19 August 2007

From:that frolicsome kid
To:Whom this may concern
Date:19 August 2007, 11:20
Subject: My Motivator  

I think I have finally found a motivation to excel in my mocks. This is it! Are you ready?

Palm TX!

Hoo boy! It doesn't get better than this. Behold, ladies and germs, Palm TX! Notice the amazing geometry and solid piece of technology. It's perfect from every angle. Sleek, beautiful and black. It's so much better than a mobile phone - it doesn't ring! =D

The local newspaper yesterday featured an article on the Sony Reader. Initially after reading it, I actually wanted a Sony Reader (an e-book device). I thought it will be nice to purchase good e-books from the Internet instead of relying on Amazon.com or going to the Australian Borders branch during my December holidays (I hate waiting! =P). Lugging 10+ books back home is no easy task! Besides, the bookshelf at home ran out of space.

Unfortunately, it is only available for sale in the United States. (I wonder why they feature that article if that's the case.) Many months will have passed before it hits the local market and by then, a new version could have probably come out. It may be cheaper than a Palm TX but too bad it's monofunctional. It is great to read an e-book for a long period of time without worrying of dead battery, but it is worth spending a few hundred dollars on a device which I can only read an e-book?

So I decided to procrastinate sacrifice my study time to look for a perfect computer device which is small and light enough to read e-books while I can still perform other things using it. Naturally, PDAs fit the criteria. So I went wiki-ing for devices as well as window shopping at Amazon.com.

I found Palm Z22 which is more affordable. However, the local online e-store does not sell it. However, of all PDAs, they are selling a Palm TX, which is No. 1 on the Palm bestseller list in Amazon.com. I cannot believe my luck and utter joy. And it's a steal as well. It's cheaper than the list price at Singapore. (By the way, it's sold for about US$330.)

I can't believe it. I am so tempted to use my mom's credit card and make a purchase immediately when I thought why not make it as a source of motivation? If I can score good results, then I will burn a hole in my pocket and buy myself the Palm TX.

And that's that. I so desire one now!

Being a smart shopper, I did a little research on this nifty technological gizmo. There were rave reviews about it. Of course, it can display e-books, it is a diary planner and has all those calendar options (I like it! I keep a diary planner for the purposes of homework) and the battery can last for a good decent hours.

Getting a Palm TX comes with a hefty price. I shall write an amateur poem to describe my predicament:
Aggregate: 18
A2s and B4s
3 of each
coupled with moolah
Palm TX
Glittery and shiny
Then only it shall be mine
Mine, mine, mine!

N.B. A2 = 85 to 89; B4 = 75 to 79. Aggregate is the sum of the numeric grades of one's best six subjects.

So it doesn't rhyme, but hey it gets the message across. So I better buckle up and start working for it. I want to be a proud owner of Palm TX! It's pretty materialistic of me, but I'm really desperate.

On the other hand, I think it's kind of impossible because I haven't been studying much lately. I'm slackening off so badly. I wonder what's wrong with me. =(

Anyway, come to think of it, I have never had a source of motivation to study. This is my first time to study for something - to get a reward in the end. This time, my reward does not only come in the form of good grades and pride, but also, for the love of Palm TX.

Wish me luck!

P.S. If you are a user of Palm TX, tell me what you think of it. ;) Do you think I should get another PDA other than Palm TX?

[+] There's more!

18 August 2007

From:that frolicsome kid
To:Whom this may concern
Date:18 August 2007, 23:37
Subject: Tragedy  

Travelling fast towards impending doom.The car zoomed by at high speed. Leaves were blown away and rustled into the night air. The silence of the night was broken by gales of laughter from the passengers in the car who had had some drinks. They were heading home after a great night of drinking just over the border.

They prattled and joked among themselves in a rather rowdy way. The group of young teenagers enjoyed a heighten feeling of temporary ecstasy. However, the driver did not join in the conversation, instead he tried to focus on his driving. His senses is starting to numb, and without realising it, he stepped on the pedal too hard. The needle in the speedometer shot to the red zone. He was not able to see it as he tried in vain to focus on the curve in the road that was fast approaching. His vision blurred and he didn't know where he was heading.

