Not as nice as 1558, but it will do!

More fireworks for ya.

Before you try to read the mess of a post… have a photo from Taiwan (on new years). I haven’t used any recently so here’s to more usage of them!

Below is the second part of this… ‘series’ (if I can even call it that). Most of the follow is the original things I typed back in September 2013 so it might feel a bit different.

I would read it again and try to fill in additional details and expand on things, but a huge part of why I never published a grade 9 entry was I didn’t feel motivated enough to expand on details, and that I didn’t feel like I could give as much detail as I previously did.  There’s some more, but they aren’t important anymore.

The important thing is why I’m going to try to do this again. Part of it is wanting to finish what I’ve started, but there’s also a tinge of regret for leaving it undone. There’s also the fact that as it gets longer, it becomes harder for me to remember these things, which is why I want to try and get the most out before it’s too late.

Anyways, excuse the opening, the post it is referring to is this post.

I feel like I’ve missed a lot of memories in the previous post. It’ll probably feel like that for each post, I’m not sure I can keep writing these back to back. Realizing that I’ve forgotten precious memories is pretty humiliating, but at some point it’s bound to happen.

Hey, I survived one year.

That’s what we said.

‘Survived’ was the popular term to use then. Getting through 3 terms of secondary school was on equal terms of not dying due to a nuke in your backyard. That’s just how important it was to us. One year down, only 4 to go.

Ah, I remember this was the first year with my current student number, 729173. I’m not sure why, but near the end of grade eight, Mr. Olson swapped our student numbers, which is why my Grade eight letter’s student number was 166543, instead of my current one. My old one was quite easy to remember too, a one and two sixes, and then a downwards count. Considering how random my current one is, I find it strange how I remembered it easier than my old one. Maybe because I remembered the pattern it made on the numpad when I would type it out. A lot of my numerical passwords are like that – I remember it based off the numpad pattern.

So what happened in this grade?

I had Science 9 with Ms. Tang. One of the most lax yet uptight teacher I’ve met. Lax in the sense of conversation outside of class, and uptight in the sense that half the class failed a quiz because we didn’t listen properly. I remember that moment. I was sitting in the front with Sean, so both him and I were able to hear her instructions. ‘Write your last name before your first name on this quiz. If you don’t you will automatically lose 50% of this quiz.’ Pretty harsh. It resulted in some pretty low scores for certain people, especially those who sat in the back. If you sat in the back and were paying attention, then you would have been utterly screwed by that, as the class was just too loud.

Ms. Tang was a very relaxed teacher. Though the talkative spirit that embodied all of MY/SY was just too much for anyone to bear. She’s one of those nice teachers that has a low threshold for disorder. It’s probably way more fun talking to her one-on-one (can confirm, not that year though!) or when the class is quiet. Apparently she’s also on of those super genius people with like 3-4 degrees. Before I thought it was super impressive how she managed all that. I still find it impressive, but now that I’m in university, I just wonder how many years she spent at university doing those degrees, didn’t they ever set her back in terms of job searching? Maybe that’s how she ended up as a teacher, as not a lot of teachers (I’ve talked to) started out wanting to become one.

That brings me to a point that a lot of MY teachers say – Middle Years kids are loud. The kids in my regular classes aren’t loud, and to an extent even IB kids aren’t that loud, so why only MY? Is it because there are only 30 of us, and we spend half our classes together? Something about frequent sightings and close proximity creating faster friendships? It’s likely to be because of the closer bonds we have. Closer friends are more willing to break the unspoken rule (sometimes spoken) of quiet during class time than strangers. In a normal class, it’s unlikely you know everyone in the class well, making you put up barriers before even knowing who they are.

Lets actually talk about Science class. The only thing I remember, and frankly the only important thing that ever happened in that class was the Science Fair. This year was partners. Hell yeah.

I partnered with Sean (going to get carried!). We did an experiment about how air pressure changes based on changes in the design of a propeller (angles, number of blades, material [this one I’m not sure of]). He was over at my house until 1am~ creating the experimental rig. It took that long because at around 9pm we realized we fucked up and had to start from scratch. I remember Sean’s Dad, my Dad, Sean and I in the washroom on the third floor (when we lived at General Currie) using electric saws and handheld saws to cut wood to create our experiment design.

