Sunday, April 23, 2017

Prince of Egypt - lights

Shee Yun is involved in the Prince of Egypt musical production at school. She is part of the lighting team. There were shows on Friday and Saturday, and a final one is today, Sunday. So Friday was a school holiday. The Friday and Saturday shows were evening shows, while Sunday is an afternoon show. At first I thought Shee Yun was simply assigned the job, but later I found out she had volunteered for it. The lighting team position was not advertised. She found out about it from a teacher, and thought it was interesting. So she asked the teacher whether she could join the team. I think this is wonderful. She is taking the initiative to go after what she wants.

The lighting team works in small groups of three. Three of them man a station. Shee Yun is the only Year 7 student in her group. There is a Year 10 (Form 4 equivalent) student who has prior experience leading that group. Shee Yun explained to me that there are two lighting station groups, one on the left and one on the right. The group on the left is responsible for pointing the spotlight at actors on the right side of the stage, and the group on the right covers the left.

On Friday night when Michelle and I fetched Shee Yun at about 11pm, there were many parents' cars waiting in the area. We stopped by the roadside quite far away. Michelle stayed in the car while I went to meet Shee Yun halfway. We had exchanged messages and she had started walking towards where we were. When I saw her, she was running, and she was very relieved to see me. There was another boy running behind her. She had thought it was a bad guy chasing her. Soon after she left the school gate she heard footsteps behind her. She didn't turn back to see who it was and just started running. The person behind her ran too, and she thought he was chasing her. I told her she was being silly. It was just her schoolmate. Even if it were a bad guy, running might not have been a good idea anyway, because she might not be able to outrun him. She could turn back and confront him, and look at him straight in the face, which might deter him. She could prepare to defend herself. She could stop somewhere with more people, so that the would-be attacker wouldn't dare to attack. She could run to a nearby guard house to look for protection.

Shee Yun had to wear all black for her job. She didn't have many black clothes, so we had to wash and dry them quickly each day. On Saturday morning I hung them in front of the fan to dry them. On Saturday night we washed the clothes near midnight after Shee Yun came home, and then hung them near the aircon to let them dry.

I still continue to get Chen Rui to practise the jamming songs on her violin. She is not as enthusiastic now though. The novelty has worn off. Sometimes she is downright upset about having to practise the songs. One of those times I said to her I'd offer her a deal. If she would join me in Clash Royale clan battles (2 vs 2 battles), and if we won, I would excuse her from practising the jamming songs that day. She found that novel, and took up the offer. To me, it was good too. I was creating some bonding time with her. Skipping one day of practice was not a big deal. We had fun playing. She was not very good at the game since she had only played very little of it. I asked her to use a deck which consisted of mostly spells, and I asked her to just play a support role. She fumbled a lot, but we did manage to win 3 times, out of 10 or so matches.

Then there was once when she herself asked whether we could play again. This time I said we must practise violin first. She did it very grudgingly, and got into a very bad mood in the process. I was getting her to learn a new song bit by bit - a song I had written myself many years ago called 失忆. She had learned two phrases before, and this time I just wanted her to learn two more. She was in such a foul mood that she kept making mistakes, and the same ones too. She sulked all the while. I said she needed to concentrate better, so that she could get it over and done with. After she eventually managed to play the new phrase half decently, I released her from the torture. I have read an article which says that stubborn or strong willed children will grow up to be successful people. They know what they want and they are not afraid to fight for it. Maybe this applies in this incident. Chen Rui is still young now and I can still set rules and make her follow them, albeit unwillingly. I think soon this will not work. I will need to use more advanced techniques.

After that painful practice session, Chen Rui was no longer in the mood to play Clash Royale. Sometimes I wonder whether it was worth it, because it was frustrating for both her and me. But ultimately I think it was the right thing to do.

I am now reading a parenting book Teck Seng lent me - The Kite Story by Jim Lim. One interesting viewpoint in the book is there is no such thing as quality time. What matters is quantity. The author's view is "quality time" is a term created by busy parents who don't spend enough time with their children, so they feel as long as the little time spent is "quality time" then it is sufficient. The author's view is a parent needs to spend much time with his child to build a strong relationship, and good parenting is founded on a strong relationship.

