Friday, January 30, 2009

Caffeine

I am a tea drinker. I enjoy coffee, but it makes the buzzing in my head a little too loud. Shortly after a cup of coffee I need a glass of red wine just to even things out.

It also makes me talk too quickly. I already speak too quickly for some people, I put this down to them thinking too slowly, but really, who am I to judge? It seems a fair assumption, but I haven't actually done any tests yet. Either way, it's very inconsiderate of me to drink coffee if there's a chance I'll have to speak with someone who can't keep up in the next hour.

Caffeine pills are even worse. I took a couple last Summer because I was tired and needed to work. I'd had a cup of tea and it had only made me feel warm. I had a coffee (with vanilla in it, can't drink it without) and it had only made me feel warmer. I had a couple of pro-plus. Ten minutes later my heartbeat matched the bass on whichever Chemical Brothers song I chose to play.

Amusing, but also kind of scary. I was too on edge to work and instead cleaned the whole flat and cataloged my DVDs. It's a mistake I won't make again, I prefer my DVDs messy and random, the good ones stand out better that way.

Today I stopped in Starbucks for a mocha. I refuse to use their sizing system, and ordered a "small." The girl said, "you mean tall?" I said, "No."

Fortunately she took the hint, or I would've had to point out that she was being pedantic about a pseudo-Italian sizing system in an ugly Glaswegian accent. That would have been mean. I'm not allowed to be mean to people in Starbucks because of the Incident.

The coffee was good, but after it I couldn't concentrate. I was trying to buy silver shoes, but I couldn't focus. I saw nothing I wanted. At first I was inclined to put this down to some kind of horrible depression, but then I realised it was just the caffeine confusing me.

I'll never drink coffee again.

Interestingly, you apparently need 12 cups of tea before you start hallucinating. I'm up for trying that out, but I need volunteers to make sure I don't try to slice my veins out of my arms, or take flight out of my window. Anyone? Anyone at all?

Monday, January 26, 2009

Motivation

I am an easily entertained person. The sort of person who notices shiny things before anyone else notices (that or no one cares about shiny things as much as I do). I am also easily distracted, though if all possibility of shoe shopping is removed from a situation my attention span can be formidable.

I should point out that a) this has never happened, and b) shoe shopping is the exception that proves the rule. I have to shop alone, no one I know has the stamina.

Naturally this means I have a talent for procrastination. I've mentioned it before, so you know I really mean it. This combined with my limitless creativity means that I can always find something more interesting to do than the task at hand. Even if that task is my maths homework four hours before the tutorial. Actually, that's an easy one, my tutorials are at 10am, the best thing to do at 6am is sleep.

People confuse this with a lack of motivation. I disagree, I have too much motivation, which is why I want to do so many things that aren't my maths homework. Surely this is the kind of wonderful logic that brought me to the sciences in the first place?

I was discussing my lack of work with Euan, and he said that the carrot method doesn't work for me because I can always find a better carrot. This is true, but he's misspelling it. Instead, he thinks someone has to be a bastard to me until I get some work done. He has volunteered, because he's thoughtful like that.

Today however I have found myself full of motivation. You'd think it was because of exam result if you didn't know that I haven't been given them yet. You'd think it's because of my super-intelligent new tutor if you didn't know I actually find her a little intimidating. You'd think it's because I've just turned 20 and I'm afraid of wasting my life if you didn't know... me.

The fact is I've no idea why it's occurred. I think it might have something to do with a certain 2nd-hand book shop, but that's because that's all I can remember from my dreams last night. If I work out what's causing it, I'm going to distill it, bottle it and sell it to large companies. I'll make millions. Watch this space.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

It's My Party

And I don't really feel like crying. Suddenly I'm 20, this didn't really sink in until I noticed that it changed automatically on my Last.fm profile. It's alright though, don't feel old yet, I happen to be the youngest of my flatmates, which helps a bit :-)

I've had plenty of birthday facebook messages too, which is nice. They tend to run along the lines of "Happy Birthday Becky! Have a great day! xxx"
But my sister's just says
"You're old."

I love my sister. She can't borrow any money for her Paris trip.

I've been OCD-ishly cleaning the flat. It's delightful, look, I even made a graph:

Friday, January 23, 2009

5 Things I'll Never Understand

1. Footless tights.

You're wearing tights because otherwise your legs will be cold, yet you somehow think that your feet won't be? I only realized you could buy these about three years ago, I couldn't figure out why, but I bought a couple of pairs anyway, just to see if there was something everyone knew and that I didn't. My feet got cold.
I guess maybe they're to attract foot-fetishists without looking too slutty.


