I'm definitely going to get back into some deep theological study. I need to, because my knowledge has slipped lately and when people ask me to debate issues such as amillennialism or Calvinism (or sometimes even just basic core Christian doctrine) I back out because I don't feel confident enough in my own abilities. My grounding in Scripture has effectively died and that's certainly a bad thing. I know I say this every holidays, but I'm going to put these ones to good use.
I also want to make some LJ custom background to really utilise this paid account, and so I might teach myself some HTML code. That'd be good. I've been working on possible ideas in MS Paint ... the main question is "sure, they look good, but can they actually be done?"
You know what really pisses me off? I know this is going to sound selfish, but I don't care. Basically, I feel like I've got the short end of the stick when it comes to English at my school. I found out yesterday one guy in my grade somehow got an article published in a magazine (despite the fact he's a stoner/idiot who I have no respect for), and there's some extension English course. What the Zooropa? Everyone knows I'm the best English student and writer in the grade. I've had freakin' meetings with the Principal about the quality of my writing, there's always unnecessary hoop-la made about my writing, and anyone with half a brain knows that I can write something good on just about any topic you throw at me. ... And now they're thoroughly ignoring me and promoting other students? I'm the best damn writer in the grade. So why in the world was I thoroughly left out in the cold for some extension English course, supposedly for the best students, and why are they encouraging the writing of others but giving me NO HELP AT ALL? It just ... it makes no sense. If what everyone says about me is true, then shouldn't they be encouraging me, helping me to get published, and so forth? I'm now bitter towards every writing program and English course on the face of the planet.
Though when I look at it, I'm more pissed about not getting encouragement and help to be published than not being even thought of for the extension English thing. Frankly, I think most English and writing courses kill creativity. You're taught a set of rules and told to stick with them, and you're guided in specific directions or have your creativity restricted by stimulus sheets/writing prompts. The best writers experiment and go beyond the rules (which would sound like blasphemy in some of the writing classes I've been in), and they sure as Popmart was a spectacle don't need some stupid prompt. They come up with ideas, toy with them and make them their own, and write something that's an extension of who they are or what they believe. Being told "write a poem about the sky" or "here's a picture of a door, come up with a short story based around it" is the opposite of that and I feel it is detrimental to good writing. Every time I've been told what to write, I've written something substandard. When I've been allowed to do my own thing, I've really shone - my story about trains when I was six that came second in some competition, the near-novel for class when I was nine, my poetry and lyrics, my novel, various stories I've got inspiration for but never completed, and so on. It's just ... I feel the school's not helped me with my writing like they should've and I'm feeling bitter about that. But oh well. I'll show them.
I must say I'm rather glad I'm not going back to NZ this Easter - I just get thirteen days, all to myself. I don't have a clue how I pulled it off, but Dad's not pestering me about it and it's just ... nice. He knows not to ask during winter - there's the "too cold" trick (it's not too cold, I just don't have sweatshirts and trousers that fit any more and I'm not buying some just for a week in Wellington) - and then come spring, I'll either be agreeable if the holidays are long enough or bash him around the head with how busy I am. Then summer ... that'll be harder, but I'll be about to turn eighteen then, and he's got to accept the fact I've grown up, become my own person, and he won't be seeing me that much any more. I live in a different country, I have my own life, I really don't have much of a reason to go back to NZ unless U2's touring, and it's his fault he doesn't get to see me much anyway. He's the one who left Mum and probably cheated on her ... I don't really want to know the specifics so I don't ask. In any case, if I knew for sure that he did cheat on her, I wouldn't be able to look at him again. No-one cheats on my mother. No-one. I don't care if they're my own father.
Now ... on the Maths B problem solving exam yesterday ...
The bad part: I didn't have a clue how to do any of the three questions. The first two I simply FORGOT, and the third ... I was totally baffled. And this is meant to be easier than Maths C!
The good part: I whacked down two pages of working, found 'answers' or otherwise made things look respectable, and there's no way I could've failed. At worst, I'll get a C for each question. In any case, considering my abysmal result on the knowledge exam, the problem solving mark can't lift my overall mark past C+, even if I get an A.
In better news, my Geograhy teacher hasn't finished marking that big written exam/essay, but she gave me some verbal feedback today, and I quote, "André, this is one of the best essays I've seen in a long while." That made me feel very good.
Received some AWESOME U2 bootlegs in the mail yesterday, including the ONLY full band performance of Please on the whole Elevation tour (19-10-2001, Baltimore). Squeee. I adore trading like there's no tomorrow, and I've met some really great people to trade with.