take a walk around town with...

Thursday, July 31, 2003

found out that le-anne's mom is actually the hod for it in my school today! thanks to angela for blurting it out... and i must also i was talk-singing to nora using five for fighting's superman as my "tune" - complete with pepperoni pizzas as part of the dialogue!

went off after school to pass luke the photo i took of him at the subaru schools' mountainbike race - he seemed a little awkward. young chaps la, surely a little shy one.

adenan motored his way to my place to pick up the photos that i shot of him, printed at 8r. the photo isn't fantastic - at least one thing for sure was, i didn't set the focus point of the camera to follow the face, but the central spot of the frame. which ended up, the competitor's number was sharp and in focus, but not the face - a bit paiseh over this wrong focus spot thing, but this isn't gonna deter me from shooting more. my cost per 8r print was $6.50, and i asked for only $10 for each of the two 8r prints adenan bought - hope he's fine with that, especially since the face can't be really seen clearly. at least, i have the moment.

reminds me too, tomorrow evening i'll be going to brewerkz to meet up marshall regarding anza scg's photos at the team time trial - my first order from any of the anza riders. hopefully i'll get a little referral and word-of-mouth here...

a good friend just recently bought a nikon d1x, along with a nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 vr lens. gosh, the $$$ spent! but good for him, he's finally taken the big step into digital photography. speaking of which, someone whom last mentioned about digital photos only being good if it can be printed clearly at 8r and above, i believe my recent prints especially the one of the anza ladies' team, should be able to let him rethink what he said - $3 for 4r is no-go, but only a 8r print will be the acid test of well a photo is taken. yaaaaawn.

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

i've gotta call in to lodge a report again comfort taxi sh6370 - the driver insisted on pushing out from a filter lane, while i was probably zipping at almost 40kph - he just had to turn out from bishan onto braddell road though he saw me coming - and he pulled away so slowly from the lane that i skidded on my rear tire and almost wham-banged into the rear of the cab. the bloody bloke actually drove off, and didn't even bother to pull over at all. tomorrow he's gonna get some fireworks from me via comfort. 6550-8588.

today's observation via videotape, was up to dr mcneill's expectations - could have done a lot better, though. things like talking lesser, more activity time, more specific rules, not keeping my back to the students...

and i forgot to mention this saturday i'll be at singapore expo, to witness the presentation of the singapore sports school, named the making of champions. i will be there with my hod, and khairil. photo-time, anyone?

i can hardly sleep properly these days.

when i lie on the bed or anywhere trying to fall asleep, i can actually feel my strong heartbeat emancipating from my chest - i know it is not my chest expanding with each inhalation of air; but the sheer pulsation of my heart. literally throbbing, as people are accustomed to write. there's the sensation of a powerful bub-bub if i listened carefully. i can feel the pulsation of blood within the vessels at both my temples. trying to sleep, now seems like a paradox - before i can reach the peaceful state, i have to endure the pulsations until my body (or mind?) finally relinquishes itself to rest - not willingly, but by surrendering without a choice. but i enjoy being tired. if i'm not tired, something is wrong. you see, if i feel tired, i know that i'm still human - that's good. but now, my state of tiredness is proving more to be a bad hangover. but i'm a paradox myself - my mental tiredness has a set limit, depending on what is at hand. if it's an event that takes some finite time to end, with a finishing at the end of it, i look forward to it; but if it's more of an endless march with no direction, i can't hold on. i'll crack up like a pistachio. this sounds silly, but i would very much enjoy the idea of finishing a physically gruelling event, and dying. i'm not on a deathwish, don't be mistaken. i just want my senses to be blinded, to be fooled, such that i can pass on without feeling pain. you could say i'm a coward. maybe that's why i have thoughts about having cancer, or just dying from a traffic accident when i'm cycling on the road, to or from work.

i greatly savour the carefreeness of the dive trips i made in tioman. it's like enjoying what God has created on earth, and finally being able to see it after hearing about it, and watching it on tv, after a great many number of years hearing fables of it. maybe i've been holed up in this little island for too long that i've been brainwashed - i only used my passport for the first time of my life by going over to malaysia at age 23. i've never experienced a lot of things before, such as the long ride up north to mersing in the minibus in the pitch black darkness of the night zipping along at 90 to 100 kph - the lack of legroom, the seemingly neverending journey - these greatly opened myself to various sensations i would have never experienced had i been stuck at home in singapore. the long ride home in the minibus was the occasion that i'm exposed to five for fighting's superman, which opens a portal in my mind - to enjoy being so away from home, and yet not missing it. it's like deserting home, to seek one's sanity. the life of a wanderer, doing whatever i love.

