Saturday, 29 August 2009
Corey Vidal

I'm wondering, have you guys heard of Corey Vidal?

He's actually one of those popular YouTubers. His videos are watched by many people around the world and he has been very successful.

One of his recent successes, was the Star Wars a cappella tribute to John Williams.

In the video, he said that the vocals were provided by Moosebutter. I personally think that it means that he was only lip syncing. But apparently some people wrote in the comments that it wasn't lip syncing.

I really didn't know that even YouTubers can become famous. He even managed to attend the People's Choice Awards because his video was nominated! And I think he deserves it. It was very good lip syncing, and the idea of having himself in fours was creative.

Today I also watched the movie UP. I guess it was a meaningful movie that managed to catch the kids' attention and also connect to the adults, so movie wise, it was a good one, but personally I didn't find it very good.

But there were funny moments still that made me laugh out loud, although some scenes didn't really make sense. But hey, it's a movie for kids.

And I was thankful that the kids in the cinema were quiet at least.
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Thursday, 27 August 2009
Week Off

So college was closed this week because of H1N1.

I'm supposed to be studying and completing assignments but I'm not. I only managed to complete one essay. And I know I have one book review and a magazine summary due next week.

But I have been productive. I've rested and thought that since my Internet will most probably be restricted next year, I might as well have things that I can do to while the time away. And I came up with a brilliant idea. I started compiling a list of DVDs I have that I'd want to rip to my hard disk so that I can at least watch movies in my spare time.

Turns out ripping DVDs is unlike music. But thankfully, there's a really handy tutorial I found which teaches you how to rip a DVD using step by step ways. Today I tried using it, and it worked! Unfortunately it takes about 2 hours to rip just one movie, and the list I made is pretty long, so I decided to start ripping movies now. Hopefully there's enough hard disk space.

But my week wasn't filled with that alone. I managed to play badminton once, and the next day I watched Aliens In The Attic. I found it funny, obviously. I particularly looked forward to the scene of the grandmother fighting a young man, and I wasn't disappointed.

I also started reading yet another John Grisham book, one I just obtained a few weeks back. I seem to enjoy reading those thrillers involving a lawyer.

And I plan to complete my book review in the next few days, and follow it up with the magazine summary. On Merdeka Day I'm going to the temple to get an award for excelling in SPM. Nothing productive there but it's extra pocket money!

I've come to realize that although this semester had just started, it is going to end soon. It is the last week of August, and I have only September and October left. The first week of November (if I'm not mistaken) is my finals. And I still have the research, a documentary, 2 reviews and other assignments from the other 3 subjects. I foresee 2 very busy months.
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Monday, 24 August 2009
No Joke, It's Sinful!

When I told my sister that I thought that although there isn't much difference in the opposition and government, at least in the BN there's MCA and MIC who can voice out their disagreement if a certain policy does not favour their respective races.

She said that I've got it all wrong, they don't have a say at all. I retorted that at least it's better than the opposition, where you have parties like PAS creating a scene about nothing and enforcing laws that are ridiculous. She disagreed. She said that I've got my politics wrong.

I also remember saying that PAS Youth is very conservative, especially since they elected a conservative leader. I was told that it was not true, and that since the election last year they have come to realize the importance of catering to all Malaysians.

Now, I read on a blog that Malaysiakini reported that PAS Youth has called for the Michael Learns To Rock concert to be canceled because it would 'corrupt and weaken the morals of the people'.

What I don't get, is how a concert can corrupt and weaken a person's morals. Just a few hours! Do they think that we're incapable of holding on to our principles? Perhaps they think that Malaysians are easily influenced?

PAS Youth also said that the government are disrespecting and inconsiderate of Muslims who are fasting. Now who was it that said that they want to cater to all Malaysians? Oh and about the Youth wing being conservative, I know it to be true because I read a commentary about it. First it was banning guys and girls from being too close to each other in Kelantan. Then the Avril Lavigne concert. Then the banning of beer. Now this.

