Thursday, December 31, 2009

Top Ten of 2009

Hey! 2009's almost over, and instead of griping over the past and wishing for a better future, I'm going to start this annual thing which recaps my best moments of each year, with the hope that they will be just as scintillating in the years to come! It's written in bits and pieces over the year, starting in June, but next year I'll start from the very beginning (Do, re, mi!).

1. Odyssey of the Mind Coaching: 2009 (Written: 16 Jun 09)
Ahahaha... no surprises that this would be on the list! Possibly one of the best experiences of this life or any other lives I had, have, or will ever have. I really had fun meeting all these new friends, and acting is a real blast, no matter what anybody says or calls me. I think possibly the best is the actual day of the national competition, and especially the prize ceremony, because I was on tenterhooks (wow, I actually used an obscure word) the whole time and it is AWESOME to jump up on your seat while cheering your voice out when one of the teams wins. Sad that World Finals was cancelled though. Meh. AH WELL STILL A HAPPY MEMORY!

2. The "Brack Obama" Joke (Written: 21 June 2009)
Oh yeah this one was a classic. Well, I was sitting on that joke for days, but with no opportunity to use it (is this how all comedians feel?). So there I was, sitting in an English class about Hedda Gabler, and wouldn't you know it, Ms Rachel Cheung asks me to read the stage directions about the first appearance of Brack. Talk about timing! Without skipping a beat, I instantly said, "Who, Obama?" and while it didn't get hilarious laughs, it triggered the standard eye-rolling response, so I guess it was good. And hey, I didn't get to waste a good joke.

3. Biking for the Second Time (Written: 21 June 2009)
Last week I went biking for the second time in my life. As I mentioned in that post, I think it was great that remembered how to do it the second time. Nothing like biking on speed! Now all I need to do is train more then we (most probably just I) will be able to rocket all the way up to Russia and back! Woohoo!

4. Finishing v3.0 of Don't Forget the Lyrics! Powerpoint version (Written: 21st June 2009)
This was thrilling enough, considering I finished everything happily at 3am in the morning. The high was absolutely fantastic, and I couldn't sleep for an hour after that. It's really satisfying once everything falls into place, and all the code that you spent hours searching for FINALLY WORKS. Then I made the Interactive Tutorial, which was quite fun as well, and right now I think the whole thing is just brilliant!

5. Animusic! (Written: 31st December 2009)
Oh man, if you still don't know what Animusic is, man you are missing out. Search it on Youtube. It's an awesome visual and aural treat that will leave you breathless. When I first found out about it, I couldn't stop spreading it around, because it was so awesome. Acoustic Curves and the Pipe Dreams are my favourites, and Future Retro is nice too.

6. The Giant Porcupine Sighting (Written: 31st December 2009)
OH MAN THIS IS A GREAT STORY. So I was on the bus with Hui Jun going home after school when the 74 stops at the Sunset Way bus stop. We were sitting on the upper deck and so the roof of the bus shelter blocks most of the view of the pavement. Anyway behind the roof someone was carrying one of those spiky brooms over his shoulder, so only the brush was visible. So Hui Jun gets distracted in the middle of our conversation, stares out the window and goes, "Oh my god it's a giant porcupine." So obviously, I crack up. And after I've composed myself, and able to breathe again, I ask him, "Why did you think that was a giant porcupine?" And he goes, "I dunno! I mean, at first I thought 'lion' but I knew lions don't live in Singapore!" And then I just crack up again.

7. GEP Chalet (Written: 31st December 2009)
Ahh, chalet. I missed last year's for WoW, so I came back this year with a vengeance. (Well, no, not really.) Between barbecuing with David and watching Fatal Frame for the first time in my life (FREAKING SCARY AND DISTURBING), it was loads of fun. I also got to try a bit of Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2, which was quite interesting.

8. Movies: Avatar and Up (Written: 31st December 2009)
Avatar was my movie event of the year. Transformers was action-packed and had interesting graphics, but this one had a whole WORLD. I really love the imagination and detail the creators put into it. It was a spellbinding totally-worth-it of 161 minutes. And Up was nice too, a nice little family movie which was heartwarming and generally awesome Pixar. Kevin's a girl?

9. Prom Night (Written: 31st December 2009)
Technically, prom itself wasn't that fun. It's for famous people to rub elbows with other famous people and not much for an inconspicuous guy like myself to do. I liked my costume though. It's the first (full) costume I ever had, if you discount those I had in OM which didn't really look like the real thing. No, the real fun was before and after prom, where we crashed in a sweet suite Ernest('s mom) booked at Raffles Town Club. I rarely get to play platform games, so it was lots of fun.

10. Youtube (Written: 31st December 2009)
It's not Youtube exactly, but all the awesome things that are there. Instrumentals for karaoke, for example, and also the Onion News Network, which is freaking hilarious. Other memorable Youtube moments this year include Improv Everywhere's many musicals, which are always awesome whenever they appear, and The Spectacular Spiderman which is the best Spiderman TV series ever made so far.

It's gonna be a happy new year!
The Edna Man

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Can you feel it? Can you feel the judgment?

They should be done by now. All over the world, they should be done by now. There's only one week left. It's all over. You have been judged. Can you feel your whole life, the rest of your future, hinging on a simple, single, two-digit number?

This is as close to Fate as it gets. From now till then, there's no changing anything. The score is fixed, the die is cast. One might say that it has already been since you wrote that final answer. But people are fickle and unpredictable, and only when the ticks and crosses are all tallied, then your fate is cast in stone.

Can you imagine knowing it now? Seven days before the day of reckoning. All you need to do is find those that belong to you, and add them up yourself. You don't need a ceremony to reveal the verdict. You have already been judged. It all exists. You just don't know it yet.

It's all there. One way or the other, you've already been acquitted or condemned. Right now, your life has swung into one of the two paths, one of the two categories, one of the two compartmentalized boxes. Right here, right now. It has already been decided. There is no turning back.

Can you feel it? Can you feel the weight of the future crushing your soul and rending your consciousness, strangling your hopes and dreams and ambitions by festering in your anticipation and feeding on your worries before it threatens to burst out and consume your every nightmare...

And then you wonder, why?
The Edna Man

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Avatar Runemarks

It's past 1 a.m. and I just got home and my parents aren't killing me. I feel old.

I just got home watching Avatar and it was awesome. I love the world, and I loved how the visual effects really brought out the world of Pandora. Missed the opening minutes though, so I'm not sure if Pandora is on another planet or an alternate dimension or what. I'm guessing planet. I thought the helicopter-lizards were quite cool. Oh, and I don't really understand the biological or evolutionary advantages of moss luminescing with applied pressure. Wouldn't that just attract predators (or herbivores)? But the effects were awesome, really loved the glowing mushrooms and the Tree of Souls. Interesting ecosystem there, interesting world. I wouldn't mind watching it again. Oh and since the movie ended past midnight, it was a race against time to the MRT station to see if we could catch the last train, and another race to the bus stops to catch the last bus, frantically scanning the large maps along the way. I felt rather Bourne-ish as I was doing that. Quite an exciting little adventure.

A couple days ago I finished reading Runemarks by Joanne Harris, and before that, Here Lies Arthur by Philip Reeve. Awesome books, awesome storytelling. A peculiar connection between these two books is that they are (possibly) meta-commentaries about stories in general. Actually, Reeve's book probably had more of it. Here Lies Arthur is a tale about King Arthur, Lord of the Britons. Except this wasn't the honourable Arthur from legends; he was nothing more than a gang boss, offering protection from the Saxons to the settlements scattered across Britain and demanding protection money in return. And the stories of Arthur's good name was spread by his trickster and bard, Myrrdin (sound familiar?). I knew enough about the legend of King Arthur to know that this was an excellent story. You have a well-known tale and you subvert it using easily-recognizable characters in a whole new setting (much like Marvel: 1602).
There was an undercurrent of tricksters in Runemarks as well, with Loki. Another book with the same vein, and another brilliant world with excellent storytelling. The only thing I found annoying was that the author didn't really focus on the "main" character throughout the whole thing, but it was possibly due to the type of story the author intended to write. Still good though.

The other medium I have recently discovered is The Onion News Network. It is HILARIOUS. I love the subversion, and I absolutely love the way they do it so professionally and so deadpan. It is brilliant. What it must be to work there.

"That's what we need. Another bloody oracle."
The Edna Man.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Dream Sequence #004

Okay, I just woke up, and I need to write down this dream.

I don't remember much now that I'm awake, and there was a whole blockbuster's worth of material in this dream. Basically, there is this land with two races, I think, a more human-ish one and a more elvish one. At least, I assume elvish because they wear more green and leaves than the other race. They use bows and arrows, but the main character (first person point of view) is learning a form of exaggerated martial arts where you have colourful bolts of energy flying around whenever you perform a movement. He learns it from a master, who he develops a powerful relationship with. If I remember correctly, both are elvish, because it makes whatever comes next have a lot of sense. Then something happens, something about an enemy inviding, and I think they have to flee to the shelter of the nearby fort. I remember clearly that the fort had a postern gate, carved out of rock in the side of a mountain.

