Narcissus' Echo

Thoughts, tears, rants, ruminations, hopes, fears, love(s), and prayers of just another being passing through this wracked sphere...

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A round peg in a world of square holes...

Friday, May 20, 2005

Tea and typos

More on my tea saga (for new readers, I had 15 boxes in my pantry, or was it 14? 16? hmm...): I bought more tea (3 more boxes). Now I have decaffeinated green tea as well. The best of both worlds: drinking green tea, and yet still able to go sleep right after. Talk about having your cake and eating it too. Next on my list would be decaffeinated Earl Grey. Man, cookies and tea at 11 PM, and still being able to hit the sack thereafter. I suppose I'm spoiled. Spoiled. Spoiled.

I returned home on Wed at 8:30 PM, expecting to shower, a quick dinner (a can of Campbell's Chunky Soup & toasted sourdough. Moderate amount of salt, low fat. Highly recommended), and sleep for 6 hours, speed read for 3 hours upon waking, when my housemate asked me if I could "proof-read" his paper revision.

Man, I should have known better. He played Final Fantasy on the Playstation for the next 2 hours before working on his paper (did I mention that I wanted to sleep?). I told him I would only read final drafts and I am not going to fix typos or missing words. When I got his paper, it was so filled with errors that it was 2:30 AM before I was done with it. Argh. Then again, I guess I'm a perfectionist. I wasn't going to let him walk away without having done my best job on his paper.

Experiences like these make me empathize with the draconian grading policies of my professors in the past (e.g. one misspelling, or missing word, or duplicate word, or punctuation error, and the highest possible grade is a "D). I am beginning to see the rationale behind it. To hand up a carelessly written / proof-read paper is disrespectful not only to the reader, but to the writer as well. In my (pompous, anal-retentive, pedantic) opinion, one should possess more dignity than that; it is extremely self-denigrating to hand in a poorly-written paper. It is akin to a declaration, "The quality of my thoughts is not worth the observance of the form in which they should be presented in, ergo here's absolute crap, presented in all its crappy form." While I am a sloppy dresser 99% of the time, I am extremely anal about form and presentation in the letters. The two exist in different worlds: one rots in the grave with the wearer, while the other practically exists for eternity, beyond the life of its creator (if he/she is good enough to be published, that is).

As if poor adherence to proper form in academic papers isn't bad enough, the government of a certain "Disneyland-with-a-death-penalty" is considering replacing Singlish with rap and hip-hop in the classroom, in an effort to root out the former. This is akin to stopping blood loss with a contaminated bandage: exchanging one problem with another; exchanging local flavor for blind mimicry. It comes across as an extremely short-sighted stop-gap solution. As "flawed" as the former is, at least it possesses authenticity (this is coming from someone who detests Singlish, so that's saying a lot), while the embrace of the latter is simply a crude exercise in pop-culture mimicry. How is Ebonics superior to Singlish? Just because one is imported from the Northern Hemisphere? Then again, it can be argued that one of the tenets of education is mimicry. If so, then it becomes a point of contention which form is more deserving of mirroring--or, aping (pun intended).

Don't try this at home now.

In case anyone is wondering what happened to Jar Jar Binks:


Anonymous Murray Lauren said...

I''ll be back. Later :)

8:59 AM  

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