« August 2004 | Main | October 2004 »

September 28, 2004

D-Day Approaching

The countdown is on: 10 days to SAT, 14 days to TOEFL.

The de javu: felt like I'm going through SPM again. A ride with a nocturnal horse (nightmare!) is the last thing I ever wanted to encounter, but I think there are many more to come.. Particularly after the reasoning test comes SAT subject tests. Am now going through 50 word lists, encompassing almost 3500 words! Accede, acrimonious, addendum, advent, antidiluvian, blatant, brusque, burlesque, cacophonous, condescend, contend, defoliate..... Today I've reached D part already, but I had no confidence I can finish all in 10 days. 10 DAYS! Even if I can, the meanings of the words will definitely be vague in my mind by the time I sit for the test. Wish I had started earlier, or else I won't be convoluted with the meanings of circumscribe, circumspect and circumvent (Ah, now you know the 'wonders' of English!)

The solace: I'm not the sole person in hot soup =P Not that I'm being sarcastic (or sardonic, I think) but what a glee to find that Andrew my friend is in a worse situation. (Hit me with those digits!)With pleasure. His countdown: 4 days to Hatchday, 6 days to TOEFL and 10 days to SAT! (Why a difference in his TOEFL test date with yours?) TOEFL is a bit unique. Only 5-12 people are allowed to take it per day. As the names are in alphabetical order, naturally Adams, Abagnales and Alices come first.

End of line: Am going to Genting this weekend! Together with papa and big bro. Maybe I can get a better ambience to study up there, but most probably I'll just play along =P

Posted by peixin at 01:34 PM | Comments (7)

September 24, 2004

Freaky Friday

Nothing went right today.

I started the day waking up to the rough pushes of my roommate. "Hey, it's 7.45 already!" he bellowed. The Flash would have been proud to take me as his apprentice: 2 minutes later, I was rushing and pushing my way up a shuttle bus to campus. No time to be a gentleman! 'Twas quite pathetic actually to sandwich 60-70 students in one bus. Don't even know if we had broken the law for over-carrying passengers, don't care also.

20 minutes late for Language Awareness class, but the lecturer was not in yet. Heck, all the rush for nothing. Hadn't eaten my breakafast either. Reaching for the bun I bought the night before, I realised that my grammar textbook was not with me. I dumped all my stuffs out on my table. No sight of it. Argh, my memory cannot be depended. I went to all the possible places that i could have left the book lying around. Nothing in the com lab. Ditto in library. Being bogged down by a missing book for 3 hours made me feel like a consummate idiot. I decided not to bother about it anymore. (Later in the day, it miraculously appeared on the table in my room. But I do remember vividly that there the table before was empty I left. Strange..)

Bad day indeed. Went through the 2nd last practice for SAT without a clue on the anology part (my flair and my score-booster). I lost half an hour and a handful of hair trying to understand the connections but to no avail. At the end, I couldn't even finish the comprehension part. My score plummetted, that goes wthout saying. (CUMMON! 2 WEEKS LEFT!)

At night, I tried to do some laundry as sort of a way to kept myself busy from thinking about the test. The washing machine downstairs was unoccupied, so I dumped all 1 week's worth of dirty clothes inside, clinked some coins in and let the machine do the work. 1 and a half hours later, the shirts turned out to be covered with murky brown stains and not even an inch cleaner. At first I thought somebody must have played a prank by pouring coffee into the tub while it was spinning, but on a closer look at it, it was actually wet rust. From where? Must be the iron tub. Then I spent another half an hour scrubbing the stains off.

Went to bed with a pain in the back. Lucky for the mosquitoes which surprisingly started dieting that night, or else they would have to suffer under my venting wrath after a horrible day.

Posted by peixin at 09:46 PM | Comments (2)

September 16, 2004

Friendster Fanatic

I have an account in friendster which I don't really bother to check and update, coz all the friends in my circle are still easily reachable with phones and SMSes and the like. Not until today I found the time to really switch open IE and browse through the pages of each and every friend linked to me, and I realize, gosh, I've been out of touch with so many of my 'Brothers' back in High School. I started off to write a testimonial requested by Shan Khiun:

How duyah pronounce his name? Shun Khi-wun? San Queen? San4 Qun2? That's how difficult it was for me when i first met him. From one glance i can tell that he is a PTS boy with super huge brain capacity and super smart in his studies. It's been a great privilege to be your roommate in Oldham Hall, albeit for only 6 months... I can never forget my debt to you for helping me lift my great bum from my bed every morning and also for teaching me F.Maths and Physics (although i'm not in your class). I think you are very good in both subjects and, well, what more can i say? You got JPA and on your way to fulfill your dreams and never have to wake up in 4am in the morning to finish those damn tutorials and project work and assignments and TERP program! Hehe... i wish you all the best and good luck in your future endeavours!