2. Bloody Mary's

Generally speaking this is an early morning drink, or a hangover drink. It's got vodka in it. Now, as I've mentioned before, I don't do hangovers, but one the two occasions when I have, the thought of more booze has only made me feel worse. I do do breakfast, and at breakfast time, vodka seems not actually repulsive, but definitely bad. Vodka with your cereal is a bit much really.

Also, if you're going to ignore the above and decide that it's just a cocktail (which I guess is valid) then that's fine. Until you read the ingredients list; vodka, tomato juice, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, black pepper, celery stick garnish. Some people will tell you to add horseradish. Could someone please try to explain to me why you'd want to drink that? It's spicy!


3. Wave-particle Duality.

I can relay explanations parrot-fashion. I can take some numbers, put them into the right equations and come out with answers that are somehow "correct." I can not work out how matter/light can technically be described as two things at once, and that it knows which one to be when you're dealing with it in a certain way.


4. International Obsession with Dan Brown Novels.

You'd think the vast majority of people didn't read real books at all. I admit to having read "Deception Point." It was ok. Not amazing, not eye-opening, not worthy of awards, just ok. I guess people never get bored of conspiracy theories. But they should, they really, really should.


5. Crotch-Topiary.

Just... No. There's no words left. Please, for the love of whatever you happen love the most (unless what you love the most is shaping your pubic hair), get a hobby. Or, just don't talk to me about it. Or in fact ever. That'd be great. Thanks.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Daiquiris

There was some very good white rum left in the fridge.

There was four limes in the fruit bowl.

There was a bottle of cointreau I'd opened to add a little to this week's cake, even though I'd sworn not to open any of the party booze until the party.

There was one metric fuckload of ice in the freezer.

Now there are only headaches.

Although, thankfully I am fine as usual*. People keep warning me that this will change, I refuse to believe them. I've had hangovers before. I didn't like the first one, and a few months later I had another, just to be sure. That one wasn't fun either, so these days, I just skip them, in spite of how many people choose to have them on a regular basis. I will not be swayed by popular choice, I will stay hangover free (though not always clear headed, I am after all still going to get very drunk).

My mother seems to deal with drinking in the same way. She's the only women I know who can out-drink me and still feel fine in the morning. Clearly I have inherited her metabolism, allowing me to drink all I want, and with will-power alone feel great the next day.

Perhaps this is evolution in practice. People need to get drunk, but they also need to not get ill. Those who are capable of processing alcohol in such a way as to get drunk cheaply and not get ill are "the fittest" and can pass their genetic material onto the next generation because they'll never choke to death on their own vomit, or end up in hospital having cracked their head on the toilet seat.

Eventually the human race will be able to process all kind of interesting drugs - enjoying the good effects, skipping the bad ones. Maybe it works like bacteria; if you expose a petri-dish of bacteria to penicillin, eventually some of them will learn to process it harmlessly. If you expose heroin addicts to heroin, eventually they'll enjoy it without addiction or harm. Of course, it'll take longer for the heroin addicts, because they're slightly more complex creatures. Many of them will die in horrible ways - but in the name of science, surely it's worth it?

*Daiquiris are delicious. I'll have to buy rum after I've bought everything else, or I'll end up drinking all the party booze with my flat-mates well before I throw the party.

PS. Sorry for not writing for a week, it wasn't out of being too lazy or too busy, it's just that I don't want to write if I have nothing to say. Fortunately though, now I do - the value of what I have to say is, as always, up for debate.

Monday, January 12, 2009

I Guess it's Started

I went shopping a couple of weeks ago, it's something I enjoy and I happen to excel at it. I purchased a pretty new pair of black jeans, because I haven't had black jeans in ages and quite fancied some. Having worn them twice I've discovered that the dye is not quite stable, and transfers to light coloured socks etc.

Yesterday I decided I really needed to know when and where my maths lectures were going to be held. It would be nice if the maths department told you this, maybe sent out an email, or put it on moodle (the online information part of the course). Generally though, they'd rather not, so you either have to guess, find it on some general information page on the uni website (which I did not find, but Martin did and saved me) or go exploring in the maths department.

I like to think of myself as adventurous, so I chose the third option. It really is a exploration, you never know which noticeboard they're going to put class information on, and there's at least five floors. I left the flat, noticing very light drizzle, and hoping it wouldn't get heavier.

By the time I arrived at the maths building, I was soaked to the skin. I shivered. The building was closed because it was Sunday. I cursed. I went round the corner and picked up some stuff from Boots, considered buying an umbrella, but it seemed a little worthless at that point, and trudged home.

Naturally, when I got back, the first thing I thought to do was go get a shower, especially since shivering was pretty serious by this point, and the rain had become nastier on my trip back, meaning that I was literally dripping when I arrived. So, straight to the shower.

My legs were stained bright blue. It doesn't even make sense! The jeans are black! Grey I could understand, but blue? This stuff is aparently also sticks to skin better than it does to denim, judging by how long it took to get off.

