Monday, September 29, 2008

Life's a bitch and then you die

Listening to: 'Long Hot Summer' by Girls Aloud [The Sound of Girls Aloud: The Greatest Hits]

So let's count. One weekend in June to see Shorty, and another day for a visit to the High Commission. One weekend in July for my cousin's b'day. One day in August for a concert in London. And that one day I took off recently. At the most, I've forgotten 2 days. So that's...7-9 days (including weekends) off in the last 4 months (I mean we're practically in October now). And you know what that means? For the remaining ~114 days, I have been in the lab.

Should it really take 114 days to set up an experiment? I don't know, but it has. And now finally, it seems like I've solved all the problems...except one: me. I put all my time and energy into getting my rig to work, and now I don't have any energy left (and not much time either) to actually use it. I'm spent.

If all goes well this week, I'll hopefully have the guts to tell my supervisor that I'm taking the weekend off and that he'll get the rest of the results next week. In reality I probably need a week to get back to normal, but no such luck. I just hope I can survive this week. Judging by my panic attack this morning, I'm not so sure.

All this for three letters at the end of my name. What a pathetic joke.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

These boots were made for walking...

Listening to: 'Something Kinda Ooooh' by Girls Aloud [The Sound of Girls Aloud: The Greatest Hits]

...and I mean these boots specifically:

Aren't they to die for?! And they're mine! Muahahahahahaha!

Sorry, I'm just really really happy with my purchase and I'm finding it hard to contain my happiness. For ages I've been looking for a pair of decently priced tan slouch boots that don't make me look like a 5-yr old trying to wear mummy's heels, and now I've found one. And I'm still (barely) within my budget. Score!

Friday, September 19, 2008

How Bored Thou Art!

Listening to: 'The Promise' by Girls Aloud [-]

Yes, still listening to GA...but it's no longer the dog's bollocks in my book. My newest addiction is...BeckyCam.

Let me explain. So the absolutely adorable Scott Mills hosts Radio 1's drive time show, with a team comprising himself, Chappers, Becky and 'The One That Doesn't Speak'. Scott's been recently obsessed with Pandacam, and decided that, well if people can spend ages watching giant pandas do nothing, they can surely spend ages watching a desk in the Radio 1 office. So a webcam was installed on Becky's desk, and it runs live from 6am - 7pm every day, and will do so until the end of next week. And there's a dedicated email address for people to get in touch with whoever's sitting at the desk at that time.

I haven't laughed so much in ages. DJs and various other employees of Radio 1 take turns to sit at the desk and scribble 'hello' messages (and other random comments, such as "yes I do need a haircut") on a whiteboard to whoever emails in. From a marketing point of view, it's an amazing ad-machine, with all the DJs making use of the whiteboard to plug their respective shows. Also, the webcam's only been running for 3 days and we've already had the Pussycat Dolls, Dita von Teese and James Morrison doing 'BeckyCam' sessions. Pamela Anderson was a right royal cow and refused.

Some people have commented that it's similar to the 24/7 broadcast of Big Brother, but I don't find Big Brother addictive at fact I find it repulsive. BeckyCam, on the other hand, is A-MA-ZING. I've emailed in a few times now, and it's quite exciting when you can see somewhat famous radio personalities responding to your email. Yes I know, I'm easily pleased.

Anyway you can catch BeckyCam here. As far as I'm aware, the live stream is only accessible within the UK, but the highlights are accessible from anywhere.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Oh dear.

Listening to: 'The Promise' by Girls Aloud [-]

OK so I'm one of the few that doesn't hear the likeness to the theme song for Blankety Blank. But never mind that...I can't get it out of my head. What is it with me and Girls Aloud songs?!?!?! Sooooo infectious. The credibility of my taste in music has long been flushed down the loo, but this is worrying. That said, GA have shown an impressive versatility uncommon in 'processed-pop' groups. And they're not devoid of talent. And they've managed to get five decent studio albums out, so we know they have staying power. OK I give in. Here's 'The Promise' by Girls Aloud.

