Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Looking fresh!

So I've decided to change my layout. I guess the old look finally got into me. I looove blogger's new template designer. And the slew of backgounds, I adore.

YAYYY :D

Of writing

I've always had this subconscious dream. A dream that I'll be come a writer/editor. It's funny, 'cos most of my high school education was geared towards the Sciences and music. Not writing. Strangely, I was never one who had a particular interest or aptitude for writing and literature/interpretation of literature. Perhaps I wasn't exposed (or was rather reluctant to be exposed) to that area of discipline.

I wonder how some people can write so freely, with so much liberty, creative ideas and aspirations. They are able to express themselves with such clarity and precision. It awes me to read blogs authored by mere 13-16 year olds who write with such originality and flair. And I, who is approaching 19 (sighhh) sometimes take minutes to compose a decent sentence.

I don't know. Maybe I'm being overly critical of myself, or am subtlety employing self-degradation. Still, Homer, Longfellow, Shakespeare, Smith, and the like are shady and ambivalent to me.

Nevertheless, "Every word written is a victory against death." I'll hang on to that for now.

Hmm. Thoughts and opinions are very welcome.

Dreams do come true

HAHAHA. I FINALLY GOT TO MEET WITH BOBBY CHEN.

*punches in air*


It was generally a great experience. Other than a rather*shocking* slip on my part, everything went almost as planned. Though I personally think I played better during the exam. Ah well.

Auditions for the 10-day stint in Europe will be in August. Anybody signing up?

July seems to be busier than ever. Yiiikes.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Should I change my blog layout?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Inside the Red Border

The world's most influential magazine - the TIME. Where everything inside its iconic red borders is worth knowing and whatever is outside..well, not so much. Richard Stengel, TIME managing editor sure painted an almost egotistical outlook to the magazine. Not that I disagree with his stance.

In a time of information overload, TIME understands that information needs editing, voices need moderating, data needs curating. Separating the crucial from the trivia is the core idea which I believe, has always animated TIME.

So anyway, Time has recently produced a new coffee-table book which celebrates its extraordinary legacy of art, photography and writing over the past 87 years. *drools* I want.

The book generally explores Time's original mission, much of which is just as relevant today. Depicting a stunning visual and cultural history of the times we've lived in, Time endeavors to challenge the minds of intelligent readers, who are interested in everything from politics to technology to art to religion.

One of the reasons why I believe Time has become so effective in transmitting information around the globe is because of its dedicated journalists. These writers have indeed "went as close as possible to the heart of the world" thus chronicling history as it happens.

There. I sound like I'm promoting the Time mag. It has been probably the only piece of literature I had for a while when I was too busy to read anything else, and has served as a means for keeping in touch with the world. Though I have to admit that some of its lengthier, weightier, articles are obscure to the general reader and are, at times, bordering on abtrusity, Times does faithfully convey a global, unbiased view of things.

Ohhhh. And their photography is amazing. :D

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Here and there in the reaches of my current gray matter

Urgh. I might be switching to a conventional Bach prelude and fugue after all. The partita is going to take up too much time. More time than I have :(. *sob*

Nevertheless, any suggestions on the prelude and fugue?

***
I've been listening to a lot of Beethoven lately, which is not uncommon. And Mozart. YES. MOZART. And Bach.
.
Shubert's Wanderer Fantasie - I WANT.
.
Teehee.
***
I CAN'T BELIEVE BOBBY CHEN'S LECTURE/RECITAL AND THE MS CONCERT FALL ON THE SAME WEEKEND! *sob*
.
Sighhh. The vicissitudes of life.
.
I better keeping my mind busy to crowd out any grudging thoughts...
.
*scoots off to (relive) a few pieces*

Monday, June 21, 2010

HAHAHA

LOL Portugal's match with North Korea today was suchhhh a joke. 7-0 NO KIDDING!!!

Definitely siding Portugal on this one. Now, if they were against South Korea, it'll be a very different story...

Nevertheless for right now...


GO PORTUGAL!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Random thoughts in a random post

1. ARGENTINA WAS AWESOME
2. SPAIN BETTER NOT DISAPPOINT ME NEXT TIME
3. I really have to practice my violin
4. Thinking about Paddington pancakes makes me happy
5. I'm thinking of a possible switch to a bach prelude and fugue
6. Mangoes and more mangoes
7. I need to makes lists
8. Many lists
9. I need to get a new pair of glasses
10. MISSES WEDNESDAY BASKETBALL SESSIONS BADDDDLY
11. FreeRice.com can get word geeks like me hooked


I better start studying...

