Saturday, October 31, 2009

I Chose Wasting Time Over Getting Stuff Done

My Friday eight o'clock class was cancelled, so I got to wake up late. I had set my alarm for nine, but I woke up at eight thirty and I couldn't get back to sleep. Apparently my body has become so used to my sleep-real-late-and-wake-up-real-early schedule that it thinks five and a half hours is an appropriate amount of nightly rest. That's a bit disturbing.

Anyway, I spent my free time lounging around the house and chatting with my younger siblings. I arrived at college around fifteen minutes early for my CTS class at eleven. I found some friends to sit and talk to for a while before I had to go for class.

Class went by quite quickly because of how interesting our work was. Venn diagrams can be a bit confusing, but they are fun to map out, especially when you're working with a friend.

I was the last person to leave the class because I stayed back to ask my lecturer some questions about the diagrams. As I was walking through the hall to get to the parking lot and my motorcycle, I saw Elo working on her research paper. I sat down to help her with her introduction and references. She was practically done with it already, which made me reflect on my paper and how unfinished it is. I pushed the thought out of my mind and decided I would return to it later when I went to the computer lab to work on the paper.

I reformatted a reference for Elo and helped her rearrange her introduction, and in return she showed me how my formatting for my paper had been wrong (I should have used double line spacing instead of 1.5). It was around this point that we realized how hungry we both were, so we went to McDonald's for some lunch.

I ended up buying an extra sundae and convincing Elo to upsize her meal so that I could get a second clear Coca-Cola contour glass. Somehow I managed to eat everything I ordered, but I felt quite sick afterwards. Oh well, free cups.

During meal I would occasionally glance at my watch to see if I could still make it to Christian Fellowship. It had started at 12:30, which was before I had left my CTS class, but I figured that I could still drop in a bit late and catch a bit of the message, which was about donkeys in the Bible and sounded like fun. I also wanted to get some of my surveys filled by the older students there. Lunch, however, ended at around one forty-five, so going to CF at that point would have been pointless.

After lunch we went to the computer lab, and that is where we stayed for the next three hours. Joanna and Roshaan were also there. Jo spent her time messing about on Facebook and blogs while working on her Human Communications assignment, Roshaan was playing Counter-Strike the whole time, and Elo played CS against Roshaan for a while before using her laptop to find nostalgic songs to assign to each of her friends or something. As for me, the first two hours or so were spent faffing about on the internet with occasional breaks to help Elo win some CS rounds or give Jo a critique on her assignment, and around fifteen minutes working on my research paper. I did not get anything done that I couldn't have done at home without the internet. This is something I will regret soon when I realize that the deadline is really close and I simply do not have time to get it done properly, but that moment has not arrived yet and I'm going to enjoy this relatively stress-free state while it lasts.

Anyway, the lab. I also showed Jo that the mirror at the back of the lab was actually a window, but when we went behind it to mess with Roshaan and Elo, they could still see us. It was disappointing, but we Elo did manage to take a couple of pictures that made us look like ghosts, so that was a plus. Another thing that happened during the three or so hours in the lab was a spontaneous breaking-into of song. Most of them were from the Lion King. The singalong ended when we got to songs that only I knew the lyrics to, which left me singing alone and with no other voice to drown out my terribleness. The others asked me to please stop. I know how bad my singing is, so I did. It was fun while it lasted, though.

After we left the lab we were approached by these three dudes who asked us if we'd like to participate in a survey about cell phone service providers. Jo, Elo, and Roshaan agreed before I could make up my mind, so I was left standing around when they started their survey. Thankfully, Elo invited me over to her table to do the survey. The guy recording our answers had to pull double-duty, so we finished a little while after Roshaan and Jo were done. When we were all done I asked the survey dudes if they would help me out with my research paper by filling in my survey. They did, and so I finally had fifteen completed surveys, which is the amount that is required for the paper. That was nice.

When that was over we walked to a bus stop to wait for a bus that would take Joanna and Elo to the Bangsar LRT station, and from there they would go to the Kelana Jaya station, and from there they would go to work for three hours or so promoting this rather tasty juice thing. Joanna practiced her pitch for the product with me as we were walking, and so now I know quite a lot about the stuff, but I somehow can't remember its name. Oh well.

After a long while the bus arrived and I said goodbye. As I was walking to my motorcycle I saw that the moon was already out, and in my boredom I sent a text to Jo informing her of this. It was probably one of the least necessary text messages I've ever sent.

When I got home I took a long nap while everyone else went out for dinner. When I woke up I ate some pasta and proceeded to karaoke for the next few hours. My siblings were in the room and they did not appreciate my warbling. I told them I'd stop if one of them beat my score for "Circle of Life", so after a while my younger brother came over and he did. Right when I had turned off the TV, though, my dad showed up and said he wanted to karaoke, which started another two-hour session.

So when that was done I got on my younger brother's computer because he's got the in-case-of-dead-Streamyx-connection wireless modem plugged in. I kinda wanted to work on my research paper, but mostly I wanted to blog and faff about on the internet. Naturally I got the last two done and neglected the first and most important one. I'm putting that off until later (again) because I am tired and I want to get to bed soon.

So now it's technically Saturday. At BB I've got new responsibilities which involve collecting attendance reports from squad leaders and compiling them in Excel, which I'm not looking forward to. I'm also going to get a few more responses for my survey for safety's sake. After that's done I may or may not be driving my younger siblings to the All-American Rejects concert, depending on whether my parents are free. I guess I may also be picking them up after it's done.

