À la recherche du temps perdu

news from nowhere

Month: December, 2004

NOTICE

Mary’s xanga updates will be temporarily suspended due to the overwhelming essay assignments. In the mean time please feel free to leave any comment, Christmas’ blessings or encouragement for my essay writings (better still messages of love). Merry Christmas and sorry for any inconvenience caused.

工作不忘娛樂
沒想到兩年前和兩年後看感受竟可如此不同
DVD 的盒子上寫着:「電影史上最美麗動人的愛倩故事」 – 有待商確,不過一定比”Titanic” 又或任何荷李活式驚世愛情片來得好就是了

(再一次確定”Amelie” 是很大程度上受到”Jules et Jim” 影響 )

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紙是包不住火的。容忍遷就了一個學期,結果今早就爆發了 – 最重要的一點是爆發的那個不是我,而是問題所在的該位人兄(姊)

今早我在廚房做早餐打算之後便整日躲在Warburg 的圖書館工作,肇事的那位內地同胞也在做類似豆漿的東西。當我拿起煲想把熱水倒去時,赫地發現兩個洗手盤中其中一個已經淤塞,盛着半盤子的渾濁液體,而另一個洗手盤的去水位也堆滿像豆渣滓的東西 當時只有我們兩人使用廚房,於是我便問她可否把渣滓清理掉,好讓我能夠把熱水倒掉,為免顯得呵刻也沒提及淤塞了的另一個洗手盤的了。誰知她竟然聽不明白我的用意(可能她根本沒想過去水位淤塞了是不能倒水的吧 ),待我再說一次之後,她就不爽的埋手清掉那些渣滓,之後便問我為何動她在冰箱裡的東西。(我沒想過她竟然想到用清算來自衛 – 或許她已忘了是她一個人佔了廚房接近一半的空間、經常用完的廚具放很久也不洗,洗了又很久也不收好,直至有一天我實在忍受不住把所有洗好的用具搬走、開了封散落在抽屜內的小吃惹來了蟑螂、常弄致洗手盤淤塞也不理等)我說因為每次我要拿自己的東西都得把它拿走(我沒有直接說她常把自己的東西硬塞在我的地方),還有就是一整條未開封又未到期的白方飽是不用放在冰箱內的。接着她就反駁我也放自己的麵包在箱呀(天呀那根本不是問題重點… ),我就說我的已過期了(我着實不想再爭辯下去的,只有用盡量平和的語氣去嘗試結束它)。她原本還想反辯,但結果想不到論點就此打住。可憐我看上去是勝了,但就為此事心緒不寧了一整天 – 誰會想和房友鬧翻?還要在聖誕節臨近的時候 我很少和人爭拗的,通常都是多一事不如少一事;好像今次即使道理在我一方,也足以令我久不釋懷…

Your Dominant Intelligence is Linguistic Intelligence
You are excellent with words and language. You explain yourself well. An elegant speaker, you can converse well with anyone on the fly. You are also good at remembering information and convicing someone of your point of view. A master of creative phrasing and unique words, you enjoy expanding your vocabulary. You would make a fantastic poet, journalist, writer, teacher, lawyer, politician, or translator.


Your Element Is Air
You dislike conflict, and you’ve been able to rise above the angst of the world. And when things don’t go your way, you know they’ll blow over quickly. Easygoing, you tend to find joy from the simple things in life. You roll with the punches, and as a result, your life is light and cheerful. You find it easy to adapt to most situations, and you’re an open person. With you, what you see is what you get… and people love that!


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大佬… 使唔使咁燥呀… 你收唔錢時我咪又收唔到貨…  

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今日先知原來著名英國民謠「綠袖子」(“Greensleeves” – 有考會考英文Listening o既一定識) 係亨利八世 (Henry VIII) 作o架  仲驚嚇過當年Aubig 話我知其實”Spirit Song” 就係”Greensleeves”… 簡直係10 個驚嚇有11 個  

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原來當時Jerry 同David (已經習慣咁叫D Teaching staff  )o係第一次o既MA Meeting 時講o既一朝早酒醉於School corridor 唔係講笑o架…  今朝一早去到David 個office時佢竟然早有準備地亮出2 支sherry o黎迎合即將到來o既聖誕  平時上佢o既seminar 每次都有咖啡或茶招呼我o地我已經覺得好賓至如歸o架啦… 估唔到… 英國學者果然係英國學者… Archna 講笑話係慶祝終於擺脫我o地  David 甚至對於唔能夠供應到玻璃酒杯表示遺憾…

