Saturday, 30 April 2011

Err... what just happened? Part 2

The same disclaimer earlier applies

As the Christian rock progressed, the crowd became increasingly high and spiritual (to put it in nice terms), they raised their hands in reverence and the like. An extremely nasty thought came into my mind. In fact I'll censor it. Was this scene unlike war parades to Hitler? With catchy and energetic Nazi songs and people pledging allegiance, raising their hands in a Nazi salute? And a bit more disturbing was that parts of the crowd were literally doing the Nazi salute... but to God. I was probably overreacting though. Or was I?

'Philosophoraptor'-ish question: If God is omnipresent, why do we look upwards to the sky and pray or ask why? (Woah it even rhymes) Technically speaking, you can just speak to him as if he's in front of you, or inside you. Wherever. You know? Meh. Its just symbolic of ancient religions where they turned skywards to worship Zeus, etc.

So finally, the music finished and the crowd settled to watch an Easter performance (the AV crew in the church is really good btw). Suddenly it was City Harvest all over again, but less extreme I would say. There was still super zombified dancing to 'happy' mood sort of music, which I thought was a bit weird. Then there was the emotional speech about evil romans and the blessed Lord. They're pretty good at that. They should perform a play heh. During City Harvest though, there was this large screen showing the Devil and there was a scene in hell too! Scare tactics much? A lot of babies cried. I was one of them.

Then, the highlight. A good sermon. Erm, did I use the word correctly? OK an easter speech. The pastor is definitely a good speaker, clearly passionate and expressive. Another extremely nasty thought. If you replaced the word Lord, God and the like with any word, the sentence is still legit. English is that funny - I'm not implying anything about religion, just a jest at the English language. I probably realised this after listening to 'A Children's Story' during my GCEP programme. Where the so-called antagonist, a trained manipulator working as a teacher in an apparent Stalinist world asked the children to pray to God, and then when nothing happened she said maybe we should pray to Our Leader. Etcetera. Can't recall the full details, look it up yourself. Online text of the book (should be full)

The pastor also said something very un-secular like. He mocked the worship of God through abstinence from Beef, Pork, etc. Woah! Uncool man! Attacking other religions (obviously) is not cool!

And then, here's the really 'erm what just happened' part. The pastor asks the people to pray, and encouraged newcomers (me included) to try it too. So I thought I'd give it a go and, so I exerted that little bit of faith I had (in his own words) and recited. Later he asked the newcomers to come forward, and obligingly I did. And all of a sudden, I became part of the church and arguably, a Christian. How'd I know? Cause after that the pastor started blessing us for 'making a decision' and later on the church gave me a 'starter kit' and Bible. WTS??? @_@ Do they honestly expect anyone to be convinced just like that? Or to make a decision there and then? In fact, I don't even know if I'm supposed to attend a service every Sunday or not. All too fast and too 'what the crap just happened?'. Seriously, maybe this is what Hendrik meant by Groupthink or induction. Meh. They said some prayers for me (about studies =.= come on you think I'm so superficial? Can't blame them, its a smart way to get people to get congregation if the individual finds hope for his common test) Of course, that aside, I definitely have more faith now, but joining this church? I don't think so actually.

Brenda's friend called me the next day (err what the hell crap you think I've contemplated my whole life like that with school and other activities?), they should time a bit more, I'm not exactly totally convinced. Overall, the experience, is not my type. I'd very much be in a quiet church and maybe sing a few sacred pieces. The relationship with God is supposed to be intimate, I'm not sure if so many loud noisy people intruding into that is what the Bible teaches. If our whole lives is meant for Jesus, should we even live the rest of our lives? Meh. So many questions, and the cruel thing is that most Christians give the standard responses, and think the same way, assume things about you, etc.

This is why I respect Kwang Ik more than most. He connects and understands my thinking. Tch, a lot of Christians hear your question and smile as if they're so smart and know how to answer and that it'll definitely convince you. Its annoyingly arrogant. Or at least, that's my perception. Yeah probably me, I have a knack for being cynical. And let me just give you some advice, Atheists don't even believe in the Bible, and you're trying to convince them using the Bible? Come on. You've got to try and think like them to convince them. Use logic and reasoning to persuade non-christians. Don't think you hold sway through spiritual means. You are neither a prophet nor God. Not a pastor, bishop, etc.


Notice the number of lights. Exclaim.

Possible captions:
Worst place to rob someone
Where Annoying Orange got inspiration
Break glass in case of emergency
The made the cut
Be careful of sharp objects
Invented when Swiss Cheese became particularly tough
Emo Corner


Thursday, 28 April 2011

No time to post - sorry peeps

So I spotted this in the newspaper. I wonder if its a typo. Technically he's a vice-pres, but of NTUC or something. My reaction was the same when I found out we had a mayor of Singapore xD

Monday, 25 April 2011

Errr... what just happened? Part 1

Warning: This post contains religious beliefs and some atheist thinking that may be offensive to some.
Hmm... I just realized I'm not just accountable to my friends, but the law too. Argh? Putting myself on the line here. K here goes nothing.

So if you've read my last post you should know I was invited to my friend's 5 minutes away church easter celebration. And there's point number one. Don't you think its pretty evil to turn down a long-time albeit not seen in a long time friend when he/she just wants to meet you 5 minutes from your house for a couple of hours during a long weekend break? And by the way, I don't do excuses. Especially not on a friend who cares AND READS YOUR BLOG WHERE YOU CONFESS ~90% OF YOUR LIFE.

But I've been pondering over this for such a long time already you know? Its kind of cowardly not to experience for yourself this sort of heavy topic that will affect your life. Let's just take a look at decent friends who are christian: Jaren, Marcus & Justin Quek, Jun Yew, Bryan Lum, Rachel, Yan Mei, Jia Lok and of course, the cherry on the icing: Kwang Ik. I've probably missed a few. It means they're unimportant.

