p pol The Adventures of Carboman: Mostly About My School Days

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Mostly About My School Days

Had a good progressive tempo run yesterday. Despite the cool weather I was sweating profusely at the end of the workout. It's nice to discover that there's still some life (read: speed) in the legs. Will go on a steady run today - to run it slower than yesterday. Justin was at the park yesterday. He looked a bit gaunt on the cheeks if I may say so, something he was quite happy about. Must be the thought of finally ridding of the fat he put on for his recent wedding. We chatted a bit about the upcoming book on Bowerman and on Ron Hill's participation in this Sunday's Ipoh Road Runners 10K.
Even though I'm not a fan of cats, Rohaizad's attempt to help a dying feline touched my heart.
The tall and slender new contract programmer in my office sports a brown top today. Her bra straps (also brown) are exposed. Incidentally she is also a runner having participated in several local 10Ks and also last year's NB Pacesetters 15K. While my unit is totally devoid of lookers, the company provides employment to many "happening" young women. It is totally unfortunate (for the menfolk, mostly) that none of them run at KLCC, if at all.
One of my colleague's daughter received 5 distinctions (out of 5 subjects she sat for) in her UPSR (Year 6) exams. I won't go into a debate of past exams standards versus present but today scoring maximum distinctions are expected of students especially in the primary and lower secondary years. Either the kids are getting smarter or the standards are dipping. Needless to say parental pressure have increased many fold as well. I never excelled in school. Maths and Science subjects were my poorest even though I loved the Sciences (especially Biology, not for its reproduction chapter, which was covered in a measly scope by the way). Brought up on a diet of 95% English books - I collected Alfred Hitchcock's 3 Investigators, Hardy Boys, Tintin and several Classic Novels - I never got round to accepting the fact that I was studying those subjects in Bahasa. Nothing against the national language but some subjects simply don't "shine" in the native language. My curiosity and interest were not piqued. With much caning, I did reasonably well in the lower secondary. My results then dipped over the years, my only noteworthy achievement was a distinction in the Cambridge Level "O" English paper.
The syllabus in upper secondary school expanded somewhat but combining the subjects I was interested in such as Fine Arts and English Literature was not possible due to the rigid curricular structure. In the end I had to settle with English Lit. My attempt at reading Shakespeare (creative fella), Fielding (funny fella) and Chaucer (wierd fella) ended in near disaster. Oh, I enjoyed the old books and tongue twisters and I even got round to buying a couple of Macbeth books (for their character critiques) and BBC VCD. But I didn't possess the necessary analytical and critical mind to write well about them. My school headmaster who taught us the subject (gasp!) was disappointed with a few of us. We were at times more fearful of him rather than paying attention to the books. He wanted us to read our parts like we were acting them out - with emotions! I barely made the grades. Therefore, instead of writing for the New York Times today, I'm writing race reports and musings which you are reading here. To end my posting, I still don't like Maths.
And yes, it's 17 days to the Singapore Marathon.


  • Having said that...

    You turned out well, didn't ya??? So goes to show, that how you fare in school is never an indicator of how you'll turn out in your adult life!

    And I think I say for a whole bunch of us runners that you're like the real smart guy among us!!!! Probably the smartest.. hahaha

    They don't call you DR for nothin'!

    By Blogger Julian Chan, at 12:19 PM  

  • Thank goodness you don't write for NY Times, else we will miss reading your interesting running write-ups!

    By Blogger John, at 2:37 PM  

  • If you had been a straight A student, we would called you Professor instead of Dr!

    By Blogger krunner, at 5:50 PM  

  • oh... the caning.... sigh... do kids these days get caned?

    By Anonymous PM26, at 8:43 AM  

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