At least now I have the wisdom to not wear them in the rain until I've washed them a couple of times, but I'm pretty sure I'll forget this the first time I wash them, and I'll dye a couple of shirts a horrible shade a blue-grey.

Glasgow is already trying to ruin me. Don't worry though, I'm already plotting my revenge, that's another thing I excel at, although taking revenge on a city's bad weather is going to be tricky, and may take quite a lot of plotting.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Glasgow

Well, I'm back in Glasgow, and term's about to start.

I seem to write better in Glasgow for some reason. The reason is that I'm left to my own devices for a greater percentage of my time, and as such there is a greater potential for ridiculous things to happen to me.

It's partly my fault, I admit. It seems to be my nature to haphazardly put myself in situations where something ridiculous might occur. But I can't help thinking that it's also the fault of some kind of God of Hating the English, that the Scots all secretly pray to. The influence of this God is to try to persuade me to go back home, where I can't write as well, but fewer terrible (if amusing) events occur. The Gods are nothing if not humorous.

But I shall resist! Partly because I want a degree, partly because I quite like Glasgow, and partly because I like asking questions such as

"What's the worst that could happen?"

Let the carnage commence.

Monday, January 05, 2009

4 Overdose

I'm generally not a huge fan of tv. I don't like advertisements, normally I have a good attention span, but when they come on I discover that it's less than 30 seconds long, a fact that fills me with self-doubt. Maybe if I could stay interested in commercials showing how white my whites could be, or how much other people are "loving it" I'd be a better and more complete individual. Yet somehow my will is not strong enough, and I always end up changing channel, or going to make tea.

I also fail to be interested in the majority of programming. While my mother will always have the tv on in the background (sometimes as many as three at once in different rooms, so she can pay attention to different shows as she moves around the house - an odd habit) I tend to observe an absence of interesting material, and then switch it off. I later find out that I missed something I would have liked to see, because I wasn't browsing channels at the right time.

Other's seem to have a physic ability, telling them when something good is showing, apparently that physic ability normally manifests itself as those adverts I can't bring myself to watch. It seems the trick is to either watch them, or leave your sofa only when they're on, so you never miss anything important.

The introduction of things like 4od (which I refuse to call "on demand," there is an older and better acronym using those letters) iplayer and the imaginatively named "demand five" which I've never even tried to use, should be a blessing. But for some reason, I barely use them.

There are always many things available, I only consider the options that are free, because I don't like paying for things I can't hold. I tend to go for Channel 4, because on my home connection iplayer crashes. The problem is, I'm now swamped by choice, quickly each item looks less inspiring than the first, and when the first option is "Celebrity Big Brother" that's pretty horrific.

It gets to the point where even a show titled "Catastrophe" which stars Tony Robinson and has a picture of an exploding planet won't persuade me to sit and watch. I like Tony Robinson, I like space and planet-type objects, and I like explosions, but now I'm questioning Channel 4's motives - why is it free? What do they have to gain?

Maybe my mother's state is due to years of channel hopping, maybe she's been steadily hypnotised by television, bound to always have one, pay the license, watch the adverts, unable to function without it anymore. The thought is a scary one.

I'd be a great conspiracy theorist, I wonder if I could involve Tony Robinson somehow...

Friday, January 02, 2009

Oh, Alright

A real new year's resolution? Seriously?

I like to set myself nice, attainable goals. For example, three ideas I came up with for new year's resolutions were;

1. Don't smoke.
2. Don't invade any third world countries.
3. Wake up every day.

Technically, if I consider these to be easily attainable goals then I must be more virtuous than certain entire governments, but lets not make this political, it's not a competition or anything.

I think I'll do the three things above, but I'll have a challenge as well. My challenge will be to stop swearing.

I tried it last year for lent, but I kept slipping up, and two weeks in I remembered that I wasn't Christian, and uttered something along the lines of "f*ck lent." See that, just censored myself, I've started already. That's motivation for you.

I'm going to make sure the goal isn't entirely impossible by starting easy. I'm going to cut a handful of words out of my vocabulary, and then add others when I've completely stopped using the first lot.

The first to go will be the mother of all curses. I can't help thinking it's a shame, because honestly, I like it. It's only the "worst" because we allow it to be, just as it is only a huge insult to women because that's what we've let it become. The sharp "c" sound flowing into the harsh grunt is, as fas as I'm concerned, everything that swearing should be.

Still, I'll try not to use it. Along with a few other particularly harsh four-letter words. Not sure if this is a goal worth aiming for, but if I succeed people might tell each other off for swearing around me (like they do when they swear around my mother, a fact that I find hilarious, but that's because I've seen her drunk).

It strikes me that this would be a lot easier if I could pronounce asterisks.

Thursday, January 01, 2009