Friday, January 20, 2012

Bored? Try these social activities!

By Julian Abraham Chua, Diploma in Business Management Graduate
Getting bored of doing the same activities over and over again? Get creative and try out a new one! A change in activity can be both beneficial and fun, especially when it is something you have never experienced. For many, when the term and semester breaks arrive, there is usually some free time.  Instead of lazing around or engaging in Facebook stalking and LAN games, get off your butt and plan something new and constructive with your friends! Here are some suggestions on fun activities to try out:
Cook up a storm at home with friends
If you love food, this is one activity you should be organising. Invite some friends over to your house to cook anything from pasta to cupcakes, and if you become “expert” enough, how about cooking some Asian or European cuisine? It is convenient enough to do this in the comfort of your own home and it also promotes bonding! This could come in handy for occasions like birthdays, farewell parties and Christmas.  Tips:
  1)      Decide on whose house to do the cooking. Try to cook at a friend’s house that has all the necessary equipment to facilitate cooking or baking.
2)      Brainstorm on what to cook as a group. Baking pastries like cupcakes, cakes, brownies, and making pasta and pizzas are highly recommended for starters. You could surf the Internet or borrow books for recipes and ideas.
3)      As finding and purchasing ingredients can be expensive and time-consuming, split the cost of the purchase by getting each person to bring an ingredient or two each.
Learning new instruments and forming a band
Music is everywhere. We all know how much music can impact our lives. Wouldn’t it be great if we could produce live music with our own collective efforts? It is truly satisfying and quite an achievement! Tips:
1)      Get together a group of 5 people. Decide on a choice of songs. Try to go for easy-to-play music like rock/pop if you are beginners. Then decide on who should play what instrument. Ideally there should be a drummer, a rhythm guitarist, a bassist, a lead guitarist and a vocalist.
2)       If you are new to the instrument you plan to play, try picking it up in these few ways:
-          Video-sharing websites like Youtube
-          Getting your friends to teach you
-          Getting a qualified instructor
-          Learning on your own through books and materials
3)      Once everyone is prepared, search for free music scores online or buy songbooks. Pick a jamming studio at a convenient location to practice and you are ready to rock n’roll!

Comedy Acts
Stress is normal and often unavoidable especially when exams are round the corner. One natural stress reliever is to tell or listen to jokes! Tips:
1)      Search or create and compile a list of good jokes to tell. Write them down or print them on paper.
2)      Do a quick study on how stand-up comedians present their jokes by observing them on Youtube.  Practise the ‘style’ you are most comfortable with to hone this new “talent”.
3)      Decide how and where to put on a show. You could do it in a tutorial room, library or canteen. Remember to get permission first! You could even perform at a comedy club/bar where performers get free drinks!
Night cycling

Organise a “joyride” and go for a thrilling adventure by exploring different places at night. Be sure that the roads and pathways are well lit and safe. With chilly wind blowing in your face, an absence of scorching sun and heavy traffic, it’s the perfect environment for a cycle. Tips:
1)      Get together friends game enough to rule the night on two wheels.
2)      Decide on the starting and ending routes. Some good night-cycling hotspots include: West Coast highway/Lim Chu Kang/Upper Thomson/Mandai road/Changi Coast road. So be sure to explore those routes. Duration of the rides depends on your endurance. The best time to cycle at night is around 10pm.
3)      Always wear safety gears and ensure there is a front and rear light on each bike. Check that they are in working condition before embarking on your journey.

Julian Abraham Chua is an NYP graduate from School of Business Management (SBM). His passion for writing was ignited when he completed an overseas UK writing course and started contributing to the portal while he was still a student on the campus. He has since written for various magazines and publications including Straits Times, SG Entrepreneurs, Spin Asia, TimeOut Singapore, NTUC lifestyle, Campus magazine and SPCA newsletter. Besides writing, he adores soccer, has his own online business Stationaire and performs with his metal band Grottesca around town.  

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