結果我就o係一大早就灌咗一杯sherry… 直到下午返到hall 沖咗一杯熱烘烘o既綠茶解酒之前,一直處於wing-wing-o地o既狀態… 去Library 揾書時甚至多次走過頭miss 咗個shelf…  

其實依家仲係有D 神智不清……
咁點做學術研究呀你…… (意思唔係指好酒阻礙學術研究,而係指酒量太渣  )

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尋晚瞓得唔好… 心裡面一直驚個淨係用咗一日時間諗o既essay topic 如果唔work 就會好似星期一o個次咁俾人插… 感覺仲驚過當年落庄AGM 前夕 – 話晒當時我盡咗力對得住自己良心,Hallmates 對我o既評價大致心中有數,所以除咗對將要告別上庄生涯o既傷感,AGM 並冇太大影響我 – 反之自問自己o係呢個course 表現又唔係好,仲夠膽死用得o個一日咁大把去準備個essay consultation… 終於明白最後審判對於一個罪人o黎講係幾大o既恐懼…

老實講自從星期一俾Jerry「警告」(都唔知應該用乜動詞先啱… ) 完真係驚咗… 一直以來我好少被批評,通常我都會努力做好自己以避免有任何負面comment o既機會;一旦被批評o既話,我會不知所措,彷如世界末日,不知如何自處… 我自以為有一套信念,不會為外界所影響;但種種事實證明我o既自我價值真係完全取決他人對我o既睇法…

總之我就一直係咁驚到去到David 個essay consultation… 一開始聽到Geraldine 話佢條essay “almost finished” 我o既心跳開始加速 (雖然唔知同D sherry 有冇關係…) ;之後Shalom 話做Utopia 時(雖然一早聽過佢講…) 開始精神緊張,驚會overlap;到Lauren 話都係做Utopia 時差D 暈低,尤其當佢提到Preface D 信時,我諗連坐我隔籬o既Julia 都聽到我o既心跳聲… 好不容易等到我講,唯有硬住頭皮present 我個唔知work 唔work o既topic… 點知David 都冇講D 乜(除咗即時suggest 咗一個reference – “the legendary” Lisa Jardine’s Erasmus, Man of Letters) ,淨係不停jot notes 同間唔中點下頭,咁就pass 咗去Archna… 我諗:at least 都冇當眾出醜… 一陣單獨見佢先再諗…

Shalom 講笑話David有齊晒Utopia Book I (Shalom) Book II (Lauren) 同 Prefatory letters (我) o係佢D MA 學生o既term essay 裡面 – 即係成本書  Julia 話不如我o地3 個夾埋寫成一本書  

之後David 再講下MA essay o既要求,就開始個自接見我o地… 到我o既時候我簡直係無面目見佢… 我seminar 上o既表現實在連我自己都accept 唔到… 完全係physically attend o既表表者… 當我坐低咗之後,David 就話:”You’ve chosen a good topic!”  先是一呆,之後就好唔certain 咁問:”Really…? Actually I was worrying last night, fearing it won’t work…” 然後David 就再confirm 一次我個topic 好,仲話我唔可以一味驚,只會搞到乜都做唔到  之後仲好好人咁借咗佢自己本書俾我之餘,仲話幫我問另一個Teaching staff 攞多D reference 再email 我  

臨走時佢話:”It was nice to have you in the course”   – 簡直係一把刀直插入我個良心 – 於是好老實咁話覺得自己做得好差;David 仲要(好genuine 咁) 問我點解  我解釋完佢就講咗一大篇好encouraging o既話(就係因為唔係專登講o黎安慰人先至encouraging ),實在係太感動… 又諗起第一次MA Meeting 時佢已經好好人咁留起一份reading 俾我  雖然seminar 時有o個D 好threatening o既”And so?”, “Go on!” 同好直接o既comment  ,都好慶幸有機會上David o既course  希望下年有機會再見啦(係喎… 到時要還返本書俾佢)。

