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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.


Organophosphate breakdown

15 Oct

Procrasti-posting is about to kick into gear for the semester. This one is semi-relevant to what I’m supposed to be doing right now though.

Google image search for ‘mechanism for breakdown of organophosphates by esterase 3’ yields this fantastic shot:

I like to imagine that these are biochemists who like to LARP in their free time, and that they’ve named themselves The Esterase Three. They roam about of a weekend, and slay any esters of phosphoric acid that dare cross them.

Might make myself some more procrasti-coffee. Or learn this riff, because it has been wedged firmly in my head for about 48 hours now:

Love to your mothers.

Living by the Bible

1 Sep

Lots of people seem to do it. Pick a handful of lines from the Bible and then believe, for whatever reason, that they have some significance to real life.

I’m not saying that this is strictly a bad thing. The New Testament has its nice little moments, but things get unpleasant when you run into Bible-hipsters, you know, the ones who prefer the older stuff. Some of those earlier bits are like proper dodgy EPs.

I’ve found a line that I think, however, everyone SHOULD live by. I don’t know the context in which it’s said, and I don’t care to find out. It’s a fantastic stand-alone line, and it is this;

“Test everything. Hold onto the good. Avoid every kind of evil.”

– 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22

Look at me, quoting the Bible at you.

Depending on how free-wheelin’ you want to be with the definition of ‘evil’ here, this seems to be a pretty fantastic system for just about everything.

Test everything. Hold onto the good.  That’s to some extent our raison d’etre, us scientists, but there’s something lyrical about this idea being applied to other facets of life. Try everything once, experience things, test the water, cliches and similes, so on, and make sure the bits that are ‘good’ stay part of your life. It’s how we make friends, how we choose music we like, how we find activities we enjoy.
Avoid every kind of evil. That’s the other side of the coin, and I’m going to be liberal with my definition of ‘evil’ here; things harmful to yourself, things harmful to others, things that are boring, brusselsprouts, people who wear leggings as pants, Brian McFadden, so on and so forth. Don’t make the same mistakes twice; if sticking a fork into your toaster didn’t work well the first time, probably avoid doing it again.

Our bioinformatics lecturer used this Biblical quotation to explain the dynamic programming algorithm for computing global sequence alignments.

I have decided that dynamic programming algorithms for global sequence alignments are evil, and I will henceforth avoid them.


On another note, this is the title-track from Blitzen Trapper’s newest album, coming out in about two weeks. I am streaming it RIGHT NOW and it is EXCELLENT. That is all.


Love to your mothers.



Some super hot slash

11 Aug

What? ‘Jon Richardson Russell Howard fic’? Please, lord, tell me that’s not ‘fic’ in the sense I immediately assumed it was…

Because that is just too far. Even for you, internet. Even for YOU.

For people who don’t quite know why this is bizarre and wrong, ‘Jon Richardson/Russell Howard’ could be compared to ‘Hamish Blake/Andy Lee’, or ‘Dylan Moran/Bill Bailey’. Two comedians being paired off because they work together.

Is this really what you were searching for, you mysterious creep? Do you just want some erotic literature with a side-helping of light observational comedy?

I can get behind some slash, honest. If you want to read or write about Harry and Ron touching each other a bit, go right ahead. (I do, however, find Harry/Draco a lot more plausible. One cannot deny the tension that exists there, and let’s face it, Ron and Harry shared a bedroom for the better part of six years. If they wanted to explore ‘special feelings’, they probably would’ve gotten it out of the way early on. Maybe they did, and J.K. just gave them a little privacy. Complicated teen years.)

But when you start to invest in slash about real people, it gets a little beyond hot speculation and strays into that most twisted and feared category…


I’ll take a gamble now and Google ‘Jon Richardson Russell Howard fic’.

Oh no.

What have I done.


British panel show slash.

I mean, it’s livejournal. I don’t know what I was expecting. I guess I was hoping that it wouldn’t exist. Rule #34 has hit me hard. I thought it was hilarious speculation.

