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Summary| Highlights| 2005 (Year View)

01.01.2005Saturday 1 January – The Year of Bronwen

That just made my day – I have just got home from the New Year’s celebrations at the Lion’s Den and Bronwen just phoned to give me the long-distance version of a New Year’s kiss. There’s not much more I could want – apart from, I guess, my own personal flying saucer (or TARDIS, if they’re out of stock), unlimited lifetime supply of chocolate (with complimentary free dental cover), and Bronwen herself.
I had to go to the Den to pick up Mum, so I did. I then didn’t have to do anything, so I also did.
Jade and Ella came over and we spent some time talking about things and so forth.
Comment by Maz – Saturday 1 January 2005, 2:58 PM
  I'm back now... did you all miss me? I have some ideas for random things to do at uni which I will go write down shortly. Hi kathryn.
Comment by Ned – Sunday 2 January 2005, 1:55 AM
  Welcome back. I hope you didn’t get sunburnt.
Comment by io – Sunday 2 January 2005, 2:28 AM
  Hi Maz.
Comment by kathryn – Sunday 2 January 2005, 4:31 PM
  Hi Maz.

02.01.2005Sunday 2 January – Mum’s Birthday

I phoned Sarah and had a short chat to ensure Mum’s birthday present was on schedule, and then had a stupid argument with Mum, about almost nothing, which made me (and her, presumably) feel bad. I then got over that and decided it wasn’t realistic to go back to Brisbane tomorrow, particularly seeing as I’ve nothing at all to do down there until uni starts (as opposed to the nothing at all I have to do up here until uni starts and I have to go back down there). I then gave Mum a little birthday present, and suddenly ended this paragraph.
Inline with my resolution to go outside and do nothing when it’s not raining, rather than not go outside and do nothing, I walked up to Dad’s, but he wasn’t home, so I figured that was a good excuse to say I’d fulfilled my resolution and could now go back inside. This was a good plan, but just as I’d showered and got myself the last of my birthday cake and swum it in cream, Jade, Shan, Ella and Kylie turned up. They wanted to know if I wanted to go to the den for pizza, which I did. It ends up they were just going there to pick up pizza and take it back out to Home Rule, so I ended up out there, and to cut an otherwise longer paragraph shorter, stayed the night.

03.01.2005Monday 3 January – Jade’s Birthday

I woke up before anyone else, so went for a bit of a wander down the creek until people began to wake, at which time we went for a swim in the dam, made a birthday cake, and then Shan and Kylie dropped me back home. I then made the mistake of drinking several glasses of strong apple juice. Apparently, not eating anything other than a small slice of cream cheese all day, and then drinking lots of apple juice, is bad for one’s short-term health.
I went for a short and leisurely walk, due to aforementioned apple juice, and then drove up to Dad’s to arrange tomorrow.

04.01.2005Tuesday 4 January – Clint’s Birthday

Continuing the trend of birthdays – today is Clint’s birthday. He’s now lacking a digital preamp as well. Mum and I went to town, dropping Dad off at Sue’s as she’s going away and he’s housesitting there again, and that’s about all I can say here about today.
Comment by Kieran Jacobsen – Friday 7 January 2005, 2:43 PM
  Can i get authorization?

05.01.2005Wednesday 5 January – Caught Dogs & Vampires

I woke up early – I had a few things on my mind. Today has been awfully hot. Sarah phoned while Mum was at work, asking me to get Mum to phone her back urgently. Shan arrived and we drove up the mountain to pick up some bike parts. Shan and I got my new hard drive and took it up to his place to test. It works on his computer. I left a note for Mum, which she didn’t read. Sarah phoned and left a message. The phone inside broke – the buttons don’t work. Mum got Sarah’s message. Mum phoned Sarah. Sarah was angry that I hadn’t given Mum her message. Mum phoned Shan. Shan gave the phone to me. I talked to Mum. Shan drove me home. I drove to Cooktown. I went to the council. I spoke to Matt the Dogcatcher. I picked up Grunt and Roden(t). I took them to their home. I tied them up and gave them biscuits. I found some jellybeans in the fridge. I sat in front of the fan. I bought a milkshake. I dropped in at Sue’s and watched a Godzilla movie with Dad. I went for my evening walk but nearly died of heat exhaustion, and only went halfway. My head pounded for a while from the hot and seeing didn’t feel good so I had a long shower. I discovered that vampires do exist, albeit mortally, and that drinking your own blood leads to a weaker immune system. Happy in this knowledge, I went to bed.
Comment by io – Thursday 6 January 2005, 1:48 AM
  That's a lot of eyes.. Even for eye-oh.

06.01.2005Thursday 6 January – Peachy & Cooktown

It’s once again hot, and once again, I’m off to town. I drove Mum to work and picked dad up from Sue’s, went and checked that Sarah’s dogs were still alive, bought gas, sat in the Top Pub for a little while, ate half a plate of nachos, and drove back to the Den. I went for a swim at the Den, or more accurately, lazed around in the water, and then drove Mum home. I’ve since discovered that I need to install a service pack to get support for hard drives greater than 137 GB, but getting a service pack via this slow dialup connection isn’t very feasible.
I went for an evening walk, as usual, and had a lung pang. I’d had a minor pang yesterday, become worried, and come home early, but today I pressed on – not least because I was already at the furthest point of my walk and had to keep going to get home. Fortunately for my confidence, I didn’t experience any more pangs, and had an uneventful walk home.
Shan is downloading XP’s service pack two for me, it’s finally cooled down a little, dinner was nice, I spoke to Bronwen for a couple of hours, and I don’t need to get up at any particular time tomorrow, so it’s looking peachy.
Comment by Kieran Jacobsen – Friday 7 January 2005, 2:42 PM
  What os? my xp machine doesnt have a sp's (well didn't) and i haven't got any hdd issues.
Comment by Ned – Friday 7 January 2005, 4:53 PM
  I will try installing SP2 tonight or tomorrow and see how it goes.

