Enlightenment of Mangkhut | Hong Kong Spirit

by Mary Ann Mok ( Mui & Cowboy Mum )

Video/photo courtesy of Cheung Chau Windsurfing Centre, Chan King Yin, David Cheung, Kevin Tam, Kit Man, Lau B, Shek O Bill & Uncle Black


Since typhoon Hato and Parker hit Hong Kong last year, this year’s strong typhoon Mangkhut has once again raged Hong Kong, and the destructive power is more severe than once. Fortunately, there were no fatal cases during the typhoon and most of the facilities in the area are still in good condition. However, while we are lucky to have escaped from this disaster, have we thought about how to resist the upcoming super strong typhoon and cope with the rapidly changing world?


Photo credit: David Cheung & Uncle Black

The destructive power of strong typhoon Mangkhut was even more powerful than typhoon Hato of last year. Picture shows the road to the heliport at Cheung Chau was destroyed completely.


Photo credit: Shek O Bill

Strong typhoon Mangkhut was the most intense storm to hit Hong Kong since record began, whipping up floodwaters to their highest levels since 1904, according to local meteorologists. Picture shows unprecedented storm surges at Shek O Beach.


Perhaps we are all aware that Hong Kong people are becoming less creative, and its competitiveness is getting weaker than before. Sometimes one may be a bit down to think that gone are the glamorous days. In resentment, efforts are not directly proportional to the return, everyone is entangled in the subsistence of living. It is understandable that why Hong Kong people are losing their spirit under all sorts of social discontent.


But as long as we accept the fact that all changes cannot be made in a day and change our mindset, life is not that dim. We must first learn to get rid of the negative thinking, adhere to our own beliefs and keep our passion. No matter how many setbacks and frustrations we encounter, we must keep our belief that “perseverance” and “time” will enable us to achieve our goals/ideal step by step.


If the founder of GoGoVan did not discard the negative thinking and have trust in the saying that “one’s life should not be tied down by the bricks (property)” then Hong Kong people will not be able to enjoy such big convenience today. If everyone starts to think more of how they can contribute to their country and step into the shoes of other people, a harmonious society is not hard to achieve.


Today, Hong Kong people have become very indifferent and alienated. They no longer keep the bond of the Lion Rock Spirit (a term that emerged during the 1970s referring to the “can-do” attitude of the Hong Kong people) which keeps them moving forward in unity. What we need is a new kind of thinking i.e. the “Kickass Spirit”. People with such a spirit have a strong mindset. He will keep to his belief and moves forward even though he receives no support from around.


When Mangkhut almost raged Hong Kong to the ground and all people were indulged in a sense of powerlessness, the seed of “Kickass Spirit” has already been sprouted inside the owners of “Hiwindlover Water Sport Centre” i.e. Hoho & Vicky (nicknamed Wisdom Couple) and Himson. (For the story of how the three owners face the ravages of Typhoon Hato and how they rebuild the water sports center, please refer to “A Dream Bigger than the Olympics | Hiwindlover.


The water sports center not even recover from the damage of typhoon Hato and Parker faces even more severe attack. Three of them should be very upset since this time, the whole center was completely destroyed. However, empowered by the seed of “Kickass Spirit’ they uphold their belief. They are determined to rebuild the center so that Hong Kong people can enjoy the sun and beaches and have more contact with Nature. In addition, the center can continue to nurture more independent and determined the next generation through diversified water activities.


Photo credit: Kevin Tam

Hiwindlover Water Sport Center not even recover from the damage brought by typhoon Hato and Parker last year faces even more severe attack from strong typhoon Mangkhut this time.


Photo credit: Kevin Tam

It was heart-breaking to see that in the blink of an eye, all the efforts of the owners of Hiwindlover Water Sport Center have been turned into nothing.


The strength of just three people is quite insignificant, but inadvertently, the “Kickass Spirit” has triggered a very powerful appeal. On the second day after the storm, traffic was still rampant. Early in the morning, more than twenty “Hiwindlover” members rushed to Stanley Beach and join in the reconstruction project voluntarily. In the days to come, it is this magical power that unites people from all around who helps to bring back a new water sports center. 


Photo credit: Hiwindlover Water Sport Center

While working non-stop under the hot sun was no easy job, Hiwindlover members still maintain a smiley face and did not lose their sense of humor.


Photo credit: Cheung Chau Windsurfing Center

Manpower and funding were tremendous for the reconstruction project. Fortunately, beach-goers are very united in the face of adversity. Their positive and optimistic attitude is worthy of admiration.


Photo credit: Lau B

Bar owners with cheerful faces continue to run their business.


Later, when we see Shek O, Cheung Chau and other beaches restore the beauty of the past not for long, we notice that the “Kickass Spirit” has blossomed everywhere and suddenly made Hong Kong people more united.  The entire social atmosphere has also become harmonious.



Photo credit: Cheung Chau Windsurfing Center

People of different ages and nationalities pitch in the reconstruction project. The “Kickass Spirit” has blossomed everywhere and suddenly made Hong Kong people more united. Picture shows a group of die-hard windsurfers who participated at the Cheung Chau Beach clean-up. Most of them lived for half a century….



