Labels: events, everyday, movies
Labels: education, Malaysia, rants
I just logged my 10th hour of driving. I have come to the conclusion that I don’t like side parking nor three-point turns. They require you to turn the steering wheel until your arms break off. And you can’t even get a guy to do it for you! The sadness.
I’m legally allowed to take the driving test but I WILL FAIL. So I have more hours of driving lessons coming up and I am supposed to take the test next month. WHAT IF I FAIL. =( I will be very sad. Haih I really don’t like the test area – it has too many poles to knock into and too few yellow lines in the ground telling you where to go. There is a slope where your engine might die. =( Then you will fail. There are many ways to fail, really. Don’t touch the yellow lines on the ground. You’ll fail. Don’t drive into a tree. You’ll fail. Don’t roll down the slope. You’ll fail. Very unreasonable.
Mr. Phillip thinks Liverpool is no use. He is a Man U fan. Haih. But he thinks Torres is good! =D He also thinks Fernando Torres should go to Man U. =(
I have no sense of direction. But I think I’ll like this driving thing. The freedom. The lack of expectations.
Labels: driving, everyday
Labels: everyday, unsent letters
Labels: confessions, everyday
Labels: espial, Malaysia
Labels: confessions, golden
I don’t have the words to say what I mean, but I will try anyway.
Sometimes I forget what it is like to worry. I forget that exam results are supposed to matter and I forget what it is like to be scared. I forget that like me, everyone has their insecurities and their moments of fear. Sometimes the world shrinks down to just me and for that, I am sorry.
I can’t help you, other than to ask you to work harder next time. It is never my right to comment or comfort when it comes to this – it always comes out wrong. Forgive me if it looks too effortless for me. Don’t envy me. There are so many things I would give academics up for, a million things I would trade.
I don’t even know if you’re going to read this.
If you’re thinking ‘this is for him, or this is for her’ – forget them. This post is dedicated to you.
Here’s what I want you to remember: You’re special, and I will always be there if you should need me.
You know, life may not take you where you want to go, but it’ll always bring you to where you’re supposed to be.
Labels: unsent letters
1. What the hell happened to meritocracy?You know, what our history text books taught us was that Islam introduced the concept in Spain. They introduced 'greater social freedom' by judging people not based on their wealth, or who they knew, but by knowledge and skill.The UMNO Youth Education Bureau commented today that "PSD scholarships are being taken from the bumiputras to be given to the non-bumiputras. The quota for non-bumiputras has increased from 10% to 45% but the number of total scholarships has remained at 2,000.We object to this move because it now means that 700 scholarships for bumiputra students are gone."WHY is it that race counts when you are applying for help in furthering your education? Surely the powers up there don't want us to think that a certain race is better than another? That would be wrong because that is precisely the mentality that brought us the Holocaust and the Second World War. Racial purity as a philosophy failed the moment Adolf Hitler decided to act on his delusions.There are plenty of criteria you can use for the handing out of scholarships. Academic and cocurricular accomplishments, background. People who need help and deserve it. Don't give it to the datuk's son, damn it. If he can buy a datukship, he can afford to send his children to uni. If he didn't buy the datukship, then he is doing well enough to send his children to uni anyway.Give it to the teachers' children, give it to the police force's kids. Give it to the repairman's son helping out at the garage who dreams of breaking the cycle of poverty and could do it, too, if only you gave him a chance. We hear the stories every day. Our seniors we live in awe of because they seem to have done everything and more - yet they don't get the scholarships they deserve. No, they don't have ministers for uncles or neurosurgeons for fathers or society women for mothers. They are normal people who have worked hard, and dared to hope. 99.9% of our DNA is identical, yet we spend most of our time focusing on the 0.1% which is different.Race is not a factor. Yes, you say that the bumiputras in Sabah and Sarawak need a quota or they would not get into our local universities. They cannot be left behind, you argue. The truth is, if they had proper education and the facilities we do, they would do just as well. They could do better. They are being pushed aside. You point at the quota left for them in universities but how many students with bright futures give up in primary school and secondary school? Help them. Help them before they become disillusioned with the country and give up. Don't you dare say there is no money. You sent an Angkasawan to space. He came back and the experiments were destroyed on landing.2. There are so many things wrong with the Malaysian education system. It would be supremely ironical if we produced successful, respected graduates in spite of the flaws like Singapore does, but no, the sad truth is we don't. When something is broken, fix it.One example: I was sitting in a theory class on driving the other day when the instructor posed a question, told us we were all wrong, and proceeded to tell us the answer. I filed it away, then an automatic response popped up in my mind: that's not going to come out in the test.It is not my desire to be as shallow as that. In fact, it was to my complete horror that it happened. It was a piece of info that was going to be useful when I got on the road, and it might save my life one day. Yet my brain labelled it insignificant because I was fairly certain it would not appear on a test. This is ingrained in the system of almost every student in Malaysia, people. It is wrong. This results in people who will never go beyond what they need to know into what they could know. This is a closed mind: there is a box, and there is nothing outside the box.
