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A minister in the PAP was criticised for coming up with a new workout to honour Lee Kuan Yew after his death.  The numbers of times the components of the workout were significant numbers, such as the numbers of Singapore’s independence date, and Mr Lee’s age.

Personally, I find it predictable that this was widely panned.  It was not a very sensitive, tasteful, or tactful way to honour a recently-dead person.  A workout is somewhat frivolous and a little silly: one has to contort oneself into strange positions in the process.  Just imagine someone doing some burpees- one will quickly see why it is not appropriate to honour a deceased person with such an exercise.  On the other hand, I don’t think Mr Teo should be lynched: this workout was crafted out of respect for Mr Lee, and there were no ill intentions.

This should be a lesson to us all:  just because something was done with good intentions does not mean it is appropriate.

-Tang Sze Kay (4 Loyalty)

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Chilli crab

Chilli crab is one of Singapore’s most famous local dishes. The tangy sauce is made deliciously fragrant with garlic and rice vinegar, while thickening flour and egg ribbons (produced by adding beaten eggs towards the end of the cooking process) are added to give the chilli crab dish the fluffy texture it’s known for. This dish electrifies your palate and satisfies your taste buds.

For an extra oomph, I dipped some mantou (toasted buns) into the thick gravy, which left me hankering for more. While mud crabs are commonly used in the preparation of this dish, other varieties such as the soft-shell crab can also be used. Once I crack open the shell of the crab, the aroma of the sauce combined with the crab filled the whole room. The smell of the dish drfit into my nose, dragging me towards the dish to sniff more. At first bite, when my teeth pierce into the flesh of the crab and the buttery juices from the crab flow down my throat. The texture of the crab is soft yet chewy.

There are male and female crabs. For the female ones, the crab roe inside is a must try. With just one lick, I can pick up a tongue full of the roe. The taste of it it so good, its indescribable. Its natural yellowness may sometimes look unappetising, but you will definitely make the exception for its taste.

If you’re a fan of seafood, this is one dish that you must have in Singapore.

Sources:

www.yoursingapore.com

Giselle Cho (1F)

Jokes

1) I was wondering why the baseball was getting bigger, then it hit me.
2) Did you hear about the man who got hit in the head by a can of soda? He was lucky it was a soft drink.
3) Why can’t the bicycle stand on its own? It’s two-tired.
4) I’m glad I know sign language, it’s pretty handy.
5) There was once a cross-eyed teacher who couldn’t control his pupils.
6) I tried wearing tight jeans but I could never pull it off.
7) I like European food so I decided to Russia over there because I was Hungary. After Czech’ing the menu I ordered Turkey. When I was Finnished I told the waiter “Spain good but there is Norway I could take another bite”.
8) I used to be addicted to soap but I’m clean now.
9) Why does Peter Pan fly? He Neverlands
10) Friend A: What’s the difference between tuna, a piano and a bottle of glue?
      Friend B: I don’t know, what?
      Friend A: You can tuna piano but you cannot piano tuna.
      Friend B: What about the glue?
      Friend A: I knew you would get stuck on that…
Giselle Cho (1F)

Christina Perri

Christina Judith Perri, is an American singer-songwriter who does alternative rock, pop and soul. Born in Bensalem, Pennsylvania on August 19, 1986, she taught herself how to play guitar as a 16-year-old by watching a videotape of Shannon Hoon from the group Blind Melon performing on VH1.

Christina has two albums, Lovestrong and Head or Heart. Her debut single “Jar of Hearts” charted after it was featured on the Fox television show So You Think You Can Dance in 2010. Then it went on to sell over 3 million copies, it reached number three on the charts and spent over 3 months in the UK Top 40.

After “Jar of Hearts” began to gather a large amount of attention, Christina signed a record deal with Atlantic Records. Her debut album, Lovestrong, was released on May 10, 2011. In 2012, she wrote and recorded “A Thousand Years” for the film The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011) and it appears on the accompanying soundtrack, which is a song that was most know of. The song went on to sell over 4 million copies in the United States, being certified 4× platinum. Her second EP, A Very Merry Perri Christmas, was released in October 2012. Christina’s second studio album, Head or Heart, was released on April 1, 2014. Its lead single, “Human”, was released on November 18, 2013.

In my opinion, Christina is an extremely good singer and is underrated by a lot of people. Christina is one of my favourite singers and my personal favourites of Christina are Run and I Believe from Head or Heart, and Bluebird from Lovestrong. Christina writes her lyrics really well and they are very relatable and inspirational.

Have you listened to Christina Perri? If you have not, you really should!

