Essay: Cause and Effect.

Often, students that passed with flying colors back in high school are struggling academically when they are admitted to their tertiary education. This is an after effect of a few factors from their usual high school habits. The three common factors that could be identified are dependency towards high school teachers, time management and adaptation to a new learning environment.

First and foremost, their dependency towards their teachers back in high school make them struggle hard when they are in college or university. This is a particular attitude of most high school students: being too dependent towards their teachers when it comes to academic. Back in high school, practices and exercises are provided by the teachers. In contrast, college or university lecturers do not always provide the same numerous amount of practices and exercises for the students as they want the students to learn being independent. Besides that, high school students’ attitude of waiting for the teachers to solve a particular question makes them struggle in college or university as they are often told to solve questions by their own by any means. The habit of depending on school teachers is one of the causes that makes high school leavers struggle in tertiary education.

Next, time management is another factor. Time is carefully scheduled for the students’ convenience, back in high school. This is especially for boarding school students that are timed in all activities: breakfast time, lunch time, dinner time, study time, and leisure time. Due to the timetable that is fixed in school, these students struggle hard to manage their time properly in college as they are not constrained in doing a particular activity. Eventually, they will squander a lot of time probably in small things such as taking long baths, chatting with friends, and watching their favorite shows. Time is not used properly for studying. This effects in them studying at the last minute of the exam, and resulted in poor academic result. Clearly, time management is one of the prime causes of high school leavers struggle hard in college or university.

Other than that, these students have to adapt to a new learning environment. In college or university, high school leavers need to breath in the new surrounding. Fast-pace teachings, whole new subjects, friends from all over the country, new accommodation with new roommate; all new things high school leavers need to get used to. Due to the new surrounding, students may need time to learn every single bit of them. They might have to change their technique in studying and find the correct circle of friends. This consequence into them struggling academically as they are in a whole different level that they are not used to.

In conclusion, the three common factors why students with flying colors are struggling hard academically in college or university are the habit of being dependent towards high school teachers, time management and adaptation to a new learning environment. Nevertheless, these excellent students will do well in time after they triumph over those problems. Colleges and universities’ system are to train students to push themselves over their limit and to persevere under high pressure situations; all for preparing them in pursuing their dream career. Despite having problems, students will learn how to survive and achieve flying colors result   –just as how they used to achieve back then in high school– in their tertiary education.

Journal 5: It’s Not Cliche, It’s Someone’s Standpoint.

My humble standpoint says that both of the options are approvable because the latter will eventually lead to the former if changing is what oneself do after committing immorality. In my past years, I did numerous actions that one could categorize it as ‘immoral’. I was a bad person. Well I am, still; but only God knows how bad was ‘bad’.

I rather die doing the righteous thing but what’s wrong if I survive after committing immorality? I just did. All praise to Him, who gave me so many chances to live my life. It’s okay to survive after doing such awful actions because at the end of the day, I will die. The world still turns and people change. It is a matter of choice to die in the midst of doing a good deed or die in vain.

I adore the life of Ahmad Ammar, a student who studied Ottoman Turk History at Turkey. On Ahmad’s way back from a social service at Syria (correct me if I got the fact wrong), he met with an accident and passed away. His body was escorted by hundreds of men and was buried at the same cemetery site  as one of the Prophet’s companion, Abu Ayyub Al-Ansari. What a wonderful ending!

Another hero I admire is Zainab Al-Ghazali, a woman who died in the name of Islam. Her paternal side was of roots of Umar Al-Khattab, the 2nd Caliph of Khulafa’ Ar-Rasyidin (The Rightly Guided Successors). She was a fighter and a defender of Islam in the 1960’s while Egypt was under the rule of a tyranny government leaded by President Jamal Abdul Naser. She was tortured in prison just as how a man was tortured at that time for defending Islam. She was active in spreading the words of Islam and she died while doing a righteous thing.

I would like my life to end while doing a noble deed. I survived a life of immoralities, so I want to make a change. My life may seem to not start with a great beginning. I didn’t start my life in an Islamic environment. I didn’t understand and study Arab as most of friends do. I didn’t memorize the Quran nor I get the chance to continue my studies in the field of Islamic studies. But I want to die for Islam. I am a lowly Muslim who is trying to be better every single day. Sometimes, I cried as I recalled my past. How can I die while doing a righteous deed? I was a bad man.

