things above

High School (Musical) September 26, 2009

Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?

This is a blog I feel that I HAVE TO do, since it’s coming to the end of my high school days and it played such a big part in my life and in developing me into the me today.

Despite my incredible masculinity, I’m getting those feelings of nostalgia now and I’m quite sad that I’ll be leaving school soon. Right now, I’m imagining a generic high school graduation in a chick flick, where the “plastics” are all “im gonna miss you guyz so much ~`!! mwaz“. Maybe I don’t feel completely the same as them, but I will miss high school for sure. I’m also going to be bringing a camera to school for the last couple of weeks. You might be lucky to get into a picture with me ;). Or if you want, you can just ask to be in one with me because that will make me feel popular and make your photo look nice. Jokes.

And I really don’t know what I’m going to talk about in this post just yet or how short or long it will be but we’ll see what comes out.

Let’s have some small talk before I launch into it.

And this post is long long overdue so it turned out really really long. I was gonna combine this school blog with a blog about ISCF in school but ISCF will wait until next blog.

Carry on, as if nothing really matters.

(Saturday) Night Fever (Bee Gees)

Night of the post-HSC-trials party for Bob and friends (Gabriel, Andrew Tsang, Marcus, Justin, Kevin, Ruilong, Michael Liu) at my place. ‘Twas a great night with a lot of catching up, ending with Bob’s impromptu speeches which were incredible but I’ll just cut to the chase, especially because I know you (Bob) are reading this. You inspire me in the way you care for people and their wellbeing and their relationship with God. I would like to some day have the same heart to take a genuine interest in the lives of others and to also make such a great effort to stay in touch and build relationships with people, even after the stage when it’s easy to stay in touch (school). I think it’s really something that we can all work towards – being able to find and make time to maintain relationships with people. So thanks for the inspiration and example you set! (and as you would say, no homo)

Talking Bird (Death Cab For Cutie)

As you may or may not know (probably not unless you know me quite well), the backyard of my house is home to several ducks which enjoy basking in the sun (or any weather) on a hot day (or any day) around my swimming pool. In addition to defecating everywhere (yes, I said defecating), they make very loud quacking sounds and enjoy waking me up at 6am when the kids next door fail to do so. And as you may or may not know, my room happens to be at the back of the house, near the backyard. And as you may or may not know, I am not a morning person. At all. But let me continue my story…

I came home from school on Monday to find that two of the adult ducks had had nontuplets (is that right?). They had had NINE DUCKLINGS. And usually when we got anywhere near the ducks they would fly away but now the ducklings weren’t able to fly and the adult ducks were just being good protective parents by not flying away.

Well, mum was distraught and gave the ducks a very stern shouting at, so I’m sure they won’t cause any more trouble, since they are able to understand both Cantonese and gibberish.

Well, here is the video of them I took on my phone when I got home from school. First time I used moviemaker. Props to me and how great it is. It only took me forever to make. I dubbed over the sound with a track (which I hope you like) because I may or may not have made an inappropriate comment about eating 9 roast ducks and I don’t want the RSPCA on me. Siu Ngarp, yo.

Yeah, nothing really happens in the video and there really isn’t much point to it. I just film the ducks, zoom in on poo and then chase the ducks around a little. I also found it hilarious when they were swimming towards the filter but then I realised that if they were killed in there my dream of feasting on nine roast ducks after HSC would be shattered… (MLIA)

Sorry for the audio track. When I thought ducks, I thought Psyducks. And when I was running around trying to catch them, I thought gotta catch ’em all. Also, sorry again for the video. It’s horrible.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Heartless (thanks, Marcus;) )

As much as I dislike Taylor Swift’s music (apart from when anyone else covers her songs – e.g. Gabe Bondoc. Yum) and love Single Ladies, I am on Team Taylor! (oh dear)

Kanye might have some cool music sometimes (Flashing… LIGHTS?) but when it comes down to it, he is one of the biggest douchebags of all time. ONE OF THE BIGGEST DOUCHEBAGS OF ALL TIME!

