Monday, July 28, 2008

Lala

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Went to this concert just now that my sister played for. She'll be playing for Turandot in late August. It's an opera and I've never been to one before, but the storyline sounds good.

Anyway, I really liked the programme notes on the Sibelius symphonies for tonight. They were the most poetic notes I've read thus far. :P I can't remember exactly, but they were made up of such stuff and fluff - 'shimmering strings', 'distant rumble of thunder by the timpani', 'earth, worms and heartache'. Oh, and let's not forget 'the most glorious celebration of C Major ever'. Like, EVER. I love visual descriptions though, they're so pretty.

And I went to Ballet Under the Stars on Friday. There was plenty of contemporary fare, which isn't a very good genre to start with if you're new to dance/ballet, but I really liked the choreography, especially the pendulum thing, where 2 people support this 3rd person who sways between them, held up by the arms.

I'll be away at hall orientation camp till Friday... We'll be spending 2 days at this stupid old Guides camp which I went to in Sec 3... I remember Tzu Wei stepped on a bee in the toilet and got stung... And I remember that camp was the first time I experienced a migraine (while I was being a patrol leader no less)... Happy memories... Please pray for me, I hope I survive it again. :P Good night!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A-string

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I broke a violin string 2 days ago. Do you know how expensive violin strings are?! So being the el-cheapo that I am, I replaced it with a string from another old, neglected violin. :P Then I realised it's an A-string! And this is embarrassing but being the mildly OCD person that I am, I like to create my own superstitions and rituals and since it's an A-string, I decided to make it into a bracelet and like wear it to exams. (In the hope of getting an A -rolls eyes-)

And I also realised we have 2 extra shoulder rests at home. Damnnn!!! So I wasted my $$$ in getting a new one!!

Anyway I'm progressing quite well. My lessons are only a half hour each, which means I've only had 2.5 hours' worth of lessons, but I can already play the 5th piece from the Suzuki volume 1, and I only started the Suzuki on my 3rd lesson. My tone is not bad I think (i.e. the sound's not flat, and sounds pretty full), but I'm not sure if my technique is good. I suppose I'll go look for my great-uncle in December to let him check on my bowing technique. (He's really old which is why I didn't go to him for lessons, but he's supposed to be a good teacher; his daughter (my distant aunt) is the 1st-violin soloist type who is currently residing in America.)

Ok I'm going for lunch now -

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Whee

This afternoon, I took my first trip on the LRT! It's exactly the same as the skytrain at the airport. -_-U

So we went to Min Li's house to play DDR on Shu Min's dance mat! She bought it from China and it cost only $6! Freaking cheap. Apparently her ex-China-teacher lost 7kg after playing it intensively for a week. WOW.

It was really fun, I got an A score ok!!! Hahaha!!! My mom had been wanting to get DDR since like 10 years ago when it first came out. Now I want it too!! It'll be great if we can play DDR in hall!!!

Speaking of hall, I realised Min Li's also without a roomie. We commiserated over the uncertainties of a future with an as-yet-unknown-roomie. Ah well. It'll be a good experience to live with a total stranger though, you know how they always say your college roomie will be your friend for life because you're in close proximity all the time and will know each other's secrets and stuff like that. Hmm. I think I'll be bringing my dad's travel rice pot along and Soph and ML and I can have a feast in hall sometime!!! (with heatable soup from The Soup Spoon, hahaha)

Anyway, yesterday's class outing was great!!! I had no idea XF would be back. I don't think I'll ever see her in Singapore again though. And I successfully recommended a VERY HOT GUY called MOCOMICHI to Miss Noo!!! Yes I totally get her taste - chao ta tanned skin, tall and ripped, with a nice, guai and obedient-looking face. HAHAHA. Oh and Shumin's totally in love with him as well. Spread the love!!! (gtg, I'm going to watch Pushing Daisies!!!)

Signing off,
Ambassador of the Fanclub for Universally Hot Guys

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Aspirin Mask!

Le masque de l'aspirine.

I finally tried the aspirin mask! I'm now officially a xhardcorex MUA-er! Yea.

