A year-long hiatus. A long year of pain. I've experienced so much in my final year in NTU... sometimes it seems too much. Don't know when I'll be writing again... but heck, here goes....
The past 12 months hasn't been all bad things. The good things, in chronological order,
converting pain into energy to manage third position in Street Challenge street soccer competition
converting pain into energy to do well in Yr 4 Sem 1
converting pain into energy to achieve semi-final berth in Inter-Hall soccer
achieving a gd FYP grade
completing my B. Eng. with honours
I must say though that crashing out against Hall 6 again (this time in semi-finals) 0-2 earlier in January was disappointing. Those who were schooling with me must have noted my absence from lessons, preferring to while my time away, playing Dota and with the cats... Crashing out against Hall 6 2 yrs in a row is bad enough, but this time round it had more significance to me as I wanted to match the success of the basketball girls' team - which went on to become champions..
A year ago, the newborn group of friends that I was in, full of novelty, laughter, care and the sorts, was a group which I though would be together for a long time to come. Never did I thought but a friend's favourite quote "people always leave" seem to hold so true now. Things that happened in the past 4 days have been the final straw on the camel's back.
The group can carry on having fun or stabbing each others' backs (whichever they choose). But now that will have to do that without me. I think I have had enough. Everything is so superficial now with the group - when we meet, we laugh and look like best of friends. When we are alone we form small cliques and stab each other, then we meet to laugh again.
Some are just out to hurt - whether they are so smart to do it purposefully, or they are too dumb to never realise they actually did. In anycase, I am walking away.
Goodbye and till we meet again. Not.
15:18 Sunday, August 05, 2007
After 3 long years, I think it is a good time now to stop writing. Haven't had much motivation and besides some things are better left saying "live" than just writing it down on the aftermath.
I am more focused than ever in football now that I have decided to return to training with the IVP team. I have also committed myself to another season with FECA, Chong Yeow's team. Hopefully I improve further and enjoy the remaining years of my footballing experience.
The final year is coming up too. Will be busy studying hard and also working on my FYP.
A hall room has yet to be allocated to me. My friends are pretty confident I will get one, but I'm not so sure - just being prepared for the worst. There are a few things that I cannot leave behind - the friends, the football, the gaming, the chats, the drinking, but something else will play a little more in my mind that the rest of the other things...
I know I do reflect a little too much. Maybe leaving this space empty from now will help me more because by reflecting and failing to take action, certain things do get out of hand. Also I have new focuses in my life now - I want to do the best at whatever I'm doing.
In any case, this place wouldn't be closed down or whatsoever - I still like to read through my entries from time to time. Just to reminisce a little.
So guys, goodbye for now.
01:05 Tuesday, July 10, 2007
____The Timelines Can Split Now
I so feel like cycling now.
Just caught Die Hard 4.0 with the rest. I fell asleep in the cinema. It's not the show - maybe i'm just tired. I think the non-stop jibes has gotten me tired. Sure if the stories are real, I don't mind being the brunt of some laughter. But this is one story that is probably made up. It might have got me thinking, but then again what could be real might just disappear into thin air with all the talking.
The night air is cold though - perhaps reflecting my mood.
One recent event has got me thinking - that whilst I enjoy being with this group, maybe I don't really belong. Such a simple piece of information and no one told me. Probably the last to know, but it made me say things that made me feel like an idiot. Not the first time though. I probably am an idiot.
I probably am just passing by.
17:54 Thursday, June 28, 2007
17th June Sunday - Suffered knock on my calf during the final few minutes of the FECA match. Damn pain. Difficulty walking that night.
18th June Monday - Woke up early feeling sore. Met the fellas at Sentosa. Played ultimate frisbee, captain's ball, beach football. No rest.
22nd June Friday - Went for a 5km run with brother at 0030 hrs. Still feeling sore. Completed run strongly. Tried to stretch the sore calf.
22nd June Friday - Went back to NTU for football with the guys. At one point, tried to accelerated but sharp pain in calf disallowed this movement.
25th June Mondey - Back at Sentosa again. Played ultimate frisbee, captain's ball and touch rugby. The calf muscle feels very damaged. At one point tried to jump to catch frisbee. Sharp pain.
28th June Thursday - Soreness is still there. Restricted range of motion. Tender upon touch. Pain extend to lower calf (gastrocnemius to soleus). Noticed a slight swell. Deep tissue knots. Scarred tissue.
