Operation trebuchet commenced yesterday 19/7 at roughly 1430 hours. As part of our v sparks thingy, where IP students are forced to serve the vjc community (sth like a second SLV, sianz…) my group, namely team bahnep minus da stig plus alot of other random ppl liek Perle, Pris, Rachel, Cheryl, YamJJ and erm…wait, that’s it lol. With Mr Har to supervise of course. Team bahnep has been building and test firing da trebuchet aptly named the trojan bunny since it looks like the one from Monty Python and the Holy Grail while the rest have been MIAing or AWOLing…But ohwells, all of us who built it had a shit load of fun. Especially by sitting in the 2x2m box marked out on the floor where the projected tennis ball is most likely to hit, with a 7.5kg weight and 0.9m sling. The sight of the tennis ball almost hitting your head is most thrilling.
Conducting the workshop however was much harder though. I had to give a safety briefing and a rundown on what to do after the little "lecture". The kids will prognosticate, using a simulator, which conditions will launch the tennis ball into a box roughly 20m away from the trebuchet. I shall give a brief run down of the briefing…
First up, CRANK DA ARM!!!
Insert hoop onto da MEMBER!!!
LOCK & LOAD!!!
Locked and Loaded
Insert FIRING PIN!!!
FIRING in 3…2…1…
Cool shot of the trebuchet against the evening sky on one of the test-firing days
After giving the briefings, I had to go and help prepare the trebuchet for firing. I even brought a little burgee to indicate wind direction and so to adjust firing angle of the trebuchet. The first group of students were fine, they were eager to try out the trebuchet and willing to listen and learn more about ballistics and stuff. HOWEVER, the second batch of students were a pain in the ass. If I had my bokken, I’d have snapped their spines. They think violating safety measures is a joke. One of them almost pulled the firing pin as i removed the safety rope. Yikes, if that happened, the member would have tore a piece of my face off. They still laugh at me, for being me, liek WTF??? They find the pictures of me in the step by step safety briefing HIGHLY amusing…Mocking the team when the trebuchet malfunctioned, complained that the simulator is lousy, complain about "non-ideal factors" like wind, blaming the team for such non-ideal factors and such. But the worse was calling me TOMMY. Hey you little bastards, if you want to talk behind my back about my face, nails, or how guys with long nails are supposed to be like is fine. But you scums have no respect for someone 4-5 years older than you. Proper name is fine, but no nicknames, only sailors and relatives can call me that, simply because they are same age or older but you little *ucktards can go bug off. And a small piece of advice on me, stop hitting on girls 4-5 years older than you too. Grow some balls and some brains. I pity Pris lol, she was in such an awkward position. The other groups from that batch were better although their lack of enthusiasm was HIGHLY noticable. I wonder why they’re here though. Prolly forced into coming. Some have absolutely no interest in what’s going on. I shall not point fingers at what schools though.
Haiz, it was tiring day after everything. After packing up and complimenting each other for a job well done, at least we hoped so, we went to join the other 06v13-majority bio group who was making poison in the form of bread balls. After taking pictures and stuff, the main group went for dinner and Wong, YamJJ, Keith and I headed home. I was grounded so cannot go for dinner. My grades were CSSSD. Liek WTF, epic FAIL!!! Haiz, must buck up… Anyway, it was an eventful day, I’ve learnt much and gained much, especially the comfy east-zone science fair cotton t-shirt! 🙂
Ok, here’s some random stuff that i thought of. What seperates man and animals. We share the same biology, with our DNA not being very much different from primates, we are biologically not very different from animals. According to the darwinian theory, we are just merely primates who are just higher up on the evolutionary ladder. Some say that we have souls and minds whereas animals don’t. It’s hard to say, really. Biologically, i’m not supposed to be thinking about such things. My instincts just tell me how to survive, not think about how different i am from monkeys. Animals follow instincts i suppose, but alot of animals deviate from such behavior. A trained dog will do tricks for a praise from its master. (Notice i did not say do tricks for food or treats, cuz it’s a "instinct" of some sort, action leads to food/enjoyment) Why would a dog do that? It doesn’t gain anything physical, it’s wasting energy. We could say that the dog loves its master. But wait here, isn’t love a human emotion? If a dog can love, is it human? Well, we certainly treat them like humans, at least the cuter ones. Well, back to the topic on love, most people consider emotions a human-only trait. But emotions are triggered when the brain releases certain chemicals. So injecting endorphins willl make me high, just like drugs. If i detect a girls pheromones, i may subconsciously fall in love with her (debatable fact). So does this emotions mumbo jumbo really set us apart?
Some also think it’s religion. We worship a higher being and animals don’t. We’re concerned about our spirituality and animals don’t have souls. So what? So what if homo sapiens sapiens worship self created gods (I’m speaking form a secular POV, I’m christian and there’s definitely God out there)? How do we know if future primates which evolve into human-like beings won’t start to worship gods. Religion could be an instrument that animals of this evolutionary rung possess. Monkeys don’t consider themselves better or seperate themselves from fish just because they can use tools. And the thing about souls is that nobody has been able to prove that humans have souls or, on the other hand, animals having souls. The soul is a man-made concept, not because of some natural law that causes us to have souls.
So what really distinguishes humans and animals, I do believe we’re different, but how do we prove it?