Thinking plaintively about David’s essay… cannot suffer another blow…  

Called Mother this afternoon, hoping to apologize for my bad temper the other day, instead a strange voice answered the phone – it was 二姑媽, already back from her trip with 二姑丈 in Mainland China, now staying at our place  Grandpa was there too, just arrived from US. The last time when our place was crowded with relatives was during Grandpa’s 80th Birthday when he and Grandma (my forever… ) were still in Hong Kong, I was only 10 then  Time flies, I am 22 now… And it was around this time last year when Grandma left… I could not even make it to her funeral…

Talked to Mother, Wan Hang (back from Eugene), Grandpa and 二姑媽, found myself incapable of handling the floods of praise and caring from the relatives  I wish I had not been separated with Grandpa for such a long time, or else I would be able to listen and talk to him with more ease than I do now… As I do not think (except 柏恆 and 柏溢) any of the Grandchildren could and would communicate with him (being unable to speak Chinese)…

I am thinking too much now – I should not be thinking about anything except for tomorrow’s essay consultation… God I am really worried…

Today I experienced both Hell and Heaven within one day – no, 6 hours in fact…


I went to see Jerry in the morning, and the meeting was disastrous… cannot even bear to think about it  I could understand clearly his underlying meanings… The thought that I disappointed Jerry was so unbearable I almost wanted to seek my end right then… just like Lucrece who killed herself for fear of shaming her husband and family, I would myself to release my advisor from his responsibility… I do not want to be only a responsibility, still less a jeopardy… I wish to be a promising student… There has not been a time when I have not thought so, and yet my sincerity was being doubted… It was a deadly blow… and my doom…


Finally I managed to drag my lifeless body back to hall, because he would have me reconsider everything and go back to him after 5pm with a decision. I pined in thought as I browsed through the Internet sources, feeling like a guilty before the death sentence, trying desperately to redeem herself. And then something came to me, an idea long in my mind but never was paid attention, or at least very slant… If that would do, that would save me from taking Jerry’s proposal which would require a new research and laying waste my previous labour; in addition to my ready knowledge on the subject, would be wonderful indeed. But I was not sure of its plausibility, either because I thought it was still vague (now I know it is a very negative term for Jerry – every bad idea is associated to it actually… ), or that I thought too much had been written on it that it did not open any new possibility.


But the time came and I must bring an answer to him. So I walked back to his office again, deep in thought all along… To be or not to be? That’s the question… I waited outside until I saw Jerry was not occupied by anyone then I knocked his door. He was still pleasant but I felt I could not believe in that anymore… When I pronounced I wanted to work on mirrors in art instead of his proposal of “The Rape of Lucrece”, there was a moment’s suspension which was so terrifying that my heart frozed, until Jerry exclaimed in the next moment, “That’s a good topic!”  OH MY GOD… I AM SAVED… And the next second he had already picked out a book from his shelves and suggested me to read it, and then another second he was searching in Googles for the other possible references for me… He said a lot… almost too much for a 4000-word essay… But my confidence came back because I felt I had picked a very potential topic… I was so happy I felt like dancing on my way back hall – like when Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) first succeeded to speak correctly in “My Fair Lady”: “I would have danced all night… I would have danced all night… And still would beg for more…” 


By the end he asked about my plans for X’mas and we wished each other Merry X’mas  I will not be able to meet him again until at least January… but still it will be by appointment because he is not leading any course anymore… Now I know my approach to the teaching staff… what Olivia said in our first meeting is true somehow…


Anyway I cannot let pride override me – this lesson would teach me how to deal with David’s essay… Just one more day to think about it… Hardwork does not mean everything but lacking it does.

