My second favourite author recently faced a colossal copyright problem: her partial draft of an unpublished book has been illegally posted on the World Wide Web. After expressing her bitter chagrin about the completely loathsome situation in the most optimistic way anyone can possibly go about it, she decided to legally post the partial draft that was leaked for the sake of her readers -gratis.

I was up all night reading the 264-paged draft of the sought-after book, feeling dejected the whole time. 11 chapters is pretty much half of a book. (Her books are usually 400- or 600-paged.) And she was handing it to us for free, asking for nothing more than our ability to gain insight from it.

It distresses me to comprehend how this violation has probably scarred the author. The effort she has invested now seems like a waste but I'd buy the published book in a heartbeat.

Just wanted to voice my views on this. It is a little disturbing. I am really hoping that the author continues the story and not give in to her qualms and quit. Because then I'd really be indefinitely disturbed. The thought alone is daunting enough.


Three Parts

Part One: Wise Uncle prompted me take a little look into the world of economics, finance, stock exchange, futures, etc. today at Bloomberg. He also helped me make (a diminutive amount of) sense of what I was staring at on the screen.

Part Two: Apparently, miniature toads have an outlandish attraction toward my brother. Last night was the third night in which the scream "Frog! Frog at the door! Frog!" shattered the atmosphere of the movie I was watching when he was about to leave the house. This doesn't happen to the rest of the family members. My brother is terrified of toads; maybe that is the reason behind their timely appearances.

Part Three: In conjunction with the country's Independence Day this Sunday, Fifth Form students are required to go to school this Friday in nothing but traditional costumes. Oh, man. Since I do not own any kind of costumes, I had to borrow my mother's. Double oh, man. My mother restricted me from trying certain costumes because she explained that I did not have the grace and poise to don it. True, that. I tried on the first one, and my brother's reaction was instantaneous and predictable. He choked on his water and exclaimed, "What the-" before launching into an uncontrolled bout of hysterical laughter. I tried on the second one and decided that I would rather much be in a Barney mascot. Or a Deluxe Chickie Chicken Costume. Because no one would be able to recognise me.


Living Skills I Do Not Possess

I just realised that I may never survive on my own if I don't learn how to:-
a) boil water
b) cook rice
c) use the stove
d) iron
e) use the washing machine
f) turn on the gas tank
g) sew a button, among everything else
h) fry an egg

Huh. I knew I was spoiled.

It is imperative that I master the above during the course of the next 2 years. A friend has even volunteered today, after discovering my sorry state, to teach me the complicated processes aforementioned.

And I'm thinking about fleeing the country. Pshaw.


One Time Thing

I can never decipher literature. It seems like a different language to me altogether. So what happened in school today was a little bit mind-boggling.

Whenever my English teacher discussed literature, she would always make us read between the lines and get us to reply her impossibly deep and thought-provoking questions that were always beyond my comprehension. While we were doing literature for English in school today, she asked, well, an impossibly deep and thought-provoking question. Never have I gotten the right answer to any of her literature questions so I didn't attempt answering it -out loud. I did, however, purposefully mutter to the friend beside me something highly unlikely and incredulous, but not impossible. It was meant to be sarcastic and funny. And we both guffawed because it was. Well, I had tried (in vain) to keep a straight face while the friend doubled over in laughter. That was how ridiculous my remark was.

We couldn't believe our ears when the teacher revealed the answer. It was exactly what I had said. I was right on the money. And it had to do with literature. We had to pause our guffawing for a while to make sure what we had heard was right and after we were positive that I was correct for the first and probably last time in literature, we launched into another fit of laughter. Amidst the chortling and convulsion, the friend declared, "I will never laugh at your answers again." Like I said, mind-boggling. And as an afterthought, literature is also mind-boggling -to me.


A Day of Respite

I spent all day today at the mall with my parents and aunt and uncle visiting from down under. Despite the circumstances -4 adults and me, 1 kid- I actually had a great time. I spoke with my wise uncle regarding my uncertain future plans and he provided, as always, very keen insight. I may have to rethink my decision because my plans seem utterly foolish now since I hadn't considered a substantial amount of vital things in the long run. I'd probably change my mind two hundred more times before the time comes for me to make the final decision. There is also the possibility that my no-turning-back decision would be solely based on the opinions of the person I last speak to. Fickle-minded? I'd say so. I am going to need a whole lot more of counseling. I'm too daft to make the right and/or smart move.