Called it ‘Winds of Change’ and handed it in.

We only got 78%.

‘Only’ for Sean. For me this was a vast improvement from last years grim 56% solo experiment. What could I say? I was never good at the writing part of labs.

I had my first French class with Ziakos. It was kind of obvious that I was really, really bad at this thing called French. It was pretty obvious the second she called on me. ‘…’ would be all anyone would hear for a good 5 to 10 seconds before I was either: 1. Try to formulate a guess 2. ‘Je ne sais pas’. I really did NOT like this course. This was also the first time I met some kid called Marco Lai. Kind of stupidly annoying, and increasingly get on my nerves. At some point I pretty much detested hearing his voice. Then somehow we end up doing a French project together because we were apparently good friends. Funny how things turn out. And oh my god, that french project. We literally just wrote it out in english, went to google translate (this was before it’s French translation was actually decent) and pasted our entire script. And that was the presentation that we presented. We ‘failed’ it and had a redo in a private room with Madam Ziakos. Kinda freaky. I felt like I was being caught for cheating (because I kinda was), and Ziakos had already told us stories about her catching students using google translate. Somehow we never got that attention, and it was smooth sailing from there.

Though I have to admit it was super embarrassing, one of the reasons I started to pay more attention in French class (though I never became ‘decent’ at it). Also, Marco has become a relatively good friend, so the suffering was worth it I guess.

English. I sat in a group of 5 with Ben, Allen, Rene and Sharon. Our group was directly to the left after entering the classroom. It was a square shape with the 5th desk added on facing the group of 4. The additional desk was Rene. He sat on the left side of the square. I was the left-back seat with Ben beside me, Allen in front of me and Sharon C. across from me. Interesting times.

I still didn’t like Ben then. He was one of the people I never could really relate too (along with Cory). Probably because of their more outgoing personality, but they didn’t have the understanding/compassionate personality that other outgoing people like Aaron, Wayne or Jasmine had. I remember day 1 of class, where the seat to the right of me was empty, I had to think of which student was missing, and when I discovered it was Ben, I was definitely not pleased with the result. He was definitely not my top pick.

I did an english debate project with him. It was pretty bad. The day before he messaged me on Facebook asking about research notes and stuff. I only did a bit then, so I sent him what I had and what our general outline was. That was all I could really do – research. I was utterly terrible at public speaking then (I still am now, though hopefully not as bad as then). Speeding up. Stuttering. Going quiet. Repeating words. Incorrect pronunciation. Reading. That debate project did not go well. On the day of, I had a lot of research points, and Ben really had nothing. I gave him my notes (since it’s a ‘group’ project with separate marks) and told him the general outline of the debate for us. He was great at speaking (he ended up doing debate club and attending tournaments) so it was fine for him. We were up against Jimmy & William Xi. Probably too much for me to take. Jimmy was also too humble about himself, but William had that ego-aspect covered. They were both good at speaking; William had his confidence to carry him, Jimmy saw it was an assignment and proceeded as normal.

I remember a part where we had to present evidence. Their evidence contracted my evidence, so we had to reveal our sources. William said his was from the government’s website. Ben looked at me for the source (since I found them), I was hesitant because I didn’t want to lose (wrong move bro) and said it was from the government site as well. It wasn’t, and was from one of those lobbyist campaign websites, but I had taken data from the .gov website so I thought I could play it off as if their sources were swapped if I ever had to present my references. William saw through my lie right away, so I had to put up a front. In a sense, I did find evidence contrary to their claim on the government website, it just wasn’t that piece of information Ben used. That’s just me justifying it though.

Did I mention that Mr. Hauck wasn’t in the day that I did my debate? We had a substitute teacher, and he really didn’t seem to like how I stuttered and caught my own words. Some people told me it was fine (probably being kind) while others were more blunt in telling me I needed practice. This sub just gave me a 11/20. He gave me a 1/5 for research. Maybe I’m bad at showing the data I collected, but I was extremely upset that Ben got a 5/5 for research when all he did for research was take my notes. I didn’t dispute it because I know my showing wasn’t good, but that was a shitty feeling.

