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September 16, 2008

A few thoughts

People at Lehman Brothers have just lost their jobs. Ordinary people, not just “fat cats”. Why are so many people so happy about this?

Also, why do people not realise that they (by proxy of their pensions and other “financial products”) are “greedy” shareholders?

Think, people, before you judge so quicky.


April 21, 2008

Group names

(e.g. murder of crows)

“Conspiracy of traffic lights”


March 23, 2008

Fence sitting

Gordon Brown is set to allow his MPs to vote against parts of a controversial embryo bill – if it means it is not defeated.

Is it just me or is that a little bit dictatorish? But this is not my point.

I have to say that this bill makes me a little uneasy. I’m not sure how I feel about it. Ethically it seems a bit wrong and worrying (although I may be watching too many films like I Am Legend), but I would like to see it help people. It’s a bit like the animal testing thing. There is a very famous person who, in the 60s/70s campaigned against animal testing. However, when a member of their family was very ill they changed their opinion. They were for the testing as long as their family member got well again.

What to do, what to do!


December 18, 2007

The best reason not to be a pilot…

Parking the damn plane.

I mean I can’t even really park my car, let alone a vehicle 10x the size where you can’t even guess where the wheels are!


November 26, 2007

You know that Christmas is getting really close when…

...you see the Christmas Coca Cola advert on tv.

I have just seen it and am now feeling incredibly Christmasy. I sit here (waiting for my new tv to arrive – what a waste of time off work), watching Christmasy stuff with a small (believe me it’s small!) Christmas tree in front of me. Ok, it’s still November, but I love Christmas! I’m still the 1st one up on Christmas day even though I have been an adult for many years and have known the non-existance of Santa for even more.

Less than a month to go :D


October 13, 2007

A little late, but still pissed off

So Royal Mail and their union have finally reached a deal. No details as yet. But this whole thing has me really pissed off. I really don’t have that much sympathy with them.

1) They are doing themselves out of a job faster by striking.
2) All businesses need to modernise to keep up with the market.
3) Most of the rest of the country only receive their pensions at age 65 anyway.
4) Although I am contracted to work 35 hours a week, if needed I am expected to work longer and receive no extra pay.
5) Apparently a 40 year old worker with 20 years service would lose more than £60,000 if the pension scheme was “scrapped”. Firstly, I’d like to see their definition of “scrapped”, next I would like to see the calcs behind this, and finally, show me a post office worker who has worked for 20 years in the same job and plans on working with them for the next 20 (which I can only assume is what they mean by losing £60,000).
6) They were offered a 6.9% pay rise if they accept the pension and working changes. Bloody hell! That’s HUGE!
7) Finally, the working conditions couldn’t be that bad otherwise they would do what everyone else in the workforce does if they aren’t happy with their job – go and get another one!

Sorry for the rant people, but seriously, I really cannot form any sympathy for them.

Rant at me back explaining their side, but considering the BBC seems to be on their side and not even they can convince me, good luck!


September 27, 2007

Early notes on Dracontius

The poetry of Ovid laid the foundation for a kind of self-knowledge by which the self is not an objective, essential text, which can be deciphered, but as a text constantly open to reinvention, refashioning, rewriting. Unlike Augustine, Ovid presents a self that can always be reinterpreted, recuperated: self-revelation is not necessarily self-renunication.

Dracontius is a late 5th century African poet, a Christian who composed (at least in his early career) on Pagan themes. If we consider the differences that Foucault observed between pagan and early-Christian “technologies of the self”, he, like Ovid in Fraenkel’s study, can be considered a “Poet Between Two Worlds”.

He succeeds Ovid more directly in his (unfortunate) continuation of the genre of Latin exile poetry. The Satisfactio is a poem that tends to be criticised for its “needless repetitions… unnecessary amplifications… untoward digressions… (lack of) logical sequence.” However, the poem explicitly recognises the power of words to both heal and harm: Dracontius was imprisoned for praising in his verse a ruler other than the Vandal King Gunthamund. Taking its indication from the relationship between poetry and an absolute, arbitrary power from Ovid’s Tristia, the Satisfactio seems to self-consciously negate its own meaning.

Found in the Satisfactio is “a self that exists at a remove from the immediate, which is constructed around the valorization of the infinite deferral of meaning, a self first glimpsed in (Ovid’s) exilic poetry” (Miller 2004: 235).

Conte in his entry on Dracontius in Latin Literature: A History remarks: “This attempt to use culture, the technical ability to write verses, as a commodity of exchange with the king is interesting… to address a poem to Augustus or Constantine was quite different from writing for the barbarian Gunthamund” (1994: 719). However, the assumption that the barbarian would even have read the Satisfactio (consider Ovid’s skepticism that Augustus ever read the Ars), or even that he could have been swayed by its rhetoric, remains open to question.