Time for the balancing act. I also know decent friends who are not!: Rifdi, Husain, Zaki, Edit: Kang Sheng, Yong Xien, Yan Zhou, Xun Yi, Hendrik, Benedict Woo, Marcus Liu, Adrian, You Duen. I've probably missed a few too. And you cannot imagine the many more if I count people older than me.

Meh. I could also talk about christians I know who are not very decent. Then again, as Kwang Ik pointed out, it means they're not true christians (which well, you can sort of excuse anyway this way +_+ Edit: No True Scotsman logical fallacy Thank Kwang Ik!). We seem to be on the same frequency most of the time. For instance, he said: Let's just start with the assumption that all humans are scum. <----- This. Like seriously, looking at myself bah haha.

I'm epic digressing! Maybe I should just talk about my experience at Faith Community Baptist Church and then finish my PI. Well first I had an ultra catching up session with Brenda who is even prettier in real life. ERR WHAT. OK forget the last part thanks :D I've been playing too much truth or dare.


When the place finally opened I had those moments where you "Woah shit this is happening" in your head kind of thing. Then again, I wasn't too worried, its a church anyway. It started with. Err. Song and dance. Hmm. Not too comfortable with that. I mean, I can sing plenty of Christian Songs in Choir because they're beautiful and its OK if you're not of the faith, the words can still be meaningful. But this was different. Its kind of, worship already you know? Maybe its similar to the, I just joined RI from VS and you're expecting me to cheer RI cheers thing that Jia Lok and Hendrik get. Me not so much since they're pretty different and not exclusive.

Being a bit more in to drums nowadays I realized I was just focusing on the drummer playing and not the lyrics. Oops. They all pretty much say the same thing anyway and after a while you start to hear the same chorus over and over again as if they're trying to drill it into you. Of course, that's from a non-christian view. If I try to put myself in their shoes, it'll be more like, I really want to say it and express my faith and these words are really meaningful. I get that, I respect that. Its a church after all. Later on my RI Christian friends agreed with me that having rock song and dance, etc is not really what they'd go for either. One person even said he considered stop going to church for that. AND HE DID STOP. Woah.

I started to recall my time attending a City Harvest Easter with Yuan Rong. Was bad from the start, since Yuan Rong (for the second time actually) broke a promise that Wei Ge was coming. Childish tantrum bah, I remember they were pretty cold though. Meh I think I'll save the City Harvest for another time.



I am consciously thinking of captions and tumblr references and lame jokes whenever I'm with my camera and I see this sort of things. I NEED MEDICAL ATTENTION.

Saturday, 23 April 2011


I remember back in the day when I lived by the code of happy go lucky. I don't know exactly what happened after. I became a pretty serious guy... "Golly Li Keen, like I couldn't tell from this blog eh?"

You know the time when our goal was just to complete homework and then turn on Runescape and whatnot? Short-sighted blessed days of childhood. You can tell I miss those days. You just have to look at my playlist and exclaim at the horde of game music inside. In fact I try to get quiet respite every weekend just playing a video game or two by myself. Yeah. Seems kind of nerdy eh? I'm pretty nerd anyway.

Its a label, nothing more. People gave it negative connotations of anti-social behaviour and what not. But many a times these moderate nerds grow up to be decent adults with stable jobs. At the same time, the extreme Gregorian parties his/her life away on booze, maybe drugs. Aren't they the same as extreme nerds who game themselves to death? Just soulless shells. No one should have a right to stereotype anyone and base actions on them.

I think I'm too serious for my own good. Should I loosen up? Meh. Too many things going on right now. In fact I'm still on the fence about following Brenda tomorrow. I looked up her church. I don't like mega churches. And I find it pretty odd to have illusionist and magic shows in them. I know good friends who are against them too. But don't I owe her some form of friendship? Quote Big Bang Theory, a non-optional social contract. Oh yes, I know she reads my blog. Just couldn't say this directly. Shy guy. I kind of like her... wrong reasons for going again. I will be indefinitely screwed if she sees this. So contingency plan: Its just a feeling, don't take it too seriously.
At the same time, haven't I told myself I should experience and see for myself a little more religion? I did. I'll probably go. I'm mostly reluctant because I'm afraid I'll rage again like the last time I went... I still have a lot of homework as a side arguement. Maybe I should really make a tumblr see a counsellor. Marcus, you've got the right idea. I should just PLAY MINECRAFT AND SCREW THE REST. Meh. But if I screw the rest I will not be helping. See the dilemma here? Bleargh. Jia Lok. How do you do it?


More MacRitchie. Stay away on canoeist training days.

Friday, 22 April 2011


I am feeling undeniably competitive.

I've always dreamed of a simple life. It all started when I tried Age of Mythology back in Primary School. I pondered of life just living in ancient Greece, perhaps of an olive farmer. I relished in daydreams, just staring out the window maybe, imagining a countryside, a meadow, a forest, a stream, a mountainside... pure nature, nice and sweet...

But I brushed it off as shallow dreams because what good are you living a hermit life of humility? Are you going to make a contribution to humanity? To your country? To your community? To anyone? Why settle when you could be great, you could induce change for the better? Isn't the thought of simple living lazy? Just a selfish escape from near hopeless humanity?

But is it in anyone's capacity to self-sacrifice so much? Have me and Kwang Ik not established the fact that all of us are pretty darn selfish and sinful? ...

I'm so weary, I know some part of me is willingly taking up jobs, opportunities because I want to prove my worth and maybe have a slim chance at entering politics, and moving Singapore forward. I've always told anyone who'd ask, and I've asked myself before, the purpose of life is a life of purpose. To do something. To not be an insignificant speck on the earth's overpopulation of homo sapiens. To give as much as you can give. Its an ideal. And there's no other rational I can give except that its the right thing to do. And I really don't think I can get further than just Singaporean Politics, I'm just really not that great.