Once in the fort, the protagonist and his master are able to train in the royal swimming pool, which is supposed to have benefits which I can't remember. (The extra spinning ability, perhaps. There was this bit I remember where the protagonish spun around, crossing his hands in front and behind him as he went, launching energy bolts shaped like small blue or yellow birds at his teacher, while he blocked them with a red ring of energy around himself.) The royalty, the king, has this thundercloud floating over his head, with lightning striking occasionally, and the prince has a smaller cloud, shaped like a leafy sea dragon. Again something happens, which I can't remember, and the humans have little trust for the elves, and one of them in particular is extremely bowstring-happy, willing to shoot anyone whom he thinks has turned traitor (and he thinks most elves have). So anyway the master is showing the protagonist a map of the whereabouts of his family, which he needs to go back and protect, when there is this cinematographic zoom-in of the trigger-happy soldier snapping his face backwards upon hearing the name of the village, and then the protagonist goes up to him and demands to know why hie is eavesdropping on the conversation. They almost fight, but are stopped by the image of an elf leaving by the postern, which if I failed to mention before, is carved into the mountain and is about ten metres tall. So the guy promptly draws his bow, and the protagonist tries to stop him, and he promptly gets shot in the side like, four times. And if you recall, it was all in first-person, so technically I got shot in the side like, four times. And it was helluva painful. I think I stumbled backwards into a pit, and that's when I woke up.

I have a feeling that this dream was inspired by Marvel: 1602, Xi Min and JX's new fantasy world, and The Two Towers soundtrack, all combined. Creepy.

The Edna Man

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Marvel: 1602

So I just came back from the National Library today feeling extremely happy since I discovered that my premium membership only expires in four days which meant that I could borrow an unhealthy number of books home. Sad that they discontinued their double-limit policy though.

Anyhoo, the first of my eight-book spree is Marvel: 1602, written by Neil Gaiman of Sandman and Stardust fame, as well as a number of other titles which I am not familiar with. And I have to agree that Gaiman is a kind of storytelling genius. I now am very willing to read Sandman.

The story is interesting, though after a couple of years reading comics, is somewhat typical of the genre. The way Gaiman crafts it, though, weaving fundamental and recognizable Marvel characters into the historical setting, is pure brilliance. I had great fun identifying the people before the plot revealed their names and identities, and it was fun waiting for Peter Parker to get bitten by a spider (screw you, Gaiman, for drawing that out for so long XD). It was good, good, good, and I enjoyed it so much, so thanks Mr Gaiman, for an hour of entertainment and a lifetime of inspiration.

"A universe in which no story can ever truly end; in which there can be only continuances." -- Richard Reed
The Edna Man

Monday, December 07, 2009

Prom Birthday Chalet Musical 3

You can tell how much I've been playing by the huge delay between posts. So anyway there's been much going on. Going in order:

Prom was a blast on the 23rd of November. The Phantom of the Opera Was Here, inside my mind. Pity there wasn't any chandeliers to crash into the middle of the ballroom, sigh. Oh, and it doesn't matter how awesome you are, if you're not famous, screw it. But still, it was nice playing the Phantom and having a cloak to swish around and draw around you dramatically as you leave the room and stuff. But I guess the Phantom must have been left handed or something, because it's damn hard to eat with that mask on. (Or maybe he takes it off. Oh yeah.) Anyway, was one of the only few people with a mask, unless you count girls' eyeshadow, which was WAY FREAKY and looked so gothic and vampish. But well. Never understood them anyway. Ernest had this awesome British costume thing with a pipe and hat and a suit which looked so close to a tuxedo that it was almost as if Mr Bond himself had entered the room. Hui Jun looked like Willy Wonka with his humongous top hat and cane and paedophilic mannerisms. Levin went as a mad scientist, with a Russian accent but he looked more Einstein-ish than Russian.

Prom itself wasn't very exhilarating. There were a couple of performances but the sound system wasn't good enough to carry it across the ballroom. No dancing. Food just came and went. Took some pictures, and went off to Raffles Town Club where Ernest had booked a suite. We had bowling earlier in the afternoon (I am thinking of learning how to do it properly) and played games through it mostly. It's quite fun playing Rise of Apocalypse with more people, but Lord of the Rings was DAMN HARD and DAMN STRESSFUL. But yeah, had much fun anyway.

And so I've been introduced to a new MMORPG. I tried BrightShadow right after exams ended, but I found it to be getting too monotonous after level 20 (I was a mage and had little late game variety). So after prom the guys got me into NeoSteam which I'm still playing now and am quite happy with it. It's great because it can run on my com, end of story.

Oh, midway between this and the next thing was double back-to-back birthdays of Juzzie and XM. Juzzie's was quite fun and I met a couple of new people I'll never see again, and XM's introduced me to Valkriya Chronicles which is an AWESOME Turn-Based Strat with a novel combat system. (As Jonny would agree, the main character is also quite cute.)

Well not long after that it was GEP CHALET which was an awesome blast. I missed the last one because of WoW last year, so this year I came back with a vengeance. I feel a bit guilty because I didn't help out as much, but I guess I helped out where I could. (Better that SOME PEOPLE who didn't help out at all!) But it was mostly a gaming chalet, with Borderlands in the bedrooms and PS3 in the hall and Starcraft matches as after-dinner entertainment. But I think the highlight of the many chalets is Fatal Frame, and this year I forced myself to stay awake to watch it. I can understand why it's such a communal game, as anyone playing it alone in the dead of night must either be insane or blindfolded. The game's creators do make the player freak out most of the times, and SZ was just hilarious to watch playing (Jew film!). But I admit that I wasn't really freaked out by the ghosts, but it was more of when the audience shrieked in terror that made me jump. But still, the plot of the game was quite disturbing, and the ritual was damn freaky. It still freaks me out whenever I think of the Blinding Mask and the Rope Maiden Ritual. Apparently, the next two Fatal Frame titles are even more freakier, because there's something about a twin strangling her sister and a whole village of undead. Yeah.

So that's been most of my activities for the past fortnight or two. Then Saturday I watched High School Musical 3: Senior Year and I LOVED IT. Okay, the plot stinks, quite badly. BUT THE MUSIC IS AWESOME. I can tell they really pulled out all the stops for the feature film, because the cinematography was just brilliant, and some of the sets and scenes were amazing. The Broadway style song, I Want It All, was stupendous, I think my favourite, because of the elaborate set and the costumes and the whole musical-ishness of the piece. Loved it, totally. Oh and then there was the awesome rotating corridor in Scream which I though was quite cool because it made it like a real music video. I think it would be awesome fun to be a cast member on a production like this.

And so that's all for now. I'll see what other awesome stuff I'll be doing these next two months of freedom.

Who says we have to let it go?
The Edna Man

Wednesday, November 18, 2009





Fastest Puzzle Solvers
1. Herrick (14)
2. Hui Jun (11)
3. Boey Yang (9)
4. Levin Tan (8)
5. Kuang Kai (8)
6. Darrell Neo (7)
7. Justin Poh (2)

The Edna Man

Tuesday, November 17, 2009



Collapse all your wave functions to become unmarried,
Like Jenga except you shout at the last card,
Of The Jet Li and ultimate rings of power,
And hitting Shift+OMG!!!!!
The Edna Man

Monday, November 16, 2009



One less than a crowd is better than one head worth more than those in the bush,
The Edna Man

Sunday, November 15, 2009



Hendiatris, Rings of Elven Power, nautical red between blue: Hat-trick!
The Edna Man

Saturday, November 14, 2009



Seasons, the Horsemen of Apocalpyse, the Beatles, Suits, Noble Truths, Elements

Friday, November 13, 2009



Click the Maroon and Take a Jackson Famous for Fighting on a Fatal High,
The Edna Man

Thursday, November 12, 2009



Iron for the birthday, bronze carried long;
Wood from the burning, stone out of song;
Fire in the candle-ring, water from the thaw;
Signs of the circle, and the grail gone before,

The Edna Man

Wednesday, November 11, 2009



pH neutral, Roman hills, Signs of the Apocalypse: Jackpot!
The Edna Man

Tuesday, November 10, 2009



A Beufort gale, a Great Richter, a devastating Torino collision
The Edna Man

Monday, November 09, 2009



Pluto's Cloud,
The Edna Man

Sunday, November 08, 2009


You don't know about me, without you have read every other post on this here journal, but that ain't no matter. This journal was made by Mr Kevin Low, and he told the truth, mostly. There was things he stretched, but he mainly told the truth.

Well, one or two years run along, and it was well into November, now. I had been to school most all the time, and now it was the examnations, where they test you on most everything they learned you over the years. There ain't nothing worse a body can't handle, except maybe some teachers I knowed. I don't take much stock in her, anyway.

One day I happened to strike an idea. I says to myself, I couldn't see no profit in this commentary-writing business, so why don't I write my commentary in the author's style? Won't it show them that I knew their style better than the author himself? I reckoned it would be fun, and exciting, and warn't any harm in it.

So I tell Tom Sawyer about it. He said, "Why, where was you raised? Would Shakespeare write in Dicken's style? Or Jane Eyre? No, he wouldn't. Because it ain't in the books so, that's why. Now, do you want to do things regular, or don't you? Don’t you reckon that the people that made the books knows what’s the correct thing to do? Do you reckon you can learn them anything? Not by a good deal. We got to do it proper, with quotes and all, and blame it if we don't get it right."