So yeah, that's about it for this post. Despite my nap earlier, I am tired so I'll end this real soon, but first I wanna talk about the dream I had during the aforementioned nap. I guess I should be more reluctant to go into details since this blog is open for everyone to read, but nobody's going to read this far in anyway so screw it. In my dream I was sitting a pier with two of my friends from earlier on today. We were just talking. It was nice. There wasn't any feeling of assignments that needed to be done or classes to be rushed to or anything. We were living in the moment and the moment was lazy and relaxing. Aside from that there was the usual surreal elements that come with every dream, in this case it was a bunch of middle-aged people on the far side of the pier doing whatever it is middle-aged people do, and also something about some post-Merdeka statues and/or monuments and/or flags. Anyway if I accept that dreams are expressions of subconscious desires, then (ignoring the surreal elements, of course) my dream probably meant that I'm lonely and want people to talk to, and I want to be able to just not care about responsibilities for a while and just exist. Also I guess it also means I've still got feelings for someone who I thought I was over. Oh well.

So yeah, this is the last paragraph. I'll give it two more sentences, excluding this one. Um, I could've spent this time to get a lot of my research paper done. Also, I want to skip taking a shower tonight and just head straight for bed, but I'm not going to because I have other stuff to do before bed such as preparing for BB and oh crap this is my last sentence oh well I'll cheat and make it a run on is there anything else I want to say no not really well then goodnight and goodbye and why am I so reluctant to just hit the period button on the keyboard and then fill in some tags and then hit post and then close this I don't know oh well time to just press that button and leave the computer here goes okay false alarm okay this is really it.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Delays

So the Ares rocket was launched yesterday at 11:30. I had been using our in-case-of-shitty-Streamyx Maxis wireless USB modem on my dad's computer since around eight thirty to work on my research paper, and every few minutes I would refresh Google news to check the updated launch times after each new delay. The last proposed launch time I remember seeing was 10:45, then I kind of gave up on it and went on to finish the definitions part of my paper, which is one third of the introduction or around 5% of the total paper. That puts my progress at 10%, with one week left and a survey that still needs more responses before I can compile and analyse the results. Let us not forget the icing on this cake of stress: because for some reason my computer cannot use the USB modem, I have to do all my work on other people's computers until the internet connection is fixed. Life sure is awesome.

Anyway, back to the rocket. When my paper was done I decided to log into Facebook for a while. After five minutes of pondering the implications of receiving only four notifications between then and when the internet died, I came to the conclusion that Facebook excels at two things: propagating retarded applications and showing the people who don't use those applications that they are sad, friendless losers anyway. It was at this point that I closed the tab and went to refresh Google news one last time before heading to bed.

After I refreshed the page, I only managed to glance through the words "launched", "onlookers", "parachutes", and "recovery" before I realized what I was looking at. I checked the time: 4 minutes ago. Because of Astro's satellite delay, 4 minutes is the exact amount of lag time between when news happens and when news reaches our TV screens. I realized that I could still probably watch the launch in somewhat real-time.

When I turned on CNN, however, they were just talking about sports. The BBC was reporting on the bombing in Pakistan and the attack on the guest house in Afghanistan. A few minutes later, CNN was reporting on the same thing. Neither channels were giving me any information on the rocket. I assumed that they had both broadcast it live and were now ignoring it until the start of the next hour.

The start of the next hour came and there was no mention of the rocket in the headlines. It was only before the first commercial break that CNN brought up the launch, and after the commercials were over they went live to a dude who had been waiting through more than a day of delays to cover that story. I didn't hear anything he said because they were playing the launch on loop in the background and I was discussing with my brother about how awesome it was ("very awesome", in case you were wondering).

After that I went to bed late then woke up early then fell asleep a few times during my daily Bible reading then got ready then went to college then attended class then arrived late for the second of my two back-to-back classes then stood in front of class to give an excuse as to why I was late (my excuse was totally valid, you guys) then corrected mistakes in the hard copy of my research paper for correction at a later time then made a PowerPoint presentation for Monday's class then found myself confronted with a dilemma. I could mention what it was, but that would rob me of an opportunity to practice being vague and mysterious about things that I do not to be vague and mysterious about.

I had two options: I could wait or I could go. Waiting would avoid the issue and change nothing. Going would mean taking the risk that things might still be very bad. It would also mean that if things were no longer very bad, then I would have the chance to make them better, or at least less worse. After stalling for quite a while, I decided to go. Just as I was going, I noticed that what I would have been waiting for was happening. This would have only been a good thing if I had been waiting, but since I was going it put me in a bit of an awkward spot. I did not foresee what was occurring. Since it was too far to turn back, I decided to see what would happen. Nothing bad happened. Things seemed to be better than I thought they were. Almost before I had the time to realize that, it was over. It was only later I realized that what happened could have also meant another thing: that things were not slightly good as they had seemed, but instead they were still as bad as they were or worse, and they just seemed good as part of their worse-ness.

That was a depressing realization, so I bought a doughnut from one of the marketing students to distract myself. It helped a little, but I needed more. I was hungry and one of my friends said she wanted to get the clear Coca-Cola contour glass from McDonald's, so I decided to kill two birds with one stone and went up to get some money for some lunch and some lunch for a free cup.

I was in line to withdraw money for a quite while because a machine was acting suspicious so the whole queue was for just one ATM. I was in line for McDonald's even longer because everyone wanted a clear cup.

I still managed to get the cup to my friend before class started, though, but I had to eat in the classroom during the lecture. But even that turned out quite nice, except for the realization that they had short-changed in the french fry area of my meal.

So anyway that was a post about nothing in particular and now I want to nap.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Frustrated

I have a 2000 word research paper to write and only about a week to write it. Normally that would not be much of a problem, but this is not normal for two reasons: I just started my survey today and I've only got six or seven responses out of the twenty that I need, and the internet connection at my house is dead so I can't go online to do the research for the paper.