Nowadays, its all about YOU. The individual. The American Dream. Living your life. Do what you enjoy, 等等。。。这样的话,有人会想贡献给社会呢?当然会有。。。那,我为什么要为人着想呢?我不能回答。。。也许,我只希望人类不会忘记我。That I will be remembered in history... heh. Glory I'll never know. I'm obsessed with history and legacies. It might explain my interest in current affairs. I just think everyone's story is worth being heard. Everyone deserves a mark. So in the end, it just boils down to me self-interest in fame and legacy... What foolish notions of altruism I have, are they mere facades? ... Dam. It sucks to realize you're only motivated by self-interest. I wonder if everyone's like that. Is it fair that I was born like that? ...

That might explain my polar opposite of my personality. My reclusiveness for the sake of avoiding shame and criticism of my selfishness, of all my ingrain faults. Isn't it just better if you chuck me into some far away rural farmhouse? So people don't have to be bothered by the spite that is me?

I don't know, if I'm up for the fast and busy life.


Nothing could be more humble (other than micro-organisms) than this lonely ant. The ant, just lives it life, serving its colony. No retirement plans. No CPF. It just lives, works and dies. Taking pics at MacRitchie Reservoir with Giovanni (A girl by the way, the name fooled ya didn't it?) But this ant did something more than that. It makes a nice potential wallpaper.

Even if it says 'photoshop' on the label, it might be the bare minimum or not at all because I'm trying to take photographs in RAW (Nikon Electronic Format, NEF) now which loses no picture data nor quality and I need post-processing software to convert it to JPEG files. Also: The plug-in for Photoshop doesn't work and I can't read NEF files, only Lightroom can. Any solutions?
Tiny World

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Slap in the face

I realized that this blog is likely more public than I thought. I don't actually mind people reading, I mean, go ahead by all means! Its jut a bit shocking that many people read without commenting or anything. Wow. >.> I knew Nicole was lying all along, but it still made me realize that someone I know could just read anytime. Its a scary thought of invasion of privacy. I've always found the peace and quiet nicer than the limelight, I mean I find it hard to believe anyone likes themselves being scrutinized all the time.

So screw it. Just read if you want.


Currently Trying Motto: Screw It. Inspired by Marcus Liu, SIJR ("Screw It Just Run" mentality during 2.4 NAPFA that got me a D from an F) and a little Barney Stinson "Whenever I'm sad, I just stop being sad and be awesome instead"


Solemn, Sodden, Snowy Soldier Statue

NOT angry birds


Saturday, 16 April 2011

Just go away

We watch on television the protagonist coming to the rescue of his depressed best friend which leads to the two becoming stronger friends than ever and they live happily ever after.

As our GP topic on media rightly points out, what we see on television is only projected as reality. It is perceived and not a true reflection.

Do you know that when I'm emotional, I get even more pissed that people 'come to my rescue'? Then I lash out on a good friend and then get even more angry at myself.

So just go away. I can only be a nuisance to my friends and that makes me really infuriated at myself.
Can you not see I'm extremely bothered that I cannot handle myself? Is that arrogance or esteem?
I know I look like I'm just begging for someone to come talk to me. And that's ironic isn't it? The more I sit away from my class, the more they are curious or feel obliged to become saints.

I hate being a hindrance. I dislike receiving charity. I've already established that what I want in life is to contribute and give, that my needs, my discomfort is not important at all for the greater good and for a community. It may be why I despise the American value of the individual over the rest. How can I achieve that if I constantly need external maintenance?

Once again, Jia Lok proves to be an expert. "He just needs some time alone." is all I want to hear.
Not "Relax dude. Chill."

I'm just selfish that I don't let other people into my life. Is that wrong? So far the only thing I've gained from exposing myself is weird looks and judgement. If I'm such a terrible person, why do you want to rub it in even more? Once again I reiterate: If everyone could hear what I was thinking all the time, I would have no friends.

This is where Bryan's advice steps in. "You find your best friends when you do what you love doing." Its true. So freaking true. Just yesterday talking to a Raffles Photographic Society member who was from RGS choir, (and her name is super cool! The Pokemon Team Rocket leader's boss, yeah an Italian guys' name 'Giovanni') and we could actually hold a conversation for half an hour (we stay two bus stops away coincidentally). Meanwhile, 5 minutes is already agony walking together with say... Nicole. Still, We just met, so its easier to talk. And she's making an effort to end awkward silences too. Ultimately though, I think my best friends, are those that don't seem like best friends at all!

I find the most humble people the most respectable. The people who ironically, do not prioritize socializing at all. Lee Kuan Yew said in his book, that he's actually quite a lonely guy nowadays ---- his dear wife passed away, together with most of his old friends. Yet, he carries on, just working... just pursuing a better Singapore and spreading her influence. In my class there's Samuel, Yong Xien and Zhe Yuan. We correspond sometimes on the simplest levels. And sometimes, that's all I need. At the least, they hold every conversation with rational purpose. I really cannot explain it, somehow, I just give them the highest respect naturally.

Haiz. It's this obsession with the unseen and the underdogs again. Another thing happened yesterday when I went to take a passport photo at Marine Haiwaii, and quaint little shop in the heartlands of Marine Terrace.

Frankly on the surface, he looks like a pathetic old man, I've even seen several bottles of alcohol in his back shop (but that could be used as a solvent for old film stuff too) owning a minor business by himself.

But if you truly get to know someone, there are always deeper complexities then you can see. The walls are littered with his photographs and in the back of the shop where only people taking portraits go there's a small wall in the corner that represents his vast experience. Awards from the photographic associations of Singapore (He was an associate director there), Malaysia, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and even one from South Africa. A picture of a Nepalese girl (he travelled there) that just owns my photography upside down.

