Friday, April 3, 2009

25 Things

(about me that you probably aren't interested to know anyway)

This is absolutely a copy-and-paste post. Social networking sites have brought narcissism to a whole new level. We can now write brilliant pieces selling ourselves like celebrities do, and make sure friends are made aware through the process of tagging them in the pieces! I never thought I would actually spend time writing such stuff, but then I was tagged. And well - what the heck! And since I'd already written the (very long) piece, why not publish it here as well?

The ctrl+c and ctrl+v text begins hereafter (names edited to protect identities, formatting and links included to increase dramatic effect):

Rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.

1. I was dying for someone to tag me on this one so I can show the world what a great personality I am... no, that's not true. In fact, I think, although a little less absurd than those FB Quizzes that everyone seems to be taking these days, this is still a very silly thing to do. But I do indulge in being silly every now and then.

2. My mouse pointer moves very fast. One of the first things I'd do to a new PC is to adjust the mouse pointer speed to the highest, the keyboard repeat delay to the shortest, and repeat rate to the highest.

3. 3 is my favourite number. I don't know why.

4. I am not a born attention-seeker. Not when I was growing up, not when I was a young grown-up. But having been in the teaching profession for this long, I can't stand it when people don't pay attention when I talk - both inside and outside of the classroom. I feel this acutely especially with my mom, who has a habit of not listening to me. These days, when she does that, I simply merajuk and shut up, and let her do all the talking.

5. I love writing, as is probably obvious from the length of the previous point. I started writing short stories and essays as early as when I was 9 or 10. I'd once seriously considered making a living out of writing, but of course, if you love doing something so much, you shouldn't destroy that passion by trying to make money out of it. As it is, I write to humour myself. If I needed to feed my family using words, I'd need to write to humour the reading market. It won't be as fun.

6. When it comes to writing, I'm an idealist (not a perfectionist, mind you) - that is, every piece has to be the way that I want, that I love. I still write with a dictionary next to me, and very often use it to confirm the words I want to use accurately represent the idea I want to express. I take unusually long to complete and publish the pieces on my blog because they'd have to go through several iterations of proof-reading and editing before I am satisfied that they are fit for publishing. After publishing, it is common that I continue to edit a piece several times, to correct errors, restructure certain parts, and rephrase certain sentences.

7. Probably 90% of my friends and acquaintances know that I teach. About half of those who knew thought I teach English. I never taught English formally in my life. I don't know why people perceived that I do - perhaps I do have an acceptably good command of it.

8. I didn't actually speak English until I was 12 or so. Before that, my main language for communicating with friends was..... Bahasa Malaysia!

9. Every day since 2006, I would read Bee Ree's blog in the mornings. It is to me like newspaper is to some people. Sometimes, I'd dig up the earliest posts and appreciate how far she'd come in terms of style and presentation. I do the same to my own blog, and realise I'm still the same long-gas from 2005.

10. Despite loving to read and having read lots, I am actually a slow reader. I don't and can't do speed-reading. I want to take the time to savour the words, the meaning they carry, the emotions they evoke. Laugh if you will - when I read a sentence or passage that is exceptionally beautiful or moving, I'd re-read it once or twice, there and then, like an instant replay when you're watching sports. Of course when it comes to long reports and boring documentation, I don't read - instead, I "review" and "go through" them - at the rate equivalent to your regular "speed-reading".

11. The first unabridged classic I read: Jane Eyre. It is still my favourite. To date, I must've read it 7 or 8 times over. Maybe more. At first, I couldn't understand why Jane would choose the old, blind and lame Rochester over the young and handsome St John. Later, I couldn't understand why I was so stupid and didn't read the book properly the first time.

12. My favourite Charles Dickens is David Copperfield. My favourite David Copperfield is Hugh Dancy :)

13. Random thought: I can't believe I'm at the 13th item only. Must I go all the way to the 25th? Should I stop now and change the title from '25 Things' to '13 Things'? But 13 isn't that nice a number...

14. OK - how about this? I love my height, or the lack of. My fellow Penguin, who gloats excessively upon the fact that she is a GRAND 2cm taller than me, disagrees. She insists she wouldn't mind being a couple inches taller. Well, I wouldn't mind being a couple millions (preferably USD, but RM will do better than nothing) richer.

15. In contrast with the height, I am not crazy about my weight. Mind you, I am aware that I am not fat (so spare me the "you are not fat larrr" drama) but remember, no woman is ever thin enough, and I am a proud member of the fairer sex.

16. The only down side of being not fat (and therefore not heavy) is that people can very easily throw me around in the dojo like a rag doll. You must also realise that this point could had been a part of the previous point, but I'd purposely separated them to help fulfill this 25-point note.

17. The darnest thing someone said to me about my height: At what age did you stop growing?

18. The darnest thing someone said to me about my weight: Girl, you are slim, but your legs are quite fat, eh?

(and that's two more points down on the topics of height and weight!)

19. I love to sing because my father loved to sing, and loved good singing. I grew up listening to his Chinese classics and English oldies. I never really listened to contemporary music until I was almost out of my teens. And thanks to my father, I only like to listen to artists who have quality voice, who can sing very well, and who pronounce the lyrics clearly (which explains my obsession with Sarah Brightman and Jason Mraz). Other qualities such as incredible song-writing capability and amazing showmanship (ie. Mraz) are bonuses.

20. I actually don't recall my father ever having thought I sang well. The first person to praise my singing voice, even before I found it, was a trainee teacher in my school, when I was 11. I remember his name - Cikgu Azman. Thank you :)

(and that's two more points down on singing! woo hoooo!)

21. I have never scratched anyone's car on purpose. Never! Well, once or twice I did leave a mark on the car parked next to mine when I swung my door out too hard - but those must be categorized as "accidental".

22. I don't eat beef. Notice the word "don't". Most others would say they can't eat beef. I don't eat beef. There is a significant difference.

23. I don't eat raw cucumber. Anyone who'd had meals with me before knows. And I eat very slowly - first to start, last to finish. My bestfriend and Big Eyes love to mention this whenever we meet for food, and I appreciate them paying me that sort of attention.

24. I've been told I'm funny. I don't mean to be, or perhaps I do - I like it when I make people laugh.

25. I've also been told I'm spoilt, stubborn, unreasonable, demanding, fierce, self-opinionated, bossy, and definitely a you-do-this-my-way-or-else person with the memory of an elephant (ie, I remember what you said to me 10 years ago, especially if it wasn't something nice).

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