The PAS Youth leader also said that 'Foreign bands, not aware of the local culture, would challenge the sensitivities of the Muslims'. Hmmm... I thought they fought for freedom of expression in the media? Music is a form of media too.

PAS also said that UMNO would be regarded with disgust. Now I'm no Muslim, but I'm glad that at least these concerts are allowed by BN. At least we have some world class entertainment. Besides, MLTR isn't even rock.

I think PAS simply didn't research enough before they make statements. They must've confused Avril for some other singer (or perhaps they just stereotyped all Western female singers!) and thought that since MLTR has the word 'rock' in it, it would give rock bands a run for their money in the rock category, although the band is so old that it is the age that a person can register as a voter here.

Now that, makes perfect sense.
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Friday, 21 August 2009
Hectic Week

Like the title says, this week was pretty hectic.

Third semester is definitely the most stressful so far. There's the added pressure of doing well because this semester determines whether or not we'll pass this course.

I went to Genting last week, 2 days 1 night. Didn't play in the theme parks, just enjoyed the weather.

This week started out fine, but then on Thursday we had a moral quiz and a media appreciation presentation. I was a little nervous as by 9 I still hadn't started studying for the quiz. I was still doing the presentation. LUCKILY, the class was canceled and the quiz postponed.

And today I had to hand in my research proposal for english.

This semester I've been working harder than previous semesters, and I sure hope it pays off.

I've just found out that the hostel I'm planning to stay in next year provides free internet, but with a download limit which means I can't download anything or watch YouTube videos or any live streaming. I shall be living a very sad existence if I'm not being busied with assignments. Hopefully there'll be a place like a cafe that has free wifi! Then I can watch as many videos and download as many things as I want.

That was a cover of Linkin Park's What I've Done, vocals by Marie Digby and the electric violin was played by Dave Kim. Not bad, eh?

And that was supposedly one of Yasmin Ahmad's last projects before her tragic death. Shows that we humans are not perfect after all, and that people who love us should accept our flaws as who we are. "Beautifully imperfect", she called it. I couldn't agree more. See I'm being media literate. And the acting was really good, too! I think the woman is a theater actress, I've seen her in the newspaper before.

But my media literacy skills has a limit. For those of you who don't know, media literacy is a skill which enables you to critically analyze media messages to get the meaning of the message.

Anyway, I don't know if you guys know about this project called 15 Malaysia. It's a project that brought 15 filmmakers together. There are 15 short films, each by one director. Yasmin Ahmad was one of them. Here's her short film, Chocolate.

I don't know about you, but I definitely did not understand what the message of the film was till I read the synopsis:

A quiet tale that reminds us that, despite the multifaceted contradiction of Malaysia, life goes on – even if not all of it is sweet.

Yes, life is not sweet. But life goes on. It is beautifully imperfect, after all.
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Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Last week in Media Appreciation tutorial we had this AA inspired sharing session whereby we sat down in a circle and told the whole class which book greatly influenced our lives.

Our lecturer mentioned that the books we read are all reflective of a certain phase in our lives. I suppose that's true, which explains why I no longer read some books that I was once crazy about.

Then I thought about friends. Why is it that we lose touch with people we were once close with? I for one don't keep in contact with my primary school friends, except those that went on to the same secondary school as me. My secondary school friends and I still keep in touch now, even when we're all busy with college. Would we drift apart? I hope not.

Then I thought about time. Isn't it funny when people say time flies. But in fact, time works in a very unique way in our heads. In Form 5 when I was sitting for my SPM I would look back and think that indeed, time passed by so quickly. I had already been in high school for 5 years. But now that I look back, Form 5 seems like a long time away. High school seems like a long time away, even though I've just left.

It seems really long time ago that I had wanted glory and power (Yes, I wanted power) and all that, and worked hard to get a post in the prefectorial board. It seemed even longer ago that I performed on stage in my first ever prefect installation. So long ago that I was in tuition talking about dirty jokes.