He's one of those unsung heroes who have put his old glory days behind for a quiet and humble living, eager to share his stories with customers like me (I asked him about all of it). Gave me advise about always fighting and going for all the competitions given the chance, just be gung ho, and if you lose, you still can see the winner's picture in copies of magazines to improve yourself. He's language wasn't fantastic, but that just made his words sincere.

I'm humbled... It makes me feel embarrassed that I have a nice home, good food, and did nothing for it. That's why I'm quite intolerant of seemingly pampered youths nowadays.

I wonder if he's like Lee Kuan Yew, with his friends and family passed on... Is it really that sad? Or sobering? Life goes on... and passes on... that makes me sad. Do people notice? I don't know. Do they deserve to be noticed? Yeah... How many people... like that, under the poverty line, or without caregivers. It's why I sometimes cannot fathom being on my own. Yet, is it really that bad? No answers... I'm too deep and serious for my own good.


Art nourishes the hungry soul. And just like food, different people have different cravings.

The quote was found on Hendrik's blog.

He wants a hug
Story of my life
*Note: Posts with label 'photoshop' also refer to images done up using Adobe Lightroom 3 (as of now), Raffles Photography recommendation. 

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Mental conditioning

I think I'm only starting to feel the true effects of 'post-vs' syndrome now...

I posted about this before... but the same issues have become like the weather currently - stormy and constantly changing.

When I was younger I saw my daddy cry I accepted I was lazy. So since I was lazy, it meant I was too lazy to do anything about it to. Perhaps that was the first sign of sentience and maturity, because soon after I saw the effects of apathy, of inaction, of going with the flow. That no one is going to wait for you. That the community is greater than me. That in fact, you are nothing, an insignificant sub-atomic particle in the expansive universe.

So I thought, why not try not being lazy!

Heh. In a way, although many may view Barney Stinson from 'How I met your mother' as comedy genius, he has a very very valid point. "Whenever I'm sad, I just stop being sad, and be awesome instead."

I will probably never completely stop being lazy, its a fact for everyone. It doesn't mean you don't try.

Meh. I am really very mood swing leh... :( Maybe I should just stop being around people altogether. I mean, do I really want to be around people? Or do I want to be comfortably alone, and at the same time not disturb anyone? Fucking confusing.

Back to mental conditioning, I think I'm feeling a backlash of its effects. Its all fine and dandy when life's good, but under pressure, can one weather the storm?

I can't. It sucks. Fuck it. Screw this. But doesn't screwing it = no action = no improvement = pathetic? FUCK LAR. >:O Cannot take this shit.

I feel a certain way is right. But everyone else disagrees. And then when I look at it rationally, I seem to disagree with myself too! FUCK. ING. INSECURE.

I think. I am really meant to lone. To not bother anyone, to be free from society, no one bothering me, just alone and happy. But then... I also want to be with many people! I wish for change! For world peace! For environmental ACTION. How can one sit by and let the world pass?





Monday, 11 April 2011

Wake Up!

I've been getting very little sleep - relying a lot on caffeine recently. Maybe my analogy to Yan Zhou was more relevant than I thought. RJ life is like using Mask of Madness in DOTA. (The item gives you a 20% boost in speed but makes you take 20% more damage)  RJ life gets you pumped and time flies really fast with a lot of things to do and a lot of things you really do. But you are under constant threat of taking more significant damage from stress and physical problems like lack of sleep.

Everyday has become that much harder to wake up to.

Today at GCEP class I got a kick out of all the naive, bemusing ideals that my classmates still have. Woah dam I sound completely arrogant, out of line, tactless and evil here. WELL TOO BAD ITS MY BLOG >:D Haha joking. Its quite a problem really, I do get a bit excessive when discussing topics that are my cup of tea. Argh. How to get rid of this. I think really it's just the fact that most of the world are oblivious, or more like, children, teens and even youths are. So it saddens me deeply that firstly people assume the world is fine and dandy in sunny Singapore, and that they take so long to grow up.

WAKE UP! People. The United Nations, is more fail than you think. They cannot impose their mandates, and the big countries often disagree. That's cause international law is anarchy! The fact is that all countries assert their own sovereignty, and guess what, its not in their interest to say, go intervene in Ivory Coast. Their men will die, they reap no economical benefits, their only interest is spreading influence and goodwill so that it may be reciprocated. Rational people act in self-interest, its true, its nature, and really there is nothing wrong with that. You can't blame a mosquito for say spreading dengue, I mean, does he know that family of four is already suffering financial difficulties? DOES IT CARE? Does the family acknowledge that it's abstaining from infecting them if it doesn't? Will they start buying blood for him to thrive on? HELL NO. It'll just fight to exist. And we fight it back to exist.


I know I'm absolutely self-interest driven. But I work tirelessly towards become a more ideal person and force myself to be more altruism, accepting little to no gratitude.

But I'll never reach it.

I don't believe anyone can. Ultimately, I'm aiming to leave my legacy, and a little self-satisfaction from knowing someone benefitted from me. The point is that I try and get closer to it. By taking comfort in just a thankful smile, instead of just not caring at all. If everyone cared, if my example affects others, then I'll definitely benefit too.

Another thing: GUNS ARE POWER.
TOO BAD. There's no such thing as I'm entitled to gain ownership of this little dot on the map just because my ancestors lived here. Hell no. We still exist because we have a well-trained army that people respect and are well aware of their capabilities like when we CHIONG to Aceh in 2004 with NS men and bulldozers (to clear the debris). Why? To help Indonesia? Maybe, because then they'll be more friendly, that's good for us. Another reason? To tell the entire world: Look at this BITCHES, our armed forces are freaking TOP PERCENTAGE responsive and if you dare try and whack us, you can expect tanks instead of bulldozers.

