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The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Friday, April 23, 2010

Is there a new religion in California?

Two days ago, someone arrived on my site with a search that is both ambiguous and bizarre. Arriving from California, they had used the search terms "Church of Ainan Cawley".

Wow. I thought. That could mean one of two things...but the way it was expressed pointed towards the second of those two things. Firstly it could mean they were searching for the church that Ainan goes to (but less likely, because of wording). Secondly it could mean that they were actually searching for a cult/sect/religion, called "Church of Ainan Cawley." Now, that really surprised me.

I gave it some thought. If they had been searching for a church which Ainan attends, I think it more likely that they would use terms like: "Which Church does Ainan go to?" Or "Ainan goes to church at...": something like that. However, if a person was searching for a church centred around Ainan they would most probably search for "Church of Ainan Cawley"...which they did, or "The Church of Ainan Cawley". You should note that they used a capital C for church, which does seem to indicate that it is a name of something, and not simply a search for which church he might attend.

Now, I cannot know why that person typed in that particular search, but it does lead me to wonder whether, probably in California, somewhere, there might be a nascent cult, built around Ainan Cawley. You may think this absurd (and it is, in its own way, of course)...but it is not unprecedented. Here, in Malaysia, there is a child prodigy (not Ainan) who is considered something of a religious figure, in some ways. They speak of him as a "saint". So, religious thoughts can become attached to children, by some.

If it is so, that there is a cult built around Ainan starting to grow somewhere in the world (probably in wacky California itself), I wonder what tenets they have? What do they believe in? What are they saying about Ainan? How are they representing him? Why did they choose him?

Perhaps it is someone's idea of a joke. However, from what I see happening in Malaysia, to another child prodigy, I can't be sure. Perhaps, indeed, there is a cult-like organization now being built around the image of my son.

For comparison's sake, the Malaysian boy is believed to have special powers. There are claims that he can "see the future" and that his gifts are somehow from God. I don't know how many people actually believe these things about the boy - but some do, it seems, for these "facts" have even been mentioned in newspapers here.

So, on the off-chance, that the search for "Church of Ainan Cawley" actually does signal the existence of a real, nascent church, if anyone should hear anything about it, please post below. I would like to hear what's going on, if any such thing is going on.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, 10, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, 6 and Tiarnan, 4, this month, please go to:
http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.html

I also write of gifted education, child prodigy, child genius, adult genius, savant, megasavant, HELP University College, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, Malaysia, IQ, intelligence and creativity.

My Internet Movie Database listing is at: http://imdb.com/name/nm3438598/
Ainan's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3305973/
Syahidah's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3463926/

Our editing, proofreading and copywriting company, Genghis Can, is at http://www.genghiscan.com/

This blog is copyright Valentine Cawley. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited. Use only with permission. Thank you.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 6:29 PM  16 comments

Monday, April 19, 2010

The oddest car park in the world.

Today, I saw what, to me, was a very odd "car park". In fact, it was in a place you would least expect a car park to be. Please have a guess where you think all these cars I saw, were parked. Reflect on it, given your knowledge of the world. It might help if you have knowledge of Malaysia, though, otherwise, you have little chance of guessing correctly.

Well, have you guessed? Please call your guess to mind and then compare it to what I write.

Today, we took a taxi to Jalan Duta, which is where a particular government office is located. The main road alongside the government buildings suffered a rather peculiar blockage. Lining both sides of the road, were parked cars, as far as the eye could see. Well, you might say, there is nothing odd about that. Yes, true. However, along the CENTRE of the two lane road, was another double column of parked cars stretching off into the distance, all along Jalan Duta, for as far I could see of it. (This meant that, at all points along the road, that I could see, there were FOUR cars parked in the road: one on either side and two in the middle.)I was immediately struck by the oddness of it: there were hundreds of cars parked in a way that must have been illegal, RIGHT OUTSIDE A GOVERNMENT OFFICE. The road was about 75% blocked, what with parked cars lining the middle and sides of the road, leaving a narrow channel in the middle of the two opposing lanes.

I marvelled at it. I really did. I marvelled at the sheer cheek of the average local, to park their cars so inconsiderately, so illegally, so inconveniently for others, RIGHT OUTSIDE A GOVERNMENT OFFICE. Only in Malaysia, in my experience, could you ever see such a thing. Indeed, I have never seen it anywhere else. Here, cars are parked wherever the owner pleases, without any regard for any rules that might exist: they just leave them where they please. Today, that happened to be in the middle of the road, which had been turned into an impromptu car park.

So, now you know. In Malaysia, the highway itself can become a car park. The space normally expected for the use of MOVING cars, can become the place where cars are parked. The puzzle of it is that people around here wonder why they have such terrible traffic jams. Perhaps if they parked their cars more carefully, traffic would flow rather more fluidly.