The more sober guy widened his eyes as he pointed at the oncoming crash barrier. They were approaching towards it dangerously fast! An air of ominousness shrouded the car. The driver quickly came to his senses and acted on his reflexes. He braked as hard as he could, but it was all too late. The car crashed on impact, rolling over many times. Unearthly screams came from the boys as they wrestled with death.

And then, silence...

About 2 a.m., the lovely cousin was excitedly observing a game of poker. She laughed when her boyfriend whined about his bad hand. The players chuckled upon hearing him, knowing maybe this time, they could stand a chance. The mobile phone whirred suddenly, and he casually picked up the phone. He opened the message, and could not believe what he had just read. He darted his eyes at every word in disbelief, hoping that it was some sort of a sick, twisted joke. His mouth was wide open in horror.

His girlfriend flashed a look of concern. "Baby, what's wrong?"

He hesitated for a moment. "Your cousin... he died in a car accident just now," he croaked.

There was shock, disbelief and horror. Seconds passed painfully as the message seared the heart of the cousin. Her boyfriend immediately excused himself and escorted his girlfriend back home. Tears streaked down her face and she sobbed miserably. Her dear cousin, gone. But how, why? Questions remained unanswered and there was nothing she could do. She was 2000 miles away from home...

As much as I wished it was an essay for a school assignment, it isn't. Sadly, it's a real-life incident. It all happened in the wee hours of this morning. Two of the passengers perished in the car accident while the other three is under intensive care. The cousin and her boyfriend mentioned was actually my elder brother and his girlfriend. He was her favourite cousin of hers, and according to my brother via SMS, she was extremely devastated to hear the news.

She isn't alone. Her entire family is grieving for his sudden departure. The most affected one is his mother who I've heard is very fond of his son. At first, when my mother told me the news, chills went down my spine. I responded with a rude "Huh?", prompting her to repeat what she had said, unwilling to believe it the first time. She received a message early this morning about his death, and by that time, the funeral was taking place. It is already over now, his corpse is already buried in the cemetery.

It's too fast, it's all too fast! I cannot believe it! =( He is... he is so young. He shouldn't just die just like that. It's so unfair! I still remember vividly his visit to our house together with my brother's girlfriend's (whom I shall refer to as my sister from now) family. I can still remember his cheery voice. He was a fine and handsome young lad! What I admire most about him was his strong dedication to lose weight. The last time I saw him, he was pretty fat. The next time I saw him, I simply couldn't believe the tall and built guy was him!

I was further saddened by the fact that he is of the same age as me. For Pete's sake, he will be sitting for his O Levels this November with me and soon be a high school graduate! What the hell? Just one accident, and that spells the end! He didn't get the chance to complete his secondary education. Heck, he didn't have the chance the live and enjoy his life until a ripe old age! =(

Oh my God...

Although I am not that close to him, I've gotten to know him over the years as a really great and charming guy who knows how to have fun. I heard that he's bright too. I didn't know that the last conversation I had with him is our last. What a sad way to leave Earth. I'm terribly sorry... =( My condolences to my sister's family.

Thank you for touching the lives of people around you for the past 17 years. You will be dearly missed and always remembered by your loved ones.

He was one of the passengers in the car. Police are still investigating the causes. The story above is not accurate as it is a product of my imagination, but the basic facts are there. According to my sister's father, it was inferred to be caused by drunk driving. It was suspected that they hopped over the border and had a drink session before coming back home (my country bans alcoholic beverages from being sold in public). The driver could have been drunk while driving. It was a self-accident.

I cannot imagine this had actually taken place. Drunk driving robs away the lives of the innocent. I plead to you people! Please, do not ever drink and drive! Get someone to drive you home or call a taxi. Don't risk your lives, or others, by driving when you are drunk.

It's not worth drinking and driving!

And it goes to say that you should not drive when you're tired too. I recall vividly an advertisement that was always aired on the British Capital 95.8 that goes something like this:

(in a drowsy tone) The monotony of driving is sending you to sleep. Monotony of driving is sending you to sleep. Driving is sending to sleep. Sleep...

Crash!! ...

Please drive carefully.

*sigh* Rest in peace, my friend.

[+] There's more!

5 August 2007

From:that frolicsome kid
To:Whom this may concern
Date:5 August 2007, 19:24
Subject: Trauma  

I am not doing well these days. =( Things have been going rather downhill lately. The written mocks are a fortnight away and I have yet to begin real, intensive revision. Somehow, I lost the mood to study and to do anything. It is as if I am rebelling against the examinations system when I normally have no qualms about it!