Friday, June 18, 2010

Sighhh

It's been a rather disconcerting week. For reasons too personal to mention here, I won't be able to go to both of Bobby Chen's lecture/recitals. Biggg disappointment. Then others things cropped up throughout the week that left me rather....cranky. And unsettled.

I know I know. I'm whining like a spoiled child.

Sighhh. I need food. Spiritual food.


"My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." James 1:1-6


True. Trials should produce growth, and the fruit we produce depends on our outlook. What a easy concept to grasp; putting it into practice is a whole different ball game.

Though wallowing in my current pool of depression, I'd better wake up and start facing these irritations head on. I need wisdom from God, and the patience to endure. Patience. That's the hard part for hyper, excitable me :/.

Gahhh.

Thank God it's already Sabbath. Much needed rest.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

So tell me why...

I've been taking forever to finish this book:




In The Great Influenza, John Barry has produced a massive and exhaustively researched description of one of the greatest disasters of human history. I was drawn to this while browsing along Border's medical/health section. Reading the preface confirmed my purchase. But gahhh, it has been months and I still haven't finished it yet.

Paperback. 560 pages. Humph. I should be able to finish it by the end of the month.

My skillful art of procrastination at work again.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Bach/Busoni

Gahhh. I can't decide. I need to choose. I can't. Please somebody help me decide.

Bach Partita no. 6 BWV 830: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6wuIgSSKPg

Bach/Busoni Chaconne in D minor:
(part one) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnoSeI3APSg
(part two) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLIDrJQ7BFQ&feature=related

Do click on the links :). While Bach definitely is purely baroque in style (pfft but of course!), Busoni actually took Bach's works and transcribed them during his day, thus resulting in a more romantic character.

As of now, I'm leaning towards Busoni's chaconne, but then again I'm a natural romanticist.

To be honest, I feel that I need to do more baroque and 20th century stuff to keep from being a lopsided classical romanticist.

Maybe I should stick with the Bach partita. Or learn up a new prelude and fugue.

I wish I never discovered Busoni's chaconne! Oh the ever-present temptation.

*cringes*

I'm still undecided.

Monday, June 14, 2010

More food...

AHH PADDINGTON HOUSE OF PANCAKES IS AWESOME!!!

Anddddd.....JCO donuts! *diiiiies*

Surprise. I'm turning into a glutton.

I'm going back the Paddington's whenever I have the chance! Who wants to come along with me? :D

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Seriously...

Just one Sakae Sushi buffet with MX and all my hard work dragging myself to the gym is gone!

I blame you MX >.<

So anyway, we ate. And ate. And slowly ate. Like gluttons. But that was last tuesday. Pictures will come later :]

So TODAY! Had to go for MY's house concert. T'was interesting. Had the usual fun :).

I'm craving for some good quality literature. Like Homer. Or smth about the Battle of Bunker Hill. Or some scientific dispute. Just something I can really get my teeth into besides food. LoL.

BTW I forgot. We had yogurt AFTER Sakae Sushi. Talk about extravagance.

*heads of to the gym*

*changes mind*

*heads to bed with a mental note to go the gym in the morning*

Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Letter to Garcia

One February 22, 1899, the publisher of a small-town newspaper was discussing with a friend who the real hero of the Spanish-American War was. He wrote down his thoughts in an hour and put them in a leftover spot in his newspaper. Soon orders came for more copies, and eventually forty million reprints of that article were distributed around the world. This is a powerful testimony to the worldwide recognition of the importance of diligence.


When war broke out between Spain and the United States, it was very necessary to communicate quickly with the leader of the insurgence, Garcia was somewhere in the mountain vastness of Cuba - not one knew where. No mail or telegraph message could reach him. The President must secure his cooperation, and quickly. What to do!

Someone said to the President, "There is a fellow by the name of Rowan who will find Garcia for you, if anybody can." Rowan was sent for and given a letter to be delivered to Garcia.

How the fellow by the name of Rowan took the letter, sealed it up in an oilskin pouch, strapped it over his heart, in four days landed by night off the coast of Cuba from an open boat, disappeared into the jungle. and in three weeks came out on the other side of the island, having traversed a hostile country on foot and delivered his letter to Garcia - are things I have no special desire to tell in detail.