I watched an episode of South Park before called “Fishsticks” which was hilarious because it bagged out Kanye’s gigantic ego, which you can watch here.

Motion Picture Soundtrack (Radiohead)

And on that note, let’s look at some slightly better videos. Lots of them. LOTS AND LOTS.

A play on a-ha’s “Take On Me” video:

A great stop motion:

This next video was the first video I favourited on YouTube (1:55 in and onwards is really really cool I think – he plays JT’s Like I Love You) and the artist was one of my first subscriptions. He still doesn’t have very many subscribers but I think he’s absolutely GREAT. He needs no percussionist:

Second video I ever favourited. Pretty stupid but pretty smart at the same time. Animation on album covers interacting with each other:

“HE wears short skirts and I wear T-shirts.” Taylor Swift has awesome male fans:

I don’t listen to Asian music, but I found this absolutely hilarious. Biggest boyband ever? And I thought boybands with four guys in them were bad enough. I also find it funny how in these Asian songs they sing random words in English. In this song, the words that I remember are “dance”, “hey!”, “oh!”, “baby”, “sorry” and “shawty”. This dance video had me cracking myself for a long while. Sorry if you actually like their music and my comments are… offensive to you. But I loved this video. The straightness levels in it were through the floorboards.

And a parody of it:

My Sharona (The Knack)

Phat put up giant posters of our very own uptown girl, Sharon, all around the common room. It was funny and I enjoyed it. Sharon did not. She used her biceps to tear them down. O-oh girls don’t wanna have fu-un. These kinds of things make last days at school nice. πŸ˜€

Visit Belle‘s blog for pictures of the day.

Karma Police (Radiohead)

Hawhawhawhaw. We are all phans of Phat. The Big Weeze split his pants and Deva scored an own goal. And later on Kris scored an own goal.

Thashan, Peter and myself also had a team for 3 on 3, which was made (in my opinion) for the sole purpose of beating Phat. We did and then we proceeded to win a lot more and made it to semifinals before forfeiting for the prefect luncheon. So worth it. Thashan’s pose would never have happened if we didn’t forfeit.

The End (The Beatles)

Oh dear, I’m getting sad again that school is almost over. I won’t lie, I’m incredibly sad that school is finishing and it’s something that I’m having a lot of trouble taking off my mind. I’m going to go grab some ice cream and then let’s just get this blog about school over and done with. I’m still straight.

Easy come, easy go, little high, little low.

Another stage of life is coming to an end (the following post may be emo).

High School has been a place of many highs and many lows but I must say the highs far far far outweigh the lows. Kind of like how Kris outweighs everyone (my bad).

In year 6, I was either going to go to James Ruse, Baulkham Hills or Knox Grammar (I had a scholarship to Knox). So I think I was quite ecstatic when I got the selective schools letter which told me I had made it to Ruse, which meant I wouldn’t be going to Knox, as the positives of going to a co-ed school + not having to wear straw hats and tip my straw hat when passing ladies on the street is far better than the positives of private school facilities!

This is a bit of what I remember in terms of each year at school.

These are the memoirs of a Geisha.

Year 7

All about cliques. Obviously, with my dashing features, I was one of the “plastics”. Kidding. Joined the basketballers after a little bit and that’s where I hung out most days. Still do, actually. From what I remember, the ballers who were there in year 7 when I first went were Michael Li (maen), James Tang (had flat hair back then), John (was miniscule), Bryan (was straight πŸ˜‰ ), Mert (not at Ruse any more) and then the group eventually expanded until at some stage in year 8-9, half the guys (maybe more, my memory fails me) in the grade were there. Then it slowly died down again to a more normal size. I still like this group and although I don’t like the title of being “one of the ballers”, I guess it’s not so bad knowing that I’ve been in that same group since year 7. And also being a member of the only successful Ruse out of school basketball team is pretty sweet too (no, coming 3rd in the worst division doesn’t count as successful).