07.01.2005Friday 7 January – Joneses & Unusual Contractions

I was woken by Jean, calling to give a message to Julie, which I dutifully delivered. I then had a quiet morning, relaxing and rejuvenating from my distastefully early waking, before Shan and Kylie dropped over to drop off a CD with service pack two for XP on it, and we went out to Home Rule for a swim, where I ended up spending the evening.
There’s a form of contraction where the first two letters of a word are kept, and all the ones in the middle replaced with a number representing how many letters were replaced – the shortened form of “internationalisation” (except normally with a zed, zee, I mean), “i18n”, is the most famous of these. I was discussing the web and web standards, someone said w3c, I said n7n... it all began as an embarrassingly geeky joke, but it occurred to me that is an easy to say, easy to remember, very short, and even symmetrical, domain name – and a suitably geeky contraction of – so I went and checked its availability. and were both already registered, and I could sense a veritable horde of desirous internet users swarming to steal away my domain before I could get it, so I registered it – in my defence, it was very late at night. I haven’t yet thought of a reason, but I’m now the proud owner of – complete with catchy slogan “I am not a geek, I am an artiste”. I was impressed with the speed of registration too – the domain was setup and resolving to my server within ten minutes of me purchasing it.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:19 PM
  Holy mackeral, he is an artiste? Son reduced to initials and number. Goodo. I think. I am still struggling with the intricacies of using phone. Okay until one has to speak. Okay, international know now that hath a mother who is phone shy and still thinketh that this or that button on compewteur is either "the ejector seat" or "The Bombe". Ooer. Look askance at the groaning thing and press this and that with a rod, with eyes Wide Shut. You think I exaggerate? Heh, heh. Asketh

08.01.2005Saturday 8 January – Spider Web

Today a spider built a web to my nose while I was sitting at my computer. I think this is an indication that the spider had been inside in front of the computer for too long.
I am VERY ANGRY and having a SHOCKINGLY BAD NIGHT. Everything is pissing me off. My chair sucks. The pillow sucks. Everything sucks. KILL KILL KILL ANGER ANGER ANGER. I’d go to bed but my bed sucks, my sheets suck, there’s guaranteed to be wrinkles, it will become tangled, and everything will go wrong. Ok, I’m better now. The light drizzle is quite pleasant. This music isn’t too bad either.
Comment by B. – Monday 10 January 2005, 1:05 PM
  May one ask what induced this little bout of aggression? I know having anyone walk all over you sucks (that the said someone is only a centimetre tall could add to the putdown). But hardly justification.
Comment by Ned – Monday 10 January 2005, 2:04 PM
  One may.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:28 PM
  Tch tch. Temper, temper. A loud bout of mowing WEt Season rabid lawn-growth in the early morn shall shut up mouth of The Precious Thing/Brat. Flaming well hope so......Sigh.ned, distraughtouuthrourt Madroni,mater. ma. sigh.(Hope so ALL of youze read It, of the tantrums doth it...lawnmowing, sweat etc) Etc

09.01.2005Sunday 9 January – Online

I had planned to, but because of something, didn’t. Needless to say,
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:30 PM
  Yes, um , yes.....needless to say

10.01.2005Monday 10 January – Dentistically Woeful

I drove into town, queued for a while, and returned mentally debilitated. In other words, I went to the dentist. Dentists are a guaranteed cure for those not already valetudinarily inclined.
I explained to the dentist how I’d always had sensitive teeth, but recently they’d become much more sensitive. He had a look for all of a minute, and said “no wonder”. I apparently have a mouthful of decay, indicative of some underlying problem – probably dietary. He then asked me some diet related questions, informed me that I ground my teeth and asked if I thought I did. I must then have looked worried as he explained that the dental decay itself is not abnormal – I guess the level of decay must be. He has booked me three appointments. I didn’t feel very good after this, so fuelled up the car, bought some things from the supermarket, and drove home, stopping at Sue’s to see Dad for a while.
I ended up staying at the Den until they shut, picking up Dad on his way back from Sue’s, and trying to comprehend the seemingly unfathomable linked horseshoes and their ring.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:34 PM
  Is easy. Just have to fang the upright thing onto the downright and then do a simple twist nd at same time to do a sort of righthand semblance whilst holding the upright and also the round sway at half knots and stand on your head and imbibe 3 Jim Beams and swear, Lots. Is total easy. I canna sae that Oi have dunnit, mon, but oi have tried, begorrah. Oh, yessuh.

11.01.2005Tuesday 11 January – Cooktown, Kickboxing & Goldfish

I walked up to Shan’s, taking the CD with service pack two on it. It doesn’t work on his computer either, so I guess it’s corrupt. We then tried burning it again, and once again, it was corrupt, so we tried with a different brand of CD, and even tried burning random other files and they’re all corrupt too. I guess something has gone wrong at his end.
  Jade, Shan, Kylie, Ella and I all went to town, where we did some shopping and ate at the Mad Cow before Shan and Kylie went to kickboxing training. I had a short chat to Sarah, walked down the wharf with Jade and Ella, and watched Kylie and Shan fall over several times during training. We then went and picked up three goldfish, one of which is black and one of which has very large bulging eyes, and a largish fish tank. Ella had to carry the goldfish in a bucket between her legs all the way home, which was mildly amusing at the time.

