmas would be spent by themselves. So by taking this into perspective and also forgetting her birthday, combined with the fact I saw Ryan’s birthday on Facebook and then asked Albert and Jenny if they would come celebrate Ryan’s birthday, all hell broke loose.

In short: I was inconsiderate and insensitive to the whole timing of everything.

3. Lack of general support
I have developed a more neutral sense of fairness towards everyone regardless of their relationship status with me. However, in this fairness, I drowned up a fundamental fact of friendship: support coinciding their connection with me.

Over the roughly two years leading up to June 2009, I have time and again shown the lack of support and loyalty towards Albert. What I should have done was a) look pass my own self righteous sense of justice and b) remind myself what Albert and I have gone through together. When Jenny and Albert had relationship troubles, instead of siding with Jenny and pissing Albert off, I should have played a more passive role and become the support for BOTH Jenny and Albert. I was an idiot.


I think that pretty much summarizes it. Indeed, none of that had to do with murdering their families, stealing and running off with their hard earned savings, nor betray them in the worst way possible and then steal the throne right under their noses, but it’s still bad enough.

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7 years ago

Spongey read my post here and sent the following SMS:Ur closing remark in the blog… I think it takes two to tango. But right now at this moment for some reason ur taking all the blame for why ur relationship crumbled

Over three decades of lessons has taught me that playing the blame game gets people no where. It will just be a never ending cycle of grudges, anger, pride, stubbornness and hurt. I was hurting and angry for years. What did that get me? More anger and more hurt, constantly fueled with pride and stubbornness.

The last 2.5 years taught me to let go. Take a look at my grandma who passed away last year. She held a grudge that lasted over 40 years towards my grandpa. When he went back to Hong Kong, with no where to live, the kids forced him into the same living environment as my grandma. Day in and day out, they fought at their platinum age of 90+. In the end, my grandpa passed away in December, then my grandma passed away in January the following month. I’m sure she intends to take her grudge into the afterlife and continue hating her husband.

I don’t want to be like that. I hated Roger for a long long time because I thought he had betrayed me with the girl I fell for. He was petty, full of himself and deceitful. I hated him because he was worthy to be hated. At one time, I admired and respected him and because of those things, what he did made me hate him so much. If he was a stranger who betrayed me, then I wouldn’t be so hurt and angry.

With Albert, indeed, I didn’t commit capital crime nor did I do anything remotely close to what Roger did towards me, but I’m sure in his perspective, I was just as bad. Each individual have their own perception of things and feelings.

As time went on, I realized that there is no point in blaming him for the things that had happened. It is better to realize my own mistakes and to change myself first. If Albert and others in a similar counter situation refuse to see the good in their former friends changing themselves and try to make amends, then bluntly put, that is their problem and not mine.

In 2006, I wrote a letter to Virginia, telling her exactly what happened without all the bullshit fluff. I mailed it and never got a response from her, but the thing is, a huge ass burden lifted off my shoulders. I said what I wanted to say all those years and whether she read it or not, didn’t matter too much. Oddly, I had called her later that same year and we spoke and she told me she never received that letter, even though she still lived at the same place. I had a strong feeling her mom probably saw my name on the envelope and threw it away.

Nothing came of that. I was just curious.

So with Albert and Jenny, of course I would want to use this experience to regain a relationship with them, especially with Albert. It’s this experience amongst others with other people that make me want to make this decision. However, I know Albert or at least I knew him and when I knew him, I knew that he holds grudges as if they are Microsoft stocks and diamonds. He is also extremely stubborn and very prideful. So with that said, I am almost 100% sure he won’t respond to me and I am pretty sure that my text messages to him and my Facebook message to Jenny fell on deaf ears.

Maybe to them, it’s just not worth it. To me though, I still think it’s worth it because I consider it a hiccup. Just like my relationship with Amber. Three and a half years of hiccups coupled with the same amount of years of learning, experiencing and growing together regardless of the distance and obstacles. So I figured: “Why not with him and I?”

Well like I said, I already said what I could say to him and that’s that. In time, this will dissipate and life goes on. I just wish that there was someone in my life besides my great friends like you all and my wife that I can talk to about games, silly little things like oddities at work, sharing wine experiences, taking walks around the park at night, talking about everything without having so many ideological obstacles, etc, etc, etc.

For example, sometimes I buy a game, play it and think, “Oh my god! Albert would love this!” Then fantasize about him in my room wearing his white cap just talking about the game. Yeah, we’re in our mid 30’s but I feel like a kid when I talk to him sometimes and I need that.

Well that’s that then. I have so much freakin work to do and I have a Chinese New Year dinner coupled with a birthday dinner my parents planned for me tonight.

Brando Marlo
7 years ago

Seems like you had a great thing going here, but reading yourresponse post to Spongey, youshouldn’t put all the blame onyourself. Ittakes two to tangle and from what I have read about you in your history you aren’t a bad person. This seems like itwas never meant to be. I don’t know what you should do with the game tho. Iwould hold onto it as a memento of sorts.

Reply to  Brando Marlo
7 years ago

Actually, I didn’t put all the blame on myself. What I did was I reflected on the things I did or didn’t do and apologized for them. The purpose of me initiating all of this was to do two things:
1) To seek reconciliation.

2) To lift a burden off of me and be a better person. Note that I said “a better person”, in case people read that wrong and think I said “the better person”.

I played my hand and the ball is on his side of the court. If he refuses to pick it up and pass it back to me, then that’s that. That’s his problem.

Basically, I want my friends to know that I did what I wanted to do and in the end, it wasn’t me who had the problem, but it was them who held onto the grudge. Having experienced life’s ups and downs, I realized that holding onto grudges is one of the worst aspects of life. It’s something I refuse to do. That is why I reconciled with Roger, which is an entirely new story I will post about later.

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