I’m Graduating in a Week!

I know, it has been too long since I last wrote here. I feel like this is how I always start my blog posts – by apologizing for taking 475389 weeks off writing to three of my loyal readers (me, included).

But today is not the time to apologize – we’ll save that for a year from now, when I write my next blog post. Today, I celebrate the fact that I’m officially graduating in less than a week. Five days, to be precise.

Not only that – I’m also graduating with first class honors AND as the valedictorian! I’m shamelessly smiling to myself with pride now. For two years, my dad has been asking me about graduating with honors and I can’t believe I can finally give him that good news.

I worked my butt off for this and although I kinda expected the results I got, I NEVER saw myself as valedictorian. That was the biggest surprise. Sure, I imagined myself giving a speech at graduation a few times as I was growing up – but that was more of a fantasy I came to accept would never happen because I am a Mass Communications student. Everyone openly thinks mass comm is an easy course (it’s not) and that anyone can pull it off. With that in mind, I always assumed the valedictorian candidates would only come from the ‘high-end’ courses like medicine, accounting and law.

But I’m not going to dwell on that too much. However, I’m going to say something (tastefully) to all the naysayers (my parents’ friends included, and one of my childhood peers) that tried to put me in a place where I felt like I was lesser than them.

Fuck that. I worked my ass off and I know for a fact that some of them could never do what I did. I’m proud of my work. Took me five whole years to say these words. I always felt like I was not good enough or that my work was subpar. But none of those were true. I only wish I stopped feeling this way a long time ago so that I could enjoy all the kind words and compliments my lecturers and family had given me about my work and short films. I would probably feel a lot better and confident today. In fact, I would probably have pursued some of my ideas – ideas that I never had the guts to go with because I thought they were bad.

I have so much more to say but I’m going to save it for another day. I just wanted to check in here and get the ball rolling again.

I’m wearing a baju kurung and I already received my robe and mortarboard. I have so much to look forward to and a speech to work on.

 

Till the next one!

 

 

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4 am Thoughts

Up at 4 am doing some research for my assignment when I decided to take a break and scroll through Facebook ( like I did four minutes ago.Shh). I quickly go through my timeline, trying to resist the urge to NOT take another Buzzfeed quiz and then I come across a certain post.

Let me just say that recently, I was writing another article to post up on the blog about how we ought to understand one another better and not hate the other person for having a different opinion – whether or not that opinion is them supporting Trump or thinking women need to stay at home. I said in the post that if we all learned to respect what someone else had to say no matter how much we hated it or how offensive it was, that maybe we could change their minds for the better someday.

But that is so so difficult to do when you come across people on your very own friend list who blatantly post things they know will hurt you. And trust me, I only keep family and close friends on my Facebook, so this person belonged somewhere in between. He isn’t just some stranger, we are technically family.

I’m not saying you need to refrain yourself from having an opinion with the fear of offending someone (in which case we would have to stop saying anything altogether), but I think you can do it with a little more tact and respect. I like being blunt, but I stop short when I know it will hurt or discriminate someone else.

I’m not one who gets offended easily. In fact, I make fun of people who do and most of the time, I’m at the receiving end of my own jokes. But heck, every once in a while like right now, it gets a little too much. I’m tired of seeing stereotypical posts about Muslims and Muslim women on Facebook. I’m tired of seeing people confuse an entire culture as a representation of an entire religion – they are two very different things. Tired of all the political hate and everything else. I want a week where the worst thing we will see on the news is a puppy being rescued from a tree, or a cat. Whatever.

I don’t understand. You criticize Muslims and Muslim women and you view them from this little peeping hole. I would get it if you don’t know any Muslims at all, but you do. You know me and you know I don’t fit into that stupid stereotype you group us all in. But you refuse to believe in that because it’s not what you want to see.

Why are people so hateful ?

 

On Turning 21 and Adulting

So, I turned 21 last week!

My birthday wishes were almost always accompanied with either congratulations on finally having my ‘keys’ to freedom, or asking me when I’m throwing my big 21st birthday bash.