I didn't believe him. It had all the marks of a Sunday school.
Unck Ednn



Tetractys Thousand Thundering Typhoons,
The Edna Man

Saturday, November 07, 2009



World War I ended at the last possible moment
The Edna Man

Friday, November 06, 2009



Zeus, Hera, Poseidon, Demeter, Ares, Hermes, Hephaestus, Aphrodite, Athena, Apollo, Artemis, Hestia
The Edna Man

Thursday, November 05, 2009




The Edna Man

Wednesday, November 04, 2009



What does Johann Sebastian Bach have in common with Sonnets?
The Edna Man

Tuesday, November 03, 2009



There's never a wish better than this,
The Edna Man

Monday, November 02, 2009


Tomorrow marks the beginning of the COUNTDOWN.

Merry Mugging to all, and to all a good night.
The Edna Man

Friday, October 30, 2009


The days flowed by like water. Swiftly the wheel for formations turned, and soon the cycle of examinations was upon him once again. Like ants, the child people worked. Like ants, the child people worked towards their goals, their individual desires, their eyes never wavering from that goal, that final perfection.

It was during this procession towards the end of days that a thought struck Uncletheddna. In the process of meditating on his sacred texts, he thought, wouldn't it be fun, wouldn't it be interesting to write his commentary verses in the style which the manuscripts were originally written? Wouldn't it show, wouldn't it express that he knew of the style in which it is written like the back of my hand? For what better way to show understanding, to show knowledge, than to produce an imitation, to reproduce the original?

His heart laughed at the thought. It would be a symbolic cycle, a renewal, a circle. It was karma, that fateful cycle of events, which would have the reader in the examiner, and the examiner in the reader. And his heart filled with delight at the thought.

This, o reader, are some of the thoughts which have crossed my mind.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Only Human After All

So I was watching Improv Everywhere's latest musical when I click on a link for one of the photographers and I find her blog. It's rather nice, since it's more of a photoblog, and her photographs are really quite nice (and her cat is adorable). So halfway down I find a link to her husband's website and apparently he's a freelance filmmaker. There's an awesomely choreographed video on the front of his site (when you first visit) which reminds me of this video which I've seen before, which is awesome in its own right (the music isn't very though). So anyway if you browse around the site and come across the videos, the first one that opens when you click that tab is a rather interesting video about the buskers in New York (if you don't see that video then click the picture of the glue bottle on the right). Aside from the video, which is both heartwarming and heart-wrenching at the same time, the song, which I assume is written by the busker with the guitar and harmonica, is a really nice one. I couldn't find the lyrics anywhere, so I guess it's an original song. But it's nice.

Only Human After All (?)
Well if I was a fountain
Would your wishes bring good luck?
And if I was a jacket
Would you always hang me up?
But if I was a jukebox
Would you play me all the time?
And if I sold my guilty soul
Would you pay any (mind)?

Well if I had direction
I'd be sure to steer you right
And if I was a freight train
Would you ride me every night?
But if I was a season
Would you catch me when I fall?
And if I gave you everything
Would you just take it all?

But if the answer's yes
To the questions I already know
There would be nothing left to prove
I wish I had the time
But you're fine
With my fate on the line
Don't need to know the truth
It might just break your heart in two
And I've done sniffed up all my glue
The (new) conclusion that I drew
I guess I'm only human after all

Well if I was a smile
Would you turn me upside down?
And if I was a whirlwind
Would I spin your world around?
But if I was a hotel room
Would you be here to stay?
And if I went and stood you up
Would you just walk away?

Yeah, if I was a riddle
Would you see me as a joke?
And if I was a pocket
Would you come and take me broke?
But if I was a junkie
Would you try and get me fixed?
And if I was a cigarette
Would you decide to quit?

But if I'm never there
Don't despair
'Cos I don't really care
As long as I'm not getting caught
Now just escape the pain
Of (this stain)
Let me level my brain
From your forget-me-nots
(Me tell) you give it all you've got
So watch me take me another shot
You're bound to make my stomach rot
Forgot I'm only human after all

Well if I was expensive
Would your wallet set me free?
And if I was a letter
Would you ever let me be?
But if I was a stop sign
Would you still be on the go?
And if I was a roadmap
Would you let me take you home?

But if I sing my song
Is it wrong
If you don't sing along
But still support me in the end?
'Cos like the setting sun
It's been fun
But it's over and done
I'm moving on my friend
Until the day we meet again
I'll wallow in my medicine
And know that I'll feel better when
You realize that I'm human after all


In other news, I've learned what esoteric, meningitis, and scuttlebutt mean from playing Clockwords.
The Edna Man

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Hey, so exams are coming closer and all that, but what better way to spend your time before eminent doom arrives than playing games!

Clockwords is an awesome word game which is slightly different from other word games (like Text Twirl or Bookworm). It's awesome awesome fun and it's replaced my "Take a Break, have a GAME!" game of choice lately. It's like Tower Defence, Scrabble and a Typing Speed Test all in one! Go try it, and you can tell your mom that you're improving your English or something.

In other news, Improv Everywhere has a new musical.
The Edna Man

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Once Upon a November

Wake Me Up When November Ends, parody of Wake Me Up When September Ends by Green Day
Year Five has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when November ends

Like my other friends in class
Three more weeks will go so fast
Wake me up when November ends

Here comes exams again
Mugging day and night
Textbooks to cram again
And more essays to write

As my memory fills
Anymore and it overspills
Wake me up when November ends

Prelims have come and passed
The stakes are high and the die is cast
Wake me up when November ends

Time makes its slow advance
Like we're working in a trance
wake me up when November ends

There goes my brain again
You won't comprehend
Drenched in my pain again
Awaiting for the end

All the things I have revised
Didn't work as advertised
Wake me up when November ends


Once we get that forty-five
I'll reawake and come alive
Wake me up when November ends

Two more fortnights of IB
Just two months and I'll be free
Wake me up when November ends
Wake me up when November ends
Wake me up when the papers end


Apparently people are willing to lie through their teeth for their curriculum vitae. Say hello, all you University Application Deans!

Maybe I've been the problem, maybe I'm the chance of rain
The Edna Man

Thursday, October 01, 2009

My First Children's Day

Hooray, blogger seems to be fixed. Back to regular updates!

This has been a really nice half-week, with lots of fun for all the family. Not only are prelims over, I spent three days out of the house! (Not consecutively, of course.)

So after the stats exam on Monday we had one of those famous "class" outings. We headed down to Cineleisure and had a brunch at Burger King (I'll have a Croissant-wich and some fries and coke on the side). Because nobody knew which movie to watch, we ended up deciding on Whiteout, which was at like, 1.30pm, 2 hours away. So we went to hunt down a LAN shop while Justin got his Omnitrix fixed, and managed to find one who was willing to hide our school-uniformed customership in the back. Played CounterStrike for about an hour; Jun Siong is a damn good (and damn irritating) sniper. But meh, I got better over time. Then we went back to watch the movie. It wasn't too bad, but the plot was a bit forced, I think, and there wasn't really a point to the story or anything. But yeah, still thrilling.

After that we split up because of differing agendas; Ernest and JS went to play badminton, and the girls went to watch Gamer, while Levin, Mong and Justin went to get computer parts. So I wandered over to Kino and lost myself in the comics section (again), and I just have to say that Marvel's Secret War event looks amazing, and so does DC's Blackest Night. Sigh.

Then on Tuesday, I went over to Hui Jun's house again for an afternoon of fun and laughter. Played X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse for a while, which was kinda infuriating because some people just want to destroy everything with a health bar, even though it's not necessary. It felt nice being experienced at a game for once. Oh yeah, before that Ernest was thrashing me with Soul Calibur, which he was competition-trained at until Sec 1 before he decided to give it up. I guess I will never be good at fighting games. So after X-Men we returned to Raving Rabbids, which is this Wii party game. It has an awesome TapTap-esque minigame, and awesome dancing one, so yeah!

Then at night, we started a game of Munchkin with JC's brand-new expansion packs, with dungeons now which affect all players. It was quite fun, especially the gender-changing one, but I had to leave halfway to make sure I could catch a bus back. But before I did I borrowed three books from Hui Jun; more on that later.

Okay, then yesterday was a full morning of OM-related activity. First I'm supposed to wake up at 8am but for some reason I must have been so tired that I switch it off while not even waking up, and it's only at like, 9.20 does my mom come in and ask me what time I have to be at MGS. Aaah! So I rush out of the house and get on the first bus down to the school, and I apparently make it just in time to surprise the OM girls for Children's Day. Ta-dah! Well, I didn't manage to get any sweets but Mrs Hah had a whole fridge of them (literally, stockpiles of it) and I just helped give them out. Meh. Oh well. So June and I hung around until the Children's Day concert, which I was quite curious to see, seeing that I haven't watched a Children's Day concert for about six years. It was quite awesome, actually, seeing the teachers go up and perform for their students. I think that it's brilliant; it really reminds the teachers that they're not just there to teach, but to make them happy, which is great. Hints for Youth Day, instead of just ice-cream.

