Sunday, September 22, 2013

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal: teaching

We are responsible for our life

It is tempting - and it does have a certain truth to it - how our environments play a big part in shaping who we are today.

Parents, family, upbringing... home and childhood. The education system: teachers and lecturers and peers. The working environment. Our government. Belief and philosophy. The masses. All certainly contribute in shaping the way we are today.

But does that make it a valid reason to blame them for who we are today? Because when you realize that you want to change - the moment you realize you should take control of your life: are you going to keep on holding on to these factors, these people and environment; or are you going to blame them for shaping the way you are today?

If people would laugh when you say 'you know, my mum taught me not to...', then why do I see people still putting the blame on, say, the parents for letting them become who they are today?

Too many people are too sentimental, emotional, and just lazy to accept the fact that they can change the way they are TODAY. What was done, was done - you certainly can't change that, so it's time to accept the things that happened and actually start doing something with your life.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Random rambling in a series of tweet: on depression, crossplaying, Facebook, life

A series of tweets that has evolved from one thing to another. I figured it was slightly interesting to warrant a post for it.

Life is neither beautiful nor ugly. But if you decided to take away your life, then that's the end of it.  I know you can't beat the sense into depressed people just like that. At the very least though, you could get them to talk to you.

Too many people venting out their depression online that they forget to actually talk to someone about it.

Actually I think a lot of people didn't really know of the hardship nonomy had to go through to reach where he is now. I mean when I was ignorant I thought that he had it easy having been born with the right stuff for crossplaying and everything.  But apparently he had thought of giving up a few times, and even on his level he still get discriminated by others.

It was after that that I thought, those who wanted to venture into crossplaying CAN actually work on their part to improve. Sure the early works might look terrible, sure you're gonna hear some not so nice words from others.  But if you're serious on improving (and not in because of anything other than a hobby) then you'll pull through.

I've seen some who have stuck through and improved over time. I'm certainly impressed with their dedication and the will to learn.  It'd be nice if the so-so ones would stick around to improve rather than doing a half hearted work (and then putting themselves down)

But hey, what I was rambling just now could easily be applied to any other hobby or work you could care to name.  Too many people not passionate enough in what they do, thinking they would make it big on their first go.

Instead of feeling like shit over your life, maybe it's time for you to stop and ask yourself, 'what do I really want to do with my life?'  No guarantee that you'll be extremely successful at that, but at least you know that it's what you really want to do.

I would thus like to encourage more people to plug off for a while off the 'net and travel more - get to know ourselves better.  Travelling - especially alone - is good in pushing you off your comfort zone, makes you see the world more, learn more about yourself.  Sitting there in front of Facebook and complaining about your life and hanging about people who aren't inspired won't do you much good.

So really, just try to stop complaining so much and start asking questions and thinking. Get yourself out of that comfort zone!  It's your life, man, and you have a choice on what you make it to be.

So why should you resolve it around Facebook?

Monday, September 16, 2013

Kuala Lumpur International Jazz Festival 2013

And now something much closer to home: last weekend saw the second installation of Kuala Lumpur International Jazz Festival, and this time they've managed to secure the venue right here at Universiti Malaya.

I always felt that jazz is something that is quite hard to be appreciated by the masses, so mad props to the organizer for managing to gather all the jazz fans and performers under one roof - it definitely shows that there's an eager crowd for the music. Special thanks to one of my friend who had invited me along to the festival: it was a great exposure to all those jazz acts - hopefully I'll be able to join any future events from these guys!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Jrock no Tamashii 4

Slightly late post-gig review.

I honestly did not really planned on coming for the fourth installment of the annual gathering of jrock fans and performers, but a brief trip down the memory lane had me thinking, 'man, I'd really like to experience the excitement again!'

So this marked my third time to the gig, after the one last year and the year before that. And as before, I was certainly not disappointed with the performance.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Loving someone

There is apparently a strong notion that it's only when you love someone that you are 'complete'.

This is certainly disturbing, as I see how some people let themselves become emotional hostages due to the notion on what love should be.

Is it any wonder why some people lamented how their have a lot of lovers, where they were either abused or they let themselves being walked over by the other side? I keep wondering if they really felt that they deserved to be treated like that whenever they are subjected to such treatments.

'I'm a worthless piece of trash that is not worth loving'

See, THAT'S your problem. The more you bring up the message that you don't deserve loving, then I'm certainly not surprised when other walk all over you. How can others love you if you don't love yourself?

Perhaps some people felt that the presence of other's company will make them better. That when others love them, then only then will they start loving themselves. That is a big misconception, and it seems that a lot are getting the concept of love backward.

And perhaps things are made worse when the subject of possession seems to be what people would associate with love. That truly everything is measured in material terms - even love - where you must stake your claim, be obsessed, and have to make a point to the rest of the world of your 'possession'.

It's natural to fall in love, yes. But I really have a big issue with just how some of us put ourselves being unhappy for falling in love under these ridiculous concept.

We always have a choice in our life, and that includes your love life. And as long as you don't love yourself, then I don't think it's reasonable to expect others to do that for you.

Mokou, Patchouli, Yuuka: a narration

Once, I was very much into Fujiwara no Mokou, and that was because of how I viewed myself back then.

Monday, September 9, 2013

My resolution

Every day should be another day where you learn something.

Each passing day are experiences to your life's story. Each moment is precious.

