Sunday, July 24, 2005


Could hardly believe this is the last week of July already. My teaching schedule for the coming 2 semesters has come out; in the first semester I have Thursdays off, and Tuesdays and Thursdays in the second one. Apart from the off days the slots all look pretty full. Hopefully there will be enough tutors going round to help out.

I was chairing an M Phil oral exam Friday afternoon and it was presented in Putonghua. The candidate was from the mainland. My sweeping generalization is that mainland students, and many mainland academics, are incredibly defensive. Any question thrown their way is treated as a personal insult to their intelligence. It is all about THEM, you see. It is nearly impossible to have a rational, civilized discussion with them about anything. They are always right and you are always wrong. You never know what they know, you see, cos you are either pathetically ignorant or so completely stupid ou can't get what they are saying. If I were one of the examiners, I would have given that woman a good bollocking. It is one thing being protective or even defensive of the work you did, quite another to not allow the examiners to even finish their questions before starting to say "... yes, but I did mention that on page 16 maybe you didn't read it properly..." Jeez. Can you imagine what the future of the country is going to be like. Let's hope they all emigrate to another country like I don't know perhaps Madagascar, instead.

Anyhow, yes, end of July already and I've only got August left until term starts again. I will have to spend at least the last two weeks of August doing work related stuff. Throwing out stuff covering my desk alone would take a good couple of days, I think. In the meantime I should use my remaining three weeks wisely.

That would include going to the cinema some more, trying out more classes at the gym, get some more swimming done, spend time with the kids, etc. Me and T did this boxing class yesterday, and it was quite a lot of fun. My arms are slightly sore now and you can get quite out of breathe doing just a minute of continuous punching. T was really into it also and I guess, hey, well, punching IS fun.

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