before school begins

once more we stand upon the brink

the time in between two periods of time. the calm before the storm? no, not so much the storm, but something more akin to standing in the breach. we are already in the trenches and we are bracing for the assault that is to come. the moment where you know the inevitable is coming… and you stand firm anyway.

it is that delicious time of the year just after orientation and whatnot is cooling down and the school term hasn’t begun yet. it’s like the time in between Christmas and New Year. a very limbo sort of time.

i like this point of time. it seems that one’s sense of the future is sharpened as you anticipate the challenges of the semester and relish the things that are to come. as you stand here wielding the sword of reason that will cut great swathes through the hordes of words that will soon descend upon you. lectures? tutorials? behold! the school year is come.

once more we thrust ourselves into the fire. is it not a noble cause! to go forth into the academic battle and prove your worth as an undergrad. a lowly undergrad, perhaps, one barely tutored in the ways of academic writing and balancing work/life balance, a mere child amidst the intellectual giants of past and present. but my trusty g2 pen and Popular jotterbook are as great as any fountain pen or venerable writing-desk of professors who haunt the mists of the mind. if my weapon be judged as equal, is not the wielder the same? for we (being myself, yourself, and the aforementioned venerables and honourables of every field) contain within ourselves that life force which we can pour out into whatever we want. and school is but a way in which we can channel this force. what if my essay will never shape someone’s life in the future? what if my final grade is poor? i rest assured that i have tested my mettle against the world, against the inexorable machinery of the bureaucracy and the spear of despair that it threatens to throw down upon my comrades and myself. what despair? the despair that it is all for nought, that in the end all men eat, breathe, die, and that studying has no value.

but it is not so! beyond knowledge itself, which is power, or the gaining of some paper (which in the end does not count for that much), we test ourselves against the future. do you have what it takes? maybe or maybe not. but then if you knew the answer it would be no fun, and it would serve yourself no purpose to cast your unfettered self (unfettered by the chains of the expectations of others) into the proverbial breach (since there is at this point, no better word).

the term is set to begin in 9 days time and i rub my metaphorical hands in anticipation of all the good things that await, both routine and non-routine. challenging? difficult? of course! one does not simply take up arms against an unworthy foe. what glory is there in sitting for PSLE right now? (well i think i might fail chinese) but the point remains that one does not wield a blade against a practice dummy. the foe whom you confront determines your measure. will you be found wanting?

the answer has to be no… but you have to make this answer happen. happy year 2 here we go

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