it's probably about the same bittersweet joy of leaving home, in turn for tekong each sunday evening when i doing my bmt and bmt recourse a long time ago. each time i was boarded on the bus, i feel such a sense of calm, that i'm actually in love with it. i don't have responsibilities, except for my own life and safety during the training. it's so unnervingly attractive - leaving a place where i have no emotional connections with, and not having to care too much. the only major emotional experiences i fondly have are memories of my late grandmother who used to dote on me - i never felt so loved before in my life. i don't belong in a home, not until at least i settle down. ironically, i feel i am more at home out there, than at home.

back in tioman, the smell of the sea, the idyllic life of most islanders - i very much relish it. my heart is with the sea. i want to dive, and enjoy the sights that lies beneath a top canopy of blue reflected. that's probably why i connect somewhat well to fellow divers such as joyce and stephanie. we're born at about the same era, we can literally can take the pressure, and thoroughly love it. and from the dive trips, i have a respect for guz, though i don't say too much with him - why would he switch from working in jurong birdpark, to being a divemaster? could it be a midlife crisis? some of us bloggers have written something about it, but we don't know what will happen until we're there. i don't know if i'll be alive and around in one day's time, let alone years down the road.

then, why am i in teaching?, i sometimes ask myself. in the beginning, i relished the idea of being able to communicate with the younger generation, inspire... indeed, it can be done, it's not impossible. but i'm getting discouraged - office politics, red tape - i find work so mentally tough that i'm starting to crack up. i'm losing myself, my mind. i'm now a livewire - i'll blow my top almost anytime - touch me and you're busted. i exploded and almost slapped my sister yesterday evening. and i'm not apologizing - there's nothing to apologize for. she got me on a wrong day. and i've never, never liked trying to talk to her. now i start to understand of emotions that get bottled up, and not having a method of relieving it. i'm now like a walking timebomb.

a few days ago i came across this jpeg about passion - "there are many things in life that will catch your eye, but only a few will catch your heart... pursue those."

work? yes, i indeed would love to work, but work for my love. could it be photography, or diving? i would love to subject my body to endurance limits, that's what draws me to the tour. but i don't really believe i can make it professional, fulltime as a sportsperson, especially when i look at the economics. but i would love to... perhaps if i can finally find the occupation that i'm in love with...

i don't want to be stuck in teaching. i now realize, i'm in it solely for existence. i'm selling my soul for a price, for a legitimate government body. remember this - a salary is what you're being paid with to sell your soul - that's why if you're fortunate to earn from what you love to do, you've attained a form of enlightenment.

i don't have anyone to talk to about my real emotions. i don't talk to God that often anymore, since i left the cellgroup. i remember reading or hearing somewhere before, that humans were meant to have another partner, come the day. but let's see the difference between being lonely, from loneliness. if no-one reads this blog, this site, this entry - it's alright - i'm writing for myself actually. i so long wish that i had someone to talk to, someone that i can listen to. but the time is not right yet apparently. this wait is more of a mental torture. i don't think i can hold out that long until that day comes. i want to escape. i'm free physically, but i'm mentally caged. where's my bravado when i was younger? i want to emigrate to some other country, do what i love, and be forgotten. i don't want to have a family, any kinship ties, anyone to remember who i am, so long as i'm fulfilled by doing what i love, and people loving what i do. right now i'm far from being fulfilled. i'm depleted. i want to take photos in france, i want to dive, i want to do triathlons for a living. possible? impossible? i don't know. i'm not in search of gratification from others, i'm seeking gratification from myself, for myself. i need a special someone for company.

and i can feel my left carotid pulse on my neck. throbbing away.