12.01.2005Wednesday 12 January – The School of Rock

Today started normally, had a reasonable middle, and ended badly. I slept in, as per usual. It was actually sunny when I woke, so after the obligatory period online, I went for a walk out to the halfway spot, took some photos, and walked back to the Home Rule Bridge where I lay on a rock with my shirt over my head, not noticing the dark clouds until it began to pour on me. It stopped raining a few minutes later, by which time I was soaked and had just finished navigating the rocks back to the road. It’s surprisingly difficult to walk on slippery rocks just under the water’s surface when it’s raining – the water becomes almost opaque from the rain hitting it. Fortunately, the camera’s case is mostly waterproof.
I walked up to Dad’s and discussed baby birds, fallen trees, and lawnmowers – before stumbling home just before it got too dark, trying vainly to avoid the sharp rocks they try to make us believe is gravel. I saw the moon framed through a gap in the trees – just a sliver, but the whole outline was visible. It was very beautiful, but being male, logical, and Bronwenless, I wondered why sometimes the whole moon can be seen even when it’s nowhere near full.
  Shan messaged me as I was eating dinner, making me eat faster so I could drive up to his place in time to watch “Cold Mountain”, which doesn’t come out until tomorrow, so we ended up watching “The School of Rock” instead. I then made the mistake of checking my email, where I discovered disturbing news, so came home earlier than I might have otherwise. Now I don’t feel fantastic and can’t sleep.

13.01.2005Thursday 13 January – The Day before Tomorrow

I have concluded that I think too much – but thinking that didn’t help me. I’m also going to take Damian’s lead, and refer to it as “a tendency to intellectualise everything”, which makes much more sense than “thinking too much”, and sounds like a better attribute to boast. Besides, the words are longer, and long words make me superior. Back to more immediate matters – not sleeping last night means I’m tired, and tomorrow I lose most of my lower jaw, but looking to the brighter side of life for a moment – Bronwen is the nicest girl I’ve ever met, and for incomprehensible and presumably erroneous reasons, likes me.
They say there are doers and thinkers, so I thought I’d think about doing – do, does, doest, dost, doth, doeth, did, done, didst, doing, done, didn’t, doesn’t, don’t, dae, dinna, disna... and it was at this point that I stopped thinking, because I’m in denial of any Scottish heritage I may have, without admitting I do.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:46 PM
  Argh. Cannae resist wroiting somethink, mon. Bronwen, a nice Scottish name, obviously has foine taste. Dunnae wot the gel is gunna dew with your foine self withart yer lower half of lower jaw. Must be love if she is game to take yer foine self on without yer lower jar, mon.

14.01.2005Friday 14 January – El Dentista

Cooktown through the dust, like a dimly lit vision, preceded the dentist, aching jaw and tightly clenched fists. Heavy road construction equipment within one’s headspace decries gaiety, while jowl distension precipitates an inane stupidity.
El dentista says that while he could probably fix my teeth, it would be a long, painful, and expensive process and still might not work, so he recommends I get the lot pulled and get dentures instead. I am not sure what to do, because he says it risks drastically altering my facial expression, and I might require facial reconstruction after. That’s what I worried anyway – the truth isn’t quite as exciting.
The dentist took two x-rays, poked me with sharp things, checked my teeth, spoke in complex dental jargon to his assistant and then did one filling. The filling itself was good; I didn’t even know he’d given me a needle until he told me not to eat until after the anaesthetic had worn off. Having what feels like heavy road construction equipment inside my head isn’t what I’d call joy, but as far as dental appointments go, it was good. I’m also a bit less worried about it all than I was before – it seems I just need a series of rather mundane fillings, rather than having all my teeth pulled out and full facial reconstruction like I was originally worried about. He did say that he probably wouldn’t have time to do the lot though, so I might have to get them finished in Brisbane. He also changed my last appointment from the Friday to the Monday, meaning I can potentially return to Brisbane earlier.
On the way home, it occurred to me how much it has changed up here. It wasn’t that long ago that anyone I met on the road would wave – now very few do. It’s been ages since anyone died from a duel or anyone got off murder because everyone petitioned in support of raw justice, although I did hear of a petition just the other week. It’s fast becoming like any other place, except we don’t need vehicle roadworthy certificates and the road rules are nicely summed up by “drive according to prevailing conditions”.
Science must have been far more interesting when you could choose between being a plenist or a vacuist. Now the terms are more suited to the study of psychology than anything else – expect perhaps the great blonde debate.
I phoned Angie, and then Silas, after getting back from my walk. He’s now in Cairns. I then gave Mum my present, before phoning Bronwen for two and a half hours or so, breaking my newly made policy of not phoning after midnight. I went to bed at a quarter to three.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 8:55 PM
  Plenist or vacuist. Flaming heck., what does this mean? And yes, we still wave to all maniacs who are so foolish as to have a go at trevasssssssssing the goat track in The Wet. Is always a potential comedy( one can only laugh whilst going darnthetrack sideways) but is okay ...The Den (Lions Den HOtel) is a healthy 400,000 miles away. Yeah, okay , I exaggerate, but if you think I exaggerate...............The Wet EXAGGERATES. And I mean, ....really....10 inches overnight is pipsqueak and to be just mildly laughed at.

15.01.2005Saturday 15 January – Flights & Music

I booked my flights back to Brisbane, after phoning Bronwen and Joe several times, unable to get through to either, although Bronwen did eventually phone back.
I’m flying Friday 28 January, departing Cooktown at ten past eight, arriving Cairns a quarter to nine, departing Cairns on Jetstar flight JQ875 twenty past two, and arriving Brisbane twenty past four. The Jetstar flight cost ninety-nine dollars and the Cooktown flight seventy-two dollars and five cents.
I drove up to Shan’s, got the second part of service pack two for XP, extracted it, and protractedly installed it with many delays due to it spending ages doing stuff before checking anything logical, such as available free space. I’m amazed to find that my hard drive now works – I didn’t even need to rescan it, it just works. This also means that I’ve bought another hard drive for no real purpose – I might use it as a sort of nearline backup. It’s nice having some music again – I was getting a bit sick of the variety I had to choose from – it was either the sound of people dying violently and with a great lack of skill, or rap, neither of which I’d stoop low enough to call music. I need to find a player that works well with large amounts of music though, as Winamp is struggling; searching or enqueuing songs is frustratingly slow. Slight aside: the word “enqueue” does not seem to be in any known dictionary.
Comment by DM – Sunday 16 January 2005, 6:31 PM has 'enqueue', but then it also has 'dequeue', so I don't think it's a credible source.
Comment by Ned – Monday 17 January 2005, 12:53 AM
  ‘enqueue’ will be in Webster’s New Millennium Dictionary, but is not yet in the OED.