It is in some sense an empty gesture, a poem written because that is what a famous poet does when he is put away by the ruling power: writes elegiac poetry.


September 16, 2007

8 days and counting

This is the number of consecutive days that I have been in the office. Ok, fair enough, my life isn’t that hard and it’s because I’ve got exams coming up (joy), but still… It feels more like home than my flat does.

Just over 2 weeks to go now till they’re all finshed and then I can have some fun again. Really can’t wait! Last Friday I went to the pub, drank lemonade and was home by 8pm!

Bring on October 3!

Anyway, other than this, I’ve had a good summer. Prague, Scotland, Global Gathering, summer parties. Got a few things planned for post exams and New York to look forward too as well.

That is all.


August 09, 2007

Laugh a second, my life is

Step 1: go to google (uk version)
Step 2: type in “MFI”
Step 3: look down the entries. Go on… Have a proper look.
Step 4: laugh. giggle. smirk. s’up to you.


July 30, 2007

The dichotomy paradox

A mathematician, a physicist and an engineer were asked to answer the following question. A group of boys are lined up on one wall of a dance hall, and an equal number of girls are lined up on the opposite wall. Both groups are then instructed to advance toward each other by one quarter the distance separating them, every ten seconds (i.e., if they are distance d apart at time 0, they are d/2 at t=10, d/4 at t=20, d/8 at t=30, and so on.) When do they meet at the center of the dance hall? The mathematician said they would never actually meet because the series is infinite. The physicist said they would meet when time equals infinity. The engineer said that within one minute they would be close enough for all practical purposes.


July 29, 2007

Global Gathering 2007

In a word – IMMENSE!

So many great memories. So little sleep. Just amazing!

Calming down a bit now, but still buzzing and listening to Radio 1 (online and live) not really helping matters. I don’t really care at the moment though. Might do tomorrow during work. Oh well.

Bring on Global Gathering 2008!


July 24, 2007

Harry Potter

Everyone on the Tube is reading it. I mean everyone! What’s the big deal? It’s only a book isn’t it?


July 22, 2007

This time last year…

This weekend I have been decorating with the help of my parents. Basicaly, it came up in conversation what I was doing this time last year and how much has changed.

This time last year:
- I had just graduated.
- It was very very hot.
- I had the whole summer to enjoy.
- I had no job to go to every day.
- I was still living with my parents.
- Although I was looking for somewhere to live when I started work, I had not actually found anywhere.
- I hadn’t even contemplated buying somewhere to live.
- Decorating was the last thing on my mind.
- Hearing about those who were going to Global Gathering was absolute torture.
- Many of my friends were disappearing for the year on a post-uni gap year.

I’ve also had a look back on my blog and found a meme and a few things there have changed:

“How many keys are on your keychain?
two”
haha – now that I’ve moved I have 7 keys!

“How many suitcases do you own?
none”
I’m now the proud owner of a suitcase. Not exactly the most exciting etc thing thats changed, but at the time I remember thinking “why and when the hell will I need a suitcase”.

“Do any of your friends have children?
not that i know of (thank god)”
Although none have children yet, a good friend has got married and this has slightly scared me.

“What post code are you in right now?
CV35. tis nice”
Now it’s B1 – city centre, I know! Brilliant for work and I love where I live.

“How many siblings do you have?
none, zip, nada etc…sigh”
Thank goodness this has not changed – that would just be scary beyond words!

“What is the weather like?
sunny and (too) hot and getting hotter”
Haha – do I even have to go into this one?! One thing though – my parent’s village made it onto the national news and even got pictures on the BBC website!

“What personality trait is a must–have in your preferred gender?
its been said before, but someone who can make me laugh, and someone who can cheer me up when im down”
Think that I now havet to add “must be as ambitious as me or at least likes the same things” to that list. Just cos I’ve found out a few things about myself this year.

“Do you like your living arrangement?
not the best, but not the worst”
I love it now. Seriously love it!

“What celebrities have you been compared to?
Mena Suvari. never worked out how they got to that one”
And now Angelina Jolie – I’ve n-e-v-e-r seen such extreme alcohol blindness

Anyways, this blog entry is basically a trip down memory lane and has been a nice recap of the past year of my life. A lot has changed and, although I didn’t think it would be for the best, it has been.

Here’s to another good year of growing, learning and memorable times!


