October 3, 2010

Thankyou wordpress.com for taking up and posting a lot of my ramblings through my late teenage years.
You’ve been great.

I’ve moved onto another blogging domain, and I’m trying to keep it to myself at the moment. Just so I can ease into it before I allow prying eyes run across the words that convey  my thoughts. I kinda love the anonymity Internet provides. It’s really hard to find sometimes when you live in a well-connected society (read: a society with Facebook).

People are always going to put you down for what you do.  I don’t understand why.  I suppose it’s different for everybody, but recently, I’ve been feeling that people (especially in my family) have been putting me down for what I do.  From the degree I study , to what I do outside of study because studying is a BIG deal in Asian families, and so it is always a topic of conversation for my relatives.

I do a combined law degree at university, and I spend lots of time and effort doing it because I thoroughly enjoy it and have high hopes of doing something worthwhile with it.  When one of my aunties, who recently flew into town for her annual visit, she questioned my mother about why I was doing law, instead of pharmacy (I wasn’t there when this conversation took place, but I know it took place owing to the fact that my mother asked me why I was doing law and not pharmacy, whilst I was studying).  I was also questioned along these lines by my grandmother (the one who doesn’t live at the old people’s home).  Pretty much, I was getting shit like “You’re never going to get hired because you’re Asian” and “You should be studying pharmacy because you can sell medicine when you’re finished” and “Pharmacy is better than law” blah blah blah.  Now, I don’t know how long you’ve known me, dear reader, but I’ve  wanted to do law (and international studies) for a long time- and coming out of the HSC and not being able to do it in my first year of uni was a bit disappointing, but I’m glad I’m doing it now.  This is not to say I disliked my first year of tertiary education, because I thoroughly enjoyed it due to many, many reasons; I was lucky enough to settle in before seriously putting in the hard yards.  I have voiced my aspirations for law ever since I’ve actually started contemplating this, so you can imagine how shocked I was when I got nothing of support from my family- I got shit for doing something I now know I love.  I brushed it off my shoulder after voicing my views:  I know that I love doing law and I wouldn’t spend my time doing anything else.  We’ve agree to disagree and I’m now off the hook, leaving my younger cousins and brother to the torturous brainwashing that pharmacy is the way to go even though you love reading/maths/designing/cooking/dancing/singing.

Tonight was sort of the same thing, except it involved something that I recently got into: politics.  I’m the secretary of my local Liberal branch, and it says a lot coming from my area because it’s classified as a ‘Labor Haven’.  It’s all really new to me, so I know I need as much support I can get.  I get loads of support from my close circle of friends, and I can’t thank them enough for holding my hand whilst I do something that’s really fascinating, and scary at the same time.  I had told my mum and dad about this, and they were happy that I was doing what I believed in, even though it wasn’t their thing.  Tonight, after the branch meeting, mum told me to head over to my grandmother’s house because I had left the family outing for the branch meeting.  Not wanting to disappoint mum on two counts, I headed over.  When I informed them I was late because of a meeting, they naturally asked what/where/how/why.  I informed them about my status and allegiance to the Liberal Party, especially Dai Le.  My uncle knew who I was speaking of and had once considered joining the branch (to my surprise).  His wife, on the other hand, said very condescendingly “Why are you a part of that for?! All governments are the same- they all say they’re gonna build carparks, and there are none anyway” or words to that effect.  I said right back at her “No, that’s not true.  I think that’s incorrect…” I was interrupted by my uncle who said “Well, it’s good that you’re having a go”, somewhat patronisingly ( I don’t know if he meant it in that manner, but I felt he came across like that).  I really didn’t understand why she made that call, but I would have really loved to have talk to her about it and explain the differences between the two governments.  I suppose it may be her ignorance to the whole political scene, but still, I don’t think that should pardon her for putting me down.  I would have much rather a neutral comment than one that puts down what I do – please forgive my disrespect for my elders, but I whole-heartedly believe in the concept of ‘treating people the way you want to be treated’, irregardless of age. I left it at my uncles interruption because she attended to her kid and I wanted to play with Lily (my toddler cousin) anyway.  I would have really loved to give her my two cents worth, but I suppose that can be saved for another day.

