Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Every performance run without an adequate or proper rehearsal is always a nightmare for me. I've learned that I tend to work on my own, not utilizing the human resources available that would actually help me reduce my load and my stress if only I had mobilized it earlier. And I guess that's a major part of the problem, getting things done earlier, which I find impossible to do because I'm not organized like that. I'm not someone who calls people together for meetings, or to plan stuff, I'd rather handle things on a need-to basis. But up to a point, I realize I can only be in one place at a time, doing one thing at a time. A team would expand my coverage, and my control over the situation and I wouldn't have to live through the process worrying about what's going to be happening next.

The Security Seminar (previously called the S-cube Seminar) for our First Years was not the disaster it might have been, but I felt things were out of my control even though I was the college rep in-charge of it. I believe what Agnes said (perhaps in jest) to me, that today I was the least popular guy on campus because I kept everyone back when they could have gone home to study or otherwise prepare for their promos next week. I felt really bad about that, and I felt even worse when Cikgu handed me a loudhailer and sent me into the canteen to chase stragglers into the LT with it. Trust me, I used it sparingly. I felt it was just wrong.

I have nothing against the Seminar, but I wish it didn't have to feel like such an imposition on my part to make the students attend it. I tried to paint it in a positive light, but it is thoroughly disheartening to hear not interest generated from a new learning opportunity but rather requests to "be excused" from it for one reason or another. I never mentioned "attendance is compulsory," because it really shouldn't be. The information promised should have been interesting enough, and of concern enough for everyone to attend on their own accord, but the dismayed groan I elicited when I said that attendance would be taken felt like another nail in my coffin.

The students did attend the Seminar, close to full capacity the LT was. The Seminar turned out ok with the efforts of the MDC's OTT performance which was appreciated by the audience. But I felt, by the quality of the majority of the questions asked during the forum, the students got exactly what they expected/wanted from the experience -- nothing. How do we convince our students that we organize things like these for their benefit, and not that they attend these things for ours? One thing's for sure: my rep must be so bad now, I couldn't stay on as a Year 2 tutor next year, but I'll have to start fresh with the new batch instead. Hello, PW!

Well, I bumbled my way through again, then drowned my sorrows with KTV, a pasta dinner and good company. The song I chose didn't have pinyin lyrics, but everyone sang along prompting me with the words and I seem to have passed my audition for the KTV contest. Now to practice, practice, practice until I have a credible performance. I will NOT show up as comic relief. Shah, Anthony and I were a bit helpless while the rest of the group sang in Mandarin; Jong Yann easily outclassed all of us; Amy, Lynnette and Vince were OK; Mel preferred the English stuff though she could hold her own in Mandarin, but it was Thad who stole the show, displaying a proficiency of Chinese literacy that surprised us all. Let's also just say Thad didn't need the mike, such gusto that boy.

Sorry for the long rant. Pasta dinner at the Bishan Olio Dome. Penne in garlic mushroom cream sauce. Yum. How could I be unhappy after that?

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