Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Just one of those days

Pirates marathon at Jonas's house today. It was alright... not the super hyped-up thing it was expected to be. I don't think anyone was more than vaguely interested; if they were, they didn't show it. So it was mostly people laughing at subtitles, Boey complain about the boring parts, Zhang groping my hair, Kwong sleeping, Jason being totally quite, Bryan being irritating, and Jonas being too extremely hospitable. HEAR THAT JONAS? YOU'RE BEING TOO NICE.

I think next time, I'll just have a marathon by myself at home. It's about the same thing.

Oh, another thing happened today. I was going home from Wisma when I saw Gideon on the bus. It was vaguely crowded; I couldn't edge past the people to behind, where he was sitting. We were like, three seats away, about 2 metres apart. We mouthed our hellos and waved, and then he tried to ask me where I came from, where I was going, and stuff. I couldn't understand his miming XD And it was so confusing that it got to the point where he asked me to call him on his handphone. Like, two metres away XD I could hear him from where I was standing; his voice I mean, and there was like half a second delay before it came through the earpiece from my phone. So I remarked this to him, and then he suggested that we hang up and just keep talking and pretending to be talking to each other on the phone. And it worked XD It was hilarious XD I have got to do that again some time.

I don't want just a memory
The Edna Man

Monday, November 12, 2007

Love

I've just finished His Dark Materials trilogy.

Once again I am swayed to writing by the power of the words of another great storyteller. A myraid of thoughts now swirl through my mind, as swift and relentless as Dust. Again, a compelling storyline, a mystifying plot, combining aspects of religion, philosophy, quantum physics; everything. And so many layers of meaning, like reading an alethiometer; and you have to be curious, willing to believe, and have the imagination to enter the fantasy world and see the meanings in the symbols.

And the meanings! If one could ignore everything else the book was trying to say, about life and religion and the quantum theory; about multipule universes and the original sin; about knives and compasses and spyglasses and honesty and trust and belief; then we'd be left with the most important thing of all: Love. And everything else would be inconsequential; what would matter most would be human being's ability to love.

"But just keep up this coming here once a year, just for a hour, just to be together..." -- Lyra

Measure in Love. Seasons of Love.
The Edna Man

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Life just goes on.

Everybody keeps asking me to blog. Okay, here it is.

Hmm, let's just go way back in time a bit.

31st Oct: THIS WAS HALLOWEEN. My dad's birthday too. Had birthday dinner at a Japanese restaurant. Tried sushi for the first time. Wasabi is still too painful for my taste. Salmon was nice. Tuna was not so. Squid was bleh. Yellowtail was okay, egg was okay, and the other one I can't remember what it was.

1st Nov: Jonas's second party. Wated Stardust; it's a really good movie. But at the end, it felt like one of those Chinese legends, like a fairytale to explain natural phenomena. Like the Seamstress and the Goatherd or whatever their names are, on each side of the Milky Way. Still quite cool though. I wonder if it's based on a book; usually movies aren't like that unless they're based on a book.

3rd Nov: Juzzie's belated party. I wonder if you can use the word 'belated' like that. Anyway, we had fun playing badminton. We all pwned Juzzie at Warning Forever, and that statement wasn't true. There was this gigantic 'Mech with three legs and like a million guns. Juzzie has supremely hyperactive brothers, like with sugar-rush on high and powered by nuclear battries and the Speed Force.

5-7th Nov: Chass chalet. Fun, but not terribly so. Spent so much time spamming TNN cards and nobody was really interested. Only played a couple games with Bryan; some beta-testing that turned out to be. Cooking is fun, but I tended to become hyper, and not many people liked that. Maybe because it's because I keep getting hyper too much that people think that's my natural state of mind and thun when I'm moody and reflective people think it's not right and keep trying to change it back. Where do you stand on the whole inverted-noninverted debate? I think I can get used to anything with enough time. Jonas has one heck of an pwnage Pokemon deck. So does Jason. My energy is always at the bottom of my deck. Michael Wee is not good at Speed. Zhang is too good at Speed. Walking in the rain is nice =) Herrick makes pwnage cocktails. He has to learn how to toss it up behind his back first though.

As far as I can tell, the Dark Materials trilogy has been awesome so far. I just finished Subtle Knife, and it's awesome. Wonder why people aren't condemning it like Da Vinci Code though. Maybe they did when it was first published. Maybe 'cos the ending isn't blasphemeous. Whatever. The plot is awesome. The style is different too; the author doesn't go too much into emotions. It's awesome, the whole thing.

I've gotten started thinking again, but I'm not going to put it here 'cos then people like Juzzie and Kwong are going to say I'm angsty again and etc.

Well, that's all she wrote.
The Edna Man

Thursday, October 25, 2007

By the Book

The keyword for today is: flexibility.

Do you dislike rules? Yeah, me too. They're too restricting. Now don't get me wrong; I'm not against all rules. I'm against the rules that don't make sense; those rules which command you to live your life in the way that the rulers see fit; those rules which are imposed on you without you knowing the reasoning behind it. And meaning is everything.

I've no belief in society. Society is a large group with overarching rules which attempt to control the minority by imposing on the majority. I've lost confidence in national identity. A nation is a extremely large group with more overarching rules attempting to sway everyone to the point of view of the majority. Nations become extremely closed-minded and unreceptive to new ideas, isolating themselves and then warring when they can't resolve their bipolar conflicts. I've never believed in one religion. Too restrictive, and once again too much group isolation and warring.

I guess it's a Nietzchian idea: we are holding on to old traditions and customs which don't necessarily hold water in our day and age anymore. Standing on chairs, for instance. Uniform jackets, for another.

I think that's the reason I like TCGs, and maybe games in general. There's an established set of rules, but the cards, or whatever, they go against the rules; like, warping them into something else that is acceptable within gameplay. And with TCGs especially, every game is different; there's so many different card combinations that your strategy has to be flexible enough to play all of them.

Being flexible allows you to tackle different problems more effectively. You're less likely to get stuck somewhere if you're flexible enough to take the route around, not just through. You get more out of life too, by trying anything and everything that comes your way.