Because of the nature of my paper's thesis (Childhood phobias tend to be lost before adulthood), I can only distribute my survey among adults. The two biggest problems about this are approaching them and getting data I can use from their ages. The women and older dudes especially are reluctant to write down their exact age, so I've just resorted to asking them to round down to the nearest decade.

I've also got a moral paper due in two or three weeks, but I figure that can wait until my research paper is done. I also need a survey for that one, but I can distribute that one to students so it should be considerably easier.

So yeah, lack of internet at home and nearby deadlines have me in quite a lousy mood. It doesn't help that I haven't been sleeping much lately, either.

Also there's this rocket, which is the tallest in the world and called the the Ares-something-or-other, that NASA was going to launch yesterday, but it was delayed numerous times due to wind and clouds and a cargo ship, until finally they had to cancel the launch and reschedule it today. The new launch time is in about two hours. I'll try to catch that. I hope it's worth the wait.

Oh yeah, one last thing. I figured out that someone in my moral class did not have the name I thought she had. I'm going to have to go back and fix some blog posts next time I'm free.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mid-Terms and Movies

So today I had my midterm examination for Advanced English. It was as easy as I was expecting it to be. My only problem was that I didn't have enough time to finish my essay, so I kinda had to rush through the last bit. I just finished my last word when the paper was taken from me. After the test was over I was talking to people about how the exam went. The essay was the topic that came up most often. We had three subjects to choose from: E-mails, Cinemas, and Homeschooling. I only read up to movies before I made my decision and started writing. It was only after my introduction was complete that I looked up to see what the third option was. It was too late to turn back by then, though, so I just kept writing. Everyone I talked to assumed I had gone with homeschooling. Oh well, writing about cinemas was nice, even if everything after the first half of my first con was rushed and written with little to no thought put into it.

Not much happened before the test. Joanna had commented on Facebook that she didn't even think I was capable of growing facial hair to shave, so I found her before the test and showed her the beard I was growing for midterms week. She didn't care. The whole point of that beard was to prove her wrong. Man, winning sucks when the losers are all apathetic about it.

Oh yeah, I also now know three people who don't want to be my date to the ball. It's okay, going alone means that I can dance like an idiot and the only person I'll embarrass is myself.

Anyway, after the midterms were over I tried to find someone to go to Subway with, but everyone was leaving, so I left, too. I tried to think up an appropriate post-midterm riding-a-tiny-motorcycle-through-light-rain-at-moderate-speeds song to sing, but the closest I could get was Simple Plan. Oh well.

After I got home I went with my siblings to watch Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, and it was very very good. When that was done we looked at some games and ate some dinner and came home.

This is quite a short post. Anyway here's a list of other things that happened lately:
-Physics mid-term was on Tuesday. We shared an examination hall with the Marketing students. Among them was this dude with Tourette's Syndrome. Calculating the effects of gravity on trigonometric velocities is more than a little bit harder when there's a guy two rows across from you yelling obscenities every half-minute or so.
-Engineering Mathematics Applications midterm was on Wednesday. It was nice because I knew what I had to do for all the questions except one. I stayed for the full two hours and I was one of the last people to leave the exam hall (The other person was the lecturer). While I was at my motorcycle, my lecturer came by and commented on how cute it was. I wish people would stop saying that about the bike. It is literally the first thing everyone says when they see it, and the first thing I say is how everyone always says that. The second thing they say is "How many CCs does it have?" and then I say "I dunno". I don't know the third thing.
-Yeah I think that's it.
-I'm kinda hungry.

Monday, October 12, 2009

This Weekend and Monday

Blogging is a massive time sink. I've got three days to write about and a lot to say and I have no idea how long it's going to take me to get all this down. I'd be surprised if anyone managed to read this whole post, too. Everything I write is so long and not terribly interesting. Oh well, here goes anyway. Point form to save time. I'll expand upon the good stuff later, maybe. So:

Saturday! Let's break it down:
- Woke up late because there wasn't any BB until the afternoon!
- Got stuff ready for BB while using the computer
- Drove to Cheras alone and got stuck in a jam
- Hung around studying CTS
- Got lunch for some people
- Took the bus to wherever Founder's Day was being held
- Stood in the sun for a real long time for opening parade
- Sat in church for a really long time for praise and worship and a message that I didn't really listen to
- Food. It was the best thing I've ever eaten at a BB event. Meat and garlic bread and mashed potatoes.
- No wait I just remembered Aunty Molly's chicken chop from that one camp. That was the best.
- Closing parade
- Took the bus back
- Drove home with Jan
- Shower
- Nap
- Computer
- Call from Papa
- Went out for dinner without getting ready
- Awesome dinner
- Drove home
- Computer
- Set alarm for 2am, went to couch to sleep until alarm went off so I could take a shower then go right to be completely exhausted.
- I didn't hit the button to save the alarm, so it didn't go off. I woke up on the couch on Sunday morning at seven, but that is later on in the blog post.

Okay, things to expand upon. First, Founder's Day. Founder's Day is a yearly thing done by the Boy's Brigade to celebrate when the organization was founded a century or so ago by Sir William Alexander Smith. It has caused problems in the past, namely, it was boring and I missed my cousin's wedding for it three or four years ago. This year was no exception. My friend from college was holding an open house from twelve to four. Founder's Day was from twelve thirty to four. Of course I always had the option not to attend, but I've been in the company for eight or so years and I'm still only a Lance Corporal. Jan got promoted last week, so now I'm the same rank as my younger brother. My next chance at a promotion is in March, but the lack of commitment I'd show from missing Founder's Day would almost guarantee that my rank would remain the same. So I had to miss the open house.

