Thursday, May 29, 2008


Have you ever been anxiously waited for someone’s call, email or message? Boy, it’s such a wait, isn’t it? It’s quite suffering but it’s exciting at the same time. Looking forward to his/her response, clinging to the slightest hope that he/she might reply in anytime soon. One will eagerly anticipating the response, wishing for the best yet realistically pulling ourselves back to the most likely and sometimes quite disappointing answer.

And if the reply is finally here, even if it’s the simplest reply, it means very much to us. It still makes us chuckle and sleep with a smile on our face. Like a poor kid sleeps with his blanket on in a cold winter night, I smiled with affection after reading his reply. Finally I’m satisfied to called it a day, tucked in with a heart filled with warmth…and slight disappointment.

A post on KTSNdebaters's yahoogroup from me dated 18th Feb 08

Hello everyone,

I believe everyone has pretty hectic schedule these days and coming weeks before final exams' shadow begins to loom in again. Academic duties aside, commitment has been given to respective clubs and college activities.

KTSN debaters have not an established club or recognised independence body. Hence, no report is needed whenever we have meeting or training, no annual audit and treasurer reports and etc. Also, we don't have to take attendence for every meeting and training, which, come to think of it, now serves as a double-edged sword for our team.

We have the reason not to be aware of the trainings and announcement simply because some of us don't have "free" internet access to such information. We have the reason not replying to mails asking if you're available for trainings and tournament. Ever wonder how the debaters before you keep themselves well-informed of the team's progress?

We have the reason for others to personally sms us then only we'd reply "not sure" or "not going" without much explanation of the reason behind, provided they would reply. We simply don't feel the responsibility to be present irregards if a lot or very little people are attending the event. Hence we don't feel the responsibility to inform others why we are absent.

Debating training has become something we can "choose" to attend or otherwise, rather than the usual idea of being a member means you have the responsibility to attend any sorts of meetings and oblige to commit to any events organised by the team. It is very saddening to hear someone told me that "If the training is in KTSN, 'maybe' I'll attend.". I never thought of this can be a reason for not attending trainings. If you can make it to travel to Bangi and come back before curfew, then should the time spent travelling be an excuse for our absent? Well, unless you have exams coming up, such excuse is difficult for me to accept. Of course travelling (especially on KTM) is very tiring, not to mention we travel at our own expences.

But we have to sacrifice something in order to gain something. We can't always expect Bangi debaters to come over here. They've come over here for the second last training, see. We have become selfish whenever we want people to do things in our way or in ways which suit us best, give us the most convenient and etc. We didn't help up with organising the training and yet we expect people to serve us? I don't think someone selfish should stay in any team, such as a debating team, which teamwork is the essence of success for it.

It could be too harsh a rebuke for us to accept. One may think "for all the things I've done for the team, you call us 'selfish'?". Please, it's time to wake up. As we grow older, more and more responsibilities are rested on our shoulders, it's up to us to take it up or put it down. There are more things to learn to handle and give the seniors a hand in organising the team. We are no longer the baby we used to be. We were pampered. It's time we pamper the rest of the team and serve others, give others ocnveniences, willing to sacrifice for the love of the team and have a generous heart to forgive each other if there's any misconduct. Last but not least, loyal enough to stick with each other through good times and bad times, just like a family would do.

I wish so much for our team to grow together - matter, manner and method wise, in becoming a real, professional debater. And I'd be the proudest to watch you guys beating the other teams flat, be the icon in debating scene and etc. If only you guys could wake up from the dream, the dream will come true.

Cher Linn

Monday, May 26, 2008

Stop Dreaming about HIM!

I really have no whatsoever idea on what spell has hit me. I've been having dreams (ok, be able to remember my dreams) lately. It is VERY unusual because I don't normally have dreams or wake up remembering my dreams I had while I'm asleep - I do daydreaming most of the time, you see.