1. Take 3 uncoated aspirin tablets. (I have no idea if mine is coated or not, this is the only brand of aspirin I could find. I think 'coated' means they're covered with a protective layer of enteric which supposedly prevents the tablet from dissolving easily.) Use less if your skin's sensitive; more if your skin is horrible and needs the exfoliation.
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2. Spray some water and they'll dissolve into little aspirin crystals! (I use Evian Brumisateur - I doubt it makes a significant difference, but it makes me feel good!)
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3. Add in some honey to taste! (Organic preferably.) A teaspoon will do or the mixture will end up too runny and drip all over your face. (Cetaphil can be used in place of honey for extra cleansing, but honey's anti-bacterial - and once I'm done adding the honey, I get to lick the spoon. ^^)
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4. Stir! The aspirin crystals will dissolve somewhat into a sort of emulsion. Then smear it all onto your face, wait 5-10 minutes, wet your face a bit and scrub a little. (I don't really scrub a lot, I find the crystals a little harsh.)
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5. Wash it off, et voila! Glowing skin.

I think it's good for when I feel like 'cooking'. I suppose why lots of people like to use this mask is because aspirin's really inexpensive in the States (like, $0.99 for 100), but it's just average here in Singapore. (I bought 24 tablets for about $4).

It's quite drying as well, and the crystals are quite harsh, so you really need to moisturise after that. The exfoliation is actually due to salicylic acid (ooh, chemistry!). I actually find my Neutrogena Pore Refining Peel (which can be used as a scrub) much better, cos it's gentle but effective. It doesn't contain glycolic acid either! I've used Estee Lauder's Deep Thermal Refinisher ($80) as well as Olay's Thermal Skin Polisher ($16) - Estee Lauder's has grains that are quite rough, while Olay's contains glycolic acid which I find kinda harsh, so Neutrogena's still my favourite! I think the deep-heat effect of the EL and Olay's cool though.

I don't think I'll use the aspirin mask frequently though... maybe just to finish up the box. :P

Anyway my sister bought the Zeno zit-zapper recently. It's supposed to be way cheaper if shipped from Drugstore.com, but apparently the Zeno in Singapore is packaged differently, with a different adaptor plug specially catered to Singapore's requirements. And I hear the zapping hurts a lot. It really isn't cheap because you're forced to replace the metal tip which runs out after 90 counts. It also only targets the really bad type of zits, and I was like, haha I don't need to use it but today I woke up with a huge one on my chin. ;_; I refuse to use it though because I think it's a waste of money!!! (even though it's not my money, I'm very poor right now so it's making me cranky)

School starts in 2 weeks and I'm not looking forward to it... :( Please let me have a nice, quiet and accommodating roomie, nice, smart and understanding project-mates, and nice, intelligent tutors who are good at teaching and explaining!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Ultra-Blah

They always say that artistic people are temperamental, and why not? Why indeed, should people choose to attend concerts when they can get 'excellent audio fidelity' with a CD and a good hifi system at home? So apparently I'm very much replaceable by a CD player. -shrugs-

And I totally abhor how people think that artistic pursuits are less difficult than say, scientific exploration, or getting a first-class honours in the totally-important-but-ultra-blah degree of your choice. Uh-huh. Arts encompasses math and science as well. Chords are permutations of combinations of notes. The quality of sound created by a violin depends on the level of vibration - harmonics and what not. There are so many more examples which few people I know would ever be interested in.

Sometimes you hear something that sounds absolutely perfect, with perfect technique and perfect execution of dynamics, except something's a little off.

That's what's missing guys. Passion. A love of life. Inquisitiveness about everything. All that's essential in anything you pursue. No matter what you're forced to study, no matter how ultra-blah you think it is, you're supposed to find interesting at some level. I found what I studied in JC interesting. And what I'm studying now is cool as well, even though I didn't care much for it at all in the beginning. [Please don't discount what I'm saying here, though I know I lose credibility by using words like 'blah' and 'cool'.]

I suppose an open mind would be a requisite.

