Saturday, 30 July 2011

Limericks for English lessons

Now, we didn't just write poems for Choral Speaking, we wrote limericks during English class too! Here are some written by my classmates, and published in the 1984 school magazine.

There was once a dog from Liverpool
Who loved to swim in the mining pool
One day he jumped in
Thinking he could find tin
But he nearly lost his life, poor fool

- Ling Hua Peng /2C1

There was an old lady from KL
Who one day for no reason fell
When helped to her feet
She got back on her seat
Why she fell, she never would tell

- Chen May Yee / 2S

In the Himalayas there once was a guru
Who by nature was a proper dungu
It was his karma
To live with a Llama
And spend his days, making bubu after bubu.

- Mok Mei Ling/2C1

There was an owl called Toot
Who lived in a very old boot
But sad to say
He cried everyday
For he didn't know how to toot.

- Mas Aryani Mohd Khalil / 2S

There was a man who came from China
He got lost in the jungles of Africa
He was caught in a trap
By the cannibal's net
And was stewed in the pot for supper

- Tan Lu Meng / 2C1

Monday, 25 July 2011

World of Women Drivers

I'm having so much fun discovering original poems composed by our clever BBGSians for the annual Choral Speaking Competitions! Here's another gem by Five Science Three, who took home the shield for the Senior Category in 1984. This poem is taken from the 1984 School Magazine.

Five Science Three Explores the World of Women Drivers

Women drivers can be found everywhere!


Up the curb!

In the ditch!

Up the tree!

In the lake! Tsk...tsk...

According to men,
Women drivers are atrocious!
Not so!
Inconsiderate and incompetent!
But, according to women,
Lady motorists are cautious, civic-minded and skilled!
"I mean, it's not easy driving up a tree, you know!"

After a minor mishap,
You can hear the famous last words of an enraged husband:
"How can you do such a thing! It's impossible!"
"You're just jealous because you can't do it!"
Informs his wife coolly
The car, sorry to say, is a total wreck,
Its wheels move in a crab-like motion,
And the vehicle is transformed
From a stately sedan
To a sports convertible...without the roof.

Ad we approach the age of seventeen,
Most of us crave for a driving license.
Driving instructors cringe,
When they see GIRLS at the driving office,
They cling desperately to the handbrakes when the lesson is in progress
---just in case.
Our monitor's first driving lesson.
"Let me guess, she drove into the drain!"
"Don't be so mean. I only hit the traffic lights. That's all!!"

Our wisdom bringers in BBGS
Comprise of a skilled lot.
See Miss Yeap gliding gracefully into the school compound,
Screeching to an abrupt halt
Missing the palm tree by centimetres. Phew.
We have the ideal woman driver, right here in BBGS.
Our very own Mrs Cheong,
Who swerves right, left, back and front,
Barely missing Mrs Thanen's pride and joy
Every single morning.
Hear the laughter upstairs in 5 Sc 3,
And the screams in 5 Sc 2,
Whenever Mrs Choe Ling
Laboriously manoeuvres her faithful Ford through the school gate.
Monday mornings can be hazardous to one's health.
For instance,
"Mrs Choe Ling, look out for that, BANG, CRASH, CHOKE........tree."

Adventurous women on race tracks,
Have caused sensations in newspapers.
Adventurous women on roads,
Have also been a source of headlines.
"Lack of trees in the city....fault of women drivers!"
Accident rates increse...women drivers on the prowl!"
Typical remarks of chauvinistic men.
These ignorant ones ind it astounding
How women change a tiny Volkswagen
Into a power-charged sports car!
If we drive slow
They sit seething with discontent, muttering imprecations, tinged with annoyance.

Yet, think of how uneventful
The world would be without us
Lovely, innocent, wonderful,
Charming, witty, enchanting,
And last but not least....modest women drivers,
Who add a little spice to your lives.
Looking gorgeous in an expensive Porsche.
A delightful sight for sore eyes,
Driving with awareness,
Every molecule in their body filled with confidence

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Courtship through our very own eyes

If your idea of a typical BBGSian is that of a strait-laced Victorian schoolma'm, think again. Here's a delightful original poem presented by 5 Arts 3, who emerged as Choral Speaking Champions for the Senior section in 1983. This poem was taken from the 1983 School Magazine.