So abolish national service? Might as well abolish Singapore. The US can send their pacific fleet of nuclear powered aircraft carriers and systematically wipe us out in under 48 hours without proper defences.

So why be diplomatic when we don't benefit? YES WE DO. Its just not as tangible. For such a small country, you'd be surprised how many people know Singapore. Our influence reaches the four corners of the globe through diplomacy and activism in the United Nations. And who knows if that starving man in Afghanistan we gave cup noodles to remembers the Red and White with the New Crescent and Five Stars, and grows up to own an empire in Afghan oil reserves... you get the point. People don't forget goodwill. If not the commoners, the government does. (Because its in their self-interest to act like grateful politicians)

I could go on. But I'll just show you more Swiss Pics!
China just received an upgrade

Those who are odd please turn right

Saturday, 9 April 2011

No rest for the weary

For all the juniors who are worried that RI life is stressful and you won't be able to compete...
Yes. It is. But judge me not by the number of setbacks and losses, but by the strength and will to continue as a Rafflesian :D So maybe its not RI trying to throw you off and put you down. Its RI trying to make you stronger, how many schools and parents have the will to do that? ONLY SPARTANS.

So my RI life begins proper after the dust has settled. No choir. No council. Nothing left but tenacity.

Issues at feet hand:
Project Work
Chinese standard
Basic dialect
Numerous test
Kicking start Raffles Photog life
Recover from flu (AGAIN? :O)

Stuff I want to do given the time (unlikely):
Haunt the RJ library and read Men in White and some other books that I chanced upon the other day
Start writing cards for birthdays, etc.
Attend several events such as RSB concert on the 12th, VS Choir results on the 13th, RI (JC) fight against NJ in Table Tennis on the 21st, 30th april busking at Orchard (various friends), etc etc
Replay The Witcher: Enhanced Edition, 3 times (zomg ==) cause the saved games for the three main choices have been lost, and the Witcher 2 uses them. (Pre-order it!!)

No rest for the weary.


Forgot all about this vid! Witness my noob sleighing skills. Haiz... good times in Switzerland. Escapism... is just magic you know. Edit: Video upload failed == So here's a picture of something spastic I found in Switzerland.

Quote of the Day

Thursday, 7 April 2011



That's why, I'm not going to run in and die of explosives. Going to keep some things about me simple and try to be as neutral as possible.

Fundamental way of thinking
Some of my core beliefs.
1. 'All I know, is that I know nothing.' -Socrates
2. Pragmatism > Spiritualism (see 8.)
3. Imagination is beyond science
4. If one question only has one answer, it still does not make that answer correct
5. Anything under threat = not entirely free will
6. Coincidence is limitless
7. There are A and B explanations, proving A wrong does not prove B is right
8. Tangible is more useful than supernatural
9. Nothing is absolute except that nothing is absolute
10. Right and wrong is relative
11. A happens. B happens. A did not necessarily cause B. Nor B cause A
12. Nothing is perfect (similar to 9, but referring to objects and not concepts)
13. Emotions are irrational... but part of logic, because it is a factor of human behaviour.

Thanks for the discussion Kwang Ik and Jeremy. If God were real, he's pretty smart to get Kwang Ik to talk to me. He would be pretty smart to get Jia Lok to talk to me to. Convincing anyone takes (mutual) trust and respect, both of which I have for Kwang Ik, and he has for me. The arguments he presented were definitely better than "God wrote the Bible, the Bible says god is real = both true" and I've grown a little less anti-christ :D and also less shy talking about this kind of stuff. Faith does not really have a good argument to present if they're burning others' holy books AHEM. TERRY JONES COUGH COUGH DOUCHE. Oh I'm sorry, was the word douche suppose to be between the coughs?

On the other hand, I also talked to Yong Xien not about religion, but basically, a C personality HTHT :P Unfortunately, logic is pretty cold and heartless. But I realized deep down that might just be the real me. And no amount of mental conditioning can change fundamentals in my DNA. A lot of my actions, are based on ideals, because giving up in the face of probability, is not logical :) If there's a chance, its actually logical for me, however small, to take it, because you never know what will happen. A lot of my thinking really goes back to does fundamentals.

Example: Why bother recycling, when the world looks pretty set for 'death by environmental destruction'? Because however likely humans are just going to own themselves, there is still that slim chance the difference I make helps, and it is my belief in sacrificing for the greater good, it just takes that little effort, to add to that chance of saving something as great as the earth and its diversity. Don't tell me you're such a wuss you can't take a little inconvenience.


I think I might just change the blog pic to this one one day. But for now, since its done up already and I never showed much of my Photography in Switzerland...  (there's really just too much Dx)


High Contrast and adjusted Shadow & Highlights


I always wonder, at the end of the day, how much do others reflect, and just plain think. Maybe its because they're happy with their life, and hence don't really think too much, maybe they're too happy. So happy they don't ask for more of themselves, constant improvement, and giving back too...

Three heavy topics plagued my mind today, and perhaps after it all I became so tired (plus gym in the morning) that I fell asleep from 6pm... till err. Now. Heh. :P

Societal Behaviour
Religion (Next Post)

Firstly, my behaviour. I-C. I'm quite aware that relying on this method of profiling is not exactly accurate nor healthy (humans are just, too freaking complex), but actually I'm using it as a simplified tool to articulate what I'm thinking. Fundamentally, its whether I want to shy from the public or not. Ultimately, I concluded that the period of putting yourself out there, making tons of friends, observing new culture, etc. is OVER. Time to get serious, get work done, and stop worrying about keeping friends, stuff like that, unless I have time. I really really appreciate the speakers for coming, they are awesome, inspiring, and original. 