Another time thing about Mr. Hauck I remember is when 2nd or 3rd term marks were being produced. Allen and Rene went up to ask about their marks and Mr. Hauck got very upset at their lack of effort that reflected in their marks (I think it was like a C-ish mark for them?). I walked by them trying to talk to someone (not one of them & I don’t remember who it was) and Hauck suddenly shouted:

You’re part of the bad street too!

He was not using a joking tone of voice. It was probably the most embarrassing moment I had in that class, and I think I had a lot in that one.

I was really surprised and confused, but when I learned of the context, I was kind of upset he had to single me out when I already knew I wasn’t good at this English stuff (I think I had a C+ in English then). Maybe he was upset that a MY/SY (technically in grade 9 we became Synergy students, but we applied & enrolled in Middle Years so that’s what I call it) student who was supposed to be ‘above average’ was performing so badly in his class. Maybe he just grouped me with Rene and Allen (because I sit with them and talk to them) and assumed I didn’t try (I did, I’m just shit at this. Rene & Allen honestly could do much better if they cared). Either way it really made me feel bad. I haven’t liked Mr. Hauck since. I remember visiting him some time last year, and he didn’t remember me (it was kind of obvious) but he pretended to because JV & Rachel were there and he remembered them (I guess he assumed I was part of MY/SY because I came with them). It wasn’t helping my image of him.

There’s more about English. I remember this project I did with Jian Vern and Allen. There’s a picture of it on Facebook (it’s not a very nice photo…). I don’t remember the criteria but it was randomly assigned groups (not too sure, I think it was a more orderly random group). We didn’t really start to design the 3D model thing we were supposed to create until the night before. I remember being in Science (the class before English at the time) trying to finish colouring in parts of the model. It wasn’t exactly a quality presentation with a lot of bullshit. In regards to the photo, I remember being embarrassed about the rushed and poor work we did that I was shouting and being very emotional (as in excessive, exaggerated emotion, not sad tears) before the presentation. That photo captured everything I felt for that project.

Here’s another project I was embarrassed in. Not because it was a poor project, but because there was a presentation element to it and I was the female prostitute character. The other two members of my group were both better fits (one’s a girl, one could pass off as a girl). Sharon wrote a majority of the short novel we were supposed to create (I think she did, I don’t remember, I just remember trying to edit it), if not all of it. It was about a prostitute who dies, a dumb, honest man called ‘Mayo’ and a young orphan boy. The story is unclear to me, but I think I have the script somewhere on my computer. Not ever going to open it though, fuck that. Oh and William Xi created the character Mayo (literally the worst character ever). The idea of the project was to make a story based on characters other people created. Rene wrote about Miku. Typical.

I realized I forgot the most exciting part about English 9. Midsummer’s Night Dream recitals and presentations! I worked with Jian Vern, Sean and Sharon C. I remember having a huge problem trying to memorize my own lines, so when they were over at my house practicing, I was still trying to memorize my own lines. I ended up hearing their lines for the beginning part of the play so many times that I memorized theirs… Those lines were so engrained into my memory that it took years before I began to forget them. I remember in grade 12, I walked into Mr. Sale’s room and I saw his poster of Midsummer’s Night Dream poster with all the lines, I saw the first few lines and began to recite the rest for about a page or two from the text I used to use.

Now, it’s hard for me to try to even remember the first line. Something about Helena asking Lysander why he’s going after her and not the girl he actually loves (lol magic). If I see the lines again, I might be able to remember them.

The presentation though was above average I think. I remember Brandon’s with Carmen and two other people. That one was kind of… crazy. They portrayed the girl as like some deranged crazy psycho. They also acted the part. It was really, really scary. For a moment I thought they might accidentally injury each other. It was intense.

Then there was Rene and Allen’s, where they played Oberon and Titania. We were supposed to memorize the lines, but Rene had troubles with that so he just said ‘Fuck it’ and brought his text beside him as he read off it.

He also played Titania.

It was pretty hilarious.

Math is next.

