My English Journals

The Gulf War is probably going to be the most influential one






Fri. 1st Feb., 1991. 13℃, Cloudy.

The most common topic (話題) in conversion (談話) at the moment is, of course, the Gulf War (海灣戰爭) in the Middle East (中東).

One of tonight's TV programs revealed (顯示) the result of a survey (調查): nearly 70% of its objects (受訪者) talked about this big event (事件) when they met friends.

The war has been going on for sixteen days already. President Bust promise: "it will be quick, massive, and decisive" seems to have no signs of coming true. Experts gave unlike anticipations (期望). Some said that it might last a month, some several months and some even predicted (預言) that it might not end within a year.

This morning Professor Cheung Ng Sheung (張五常教授), a famous economist (經濟學者), gave us a speech during our college assembly (學院集會) in Chung Chi Chapel (崇基禮拜堂), saying that among all wars in human history this is probably going to be the most influential (影響最深的) one.

The musical scene at the begriming of the Renaissance

Sat. 2nd Feb., 1991. 16. Cloudy.

I reviewed music history this morning. In order to fix in my mind what I have read and finish Mrs Bond's assignment at the same time, hereafter (以下) I brief (簡述)- on the music scene (實況) in the begriming of the Renaissance (文藝復興).

At the begriming of the 15th century, the great flowering (盛期) of the Trecento of Italy (學派), led by Francisco Landini, a blind organist, and Sacopo Bologna as well as Giovannida Trirenze, had withered away (息滅). The overly subtle (細緻的) style of the Mannerism (表達手法流於固定型式而缺乏新鮮感), which had attracted many Italian and French composers, seemed to reach its end owing to the Papal Schism (宗教分裂). While Germany remained as a follower of its sophisticated (先進的) neighbors, France was debilitated (衰弱) from the Hundred Years War and Paris was no longer the music capital of the world.

Where had the musical focus gone? It had shifted (移去) to Burgundy (勃艮第).

Most composers were trained in Burgundy and by coincidence (巧合) major composers of the 15th and 16th century, such as Dufay, Binchois, Ockeghem, Bunsnois, Josquin and Isaac etc., were born there.

Burgundy where the Burgundian School (勃艮第學派) led by Dufay arose at the northeastern part of France. It was ruled by four Dukes (公爵) from 1404 to 1477, and the last Duke was Charles the Bold, who died in a battle undertaken to unite the disparate (不同的) parts of the Duchy, and thereafter (由那時之後) the Burgundian threat (威脅) to France in music ended all the time.

Where was the music Centrex then? France again!


My old friend, loneliness

Sun. 3rd Feb., 1991. 15. Sunny.

My Friend

I was wandering (徘徊) alone in the countryside.
Birds were singing,
Trees were whispering (耳語) and
The earth was communicating (溝通) with the sky.

All of a sudden, I saw a friend
Waving hands to me from afar.
Rushing forward (速行前) to embrace (擁抱) him,
I woke up and found that it was
Loneliness (孤單), my old friend.


Government ought to pay money to support the UN army

Mon. 4th Feb., 1991. 16. Cloudy.

Hong Kong citizens are now talking about whether our Government should pay money to support the UN (聯合國) army fighting in the Gulf War against Saddam Hussein.

A survey (調查) has revealed (揭露) that 42% of Hong Kong people are on the positive side (讚成).

The Legislative Council will have a debate on the proposal that Hong Kong is going to pay more than one-fifth of a billion (多過二千萬) to support the coalition army (聯軍).

Chinese Government strongly opposes to this motion, saying that Hong Kong's saving is earned difficultly by its people and should be used internally (內在地) rather than spent in that way.

In fact the UN army is not just fighting for their own countries, but for everyone who loves peace and hates aggression (侵略).

Hong Kong has been tolerating (忍受) the huge burden (負擔) of the Vietnamese boat-people (越南船民) for more than a decade (十年) without knowing its end. Even so (雖然這樣), Hong Kong ought to (最好) do as much as it can.

Anyway (無論如何), the amount (款額) suggested clearly (明顯地) needs (須要) to be reconsidered (重新考慮).

Jangle Tsing

Tues. 5th Feb., 1991. 15. Cloudy .

Mao Zedong's widow (毛澤東的遺孀) Jiang Tsing (江青) recently surfaced (露面) in a rare (罕見的) report. She, once being the leader of the Gang of Four and sentenced to death in January 1981, was presented still as an unrepentant (不知悔改的) woman.

I can remember this shrew (潑婦) shouting scornfully (輕蔑地) on television when she was sued (控告) in court years ago.

She had done so much irreparable (不可修補的) harm (危害) to China but she didn't have a bit of repentance (悔改). In return she even scolded (責罵) the judges by saying that she was all correct because she was carrying out Mao Zedong's policies.