But if you get a kick out of setting store by the rules and doing things by the book, then that's you.

I can't change the world. I can only change myself.
The Edna Man

Monday, October 01, 2007

Rules Against

Today I was reprimanded for standing on a chair.

I finally figured it out. I wouldn't book anyone else who stepped on a chair because I don't see it as disrespecting the formality of the occasion. It was just the fastest route from A to B. I admit climbing over the chairs would have been a better move, but it's been done. And I won't do it again, not because I see the action as wrong, but because other people with power and authority don't like me doing it.

What is the deal with conformity anyway? A person doesn't have to be like everybody else, wearing the same things, behaving the same way. What have you people got against things that aren't normal? I'm cold, so I wear gloves and a hat. It's perfectly justified, and yes I am that cold. I can't wear my jacket, so I wear gloves. I don't give a damn if you're not cold; I am. Why can't I be different from you?

What's the deal with jackets anyway? It's just an overcoat; it's not killing anyone or insulting anybody's religion or disrespecting the formality of the occasion or anything. I don't see what's so important about not having a shield-shaped logo stamped there. Will it compromise national security? Will it reflect negatively on the school's reputation? If you wanted to be so damn uniform about it, why not just plug up everybody in this whole damn universe to a gigantic pulsing brain so that IT controls everything and everything and everyone will be exactly the SAME. Why must you humiliate, shun, repremand me, just because I am different?

IHS was okay. Lang Arts is fail. Physics tomorrow.

I am a thermic resistor: resistance increase proportionately to decrease in temperature
The Edna Man

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Against the Flow

If you want to know what it's like to be different from everybody else in the whole universe, go into a cinema (pay for your ticket first) and in the middle of the movie, just turn your head around and look at the audience (don't block anyone!).

If you are not so cheapskate that you can't even afford to spend a minute or two looking away from the big screen, you will be greeted with an eerie, haunting sight. Two hundred odd people all staring at something over your shoulder, their faces lit up with dim, flickering light, all eyes focused in the same direction, all not looking at you.

That's when you come to the realisation that you are totally, uniquely, creepily different from everyone else. I witnessed something like this today during the Honour's Day Rehersal (waste of time again but that's not important). I purposely turned my back on the screen so that I would not be bored tomorrow when the real (reel? haha) clip played. It was the exact same look-behind-you-in-a-cinema effect. It felt weird; imagine walking through a crowd of people all staring at the screen, paying no attention to you.

I guess that's why people with new ideas, who go against the flow, always feel so alone. When you're going the opposite way from everyone else, it sure is creepy.

Upcurrently,
The Edna Man

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

In response

It’s exam time again, and unfortunately,
I’ve got to do this exam, by decree.
I really don’t want to, I have to confess;
Let’s just get this done so I can go for recess.
In the spirit of fun, I’ll stick to the style
Of the question in question, so that it’ll bring a smile
To the unfortunate soul who is marking this script
Since grading this paper will sure make you flip.

A look at the poem and it’s easy to see
That the poet’s intent was to make it funny
Through the structure and rhyme! And this essay
Will attempt to show how the humour is conveyed.

Firstly for structure, it’s clearly a sonnet;
Let’s just keep moving on; don’t keep bees in your bonnet.
Although that was obvious, the purpose is not
‘Cos sonnets are mostly in love songs a lot.
And this is no ballad, no sweet courtship song
If we’re talking ‘bout genre, this style is all wrong.
But if I could make an intelligent guess,
The content and diction would seem to suggest
That the poet was aiming to juxtapose
A question ‘bout poems not written in prose
With the rest of the questions; but that’s one aspect;
The other: that this poem seems to reflect
That sometimes the structure is inconsequential
It’s more likely the content would be more essential.
And I’m sure you’ll agree that this is the case:
The structure was something that just fell into place.

Now talking ‘bout rhyme; the poem, in fact;
The rhymin’ and timin’ would seem to attract
More readers, more students, to give an attempt
To answer the question with a bit less contempt.
That’s one of the uses; the other is thus:
The rhythmic verses makes humour a plus.
The rhyme scheme and rhythm can be said to produce
An effect on the poem not unlike Dr. Seuss.
The singsong-ish voice, the unserious tone
Only serves to make the content more shown
In a humourous way, and that makes you laugh
Even if it didn’t, it sure was enough.
For the whole satirical effect to come through
Don’t think too deeply; no meanings construe.
That poem and this were written for fun
Which exams obscure and destroy all in one.

Thus in conclusion, this essay is moot:
Both poems have no real meaning to boot.
The exam will be over when I put down this pen
So when I do: Let the party begin.

Monday, September 24, 2007

With reference

I forgot about this. Mr Wong today in Lang Arts asked us to set possible exam questions. Only at the end of it all did Jarrel remind me of something totally pwnage: write the question in the style of a poem.

It's exam time again, and you know the drill:
Sit here and be silent and write stuff and chill
yourself to the bone, but again I digress;
You're reading this only because of your test.
This question's 'bout poems, about words in a verse,
Of which structure and meaning can be so diverse.
There's sonnets and ballads and of course limerick,
Some read for pages; some others quite quick.
It goes without saying, you've already guessed,
What your answer to this must surely address.
Comment on the structure, or on the rhyme
of the poem in your essay, if you've got the time.
Content's up to you, rebutt if you must,
But from two or three of your poems: Discuss.


If this came out, I'd totally do it for the sheer pwnage-ness of the question.

And to make it interesting, if I've got the time,
I'm prepared to write the whole essay in rhyme.
The Edna Man

Chaotic Neutral

Hi.

Today I'm talking to all you pioneers out there. Yes, you know who you are. All of you who have ever had an idea which has been shouted down, criticized, alluded to fantasy, called ridiculous, insensible or illogical. Here's my question to you: how did you do it? How did you change the face of the world with just your idea, when everyone else was against you, calling it daft, away with the fairies? All the encyclopaedias and biographies just say that "with hard work and perseverance", but what really was going through your mind? How did you know you were right? How would you know that you weren't wrong? What made you continue when nobody believed in you?