The point that I wish to make is this: President McKinley gave Rowan a letter to be delivered to Garcia; Rowan took the letter and did not ask, "Where is he at?" There is a man whose form should be cast in bronze, and the statue placed in every college of the land.

It is not book-learning young men need, nor instruction about this and that, but a stiffening of the vertebrae which will cause them to be loyal to a trust, to act promptly, to concentrate their energies: do the thing - "carry the letter to Garcia."

General Garcia is dead now, but there are other "Garcias." No man who has endeavored to carry out an enterprise where many hands are needed has not been appalled by the inability or unwillingness of workers to concentrate on a task and do it.

Slipshod assistance, foolish inattention, dowdy indifference, and halfhearted work seem to be rule. Put this matter to test: You are sitting now in your office - six clerks are within call. Summon any one and make this request: "Please look in the encyclopedia and make a brief memorandum for me concerning the life of Correggio."

Will the clerk quietly say, "Yes, sir" and go do the task? He will not. He will look at you out of a fishy eye and ask one or more of the following questions: "Who was he?" "Which encyclopedia?" "Was I hired for this?" "Don't you mean Bismark?" "What's the matter with Charlie doing it?" "Is there any hurry?" "Should I bring the book and let you look it up?" "What do you want to know for?"

After you answer his questions and explain how to find the information and why you want it, the clerk will no doubt go off and get one of the other clerks to help him try to find "Garcia" - and then come back and tell you there's no such man.

This incapacity for independent action, this moral stupidity, this infirmity of the will, this unwillingness to cheerfully catch hold and life - these are the things that drive employers to despair.

We have recently been hearing much maudlin sympathy expressed for the "downtrodden denizens of the sweatshop" and the "homeless wanderers in search of honest employment" and with it all often go many hard words for the men in power.

Nothing is said about the employer who grows old before his time in a vain attempt to get frowzy ne'er-do-wells to do intelligent work, and his long, patient striving after "help" that does nothing but loaf when his back is turned.

In every store and factory there is a constant weeding-out process going on. The employer is constantly sending away "help" that have shown their incapacity to further the interest of the business.

I know one man who has not the ability to manage a business of his own and yet who is absolutely worthless to anyone else, because he carries with him constantly the suspicion that his employer is oppressing or intending to oppress him. He cannot give orders, and he will not receive them.

Should a message be given him to take to Garcia? Tonight, this man walks the streets looking for work. No one who knows him dares hire him.

In our pitying, let us drop a tear or two for the men who are striving to carry on a great enterprise, whose working hours are not limited by the whistle, whose hair is fast turning white through the struggle to hold in line indifference and the heartless ingratitude which, but for their enterprise, would be both hungry and homeless.

My heart goes out to the man who does his work when the boss is away as well as when he is at home, and a man who, when given a letter to Garcia, quietly takes it without asking any idiotic questions, and delivers it.

The world cries out for such. He is needed, and needed badly - the man who can carry a letter to Garcia.


Condensed and adapted from:
"A Letter to Garcia" by Elbert Hubbard

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Midnight rambles...

Hello. It's practically midnight and I'm still here. Blogging my life out as I promised I'd try. bleh. So what did I do today...

1. piano
2. violin
3. Bible
4. accompanying
5. music ministry meeting
6. Advanced seminar


So that's basically it. How very boring. Let me sign out before I bore you to tears.

Poor pathetic me. At midnight too. Gahhhh.

From a thankful heart

"God can do the impossible." There. Just one simple statement that sums up the past day, week, and...actually a few months ago. God has been especially good to me this year. Seriously. All the little things He has done, and the big, has been truly astounding.

I used to be easily stressed out and freak out on a regular basis. I still do, but am able to control it a lot better. This year, I find a calmness and sense of confidence and assurance I never had before.

It's a lil too public to post everything that happened, but without a doubt, God will bless those that FULLY put their trust in Him. That's hard for me to do. I'm the kind that innately relies on my own strength, often forgeting to put God first.

And so, for all He has blessed me with, I give Him all the glory and purpose to use my talents for His work.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Totally uncalled for

I know this is a really weird post that apparently does not connect with my previous one, but so much has happened and I don't know where to start.

This pretty much sums up my thoughts so far today:

MX IS ARRIVING AT 1:45 PM!!! ....and I'm stuck at home when I should be tearing myself to the airport to meet her.

What to do...no car la. Hah :/

So yeah, hoooray!

Maybe I should start blogging again once I recall what has happened since my last post. *mind swimming frantically*

Cheer me on!