-Germaine Ong (1 Loyalty)

The Sam Willows

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Formed in mid-2012, The Sam Willows is a Singapore band, made up of siblings Benjamin and Narelle Kheng and their friends Sandra Riley Tang and Jon Chua.

They were invited to perform at Channel 5’s live telecast countdown show event, “Celebrate 2013”; took home the m:idea Youth Choice Award in 2013 and 2014 in the band category; and won a week of studio time with a 5-time Grammy award winning producer, Steve Lillywhite
Their rise to fame was described as “meteoric” by The Straits Times. They released their self-titled debut EP in October 2012; has more than a million views on their Youtube page with more than 15k subscribers.

In 2013, The Sam Willows played 6 international music festival and conferences within a short span of 8 months. These include SXSW Music Festival in Austin, Texas, USA: Canadian Music Week in Toronto, Ontario; MU:CON 2013 in Seoul, Korea; WAM Festival in Perth, Australia and many more. The Sam Willows has also been seen on big stages including the Style x Style Asia Style Collection; Under the Stars; The Youtube Sensations; and the F1 Singapore Grand Prix concerts. They were also final nominee spot for MTV EMAs Best South East Asia Act.

Band members include: Benjamin Kheng (@BENJAMINKHENG), Narelle Kheng (@NARELLEKHENG), Jonathan Chua (@JONCHUA_TSW) and last but not least, Sandra Riley Tang (@SANDRARILEYTANG)

-Felicia Choy (4 Unity)

Insurgent: The Divergent series

The spotlight is once again on Veronica Roth’s bestseller trilogy as the second movie for her book series hit theatres on March 20th. The Divergent Series consists of three books, namely Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant. The trilogy tells the story of Tris and Four, in an experiment city littered with Divergents. The city was originally divided into five factions: Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Erudite (the intelligent), Amity (the Peaceful), and Candor (the impartial) but chaos breaks out when Erudite conspires with Dauntless to overthrow Abnegation from the government by a mass killing of Abnegation. In Insurgent, Tris and Four, both Divergents, fight against the Erudite and Dauntless’s quest to exterminate the Divergent and take over the city. The city eventually finds out that they have been existing as an experimental city after the success of the Divergents and they break out of the city into the welcoming arms of the outside world, thirsting for peace.

But twists lie waiting outside the city and Tris and Four are met with more challenges and conflicts than before that they will fight to overcome together in Allegiant.

I definitely loved the Divergent series which I devoured quickly. I was hooked to the thrilling storyline and mind blowing twists that Veronica Roth beautifully crafted. The love story of Tris and Four intertwining with the intriguing backdrop of the story and the nicely sewn together details was so captivating I could not leave my books at all. The city as an experimental city also got me thinking crazy ideas about our lives on the Earth. Could it be possible that we were also put on this Earth as experiments? The strange but somewhat relevant plot put me in completely different reality reading it. Indeed, they say good books bring you to a whole new world, and I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed my time reading the trilogy and have already reread it once! I strongly recommend this book to any adventure seekers, romance lovers, and anyone looking for a good read. It is definitely worth your time and I’m sure you would love it!

“A taut and shiveringly exciting read! Tris is exactly the sort of unflinching and fierce heroine I love. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough.” —Melissa Marr, New York Times Bestselling Author of Wicked Lovely

“With brisk pacing and lavish flights of imagination, Divergent clearly has thrills, but it also movingly explores a more common adolescent anxiety—the painful realization that coming into one’s own sometimes means leaving family behind, both ideologically and physically.” —New York Times Book Review

See Mun 4 Truth

Jokes & Pick-up Lines

Although Valentine’s Day may be long over, it doesn’t mean we can’t use some pick-up lines to ‘annoy’ our friends! Here are some lines to get the ball rolling!

  1. I’ll be Burger King and you be McDonald’s. I’ll have it my way, and you’ll be lovin’ it.
  1. A boy gives a girl 12 roses, 11 real and 1 fake. He says to her, “I will stop loving you when all the roses die.”
  1. I’m no photographer, but I can picture us together.
  1. I want to tell you your fortune. [Take her hand and write your phone number on it.] Your future is clear.
  1. See my friend over there? He wants to know if you think I’m cute.
  1. Was that an earthquake or did you just rock my world?
  1. My love for you is like diarrhea, I just can’t hold it in!
  1. You’re so hot you must’ve started global warming.
  1. Are you made of beryllium, gold and titanium? You must be because you are BeAuTi-ful.

With reference to http://www.gotlines.com/lines/funny.php

Daphne Yow (4 Truth)

Letter Writing Kept Alive

Topic: Opinions on Society

 

In Nairobi, Kenya, the boys of Starehe Boys Centre have a unique method of communicating with their female friends from other girls’ schools. Texting? Facebook? Twitter? Nope, their way of communication is through letter writing!