So then June and I went down to town for lunch, chicken rice a la carte. We wandered around town, shared an Auntie Anne's pretzel which I haven't eaten since I was ten or eleven, I think. (Actually, "shared" is a bit of a euphemism; June claimed she was full and only accepted a small chunk.) Then it was off wandering around Kino (again) and we found this AWESOME series of books. They're like textbooks, but all in manga style. That's right. Typical Japanese manga girls and nerdy-looking boys explain Newtonian physics, molecular biology and calculus. June was complaining how she never had these books in her time.

After that June said she had never explored Orchard Ion, so naturally an expedition was in order. Thank goodness this time I managed not to get lost, and we wandered around looking at posh tea houses and expensive fashion accessories. Then it was time to go home.

And what I've been doing at home is reading. Lately, Hui Jun has been like a library to me, and I've been borrowing from his extensive (read: he has books shelved behind his books) collection. I'm supposed to do a review on them soon, so keep your eyes out for that. In order: Garth Nix's Keys to the Kingdom series, then Trudi Canavan's The Black Magician series, and now two of Eoin Colfer's: The Supernaturalist and The Wish List, as well as Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, which is the only one I haven't yet read. Will get to the reviews soon, I guess.

Happy Children's Day!
The Edna Man

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Sad, Sad Situation

Link: "Wanton Disrespect from Another School"

I refer you to the above forums for more information about this post.

Firstly, you can see that Singaporean Internet commenters are no different from American Internet commenters (seriously NSFW). Nice to see civility taking a backseat when hiding behind the anonymity of teh interwebz.

I think most of the people condemning the act are too quick to judge. They are quick to blame the teachers, the school, the education system, before getting the full story on the situation. I think the intent of the initial forum poster, to rile up emotions on this event because of the apparent shocking nature of the pictures, was achieved quite well. People tend to react more violently or strongly to images or events which throw a wrench in their system, which might affect their rational judgment about the situation.

From what I can gather about the nature of the project the students were supposed to undertake, I think that it is brilliant. This is the kind of education method I prefer: something which exercises creativity and exploration, not just extraction from a textbook. I think it is effective because you can see how the students really got into the role-playing and the systematic process of taking over the rival school. On the basis of understanding the mindsets of colonists and putting the student in their shoes, which was allegedly the aim of the exercise, this was a fantastic idea. However, what was not mentioned was the aftermath: learning from your mistakes. After all the laughter and humour was over, did the teacher explain the detrimental possibilities of their plans? Did he or she take them back out of context and ask them to look at what they had thought up? Did the students recognise the potential of the atrocities they might commit if they had the opportunity to put their plans into action? That should be an important lesson here as well, not just the understanding of colonists.

That aside, we return to the "public's" reaction to this so-called "despicable slandering". First comes the Victims, who are offended by the "stereotypes" portrayed and demands that teachers be sacked, schools admitting apologies, ministries coming in to investigate, and all that jazz. These are the same type of people who hate Islamists just because of a few fundamentalists. I will never understand the human tendency of association, especially the Singaporean idea of "each student represents the entire school". In any organization (especially those in which membership is not voluntary), there will be rebels, or at least deviants who do not totally believe in whatever mission or ideal that the organization represents. But thanks to the media, these anomalies are hyped up to such an extent that the layman thinks they represent the entire organization.

I've been studying statistics for the past few months, and one of the basic principles of sampling is that a sample is never an exact representation of the population. It gives indicators, sure, but is not a photocopy. Once that is understood, then the second concept to understand is that correlation does not imply causation. So, a few students with the propensity to think up such ideas and with the intelligence to post them on a public domain does not immediately mean that the entire school is like them. As if schools could control the every action and thoughts of every single student that passes through their halls. The same argument applies for all the people who believe that the whole ACS fraternity is highly offended. Some commented that they found it highly amusing and mostly harmless; for who can blame them? They must have done it in their own time as well.

Then there are also the slights on racism, discrimination and stereotypes. Those happy people who believe in the racial integrity of our stable country insist that these type of stereotypes and generalization, if applied to the more emotionally-manipulating subject of racism, will bring instability to our great nation. To these happy people, I invite you to watch a liberal musical called Avenue Q, in particular a song called Everybody's a Little Bit Racist. If you understand what it is trying to say, you will see that everybody makes little judgments, not just based on race, but on whatever organization or stereotype you belong to. And the whole idea is not to escalate it to such violent, rioting levels, but to accept it as part of human nature.

So there is my take on this whole shebang. Now to get back to stats.
The Edna Man

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Scallywags and Scoundrels

Ahoy me hearties! Terday be anoth'r Talk Like a Pirate Day, and woe betide it falls on a Saturday, with naught a social gatherin' all day. Talk Like a Pirate Day ain't much fun, if yer don't have nobody ter talk ter.

I allow'd meself ter write me cap'n's log terday, being one o' them special days and all, and since I miss'd September 1st 9th and 11th, I made sure ter commemorate tha special occasion.

It ain't much fun, like I said, but me be studyin' me organic alchemy to tha excitin' instrumentals o' tha Pirates o' tha Caribbean soundtrack. S' better than naught.

Ye bilge rats and landlubbers should be more appreciative o' tha special days o' tha year, as they be making tha borin' and mundane inter somethin' diffrent and un-monotonous. But well, one mate's treasure chest is another mate's booty, if ye know what I mean.

Avast, and belay that bilgewater.
Cap'n Edna Mann

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Bike Trip!

So we went biking on Friday and I'm only writing about it today. Partly because of distractions and partly because damn Blogger is screwing up its XML or something. It really puts me off writing when the formatting of the submit form is all over the place.

Anyways, bike riding was awesome. As expected, not many people came, but a couple new faces this time. We took a different route from before, but ended up at a place with cheaper rentals than before, in a way. And what an epic bike journey it was. We cycled all the way down to Changi Airport, which was a first for me (I can do turns now!) and EPIC when we tried racing the planes taking off. Unfortunately, the bikes from this rental place were so overused that my gear-change system didn't work and I was stuck on high for most of the ride, meaning that I couldn't coast, limited to short bursts of speed. Still, not as bad as Guangda, whose rear tyre somehow acquired a dent which interfered with his braking system, causing him to pedal with all his might just to keep moving.

Arun and Charmaine joined us for dinner, at Carl's Junior (best place after a three-hour bike ride) over a fascinating discussion about superstitions and the supernatural. It was really interesting, coming from the skeptic point of view, and it's good because you keep your mind open to all the various possibilities and explanations. Huh.

Anyway, on the MRT ride back, there was another interesting conversation about NS with the China scholars. After I changed to the red line, I let an old man take my seat on the train. One of the few times I actually had a seat on the train to give up. Anyway, he didn't sound as grateful as some of the other elderly I've helped; not that I'm expecting, I just noticed he was different. But good karma goes around, I guess, because the bus driver waited for me while I hobbled to the bus stop with my injured leg.

That's about it I suppose. Mugging is back with Prelims, and there's no break to the IBs, so.

Need to fly away in a costume of colours,
The Edna Man

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Holding out for a Teacher

Holding Out for a Teacher - Parody of Holding Out for a Hero by Bonnie Tyler

Where have all the tutors gone?
And where are my textbooks?
Where's the stupid search engine
Telling me to look?
All these facts and figures are running through my brain
I need help to sort through my head before I go insane!

I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher till the end of the term;
He's gotta be smart
And she's gotta have heart
And he's gotta be friendly but firm
I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher so that I can learn
She's gotta be sure
As an entrepreneur
Or the finals and exams will burn
Exams will burn

Though this class ain't perfect
And it just gets on your nerve;
Idiots and geniuses,
Taken from both ends of the curve.
But ask yourself one question; ask your own true heart:
Would your life be better if we spent our year apart?

I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher 'till she marks my essay
Don't come into my dorm;
Sign my CAS form;
Don't tell me it's another survey?!
I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher until Teachers' Day!
Jarrel Seah can't explain,
His words are too arcane
And it leaves me in more disarray
More disarray

"Madam could you please write my testimonial?
I need to apply for Uni."
"No please don't confiscate my

Through the toilet breaks and long timetables
Fire drills without smoke
We will all study hard
So we can get your jokes

I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher who is also a friend,
Don't need no professor;
Or Internal Assessor;
Or someone who just condesceneds;
I need a teacher!
I'm holding out for a teacher who really comprehends
We gotta remember
'Cos the end of November
Doesn't mean that these friendships must end
Friendships must end

My tribute to all my teachers, past and present. Happy Teachers' Day, y'all!

In other news, today's T-Day performance was one of the best EVER. I mean, I don't know how the older teachers are going to appreciate the hip-hop and stuff, but having the Senior Admin in feather boas and a sparkly top hat must surely make any performance an instant sellout.

Somebody give me a grade!
The Edna Man

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Got these Chains on Me

Got these Chains on Me - Phineas and Ferb
I woke up this morning, and the world was gray.
Haven't seen the sun since they hauled me away.
The boss man says there's no use in trying,
He won't let me color outside of the lines.

