Thursday, September 17, 2009

Still here

Still breathing, as an elderly colleague of mine used to say... until, one day, he stopped...

I have been a bit flat today, following a slightly imperfect MAF audit yesterday, but I have been having some pretty happy days lately too...

Things I really like right now:
  • spring (masses of bluebells in the Esplanade were the highlight of today's floral offerings but kowhai and blossom and our 4 red tulips also rating pretty high)
  • recent visits to Wellington
  • swimming (2-3 times a week) and the happy I feel after I have run (while I'm running, maybe not so good :-) )
  • the cuteness of my children (J cites anecdotal evidence from imaginary scientists to support his arguments... he seems to have a grasp of the fact that large samples are required for good science that many tertiary students and some scientists lack... "A scientist told me he went in his submarine and he saw 100... no 600 of rainbow fish and they were all eating krill", ipso facto, "Some fish eat krill, eh Mummy")

Thursday, September 3, 2009

In spring even Palmy is fairyland

The pink blossom avenue in the Esplanade is like a fairy tale place and we have purple hyacinths, creamy freesias, red and pink and purple and white anemones, purple pansies, purple and white and yellow violas, hot pink dianthus, 3 yellow and orange daffodils and a red and yellow tulip in the pots on our deck. Tiny pale green leaves are starting to appear on the trees... Today was cold, but the sky was blue and the sun was bright... So many colours... No wonder T's favourite song is "I can sing a rainbow!"

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Further, faster, fitter

This evening I ran 3.1 km in 25 minutes (apart from walking across one busy road), then when the kids were in bed I made myself a healthy dinner of awesome deliciousness... medium rare steak in a wholemeal wrap with hummus, mesclun, tomato, cucumber and chickpea salad (+ pumpkin, sundried tomatoes, mint and coriander from the garden, lemon juice and madras paste)...

... On Saturday I swam 750m and cycled 5 km (though not consecutively)... And on Sunday I rode my bike 9-and-a-bit km (which is d**n close to 10 km)... even mamnaged to go down some gentle slopes without my feet in the ground, and only feeling slightly shaky (well, quite shaky really, but I stayed on and kept going)...

I am so totally going to do this triathlon! (It is 6 months away, so really quite a reasonable goal)

Full and sleepy now... milk and bed!

(I copied some of this across from facebook and it has made the formatting go psycho but I am too knackered to fix it now)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Runnin' down the road trying to loosen my load

I just ran for 20 minutes continuously, and from this useful website, I can tell you that I ran 2.4 km and burnt 852 kJ (one advantage(?) of obesity is that you get to work harder when you exercise)... After the 1st 5 minutes (during which I wheeshed and puffed like a tank engine), I found a comfortable hippo-trot, and it didn't hurt again until I got stitch right at the end. I'm pretty pleased given that my aim is to be able to run 3 km in 20 minutes (after swimming 6 lengths of the real pool and cycling 10 km) by February. My workmate and I are planning to do the Palmy TriWoman triathlon before we turn 40. She's got a couple of years, but I totally have to do it this summer!

I swam 1 km yesterday, and we're swimming again tomorrow (and we walked at lunchtime today too... I am such a jock), so now I just need to overcome the cycle-vertigo I developed during pregnancy and get on my bike and ride :-)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The queen of suburban fusion cuisine

Tonight we ate tacos with slow cookered mince, beans and lentils (1 kg beef mince browned in batches in the frypan with 2 chopped onions and a large dollop of cheat's garlic, a Tsp of coriander, a tsp of cumin and a smidgen of chilli, then chucked into the slow cooker with 2 cans budget chopped toms, a can of 4 bean mix, a couple of grated carrots and a sprinkle of salt, and left on auto for the work day), raw grated carrot, grated cheese, sliced cucumber, 1/3 of a tiny tomato each, tinned beetroot and steamed brocolli. It was consumed with gusto, apart from the broccolli which was grudgingly nibbled... It seems beetroot goes with everything!

