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long overdue update

Well, the Camedia 5050 idea didn’t pull through, the shop ended up being out of stock…

And I’m beginning to realise my blog has a much wider audience than I ever imagined…

Car Geek-speak ahead!————————-

Got caught by the car bug again recently. Been staring at Saturday Classifieds while waiting anxiously for my mom to confirm the office getting her a car… her boss is one tough nut to crack but I hope he’ll agree… its just a matter of time and I have to be patient I guess.

Went to test drive the plain vanilla 1.6 Impreza the other day. My mom found it a little cramped in the back given its length was slightly bigger than our old Sunny. That’s probably because of the boxer engine configuration. Also, It weighs over 1200kg due to the AWD mechanism and the 1.6 litre auto I tested felt quite underpowered. The only viable option would be the manual. So cramped interior, higher fuel consumption. The handling and roadholding is fantastic though… curves at corners at speed without a hunch… Steering feedback is good.

This is one car you’d choose with your heart, not your brain.

Looking to try out the amazingly cheap Lancer 1.6 over another weekend… its almost a good 7 or 8k cheaper and on paper has a larger interior. Also has an interesting CVT gearbox option and comes standard with more goodies like reverse sensors. Will keep you posted.

I’d like to gun for a manual but the way my mother drives the van sends shivers down my spine and I honestly worry about whether a manual car would last very long in her hands… there’s absolutely no concept of engine break… its like there’s this phobia of the engine stalling that’s so paranoid that even when she approaches a red light at 50kph she’ll just immediately free gear and start braking very hard… with that dangerous ‘diving forward’ feeling occuring frequently while stopping…

but then again its not like her braking is any more gradual when driving the auto car… LOL… that’s why I wonder whether a CVT would build in any engine braking to help slow the car down gradually…

———————–Plans—————-

My interview with MOE is tomorrow afternoon. I have to miss the last CS401 lesson! *gasp* But I hope to do well and get a confirmation for GP at JC level straightaway…

Also, I’m planning to visit my dad in Cambodia over the holidays. We’re looking at first or third week of December since Simon has a church mission trip on the 2nd week in nearby Vietnam. Any1 interested? the tickets are only about $70 per trip

————- School matters

Quite a few things have happened: For CS411 a formal complaint has been made. Now I have my reservations about the way the course is being conducted and I do agree it is severely disorganized… Prof Javed has a lot of shaping up to fit into the way things work here… but I still feel that the subject matter covered was within my expectations…

I think he talked about the aims of specialist writing as in being specialist training to address imbalances in journalistic media coverage of specific issues like labour relations, against big business interests that are exploitative, women’s rights, minority rights, and other areas that news values traditionally ignore… news values has a very short attention-span and is hopelessly myopic…a dominant-discourse driven value…. which is why many journalists are agenda driven…

yes I know these issues are being covered in world media but probably what is meant is that the aim of the course tries to provide a framework and some starting points and content for future venturing into such areas that should be covered…

And what’s with all the philosophy stuff like Huntington, Francis Fukuyama, human rights and all that? It’s quite simple. We need to examine and come from some moral, rational or philosophical background as to why these areas should be covered, to what effect, with what angle, and with what intended aim. And also to write sound editorials and commentaries.

I absolutely regret that media’s role and purpose and what part it should play is not really discussed or debated (despite some attempts on the part of my classmates and myself to bring the matter up) but then we more or less can assume that these areas are to be covered and this course is working on that premise.

But once again, if you feel shortchanged, you can always seek redress. It is your right as a paying consumer of education, right?

CS401:
It’s coming to a close, and its been quite exciting… unfortunately I realise this is not a philosophy class and most people don’t want to treat it as so… its just another place for people to look smart by citing big names and sounding scientific and credible by using frameworks and such to justify whatever they want… without critically debating and challenging the various frameworks that are presented us and coming out with our own… the FASS shadow looms again…

Even Cenite’s worldview is gradually being exposed as the lessons begin to draw to a close… hah! He’s been exposed. Everyone’s entitled to his own views no doubt about it, but I thought he always says he never tries to show his own point or to influence us and has professional unbiasedness? πŸ™‚ well to be fair there isn’t such a thing. I think the important part is to be honest about stating where you’re coming from yet being as realistically unbiased as possible…and being critical in your approach to everything…

It’s just like the “Struggle for the soul of Islam” talk with Prof. Esposito… very analytical, systematic, fluid and robust line of discussion and argument… and all the time I was trying to catch his worldview but I couldn’t… because he was very strictly academic and so was the manner in which he addressed the topic… it was only when he said he had spoken before at Unitarian Churches that we understood… (even then I’m making a presumption that such churches only invite believers to speak)

CLOSING THOUGHTS
What gives, as this phase of life leaves for the next? Not much really. Earning a salary is quite important, having less free time would be sad but inevitable, but, its just a different set of things of circumstances and working conditions that’s all… we still have our longstanding areas of concern in family, church and close friends… but who knows what will happen next?

Because with freedom in Christ everything else only matters so much… and that is something worth celebrating…

Have you seen God’s Kingdom? I’ve seen in… in the hearts of men and women who live selfless lives in Christ’s name… I’ve seen it… in those who struggle against themselves and their tendencies to try and obey His commands… I’ve seen it… in those who willingly submit themselves to the circumstances God put them in, focusing rather on serving and loving those whom God puts around them than on what they want to do…

Lord keep me in thy Kingdom amongst your people both now and in eternity!

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword;
His truth is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! His truth is marching on!

from Battle Hymn of the Republic

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