Got these chains on me,
And they're draggin' me down.
Got these chains on me,
Hear that clanking sound?
Got these chains on me,
Mister, hear my song
Don't say imagination is morally wrong

Drink of water, boss?

As long as I've been here I got nothing to show,
Try to make something but the boss says no
Wanna be creative but the man won't hear it
That big boss man, he's trying to crush my spirit

Got these chains on me,
They won't let me fly
Got these chains on me,
Won't tell me why
Got these chains on me
Mister, hear my song
Don't say imangination is morally wrong

No, they won't let us dance or bang that gong,
Cause they say imagination is morally wrong.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

How Many Times Has This Happened To You?

What are you waiting for?

Images taken from here and here. Don't ask why both have hoodies; I was searching for one for the emo model but found the girl to be quite nice.

On second thought, I should have hosted this on my devart.

Order now and we'll throw in a SoulmateTM ABSOLUTELY FREE!
The Edna Man

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Coming Soon...

Movie Poster

Levin started it with his H1N1 movie. Then I wore my hoodie out in a public place. Thought about how the shield could be a symbol for some secret society. One thing led to another. Need more photoshop skills though.

How free are you?
The Edna Man

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Music and Lyrics

Yes, I realize that I've been to way too many FoA performances this year. I couldn't help it! The sounded good beforehand and well, I had friends there. What's a guy to do? I guess, being the last year of seeing these people perform, I might as well just go. And I wasn't disappointed.

Levin can sing Jazz! And Ernest... well, we all knew Ernest could play anything with a trumpet, so no big surprise there. But still the music was awesome. THEY CHANTED HOIST THE COLOURS. Instant-win in my book. Oh, and now I feel like going to watch all the Broadway musicals that I've missed over the past few years.

Things to do:
1. Movie poster
2. Superfriends story
3. Review Keys to the Kingdom
4. Parody Graduation
5. Write song
6. Satire PQs
7. Story about procrastination, destiny, Venice/Paris

Probably won't be doing them so soon, since there's something screwy with Blogger and the stupid post interface is HTML-ing up somehow. Ahh well. Will try for story next.

The Edna Man

Monday, August 10, 2009


And so my parents dragged me out for a movie anyways.

Up was nice. You can't go wrong with a Pixar movie, that's for sure. The 3D effect was quite nice, for a change of boring 2D. Seems like all the upcoming movies are aiming for the 3D visuals now. Wonder how that'll change things.

It must be nice to fall in love. To go to the ends of the earth for someone else.

In other news, this year's NDP was quite nice. Nice music. Funny. Rare, that one. It was really colourful this year too, I noticed. Mmm.

Things to do:
1. Movie poster
2. Superfriends story
3. Review Keys to the Kingdom
4. Parody Graduation
5. Write song
6. Satire PQs
7. Story about procrastination, destiny, Venice/Paris

Thanks for the adventure. Now go have yours!
The Edna Man

Sunday, August 09, 2009


I got food poisoning over the weekend. From Friday, to be precise. Still don't know what caused it, but I had gut-wrenching stomach pains, and coupled with the fact that I couldn't sleep but was really really tired, gave me a hint of delusional mumblings. Then came the vomiting, and everything fell into place.

Well, check "Get food poisoning" off my Life's To-Do List.
The Edna Man

Friday, August 07, 2009

Decrypting a Printer

Wednesday, Jarrel Seah and I got interested in a printout from Neil's printer which has this mass of gibberish on it. Due to some printing error (probably the buffer memory), the characters all got replaced by its precedent (probably also by the ASCII, numerically). So we spent the better part of an hour decrypting the binary Caesar shift and generally having a lot of fun. Seems awesome to cryptography in real life, though I assume it wold never be so easy. I mean, we had an awesome crib in the form of a URL, so that pretty much gave the game away.

Still, it was quite fun
Sgd Dcm9 L9m

Monday, August 03, 2009

Down in the History Books

Just a thought while doing war poems. I noticed that we have no problem calling those war recruitment posters "propaganda" but now we dare not even mention the word. Why? Which led me to think: the best way to run a country is to imagine you are a historian from the future writing about yourself now. Is what you're doing now considered "propaganda" to those future historians who have not the bias you have?

Just a thought.
The Edna Man

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Oh vassal, miscreant

So I've come back from the Drama Festival of Arts: The Thwarting of Baron Bolligrew. And I guess it's kinda okay, much more comprehensible than the avant-garde performances of three days ago (sorry). I guess it's quite pffft that they don't do pure comedies anymore, because these days, with all these tragedies, we do really need a good laugh. Joshua and Jesmond almost did the Thriller dance in the intermission though, which was exciting.

Speaking of tragedies (sigh), it's quite something to be critiquing the play, noting the use of foreshadowing and irony throughout. And man oh man, the freaking use of RHYMING COUPLETS TO END THE PERFORMANCE. DAMN YOU SHAKESPEARE.

Dear sir, forebear,
The Edna Man

Friday, July 31, 2009

Skipper Dan

Music Video

Skipper Dan by Weird Al Yankovic

I starred in every high school play
Blew every drama teacher away
I graduated first in my class at Juilliard
Took every acting workshop I could
And I dreamed of Hollywood
While I read my Uta Hagen and studied the Bard

Hit the boards and paid my dues
And got phenomenal rave reviews
I knew the world was gonna love me, without a doubt
I was sure that Tarantino would be callin' me on the phone
Annie Leibovitz would shoot me for Rolling Stone
But the years have come and gone
And I'm sorry to say that's not the way that it's all worked out

I'm a tour guide on the Jungle Cruise ride
Skipper Dan is the name
And I'm doin' 34 shows every day
And every time it's the same
Look at those hippos, they're wigglin' their ears
Just like they've done for the last 50 years
Now I'm laughin' at my own jokes but I'm cryin' inside
'Cause I'm workin' on the Jungle Cruise ride

Oh, the critics, they used to say
I was the new Olivier
Thought I'd be the toast of Sundance or maybe Cannes
Aw, but don't bother tryin' to IMDb me
The only place you might possibly see me
Is ridin' my little boat around Adventureland
It ain't exactly what I planned

But I'm a tour guide on the Jungle Cruise ride
Skipper Dan is the name
And I'm doin' 34 shows every day
And every time it's the same
I would've killed if I'd been in "Speed The Plow"
But what's the difference, that's all behind me now
'Cause I'm payin' the rent and I'm swallowin' my pride
And I'm workin' on the Jungle Cruise ride

I should be there on Broadway
Knockin' 'em dead in "12 Angry Men"
But instead I'm here tellin' these lame jokes
Again and again and again and again and again and again and again

Bengal Tigers can jump over 20 feet!
That's an African bull elephant...
And there it is, the backside of water!
What have I done with my life?!

I shoulda listened when my grandfather said
"Why don't you major in business instead?"
Now my hopes have all vanished and my dreams have all died
And I'll probably work forever as a tour guide on the Jungle Cruise ride
Skipper Dan is the name
And I'm doin' 34 shows every day
And every time it's the same
Look at those hippos, they're wigglin' their ears
Somebody shoot me 'cause I'm bored to tears
Always said I'd be famous... I guess that I lied
'Cause I'm workin' on the Jungle Cruise ride
I'm still workin' on the Jungle Cruise ride


This is a bit of a deviation for Al, who has always been on the more funny side of things. This one is more satirical, more depressing, but still a brilliant piece.

Always said I'd be famous; I guess that I lied,
The Edna Man

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Old-School Acting-Performance

Well I just came back from a post-modernist drama performance and I must admit I am quite confused. Call me old school, but I can't get interpretive dance. I have the feeling that if I knew what I was supposed looking out for, I would be able to see it (just like normal literature) but I'm completely in the dark. I guess I kinda liked the last one best, because it actually had some kind of story; but well. Too avant garde for my taste, I guess.

In other news: IOC dammit.
The Edna Man

Monday, July 20, 2009

Happy Anniversary, Armstrong

Hey, so it's the 40th anniversary of man's first step on the moon. How does it feel, that 40 years from now, it's still too expensive to send another man there? Lunar rovers are obviously cheaper at only a few million dollars each.

But they say that the moon is full of minerals, rich for exploitation. We just can't leave anything alone, can we? Five millenia from now, Al Gore's descendants will be pissed off because we mined the moon dry. What then? Will its light mass cause it to have a reduced effect on the tides? Will it drift off into space? Will humanity care?

Anyways, here's to the future of space exploration. Don't screw it up, humanity.
The Edna Man.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Book in Advance

Come on, you know you want to.
The Edna Man

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Half-Bloods and Handphones

So I watched the Half-Blood Prince yesterday. It was kind of a let-down, seeing as there was no epic battle scene at the end, which should have been there ANYWAY. It's like they're saving it for Deathly Hallows. And to top it all off, Luna Lovegood didn't get enough screen time. Seriously, Luna is AWESOME. And I don't remember Tonks being so dreary and brunette. She's supposed to have pink hair, dammit.

Anyway, I guess it's not really worth the $10 you pay to watch it on a Friday night, so I guess I got my money's worth from the people you sit with. I have the feeling that we pissed off the other people sitting in the cinema though. But man, it was fun.