Mr. C’s class was interesting. I had taken a lot of extracurricular Math lessons, so I was prepared to do well in Math 9 Enriched. Little did I know, that enriched part was actually going to make it hard for me to do well. This is also where I met Kyle Zhou. He’s an okay friend, sometimes he’s super annoying and sometimes he’s actually helpful. The latter is really rare though. Usually he just drones on about some topic slightly related to something I may like (it’s impressive he remembers all those things, but a lot of it is really general and the fact that he always goes over things that are not interesting to me severely reduces that impressiveness) and occasionally makes remarks about why I don’t know this, and how I should know this, but I’m just being knit picky for the sake of memories.

I remember I had a ‘fight’ with him before. I’m not sure how it started, but there’s probably some of my responsibility in there. It was something around the slow abuse of our respective pencil cases and it became him eventually knocking mine off the table and then throwing it off again after I picked it back up. I think I retaliated the same way, and I might have even given him a light punch because I was unamused. I think he hit me back and then I think I hit him back harder and said something similar to:

Fucking hell Kyle stop being such a god damn brat! Pick up my shit you asshole.

Not exactly how you solve a conflict.

Doesn’t matter though, as it resulted in him starting to cry. I remember being confused and infuriated at him. Why was he crying? He started this god damn shit! He wouldn’t stop pushing off my things even when I told him to stop countless times! I even hit him to make sure he actually knew I was seriously upset at him. What gives him the right to suddenly start crying and elicit pity from others? No bullshit emotional appeal would change the fact that this is your fault, all it’s going to do is make it look like I bullied you (well I mean hitting him probably constitutes that). I remember Sharon C turning around to see and giving me the ‘no dude, just stop it and leave him alone’ look. I’m not sure how I knew what that look meant, but her saying those words probably helped.

I also remember some dumb stuff with Iris and her post-it note rabbit&carrots (‘carrots’ is more appropriate), my DS being viewed as a communal resource, the same DS being confiscated, joint tests (I remember doing one with Kyle and one with Jessica C. [at some point in time I was relatively close to her – mainly just msn contact though] and Jimmy doing his with Mary [which was the OTP]), meeting myself (Hi Kevin Wang, I’m Kevin Wang) and getting to know Hanchen (it helped out a lot in grade 10!). Oh, and Mr. C’s room being the chess club where I would fail to play acceptable levels of Chess and Go while Rene/Gordon/Allen trounced me in those games. Fun. Though I think Go came much later. Actually, the chess club in general might have come later (like next year).

I remember a joint test I did with Jessica about probability and I completely ignored the existence of permutations and combinations and instead went for the good old fraction multiplied by fraction. It could have worked, but because of my unpreparedness, lack of understanding, and just being dumb it did not. I felt bad for pulling Jessica’s mark down from that one. Welp.

Next one is Socials 9.

I only remember doing poorly on the written essays and Mr. Martin’s clock of partners. It was a clock, but beside every hour there was a person’s name, so when he called out a time, you would have to work with the person beside the hour. And no, he did not call minutes to mess with us. This was also the class where at the end everyone wrote each other an anonymous comment. Here’s mine. Fun stuff. Looking back on them, I never found out who this chocolate person was. I remember they did it for everyone (people talked about what they got afterwards). For all the things I’ve written about Ben in this post, I came to like him a lot more during this year. The comment about the inappropriate Pokemon battle was from him. There was some msn (RIP) app that allowed you to simulate a Pokemon battle with self-created and named Pokemon along with self-named moves. It was very inappropriate, but it was hilarious. That SY/MY reunion/time capsule thing is supposed to be in 5.5 more years, so I guess I’ve got to wait until then.