But, no! Allah is All-Forgiving and He will accept repentance. I still have hopes to be like Zainab Al-Ghazali or Ahmad Ammar. It may be a long, thorny road to be like them, but hey, a good ending must meet with strings of conflicts. Paradise is dear, and a dear thing is a struggle buy.

Chick Benetto.

People has upside down moments. Some manage to raise up and fight, but some choose to just fall down, surround oneself with miseries and sadness. For One More Day, an adapted movie based on the novel with the same title shows the changing of personalities of the latter. A major league baseball player, Charles ‘Chick’ Benetto, who chose to end his life ended up being a better person for the greater good. His characteristics changed from being ungrateful, quitter and irresponsible to a grateful, hopeful and responsible person after he got the chance to spend for one more day with his deceased mother.

Firstly, Chick was ungrateful with the life he had. He was a ruined man with loads of problems on his shoulders. His mother passed away, he became an alcoholic and lost his job. Other than that, he got divorced with his wife and the peak of all problems: he was uninvited to his own daughter’s wedding. He felt unappreciated and unwanted. Thus, he decided to take his life away as he saw no reason he should live. In the contrary, after his meeting with the tree his mother carved ‘Please’ on the bark of it as a prayer to God to conceive her a child, he realized that someone wanted him badly in this world. He became more grateful with the life he received. Chick appreciated his life more than ever after he knew that his mother went through hard times to get him.

Besides that, Chick was a quitter. He gave up his responsible as a father after he lost his job. He didn’t improve the bad condition with finding another occupation. Instead, he consumed more alcohol than he used to. In addition to the problem, he started to lose everything; his wife and daughter. Conversely, Chick decided to persevere with any hardship that comes after his mother revealed to him that she had double jobs after she got divorced with Chick’s father. She didn’t complain nor she gave up. She sacrificed her time to support the household. Chick understood that he couldn’t give up even numerous adversities fell upon him, just like her mother. Chick changed from a quitter to a fighter.

Other than that, Chick became hopeless after he received his daughter’s wedding picture. He was irresponsible as he let his family crumbled apart. Chick did not fight for his family. In contrast, his encounter with his mother made him changed himself to be a more responsible father. As his mother said to him, “You have one family, for good or bad, and you can’t ever lose it”. After his imaginary meeting with his mother ended, he met Maria, his daughter and explained that he want his moments with his beloved daughter back. Quoting Chick Benetto’s words, “I want to make things right”.

In a nutshell, Chick Benetto’s characteristics changed from negative to positive. He changed from an ungrateful, quitter and irresponsible person to a grateful person that would not stop fighting for the right thing. He also became a responsible father as clearly stated by Maria in the movie. After the conversation at the bleachers with his father, she spent the best six years she had with Chick Benetto, his father.

Journal 4: Response Poem to a Non-Favorite Song


This is my freestyle poem to a mainstream tacky song by Meghan Trainor. This poem exposes the side of me that I seldom show to most of the people I know. As you read this, you might wonder if this is really me. Well, this is me.

Dear Future Husband by Meghan Trainor

# Dear future husband,
Here’s a few things
You’ll need to know if you wanna be
My one and only all my life

Take me on a date
I deserve it, babe
And don’t forget the flowers every anniversary
‘Cause if you’ll treat me right
I’ll be the perfect wife
Buying groceries
Buy-buying what you need

You got that 9 to 5
But, baby, so do I
So don’t be thinking I’ll be home and baking apple pies
I never learned to cook
But I can write a hook
Sing along with me
Sing-sing along with me (hey)

You gotta know how to treat me like a lady
Even when I’m acting crazy
Tell me everything’s alright

Repeat #

After every fight
Just apologize
And maybe then I’ll let you try and rock my body right
Even if I was wrong
[Laugh] You know I’m never wrong
Why disagree?
Why, why disagree?
You gotta know how to treat me like a lady
Even when I’m acting crazy
Tell me everything’s alright

Dear future husband,
Here’s a few things
You’ll need to know if you wanna be
My one and only all my life (hey, baby)
Dear future husband,
Make time for me
Don’t leave me lonely
And know we’ll never see your family more than mine

I’ll be sleeping on the left side of the bed (hey)
Open doors for me and you might get some kisses
Don’t have a dirty mind
Just be a classy guy
Buy me a ring
Buy-buy me a ring, (babe)

You gotta know how to treat me like a lady
Even when I’m acting crazy
Tell me everything’s alright
Dear future husband,
Here’s a few things
You’ll need to know if you wanna be
My one and only all my life
Dear future husband,
If you wanna get that special loving
Tell me I’m beautiful each and every night

(That’s right!)


