Fresher’s Welcoming Party

Written by: Thinesh Naidu

Welcoming PartyMerry. Fun-filled. Bonding and camaraderie.

These are the 3 terms I would use to describe the Fresher’s Welcome Party that took place on the 25th of March, 2016. My perspective on this event was a rather unique one, as I was part of the organizing committee for the party. I was one of the 10 game masters, in charge of the board games that would be played that night.

The crowd, comprising of new and returning Sunway University students, began filling up the extended deck of the foyer at 6.30pm.

Welcoming Party002

All attendees of the welcome party were treated to a scrumptious combo of Aglio-Olio spaghetti & fried rice, courtesy of Joshi Josh, and also banana cakes and jellies made by members of the Sunway University Student Council.

The party started proper at 7pm. The board games were officially opened up, and the game masters proceeded on a table-by-table basis to instruct individual groups of attendees on the minutia and technicalities of the games laid before them.

Welcoming Party003

Running concurrently with the board gaming session was the open mic session, which featured pre-determined and impromptu selections from the student council and audience pool.

Welcoming Party004Welcoming Party005Welcoming Party006

The atmosphere was all-round warm and relaxing (thought the warmth could be partly attributed to the recent heatwave phenomenon), and everybody seemed to be in their element, thoroughly enjoying themselves. The standout board game of the night was, without surprise, Cards Against Humanity, a game designed to bring out the worst of us.

Welcoming Party007

And thanks to some really enterprising players, we got this little gem:

Welcoming Party008

The incessant Malaysian heat did not dampen the mood of the attendees, and everyone cheered and sang along whenever a particularly good song was being belted out on stage. The standout songs of the night were “Titanium” by Sia, performed by Sandya, “Secrets” by One Republic, performed by Chow Shenn Kuan and Yoon Pei Li; and “Wonderwall” by Oasis, performed by Tahsin.

All in all, the event was successful one, as it clearly achieved its key objectives: Bringing seemingly random groups of strangers together, and introduce them to each other. At a certain point, even the passers-by stood transfixed as they listened to the wondrous vocal potentials of Sunway University belting out song after song.

Inserted below are random shots of the event, taken by 2 other photographers and I (Ang Shuo Yan and Mwesi Ndibalema) who were on scene, and happened to be contacts of mine.

Not Your Ordinary Superhero by Elycia Lee

Superheroes; something happens, girl in distress, villain on the loose, and superheroes are there to save the day. But have you ever wondered – what if we didn’t need superheroes to save the day? What if they were humans with superpowers, yet they lived life without being a hero?

 

  1. A)     If Superheroes Had Part-Time Jobs

Hulk: Help demolish buildings.

Mr Fantastic: Help pick fruits from taller trees.

Invisible Woman: Help magicians con people.

Storm: Work as a farmer and water the crops.

Ironman: Probably could help iron some clothes.

Human Torch: Replace ovens, and roast chicken.

Iceman: Make ice rinks, supply ice for restaurants.

Deadpool: He’d be a pretty good knife throwing assistant.

Spiderman: Make fishing nets, badminton nets and racquets.

Thor: He could use the hammer while working as a blacksmith.

Captain America: Use his shield as a platter while serving food.

Wolverine: Become a landscape gardener and cut hedges into nice shapes.

Cyclops:  Drill holes in walls or in the ground. Can help in renovating houses.

Flash: Pizza delivery! Or any food delivery and maybe even PosLaju. (mail delivery)

The Thing: Work at a construction site or help people while they move houses. Can work together with Hulk too.

 

Or perhaps, a little fusion between your favourite superheroes and… Pokemon?!

 

  1. B)      If Superheroes Were Pokemon

Flash: Zapdos.

Hulk: Machoke.

Iceman: Regice.

Hawkgirl: Staraptor.

Spiderman: Spinarak.

The Thing: Hariyama.

Wolverine: Sandslash.

Human Torch: Torchic!

Thor: PIKACHUUUUU!

Mr Fantastic: Tentacruel.

Batman: Zubat, obviously.

Ironman: Charmander? Ironmander, haha.

Invisible Woman: Kecleon. (but with Devon Scope, no longer invisible)

So, what are some other superheroes you know that could use their powers to advantage in a job, or what Pokemon are they similar to?

Superheroes and Villains by June Ong

Team Spidey or team Green Goblin?
Easy for you to say.
What about team Joker or team Penguin?
Now that’s a weird decision suspended at bay.