Except, you know, I didn't. Turns out that it went on until six or so, and then after that my college friends went and hung out and stuff. Ah well. If I had gone there I would have probably missed dinner, and dinner was awesome.

Anyway, the last few semi-interesting things about Founder's Day before I move on. Um, I got really thirsty. After opening parade I found a water cooler and latched on for a couple of minutes. Also, Jan and I ignored the speaker's message and read from the Methodist hymnal instead. We learned that Methodists are different from us, and thus they are funny. Finally, I found out something new about Aolani, my assistant squad leader. Apparently, Jan thinks she (Oh yeah we have girls in our Boy's Brigade company. I think I may have pointed that out before but who can be bothered to remember) might like him. I hope so. That would be fun to watch.

So, moving on to dinner. After waking up from my nap I got a call from my dad asking if Jan and I wanted to go out for something to eat. I said yeah and asked Jan to come, too. I assumed we were going to Burger King or some such place, so I didn't bother to put my contact lenses in or change into some nice pants and shoes. Turns out I had assumed wrong. We were going to have dinner with my dad's friend's sister and her husband and daughter and some of their extended family. I was especially regretting my appearance when I heard that her daughter was around the same age as me. I guess if I'm only going to meet someone once I might as well make a good impression, especially so if that someone happens to be young and female. I guess it's a good thing that I didn't know on the way there that she was also half-Australian and really, really hot.

So we got to the restaurant and it was a Chinese seafood place. I did not have high hopes for the food. We were some of the first people to get there, so I surveyed the menu and tried to figure out what I was going to do. My plan was just to order the lemon chicken, drink the tea, and try not to look like an idiot in front of the girl and her family. My plan was silly.

The night began its climb into awesomeness the moment the first few people arrived. My dad's friend's sister was the first person I greeted, followed by her Australian husband and their daughter, Louise. I was not expecting an Australian husband or Louise. I didn't ask too many questions on the way to the restaurant, so I was just assuming that this family was from out of town, not from a completely different continent. It was a very pleasant surprise.

Louise is really cool and her parents and grandparents are fun and interesting people, so conversation at the table never got boring. The food also turned out to be a lot better than I usually expect from Chinese restaurants. I tried a bit from each dish and I liked everything. By the time the lemon chicken arrived I only had enough appetite for one piece, which was a shame because it was amazing. The last course was crab, which I enjoyed more for the smashing and prying apart than the eating. Before we said goodbye, my dad arranged for Louise's family to come to church with us the next day.

I got to drive back, but it quite torturous. I have forgotten how many times I refilled my glass of tea, but I do remember that it later proved to be too much. A quick stop at McDonald's solved that problem, and we got to get some ice cream.

So yeah, that was Saturday. Took me an hour and a half to write that, so let's move on to...

Sunday!
- Woke up early
- Used "practicing for my CTS presentation" as an excuse to dress up nicer than usual
- Went with my dad to pick up Louise and her parents
- Had breakfast with my brothers and Louise
- Church
- Went to a nearby pond to show Louise the turtles there
- Found by Ian and Jan and informed it was time to go home
- Sat in Ian's new car (Oh yeah Ian got a new car) on the short and rather unnecessary drive back to church. Cool car, though.
- Got to drive home in my dad's car (Power steering and very nice suspension)
- Showed our view, cats, and piano to our guests.
- Attempted to initiate karaoke
- Directed Ian to his college
- Said goodbye to Louise's parents as they went with my dad somewhere to do something or see someone
- Said goodbye to Louise when she went with her aunt and grandma, I think, for a manicure or something.
- Karaoke-ed alone.
- Computer
- Nap
- Woke up to parents watching Iron Chef
- Did overdue Engineering Mathematics Applications homework, and a sketch from the current set of homework. Still have eight questions that are due on Tuesday, though.
- Shower
- Bed

I asked Louise after the service if she wanted to go see the turtles because she sounded interested when I pointed out the lake and mentioned them on the drive to church. It was a good idea. Pictures were taken and awws were exclaimed. Things were nice and then Ian and Jan arrived and told us it was time to go. It wasn't an urgent message, though. Jan stuck around for a little bit to poke an oil-slicked and kinda-sick turtle around with a stick.

Not much was done when we got home. After looking at the view we just kind of sat around. Fortunately we had a kitten to amuse us. I hope the day never comes when Cali gets bored of chasing strings and lasers.

I wanted to play with the piano for a bit, but I only managed Heart and Soul with Louise and The Entertainer before Jan started banging random keys when I was trying to play Hallelujah. He said it was "his turn". I told him that I never bang on the drum set randomly when he's playing and that he doesn't really play the piano anyway, but he's a bit of a stubborn bastard so I let him have his way. When I moved away from the piano the wire got loose and the thing powered off (Oh yeah, it's an electric piano), so Jan couldn't play. I was convinced enough that he couldn't fix it to place a bet on it, but he could, and now he is five ringgits richer and I am five ringgits poorer. I don't think he played anything when he was done, but I'm sure if I tried to get back on he would've kicked me off. That's just the kind of lovely guy he is.

Anyway, after that I wanted to karaoke for a bit, but I couldn't persuade anyone to join me. I was about to sing alone when I got a call from Ian asking me to guide him to his new college via a map on his computer. By the time I was done with that, there was no time for karaoke as Louise's parents were just about to leave with my dad for something and Louise herself was about to be picked up by her aunt and grandmother (I think) to get their nails done or something.