Physically, my body is not cooperating with me. Just when I demand good health while studying. Apparently, I have not taken enough measures to ensure that my physique is in top shape. Last week, our school organised a run. I should have bought a new pair of running shoes; the current pair is too tight for my big feet even though I normally wear size 9.5. My toes had to suffocate and suffer from injuries as they are cramped together in the tight space. As a result, two of my toenails (next to the big toe) are traumatised from the constant impacts of the shoes and they broke. One became detached from the nail bed, and other one bled and later became detached.

I was really shocked to see the throbbing toes and I was, and still am, shocked when I realise I'm going to lose both of them. Just now, I clipped away the entire left toe as it was painful (when coming in contact with the floor, or when I try to bend it). It's bearable but it was starting to bug me. Furthermore, it was already oozing pus (?). So reluctantly, after googling for advices (which weren't helpful), I made the hectic decision of clipping the whole nail to the cuticle. I was frightened by the slight ease of cutting it away without pain. Now, my nail bed is exposed and can any time be invaded by bacteria or fungi. I immediately regretted my decision, and I lamented about my ludicrousness. =(

I'm paranoid that I have cut away the nail root too and I will be stuck without a nail at that toe forever! I look at the now nail-less toe longingly to have the nail back. I feel vulnerable seeing the exposed pinkish nail bed, which looks sensitive. Just great! And it still slightly hurts too when walking, and watery, clear pus still ooze out from within the cuticle. How totally absurd!

I decided to remove the other detached nail too but however, I was pleasantly surprised to see a new, hard nail growing beneath the dead, crusty detached nail. It does not look pretty, but I'm glad that I've already got a new nail there. It must have been growing when that nail was partially broken a few months ago. That surprise finding itself lifted my spirits up a little but there are many factors out there which hampered my satisfaction with life lately.

Missing nails are just a minor concern. My chest throbs with pain whenever I sit, stand, move or lie down. It began rather suddenly yesterday when I came back from school. I was sitting on the sofa about to have my tea when suddenly, my right pectoral muscles began to hurt like hell. I was squirming with pain at the sudden cram. My mother questioned my sudden awkward behaviour. I assured her there was nothing wrong with me, when in reality it was painful! Knowing her, she fiercely makes sure I recover from whatever illnesses and pains by bulk feeding me with health products. I hate it. I do not believe in health products although the company was trustworthy! She also gives all the unneeded attention to me, thinking that I'm incapable of doing "ordinary tasks", and strictly ensures that I'll get my rest in bed.

To make matters worse, the pain increased substantially in the next few minutes and I simply had to tell her about it. I was afraid that it could develop into something rather serious. The timing to have such injuries is bad. Must it happen so close to my mocks?

My pectorals were massaged using an ointment which relieves muscle cramps. Thankfully, the pain subsided, but not a lot. My chest was still painful and memories of a previous experience of this "injury" came flooding back in my memory. I remembered enduring the pain when my parents were not at home. It was assumed that there was bad blood circulation. The symptoms were the same: there was "something" inside the chest that moved slightly whenever I moved, aching my right chest. I don't know how to describe it. If I hadn't remember wrongly, the pain will have subsided in the next couple of days.

And so, my parents once again reinforced the fact that I should not carry heavy things. Hey, I'm a guy and I am already pathetically weak, and you're asking me not to lift things? How was I supposed to build at least "some" muscle? What are they thinking? I'm already soft! Great, thank you!

I know that maybe the way I carried the table yesterday morning may not be right. But must the pain come much later after that? I had the feeling that it has nothing whatsoever to do with the pain.

Oh, I am so confused! I just want the pain to be rid of as soon as possible. It's not nice to breathe shallowly to avoid feeling the pain and having to move in pain constantly.

What more, I'm doing shoddily in school and revision. I do not get organic chemistry, radioactivity and vectors (Mathematics). The last few chapters of the syllabi are ridiculously difficult to comprehend. I seriously question how well I will fare for my mocks. I am going to jeopardise my future applications to sixth form schools if my mocks results are mediocre... =(

I'm procrastinating badly. I'm sick of it. I just want to revise properly this time. I told myself that already, why aren't I fulfilling my own wishes? =(

[+] There's more!