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Femion » Life

Gazette #28  - Double Dose of an outraged science student

November 12th, 2007

The brain behind ’scientific racism’
Terrorism for monkeys

Okay, I’ll admit it - I’ve caved to my editor’s demands to be more controversial and opinionated. Good thing there was a lot of material handy.

On another note, I’ve updated my Amazon Wishlist. It contains to of the textbooks I need for next semester. I don’t know if anyone will be able to buy them off their website because they seem to be going out of stock. What I could really use right now is a set of ear plugs, because I’ve got Linear Algebra and Calculus tests to study for and my neighbor is blasting the country music again. Also, he has a new girlfriend, and let’s just say they’re very ‘active’.

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Some dorm complaints…

September 26th, 2007

Last year, the worst complaint I had about my bathroom was that some people didn’t put the toilet seat down after using it.

This year, the problem is they don’t put the seat up, so the seat is usually covered in piss. Also, there’s at least one person who doesn’t flush or wash their hands after using the toilets. It means that anyone else washing their hands is pointless.

Last year, the worst noise complaint I had about my neighbor was that she once had a Lion King sing-a-long at midnight.

This year, the worst noise complaint about my neighbor is actually a sum of several small things. For example:
- Listening almost exclusively to country music. Not even classic folk-rock type country, but full out, my dog ran away, twangy country.
- Listening to the same songs over and over and over again, when I get annoyed if I listen to the same song more than twice
- playing his music at the loudest possible volume, no matter what time of day.
- owning a sub woofer
- leaving his music playing in his room at 2:30 in the morning, locking his door and then leaving to go party somewhere else in the dorm.

Country Music Neighbor will turn his music off if I ask him to. But I’m a little bit afraid of asking him too much, because I don’t want to appear to be a bitch if I ask him to turn it off just because I hate country music. He has agreed that should he be playing music during quiet hours and he’s not in his room, I can shut off the power to his room at the circuit breaker.

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If the stress of University or Life is getting too much…

September 18th, 2007

…and you feel that you just need to focus on something to be able to meditate and calm down, look at this:

It’s waves from a fountain reflecting on a tree in the Halifax Public Gardens.

“That is cool.” guy is Travis.

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Entering thoughts on Sophomore year

September 8th, 2007

- I’m taking three math classes this year. The schedule I posted on my blog is wrong. I talked to my academic adviser and in order to apply for honors, I need to take 2 math credits this year. I thought I would be taking 2 math, 2 physics, 1 journalism this term, but one of my physics classes is actually a math class in disguise. As it stands, I’m taking Foundations of Journalism, Linear Algebra, Intermediate Calc, Modern Physics, and Physics Tools: Theory (which should be renamed Mathematical Methods in Physics or ‘Why is Dalhousie putting me through all this mathematical misery with this hard-ass prof and 1000-page textbook with tiny type?’). Intermediate Calculus seems to be an extension of what I learned last year, with functions going into the third dimension. The prof a balding chinese man who shouts out at the class and mangles his words. (he said perdiculem and pryragors Tea-reem yesterday - I think he meant perpendicular and Pythagoras’ Theorem) He also has a tendency of being overly-corrective of the students who volunteer answers in his class - if you say something wrong, he’ll explain why it was wrong, then turn around, ask who said that, and scold you for saying a wrong answer. I think the class will be funny. The good thing about taking all the math classes, according to a fourth year physics major I’ve been talking to, is that there is a lot of subject overlap between classes, and I have no labs this term (yay!). I still think I am going to be mathed out.

- I feel so much older than all the new Eliza frosh, even though I’m younger than most of them.

- Apparently I’m in Eliza’s party hall. Everyone leaves their doors open around here, and then has music blaring or loud conversations. I actually don’t mind. I’m up so late anyway with my older, nerdy friends in the basement so by the time I get back to my room, they’re all gone. My neighbor likes to play corny country music. Luckily, he doesn’t mind me blasting my music even louder, and he does shut it off when I ask him.

- This year’s orientation week’s events were so much better than ours. For their induction ceremony, they got Dr. Tom Duck, we got ex-Prime Minister Joe Clark (I know having an ex-PM sounds more impressive than getting a physicist, but Joe Clark sucks at giving speeches, and Dr. Duck’s laser is going to Mars), for their concert, they got The Joel Plaskett Emergency, we had Pilot Speed. Unfortunately, Eliza seems to be low on spirit this year, so the events were not well attended.

- I really don’t like drunken frosh. Ugh. Last night we were trying to watch a movie in the multi, and they just kept barging in and interrupting us. One of them tried to hijack the TV to see what episode of South Park was on, even though it was an hour late. We tried to remedy the situation by placing a couch in front of the door. It didn’t stop them. They just pushed harder to get into the room. It’s like it never occured to them that ‘hey, there’s a sofa in front of this entrance to this door and the people in the room are ignoring me. Maybe I’m unwanted’. Already we’ve got several holes punched into our walls - including one through a reinforced window. However, there are some funny drunk frosh, like one who thinks he’s a ninja when he’s smashed and performs karate on the people who walk past his secret hiding spot.

