The Joys of Swimming for the Terminally Weak

Well, it looks like I’ve caved for yet another year. 

At the start of every school year, our school holds their annual swimming carnival. Students are expected to participate for their house, provided they can 1. swim, and 2. make it to the end of the pool.

Every year, I cave into the teachers because I have such a problem with telling them ‘no’. And they really are quite insistant that I swim, because… well, I earn points for the house even though I lose every single time, and there’s barely anyone else in my house’s age group who will swim. I’m the Event Filler.

But I tried to get out of it, this year, and came out of the teacher’s office feeling as though I’d been steered around the subject of throwing in the towel. I believe I said something to myself like “Damn it, I caved!”, so angrily that a number of kids passing by stopped and stared at me.

Well, here I go. I can’t swim for scratch. Heck with it, I can’t even make the full 50 metres without stopping halfway, and this time, for the first time ever, I haven’t swam in an entire YEAR.

Pray for me.

But, here comes the main point. Why are figures of authority, (teachers in particular) so hard for me to say ‘no’ to? I haven’t a problem with saying no to my parents, but there’s something about teachers that screams “Obey!”. I suppose… in a way, I feel like I owe something to them. The same ones who teach me are the same ones who ask me to swim. That, and the feeling of letting down the team that I know I’ll get if I skip. And then there’ll be the disappointment from my teachers, and… oh, dear me.

If there’s one thing everyone needs to know in life, it’s how to say no. Even to figures of authority who can use persuasive techniques like knives.


WE Are the People. WE Are the Majority.

Who else thought that Copenhagen was a real… well, failure? All it was was a bunch of pollies arguing over who should do what in a non-binding contract! Not to mention, I’m fairly sure (not completely, correct me if I’m wrong) China, a great polluter, did not sign the contract.

What rubbish. If anything can save us from global warming, it’s the people’s opinion – not a bunch of arguing political leaders. It doesn’t matter whether you’re from the Western countries, the Middle Eastern countries, the European countries, the African countries, the Asian countries…

We all have to pitch in and do our bit. When the pollies won’t shut down things like Uranium mines, mining in general, coal power… we’ve all gotta save what we can – we have to try to make up for what has been left out by our political leaders. Political leaders who apparently represent us.

If we don’t, who’s going to? The Prime Minister of Australia? The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom? The leader of China? May I remind you right now that Copenhagen’s agreement lacks penalties and has wriggle room right throughout it (so says a news person trained in law and legal documents). The agreement is probably not even strong enough to keep the global temperature rise from going past two degrees.

WE are the people. WE are the majority. Therefore, WE RULE.

And if we really try, we can collectively offset this blunder.

But only if we act as the majority and actually try. Only then.