Personally, I found it a little bland, but couldn't be bothered reaching for the chilli sauce.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Stuff that's happening

  • Beautiful crisp frosts, but ever so cold
  • Broken car, but not the head gasket, so Millie survives to drive another day
  • Awesome car-lending D who caught the bus to work for 2 days so I could drive the kids to creche in comfort
  • Weird automatic car
  • Warm fire, Idiot's cookies and Battlestar Galactica
  • N feeding kids dinner on his nights now (an unexpected outcome of the Family Court counselling I believed was a waste of time)... and have used the time to go jogging twice (albeit in a pathetic staggering panting way)... 20 lamposts, then 26... in pairs with singles walked between... next week shooting for 30 in threes.
  • Soup with smoked chicken stock and barley, pulses and pumpkin in the slow cooker, then carrot matchsticks and brocolli and assorted leaves from the garden in at the end... good contrast between the soupy broth and crisp and fresh veges... and the kids liked it too!
  • Swimming with colleagues once or twice a fortnight
  • Working harder on looking professional for work and getting some positive comments
  • Haircut that I like
  • Emotions that crash on me unexpectedly if I stop concentrating on positive, leaving me in the toilet at work with my head in my hands
  • Weekly gaming keeping me sane... how do non-gamers escape?
  • Kids sleeping better, so I am too, and both abed by 7:30 tonight, so 2 hours + to myself when the chores were done!
  • Divorce goes uncontestable on Tuesday if N hasn't contested it yet, which I don't actually know. Still, it is done, and cannot be undone, just delayed...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The evolutionary significance of appreciating beauty

Today my feelings are hurting me (James, source of accurate descriptions, has given me this one). Where is my handsome prince? Where is my luxurious castle? Where is my beautiful swan-body? Was I cheated, or since I am clearly not in line for a happy ever after, perhaps... perhaps... I am evil?

So yeah... today... emotions not good... concentration shot to sh*t... walking around in a blurry cloud of misery. Poor concentration is certainly not a survival trait.

But this evening was beautiful. So beautiful it broke my bubble of bad Red and yellow autumn trees glowed in the golden light. the clouds were fluffy and peachy. The gorgeous young man next door smiled his sweet smile and gave me a cute little wave as I drove in, and a full rainbow presided over the washing line as I brought in the washing. And hey... here I am back in the world again!

At the start of the year, after a walk to Dawson Falls on Mt Taranaki, A asked me why I thought we evolved to appreciate beauty. I couldn't come up with a reason. But now I'm thinking... too much misery and stress is not good for us (I went to an awesome "resilience" seminar at work a while ago which touched on this. I intended to blog about at the time and maybe will soon). We need something to activate our "happy" hormones and neurological pathways or we get horribly depressed and life feels like it's not worth living (interestingly we are not the only animals that suffer from depression) and we can't be having sex or eating ALL the time... so maybe "beauty" pathways and "fun" pathways have co-opted those other pathways to keep us happy more of the time. Because let's face it... unless you're in a flight or fight situation, stress is really NOT that great

What do you think?

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Still Feeling Tragic

Alas alack!

Alo alas alack
Alamus alackus alant

'Allo... Alas alack! Alarmist! I lack kiss... a lant???

Monday, May 11, 2009

A very obliging little monster

T: "Roarrr roarrr, I'm a monster"
Me (cowering): "Ooooh ooooh. Please monster, please don't eat me"
T: "Okay"

Friday, May 1, 2009

Appropriately tentative

In an email from a colleague, she was unwittingly apt... "You can diffidently put me down for [that task]". If only she knew... or maybe better not?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Seeing the world through new eyes

I got new glasses before Easter. I think they look kind of cool, but unfortunately the only picture I have is this one my Mum took of me in my dressing gown with my hair all messy...
What I really wish I could show you is my new clarity of vision. I'm loving the crisp clean edges and bright shiny colours... helped along by the golden April sunshine and the crunchy leaves underfoot. I'm having an especially beautiful autumn this year!