I showed her downstairs to the lobby and waited with her for the car. It didn't take very long to get there, so I said goodbye to Louise and went upstairs to karaoke alone.

Oh yeah I forgot to mention in my point form summary that my dad had some more friends over who wanted to know if the Boy's Brigade was right for their son. I sat around and basically told them yeah, yeah it is.

I ended Sunday late and tired and not really looking forward to college the next day, but nonetheless when I woke up it was...

Monday!
- Got up
- Read three chapters of the Bible about 45 minutes (Approximately 5 minutes reading and 40 minutes falling asleep between verses)
- Shaved, put in my lenses, brushed my teeth and all that
- Walked up twenty flights of stairs
- Took my motorcycle to college
- Hung around until my first class
- Cleaned out my wallet during class and found a six-month-old RM20 gift certificate for Outback Steakhouse
- Went out to eat and get better acquainted with some of my classmates from CTS
- Came back for my second class
- Hung around with various friends until five
- Took a nap
- Used the computer lab while waiting for the last of my friends to leave
- Went home
- Nap
- Wrote this

I spent a lot of time hanging out with people on Monday. I could have actually gone home at twelve, but I decided to stay because friends are cool.

The first group of people I hung out with was Crystal and two of her friends. Crystal was the only other student to get a HD in Intermediate English last semester, and I should have become friends with her earlier. She's fun to talk to and she holds interesting views which I can argue with. We talked about Satanists and college clubs and stuff, and I invited her to Christian Fellowship this Friday. We'll see how that last one goes.

I also met Tanuj, who was in my calculus class last semester, and his friend from the degree program. We talked about smoking and what it was like in the degree program and the certificates of completion for completing Foundation.

Aside from those two I also hung out a bit with Denise's group and Joanna's group and some of the third semester students, but not necessarily in that order. Oh yeah, I also hung out with Effie (or Effe. It is a nickname and thus doesn't really matter. I like it better with an i, though.) and JiaYin. The conversation with those two had something to do with relationships and music and coins and stuff. They were my favorite people to hang out with. Effie is refreshingly honest and blunt about things.

So yeah, that was the highlights of Monday, so I guess I'm done with this post. Took me a little over two hours and two thousand words, but at least I'm finished. I wonder if I would have finished my EMA homework if I had done that instead of this. I guess I'll never know.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Technically Yesterday

Having a lecturer in Vietnam meant that my morning class was cancelled, so I got to sleep in until 9. It was pretty sweet.

After waking up I walked the stairs with my sister and told her how the day before went. Then all my siblings and I went to one of the many Ali Majus near my college for breakfast. I had to leave in the middle of it because I had a Critical Thinking Skills class that was starting soon. Miss Tay, our lecturer, forgot the cable to connect the laptops to the projector, so she had to go leave to get that. While she was away I went up to repark my motorcycle. I saw my siblings, but they didn't notice me.

On the way back to class after reparking the motorcycle I passed by my friends. I told them my siblings were eating breakfast nearby and they asked to meet them. Unfortunately, by the time I got my brother on the phone they had already left, and he had paid for my meal a second time (I had paid when leaving). Perhaps I should have said something to them when I was on the way to repark the motorcycle.

Anyway, the presentations were started when I got to class. They were quite good. During the breaks between them I asked this dude about this BMW he had as his background. Apparently he had the exact same model, so that was cool. I'm not sure whether the story of how he got the car was about fantastic profits from stockbreaking combined with connections to dudes in the import/export business or organized crime and German car thieves, but I don't really want to find out. The intrigue is exciting.

After CTS I helped Joanna brainstorm some ideas for her human communications project. Nothing much to note about that except the joke question of whether it's halal for a Malay chick to kiss Chinese dude who had char siew for breakfast. I invited Jo to Christian Fellowship, but she was busy until next month. Eh.

I arrived in the KPD a bit late, but CF hadn't started yet so things were cool. I passed the time by failing to understand this one girl's chemistry notes before moving on to reading this really good text about WW1 and letters from her english notes.

CF was alright. The speaker's message was about the influences of media. There was a bit about DotA and connections to the occult which I found ridiculous. I got in a bit of a debate with the speaker over that, partially because I wanted to make things more interesting and partially because I enjoyed the irony of playing the Devil's Advocate in Christian Fellowship. I talked to the speaker after CF was finished and found out he had been a missionary for 26 years. That was cool. I also helped some guys fill out some surveys for their assignments before heading home.

When I got home I karaoke'd for a while with my youngest sister. That was fun. I took a long nap after that and woke up several hours later to the news on the BBC that Obama had won the Nobel Peace Prize and from my brother that we were going to TGI Friday's for dinner.

TGIF was okay. The lamb seemed a bit overdone, but I finally got to have parfait. I had been wondering what that stuff was since I saw the first Shrek movie. I'm glad I finally know what that stuff is now. While at the restaurant I talked about pyramid schemes, binary marketing, and multi-level marketing, then my dad told us about this Ponzi scheme he was almost conned into. Other subjects were discussed but I will skip them so I can finish this and go to bed.

On the walk back to the car we saw birds. Loads and loads of birds, all sitting on the side of the old wing of One Utama. If you're ever there at night, look closely at the black lines on the sides of the building. It's awesome.

So yeah, I got home, did no work, and now I'm writing this. I really need to study hyperbolic functions sometime. Oh yeah and here is the definition of devil's advocate in case you didn't know. Now that I've got a link in my blog I guess I should start linking to my friends. Eh, I'll do that next time I'm free.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Like Some Sort of Inverted Tuesday

Not feeling very motivated to type. Gonna leave a lot of stuff out, probably.

