Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Here

Loneliness clarifies.

The two words above struck me the most whilst studying this poet called Philip Larkin. I found it to be so very accurate. I do know of some people who cannot stand being alone..literally. They must have at least a few (preferably a whole crowd) of people around them all the time. They cannot bear doing the most mundane tasks such as having lunch or even walking alone. I find that weird because I enjoy my own company a lot. I feel like I can be myself when I'm alone, and I don't have to say or act in a way that would please others, and this statement by Larkin, that loneliness is actually clarifying, really moved me. Its as if he's saying that the absence of company also means the lowering of expectations, the lightening of burdens, that the path is clear for one to find one's self without any pressures or influences. And finding yourself brings you a step closer towards finding the meaning of life itself, a theme that is recurring in a lot of Larkin's poems.

Here is unfenced existence:
Facing the sun, untalkative, out of reach.

This clarifying loneliness then allows one to find that place where we can have an unrestricted, free existence. Unfenced existence. Do you see the beauty in that phrase? It is what a lot of us only dream of, but can never attain. Out of reach. Because the reality is, we all live within constraints. We are never completely free from the rigidity, the restrictions, the ropes that hold us back, due to the fact that we live within a society and whatever we do affects others in some way or the other.

That's why, loneliness clarifies.

Mr. Larkin, you're not too bad after all.

p/s: In case you're wondering why this post is so..profound, I'm actually practicing for my Unit 4 Literature coursework :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Bukan Nak Buat Lawak, Betul!

Mungkin orang yang baca blog ni tertanya-tanya kenapa Aira tak pernah (atau jarang-jarang) berblog dalam Bahasa Melayu. Mungkin juga ada orang yang ingat Aira ni tak reti berbahasa Melayu dah, ataupun dah tak nak berbahasa Melayu. Sebenarnya, bukan tak suka/tak nak..cuma dah lama sangat tak tulis karangan Melayu ni, sejak lepas SPM tak tulis-tulis, jadinya tak berapa nak pandai dah. Boleh tu boleh, cuma nanti campur-campur dengan English nanti jadi rojak, tak sedap baca. Tujuan berblog bagi Aira sebenarnya ialah untuk latih diri mengarang dengan baik. Jadi kalau anda semua tergelak-gelak baca 'blog post' kali ni, gelak lah ye. Sebab memang kelakar pun, tapi nak jugak la sekali-sekala berblog dalam Bahasa Melayu ni. Takut nanti dah tak reti langsung pulak mengarang dalam BM, susah nanti.

Jangan salah faham, Aira sebenarnya bukannnya tak fasih berbahasa Melayu. Dekat rumah, memang kebanyakan masa cakap Melayu pun. Cuma campur-campur lah. Tu yang tak seronok tu. Haha.

Jadi, apakah motif post kali ni selain daripada ingin membuktikan bahawa bahasa Melayu Aira belum lagi berkarat? Hmmm. Tak pasti lah. Kalau nak cerita pasal kolej, rasanya macam tak ada sangat benda yang berlainan untuk diceritakan. Semuanya benda yang bosan dan sama - kerja banyak, stress, takut dan macam-macam lagi. Macam tak ada modal lain dah.

Mungkin Aira boleh ceritakan pasal sambutan Raya tahun ni. Seperti biasa, hari pertama di Klang, rumah nenek dan atuk. Makan memang tak payah cerita lah, rasanya baru raya pertama tapi berat dah naik balik. Sia-sia puasa sebulan. Haish.

Raya kali ni Aira jemput kawan-kawan baik dari Melawati datang rumah makan-makan sikit. Belle, Farah, Nadrah, Rifdi, Dan dan Ruslan. Aira gembira sangat jumpa diorang ni sebab bukan sahaja dah lama tak berkumpul ramai-ramai disebabkan kesibukan masing-masing di kolej/universiti, tapi Aira seronok tengok diorang ni masih kekal dengan karakter dan personaliti masing-masing yang tetap sama..tetap orang yang Aira kenal sejak sekolah dulu. Rasa bersyukur dapat kawan-kawan yang bukan sahaja baik, tetapi unik karakternya setiap sorang.