It is very unlike me to say this, but, I finally got the Superman T-shirt I had longed for. I met up with my cousin sister later in the day and she revealed to me that she had actually planned to get the shirt for my birthday this year. It's the thought that counts, so thank you. Appreciate it.

(You can get me Batman or Spiderman shoes instead. Just kidding.)

The one week of holiday flew by in a rapid pace. School commences tomorrow and I never think it possible of me, but honestly, I am not looking forward to it.


Lucky Number Seven

Part One: I went to my brother's college yesterday to, once again, inquire about the courses I intend to pursue there. It was quite a dismay as the counselor wasn't very informative. I'm sure it's understood that "petroleum engineering has to do with petroleum".

Part Two: I went for a family dinner last night since my aunt and uncle from down under are visiting the country. It is a delight to have them over since they are always the life of the party, or in this case, the life of family gatherings.

Part Three: Today, I went for the class party of 2008. We ate, joked, watched a remarkable movie, took pictures -the whole shebang.

Part Four: I must have looked really devastated when I discovered that I was selected for the National Service programme because my mother ordered an exorbitant and extraordinarily unique cake for me which arrived yesterday. That's my mother. And I say that with affection.

Part Five: My cousin sister made my mother get me a dress a few days ago. What have I become. (It is not a question.)

Part Six: I am going to have to enroll in college in less than two months' time -even before the major examination, even before high school is over, even before I get a break, even before the school holidays- because of something pesky that needs to be sorted out as soon as possible.

Part Seven: I'd be lying if I said that everything in my life is going great. My mind is constantly telling me that I am going to crack soon. I can almost feel it. Almost. But my strength comes from God. And what I only need to do, is have faith.

(Part Eight: I don't believe in luck.)


Weekly Update

My father let me off the hook tonight.

The week has been harrowing. That is mainly due to a completely unprecedented, unwanted and undesirable circumstance that has stuck me in a huge rut.

I discovered on Monday, to my utter chagrin and horror, that I was chosen for the country's National Service programme. I didn't want to be selected so unbearably much that I was selected. Of course that had to happen. It is not my desire to contract lethal illnesses, clean lavatories, march endlessly, strain my muscles beyond ability as well as come close to death. And relinquish all my college plans after high school. Even what my brother conveyed here cannot express the ordeal I am in. It almost seemed like life or death when I received the ominous phone call from my cousin to confirm that, yes, I was to serve the country. I know we get to learn how to use guns as a self-defense technique because it is common for us to have a gun in our pockets to shoot any suspecting perpetrator. But even if I get to launch a bomb or throw a grenade, I will not submit to this.

I had been in a perpetual state of gloom for about one and a half days before I snapped out of it and asked for as much help and/or advice as I can get. I owe my gratitude to the ones who have provided the help and counsel I direly needed. I have even printed the necessary deferment documents today.

Yes, I am really this extreme, not to mention fanatic about it. Sorry for ranting, I'm just a little worn out.

In other news, I have officially resigned from my post as Prayer Coordinator in the school's Christian Union Club today. It has been a journey of many discoveries. I am blessed to have the opportunity to lead the gatherings for God.

The class party of 2008 is next Tuesday. I'm glad I have something to look forward to in the week besides eating, living and sleeping revision books.


ME, THE HUMANS AND PLASTIC -guest starring Lydia Zehr (a very important person in Justine's life)

MTV Asia Awards was a blast! I had tonnes of fun and Justine has asked me to share the experience with all of you. So here I am...