5A3's presentation of Courtship Through Our Very Own Eyes

Courtship has played an important role in mankind for many, many years
And if 5A3 has it her way
it will continue to do so for many, many more years to come
Courtship has all the ingredients of a potential bestseller,
It has adventure, intrigue,
Humour, freshness
and not forgetting the most important ingredient of all
Besides, what is a marriage without courtship?
Nothing, AB-SO-LUTE-LY nothing.

Courtship is the period for memories to be cherished,
The days of red roses,
And gaily, coloured gifts.
Of opening of car doors
and candlelight dinners
Of posh hotels and smart restaurants
.....or perhaps
A walk int he thunderstorm in his best suit
and her best shoes.
A French menu that sounds Greek, exorbitant bills
And of getting up late for work the next morning.

According to the Oxford dictionary,
Courtship is the period during which
A person tries to win the affection of another
In view of marriage,
But, according to 5A3,
Courtship is the period for his bank balance to sink drastically
And her wardrobe to increase dramatically,
In view of a longer engagement.

The concept
of tall, dark and handsome men and their fair, petite counterparts
Is still predominant,
Unfortunately, there's a little snag to this,
You see,
"We aren't fair", "He isn't tall enough"
But as they say
Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder
So there's hope for us yet.

On a more serious note, ladies and gentlemen,
Courtship is not just the time for fun and lavish attention
It is like a bed of roses
A bed of roses with many thorns
It is the period when not only the virtues
But the faults surface.
It is the perfect opportunity for jealousy to rear its ugly head
For discontentment to set in,
For frayed tempers
And for settling differences once and for all.

Courtship can bring happiness
Let us take the case of modern day Romeo and Juliet
Happiness is when Juliet says
"Romeo, Romeo
Wherefore art thou?"
But tragedy when Romeo replies,
"I am here, you silly cow!"

Let us now deal with the before and after effects of courtship.
Before, she'll say
"Yes, dear
"Anything you say dear"
After, she'll say
"Do it yourself. I'm going back to mother's!"
Before, he'll say
"You look lovely tonight"
"Amazing what a woman looks like without her warpaint"
Before, she'll say,
"Oh, Thank you for the lovely flowers but you really shouldn't"
"You don't bring me flowers, anymore"
So much for happily-ever-after endings.

A slight twist to that famous Shakespeare phrase
More or less sums up the situation in general
It's just a matter of
To court or not to be court
To be courted or not to be courted
These are the questions
And 5A3's aswers are
To court and to be courted!

Note: I can't help thinking that these girls could have graduated to become scriptwriters for "Winter Sonata" and other Korean dramas...haha!

Monday, 18 July 2011


One thing I've realized about Choral Speaking at BBGS is that it wasn't always about Shakespeare, Keats or Tennyson. In fact, some of the best poems were often written by the girls themselves!

Here's a fine example by Form 3A, who were the Intermediate Choral Speaking Champions in 1984. Till today, I still remember how entertaining and engaging the poem was because we could all identify with the distinctly Malaysian scenes, characters and flavours contained therein.


As dawn breaks over the tenement houses
Life begins in the heart of Petaling Street
The carts rumble into the market square
And the cries of hawkers (Rumble Mumble Hustle Bustle)

Ka ma lun pheng koh, yau pheng yau leng, hoong toh-toh, Aunty, aunty, ai beh cai boh... Ham yee ah (2x) Sam Khow yat ma (3x) Mai yat cek soong yat cek, cin-cin, cai-cai, mai toh soong toh,
Mingled with those of early shoppers

The morning sun rses
The shops are ready for business
The big bully jaga with his beard neatly curled
Grins as a Mercedes pulls up, eek....booom
It disgorges an opulent lady
Making her weekly pilgrimage to the jewellery store.

The Chinese medicine halls display their strange products
Guaranteed to cure every ill.
The sinseh by the corner picks his teeth as he awaits his firs client
The joss stick seller is busy fashioning a paper limousine complete with number plates.
While two shops away in the eerie darkness,
A coffin lies waiting for the same customers.

"You ain't nothing but a hound dog"
Hot rock music blares from the cassette players
While metal smiths and cobbles, beat in time.
Girls in the latest fashion
Strut among the hawkers
Selling platform shoes and handbags

A shout is heard, "Hoi!"
A wiry youngster wheels among the cars
He disappears into the lane
Clutching a gold necklace
No one goes after him
No one dares, it's wiser not to be involved.