Frenz 4eva!

Then, remembering that I will not see Yilie anymore for quite a long time in the future, I penned down something for her too:

Ah, guess you are in La Rochelle now rite? Like the place? Haha, i wonder what 7 years in France can do to you? Increase your velocity, no? Okay la, I know you are not THAT SLOW anymore ever since you came to Shah Alam but you can't deny the fact that the names that we used to call you back in Singapore (Silly Yilie and Yilie Slow!) are imprinted in our minds so indelible that it has become your icon, or trademark. That makes the memories in Singapore so beautiful and unforgettable. (Really. Serious.)Thanx for being my friend, it's been a privilege to know you. Hope you have a good time in France and don't forget to introduce your new French boyfriend to us when you return =P

()""() ()". ."() ()""..() ()""()
( ,'o') ( , o ) (""( ,o) ( 'o',)
(( (,) (_/""\_) ( "\_) (,) (,)

Feeling satisfied, I returned to the main page. That's when I saw Alvin's and Raymond's icons side by side in My Friends' List. Ah, they are my best buddy during secondary school, being together in the prefectorial board and Leo Club and share the same affinity towards sports cars... Now we are separated, one still in HS and the other in LimKokWing. Feeling nostalgic, I suddenly had the urge to write something the encompassed our past memories. This is what I wrote:

To Alvin:

Remember to remember me,
Forget to forget me,
Even if you remember to forget me,
I will never forget to remember you...

To Raymond:

On a clear sunny day,
I think t'was a Monday,
I was sitting alone in canteen,
Drinking milk (high in protein).
Silly as it seemed to thee,
But thee still come to me,
"Hi! Raymond is my name,
Wanna play a game?"
I was startled, astounded,
Simply flabbergasted,
Thy sincerity touched my heart,
We became friends never apart.
That was during primary school,
But how about in High School?
We met each other every day,
Jokes and laughter filled the air, and hey,
You know what?
In my life you play a part,
Teaching me friendship values,
Thus brotherhood imbues,
Together with Alvin and you,
Happy moments we had quite a few.
However something unexpected happened,
An unintentional prank left feelings darkened,
A naive yet beautiful friendship,
Ended with a break of the fellowship.
Days of yore returned no more,
I felt bad straight to the core.
Hence we were tested by time,
Can we turn back as good as dime?
So here am I writing to thee,
Wonderin what ur answer would be..

Posted by peixin at 03:29 PM | Comments (4)

September 07, 2004

Athens 2004: Our Story

lol... My last entry hit the record of the most comments posted due to an obvious mistake I made in the title. It spelled 'Abba was I ere I saw Abba'. See the mistake? It should be 'Able was I ere I saw Elba' as corrected by munkit.. I think the famous cliche was from Napoleon or Caesar or some historical figures (trying to make it sound general so that mistakes look subtle =P)Haha, laughing at my own mistakes is better than frowning upon them, and no harm is done anyway, plus it attracted so much attention. Guess this is an amusing lesson learnt =)

Yesterday I had a real funny Oral Comm class. We had a class activity called making 'Progressive Story'. It went like this: my teacher started with a sentence (an opening for a story) and then she randomly picked out our names and those who were chosen had to continue the story instantly. It was something like impromptu speech but with a twist; we had to make up stories on the spot. She would then stop us halfway through the story and called another person to continue. Here's the complete one (I might miss out some parts but it's roughly the same):

The teacher's line: I never knew my heart would beat so fast...

Our story goes:

1. I was standing at the starting point with hundreds of other athletes from various countries, my mind focused on one thing: finish the 42km marathon and win the gold medal. Every contestant was vying for the same thing as I could tell from their narrowed eyes and tight lips. I did some warming up, but my mind keep wondering off to the scene before I left Malaysia for Athens: The Prime Minister wished me good luck and hope for my good news. I was nervous, but I had trained long enough for this moment. I am ready, I told myself. Then, I heard an announcement calling other participants of the marathon run to assemble at the starting point....

