My Next 6 Months.

28 01 2012

Dear world,

Now, I am really just slacking around wondering how I intend to spend my next 6 months of ‘freedom’. My guy friends are all heading into army (compulsory service) and me and my gal friends have several different plans.

Some are working, some are gaining experience, some are just having fun. So far, my 6 months has been focusing on getting my driving license, getting some arts scene volunteer work in, spending as much time as I can with my friends, helping my Juniors and tutoring kids ( actually, kid. So far I’ve only got one student). Seems like a lot but honestly my volunteer work is only happening in February.

Anyways, a lot of adults ( people older than me) tell me that I should chill, don’t work and just enjoy. I think it is because they see all of what I intend to do as ‘work’ or not’ having fun’. But honestly, I think there are various activities I would like to have a chance of taking part in before I enter University or the working world because I know I might not have many opportunities after that. Besides, better to do some of this while I am young and have the energy. 😛

The point is that people think that because I have time now, I can do whatever I see fit and I suppose to some extent that is true. I do have more free time than all those in school or working but I do not really want to ‘waste’ it. Typical asian/singaporean thinking but the way I see it is, I have time to do anything. I really do not intend to laze around. Sure I have a mountain  of books I want to read (literally) and friends I want to meet up with but I think I would like to spend sometime exploring my interests. May be (finally) taking up a different language.

It’s 6 months to do nothing. I really want to enjoy every moment.

 

Cheyenne





My views on SOPA

23 01 2012

Dear world,

Let’s see if I get this straight. A bill is being ‘debated’ in congress to (basically) prevent sharing of all information, videos, audio, photos and more of all sorts. That’s the basic understanding, legal or illegal, it has to stop ( so says the bill).

Or at least that’s my understanding.

So here’s my issue with this. The internet was first invented to help in the war. If I am not wrong, Russia first created it to communicate military tactics across large distances  in the shortest time possible. With its growth, the internet gets everyone involved in some way or another, through video sharing, photo sharing or blogging and etc. Now, if we remove the basic, fundamental and the very first function the internet was created for (i.e sharing), you’ve lost the internet. And this bill does not apply to American Citizens.

If you removing sharing, you’ve stopped globalization (sounds iffy but stay with me here). Globalization is the term to describe the world getting -figuratively speaking- smaller. I know what people in America are up to, I know how people in Italy are and not just in terms of news. I see how some people are doing, I follow some personal blogs. I refuse to stay in the bubble I was in before I started blogging and reading around and I am pretty sure the rest of the world refuses to take 10 steps back into the past.

This does not affect America. The internet, is universal. To quote the movie ‘the social network’, “they don’t have roads but they have Facebook” and that is how powerful the internet is. It is a global network, and if one area goes down, others will start shutting down too and there goes the most effective method we had at connecting the world.

I’m against it and since I’m not American, I hope everyone who is American is against it to.

Cheyenne

Sources: http://www.ted.com/talks/defend_our_freedom_to_share_or_why_sopa_is_a_bad_idea.html





Something sweet

21 01 2012

Something I thought everyone would like

I Like Your Flaws

DEC. 20, 2011

I like how you mispronounce words sometimes, how you fumble and stammer and stutter looking for the right ones to say and the right ways to say them. I appreciate that you find language challenging, because it is, because everything manmade is challenging. Including man, including you.

When you sleep on your side, I like to map the constellations between your beauty marks freckles pimples, the minuscule mountains that sprinkle your back. I like the tufts of hair you forgot to shave and the way you smell when you haven’t showered in a while; I like the sleep left in your eyes.

I like the way your skin dies in the middle of the night, how you die from embarrassment the next morning; how you writhe in the snake casing you’ve left behind. I like that you think pillow snowflakes carry more weight than pillow talk; that you think my opinion of you is so fickle that it could change overnight. (It’s not.)

I enjoy seeing you insecure, vulnerable. I like to watch red steam light up your cheeks, a spreading mist of shame when you think you’ve done something unacceptable like missing a step on the stairs or not having the perfect answer to something I’ve said. It’s like you honestly don’t know how wonderful you are, it’s like you have no idea.

The burns, the scars, the black and blues on your face body heart, I want to know their stories. I want to know what hurt you, who hurt you, how bad the damage is. I like your hard, ugly toenails and the layer of fat that lines your belly, the soft parts you try to hide. It’s okay to be soft, sometimes.

I appreciate your ability to get inappropriately angry as much as I appreciate your willingness to apologize afterward. I like how your passion manifests unpredictably and uncontrollably, how your feelings cannot be caged or concealed, how you’re incapable of apathy.

I like how you can’t dance, how you have pedestrian taste in music, how the worst song on every album is your favorite. I like how enthusiastic you are when you hear it, it’s like you don’t know how terrible it is, it’s like maybe how you’re able to love someone like me. (Perhaps that’s your biggest flaw, perhaps that’s the one I love most.)