16.01.2005Sunday 16 January – Ghosts, Aliens & White Cockatoos

I am beginning to think that the morning may just be a social convention without any basis in reality, as it seems extraordinarily difficult to observe one in its natural state.
I had a bit of an abortive walk this evening. Just as I got to the halfway spot, I heard a strange noise deep from within the dark and gloomy forest, which reminded me of another strange flapping noise I’d heard on the way there. Just as I was reminding myself how I was a macho hero type, not scared of noises emanating from deep within dark and gloomy forests, some large white thing flew through the murky shadowy trees, right above me, and a whole herd of something, or perhaps one very large something, passed overheard disturbing the ominous silence with a strangely powerful flapping. It then occurred to me that I’m actually a sensitive new-age sort of hero, and that, while goblins and ghoulish monsters deep within the earth might be stretching reality a little, aliens probably weren’t, and that it was quite late, quite dark, and only getting darker the further I pressed into the jungle. To cut a short story to the exact length it was going to be anyway, I turned around and went home.
Being in a particularly good mood, having spoken to Bronwen for two hours, I decided that I’d be slack and rather than stay up all night as one should, I would go to bed and dream about her, especially as I was going to be woken horribly early tomorrow by annoying phone calls soliciting donations. Having decided this, I acted promptly and decisively to put my plan into action, or inaction, as the case may be.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 9:00 PM
  Is called Owl. Flaps overhead. Frightens. Even macho heroes. Enough said.

17.01.2005Monday 17 January – Werewolves & Jalapeños

As predicted last night, I was woken by someone from the Red Cross soliciting donations, and after valiantly fighting to regain my sleep, I was again awoken by someone calling for Mum – so I gave up and here I am, awake, ridiculously early, far before midday.
I had to disable parts of my site due to a lack of available data transfer, due, I think, to bodge accounting. Shan and Kylie then came around and we went out to Home Rule where we had a swim before heading back to his place to watch a DVD (some not particularly great movie “based on a true story” about werewolves, set in Spain a century or more ago). We then went and got a pizza from the Lion’s Den, which was very nice and very jalapeño hot. Now that I’m no longer on fire, I’m back to relaxing.
Comment by Salman – Thursday 20 January 2005, 9:16 AM
  i want to download best mirc peace&protection422
  plz send me to easy&free download pnp422 script
  i shall be very thanks full to u
  good bye
  plz mail me
Comment by Ned – Thursday 20 January 2005, 4:37 PM
  It surely cannot be that difficult to find a contact page, other than a journal comment, somewhere on my site – but perhaps it is, so I shall update the page at PnP with a link to one.

18.01.2005Tuesday 18 January – Cooktown Unplugged

Your honour, my client maintains that he only went to town to pay his airfare. He maintains that he checked his mail, finding only a letter from Centrelink, necessitating a call to them tomorrow, before buying nachos from the Mad Cow Café, located within the supermarket complex. He maintains that he ate less than half the nachos, and that his mother ate the rest. My client is adamant that he then walked down to the wharf and sat watching a single small crab and several small yellow and black striped fish, prior to returning to the Mad Cow Café to purchase a standard sized milkshake, chocolate flavoured. My client asserts that he then made his way from the supermarket to Peter’s shop, which he entered and proceeded to converse with the proprietor about job opportunities and the direction he wanted his future to take, until another customer entered the shop. My client maintains that it was at this point that he left Peter’s shop and made his way to the library; however, my client makes it absolutely clear that he did not possess, nor notice, a lead pipe or a candlestick while in the library. Instead, my client spent his time reading a Footrot Flats comic. My client also wishes to make it known that, while he did initially forget to pay his airfare, he did remember before going home, and that it cost him seventy-eight dollars and ninety cents. Furthermore, my client wishes to inform your worship that he spent over an hour on the phone to his girlfriend, during which time he could not have left the conservatory.
Comment by DM – Wednesday 19 January 2005, 3:17 AM
  I appreciate the humour of an eatery calling themselves the Mad Cow Café.
Comment by jojo – Wednesday 19 January 2005, 1:41 PM
  i liked the references to cludeo. very amusing.
Comment by Rhett – Thursday 20 January 2005, 1:00 AM
  On what charge are you defending your client from?
Comment by Ned – Thursday 20 January 2005, 1:16 AM
  Murder in the sixth degree.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 9:05 PM
  Living with this super lative wit, is murder

19.01.2005Wednesday 19 January – Uni Courses & Babies

It rained. As a corollary, it was wet. Shan and Kylie dropped in on their way back from looking at some computers, and we had a good chat about all sorts of things. Because today is before tomorrow, but after yesterday, I had decided to do all the things I have been putting off, such as signing on for courses for uni, and billing Graeme.
I’m not overly happy with the courses I’ve chosen – I need to discuss some things with an academic advisor, and check out what else is on offer. It ends up that Bronwen has done all the courses I’ve chosen, so I should probably have a talk to her too. I have to do the year long project, although I’d really rather not – but the rest are rather random and I’m not going to consider them serious prospects until I’ve looked into it further.
Comment by Reubot – Monday 24 January 2005, 4:25 PM
  Let me guess - COMP3300 & CSSE3003?
Comment by Reubot – Monday 24 January 2005, 5:47 PM
  Oh wait you did COMP3300 last year....I change that one to COMP3501
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 25 January 2005, 12:27 AM
  My choices so far: CSSE3004, COMS4200, INFS3202, PSYC1030 – these are, however, quite likely going to change after I’ve had a chat to an academic advisor.

