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I forgot I had you, little blog

28 Nov

So I’ve been flicking through pages of this blog and it’s a little mind-blowing to realise how much of my life is up here (albeit heavily disguised and hidden in metaphors and haiku). It made me sad to think I haven’t really documented any of this year in the same sneaky way. I guess it’s a mark of growing up, which is not strictly something I want to do.

Here is an adequately vague summary of 2012:

This is a year of acceptances and successes. I had to accept that my academic plan was going to be different to my peers, come to terms with being the odd-one-out, the only person starting honours halfway through the year.

But honours is crazy. I’ve gotten better at things rapidly. Machines that once terrified me are now my loyal and hardworking subjects.

Haha, Mr Centrifuge, you’re making that high-pitched screeching sound again, but rather than running for my life, I will simply stand beside you and glare, knowing that you’ll shut up any second and get on with the job at hand!

When I say these sorts of things out loud, I gain the fearful respect of the centrifuge, but my coworkers think I’m odd.

I’ve had successes with grades, work, haircuts, and crystallography.


I’ve learned more this year than I expected to, in about as many areas as one could prod with a stick.*

I want to use this blog more, I want to have opinions (something I’m scared of because usually I don’t have enough evidence to back up my opinions, so it all just feels weak), and I want to write about science and cool things that are happening, and blogs and comics that I like on the internet, and awesome music like this:

I miss being vague on the internet.

Perhaps expect more from me, dear readers, as I can feel the procrastination creeping up on me.

Love your mothers.

*Do not prod sensitive areas with sticks.



13 Nov

So far I’ve sewn up a disembowelled white tiger, written out most of the lyrics from Modern Life Is Rubbish on pieces of cardboard, acquired a huge stack of albums from the late 60s, early 70s, started a file in De Blob 2, walked my dog at least twice a day, assisted in the construction of a Mars Bar mud cake, and successfully introduced my mother to the wonders of Blur.

I have not studied as much as I had planned to.

As a final (yeah, right) act of procrastination, I’ve decided to pick a subject for next semester. I’ll do a second research project for chem, and *one* other course. Somehow I’ve rigged this so it can be any course I desire. Anything at all.

So here’s a poll of current contenders. Leave comments if you have suggestions that aren’t on this list, or secret insider info on quality of courses. Help me procrastinate/finish my degree!


As a ‘thank you’ for helping out, here is a picture of an aye-aye.

The Woods

18 Sep

So, this play thing happened, where I somehow found myself tangled up in a story about a perpetually-titillated Red Riding Hood figure exploring a forest with a pot-plant for a side-kick, meeting some twisted woodland folk, and then melting into a tree while people in the foreground got naked and smeared paint on each other, with ‘Teddy Bear’s Picnic’ playing on a child-sized glockenspiel.

It was received quite well.

I finished a handful of books from my holiday reading list, including Shades of Grey by my personal idol, Jasper Fforde, and Looking For Alaska by my other personal idol, John Green. I’ve almost finished The Great Gatsby and I think I’ll read Good Omens next, which looks intriguing and has two fantastic names on the cover, (Terry Pratchet and Neil Gaiman) so I imagine it’ll change my world.

Reading. It’s so foreign. Science students aren’t supposed to read. I hadn’t read anything (fictional) since highschool, until this recent reignition of my love of the written word. There’s probably some shallow motivating force in here somewhere, (she said, gesturing vaguely towards her brain), but it seems to be encouraging self-improvement, so it can’t all be bad (she said, hopefully).

This makes me laugh:



This excites me in more ways than I really should admit:


And this makes me happy that music exists:

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12 Sep

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Taking notes

6 Sep


9 Aug

I have a secret project that I can’t tell you about, internet.

Because that’s the way things have ended up. I’ve reached an impasse with this blog. I’ve run out of things to say that are interesting and engaging and worthy of being read by the wider public, but I’m not really keen on going too far in the other direction either. I don’t want to have a full-blown emo web-journal. That’s far too 2008.

Whoa, second shoddy paint-graph in 2 posts.

So I’ll revert to music chatter.

I’ve crafted an amazing playlist packed full of unbridled joy and rainbows, and I don’t even care that there are songs on it that old-me might have been ashamed of. Screw you, old-me.

I recognise CMYK doesn’t really scream ‘happy joy joy’ but my fifteen year old sister’s reaction to it amuses me to no end (she’s utterly terrified of it, not in an ‘over-the-top-to-be-humorous’ way, in a proper completely freaked out by it way) and seeing James play it live was a little bit special, so it counts as happy for me.

Other stand-out tracks at the moment are this:

And this:

If you’re the type of person who feels no joy at the ‘c’mon Ginger slam’ line, you are the type of person I shall henceforth avoid.

It speaks to me.

I was thinking about getting a tumblr to combat my horrible blogging of late. BUT if I got a tumblr (which will never happen) (except I do have one, mostly as a place-holder for a name) I would only ever post GIFs of Kit Harington (Jon Snow, Westeros Hipster) and answer hundreds and hundreds of questionnaires about myself, like the one below.

I can’t get to sleep without: 6 pillows, 2 blankets, a fan running, 2 cups of tea, upwards of a hundred glow-in-the-dark stars 

If I were a doll, the accessories packaged with me would be: labcoat, sensible shoes (not in the lesbian sense), an iPod, a strawberry?

I have an irrational fear of: eels

At my grandparents house I usually eat: cake and potatoes

When I was born I weighed: less than I do now

I am most opposed to: extremists, you know, the kind who jump off bridges with parachutes.