It’s not.

For people who don’t know, they used to do a radio show. A lovely, Sunday morning radio show, with happy music and fun little segments. This person has decided that the world needs to know what would happen if they slept together. It’s actually a good read. It’s short, to the point, the author has captured Jon’s character alarmingly accurately, and it ends unhappily…

What? There wasn’t even any decent action in it! Why does this exist? Is this written for people who are titillated by awkward friendship-turned-gay-sleepover-mistake stories, where beloved British radio personalities end up dejected and emotionally crippled?

I mean, it made me think. It raised questions. Also, Russell Howard did leave that radio show pretty suddenly, with rumours of a falling-out…

Maybe there’s something there.

Maybe it’s a true account.

Maybe I need to close that livejournal tab and never, ever return there.

Might close that deviantArt tab too.

Ooh, graphs…

27 Jul



This is from an article on a dating website’s blog. I swear to you, it came up in my facebook feed.


And really, there’s only one thing you need to ask on a first date, and that is ‘can I inspect your iPod, please?’

Also, dating is stupid.

That is all.

Blog power activate!

26 Jul

Blog, I will come to rely on you more in the next few weeks, because English has started up again and I am going to have to write some things.

I haven’t written any fiction in a really long time, (unless you count fabricating lab results) (I’m kidding! That’s illegal and I’d never do that… ) so it’ll be interesting to see if I still have any idea how to put words together to make them into something readable.

The other thing I’m doing in the next couple of days is going to see Elbow perform in Sydney, and it’s going to be pretty amazing, I expect. I will take a camera to Sydney and try to take arty photos of things (even though I don’t have an arty camera), maybe I’ll snap some shots of Elbow too.

Elbow is Woble backwards.

Also seeing James Blake, who I’ve grown fond of. There will be hipsters there.

You should all listen to old podcasts of the Russell Howard Show because he and Jon Richardson are beautiful and hilarious.


Drug induced sleep

5 Jul

It makes for good dreams.

Last night, I dreamt I was surveying a chocolate factory, and the oppressed labourers had to sing greetings to the foreman and whistle while they manned heavy, ugly machinery. Like Wonka’s factory, but without the colour or soul.

Then I dreamt I was being followed around a shopping centre (in some rural area) by a fearsome man wearing black (possibly Ser Ilyn Payne, the executioner from Game of Thrones) until I found a group of friends who told me that a lady had arranged an interview for me for a job at some fancy, upmarket clothes store.

I went to the interview, and she told me I could work in the Canberra branch of the store, but noted down on her clipboard that I was too nerdy for the job. I told her it was geek chic, and I think she appreciated my attitude.

Cut to a giant, old fashioned school building, almost castle like, edged on one side by a man-made lake as clean and clear as an Olympic swimming pool. A Scooby-Doo-esque team of young adults and I wandered into the out-of-bounds corridors of the school and discovered another branch of the upmarket clothing store, which I now suspected was the front for some sort of organised crime syndicate. The girl working there looked at us with contempt and told us we could look at the clothes but couldn’t try anything on, and then she returned to the back room.

I stole a set of keys from the desk and tried to break into a nearby office, setting of alarms and cameras, and the corridors became the arena for a huge chase, leading deeper and deeper under the school.

While running, the reason for all the secrecy and defence suddenly became clear; the school only offered the same six courses over and over and over again, taught by different people. Students were so inattentive that they hadn’t noticed.

While the evil upmarket clothing store/ fraudulent college executives were taken away by education police, my Scooby-Doo-esque band of friends sat on one of the highest roofs of the school, and threw balled up socks into the lake, laughing as the principal was clapped in irons and the sun slowly set.

Stats update

2 Jun

A – Happiness having finished my lab reports
B – Excitement to see X-Men First Class tonight
C – Passion for The Shins (because their tunes make me all happy and sparkly)
D – Ability to fit into my skinny jeans
E – Self esteem after squeezing into them and realising I look awesome

Maturity strikes again

2 Jun


1 Jun