I am of the opinion that parents should not simply let children do what they want. I will make the children practise piano, practise violin, wash their shoes, participate in family activities, even if they are not keen or even not willing. If we give children a complete free reign, they will be glued to their smart devices, wearing their earphones and isolating themselves from the outside world and their family members. Parents are responsible to apply the right judgements. I understand it can sometimes seem pointless and counterproductive to force a child to do something he is not willing to do. Perhaps a softer or more shrewd means of convincing the child to do what you want him to do is better. In the end, it is the parent's responsibility to do good parenting.

I try to take an interest in what the children are interested in. Chen Rui has tried to play some Undertale songs on her violin in her own free time. This morning we tried playing some of the songs during our practice session. It was difficult to find the guitar chords for the songs, and it was also difficult for her to play th melodies on the violin. We tried many songs, and only found one which we could manage. Even then she still found it difficult. When we switched over to the jamming songs, we felt relieved. It felt easy compared to the Undertale song.

We are having a long weekend now. I had planned to organise a family activity. I thought of doing either ice-skating or bowling. When I first asked the children, they were enthusiastic. Chen Rui wanted to do ice-skating, and Shee Yun wanted to try bowling. However after a few days, the interest level died down, and now Chen Rui is asking whether she can just stay home to draw. I feel rather dejected. Shee Yun is a little tired from her school activity, so maybe we won't do anything after all tomorrow. I had bought gloves in preparation for the ice-skating. I checked the opening hours. I asked friends for advice. I watched Youtube videos on ice-skating for beginners. I even caught myself trying to remember the basic bowling techniques.

Nowadays it is also not easy to convince the children to play a boardgame with me. Playing a boardgame is much harder to force, unlike piano practice, violin practice or household chores. A forced boardgame session is poisonous. It may be why I rarely buy new boardgames now. I no longer expect the children to play with me. In fact, I buy boardgames with higher expectations of playing them with my colleagues.

12 Mar 2017. Chen Rui playing Santorini.

Saturday, April 15, 2017


The children now often listen to music on their earphones, using their phones. This must be a teenager thing. I often tell them not to do it. If it is not necessary to stay quiet, just play the music aloud. Also I feel listening to music on earphones when we go out or when we visit friends is rude. It feels like you don't want to be there and you'd rather be somewhere else. You use the earphones to exclude yourself from your company.

The children love the music from the Undertale PC game soundtrack. Shee Yun has completed the game, probably a few times. Chen Rui doesn't play but watches Shee Yun play sometimes. The music is mostly electronic music, and is of an 80's style game music. Some of the songs are interesting, but most I find too "electronic".

The children often bring their homework, drawing material, or writing material, when we go out to eat. They say they don't want to waste time when waiting for food. Recently when we went to Chee Ying's home for a housewarming lunch, Shee Yun brought her writing material. She is writing a story. She is a little secretive about it and doesn't let anyone read it. She doesn't seem to intend to share it even when it's finished. Nowadays Chen Rui is closer to Chee Ying than Shee Yun. That day after playing with Chee Ying for a while, Shee Yun lost interest and came downstairs to write her story. Shee Yun is often not very interested in what Chee Ying and Chen Rui talk about. I don't think it is her being in secondary school now causing the difference in their interests. I remember this has started even when Shee Yun was still at Naam Kheung.

Shee Yun has to do a song performance at school with a team of nine. Last weekend I sent her to practise twice, at the home of one of her teammates. Three of them play instruments - piano (Shee Yun), keyboard and violin. The other six sing. There is one who was initially supposed to play cello, but they said the cello was too big and difficult to carry about for practices, so that teammate ended up doing a singing part.

Chen Rui put these toilet paper roll cores at her stool. She does weird things.

Ba and Ma were in town for a few days, when they were en route to China. I arranged for the children to sleep over in our room, so that Ba and Ma could use their room. However Shee Yun said she preferred to sleep in the computer room. I guess she feels she is too old for doing sleepovers in our room. She is a grownup now. We should not still think of her as a child. Later on she told Michelle that actually she would have preferred to stay in her own room. It is our oversight that we still treat her like a small child. We should start treating her like an adult. She wants her privacy and her own space, and we should give her that.

