Chicken Soul Soup: The Musical Development of Othello


The English Major's Blog

In which a student demonstrates the adroitness of multilingualism.

Me: How would you summarise Othello’s character development throughout the play?

Student: Chopin→Rachmaninoff→Beethoven→Schoenberg.

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New Bullet Journal

This wasn’t my first one, and it wouldn’t be my last one either.

My first “bullet journal” was merely just a small pocket notebook where I kept everything about me in it. It kept me organized in my chaotic life: it was the peace in the pandemonium.

I didn’t know about bullet journals after I finished my first pocket notebook. And after some research and goofing around, I decided to start an actual bullet journal.

I feel very guilty because maybe I should be spending more time practising and studying instead of doodling inside a fancy notebook?

Also have a merry merry Christmas!

An Attempt to Write like Stephen Fry


I have stumbled over the fact, some days ago, that attention was urgently needed to my concept of time. It crept into my life with an eerie but imperceptive presence and, with the growth of time, it embodied itself in my subconscious and merged with my very habits of staring at a digital screen with utmost concentration.

It is, by far, the most catastrophic flaw that required the most labour. It served as an origin to other nameless blemishes that resulted in great sacrifices. See, when I speak of time, I mean the consciousness of its flow, its own extraordinary ability to lengthen, to stretch, to zoom in on a precise point. This mere quality has an enchanting outcome; with every focused task, time itself will elongate to baffling amounts. However, the root of the problem is that this juicy quality can reverse itself with mindless tasks. It dries up, the hydration evaporates, the thick, meaty layer shrinks itself to a set of rotting bones.

Precisely, the function of an inorganic phone is to engulf, to absorb all of the succulent content of time. It feeds on the very life of the infinite ticking of the clock, of the immeasurable eternity. It is the supreme ancestor of all malicious allure.


Thank you! Thank you.




To The Best Teachers In The World

It’s 4:12 pm. I am sitting on the sofa doing absolutely nothing. Every day, I get home at 3:40 pm and I feed my dog, I do homework, I play piano, I go to extra-curricular classes.

Not really feeling the grove to finish all of those worksheets right now.

You know, sometimes there are really bad and really good days for no reasons, and sometimes there are really bad and really good days that are because of something. And today belongs to the latter.

It was because my chemistry teacher is leaving.

I mean, it seems like it’s no big deal to cry and be sad about right?

But what if he was one of the best teachers you had? The funniest guy you have met? THE ONLY teacher that makes everything seems so clear and easy to understand?

He puts his whole efforts into writing those lesson plans, find ways to present the lesson so everyone in his class can understand. He is one of those teachers who put passion into his own work.

People always tell me, “go into the profession that you enjoy.” I can see it on that guy.

Today, he gave us a formative quiz on himself, (yes, I know. He also has really bad puns. The puns that make you laugh and cringe at the same time.) and informed us that we will be “in good hands” for the rest of the semester through a 20 mins presentation. We all got a lollipop from a glass bottle with a “so long suckers” sign on it. He also sang a “goodbye” song that made me cry for the rest of the period.

But I couldn’t see the rest of the semester without this guy. A substitute teacher? Nah, no one can substitute for him. A new teacher coming in? Nah, then I’ll just skip that class. ( I actually won’t, but I won’t try as hard.)

I just can’t seem to adjust to this sudden change in the middle of a semester; it will feel like he was only absent tomorrow. Like he is gone just because he had the flu.

It’s not the end, is it?

I came home and sat on my sofa and cuddled up with my dog and cried for a few minutes. There goes another great teacher!

A few days before he organized this “amazing race” where we had to find different chemical formulas all over the school, and come up with the names of them before the end of the class. The clues for them were riddles that we were given on a separate piece of paper.

What kind of teacher would do that if he didn’t love his job?

So to all of the teachers in the world that makes puns, and give lollipops to their students before summer break, thank you so much for your patience, your efforts to help us in what we are about to do, about to become. You inspire us to thrive in those fields, to sprout the passion that we are going to carry for the rest of our lives, and lead us into the human beings that we want to become.

To the best teachers in the world, you are the dream guiders that makes all dream come true.

The Forgotten Words of Childhood

I was wandering through the library today for English lesson today, and I saw this book called “The Child That Books Built” by Francis Spufford. I flipped through it, and something in it made me have goosebumps to stand on my back.

It was sort of those moments that made me think about my childhood. My mom loved books, and we used to have a library full of books. I loved reading about the grim brother’s stories, and tons of other fairy tales. I have gone through one of the hardest times in my life by reading books after books. Savoring the taste of the first book and diving into the second one without any waste of time.

The book starts off with, ” I can always tell when you’re reading somewhere in the house,” my mother used to say. “There’s a special silence, a reading silence.” I never heard of it, This extra degree of hush that somehow traveled through walls and ceilings to announce that my seven-year-old self had become about as absent as a present person” (Spufford 1).

Because yes, I have had those moments before; in elementary, I was always the first person to leave the school because I had other important business to do, and by important business, I mean reading. But it was different then; I had so little to care about, I can just sit there and read from afternoon till night. Homework was the least of my concerns.

