[Song of the post] I'm Still Here (Jim's Theme) - Treasure Planet Soundtrack - John Rezenik
Welcome back to school. What a week it has been.
There’s been something that has been eating at me ever since Saturday. And now I got a lot more questions that won’t be answered.
Saturday: writing 周记 for the part about self reflection. It’s something like this: the mind is split into two parts, conscious and subconscious, right? And when we make decisions or do stuff the conscious part actively supplies reasons to do those things and make choices. But then we also know that the subconscious also, subconsciously, affects how we think and reason and decide. So, how can I know that whatever reason that I supply to my consciousness is the real, right reason, instead of an excuse by my subconscious to cover up the reason which it is supplying?
It’s like, you see a friend in trouble. Decision: help or don’t help. Help. Why? Reason: because he’s my friend, and I have to help him. How do I know that’s the real reason? What if that’s an excuse, a cover up, a lie, a fake reason supplied by the subconscious to hide the real reason. Because it’s the right thing to do. Because he will like me more. Because other people might see and praise me.
“Even the best decision, if made for the wrong reason, can be a bad decision…” –Governor Swan, Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl
How can I trust myself anymore? How do I know that whatever I do, whatever I decide, I’m doing it for the right reasons, and not for some selfish, personal, subconscious reason? How does the subconscious get populated anyway? With instincts, and with the other side of books, the darker side, it’s like whatever I read gets filtered and the evil sinks into my subconscious.
And what about doing something just because it’s the right thing to do? Every time I see a situation I’m like, what should I do now? And, if it’s with strangers, I’m scared I won’t do the right thing because it would feel so stupid. It’s like, whatever storybook situation, whatever fantasy solution, decision, action; in real life it would feel so stupid.
Monday and Tuesday: rushing Chinese scrapbook. By the early hours of Wednesday morning I was super tired and almost didn’t clear up the mess of newspapers and glue-stuck paper that was on my floor. And when I look at my scrapbook, it looks really, really horrible. And all that effort I put into each article, it feels so wasted when you know that you’re not going to win anything anyway.
And then I ask myself why. Why didn’t I finish it earlier; why couldn’t I have done a better job? And I know the answers. Because I procrastinated. I didn’t feel like doing homework that day. Oh look, I finished this bit; I’ll do the rest tomorrow when I feel like it. A stupid conscious reason, influenced by subconscious feeling. It’s not like people don’t know what they should do. It’s just that they don’t do it.
Tuesday: Chemistry practical. Making crystals with different chemicals. I burnt through my sample on my first trial, and then exploded my boiling tube on the second one. And I stupidly touched a evaporating dish left over a Bunsen flame for fifteen minutes. My worksheets got splattered with a mixture of lead nitrate and distilled water, and I got crystals that looked like gold dust.
You know what it’s like to be bad at something? I’m always the slowest doing chem. prac. and I’m always rushing to clean up at the end. I keep making mistakes; keep messing up stuff; it’s sick being a colour-blind chemist; and I’m always one of the last.
This has nothing to do about you being better than me. When you’re really bad at something in class, you’ll be behind. Alone. And I don’t like being alone. And when you’re good, really good at something, you’re out there, in front, alone. And I don’t like being alone because when I am, my thoughts come out to play.
Why can’t everyone be the same? Then there’d be no discrimination, no loneliness… but if everyone was the same the world would be boring. There wouldn’t be life. The world never works out to be what you want it to be.
Wednesday: Start of The Crucible by Arthur Miller in Language Arts B. Wonderful. If there’s anything that can help my mood, it’s Literature. Mr. Wong started out with the themes, which was stuff about “purification” and “separating the good from the bad” and “inner demons” and whatnot. He said that when people go through difficult situations, their true colours show. And about Proctor fighting his inner demons, which everyone has, and nobody is perfect, and whether and how you fight your imperfections that makes you who you are. Thank you Herrick, you made me laugh.
Thursday: Philosophy of Disipline with (some other) Mr. Wong. Started on what philosophy is and was, and about three great philosophers of ancient times. Philosophy is about questioning the fundamentals of the universe we live in. That’s probably what I’m doing now.