Oh yeah, my mom got me a new (free) phone. The number's the same but it's switched to one of those newer 3G SimCards, so they cancelled the line on my old card on Thursday. It goes to show how different/deprived* (delete where appropriate) I am, because when my mom told me I was like, "What? You got me a new phone?" not in that excited, jubilant voice but with that affronted and disappointed tone. So you get my friends' reactions: "Wah, your mom gets you a new phone, still not happy arh?"

I guess I value my old phone very dearly. It's 3G - three generations old, used to be owned by my aunt, who passed it to my mom, who passed it to me. It's old, but not so old as to not have colour images and polyphonic ringtones. I've had it for about five or six years (yes it's THAT old) and it's been working fine for me up till now. You know how you hear those stories of people losing their phone all over the place, or dropping it and it breaks, or it's got weird battery or start-up malfunctions. My phone served me well for one-third of my life, and it's outlived anything my friends have. Or had.

I guess having a communications antique keeps you humble. You've never had anoy of those sexy new iPhones or flashy paper-thin showpieces which might crack if you bend it too much; so you never feel the need to show off. And its antiquity means it is the least likely to be stolen, because who would want it? It's got no camera, so it fits perfectly into the army knapsack, and has never been the subject of controversial discussions about camera-phoning people in public. It was perfect. But the SimCard's been Avada Kedavra-ed, so now it's just a clunky contact-storage device.

Gonna miss you, old pal,
The Edna Man

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


DFtL v3.1 Changelog
1.0 New Features
2.0 Supported Songs

1.0 New Features
1.1 Added two-word limit on eponymous backup

2.0 Supported Songs List
2.1 Coming soon...


Monday, July 13, 2009

Movies in Disguise

Woohoo! Today I spend six bucks on awesome computer animation and visual effects. Really, movie critics need to spend a break once in a while and watch something for the pure visuals of it. Besides, you notice that many scenes are ripped from major motion pictures of the past decade (or so). Warning: SPOILER ALERT, though the plot is so thin there's not much to spoil anyway.

Scene: Megatron explodes from beneath the waves, breaking a aircraft carrier into two and it sinks into the depths
Ripped from: Titanic

Scene: A bunch of Decepticon constructions transform and merge into a giant four-legged and anatomically-correct vacuum cleaner.
Ripped from: Power Rangers

Scene: Two new Autobots, hillbilly automobiles with buck teeth.
Ripped from: Cars

Scene: The Tomb of the Primes is lost, hidden deep in a random Egyptian desert. Guess where?
Ripped from: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

Scene: Bumblebee, containing the heroes, is made to stop in a checkpoint in the middle of the desert. A strangely familiar midget sergeant comes out to greet them.
Ripped from: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Scene: Sam starts seeing runes and symbols as a secret message after he touches the sliver of the Allspark.
Ripped from: The Matrix

Scene: The Fallen is standing on top of the pyramid, and with a wave of his hand, sends the Jordanian helicopters crashing into its rocky sides
Ripped from: Magneto, the X-Men

Scene: Sam dies and goes to robot heaven, where the Primes tell him that the Matrix of Leadership has to be earned (NO, REALLY?), and that he is now worthy of wielding it.
Ripped from: Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone ("find it, but not use it...")

Scene: The Major tries to get rid of his government liason, and tells him that it's time to jump the plane, and gives him a briefing unintelligible over the roar of the wind.
Ripped from: Finding Nemo

But seriously, the transformation scenes are quite teh awesome. I think it was worth it.

I didn't see the giant hands that came in to change them though.
The Edna Man

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Famous Last Words

The Edna Man

Now All I Need is a Mask and a Television Broadcasting Studio

Good evening, Bethesda. Allow me first to apologize for this interruption. I do, like many of you, appreciate the comforts of the classmate, the familiarity of the friend, the association of acquaintance. I enjoy them as much as any Singaporean. But in the spirit of commemoration - whereby those important events of the past, usually associated with a school holiday or the end of some awful bloody examination, are celebrated with a nice outing - I thought we could mark this July the thirteenth, a day that is sadly no longer remembered, by taking some time out of our daily lives to sit down and have a little chat.

There are, of course, those who do not want us to speak. I suspect even now friendships are being shattered, and enmities of hatred being formed. Why? Because while lies may be used in lieu of social interaction, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning and for those who will listen, the enunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this class, isn't there?

Selfishness and neglect... intolerance and discrimination. And where once you had cohesiveness and solidarity of a second family, you now have cliques and detaching debutantes, rending the relationships and and shattering the class spirit. How did this happen? Who's to blame? Well certainly there are those who are more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable. But again, truth be told... if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror.

I know why you did it. I know you were apathetic. Who wouldn't be? Revision. Prejudice. Laziness. There were a myriad of reasons which conspired to occupy your time and prevent your participation. Self-interest got the best of you and in your shallowness, you turned to your cooler acquaintances. They promised you acceptance. They promised you fun. And all they demanded in return was your silent, subliminal disregard.

This afternoon, I sought to end that disdain. This afternoon, I organized a movie outing to remind this class of what it has forgotten. More than six months ago, a certain person wished to embed the class spirit forever in our hearts. His hope was to remind the world that friends, classmates and compatriots are more than acquaintances - they are family. So if you've seen nothing, if the crimes of this study group remain unknown to you, then I would suggest that you allow this thirteenth of July to pass unmarked. But if you see what I see, if you feel as I feel, and if you would seek as I seek... then I ask you to stand beside me, one day from today, outside that movie theatre. And together, we shall give them an end-of-exams celebration that shall never, ever, be forgot!


A humble vaudevillian veteran,
The Edna Man

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Dream Sequence #003

Okay, so I just woke up and I had this dream, of which I can only remember half. All I remember was wandering through some spookily-lit shopping mall, with the Joker (again) on the loose somewhere. I vaguely remember walking past Darrell Neo, because I recognized his super-white glasses, and thinking that he (the Joker) must not have been able to catch up since he was behind Darrell and Darrell was on the other side of the site under construction and/or rennovation (in the mall).

Then I bump into one of the other weird villain wannabes, this batty old lady called the Frightler, which is vaguely traumatizing, but she just carries a large blue cardboard box with a bunch of random junk, which isn't quite deadly. So anyway she thinks it's cool to come threaten me, and pokes the corner of the box under my chin like a gun (I remember another lady passing by just hold up her hands in surrender and walking by nonchalantly at this point) and the Frightler introduced herself and made some scathing remarks about her being better than the Joker, etc. etc. She must have been quite insane, no matter what.

Anyway, she mentions something about "What type of idiot goes around with a yo-yo with 'The Joker' printed on it?!" and in that split second you know something is horribly wrong, I spotted the yo-yo in the matted bunch of junk in the box.

So like any self-preserving civilian, I jump to the side as it explodes dramatically, landing behind a row of plastic seats with shrapnel and fire licking the floor all around me. So with my head in my hands and my eyes squinted shut, I hear that familiar Heath Ledger voice who mutters, "One more hapless victim of the Batman," and I feel that hand on my shoulder.

Then I woke up 'cos I needed to pee.
The Edna Man

Thursday, July 09, 2009


All Hail Chemguide!
The Edna Man

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Because We Really Need It in the Future

He spotted his colleague hammering away at an early-morning report. "Morning, Rob," he called.

"Hey, Joe," replied Rob, easing back into his chair and greeting his colleague. "Had a good weekend?"

"Can't complain," said Joe, grinning. Sitting down, he set down his mug of coffee onto the desk and glanced around conspiratorially before saying in a low voice, "I won the lottery."

"YOU'RE KIDDING!" Rob exclaimed, while Joe shushed him and glanced around again. "It's nothing, no big deal; it wasn't like the first prize or anything, just one of those smaller draws. But I'm now ten thousand dollars richer!" he hissed excitedly.

"Congratulations, then!" said Rob, shaking his friend by the hand rather vigourously. "Lady Luck must really be smiling down on you!"

"Yeah, I couldn't believe it either," Joe remarked. "Like, what are the chances...?"

There was a split second in which the two men stared at each other, instinctively realizing that they had just done something incredibly stupid.

"Oh my god, did I actually say --"

"You did! Bloody hell, you did! They'll be coming for you, Joe, they'll --"

"I know what they'll do! Just - quick! Get me some paper! We need to solve it before they get here --"

"Oh my god, they're going to get us, they're going to get us --"

"Stop blubbering and help me, dammit! There are 49 numbers to choose from, right? But you only pick six --"

"Do you have a calculator? You need to do combinations, unless you can somehow calculate factorials in your head --"

Just then, the lights cut out and the men were thrown into darkness.

"Oh god, they're here..."

There was a deafening crash as a number of men in dark uniforms and heavy firearms burst in through the window. Fragments of glass showered across the two men now cowering under the desk. Then the door burst open, and more men in uniforms charged in, weapons and voices raised, yelling, "Freeze! Thought Police!" and "Get down! You two, get down!"