July 15, 2007

School Reunion

Well officially it was George’s birthday barbeque, but since it’s the closest I’m ever going to get now to a school reunion, I may as well call it that.

So it seems everyone is now working in various places along the M4 corridor, and almost everyone has ended up working in IT related jobs. Furthermore, everyone is looking to get themselves on the property ladder. In a way, I’m no different.

The highlight of the evening… well there wasn’t one as such, as everyone seems to have matured to the extent that alcohol-induced antics are becoming a thing of the past. But nevertheless it’s always good to cross paths again with those with whom we spent our childhood. Hopefully I can be less of a stranger to them from now on.


July 12, 2007

chair math

6 people plus 1 equals 7 people.
6 chairs plus 0 equals 6 charis.

Hmm… I may have a problem.


July 07, 2007

Why?

Why am I awake at this time in the morning? Oh, I know – its all the caffine alcoholic drinks I’ve consumed tonight. As well as only getting back about an hour ago. I’m tired and drunk and have so much to do this weekend. Oh well…

Going to Global Gathering though :D


July 05, 2007

How to destress…

...and forget about the crap that is life sometimes.

Take one bath. Add water.
Take one glass. Add wine.
Take one book.
Get in bath, drink wine, read book.
For added luxury, eat strawberries.


Why am I awake at this time in the morning?

Any rational person in my situation would be asleep.


July 03, 2007

Is this the most boring Wimbledon ever?

Really. No British interest after the second day. No competition in the men’s tournament because the identity of the winner was known 51 weeks ago. No play for three quarters of each day because it’s always raining. No five set matches finishing 19-17 in the fifth with both competitors drenched in sweat. No real upsets of the recognised pecking order. No timeless classic appearing in the tournament for the twentieth time.

Honestly, if I weren’t so sports-orientated, it would be easy to overlook the fact that it was happening this year at all.


July 02, 2007

Minor injustice

It wasn’t my fault. Yes, I was caught holding the instrument and yes, i was at the scene of the misdemeanor when it was spotted. But that doesn’t mean it was me who was responsible. I was innocently doing my business in the wrong place at the wrong time. I hope you realise this. I hope that when the dust settles you recognise that you’ve got the wrong man here. I’ll take it on the chin and know better next time. But the real culprit is still laughing his head off somewhere.


July 01, 2007

TV fest

This weekend I have mostly be watching tv. I needed a weekend off – I’ve been travelling the country every weekend for the past, erm, long time (can’t remember how long now). This entry is basically a round-up of the tv I’ve watched. Sad, I know, but what are you gonna do about it?

Big Brother

Unfortunately I’ve got addicted to this this year. All in all I don’t think that it’s been really great and now that Billi has been voted out it’s going to be even more boring. Him and Charlie would have been a great duo – arguing and bitching together. Would have made great entertainment. But no. Instead Tracy and Carole are left in. To be fair Carole has grown on me. A Few weeks ago she was annoyingly mummy-ish but now she’s joining in the fun a bit more. But Tracy… I think the amount of airtime she has had says a lot. She isn’t that entertaining except when it comes to nominations. Basically I think that she’s clever (can come across as very wise) but she doesn’t really add anything to the house.

Dr Who

Omg – Saturday’s episode was fan-bloody-tastic! In fact the whole series has. And definitely one for the ladies. There are so many programmes with eye-candy for blokes, but this series (especially the last 3 episodes) has really been nice to look at (and watch of course)!

Hickstead Derby

Yes, I’m one of the few that likes watching this, but I have an appreciation of the skill and bravery involved. And this year’s weather… I’m glad I didn’t have to do go round, even if they had lowered the jumps! Also, glad that Geoff Billington won. ‘Bout time!

Diana’s concert

Erm, I have a slight problem with this. It just makes me uncomfortable having a concert in her honour. But I’ll not go into that for fear of being shouted down. A lot. One thing that is funny is seeing the princes dance! Generally blokes dancing makes me laugh but when they’re famous it makes it even funnier!


June 29, 2007

Young 'uns

Just got ID’ed! At 23!

I’m still young!! :D


June 28, 2007

So what happened to June then?

This time last year, it was blazing hot. Temperatures continuously in the high twenties for three whole weeks. Shorts, vests, and sandals all round. Sleeping out in the garden all day because it was warm enough to do so. Waking up every morning to the sun’s rays on your bed.

Why are there floods everywhere now and why am I shivering on my way in to work in the mornings?


June 27, 2007

You wha?!

On my way to work this morning I passed a sign saying:

Canal locks temporarily out of order due to lack of water.


June 24, 2007

Little sister

My little sister turns 20 years of age today.

My God that makes me feel old. Worryingly old.