It’s like as if after all these years, my family still doesn’t see me for the boring introvert I am. That’s alright, I’m all about surprises – and by that I mean the kind of surprise that makes a person go “Ah..” , not “Oh!”.

I don’t drink and I hate being at the center of attention in any form – what more a party thrown just for me. It’s not that I hate people (I don’t), or that I don’t like having company.. I’m just a big fan of staying home in my room, listening to action packed music and pretending I’m in Game of Thrones or some other fictional reality.

I’m more of a “lazy-Tuesday-in-my-room-with-my-jammies-and-daydreaming-for-hours” kinda girl (don’t underestimate my art of phasing out). That, or I spend the day scrolling through Facebook, ‘saving’ articles I know I won’t remember to read.

The only thing I did want for my birthday was to get myself registered as a voter! And I made it very clear to my parents, family and some friends that it was the only thing that mattered, nothing else.

It has been three years since the last General Election and back then I wanted to vote for very different reasons than the ones I have right now – being someone who now has a more educated opinion on the political sphere in Malaysia than my 18 year old self did.

I woke up this morning with the goal of making sure I get it done and not end up procrastinating it like I do with every other important thing in my life – like driving. Imagine having your licence and not sitting behind the wheel for THREE YEARS. I’m pretty sure a recording of me attempting to park a car right now would end up being one of those videos that go viral.

After class, I walked to the printing shop to make a copy of my identity card, in case I needed it. As I was about to leave, I notice some drizzle. Literally three steps later and it’s pouring cats and dogs. At this point, I still had like, another 50 steps to get to somewhere with a roof. I was not going to ruin my hair and clothes since I already screwed up my make up before I even left the house in the morning.

But I was a girl on a mission (or am I a woman now?). So I decided to ruin my bag instead, and use it for cover.

On the way to the office, I realize that my dad was two minutes away. Normally when my dad says two minutes, what he really means is 45 minutes. He decided to turn over a new leaf today.

Long/boring story short, I convinced him to park outside while I go in and do the most adult thing I ever did in all my 21 glorious years of life.

As of now, I have registered to vote. I need to wait a few days, maybe even weeks, while they process my application and then it’ll be official!

Is it weird of me to register so early on? The next election is most likely only taking place in 2018. I felt so shy even asking the lady where do I register.

But whatever. I feel pretty damn good. I can actually go make a difference now. I get a say in what happens next and that’s the most powerful weapon in my book.

In other news, I have submitted my final assignment for the semester and come Monday, I’ll be done with my finals too. I can’t wait to get this first semester over and done with. Learning how to animate has been the most exhaustive thing to happen to me – and this coming from a person who created an 84-page coffee table book in four weeks, while writing a movie script and managing a club simultaneously before.

So it’s not so much the workload, but the fact that I’m doing something I don’t like. I realize how bratty that sounds and that we’re all going to have to go through that at some point in our lives.

But I now know what it would feel like to spend the rest of your career doing something you hate. You know that saying about how if you were to love what you’re doing, you won’t have to work a day in your life? That resonated with me so hard this semester.

I realize that not all of us will be so lucky as to be able to land a job doing something we are truly passionate about, but now I just want to strive harder for it even more.

I will probably spend the rest of my day wondering why Mass Communication students were required to take such a heavy technical subject that has little to do with our line whatsoever in the first place. But I can’t deny the trickle of good that came out of it.

The optimistic person in me wants to believe that everything happens for a reason.. Including the things that make you lose sleep for more than a week while ruining your biological clock and potentially shortening your life span in the process.

But yea, things fall into place when we’re not looking, right?

However, for at least a couple of my assignments, I did pretty well. And that was for the only two subjects I liked. So for that, I’m really happy!

Till the next post.

xx,

Kelly

 

The Accidental Fan Girl-ing

I have about six (possibly more) assignments due in a few weeks, but I chose to be irresponsible and typed out ‘WordPress’ on my search bar instead of “How do I make my animated character walk in Flash CS6”.

I’m not sure what I’m even going to write about today.