I've got ideas. I've got lots of ideas. And lots more that nobody agree with. Ideas that are so weird, different, disagreeable, that it can only be called revolutionary. I'm not praising myself here; revolutionary in the sense that it's so against the system. That the concept is so contextually wrong that nobody agrees with it and/or gives it backing and support.

Should I just shut up? My ideas will be shut down anyway, so what's the point of bringing them up at all? Why don't we all just work with the system, who cares about the flaws, accept that life is what it is, screw creativity, screw progress, screw point of view. Why do you follow something you disagree with? Isn't it better if you try to make it better?

Why make it better in the first place? There are so many contradicting viewpoints that there is no such thing as better. And everything is impractical because it takes too much time and money. What is good? What is bad? Why is my idea flawed? Why isn't yours? Why are we putting so much faith in the system? What's wrong with changing the system? What is wrong?

Kev once asked me what Chaotic Neutral is. It's a character alignment system from Dungeons and Dragons, which basically ascribes your character's ethical code and moral path. It's based on two perpendicular axes: the chaotic-lawful, and the good-evil; so there are nine different alignments you can choose from. I came across Chaotic Neutral while playing Neoquest II, and it kind of describes me; 'cos I'm not totally good, but not totally bad either. And I'm definitely not lawful because I keep going against the system. Apparently Chaotic Neutral is the alignment for rebels. Huh, imagine that.

The fact that the issue is so small and easily rectified is what upsets me.

Change the world, they said. Make a difference, they said. Well, I'm trying, but nobody's letting me.
The Edna Man

Monday, September 17, 2007

Synesthesia

I just watched this show on Arts Cenrtal. It's this segment called Mosiac Monday, and today's was called Brain Man. It's about this British person, Daniel-something, I can't remember, and he was like a genius. Like a hundred Jarrel Seahs put together. I think it was really cool.

Apparently he has a form of number form synesthesia, and he sees numbers as landscapes, images in his mind. And while in most other synesthesics the images are more concepts, abstract; with Daniel it's more physical and vivid. And his abilities were amazing. He memorized a chessboard with 26 random pieces on it in 10 minutes. He used his intuition to win three hands of 21 at Blackjack in Las Vegas. He calculates exponentials with just shapes. It's really very amazing.

Next week is about a boy with no eyes; yet he can "see" using something which I think is echolation. That's like a real-life Daredevil.

Sounding purple,
The Edna Man

The Exams Problem

The Barometer Problem

The following concerns a question in a physics degree exam at the
University of Copenhagen:

"Describe how to determine the height of a skyscraper with a barometer."

One student replied:

"You tie a long piece of string to the neck of the barometer, then lower the barometer from the roof of the skyscraper to the ground. The length of the string plus the length of the barometer will equal the height of the building."

This highly original answer so incensed the examiner that the student was failed immediately. The student appealed on the grounds that his answer was indisputably correct, and the university appointed an independent arbiter to decide the case.

The arbiter judged that the answer was indeed correct, but did not display any noticeable knowledge of physics. To resolve the problem it was decided to call the student in and allow him six minutes in which to provide a verbal answer that showed at least a minimal familiarity with the basic principles of physics.

For five minutes the student sat in silence, forehead creased in thought. The arbiter reminded him that time was running out, to which the student replied that he had several extremely relevant answers, but couldn't make up his mind which to use. On being advised to hurry up the student replied as follows:

"Firstly, you could take the barometer up to the roof of the skyscraper, drop it over the edge, and measure the time it takes to reach the ground. The height of the building can then be worked out from the formula H = 0.5g x t squared. But bad luck on the barometer."

"Or if the sun is shining you could measure the height of the barometer, then set it on end and measure the length of its shadow. Then you measure the length of the skyscraper's shadow, and thereafter it is a simple matter of proportional arithmetic to work out the height of the skyscraper."

"But if you wanted to be highly scientific about it, you could tie a short piece of string to the barometer and swing it like a pendulum, first at ground level and then on the roof of the skyscraper. The height is worked out by the difference in the gravitational restoring force T =2 pi sqr root (l /g)."

"Or if the skyscraper has an outside emergency staircase, it would be easier to walk up it and mark off the height of the skyscraper in barometer lengths, then add them up."

"If you merely wanted to be boring and orthodox about it, of course, you could use the barometer to measure the air pressure on the roof of the skyscraper and on the ground, and convert the difference in millibars into feet to give the height of the building."

"But since we are constantly being exhorted to exercise independence of mind and apply scientific methods, undoubtedly the best way would be to knock on the janitor's door and say to him 'If you would like a nice new barometer, I will give you this one if you tell me the height of this skyscraper'."

Source: Snopes

Doesn't this tell you something about the nature of exams? Of why answers given must be the ones that the marking scheme wants, although other answers could be correct? And even then, any scientific reasoning we could give would be void by the most practical answer. So what are we still doing exams for?

If you can tell me, I'll give you a brand new barometer.
The Edna Man

Monday, September 10, 2007

How many last straws can we take?

Name: Uncle Edna
Class: 4.09
Date: 10th September
Year: 2007
Organization: Blogger.com
Areas: Creativity, Action, Service, Leadership
Shoe Size: 9
Favourite Colour: Orange, maybe blue.
What do you feel about the whole optimist/pessimist thing?: What?!
Teacher Supervisor: None

Proposal for: Blogging about CASL

On the 10th of September 2007, I intend to write a blog post about the idiocy of the Creativity, Action, Service, and Leadership Programme (CASL) in long, satirical prose.

The aims and objectives of the aforementioned activity are to allow me to express my views about the above topic, in the hopes that others may see my point of view, allowing them to garner a fuller representation of the above topic. Formalities aside, this activity is also an opportunity to antagonize and vent my frustrations about the failures of the education system which is a very serious matter indeed.

Signed: The Edna Man
Teacher Supervisor

Was that stupid enough for you? If not, let's go on to talk about my day, and you'll see stupid concepts worse than Being Hit on the Head Lessons.