Lunch time in Madras Lane
For the adventurous gourmets they are
Monkey brains, served fresh from the skull
With a dash of pepper
Or, if you prefer less exotic fare
Try: turtle soup, fried lizard tongue, mouth watering eels.

The sun has set
The market is closed
And shops will be shut
But wait, more carts rumble in and kerosene lamps are lit
The pasar malam has begun
The hawkers advertise their goods in the road now devoid of traffic
There is food galore!
Char Siew Pau, Chin Toi Chai, See Ham Chow Fun, Loh Mai Kai, Hoong Tau Sah

Customers stream in from the nearby cinema
Jostling and pushing, oblivious of the pick pockets
At midnight the carnival is over
Silence and darkness descend once more
A naked light bulb swings in one of the windows
A dustbin clatter, "Meeoooww..." as the cats begin their nightly haunt
An old beggar huddles to sleep on the cold sidewalk
All is quiet and still.....until tomorrow.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Ode to Garfield

The School Magazine has been an endless source of material for this blog. Going through the magazines recently, I've been so impressed by the quality of writing that I'm starting a category dedicated to the writing of our teenage Bards.

Here's one our finest writers, Irene Teo, my classmate, and her "Ode to Garfield", taken from the 1985 School Magazine.

from an admirer

Thou exalted cat!
Thy rolls of fat
o'er feline frame that
slinks (or heaves) through
midnight dark
in home or park.

Thy ever peaceful mien
by sun or moonlight seen
betrays not cunning deeds
performed by thee, who heeds
not lordly man, nor lowly beast.

Thy many escapades
through garden trowels ad spades,
and screen doors low or high
though foe be lurking by,
never fail to amaze
and leave in a daze
thy humble followers.

O cunning, cruel cat!
Mark of thy claw does mat
the hides of foes forlorn,
now wiser than to test
thy anger, whether thou
be at play, or rest.

O Cat!
We remain,
through sun or rain,
thy everlasting admirers.

By Irene Teo, 3C1

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Remember these cheers?

Just found a whole heap of cheerleading songs from the 1984 School Magazine and couldn't wait to share them with you...

Gimme a V, V, V, I, C
Gimme a C, C, C, T, O
Gimme a O, O, O, R, Y
VICTORY, VICTORY is our cry.

We're all leaders of Maclay team,
We're gonna show you how to win,
Just feel the beat and follow the team,
C'mon Maclay we're gonna win.

Prouse House is dynamite,
Don't play with dynamite,
Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!

Anything that they can do,
Green House girls can do it too,
Am I right or wrong?
You're right!
Tell me if I'm wrong,
You're right!
Sound of
1, 2
Sound of
3, 4
Sound of 1, 2, 3....FOUR!

5, 6, 7, 8
What do we see?
What do we hear?
Shirtliff is the house to cheer!
if we lose,
Please don't jeer
Coz we will win next year!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Secrets of Cheerleading Success

This article was written by Salwah Shukor (5 Science 4) and taken from the 1985 School Magazine, detailing the success of Prouse House cheerleading team, which enjoyed a string of championships in the 1980s.

What's the secret of success?

"Goreng pisang!" came the unanimous vote. Now what could this 267 calorie delicacy that scored and instant hit with BBGSians' taste buds since its January introduction, possibly have to do with Prouse's enviable success?

The captain, Ho Ching Yee, described its crisp outside and contrasting interior as having a startling effect on the team. In fact, when things just did not seem to be working out, she was even heard to be frantically saying "OK guys, you can take a 10-minute break and I insist that you take 2 goreng pisang(s) each." Talk about prescriptions!

Farah, the VOLUME of Prouse, chips in, "We also owe it to our 10-second pep sessions..." and the team deafeningly breaks into "HAVE YOU GOT THAT SPIRIT? YEAH MAN!!...." - guaranteed to lift even pit-low spirits.

Low spirits? Bubbly Janet remarks that it's the most fatal disease that could beset any cheerleading team. The cause? "When it suddenly dawns on you that other teams are just as good, if not better than you are," states Sok Feng solemnly. "...but it simply has marvellous side effects," interrupts optimistic Suzanna, "it's just what we need to make us work!"

