Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Post exams...blues?

At last! Finished exams today after a long one month marathon.

I don't know why, after every series of exams I have this post exam syndrome. And I felt it again today.

First, it is the feeling of relief that the exams is over.

Then there is this happiness that kicks it when I began to realise that I'm really free from exams.
Then the brain says: hey you should party. Its over!

Then the problem starts. Coz suddenly it just felt so hollow.

Like hey I want to party. But there is just this emptiness.

Like the amygdala say: okay okay, lets party.

But the hippocampus say: party? wat is party? I can't remember..

After one month of rote learning all the materials that is examinable, seems that the concept of party got accidently deleted or replaced from my brain.

It felt like I forgot how to have fun after one month not having them.

It is like after being in prison for 10 years and after savouring the first moments of freedom, reality sets in and you start to think: what am I going to do next? Like you don't know how to refit into this world.

Or maybe the fun is not like the fun when you are having fun when you are not supposed to have fun, if you know what I mean. Like playing Dota yesterday morning and nite before today's exam. It was so fun. Forbidden fruit really tastes sweetest.

Perhaps there is a need to abolish exams after all. So that I don't have to suffer this post-exams syndrome.

But then... it means I can't enjoy the adrenaline rush I felt when I turned the exams paper to find out what is inside. Or the exhiliration I felt when I read the questions and knew the answers.
It is just like the Mastercard advertisement:

Poring over lecture materials for 6 times... 24 hours
Rewriting everything I remember down (hopefully identical to the lecture slides)... 36 hours
Turning over the exam paper and found that I knew nearly all of the answers... priceless.

Life's so contradicting.

Anyway enough whining. Time to start relearning the term party or fun. Happy holidays. ^^

Monday, June 18, 2007

8.05 a.m. today

8.05 a.m.

On my way to my exam venue, from the backseat of a car I'm travelling in, a blue neon sign captured my attention while I'm scanning my Clinical Pharmacy lecture notes.

"Barcode" it read.

I wondered about it for a moment, not sure why my attention lingers on it. Had I seen the sign before somewhere? This is not a part of the city which I frequent. Sure, I had past this street four times in the last 2 weeks to get to exams but had never noticed it. Nevertheless, the neon sign swirled around in my memory for a good few minutes.

It was like COPD... asthma... cough... barcode?

Whatever. I shrugged it off. I have an impending exam to worry about.

Flash forward 7 hours later.

I was enjoying a meal at Hungry Jacks, after finishing the toughest paper in the exam with relative ease when Woon Pang called. He said: "There is a killer at loose in the city. Are you still there?"

Truth to be told, I'm more interested then scared.

Spying the free Mx newspapers stand just outside Hungry Jacks, I sprinted out and grabbed a copy.

The frontpage reads: "Killer on run." Interesting, I thought.

Then I read these sentence and my blood went cold.

"The horror began early today when the gunman and the woman argued at the
barcode nightclub."

"About 8.15 a.m., she was dragged from a taxi by her hair during an argument with the gunman."

"Three bystanders - two men and a woman - went to her aid. The gunman then coolly opened fire, shooting the three good samaritan before walking away."

I'm just 10 minutes away -or maybe less than that, from being involved in a horrendous crime scene.

Such a close shave.

Then the event this morning wedged itself into my conscious mind. How the blue Barcode signage flagged itself into my attention. Is it a premonition that something bad will happen? Geez.. maybe I now process the sixth sense.

Shivers. Lucky I cannot get any colder because it is already very cold out there.

For latest updates of the incident, please visit Herald Sun. It is all over the news. At the time of writing, one of the man had died. The killer is still at large but the weapon had been found.

Condolences to the deceased good samaritan's family. And I definitely hope that the otehr two seriously wounded person are ok. And I'm also very touched by Woon Pang's call. Thanks a lot!

To finish it with a haiku:

Cold Monday morning
Exams send chills down my spine
Murder even so.

P/s: glad to see Chang Yang picking up my haiku craze.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Of Haiku and Honku

An article in the Herald Sun caught my eyes today.

Seems that using your creative senses to write haiku, the modern Japanese poetry can generate physical, mental and emotional benefits similar to those offered by yoga, meditation and other holistic therapies. Physically, they can reduce stress and blood pressure, therefore result in better prognosis of diseases. Psychologically, they can help people through periods of darkness and despair or mid life crisis.

The article centred on a particular person, who had used haiku to dissipate his anger at those people honking just below his apartment daily. It was a very inspiring story of how his resolve of no turning to physical anger leads to a state wide movement that actually reduces the amount of honking. You can read the story at honku.

After reading this article, I think I gonna write a haiku everyday to reap the alledged benefits. Writing haiku is so simple... definately simpler than doing sudoku to improve my brain.

In 3 mins I can come up with this simple haiku following the 5-7-5 syllable rule.

damn micrology
no matter how i study
still cannot go in.

I know it is a no-brainer, but it is a haiku.

Damn. Reminds me, I am having an exam tomoro. On micro.

Friday, June 08, 2007

New job vacancy

If only there is such a job in the real life. Then a lot of the top students in universities all around the world can have their dream job. =)

For those studying for exams, add more oil la. Brilliant-owl.blogspot got lotz of different kinds for you to choose.

P/s: I just complained to my housemate yesterday that the exams is just like a memorisation test. Seems that one of the lecturer heard me. He went the extra mile to do a very extraordinary test question, along the way revolutionizing the whole medical dictionary with new disease like lectitis and adding two more evil scientists to the world. I salute him for his creativity.. geez I am so impressed that I don't even feel sad for not being able to answer that question..

PP/s: The great antibiotics
vancomycin was first isolated by EC Kornfeld (working at Eli Lilly) from a soil sample collected from the interior jungles of Borneo. Geez I didn't know that..

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Post number 100

This will the 100th post in phiawz.blogspot.com.

I can't think of anything else more fitting to be featured as a mark of celebration for this significant 'achievement' other than a homage towards food.

"We live to eat and eat to live" so as the adage goes. For me I certainly loved food, including preparing and cooking them. These activities of cooking are even more enticing and fun when practiced at a time when I have more pressing things to do: studying for the exam. I found that cooking is very therapeutic and certainly serves well to ruffle the mundane routine of studying. Here are some food that I had prepared over the last week:

Fresh, crunchy and yummy hand-cut potato wedges

Eggs and vegetables on crispy pan toasted pasta dura

Authentic pan-fried wo-tie with ginger, sambal chili and vinegar dip

I also celebrated my birthday last week. Thanks everyone for the wishes, whether it is via snail mail, e-card, friendster, msn, telephone or in person. You made my day =).

And special thanks to those who sacrifice their valuable study time to join me in a birthday dinner and to those who got me presents too. And double thanks to Thow Kong for organizing the birthday dinenr and buy me dinner on my actual birthday.

My birthday presents are:

A Italian cookbook courtesy of Wee Loon and Violet

A CK eau de toilette from Heng Liang

A chocolate fondue set from Hui Bing, Pauline, Kheng Ying and Jing Hean

Thanks a lot guys! I am so so so touched.

To view some of my birthday pic, go to brilliant owl's blog. He is the only one with the camera that day.

Discoveries of the day:

1. Indulging in excessive alcohol drinking or smoking is more likely to kill you compared to chronically smoking hemp/ganja/marijuana/cannabis.

2. Walking on hot charcoal will not hurt at all if you do it correctly: ie. applying the correct physics theories.