Chen Rui participated in a Scrabble contest at school. She had to attend training sessions. In the first round of the actual contest, she had to play with two students from the 5N class (she is in 5K), and she told me she was a little nervous about that. Both 5N and 5K are the top classes (精英班). Each class sends three reps. The contest is in a 3-player format. Chen Rui eventually won 2nd place. Her good friend Yen Ying was 1st place. Chen Rui told me that in Scrabble when you can't make words, watch out for short words made of vowels. I think she mentioned words like IO, or EO, or something like these. I know that under Scrabble rules there are such strange words allowed, which are not found in a normal dictionary. I have never played competitive Scrabble.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Beauty and the Beast

We brought the children to watch Beauty and the Beast at the cinema. This is a real life version of the classic Disney cartoon movie. Michelle loves the original. We watched the musical version when Michelle visited me in Melbourne in 1995. One thing I did not expect was to cry at the cinema. There was one scene which deeply moved me. I knew how the story would end, but the emotions and intensity of that particular scene overwhelmed me. Michelle didn't cry. I think Shee Yun cried too, and Chen Rui didn't. When Michelle asked the children whether they cried, Shee Yun tried to brush it off, so we are guessing she did cry. I didn't really expect much from the movie, since it was just a remake. I expected it to be fun seeing a cartoon version movie converted to a real life version movie - the kind of fun in watching the Harry Potter movies after having read the books. There were additions compared to the original. There were new songs, new details, and some minor changes. The new details are nice. They give additional back story and make the characters more real.

I brought Chen Rui to join my jamming session with Mr Lim and Shyan Jiunn. After the session I asked her whether she enjoyed it, and she said she did. Before we went she was a little worried about not being able to catch up, but I reassured her that our session was very casual and was mostly practising and not at all like performing. We mainly played 甜蜜蜜 and 青花瓷, since Chen Rui only knew these two. We played a little 北国之春. Chen Rui is still halfway learning the violin part for it, so she played along a little, and took a rest when we played parts she didn't know yet. We mostly focused on Mr Lim's parts during the session, since usually it was him who had difficulties. We repeatedly practised sections he had problems with. Chen Rui generally played her parts well enough, so we didn't have to focus on her much. I think that made her feel more at ease.

I'm glad I brought her along. Jamming is a fun activity and I am happy to introduce her to it. I hope she will continue to enjoy it, and I hope this will help cultivate her interest in music. We played for about two hours. After the session both of us were hungry. She had brought some packets of biscuits, and she shared some with me on the way home.

2 Apr 2017. In the car on the way home after jamming, sharing a pack of chocolate filling biscuits.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

hearing things

Chen Rui sometimes hears things, and she believes they are ghosts or monsters. One night she came to our room crying saying that she heard breathing next to her bed and it was scary. I went to the children's room. I thought she must be imagining it. But then I found Shee Yun awake, and Shee Yun said she heard it too. Now that was getting spooky. I asked Chen Rui where the sound came from. She pointed at the floor, about one foot away from her bed, next to the wall. I turned on the lights. There was a small insect there, and a paper bag was nearby. I suspected the sound was made by the insect, even though that didn't sound very convincing. I said to the children that when such an insect crawls inside the paper bag, it can make a sound like breathing. The hollow paper bag amplifies the sound. It is a scratching sound of insect legs moving on the paper surface. I picked up the insect and flushed it down the toilet. Chen Rui was still scared, so I accompanied her while she went back to sleep. After that she did not hear the breathing sound anymore. So it was probably the insect after all.

Yesterday when I was having dinner she said she heard breathing again. She felt scared. She, Michelle and I were at the dining table, and she said she heard it right there and then. Michelle realised it was the sound of construction work at the shop lot where Mulia Supermarket used to be. The sound of breathing was actually the distant sound of a jack hammer.