「偷吻」- 「四百擊」的續集
十二歲的頑童,二十歲時仍是一臉稚氣
看慣荷李活公式電影的人可會欣賞這法式浪漫?
至少,當我在日文課上說:「映画なら、フランス映画のわけです。」時,石山先生會說我「おしゃれ-」 

杜魯福的「四百擊」- j’aime le cinema
總有一天要再去一趟杜魯福的巴黎,走上高達的「斷了氣」中俏女角叫賣早報的香榭大道,冒着被抓的險怒奔穿過羅浮宮的畫廊,在艾菲爾鐵塔俯望一對情侶在跳最後探戈時,想起天使柯德莉塔圖的矮人不知到何處去了。

想來第一次在大銀幕看杜魯福是「祖與占」,是和陳卓琪和Zoe 去的。當時她倆才剛搬來何東七樓,我又忙於庄務,大家的交流幾乎是零。然後有一天難得的下午我騰得出時間,便應阿琪的邀請一起去莉碧嘉食tea 。不知為何就只那一陣子的傾談便足以令她當拿到「祖與占」的優先場戲票時就知道要邀請我一塊去 – 原本不知道的,後來聽她說才知道。她說在那一次食tea 時我說了一句有趣的話,她出生以來只聽過兩個人說;因此她確定我會喜歡那電影,所以才邀請我的。至於我說的那句神奇的話,我到現在都覺得是理所當然的,還未找到其奧妙之處  那次之後和阿琪越來越熟,實在很喜歡和她傾談(但絕對不是和她玩 – 她玩起來就像患了過度活躍症的小孩  );只是她畢業後便很少聯絡了… 不知近況可好?我們的比升了仙的何東人更何東人的七樓人  

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Sunday 12 December 2004

Happy Birthday to Eva  (How come everyone chooses to be born in December?)

Reread David Norbrook’s article. Confused…  How am I to face Jerry tomorrow??? Where is my Muse?

“You read it again, and read it again, and read it again… ” Resonance of residue memory in the hidden drawer of the mind…


Saturday 11 December 2004

Happy Birthday to Karen  

Reread the excerpts of Huizinga’s The Waning of the Middle Ages. We decided to go to Jackson’s place for dinner, so I took the tube to Chalk Farm to join Jessica, Jackson and Kuniyoshi to shop for things needed for dinner. There were 6 of us, including Jackson’s Chinese flatmate Fan and his friend. After a considerable bustling in the kitchen, we managed to fill the table with chicken and potato curry, fried salmon, fried shrimp with broccoli, salad, salmon head with tomato soup  It had been a long time since I last had a meal with so many dishes…

Afterwards Jessica, Jackson and I went down to Camden Town to have a drink – 2 cocktails for only 5 pounds!  Back in West End 5 pounds is not even enough for 1 cocktail… And then took the tube back to hall. When I was waiting at the platform at Moorgate I was in a semi-conscious state; and then suddenly I realized something was gazing at me – it was an English guy in the train just arrived smiling at me through the window  Reflexively I smiled back at him  and he kept smiling at me as the train began to depart…  Christmas and weird guys are all around…

Can you tell the difference? (Tip: one is the original Shakespeare’s Birthplace at Stratford-upon-Avon, the other is a 1:50 paper model)

            

Yes – that was the destination my self-imposed exile   I was struggling whether I should go, because it would take 45 minutes to get to Paddington station and another 2 hours to get to Stratford-upon-Avon, and another 2 hours 45 minutes to get back. Father’s suggestion to watch a Royal Shakespeare Company performance and stay overnight sounded appealing, but my essay consultations were at stake…  

I woke up at 7:30am in order to catch the train; and when I finally got on board the train and thought I might as well take a nap, a horrible thing happened – a bunch of American girls marched into the carriage  And they kept talking and laughing and exclaiming (6 of them at once, I had no idea how they managed to talk and listen at the same time; and literally no gap in between) throughout the journey, and it was not until the train reached Warwick the carriage resumed its silence, but then it was already towards the end of the journey  It striked me immensely that they were totally insensible of their being a nuisance to other passengers  Not to mention the American accent which I loath excessively, they were loud. I do not object people chatting in the train, as long as they keep their conversations within their own range of hearing. It seems to me only Americans fail to do this – or rather they have a fear of not being heard. As if silence means ignorance. For me, they had better shut up if they have nothing good to say, instead of exposing their own ignorance by babbling nonsense. That is the difference between the brain and the mouth I think. Bush is loud, so is his Bush morality. Hollywood blockbusters. Americans  

When I got off the train and was pondering at the map, an English gentleman approached me and asked where I wanted to go. I was not sure so I said I wanted to go to the Tourist Information Centre. Then the gentleman showed me the direction, and even escorted me till I got there  On the way he kept providing me information of the town, and if he had not told me he had always lived there I would have thought that he worked as a tour guide  When finally we parted he even gave me a friendly pat on the back  I am so obliged to him… he reminded me of Dr Smethurst (but of course Dr Smethurst does not have his accents)  

So I went to Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Nash’s House, Hall’s Croft, Shakespeare’s Memorial, but when I got to the Holy Trinity Church I was 10 minutes late and failed to pay my homage to Shakespeare’s grave  Afterwards I walked over to the Swan Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Teddy Bear Museum, then back to the train station.

