today's thought: Reins of Power, Robert E Vardeman.


<< reminisce envision >>

Ok, I have a few things I wanna write about in this entry, but there is an urgent issue I wanna address first. The starting paragraphs of a soccernet.com article:

Newcastle are the new Leeds. It's not a theory - an expensively assembled team of young British players, threatening Arsenal and Manchester United's domination of domestic football - though, like everything else this summer, rather put in the shade by events at Chelsea.

There are other common factors - unexpected success in the Champions League, the presence of Lee Bowyer and Jonathan Woodgate and large debt.

And both clubs have a combustible, iconic striker who attracts the enmity of opposing fans: Craig Bellamy and Alan Smith.

The duo share an uncompromising attitude and a willingness to upset defenders which has stood them in good stead both in the Premiership and Europe.

There the similarities between Newcastle and Leeds, who meet at Elland Road on Sunday, end. The rapid decline of impoverished Leeds is scarcely believable. In contrast, the ascent of Newcastle has come almost as quickly as Leeds' demise.

Newcastle are not the new Leeds. Fuck that. They are not the new Leeds, nor the old Leeds, nor will they ever be like Leeds. I'm sure there was no offense meant, but there is offense taken. Newcastle are no strangers to Champions League football, nor a high league position. They were runners-up for two seasons straight before hitting a slump, thanks to Ruud Gullit. To say that Newcastle are the new Leeds is to suggest that Newcastle will make it to the semi-finals of the Champions League, then run into finanical problems due to extravagant expenditure and finally see an exodus of top players, which is never gonna happen. Leeds is a prime example of poor management + discipline problems. Woodgate is the best thing to ever happen to Newcastle in a long while, and while I'm still doubious about Bowyer, he's a good player, and will no doubt show his stuff in due time. I'm just still a tad drawn towards Solano, especially after that goal he scored against Partizan, which may have looked lucky, but still... Newcastle is a club full of tradition and potential. Rich in history, it is probably the most underachieving club in the League. It has twice been runners-up, a 3rd place, a 4th place, and lost in two FA cup finals. It takes alot of patience to be a Newcastle fan, because as a Newcastle fan there are alot of heartbreaking moments. Manchester United's 6-1 romp at St. James Park was a good example. When Ruud Gullit was in charge, Newcastle screwed up so badly I'll hate Ruud Gullit for life, languishing so near the relagation zone that its really embarassing to say you support Newcastle. But I'll have faith in them, and hopefully they'll succeed. Gawd, the day they win some silverware, any silverware, I'll really cry. =P

Ok, that's all about it. I'm soooooo hooked on Warcraft 3. Its all the stupid Warcraft 3 competition that totally ignited my interest in a game which originally didn't appeal much to me. And its all one map: Azure Glade Tower Defense. That map's got me hooked so much I can just keep playing it over and over again. And I've kept unearthly hours just for it, 5am for two days straight. I think its gonna be the same again tonight. Hmmm. Better watch myself.

Michelle Branch's Till I Get Over You is a truly beautiful song. Truly, truly beautiful. The gem of the album, and I doubt its gonna be a single, so get it! I wrote something more about it in my private entry though, but that aside, its a great great song. GET IT! Jewel's album isn't too bad, especially the last 4 tracks. Kinda catchy, but alot of it is just pleasant sounding, lyrics for a couple are great, but for the others its just mediocore. Not a bad album, and Stand is still a great song. Great melody, and great lyrics. So damn meaningful.

My hair is a big mess. A big big mess. I think I'll never ever trust the barber in camp again. He's made a big mess out of it, and I don't know what should I do with it now. Grrrr. And they want us to have a decent haircut before going out to Thailand. And I wanna leave my hair long, just like that last time. Urgh. Looks like I'll hafta start all over again and cut it to restart.