Long live Britpop!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Lady of leisure

Listening to: 'Miss Independent' by Ne-Yo [Year of the Gentleman]

An amazing thing happened today: I took the day off! Yessir, I stayed at home! Did 'normal' things like laundry, trimming my nails and tidying my desk. Despite the work-related stress I'm experiencing, I feel extremely calm today. Looking after myself has a soothing effect, I think.

Apart from household chores and personal grooming, I also had a look at a few Sri Lankan blogs. I'm not one of those who spends hours on the internet reading blogs, but it was quite interesting to see what other people are saying and doing. It also made me feel a little closer to Sri Lanka - I feel strangely removed from that place I call home (but I'll leave that discussion for another time). It seems that SN has caused quite a commotion in the Lankan blogosphere, and suddenly people all over the place are questioning their attitudes towards carnal desire. The reactions are quite amusing, to be honest.

I've also been looking at clothes. I mentioned recently that I've started to enjoy shopping, and it doesn't seem to be a passing phase. My wallet should be worried, but so far I think it's under control. My relatively non-existent wardrobe sense seems to have hit a stumbling block though: what does one wear in Autumn? I'm not talking of the picturesque Autumn where leaves of amber and red pave the streets, but a British Autumn, in which the streets are adorned with mud, puddles and, well, more mud. Grey is the only colour in abundance, which is depressing, to say the least.

I think I'm also at risk of being far too imaginative with my wardrobe, and overdressing for day in day out in the lab. I guess that's what you get when you look to Glamour magazine for inspiration! Cambridge, in fashion terms, is, well...frumpy. It's a student town, and student chic is typically skinny jeans, t-shirt, paisley-print scarf and ballet pumps, which isn't really my thing. To be honest, I don't know what my 'thing' is. I don't have a particular my outfits tend to be neither here nor there on the style scale. It's not helped by the fact that I have difficulty finding things that suit my non-existent figure. Honestly, a plank of wood has more curves! Sigh.

Anyway yes, I'm becoming far more feminine in my attitude towards fashion. I'm treating it as a hobby, along with blogging. An expensive hobby, I have to admit...but we'll see if that becomes a problem.

I'll leave you with the video for 'Handlebars' by Flobots. I think the video is awesome, and I am loving the trumpet!

OK me go sleep now...back to the lab tomorrow :-(.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Listening to: 'Honeycomb Child' by Natalie Imbruglia [Counting Down The Days]

DISCLAIMER: I am very tired and stressed and my head is all in a muddle, so this virtually unedited post might not make much sense. It is what it is: a braindump. I'm hoping it'll help me get some sleep. You have been warned.

Sleep. Where has it gone? I used to be able to fall asleep in 5mins flat and the next thing I know, it's morning (and way past the time I'm supposed to wake up). No such luck any more. Toss, turn, flip, curse, over and over again until the alarm goes off, and then I'm so tired I can't get out of bed. I do get some sleep, just not as much as I need.

Why did Rafa lose? Waaaaaaah. And I couldn't even watch. Stupid bloody PhD (more on that later). At least it was Andy Murray. Only Federer and British players (and Sri Lankan of course, but let's not kid ourselves here) should be allowed to beat Rafa, if at all.

I'm sick of Sainsburys microwaveable meals. I want a nice steak with chips and peas. Or maybe mash instead of chips. And it should be on a plate. Not in a stupid floppy plastic container which looks too much like a bedpan.

Who was the bright spark who decided that some girls should feel the fires of hell in their lower abdomen every month? Must be a man. And why the hell can't other girls understand? Aren't women supposed to be beacons of empathy? What nonsense. You asked me how I was feeling, woman...don't roll your eyes when you don't like the answer. Grrr.