Monday, April 13, 2009

No longer milking it...

Highlights of a fantastic Easter weekend...

  • Staying with the wonderful Ruth, D, H and K.

  • Finally getting to watch some Flight of the Conchords... the 1st 6 episodes of season 1... I loved it... especially the Bowie episode and the 'if you're into it' song Brett sings to Coco.

  • Big yellow bus adventure on Friday to Oriental Bay, admiring the swampy waterfront gardens and the skateboarders, hanging out in two very different, but clearly enjoyable playgrounds, having a picnic and looking at boats, and our first ever crocodile ride... ding ding! My kids also paddled in a most-of-body immersion kind of way... and D kindly got wet instead of me:-)

  • Saturday, another beautiful day... walked in Otari with Ruth, H and K and another friend and two of her kids... enjoyed the treetop bridges and lookouts, and the alpine garden sandpit (we are a menace!). The troop picnic area has a very nice toilet now!

  • Fluffy dinner on Saturday at the Mexican Cafe in Newtown... very yum, but closed early, so we adjourned for dessert to a nearby Fluffy-dwelling. It was lovely and I am so lucky to be friends with such awesome women! Extremely grateful to the wonderful D, who not only babysat, but put BOTH my wee darlings to bed!

  • On Sunday, Easter bunny left eggs in the garden for our little darlings (and gave me one too). We drove back to Palmy, but T woke in the traffic jam south of Waikanae, and inspired by Friday, I picked up food from the petrol station in Otaki, and headed for the beach... first time at a beach alone with both kids. It was great... lovely sunshine, although the breeze was chilly, I took their trousers and pants/nappy off , but left their fleeces on (an autumnal fashion statement). Because J is cautious round water, keeping track of both of them was fairly easy... initially J dug a paddling hole for me to fill with buckets of water, If T got away, his protective big brother charged after him, bullrush style... eventually J also braved the waves, to help collect water (apparently I wasn't fast enough) and then I had to bribe them both out with the promise of icecreams. We ate them at the playground a couple of blocks back from the beach, which has very cool merry-go-round, that I'm sure is dangerous by modern standards

  • Today, Brunch at Cafe Cuba with Giffy and her friends, a trip to the Esplanade and a ride on the train

And most excellent of all (though right now my breasts are huge and hurting)... with the support of Ruth and especially D (who both boys adore) I have weaned my little T, who actuallyseems mostly unfazed... so long as I let him keep the light on and "read" for a while before he drops off to sleep. And this means that all of bed-time takes less time, and tonight both boys were asleep by 7:40, and since I have not got the new episode of Dollhouse yet (my other reason for blogging slackness), I wrote this. Now I must do the dishes, make lunches, pack bags for tomorrow, and sleep, for sleep is good.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Dear Darwin!

It is 200 years today since the birth of Charles Darwin (many happy returns Chuck, we love you!). There's a Nature special, some of which is even open access, Scientific American has an awesome podcast, with Darwin himself speaking and the ever wonderful David Attenborough discusses why you'd have to be incredibly blinkered not to believe in evolution. Enjoy!

For he's a jolly good fellow... and so say all of us!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

If today were a Covenant game

Motifs: "Torrential rain", "Windowless spaces", "Grey", Emergency vehicles".

Conventions: "If I keep doing stuff, I'll make it through to bedtime", "Laughter makes life bearable", "Tomorrow will be better".

I think my character has a story level consequence of "Makes bad choices".

Unsustainable development

We have emergency services stickers with cool fire engines and ambulances.

J was dry overnight then did wees in the toilet. Then he got dressed, including asking which drawers his clothes were in and finding them for himself.

I am running out of stickers!