Oh. This was the year I became an Alumni on Sale’s forums (here’s the link for the remaining people that can even log in). When the new SY’s (they’re not MY/SY, because they are full on Synergy!) joined the forum, there was only one person that seemed to stand out to me. They posted a lot (more importantly they posted a lot in the Off Topic Discussions board [the best board] as well as the Cross Grade Discussion [the part that was for marks]) and they interacted with people a lot. It was a refreshing moment of nostalgia to see new active forum users spreading over a previously abandoned forum (basically at the end of every year the forum dies because really maybe only 5 people will care to post/visit again. Then the next year some of those alumni leave and there’s no one left). The person I remember is Rockband. I’m not even sure if they were part of this year, but this was one of the biggest regrets I’ve had. Honestly it was a small thing, but I feel like it was one of the reasons why they stopped being active (or maybe they swapped usernames, who knows). I remember changing my signature to some phrase, where there were 3 key words that I had italicized, bolded, or underlined. Looking back on it now, it seems kind of childish, but I really liked it back then. Some time later Rockband had a very similar phrase with those same 3 stylized words. I got a sort of ego boost to see someone using something I thought was nice. But I felt like I had to hide my joy/happiness for some reason. I think it had something to do with being the ‘older student’ so I didn’t want to be seen liking similar things as younger and assumedly (is this even a word?) less mature people. Now, it’s a amusing and fun thing to like something that is targeted at a younger audience (eg: colouring books, Disney movies). So when they asked me how their signature was (I think they were expecting praise, because mine is similar and I talked about liking my own, haha) I, trying to hide my happiness, harshly criticized it. I think I said that the stylized words made it look childish (I literally have the same one!) and that it was ‘meh’ overall. Thank god Vanessa told me that I was being retarded since I literally had the same kind of signature. Helped me realized what I was doing. I still didn’t apologize to them though. That’s my biggest regret of this year, not saying sorry. Because of it, I can literally never say sorry to their face, because I’ll never know who they were. Honestly I think they were a girl, I don’t think any guy acts or types like that. Maybe me. But I’m weird. Maybe it was a guy, but then maybe they wouldn’t succumb to my comment, and would have fired back at me. But that’s me assuming things about gender and gender roles.

This was also the year I took programming 11/12 with Rene. Term one I got my first and only I (incomplete, aka fail). I couldn’t understand shit, and the teacher (I forgot his name but he was a math teacher [old, white, and white hair] and he retired) wasn’t very good at explaining anything. At one point I remember asking him why my program wouldn’t compile. He looked at it, and said that he didn’t know and told me to just hand it in, even though it wouldn’t run. Term 2 I had a C- with around 56%. Term 3 I had a C+ with 68%. I think Rene either failed that course (he didn’t do any work in class or hand anything in!) or he copied Timmy’s programs (which were copied off someone else) and handed them in without me noticing. I remember term 1, all anyone ever did was play Starcraft. That was my first experience with Starcraft, and I was shit at this game. So shit I didn’t even want to play (I’m still shit at Starcraft). Though eventually it ended up with me buying  an SC2 account, but never really playing on it because I was just so damn terrible at it. After Winter break, the teacher told us that everyone who had Starcraft on their computer lost marks or something. I was so scared. I remember crying, because I was going to lose marks for having Starcraft on my computer (I didn’t even play it that much because I was so shit I didn’t know what I was doing). I remember showing my mom my report card with an ‘I’ on it. That was such a scary moment. I remember something about her talking to Mr. Stuart (I remember his name!) about my grades at a meeting she arranged with him. I wasn’t even there, I just heard that it happened.

I guess it was why when after Term 2 and 3 when I started to do assignments and really try to learn them, he gave me an A+ (98%) for my final mark.

I remember looking at my programming mark and just being confused. What? Did I just get an A+ after I rolled an I, C- and a C+? I literally didn’t understand in what world was that possible. No possible clue that a parent to teacher talk could cause it. I thought he just pitied me.

I never took programming again (until this term, I tried to chose the easiest one possible). I also tried to avoid Mr. Stuart. Avoid his classes, his classroom and seeing him in the halls. For me, it was embarrassing knowing that I cried in front of him about failing/mark reduction (well I did get 48%, and he did like cut 10%+ from everyone with Starcraft…) and that it was his course I performed the worst in. I thought he would think I was some kind of rebellious child that wasn’t here to learn (I admit, I did play a lot of Dissidia with Rene during this time. I also got really good at that game [in my opinion] by playing against Rene who was better than me and had his broken ass equipment [apparently he grinded it himself, I believed him here because he had like 600+ hours on that game]. I like to think we were even, with him  having an edge because he had all the equipment, and I only had scraps) and had to have his parents persuade teachers to give him a passing mark. It was embarrassing to see him because it would just bring back those memories.

Terrible.

This year also was the first time I’ve ever skipped class.