I really dislike it when people put me down, even though it might be unintentional.  It just leaves you questioning yourself unnecessarily.  However, I think I want to  leave being the person with the moral high ground, knowing that I’m doing what I love, what I believe in, and that people are who putting you down are merely another obstacle in your path that you can hurdle over, making your achievement all the more worthwhile.

The word ‘liberal’ can also come to be a noun describing a person of liberal views, and I think I’ve just wholly re-aligned myself with these views after my routine morning shower.

I don’t know if it came across from my last couple of months of blogging in 2009, but I was pretty much tossing up my choices because they come across as very contradictory.  I’m a member of my university’s Oxfam club, who do wonderful things to help raise funds and, more importantly, awareness of the dilapidating poverty that exists in the Third World (and this is just the base of the cake, we also focus on domestic issues, gender equality, as well as climate change).  I am also a supporter of the Liberal Party of Australia (who are notoriously known for their conservatism).  I suppose I wasnt quite sure why I was a through and through supporter of the Liberal Party, as I didn’t want to delve into the world that was politics, that seemed to hardcore at the time.  My basic response to an inquiry of why I was a Liberal was because my parents own a small business, which was supported by the government, because I didn’t want to be slammed by other comments that would leave me with the lower hand.  I never like being the person that is subordinated in a conversation, I don’t think anyone does.  But since I was a Liberal supporter coming out to a pretty much Labor supporting generation (the young people who voted him into power), I felt very much disinclined to share a lot of my views.  It’s not that I’m ashamed of what I believe in, but rather I would get so much shit for being Liberal from people who I go university with, even within Oxfam who are genuinely nice and caring people. I would get comments that just slam in my face what a shit party the Liberals are for human rights, how their out of touch with society and pretty much putting K. Rudd up there as a demi-God or something.  Something that would eliminate any queries as to why I believe what I believe, because everyone was so caught up with the Kevin 07 and their stimulus packages and playing the blame game.  I would have loved to explain why I believed in the party, but (i) I never got into the politics of it and ultimately felt inept to have a full-on political discussion, and (ii) I rarely had the chance to.

Admittedly, there are some Liberal policies that aren’t that great and need some work.  A lot of work is needed for their social policies.  I think a lot of the copping I get from pro-Laborors stems from these issues, and I really can’t refute them because I too think they’re not up to scratch.  However, I firmly believe that within the Liberal party, there are members who uphold the Liberal traditions its founding fathers administered, one that resonated with the respect for freedom and individual liberty.  I’m not sure how the Liberal party became to be so conservative, as it initially was the progressive party in Australian politics; “Liberalism… stands in contrast to the philosophies of conservatism, socialism and communitarianism” is what Mr. Joe Hockey said very recently at the Grattan Institute.  His speech encapsulates a lot of what I believe government should be for society.  (If you’re interested, I’ve attached a link here).

Labor has its strength- it shrines itself as the party for the working-class, for families.  Their social policies reflect what is the 21st century.  I can’t commend the current government’s efforts in areas of Climate Change and Indigenous peoples of Australia enough.  However, I really don’t side with the over-regulation that is inherent of Labor policies.  Stimulus packages, lowering the legal drinking age, and internet censorship.  These are only a few policies that undermine individual liberty and freedom.  There are definitely other means to deal with these problems, and government regulation is NOT one of them.  I suppose you can kind of see why I’m not a big K. Rudd fan.  In his near-4 year term, I hardly have felt some sort of empowerment  or change as an individual (and this is the guy my generation voted in to see some change!)