The change from primary school education system to the high school one was pretty hard but I quite enjoyed it, since there was so much variety. Having to change classes every 40-45 minutes was quite fun. And even though I never studied at all until probably year 11, I found stuff that I was good (or competent at least) at. In year 7 that was maths and geography and PE prac and music I think (probably not, my memory fails again).

7K. Rassack Pride (for sure πŸ˜‰ ). Loved this class. ‘Twas awesome.

Year 8

I chose Japanese so I ended up in 8A, with all the Deutchlandish people in 8K. I think I quite liked Japanese (not enough to pick it the next year, though). I don’t have too many vivid memories of year 8. I do remember I dropped about 100 ranks from year 7 in maths, though. And they still invited me to maths enrichment in year 9 after I was ranked horribly, just because I aced the Westpac comp. I declined. Got hated on. Woo!

I remember Visual Arts (or I do NOW, anyway. I had a look at my VAPD recently. I’m glad not too many of you saw it :D). I couldn’t be bothered for a lot of it (highlighter borders) but then towards the end of the year, I was getting good marks so I tried a little harder and ended up coming 3rd, which was pretty sweet. And I remember I drew Derek Zoolander’s Blue Steel and I’m quite sure I still have that!

The name “Simy” originated from year 8. Some 8A people seem to remember how it came about, even after I refused to remind them. There was a substitute PE teacher we had for quite a while and for some unknown reason she enjoyed getting me to lead stretches and demonstrate stretches and stuff (looking back on this, it’s actually REALLY creepy). And one day she called me “Simy” and I believe that not everyone noticed. But I DO remember looking at Bryan, who giggled at me, like a girl. Tribal dancing was also fun. We had the super-special-sub from another school. 8A, “Slow… slow… basketball, basketball, basketball DREEBOOL.” Awkward turtle if you have no clue what I’m on about.

Year 8. The musical the school did was Les Miserables. It was INCREDIBLE. The best musical I have seen from Ruse BY VERY VERY FAR and I’ve seen 6 now. I’m now a big big Les Mis fan and I listen to it a tonne. Our grade’s was next best for sure, though.

Year 9

I got put into 9C, which I initially wasn’t too happy with. Out of the dudes, I knew Joseph and that was about it. But it’s alright because little did I know but Anthony Le (more commonly known now as “Phat”) was also in this class! He became my go-to-move in work if I couldn’t do it. My year 9 class was pretty allstar, as it had… lots of allstars. Year 9 was interesting because it was the first time AK people had any classes with LT people and it was around this time that everyone got to know who everyone was. Before year 9, I had never seen some of the people in my grade, except for in school photos. But yes, year 9 was the time AK and LT started mingling and ohoho plenty of gossip to go around!

Overall, I think the transition from year 8 to year 9 is probably the best grade transition (well for me, anyway) in high school for a few reasons:

  • mingling – meeting and talking to people who I previously didn’t know or had never seen
  • sports on Wednesdays – obvious reasons
  • elective subjects
  • substantial increases in maturity levels all around for previously immature males occur around this time (yes, I just said that), which made them easier to hang around and talk to. However, this was not always the case. πŸ˜›

The electives I chose were visual arts and drama. I dropped drama after a couple weeks because I didn’t enjoy my teacher too much, nor did I enjoy the subject as much as I thought I would. I changed from drama to commerce, which in hindsight, was a good choice. Even though I don’t do economics now, I happened to be very good at commerce for year 9-10 and did amazingly well in exams without having to study for it (also owe it to Ms Connors for being the far superior teacher).

Visual arts. My favourite subject from year 9-10. Lots of friends in this class (dudes in the class were me, Deva, James, Jero, Bryan, Vinson), a relaxed environment, fun and not so stressful work. Excursions to the city where we would go to our Hungry Jacks with all the vintage posters and items. Awesome. Some good good good times. But since it was now an elective subject, I could no longer use highlighter borders. I had to try slightly harder, so I moved onto using coloured pencils for the borders, which took so much more effort! I remember that I aced photography in year 9 VA. And my camera skills are evident in my adept luvos of late.

