Tuesday, March 27

The End Is Nigh

Just finished marketing (with Ian, Serene, Eric and Lloyd) and corporate reporting (with Bene, Dan Chi, Sharon and Fiona) presentations today. Left with tax essay (yes, you can write essays for ANY subject) by Friday (with Timbo, Chris, Qihan and Ying Tee). Thank God for fantastic group mates to work with. I've definitely learnt from everyone, and gotten to get to know everybody a bit better, although some better than others.

Really bogged down of late, as my grades for the accounting modules have been dismal. Yet I'm glad I have people to remind me of the big picture. Well, there's still the final exam (Not sure if that's comforting actually!) Thank God for such friends.

April's coming back tomorrow afternoon! Really the highlight of my week. It's been three months since she's left, but it feels like an eternity. Thank God for Skype.

Exams in two weeks. Revision not started. It's crunch time.

Thursday, March 22

Windy City

I miss Chicago. Came across this pic while reading Carol's blog. She's taking the pic while Ambrose, Yong Chang, me and Debs defy gravity (Ok maybe not Debs) at Millennium Park.

Really looking forward to going up to York with April after the exams and the April Bible Retreat. I need to get away from Singapore for a while. Happy times are coming! =)

Tuesday, March 20

Putting Things Into Perspective

My dad just told me that my second uncle was just diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas yesterday.

It's in its final stages and the cancer has spread to his liver. The doctor says on average, people with this stage of cancer live for about 3 to 9 months. With treatment, 2 years.

This really puts things into perspective. Just a few hours ago, I was blogging about the 'plight' of us students around the end of the term. How myopic of me. I'm ashamed that I even mentioned it. Such self pity is pathetic.

Please pray for my uncle and my cousins. For strength, and an open heart and mind to listen to the gospel. He's not a believer, and my aunties and grandma have tried to share the good news of Jesus with him before. I wish we didn't have to wait for something drastic to happen before the urgency of sharing the gospel kicks in.

Monday, March 19

The Quintessential SMU Experience

It's 11pm on a Monday night, and I'm blogging in the school library to let off some steam.

It has been a mad weekend trying to finish up our Corporate Reporting project. Never have I seen so many people online on my MSN list at 3am on a Monday morning. Everybody (well, those taking Corp Reporting at least) was up trying to put on the finishing touches to the report and Excel spreadsheets that were due this morning at 10am.

I really have to hand it to my Corp Reporting group, especially Bene. He was phenomenal and a real work machine. Bene stayed over every night in school since Thursday to build on the Excel spreadsheet. It's seriously the most work we've done for a 20% project.

That, Ladies and Gentlemen, is part of the SMU experience.

My friends from other universities question why we're putting in so much effort into our projects (almost every module has a group project component) and presentations. What I hear from my friends in NUS and NTU, is that the most people don't really put that much effort into their group projects and presentations, and its OK since everyone is graded on a bell curve, so it evens out when everybody puts about the same amount of effort.

Maybe it's the competitive nature of being in a business oriented school, maybe it's our way of making up for the lack of hall life. No better way to get people to bond than force them to do a project together.

Got a 18% marketing quiz on Thursday, a 10% Income Tax quiz on Friday, 35% Marketing presentation on Island Creamery next Thursday, and a Tax report due on Friday. It's Week 12 people.

All those jokes about our parents renting out our rooms because we're never home, don't seem so funny anymore. =/

Saturday, March 17

We Live In Singapura

Apes showed me this a while back. Thought I'd spread the love a bit. Hossan Leong kicks ass!

Thursday, March 15

I Was There. Kinda.

Big thanks to Tiff and Spence for the photos! SMU Open House 2007!

I think Terence does a better job. =)

The only time Spence looks smaller than Tiff.

Monday, March 12


Sometimes I really wish I could do a Dr. Manhatten and split myself up, and be at various places at the same time. There's just so much to do, and so many people to meet up with.

I've had a few conversations with friends, about how we don't see so-and-so around anymore. Sometimes, friends are forgiving, saying that we should be more understanding, that so-and-so is really busy with more important things, and therefore can't meet up with us anymore. Sometimes, friends are not so forgiving, saying that so-and-so is not a sincere friend, since he/she doesn't make the effort to meet up anymore.

And then the thought hits me- Do people talk about me like that when I'm not around? I wouldn't dare presume that I would be the topic of any conversation. That's not the point. The reason why I think about this is because over the past few years (or months even), I've hung out with different group of friends, due to different circumstances. As a result, good friends I used to hang out with a lot, have become marginalized in my schedule.