After a bone-chilling hour of IHS lecture, some guy from some university (dunno which university lah, but you can guess) comes in and starts talking about that university and everything the school offers, blah blah blah. I was barely interested, and while it would have been tolerable if he had ended at the appropriate time (because he said he would take only FORTY MINTUES), he ended up overshooting by half an hour. Very slick. Would his whole faculty be like that? If so, then I might not be interested, thanks.

And that's with me freezing in my seat and dying of hunger.

I don't get it. Everyone keeps lecturing us on how to keep within the time when you're presenting, and don't hold people up and all that. Didn't these people receive the same education? Why is it when kids do it it's wrong, but when adults do it, it's alright?

And then, to top it all off, the Year 4 Level Director comes and gives us another 15 minute lecture on How our CASL Book is Not Up to Standard and If He were to Judge Now We Would All Fail and Stay Back A Year. That's about all I got from those fifteen minutes, partly because the cold and lack of lunch was numbing my brain, and also partly because that's all he seemed to say; he repeated it about ten times. At least.

Hello...? Hungry? Cold? Irritable driver waiting? Don't care? Alright. Nothing I can do about it anyway.

And then there's the whole idea CASL which irks me. That you have to do a proposal for every little stinking thing we do. Oops, I sneezed; guess I have to write a proposal for that. Then comes the meticulous records of the number of hours we put in. Then the reflections.

Can you imagine? A hundred and fifty hours worth of proposal, C-A-S-L, reflections. I mean WHAT THE HELL-o what have we here? A blasted ESSAY about the whole thing or YOU DON'T PASS YOUR IB.

C'mon. There has got to be a better way than this. Doing good or participating in activities isn't supposed to be about meticulous proposal writing, or the frantic calculation about how many hours you've got. Once you implement the quota, the whohle meaning is lost. A wise Core Math Teacher once said, "When you start taking photos for money, you're not going to enjoy photography anymore."

Or maybe that's what it's about. Screw the meaning and purpose, what's important is Vitamin M.

Sometimes it just makes me think about quitting formal education and opt for home-schooling. Might as well learn everything from the Internet. Just imagine, if you go apply for a job interview, and you say, "Well, I almost reached the IB Diploma. It's just that I disagreed with the system and quit in protest, and continued my education on the Internet." And they hired you. You must have had some really good pants.

At least there are some other examples of the human species at its prime. Lang Arts Teacher in stunning move launches into speech about language and words, and how important they are to building character. Extra, extra, read all about it!

Hours done: 30 Writing: 1 Creativity Posting: 1 Service
The Edna Man

Monday, September 03, 2007

WARRRGHHH

Remember that Dexter episode where he was watching some Action Hank movie when it got interrupted by a Emergency Broadcast Blue-Screen-of-Death so he went around solving crises and emergencies trying to prematurely end the Emergency Broadcast but when he got back to his TV they said it was just a test of the system and when his show continued the movie was at the end?

Yeah, well, I was watching Danny Phantom today, a new episode, and a double-part storyline to boot. I didn't know that there were two episodes back to back but since I was so excited by the first part I stuck around to se if there was a second part and to my great surprise and excitement there was! So there I am wacthing it eagerly and it gets to the exciting climax where Danny beats the villian and then - the broadcast broke. WARRRGHHH So I kept the TV on in the hopes that they'd get it fixed soon, and it did - after Danny beat the villian and the climax was over.

WARRRGHHH
The Edna Man

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Eureka!

Today during Core Math Jarrel was explaining to me how the Monty Hall dilemna works. He patiently attempted a couple of times, while my brain simply refused to click, when all of a sudden everything sudenly fell into place! And for a brief vague moment, I understood it! I don't think I can explain it to anyone else now, but oh well.

Don't you just love those moments?

Aha!
The Edna Man

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

ALL HAIL POWERPOINT

I just completed a Teachers' Day event using nothing animations in Powerpoint 2003. YEAH!

It's so ownage, I can't believe it myself.

But then. Jonas knows how to use MACROS. O_O Since he was in PRIMARY SCHOOL. O____O

Anyway, 3 days of hard work, completed. I hope it works out okay!

Oh yeah, I showed it to The Jarrel Seah, Programming Lord and Master.

(10:39 PM) Jarrel - Names i: u made this?
(10:40 PM) Life, Love, and: Yeah >_>
(10:40 PM) Life, Love, and: Why?
(10:40 PM) Jarrel - Names i: quite cool
(10:40 PM) Jarrel - Names i: i like
(10:40 PM) Life, Love, and: WOAH
(10:40 PM) Jarrel - Names i: it works
(10:40 PM) Jarrel - Names i: btw
(10:40 PM) Life, Love, and: I HAVE BEEN BLESSED BY THE GREAT JARREL SEAH
! O_O


Hahahahaha,
The Edna Man

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Orchestrated

On a happy note, I managed to pull off my IHS presentation. Jarrel's question was okay to answer, even though I didn't know the answer.

On a sad note, my IOP wasn't as great as all the effort I put into it. Well, cest la vie. I think.

On a happy note, most of my graded homework is over, and all I have to do now is backlog.

On a sad note, I'm quite disgusted at how my class stripped a box of curry puffs to the bones, when Mr Jason Chan brought them into class today. He never mentioned why he had them, why he was giving them to us, or even IF he was giving them to us. They were on them like a flock of vultures. The puffs never stood a chance.

On a happy note, Confucius say: "Tired students, always late." Go Mr Bernard Taylor!

On a sad note, Juzzie is pissed at me because of my negative MSN nicks.

On a happy note, I like Jason Mraz's Wordplay.

On a sad note, CAS sucks.

Put the notes together and you get the melody of my life.

Requiemly,
The Edna Man

Monday, August 20, 2007

Perchance to dream

Damn Hamlet. Why did Shakespeare have to be so long-winded. Why did our generation acclaim him as a literary genius.

It's my IOC tomorrow. My head is pounding with the Elizabithean language while I struggle to pick out literary devices.

Once again, we are bereft of pupils whose main interest is that of securing high marks and beating the rest of the competition. While here I am, just trying to do my best, to do my commentary properly, learning as I go along.

