The Wave


It’s “only” in IB class where you watch a German film the Wave to learn about anarchy autocracy.

This is where substitles are the only means to understand….

IB* =International Business

The Pen that Drives

A couple of weeks ago, I had an assignment – present the 3rd Chapter of The Great Gatsby with two other team members. I divided that chapter into 3 parts and I landed myself with the first part.

On Monday, my presentation went well, my classmates liked it a lot.

On Tuesday, when I was in the college’s bus en route to college in the dark of the morning, I realized that I had forgotten my pendrive –  I was printing out the chapter’s glossary I was supposed to distribute to my classmates before I left my house.

If only I had a wireless printer, if only that one teammate of mine had given me his vocabulary list earlier – and his vocabulary list consists of only three words! THREE! (note: I am not that bothered by it now, the exclamation mark is deliberately added for effect) I will find out later that he didn’t read through his slides or let alone the book. He had trouble pronouncing them and it was obvious that he didn’t know the meaning of a whole lot of other words. I was very annoyed I had to make that discovery only when he was presenting his part. It’s okay, since the lecturer assessed us individually. He got 7 marks less than me. My other teammate, whom I am very impressed with, got only ONE mark higher than him. I think he deserved more than that, he was so much more prepared! And we actually went through the slides together. =(

So I called my mom and asked her whether does she have any appointment near my college. No. She doesn’t. Then I told her that most probably I will tell my lecturers that I left my pendrive at home. I had another assignment dued – Adobe Illustrator thingy. Little did I know that it was okay not to pass up that day because it was officially dued much later. I thought I need to hand it in because the previous class handed it in to their lecturer the day before that. Now I know better – that my lecturer is more flexible.

Then it occurred to me that my parents can actually email it to me. So, during the period of time when I usually sleep, I directed my parents how to email the files to me as attachments, It took quite a while because there was some problems logging in to the email. Despite telling my father to use other email addresses that my mother and I had, he had insisted on finding his, then he tried using one of mine but it didn’t work. So finally, he finally resorted to my mother’s email address. I had to give the password and it failed many times.

If only I had a sibling.

It was also during then that I realize that I actually have a copy of that Gatsby presentation on my computer. On the night before, I actually put two pendrives into my bag, and I actually hesitated whether I should bring the second pendrive because there’s nothing inside that I need.

And the thing is, I told my teammates to upload their PowerPoint to Google Drive, but I did not do it for mine because I was still editing it and it was really late already. EXCUSES.

So then, I actually didn’t need my parents to email me those files at all.I could have used those time to ZzzZZZ because after lunch, when I went to the library “to check my slides” I realized that my other pendrive is MISSING, AGAIN.

So then, I thought and thought and thought and reasoned that I must have left it in Comm Tech class. So I traveled there via the library back door to the North building and intruded on the ongoing class. Thank God I didn’t need to ask the lecturer the whereabouts of my pendrive because the seat that I had occupied a class before is vacant. There was once not long ago, I enquired the whereabouts of my purple Tupperware water bottle.

So by the time I retrieved my pendrive, it was nearly time for the next class. I was quite out of breath, and sleepy.

When I presented, I had a lot of erms and ahhs, pauses and awkward moments, and it wasn’t as great as the day before. My lecturer noticed that and he commented that my pace was faster the day before. He noted that down on paper as well.

I got my score last Wednesday…I think. And I am quite content with it since I did not comment on the Style, or had a section on Character Analysis, and that sorts. I am two marks away from a perfect score. Someone got that.

So yeah, I had been meaning to write about it but I didn’t feel like it though I actually sorta drafted the title some time ago.

I am writing this now because I was suddenly inspired to write about how I can relate with Gatsby or how am I like Gatsby. But I think I’ll be write that later.

12 Years A Slave is waiting for me.

The Year 5774: Ayin Dalet

Defining Words

Sundown on Wednesday, September 4 marks the beginning of Rosh Hashanah or Jewish New Year. For the Jewish community, this is a time of reflection, purification and hopeful contemplation of the future. Not unlike our Western New Year’s celebrations, Rosh Hashanah is a time of recapping or regrouping in order to advance. The word I shared on Ayin Gimel is still being fulfilled in the lives of God’s people, both now and in the days ahead. What Father releases in any year does not expire at the close of the calendar year. Think of these timely revelations as layers of flavors added to the dispensational brew that Heaven is distilling in the earth. Each ingredient flavors the whole and affects the end-result. I encourage you to read what God has been doing thus far in the decade, here, here, and here. It’s quite impossible for a desiring…

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Oh God, I am not worthy for this.

Yeah, “You will have many opportunities. You will stand back, look and say, knowing that, “it must be God.”

 Alright, so the thing here is God is just wanting to prove His faithfulness. That many times you’ve asked God to show His faithfulness. Alright, to show and to prove it to you. And in this season God will prove it to you. Alright, and God will prove it beyond your imagination. You’ll see how things will come and fall into place beyond your imagination. And you’ll see that it is of God and not of men. God is always wanting you to keep your eyes on Him and you’ll see that there’s supernatural things that you’ll do in your life; that it’ll be beyond, beyond explanation.