Sunday, July 27, 2003

lance's gonna be in with #5! YESSSS!!!

last night i was asked by two different people (one's marianne, the other's kseet), if i were a professional photographer, if i had an assignment to cover. factually, no. i'm just a hobbyist. but my heart wishes for me to be doing sports photography.

but i cannot forget this thought of mine - whatever done in excess, will be a killjoy.

saw dr koh in the late morning, got some more nsaids for my back that's absolutely killing me. otherwise i stayed home to clean up my bike a little. finally i had the courage to disassemble my time pedals - the clip section - for massive cleaning. not that hard to do the disassembly and reassembly, as i found out. good luck to shimano users! they'll have a good time taking out each and every allen bolt, screws, etc.

went out to meet marianne at kallang mcdonald's, and also met ben there. she didn't tell me earlier that she was there to watch the fireworks! danged... i missed every single thing that was fired today. i'll probably cycle out to watch the fireworks on the actual day itself. we soon broke up company, as i made a beeline for the big splash to meet yiwen from nus, to register for next weekend's nus triathlon. let's see what good old me, with zero training, can do...

i made a call to the woodfords, and they were at home - so i cycled over there and passed them their sons' photos. the senior woodford was very generous, offering me 10 dollars for 6 photos of which i thought were mediocre, even in my own words... yelch! they said that they might be coming down to sentosa to watch next weekend's triathlon, after i told them of what i just registered for.

made a stopover at tiong hin - met two riders, each with a mountain cycles san andreas dh frame... cooooool...

Friday, July 25, 2003

missed out the bruce lee interview on tv tonight. this is his famous interview quotation - i pulled it off this site.

"I said empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water, now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot, now water can crash or it can flow, be water my friend."

just learnt that athena was from st nicholas' in the past, does she know caroline too? after all, both of them know the blue-haired girl...

talked to marianne over the phone for about an hour - she's pretty much better than some people make of her online persona.

good thing is, she's thinking of trying out triathlon.

urgh, received a ridiculous letter from nie asking me to pay $393.94 to them for this semester's fees although i'm not taking one step into there - just about a week ago i received a letter from moe asking me to pay back $48.33 that was apparently overpaid to me.

on a consolation, i've received a few more orders for photos from the cycling events i've covered. better some income than no income, though the total amount can be counted with 2 digits...

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

feeling better now. some interesting quips by triathletes...

"you wear your bathing suit under your work clothes to make a fast transition from work to swim on your lunch"

"somebody hands you a cup of water and you have to restrain yourself form pouring it on your head"

"you forget that talking about daily lsd (long slow distance) and speed freak some people out."

view the rest at triathlon singapore's website.

just saw dr koh for my sore back. naturally, i'm on mc today.

if i had only opened my mouth to even ask the old man in my "broken hokkien" on that fateful night of 23rd may, if he was able to manage getting up on the divider - he may not have fallen, seconds later. and that means he wouldn't have fractured his skull... and died the same night.

i'm trying to cope with grief.

sars, cancer, and the old man's death. inevitably, i'm inspired by lance's comeback to life after his bout with testicular cancer. the tour de france may be tough and all, but i don't really care about the riding. i'm in search of a role model who inspires me. just hours ago, i've read that lance won stage 15 of the tour although he and iban mayo both crashed. and jan ullrich actually not attacking for the leading although he was just 15 seconds from being the maillot jaune. isn't cycling one of the world's best spectator sports?

i may not really support him personally as a cyclist, but being able to make a full u-turn from death, and more importantly succeeding the fight from cancer that nearly killed him, is indeed a greatest inspiration i have ever, ever known of.

allez, maillot jaune!
photo by graham watson

Monday, July 21, 2003

learnt in the morning from staff ho that the old man whom i assisted that night in may, died on the same night. the coroner's report had reported a fractured skull with internal bleeding as the cause of death. sad, but life has to go on.

finished with school, i was going to take a bus to orchard - then there was jacelyn tay and zhu houren filming on location. earlier in the morning, there was another group filming, but i didn't spot any familiar faces. anyway, i happened to see mark and paceman outside liat towers as i was leaving borders, where i bought bicycling and runner's world. and i was about to cross the road, then i received a call from cherry - she was on orchard road too! she was visiting with her boyfriend (whose name i didn't manage to catch) for one day, and would be leaving tomorrow.

coincidentally, i also met vic, who's posted to east-something secondary school, and he told me karen was posted to the same school as alvin tan.