English. I remember I had Ms Mayers, one of the most awesome teachers in James Ruse. I don’t really remember too much about this class, except that we had to rewrite and perform our modern versions of the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet. And since I just went through and found it (because I didn’t remember what it was for), I’ll upload this script I dreamt up HERE. I remember Mayers loved it and asked me what kind of girls I hung out with. Awkward. Here it is (don’t judge me): script for the balcony scene

I remember that in year 9 I had Mrs Chan for maths. She didn’t learn my name the entire year but could name every other person in the class. She did make a big effort to learn my name in the last week or so of the year but she was unsuccessful. In year 11 when I moved up a maths class into her Maths 4, she learnt and remembered my name on my first lesson with her, since I had to be good at maths to move up to her class and I guess teachers find it a lot easier to remember the names of good students (which of course, I still am).

3 on 3 basketball was quite the funny. Bryan and I took Jo Zhang and Jimmy (who were in year 7 back then) to be on our team and we made it to the finals, where on the last play we were down 3. Jo had the ball and Bryan and I were open on the perimeter, waiting for the pass. Jo took a turn around fadeaway and swished it! To lose by one. Yayyyyyy! Hehehe ’twas fun. He’s a savage beast now.

Year 10

Hohoho. Big year for everyone! Last year in junior uniform and the ever dreaded School Certificate, right?

Kidding? Yes, I am. Nobody cared about School Cert. This was the year of the first formal! The whole half of the second year was dedicated to the formal and all the gossip surrounding it. Looking back, it was quite funny hearing all these stories about what was going on and who was asking who and so on and so forth. With so many tears and so much controversy for so many people who were desperately trying their luck to find love a date (yes, I onlyΒ  did that because I just discovered the strikethrough tool), it was the main, nay, ONLY topic of discussion for this year. When I think about it now, I don’t know why everyone was so desperate to have a date to the formal. Did people look like losers if they didn’t have someone of the opposite sex sitting on the table next to them? Oh well, they were some good times I must say! So much less talk of the formal going on this year. Or maybe I’m just very out of it now (probably this). πŸ˜€

I remember the day after the formal, lots of people didn’t turn up to school because they were like, so totally wasted from sitting next to someone of the opposite sex all night. But the great Deva came to school, completely wasted from going to bed at 11:45pm, a whole 7 hours over his bed time! Kudos! But it was so worth it. The select few of us who came to school got to witness Don dunking for the first time at school with his cast still on. OHHHHH’s ensued.

So what else happened this year? Not much that I can remember. I wrote a short story for the yearly english exam which got 20/20. It was about a boy who farted in class, when the girl of his dreams said hi to him. I recently dug it up again and read it. It was… interesting. I shall upload it in a later blog when I find it again under my piles of grot on my table.

Ooooh I remember now! Best part of this year was most definitely the camp I went on: ISCF Leadership Conference, which is, to this day, by far the BEST camp I have been on. Well, I originally wrote something about it here but I’ll save it for the next blog when I talk about ISCF.

This was supposedly the last year of school fun and in many ways it turned out to be that. It was the last year that I didn’t study for my exams and the last year before stress kicked in but then it’s not like year 11-12 wasn’t any fun for me, being the party animal I am. πŸ˜‰

Year 11-12

These two years have most definitely been the best two years of my life so far for many many reasons. I won’t go through all of them because I can’t.

This period of time has definitely had the most downs but it has also had the most ups by far. When I look back on the rest of my life, on the 16 other years besides these last two, I find the 16 years so mediocre in comparison to these last two.

I’ll start with subjects:

For year 11, I chose 3U maths, 3U english, biology, PDHPE, geography, agriculture (accelerated). 14 units. Yeah, baby.