Not only at that time, but also now, there is nobody dare to say a bad word about Mao although he is deemed (認為) to be responsible for the disastrous (災難) ten-year Cultural Revolution (文化大革命) in China.

Jiang Tsing can be such die-hard (死硬派) for Mao will be her backing (撐腰) as long as Mao is respected (受專重).


A battle with the bacteria

Wed. 6th Feb., 1991. 15. Sunny.

I don't know what their names are; they are my unwelcome (不受歡迎的) guests.

Digging and Drilling busily, as I feel, they are endeavouring (盡大的努力) to build a castle on the upper part of my nasal cavity (鼻咽), where must be an ideal place for them to settle.

They can have a lot of space and moisture there as well as fresh air is surely continuously supplied as I breathe constantly (不停地).

I have been taking antibiotics (抗生素) since yesterday to devastate (消滅) them, but they seem to have no notice on my attack and continue to proceed down to my throat (喉嚨).

This make me doubtful on the effect of the drug, Amoxil, which is a new kind of antibiotic to replace Ampicillin, which has been considered old and having lost its killing power on bacteria (細菌).

I will keep on taking the drug until the end of the course (療程). They will surely die for I have confidence on medical research (醫學研究).


The fee of tertiary education will be raised

Thurs. 7th Feb., 1991. 16. Sunny.

The fee of tertiary education (高等教育) will be raised to until 18% of the total amount spent on each student every year.

According to the rate, I shall have to pay seventeen thousand dollars in my fourth year. It is a double of the amount I pay now.

As a student of the music department of Chinese University enjoying much subsides (補貼) and good facilities (設備) from the society, I have no comments on this policy though I shall have to pay more in the future.

If Government uses the increased amount to let more youngsters receive high reduction, then the policy is quite alright. Besides, it is said that the financial help for students will be increased.

Therefore undergraduates (未畢業的學生) should neither (無須) worry nor (也不要) complain.

Filmmakers are subjected to certain trends

Fri. 8th Feb., 1991. 16. Fine.

This morning we had a speech by the famous film director (電影導演) Sin Gate Yin (冼杞然), who was a student of Chinese University.

He began with an introduction: "I, standing on the podium (講台) in such an occasion (場合), can't just casually (非正式地) wear jeans and sports shoes, but have to put on a suit (西裝) with a tie."

Then he came to his main theme, stressing that filmmaking industry has a lot of rules or regulations that one has to comply (尊從).

From his speech, I have understood that films, being a kind of commodity (商品), is unavoidably (無可避免地) subjected (受制於) to certain trends. Filmmakers can't neglect (忽略) the audiences' (觀眾的) response (反應) and do whatever they like.

Mr Sin has also said that anybody who wants to join the film industry must not insist too much on his ideal and should prepare to follow fashions at any time.


Gulf War after 24 days

Sat. 9th Feb., 1991. 16. Fine.

President of France (法國總統), Mr Mitterron (米特朗), said the UN army will start ground attack (地面攻擊) on Saddam Hussein's army within this month.

After 24 days' fierce air-raid by the coalition air forces, Iraq still preserves (保留) substantial fighting ability (實質的作戰能力) because Saddam cunningly (狡猾地) hides his weapons and soldiers inside the strongly built underground cities which, according to people who have taken part in the design, are so save that people and weapons within can't be affected by ordinary bombs.

This is why the UN ground forces can't reach them easily.

Another factor keeping the soldiers waiting anxiously in the desert is that President Bush wants to minimize (減少) the death rate to the lowest (最低).

Chinese New Year is approaching (接近). We wish Saddam Hussein would change his crazy mind and withdraw his army from Kuwait, thus (就此) ending the war.

Donate money to aid the Gulf War has become controversial

Sun. 10th Feb., 1991. 17. Sunny.

That Hong Kong will donate 230 million dollars to the United Kingdom (英國) for aiding (援助) the Gulf War has now become the most controversial (爭論的) matter among Hong Kong people.

Despite (不管) the opposition (反對) of a lot of people, including leading scholars (學者), the decision of the donation was made in last week's Legislative Council meeting with the agreement (同意) of a large number of legislative members (立法局議員).

Mr Chan Ming Kau (陳明球), a scholar of the Asian Matter of Stanford University (史丹福大學), pointed out in this morning's Public Forum (公眾論壇) that most legislative members voting for (投票支持) the donation are appointed by Government.

A representative of the press raised a question that does the support of the donation has anything to do with the M.B.E. (勳爵) or O.B.E. (勳爵)?

That, indeed, very much embarrassed (使困窘) the legislator speakers who uphold (支持) the donation (捐贈).

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