Sunday, July 20, 2003

desmond drove over to my place in the morning to pass me back the compactflash cards that i lent him earlier in the week. apparently, he took his shots in raw format, so no wonder for the usage of 2 x 512mb cards!

someone came over to my place in the early afternoon to settle the massive photocollage that has to be settled by friday. my initial attempts to create a 11,000 x 10,000 pixel a1 sized collage failed multiple times - in the end when i changed the output to one quarter the area, the entire file was 171mb in size. this is my first time creating a montage using 76 discrete layers - boy, was it confusing and tedious!

arthur changed his front inner tube today - then i learnt that ancient traditional bicycle shops also can try to pull a fast one by charging 8 dollars for "the best" cheng shin inner tubes that i can pick up for 4 dollars normally. check it out at this thread that i started.

saw george at the ndp preview show today - didn't know he was a saf regular otherwise! also saw romi, zurinah and another nie-mate, whose name i never knew of.

my hod gave me a lift on her car from school to home - i sure appreciated it, at least i'm not dead beat carrying my deuter, lowepro, a el cheapo tripod, two packs of packeted lunch (sorta - contained a muffin inside), my lafuma hang-bag and an umbrella. phew!

Friday, July 18, 2003

today's two curriculum gymnastics lessons went swell - ok - the first one wasn't that good, but at least 3-6 now knows my wrath. 3-1, on the other hand, co-operated very well, even i enjoyed the lesson. basically the lesson was a rehash of dr mike koh's initial curriculum gymnastics lesson with my group.

siva, handbag, debs, ah lau, siao lily and who-else? are all in jb for a merry time. lucky brats lol...

Monday, July 14, 2003

the photos for the saca team time trial are up!

took the day off on mc, having a massive strained back from yesterday's load.

Sunday, July 13, 2003

interesting day - indeed!

started out from home in the morning, only to meet two roadies by coincidence along hougang avenue 3, around tiong hin, who were both coincidentally heading down to coastal as well. one of them was colin (double "l"?) and the other was ryan. colin, i'm dead sure that i met him during the national leisure cycling event last year. anyway, these two chaps were very pleasant - they'd let me draft behind them all the way to coastal without dropping me - cool! bade them goodbye because they joined in another group, while i went up over to the team time trial registration tentage area.

met up with the whole load of cyclists whom i shot photos during the subaru race - and i gave some of them some of the shots i thought were well taken enough for keepsakes. well, this way, at least i can let people know that i'm around to shoot photos for their competitions, you know? it may be small money to give photos to people, but volume quantities aside, this is a very economical way to get to know more people by sharing a common interest - seeing oneself in action, in the racing garb. just 35 cents cost price per 4r photo will keep their memories alive for a lifetime, regardless of whether you set up a tripod to shoot the event smack in the middle of the road, or develop 8r prints to see if they're precision-sharp. that's for people who are too arty-farty - i'm a country bumpkin in the sense of photography, after all.

i shot especially more photos for team anza today, because from what i gather, these folks are very gregarious. i mean, after all, they are the usual crowd at brewerkz... you know? in fact, i was very pleased when some of the anza riders actually figured out who i am - without me remembering slapping on a picture of my face anywhere on my website, or the anza cycling yahoogroup.

daniel from cannasia was very gracious, he paid for his team-mate's (marianne) 38 photos that i collectively shot at the subaru race. hope she likes my shooting "style", or therefore, the lack of it... john from team cycleworx was one of the most generous, with a willing 20 dollar contribution for the 01 x 5r and 02 x 6r photos i shot.

on the way back, i met this chap called alvin, who happened to kit leong's cousin! and boy, was he surprised that i knew both mervyn and lionel bok. delivered 02 x 5r photos to kelvin's place, but later on his sister introduced herself as a staff of is-magazine, so she asked me if i have any leads for product photographers. will keep that in mind. then i popped by cannasia to talk bull with daniel, along with shaoxiang and two more riders. i managed to listen in to how daniel make sales to people, not bad. much better than he talked to me last time...

made a call back to singletrek, and once i confirmed that yann was in, i went down and passed him the photo of him with keith ellsworth. luckily before i went in, i spotted ah boy, because i forgot to pass him his photos... oops. phew - finally went back home after that. but truth is, there was a lot more people's names i didn't mention - because i can't remember the sequential order!

tiring, tiring. yesterday i finally told my encik that they might as well pull me out from the ahm team, since my schedule can't allow much time for me to dedicate to training in the first place. work work work - what life? i only manage to get back some sanity by cycling - for it makes me feel in touch with the human core inside of me.

by the way, girls, don't post your photos online - seems that any shots with girls will end up on sggirls.com regardless of age, location, modesty, looks, et al - these leeches who steal original photos and post them up again are really, really lowlife.