*Edited to add. Tonight he did poos in the toilet even though he already had his nappy on, went to bed beautifully and was miraculously asleep by 7:40... but we used the last ambulance!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Who is Dr Bunny now?

As you can see, I finally updated my profile last night with some actual words... It's too long so I'll change it soon, probably to something less job-oriented. I'm posting it here, so it doesn't get lost because I think it is an interesting part of the refocussing process I'm going through (thanks to Giffy for pointing that out!)

I'm a single parent with two beautiful boys J, aged 4 years, and T who is 19 months. I feel very lucky to be their Mummy and am learning with them as they grow! I was once (and forever) a plant biochemist, but recently fell prey to funding shortages and my poor publication record. I'm now working as a Science Facility Manager or "Compliance Guy" (what my position was called before I was appointed). I'm finding the transition difficult, but starting to see the funny side... Compliance Guy would make an awesome super-villain. In fact, one of my current performance objectives is "to build my evil empire of beautifully compliant scientists." My boss even approved it; but told me I had to word it more subtly to disguise my blatant ambition! Mwahahaha! I also think it would be cool to make a Reality TV spoof called Extreme Compliance, but I don't have the skills or technology (and it has probably been done).

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Beware... voracious computers may consume you!

"Warning, computers fed off this board" says the sign on a grey metal cupboard at work. Sadly, the sign doesn't tell you when it will be feeding time. and I've never seen the zookeepers or their hopeful charges.

T spoke sentences

"Apricot not yum".

"Out there blow... pffffffffffff" (He was telling me it was windy and I must have looked blank, so he blew to illustrate).

"Oooo look, Jessie... ball" (his friend had a balloon)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Another study states the obvious... but nothing will change

"Our study [also] indicates that children and adolescents who may face the greatest risks of vitamin and mineral deficiency are the least likely to be taking supplements," said Ulfat Shaikh, lead study author, assistant professor of pediatrics at the UC Davis School of Medicine and a clinician at UC Davis Children's Hospital.
"The study findings seem to bear out the hypothesis that cost is a barrier to children getting vitamins. Among households considered below the poverty level, 22 percent of children used vitamins. The number jumped to 43 percent among those not considered poor. Among households not enrolled in the federal Food Stamp Program, 38 percent of children used vitamins. But in households using food stamps, vitamin use was around 18 percent. Children in 36 percent of households where there is no hunger use vitamins; only 15 percent use vitamins in households where there is "food insecurity and hunger.""
U.S. families living in poverty are less likely to be able to provide adequate nutrition for their children or to supplement their diets with vitamins to compensate... I'm guessing the situation is probably similar here... so, how do we change it?

Monday, February 2, 2009

"I don't think 9 billion [people] is better than 1 billion"

James Lovelock, the scientist who originated the Gaia theory has written a new book (The Vanishing Face of Gaia) and New Scientist has an interview with him.

Read it... It's pretty extreme stuff:
"I think it's wrong to assume we'll survive 2 °C of warming: there are already too many people on Earth. At 4 °C we could not survive with even one-tenth of our current population. The reason is we would not find enough food, unless we synthesised it. Because of this, the cull during this century is going to be huge, up to 90 per cent. The number of people remaining at the end of the century will probably be a billion or less."
I don't really have enough background to assess this at the moment, and I'm very sure my values differ from his a whole heap, but if this was a marketing ploy, it was effective, because I definitely want to read the book now!

Terraforming planet earth

Now you can replant a forest by dropping seedlings out of helicopters... Awesome! Has anyone got a spare helicopter lying around for a wee bit of ecoactivism? I fancy reforesting the Manawatu!

Should I delete the last entry?

Or should I let it stand as a record of a bad couple of days?

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Who is Dr Bunny?

You may have noticed I no longer have a profile. It was woefully wrong but is proving hard to replace. You may also have noticed that I've always put my career first in any description of me. Before I had kids, being a research scientist pretty much defined me, at least as far as I was concerned. Then I became a parent, and I was a research scientist who was also a mummy... Yes, probably that way round. But now... what do I say?