Let me thus make a resolution: to learn something every day, 'til the day I die

Ahmad Faiz

An overview on Singaporean Touhou fans from a Malaysian perspective

This was not the first time Malaysia and Singapore have events so close together, with C2AGE and Cosfest occuring in such close proximity between each other a few months ago (which I've opted for the latter, seeing as I couldn't make it for the first one).

With Animangaki taking place just the week before Singapore's STGCC, it might be crazy to think of even going to another event, much less one a few hundred kilometres down south. But that's what a few of us did, and it's mainly for one reason:

TAM is a pretty humble person, I like him. And his playing is of course great. Nothing beat seeing the real thing in the flesh, hey!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The ol' Malay mentality

Hasan memberi contoh semasa negara suatu masa dahulu mahu melaksanakan Pengajaran dan Pembelajaran Sains dan Matematik dalam Bahasa Inggeris (PPSMI), pelajar Melayulah yang ketinggalan dalam keputusan peperiksaaan terutamanya mereka yang tinggal di kawasan pedalaman.

Beliau menggesa kerajaan mengkaji semula dasar tersebut kerana Bahasa Inggeris bukanlah bahasa pertuturan majoriti kaum Melayu serta dasar tersebut, katanya, akan menghancurkan anak Melayu.

You know, there's this one old mentality among the Malays that I'm ashamed of: that of being in a comfort level. I suspect this stems back from post-Independence, when the government were giving out all those incentive in developing the less fortunate and the ones in the rural areas. But fast forward 50 years later, and we still seem to be in that comfort zone: that we will be left behind other races, that we should continue to be where we are, that we needed help from the government. That if we we to face challenge of the ever-changing world, we will lose out.

They say the Malay will lose out if the requirement to pass English in SPM were to be implemented. And you know why they have this kind of thinking? It's because of two things:

1) The education system quality in teaching the language is terrible

2) The mentality among some Malays that English is difficult, and how they're better off sticking with Bahasa Melayu

There's something terribly wrong here if we still have this kind of mentality. And it's worse when you get people like him who continue to perpetuate this mindset. It's been 50 plus years man; how long do you all plan to stay in your comfort zone?

Friday, September 6, 2013

Product placement - what we need, what we want

I have a moment of epiphany as I'm eating one nutella brand knockoff: that for a much cheaper price I could get something good to put on my bread...

And then I've stumbled upon a relatively unknown guitar brand which had me thinking, 'hey, this is as good as the 'real' thing...'

But then I thought further into it: are branding really all it ought to be?

Is it a matter of want vs need? Do we really want it? Do we really need it? Why do these different brand offer the same deal at different pricing?

On one case it's food, on another one it's on entertainment/art. But the same question arise: is the 'imitation' no better than the 'real' deal?

Does it matter if our wants are ever fleeting?

Are we buying certain brands because they are what we WANT, or is it entirely out of NEED? For some, they might have no choice for either.

So all this complain about branding is just ridiculous for me, especially when it comes to things we can live without.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Tanda Putera

I rarely watched movies in cinemas, and the times that I do I rarely include Malay movies in my to-watch list (the last one that I did was KIL, which I thought was great).

But the recently controversional Tanda Putera had really piqued up my interest. Judging from the review (or rather lack of it) I was curious to see just how bad the movie is, and if I could find any merit out of the whole thing. After all, don't judge something until you see every side of the story is one of my philosophy in judging (the second one is simply: do not judge at all).

And I'm feeling a need to be judgmental with the movie, so I gave it a watching anyway.

To sum up in simple words: the movie was boring.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Managing your Facebook 'friends': JUST SAY NO

I've recently met someone who took a rather radical step: he removed a huge chunk of people from his Facebook's friends list, as well as removing himself from a few groups.

The action have gotten some pretty angry reaction from the removee ('why does this guy remove me for no reason?' 'I've never liken that guy anyway!' 'what an asshole!'), but that've gotten me thinking: are we putting too much value in Facebook 'friends' that it's easy to fall into the trap of being in an imaginary abusive 'friendship?'.


I think it's highly deceiving to list your contacts as 'friends': maybe words like 'contacts' or 'acquaintance' are more accurate in designating some of those people. But does that necessarily mean 'friendship' on Facebook is much shallower than, say, a 'real' friendship?

I don't think we have to really be cold turkey and dismiss most of the people in our list as being 'not real' friends. For me essentially the core of Facebook is for you to connect with people - so for some that might include adding a bunch of people in the hope of trying to get to know them better...

But that does seem like a misguided effort. After all, there's only so much people you can truly give away your time to know what they've been up doing with their everyday life (aka people you truly give a shit about) isn't it? Now try and extrapolate that by imagining how much you might mean to the other guy (aka people that give a shit about you).

And that I believe is a good start in managing a seemingly large number of people in your list.

Do I truly want to spend my time listening to what this other person is doing in his/her life?

Do I really want to share what I feel with this other person?

Are they going to notice if I removed them off the list?

And the biggest reason for you to really consider removing them: is this person's online presence really bothers me?

If so, know that you always have a choice:


Interestingly the person I mentioned earlier have said that the action helped him to stick with the people he truly give a shit about, and vice versa - his reasoning was that if they truly wanted to connect with him and all that, then they'd have no problem in asking again to connect. Those that were angry and harbour a sort of grudge would be the one at loss, rather than him - and that is something I would agree.

So at the end of the day, take your Facebook 'friends' with a large pinches of salts. And remember, you always have choice to pick who are the ones in your list - or having fail that, there's always the option of managing what you see from them. We always have a choice in having less drama and horseshit.