Future husband, better love me right

Now, the moment you’ve been waiting for, my response poem. 

She hope she’s not Meghan Trainor
Who sings a whimsical song
Soliciting a future husband
To abide by everything she wants.

She hope she’s not Meghan Trainor
Who expects her future husband
A fancy man that buys flowers
To fill her with contentment.

Now what about ‘she’?
Refusing a dreamy man
To be the future husband
Never will it be, then.

An ordinary man is all she needs
who tells she looks lovely  but she is not indeed
who caresses her
when she’s in bleed
and who plays around with her
it becomes a deed.

A scruff-bearded man she likes
That will provide her, ‘her rights’
Act with great fore sights
And be among those collar whites.

Religious is priority
One might find hard to be
As long as for the Almighty
The best man she’ll ever see.

She do not ask him to open the door
Or buy her flowers like every girl adores
He should understand that
She ain’t Meghan-Trainor-brat.

She wants to talk lovey-dovey
But you know that’s not her thingy
As you always observe how she acts kingly
Before friends that talk tinny.

How nervous now, she turns out to be
Her heart feels like a bee
Flies around a shady tree
Hiding her heart away from eyes that see.

Writing this poem makes her smile
Never did she do this in a while
This is not one of her guile
It’s just an experience worthwhile.

How much she wish this could come true
As she is a girl just like you
Dreaming of a real man she knew
But he is very hard to get to.

No, no, he’s not a former lover
Nor he’s a former friend
America is not where his alma mater
But America is where he was sent.

Now, she’s going there
Hoping to see his black hair
Meeting him eye-to-eye
And  have the opportunity to say ‘Hye’.

By the way,   superthumb I could never agree more.

Classification Essay: Types of Attitudes Towards Money

Money has been a need and there is no skepticism on it. Paradoxical to the common saying ‘Money can’t buy you everything’, the reality that we are facing in this ominous world is that money does buy you everything. This resulted in different types of attitudes of people towards money. The three typical attitudes that we have seen exist in our daily lives are money worship, money status and money essential.

First attitude, the money worship. To people with this type of attitude, money is their God, whether they realize it or not. Although the act of ‘worshipping money’ is not vivid enough in our modern world, this attitude would eventually born inside people that are always feeling inadequate with what they have. They are always thirst for money, to the extent that they are willing to do anything to get those ‘printed papers’. A clear example of money worshiping is in the movie ‘Catch Me If You Can’. The main character (played by Leonardo DeCaprio) goes through a series of fraudulent schemes to possess that life full of pleasure, fill with cheques and money. He never gets enough, despite the police chasing events he has to endure. Money worship is one of the negative attitudes of people that if not managed well, it could lead to a serious problem that would bring harm to our lives, directly or indirectly.

Next, the money status. Money status people are the individuals who believe that money is a status symbol. Money is placed beside power, though it is true with what is happening in reality. Notable people that are featured in Forbes’ Richest People are the powerful people, the ones that achieve high status and class for being opulent, leaving commoners behind. Quoting the prominent lead singer of the rock band ‘Kiss’, Gene Simmons, “Money is everything. The ones that said money is not everything are stupid”. He was able to say that, after he gained popularity and wealth in the entertainment world. Money is vital for power and status, as what these people think towards money.

Last but not least is the money essential. Money essential attitude fundamentally means money is essential for a living. Without a simple amount of money, life is shattered. The money acquired is only to fulfill needs to purchase basic goods such as food, drinks, clothes and to pay the bills. It is not necessary to have tons of money for these commoners, as they are used to have a life with money in an average amount. Usually, money essential people are the happiest people. They are the humans that actually live a supposed life one should have, a life full with struggles and joy.

In a nutshell, people have different attitudes towards money, depending on how they perceive money. Our attitudes towards money affect how we live our life whether we notice it or not. However, people have to be real that money should not be treated as an oxygen, the air that keeps us alive. Money should not be treated as H20, the water that we drink. Money is our responsibility. We should be aware on how we spend it in a way that does not exceed our capability.