On a separate issue -
"When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it."
- The Alchemist

Friday, July 11, 2008

DHS Guides Campfire

40th anniversary campfire tomorrow!

http://dhsguidescampfire.blogspot.com/

I wanna go but I can't! :P

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Piano Lessons, Violin Accompanist, etc

Hi, this is my personal advert to everyone out there in Singapore. :D

If you're looking for a piano teacher or violin accompanist for your exams, look for me! Drop me an email at fionastar[at]gmail[dot]com. Thanks! (:

Experience:
  • 3 years ++ experience as a ballet accompanist (and counting!)
  • able to improvise
  • plays for CSTD and RAD ballet exams, from pre-primary to majors
  • played and improvised for CSTD Summer School
  • highly versatile
  • currently learning violin
  • accompanied a Grade 7 violin top-scorer at the ABRSM High Achiever's Concert in 2007
  • ABRSM Piano Grade 8 (Practical)

I obtained Grade 8 a long time ago and am intending to start practising for my diploma in the middle of next year. I can learn pieces within short notice (but please give me a reasonable allowance of time for Grade 7/8 violin to perfect the pieces if you want your distinction). I have been offered a job as a piano teacher at one of the biggest music schools in Singapore but had to decline due to scheduling conflicts. I can teach up to Grade 6 piano, and teach with the Suzuki Method if so preferred.

FYI, I'm a female Chinese undergrad and I live in the East. Locations most preferred are Marine Parade, Bedok, Kembangan and maybe Tanah Merah. I'm free on Sunday afternoons, Sunday evenings, Monday mornings and Friday evenings.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

犬と私の10の約束

Course registration drives me mad!!!!!!!!!!!! GRRRRR. And I hit my mouse button with a vengeance, not demurely in the least. My laptop's enter key and mousepad button will never be the same again. Anyway I got 3 modules with as MinLi+Shumin, 1 module with ZY, SuHui and Jo. I will miss Prof Chua!!! ;_;
Watched 10 Promises to my Dog yesterday! I WANT A DOG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I like malteses... (not because of maltesers ok) Jaslyn said her grandma got a maltese a week ago... So cute... -faints- But I don't wanna wait till I'm an old grandma to get a dog... ;_; Anyway, malteses are good apartment dogs! So I'll wait till I get my own hovel. XD

Next time I wanna watch 僕の彼女はサイボーグ (literally My Girlfriend is a Cyborg, or the English title, Cyborg Girl). There's Keisuke as the male lead, he was the 2nd boyfriend in Koizora. ^^

Ok I'm gonna practise my violin now, I just got new packages but I'm too depressed over my sucky timetable to unveil them, blahhhhhh.


if you're lost you can look and you will find me
time after time
if you fall I will catch you, I'll be waiting
time after time

Monday, July 7, 2008

Photos

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I've been playing this since watching that episode of Lost where Ben Linus plays a couple of bars of it on the piano. Watching an Ocean's Eleven re-run on TV also made me want to play Clair de Lune!

Till next time -
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Friday, July 4, 2008

Musique

Say Bonjour to Bob L'eponge!
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I think by now most people would have known that I'm learning the violin!

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I just love how the f-hole looks... ^^ I know some weird people will think it looks like an integral sign ∫ or something, but it's F! (For Fiona!!) :D

This is just a cheap violin, you can see all the rosin dust there. I love how the rosin dust flies when the bow is pulled across the strings, it's so beautiful (if you can ignore the horrible sounds I make hahaha). My sister was away, so I picked out this violin myself from our dusty collection without knowing it was a cheap one and hadn't been played in more than 10 years. (I mistook it for my dad's old one which is more expensive and better in quality.) My teacher was so horrified when she looked at it, cos it was totally out of tune and the bow wasn't rosined. Hahaha!

I bought a shoulder rest as well; apparently I have a long neck (yay!) lol. My mom said I sounded better than my sister when she just started, but she didn't realise I was just playing open string. When you press down on different keys, the tension will be different, which makes amateurs sound bad. :P It's just technique though, which can be easily mastered through practice! (I realise I always make things sound easy, haha!)

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Went to Daiso yesterday, bought more origami paper, a pancake/fried egg mould and a chopsticks case!

Yesterday I also went to this hotel where there's a buffet table and everyone was cutting the queue and everything. A stupid auntie tried to cut my queue and I said loudly in an overly-bright tone with a humongous grin pasted on my face, "Um, I think the queue starts over there?" pointing way behind me. Stupid woman got the hint. I was like, nyah nyah nyah nyaaa nyaaaa!!! (in my head, of course!) I can't stand people like that.

Anyway here's a couple more photos of the bakchoy.
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Day 8
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Day 10
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And this is a tomato plant!

Yea... I've been playing with the macro mode of my camera a lot. :P

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