This morning Chen Rui asked whether she could sleep with ear muffs on, so that she wouldn't hear any more the breathing sounds. I looked for her earmuffs for her. They had been stowed away in a bag with other winter clothing. Now that I think about it, using earmuffs is an ostrich method. If there were ghosts, stopping herself from hearing them would just be lying to herself that they weren't there. But if this works for her, I won't object.

19 Feb 2017. Playing Pickomino with Chen Rui.

Tomorrow is my second jam session with Mr Lim and Shyan Jiunn. We plan to make this a monthly event, around the start of the month. I will bring Chen Rui along. I managed to teach her to play violin parts for 青花瓷 and 甜蜜蜜. I'm trying to teach her 北国之春 but she needs more time to learn it. I used to enjoy writing music and making music with my friends, and I hope involving Chen Rui will help make her appreciate such joy.

The piano teacher had a talk with her violin teacher, and after that Chen Rui told us her violin teacher taught her very well. Let's hope things stay this way. Chen Rui sent us a Whatsapp message when she overheard the two teachers talking. She was surprised that Michelle had recorded a video of me teaching her, and the piano teacher played it for the violin teacher. She even recorded part of the conversion and sent it to us. I couldn't hear the conversation well. I only heard bits of it. The violin teacher said that sometimes after Chen Rui learns something, she can completely forget it after a few weeks. That's not surprising. I think she lacks practice. The piano teacher seemed to be explaining to the violin teacher that Chen Rui is indeed a bit blur sometimes, and she was probably sharing her techniques in teaching Chen Rui.

At work, I started a short series of lunchtime lessons to teach a few colleagues Visual Basic programming in Excel. It started when one non programmer colleague Zhi Nin mentioned she was trying to learn programming by herself. I said I used to teach my children programming and I had already developed a syllabus. I offered to teach her. I opened the session to other non-technical colleagues. So far we've done one session, and there were five students in total. I probably just need two more sessions to conclude this simple introduction to programming.

Saturday, March 25, 2017


I recently noticed that Chen Rui had not been practising violin much at home. I do regularly remind the children to practise piano. When I realised that Chen Rui hadn't been playing the violin much, I made sure she practised that day. I was shocked to find that her violin was very obviously out of tune. That meant she had been playing with an out-of-tune violin for a long time, including when she had her weekly lessons. Why did her teacher not realise it? Has he been paying attention? I was quite upset about this, and this made me doubt the violin teacher's sincerity in teaching, and his professionalism. This young man is supposed to be a good violin player and performer. Michelle and I asked Chen Rui about her lessons. It seems the teacher doesn't put much effort into teaching her. When she makes a mistake, he just tells her to play again, instead of spending time to guide her and to help her correct her mistake. He seems to be looking at his phone frequently. He seems to teach other students better, and Chen Rui sounds like a case he has given up on. All these may not be fully true, but I think they are at least partially true. These are my conclusions from what Michelle had heard before from Chen Rui, and also from our more recent chat with her. I did say to Chen Rui she herself also bears part of the blame, because she also hadn't been practising. We cannot just blame the teacher. She has a part to play too as a student. We are considering finding a different violin teacher. If things are as I suspect, then we are wasting Chen Rui's time. Michelle had a chat with the piano teacher. I'm not sure whether she will be able to help. Michelle had spoken to her about this issue before. The piano teacher herself is very different. She is passionate about teaching and helping her students learn and improve. This is what I want in a teacher. I cannot accept an indifferent teacher.

I said to Chen Rui I would practise with her. Since I recently started jamming with two Shell friends, I picked one of the songs we played (周杰伦的《青花瓷》) to jam with her. I taught her the melody. I played the guitar. I don't know how to play the violin, but I try to teach her some ways of playing based on guesswork and how guitar is played. I may be completely wrong. It turned out to be quite fun. With me playing with her, I can prod her to focus and to play. Sometimes she complains about her fingers hurting, or the song being very hard, but I teach her the song bit by bit, verse by verse, repeating short passages over and over until she knows them well. Quite often her finger position is not accurate enough, and the notes she plays are a little out of tune. They are often at a slightly lower pitch. I need to keep reminding her to press higher.