Nobility truly is dead.
The Edna Man

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Of twentyfour and ninetysix

Well, twentyfour is over and that means a whole load of stress and work off my shoulders. It (the prize ceremony) went excellently, and I think some of my stupid jokes made it through, which is good =) In other related news, Also Sprach Zarathustra is great for announcing awards.

By the way, go see this. It's based on the Nokia N93 Ad with Gary Oldman, and I think it's amazingly done. Conflict!

I watched this year's NDP parade, and I think it's just totally weird. I mean, the starfish and Sing the roller-skating lionfish were strange enough, but... garden faries? That takes the cake.

Anyhow, today's been the start of ninetysix, the four-day coursworking marathon, to finish all the graded projects which I missed while I was sick.

ninety-six hours. three projects. one dead guy.

All the world's a stage, and all the men and women in it are merely players.
The Edna Man

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Now this.

Well, it's my first day back in school for one and a half weeks, and the first thing I hear is about the jacket design competition for the new school jackets. I've done a design, yeah - should I enter?

Yeah, definitely.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The Story Ends

Hey. I haven’t blogged in a long time. Been sick, mostly. Hospitalised, haven’t been to school for more than a week. I’m really supposed to be doing homework now, but I’m completely not in the mood to do so. I’ll probably have to start something after this, though.

I just thought I’d note some of my feelings down here, the only place where my memories don’t get lost. I’ve just spent most of my bedridden days reading - sleeping, mostly, but reading as well - the entire Harry Potter series. Mr. Wong lent me the seventh book when he came to visit with the other Mr. Wong, the one who doesn’t like reading. *cough*

Anyway, I finished reading Deathly Hallows just yesterday, and since then I’ve felt - I don’t know - empty, lost? Like a hollow feeling, like there’s something that should be there but isn’t, like something left me. I’ve no idea how to explain it, describe it, put it in words.

I understand if Harry Potter isn’t your type of book. I think it’s one of the best pieces of literature around today, although I don’t read that widely. It’s best to me though; is that worth anything? Much better than Hamlet or all the other weird Elizabethan stuff anyway.

J.K. Rowling is a genius. Can you imagine what type of creativity and imagination this author must have? Nineteen years, seven novels, a whole new universe of magic. ‘Cos that’s what it is, really: magic. The captivation of a spellbinding plot; the charm of a number of enchanting characters; the hidden, silent call of the profound exponential lessons of life that emanates from the literature… it can’t be anything else.

I don’t think I can achieve my purpose of writing this; I cannot hope to convey the feeling of absolute dread and anticipation as I thumbed through the pages, drinking in each and every word, the images forming in my mind; excitement from the fact that I was getting to the end of the mystery, but dreading to reach the end and finding out that it… ends. It was such a wonderful experience, flipping page by page, living chapter by chapter, ignoring the harsh world around me, just sunk into this amazing work of fiction and living, breathing imagination. It stunned me, when I the back cover closed, and the entire legend finished, ended.

It seems a world apart from me now, something faraway; distant, like a long-lost friend. I now realise the power of (good) literature (for the second time I think, since the Da Vinci talk), its ability to take the reader and his imagination on an emotional roller-coaster ride, living with the characters as though they were real, laughing, crying, everything. Something Hamlet has never been able to do for me, I might add.

And the writing style! I find myself trying to copy it, to imitate the technique of one a hundred, thousand, million times my superior. It makes me want to write, yet when I look at TNN, it seem to pale in comparison. The vocabulary, the organisation! The placement of information where and when it is needed! In short, the absolute essence of the work, a masterpiece. It seems foolish to try and reproduce such perfection.

I feel lonely now. Like I can never pick up a book and be immersed in it as such. I must sound really stupid, feeling lonely because I finished a book. But that’s how I feel; or at least, as close to how I feel as I can describe it.

I should go now. I have homework to finish, and it has to be completed, somehow, even when my mind is clearly elsewhere.

All is well. No, not really.
The Edna Man

Thursday, July 19, 2007

All the Time in the World

Since FPS isn't given official status teachers can't excuses us from lessons/CCAs so we have to stay up to 10pm everyday not including BoB and I'm sleeping at 2pm which is only four hours of sleep. I fell asleep today during my Chinese test and didn't even do the summary. Maybe I'm just the one who's weak because there isn't anyone else breaking down.

Goodnight
The Edna Man

Thursday, July 12, 2007

FINALLY

At last! Someone from the Student Council has finally got back to me about the socks letter I wrote way back when the stupid idea was even implemented. Here's a copy of the letter the Student Council sent to Higher Authorities™ about it, with a little running commentary.

Report on Socks Purchase

Implementation of the socks purchasing, as expected, was met with some amount of resentment from the student body.
Surprise! I mean, oh really? They did? That's quite surprising.

However, due to the nature of the implementation, students who complied with the socks rules were still required to purchase socks. This antagonised the students who felt that they were still being punished, by being made to purchase the socks, even though they complied with the school rules.
"Punished" is an understatement here. I'd go for "oppressed" or "coerced".

The Student Council appreciates the fact that socks purchases cannot be retroactively refunded, it would like to voice the concern held by some regarding this issue.
Why no refund? All part of the plan, dears.

We sincerely hope that such situations can be avoided in the future, by ensuring that disipline initiatives be targeted at offenders rather than the school population in general.
It better be avoided in the future. Hear hear I say!

As a note we have attached a letter from a year 4 student, expressing similar sentiments to the Student Council.
WHAT?!

Although as a year 4 student, he is not technically within the Student's Council's jurisdiction, his feedback is still applicable to the predicament facing IB students.
Great. Now they know who I am. I am so dead x_x

Well, there you have it. Something has been done, at least. Hooray for Student Council! Just that now, if you have a problem with the school, you're on your own unless you can be bothered to wait until Year 5.

On a side note, Shuan had this very interesting idea about a giant school Mech thing, like Transformers but of entire buildings. He's drawing it now or something. It sounds like a pretty cool idea.

Homework's overloading right now, especially since FPS is coming along. My mom's not very happy that I have to stay back at night. Oh well.

