02 April 2015

Start Them Young

Our baby girl Rayne graduated from pre-school last 21 March 2015 as the Valedictorian of her class. It's a feat that merited gifts, celebrations with her family from both her parents' sides, and immeasurable pride in everyone who loves her, myself included.

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Polo top used as dress: Zara Man | Cardigan, socks: H&M | Leather gloves: Temple Street Night Market in HK | Shoes: Adidas

Considering that she's the youngest in their class, she looks like everyone's older sister right? This must be how I look like when I'm with my friends, only I'm everyone's younger sister. Oh well. I wasn't able to take a decent photo of what I wore to her graduation but since this blog is about me-thoughts, me-outfits, me-reactions, I had to post accompanying photos that show what I wore from head to toe. You know, just to satisfy the pretend fashion aficionado in me. The rest of the photos were taken on her graduation day.

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Rayne with her classmates

"There was something that he lacked: discretion, aloofness, a sort of saving stupidity."
Over the last months, I finished reading two novels which immediately rose to my 5 Favorite Novels Of All Time. (I really have nothing to share so I'll babble about books today) George Orwell's 1984 introduced the concept of doublethink. To simply put, it's how intellectuals have to be selectively stupid. See, when one lives in a superstate like Oceania with an omnipresent leader such as Big Brother who dictates the expected conduct of everyone, free-thinking is not only frowned upon but more so, greatly prohibited. So even if one knows that Big Brother is just a concept and the history is simply a constantly rewritten novel by members of Minitrue, he has to convince himself that whatever the Inner Party says is true is the truth. 1984 is a brilliant novel that ticks off everything that I look for in a novel. I love words and how they bring to life abstract ideas. This novel didn't only display a new way of putting words beside each other to paint a different term but it also created an entirely different dictionary known to the Party as Newspeak.

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The greatest act of rebellion begins with an idea. But as others said, chaos resulted from well-meaning ideas. Stephen Hawking benefits from the advancements of technology but he's never short on warning us about the precautions of having a machine that's capable of being smarter than our race. He warns us to be wary of all the devices that Science is developing under the guise of innovation. Once technology can read what's inside our mind, freedom will cease to exist. Perhaps the government, or a powerful country's government for that matter, can then monitor every one's thoughts under the pursuit of the common good. Who's to say then that 1984's Thought Police are far from reality?

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"And that's what's frightening the life out of me. To have no idea."
The stories of Sherlock Holmes were so good that I found other detective stories falling short in comparison. Until I've read Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None. I've long been impressed when a book references another literary material so from the very first page of this novel, I was already devoted to finishing it. At the very heart of this, I'd like to believe that this is about a test of one's morality. Was Judge Wargrave's crime justified when all his victims were all criminals, who continued to freely roam around just because the law cannot reach to them, as well? As with all other morality tests, it can only be answered by those who are subjected to the case. Every one else either becomes a passive spectator or self-righteous commenters.

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Philip Lombard is my favorite character not only among the 10 "Indian boys" in the story but among all the books I've read. He readily admitted to his crime instead of denying the accusation like the rest did. Secondly, he's very intuitive and logical. His high sense of survival would have brought him out of Soldier Island alive but alas, the panic in the survivors bested him out. It's a shame how the only character who somehow saw the tell-tale signs, which were brilliant by the way (the poster in each room, the figurines on the table, and the glimpse in each of the characters' thoughts), had to die eventually. Of course his moral fibres were also tested. But he's decisive so he knew that if he would choose to stay with the natives, they will all die. To cut the story short, he knowingly left the natives to die and chose to save himself. Was it wrong to choose one instead of none? Again, it's not for us to high-handedly decide on.

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I can go on in articulating a few more of the themes in these novels but I'll save them up for future posts when I'll find myself at a loss for insightful thoughts once more (which is pretty often). To close, allow me to say a few words about my cousin's celebration. Since there were around 15 of us that day, her parents decided to have it in Yakimix in Alabang Town Center. I think it's just right that kids are pressured to excel right from the beginning to gauge whether he can do it or if he excels in another area. I grew up with a very lax attitude towards education and by anyone's standards, I've among the poorest study habits. A classmate never even had to dare me to not submit homeworks because chances are, I didn't even have plans of doing anything at all. But as expected, my grades heavily suffered from my attitude - well at least, in my parents' standards and mine. So I say to everyone else, a certain amount of push is necessary. If one wants success, then start young.

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