Your flaws single you out, set you apart, make you different from the rest, and thank god. I don’t just put up with settle for accept your blemishes, I like them. I like them because they make you human, and humans are easier to love than photographs and illusions and ideals; humans fit more easily between arms and between legs; humans are welcome to their imperfections because if there’s one thing humans can do perfectly, it’s love. Humans can love, they can do it flawlessly. TC mark

Source: http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1fiqXh/thoughtcatalog.com/2011/i-like-your-flaws/





Singapore: Ministers and their salaries

18 01 2012

Disclaimer: In no way is this a news report on the situation in Singapore. I firmly believe that my government has done a good job at running the country and I would not be able to do a better job. This merely is MY response to the events around the ministers pay cuts. In no way am I authorized to comment officially on local events like these. DO NOT BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ!

Dear World,

This has been a pretty debated topic… well actually it is not really debated. A better way to describe the situation would be Singaporeans venting their frustrations about Ministers reactions to their pay cuts. Me and my friends have been discussing the issue and been following this pretty closely.

Singapore Ministers are one of the more highly paid group of ministers around the globe. By my understanding, some are even paid higher than President Barack Obama ( and to me, that actually says something).

There are several issues going around. Firstly, one of the ministers put a comment a Facebook saying that the cuts were unfair which of course, resulted in this up-roar that is dominating twitter and Facebook (since we can’t protest in the streets by law, we used the internet). To add fuel to the fire, after Singaporeans ‘asked’ for ministers pays to be cut further (yup, that’s how high their salary is) Deputy Premier said that further cuts would deter people from entering local politics.

That’s the context! Here is what I think.

Why in the world are Ministers getting paid so much! Yes, yes, running a country is difficult and all but I believe that state money ( which is what majority of their salaries are anyways) should be funded into the state, be it education, transport, rebuilding and further developing our economy. I honestly believe that our ministers have more than enough to meet their basic needs (food, housing, utilities, etc.) and save for retirement or their kids’ education or for health purposes with the cuts and if we were to cut more, they would still be pretty ok. I am not asking them to give us everything. I’m asking them “Think about how you work?” and if they give the answer of someone higher in parliament, they are so wrong. We have the power to vote them out, especially if we believe that they aren’t putting national funds to good use. All I’m saying is that I’m pretty sure 5 million people would benefit from their pay cuts.

And here’s the next part to this – how the government thinks with lower salaries for politicians, Singaporean youth will not be interested in joining politics. I have two issues with this. Firstly, trust me, no youth I know wants to join politics and even if I knew someone, they would do it to make a change, or make a difference, or do something significant. Something along those cliche lines. I like to believe my generation is driven by much more than money. It is superficial to believe otherwise. It is also superficial to say that people are motivated by money to enter politics. And that leads to my second point  about the issue. By saying that people arent motivated into politics without the money, you are basically implying that our system is, in some small extent, corrupt. I do not really want money minded politicians running the country I live in and if that is the only reason why people are involved in politics… well then yeah, it isn’t a good message- to anyone. And I don’t think it is that would be a good reason to enter anything. Something about that issue feels so immoral and wrong that it needs to be brought up; may be it was the way the issue was approached. And we are better than that.

I think that’s why people are upset about this. It reflects poorly on our government and hence it represents poorly on our people.

Sorry guys in parliament. You guys don’t get it, because no one has really written it down. Hope this helps understanding some of the people’s concerns. I’m not saying you guys are doing a bad job. I’m just saying, we have an image to maintain and other areas of the country to see to. Don’t let us down.

Cheyenne

sources:

http://zeenews.india.com/news/world/ministerial-pay-cut-fair-singapore-deputy-pm_753093.html





Google Science Fair 2012

12 01 2012

Dear World,

So last night I was surfing the internet and I came across this interesting event called the Google Science Fair. I was watching a video about what last years winners did and I was astounded. No seriously, I was in awe. Here is the video to prove my point.

Award Winning Teen Scientist

So when I watched the video I was inspired to attempt this and at the same time, I was … well intimidated. At 13 I was more interested in facing the future of my education and ‘life’ (at 13, I didn’t really had a life). Now, kids are finding a way to improve the world. It is seriously cool. I am all for kids making the world a better place and everything but I didn’t think anyone would start at 13.

So here’s the deal. I am thinking of joining and that is if I could think of anything to do a Science Fair Project on. I have to figure out if I even fall within the age group… but while I attempt to add to the pile of ….well, pile of ‘activities’ I have, I highly recommend parents and students alike to consider this wonderful opportunity.

I am not advertising Google, but it is fun seeing what teens can do.

http://www.google.com/intl/en/events/sciencefair/index.html

Get Science-y

Cheyenne





Arts vs Science; picking a side

12 01 2012

Dear World,

I have a bit on my mind. Mainly, my University course choices. Sounds typical teen ‘stress’ like everyone thinks it is. I don’t want to talk about growing up right now because we all know how hard it is to grow up and confront with the horrors of adulthood and I am only starting to embrace this. I actually want to discuss why Science and Arts aren’t so different (and may be shed some light on why I am so confused on which way to go).