Secondly, my future. Somehow after the talks for career day today, I find myself, much more ponderous about whether I really should have chosen Science Stream. I gave myself a pat on the back, saying ultimately, its OK, school is not going to decide on your entire future unless you make it so. Society is nice enough to give you more chances later, and the fact that you can jump from PCME to a degree in Politics for example, is reassuring, because if you truly love something, it will manifest in hard work and catching up with the people who had epiphanies in P6 to become LKY-wannabes or something haha. From what I gathered, I discovered things. 

One, I really find Journalism appealing, and its time to take serious consideration in this area, instead of going all conservative and only considering banker, lawyer, doctor, engineer, etc. Which means, A. Extreme undivided attention to my writing skills and GP in general. And B. Research on the SPH scholarship and universities. 

Two, I also find the Maritime Industry attractive. And I have absolutely no idea why. I just naturally strayed to the PSA international, Maritime One, and Navy booths. Then again, when I thought about it, it could really be something very superficial like 'my whole family is like that, its pretty cool if we're all experts, will become like some maritime family haha.' On the other hand, trade and the sea, is Singapore. And I'm pretty patriotic. (the volume of me singing the National Anthem is a good clue) 

Three, government and civil service jobs, which not surprisingly, also arouses my attention. More specifically. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), National Parks Singapore (NPS), the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), which fall under the Ministry of Education (MOE) as well. And holy crap I missed the MOE booth. DANG IT!!!!! Ah well... can't be helped. I wouldn't have traded any of my time at the other booths or the Journalism and the Arts talk. Firstly, 

Why MFA? International Policy, is one of the most interesting topics to me, and ties in with my passion for current affairs too :D Why NPS, nature. Really. Why URA? Think Sim City 4, think green spaces and think making those super cool miniature scale models :D!! Why NUS? Yale-Nus tie in, sparks my curiosity and excitement, plus ranking 29th in the world, in my eyes (IME) <---- possible new cool slang? :D, is no mean feat and definitely worth my time to help Singapore further develop its education scene. Why NTU? Because just an hour ago the Journalist Ms Jessica Tan (one of the speakers) told us many people enter SPH from NTU, and not via the SPH scholarship. Why MOE? Teaching. Duh. (Though its obvious I'm not very good at explaining stuff to people through my daily encounters with suck tasks xD)

OK no time to talk about the last heavy topic (which quite frankly, might be the heaviest of them all). Till next time I guess :D <--- shit I'm addicted to this emoticon. Used to be these =.=, >.<, +_+, xD, >.> and =D


Further cropped photo, I found the wings to be in quite an interesting position. So I thought, why not try cropping further, and make the fly look like its landing, since its a macro shot anyway. More or less, I just felt like, experimenting is really the way to go in any art form.

Hmm wait, isn't the bug pokemon good against the grass type, not the other way around?

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Beneath the skin

FACT: If you knew what I was thinking all the time, I'd probably have absolutely no friends heh.

That's what I believe anyway...

I always advocate strongly, the right thing to do, and my ideals, but those aren't exactly by nature... may explain why I'm not in council, or in fact, have very little leadership experience.

The truth hits hard but I've accepted it.

I'm selfish.
I'm judgmental.
I'm jealous.
I'm snobbish.
I'm arrogant.
I'm pampered.
I'm lazy.
I'm over-competitive.
I'm horny desperate.
I'm hateful.
I'm cowardly.
I'm heartless.
I'm rude.
I'm vulgar.
I'm domineering.
I'm cynical.
I'm insecure.
I'm a show off.

But I'm different.

From young, I've constantly reflected, and reached these conclusions. The pragmatic solution? Rules.

Rules I play by, live by. My logical and pragmatic mind, is stronger than you know, and I'm colder and more emotionless than you think. The reality is we are humans, humans with emotion and irrational feelings full of logical fallacies. I despise this distorted way of acting. So I have agreed with myself, that since these emotions and irrational feelings, are going to mess you up, just destroy them, or just like conditioning your body, conditioning my mind, by making myself become a nicer and better person.

I know these facts. I'm not happy about it. The only logical solution is to force change. So far its been working.

Here are some examples of what I mean.
Due to the extreme nature of my real thoughts, I've censored them. And the sentences may not be linked, but different responses. Most of my actions are with reluctance emotionally, and sometimes physically but with pure logic and temperament mentally.

*Group project, after seeing groupmate's work*
Thoughts: Fucking hell bitch don't screw up the fucking powerpoint just let me do it if you don't give a damn about the finish. Fuck, have to use Microsoft word just cause these lamos don't have InDesign. Times New Roman? For god's sake, fucking change the title font at least. Great, no fucking pictures, are you even interested? What the shit, all you fucking did was Wiki and google crappy images, go to hell.
Forced change: OK I'll let you do this part, I trust you. Haiya, can lar I suppose. OKOK should be OK. If something he/she did went wrong, will cover for him/her completely. Put all effort into fixing and improving.

*Friend (in this context, not as close) comforts me*
Thoughts: You think I fucking need to know shit I already fucking know. Are you not just fucking repeating the same cliche shit that every dang person is telling me? Are you even fucking listening to me? Do you even understand what I'm going through? Nope. I bet you're just trying to act like such a nice person and make people like you. Fuck you.
Forced change: Thanks... I'll be fine, really.

*After failing something*
Thoughts: Any excuse that usually blames everyone else and everything else. Because I'm obviously the best, and I don't make mistakes. Fucking not my fault.
Forced change: Completely thrash all excuses and blame myself in every logical way I can find, usually the truth. Apologize to everyone who helped me, or showed support. If it is a screw up, will force myself to offer resignation or drop out of whatever I was doing, and will really do it, against my true thoughts, and no matter how unfair.