3. Chinese is our mother tongue, yet everywhere in the nation, people are struggling to score an A1 in SPM Chinese. Surely we are not that incompetent? After all, we have mastered your mother tongue: Bahasa Melayu or Bahasa Malaysia (which have you changed it to this time?). We have even, lo and behold, mastered notoriously difficult subjects like Additional Mathematics and Physics. Why is it that a mastery of Chinese eludes us? Would you care to explain why an A1 in Add Math and Physics only require scores of high 60-s to low-70s when Chinese requires us to score, at the very lowest, high 80-s? The requirement for an A1 has even jumped to 94%. But of course you knew that. You drew the graph that year, didn’t you?
The Chinese language is the language of the future. The whole world is fighting for the chance to learn Chinese and grab a piece of the China pie. Why are you stifling the growth of Chinese in your country? You have countrymen who are willing to teach you the language. Why are you stabbing those who will help you in the back? You have to believe. You have to accept that we are Malaysian. We were born here, we grew up here. Whatever you do, we will always have love for the country, patriotism, loyalty. We will come back and we will give back. Have some faith.
Keep doing what you’re doing. One day the Chinese will all fly to Singapore, to Australia, to Hong Kong, to America, and you will beg them to come back. When they stay where they are, you will be angry. You will blame them and call them disloyal. This amounts to treason, you will say. And you will forget, like we always forget when we are in the wrong, the day when a member of parliament stood up and declared, ‘If you are not happy, then go back to China.’ You will forget the day when leaders of the country swore that the keris would be soaked in Chinese blood. You will only be angry because regret is not in your vocabulary.
4. This is an appeal to the Education Ministry. Moral education is a waste of our time. We are not learning to be better people. There is no meaning in memorising definitions of moral values. It is negative psychology at its best because memorising it? makes us hate it. Believe me, the integration of moral values through the subject Moral Education is flawed.
If you disagree, please TELL us how it is benefiting us and the country. Issue a memorandum, make a statement, hold a press conference. Don’t ignore the problem like it isn’t there. What problem? Interview any secondary school student in Malaysia. (Did you know that nowhere in the 36 moral values is ‘honesty’ mentioned? One would think honesty is the first value we need to learn as a nation – the reasons for this statement need not be elaborated. Besides, Lincoln has his own legend about honesty! You don’t hear stories about moderation, do you?)
5. Replace Moral with Geography. Somehow, someone decided long ago that Geography is not a required subject for students above the age of 15. It is an embarrassment. Most people wouldn’t be able to tell you where Turkey is, let alone the name of its capital. Who was the person who decided that knowing about the world around you is not important? Our three years of Geo were dedicated to Malaysia. Somehow the other 194 other countries in the world never made it into the picture.
6. Deciding to teach Math and Science in English was the best decision you ever made. Don’t shake things up by proposing to change it back every few months. Don’t give people false hope that it’ll all go back to BM; how are they going to accept facts if you keep feeding them lines about reviewing the system? So certain people have problems with learning in English. That’s why it’s called the education system, so they can learn. If not now, then when? You surely don’t expect them to miraculously become masters in English after they move on from secondary school? This matters. Please don’t produce another Nur Amalina who went to England as Malaysia’s top student and failed a basic English test.
Please. We criticize because we care.
Your children have been sent to Australia. Have you no faith in your education system? Then make the changes. They might not benefit your children, but they will benefit the children of the nation.
Surely you care too.