Journal 3: Real Heroes

Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani is an Indian entrepreneur, a shareholder of India’s second most valuable company by market value. But he is not the hero that I will be writing about. “Ambani, the Investor” is a short, award winning film that I had been watching for the past 19 minutes. It is about a typical Indian boy who lived a life just as how the other ordinary boys in India live. The movie started off with the boy writing on what I presumed his diary about recycling old stuffs. Just as he started to write in his dimly lighted room with a worn out lantern before him, his drunkard father came in.  This scenario, I assumed, might be a daily part of his life, to see his father came home every night with empty alcohol bottles in his hand. As he went to sleep, and his mother turning off the light, he caught a glimpse of his father’s empty bottles at the side of his father’s head. The next morning, he took the empty alcohol bottles and sold it to the garbage collector. He received some money, and subsequently the movie showed a series of the boy investing money on little things, such as giving packs of milk he received to a ‘chai wallah’ just to get in return a sum of money as a result for selling the ‘chai’ to the people of the streets.

There is a significant part of the movie, when the newspaper man called him ‘Ambani’, and said, “You are the only one who is earning after investing like Ambani. So I call you Ambani”. At the end of the movie, the film showed him counting the money he received after investing on so many things. Afterwards, he went to the kitchen to see his mother cooking what I presumed again, keema (an Indian dish often eat with chapati). He put some money on the rack as if to tell his mother that the money is hers.

“The real heroes anyway aren’t the people doing things; the real heroes are the people noticing things, paying attention” said one of the most salient authors in his proverbial The Fault In Our Stars book, John Green. My precept on heroes are almost similar to John Green’s, though, I like people that bring whether a small or big change towards his/her society or family or even to themselves in the intention to ameliorate condition but in a manner that not many people celebrated his/her contribution. Or it is better to be known as the term, ‘Unsung Heroes’. To me, the ‘little Ambani’ is one of the real heroes I’ve known. He must have been paying attention on how to gain more by bravely investing his small number of moneys. He believed with his actions although he couldn’t be sure whether it is going to work. I admired his thinking and his heroic moves as eventually he gave his hard earned money to the person he cherishes the most, his mother. That’s a real unsung hero.

One of the real heroes that I acknowledged is Mr Bean in his hit movie, Mr Bean Holiday. I remember vividly how he changed the whole ending of the movie with his odd behaviors in his camera roll. Despite his alien-like characters, his observations and comprehension of what happened around him made him the hero of the movie. I also recalled how I was so impressed by him (for the first time since he was idiotic in the Mr Bean Series) with his scintillating ideas. He was amazing.

We all could be heroes. We need not to be influential to be called heroes. We just need to pay attention, plan and move. With a minor smart move, we could be the savior to the community.

Week 7: Dear, Mrs Roosevelt.

It is not fair to ask of others what you are not willing to do yourself – Eleanor Roosevelt

Mrs. Roosevelt, if you say this to me, my response might be a little odd than others. First, I might say to you, “Have you, Mrs. Roosevelt, ever told someone to do things that you don’t want to, but you are well aware those things have to be done?”. And if you replied me with an assuring ‘Yes!‘, I might replied you back by saying “Well then, it’s not fair for you to come up with a saying that makes thousands of people feel bad with their lives”. But if you replied me with a reluctant “Yes?” I might said “Mrs. Roosevelt, you used that bright brain of yours to make a quote that will be memorable over the years, but you didn’t even know what you’re saying”. However, if you replied me in a certain manner “No. I never ask of others to do things I don’t want to do myself” then I might just replied to you “Cool”.

This is clearly subjective, Mrs. Roosevelt. My views changes depending on certain situations. I sometimes do think it’s fair to ask of others to do certain things that I, myself are not willing to do. For example, when I told my friend to join a particular sport, specifically a sport that I don’t master in (actually I never master in any sports) because I was very sure that she has the capabilities required for the sport that I myself don’t possess. Another example, I once assured my friend to take up child psychology major because I was very sure she could handle it and considering the qualities she had, such as loving, caring, soft-spoken, loveable and whatnot. But when she said, “Mana, you should take it too!”, I frowned. Yes, I did mention to her that I am interested in psychology, but that doesn’t mean I want to take child psychogy as a major. I hate kids, Mrs. Roosevelt, I do. But when people like me take up child psychology as a major, what do you think will happen to the world? So, do you get me Mrs. Roosevelt?