I've come to realize that although I've only been in college for 8 months, I've changed a lot. One year in the prefectorial board's leadership matured me, but college made me open my eyes to the world.

So in some ways, not much time have passed but it seems as though it has, and sometimes time flies.

This is a really nice song. I couldn't find the MV and I don't know whether there's one, I only have 2 songs from this band (Aqualung). The clips are from Gossip Girl.

Now I think I better stop and start on my college work.
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Monday, 17 August 2009
The Firm

Has anyone read John Grisham's The Firm?

It's about this Harvard Law grad who was third in his class and obviously being third in Harvard is no small feat. He was swarmed with job offers from big corporations, but in the end, he accepted an offer from a small firm who offered him a lot of money, and a lot of benefits.

But he later finds out that the company he's working for is dealing with a lot of illegal stuff, and he realizes he's in danger.

Anyway, the main character is regarded as something like a machine. He works like no one has before. Normally the new recruit would work his ass off for a few months, then he would cut down. But this guy didn't. He just worked and worked and worked. He rarely sleeps.

And I'm wondering. It would be nice to have a little of that. This semester would be the most important of my whole course and I don't want to risk failing anything, so I'll have to work harder. It would be nice to have that energy to work non stop and still excel. Sadly, I don't have that.

A new week begins tomorrow, and I should probably get some rest.
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Wednesday, 12 August 2009
Did Someone Call Me?

I finally finished reading Tuesdays With Morrie for Media Appreciation. Now I think I'll read The Last Lecture. Not that I particularly enjoy motivational books.

Anyway, today I answered two phone calls on the house phone.

Both times, I was told that someone from my family had called them from my house phone, and they were wondering who called, and what about.

The funny thing is that I did not call them. I don't know who called them, but I didn't. I recognize one of their as my sister's university roommate's mother as we had visited their home before, but the other caller was an unknown.

Some event in college a few years back. Funny why they still didn't take it down.

The first, unknown caller, after hearing that I wasn't the one who called him, and had no idea who had, at least had the sense to tell me to ask my family members and give him a call. The other caller, I shall give her the benefit of the doubt and assume she did not hear me when I said I don't know who called her, for she asked again why did I call her for. Slightly stunned, I asked my sister to answer and see whether it was who I thought it was. Apparently I was right, but for some reason my sister put the phone down.

But she wasn't about to give in. She had called again, just to find out who had called her! Funny lady.

As they say, 'a picture speaks a thousand words'.

But what frustrates me, was the fact that these people had called an unknown FIXED line in the hopes that whoever had called them would so conveniently be by the telephone awaiting them to return the call. As if anyone's that free. It's a FIXED line. There's clearly more than 1 person using the phone when it's a fixed line. The chances of you getting the person who had called you is extremely slim. Heck, even with handphones you can return the call and the person who answers is not the person who had called you! I witnessed someone I know, too, call an unknown number. How weird was it to say 'hey, someone called me using your number, could you just verify who it was?'

Look!!! I'm featured in a street billboard!!!

I for one, never return a call when I don't recognize the number. Handphones these days will display the name of the person who called you if you had saved their names into your phone, so when I have a missed call and it's from a number I don't know, I don't bother returning the call.

I figured that if it's an emergency, the person at the other end would call back, anyway.
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Saturday, 8 August 2009
Prefect Installation

Guess what? I skipped a lecture and a tutorial, just so I can attend my alma mater's prefect installation.

A group picture with the VIP. Now how many graduates you know can actually take pictures with the VIP of an important school event? And guess why we all looked at different places? No it wasn't planned. It was the 'paparazzi' clicking away. Really, there were about 10 of them, each taking pictures without counting. Privilege of a senior and being with a VIP, perhaps?

I guess the main reason for doing so was because I missed form 5, and also this could very well be the last installation I'm invited to.

I was surprised at how different I felt about the whole thing. Installation to me, would still be a very important event but I just looked at it from a different point of view. Knowing how hard the form 4s worked just to get into the Top 6, like I had done, doesn't seem so glorious anymore. Either I'm jaded as I've gone through the same thing, or it's because being in college and learning about so many different things that I've not learned of in the science stream, changed me.