When I was at Shakespeare’s Birthplace I saw a pair of Mainland Chinese couple. The man stared at me, then said to the woman, “Korean.” Before I had always been recognized as Japanese, and now I am Korean???  

May be the influence of my MA, I began to pay attention to particular details in the exhibitions, like the contemporary manuscripts and printed books, portraits, maps, living space… which before I used to scan through only. Feel more like a Renaissance scholar now  

I thought the trip would give me some stimulation for the essay topics, but weariness is finally what I get  


As you from sins would pardoned be,
Let your indulgence set me free.

其實我真的不喜歡生日。
這個可怕的日子理所當然的斷定當事人一定是當天的主角,結果帶來無謂的期望之餘亦帶來無謂的失望。
誰人送了禮物誰人沒有送禮誰人送的禮物不合心意;誰人一早送上生日祝福誰人最遲誰人什麼也沒表示誰人忘了自己的生日。
原本不知為何變得意義重大的日子,不知為何又變成令人歇斯底里的日子。
至今,歇斯底里的日子,已過了二十二個…
可以的話,每年這日子,總想避人,一個人逃到好遠好遠的地方…







今天過得還好 雖然早上混混沌沌的上了David 最後一次的seminar (真的很對不起… ),之後的時間是挺開心的 

回到hall 赫然看到大門前有2 個大包裹 – 直覺告訴我那是久候不至的從家裡寄來的東西。總算趕得上在我生日前來到 打電話回家替那2 個包裹報平安,再和母親核對包裹裡的東西。「誰憐父母心,報得三春輝」 – 母親大人竟連即食麵、百潔布、牙膏牙刷牙線、化妝綿什麼的也寄一大堆過來,彷彿倫敦是一個荒島…  反而一些我說要寄過來的東西卻找不著… 不過也不打緊。倒是現在有2 塊新的chopping board、一把西洋刀(真的handle 不了中式菜刀…)、Peter Rabbit 餐具、我(偷父親)的Levi’s 501、一堆的杜魯福(多謝父親大人 ),還有樂天熊仔餅和芒果乾…! 滿房間都是東西,花了一個下午才總算將全部東西安放好… 這真是在生以來最具「份量」的生日禮物了…

打開電腦,收到一連串生日祝福 多謝諸位… 感動 其實每一年我的生日也是考試時節,所以總是靜悄悄的便過去了;今年除了setting 不同了之外,大概也會與往年相差無幾吧… 曾幾何時以為會有一個特別的生日,結果… 我想我還是繼續期待下去吧…

Devil Coach 野仁也send 了個ICQ message 來 – 跟這個人一向少話,並不是討厭他,反而對於這個Coach 我是很尊重的;只是和這人來往時總是感覺奇怪… 可能是因為大家都是害羞的人吧。非常記得Year 2 的Team Evaluation Meeting 怒哭完後,Coach send 了ICQ message 來鼓勵我,又給我很多建議如何提升自己的能力 – 雖然只是ICQ,但那是第一次我們正式的對話。當時又感動得落淚 – Coach 原來一點也不Devil,是很Angel 的 不過結果還是令他失望了… 或許像我這種沒talent 的人一開始便不應該入team 的吧。 之後又發生了一些不愉快事件,錯全在我,只是我連對不起也沒有說… 對不起… 臨來倫敦前他send 了message 要我保重,字行間我感到他還有話想說,只是因為我有愧於心,沒有追問下去。今次他send message 來,結果我們便連同以往3 年的話一下子全吐出來了… 其實彼此都很欣賞對方,結果要到現在才來承認,我們還真「柯過」 再說一次:ONCE OUR COACH, ALWAYS OUR COACH – 是不是很stunning ? But we did mean it when we said it… 算了吧,我們的時代經已過去…