I have many readers, from countries all over the world. So, please relate your tales of oddly parked cars, in the comments below. Can you beat my experience of today, for inconsiderate parking? Your memories please...

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, 10, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, 6 and Tiarnan, 4, this month, please go to:
http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.html

I also write of gifted education, child prodigy, child genius, adult genius, savant, megasavant, HELP University College, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, Malaysia, IQ, intelligence and creativity.

My Internet Movie Database listing is at: http://imdb.com/name/nm3438598/
Ainan's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3305973/
Syahidah's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3463926/

Our editing, proofreading and copywriting company, Genghis Can, is at http://www.genghiscan.com/

This blog is copyright Valentine Cawley. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited. Use only with permission. Thank you.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 10:02 PM  2 comments

Sunday, April 18, 2010

On the need for a postal service.

A postal service is basic to any modern civilization, even in the age of the internet, since, sometimes, a physical object must be delivered and information is not enough. Unfortunately, Malaysia has overlooked this necessity. I shall explain.

Yesterday, we were talking to a recently married expat, living in KL with his Asian wife. At one point in the conversation, he shared with us his unhappy experience with the Malaysian postal service. They had mailed out 30 invitations to intended wedding guests in Thailand. They were very well presented invitations and a lot of work had gone into preparing them. Imagine, then, their surprise, when, two weeks after they had posted them, in a Malaysian post office (and been assured that all would be well, since they had asked about the likelihood of a successful delivery), not a SINGLE guest had contacted them, to say that they would be coming. So, they had to contact them all, one by one, by phone and to their amazement, discovered that not a SINGLE wedding invitation had arrived. No one ever received any of the invitations. Yet, thirty had been posted to Thailand.

This tale sounded very familiar to me. You see, we, too, have had trouble with the postal service. Many items of mail, which we know have been posted, have never arrived. My mother posted a birthday gift for Tiarnan. We never got it. We posted a gift to my father in law, in Singapore. It never arrived. A very important letter concerning the acceptance of Fintan, into a school in KL, just didn't get to us - leaving us in the dark, for some time, about his schooling. In short, the mail service in Malaysia is extremely unreliable. A very high percentage of items that we have either posted, or had posted to us, have not arrived.

One of the people at our gathering last night, had their own theory about what is happening. They think the postal service workers are opening mail that looks interesting - and simply taking what they like. Now, this is quite possible, since it is very noticeable that GIFTS we send from Malaysia, tend not to arrive (no gift we have ever sent has ever arrived). Also gifts sent to us from other countries, tend not to arrive either. This is suggestive that sometimes, postal workers are stealing from the mail. If so, this is truly an appalling situation, since it means that one of the basic services that allows a nation to operate, is failing, due to a lack of honesty among the staff.

Whatever the cause of the postal failures, it cannot be denied that the postal service does not work, in Malaysia. It is a real gamble whether or not any particular item of mail will arrive: sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. Even non-valuable items like letters or birthday cards, can fail to arrive. So, it is not just a case of valuable items being stolen by dishonest staff - there must be incompetence or laziness too, and so things are being lost or just not delivered.

Malaysia is a nation of much potential. It has great natural resources. It has a diversity of people of a diversity of skills. In some sectors, particularly the private sector, its education is strong. So, there is much reason for hope, for this developing nation. Yet, some basic functions of society are not being performed to a high standard. Running a postal service, should not be beyond Malaysia...yet, presently, it is. Greater attention should be given to ironing out the systems in place to ensure the efficient, reliable movement of letters and packages in the postal service. If this is not done, Malaysia cannot expect to grow as it should, nor to encourage foreign companies to set up here. International companies expect, as a basic, that such things as postal services (and transporation systems!) are functioning. If they discover, before they arrive, that they are not working well, they are likely to choose another nation, in South East Asia, where such systems do work well. Thus, Malaysia, will lose out on job creation, because it will not have shown that it deserves the investment in question.

I would like to see a Malaysia with efficient public services. They are basic to the functioning of any society. Let us start by having a postal service that delivers the mail, every time, without fail, whether it be a letter, a birthday card or a gift. The postal service should be safe enough to post valuables and reliable enough to entrust with such things a wedding invitations. Presently it is not, in any way, reliable enough. I hope that this changes for the better, soon.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, 10, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, 6 and Tiarnan, 4, this month, please go to:
http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.html

I also write of gifted education, child prodigy, child genius, adult genius, savant, megasavant, HELP University College, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, Malaysia, IQ, intelligence and creativity.

My Internet Movie Database listing is at: http://imdb.com/name/nm3438598/
Ainan's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3305973/
Syahidah's IMDB listing is at http://imdb.com/name/nm3463926/

Our editing, proofreading and copywriting company, Genghis Can, is at http://www.genghiscan.com/

This blog is copyright Valentine Cawley. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited. Use only with permission. Thank you.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 10:52 PM  17 comments

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