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February 26, 2006

New class schedule

So annoying the weather has made me go nowhere recently, let alone write any fun traveling stories for my readers. When it comes to March, we realize that the pleasant and relaxed atmosphere of the new year has waned to the least it can be. Everyone appears to get back to their regular way to live their own life.

The following month, however, seems a little different to me because my new class schedule will be taken effect. First of all, no more night class for the Global Village. Though I had already finished teaching the last TOEFL class on last Thursday evening, I think it is about time to relay it to the next teacher. It is indeed a rewarding class to me where I learned many wonderful things out of the text book. Some students complained to me that the contents in the textbook seem outdated and not compatible with the patterns of TOEFL, but I still believe that it is a good thing to read, as well as a decent reference material for English learners. So.. Jenny, the only student remaining in the class, please take my words for it.

Where am I going and what I am doing from next month on? Few new classes will be arranged and I will see them as new challenges I will be taking on. I feel like I am getting more chances to instruct on diverse classes for the days to come. Good news for me to a degree.

Feel free to catch me, and I will be glad to assist you in your studies.

(PS. I have updated my personal Website with new sentences -- http://aboto1.myweb.hinet.net , please go take a look)

February 19, 2006

Blood types and personality

Asian people especially who live in Japan and Korea nearly have the strong belief that their blood types connect to human's personality characters. This craze has been picked up stream and spread around in Taiwan since long ago. One of my friends, Dennis, is the expert of analyzing the personality straits on people with different blood types.

According to his analysis, people with blood type A is always a perfectionist. Type-A people is also considered to be level-headed and the ones who can be trusted. When dealing with a tough situation, they never quit until they have it done to a T. On the other hand, they are sometimes indecisive and become easily depressed. I think they should learn more about how to look at the bright side of everything. I was told that why Japanese products are so renown to the world is because a dominant population of Japanese are type A. Do you buy into that?

Speaking of the Type-B, the people with which are just the opposite to the Type-A. Type Bs are mostly the optimism, and it is hard for them to expect something to turn out be to a disaster. When asking them what to eat in a restaurant, their answer always goes "everything is fine to them". They are unlike the Type As who seem to be on the horns of a dilemma making a quick decision about what to eat.

Type-O people easily fall into a yes/no pattern. The logic in their mind appears to be "If X is not good, then Y must be good". No wonder it is easier to deal with these people because you can read their mind without taking a guess. But, their hot temper and lack of romantic view are things you have to put up with.

What about Type AB? Well, I guess they are either like A or B, or the hybrid of them.

If you have the idea in your blood, try not to take my words for it. You can't take it for granted that all people follow the same patterns on their blood types. If you entirely believed in that, you might get screwed over.

craze 短期的瘋狂流行
picked up stream 加速進行
spread around 傳開
analysis 分析
perfectionist 完美主義者
level-headed 冷靜的
to a T 到達完美
indecisive 猶豫不絕的
renown 知名的
dominant 佔上風的
opposite 相反的
optimism 樂觀主義者
be on the horns of a dilemma 左右為難
pattern 型式, 花樣
romantic view 浪漫的觀點
hybrid 混合物
someting in your blood 在血液裡面(對某事很在行)
take somthing for granted 認為理所當然
be screwed over 被害慘

February 14, 2006

Back-to-school week

You may be wondering where I have been up to these days. Well actually I am so busy since my kid had got to get back to school earlier this week. This has been his second semester since he started in elementary school last September. Being the only kid in our family, Brian owns his own study room at home but never seems to use it at all times. As a result, he always does his homework in the living room. I realized that it was time to prepare him a real place for studying now as I found it was piled with countless toys and books in such an untidy way.

After cleaning his room, tons of toys and books had been sorted out and placed into different boxes. I guessed I might be able to get some of them listed for bidding on eBay or Yahoo Auction to make some quick buck. His room looks clean now; however, I start considering whether I should do some cleaning job in my study room because it looks like such a mess too. Perhaps I can dig something out and get them sold on line.


It used to look like 10 times messy as you look in the pic...

February 10, 2006

About Google Groups

Google Groups is a service that helps people/ members communicate effectively on the Internet through email. It is also known as a discussion group formed by the organizer of the group and he or she will have to create a contact list by collecting all memebers' email addresses. With the contact list established, everytime when any memeber including the organizer her/ himself wishes to send new information to other members, all she/ he has to do is send email to them by the contact list. The group email address is similar to the one below:
aboto1@googlegroups.com *
* I have created my own group on Google Forum so I decided to use aboto1 as the account name for this group email address.

Each group founded on Google Groups can have their front page set up, though, most group members don't need to come to the front page all the time. They will receive the same information via email from other members who posted them. They go to the front page only if they want to check some old messages posted earlier by other people.

Being the only organizer of my group, I can't appreciate too much for this Google Groups service as it helps connect me to my students and readers in a tighter way. You can start building your own group with Google Groups now to experience the magic of it.

By the way, if you are already the member in my group, why not post your questions or send us anything using our group email address. We are craving to know more about you.