20.01.2005Thursday 20 January – Town, Rain & Passport Photos

I drove into town, where I got a milkshake and four passport photos. I was supposed to take Dad in, but by the time I woke up, he’d already gone. It rained a lot. I went for my usual evening walk, despite the rain, which proved to be quite nice – there’s a certain solitude around dusk, with the rain throwing a curtain over the rest of the world, and all is silent as the colour of the day fades away. To continue this pleasant mood, I phoned Bronwen, chatting for a few hours and keeping her awake far too late.

21.01.2005Friday 21 January – Floods, Shock & Custard

It’s been flooding, or trying to, for a while now, and today I finally got to go swimming in it – something I’ve been waiting for, ever since coming up here. Jade, Shan and Kylie drove up to the Home Rule Bridge, from the Home Rule side, and I walked down and met them. The water has gone down a bit now – it was too high to walk across the bridge this morning, but now it can be crossed without too much difficulty. We drove back to Home Rule, patched up some tubes, and jumped in the icy cold creek. Ric, Ella, and three girls from Home Rule also came. One of the younger Home Rule girls had a bit of a rough time, hitting a few trees and submerged logs, and got out before we’d gone too far. The rest of us continued back down to the Home Rule Bridge, and on to Shan’s place. I had a small tube, which made it very unstable, so I fell out a few times – but there’s nothing too bad before Shan’s place, and the worst injury I got was a splinter in my thumb, water in my ear, and a nearly-cramped leg.
  The two remaining Home Rule girls had got a bit knocked about on the journey from the bridge down to Shan’s, falling out on one rapid, so they went home, while the rest of us walked back to the bridge and jumped in again. This time I had a proper sized tube, and we continued towards the ominously named “Black Rock”, over rapids with exciting names like “Popping Rock” and “The Suction”. I went over one rock that tipped me vertically into the white water behind it, where I fell off. It was at the start of a rapid, typically, but fortunately not one that was likely to kill me. Even so, I expended so much energy saving myself that I didn’t have enough left to get back onto my tube. It’s a bit scary – being so exhausted that I couldn’t do anything other than hold onto my tube and try not to break any bones. Had I been dying, I’d have been unable to do anything about it.
  Nothing else too eventful happened before the Black Rock rapids – I enjoyed myself greatly. It has been quite a while since I’ve gone tubing, but I don’t seem to have forgotten how, so I had great fun skilfully navigating rapids, getting stuck in whirlpools, and all the other great things that a flood brings. A few people fell out over a few of the rapids, but no one was badly injured. Shan thought he had broken his leg at one stage, somehow getting it caught between two rocks when he fell off in a rapid, but it was just badly bruised.
  Black Rock Rapids however, are probably a little too extreme – pushing the limits of tubing perhaps a little far. I went down the rapids first, to guide the way, but I was also trying to keep an eye on Ella in case she lost her tube, and it’s rather pointless being in front for that as there’s no way to stop – if someone has trouble behind me, I can’t help them. With this in mind, about halfway down I held back so she could pass me. We’ve very little control where we go – we’re pretty much at the mercy of the water as it rushes over the immense submerged boulders that it normally winds its way sedately through. I had Ella in front of me, and Kylie behind me. I didn’t have time to see where anyone else was, as I had to fight with all my strength to stop being turfed out of my tube myself. About halfway down Ella went directly over the top of a small waterfall, amazingly managing to remain on her tube as she landed in the turbulent suction at the foot of the fall. She came up panicked and crying, so I spent the rest of the rapids trying to save her, but by that time, it was all I could do to keep close enough to her to save her should she lose her tube, and not lose my own tube. The general idea is to avoid going directly over the top of waterfalls, but instead go just slightly to one side, riding the wave they form, but not being sucked too far into the suction caused by the water pounding over the fall as it will likely suck you under and pound you against rocks. Then, unless you really have your wits about you, you’ll try to protect yourself with your arms and come up for air, forgetting to hold onto your tube and it will remain tossing about at the base of the waterfall while you’re ejected directly into the next waterfall. Going over waterfalls is probably not a good idea at anytime – it’s a particularly bad idea without a tube, and in rapids such as these, losing your tube halfway down means you’ve several waterfalls you’re going to be thrown over, sucked around, and battered by. Even if you don’t lose your tube, it’s remarkably hard to get back on while being thrown around rapids.
  By the time we all got to the bottom of the rapids, all three girls were crying and in shock – all had thought they were going to die. Jade had been thrown from her tube sometime earlier on, and gone down the rapids without it. She thought she had broken her leg, as she couldn’t move it. Kylie had also been thrown from her tube, but managed to keep hold of it, although she couldn’t get back on it. She went down on her tube on her stomach, with Shan doing his best to guide her around waterfalls. She thought she had broken her toe – which was very swollen. I’d been keeping an eye on Ella, and she hadn’t really had any problems – she hadn’t fallen off her tube, but she’d still thought she was going to drown, and was in shock. It is a bit of a shock – you go over a huge wave, down a vertical cliff of water and plunge deep into a writhing mass of water, which is rushing against the flow back into the base of the waterfall. The surface of the water is sucks you back into the thundering mass of water flying over the waterfall, which then pushes you underwater and out. Then, before you can think, either you’ve been turfed off your tube and are fighting for your life, or you’ve been pushed out of that wave and are flying towards the next. All you can do is paddle, trying to steer around the edge of the cliffs of water surging over submerged boulders, while trying to plan a route so you don’t end up right on top of another waterfall when you’ve got around the current one. It goes on and on – from the top of one waterfall, you can see right down the cliff to where the savage white water is waiting for you at the bottom, and at the same time, you can see several other sharp drops waiting directly after that, but you don’t get time to think.
  The poor girls were all crying and shocked, and refused to go anywhere near the water. Two of them couldn’t walk for a while – Shan had to carry Kylie, who wouldn’t stop shaking. Ric, who had also come off his tube, and ripped his shirt and gashed his shoulder, headed off to Doug’s to get help and call Shan’s parents. Doug drove down and picked up Jade and Kylie, who couldn’t walk that well – and Shan, Ella and I walked back to the bridges where we met Shan’s father and they all went home. So there we go – I’ve got at least one flooded swim in these holidays, and survived. I only fell off in one rapid, but it wasn’t a bad one, although I did fall off all over the place when I had the small tube, but there wasn’t anything that serious at that stage. It was a bit scary when I did fall off, realising that I didn’t have the energy to save myself had I needed to, but fortunately I didn’t need to at that stage. In fact, my worst injury is a splinter in my thumb – which is actually quite annoying while I’m typing. The water was the perfect level, any higher and the rapids lose some of their charm as the waterfalls tend to flatten out and become boring, and any lower and the rocks begin to get scarily close to the surface, making navigation much more difficult – landing on a rock that’s only a few inches underwater is not good.
As soon as I got home, I had slide my way through the mud and gathering gloom, to the pump, and carry it up higher so it isn’t washed away if it keeps raining. Lugging a very heavy pump up a slippery mudslide through the dark jungle isn’t really all that fun. I then relaxed in front of my computer, eating custard and cream, and feeling a little sick and sore from today’s exertions.
Mum got home and says that Damian reminds her of me in some ways, and is intelligent, easy going, and “nice”.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 9:29 PM
  Ok. Ma does not approve. Several years ago...."Ma look at us...." Yeah, okay. Not too happy about son and daughter risking necks in flooded creek, but being assured of "fun, is okay" by parents of nearly-drowned Ella/Shan/Kylie/Jade.....I posited myself at The Bend to see kiddies having fun. Heh, heh, little darlings thought I as I sat in the torrential downpours, watching with alarm (shove aside alarm. God is) as river (formerly called creek) raged....RAGED... "Look at us Mum, wave....etc" Okay. Sodden and apprehensive, I heard a distant collective shriek, which in about a split second became a full frontal shriek which lasted about a semi semi split second and in a blur and a flash, The Whole Mob sped past my designated spot with Immense Screams (which I, in inc
Comment by Mum – Saturday 29 January 2005, 9:37 PM
  Cant even finish the whole ordeal. Never will look again. The blur or screaming kids fanging past in a flash, all of the screaming (I guess it is in joy, thunk I weakly)....gah, dont even ask me to look again else it will be BIG MA and YOUS VERBOTEN (this was about 450 years and 400,000 grey hairs ago) He still does it. She also, when out here. I still do it. Sit at home I a widow, son widow yet?
Comment by Mum – Sunday 6 February 2005, 2:49 PM
  Why is this repeating? I say again, why is this repeating. It is repeating, and why is it repeating, repeating.