Wednesday, July 09, 2003

yesterday, i was too dead tired to blog. slept really early, about 10pm last night, and i didn't flinch to wake up until 9am this morning though i set and reset my handphone's alaram clock two times...

today's pe lesson was much better

Monday, July 07, 2003

went back to school in the late afternoon to take pictures of my school's pe and cca stores, and just posted them online.

also passed keng cher my bell helmet, because he needed it for the BB adventure quest event this friday. while talking to him, i met joo hie, and later, teng wee.

and i forgot to tell you guys how i remember the sizes of 4r, 5r, 6r, 8r, and s8r prints by using the space under my keyboard...

Sunday, July 06, 2003

just discovered that michelle was the mysterious rider at last week's subaru mountainbike race, on a rocky mountain bike! called her up and talked to her for a while, and learnt that her cannondale is consigned to be her "old bike" now. funny how things can turn out to be in real life. for example, one of these boys whom i shot at saturday's schools' race, is actually asmah's brother! small world, indeed...

Saturday, July 05, 2003

reached school at about 1140am yesterday - knocked off just past 7pm, because i was taking photos of the pe store equipment. can't remember much about last night except it was raining... nothing noteworthy.

today, it's slightly different. i joined arthur to conduct floorball play in the school hall, and i was glad because the students actually enjoyed themselves, though some would have liked to have soccer instead. but when you're talking about students in taf/h&f, any physical activity they enjoy is good news.

after spending like 2+ hours clearing up my school's pe store, inclusive counting equipment, and sweeping the floor, i went over to tef's, and met chrislawson and paceman there. had a short talk regarding foolish riders being a disgrace to all other cyclists by jumping with his bike in a crowded place. there were apparently at least two other times this kid could not even have the commonsense, by cycling in the middle lane of a busy road when a bus was apparently approaching from behind. maybe i got mixed up whom paceman was talking about, but we know all too well about this kind of people. irresponsible ride leaders who can't be bothered about where their newbie riders have ended up in, was another thing we talked about. we decided that we were talking too long there, and so we walked over to paceman's place where i saw his 2nd handed colnago something, that had 8 speed dura-ace on it, along with campy shamal wheels. i thought it was a good buy, though there was the antiquated shimano groupset, but nevertheless, the campy shamal wheelset... *drool*

anyway, we'd left his place soon to pick up mark and wer somewhere around orchard, then we'd went off to trek3 holland grove. he'd bought two jerseys, and soon we all made our way to twa - not before spotting the young chap with the yellow santa cruz v10 - apparently they all know each other. at twa, paceman bought another pair of defeet lance armstrong foundation socks, while i picked up two more. i now have five identical pairs of these socks!

on the way back home in toa payoh, i met naidu, one of my bmt recourse mates, the one who's a pretty mean runner then. too bad he said that he ain't running these days. later, i watched this show near the library where this medium (not too sure if i should call him one) actually quickly rubbed his bare palm on this red-orange hot chain heated in a charcoal furnace two times. a little revolting, but i don't know what's really going on. anyway, i'm Christian by belief - but i note that it's extremely interesting to watch the whole thing. there's the possibility of either way - all these being a make-believe, and a very slick marketing thing, or a very genuine divine intervention thing. i'll choose to sit on the fence regarding what it is...

i'm thinking of going for the 25km run tomorrow morning.