You have always wanted to learn the violin, then resolve that you would prefer the viola because the violin is too mainstream. You name the violin Raphael, the viola Seth, the cello Ephram. You used to air piano when your small world have not collided with the YouTube world of music. You used to dance to Strauss and other classical music in your ballet suit in the dim light in your room. You conducted the music that was played before National Service classes (you should have recorded it, you brought your recorder, you should check whether you have it), you play the conductor whenever you feel like it, you tried to forget this world because it’s quite a pain to think about it because your reality is a far cry from your ideal world of music. You tell yourself, “in eternity, so it shall be.” Your friend once commented that you may conduct an orchestra when kingdom comes. You thought about which composer might make the best piano teacher in heaven, and you sorta chose Haydn because he’s happier but in heaven everybody is perfect and a novice might do a better job in teaching. So then you sorta resolved to someone from the 18th century, since it’s timeless up there. You stopped loving music that much because of reality, because you thought He’s goanna come real soon and you wanted to concentrate on things that matter more, You stopped loving music that much because you know you are incompetent and it’s painful to acknowledge that, you stopped loving music that much because you are not in the ideal environment you think music lovers thrive in, you lack encouragement, and you are not even the last resort when the A-team in church needs a pianist or a keyboardist for their mega event.

You’re in a mess, that’s why you can be a message.

You’re at the lowest, and He chose to exalt you.

You’re such an outcast in the music world, and He chose you.

He qualifies the called.

By right, you shouldn’t even be in there. You are not qualified. At least you have a Grade 8 Theory and can read orchestral score. You lamented a couple of times on Twitter that why can’t worship songs be written in orchestral scores and now you are faced with it. You have not seen a Timpani first hand and now you’re playing it on the keyboard, and the Gong which you have yet to meet as well.

You are not as young and qualified as they are. The only experiences you have are by watching Nodame Cantabile and the Berlin Philharmonic (sometimes) and etc. You only know Sir Simon Rattle, the one with the white fuzzy hair, because of it. You have no degree in music. You passed your grade 6. Grade 7 was too easy for you but Grade 8 was just too much. You were lazy to practice the scales. You had no motivation back then. So many things were going on in your life at that time. So many bad choices were made prior to that. You now know better and you would definitely choose more wisely if you ever have children in the future if the Lord have not come yet.

You have problems playing a long piece perfectly, you have not entered any real music competition. That day of excellence piano event was crap, I don’t know how you even got a second place when you forgot the rest of the piece, urgh such discordant din. Maybe you gained the upperhand 10 points for not referring to the score. You don’t even play the guitar like the some other keyboardist your age does. You are a lowly one.

But you stood at the back that Sunday evening with your music file, highlighted parts on the orchestral score, and the sounds of the timpani that the keyboard makes was loud to you but soft to the conductor standing at the forefront. He told you to up the volume, you did while muttering “O My God.” The brass players in front of you must have heard you. The drummer looked like someone (most prob. from NS). The conductor remembers your name. The conductor is the principal of the prestigious music academy in Malaysia. You attempted to go there two Christmas before to check out the “talk of the town” but you couldn’t find the place and your mother was tired. You wanted to get your hands on a Steinway because you want to hear how does Arabesque I and II sound like on a Steinway. Would be sound like the ones on the CD, the surreal flow of notes which you can’t produce. You asked your senior who is excellent in music to play it and it sounded unlike the ones in the CD and you enquired of him and he told you that in order to do that you would have to live where they live, eat the food they eat, and experience what they experience. Arabesque II, how to produce sounds like the birds are chirping ? Serenade of the Doll! So during a warm-up/introduction meeting two weeks ago, the conductor played the introductory section of Arabesque and it sounded like notes. So, you tell yourself that you are not abnormal.

So you stood at the back, if you interpret it literally, you really did stand back, look and say, knowing that, “it must be God”.

You are okay with just the idea of it, you are okay with just being offered a role but denying it. It’s just the thought of it. Perhaps because you have not been offered things like that and think that it’s too good to be true or because you fear failure, you fear stepping forward. But this season (the significant year in the Hebrew calendar) you can’t because you read an article that told you that if you don’t step up and recognize what He has given you, you are disqualifying yourself from your destiny and things after that go downward.

So now you tell yourself that if He can bring it to you He will bring you through it. You told yourself not to write about this until it’s over because you have thoughts about calling it quits, perhaps someone more qualified can replace you, you are afraid to ask whether has the person who offered this to you asked your other more qualified friends; making you the last resort, but last resort is better than no resort at all, and you actually thought of telling her to make you the last resort but you saw this as a God given golden opportunity. At first the parts you had to play frightens you but after reviewing them you are more okay with it. You still need to up your “game” though.

But you are writing about this now because you looked them up on Facebook again after having a brief idea of whos who and you are humbled that you are actually in there. You actually met one of them on the elevator and she looked familiar. She’s such a talent. Don’t reveal about your capabilities because you have nothing to boast. Because albeit they’re playing the violin in this orchestra, their piano capabilities is most probably (99%) better than yours. That Sunday evening you told yourself once again that you can’t judge a person by his looks because you see people like them on the streets, in the mall, and in places when you chose to go out instead of spending me-time in your own place of solitude.

till then.

In addition, I just remembered that that day, an auntie (we address ppl as aunties and uncles here) came to visit my grandmother – who is staying in the same house I’m living in- and she told my grandmother that God doesn’t see how excellent (li hai) you are, He sees your availability. 

Many qualified musicians were asked, but they had prior commitments. So in a way, I’m kinda the Last Resort. 

but I’m absolutely fine with that…I feel unworthy, even.