For the past 7 days or so, I've been having dreams in my sleep and I remembered some of them! If this is not the weirdest part, then how about this: this guy friend of mine has been appearing in all of the dreams I can rememeber, except the not-ready-go-get-married-girl-friend dream as mentioned previously. Everything is normal in the dream, seeing him and etc, but I still can't accept the fact that he appears in my dream again and again! By right I'm the type of person who can sleep deep and tight till day light, waking up feeling fresh, not remembering anything happened while asleep.

What is wrong..? Dreaming about him isn't a bad thing. That's the point. Because of this, I'm confused why do I bother about this..

Friday, May 23, 2008

It's Friday!

As a student, I always look forward to every Fridays for obvious reason, provided there’s no co-curriculum activity on the next morning. There was once I purposely registered my tuition classes within Monday to Thursday, so that I was free on Friday and during the following weekends!

I have just started my industrial training in Bukit Mertajam Hospital as mentioned earlier. Since Monday was Wesak Day, I only “worked” for four days in the lab I was sent to – the clinical laboratory.

In general, the laboratories in this hospital carry out the basic screening tests, while for other more advanced tests, the samples are sent to either Penang General Hospital or Seberang Jaya Hospital (the first and second largest hospitals in Penang state, respectively, followed by BM Hospital) :

(a) Urine FEME (Full Examination, Microscopic Examination) as in urine pH, sugar and protein levels using conventional test strips, and microscopic observation for the presence of crystals, microorganisms, blood, pus, and epithelial cells. Today we observed a patient’s urine containing loads of crystals. It’s sad to know that yet it really amazed me – our body can produce the kind of crystals which have different facets like diamonds (at pathological state, of course)!

(b) Blood analysis
- Full Blood Count is now carried out by machines. Of course, we’re not going to count the red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets manually, not to mention there are different types of white blood cells present. Even by brief assumption it is also time consuming. It’s like the busiest machine in the whole lab – very often there are blood samples arrived in our lab requested for this test because it provides a general idea on the health condition of an individual. Using machine is definitely more convenient. We only need to key in the patients’ identification data then the machine will run the test and record the results. It is easier for us to trace back the results, too. Sometimes the doctors can’t wait for nurses to send back the report for patients’ condition might be critical so they’ll just call up the lab and ask for results.

- Prothrombin Time and Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time are for detecting coagulation disorders. If the blood doesn’t clot within the expected time frame then it’s considered as abnormal.

- Staining of thin blood smear for detection of malaria cases. It’s kinda rare but we do have a few slides sample of Plasmodium sp. kept by the laboratory personnel. Observing microscopic slides are definitely a fun thing!

- Full Blood Picture: I’m suppose to learn this starting next week but I somehow manage to have a peek at the lab next door and learn the secret methods to produce an all-time 100% smooth thin blood smear and high quality staining result from a very experienced MLT. I’m very glad that he loves to share his knowledge. He spent time to explain to me and patiently watched me do the slides myself. Not only that, he’s also very experienced in reading the morphology (shape and size) of red blood cells under the microscope.

- Retic cell count: The abnormally high number of immature (young) red blood cells may indicate excessive blood loss for whatever reason, or other haematology diseases.

(c) Stool
- FEME: we seldom carry out this examination due to few samples are sent here. Today we did receive one, but there’s nothing abnormal observed.

- Feces Occult Blood: detection for presence on blood in feces. It may indicate gastrointestinal hemorrhage or other related pathology.

- Reducing sugear: The presence of reducing sugar in a baby’s stool may indicate lactose intolerance. Usually when the baby is having diarrhea once the mother starts breastfeeding the baby then we’ll suspect this. Actually I’m quite new to this, now still in the process of reading up on this matter.

(d) Sterility Test using Attest culture. I’m still checking out this test so I’ll keep the updates for future posts.