All I know, is that I had a busy week with very little sleep and all I want to do now is procrastinate – so that I have enough regret to motivate me into staying up till 3am for work later.  Don’t ever let anyone tell you procrastination is a bad thing.

^ My critical thinking skills are on a whole other level.

Sixth week of college is almost over and done with and I’m finally starting to get used to my new classmates, apart from the five I knew from diploma. I thought I was doing okay because after six weeks, people don’t remember how you tripped on *air* and almost fell on your first day of class. The embarrassing phase of avoiding eye contact with your juniors is gone. I thought that was the last of it.

AND THEN..

This happened.

So, there is this lecturer in college who I’ve been wanting to teach me since I attended this journalism workshop he gave about two years ago. I even got a copy of his book. My seniors tell me he’s good at what he does and that his classes are great. So obviously, being the person and student I am, I hope I end up in one of his classes. Cause, who doesn’t want to learn from the best, am I right?

I was caught up with something the other day, so my friends leave to go get some stuff done at the office. When I finally decide I can’t stand my own company, I go hunt for them and they tell me that they ran into this lecturer earlier.

One of my friends told him, “My friend, Kelly, really wants to meet you.”

“Oh, do I know her?”

“Nope, but I just know that she wants to meet you.”

It’s important to note that my friend is one of those who makes everything sound exciting, even when she’s not trying.

So yeah. I’m sure my lecturer, who had no idea I existed before this, now has to add the name ‘Kelly’ to the list of creeps he needs to avoid on campus.

There it goes, my first impression is ruined once again – before I even got the chance to speak.

I know, I’m overreacting, and he probably wouldn’t remember how my friend stopped him mid-way (he doesn’t know her either, btw – which makes it THAT much worse) and unintentionally made me the weird fan girl.

She means well, though.

So I went from hoping I end up in his class to praying I don’t. At least, not for another three semesters, so that he has the time to forget all of this ever happened.

But not me, I won’t forget. Because my anxiousness has a photographic memory of all the embarrassing events that has ever happened in my life. I still remember how I sang a song about poor people and poverty for my aunt’s wedding, and nobody told me that was weird because they thought it was cute.

I was 10.

Funny. All of these won’t matter next week when I’m losing hair over my impending Web Animation due date.

 

x

Kelly .

 

 

Of Ice Breakers and Old Faces

Update: I’m back from England. Out from the cold and into the heat.

Speaking of which, the heat is CRAZY. 34 degree Celsius at night. That’s what my phone tells me. Imagine what it’s like during the day.

So, my first week back to college was alright.

As usual, the first day of classes always make me super anxious. I spend the night before picking out what to wear – something decent but nothing that stands out too much because the last thing you want is for the lecturer to notice you, in the event they have a random Q&A in class. But you don’t want them to think you’re a hippie either.

“Give me examples of different cultures…. Kelly?”

Damn it.

And then I move on to packing my three pens into an oversized pencil case and I check to see if my wallet has my ID and money, like I did three minutes ago for the fourth time. I make sure my phone is fully charged, or just enough so I get to keep it close to my ear at night to increase the chances of me waking up in the morning. I set my alarms, the back up alarms and the back up for the back up, just in case. And then I try to sleep and fail miserably, like I do in preparing for any form of social activity with the outside world.

I honestly despise the first days of anything. I feel pressured into smiling at strangers I never met because my resting face is well, bitchy. Or so I’m told.

I try and smile at lecturers and be myself, but not too friendly just yet, because the last thing you want is for anyone to think you’re sucking up for good grades, even when you genuinely want to smile.

It takes so much of planning to look normal, it’s exhausting. I don’t know why I bother trying sometimes.

My aunty once asked me how do I even get on in college.

So my college ritual usually involves me sitting at the front of class, which by the way, take a lot of balls considering the person I am. Especially on the first day, cause I know there’ll be ice breakers.

Do not get me started on ice breakers. I always give the dumbest answers to the questions I’m asked and spend the rest of the semester (or life), as long as I know my lecturer, regretting it. They must think I’m stupid. Once I was asked what my favorite movie was in scriptwriting class and I said “The Dictator.”