Damn pain lah. The reconstruction of the muscle must be hindered due to the amount of activity following the injury. Any toe-off is painful now. What I fear most is that it may lead to a complication whereby the muscle reconstructs around the bone. This will cause performance problems in the future.
But now, my mind is on IPPT. And most probably the stations that I'm going to suffer in will be the broad jump and shuttle run where explosive power is required. Hopefully the tissue heals faster and by next week I can start getting some training. Also, need to apply deep muscle massage to get rid of the scarred tissue.
This is the worst dead leg ever suffered.
01:50 Tuesday, June 26, 2007
____I Know Now..
That what it means to be in some situations where the stars are there for me to see but are not for me to keep.
I'm happy now as I have been clueless before. Relieved that the burden is gone.
I only happened to be there - wrong place right time - as someone who could listen. As a friend that can be relied upon to deliver expectations. As a friend who could help one out during tough times.
Maybe, as a friend I can ask too much from others and I know that. But the conclusion?
Sometimes, the stars are there for me to see but are not for me to keep, simply because it applies to everyone else...
14:42 Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Finally I have decided on my world's starting eleven. I have watched and admired many players since I started watching football and these eleven are the best in the history (from the time I started watching) of world football. These is, of course, room for debate over the selection of certain players but as this post is titled, "Robin's Select", speaks for itself - my dream team of the world. Noticeable exclusions include the greatest stars before my time such as Pele, Maradona, Cryuff, Best and many more, but the eleven mentioned will no doubt trigger some nostalgia and images of them in full flight - certainly the best.
Formation chosen is the 3-4-3. Reason not only due to the fact that there aren't many really outstanding defenders in my time, but also due to the fact that everybody loves an attacking team. So here goes. (Clubs stated reflects the era in which the players provide their most inspired performances)
Goalkeeper - Peter Schmeichel (Denmark/Manchester United) This man is seemingly impossible to beat in a one-on-one situation. He opens his arms wide, palms large like that of a gorilla's and most strikers would find it hard to see the goal. His size masks his agility. And I cannot count the number of "double saves" he has made whilst playing for Manchester United. I also like the way he commands the defence - a very vital quality in a top class keeper. And because of these reasons, he beats other honourable mentions such as Gianluigi Buffon, Petr Cech and Iker Casillas to the "No. 1" jersey.
Leftback - Paolo Maldini (Italy/ AC Milan) A legendary leftback. Whilst recent times remind us of his lack of pace. This rightfooted leftback used to tear down the left side of the field and score some amazing goals. However, it is his ability to win the ball back for the team while executing the sliding tackle is attribute that caught my eye. His technique in the sliding tackle is superb. Most times, defenders tackle their opponents to put the ball out of play, but Maldini slides in to win the ball back, keeping the ball at his feet. Coupled with his longevity in the game, nobody else comes close. Not even Roberto Carlos.
Centreback - Alessandro Nesta (Italy/ AC Milan) This classy defender is fast and reads the game well. Probably the most likely player to lose his spot in this team as there are many defenders able to do what he does. However, as an Italian Catenaccio admirer, I tend to favour Italian defenders. Keeps things simple and is not prone to high profile mistakes. Tackles well too. And very mobile. Honourable mentions include Marcel Desailly, Fernando Hierro.
Rightback - Fabio Cannavaro (Italy/ Juventus) Not one to be remembered for his club career but he is still a World Cup winning captain. No nonsense defender. Great concentration. Small but fast. Tends to be a little risky with his rough challenges. But nontheless a great defender for his size. Close rivals for this spot include Gianluca Zambrotta and Lilian Thuram.
Defensive Midfielder - Roy Keane (Ireland/ Manchester United) One of the last few tough defensive midfielders. Does the simple things well. Disrupts the opponents' attacks. In his prime, he is the driving force of the team. Constantly urging and fighting, he never gives up. Recent times have brought the emergence of the flair-type defensive midfielders such as Andrea Pirlo and Xabi Alonso. However, I favour the ability to win the ball and disrupt play in defensive midfielders. Coupled with Roy Keane's box to box engine, this World XI is a Rolls-Royce in motion.
Left Winger - Ryan Giggs (Wales/ Manchester United) In his prime, Giggs blazes past defenders. Possesses a keen eye for the final pass. Best known to run with the ball at a speed faster than just about any defender. His crossing ability remains a doubt but his improvisation remains a very underrated ability. Scores wonder goals. My favourite winger of all time.