Though, sometimes what you said, Mrs Roosevelt, is right. I have encountered so many colloquys and scenarios when someone told another to do things he/she didn’t want to do it him/herself usually due to personal reasons. Usually to benefit the former more than the latter. And I have to ashamedly admit that I do it too on certain occasions. I told my brother to dispose the dead lizard when I myself was scared to do it. And when he refused, I rebuked him by saying “You’re a boy, Keyi! You’re not supposed to be scared of lizards!”. It was unfair, because he grew up surrounded by women who are scared of lizards. No doubt, he was influenced by us indirectly.

Despite all that, Mrs. Roosevelt, I am inclined to agree with you. Yes, it is unfair. It is much better if we ourselves could prove it to others that we are capable of willingly doing something before telling others to do it too.

Thank you, Mrs, Roosevelt, for opening up my mind.

Week 6: L.O.V.E

The minute when my throat hit the irrepressible flow of the creamy, ‘Badam Lassi’ at an Indian restaurant called 7 Spice, I learnt the meaning of sensual feeling. I get sensual delights when I am tasting new discovered enigmatic, exotic food. It just makes me feel like I am in the clouds. I forget about the world for a second, and enjoy the nonsensical amazing taste of it. I could (not literally) cry over nice foods.

The moments when I witnessed my parents’ arguments, fights and unparalleled decisions, but a few minutes after that, they were nice to each other and acted as if nothing happened, I learnt the meaning of acceptance. It’s hard to accept someone’s behaviour that is dissimilar from you. It takes time, and tolerance. It makes me ponder, how could a couple lived together for so long, and never get bored of each other? The answer to this is accepting partners for who they are.

The second I laid in the hospital bed and saw the worried lines on my parents forehead, I learnt the meaning of appreciation. I should have appreciate myself and my parents more. I had been hurting myself for superficial reasons when I have people, before me, appreciating and accepting who I am.

Love is the combination of all these things. It gives me sensual feelings over things that make me smile and contented, acceptance of diverse things and appreciates me and makes me feel worthy. Love gives contentment and joy. It makes me realise that this world is too big yet too small to minimise the meaning of love to only human because humans can’t give me all of these at once.

So I met Love. Last year, someone introduced me to Love. I started to seriously understand and slowly reciprocating the love that Love itself has been giving me. Who is that Love? Love is Allah, Allah is Love. There’s no greater Love than He is. I started to understand what He has been giving me and I am slowly reciprocating His love. I am struggling, though, because His love is too enormous that a slave like me, couldn’t barely comprehend.

I hope that I can always keep up this struggle and I pray that everyone in this world can perceive the ultimate love of Love. So they could find contentment and finally, peace.

Note: sensual does not only mean sexually exciting. It also means appetities and passion of the body.

In the memory of Lee Kuan Yew (Narrative)