These are the test carried out by the lab I was in for the past four weekdays. Next week I’ll be attending TB and Haematology Lab, followed by Biochemistry Lab and Blood Bank, then if I’m lucky enough to be accepted by Seberang Jaya Hospital, I’ll be spending my last two weeks there to learn Histopathology (human tissue slides processing and reading) and Microbiology techniques there. My supervisor is kind enough to do the arrangement for me.

Overall, my industrial training thus far has been fruitful for I’m learning a lot from the people there and we get along pretty well, too. Thank God =)

Edited: Actually I'm not suppose to touch any specimen before the lab perosnels examine them. Hence I'm only allowed to repeat the procedures using the remaining samples after their tests, if there's any. Most of the time, urine will be abundant, but not once for blood samples. So I only watch them process it using machines. Yet it is still fine, for I am allowed to read the results and the stained slides =)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Night mares

Having two stupid night mares in a row really doesn’t make my day. Thinking back, the night mares were pretty silly and funny. But they did disturb my sleep and this morning I woke up feeling very awful.

I dreamed that a friend of mine thought that I told everyone that he is my boyfriend and that pissed him off. Well, of course I didn't, and we’re both good friends, surely we don’t want such rumors circulate among us. The thought of him being angry at me really saddened me. The emotion was very real although it’s just a dream. A night mare, I mean.

After that, I dreamed that another friend of mine is getting engaged/married (can’t remember). I do have a friend who’s engaged in March. It’s exciting to know that and I’m happy for her. But this friend in my dream, well, I’ve never known she’s in a relationship or a lovey-dovey kind of person, yet. Besides, she loves her job and *ahem* loves traffic jams – I doubt if she had time for all these. Most of all, she’ll never rush into a marriage if she’s not ready for it and no one can force her to do so. What happened in my dream was, she’s not sure if she’s ready for it! Oh, no! Half of me was already planning to convince her to runaway! Yet, I didn’t manage to do that because I was scared off my bed on the thought of her getting married in the first place.

Stupid dreams.

But these dreams are not more stupid than Myanmar military junta who doesn’t allow foreign medical and food aids to go into their land to relieve the cyclone victims there. Their reasons for being stupid? The junta are afraid of the foreign aids will reap them off power in Myanmar after 46 years of iron ruling there. Nargis cyclone was a natural disaster all right, we all knew that. But if they stop foreign communities to give help, the junta will have to pay the price for they’re the one causing secondary disaster there. The rise of death toll will no longer due to the natural disaster – it’s the junta that causes the loss of life there! Let the relieve aids in, stupid!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Of Thesis and Iron Man

Here's a short update and you'll get some idea what I'll be going through for the coming weeks if I didn't update my blog.

I've met up with my thesis supervisor yesterday and she's given me a suggestion for my thesis title: comparison between the parasitic contamination between wet market and hypermarket. I find this topic pretty interesting, though I might need to catch a rat right at the market and comb its hair to get the parasites sample attached on it - scary! And maybe to compare between non-cemented wet market and the cemented ones. Hence if there's a lot difference between them in terms of parasitic contamination, then maybe we can suggest to the local council to upgrade the wet market for local community's benefit. It is more to public health as well as lab work. I'm suppose to start reading, especially on Helmint and Protozoa - their infective stage, parasitic stage, mode of transmission and etc. Also journals on wet markets and hypermarkets. Basically everything related will do.

Industrial Training:
I'm going to start my industrial training on 20th May till 27th June in Bukit Mertajam Hospital in Penang. The hospital no doubt near my home but I'm still having problem with the transportation to get there. I wonder if RapidPenang can help... Nonetheless, I'm looking forward to the training and hope I'll learn as much as I can, and have a good time with the people there, too. Also awaiting is the writing of report regarding this training. Report...oh~report...

Iron Man:
Yup, just watched it. Believe me, as a person who doesn't fansy Transformer on the supertitious reason that robotic works are plain boring, Iron Man is more humane than I expected! The robotic part is pretty cool maybe because the director didn't play on it too much like the Terminator series. As for the story line, it is interesting and makes me ponder on the idea of weapons (of mass destruction) and its purpose. Last but not least, the sense of humor injected into the movie is easily understood. Fantastic!