I’m currently the secretary of my local Liberal branch, and with the March 2011 election less than 12 months away, I’ve never seen so many committed people to upholding the Liberal values.  Our candidate, Dai Le, is such an independent within the Liberal party and it absolute inspires me to be the individual inside me. She has taught me to stand up for what I believe in, whatever that may be.  Branch members, too, have understood my difficulties of being a uni student and a Liberal supporter, and have taught me be who I am.  These people are the leaders that I look up to, and consequently, they have just re-affirmed my Liberalism for me.  I knew it was always there, but have always questioned it because I was unable to assert exactly how I felt in the environment that I was in.  Obviously, nothing has changed- I’m still going to go into uni tomorrow with K. Rudd lovers.  But I’ll have a strong perspective towards what I believe, and that is what liberalism is: being an individual, so it’s okay to be who you are, it’s okay to not conform and uphold your beliefs and values that make you an individual.

I’m a liberal through and through, not a heretic as many people at uni have dubbed me to be.

My internet is so fast today it makes me uber happy to watch Youtube videos whilst doing my law readings.
Law has been great so far.  I love it over my International Studies component this semester (maybe because I’m not doing one of my Major’s core).  I’m finding that studying law is not all about the readings, even though it is very time consuming.  It’s about thinking differently, logically and pretty much, lawyerly.  I find it very interesting to delve into the cases that make up what regulates our society, and the various (tedious) procedural and substantive aspects of this system.  Also, heading back into uni as a second year student has is benefits- you know where everything is, you feel comfortable in your environment and you know much more people than you did going into uni in first year.  I am currently loving how the tertiary education of my life is flowing.

On a more trivial note, I visited the NSW Supreme Court with Ash and Tammy (fellow law students) for one of our assignments.  In the duration of the trial, I really needed to go to the bathroom however the Courthouse didn’t seem to have any, leaving me to resort to the public toilets.  The public toilet that was closest to the Courthouse was one that you needed to pay a fee of 50c to gain access into.  It was a free standing toilet, sort of like a free cubicle in the middle of the street.  Since I really needed to go, I hesitantly paid 50c, not expecting much because it was a public toilet.

However, this was the best toilet experience of my 19-year-old-never-out-of-the-NSW-border life and was completely worth my 50c.  Once the cubicle had administered my 50c fee, its door slid open, allowing me to gain entry to what was a nicely maintain public toilet with halogen lighting.  There were not one, but two hooks to hang your belongings (where I used one to hang my bag and the other for my umbrella); a nice toilet bowl that you need not flush because it automatically flushes upon your exit; a self-handwashing machine where soap is dispensed with water so you can lather, as well as a hand-dryer, and; a distortion mirror, which stretch your body/face when you look it, providing great entertainment for what was conventionally a mundane practice of society.  Best experience of the day, honestly.

I’m growing up and am becoming accustomed to society and how it isn’t perfect (even in my own circle).  I know people who have changed, but am unable to tell them that I don’t exactly am fond of who they are now; people who think they’re bigger than other people, even though God created (wo)men all alike and equal (or words to that effect); people who I am unable to confront because I’ve grown detached to them.  Too many issues that I can’t be bothered with because I know there is more to life.  Who I am fond of include the handful of people I trust, and the people who I have unknowingly become close to because of similar interests and share the same amicable nature as I.

Here’s something my fast internet provided me with:

I have a handsome new bookshelf in my room that’s waiting to show itself to the world whilst it sits in my room, via the internet.  Since today is Wednesday, I decided to coincide its unveiling with GPOYW, because Mum braided my hair today in a funky way (from my left ear to my right).  I’ve been trying for the past 20mins to try and capture the awesomeness that is Mum’s delicate work and skills, but Toby fails as a camera in this regard.  So all I have for you is my flashed-white face that doesn’t really show Mum’s handiwork, with my new handsome bookshelf that I’ve only half finished packing.
Clearly, my bookshelf is more handsome than I.

Here’s the sexy beast again. ( I really love it!)
And yes, I have bottles of alcohol holding up my books.  I currently don’t have any bookends so half-full alcohol bottles, which aren’t mine, will suffice!