So how do catchy chants with pulsating beats coordinated by original steps materialise? The touch of expertise required in choreographing was supplied by the team's pair of twinkle-toes, Tan Foong and Kiren (the only two known to show the slightest mercy to the ground after a star-jump or a reindeer-leap)...whilst the credit for adapting jingles into suitable cheers goes to Muzeena. Given a tune, she has been known to complete the intricate task in a matter of seconds.

A swift glance at the Prouse scream team would not fail to pint out the mixed-up lot they are. Tall, lanky Carol and demure, petite Premalatha convey the long and short of the story.

And what kept them going and supplied the much needed drive?

Inevitably, the incentive of...SUCCESS!

We Had A Hippopotamus

Back in 1985, my class, 3C1, had won the Choral Speaking competition for two successive years and we were desperate to make it a hattrick. We valiantly combed all the poetry books in the library and came up with this gem!

The poem may appear simple, or even inane to the unenlightened mind, but don't be fooled. There are plenty of clever tongue twisters that make it a very challenging choral speaking poem. But the best thing is - WE WON!

We Had A Hippopotamus

We had a hippopotamus, we kept him in a shed.
And fed him upon vitamins, and vegetable bread.
We made him our companion,
On many cheery walks,
And had his portrait done, by a celebrity in chalks.

His charming eccentricities, were known on every side,
The creature's popularity was wonderfully wide,
He frolicked with the Rector in a dozen friendly tussles,
Who could not but remark upon his hippopotamuscles,
If he should be afflicted by deppression or the dumps,
By hippopotameasles or the hippopotamumps,
We never knew a particle of peace,
Till it was plain,
He was hippopotamasticating properly again.

We had a hippopotamus, we loved him as a friend
But beautiful relationships are bound to have an end.
Time takes, alas, our joys from us
And robs us of our blisses.
Our hippopotamus turned out to be a hippopotamissus!

Our housekeeper regarded him with jaundice in her eye,
She did not want a colony of hippopotami,
She borrowed a machine gun,
From her soldier nephew, Percy,
And showed our hippopotamus, no hippopotamercy.

Our house now lacks the glamour, that the charming creature gave,
The garage where we kept him is as silent as a grave.
No longer he displays among the motor tyres and spanners,
His hippopotamastery of hippopotamanners.

No longer now he gambols, in the orchards in the spring.
No longer do we lead him through the village on a string.
No longer in the mornings does the neighbourhood rejoice
To his hippopotamusically-modulated voice.

We had a hippopotamus, but nothing upon earth
Is constant in its happiness, or lasting in its mirth,
No joy that life can give us,
Can be strong enough to smother
Our sorrow for that might have been a hippopotamother.

3C1, the Intermediate Choral Speaking Champions of 1985

Old friends with new names

(L-R) Mok Mei Ling, Lau Pei Shan, Chua Siew Hwa (aka Terri Lim), Ng Wye Wye

Facebook has become my window to the world for all my friends, both old and new. Sometimes, new names pop up on familiar faces, and that's what happened recently with Chua Siew Hwa, now known as Terri Lim. I rejected her request twice before receiving her note of explanation...persistance pays!

She's back in KL and caught up some classmates (Class of 1987) recently and here's a quick snapshot of what everyone's been up to. Thanks to Wye Wye for the photo and update.

Ng Wye Wye says:
"Mok and Pei Shan are leading very exciting lives in the fashion and retail industries. Going international hehe. Siew Hwa and family have been jet-setting the globe for the last 20 years! She's now based in Moscow, having resided in the States and Bangkok previously. As for me, I am now serving the Lord full time in church as a pastor. I left my workplace of 16 years last year. Loving my life now! :)"

Siew Hwa adds:
"Ha ha Jo, thanks for clearing the confusion over my "new name" and "old name" I will answer to both, of course. Wye, u did good in summarizing where I hv been in the last 20 yrs except that I only started the jetsetting part abt 14-15 yrs ag...o:) 20 yrs ago, I was still in MU with Joanna Yeoh:) here's a little more update on me- I joined KPMG Consulting for a few years after I graduated. Then I got married and moved overseas. My husband works in an oil and gas co, So we relocate every few years or so. Moscow is our sixth home, we have lived in Bangkok (twice), Dubai, Houston and Perth. I have 2 boys, 13 and 8. I have been mostly a full time stay at home mom and a part time research analyst with an US based firm."