- Scotiabank won’t let me get a credit card until I turn 19. Poo.

- I feel like I’m going into uncharted and deep waters in all aspects of my academic, professional, and personal life. It’s going to be interesting, but I think I’ll survive if I keep my head up.

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Halifax Bike Ride

August 29th, 2007

Now that I’m in Halifax, I actually don’t have much to do. Our student life overlords have banned all ‘hazing’ of any kind, including our ‘frosh names’ (where we give each freshman a stupid name and action that they have to do whenever we call their frosh names) and our Eliza initiations, where we blindfold them and give them the choice of drinking or wearing tabasco sauce and then have a mustard and ketchup fight. Actually, I’ve just quoted the only two instances of so-called hazing we do to the frosh, and that’s really not that bad compared to what they make the council and RAs do for their initiations, and ours are all optional.

We were given 5 days to prepare for frosh week (which is closer to 4 days than a week) and most of that involved picking the frosh names or planning initiation. All of the activities are pretty much the same as last year. Which leaves us with a lot of free time.

I took my bike down to the Halifax marina after dinner this evening. It’s a good place to bike for exercise. There are a lot of hills. I also got to see how the other half of Halifax live. It was very nice:

halifaxmarina.jpg

On a side note, I thought I should mention that I won one of the first James Randi Educational Foundation scholarships. I’ve got a signed letter from James Randi himself (or someone who can fake his signature). And the editor of Scientific American was on the scholarship committee.

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Henna Tattoo

August 28th, 2007

On the evening of my last day in Antigonish, Subha gave me this henna tattoo:


henna.jpg

The black stuff flaked off and only brown remains. I really like it, but it will only last at max two weeks.

Also, this is my first post from my dorm room for this year. Everything is unpacked and my posters are all up. I’m so tired though. I drove from Antigonish to Halifax (well really from Antigonish to the parking lot of the Wal-Mart at Bayer’s Lake, I didn’t want to negotiate Halifax city traffic). Tomorrow I have to attend two lectures tomorrow on diversity and leadership. Fun fun.

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Last day In Antigonish

August 26th, 2007

But first:

augustcsj.jpg

There are several mistakes throughout. I don’t really have time to edit them now. And second: the Peace Camp Nova Scotia website is up. Now click on that link to make it appear in Google.

As the title of this entry suggests, I have one day of this summer left in Antigonish. I move back to Halifax on Tuesday morning. I can’t believe how fast this summer went. Back in May when I was working at the crappy job at the superstore I never thought it would end… and now it’s over. I’m halfway between “Why do all good things come to an end? *sob*” and “I made it out alive!”. Combined, I suppose I’m just apathetic about it.

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If only they’d named their religion after me…

August 9th, 2007

Last night I went to the Gordie Sampson/Joel Plaskett concert. (fun fact: it was Sampson who wrote Carrie Underwood’s Jesus Take the Wheel, a song which I used to hate, but I now partly respect for its Nova Scotia connection.) ’twas good. A spotlight even exploded during the show.

At the beginning of one song, Gordie Samson asked if there were any Catherines in the room. He asked us to raise our hands and said that this song was dedicated to them.

I was astonished to see that nearly everyone around me had raised their hands, and I was wondering for a couple seconds why I had never noticed that there were so many Catherines in my hometown. But then I clued in.

His words were just muffled from where I was sitting. He’d actually asked if there were any Catholics in the room.

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Lovely Sounds of Nature

August 2nd, 2007

It’s 12:00 AM, I’ve stayed up late writing a draft of my column on the Law of Accelerating returns as I finished reading Kurzweil’s The Singularity is Near this evening.

Outside my window, my neighbor is blasting out Fall Out Boy. On the steps below my window, there are two stray cats in heat, yowling at each other. For several minutes, I couldn’t tell the difference between the two.

I guess you can tell I’m not a Fall Out Boy fan.

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On my own in Antigonowhere: Part 2, the food

July 11th, 2007

I suppose at this point I should explain why I am alone in Antigonowhere. It’s not a long story. They’re going down to New Jersey to help Dad’s new colleague move to Nova Scotia, and in the meantime they’re going to New York. They went to the UN a few days ago. They didn’t take me.
So while they’re gone, I’m on my own for meals. After having just about as many peanut butter sandwiches and enough-salt-to-kill-an-octopus TV dinners, I decided that I would cook all of my meals while my parents are away.
However, it takes me forever to chop things and I never plan things out correctly. I make almost every single possible mistake when cooking. I’ve burnt spaghetti sauce.
I did all my cooking on the weekend for the week ahead. I made curry and tortillas. It was fun. Too much fun. I had the sudden urge to make deserts, too. So I went to the Sobeys and got the ingredients to make cheesecake. And here’s how it turned out:

cheesecake.jpg

Not perfect, but pretty good for me. With the leftover ingredients I made lemon bread, and I still have some fancy Italian cheese remaining, that I have no idea what to do with.
In the end, three things can be learned from this venture:
1. I have too much desert than can be eaten.
2. There is no real point in spending 15$ for ingredients when I could buy a 6$ cheesecake already made.
3. I didn’t mess up on any of my projects. yay!

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