Today my morning class was cancelled because my lecturer was teaching in Vietnam. I talked about The Sims 3 with my classmate instead. After that I lent some super glue to Carmeni for her Human Communications project. The cap was stuck, so Arun tried to open it with his teeth. He ended up almost gluing his mouth shut. When I attempted to open it I ended up squeezing glue out of the tube through a hole he had made. I ended up with glue all over my fingers. I managed to get it out when I remembered that alcohol dissolves the bonds of the glue and hand sanitizer contains alcohol, so getting the glue out was just a matter of finding a friend with a bottle of hand sanitizer.

After I got the glue out and finished my English class, I took a nap in the hall with some friends while they worked on a project and we all waited for Marc, a friend from our first semester, to visit. When he finally arrived we went for lunch.

I had to leave in the middle of lunch to get to class. After class I played truth or dare and then took another nap. After the nap I did some physics homework, and after the physics homework I went to LOL, which was this comedy event that some of the students were organizing.

There was some good music and some funny music and some beatboxing with alright comedy and then some very good comedy followed by some very comedic beatboxing (If you ever get the opportunity to hear someone beatbox a lion dance, don't miss it) and then a final musical act before I went home.

That last paragraph could easily be expanded fivefold, but I'm tired. I had a good day, though.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Ugh

I'm an idiot.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Ten and a Half Hours; No Breaks

I'm tired, so here's my attempt at a short post.

1st class was EMA from 8 'til 9:30. Learned some cool new stuff, got a bunch of homework for some other day. Also got my quiz results. 22/40 compared to the other students' 40/40 and 37/40. I lost a shitload of marks due to careless mistakes and failure to check my work. It's still a really tough subject, though, so at least I know I've got a couple of geniuses to turn to if I need any help.

2nd class was CTS from 9:30 'til 11:00. Learned about fallacies and stuff. Was okay. Didn't drag. Projector wasn't working.

3rd class was Advanced English replacement for the one hour I missed yesterday. It was from 11:00 to 12:30, but I was leaving early. I made some new friends and listened to Mr. Dharminder talk about his experience at an Ali Maju the other day with Mr. Joel, my EMA (and formerly Calculus) lecturer, which involved them sitting across from a table of loud, vulgar students. Apparently all the vulgarity was coming from the girls. We had to explain how "the f word" had changed since his time as a student, and become a very versatile adjective instead of a swear word. That was fun.

4th class was Physics tutorial in one of the KPD labs scheduled to last from 12:00 to 2:00. It took me around ten minutes to get there. Fortunately, we managed to complete all six questions quite quickly and left with 20 minutes break.

I spent that break getting money to get my ticket from Roopa, who had booked a table for the ball. The ticket is pretty cool. Also when I was running to the ATM I figured out how to simulate drowning: get your heart rate up, then hold your breath and sprint. That was quite an interesting experience.

5th class was Advanced English from 2:00 to 3:30. I gave a presentation and was evaluated by the class. The presentation didn't count towards the continuous assessment mark, but it did help for the next class.

6th class was Moral Studies from 3:30 to 5:00. I had to give a presentation that was worth 10% of the total marks for the subject. I asked one of my classmates to help me out by asking questions so I could stretch my five slides of content to last for fifteen minutes. She agreed to help me out, so that was nice. I managed to get a bit of audience participation going on by way of a Q&A, and my presentation lasted 16 minutes. My classmate, Annora, actually lifted up a sheet of paper that said "14 MINUTES" at one point, so I knew when to start wrapping up. Yeah, that was nice. When my presentation was done there was another presentation by two dudes, the first half of which was presented quite well and the second half of which was pretty much a comedy routine. There are some funny dudes in HELP. I think they're gonna score pretty high. After class was over I got to see my score and I got 8.5/10, which was awesome. Annora's group got 7.5 but I'm pretty sure they did better than me, since their slides had visual aids and animations and stuff.

7th class was the Moral Studies Quiz, which I wasn't prepared for. I didn't understand what the questions were asking of me, so I was tempted to pull out my notes and cheat. I actually managed to get them from my bag to the desk before I realized that cheating during a Moral quiz, although deliciously ironic, wouldn't be worth the consequences of getting caught, so I put the notes away and reached into the recesses of my memory for the answers. I'm not sure if I answered correctly, but I passed a much more practical moral test that class.

When I was done with the quiz I talked to Davinia, who I apparently hadn't spoken to in ages. She asked me how things were with "Junita, or Julia or whatever" and was shocked to hear of my motorcycle accident last week. I said something along the lines of "Oh wow, it really must have been a while since we last talked. You don't know the name of the girl I can't shut up about, you don't know about my motorcycle accident, heck, I bet you haven't even heard about my dad's funeral." Her reaction to the last item on that list was worth the horrible fabrication. I forgot what we talked about next even though that was less than two hours ago. Again I will blame sleep deprivation.

After that I talked to Ms Usha because I wanted to tell her to call off the search since she still had not made any progress finding someone who I could ask to the ball. Apparently she had not told anyone that she was helping me, but somehow all the girls she asked knew she was talking about me when she told them about (her words) "a tall, fair, handsome guy" to ask to the ball. I told her of course they're gonna guess me if she uses the word "fair" in her description. With the exception of the international students, that word would only be used to describe two people, and although it could be argued that she is tall and handsome, Juria is most definitely not a guy. I guess that is the downside to a mixed heritage: you tend to stand out, even in three-word descriptions.

Ms Usha then said that her new plan was to get a column on the notice board for students to put up their phone numbers and descriptions of themselves and of what kind of person they would want to go to the ball with. I agreed to be among the first batch up on the board. Perhaps I should not have volunteered, though. It just seems a bit desperate.