Among the highlights of my experience were:

I WAS ON THE RED CARPET ALONGSIDE ALL THE STARS! (I managed to get all their autographs) *grins widely*
2) I AM ON INTERNATIONAL TV! (MTV to be exact) - I'm proud of it!
I GOT TO PARTY AT THE POST-PARTY WITH THE CELEBS! (I had the time of my life ~ literally) *feeling boastful*


5) I SENT 2 GIRLS UP TO JARED LETO'S HOTEL ROOM! (I can't explain ~ all I can say is the guy deserves his fair share of entertainment)
6) I SHARED A BURGER WITH DANNY FROM THE SCRIPT! (He kissed me twice and fed me burger for breakfast) - how sweet ~ he's such a dear.

I BADE GOODBYE HUGS AND KISSES TO MY NEW FOUND CELEB FRIENDS I NEVER THOUGHT I COULD HAVE. (Bye ~ Danny, Glen [The Script], Ryan, Spencer, Jon, Brandon [Panic At The Disco], Leona Lewis, Jared Leto, and Joey, Kyle, Ethan, Ben, Joe [The Click Five]).

(signing off):
Lydia Zehr
a.k.a. an official the click five groupie!

'woot! woot!'


Best Blackout

Today was fantastic.

For starters, there was a power outage in school even before I arrived at school in the morning. Due to the complete absence of light and breeze, the teachers allowed us to get out of the class and fill our time with anything we wanted. In fact, the English teacher ordered for us to leave the class since we were reading in the dark. We gladly obliged. She even granted us the permission to hang out at the forbidden area. Sweet. Today didn't count as a school day. I read my storybook for about five-seventh of the school day without (much) interruption.

To top that off, it rained immediately when school ended. I enjoy the rain as much as I enjoy Math. I wouldn't mind if it rained everyday or if I had to do equations everyday; unless, of course, if there was a flood or if my brain froze.

And to top that off, lunch today was a huge delight.

And then to top that off -it ends here, I promise- I finally and truly understood why I love reading as much as I do because the 750-paged book I have just set down is probably one of the most ingenious and compelling books my mind has ever had the privilege to dwell in.

Yes, it was a good day. Not even the freak accident which happened to me - really, why?- in the midst of my euphoria could dampen my high spirits.


I've Got Mail

Two awesome stuff arrived in the mail today. The first was my membership card from a bookstore I had been waiting for for a few weeks now after stupidly losing my temporary one a few weeks ago. Unexpectedly and coincidentally, the second was a book rebate voucher from yet another bookstore. This clearly explains that the only time I ever get mail is from a bookstore -or two. Sweet joy.



A lawyer came over to school today to give a talk on juvenile delinquency. He was a funny man; for the ten minutes I was there. I had to leave to sit for the Australian English Assessment. It was, in one word, t-u-p-h, tough. In more than one word, it was tough to the power of two.


Brought to You by An MTV Asia Awards 2008 Attendee

The Script

Leona Lewis

Panic! At The Disco

The Pussycat Dolls

One Republic

Jared Leto

P/S: Nope, I wasn't the brave soul who approached the stars on the red carpet.


Option C

I'm torn apart between living each day like it's my last and planning for my future ten years down the road. But there is always option C. Which I will figure out soon.


Understand, I Do

Today was a day of profound understanding. I woke up in the wee hours of the morning today despite it being a Saturday. My mother and I went to pick up two awesome people -a great friend of mine and my cousin sister, who is also great.

My cousin sister led my mother to the college holding the University Day today and we spent about 2 hours there inquiring the very decent counselor about the whole concept of college/university after high school, to cut the long story short. Before today, I was extremely confounded because I had multiple options, was on multiple crossroads and couldn't decide. Now, I am merely on multiple crossroads. And have multiple options. The confusion, thankfully, has gone. We really owe our thanks to the lady because now we have a much clearer understanding of pre-university programmes, housemanship, America, etc.

It was only noon when we finished the whole college discussion so we went to the mall as planned. There was a book sale. And I am going to need a whole lot of self-control. That is all I am saying about it.

My mother was truly gracious for willingly chauffeuring us around today. Thank you, mother.


Back on Track

The computer was supposed to go. But it can't; not with type-written assignments, group presentations and college applications in the offing.

Looks like I'll be posting here regularly, though not quite as often, again.

Anyway, I'm sorry.

On a side note, the pub located a short distance from the house exploded into flames last night because someone planted a bomb there. It would be funny, if it was a joke.