2. Everyone stood poised to begin the race. 5 minutes later, the official in-charge clicked on the gun. BANG! The race was on. I steadily ran with the crowd, gaining momentum with every step I took. Then, I gradually overtook some 30 runners in front of me and became the leading man. I held that position for 3-quarter of the journey. Coming into the 4th quarter, my legs are already stinging with pain but I still ran on. Then, without warning, an excruciating pain shot up from my right foot. I groaned deeply. The pain was coming from my old injury and it was trobbing so badly that I had to slow down my pace into a limp. Several runners past through me. I couldn't believe my luck. The efforts I had put in all these years were gone. I stopped walking altogether, feeling dejected.

3. Suddenly I felt a great tremor under my feet. An earthquake! The route that the runners took broke into jagged stones and deep fissures. Every contestant fell down to the ground, some went into the cracks of unfathomable depth. Shouts and yells were heard everywhere. My instinct told me to lie down on the ground and cover my head. Then, as sudden as it came, the earthquake stopped. I stood up tentatively and looked around. To my surprise and joy, I was the only participant fit to continue the run. My renewed vigor mitigated the pain in my feet. Heart thumping, I continued running to the stadium. The finishing line loomed in front of me. 50m...40m...30m...20m...10m...5m...-0.1m. I was overjoyed.

4. An official came up to me. My hands were ready to shake his hand and take the gold medal but it never came. Instead, the official told me that the race was cancelled off due to the earthquake. I stood rooted to the ground, transfixed with horror. After some thoughts, I gained my composure and argued with the official. The argument took off like a heated debate and lasted for an hour. Overcame by fatigue, I slipped into unconciousness..

5. When I woke up, I was lying on a hospital bed. What on earth I'm doing here, I wondered. Then, I regained my memory about the race and the argument. I can't imagine how would tomorrow's headline sound. . It was so disappointing. 2 minutes later, newspaper and TV reporters came streaming in. Just as I expected, I told myself. I'm not going to face them. Then I excused myself and went to toilet. To my great surprise, I found Mr. Bush standing outside the toilet, his hands rested on a huge mock cheque. He saw me and came forward, eager to shake my hands..

6. He said, "Congrats!" Then, he presented me the cheque. The figures were astronomical. 15 zeros altogether. I was awestruck. However, after scrutinizing the cheque properly, I found that another guy's name was written on it. Mr. Bush noticed my wierd expression and realized his blunder (a small one compare to others). The cheque slipped away from my fingers as I was still bedazzled how, in 5 seconds, I was a billionaire.

7. Feeling dejected, I went back to my room and laid on the bed. Then, familiar faces appeared through the door. They were my family. I was surprised to meet them. Father explained that due to the disastrous earthquake, the organizers decided to give my whole family a 1-week tour around Athens FOC as a remuneration. I was equally excited and thought, "Finally, all's well that ends well."

8. But that was not the end. Through the euphoria, a doctor came in solemnly and delivered a bad news: I would not be able to use my right leg after one month. It seemed that the earthquake had a detrimental effect to my brittle bones to such extent that my right foot was starting to sighns of fracture. I was devastated by the news. The doctor said, encouragingly, "At least you are in time for the Paralympic Games." And he walked out.

9. Our family decided to forfeit the chance to tour around Athens and brought me straight home aboard the first flight the next morning. Touching down on the familiar terrain, I felt the warmth of home again. This experience had thought me a lot on perseverence, tenacity and faith. THE END.

Posted by peixin at 01:44 PM | Comments (2)

September 01, 2004

Abba was I ere I saw Abba

OMG, two weeks has passed without a single entry! And I thought my 1-week hiatus will give me ample time to write something on Angels and Demons (A&D) as I promised...

Okay, A&D follows the footsteps of Robert Langdon into discovering the reappearance of the millennia-old Illuminati clan, a secret society formed by scientists long time ago. The story starts with a murder and a stolen weapon that threatens to wipe out the Vatican City more effectively than a nuclear bomb. As a typical Dan Brown's book, the plot is full of twists and turns that will make you gasp at the ending. Can't say more here, or else I'll spoil the fun. Grab it! It's a must-read.

To whet your appetize, I personally find that the ambigrams featured in A&D are deviously ingenious. To the uninitiated, an ambigram (coined by Douglas Hofstadter, College Professor of Cognitive Science and Computer Science and Adjunct Professor of History and Philosophy of Science,Philosophy, Comparative Literature, and Psychology in Indiana University, Bloomington) is a generic term for inversion, a word or name written so it reads in more than one way. In the instance of A&D, the ambigrams (7 of them) can be read upside down. My interest lead me to this webpage which features animated inversions. Just click on GALLERY to see the links to some 58 cool animations.

Posted by peixin at 02:01 PM | Comments (8)