Bulldog classic. Basketball games in the gym for the last 2 periods of class. You had to buy tickets for them, and then you could go watch the games (or just leave). I got forced to buy tickets, forgot why. Probably Rene. Then Rene, Allen and Sharon C. somehow forced me to ditch class during lunch. The amount of stress I was under when we were walking down Oak Street and passed by the Marpole-Oakridge community centre. Every person I saw was someone from the school looking for kids who ditched class. Even when we were at Rene’s house, I was still scared of being caught. I was that scared of ditching class.

Sharon laughed at me for that.

Then again, she mocks me for pretty much everything, nothing new there.

This was also Rene’s famed line:

You guys gotta leave at 3:15. I gotta fap at 3:30.

Going off of Rene’s love for hentai games, this year was when he started to bring a laptop to school (a small and weak one, but still a computer). He would play his H-Game (the Shuffle! series. I thought the art was quite cute back then, but now when I look at it again, it looks out-dated. It’s only been 5 years) on his laptop during lunch. There was a day where Allen, Sharon C. and I would fight each other over the earbuds that played the voice acting from a sex scene in the game. We were all laughing so hard at the voices. Rene was just confused. Looking back, I don’t even know why or how it was funny. I would be confused too.

I think that summer I was made to start studying SATs. I wasted so much of my parents’ money taking SAT classes that I didn’t want to take. That lead to me not putting effort in to learning the material, but during the lessons, I always felt dumb and stupid for getting questions wrong that I should have learned how to solve. I don’t think I stopped until half way through grade 10, or maybe even until the end of grade 10.

Anyways, I hated SATs.

I had PE this year too. It’s been so long since I have had mandatory PE that it doesn’t even register as a legitimate course to me anymore. PE9 was with Ms. (Mrs?) Calder. I only remember having Sean, Allen, and Rene in this class.

Applied Skills this year was probably the most boring, ever.  We did crocheting this year. A supposed upgrade from knitting scarves last year.

I don’t think I made a single hat. Just like last year, my mom helped me. Actually, I think she did like 1 or 2 then didn’t do anymore. Apparently Mr. Olson didn’t care about it (for me at least). This was also when I really stopped giving a damn about those stupid ass daily blogs. He also introduced ‘Super Blogs’ (I literally never did any. I didn’t even know they were a thing until half way through the term). At that point, I had already begun the lie about my blog counts. I would just skip a few weeks of blogs, then do 2-3 entries for the last couple days in 20 minutes. I’d title them as if I never skipped it. Then I e-mailed him the most recent one.

Either he didn’t notice, or he didn’t care. I got a B in that course.

Self Reflections counted for a lot in that course though. I never gave myself above a B for self reflections. It’s because I literally never really tried to work in that class. To me Applied Skills was the let loose and relax class. I would send in reflections, and Olson would just respond with ‘ok’. That reminds me, in the ending days of grade 8, we started a physical 3D castle project that we were suppose to resume the following year. We never did. Instead we ended up building a rocket. That was a fun week. Losing rockets, trying to catch them, and running around the area of the lower field trying to reclaim our rockets.

Also when Rene tried to hand in a Self Reflection that gave himself full marks (basically an A saying that he tried his hardest and learned a lot of new things and was always prepared for class [l0l]) Mr.Olson said the best line he’s ever said:

This is you? I think you need to take a good look in the mirror again.

God. Damn. That was an amazing one liner.

Rene and Allen also got wiped by Mr. Choi for sitting on lab benches and laughing way to loud.

Here’s my probably inaccurate account of what happened:

Why is your face like that? (Choi to them, they were laughing really hard)

Who said you could laugh, hn? Who said you could laugh?!

What the hell is wrong with your face?! Stop laughing now!

Who do you think you are? What class are you from? I’ll make sure you come to my room afterschool.

And that’s how Rene and Allen got detention for laughing too hard and sitting on lab benches.

It was much funnier in person. It would also probably be funnier if I could remember what Mr. Choi said word for word. Oh well.

I’m not sure what else I could include here.

I don’t think there’s anything else. I’ve went through all of my courses and even things that just happened that year that I remember.

This is my longest post so far at 5.6k+ words. I’m not sure how I’m going to top this or even reach this amount of depth for any of the following years.

Maybe it’s time for another 2 year break.

Hope this was worth the 2 year break.

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