Advocate of socky justice,
The Edna Man

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Can you say BLACKMAIL?

This is the last straw. Well, it wouldn't be if they just stopped at the socks thing, but they didn't. So this better be the last straw, or else.

It sounded like a very normal thing. School drama night, selling tickets, mantinee show, yada yada yada. Then: "I've got word from high that we have to set an assignment for this."

Can you say BLACKMAIL?

I mean, tickets are $15 each. If the school is so desperate to sell out their seatings, why not WORK A BIT and ADVERTISE, instead of blackmailing students with F grades if they don't go. This is what Mr Wong was talking about when he said that people can't learn in a fearful environment, and, well, apparently the education system has propagated young minds with the idea of GRADES IS POWER to the extent that now we're being blackmailed with them.

Correct me if I'm wrong, please. I'd be very glad to know I'm wrong.

Prefect duty today was also very. I don't know how to describe it. They called down 11 people, and half an hour before duty starts, only half the amount were needed. And for what? Clearing up after the event. And I got home at like, 10.15 and missed Heroes because of that.

Today in the MPac room Gideon was intellectually sparring with Alwyn. It was so darn funny XD

Kk, sleep now. Really tired.

Not doing the assignment even it exists,
The Edna Man

Monday, June 25, 2007

Dawn of a New Era

It's back to school again. Shame how the holidays just fly by in a fla- wait. We had a holiday?

Anyway, Mr Andrew Wong, Lang Arts Teacher extraordinaire, just revealed his new plans for the semester today. It was most unbelievable. After all these years, we finally get a teacher who wants to focus on the learning and not the grades. FINALLY. I can't wait to see whether he pulls it off. If he does, it would me like, a milestone in our education system.

Doubt it will work though. End of the day, some big guy with more power is going to expound his values of good grades = lots of money/no con-camp into everyone and Mr Wong's great values will be lost on the ears of those who live in fear. Sigh.

Anyway, I haven't posted for a long time; there's Canada photos which I have yet to upload and a Chinese compo workshop which I went for and I haven't blogged about yet. Probably never will, but that's procrastination for ya.

I-don't-care-if-I-get-an-F9-ingly,
The Edna Man

Monday, May 21, 2007

Aaaaand ACTION!

The first scene of filming was done today! THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO WENT DOWN! I'm going to treat you all after the whole thing is over =) Sucks to you Sam Teo

It was really great that everyone was so cooperative and everything, and I'm really really sorry for making a lot of people wait around while I was shooting x_x I guess I'm not really a good director... but thanks anyway!

I guess it was really fun working with all these actors and acting the actors parts to demonstrate and stuff. My throat hurts now though x_x

Whee only three more shoots x_x

Aaaaand CUT!
The Edna Man, Director

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

SCOLD SCOLD

[Quote of the post] You're weird. o_O
[Song of the post] It's My Life - Bon Jovi

Juzzie's evil.

And also weird.

He just got half the people I know to scold me on the account that I called him weird.

Evil weird person.

Oh well.

And I found Jonny's blog! Jonnyfreak XD

I need to blog more. And tag more.

Have you noticed that this post has been random statements so far?

Nope, neither have I.

Another stupid arrangement of tables today for exams. Why can't people think for themselves instead of sticking too rigidly to the rules?

Well, the Pirate Code... to be precise, they're more like guidelines...

AH well.

Back to mugging Geog.

I am so going to hate Geog on Friday.

This time I mean it.

MUG MUG
The Edna Man

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Shutting up now

[Quote of the post] "Just keep it to yourself."
[Song of the post] -

So let's all shut up now. Even if it's wrong, or we don't believe or agree with it, keep it to yourself. Let the unjust go unspoken; let the problem go unsaid. Children should be seen and not heard. Everything that is disagreeable, or contrary, or different, just keep quiet. Silence for survival; survival above all.

...
The Edna Man

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Vive la Revolution

[Quote of the post] VoilĂ ! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain by the vicissitudes of fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is a vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished. However, this valorous visitation of a bygone vexation stands vivified, and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin vanguarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition. The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous. Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose, so let me simply add that it's my very good honor to meet you and you may call me V.
[Song of the post] Anything, really

Remember, remember, the 5th of November
The gunpowder treason and plot
I know of no reason
Why the gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.

This is the last straw.

School socks.

As if we weren't already branded enough with our school crest. There's school ties, school badges, school jackets, school everything, and now school socks. Soon, school shoes, school spectavles, school underwear. So that the crest can be emblazoned on every piece of living fabric and marketed to the entire world.

I'm not even going to start about the irony of them dissuading us from buying branded goods.

Am I a crazy person? I believe they will say so. They already have said so. I half-jokingly shouted, "Support the revolution! Don't buy school socks!" when I entered class today, and as luck would have it, my teacher heard. Of course, being the nice person she is, she just gave me a small talk about how a person of my position (pointing to my tie) shouldn't be saying things like that, and that even if I didn't like it, I should keep it to myself.

Not that I am against her viewpoint. But I am not that sort of person. Very much soon, we're going to have to keep everything to ourselves, like it or not, because that's what we're supposed to do these days.

Right.

I'd rather die behind the chemical sheds.

Maybe it's just the Asian, Eastern upbringing that many people here have. I have been influenced to a lot of Western culture over the past few years which could explain this outburst. But if you look at it logically, there is absolutely no reason at all why someone like me should conform to the enforcements of the higher power, because I have nothing to do with it. And on the Internet, I have no position to care about.

Here's the background information. As I understand it, the implementation of this rigid new rule is so that the problem of ankle-socks will be properly contained. By and large, I don't get what this problem is per se, but if the school says it looks unsightly and ungentlemanly, then fine, alright by me. But when you start to generalize everyone as wearing these ankle-socks and forcing the entire school population to buy four pairs each, even those who have never flouted the rules and continue to wear socks well above the ankle line, how is it fair for them?