     “Lee Kuan Yew admitted to hospital” “Lee Kuan Yew identified with pneumonia”, the first headlines about Lee Kuan Yew days before he really passed away. When I read the headline for the first time, frankly, I sneered. I am not a fan of Lee Kuan Yew nor a hard core hater. I am a moderate ‘disliker’. But I know someone who is really an inveterate, hard core hater of Lee Kuan Yew, my father. He is a true Singaporean. He is the ultimate complainer. He hates his country, but he likes to compare “how good Singapore is” to Malaysia. There are times that he would praises Malaysia over Singapore when it comes to…hmm let me remember. Ahh…free parking. When the headlines of Lee Kuan Yew were busy revolving around the internet, people started to take advantage and made hoax. I received the news that Lee Kuan Yew was already passed away. I shared it to my old high school classmates and asked them, “Do you guys remember Lee Kuan Yew?” I expected them to remember because even though they weren’t Singaporeans, but at least they learnt about him in our History subject. Then, one of my classmates said “He is not dead yet. He is sick” I was puzzled. I just received a picture saying that Lee Kuan Yew was dead and it looked legit. I checked it back on Google. Yeah, he was not dead. It was a hoax. But he was in his deathbed, though. He was sick with pneumonia. I was devastated. “When will he die?” I thought to myself. Lee Kuan Yew was the founding father of Singapore. However, to me, Lee Kuan Yew was like Mao Tse Tung in another generation. He changed Singapore into a wholly different country after he succeeded to separate Singapore from Malaysia (the Independence Day for Singapore, 9th of August). To most, that was the victorious moment as it was a turning point for him to change Singapore from an underdeveloped country to a now one of the richest country in the world with an incessantly growth of economy. How about Malaysia? Malaysia is like the tortoise in the story of The Hare and The Tortoise except that the tortoise really lose here. But when my dad started to tell the secrets behind the history of the developing Singapore and when the complainer started to complain, I could sense the hidden revulsion of Singaporeans to their own country. Days went by, and in one day, I checked BBC News on my cell phone. “Singapore’s founding father dies at the age of 91” This time, it was for real. I sneered again. At last, he died. But after a few seconds of pausing, I looked at the distant and started to ponder. He ACTUALLY died. Lee Kuan Yew, the man behind the success of Singapore, the miniscule island that we couldn’t barely see its presence in the world map but people all around the world acknowledge it as an opulent country, had died. I saw pictures of Singaporeans crying and mourning. Nevertheless, little did I know that most of them were actually glad when they heard the news, especially when I read the news of a man who insulted Lee Kuan Yew on Youtube after his death was caught by the police. It became more surprising when I read the comments that tons of people were actually siding him and said that he was a genius. I am a Malaysian although half of my life memories were in Singapore. I am still proud that Malaysia, the tortoise, is still keeping its longstanding Malay identity. I hope that Malaysians will always stand behind their country and help it, rather than waiting for the death of the leader, like my dad, who waited for the death of Lee Kuan Yew.

Journal 2: What Will I Fight For

I had been through a phase when I said I would fight defending a celebrity I loved ‘with all my heart’. I had been through a phase when my mind would go mad when I heard the song that I loved. That was six years ago. It was dumb when I reminisced those days. I was making a fool out of myself. How could I fought for a guy or a group of dancing ‘pretty boys’ or a group of dudes playing guitars and singing till their throats almost fell out? Seriously, it’s not cool. AT ALL.

Let me tell you something that is superbly cool. Fight for justice. Fight for the truth. Fight and DIE for al-haq. One of the elements that make up a life is to fight. Without fighting, you’re not living. The subject that you’re fighting is subjective. You can fight for anything, either for a good cause or bad. So here I am, making a sojourn at a temporary land, the World.

What is the truth (al-haq)? The truth is in the Book of Surviving in The Parlous World, the Holy Quran. So whatever I’m fighting for, but if it’s not in the book, I’m just wasting my time away. The Book tells us that Islam is just. So I have to fight for justice. The Book tells us that Islam teach us to love and care for our parents. Therefore, I have to fight for my parents welfare. But above all, the Book tells us to love The Right One. The One that gives you life. The One that gives you a heart to beat, ears to listen and eyes to see. And The One that has been giving you ‘second’ chances everyday. So who is The Right one? Him, of course. If I state that I love Him, but I spend the most hours of the day listening to the songs that I like, ‘fan-girling’ on the singers that I craze for, worrying about my assignments and the universities that I want to enroll to rather than the Ummah’s problem, it seems like I don’t love Him enough to do the things He tells us in the Book. So you think you love Him?

This journal will be a big responsibility for me. Because I’m stating the things that I’m trying to fight and die for. If I don’t do it, I’m just a person with words, without actions.

In simpler words, I will fight and die for my religion. I am trying my best to put my religion above everything else. Someone once said to me ‘you have to be open minded’. Now, here’s a thing. The right way to be open minded is to follow the Quran and Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad. To apply the teachings of the Prophet in any way possible. It’s right to understand and learn how can someone change one’s gender and figure out a way how to help that person, but it’s not right to accept the changing and say ‘this is human’s right’. In fact, it’s against the human nature.

So this is what I’m fighting for. I will wait till the day when humans will come to their minds and return to their fitrah. I will keep on fighting for the truth and if someone tries to stop me, I will try my best to fight and if it costs my life, then be it.

If you’re living for this world, then your life is short. But if you live to fight for the truth, then your life will lasts till the legacy ends.