Saturday, October 29, 2005

Traditional Chinese torture session

My knee problem has been pretty bad the past few weeks since I had my little accident during my field trip to Taman Negara. My right leg has been feeling slightly out of alignment when I walk, and whenever I try to run I have to take short small steps or else it feels like my knee will give way. I've been hoping the problem would fix itself, but the clincher came when a few days ago while I was studying, I folded my right leg over my left and then felt something in my right kneecap 'snap'. It wasn't a painful 'snap', but it didn't sound very nice. And it wasn't. As soon as I stood up, I was kneeling over from the pain in my knee. I couldn't put too much pressure on my right leg without feeling the pain. And it lasted til the next day, so i told my dad that my knee problem was getting worse. I know that surgery for a knee problem could cost a whopping RM10,000, so I was hoping it wouldn't have to come down to that, but after that incident, I thought I'd better do something about it. My dad agreed, but suggested that instead of having surgery first, I could try seeing a traditional Chinese therapist first. If traditional Chinese techniques like acupuncture could heal me, it would cost a heckuva lot less than knee surgery...only a couple of hundred bucks! I was, and still am, doubtful that a few needles poked through me would heal the problem, but I thought what the heck, might as well try.

So today I went with my dad to see a Chinese masseuse and acupuncturist. The good news is that I didn't have to endure a single needle. The bad news is that I went through a massage by a female masseuse, which was so painful I think I would've much rather prefered the needles. Apparently my right leg is shorter than my left leg by 2cm because my right hipbone is out of alignment. So they had to massage me first to find where my problem was exactly in my bones, and then straighten me out. So I had to lie on my back while the masseuse pounded and pressed (at some points, til I couldn't breathe!) and rubbed, and the rubbing was the worst. Gosh, she was rub my skin hard against my vertebrae or my bones at the same spot over and over. And the whole time, even though I barely made a sound, my face was contorted into all sorts of grimaces you could imagine and my only thoughts were "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!". I think the rubbing was almost as painful as my knee whenever it gave out - which can only be described as EXCRUCIATING! At one point, the guy masseuse took over and pulled and pressed body in such ways that my bones would make very audible cracks. Sounded scary, but fortunately not painful at least if there was any pain, I didn't feel it after the torture I had to endure during the massage.

The other good news is that after all that, I think all that torture actually did me some good coz' now I no longer walk funny and I can run more properly without feeling like I'm about to fall over. So maybe this traditional Chinese torture has some merit after all.... But I still have to go through a few more sessions before the treatment is fully done. Then I'll find out if my knee will really be back to normal!

Friday, October 28, 2005

Exams almost done and working life almost starting...

Yay! I've finished the first three of my exam papers, all of which were one day after another this week, with the third one being one of the toughest subjects of my entire course - Genetics of Development. But thankfully, the lecture notes for that last subject were pretty good, and I had a very good text book to refer to along with it, so even though that subject would freak out the average biology student and no amount of common sense would spare you a failure if you didn't study for that subject (unlike some subjects where you can pretty much crap through it and pass), I think I did a lot better for that subject than my first two! Pretty much coz' I studied everything really thoroughly and had understood all the important details so much that I looked at almost every question on the paper and thought to myself "Ha! I know this one! Piece of cake!". I think I had more trouble doing my Tropical Terrestrial Biology paper and Introduction to Biotechnology paper, coz' I definitely did more crapping on those two papers than my Genetics exam. It's the one paper I know I can't get away with crapping, so I studied it to the max. Hehe! I might even get a high distinction for it, which would no doubt lead to most of my classmates for this subject wanting to strangle me and hang me out to dry. But I won't get my hopes too high up. :D So now I only have one more paper left next Friday, which I'm not too worried about coz' I pretty much know most of it already. After that one more paper, I am officially done with university life! Woo hoo! No more sitting at the computer all day doing assignments and lab reports all day! No more studying my brains out for exams and then forgetting everything I learned the following semester! No more having to do work in the crappy laboratories at Monash Malaysia, where I have to search all over the place to find one little glass pipette, and deal with lab workers who don't give a damn!No more no more no more!!!! Wooooo hoooo!!!!

NOW I have to start worrying about finding a job.

Whoa oh.