I find that I have so little time to go into the deep readings that I did 5 years ago. The amount of books that I have read and the pace that I am reading the books just keeps on diminishing. Part of it is because I was reading other articles and short paragraphs like fanfics or research documents. But none of that was nourishing to me. It wasn’t the food for the soul. It’s not the jam in the bread. It was until today that I realized how dry up inside and how plain my life has become. I have forgotten all the closets that contain the entrance to a magical world, all the peas that can grow as tall as the sky, all the houses that are made out of sweet candies, and the evil witches that are waiting for lost children.

I have forgotten how the syllables rolls off your tongue and the savory taste of it afterward, the simple fulfilled happiness of just saying them.

The picture of my mom holding me in her arms, and the pile of books lying beside the nightstand still lingers in the distant memories of my childhood. Her voice, soft but enough to wispher life into each words, gave colours to the fiction world I was able to see.

“And as I walk down the aisles, I remember that in every novel there are reverses, that all plots twist and turn, that sadness and happiness are just the materials authors use, in arrangements I know very well; and at that thought the books seem to kindle into a kind of dim life all around me, each one unfolding its particular nature into my awareness without urgency, without haste, as if a column of gray, in substantial smoke were rising from it, softening the air…. Among these drifting pillars, the true story of my life looks no different; it is just a story among other stories, and after I have been reading for a while, I can hardly tell anymore which is my own” (Spufford 210).

Dream #1: While I was sleeping….

Ok, so I decided to start this series of (short) post thing where I talk about my dreams. I first thought of this when I started to watch this new KDrama called “While you were sleeping”.  The protagonist, Nam Hong-Joo can predict and see unfortunate events that actually will happen in real life. While she tries to cope with this special ability, she meets a prosecutor who tries to prevent her dreams from coming true.


I actually don’t watch that many KDramas and I am not a crazy KDrama fan, but it is one of my favorite things to do. But because Lee Jong Suk had been in so many GOOD dramas, I have developed this habit of re-watching every drama that he did. Literally, he gets the drama with the best plots and the best characters! Last year it was W, Pinnochio and Doctor Stranger in 2014.

Anyways, back on topic.

Believe me, my dreams are not the best at making sense; sometimes I would question myself, “why did I dream that?” Sometimes, it is a reflection of what I was going through in real life, and sometimes it’s just because I just dreamed it that way. It is a way to understand myself better I guess. Also, Because school is killing me, so I don’t think I will have much time to write all of my weird dreams down. So let’s get started!

Oct. 14

I find myself as a ghost, traveled back in time to the mid-1800s. I was in a mansion, in a room with an alarming maple red wooden floor. There was a wooden piano at a corner of the room and there was a set of staircase leading down to the main floor on the other end. I can see across the streets from the black steel framed windows.

There were noises, the sounds of clinking wine glass and distant laughter; People having conversation downstairs but I couldn’t make out what they were saying. There were also faint, soft piano music in the mids of those conversations.

“Chopin,” I whispered to myself.

I float to the piano and sit down at the piano, and remembered that I haven’t practiced my Chopin Ballade in days. (PLZ DON’T TELL MY TEACHER) I touch the keys and found that my finger could feel the cold, smooth contact with the keys. The frame glowed with warmth of the wood and the piano was so captivating.

It was a Pleyel grand. Chopin’s favorite piano.

I tried to remember the melodies and started to play. It was terrifying. It sounded like a beginner who was trying to impress a professional. My fingers were numb and stiff.  Nothing was right.

But then I heard rapid footsteps coming upstairs and a small crowd of people filled the room. I stopped and froze.

A handsome young man rose out from the crowd and stepped towards the piano that I was sitting. He surveyed the piano and turned around and asked the crowd,

“There is no one here. Who was playing the Ballade?”

“I can assure you, Mr. Frederic, no one was here. I made sure that your practice room was out of bound.” One of the fancy dressed lady replied.

They all stared at the piano with confusion, but the young man was staring right at me. I felt a strong need to dig a hole and bury myself right there.



Here is a Pleyel grand! I actually didn’t really know what type of piano it was, but because of Chopin, I figured it was a Pleyel piano.


Distractions- A poem

He felt as if his eyes were stabbed  with a razor-sharp knife

Every time he blinked, he noticed the throbbing pain

He felt as if his arms lifted ten-thousand weights for ten-thousand days

Every time he moved his fingers, he could feel the soreness in

Every. Single. Cell

But still he kept on moving his fingers

From morning

To night

From beginning

To end

Even though

The intense summer heat was invading his consciousness

Even though

His mom was arguing with someone on the phone next door

Even though

He was irked by the endless repetition of finger exercises

He was still practicing

He practiced until days were the same as night

He ignored the sweet invitation of blithe dreams


That feeling of powerlessness and indifference

That panicky feeling of agitation

Slowly took him over

‘I am not improving,’ he thought

His messy hair screamed frustration

‘Buzz—‘ ‘Buzz—‘

He stopped abruptly

And picked up the phone