*Asked why I am such a goody-two-shoes, or after witnessing anarchic/rebellious acts/complete disregard for the teacher, class, school, stuff like that*
Thoughts: Fuck your balls off, you don't give a shit about your fucking future. Why the fuck would anyone choose to be unproductive at his/her own will? Its the fucking rules. Fucking follow them asshole. Stop fucking acting cool, seriously, just stop. If I had the power and no restraint, I would fucking stab everyone of you with Kwang Ik's sharpened knives. Do you actually give a fuck about your parents worrying about you? Your teachers? Nope. You're just a spoilt brat with no life, I hope you grow up to be a fucking cleaner.
Forced change: Haiya, I'm too guai kia for my own good :D. Its a free country, they can do whatever they want. You could do with some letting loose Li Keen. Let it slide. People are different. You are not the ultimate authority. *Continues justifying peace*

*Told I'm lame/immature for either, lame jokes, playing Pokemon, stuff like that.*
Thoughts: Yes yes very matured of you to stare in the mirror all day and stopping at every reflection you see and start styling your hair and checking out your fucking awesome abs eh? Do you fucking work for Gatsby or California Fitness? FUCK YOU. I can fucking do whatever the fuck I want you arrogant bitch. Just fucking go away. I don't fucking care if you're my friend or not. So you'd rather I fucking tell sick and racist jokes? They are like, the fucking epitome of immature douchebags like you.
Forced change: Haha I know la, but its fun what... I'm just bored la. I'm dam lame and nerd one, don't know meh?

I could go on, but I think its been too long.

I think, a lot of people are like that. But the difference is, I made a choice to put all my strength into improving. Its only the right thing to do for humanity. The logical path. Ultimately, I benefit too, perhaps that's really why I'm doing all this.

I'm courteous.
I'm kind.
I'm restraint.
I'm peaceful.
I'm caring.
I'm selfless.
I'm optimistic.
I'm NOT uptight.
Still not very humble heh.
I'm adventurous.
I'm hard-working.
I'm understanding.
I'm compromising.
I'm down-to-earth.
I'm abstinent.
I'm trusting.
I'm semi-altruistic (I don't believe anything is pure)

I think I really need to credit a few things. I may have forgotten more... its been a long time since I set myself on a goal towards right (no pun intended).

Naruto. This show, I think, influenced me, to never give up in the face of near impossibility, both of changing my personality, and changing people. Hard work, but you always keep trying. Its only right, and shows true strength of character. Basically, never giving up on always improving, and doing better every time.

Ngee Ann Primary. This school, IMO, instilled me the true and noble values of selflessness and putting others before you. The community before self, a communist and chinese ideal and value, but truly logical, and righteous. I still remember, part of our key values was to put others before self.

Fairly Odd Parents. One episode. Jorgen was his usual arrogant and militaristic self, but with respect, sincerity and sense of righteousness he said to Timmy, "You don't do good deeds to get noticed. You do them, because they are the right thing to do!" I found it deeply profound and logical, and tied in well with an earlier quote on kindness and about putting others before self in Ngee Ann.

THIS POST HAS BEEN SO EPIC LONG. I bet you guys would strangle me if I didn't put at least one pic!


The flower that looked down and the leaf that dreamed

Monday, 4 April 2011

Running because of council

All proper words are sacred, don't use them for no reason, especially vulgarities.

I crept slowly towards the notice board and huddled around the mass of anxious students already gathered. I scrutinized the list of councillors like scrutinizing a score for dynamics and difficult jumps between notes. Two candidates starting with Lim. None of them me. It's over. I knew it then, I knew it days, maybe weeks ago. Not that I didn't try. I will never, in the face of near impossible, but not entirely.  And in the end, I really learned something. Be absolutely true. Honest, to yourself, ideals and beliefs. Too late.

I watched the other candidates making new friends, with ease. For me, its a challenge. Insecurity means I am always afraid of judgement, and cruel stares of disgust or weird looks. I guess, without any chance at council, no one will watch me. And thats great in a way. Then again, I shouldn't have feared all along.

Look at Bryan (Lum), he wasn't afraid to tell me he believed vulgarities was absolutely OK even as a leader, even though he probably knew how Guai Kia I was. He is a natural at leading.

Jia Lok too, not afraid to show his true colors as a true blue Victorian, and being sincere the whole time.

Eugene Phua, outspoken about his belief in voting for the worthy and deserving not the usual obligatory friend vote.

Bryan Ong, at first I was skeptical at his defeated-ness in situations. But he is cool and confident, and perhaps realistic.

Dylan Lee. I have to admit, I was slightly put off by his passion about gym-ing all the time. But I was won over, because he has passion and enthusiasm for his school; the manifest of the Rafflesian Spirit.

Yuan Rong, amiable to the max, understanding, and has shown his capabilities to me in his time in VS

Surya, I didn't vote for him in VS. But his group, and his personality, is just too fun, and actually a lot of hard work too.

Husain, constant improvement, strong values, the Professional, Gentleman, Sportsman.

I voted for all these people. They deserved it, and they did get their spot in the council. I am definitely proud and happy for them, the world needs to take notice of these individuals. Why are there 2 more votes? Me (duh) and my group mate, whom I actually regrettably wasted on, she really doesn't have any capacity as a councillor, at all. She is decent, but not outstanding.

Its I vs C again. I've always enjoyed background work, and the road less travelled... I did mention before I am really inspired by that poem. Yet, it always wasn't enough for me to do just that, when I could do so much more, and show the world, how I really feel things can be, should be done. Teaching, and being paid attention. Attention seeking? Probably. But in all honesty, when it come down to it, my morals always come first. I will never shortchange myself. I'm uncool and I'm proud.

Why am I 'running because of council', not for council? Like a work of art, it has multiple meanings. Firstly, because after finding out my results, I ran at Mac Ritchie reservoir with Kwang Ik and Jia Lok to cool off. I think it was less the running than just their friendship that helped.