The problem I have with people who shrug it off and say, "Life's unfair. Deal with it.", is that these people are unwilling to break out of their boundaries, just because it is too difficult to do so. Sure, life's unfair, but does that mean you HAVE THE RIGHT to perpetuate it in an educational facility? Since life is so unfair, can't you, just for once, make it LESS unfair? People in power are always in the position to do so, just that they don't want to. Because of time. And money.

A sock is a symbol, as is the act of not buying it. Symbols are given power by people. A symbol, in and of itself is powerless, but with enough people behind it, not buying a pair of socks can change the world.

You know how simple the solution could be? Maybe, once a month, you can have a sock-check. Everyone pulls up their trouser-legs and the teacher stands the sight of hairy legs long enough to see who's not wearing ankle-socks. Then, whosoever has naked ankles would be required to purchase aforementioned school socks. Punishment for crime. Isn't that what we are taught all the way from kindergarden? You are responsible for your actions. Not punishment for all, just because a few people think they are above the rules. Justice. If I'm not wrong, that was the original plan for the socks. To be a punishment, a disincentive. Not a moneymaking machine.

Of course, everyone could say that it's just socks, it's just ten dollars worth of cotton, why make all the fuss? The fact is, that it is not the sock I care so much about. It is the meaning behind them, the motive behind the act. The potential of what they will do next. Already I am being criticized for my not wearing of school jackets. I know one teacher supports me; the same one who asked me to keep my ideas to myself. A friend tried arguing that it was for school pride. We've got enough shield-shaped objects all over our body to not know about school pride.

I caught a snippet of Recess: Taking the Fifth Grade a week ago, where T.J. refuses to go to school because they took away their playground, proper canteen food, and lockers. He brought it up with the principal, but the principal says that "Up against the Board of Education, I'm just a little guy. And as a little guy, I can't do anything." T.J. then refuses to go to school the following day, resulting in a revolutionary movement which reveals that the Board of Education didn't want to go through with the school changes at all, but instead all kept quiet because they thought everyone else like the new ideas.

Sometimes, the little guy can do something. And I'm going to do something.

What do I think will happen? What happens when people without power stands up to people *with* power.

Because behind this mask is an idea, and ideas a bulletproof,
E

Friday, April 06, 2007

But I didn't have the time.

[Quote of the post] GEP is dead, and they have killed it. --Xi Min
[Song of the post] Music is just >_>

It's almost midnight and I have to get up early tomorrow.

Sorry I haven't been blogging in a while. I haven't had the time.

GEP camp has been over for a week. I was supposed to blog about it last week but I didn't have the time.

The GEP really is dead. We've got less GEP teachers, more "GEP" students, and they're thinking of scrapping the programme in a couple of years time. I guess that I really felt kinda special, being the the programme. Not because I was supposed to be smarter than the rest, no. It was because the people were better, not in studies or exams, but in morals, friendships, abstract concepts and I guess... better people. I guess the mainstream has these sort of people as well, but the majority of them, when I look at their classes, I laugh everytime I hear the school boast about their awards in "character development". I guess being in the same classes year after year, you get to know everyone very well, and the ostracized tend to stick together, y'know? I guess I really felt special, and when I see some people who are in the GEP but have totally rotten attitudes, like and and and, it's like a taint, I guess. I don't know. GEP is dead, and they have killed it.

The new blogger is... I guess I'll get used to it eventually. It was so irritating for me just to get a Google account. Google is taking over the world, I tell you. Get ready before they start buying your lives. Anyway I guess there are a lot of cool features, but I'm not used to them yet, so. Will take some time.

Homework is. Guh. (In both senses of the word. That's for 'Homework', not the 'Guh'. Obviously.) There's so much of it piling up, and everywhere I turn it seems to be there. And I just can't get rid of it, because everyday, more of it arrives. And there's so much of my own stuff that I want to do, but can't. It's so irritating.

Then there was CMPS today. And Mr Azmi treated us. Again. Again again. I tried to pay him back, I really did. But he wouldn't accept it. Of course he wouldn't. And it was very hard to dissuade him with his sort of argument. That's what you get for trying to be nice, I guess.

This is blacked out because I'm not really sure whether I should be saying it. After the whole fiasco with the trying-to-pay-for-my-meal thing, I was a bit... upset? confused? at the uneagerness of the rest of the team to return Mr Azmi his money. I mean, we agreed on it beforehand, that we should try not to let Mr Azmi spend on us. I was the only one who actually took out my money to try and pay him back. I was upset/confused because I thought that maybe if everyone else did the same it might help persuade him (to a certain extent). I mean it's the right thing to do, isn't it? Nobody seemed very enthusiastic to pay him back. I thought, yeah, maybe some of you are less financially able, but I mean you're not totally incapable o paying for your own dinner are you? Then I thought, maybe I just didn't understand them enough, and don't get the necessity of saving, or of getting the best bargain for set meals or whatever. I just hate money. It's a stupid value system. Or maybe I'm just naive or something. I don't know. Yeah.

Well, gotta be in school at six tomorrow. What fun, eh?

Kinda like this cool idea of signing off every post,
The Edna Man

Thursday, March 08, 2007

At last

[Quote of the post] "I don't expect any help. Come on, this is Singapore." -Ms Audrey Yeo, pregnant lady caught in Wednesday tremors
[Song of the post] What you Own - Rent

I haven't posted in a long time. I guess I didn't feel like writing anything.

I had something to write on Monday. I didn't get down to writing it. It's now Thursday night. I've been sick for three days. It kinda says something, that when you're out of things for three days, and you're behind by a week. Just goes to show, I guess.

These are the things I wanted to say on Monday.

Chapel was some video about making choices. Mostly talking about pre-marital sex, and the horrors of abortion. In the movie, someone said something about "abortion being like murder". Then Jarrel said something; he said, "Sure it is, but war is too." So on the one hand, we have people arguing about the crimes of abortion, how it takes another human life etc. While they still go to war, taking countless of other human lives. Isn't war a choice too? Maybe we should start aborting war instead of just warring about abortion.

The second is that of marks. I think I'm repeaeting this over and over again; the fact that our world system of living is based on marks has detrimental effects on the individual. I read in The New Paper today, forums page, about an previous article, titled "Embarassed by getting only 4 A1s". There was this person who wrote in, and again brought up the examples of the Happiness Rating and how Singapore was at the bottom, and how we should reevaluate our value system if it is only marks that make us happy, etc.