Ah yes, the wonderful world of working for your keep. I'm looking forward to it (especially after 16 years of schooling and uni!) but at the same time quite apprehensive about it. People always say the working world is a lot more tougher than studying. People can be more unscrupulous and backstabbing, and all that nasty stuff. And even though my first interest will always be doing environmental work, my parents will no doubt be wanting me to get a job where I can earn some REAl money....and well, environmental work usually doesn't rake in the cash. And even though I don't like it, I am thinking that maybe doing something a bit more financially rewarding might do me more good, at least for the first few years. Then maybe later on when I'm more well off, I can move on to do what I really love. Plus that time I'll be more independant and can sort of make my own decisions without the folks breathing down my much. Would be good if I could start some small business off side, selling some stuff that would earn me a bit extra money. I got a friend who make earrings and sells them, and it looks kinda fun to do, so I might try doing something like that. Which means I gotta get my inherited Chinese enterprising genes into gear....:P
Well, things will be getting interesting from now on, me thinks. :D

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Get off my blog, you spammers!

How lame is it that people are now using blog comments for spamming about their websites that nobody cares about. It's especially annoying when they put comments like "Oh, I love your blog! It's so cool!" before rambling on about their product or website. Yes, yes, I'm sure these automated spammers read my great blog. I wish these people would get a life.

A noble profession, my @$$

I've always had an interest in biology, but from the start I knew that I did not want to be a doctor. Partly for selfish reasons, coz' most doctors spend so much time working that they don't have much of a social life. And also because I know if I make any screw ups, my whole careers could be over and I would've completely wasted dunno how many donkey years of studying medicine. And also because I wasn't too keen on the stressful life of a med student. But there is another reason why I'd never want to be a doctor, which was brought more home to me yesterday. In the news, there was an article about an Indian guy who died because he didn't have the money to pay for the treatment he needed to get. I don't know all the details, coz' I only read a bit of the article, but it's still enough to piss me off to the max. I mean, medicines are made to treat people and doctors are there to help heal people, yet even though they have the medicines and the doctors available, they allow this guy to die just because he can't pay for them. Effectively demonstrating that in the medical world, if you don't have the money and don't have the insurance, you can just go ahead and die. Why? Why couldn't they treat the guy first and then settle the payments later? How could they sit around waiting for the poor wife to try and round up enough money, knowing full well that her husband needed treatment soon or else he would die? How can any self-respecting doctor do that? I mean, if it's not a life-threatening situation, then fine.....but this guy was dying and now he's dead. To me, it's just a really sick situation. And another thing is that all these treatment cost so much money, and you have to wonder where does all this money go to.... The doctors and the companies who develop the medicines, treatments and equipment. And then you have to wonder, how much of this money actually covers the costs of the medications alone, and how much goes straight into the doctors and company directors' pockets? Well, considering most of them are driving around in big fancy cars and living in ridiculously big houses, the answer to that is a big DUH. Why else do all our Chinese parents want us to become doctors? To make big money lah.... Yes, being a doctor is such a noble profession when they scrounge every possible penny out of people who can't afford it while they are happily playing golf every other weekend. Even more noble it is that they can stand by and allow a poor person to die because he's not paying them the money they need to buy new golf clubs. Ugh, doctors are supposed to be the healers, but it seems to me that they are ones who are sick. Of course, there are the exceptional few who actually DO care more about healing people than making big money... those who are even willing to go to poor countries for free to help others..... and those kind of doctors I applaud. But unfortunately, perhaps there are not enough of those kind of doctors around. And because of that, one poor guy had to pay with his life.
Of course, to be fair, doctors have to work hard to become good doctors, and naturally they do deserve to get well paid. But knowing that some people simply cannot afford medical treatment or insurance, there should be a way to allow all people, rich and poor, to get the same medical treatment and the doctors still get paid the same. I mean, if they can do it in other countries like Australia, why not here? In Aus, every citizen in covered under Medicare, which far as I know, allows everyone equal medical treatment regardless of their financial capabilities. And how on earth can the Aussie doctors survive then? They're paid by the government, using the people's taxes. Australians have to pay higher taxes than here to get such benefits, but at least they are all covered. Here in good ol' Malaysia, no such thing. The best we can do is buy insurance, and even that can be denied to a person if the insurance company learns that he or she is very likely to fall gravely ill or get seriously injured. Oh yeah, the insurers are all out to help us too, just like the doctors.
It's quite sad really, to know that so many people can so easily place more importance on money than over the lives of others. Which is why even though I am qualified to work for pharmaceutical companies, I don't think I could do so without constantly thinking at the back of my mine that these companies care more about the profits than actually helping people. Which means I'd probably be stuck the rest of my life working for pittance at some organization for a good cause like WWF just so I can have a good conscience. Kakakaka! Of course, every organisation has their politics and ulterior motives as well, but that's another story for another time....