22.01.2005Saturday 22 January – Familiarising

I stayed up late – it was half past three or thereabouts when I got to bed. Mum woke me and we went down to the Lion’s Den. Vince and Sarah drove out not long after, and we all spent the morning at the Den, going for a swim in the refreshingly cold and flooded creek.
Met Damian at the Den, chatted alone with him for a while until Sarah arrived, then we both chatted for a while before buying pizza. Sarah went home around midday some time and Damian, Mum and I drove back to here, where Damian had a look at the scanned photos I have on this PC, went for a walk with me just past the Home Rule Bridge, and then I drove him back to the Den.

23.01.2005Sunday 23 January – Familiarising Part Two

In what’s becoming a tiring habit, I was again woken by Mum after too little sleep. We then drove to the Lion’s Den, where I left Mum and continued on into Sarah’s, looking at her computer for a while, heading back to the Den around lunchtime. We spent the afternoon there, heading back into town in the evening, and picking Dad up from the Den on the way home. It was very hot, very muggy, and a lot of flying ants flew after dark, which was as good an excuse as any to hide unmoving, away from light and flying ants, and talk to Bronwen for a few hours.
We spent the evening talking to Damian at the Lion’s Den. He flew out on the evening flight.

24.01.2005Monday 24 January – Drills, Geckos & Intellectualising

It is remarkably muggy today. I drove into town, went to the dentist, went to Sarah’s and tried to fix her computer (it’s a Macintosh, so there isn’t much hope), and met Jade and Mandi at the Mad Cow Café while buying a milkshake as an antidote to the dentist. I then spent the evening talking to Dad about the economics of taxation with regard to the standard of living, employment, university, entry cut-offs and their relation to intelligence, various career options and what constitutes a healthy diet, amongst other things.
I had four fillings, all on the left side, none of which hurt, although my mouth felt stupid for ages afterwards, and my jaw got sore from holding it open for so long.
I have a baby gecko, not more than an inch long, which has not yet learnt to fear humanity. There’s actually two of them that wander around in here, but this one has just been walking over my keyboard making it hard to type, and onto my hands and up my arms – I think it’s trying to get to my head for some reason. I put it on the light switch, where I nearly squashed it turning the light on, and it’s now gone to talk to a grown-up gecko.
Comment by trace – Wednesday 26 January 2005, 10:54 PM
  i'd watch yourself and cover any orifices. it sounds like your little gecko friend is an alien trying to sabotage the world we live in. peace out.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 27 January 2005, 1:25 PM
  Well I know 'I' am afraid. Damn aliens.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 6 February 2005, 2:45 PM
  Geckos are sweet. Unfortunately, they poo all over the place, which isn't so sweet. They also fight each other, or perhaps it is mating. Dont know. Is a noisy affair anyway, a sort of um high clicking thing. They fall off the roof into your lap sometimes, wherein Mum mkes a sort of high noise, not at all like clicking.