Ok, I actually came up with this when I was contemplating my University courses and which is why I am having this difficulty now.

I probably took the weirdest subject combination in Junior College, taking many heavy science subjects and a hardcore Theatre subject. In fact, now that I think about it, my secondary school life was me being involved in Drama club so much, as much as I studied my sciences. So my hybrid education has left me torn. Mainly because the Art and Science industries, well, are torn. They are divided and people on the Arts side misunderstand the people on the Science side and vice versa. I’ve heard Arts people feel patronized by the Science side and the Science people have felt insulted when they are recognized as less creative than the Arts. This strong divide that is emphasized by social stigmas developed over the years forces me to step back from everything and I feel like I have to choose a side- there is no middle ground.

I personally can’t take that. There is always a middle ground. There is always a way to accommodate both sides. And there is, in this case- or so I believe.

Arts and Sciences ,to me personally, are both expressions of life. There are millions who may disagree with me, but let me state my case.

I took an interest in science, at a young age. I loved learning about how things grew and developed and as I progressed in my educational career, I studied genetics and DNA and really loved it. I took an interest in marine biology because I love the sea, but I gained a strong interest in genetics when I studied about the human genome project in JC. I thought to myself ‘what better way to understand life than to break it down to its molecular form, to the basics of what made everything around me live!’. It was fascinating and I was and still am intrigued.

But while my interest in science grew, so did my desire to Act or direct or create an artwork that the masses could have access to and appreciate aesthetically. So I took up theatre. I loved it. I still do. Theatre like most art forms is just people’s interpretations of life and society around us. An understanding of life, in the eyes of the living.

So here is the battlefield. An appreciation for the fundamentals of my being verses how I comprehended the interactions of people around me. In other words, the makings of life verses the… makings of my life. how can anyone really pick a side? The other important question is : do we need to pick a side?

Many people have not taken sides. Some have embraced some aspect of the other side, even though they may not have thought of the idea originally. There is a surgeon called Quyen Nguyen who has found a way to ‘colour code’ the human body to find tumors and nerves, to assist surgeons in the removal of harmful substances from the body. Already having such a system is amasing, the substances inserted into the human body are organic and can be removed naturally form the body. Can you imagine taking it a step further? Finding away to colour code the entire human body in some way so that the masses could appreciate the complexity of the organs and the body. Especially in a world that is very focused on visuals  ,  students, teachers and even the common man could possibly be more interrogated to want to learn more.

Arts have benefited with the assistance of science too. There is an artist, whose name as unfortunately slipped from my mind, who builds splutters made from fishing wire, or netting, trying to follow how fishing nets were originally made in India . She crafted them beautifully to result in massive structures that would flow in the wind and create various other shapes. Thanks to engineers and builders, she was able to create a structure that still stands if I am not wrong, in Milan.

Things are already happening, may be not as fast or not in the way it gets noticed. But things are happening. I suggest everyone open their eyes and find ways to help the ‘movement’, because I certainly will not drop the topic any time soon. Neither will I be picking a side.

With Regards.

Cheyenne





Starter for Ten by David Nicholls

9 01 2012

Dear World,

Today was the release of the GCE O level Examination Results for those who did the examination in 2011 (last year). The results seem rather positive and I am sure many parents all over Singapore are proud of their kids. To everyone, congratulations and I hope you are able to pursue the courses of your choice.

There is a reason why I brought up the O level results. I had just completed Starter for Ten by David Nicholls which I bought about a week ago. To be honest, I was not sure I would like it but when I read the first page, I was pretty sure it was going to be good.

Basically, it is about a guy who just completed his A level examinations in England and the story revolves around the first year of his University career. He makes a lot of mistakes – and I should emphasize ALOT of mistakes. In fact, every mistake he did was rather predictable, he blew off his studies for a girl, he made a fool out of himself and he did not really be the person he wanted to be. Yup, sorry Mr Nicholls, but I saw it coming. *shrug*

With a more predictable plot, you would think I hate it. But I don’t. Mainly because I think it captures every feeling that any student would ever go through, at one point or another. The anxiety of waiting for results or going to a good school, or studying the subjects you want to or re-inventing yourself. Now I sound cliche and at the same time, I might be making the book sound cliche but I think that Nicholls first establishes an understanding between the reader and himself, that while the story may sound familiar, the lesson to be learnt is that we all have some silly story like this. We simply aren’t alone in feeling everything a student is suppose to feel.

To O level students, this book at this point of time, is not on my recommendation list for you. Wait a year or two. Junior College, High School and University students might get it more. May be the following extract will explain why:

” All young people worry about things, its a natural and inevitable part of growing up, and at sixteen my greatest anxiety in life was that I’d never again achieve anything as good, or pure, or noble, or true, as my O-level results.”

That’s why I bought the book. I suggest you take a look at it too.

With regards,

Cheyenne