English Literature Memories

I insisted on taking up English Literature during Form 4 and 5. In fact, (when we moved to KL after my PMR), my dad and I scouted through schools in Subang Jaya, looking to see if they offered English Lit. as it was not a very common subject taught, especially in schools. 

In the end, we did locate one school in Subang that offered this and till today, I still remember the poems, short stories, novel and drama that we had to read and analyze throughout the whole course. 

Of course we had great fun. These classic works of art were like an escape from the usual mundane school syllabus (at least it was for me). It was like as if I was at home, reading a book and imagining I was one of the characters. Anyway, the point of this post is to display one of my favorite poems that I learned at the time.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I'm sure you can derive the initial meaning of the poem from the title but the poem itself is quite deceiving. Sure, it talks about how different things would be, had we decided to take alternate choices in life, instead of the most common ones. But Frost himself warned, "You have to be careful of that one; it's a tricky poem - very tricky." *winks

Image credit: Flickr

A Sinatra Moment

I was browsing for some oldies to listen to today, and I just remembered Robbie Williams' Swing When You're Winning at the Royal Albert Hall. His strong vocals are simply charming and needless to say does Sinatra's songs proud. This is one of my very favorites :D

Rest in Peace Elizabeth Taylor

Another one of Hollywood's prestigious screen icons passed away yesterday of a heart failure, at the age of 79. When you hear Elizabeth Taylor, you would think of classic Hollywood glamour, Cleopatra, love-life whirlwind dramas, fashion statements, infamous hairdos and probably even Micheal Jackson. 

Liz Taylor was known for her dark beauty that made her stand out in a competitive industry. Apparently, she was born with a mutation that caused double rows of eyelashes *talk about never having to use mascara!*, which further enhanced her appearance on screen.

I remember Cleopatra and till this very day, I don't think any other actress could have been more suitable for the role of the sensual queen of the Nile. The dark hair and makeup combined with her acting abilities made the role even more authentic.

And naturally, let's not forget the '7 marriages'. Her whirlwind romance with leading actors and not-so-leading men generated a lot of media interest over the years.

According to her, "if I wanted to have a love affair or a fling, I was taught by my parents to get married. I guess I'm just an old-fashioned girl". But all that media attention probably just helped her obtain more movie roles (with an increased salary!).

I recall one particular movie, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof where she wore this gorgeous white silk cocktail dress (can't remember how young I was) but I remember thinking she must be the most beautiful actress I've ever seen and how I wished I looked like her when I'm her age. LOL!

Sadly, old age can be really cruel to a lot of people so I prefer to remember Liz Taylor when she was in her prime. The below pic is from her final TV role in These Old Broads which also stars Debbie Reynolds who was once married to Eddie Fisher - whom Liz had an affair with, while he was still married to Debbie!

New Hope for Japan

After the devastating 8.9 magnitude of an earthquake followed by a destructive tsunami, Japan certainly need all the help and support they can get. To make matters worse, few nuclear reactors were damaged in the process and are at risk of a radiation leak.

"Officials confirmed on Sunday that three nuclear reactors north of Tokyo were at risk of overheating, raising fears of an uncontrolled radiation leak.  
Engineers worked desperately to cool the fuel rods in the damaged reactors. If they fail, the containers that house the core could melt, or even explode, releasing radioactive material into the atmosphere."
(taken from Reuters

In fact, Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan has mentioned that this is the nation's worst crisis since World War II. I was going through new reports on how the death toll has risen up 400+ with over 10,000 people unaccounted for and the only thing I could think about was how lucky we all are to be alive. 

Imagine going to work, doing what you normally do, probably thinking what to have for dinner later and before you know it, you're gone. That's a really scary thought. I think most of us take our lives for granted and fail to realize how short a time we have on Earth. Right now, I pray for Japan and hope that more survivors would be found.

UPDATE: I've donated through GlobalGiving for the Japan Disaster Relief Fund - every small bit helps.

Images: The Atlantic

Darth Vader captures Princess Leia - in NYC Subway!

I stumbled upon this really interesting site, which involves a bunch of people working together to cause scenes of chaos and joy  - by playing pranks or 'missions' on the public.

Some of their missions are really funny like going pants-less on the NYC subway (during winter!) or pretending to be the Ghostbusters in the NY Public Library (naturally as the location was an iconic moment in the movie) and there was even a time when they threw a surprise wedding reception on the streets of New York for a random couple that just got registered.

Among their recent missions, I found this one to be quite amusing (and yes, if you don't know it already - I AM a Star Wars fan!). Check out their whole list of missions  - I'm sure some are guaranteed to make you laugh!

Image & Video: Katie Sokoler & Improv Everywhere

Jennifer Aniston Sex Tape

Aptly titled above, the latest 'viral video' to hit the Net is Smart Water's ad which features Jennifer Aniston. It's nothing like the Numa Numa videos but she still manages to spoof several well-known viral videos from the past. In my opinion, she's having better luck doing these kind of videos than scoring in her not-too-great romantic comedies.

What do you think?

The Unknown Should Remain Unfound

If you had missed this in the cinema or planned to get the DVD - forget it! The Unknown remains as a piece of C-grade fiction that would probably work better  - not being published into a book for starters.

WARNING: Spoiler Alert!

The storyline is so out-of-this-world that it would simply leave you in bewilderment. The first half of the movie revolves around Liam Neeson trying to find out why is there someone else impersonating him and has intimate memories of his life with his wife. Naturally, he couldn't do it without some help (played by Diane Kruger) and the both of them get more and more entagled into the mystery.

The mystery unraveled - Liam Neeson and his 'wife' are actually professionally-trained assasins, hired to kill a botanist who has discovered a way to grow crops that would resolve famine in most parts of the world. *shakes head in disbelief*

The one character who looked remotely interesting was this retired East German officer/spy. He had been enlisted by Liam Neeson to help him prove who he is. Unfortunately, he died by from cyanide poisoning.

So that is it. End of story. The bottomline is: I would skip this by a mile if I were you!

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