Thursday, July 03, 2003

woke up by gab's call, regarding the photo that i took. then i rushed through typing down my new timetable, sending it to dr mcneill, doing up some galleries - the pe store, and some tp-related files. then i was running late, so with a fairly hard bike down to school, i managed to get to it in just under 17 minutes, wasting around 1 full minute going slow on this road-relaying section just right outside school. so that means i'm blardy fast for this ride!

took over arthur's two pe classes today - for the first class, since it was raining when i was taking the class, and the hall would be practically impossible to conduct pe in, since there would be other classes there anyway, i took the class' height and weight. some of the little giants tipped my scales at 70kg - really! in the end i had a conversation with the class on basics of why our emphasis on their weight. the most unanimous reaction question was "when you grow up and marry, do you want to look handsome?" - all of the students in the class raised their hands. i just had to ask them a question they can't say "no" to, you know...

the later class, i brought them to the field for pe, though it was somewhat soggy - well, they did request it from me though i mentioned that the field was indeed soggy. the original game plan was to do let them learn how to punt a ball, but because i couldn't get the ground rules set up with them, so i only managed to teach them how to do this what i call, front-back running, which essentially is on a whistle, the front two of the two rows will run to the back of the entire queue, and this is repeated on each whistle. managed to pull this off, but then the only next thing i was able to do was to split them into 8 groups. at least the saving grace is that they've learnt how to do the front-back running thing...

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

went out with dawn's class to the discovery centre in the morning - but surprisingly, met one of the former nie canteen cleaner aunties there - what a place to meet! she's been there for four months now.

took a whole load of photos of the school's pe equipment, and found out that dr mcneill will be my supervisor for this tp.

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

school yesterday was hell. went to school early, because i wasn't told if i'm deployed for morning or afternoon session, so i took the defensive step and went in the morning. big mistake. i went to ask the principal to whom i'll be attached to, and she asked me to take down the names of the students gathered on two sides of the concourse platform - quite a lot of them - at least 50! later on i found out that these students were supposed to hand in their annex f forms to declare if they have gone overseas or not, so just because it wasn't signed, or the form was lost or for those who went overseas but did not photocopy the passport, they had to be mass-isolated from the main bulk of the student population. so me, being the afternoon staff who was around in the early morning, took the sole responsibility to make sure these kids do not leave the concourse. so there i was, babysitting these students all the while up till dismissal time! urgh, missed out my first recess break as well just by doing so. truckloads of fellow teachers also were witness to my unusual deployment, but because the afternoon session teachers weren't there early enough, i was the ONLY person doing so.

there came a big big boo-boo - the main bulk of the morning student population had finished their recess, and i let these "isolated" ones to go for their short meal break at the canteen - suddenly the principal just appeared right out of thin air and then i was told, "mr ngoh, would you not overrule my authority..." oh greeeeat - i've done something massive... she went on to the canteen to call them back, after letting them have a drink, and in my mind i was thinking, "eh, habish already"... i let them go because i sympathize with the kids, because if you take away their entitlement (not privilege), it is something not positive. it's practically the same as restriction of privileges in the army, but this was restriction of entitlement. i know that the students were kept away from the others for good reason, but no food, no drinks for the whole day, until their parent(s) came in to the school to sign the form?

when the afternoon session students started to stream in, this was probably adding to my stress. had to move all the "leftovers" to a side. there was a couple of icky cases - the morning session students whose parents wouldn't be coming until the evening, are they supposed to be released until the parent came down personally to sign the form? there was an ickiest of the icky case - this indonesian student whose parent visited singapore and then left for indonesia - the boy forgot to get the signature from her, and the principal wanted him to call back to indonesia (for what? ask the parent to fly over?) and he will pay for the trunk call himself!

eventually, i finished the day talking to my pe hod - she's very cordial - how often do you get a hod of around your age? best part was the mutual sharing of the pe fraternity happenings then and now. she stays around my area though, coincidentally. anyway this was only possible because nisa helped to relieve me from the boring entire-day task of watching over kids as a babysitter...

cycled to meet robert choy to pass him the photos - and got a glimpse of these massive photos that were taken of the national triathletes in china for an itu (world cup?) race. had a long long one hour talk with him that seemed to last much shorter, because i guess we finally can click now. i left for tiong hin after i left his block and bought myself a pair of sidi rampa cycling shoes - because my exus cycling shoes are busted. as i clipped in, i could instantly feel the "freshness" of the new shoes - the plantar fascii had a marvellous support from the very stiff footplate in the shoe - i'm starting to love my bike again! *swoon*