I find it quite enjoyable to jam with her. I think she feels a sense of achievement too, being able to play a song smoothly. When Michelle asks her whether she enjoys the jamming, she just shrugs. I guess she doesn't actively enjoy it, but it is probably better than how her current lessons go. Now I plan to get her to join the jamming sessions with my Shell friends. We've only had one session so far, but moving forward we will try to do maybe every first Sunday of the month. I will need to teach Chen Rui to play some of the songs first. The next session will be next Sunday. When I told Chen Rui this morning during our practice session, she was anxious. She said she was afraid she would make mistakes and she wouldn't be able to play well. Then later I found out she had misunderstood. She thought we were going for the jamming session in the afternoon. I said no, it was next Sunday. She still had time to learn the songs. I am planning to get her to play the bass part of the songs, and some accompaniment. I taught her 《甜蜜蜜》 today. Some intro, mostly bass, and a little bit of ornamental parts. I'm not sure what to do with 《青花瓷》yet. I have taught her to play the melody, but if we are going to jam, Mr Lim will be playing melody too. Maybe I get them to duet.

My colleague 小猪 asked me to teach him piano. Yesterday Edwin brought his keyboard, and I spent some time teaching 小猪. He was interested to learn more, and asked whether I could find the children's piano books from when they first started piano. Today when I looked for the old books, instead of finding them, I found my own piano books from when I started, and some of Mei's too. That was decades ago! The sticky tapes used to fix one of the books had dried up, and I had to remove it and apply new sticky tapes. I had forgotten that I had brought the books to KL. So I'm going to continue teaching 小猪 using these books.

This morning when I was looking for the piano books, Chen Rui found her old ballet shoes. She put them on. She walked about the house with those shoes on. She sometimes does crazy things like this. Later in the day I saw her playing with her ballet skirt - the black one. When the girls stopped their ballet lessons, Michelle had told them they could wear the skirts like normal skirts, but neither of them listened. They felt the skirts were specifically meant for ballet. So the skirts were stored away and never used. I think Chen Rui took hers out today because she saw some Youtube video about removing creases.

When Chen Rui practised A Thousand Years on piano today, I saw she practised while listening to the original song on Youtube. Last week I had pointed out to her that the way she played was wrong. She played the intro at a normal speed, but the actual verse at half the speed, because the left hand part of the verse requires playing very quickly - lots of semi quavers. I said she could play the intro at a slower pace, so that when she reached the verse, it was more manageable. However I felt it was wrong to play the two sections of the song at different speeds. I'm not sure whether the teacher had explicitly asked her to play this way, in which case then I should not have interfered. I am glad that she took the initiative to listen to the original and to try to play along with it. It means she is taking is seriously and is trying to play the song well.

Shee Yun had a school camp yesterday and today, and stayed overnight at school. We had to buy a sleeping bag for her. Throughout the school holidays she had been waking up late, but yesterday she woke up very early, I think even before 6am, because she looked forward very much to go to the camp. She really is enthusiastic about school. After she came back from the camp today, she told us the topics of the talks during the camp made her feel uncomfortable. E.g. LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals), dating. Michelle and I said she shouldn't feel embarrassed about these topics and she shouldn't shy away, or feel ashamed, or think them awkward. In fact we are happy that the school takes seriously educating students about these topics. There are topics that parents often find difficulties discussing, especially not knowing how to start. The school, being a missionary school, is against LGBT. I said to Shee Yun that I have a different view. Ultimately it is up to her to decide what her view is. She can listen to different views, and try to understand them, before deciding what she wants to believe in.

Due to Shee Yun's camp, Chen Rui went to the office with me yesterday. She didn't want to be home alone. She brought an iPad (Shee Yun's, since hers is wonky) and her phone (well, Michelle's old Xiaomi Mi3). She brought pencil and paper to draw. She brought earphones to watch Youtube. Sometimes I heard her giggle softly. She was picky about food, so I told my usual Thursday & Friday lunch group that if they didn't mind let's have pan mee. They teased me saying that I was using Chen Rui as an excuse. I do often like to go to Jo Jo's Kitchen because I like the spicy pan mee there (麻辣板面), which I always have together with Michael Jackson (soya cincau). Chen Rui ordered a second bowl of pan mee because she felt the first bowl was not enough. I quickly pointed that out to my friends, that she really did like pan mee.