My current job certainly isn't me... I mean, I think I can do it well enough... I'm enough of a control freak, but I've met people who really are compliance nerds. They are more than a tad scary... and not in ways I am, I hope :-)

So primarily I'm a mummy... mostly parenting alone, which is hard... but I'm trying not to let that difficulty define me.

And I'm passionate about... My kids of course, child development and psychology... And biology, mostly, though other science too... Books, primarily science fiction, though if a friend recommends it, I'll give it a go (and when I find the time, movies-or-TV-on-the-computer)... Mucking around on-line (I get lonely when I don't)... Politics, I'm still a greenie and a socialist and a feminist, and I still care much more than I let on... Roleplaying, sometimes, at the moment even, fresh from Kapcon, thinking about running Covenant, and with Pendragony plans to kill a dragon in a week or 2... Food and associated issues, sometimes obsessively, enjoyment tempered by past disorder... Exercise too, especially tramping and social sport, neither of which I get to do.

Usually I do what I do with enthusiasm... sometimes it starts as a show, but with effort, I can make it real.

But who is Dr Bunny? I lost my career, but I'm still here, so what's left to say about me?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Rainbow rice is nice

We have an on-going glut of zucchini from the garden, which my boys refuse to eat in visible form... a few weeks ago I started making this, which is healthyish, reasonably quick and tasty (and not bad reheated for lunch next day either). Every time I cook it, J says delightedly "This is so yum" and actually eats a large portion... so I think it is probably a useful vegetable input tool, and I think it's yum too.

Nice Rainbow Rice

Cook 1 cup of rice however you usually would, leaving it slightly on the dry side (basmati or long grain or a mixture with brown rice)... I put 1 c basmati rice with 2 and 1/8 c cold water in a big jug and nuke it for about 20 minutes until the water is absorbed.

Cut 200-300g raw animal protein thing (I've used beef schnitzel or chicken breasts or thighs) into strips and mix with 2 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp prepared garlic (or a 3 cloves of real stuff), 1-2 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp Indian-style curry paste (I am using a mild madras at the moment)... allow to marinade in fridge if you have time (which you probably don't)...
OR shred 1 cup or so of smoked chicken or leftover cooked chicken... in this case I mix the marinade and add it when I am cooking it...
OR use a tin of drained, rinsed kidney beans.

Chop 1 small onion finely.

Assemble 2-3 cups of grated/very finely chopped colousful veges... whatever you have... at the moment I start with 1 grated carrot, 1 grated zucchini... then add a selection of: red cabbage, ordinary cabbage, broccolli, spinach, silverbeet, capsicum, runner/green beans, frozen corn and/or peas... use whatever YOU have now.

Heat a heavy frypan (large enough to contain your food heap) with enough oil to cover the bottom... Seal raw meat, then add onion and cook until meat is cooked and onion is translucent, stirring as required to make sure it doesn't stick in your pan... or cook onion 1st and add cooked meat or beans and soy + spices. Add veges, cover pan and allow them to steam until cooked, stirring occasionally (about 5 minutes). Stir in rice, mushing up all the clumps so the flavour will spread through. Allow to stand for 5 minutes or so to allow the rice to absorb the yummy liquid.

Serve garnished with chopped fresh tomatoes and cucumber, maybe some avocado... fresh peas, coriander or parsley are nice on top too... so is chopped gherkin.

This does us two meals... so I'm guessing that in recipe book terms it serves about 3-4 people.

This is a Karen recipe... so if it used excess from the garden or stuff you had in the fridge already, and you enjoyed eating it, you did good :-)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

I've had this picture of Dione, one of Saturn's moons on my desktop for the last week or so and am still enjoying it, so I am sharing... I love iGoogle and Nasa's image of the day

Happy happy!