On myspace I like to stalk: ha. myspace. but yes, I like to stalk.

I am too old to be: on myspace. 

I find the thought of childbirth: terrifying.

Next door to my house is: another house.

My feet are: room temperature.

My preferred style of jeans are: skinny, for I am a hipster, and it is a requirement of my people.

I know how to cook: lemons and olives (with pasta)

I am annoyed at: english classes.

Men should always: wash.

Women should never: be impolite in company. ’tisn’t proper.

The scariest sea creature is: eel

The world is over populated with: eels

I recently broke: my fruit ninja record.

I last cried because: I felt sad.

I would like to be in an advertisement for: British tourism

My favorite shoes are: my rainbow heels, but they’re impractical for lab-work, so Cons are good too.

My mothers’ greatest fear is: aeroplanes.

And so on and so forth. So really, consider yourselves lucky I haven’t entered the world of tumblr properly (though if anyone can pick which tumblr account I created, I’ll reward them… hint; it’s pretentious and slightly Blur-themed)…

Think I’ll watch British panel shows and knit some things.

Love to your mothers.


Dugongs and Hipsters

1 Aug

If there’s one thing I can say for sure after this past weekend, it is that if given the chance, I would hug the following people:

Guy Garvey

James Blake

A dugong

Obviously there is a variety of reasons I would initiate hugs with these people/sea cows, but I think I can separate the key motivating factors into the following Venn Diagram.

Close your eyes for a moment, and imagine this scene;

(Can you read with your eyes shut?)

You’re swimming through crystal clear water, feeling content and cool, when you suddenly spy a dugong. You take a deep breath of air and dive down to greet your soon-to-be-friend. The dugong looks puzzled at first, but when you hold your arms open and beckon, it glides towards you and embraces you with its stubby little flippers. You can see a smile on its big face as you both think yes, this is a friend for life. 

That is my dream. And why wouldn’t it be? Look at this big guy:

I struggle to take photos of big things moving quite quickly through thick glass, but I think these shots convey the adorableness.

This one is a little simpler logistically (no swimming gear required). I would hug Guy Garvey because he made an entire audience of loud Aussies (and a lot of Mancunians, apparently…) weep with his story about turning to his friend (and Elbow drummer) Richard Jupp for support when he was going through some really tough times…

Hugging in that scenario seems almost as natural/required as embracing a dugong.


You’d expect an audience gathered to watch someone like James Blake play would consist mostly of mellow (if a little pretentious) types wearing lenseless glasses and skinny jeans. You’d expect a crowd of people moving slowly for fear of bumping into each other (for vision would surely be impaired by those fringes), and sparks of static electricity arcing across cardigans and vests. You’d expect a sea of iPhones with Instagram open, snapping really arty shots of James hunched over his synth.

You would not expect drunkards, preps, and bogans. At least, not in the number that they seemed to turn up in.

I guess James isn’t exactly underground, and anyone who reads Pitchfork knows how ‘cool’ it is to like him, (especially his EPs, because we all know how much cooler people are before they release albums), but I was still slightly amazed by the dichotomy presented; people not shutting up in the quiet, mournful, negative space moments, but going MAD for tracks off his EPs because these people had done their research.

It was like they knew that the quiet hipsters would be leaning against walls, foreign beer in hand, moaning about how his new music really doesn’t capture the same raw simplicity of his old stuff, so the preps and bogans said “enough of this! We will appreciate his old music ALL THE MORE, removing the only weapon you have against us, foul hipster hoard!”

But it doesn’t matter, because the music was loud and drowned out the worst of the crowd, and James looked genuinely happy the few times he looked up from his keys and smiled, so it all worked out.

And we were up the front, so the worst people were behind us.

And then this happened:

It was a good weekend.

Living life like you’ve got an 8pm time slot

14 Jul

I’ll alphabetise my CDs
Maybe empty my draws and sift through all the junk that lives in them
There’s a lot of paper on my desk that needs a home
My pinboard could probably use a cull as well

Just old movie tickets and last semester’s timetable
Should print out this semester’s timetable
Colour code it
Buy books for each subject? Instead of one big book for all of them?


Listen to Of Montreal
Send texts to people, whinge a bit
Find out the riff I thought I wrote is from a Dave Matthews Band song
It sounded really pretty

Whinge some more
Delete some texts
Save some others
Look through colours

Vacuum under my bed
Things live there
Dry my hair
Paint my nails
Worry about my skin
Worry about the next six months
Worry about how much money I have
Worry about global warming
Worry about road accidents

Get out some paint and paint some things
Not sure which things
Notice how many blank diaries I’m collecting
Fill them


This is the greatest thing I’ve ever heard:




Ravenclaw Pride

10 Jul

And the final product:

To any knitters out there, this design was knit in the round, about 70 stitches cast on, then 27ish blue, 4 silver, 6 blue, 4 silver, 20 blue, 4 silver, etc etc. End with the slightly bigger blue section again. Mine is pretty long, because 12 groups of silver stripes was too short and 13 was unlucky, so it’s 14 sections all up.

It was made to a backing track of the first 3 seasons of the US Office, a few episodes of Masterchef, some Liam Finn, and some Fountains of Wayne. Wine was also involved.

Project Time

28 Jun

These holidays will be 50% Adventures and 50% Projects, I hope.

Here is one of the Projects, nearing 2 days of work:

Click on the picture and you will find a link to song I like but can’t embed! Bonus!