We idolize superheroes; we dress up on Halloween,
We have our birthday cakes decorated with spider webs and red capes;
But if you start dressing up like Mr. Penguin with those demonic fins,
People start to look at you, a socially-awkward ape.

Do you really think that superheroes and villains are different?
Are they really placed on either ends of the moral spectrum?
They say there is a fine line drawn between similarities and differences.
I better hope that is true or else I might throw a tantrum.

I agree that villains love fortune and fame;
While superheroes do it for the sake for avenging their loved ones’ names.

However do you realise they’re both hopeless without their fancy gadgets and superpowers?
Clark Kent can’t afford to fight just as a normal mortal, perhaps he runs away, that little coward.

Spidey feels dejected when he stops producing webs.
In fact, consequently, he spends too much time on the net,
Trying to readjust and wear back the mundane human daily activity hat;
But fails to do so and end up being slightly bad.

When you think about it, you really have to applaud The Joker.
He doesn’t have any superpowers, all he has is that sheer mask of clown-faced poker.
He has a flair for thunderous executions, astounding gasping and awe-struck onlookers.
Maybe that’s how he became The Joker, quitting his day job of being a broker.

Batman has his unlimited fortune, cool gadgets and an awesome bat mobile.
Ironman has Jarvis, the Stark Empire and out-of-this-world (literally) flying suits.
Sadly the truth is, all superheroes have their Achilles’ heel;
And not all villains will be apprehended and be kicked in the boots.

We too can be superheroes or villains in our lives.
It’s our daily decisions that affect the colour of our stripes.
If you choose to focus on the positive and face evil with your head held high,
Congratulations, you are worthy of being a “superhero”, an honour so high.

Similarly, if you choose to knock others down for your own wicked purposes,
Let it be known that sooner or later, you might be cursed.
For evil never triumphs in the end, justice always comes first.
Superheroes and villains,
We carry both these titles everywhere we go in our daily lives.
It’s just a matter of dark versus light.

Superheroes in Reality by Merissa Tan

When we hear the word “Superheroes”, what comes into mind are usually depictions of “superhumans” with unnatural strength or abilities, which is not surprising, considering the amount of superheroes films these days. However, these are all works of fiction. Do superheroes exist in real life? I believe they do. I believe we have superheroes among us, who are really just normal human beings, but with an extra touch of kindness, passion, love and everything else that makes humanity great. These people are often underappreciated, which is why I’ve listed just a few examples of the people that I consider as real life superheroes right here

 

  • Ellen DeGeneres

An American comedienne, Ellen hosts her famous talk show The Ellen DeGeneres Show, where she regularly gives out presents to needy and unsuspecting viewers. She ends her every show with the phrase “Be kind to one another!” She was awarded “Favourite Humanitarian” of People’s Choice Awards 2016 for her continued plight to help communities in need and for tirelessly working to raise awareness for organizations and charities that strive to make a difference in people’s lives.

 

  • John Cena
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Source: 411mania.com

Better known as a professional WWE wrestler than a philanthropist, John Cena is actually an extremely kind gentleman underneath his intimidating, muscular appearance. He had recently become the first celebrity to grant 500 wishes in Make-A-Wish Foundation history, a non-profit organization founded in the United States that arranges experiences described as “wishes” to children with life-threatening medical conditions.

 

  • Arnold Abbott

This one is not a celebrity. He’s a 90-year-old man from Florida who is every bit as normal as you and I! He founded the Love Thy Neighbour charity, and goes onto the streets to feed homeless people with volunteers. However, this act violates a new city law in Ft. Lauderdale that essentially prevents people from feeding the homeless. Mr. Abbott was arrested, but that did not stop him. He went out again to do the same thing two days later, and was charged for the second time. He now faces 60 days in jail or a $500 fine if found guilty.

Why we love batman? by Clinton Wee

Once upon a time is arguably the favourite phrase of children across the globe. The phrase serves as a transition from their boring lives to the majestic unknown world of fairytales. 10 years later the phrase still resonates deeply with our human psyche, although in a different form- superhero stories.

 

Have you ever wondered what it is about superhero fantasies that just seem to pique our interest? The power these adult fairytales possess to ensnare us in their captivating web of fiction and plot twists. So why do superheroes stories intrigue us? Why do we look up to figures that we logically know cannot exist?

 

The superhuman feats that these heroes can accomplish astound anyone and everyone who reads about it. We idolize heroes because of their ability to do things no man can even dream of attempting, for example lifting a truck with a pinky, or running fast enough to break the space time barrier, or even regrowing a hand after having it cut off. However this is just a superficial outlook on the matter, the real crux of the superhero mania is far larger than that and has less to do with superhuman powers than we might think.