Ya know, there's something that is kinda... hmm, I don't know how to put it. But it just makes me feel like God is out there. And I'm just so stubborn in that I'll do something even though its wrong and I'll regret it in future. And I know I can't run way from God forever, but I'm still doing it. Like in the army, I just like to "test system". Anyway, yeah. My uncle on my dad's side, the eldest one, was diagnosed with colon cancer a couple of years back. And the cancer cells just spread to his lungs, so he hasn't got more than a couple of months. I'm not too close to him, he being in Malaysia, and I rarely ever see him, but ya know. My aunt died a few years back of colon cancer as well. I think that it can get really depressing, especially for my grandmother. I'm really worried for her. Attending your children's funeral is just so wrong. I remember this scene from Lord of the Rings 2, where, ermm, ok, I forget the character names, cause I don't read the book! Where the old king is standing at his son's tombstone and saying something like "It is just wrong for a father to pay his last respects to his son." or something like that. It's really sad. And I'm pretty close to my grandmother, cause she visits us sometimes, and quite often when I was little. I don't know if she could take it, she's close to 70 already. Sometimes, being old can be such a drain. I don't wanna live so old. And living to that age, and seeing 2 of your 5 children pass away, its just so wrong. So damn fucking wrong, I tell ya. I'll be praying for her, if the worst, which is inevitable, happens. Anyway, if you have the time, do pray for my uncle and grandmother. I know my uncle's going to heaven, he's been saved, and everyone's more or less prepared for the worst, but my grandmother, we can only hope she wouldn't take it too hard.

And that's what I wanted to talk about. When my aunt who passed away a few years back from the same colon cancer, my grandmother was spiritually shaken. My aunt was a Christian, and she wanted my grandmother to eventually convert. Come to think of it, its quite amazing. The Bible says that When you believe in God, He will save thee, and thy house (family). Ok, sue me for not memorizing my Bible verses hard enough, memorizing was never my forte. And I see my relatives from both sides starting to attend churches; my dad's side has had quite a few converts already, while on my mum's side my aunt married a Christian and she's reaching out to my grandparents on that side.

ANYWAY. I sidetracked so much. I sounded like I was preaching. Back to the topic. My aunt passed away, and my grandmother was spiritually shaken. My mum and cousin took the chance to reach out to her, but she was stubborn. Then, I can't remember if it was my mum who said it, or if she said someone told her, but she said that it would take something like this to happen again before my grandmother would finally see the light. See, she was always a very devout Buddhist, and has helped out at a temple for a long long time. But I guess its kinda obvious that she was feeling kinda empty inside, but is just too stubborn.

So, my mum said that it would take something else like this to happen again before she'll finally accept the Lord. Then, yep, not long after my uncle got diagnosed with colon cancer, and soon after he converted. And now the same scenario is playing out again. Its... too coincidental, to say the least. Maybe this is God's plan, but it sounds kinda brutal.

Ya know, last year, when I wasn't posted to OCS or SISPEC, I was kinda disappointed. And for quite some time after, I was like thinking that I really sucked, couldn't even be a specialist. I had promise, cause I knew my platoon officer had a good opinion of me, but I knew I screwed up in the peer appraisal. A year later, I realized that maybe it wasn't really because I sucked. It was more of a maturity and leadership kinda thing. I guess not everyone's cut out for the millitary, I just don't have the discipline nor maturity required. Maybe not then. But that doesn't mean I've failed. Ok, I can't concentrate anymore, I'm suffering from Warcraft3 withdrawal symptoms. =P Will continue again.

Playing CM4, listening to Michelle Branch and writing my diary entry, having two computers is just so nifty. Anyway, might as well work on my entry since its a new season in CM4 and there are so many many matches to load and process. Warcraft 3 finally lost abit of its appeal. Whew! I'm so glad I'm not as addicted to Warcraft 3 now. Lets see, I realized that I need a better rush tactic than Huntress rush for Night Elf, but I just can't be bothered to train. And I got to like level 31 in Azure Tower last night, and I realized that its really hard, so yep, at least I've seen most of the map. I was hoping to do some work for my Xenogears, then I'll get my FF9 back and I can proceed to buy FFX-2, Xenosaga, both original. And Shadows of Unrentide as well. Then I'll need to get Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance, and maybe DOA Beach Volleyball (just to see what's all the hype about). Yeah, lots of games to be playing, and so little time.