Belle yang selalu memahami dan kuat makan, Farah yang sentiasa sensible (maaflah, betul-betul tak tau sensible tu macam mana nak ekspres dalam Bahasa Melayu), Nadrah yang sentiasa buat Aira ketawa dengan gelagatnya yang mencuit hati (ya Allah!), Rifdi yang susah nak dibaca perasaannya tetapi sangat-sangat baik, Dan yang kreatif, ceria dan kelakar..dan Ruslan yang pandai mengambil hati. Semuanya Aira sayang, dan Aira seronok dapat kawan macam korang yang unik dan serba melengkapi antara satu sama lain. Terima kasih banyak-banyak sebab sudi datang rumah Aira beraya :)

Coursework Sastera Bahasa Inggeris masih juga belum selesai dan Aira disini tengah berblog. Tak tau apa nak jadi. Aira harap anda semua terhibur dengan post kali ini. Bukan tujuan untuk buat lawak, cuma nak membuktikan pada diri Aira sendiri yang Aira masih mampu mengarang dalam BM. Tapi kalau anda nak ketawa, ketawa lah. Sebab Aira pun nak tergelak dah ni.

Jaga diri anda semua!

Irreplaceable

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Vamos Rafa!

This is my current desktop wallpaper:

At the age of 24, this man has achieved:
- 18 Masters 1000 titles (the most of all-time)
- Three Davis Cups
- The Olympic Gold Medal
- 9 Grand Slams (5 French Opens, 2 Wimbledons, 1 Australian Open, 1 US Open)

and the ultimate...

- The Career Grand Slam (winning all 4 Grand Slams at least once in his career)

All the while maintaining an endearing, humble personality. He is already proven to be the best clay-court player in history, yet his achievements show time and again that he is indeed A Man of All Surfaces. He firmly shrugs away any comparisons between him and Federer, whom he looks up to as a role model and whose achievements he believes he will never surpass. Yet at his age, who is to say he won't? He has achieved more than Federer has when he was his age (Federer only got his Career Slam at the age of 28 after winning Roland Garros last year). I can list down countless other records this young man has broken, yet it is his off-court attitude that truly makes him a champion. Read any article about him and it's bound to mention how polite and well-mannered he is towards practically everyone - journalists, photographers, fans. His coach, uncle and mentor Toni Nadal has done a good job with him. In an age where its a norm for athletes to cheat on their wives, abuse drugs and god-knows-what-else, Rafa maintains a good relationship with his family (he still lives with them in their house in Mallorca, Spain).

Kids should start idolizing youths like these instead of those celebrities frolicking around E! Entertainment. Seriously. He is already my role-model, along with men like Barack Obama, people who have achieved so much at such a young age.

You will continue writing your own chapter in tennis history, Rafael Nadal. I'm sure of it. Can't wait for the Australian Open next year! :D

VAMOS RAFA!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Nothing To Be Said

My apologies for the lack of any posts for the past few weeks. I can't really find an excuse for my silence, to say that I don't have anything to talk about would be a lie, for those who know me (and are on my Facebook) would know that I ALWAYS have something to say about almost everything. No, my lack of posts isn't due to the lack of things to comment upon, but rather due to the fact that there are too many things going on out there that I find it easier to just rant about them on my Facebook status.

The second half of my last semester at HELP has begun since the last time I blogged. We've received our June exam results and classes have resumed as usual. Its mid September now, which means that most of us have started panicking. UCAS applications have started, and that alone has taken up so much time. Making my uni choices, writing my personal statement, all those deadlines to keep in mind. The effects of the June exam results have barely settled and registration for the January exams are already open. So now I'm supposed to think about which papers to retake, whether or not I can cope with so many papers, 2 courseworks, the exam timetable..etc etc. I swear I can't imagine the kind of euphoria I'll feel when I'll finally be done with A-Levels next year.

In between it all, I've managed to attend TAYMUN 2010, my sixth MUN conference, watch the US Open, and keep up with the 'International Burn A Quran Day' fiasco. TAYMUN and Quran Burning are already quite stale to be discussed right now, and besides you can go see my Facebook statuses and links to read my viewpoints on the matter. The US Open however, is still going on, and thanks to the unpredictable weather in New York, the world doesn't have a Men's Singles Champion yet. The Nadal-Djokovic final is somewhat a letdown for me, since I was so hoping for a Nadal-Federer match, but all credits to Djokovic for beating the greatest player of all time on a court where he has won for 6 years in a row, and where the same player has beaten him for the past 3 years. That being said, I'm a die-hard Rafa supporter, and I would love to see him become the youngest man in the Open Era to win a Career Grand Slam. If he does, he will guarantee a place in tennis history, and considering his young age, is on course to win plenty more Slams. Vamos Rafa! :D

Before I forget, Selamat Hari Raya, Maaf Zahir dan Batin to all. Hope everyone had a blessed, peaceful Raya :)

I have to get back to Philip Larkin now. Take care, everyone.