February 08, 2006

Frisbees --by Bruce Lin

In my teens, I bought a set of English-learning books that came with 7 audio cassette tapes to save my English. I read the books and listened to those tapes over and over but could not understand much. After that, there was no apparent improvement in my English, but the experience triggered my interest to learn the language. To this date, I still have those tapes though they are no longer useful.

Now students mainly use CDs to learn English. Amy*, a high school student, told me her school demands that every student subscribe to an English magazine that comes with a CD. However, no student – not even one, she said – uses the materials. Instead, some students use the magazine as a lunchbox tray, and most use the CDs to toss at each other as if they were Frisbees. Owning learning materials certainly is not equivalent to learning from it.

Lord, how we have changed. In terms of price, user-friendliness, durability, and sound quality, the CD is far superior to the cassette. The problem with CDs is that they are easy to produce – they are a dime a dozen now – and thus, less valuable. Besides, they often come out so fast and in such high numbers that students like Amy are eventually overwhelmed by too much information: they don't know how to use the information and don't know where to start under the cramming education climate. Naturally, CDs become Frisbees.

I flipped through the 20-something English articles in the magazine. Most of them were quite good. I picked one article on fashion designing (Amy's interest) and told her that every month she only needs to read one article and listen to the sound file from the CD. Of course, she may read more if she likes. Now she is the only one in her class to really use the magazine-CD.

Less could be more. Haven't we learned?


*Amy is not his real name.
2006/2/5

February 06, 2006

Website Update

I updated my personal website, Albert's Showcase.
This time I just posted a few sentences I made earlier.
So, please come take a look at it. Its Web address is http://gept.xxking.com.

February 04, 2006

Life, tour, and train

My friend sent me a file the other day. It really touched my heart as I read through the whole passage. As a result, I decided to translate it into English to share it with you.


Life, tour, and train

Not long ago, I read a book that compared our life to a journey on a train.

Our life is like traveling on a train. We often get on and off of it. There are always suprprises and incidents occured all the time during the ride. We meet not only surprises but also unforgettable things of sadness.

Our being given the birth is like getting right on the train. In the first place, we thought the first two people we met-- our parents, would accompany us from the beginning of our life to the end of it. Unfortunately, it was not true. They must get off the train somewhere ahead of us, leaving us hopelessness and loneliness. Their love, affection, and companion with us can't be retrieved and also be replaced anymore with anything else.

Besides, there are still some others who mean a lot to us: our offsprings, relatives, and we may also meet our better half to experience the great romance on earth.

There are other passengers on the train as well. Some of them enjoy their trip pretty well. Some don't, however.

Moreover, some guys rush about on the train to give us assistance and advice. They are the helpers memorized by us eventhough they may get off the train before us. They will be known by our heart forever. In stead, some other faces are hardly remembered once they take off from their seats.

Maybe someone who means a lot to you is not sitting next to you but somewhere else on the train. You can't help but keep a distance from him/her on the journey. Or, you can go straight ahead to find her now but I am afraid that the seat next to him/her may have been taken already.

That's ok, dude. The trip is by all means full of challenges, dreams, desires, seperation, and so forth...you got to face all kinds of things... but never turn back.

Treat nicely to anyone you have met during the trip. Find their good qualities and learn to appreaciate them.

Always bear in mind that people like you and me may feel weak and vulnerable at all times.

We need to learn to feel for others because they may feel for us too.

The mystery of life is:

When will we get off the train?

When will our significant other get off the train? and so will our friends?

We seem to have no idea to this point.

More often than not, I ask myself if it comes to my turn to get off the train, will I do it with no hesitation? I don't think I will because it will absolutely hurt me when I bid farewell to my friends. I will mourn to my kid if I let him go along without my company. I am sincerely hoping that we can meet again at the destination to our journey.

My kid's luggage is empty when he/she first got on the train. It will be such a nice and wonderful thing if I can leave some good memories in it.

If anyone can rememebr my face and misses me as I get off the train, that will make my day.

Bon Voyage my friend, we are riding the same train now.

February 02, 2006

Busy week

I have got to apologize to those who are looking for me. I really don't have time to update anything new on the blog here, because I've been so busy over the week. My schedule is dead crazy like having different things to do on a daily basis. Since the eve of the Chinese new year, I have been hanging in and out with my family members for different purposes. I went for big meals with my parents, my wife's parents, and gatherings with other in-laws and relations. We also went to see the sight at Caolin Water park in Gongliao of Taipei county, join the workshop for making pottery works such as bowls and vases in Yingge Taipei on the other day, and so forth. Those are pretty cool events I have partaken in so far.

I have received greeting messages from friends and students of mine through the ways like email and phone. Thank you all for not forgetting me. Leo called me earlier today. I can't believe that he has been in the military for three months already. Time really flies and he will be getting out of the army sooner or later.

I will get back to my daily routine right after this new year vacation. I know I will have a lot of new things to do and I think I have to get myself ready for any upcoming challenges. Days of mine may get tougher but I must get over it by all means.


Caoling Water Park


Caoling water park


Caoling water park


Gongliao Old Street


Gongliao train station

Yingge pottery class

* The above photos are taken with my Sony camcorder/ DCR-DVD 803. I love this guy so much.