While I was getting ready to go, this old dude with a terrible combover approached a group of students and asked how to delete text on a slide. When I started to answer him he grabbed my wrist and dragged me over to his computer so I could help him with it. I don't think I've met a bigger stereotype in my life before. This guy was a classic technologically illiterate elder. After attempting to help him get his presentation done for a while (he wouldn't tell me exactly what he was trying to do, just what he wanted me to do next, so all that ended up being changed was that the text in two slides were replaced by the text of two other slides that he didn't know where there, and one of those slides being moved up in the presentation), I gave up and set the alarm on my phone to a minute later, then picked it up and excused myself. Man, I hope I never get to the point where I'm pulling random college students into my cubicle to help me adjust the holoprojectors or reconfigure the teleporters or whatever.

I finally took my motorcycle home at 6:30. I wanted to take a nap, but my mum wants me to go to bed at 10pm so I don't end up staying late and getting only four or so hours of sleep like I did last night. Eh.

I figured today would be a lot harder than it was. I was riding on a sleep-deprived high for most of the day, and I only crashed when I got home. My mood's not too great right now, but I was pretty dang ecstatic for classes one through six. Ah well, that is the price you pay for not listening to your mother.

Anyway I'll end this here. I'm gonna go take a nap.

Edit: I didn't actually take a nap. I think I may actually go to bed at 10. I am really tired.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Secrets, Smoking, and Stuff

So today was very interesting. Most of the paragraphs here are not, though, so feel free to skim to the good bits. Also, the second word in the title is purely for alliteration. There are only like three sentences on it in this entire story.

It's been a week since my second motorcycle accident. On the way to school I kept the bike revved at the lights and kept my eyes on the road ahead the whole time. It worked, and I got to school without any problems.

I usually have two classes every Monday: an English class at eight and a Physics class at eleven. Today I also had a replacement Engineering Mathematics Applications class at 10:10 and a replacement Critical Thinking Skills class at two o'clock.

I arrived about half an hour early and decided to check if anyone I knew was at school yet. I didn't find anyone to talk to while I was walking down the corridor, so I wet my hair, found a mirror, and wasted some time by playing with my fringe to see if I was capable of pulling off an emo look. I was not. I kept the hair anyway, since it wouldn't take long to dry.

I met Carmeni in the hall and we talked for a while. The conversation was about the best place to sit and what I had come early to college to do. Carmeni said that my plan was ridiculous. I said it was the best way to move on. Ten minutes before class I decided to roam the hall again to see who I would run in to.

Juria was in the upper foyer with some friends waiting for her statistics class to start. I tried to figure out the statistics homework for a while, but I am just not that great with math when all the equations are upside down and the formulas are things I have never heard of. At one point someone said that statistics was cancelled that morning, and the information was confirmed a little later by three texts saying the same thing. At eight o'clock everyone started leaving for their classes, but I stayed around to hear Juria tell her story of how her birthday went and for another reason that will be mentioned a few paragraphs down.

Juria's birthday was awesome, apparently. Meeting Boys Like Girls and getting the lead singer's wristband as a present on the eve of her birthday on Friday night was just the beginning of the story. The second half happened the next day but was so mind-blowing that Juria told me to promise twice not to tell anyone what she told me, with the exception of my sister and people who she had already told, which turned out to be quite a large list. But more on that later.

By the time I was done processing what I had just heard and the magnitude of the secrets I had to keep, I was more than half an hour late for class. Once fifteen minutes had passed my attendance mark was as good as gone, so I decided to stay on a little longer and finally do what I should have done sometime during my first semester.

So I told Juria that I liked her. She told me that she already knew, and had known for about a month or so thanks to my blog and Facebook notes. I been anticipating a reaction be more along the lines of rejection and avoidance, so it was a nice surprise to see how cool she was about the whole thing. Of course she wasn't interested, but I had never imagined the outcome of that conversation as anything along those lines anyhow, so that went much better than expected, even though things are pretty much the same.

I remember surprisingly little of that conversation. It happened a little more than half a day ago and I can somehow only remember the gist of things. It's odd, since I'm pretty sure that her eighteenth birthday story was the best birthday story I had ever heard and that the talk after that was the first time I've ever told a girl face-to-face that I liked her. I guess memories don't form that great when you're only getting four hours of sleep every night.

I left the foyer when there was still half an hour left in my class. I figured showing my face was better than not appearing at all, since I could schedule a replacement class and such. The lecturer asked why I was so late and I told him I didn't have any good excuses. The class ended fifteen minutes early and he told me that I could sit for a class tomorrow to replace the one hour that I missed, and I'd still get full attendance. That was pretty awesome. What wasn't so awesome was when I checked my schedule and saw that that one hour was my only break the whole day, and so now I had back-to-back classes from eight am to five pm. Wonderful.

I went back to the foyer to see if Juria had told anyone else, since generally the more people that know a secret the less exciting it is, and the less exciting it is the easier it is to keep. A lot more people knew, but the secrets were not any less exciting or any more easy to keep. Oh well, at least I had more people that I could talk to about it if I ever got overwhelmed by the urge to blab.

Everyone's classes started again at nine thirty, so I left the upper foyer to see if any of my friends were in the hall so I could let them know that I was keeping the biggest and awesomest secret I had ever kept in my life, because what's the point of keeping an awesome secret unless everyone knows that you're keeping an awesome secret so they can be jealous of your position as a person who is privy to such information. When they (when I say they I mean mostly Carmeni and Elo) started asking what the secret was about I started to regret telling them about it, but I decided I wouldn't be breaking my promise if (1) I didn't tell them anything that wasn't already public knowledge, (2) I only told them which guesses were false so they didn't think that it was something terrible or less awesome than it was, and (3), I kept silent or refused to answer if they asked me something where the answer would be a "yes", since that would be giving away part of the secret and count as breaking the promise. They left for class before they could learn anything beyond some Taylor Swift trivia.

