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Old 05-29-2008, 12:02 PM   #2201
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Thanks Tobbe and tsa!


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Okay. Essentially, you learn a whole load of texts, and then the exam consists of single sentences from those texts. You have to locate the sentence in the context of the text, elaborate on it, and link it to all the other texts you've studied.

It is, at once, both surprisingly easy and infuriatingly hard.
And Rob, I've never heard about an exam like that before.
Must be quite a challenge.
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Old 05-29-2008, 12:08 PM   #2202
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I managed to avoid as much forced memorization as possible in university. I figured that memorizing pi to 500 decimal places in high school was enough.
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:03 PM   #2203
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Congrats to Robert and Jelena. Also, Robert, what's this stupid thing you're going to apply to, if you don't mind my asking?
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:36 PM   #2204
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I don't mind you asking, but I don't want to comment on it right now, other than to say that it would involve another few years of university (and more exams )...
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Old 05-29-2008, 02:23 PM   #2205
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Gotcha. Actually doesn't sound that bad, but then, I wouldn't know.
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Old 05-29-2008, 02:52 PM   #2206
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First of all, Conga Rats to Jelensie. And also conga rats to Tibsie! Well done! ^_^


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Aaw... sweet.
*hugs* ^_^

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Congrats on your sister Jaz! Will you tell us what you got her and how she liked it?

Of course. I got her a set of two plush pigs of Japanese origin (I don't know what it was called...something starting with "M". One of the pigs is black, and the other white, and rather simple in design. But very cute), because she loves pigs (what with her Chinese zodiac sign being that of the pig.), a "Hello Kitty" ice tray, a tiny cute piggy figure with a hand crafted deco bead as its body I spotted at the stationery shop recently (for 1 Euro, so it was a good deal), a tray (consisting of 10 boxes I think) of Milk Pocky (which she loves), and two packets of Bento grass (in the colours yellow, pink, and green. And yes, Bento grass. The type you find separating the Wasabi from the Sushi when you pick up Sushi bento, for example. My sister often sees stuff like that, that others would throw away immediately, thinking of things she might make use of it. Usually for some kind of artwork. It's little things like that that make her go "Squee". ^_^ ).

She was very happy, though she joked that I wanted to make her fat with the Pocky (though really, even a packet chocolate crush pocky [some types of pocky comes in separate packets in the box. Each packet has a number of pocky. In the case of Chocolate Crush, it's four sticks of Pocky. Together they have 77 kcal.] has less calories than an American Chocolate chip cookie. [Which has 92 kcal.].).


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Old 05-29-2008, 03:31 PM   #2207
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Lots of presents!
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Old 05-29-2008, 09:11 PM   #2208
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That's nice Jaz, I see you had a good time!
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Old 05-30-2008, 12:08 PM   #2209
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Dear Blogsie,


Tomorrow a friend of mine is coming over with his almost one year old daughter. They will stay overnight. I look forward to that. This is the first time a small child will stay the night at my house. I hope she sleeps and doesn't keep us awake the whole night
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Old 05-30-2008, 12:31 PM   #2210
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Quote:
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I hope she sleeps and doesn't keep us awake the whole night
I cross my fingers for luck tsa!
When my daughter was that age she'd have me walk around the house carrying her, singing each night. If I put her in her own bed, she'd scream. If I sat down with her in my lap, she'd scream. If I put her in my bed, she'd scream.
The procedure would last 30-45 minutes until she finally would fall asleep in my arms.
I can't remember for how long she used to wake up like that. Probably just a month or so, but I still remember how tired I was at work during that period in our lives.

Not that I think your friend's daughter will do what my daughter did. The memory just came back to haunt me.
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Old 05-30-2008, 01:16 PM   #2211
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My parents told me I did similar annoying things as a baby. But then, I was colicky.
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Old 05-30-2008, 01:47 PM   #2212
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When I was that age, I decided I could fly, and thus leaped backward off the couch and split my head open on a cedar chest. Later, the doctors had to restrain me to put the stiches in.


...Of course, I doubt your guest will be as bad as I was at that age. Hopefully.
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Old 05-30-2008, 07:01 PM   #2213
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Thanks for the encouraging tales folks!
Since I've never heard my friend complain about his daughter, I think she'll behave. Another friend of mine once told me he would put his son on eBay because he cried so much
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:03 PM   #2214
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Congratulations, Robert.