Watching The Crucible in Language Arts A. The actress for Abigail looks a bit like Keira Knightly. More inner demons. Abigail is just… horrible. But Parris and Hale aren’t any better.
Poetry in Language Arts B. The wonderful thing about Literature poems is that they’re almost never happy and they almost never rhyme. I’m probably a boy in a bowler hat.
PC lesson was switching around seats with Mr. Quek. There’s an old saying which goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Now I’m right at the back. Well, not right at the back, but still far away from the board. And further away from you.
Then there was the whole Boey-Kevin episode which was… it wasn’t really frustrating, just… there. And I don’t think I’ll ever understand either of them.
At night, talking on the phone. First trying to comfort Boey, then confiding in Zhang. I don’t think I went about the right way doing it. I didn’t do anything to help him. I think I actually fed more coal to the fire. And then Zhang. I didn’t want to tell him. But in the end it just came out. Everything – well, almost everything – in this post. I told him (and Kev) the same thing: don’t worry about me, I’ll deal with it. Turns out I can’t. Am I that weak.
Friday: Youth Day celebrations. First people mocking me about my flowery shirt. Then I followed Boey around the entire school campus because I was afraid he might throw himself off. I know what it’s like to be alone. I know what it’s like to be alone and be thinking horrible thoughts. I know what it’s like to say you want to be alone, where in actual fact every cell in your body is screaming, stay and talk to me. That’s what I did. Or at least tried to. It didn’t work as well as I thought it should.
Then Pre-IP Symposium. Mr. Alistair Chew made this really long (and angsty) keynote address about the past 2000 years of human history. And he mentioned Isaac Newton’s Law of Finance: If you make big money, people will come to you. And that’s the basis of the entire world today. Which is totally stupid. My dad talked to me about globalization today, and all its problems come from Newton’s Law of Finance. It’s money that’s making the world go round. It’s money that’s now a basic necessity: without money you can never survive. You could be roaming an Indian marketplace totally starving and totally bankrupt, but then pull out a plastic card and Hey Presto! Ten thousand birds. Then there’s this quote from the Fragile Forest in the Singapore Zoo: “After every tree has been cut down, after every river has been drained, after every animal has been killed, then you will realize that money cannot be eaten.”
Then there’s the symposium itself. I don’t like politics. Let those who like it go do it. I don’t even know why people bother to read, let alone write, 127-page reports. And the teacher-in-charge is encouraging us to “write a resolution which appeals to our country’s interests”. Right. How are we supposed to solve world problems if each and every single diplomat is trying to twist the resolution so it benefits himself and his country? How are we supposed to help people if everyone is being selfish?
Saturday: Geography field trip. It seems like a very rush job. They didn’t really tell us much in advance, and they didn’t really give us much time there to measure stuff. Oh well. Mrs. Sim is really a very good teacher. And Mr. Davies has an Elmer Fudd accent.
On the bus home via Nanyang Funfair. I couldn’t go because I had tuition. I would have love to have gone. Really. But when you think of everyone, rightly, parent’s interests should come before self. And that’s just what I did. Sorry I couldn’t come. Hern Hern says she’s going to Photoshop me into the picture; I find that really amusing.
And tuition itself. Chinese oral is two weeks away. I am really nervous and my vocabulary is nothing to write home about. I don’t want to fail Chinese. I don’t want to get left behind doing normal Chinese while everyone else stays with Higher Chinese. I don’t.
Sunday: Zhang invited me to go watch Superman Returns later today. Another “I would really love to go” event. Unfortunately, my mom gave an instant, outright no. Exams are coming (in four months time) and I have to study (even though they haven’t finished teaching yet). So Superman will have to return without me.
Week: I’ve been rather depressed and melancholic the past seven days. If you had the weight of a million thoughts crashing down upon your head, you would too. I won’t be talking to you much anymore. It’s related to the very first thing I mentioned in this post. I can’t account for my subconscious anymore. I don’t want to manipulate your emotions again.
“Oh… so this is no cowardly flight. You’re being noble.” -Phenias Nigellus, Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix
No, I’m not being noble. This is as cowardly as it can get. Telling you, through a blog, I don’t get to see your reaction, your response I would get if I told you face to face. I’m a coward, I’m afraid, I’m dangerous; leave me alone or I might hurt you.