Today when I brought Chen Rui to the kopitiam for lunch, we found that the 干捞面 stall was closed. Usually she wants mee kosong with soup, using the 干捞面 noodles. I asked her whether pan mee kosong with soup was OK, and she said yes. I went to the other stall, only to find that it was closed too. So we left and went to Burger King instead. She had 10 pieces of nuggets. After going home, she told me she was still hungry. So in the afternoon I bought another 5 nuggets for her. She has good appetite. She is growing.

26 Feb 2017. Pancakes for breakfast. Hakka: Man Foon Taat.

This is how Chen Rui eats her pancake - with Nutella. She says it tastes like the wafer which she used to have from Mulia Supermarket.

I am not sure why the children suddenly started liking pancakes. They weren't particularly big fans before this. One day when Michelle made pancakes for lunch, she brought out a first batch while still making the second batch. I only had one piece from the first batch. By the time Michelle was done with the second (and final) batch, the children had finished the first batch, and it looked like the second batch was barely enough for them. So we let them have the rest of the pancakes, and Michelle and I went to Burger King instead. Next time when making pancakes Michelle will need to make many more.

Friday, March 17, 2017

When Marnie Was There

When Marnie Was There is a 2014 movie from Studio Ghibli, but it is not directed by Miyazaki Hayao. I watched it without knowing anything about it, other than having seen some pictures and knowing it's from Studio Ghibli. I like it a lot. It is about a 12-year-old girl, and some parts make me think of Shee Yun, who is also 12 now. It is a drama, and some parts feel slow, but I find it very meaningful and touching. Like My Neighbour Totoro, some aspects of the movie are mystifying and some details are not explained explicitly, leaving it up to you to interpret and to imagine. I find that among the more recent Studio Ghibli movies, I like those by directors other than Miyazaki Hayao more. I like When Marnie Was There and From Up On Poppy Hill a lot. I quite enjoyed The Secret World of Arrietty too. However The Wind Rises was good, yet did not move me as much as the others.

Like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I am thankful I hadn't read anything about the movie beforehand. The Wikipedia entry contains a lot of spoilers. The trailer doesn't reveal much, but I would prefer knowing even less. So it's a good thing I avoided them.

Michelle and I also watched Logan, a Marvel superhero movie that is very unlike any other Marvel superhero movie. It is about Wolverine when he is old. It has action but also feels like a drama. Michelle likes it a lot, as do many of my colleagues. However I would have enjoyed it even more if it were more drama and less superhero. I feel many aspects could have been fleshed out more. The story is certainly not shallow, just that I wished it were deeper.

My colleague said I might cry at a certain scene. After watching the movie, I knew which scene he was referring to, but I hadn't felt like crying. Throughout the movie there hadn't been enough build up. I had not been pulled in to feel deeply for the characters.

Last weekend three of Chen Rui's classmates came. They were teammates for a science project. Originally they arranged to come this Saturday to work on their project together, 3pm - 5pm. They arranged using their Wechat group. Then at 2:50pm last Saturday Chen Rui told me they were coming now. All the parents scrambled to arrange. It all started when one of the teammates said the project was due this week. It was actually not. It is due after the school holidays. The children were a mess in arranging logistics. All the parents had difficulties finding our home. Chen Rui didn't give good directions. She didn't tell them the road sign is still using the old name of our street. The children arrived quite late, and to my dismay, most of them were not focused on their project. I realised they were all just like Chen Rui - no focus at all! One of them kept going upstairs to watch Shee Yun play Undertale. One was playing with her phone. They ate snacks. They chatted. They stayed later than planned, since they arrived very late. That day we needed to have dinner early because Michelle and I was going for a movie (Logan) and we had bought tickets. The children could not finish the project, so Michelle told them they needed to make other arrangements to complete it. Chen Rui and Yen Ying were to work on it after school, and if they couldn't finish it, they would pass the project to the other two, so that everyone took turns to complete it.