As for my week, it passed by uneventfully, except that I've watched G.I. Joe already, and it's just what? 2 days after the release?

No actually something did happen. I caught the flu last week. I've seen the doctor twice, and they have both said that it's just the seasonal flu, not H1N1. And today I found out that somebody in my campus tested positive for it. He / she is responding well to treatment, and his / her classmates are quarantined. When I read it the first thing that came to my mind was "WHAT? NO HOLIDAY?!?!" Evil of me, eh, to think of holidays when someone's down with H1N1?

And this is something I just read.

The blog post? 5 Big Blogging Mistakes You Should Avoid.

1. Having Music Played On Your Blog
I know you love to share the latest song you are in love with. But at the very least don't let it play automatically. Blogs that start playing music automatically it's really annoying. Trust me.

2. The Way You Write Your Blog
tHiS is NoT coOL. WrItIng tHiS WaY iS aNnOyIng. iT's NoT cReAtiViTy. iT is pUrE stUpiDiTy.

3. Too Many Widgets
Your blog will load super slow with widgets. People who come to your blogs probably visit around 50 blogs per day too? The last thing they will want to do is to wait for your blog to load up.

4. Complaining,Cursing About Something Or Somebody
Too much negativity in your blog will drive people away. People don't like to hang out with people who are always frowning.

5. Long-winded Posts
I know some people love writing thousand words essay. However, unless you are confident enough to make them interesting enough to capture your readers' attention until your very last word, write short and straight forward posts. They will appreciate that.

I agree with number 1 and 2. Completely. I rarely visit blogs with music on it; I just don't like it when I have to pause it so that I can listen to the music I've been playing. After all, everybody's music taste is different. And mixing the letters with capitals and normal ones just makes it hard to read. Seriously.

As for number 3, I'm so bad with these things that I don't know what a widget is.

Okay I admit I couldn't find another picture to post, so I chose this. Taken during last year's prefect annual dinner, with some uniformed people from the army, I think!

Number 4... Hmmm... Well I definitely wouldn't like to read a blog in which every single post is dedicated to someone or something the author doesn't like, but once in a while, it's fine.

If a blog I'm reading belongs to a famous blogger, I probably won't read much if it's a long winded post; but if there are pictures involved then it's a different story altogether. But most long winded posts are found in my friends' blogs, and I don't really mind it much as I just scroll down and read whether anything major happened in their lives.

Okay, I better stop before I commit big mistake number 5.
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Tuesday, 4 August 2009
Surprise Birthdays!

On Saturday a few of us organized a surprise party for Yuet Yin and Yong Bin.

Group pic, outside Zanmai.

Yong Bin's birthday is actually not for another week or so, but we decided since everyone's so busy nowadays, we might as well just hold a surprise party for both. Well it wasn't a surprise party, but more of a surprise birthday dinner.

We told both of them that we're having a surprise dinner for the other, but unfortunately Yuet Yin already suspected something. Yong Bin, however, was clueless! Even when the cake came in he was singing along, until we sang his name. That was when he realized that the celebration's for him, too!

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the craziest of us all?

Group pic, with the birthday girl & boy

The dinner started really late, slightly over 9 if I'm not mistaken, and in the end we were the last customers in Zanmai at 11. But I still had fun, nonetheless. We were laughing so loud at all the jokes and incidences that happened that even people from other tables stared at us. But I'm not complaining. I missed being out with them and talking, joking and laughing. It's definitely been a while since we last did that.

Deciding on where to go

After dinner, some of us weren't ready to go home yet, so we went to Hassan for drinks. So the talk continued till after midnight, when we called it a day and left for home.

Hopefully there will be more of these gatherings. I really enjoy them a lot! Last year, we see each other every day, and now that we don't everytime we meet up there's always some news about each other, and it always feels as if we haven't met up for a long time.

Here's to Yuet Yin and Yong Bin: Happy Birthday!
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