 

Furthermore, it might seem contradictory, but what makes superheroes really super is their weaknesses. Yes, it is cool when they beat up bad guys, but where is the fun when your superhero is unbeatable and no villain even puts up a proper fight? Thus, I don’t and never will watch One Punch Man. Superman, arguably the most powerful superhero of all time, has kryptonite; Batman is haunted by his past; Ironman’s ego clouds his judgement; and even Wolverine’s immortality is a classic example of hell on Earth. The point is even superheroes bleed sometimes, but rather than making them seem weak, it helps us draw parallels with ourselves and others. The knowledge that even superheroes are prone to moments of weaknesses, just like us mortals, is an infinitely powerful statement that we are not all that different from them.

 

Hence, we can safely assume that Bruce Wayne has as many superpowers as a potato. Only equipped with his will, he fights evil on a daily basis. At some point he has even become a match for Superman, the man of steel. Compared to Superman, Batman is obviously the underdog, but he serves as a reminder that we do not need superpowers to be heroes. In most of his crime fighting days, he had nothing to rely on but pure intelligence and average human strength. That is why everyone is rooting for Batman to win in the long awaited blockbuster, “ Batman vs Superman”. Even if Batman ends up losing to Superman, which is unlikely, viewers will still be moved by his sheer determination in the epic fight of man versus God.

 

In a world where people face systematic discrimination and suffering, where the odds are always stacked against certain groups of individuals, superhero stories bring out the child in us. The child, that puts up a fight.

 

Otaku Corner: White Day

ヨホ、みんな!お元気ですか?(Romanji: yoho minna! Ogenki desuka?)

(Eng: Hey everyone! How are you guys doing?)

In the previous session of Otaku Corner, we have talked about the degree of affections that can easily be mistaken in many situations. Today, we shall talk about two things: i. the ‘kinds’ of chocolate gifts and ii. Anime versus Reality. In Japan, it is a custom to gift chocolates to the person you like on Valentine’s Day (14th of February) and it is also a custom to return those gifts on White Day (14th of March) too.

On Valentine’s Day, the girls would be busy preparing chocolates for the occasion. The chocolates being prepared could be either bought or in many cases handmade. There are a few ‘kinds’ of chocolates given during the occasion.

 

  1.       義理チョコ (Romanji: Giri Choco)

Eng: Obligatory Chocolate

Obligatory Chocolates or義理チョコ are chocolates given to friends and families on Valentine’s Day. They are given as a sign of gratitude towards the people around that particular individual who gave the chocolates.

  1.      本命チョコ (Romanji: Honmei Choco)

Eng: (Favourites’ person)

Fovourites’ or本命チョコ are chocolates given to the person you love. In anime or manga, such scenes are rather one of the highlights in series.

  1.       逆チョコ (Romanji: Gyaku Choco)

Eng: Reverse Chocolates.

Reverse Chocolates or逆チョコ refer to guys giving out chocolates to the person they like (a reverse role) on Valentine’s Day.

—————————————–More—————————–

Onto the second segment of the corner, let us compare some of the points shown in shoujo series and in reality.

  1.       Valentine’s Day and White Day (14.2 and 14.3)

Yes, Valentine’s Day and White Day are celebrated in Japan. It is an event that is really special to many people in Japan.

  1.       Public Display of Affection

Japanese people are rather reserve in displaying their affections. Hence, you very rarely see Japanese couples hugging and holding hands in public, unlike in anime and manga.

  1.       Confessions

In reality, many Japanese guys prefer to take the lead and make the first move in asking the girl of their dreams out. According to Jun’s sister, all of her friends (who are in a relationship) were asked by the guys.

  1.       The shoe lockers

According to Jun, yes, the shoe lockers in Japanese high schools do act as a communication box for students. Love letters and other ‘gifts’ are placed into the shoe lockers to deliver the messages intended.

  1.       Kabedon (壁ドン)

The all-time favourite kabedon can only be found in the 2D world. According to a friend of mine, it is something that you do not often see in Japan.

These points are some based on what I found and some points are from Rachel and Jun’s videos. I apologize if they are inaccurate. Thank you for joining me in another session of Otaku Corner. Ja ne!