No wonder Chen Rui is close to Yen Ying. Yen Ying also prefers to speak English. The other two teammates speak Mandarin. Yen Ying is coming again tomorrow, to do other homework. I actually do welcome Chen Rui's friends. I find it interesting to see how she interacts with her friends, and I want to know her friends too. It is just that seeing them so unfocused on their work, and so irresponsible, I get annoyed. I had said to Chen Rui that if she and her friends could finish their work quickly, they could spend the remaining time playing. I guess Chen Rui is not the only one who needs discipline.

One thing funny was one conversation I had with one of Chen Rui's classmates. I said that they could not stay longer because we needed to have dinner early, and that I had made plans. She asked me what plans. I said I was going to watch a movie. She responded saying, "oh that is so leisurely" (酱悠闲啊?) What the hell?! I hope I'm not being egoistic. I would hope Shee Yun and Chen Rui are not children who speak so casually to adults whom they have just met. I find that impolite. But maybe that's just a child's innocence. I was certainly 扎到 by that "酱悠闲啊".

Saturday, March 11, 2017

二胡 kap band

上个礼拜和 Mr. Lim 还有 Shyan Jiunn kap band。是Shell老同事的新年聚餐时 Mr. Lim 提出的。以前讲过几次,一直没有实行,这一次总算做到了。他知道我和 Shyan Jiunn 以前有 kap 过 band。我们是有讲过可以试试看二胡 kap guitar 和鼓的。我们去 Shyan Jiunn 的家玩,他的鼓已经全 set 好了,是真鼓电子化,接去电子仪器。选曲是 Mr. Lim 做,我们将就他。选了四首:《甜蜜蜜》(邓丽君)、《心太软》(任贤齐)、《千里之外》(周杰伦)、《青花瓷》(周杰伦)。我和 Shyan Jiunn 都需要事先准备一下。我们是 kap 到很爽下的,尤其是 Mr. Lim,因为他是第一次这样玩。他没那么熟,因为他玩音乐没我们久,不过我们慢慢来,还是很好玩。我们打算以后大概一个月来一次。二胡加上电子 guitar 和西式的鼓,是有趣的组合。我这几天时常在哼《青花瓷》,是不错的歌。

这周末煦芸的功课很早做完,今天早上已经做完,钢琴也练了、鞋子也洗了。她来一一向我报告,我就说可以玩 iPad 了。她还有玩 Piano Tiles。最近有听孩子们讲电脑游戏《Undertale》的事,煦芸也有听它的 soundtrack。我的一个同事有向我介绍过。今天我走去问煦芸,要不要玩《Undertale》,她的反应很大,很大声地说要。我想孩子们有一种自动的想法,就是如果有需要用钱买的游戏,我们是不会买的,因为现在一大堆不用钱就可以玩的游戏。所以煦芸从来没有问过我可不可以买《Undertale》。我看她那么兴奋,就上 Steam 买了,install 了给她玩。这是 RPG 式游戏(角色扮演),但是特点是遇到的怪兽不一定要杀死。杀或不杀,或怎样应对这些怪兽,往后是会影响故事和游戏的玩法的。我自己本来就对 RPG 没很大兴趣,但是既然同事介绍说好玩、特别,孩子们也有兴趣,就买给她们试试看吧。RM23。

2017年2月19日。晨睿就是喜欢作怪。我们在玩《Machi Koro》。

前一阵子我有时候可以一整天都看不见煦芸。Michelle 早上载她上学的时候,我才刚刚起身还没下楼下。我放工回到家,她已经跑去睡觉。后来 Michelle 发现她是特别早起身,handphone alarm set 到凌晨三点四点,我们就不准她那么 set。该睡觉的时候就要睡觉,那么早起身干嘛。难怪晚上那么早眼睡。所以这几天她就没有晚上那么早睡觉了。

晨睿还是不大有 discipline。开始有手机后,时常会一面做功课一面听歌或看 Youtube,搞到自己分心。有时候甚至在和朋友用 Whatsapp 或 Wechat 聊天。结果是有时功课做到礼拜天晚上还做不完。我们要管制她怎样用手机。不管的话,她现在还没那种自律。幸好煦芸会好一点。