Morgue and Cal's civil union yesterday had such a fantastic buzz that I am still in afterglow! They both looked so happy that it was impossible not to be happy with them... from the awesome music when they walked in (man, I need a copy of that song) to the mega-dancing session at the end, I had a great time and discovered that at some level I actually do still believe in the whole love and ever after thing, at least for other people (though I am certainly glad that I am not still living out my own horrible mistake).

So congratulations (again) Morgue and Cal! Confounding expectation, I totally believe in you... and last night and today is the happiest I've been in a long time...

I am a big romantic sook!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Congratulations Morgue and Cal!

Nice things happen to nice people that I know!

Kapcon 18: The joy of being several someones else

Round 1: Shelter Me
GM: Marcus Bone

Like last year's "Fear of Dreaming", this game really was one of the highlights of my con! Interestingly, I found it a bit less intense than last year, probably partly cos I have been gaming regularly, and partly because my character's fairy obsession took the edge off the stress for me (while making it much more stressful for some of the other characters). Still, it was plenty horrifying, and our interaction with the dead Nazi psychiatrist "bad doctor" and his victim will stay with me for a long time! Marcus's GMing style gives really excellent scope for players to interact and develop their characters' stories, and this group took advantage of that... there's been a lot of comment on the excellent roleplaying in this game (which also ran in round 6) on NZRaG... I absolutely agree that Mash's creepy obsessive list-making was truly disturbing (and worryingly reminscent of some people I know and love) and I'd recommend the sequel next year (so long as you don't take MY place).

Round 2: FRUP: One of our dinosaurs is missing
GM: Ivan Towlson

Cool premise and great fun... I did a lousy job of roleplaying my character who was someone else's minion, and a muscle-bound fighter... Strangely, not my usual choice in D and D.... Enjoyed the rest of the party's roleplaying and all the humans dressed up as various monster manual beasties... Loved the reserve where new beasties were being "bred" and was delighted by the appearance of real live dinosaurs (only in the game, silly). Good, but a bit light
following Shelter me... would've worked better for me the other way round

Round 3: Sneaking off for a swim and putting kids to bed

Unfortunately J eavesdropped on me asking his Grandma if I could go for a swim, so I clearly failed my sneakiness roll... however, the double tantrum (if one starts, the other follows to get in on the attention) had subsided by the time I arrived back at my folks' place and they were all eating happily. I was convincing enough in the maternal GM role to settle two very demanding PCs. In fact, I came out from feeding and settling my littlest darling to find the other wee darling asleep on his dozing Grandma, so just had to carry him to bed... easiest ever! A busy day was had by all!

LARP: Mafia 2071

I enjoyed the LARP this year (and I didn't run away... yay!). I played Rhond1a, a Stanford business graduate who had fallen foul of a nasty sexually-harassing corporate boss, ended up running
on-line gambling sites for the Neo-Mafia to launder money, and was looking for a way back into the legitimate corporate world. I made a couple of pretty satisfying deals... one with the Malandrinos to open a joint-venture casino that would serve as an interface to attract new clients, and another working as a consultant for a corporation to help them minimise their visible profits... not quite the legitimacy I was looking for, but I like to think I played my part in making the head of our family Don of NeoSteelsburg...

From my POV, a problem with this Mafia wake scenario was that there was not much action to watch or tag along with... to get the most out of it, you really had to walk up and engage other people in conversation, and I wasn't feeling awesomely confident in my roleplaying abilities (having had a panic attack and run away from last year's LARP)... so it was hard work for me... but well worth it!

Round 4: Games on Demand-Covenant
GM: Malcolm Craig

Last year I had to play Games on Demand cos of never knowing when my 6-month-old would need feeding... this year I was determined to play one cos last year rocked. This didn't disappoint! Malcolm was a great GM...