I've realized that certain friends that used to ask me out for their events or activities have stopped asking me altogether. Quite sure it's because I have given them one to many 'No-I-cannot-make-it's. I don't blame them. In fact, I'd probably do the same if I were them. What I really hope they don't do, is doubt my sincerity in wanting to know them as real people.

I guess, as we grow older, it becomes inevitable that we have to become more selective in the friends we hang out and keep in touch with. Everybody has their own path in life, and I say it's impossible to keep in touch with everybody eventually. Some friends you can not meet for years on end, and still pick up where you left off as if you were never apart. Some friends require you to spend more time with them to continue the friendship, a rule that is usually left unsaid, but is understood mutually by both parties. Our creative God has created us so differently, with different emotional and physical needs.

So dear friend, if I haven't met up with you in ages, and have turned you down many times to meet up, forgive me. It doesn't mean that I don't treasure you as a friend anymore. Since you're here at my blog, you know how to contact me. =)

Thursday, March 8

I'm Singaporean, but it's OK.

I enjoy the daily car rides to school with my dad. We talk about random things, about his business, about my university life, about society in general. Today we talked about Singaporeans and national pride (or lack thereof).

My dad was relating to me how he went for a business lunch with a acquaintance, and for most of the two hours, this business partner was very critical of Singapore, the government, the PAP (ok the government IS the PAP), and its people. He went on for 2 hours about how bad this and this is, or how other countries were better in such and such. I don't know what exactly he said, but my dad said it was just really negative on the whole.

My dad is quite for the Singapore government, but it's not without reason. It's mainly because he's seen the rapid changes and improvements since we gained independence in 1965. That's not to say he follows the government blindly. He thinks there's room for improvement in terms of dealing with social issues (there always is), but you can't deny that the government has done a good job since gaining independence. I think it's something that we really take for granted. Which other country in the world can claim the rise from third world to first in a span of 30-40 years?

In the 1970s, there were complaints that Singaporeans had no manners and never queued for anything. National campaigns to get people to queue up resulted. Recently in parliament, a MP commented that we are 'a nation of queues', as if it was a bad thing. While the issue he was addressing was that queues in Singapore are too long, it would not have hurt if he recognized that its an improvement from the unruly days where order was non-existent. While it's good to be critical of our country, I think there also should be more acknowledgment of how far we've come. Our security, cleanliness, sound government, low corruption, and religious freedom- all these we take for granted.

I see more Singapore bashers than people who are genuinely proud to be Singaporean. I get very uncomfortable when my fellow Singaporean students talk Singapore down to exchange students, labelling it as boring, being just a 'little red dot'. What do they get out of it?

Just a side point, on the 'little red dot' issue, I don't understand how we just lap up that label. It was ex-Indonesian president Habibie who labeled us as that, trying to drive home the point that our size is insignificant. I keep hearing it in conversations with friends and even the media keeps using it in their columns. Why do we use a term that doesn't do us justice? We're small, but we make up for it in quality human capital.

Anyways, the point I'm trying to get at is, we're really doing ourselves a real disfavour if we keep talking our country down. We're all Singaporean citizens whether we like it or not, and complaining about our country to foreigners doesn't just make our country look bad, it makes us as citizens look worse. What good does complaining to non-Singaporeans do? Just as people are proud to say "I'm American", or "I'm Thai" or "I'm from England", I hope one day most people can say they're proud to be Singaporean.

I'm not saying we live in a perfect country, after all the world is imperfect. A little positivity wouldn't hurt.

Thursday, March 1

Happy Founder's Day

Ah yes. March 1st. Founder's Day.

I really have lots of fond memories of my secondary school days back in AC. Some of the most enjoyable, most carefree 4 years of my life.

Fantastic friends. Thought of the day. Debating whether Grace Kwee can see you if you stood directly in front of her. Playing football everyday after school. Everyday wear tie. Playing football during recess wearing tie. Art classes with Danny Toh and Mr Tham. Ponning Chapel. Mass strippings. Declaring everyday Malcolm's birthday so we could strip him. Charno farting. Cruciball. CKS. Bird's Nest. Uncle Kenneth. Ms Fiona Ho. Talking about FF7 with Shaun (Tan). Going maths tuition with Lloyd, Rudy Yogiaman, Ng Weihong. Eating Xiao Ji. Xiao Ji Aunties. Xiao Ji set meal (can skip queue one). Slimy Bak Kut Teh. Squeezing 5 meatballs together so the yong tau foo auntie counted it as one meatball. Rugby matches. Holiday. Drong. F*nny T*n always ask for money. Football at Parade Square. It's not a canteen it's a refectory. Poolside Cafe. Boarding School. Mr 'Ni-Mei-You-Jia-Jiao' Ying.

I could go on forever.

The Best Is Yet To Be.

4.9 Elijah. Class of 2000.