Centre Midfielder - Zinedine Zidane (France/ Real Madrid) If Pele is the best player in history and Diego Maradona is second, Zidane is third. The first player to make it to this list. Amazing control. Superb technique. Great passing ability. Zidane remains the player I would continue to search on Youtube for his fluid movement. He is like water controlling the ball - sure, strong and sublime. A World Cup winner. A Champions League winner several times. Scored an unforgettable volley against Bayer Leverkusen in 1 particular CL final - technique at its best.
Right Winger - Ronaldinho (Brazil/ Barcelona) The clown on the field. Treats tricks for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Frustrates the hell out of defenders. Explosive. Superb control. Does the most difficult with remarkable ease. Not an out-and-out right midfielder but his control and awareness is an asset that can allow him to play anywhere in the final third of the field. Very direct and chooses the shortest path to goal. Simply selected due to his ability to carve something out of nothing. Beats David Beckham and Luis Figo for his spot in the team.
Attacking Midfielder - Kaka (Brazil/ AC Milan) A debatable selection considering his relatively young career. Very fast. Very dangerous from long range. Keen eye for the final pass. His most underrated asset is to tire out the opponents' defence with his off the ball running. His fantastic movement and decoy runs make him extremely difficult to track and also opens up the defence for his teammates to exploit. A world-beater sooner than later.
Forward - Thierry Henry (France/ Arsenal) Another player with amazing pace and movement. Makes scoring simple goals look simpler than ever. A player I like due to his movement and willingness to play the short pass instead of the long one. A debatable selection too as this team needs a more direct striker that can stick the ball into the net. He beats Ruud van Nistelrooy and Andriy Shevchenko because of his superior movement.
Forward - Ronaldo (Brazil/ Barcelona) El Phenomenon. Ronaldo remains the most enigmatic player of modern football. His finishing is undoubtedly the best in the business. Yet, to some extent, he has failed to live up to his enormous potential. In his prime, nothing stops him except a goal - one of the few players capable of picking up the loose ball in midfield and going on a explosive burst all the way to score. Ronaldo at his best is just scary.
I know there are other players such as Francesco Totti, Steven Gerrard, Roberto Baggio, Gianfranco Zola, Rivaldo, Gabriel Batistuta and Alan Shearer that deserve some mentioning. Drop me their names and reasons in my tagboard and help me reminisce these great footballers' best performances.
That's all for now. Presenting to you again... Robin's Select.
01:50 Monday, June 11, 2007
____Updates and Results
Results are out, the 2 C+'s stuck out like a couple of sore thumbs. Other than that, I did pretty much as expected for the other papers. I got asked about my "re" again just now. I think he is probably being concerned about whether I'm going to achieve my second upper. I am probably not, but that's not the end of course. There are more things than just the results, although a second upper would look really nice.
Will still be looking forward to working hard too. Sure mathematically the upper is a distant target already, but hopefully working hard sets the tone for how I want to treat my future career and life. True sometimes, the work I do go unrecognised. Sometimes, I find myself feeling low and demoralised when others do better. But unlike the time during JC, I will not give up that easily now. I should target an A for FYP - which would show that I will be able to cope with projects and constant work. Should also target around 2 to 3 As for final year too - as how CCY fared during his.
Aloy returned from Europe and we gathered at his place for a meet up. Nice to see everyone still. I never know as maybe the chances of meeting this group of friends will be low in the near future as my place is hall is still not confirmed. Which is a very sad thing, considering I have already spent 3 quarters of my undergraduate years having a certain level of freedom as well as being able to play in a team. But what is most important is being able to walk into any neighbour's room and being welcomed for a little chat/joke or simply just playing with mao mao...
Just played a tough game against the team that we won 4-0 against the last time round. That time, I was my team's MOM. But today, I kind of lost the plot and failed to read the game as expected. FECA rode their luck after going ahead twice in the first half only for the opponents to equalise twice. But after we secured our third goal, we set up a very defiant defence against them and eventually saw out the game winning 3-2.
Wasn't really playing at my best. The opponents closed me down too quickly, and I had no time to pass the ball around. Also physically, I was unable to match the big man from the west. But for the first time, I felt the team fought for each other to make sure we secure this vital win. Well done again FECA.