Well, I watched this movie with Lee Fang, Lau, and Darryl at BTS after our debate training camp and a lunch with Ai Huey. That explains most of the reasons why I enjoyed this movie very much.

Friday, May 09, 2008

A Trusted Friend

I'm writing this for a friend of mine whose departure is never thought to be so painful that as I watch him walks further and further away, my throat tightened and words are jumbled up. I can only managed:"Bye, Thompson!"

He's the kind of friend whom you can fully trust. I wonder if this has anything to do with the fact that we're from the same home town but whenever I face family problems I'll share with him. It is difficult to find someone who'd find balance between sharing and solving problems. I can't expect him to interfere and give comment or solve my family problems. But he's the one who'd listen and be empathy towards how you feel. He understands that whenever I have something to talk to him disregards of the time, there must be something serious and affected me so deeply that I can't handle it alone.

He's the kind of friend who'd compose songs and let me be the first few to listen and comment. You can expect what kind of comment coming from someone who hasn't even pass the first grade of guitar lesson like yours truly here, haha. But he'll listen still. And I feel very honored. I still love one of his songs - How Can I Let Her Know. It's a very beautiful love song which will warm your heart and make you feel peaceful everytime listen to it. But *ahem* yes, without him singing in the song. (Haha, sorry, bro :p)

He's the kind of friend who's willing to be the chauffer for girls and go out for movies and shopping together. He even needs people to nag beside him while he's driving so that he can concentrate on the road. And he's even more willing to wake up earlier so that he can pick me up while on the way to Sunday service at his church.

He's of the same age as me but sometimes he's still like a big boy who'd insist to watch his childhood hero movie - Spiderman. He's the kind of pianist that when he plays the piano in the hall in KTSN, I can guess it's him by listening from outside the hall. Really. I somehow know it's him though it is very surprising to see him there that day - I was just arriving at KTSN for debate training while he's packing his stuff to move to HUKM to start him new term on the next Monday. By luck, I guess.

He's the kind of friends who can see you crying in front of him and force you to tell him what's going rather than feeling helpless. It's really rare for it's coming from a guy. He'll listen halfway and talk to you about the controversial Malaysian MPs behaviour in the first parliment. I wonder how does he know that it'll make me laugh amidst my tears.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Sensitised funny bone

After a few days of great depression, suddenly the sense of humour rebound and my funny bone is sensitised! I laughed when I was reading Teddy's comment, laughed when I was chatting with Shyang Heng in MSN, laughed when helping mum to mark her standard two students' essays, laughed even louder when chatting with Catherin Kho from UM. That girl is really random! Anyway, *high five* dear =)

I think I just need to readjust to the normal me, where stress and laughter should remain balance. when there are great depression, I need great laughter as rehab. How to get more laughter? Sensitise your funny bone!

Have a nice day laughing, folks! :D

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

When someone is leaving a team or a group of people, there will be response like "Oh, thank you for your contribution all this while." and other words of appreciation.

Even if the contribution is very little, we still have to say we appreciate it, or at least, don't say that it is insignificant.

But there's someone from the debating team is leaving. Why don't I feel his departure is a significant loss? I so wish to say that:" Oh, ok. Thanks for being with us for the past two years (though for the last year your presence wasn't really felt)." But it sounds wrong, hence I refrain myself from saying it out loud. He's already half gone for all this while - does it make any difference now? No, it doesn't.

Seriously. When one's departure doesn't really put more burden unto another's shoulder, I wonder if it really matters anymore. When that someone walks out of my life, I wonder if I really care because for all this while, he doesn't really help much in sharing the burden either. Though I have to clarify he did turn up for a few occasions to help up, but...really...I don't care if he's leaving or staying - though remain transparent.

Call me mean. But really. I don't feel sad. I don't feel like I've lost a limb.


*relieve* It feels so good to be able to say this outloud. :D