In Starehe Boys’ Centre, mobile phones are not prohibited within the school grounds. They do however have ICT hubs, smart boards and internet access yet these facilities are solely for academic research. Social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook are also prohibited.

Instead of sulking about it, the boys have developed a much more meaningful way of communicating with their female friends, through letter writing. These letters are not just any ordinary letters. They take on a mix of calligraphic fonts, artistic drawings and carefully penned words and emotions from the heart. These beautiful letters are gladly received by the girls of Loreto Msongari girls’ school.

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”I am really excited to receive a letter from one of my friends in Starehe,” says Tabitha.

“I think it’s better to write letters in school than to have phones. It is a mode of communication that everyone can afford and it’s what everyone looks forward to when you go to high school,” she says.

One would imagine that letter-writing is ancient and backward but many students in Kenya actually enjoy this method and describe it as a real blast from the past.

It seems that amongst the quick development of technology and evolving of smart phones, the traditional method of letter writing to convey our heartfelt emotions and words has faded into the distance. This meaningful method has instead evolved into text messaging, Whatsapp, and social media platforms, all of which lack the sentimental value letter writing once had. Technology might have brought us to greater heights, but what is it really doing to our human relations? Is technology really bringing us closer to one another or is it distancing us from one another? Perhaps this issue is one worthy of consideration in this ever-growing society.

Reference(s):

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-31939288

-Vanessa Loh (4 Loyalty)

Music Favourites

The Script is an Irish rock pop band formed in 2001, comprising of lead vocalist/pianist Danny O’Donoghue, vocalist/guitarist Mark Sheehan, and drummer Glen Power.

A personal favourite would be their second released album ‘Science & Faith’ It was released in Ireland on 10 September 2010, via RCA Records. It was preceded by the lead single, “For the First Time“, on 3 September 2010. It debuted at number one in Ireland and United Kingdom, selling 70,816 copies in its first week in the United Kingdom. In the United States, Science & Faith debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 49,000 copies. The album has sold 314,000 copies in the US, and over 1.5 million worldwide. The album was met with generally mixed reviews.

The tracks If you ever come back and For the first time are the two of the hottest tracks out of the ten tracks in this album. They were received warmly by a widespread audience and millions of fans around the globe, captivating teenagers and adults with its lyrics, catchy tune and of course, Danny O’Donoghue’s talented vocals! Be sure to listen to The Script’s albums if you haven’t, especially ‘Science & Faith’!

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-Vanessa Loh (4 Loyalty)

Book Review: Struck by Jennifer Bosworth

Fiction novels are mainly run-of-the-mill and sometimes rather clichéd, but Struck by Jennifer Bosworth will be imprinted deeply in your mind for the rest of your life. Bosworth introduces Mia Price, a teenager in Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, and where she believes she is safer from her addiction. Mia has survived countless lightning strikes, but is left with red scars snaking across her body. She craves lightning like she craves oxygen. Every lightning strike endangers Mia’s life, and the lives of innocent citizens around her. There’s much more supernatural happening with Mia than just surviving lightning strikes. She’s being forced to choose a side after an earthquake rocks her world – the mysterious Seekers always clad in black, or the Followers in their white that symbolizes purity.

I thoroughly enjoyed Struck and it has kept me up to the wee hours of the morning. It is a whirlwind of thrilling romance, fast-paced action and the heart-wrenching love between Mia and her brother, Parker. The feisty heroine is smart and will do anything for the ones she loves. Never would I have imagined that slow-to-trust Mia would have an instant connection with the alluring Jeremy, who stalked her and even tried to murder her. I think the most well-developed character was probably Mia’s mother, Sarah. Bosworth provides an insight into her feelings, thoughts and history, and also how she dug a trench of depression for herself. I feel that the most hated character is Prophet – whose name is really Prophet – as he is cunning, crafty and a master of trickery. Jeremy, too, has made a great impact on me, despite not being the main character. He shows that anything is possible and we, human beings, are able to defy our fates and create a brand new future for ourselves. Parker’s character implies that we should follow our hearts and do what we think is right, even if others go against us. Mia is a strong, independent character, and believes in no one but herself. Her goal in life is to keep those around her safe from harm – which probably means to stay well away from lightning strikes.

I would recommend this book to all action-lovers and anyone who does not mind a bit of blood and suffering. Be prepared to submerge in a sea of lightning as you dive into Struck, by Jennifer Bosworth.

-Chua Wei Ting (1 Truth)