I thought I was being funny.

This time around, we were asked why we chose to take this class and where do we see ourselves in five years.

I look around me and realize I have about half hour to come up with a decent answer and not royally screw up my first impression like I did in my diploma. One problem though, I don’t know where I want to be in five years yet. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a little confused right now. I’m not as certain as I used to be.. Like, can I say both a journalist AND a filmmaker? Or does that sound silly? Do I have to pick just one?? Anyway, there’s still 24 minutes left to come up with something.

I know I enjoy writing but, writing what? Again, refer to my choices above and tell me how do I pick just one?? I like writing stories but I also like discussing politics online.. OH, THE DILEMMA.

If I say news, there’s a chance she might ask me about a current issue and then I’d have to keep standing up and speak longer when all I want to do is sit back down and observe everyone else.

So, bad idea. Next.

I have 15 minutes left now. Apparently half the class wants to do broadcasting.

There’s one guy who decided to give his life story and an introduction to Asian family feud. But heck, I’m next.

My turn comes and I can’t decide if I should face the class or the lecturer in front of me. So I just face somewhere in between, which is basically a wall while I struggle with eye contact. Who am I introducing my self to, really? Haha, I almost fell too. I can’t even remember how. I heared J-Han say from behind me, “Calm down, Kelly.”

Apparently I wasted my time brainstorming cause class was almost over and the lecturer wanted to make sure everyone had a chance to speak, so giving a vague answer worked in my favor.

“I like creative writing. ”

She asked me if I liked to daydream.

“Yes!”

Oh well. So that’s my first week for you. I was made the class rep for Animation class. Ironic because I am the absolute WORST at computers and drawing – both skills you need to ace the subject. But, I’m not complaining. My lecturer seems fun. All of them are friendly and approachable, which is the most important thing to me.

Therefore, first impressions aside, everything else was good. Which is more than I could ask for. And I know at least five old faces from diploma, which is great.

Now excuse me, I have notes to look at and drawing skills to brush up on.

 

Kelly

Untitled

Hello again.

Today I am writing to you from Portsmouth, England.

My home, Malaysia, is currently suffering from a heatwave and while you think the cool spring weather here might be just what I needed, it really is not. My tolerance for the cold is just about the worst. You could say that I’ve taken myself out from one extreme to another.

Sadly, I’m not in the land of hope and glory for anything hopeful, nor glorious.

My mum and I were on our way here to visit my uncle who recently fell ill and were completely heartbroken when we heard he had passed away while we were on transit in Doha. The following six hours on the plane was grim, to say the least.

We were so certain we would get there on time to give him one last hug, but God had other plans it appears.

With that being said, death is a very peculiar thing, isn’t it?

It’s weird how a body can go from being full of life and personality to literally being nothing more than a shell of its former self. Even with that thought in mind, a lot of us feel and act as if the person we knew is still somewhere in there. I myself was bothered with the idea of my grandfather being cremated after he passed away. Just the thought of the body being burned and alone made my eyes tear.

Do you believe in life after death?

Has it ever crossed your mind what it’s like up there? I think about it all the time.

Do they meet other loved ones who have passed? How long before they ‘cross over’ into a different place or do they still live among us, invisible and ignored as we go on with our daily lives?

“Was that shadow I saw from the side of my eye ‘him’?”

“Was that smell I just had mean he’s here with us?”

There are so many things we ask ourselves so that we may use that as an excuse to give us assuring answers. Especially when it makes you feel less lonely.

And that makes the process a little more bearable for some.

I know what I’m about to say will sound a little ridiculous to a lot of you, but we felt my uncle’s presence today. Something strange happened and we all realized that it was him trying to tell us he was there, in his own mischievous way. And that thought made my aunt feel better. I could tell.

It put a smile on her face.

The Red Bookmark, an Old Diary and Childish Musings

The other day, I found my mind wandering inside the rich stories and historical culture that was narrated by an old book I recently started reading, the sound of my brother putting his pile of homework down on the dining table interrupted the temporary solitude I was enjoying.