Year 12: 4U maths, 3U english, biology, PDHPE, completed agriculture (year 11), geography dropped. Relax. πŸ˜€

Chemistry: No, I did not choose chemistry. I find it to be irrelevant. And it’s not needed for medicine so there we go. πŸ˜€

Maths: Unjustly placed in maths 5 after acing placement tests the year before. But oh well. Worked hard and killed the first exam and got to move up to maths 4, which was the strike zone for 4U maths! And did enough to make it to 4U maths, thank goodness. I don’t particularly like 4U maths. It involves too much work to be good at and I don’t have the kind of work ethic to practise it every day and find it enjoyable, or bearable and it is therefore done purely for scaling. Yes, I said it. 3U maths is quite alright though. I can improvise most of it in the exam and still get a good mark. All in all, I think maths is just there for getting an ATAR. πŸ˜€

3U english: I quite like 3U english (if maybe just comparing to 2U). I’ve had quite good teachers and the exam is just one essay and one creative writing (ew, creative), so there’s not much to it. It’s a little hard to be good at it but it will be so worth it if it can cover for my 2U english.

2U english: Possibly the worst subject ever invented. Four essays, one creative, one comprehension? Are you kidding? That’s just way not cool. And module B, learning something like seven or eight speeches, only to use two? Ew. I would recommend for you not to do this subject if you’re not in year 12 yet… but I can’t.

Agriculture: Hehe. Good for HSC experience, if nothing else (or maybe good for setting you up to take it easy in year 12 if you’re a complete gun and can get an awesome mark in it). I didn’t find the syllabus particularly interesting (plants, animals, other stuff that I forget) and the scaling was horrible. Ag excursion was okay. I remember taking a bunch of angry luvos to imitate… no one. πŸ˜‰ Actually, no, the excursion was horrible. Subject was horrible. But I do have a memory of the day of the HSC exam. Wednesday and most of us were skipping sport because we had an HSC exam to do right after it. Except for Bryan (and I think Jero too). Bryan walks in while we’re all filling out our numbers and names and stuff, getting ready to start. Sorry, Bryan STROLLED in, swagger phenomenal, wifebeater disgusting and dripping. Bryan had sucked at ag the rest of the year but managed to drop a 94 in the HSC (after balling) to tie with the huge chunk of us at a total of 92. Monstrous. Ameya came second in the state. Shame, really. πŸ˜€

Geography: Hawhaw. I was good in year 10, so I chose it. 8 periods a fortnight, which gave me two random free periods. Partay! It was horrible. I dropped it. Excursion to PENRITH? Yes, that’s just how bad it was: I ended up in Thashan’s hood by doing the subject. And I got to look at the water there. Lovely. After dropping it, I had 10 frees! And after ag finished, I had FIFTEEN frees (as well as four less morning classes). Good good times they were.

Biology: Hawhaw loved it. I liked what I learnt in biology, especially about evolution and natural selection because I was always interested to see how all of that could fit in with the Bible and Creationism (might blog about this some day). But yeah, I’ve done well in this subject, besides the trials where I just didn’t study very much. But overall, I have loved biology and there are things in it that I’ll continue to learn after I’m done with school because I like it that much (whereas I plan on never doing any hard maths ever again. And I plan on burning everything 2U english related unless I have to return it to school). I’m sure that a lot of the biology stuff will also come in handy in medicine (“maintaining a balance” and “search for better health” at least). My favourite subject. More guys should do it. It’s manly. πŸ˜‰

PDHPE: Love this subject too! Well. 3/4 of it. The topic on health is possibly the worst thing ever invented after 2U english. But the topics on sports med and performance are awesome. Although there wasn’t as much prac as in junior years, LEARNING the theory behind prac for me was very very enjoyable. And the overkill 5000 word assignments weren’t bad either.Β  Even when I don’t study very much for PE I end up doing okay because a lot of it is similar to biology and can make things up based on my bio knowledge. It’s quite alright! Even though the class dropped from about 25 people to our little class of 7, that isn’t a bad thing. I think our class is quite the awesome (besides Angelina, who sucks. Jokes. Sort of. πŸ˜‰ ) and class itself is very very fun, especially with the ever loved prizes, which we compete for with so much intensity!

