Sunday, 31 January 2016

Your cheatin' heart* - Hank Williams

It was rather painful to discover some students who cheated in their coursework. It was pretty obvious as one of them tried to conceal it while the other blatantly lied about it to cover up her devious act.

I was chatting with my colleagues about this and for all of us, we cannot sympathise with these students. Sure, we tried our best to help them and will continue to do so - but we cannot understand why they had to resort to such methods. For us, cheating was never an option - it never crossed our mind, or if it did, it would have been fleeting and dismissed immediately. I for one would rather fail than to choose to cheat - but then again, i was never really at risk of failing...

So why did they do it? Different generation? Upbringing? Fear of failure? The attitude that they would do anything to achieve their objectives?

It is really sad that students like these 2 would have to resort to such methods - and with lasting repercussions. From now on, they will be remembered as cheaters, students guilty of academic misconduct. What is worse is that they are trying to be lawyers in the future. I worry for them when they work in the future. Will they also use illegal means to get what they want or to prevent failure?

I hope being caught will serve as a painful lesson for them.

And i guess i have to be thankful that these 2 are the small minority. They are many others who did not cheat. There are also those who had failed, showing that they would not resort to such methods no matter how painful the consequence is. At the end of the day, failure may be painful but it can also be a good thing. After all, as Churchill said, failure is not fatal but what matters is the courage to carry on.

The scary thing is that these 2 are the only ones we caught. Perhaps there could be others? I hope not...

*Ranked as one of the best country songs ever, this song has been remade countless of times by many great singers.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

It ain't over 'til it's over* - Lenny Kravitz

What a game last weekend! I wasn't planning to catch but when i checked the score, i found out it was 3-3 and there was still some time left in the game. So i decided to watch the remainder of the match.

It was a roller coaster game! I found out that Liverpool led first.

But Norwich equalised with a wonderful back-heeled effort!


They then led by Naismith's debut goal!

Naismith played a part in the next goal when he was brought down by Moreno in the box resulting in a penalty which was duly dispatched by Hoolahan.

Henderson started the Liverpool revival by making the score 3-2.

Firmino then added his second to tie the game at 3-3.

That is when i come in - and i witnessed the appalling mistake by the Norwich captain gifting Milner with a one on one situation with Rudd. And it was 3-4 then!!! From trailing 3-1, we are now winning 3-4!!!

At the 90th minute, to our dismay, there were 5 minutes of added time!!! But surely we can hold on, can we? Well, we can't. 2 minutes into stoppage time, we conceded with a well taken Bassong's goal. It was painful to lose 2 points like that so close to the end.

But wait!!! It ain't over til it's over!!! And just before the final whistle went, Lallana scored our 5th goal which sparked wild celebrations!!!

Crazy! Madness! And just when i decided not to watch any more games, that vow did not last one game!!!

Just a foot note - Paul Parker, former Manchester United player who was one of the commentators for the match criticised the Liverpool players for celebrating at the end of the match, saying they should all be hanging their heads in shame. I thought that comment was very unfair. Sure, defensively, they were awful at times - but they are not celebrating the fact that they were bad. They did not give up and pushed on literally to the last minute, scoring FIVE goals in total away from home. They were down 3-1 and came back to win it 4-5 with almost the last kick of the match. Surely you can't deny them the right to enjoy the moment! If he was in that game, wouldn't he be celebrating too? Of course he would. But he chose to be negative about it. Ah well... he is a former Man Utd player anyways...

It's also about time we had a bit of luck on our side. Just one week ago, we had so many good chances but failed to finish the game off and in the end, Rooney's scored with their first shot on goal (when he was out of the game until that point). But that's how football is - sometimes you have the luck on your side. And when you do, why can't you celebrate?

(note: pics obtained from all over the net)

*Written and produced by Lenny himself, this is one of my all time favourite songs.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

When I see you smile* - Bad English

Truth be told, in the past i used to think of other people when i listen to this song. But i stopped listening to it for a while - until the night run i went for last year. It was the final run of my Brooks shoes...

I uploaded songs into my phone to keep me company while i ran. It was a wonderful run! It was cooling and nice and the songs really kept me company, bringing up old memories as i listen to them.

But when it came to this song, i immediately thought of my little girl. And the words just became so true and so real. It was a difficult time of my life - just a month after discovering that i have a recurrence of my brain tumour. But no matter how bad things were, no matter how bad a day i have at work, no matter how sad or disappointed i am, or frustrated with anything or anyone, it all doesn't matter when i see her smile. And when i do, i feel that i really do anything.

It also happened that when the song came on, i was starting to run up a steep hill - and the thought of her and her smile just pushed me up the hill, passing everyone who were struggling up.

Even today, just the sight of her smile fills me with so much joy. It wasn't a good day at work - i had a minor fender-bender on the way to work and have to pay for the repairs for both my car and the other's, there was a student of mine who was caught cheating, a lot of work (but that's normal). I was feeling physically tired but when i got home - in fact, i just stepped out of my car when i heard a loud "DADDY!!!". And there she was, at the window, smiling at me. I can't think of another sight more beautiful. Everything else just didn't matter and i sat down with her and chat with her before dinner.

I thank God for her, and for using her to bring so much joy, meaning and purpose in my life.

*Their first and only no. 1 hit in the US, one of my all time favourite songs.

Sunday, 10 January 2016

Hello* - Adele

It has been a while, hasn't it? Not the usual long break, though. Just a bit more than a month. But it has been a crazy month. So much has happened.

The highlights? Well, the youth camp was definitely one!

And then it was the Christmas celebrations!

And lots of eating!!!!

A short simple holiday to Ipoh.

There was also Star Wars, the biggest movie event of the year!

And the year ended with a most painful time of marking exam papers. Yes, marking exam papers are definitely the worst experience one can have as a lecturer - unless you have good students. And with all due respect, it has been quite a while since we have had good students.

New Year was simple, as usual. And then, we are in 2016!

Hope to be able to blog in greater detail... for this year!

*Her latest big hit - I only first heard the tune when i listened to the Star Wars parody of this song!!!