One of the men in uniforms threw himself upon Joe and held him down on the ground with his knees. Arms pinned behind his back, the office worker could do nothing but whimper, "I don't know the answer, I just - I wasn't even thinking about it, and it slipped out - it's an figure of speech, dammit! It's something to do with combinations and --"

"Silence!" shouted the man on top of him, and Joe's protestations fell mute. A light flickered on from somewhere, and the room was thrown into a pale florescent glow. Joe spotted three chevrons on the officer's sleeve, above the infamous logo of the dog-eared document with the golden "A+" superimposed on it. It didn't make him feel any better, especially since a dozen gunbarrels were now aimed his direction, laser sights dotting his face and clothes.

"You have the right to be warned that any unauthorized material found in your possession will be taken to mean that they are intended for dishonest use," recited the sergeant, nuzzling the muzzle of his handgun against the back of Joe's head. Joe whimpered.

"Name?" barked the sergeant.

"J-J-Joseph T-Taylor Smith," he stammered.

"Index number?"

"Uh, Nine - oh god - nine, four, t-two, one, s-six."


"Th-that's it!"

"YOU FORGOT ZERO-A!" roared the sergeant. All around him, hands gripped the holsters of their rifles more tightly.

"Z-Zero-A," Joe muttered. He cast his head around as much as possible, hoping for a glance of his colleague. Had Rob managed to escape?

"Stop fidgiting," barked the sergeant, pushing Joe's head back to the floor roughly. "You have a minute to answer this question, and you cannot go to the toilet in the first thirty seconds and the last fifteen seconds of your alloted time."


"For two marks: What is the gravitational field strength experiened by a fifty-kilogramme satellite in geosynchronous orbit around the equator, assuming its centripetal acceleration is nine-point-five-three metres per second squared?"

"I- I don't know!" Joe sobbed. "I did those kind of problems so long ago, and it's not like I need them in my everyday life... I can't remember!" he wailed. "Don't shoot me, please!"

"Time's up," said the sergeant. "You've failed." And he squeezed the trigger.

With a click and a splat, a red "F' spread across Joe's forehead, seeping into his skin like tattoo ink. With that, the men in uniforms started to withdraw. "Have a nice life, Balrog," growled the sergeant as he got up and left with his men.


Woah, I managed to use the word "conspiratorially". A mix of V for Vendetta - whose speeches I have been watching - and College Humour, which combines to form quite a traumatizing picture. I guess it would look better as a video.

The Edna Man

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Comedy is Life

You know how you're supposed to take in real life and apply it to what you learn in school? Well, this is real life, and you can't learn it in any school I know.

Eat your heart out, Economics
The Edna Man

Monday, July 06, 2009

It's like 14th March all over again

The area of a triangle is half-a-b-sin-theta or half of the modulus of vector a cross vector b. Look out for differential equations, where dy/dt = dy/dx times dx/dt. Point of inflexion exists where d2y/dx2 = 0 and the sign changes from one side to the other; stationary point means dy/dx = 0 but not the other way around. Don't forget the modulus when converting complex numbers from cartesian form to cis form. r dot n equals p. A singular matrix means that the determinant is zero, and does not have an inverse matrix. Hypergeometric distribution is used for sampling without replacement; N = total number of objects, M = number of successes and n = number of trials. Standard deviation for a sample is the square root of the population variance divide by the size of the sample. Volume of revolution must be multiplied by pi, and f(x) is squared.

Happy Youth Day.
The Edna Man

Friday, July 03, 2009

Memories are Made of This

Thirty years from now, I'll be able to look back on today's Economics Paper 2 and remember that I did it dressed as Michael Jackson.

Dare to be different,
The Edna Man

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Quantity over Quality

Non Sequitur - Facebook

Talkin' 'bout my g-g-g-g-g-g-g-g-g-generation,
The Edna Man

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

In All the Unlikely Places

But, I forget! While leaving the bus, I bumped into another person I know, from MGS OM! How pleasantly surprising! This would have to be the first time I have unexpectedly met someone I know while out of my house. Granted, the circumstances were slightly more fortuitous (this is probably the first and only time the bus has trundled by at around MGS dismissal time), but still, nice surprise today.

The Edna Man

With friends like these

Who needs friends.
The Edna Man

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Damned Lies and Statistics

We lie a lot, don't we? As a human species, we lie more than statistics can tell us (and who listens to statistics anyway, since they lie through their pie chart-encrusted teeth). Everybody lies, it don't matter if they're black or white. Stretching the truth, concealing facts, asking no questions.

Why? Why do we lie? Do we do it because it's a form of protectionism, a way to shield yourself and others from the truth? Do we do it to withhold knowledge, which is power, and lord over the ignorant? Do we do it because we fear others' reactions when they find out the truth, and that they'll never miss what they never had?

I lie a lot. I lie a hell lot. To friends, to family. For many of the above reasons. It doesn't seem right to let other people know the truth about yourself, if that truth is going to burden them or something. I've told so many white lies that if I had a pack of them, I'd have a couple of royal flushes, four aces and a joker. But what else can you do. Tell the truth and people will hate you. Keep silent and you die an unsung martyr.

Here's to fooling all of the people all of the time.
The Edna Man

Monday, June 29, 2009

You Are Not Alone

What, no song tribute? No dance-off in memorandum? Not even a single announcement? Some school this is. (Granted, I was racked with exhilarating stomach contractions at the time and I might have missed it, but I received no word of it afterwards, even.)

Ahh, well. Here's my sendoff to Michael Jackson, one of the greatest dancers the world has, or will ever know. Weird Al parodied you twice. I don't think I need to say more. Maybe one day, people will learn to accept your differences. Knowing this humanity, I highly doubt it.

English exam today was WTFont. Random inclusion of your maternal parent is never a sign of cohesive writing. And after talking to other people who did the poem, now I know too much. Too little, too late. Couldn't you have been clearer, Margret? Econs seemed fine, but I doubt I filled quota. Oh well, live and learn.

Though we're far apart, you'll be in my heart,
The Edna Man

Friday, June 26, 2009

Techno Trance Remix!


It really does make you happy!
The Edna Man

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Comic Lessons

For all you people happily mugging your life away, here's another life lesson from anthropomorphic tigers:

Calvin and Hobbes - Snowflake

And for all you people unhappily mugging your life away, take comfort in the fact that they can't take everything away from you:
Calvin and Hobbes - Kazam

I'm just selective about the reality I subscribe to.
The Edna Man

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Life is like prom night

It's all just one big masquerade.

High School Never Ends,
The Edna Man

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Sail around the world and tell them all to keep singing it

You know that "Don't Forget The Lyrics!" game I made last year? That low-budget low-tech one which failed miserably because Singaporeans are too embarrassed to stand up in front of a crowd and sing? That one. Well, I've tinkered with it occasionally over the past few months and I'm happy to announce (to nobody who's interested) that I've TRICKED IT OUT! v3.0 now supports full sound effects (I managed to figure out the code!) and state-of-the-art Lyric-Recognition technology. It's probably still in Beta (because bugs are easy to overlook in this thing) but hey, it's awesome.

I think I completed it at the wee hours of 3am this morning, and when I finally shut down my com I couldn't sleep, because of the adrenaline rushing through my veins. It's funny, because I just read a Ultimate Spiderman collection (#14 or #20 I think) and there were words in there to describe exactly how I felt. It's the thrill you get when you finally finish a creation that you've been working, and the amazement and pride you experience when you realize that YOU did this, all by yourself, with your bare hands, resourcefulness, creativity and a boring application like Microsoft Powerpoint. Creation gives you a high that doing exams or playing music or OM or anything else can give you.

Then you wonder if god is looking down on us all right now and having that very same high, of pride and amazement. Or maybe he's scrapping this project and moving on to something else.

Shut up and SMILE!
The Edna Man

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Imaginary Friends


Tried making my stories more visual... hooray for typography.

Imaginary numbers are all about i,
The Edna Man

Friday, June 12, 2009

Much More Beautiful Person

Much More Beautiful Person by Bowling for Soup

Jeanie has a dad that might as well be dead.
A case a day habit and three other kids.
She's a much more beautiful person
Than you'll ever know.
She hates the world
At least the one outside.
She's a Myspace kid livin a virtual life.
She's a much more beautiful person
Than she'll ever know.

Close your eyes and let time tick by.
In this life, it's OK to cry, sometimes.
It can be hard to see when it's right in front of you.

You're gonna smile sometimes,
And worlds will collide.
I know you're tired of waiting,
So when you're through with hating,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
And now you know.
And now you know.

Tommy can't help but feelin' alone,
Walking the halls with his head hung low.
And he's a much more beautiful person
Than he'll ever know.
High school kids can be so nasty
In a cut-throat war for popularity.
A much more beautiful person
Than he'll ever know.

Close your eyes and let time tick by.
In this life, it's OK to cry, sometimes.
It can be hard to see when it's right in front of you.

You're gonna smile sometimes,
And worlds will collide.
I know you're tired of waiting,
So when you're through with hating,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
And now you know.

And you don't feel so lucky,
But I've seen so many things in you.
Believe me, I know just what you're going through.
So stand up and take a bow,
Hold your head high
Don't ever let them get you down.
It's all about you
And it's not what they do.

You're gonna smile sometimes,
And worlds will collide.
I know you're tired of waiting,
So when you're through with hating,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
You'll be a much more beautiful person,
And now you know.
And now you know.
And now you know.