Studying has been a lot more intense than every other year, since these exams actually count towards something in life (although I’m sure studying has been less intense for me than others) and I haven’t worked this hard before but I’m sure that it will just be more work in uni. But I guess that is okay. I think that being in Ruse kind of prepares you for the studying in uni, since everyone in Ruse studies and you’re pressured to do the same. Having said that, I think that being in Ruse also under-prepares you on a social level for a lot of people because as Ruse people, we don’t know too many people who aren’t on a relatively high level of intellect. But I got the thumbs up at a camp last Summer holidays, when people I met were in shock when I told them I was from Ruse and they thought I was way too normal for that. Score! πŸ˜€

I think the single greatest thing about year 11-12 (or at least within our grade) is that just about everyone puts aside most of the bitchiness and matures, since they’re becoming adults. Everyone gets along, even if they don’t hang out and stuff, there isn’t hate between people and I think that is by far the best thing about being in year 11-12. Before senior years, I had my group that I hung out with and then a few people who I was close to, whereas now, the playing field has been somewhat leveled out. I still have people I’m close to and the people I hang out with but the OTHERS aren’t just people who roam the school.

So even though everyone says “ENJOY JUNIOR YEARS BLAHBLAHBLAH”, it doesn’t mean that older years aren’t good. In fact, they are WAY BETTER if you spend them in the right way. Older years just means less of school left, which means there is less of it to enjoy.

James Ruse

I honestly think that Mr Wearne was SPOT ON when he said that it was the James Ruse atmosphere which made it great. Over the years, I’ve felt this atmosphere in Ruse, where people just get along in general (although I’ve felt it much less in later years). But still, I don’t think that in other schools, you know who so many people are in other grades and everyone is just (generally) nice to each other.

When I first got to Ruse, I thought that it wasn’t so great. Everyone seemed so smart and seemed to be so into doing work, the bunch of nerds. But I very quickly came to love the school for everything in it, especially the people and the Christian groups (next blog). And even though I haven’t really made too much of an effort to meet people over the years and I COULD know a lot more people in Ruse, I’m definitely more than satisfied with the people I know and am friends with.

However, I am glad that I am leaving this year. I think that the school has got progressively worse, as a result of new management. It’s just my opinion, but I think the school functioned much better a few years ago. A lot of screwups that happen in the school would never have happened a few years ago. When I see newspaper articles now about Ruse, I can honestly see why people get a negative picture of the school. It’s comments like the ones in the paper which make people think we’re a bunch of douchebags after nothing but a good HSC pass to go into medicine or law. So for reasons like this, I am glad to leave now before it gets worse and I feel sorry for grades to come if it continues to get worse. They’re in for one long and crappy ride.

But aside from the small amount of hate in regards to that, I LOVE James Ruse. (EDIT: FORGOT TO INCLUDE THIS) Even though, as I mentioned before, I’m not friends with EVERYONE and I don’t know EVERYONE, I really am grateful that you’re IN James Ruse. Because it’s the PEOPLE that make James Ruse an awesome place. And not just the people I know or am friends with. So to everyone in Ruse, your mere presence in the school has made it James Ruse and that in itself, is a wonderful thing. I really do think that James Ruse wouldn’t be what it is without each and every one of you. I really will miss the school and especially all of you.

Ruse ’09.

Just gotta get out, just gotta get right out of here.

It is time to move on. This stage of life is ending but of course, a new one is beginning.

I’ve pretty much decided that I will do medicine no matter what. And I will do it without having to move away. I applied for UWS and UNSW medicine and I was very happy with my UMAT (no UMAT training represent, yo) and my ATAR is still okay, so I have two interviews to look forward to. It would be very preferable to get into UNSW, since it’s… not UWS but I’ll take UWS if I can’t get UNSW, even though the transport will be horrible. But if I don’t make either, then I reckon I’ll do medical science (3 more years of… school? Ew.) at USyd and then do medicine there as a postgraduate degree. It might take a little bit longer but I think that USyd would be great so it has its ups too, I guess. But whatever happens, I trust that it is God’s will.

Any way the wind blows…