I parodized What you Own last week, in an attempt to alleviate my thoughts on this matter. I tried keeping to the spirit of the song as much as possible; in as such it's not a very good parody.

Don't think too deep
Can't take all day
File more homework
Gotta get that 'A'
Those distinctions, all look the same
Letters to extend your name

You're living here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
You're living here in Singapore
Leave your conscience at the tone
And when you're living here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
You're who you pwn

You study from eight to three
For the test at the end of year
They say if you get all correct
It'll help in your career
Just sharpen those pencils
Just spam everything in detail
Just don't have fun or you will fail

You're living here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
You're living here in Singapore
Derive x from the unknown
And when you're living here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
You're who you pwn

I've no time for emotion
Hesitate, debate, or doubt
What's all the commotion
About

Why do we all have to fight
Let money be what makes the world go round
For once, can you just live with 'not right'
For once, can you just look around

Numbers, percentage, they're all just some fractions
A pass mark, a fail mark; you've got it all wrong
Everyone- just He's just crazy
Calls me a hypocrite Money
I'm trying to change the world Ka-ching!
I quit!

Dying here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
I'm dying here in Singapore
So freeze your soul in stone
And when you're dying here in Singapore
Where you gotta get that perfect score
You're all alone

You're all alone
You're all alone


-----
Monday during Chinese, Laoshi gave us this article, about this Chinese performer and philanthrophist, who gave away all his money, borrowed money to donate, and died of cancer. So there we were, talking and discussing his motives and his intentions, and then I realized I spoke what I am doing. He and I are so very much alike. But the thing about not caring about yourself, means you care for your family too, because they're not yourself.

That's Monday sorted out. Today I was sick at home again. In the morning I glanced at the newspapers. There was this article in The New Paper about who we should save in a real emergency, relating to the tremors which shook the nation on Wednesday. It mentioned pregnant women walking down about a dozen floors in their office buildings for evacuation. It then goes on to say that many disabled, elderly, and all "unnormal" people (no offence implied here; the word "unnormal" is used for the lack of a better one) have resigned themselves to the fact that they will have to be left behind in an evacuation. The quote of the post is from Ms Audrey Yeo, one of the pregnant ladies caught in the tremors. If that isn't a bigger insult to the moral standards to our nation, I don't know what is. "Come on, this is Singapore." It's obvious. It's expected. That's the way even our own citizens think.

Money doesn't make the world go round. Gravity still has that job. But money is starting to be something necessary to human survival because, if you don't have money, you can't buy food, your water supply gets cut off, you get evicted; very soon you can't even afford to buy the air you breathe. And all because humans can't give something for nothing. Just think, if everybody in the world were paid in thank yous. I'm not asking you to go back in time and change the invention of money or anything. Just think, if all the money in the world, right now, would disappear forever, and the world just exchanged their work for thank yous. Just think. The greatest payoff in having someone appreciate your time and effort. Do you think we can do that? As a people, on this planet, can we do that? This is probably the most important thing I am going to say in here: if you just forget, for one moment, that we are supposed to be a "fallen" people; if you forget, for one moment, that the world is stuck as it is and cannot be changed; if you forget, for one moment, the barriers that you placed at the entrance of a path that you are too lazy or too scared to walk down, and take a look at the end of that path. And just think. Is it worth it to walk down that path, just to get there?

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Empath

I feel your pain.

That’s what they always tell you. That somehow the people around you manage to feel the pain that you are feeling. Most of the time, they’re just saying it to act sympathetic.

Me? Well, I can experience your pain. Literally. Every moment of agony, every minute of torment. I don’t just feel your pain. I live it.

As far as you need to know, I don’t have a name. The people who I work with, they call me Empath. There isn’t any scientific reason why I can do the things I do. I call myself an emokinetic: I can control emotions. It’s not like the way you keep from laughing during assembly or prevent yourself from hitting your teacher.

I can move emotions between people. I can transfer your joy into your best friend. I can siphon your anger into my mind. I can take away your sorrow… or fill you with fear.

My own emotions, they’re under control. I don’t “feel” anything from myself anymore. I don’t get happy or sad or frightened or mad.

But your feelings, your emotions, I can sense them. I cannot “feel” the reason you are experiencing that emotion, but I can sense it. Every mind I touch is a maelstrom of fear, happiness, disgust, surprise, anger and sadness. But the one I am most experienced in is pain.

Everybody feels pain. People in power know how to use pain; to control, to manipulate, to cause fear. I hate these people. Pain isn’t something one human should cause another.

I have never used pain as a weapon. But I have drained it from people. Drained it into my own mind. And I feel the pain as it were your own.

Have you ever felt pain? Excruciating pain? Like you think your whole being will explode from the torture? That’s just physical pain. Emotional pain, psychological pain, is much worse. Your whole body goes numb, and you lose control of some of your motor functions. That would be the serotonin cutting off the signals in your nerves. You start crying, crying like you’d never stop crying ever. You start speaking your thoughts, trying to control yourself, but failing. And your mind… your mind is ripped apart.

Many say I manipulate people’s emotions and that it is wrong. But I use it to save lives. How wrong is that?

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Good Deed #001

It's the new year. And today, I did something.

Well, I was walking home from the barber, reading Shaun's copy of Eragon, when I noticed a woman ahead of me. She was a maid, I [i]think[/i], or maybe just Indonesian. Anyway, the strap of her gigantic shopping bag had snapped because of the tremendous weight, and her groceries were rolling all over the floor.

I didn't know what I was doing, I just stepped forward and helped her. It was so sudden, so unexpected (of myself). Nobody else was helping. Then when she noticed I was helping her, she said, "Thank you!" And it was so melodious, like the tinkling of a bell: "Thank you!"

I asked her whether she needed help carrying it anywhere but she said she could get a taxi. So I walked home, really happy and totally bewildered at what I had done.

Oh well, great way to start the yaer anyhow.