I called my sister right after that to tell her as much as I could before I had to get to my 10:10 EMA replacement class. Rushing the conversation on the phone was a bit pointless, though, since the class started at around 10:30. All four of us were waiting outside early, and we talked about cockroaches and the college's past as a parking garage.

Engineering Math wasn't terribly interesting. I guess the only thing worth mentioning would be that no homework was assigned to us, which meant that my half-day assignment-free streak might make it to last a few actual days. That was nice.

Before Physics started I met Denise and a few other friends. Denise wasn't happy about me telling her that I had a secret that I wasn't going to reveal to her. She said she wouldn't talk to me until I told her what it was. She did not manage to stick to that.

Physics was informative and somewhat interesting, but again there was nothing much to write about except for the lack of homework, which was nice again. Also, the class ended pretty early.

After Physics I went to go eat lunch with Joanna. I got to share her meal and get that cool coke contour glass in exchange for telling her the story up until the point where I had promised not to tell anyone anything anymore. When I was done, she didn't believe what had happened. I still got a pretty kickass sundae out of that, though, so whatever.

When lunch was finished we hung out at the computer lab before I went a-roaming in the hall again while waiting for my CTS replacement class to start. When I was bored of the hall I went to wait in the class, where I talked with a dude about the biggest secrets we had kept. He couldn't really remember anything, but he did tell me about this one friend of his who slept with a transvestite. That was good for a laugh.

The class was cool. We got to watch clips from Thank You For Not Smoking, which I have to remember to download again sometime soon. Again, there was no homework. That was a nice note to end the day's education on.

After that I hung out a bit more and managed to avoid breaking my promise not to tell anyone despite around a dozen people knowing I had a secret. That was a bit tricky, to say the least.

Word had gotten around about me telling Juria that I liked her. It was pretty cool being the subject of gossip. Carmeni's boyfriend, Nicholas, was in college, and he had heard. He told me that I did it wrong, and that the surest way to fix things was by kissing Juria the next time I see her. Nick's a cool dude, but I think I'll pass on that particular nugget of wisdom. Somehow I get the feeling that borderline sexual assault is not the best way to get a girl interested in you.

I also found out that Elo used to smoke. She told me how she started and how she managed to quit, so that information might be useful in the future. It seems like a lot more of my friends smoke or used to smoke than I originally thought. Still not tempted to try, though.

Later on a bunch of us went to one of the many Ali Maju restaurants for drinks and snacks. I had spent most of the rest of the week's allowance on a ticket to a student-organized standup comedy night on Thursday, so I didn't order anything. Joanna's mum called and told her that she was arriving soon, so Jo left before she got her order. It arrived moments after she left. Since we are not the type of people to waste perfectly good food, I got to have something to eat after all, and Zach said he would pay. So for me at least, there was such thing as a free lunch. Later we saw Jo waiting outside, so I miscalled her and she sat inside until her mum actually arrived.

After that I went home. I spent quite a while talking about my morning conversation to my sister while my brother tried to guess what the secret was.

So anyway it is now around twelve thirty and all the events described technically happened yesterday since it is the sixth today. The fifth was a long day. Today is going to be even longer. I am not really looking forward to waking up six hours from now to get ready for nine straight hours of college. Oh well.

I guess the short version of this post is I can't keep secret the fact that I have a secret, and also I told Juria I liked her and it was pleasantly liberating. So yeah, there's that.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

This Post Should Be Longer

So. Awards Day was today, as were a couple of replacement classes at college because of last Tuesday's holiday.

Awards Day was good. I got a whole bunch of badges, including a one-year-service badge I had forgotten to request four or so years ago and have been waiting for ever since, and my certificate of completion for Basic NCO Training Course, which I had been waiting for since '07. Lots of people got promoted, including my younger brother Jan and a whole bunch of my friends. I'm still a lance corporal, though, but you couldn't argue that I deserved a promotion anyway. Oh well, there's still a chance at promotion if I buck up before Enrolment Day.

On the way back home, my dad made a deal with me. If I got a date for the college ball, he'd pay the full ticket price, otherwise he'd only pay RM80 and I'd have to cover the extra fifty. I'd already been approached by one of lecturers, Ms Usha, who asked if I wanted help getting a date. I agreed and now she's out looking for someone who'd make a good match for the night. When I met her today she said it was a "work in progress". I am cautiously optimistic.

College was okay. It was a replacement for Tuesday, so all the classes were held at the same time in the same place. Tuesdays are my busiest day, with classes from 8am to 6pm with only a one-hour break the whole time. Fortunately my eight o'clock class was not on, neither was my twelve o'clock or three thirty class. All I had were Critical Thinking Skills at 9:30, which I had to miss and will be replacing this Monday, and English at two o'clock, which ended early because everyone was tired. After English I found a bunch of my friends playing hide-and-seek in one of the darkened classrooms and joined in. It was pretty fun. My friends seem to have been playing some pretty childish games lately. The other day we played Pepsi Cola and a rather interesting game of Truth or Dare.

So yeah, that was my day. I also found out when I got home that one of my friends had met Boys Like Girls yesterday night to celebrate her birthday eve. I cannot believe I did not know Boys Like Girls were going to be in KL yesterday. I need to stop missing opportunities like this. First it was the Hitz.fm crew at Mist, now Boys Like Girls. At least I still got to go to the MTV World Stage mosh pit and the fashion show at Mist, I guess.