Good luck, tsa.
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Old 06-01-2008, 03:04 AM   #2215
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After a lovely, relaxing week watching the mist hang in the green mountains while soaking in a hot tub on the deck, I return to overdrive: painting/redecorating Gracie's room, civilizing two feral kittens that we rescued from the Humane Society, helping my husband prepare for the Shakespeare seminar that he's teaching in July, and the return to my stringent writing schedule (I have sworn on all that is sacred that I will have the first completed draft of my new YA novel to my agent by the end of summer. Gulp.)
I'm already looking forward to our next holiday, planned for the last part of July. I hope I can tame those kitties in time.
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Old 06-01-2008, 04:32 PM   #2216
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You're writing a YA novel? Cool!
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Old 06-01-2008, 09:42 PM   #2217
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Last weekend my friend and his daughter were at my place. We had a very good time together. No horror scenarios! We went to the city with her in the buggy, and she just looked around and enjoyed herself. The next day we went to Roombeek (the area in Enschede that was completely destroyed by a fireworks disaster and is now rebuilt), and had lunch in the sun at a restaurant. After lunch my friend left again, taking his daughter with him. I love small children; especially the fact that they're not mine
Yesterday afternoon I had to go visit some other friends of mine. Their two toddlers turn one and three this week. The eldest was completely and utterly overwhelmed by all the presents he got. Kids get so much stuff these days they don't even have time to play with all of it. It's amazing how much plastic rubbish you get between your birth and your fifth birthday. Anyway, after an hour or so I had seen enough little children for the weekend and I went home to play Dreamfall.
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Old 06-02-2008, 02:53 AM   #2218
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Quote:
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You're writing a YA novel? Cool!
Thanks. When I was studying for my MFA, YA fiction was considered very uncool. We all wrote very Raymond Carverish type of short fiction--gloomy and spare and poetically tragic. We didn't know then how much of that effect was achieved by sheer editing.
It wasn't until I started writing and editing for bread and butter that I realized how much I enjoyed writing for young people.
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Old 06-02-2008, 03:33 AM   #2219
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Iím back, and itís a new me! Well, sort of, well, hopefully. I just needed to take a little break from everything in my life for a while. Iíve been a complete mess this year, 2008 hasnít been good for me thus far. Iíve been steadily spiralling out of control, along a path of increasingly self-destructive behaviour. Firstly Iíve been drinking too much when I go out, far beyond excess. On a typical night out Iíd be regularly consuming a minimum 20 units of alcohol. As a result on about 90% of occasions I would black out at some point throughout the evening, and have large gaps in my memory, often having no idea how I even got home. This lead to even worse things, many times I wouldnít even get home, Iíd wake up in some strange place with a person whose name I didnít know, and whose face I didnít even recognise. On an occasion that I went on a trip to London, I lost my friends in a club, blacked out, got kidnapped by some man. I woke up the next morning to find myself in a towerblock in the ghetto, from which I had to escape, and was lucky not to have been raped, murdered, chopped into small pieces and thrown into the river Thames. I only had enough money on me to get onto a crowded bus, and I stood there for an hour clutching a pole in one hand, my Selfridges bag in the other, and hiding behind dark glasses as I waited to get to Marble Arch. Then to top it off, there was the night that I was so paralytic I allowed a dastardly taxi driver to steal my precious wallet.

The strange thing was that during this time I was aware that my actions were dangerous, and I didnít like what was happening, yet somehow I was unable, or unwilling to stop myself, and week after week I kept repeating the same behaviour. I felt like my life was playing out like the Madonna song ďBad GirlĒ. Thankfully something finally clicked, and I realised that I couldnít continue down this path any longer, and something absolutely had to change. Just to show how fucked up my priorities were, it wasnít the frankly horrifying incident in London that acted as a wake-up call, it was the theft of my wallet. Apparently in my mind some stupid Louis Vuitton wallet that I can easily go and replace is more valuable than my own personal safety. Now what exactly does that say about my mindset? So anyway, I completely extricated myself from the situation, Iíve stopped going out, and Iíve stopped drinking. The last month Iíve just spent quietly reflecting on things, and reading a book, and I feel much better for it.

I really donít know what caused this to happen, because itís totally out of character for me, Iím usually so in control. My best theory is that it may have something to do with my total disillusionment with the gay scene. When I first began frequenting gay clubs in 2006 I enjoyed it, it was all new and almost exciting. Then over time the novelty wore off, and I began to see things for what they really were. I wasnít meeting the sort of guys I wanted to meet. Gay clubs are essentially a meat market, filled with guys looking for nothing more than some tawdry hook up, the complete opposite of what I was interested in. Despite all this I kept going, as where else do gay men congregate en masse? I was going more out of compulsion than because I wanted to. So in order to cope with everything I disliked I think I drank more, choosing to escape into the bottom of my glass, which ironically caused me to be sucked into the very world I despised. I also found myself rather bored, the quality of music in these places was deteriorating, so it was no longer fun to dance. When ennui sets in I need to find something to occupy my attention, so if I had a drink in my hand Iíd keep sipping it, then Iíd go off and refill it, and repeat for the entire night.

I canít say it helped that none of the people I go out seemed to take any issue with what I was doing. I was just the funny drunk one with all the entertaining stories. For me it was easier just to become numb to what I was doing, and laugh and make light of it.

Thatís all over now, however, I feel like Iím back in control of things, and I feel much better for it. Iím off on my holiday to Portugal tomorrow with my friend, for ten lovely days of relaxation in the sun. It should be lots of fun, and a welcome break. If anyone* would like a postcard, PM me your postal address and one shall be whistling its way to you in the coming days!

* Offer subject to terms, limited availability, only open to people with whom I have a degree of friendly relationship, or have shared cordial discourse. One per person, may not be exchanged for cash alternative.
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Old 06-02-2008, 04:52 AM   #2220
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Welcome back Jat!
It feels good know that you're taking care of yourself better now. Have a wonderful vacation in Portugal. Don't forget the suntan lotion to protect that pale British skin of yours.
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