25.01.2005Tuesday 25 January – Tantrums, Sunburn, & A Lovely Woman

Yesterday, when I first attempted to go online, I couldn’t. This was very disturbing, and actually more complex than the preceding sentence. I could actually go online. This would seem to be a contradiction, but in the next sentence, I will explain further. I could go online, but after a short period of time, no connections would connect, and while the modem didn’t actually disconnect, I was essentially disconnected. Then, after several retries, I had a few attempts where I connected at ridiculously slow speeds like 2400 baud. To make matters more complicated, and to make this paragraph slightly longer, I will include more details directly following this sentence. Actually, I’ve changed my mind and decided to include the further details after this sentence instead. Here are the further details, as promised twice already: In several connection attempts, occasionally the modem would fail to dial correctly, sometimes it would connect at a “normal” speed but all connections would die after a minute or two, at other times it would connect ridiculously slow and nothing would work, and once or twice it connected for up to half an hour but then nothing would work. I was about to re-plug the phone line, but became disconcerted and switched to using my far more expensive external modem instead. It has fancy features such as a backlit display and a rich variety of plugs to plug things into. More importantly, it has impedance matching and dynamic signal and line quality monitoring, and works when others don’t.
I decided that I should get some sun, as I won’t get much when I’m in Brisbane. With this in mind, I walked down to the creek and lay on my stomach on a rock in the sun. Shortly after, I lay on my stomach on a rock in the rain. The rain didn’t appear to be stopping, so I walked home. Now I am badly sunburnt. It seems that lying in the sun causes sunburn.
I threw a tantrum, phoned Bronwen for a while, and slept in front of a fan without moving or having anything touch my burnt back.

26.01.2005Wednesday 26 January – Australia Day

Very hot, very muggy. Sarah phoned arranged for Shan and Kylie, along with Shan’s sisters and me, to come in for dinner. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out quite that way. Shan’s sisters went up to Kylie’s to wait for Shan, who was at work, and I did exciting things that I can’t remember, also waiting. Then Mandi broke down on the way into town, followed by Kylie getting angry that Shan wasn’t home yet, so she came and picked me up and we were about to go to town by ourselves when Shan arrived home. His sisters had to help Craig get Mandi’s car back home, so just Shan, Kylie and the fantastic bloke that writes all this went to town, saw Sarah, bought food from Mandi, and later drove home. All quite exciting stuff – it’s an art form in itself transforming events such as these into such boring prose. For some reason, the closer I get to being with Bronwen again, the more I miss her – so I phoned her, again.

27.01.2005Thursday 27 January – Packing & Dentists

Today dawned around about dawn, followed by intense humidity and heat, a condition locals call “bloody muggy”. Mum woke me up so I could enjoy the bloody mugginess, rather than my peaceful sleep, so I walked up to Dad’s (after peacefully sleeping a little longer), chatted for a while, walked back, drank eighteen litres to replenish what I’d sweated out, and drove to town to visit my friend the dentist. After being dentally abused, I drove home, narrowly avoiding death when a two-trailer truck met me around a corner, it being in the middle of the road and me not having enough road left over to drive in. It’s strange how shortly after the adrenaline rush of near death, ones stomach and legs weaken – I wonder why.
The dentist hurt for the first time today – I could feel what I assumed was him hitting the nerve as he was drilling, but on the positive side, I thought we were only halfway through when he said that was all for today. Once my mouth finally stopped feeling spastic, I noticed that my bite is now higher – there is a new lump on one of my right molars that is higher than before.
I’ve moved the computer back inside, where the old modem seems to work.
Shan and Kylie came up and we snacked and had a good old chinwag. I then phoned Bronwen, and now it’s the early hours of the morning and I still haven’t packed – so it’s a-packing I do go.

28.01.2005Friday 28 January – Cooktown to Brisbane

I discovered another way to use spare money: missing flights – but today started earlier than that... I was woken early by Mum – getting up doesn’t feel so good after only a few hours sleep, something I should have thought about back when I wasn’t packing yesterday I suppose. We drove to the airport, and I departed for Cairns, but not until the pilot had stressed everyone by spending several minutes trying to warm the left engine – every time he put load on it, it’d die, so he’d rev it out for another minute and try again. Silas picked me up in Cairns, and we went to Amos’s place, where we had a bite to eat and a chat, before heading back to the airport for my flight to Brisbane. Ironically, we actually went to get coffee first, but couldn’t find a parking spot so decided to head out to the airport a bit early. All airlines have some time they require you to arrive in advance of their departure time – half an hour with Jetstar. Unfortunately, I understood this time as more of a guideline so people wouldn’t be late, rather than an absolute cut-off. I have nearly always arrived just on time in the past, actually making a point of arriving only half an hour before the flight, as it avoids waiting in a large queue. However, as I found out today, this doesn’t always work – Jetstar close check-in at precisely half an hour before departure, or one minute before I arrive. They then, unsurprisingly, refuse to accept unattended luggage, so would not fly my luggage separately, meaning that without being able to check it in, I couldn’t fly. The service lady offered to transfer my ticket to a flight a couple of hours later and allow me to pay the fifty-dollar difference, which was nice of her as the ticket conditions don’t permit that, but Virgin had a flight leaving roughly the same time as my original flight, so I took that instead. $175 later and I was boarding my Virgin flight, just a few minutes after my original flight boarded. Virgin closes their check-in fifteen minutes prior to departure, and it seems, will attempt to assist late passengers, unlike Jetstar.
I collected my luggage in Brisbane and waited in the arrivals area, but Bronwen didn’t arrive. Eventually I was paged over the intercom – Bronwen had made her way to the arrival gate, and was wondering where I was. We drove to her place, where her parents were just leaving for Stradbroke Island, and had a lovely night cuddling.