I noticed something while at church this morning - my pastor prayed for the people in Pakistan that were affected by the earthquake, and at the beginning of this year, we were all gung ho praying for the tsunami victims and having offerings for them....but I have not heard any prayers for the Americans who were recetly devastated by three major hurricanes. Which makes me kinda go "Hmmm...I wonder why..." Sure, Bush isn't the most likable guy on the planet, but hey, one guy does not an entire nation make, and the Americans who went through those tragedies need help too, right? Maybe they did pray for them but I didn't hear it coz' I haven't been to church for three weeks straight. Kakakaka.....

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Naeem's Top 10 Ways to Waste Time/ Procrastinate

10) Playing with Sassy - When my little Shih Tzu gets hyper, we could chase each other around the house for ages! And it's good exercise too!

9) Playing Textwist ( - Was into playing that almost everyday not too long ago, but now I'm kind of losing interest....

8) Playing Sudoku - now that the Star is given free at my campus, almost everyday I get a copy and instead of paying attention in class (which I usually don't anyway), I'm happily filling out the numbers in a bunch of little boxes (For those who have been living under a rock and have no idea what Sudoku is, check out

7) Blogging - Gee, that's what I'm doing now!

6) Sitting in front of the computer trying to do some work but end up doing other thing (checking emails, playing games, blogging, etc...) - Speaks for itself

5) Thinking about what to put on my Top 10 lists - Also speaks for itself

4) Brushing Sassy's hair and getting her tangles out - Takes ages, but seems to have a rather therapeutic effect...unless of course I accidentally tug too hard on her fur and she starts biting me.....

3) Eating Tom Yam Maggi noodles, or KFC Cheezy Wedges or Bubble Tea - Practically no nutrition, but tastes so good!

2) Watching "Whose Line Is It Anyway" at 4.30pm and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" reruns every weekday at 5pm - Yeah, good quality family entertainment!

1) Sleeping - number 1 smply because it takes up the most time (one third of my life), requires the least energy expenditure and the most fun thing to do on a rainy day

P.S.: My brother just recently bought a Playstation 2, so I'm probably going to be modifying this list a little bit later on....:P

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

A job well done.... I think :D

Woohoo! I have 40 hugs! Yay! Thanks everyone who's been giving me hugs (although technically it's not a real hug but a silly looking thing on my sidebar that you just click on....but it's the thought that counts! :P).

My skit on October 1st has come and gone, and after several weeks of sort of freaking out and trying to get things together to make a good skit, I think the whole thing came out really great. Thank God for that! I really appreciate everyone who helped out on the skit too, for coming to so many practices and sometimes not really doing anything but just watching other people practice. I really thank those people who shared their very encouraging real-life testimonies at the end of the skit - Charlene, Kelvin and Rachel, especially Rach coz' for her to go up in front on a bunch of people she doesn't know and talk about how something so personal like how she tried to commit suicide once and the way her dad treated her when she was younger, that really takes courage, man (I don't really blame her for almost freaking out the day before the show. :P). I'm also quite grateful to Jonathan for coming through on the very day of the show and helped figure out how to play the video WITH the sound coz' it wouldn't work before that. And of course, all the actors and actresses as well as the props and lighting people did a great job too. And yeah, I'll give myself a pat on the back too for doing a pretty good job if I do say so myself....kakaka! *perasantan* Apparently I was quite convincing as the depressed suicide case. So now you know, if I ever want to kill myself, I'll do it very convincingly! *sweatdrop*

Anyway, the main thing is at the end of the night, I know at least a few people were touched enough to want to know Jesus and went up during the altar call. I think there were about four people who went up front and Pastor Mal prayed for them, which seems like a few people, but to me even if only one person had gone up, it would've been worth the trouble. Anyway, even with all the silly little problems here and there, I still enjoyed doing the skit. But now I must get back to reality and start labouring over my assignments and reports again. Bleeeehhh... ^_^