The “Kickass Spirit” has triggered a very powerful appeal. In just a few months, a brand new water sports center stood proudly in front of us.


During the disaster relief, there are many selfless people who sacrifice their personal time and help out with the clean up of the beach and participate in the reconstruction project. During the period, I met Kit Man, the creator of “Kickass Type”. Kit Man is a very creative and passionate guy.  He has always held fast to his beliefs and has a high standard of his works. He is a hard-liner who is willing to go hungry in order to defend his dominance.


Although he was busy organizing his exhibition, he still squeezes his time to pitch in the reconstruction project. During our talk, I learned that he launched the online campaign of the Kickass Type Creation Kickstarter Project in 2016.  In an attempt to preserve the culture of traditional Chinese characters and Cantonese, he was determined to transform this set of free-style hand-written calligraphy into a computer font. It took him more than two years to complete 6,000 words. With a lot of enthusiasm and painstaking efforts to build a font for every Hong Kong people the upcoming exhibition is worth supporting.


Kickass Type Mini-Exhibition

Date/Time: December 1-12, 2018 (1200-2200; Sun until1830)

Venue: HOW / Block AB, 3/F, How Ming Factory Building, 99 How Ming Street, Kwun Tong, Hong Kong

KIT DA SKETCH FB PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/KitDaSketch

EVENT PAGE: http://bit.ly/kickassshow



Photo credit: Kit Man

The upcoming Kickass Type Mini-Exhibition to be held from Dec 1 to 12 will showcase the great work of Kit Man.


Video courtesy: Kit Man

The Kickass Type is a font set of 6,000 traditional Chinese characters incorporating Cantonese words. It is a unique, free-style hand-written calligraphy transformed by Kit Man into a computer font accessible by all people. It originated during Occupy Central in 2014, when a friend of Kit Man wanted a banner for the movement which he wrote “I want genuine universal suffrage” in an irregular Chinese calligraphy style. 


Photo credit: Kit Man

The owner of Hiwindlover Water Sports Center, Hoho admires Kit Man’s passion and perseverance for pursuing the Kickass Type Creation Kickstarter Project. To back up Kit Man, Hoho generously offers him one year’s free rental for storage of equipment at the windsurfing center. In return, Kit Man tailor-made a fantastic logo design for Hiwindlover.


Photo credit: Kit Man

Kickass Hong Kong” has become a popular slogan for the Hong Kong football team. From time to time, Kit Man has put the design of Kickass Type on different propaganda materials, including the Trailwalker, Community Chest etc… to bring unity and help spread positive vibes to the community. Picture shows Kickass Type design being applied to Trailwalker items.


Photo credit: Kit Man

Community Chest uses Kickass Type for its print ad.


Photo credit: Kit Man

Picture shows Kit Man tailor-made a lovely present in Kickass Type for Mui, congratulating her for winning the silver medal at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games RS: ONE Windsurfing Mixed Team with her partner Rafeek Kikabhoy. Another framed work is to congratulate Hoho for winning the bronze medal at the 2018 Hong Kong Stand Up Paddle Board Competition.


Mui (left) with her partner Rafeek Kikabhoy (right) won the silver medal at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games RS: ONE Windsurfing Mixed Team. Their path from winning the right to qualify for the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games to winning the medal was rugged and full of twists and turns.


In a real life situation, all medal-winning athletes should all have experienced countless hardship and bitterness. However, the “Kickass Spirit” inside them reinforce their never-give-up attitude and drive them to move on to achieve their goals.



Photo credit: Chan King Yin

The Hong Kong Windsurfing Team achieved great results at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games. In addition to winning the medal in RS: ONE Windsurfing Mixed Team, Michael Cheng (third from left) and Hayley Victoria Chan (second from left) also won the silver medal at the RS:X Men and RS:X Women category respectively. The glory of each medal is not only for the athlete but also for those who rendered their support, worked tirelessly and made a selfless dedication to the sport. The “Kickass Spirit” has been passed down from former athletes who now become coaches. Photo shows Hong Kong Windsurfing Association Chairman, Cowen Chiu; head coach, Chan King Yin (extreme left); coaches Yu Wing Ho (third from right) and Winfield Zee (second from right); and physiotherapist Stephanie Au (extreme right).


Although Typhoon Mangkhut has already gone, hope that Hong Kong people can still remember the destruction that it once brought and brings us enlightenment. I hope that this disaster will wake us up from the negative thoughts. From now on, we all take up the “ Kickass Spirit” so that everyone will do their part and let love and enthusiasm to prosper. If everyone can put out one small step and works for a better Hong Kong wholeheartedly, then we will not be afraid of an even more destructive typhoon like Mangkhut.


Photo credit Kit Man

Both Kit Man and Mui/Cowboy Mum share the view that as long as 7 million Hong Kong people display the “Kickass Spirit” together, Hong Kong will have more “Kickass Stories”.

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