And I'm running away. The extreme C personality. Escapism if you will. Always found it peaceful, and just plain fun, to go all single player on my computer and listen to the same great stories and music, and computerized, but not robotic, lively characters of the games I play. Because in the end, these computers, were made in likeness to humans, and were created by humans, and unlike humans, they don't judge, they don't bitch either.

I can't pen my thoughts clearly in this mood. Its just a daze. I recall the stuff that prompted me to try this. Firstly, because I feel my time in VS was wasted by my dearth of leadership. Why didn't I put my effort into becoming a student leader, so that I may pass on, instill the Victorian Spirit, which I still cherish dearly? Being the extra guy who cheered with the red and black shirts, felt empty, when they started conversing about their experience, and behind the scenes work. Stuff I like.

Secondly, because I've never been satisfied being the average pupil. Part of me, relished in taking the challenge of 10 subjects, 2 and a half CCAs, and volunteering on many other school activities, because ultimately, I want to make a contribution, however little, but as much as I can to this world.

Thirdly, because I truly and dearly love Raffles Institution. Its history, culture, and warm welcome and acceptance of me, was enough to win me over. And being from VS, it was the road less travelled. I wanted to maybe prove, that I didn't make a bad choice in coming here at all and that it really is great, encourage my juniors to come too. You can say that I've just entered. But having a place here, already makes me that grateful as an appeal student.

Fourth, because 'challenge accepted!' You know, the ironic thing is, the more the council members and teachers talked about commitment and really difficult and stressful work, the more I was interested. Haha weirdo workaholic eh? :D Yeah, honestly sometimes I can't even believe myself, am I that serious about liking work? It seems, illogical, and I love Lepaking too! Maybe, specific work. Work I'm passionate about, and council was one thing I was quite sure about.


There's still so much I want to talk about. Another time. Its super late.
At the last Kampong in Singapore, a photography society outing. (THERE'S TOO MANY PEOPLE IN THIS CCA SERIOUSLY)

I think, I should stop downplaying my photography if I want to be more serious. Instead, accept and understand criticism, and defend my skepticism of them (if any).

The photoshop marks are so obvious argh! I've no time to do a proper one in short notice, sorry guys :(


After 5 mins PsDing

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Reply & Some stuff about game music

My CBOX is flooded, I think it best I reply as a post instead.

@Marcus: I just... don't like to be beaten, meaning I'm not that OK relaxing all the time. I'm a bit over competitive that way. I managed to get into Photog society. Council results on Monday

@Jaren: Mhm... I'm insecure all the time

@Jin Xiang: Awwww I'm so touched you read my blog, really. Its OK if you don't tag, don't force yourself, you're not my guidance counsellor haha. We're not in the same boat, we're in similar boats that are both in similar situations haha. If we were, I'd have been banned from playing scrabble or something. I think my priorities were shaped a lot by Chinese values inculcated in me in Ngee Ann, others before self. Don't worry, I'll take care of myself for you haha. (See what I did there? I twisted it so its doing something for others lol)

@Jia Lok: Haha I'm so guilty you always have to come 'rescue' me +_+ You're right, nobody told me I need to befriend everyone... actually it was more of a personal value and goal of mine. But I was probably being naive when I set that value early in Primary School... About my fitness, I'm often ashamed of myself. Every time I hear other people running everyday I tell myself I'll do that and then end up not doing it. The most I can make nowadays is to do it every week.

You could say I'm walking in your shadow, but being a shadow is being the lesser exact copy of you, and I guess I'm not. And even if I were, I'd be your shadow over anyone else. Being unknown is not that  bad, I don't think I feel the kind of pressure you get from teachers as much. I don't know why but this reminds me of the little 'chao da bao' you gave me from Taiwan. There is nothing extravagant about it, but it is whole and genuine. It doesn't have a mouth or anything but eyes, just watching the world in a little corner and still being cute. It doesn't need to say a thing to cheer me up, I just look into its empathetic eyes.


What good game OSTs might have:
1. An original, recurring but varied tune/atmosphere, or a familiar main theme
Example: The Halo Sountrack (main theme), The Witcher Soundtrack (Atmosphere and tune), Harmony- Runescape, A cat named Mittens - Age of Mythology

2. A Choir part! (Come on seriously, no game OST is complete without the harmony of voices and instruments)
Example: Muptop - Age of Empires 3 OST, Heretic Hero - Halo 2, A lament to Solon - Kameo OST

3. Interesting instruments! (or an interesting mix, e.g. Er Hu and Violin) (To Augment originality!)
Example: Peril (Pizzicato String) - Halo 2 OST, Age of Mythology soundtrack

4. An emo/relaxing song (using the violin or flute for example!)
Example: River of Life - the Witcher OST, Autumn Voyage - Runescape, To Zanarkand - Final Fantasy X

5. A String-Percussion hybrid instrument heavy song! (like the Piano, Synthesizer or Gu Zheng)
Example: Minigame theme - Plants VS Zombies, One Final Effort - Halo 3 OST

6. A beat heavy song! (For battles or intense game play moments)
Example: ElectiCity - Sim City 4, Act on Instinct - Command and Conquer, Ruinion - Age of Empires 3

7. A expansive/epic piece!
Example: Born to do this - Runescape, Human theme - Warcraft III OST, Behold the Great Sci Fi - Age of Mythology, Menu Theme - Grand Ages Rome

8. A very catchy or overall good song!
Example: Lith Harbor - Maple Story, Ultimate Battle - Plants VS Zombies, Jerk it Out (By the Caesers) - Fifa 2004

I'm sure there are more, but I've no time to list them all! This is not to say any soundtrack with all these is good, not that a soundtrack without any is bad. It really depends on the game! I tried not to repeat examples but most of them can be repeated.