Covenant is awesome too... you play members of a a cult that was preparing for an apocalyptic event that never came... the use of motifs (images that crop up repeatedly within the context of the game... ours were London fog, timepieces, crying babies, puddles and ? ) gives plenty of scope for beautiful cinematic imagery which I loved! I actually came away with pictures... my character and her lover with coffee on the steps of the British museum, an armed confrontation in an abandoned docklands warehouse... cliched, perhaps, but very very compelling in context.

Relationships are central to the game... and in this scenario, they were truly f**ked up (as you might expect). Combats allow you to draw on motifs, on the conventions of your cell group within the cult (core beliefs you share... Suffering can be avoided, science trumps art) and your own edges (attributes and relationships)... the game itself was very tense, with lots of ugly dialogue and action...

My character Leonie was sleeping with an arsehole called Trent (one of her edges) who actually tried to kill her! Talk about plumbing new depths of relationship nightmare through roleplaying!

This was definitely my other favourite game at this year's Kapcon. You can read about Covenant... and I bought the PDF for $10 at RPGNow (it's the 1st new RPG I've bought in years if that is any recommendation... but I have a copy now, so if you know me you can totally check it out)

Round 5: Breach of Containment
GM: Me

Not my best effort... the players felt there was too much science and I explained it badly and probably came across as an arrogant nerd.... and sadly I couldn't convince most people to score me so I had a better chance at a spot prize.
[I had a bit of a self pity wallow after I f**ked up my game... and I apologise to anyone I talked to while that was happening, cos really my life hardly sucks at all these days :-) ]

Round 6: For me, there was no round 6

Still and all, life gets easier... and nothing highlights how much easier it's got than trying to do something that last year felt like an almost impossible struggle, and finding it almost frivolously easy! I got to the same number of sessions this year (apart from my sustained LARPing effort), but overall my Kapcon felt more satisfying because of being able to hang out and chat, and not having to race away immediately the breaks began.

I'm already looking forward to next year and I have 2 ideas for games to run... and I promise... whichever one I go with... there's not much science in either! See you at Kapcon!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Instructions for Bioterrorists

Today I printed out the delightfully titled "SENTINEL LABORATORY GUIDELINES FOR SUSPECTED AGENTS OF BIOTERRORISM" to refer to at work. Sadly, it is only packing and shipping instructions for diagnostic and clinical specimens, infectious substances, and biological agents, but for 30 seconds there I actually loved my job!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Breach of Containment

Tonight we playtested my game for Kapcon... It was fun, though I worry that all my players were science geeks too and it may require too high a degree of that kind of geekery! I will post about it after the weekend when spoilers won't matter...

I am fascinated to see if the real game resembles the play-test in anything beyond the characters and initial scenario!

It is late now! G'night world.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Research has shown that the most erotic thing a man can do for a woman (after she has had a baby) is the dishes?!

... and Ali G tells Naomi Woolf she could make lots of money as a prostitute... what more can I add?

Friday, January 9, 2009

I do like you today...

I was burgled 2 weeks before Christmas... the bast**ds took my computer, my camera, 3 months worth of kid photos, 2 presents for the kids from their English grandparents and a whole whack of my self-confidence and security. Fortunately my insurance covered some of the above.

I finally got my modem this morning, though being fully mummified today have not not had much chance to make the rounds of my favourite places... and strangely all day today I have had the Vodaphone jingle jangling through my consciousness.

I think the reason is this: Being without a computer in the context of Christmas holidays and work's recent crackdown on internet use has made me realise how web-dependent I am... I pay my bills on-line, I get my news on-line... but most importantly it connects me... and in the context of my current existence, that is no small thing! I was unbelievably lonely without a computer... so to all my favourite blogs... to Ruth, Morgue, No Right Turn, Susan, Cal, Jenni, Carla, Dan... to my Gmail chat buddies, to iGoogle, to New Scientist, Science Daily, Nature News, The Panda's thumb and many others... I haven't finished catching up with you all yet, but really, truly, madly, deeply... I DO like you today!!