Oh, anyway, back to where I left off last night. Yeah, I realized that I wouldn't have had the discipline or maturity required. Heck, I still think I'll need some work on my maturity even now. So yeah, something I realized is that you may not succeed at some things, but that doesn't mean you don't have a future. Like when I was in Chinese High, we were told that just because we are in there doesn't mean that there's a future guaranteed for us. Sometimes there are many things that doesn't matter as much as they seem to. Like some of the guys in camp, they may not have had much education, but they are damn good at what they do. I wouldn't be surprised to find a few of them drawing a large paycheck in future. Singapore's society is fundamentally flawed, and the parents place emphasis on the wrong places. I know people talk about this all the time, but I'm starting to realize first-hand why is it so. Character building is just as important, if not more important. Next time when I have kids I'll make sure they have a good character first. Why force your kid to attend swimming lessons, ballet lessons, piano lessons, tuition when you could just teach your kid how to be someone enterprising and to have a thrist for success. Sure, your kid may not know what's good for him/her when he's still young, but see, so what if your kid makes it to Rosyth Primary, then Raffles Instuition, then Hwa Chong Junior College, then to NUS when all he really is is someone who's shy, quiet, unsure, and good only at studying? You don't need to have sky-high grades to be a successful person. So yeah, you may not be a all-rounder, but that doesn't mean you suck or anything like that. Just make sure you do well at what you know you are good at, and try your best at what you are not, and you would have done yourself a big favor.

I like talking to people and listening to their views, beliefs, opinions and stuff. Really. That's why I like talking to Maureen and Shinqi, they can sometimes offer quite a different perspective on things. Especially Maureen, a friendly argument will always make sure things are fully understood. Other people too, like in camp when the guys talk about people or things like that. Its really interesting sometimes, and you can learn alot. You don't hafta agree with something, you can disagree with it and yet derive something from it. Like why do they think like the way they do. The diamond of truth has many facets, and there's no absolute wrong in the world. And also, when we talk about our peers, its interesting to see why people dislike each other. I think I'm relatively blessed, people usually don't dislike me or have a problem with me, so when you see two groups of people not getting along with each other, and listen to their reasons, you just hafta accept it that some people just don't get along. It isn't anyone's fault, its just a clash in opinions.

Extreme Makeover? Its this TV programme where 3 people, who, really, don't really look all that awful, go through a huge makeover. Plastic surgery. Eyucks. I feel grossed out just looking at it. Why would people wanna go through all that pain? Its just so gross. And what's wrong with people nowadays? They place excessive emphasis on appearances. That's just so wrong. What ever happened to perceptions of people based on their bank accounts and social status? Looks are just so superficial; so what if you look like Delta Goodrem if you are poor as shit? So what if you are as rich as Bill Gates or as powerful as Alan Greenspan? Why, you rule the damn world. =P Really, I mean, if I had to choose, I'll pick money over looks any day. With money, you can get looks, but with looks, you might not get money.

Ok, that was abit materialistic there. But, hey, the way they put it, especially how the narrator kept saying that their lives are gonna change. Its just so superficial! I'm not against plastic surgery, nor am I an advocate of it. Its a necessary evil, a double-edged sword. Its like, the next one's gonna be "EXtreme Population Control" where they glamourize abortion. They'll get a team of the country's top abortion experts, top counsellors, and top birth control experts to help you have the best abortion. Plastic surgery's nearly tantamount to abortion, ya shouldn't be trying to tell people to get a nose job. Its just wrong.

The whole show is so bimbotic.

I'm too critical.

I ran out of steam. The remaining topics, actually, topic, has gone stale already from taking too long to write, so I'll just drop it. It was about being empathetic, but I'm so pathetic in that I'm too apathetic to write about being empathetic, so sue me for excessive abuse of the word "pathetic".

Back to camp, back to camp.

Oh, wait. One last thing. I just cut my hair, and I don't know why barbers always like to cut the fringe. Its so grrr, like they can't keep their hands off it. Explicitly said that not to cut my fringe, but he cut one side of it, then asked, "Oh, don't cut the front, right?" I just nodded and what the hell, he might as well cut the other side to make it even, but he didn't. Bah. My hair's really a disaster. I can't care much now. At least I passed off for a secondary school kid! Hahaha, he said "secondary school, right?" And I just nodded.

Bad habits died hard. I know, I just wagered 100 on Newcastle to win. But hey, Sharon's doing it too, and she said she wanted to quit. Anyway, Newcastle can't lose tonight, so there. Not against a crapified Leeds.

AMBERYL IS TALKING TO ME AGAIN! Yay, she's not mad at me anymore. Now, lets see if I've broken out of the vicious cycle of the someone's-got-to-be-ignoring-me-all-the-time symdrome. I hope so. =P The week ahead is looking great, giddy up!



lifelong lessons
Sunday, Aug. 17, 2003 @ 17:28
mood: Addicted
current music: Till I Get Over You, Michelle Branch