Why aren't the computers in my lab connected to the internet? Is our IT officer that scared of chemicals? They won't bite, you know. They might burn, asphyxiate, and maybe with careless usage, kill you, but they won't bite. Yet.

Pumps. I hate pumps. Actually scrap that. I love pumps. Especially HPLC pumps and peristaltic pumps. They might just save my life. Or they might not. How many weeks of work have I lost because of this stupid HPLC pump? It's a stupid piston pump, how complicated can it be? Very, by the looks of it, and very expensive! So whatever you do, PR, don't break it! Erm....too late.

What I definitely hate, is PVC. It's absolutely useless! What relevant experiment could I possibly do at room temperature? Oh and silicone tubes aren't designed to withstand any pressure...says the manufacturer. Um dude, if a tube can't withstand pressure, it can't be used. Ah right...that explains why my experiment wouldn't work.

And my supervisor. My glorious supervisor. Actually he's being a gem so I won't diss him. But my supervisor meetings could easily be uploaded on youtube with the following subtitles:
"There's a fault in my rig, dear Supervisor, dear Supervisor
There's a fault in my rig, dear Supervisor, a fault.
So fix it, dear PR, dear PR
So fix it, dear PR, fix it."
AAAARGH yes I know it needs to be fixed, but I was kinda hoping you'd help me figure out how!

And who is the annoying, selfish, ignorant housemate of mine who's been raping our bandwidth so much that the ISP has decided to throttle our connection to silly slow speeds until 11pm every day? I can't believe I have to wait till I'm supposed to be going to sleep to catch up on X Factor.

I am bloody sick of that new Verve song. I wish they'd stop playing it on the radio. And what is with Katy Perry's faux lesbianism/let-me-turn-every-guy-on-with-a-stupid-song-about-snogging-another-girl? It's the same processed bubblegum pop that got Britney into the limelight. Big deal. But omg live lounge tour. Can't wait to hear Snow Patrol. And Girls Aloud, seeing as I'm Cheryl Cole's newest biggest fan. Oh and the new-ish Black Kids song...what's it called...something like "look at me when I rock witchoo". So American Apparel, it's ace! And I'm liking MGMT too.

Oh and I wish Sarah Palin would shut up. "I'm going to Washington to serve the people of this great country." Yeah whatever, anyone outside the US believes that. The same way no one outside the US believes that you were not made VP candidate in an attempt to steer Hillary groupies away from Obama. I can't believe these people are some of the most influential people on this planet.

And apparently the world will end tomorrow with the LHC experiment. I can think of plenty of reason why that would be a good thing. Why are people so scared? We're all gonna die at some point. If we all die, then no problem no? No war, no famine, no AIDS, no need to fix my experiment...see, all good!

I'm tired. And no I'm not PMSing. I'm just stressed. Work is consuming my very being. I don't feel sociable. This is my only outlet. I just want to crawl under a rock until I've figured out how to fix my experiment. I'm scared to try out my ideas 'cos I'm scared they won't work and I'll be disappointed. And I've got a cold. Hopefully not flu. I don't think I could deal with falling sick right now.

Oh wow this is a long ramble. I'm gonna go try and sleep now. But now I'm hungry again. I wanna cry. I want my mummy.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

The fun just never stops

Listening to: 'Take Back The City' by Snow Patrol [A Hundred Million Suns]

Oh yeah. They're back. While I missed the world exclusive first play on Zane's show last night (I was stuck in the lab sans my radio, trying to glue together a polypropylene syringe and a PVC tube...don't ask), I've been fortunate enough to hear it thrice on the radio since then. The new Snow Patrol single will be available for download on the 13th of October, and the album will be released on the 24th (I think). The website has a audio snippet which I'm playing on loop at the moment...and I love it more with every listen.

Not satisfied with joining the Snow Patrol mailing list and subscribing to the website RSS feed, I'm checking the website every day for news of tour dates. I was too lazy to get Coldplay tickets, I am not missing Snow Patrol!

BTW n, this is all your fault :P