The sad truth is, some people will never know.
The Edna Man

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I want to ride my bicycle...

...I want to ride my bike...

Went cycling with my class (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA, fractions of a whole) today. This being my second time on a two-wheeler, I was exhilaratingly overjoyed to find out that yes, just like elephants riding a bike, you'll never forget.

Zeng Jie, Guangda, Hao Lei and Wang Jun were all biking veterans, so it was hard to the rookie to keep up with them all. I kinda was the only one who crashed in the entire biker gang; my instinct keeps me using my legs to brake instead of the handlebars, which results in brusied knees and sore rear ends.

But it was EPICLY FUN. On a hot weekday like today, the bike paths are mostly empty, but scattered here and there are all the happy people who are enjoying a normal school holiday. It's so much easier to weave in and out between all the roller-bladers when there are fewer of them jamming up the express lanes. And it's roaring fun to blaze down a straight trail void of other cyclists, feeling the wind in your face, your hair...

The seat needed more cushioning though. And suspension. Argh, my black-and-blue butt. Oh, and bike chains have the unhappy habit of slipping out of their gearshafts. But not to worry, just a simple oil-stained maneuver and everything clicks back into place. We rode right up to the end of the trail, which was blocked off due to construction, then back up again, past the place I first sat on a bike, then up to Long Beach restaurants. We would have continued up the coast, if our time hadn't run out. The bike rental owner's cat is adorable.

I think the time is ripe for a bicycle revolution. We pull up half the roads and convert them to bicycle paths. It's much greener and you get all the affordable exercise you'll ever need. Once you start biking, you'll never know why you would want to walk anywhere anymore.

On a totally unrelated note: Hey, look! A semi-non-emo post!

I want to ride it where I like!
The Edna Man

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Inverse Friend Law

"Your worth as a friend is inversely proportional to the number of friends your friend has."

And you'll never know what the spread or distribution, or weight is. Good fences make good neighbours, after all.

If you suddenly turn completely invisible, how long would it take for people to notice that you're not there anymore?
The Edna Man

Friday, June 05, 2009

A Place for Everything

The teacher stopped racking her brains and sighed. “Why did I have to be so good at my job?” she thought. “I could have just kept my head down like everyone else, but noooo… I was the fool who tried to be the best. And now I have to work overtime just to fulfill a small requirement of some stupid award. It’s not like I even believe in the whole thing anyway. Graaah…”

She turned back to the trilogy-thick stack of paper, which was somehow held together by a single reality-defying staple, and read the title again: “Superfluous Quantifiable Accolades: Chapter 16, Part IV, Section 32, Subsection 7f (iii), Rubric Prime-epsilon - A Child’s Place in Society.”

She flipped though the pages, searching desperately for some inspiration, but ten pages in, the introductory novel about educating children about their place in society ended and the endless list of individually scored rubrics and criteria began. Not wanting to go through that again, she put the booklet aside, thinking that “booklet” was not the correct term to use here; “tree’s corpse” would be more appropriate.

Twirling her pencil between her fingers absentmindedly, she thought about how all the credit for the task she had been given would be directed at the school in the end, or at least the entire staff in general, and how her individual contribution would be lost in the grand scheme of things. It didn’t make sense to her how the world could work this way.

“A Show-and-Tell, then,” she muttered to herself, picking up a second memo (which, at five pages thick, was quite long for a memo) neatly typed with the principal’s photocopied signature printed below the letterhead. “Show-and-Tell would be easy, and I’m sure the primary school students could cook up something spectacular if I tell them it’s assessed. Or at least their parents will. Who knows,” she muttered, “it might even turn out to be fun…”

She paused, with a look of incredulity on her face. Did she really say those words? No, she couldn’t have. She laughed lightly to herself, and went off to prepare the logistics.

* * *

On the day of the Show-and-Tell, the atmosphere was cheerful and expectant. The children, rarely having an opportunity for something outside the rigid curriculum, rose to the occasion magnificently, decked out in multicoloured costumes and clutching a number of homemade props.

The teacher was nervous. Seated behind the excited, chattering students was the principal, in his best suit and tie. He was attempting to initiate conversation to the assessor from the Board of Award Giving for Schools, who was sitting next to him. He looked stiffer than the principal, in a finely-cut black blazer, dark sunglasses and an earpiece trailing a wire from his ear. He looked more like a government agent than an assessor; but then again, he probably was a government agent to begin with.

“All right class,” she said loudly, “we’re about to begin. Remember, when I call your name, you come to the front of the class and tell everyone who you are and what your place is in society. Alright?”

There was a loud cheer of assent from the students. They couldn’t wait to begin. The assessor unclipped a pen from his pocket with a loud click, and, without even looking down at the notes in front of him, made a small mark on the paper.

“Now, who wants to go first?” the teacher asked.

Instantly, a hundred hands were in the air, bouncing up and down, with jubilant cries of “Pick me! Pick me!” echoing in the confined classroom.

“Emily, why don’t you start?”

The little girl squealed with delight, and skipped to the front of the classroom. She was dressed in a pure-white blouse with a trim white skirt. A stethoscope dangled from her neck, and a small hat with a red cross sat on her head, which never moved when she ricocheted across the floor. She was wearing thin rubber gloves, and holding a small wooden ice-cream stick in one hand and a portable flashlight in the other.

“I yam a dock-ta!” she proudly announced. “When people are sick-sicky, they come to see me, and I see what’s wrong with them, and then I use my med-shun to make them all betta!” She brandished her torch wildly as she said this. “That’s my place in so-shai-tee!”

“Thank you Emily, that was great,” said the teacher, glancing back at the assessor sitting at the back. He was still writing notes on the papers in front of him while staring straight ahead; she noticed that the principal was getting slightly freaked out by it.

“Who’s next? Umm… how about you, Robert?”

The boy stood up with much difficulty, since he was carrying a large briefcase which was almost taller than him. He straightened his tie and dusted off his pinstriped suit before dragging the case to the front, his polished black shoes making clack, clack noises as he walked.

“My place in society,” he said smartly, “is that of a businessman. Like my father,” he added. “We carry fortunes of money and important documents in a suitcase like this” - he pointed at his baggage - “and travel around the world, doing deals with other business men and making money. Oh, and boosting the economy, whatever that means.”

“Thank you, Robert. Err… Madison! Your turn!”

Madison was wearing a brightly-coloured skintight suit, complete with curled slippers and a plumed hat. A Shakespearean-style ruff circled her neck. “I am a stage actress,” she declared with a sweeping gesture, “an entertainer of the finest art, who will take to the stage and bring drama to the audience. My place is to perform, never to forget my lines while I… um, while I… uhh…” she fumbled in her pocket, pulled out a square of paper and unfolded it, and read: “uh, while I play the part and bring the house down.” She was blushing as she returned the sheet to her pocket.

One by one the students appeared at the front of the class, each one different, each one unique. Lawyer, policeman, game show host, impressionist artist, rock star, superhero; all forms were present and accounted for.

“Alright, Calvin, how about you next?”

He was the only one without an exuberant costume. He was dressed in a simple plaid shirt and jeans, nothing special. He remained silent when he reached the front of the class, and the students broke out into mutterings.

“Calvin? Go on with your presentation.”

He remained mute. The children, getting impatient, did what all children would do: start guessing.

“A cowboy without a hat?”

“A mannequin! With bad fashion sense!”

“Oh, oh, oh! You’re one of those emo pop stars!”

And Calvin began to speak.

“I am one who is cursed with selfless good nature. One burdened with a sense of morality less pliant than yours. In doing what I thought was right, I helped. I did my best to help anyone and everyone who crossed my path and needed assistance in one way or another, asking for nothing in return.

“And nothing did return. For a moment, a sliver of time, they needed me; then, once they had what they wanted or needed, I was discarded, thrown aside, ignored, left to fester in my own decomposing thoughts. I was useful in one thing and one thing only; not a friend, but an asset. Maybe because I am different. Nobody likes different people, because people can only relate when they are on similar frequencies. My assistance was all they needed; everything else was inessential.

“I wear no costume today because I am not one person. I am the stagehand behind the curtain, while the actress bows in front of the applauding audience. I am the squire to the chivalrous knight who shining armour blocks me from view. I am the insignificant name two minutes into the credits which nobody pays any attention to. Used, once, then ignored for the rest of eternity.

“Now, I must fade back into obscurity: inaudible, inconspicuous, invisible. I have broken the vow of silence that I imposed upon myself. Even now, criticisms are winging toward me, castigating my ideals, retorting that I should be the silent selfless philanthropist, who gives and gives until he has nothing left to give. Because that would be the right thing to do. That would be where they want to place me in society.”

The jaws of the three adults were hanging open, even the assessor’s. It was the teacher who recovered first. Remembering that her job was on the line, she said quickly, “Uhh, yes, well, Calvin, people like you, they’re… they’re essential. Necessary. Like - like gears, in a watch. You’re an integral part of society. Thank you; please sit down. Now, who’s next? Alicia, how about you…”

As Calvin wandered back to his seat, the hubbub of the children masked out his next few words: “Just because you are necessary doesn’t mean that you have any worth.”


And everything in its place.
The Edna Man