Links/ references:

  1.       PDA (Japan vs Korea)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDfGoUezyyM

  1.      Anime vs Reality Part 1: Dating & Love https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0bnaxv8d_w&list=PLNB5_GMK6YzEdGkAUyQl2OriSkpwEwIJL&index=8
  2.       Bullying In Japan

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3I1i-UEPK0

Sunway Music Society Welcoming Party

Welcome back, welcome back, to one and to all of the freshmen.
The holidays are over and semester has begun, but that doesn’t mean we must stop having fun.
We know that catching up with friends can be tough and as such, a welcome back party was thrown by Sunway Music Society on 19th February 2016 at Student Hub to welcome new members and to reunite the old. It was a great chance to see all those familiar faces.
The party started at 6:00 p.m.. There was a total of about 80 participants including committees, faculty members and of course, the new members of Sunway Music Society. Mr Kenneth, our club advisor also attended the party. The party started with a self-introduction by the committees followed by ice-breaking games (‘BINGO’ and ‘Continue the Lyrics’) to allow interaction among the members.
An hour later, dinner was served and ‘Open Mic’ session was opened to members for an opportunity to perform. All in all, the party was a success and everyone enjoyed themselves.
For those who couldn’t make it on that day and would like to know more about us, Sunway Music Society(SMS) is a society active in providing members a platform to perform and showcase their passion in music. For instance, our club’s monthly event, Livewire, is held in Energy Hub every Wednesday fortnightly from 12 to 12:30p.m. We also have invitations from third parties (in/outside college) for performance at times such as during the CISA’s Chinese New Year Festival and Laundry Bar to name a few. Besides, we are in the midst of planning our first ever musical drama called ‘Musical of the Ages'(MOTA) too.

To know more about us, feel free to be a part of our meetings and SMS family! We have our weekly meetings on Fridays at Function Room 2 in Graduate Centre from 5:30 p.m to 7:30 p.m. You’re also welcome to hit us up on Sunway Music Society-Public page in Facebook or email (sunwaymusicsociety@gmail.com). We are looking forward to seeing you at our weekly meeting!”

Below are the photos taken by one of the ECHO members, Danial Johan, during some parts of the event.

 

Otaku Corner: Ai/ Koi? by Chloe Kong

Otaku Corner: Love is in the air

By Chloe Kong

Konnichiwa minna (Hello everyone!) Welcome back to another session of Otaku Corner! It is February and many would look forward to this month. Why? Because this month is the month of love. Other than celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year, where we share the love and bond between members of the family (Gong Xi Fa Cai!), there is also another event that many would look forward to and that is..Valentine’s Day!

 

Valentine’s Day, a day where many would profess their love to the people they like. In anime, many series have emphasized on this very day itself. Hence, this very special day has turned into somewhat a battle field, especially for the girls. In general, the girls in Japan would give chocolate to their crushes and in return, the recipients would return the favour on White Day (14th of March).

 

In reference from a video by Rachel and Jun (Youtubers), Japanese use different words to express the different degree of affection. Here are several terms that are used to say how much one likes or love someone or something:

 

  1.       好き(Romanji: suki)

[Eng: Like]

In many situations, this term is used to express the basic degree of fondness towards someone or something. In many shoujo series, this term has also been commonly used in a confession.

Eg: a. 私は(名前)が好き。 I like (name).

  1.   私は犬が好き。I like dogs.
  2.       大好き!(Romanji: Daisuki!)

[Eng: Really really like (something/someone)/ Love/ Like (something/someone) very much]

This term has been used in many situations by characters in anime to speak out how the characters really really like someone or something (a level higher compared to好き) . It is commonly used to show how much that person means to you (although not necessarily in a romantic way)

Eg: a. この靴大好き!I really love these shoes!

   b. もう、雪―ちゃん大好き!I really like you!

(Though in this context, 大好きcould also be used among close peers to show their gratitude or affection towards someone. Also, 大好きmay not indicate that that individual means it in a romantic way)

  1.       愛してる (Romanji: Aishiteru)

[Eng: I love you]

As what we know, 愛してるmeans I love you. Literally, it means that. This term is purely used to express a higher level of affection towards a person (normally among lovers).

  1.       恋してる (Romanji: Koishiteru)

[Eng: I love you/ I’m in love with you]

On the other hand, 恋してる has a much much deeper meaning compared to愛してる.  恋してる can also be said as the highest level of affection in terms of expressing affection verbally through words.

That is all for this session of Otaku Corner, ja ne minna and happy holidays!

 

Links/ References

  1.       Japanese don’t say I love you? どうして日本人は愛してると言わないの?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azLpKvKBdHE