Sticking out from the thick files and papers were a novel I remember convincing him to buy during a book sale last year and a dark blue faux leather Sherlock Holmes bookmark sandwiched in between the pages.

I recalled him buying that from London during our holiday in 2014 and him giving me the same bookmark, but in dark red.

Jealous, I stared down at my old and washed out bookmark that had a drawing of Cleopatra and some random hieroglyphs symbols printed on it and started to wonder where did my appealing red one go to. Don’t get me wrong though, I love my current Egyptian inspired bookmark I got during a family vacation in Langkawi, but this was far more attractive and mine was starting to look like a dried leave. Sort of. I’m exaggerating. I mean, it was cool when I was reading Chronicles of The Pharaohs because of how well the book and the mark went together. But still, the red one was simply too lovely!

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*P.S: You can find a picture of the red bookmark on this link. My brother’s book is nowhere in sight at the moment. But, it is almost the same thing. Pretty, isn’t it? *Cue the deep sigh*

I went through my already messy room and looked through the likely places I would’ve left the bookmark in and found no sign of it. Asked my brother and he is almost convinced he already gave it to me. I was disappointed. And to think only an hour earlier, I couldn’t care less about anything else other than the book I had in my hands.

Annoyed and frustrated, I decided to give my room a more thorough look and much needed ‘spring clean’. Let’s just be clear that my mum and I are incredibly particular about hygiene, so my room is cleaned and mopped everyday. However, tidiness isn’t exactly what my room is best known for. I still had Christmas presents stacked together at the back of the door and some books pilled over one another on my desk and near my bed. My bookshelf was and still is packed with the Mr.Midnight stories I used to read in school, along with recipe journals and these super thick books my grandfather used to give me for birthdays and Christmas. Everything was a complete mess, just like my thoughts at the time.

So, as mentioned in my last post, I decided that clearing or cleaning would have the same cathartic effect on the other. It worked! I got rid of old papers and assignments but kept all my textbooks. Honestly, I didn’t realize how much unwanted pieces of paper I had hiding in every corner of my room this entire time. I came across many things I didn’t have the slightest need for (picture below) but not a single sign of the red bookmark.

I know it seems like a lot of work for a tiny piece of faux leather, but if you’re a bookworm, these little things matter to you. You cannot imagine the frustration of having to go through all that hard work and old dust and leaving without the one thing you were looking for.

Anyway, I did however, come across an old diary of mine.

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‘Pink Power’ . I know. Go ahead, laugh.

I found the paper trail of all the silly musings my 13 year old self used to write about. Took me back to the days of school boy crushes and when I spelled “chip” – when what I really meant was “cheap”.

Going through the diary felt nostalgic. It instantly brought back old butterflies as I went through the pages of a younger me writing lists about my crushes and even longer lists about why I hated the catty girls in secondary school. I can’t believe I dedicated a page and a half of bad handwriting bitching about other half sized humans back then.

Oh, I just love how the paranoid kid in me made sure to blacken the embarrassing parts that could have potentially been used by my brother to blackmail me for five Ringgit at the time. Funny how after all these years, I still remember the words I blacked out and what they said.

I used to give all the boys I liked the code name, ‘Cat’, while my friend Charlene called her’s ‘Dog’. Lol.

I came across the page where I vowed to study one subject every day for an hour and double that on the weekends while also making empty promises to finish my homework on time. I roughly remember the thoughts that went through my head as I wrote those things down at the time. I wanted to be the ‘smart’ one in school. Sadly, that only worked out for me in English and Science back then. But I managed to make up for that lack of hard work in college in any way I could! So, I’m not feeling that guilty about it now – everything worked out fine!

I do wish I had continued writing in my diary regularly back then so that I would have had more material to go through today. But silly me was only inspired to pick up the pen when Elena Gilbert did on The Vampire Diaries.

Well, I didn’t find what I was looking for, but I did have a nice stroll down puberty lane. It was worth the while actually, since I’m wayyy over those days of my questionable taste in boys, cat fights and pimples. All is good and everyone lived happily ever after.

 

The end!

Kelly