29.01.2005Saturday 29 January – Bronwenising

Unspeakable beauty.
I spent the day with Bronwen, cuddling, walking to Mt Cootha botanical gardens, and getting hot and sweaty often.

30.01.2005Sunday 30 January – Joe’s

After a lovely day at Bronwen’s, I made my way to Joe’s, arriving very hot and sweaty. It is remarkably hot. Tonya, and later Michelle, arrived and Joe and I went for pizza and drinks, which we then ate and drank.
I’ve eaten my fill of pizza, unpacked, set up the computer, and managed to get online using my sadly crippled, but “free” (disregarding the fees I pay), university dialup account. My back is peeling now, and quite itchy. It has cooled down a little here, but it’s very hot otherwise.
Comment by Kathryn – Tuesday 1 February 2005, 5:26 PM
  Moo Har Har
  This is a msg to let you know that Kathryn who has been silent for a bit now will be silent for a bit longer as i am on my way to Vietam on Sunday. After spending all holidays wanting to travel a friend and i finally got our act together and are off on an adventure. I hope that the needles the doc gave me will protect me from any nasties. And if anyone really wants to know i return on 26/2 and if you ask (may the forces of the universe protect u if you do) i will tell you alllllllll about vietnam.
  bye for now kathryn
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 1 February 2005, 6:03 PM
  Vietnam sounds interesting – I wish I could go overseas.

31.01.2005Monday 31 January – Banking, Centrelink, Uni & Maz’s Madness

I needed to sort out a few things, and do some grocery shopping. Grocery shopping didn’t sound too exciting, so I phoned Skytrans to request the tax receipt I forgot to get, and then caught a train into the city where I dropped in at the Commonwealth bank. I explained to them how I was always right, so they must be wrong. They agreed, and politely disabled the card I didn’t get, which they insist they did send, as it must have been “lost or stolen”, and promised they’d send a new one. In the meantime, as I had no money and my current card expires tomorrow, I could walk out to the ATM to withdraw some cash, put my card in, look at it in a bemused fashion while the machine eats it, reports it “lost or stolen”, and contemplate killing all the staff in an American style shootout. This seemed like a good idea, but I realised I wasn’t carrying a gun (one of the disadvantages of living in Australia, I suppose), so caught the bus out to uni instead.
  They appear to be renovating everything at uni. It is good to know they have tons of money to throw around I guess. There are large holes all over the place, and every second walkway is fenced off. I booked an appointment with an academic advisor, paid for Clint’s dialup account, requested a graduation check (which may take up to three weeks, somehow), and checked in at the refectory to see if they were selling any edible food, which they weren’t. I then caught a bus to Toowong, and went to Centrelink.
  Centrelink closes at half past four, and I arrived just after four – only minutes before everyone else arrived. I thought the staff were doing a good job – they had one woman walking down the queue trying to help people, and the people at the computers did whatever it is they did, presumably as fast as they could. Not everyone had this opinion though – at least one irate woman jumped the queue and demanded to be seen immediately, demanding to see the manager when she was refused, eventually leaving after the Centrelink man agreed wholly with her but wouldn’t help her, confusing her somewhat. I have a feeling I am perhaps the only person who has fun standing in a queue at Centrelink, but I did – it’s an interesting place to watch people. They really need to upgrade their software though – everything they do causes me obscure problems, so they let me watch them doing it all now, and they’re using the most inefficient and confusing interface possible. To celebrate the apparently successful completion of my visit to Centrelink, I bought a felafel roll and walked up to Maz’s house of madness, which I survived, although why anyone would make a hill in such a way that you have walk up it, then down it, just to get to someone’s place is beyond me.
I got home just in time to get a message from Joe that Bronwen had just phoned and that I should phone her back immediately and apologise for everything he had said, which I did, and we had a chat for a couple of hours. It’s nice to be able to phone without the phone bill tending rapidly towards the national debt.
Comment by Maz – Wednesday 2 February 2005, 2:02 AM
  You were lucky you caught the place at such a sane time. It was decievingly quiet last night. Lucky you weren't here tonight.

01.02.2005Tuesday 1 February – Wherein they refer to themselves collectively

They had a quiet day, doing some washing, some grocery shopping, talking to Silas when he phoned, and sorting pictures. They then ate too much dark chocolate, felt unwell, and went to bed. They wish to point out before their mother reads this, that eating dark chocolate is not unhealthy, and has actually been shown to be the opposite. In fact, according to something that they read in a trashy magazine while at Bronwen’s, some of the secrets to a healthy life are beer and wine, dark chocolate, and laughter. These struck them as very well known secrets, but they wish to know if milkshakes are perhaps one of the lesser-known secrets to health.
Comment by Mum – Thursday 3 February 2005, 9:03 PM
  Their mother reads this. Chocolate...smooth and dark. A bit like lawyers. Healthy? Milkshakes...froth and bubble. A bit like yankee TV. Healthy? Wine and beer...indicators toward that state in which some of us find ourselves so disgustingly healthy that we cannot contain........which leads to Laughter. (Good old fashioned state). Is this "good old fashioned state" healthy? Will have to log off for a while until I can contain my belly rolls.....must be something wrong with me.
Comment by Mum – Thursday 3 February 2005, 9:11 PM
  Laughter is the best medicine. A good old fashioned pursuit

02.02.2005Wednesday 2 February – Bronwen

I did very little, breathing regularly and occasionally blinking.
Bronwen arrived. We went on a hunting adventure, involving complex and long-winded descriptions of roads, speed limits, and missed turns. We then ate through an electric storm, which was nice, although I found the mushrooms to be a bit on the tasty side. I discovered that the oscillating feature on my oscillating fan features a random, and noisy, slipping – perfect for clicking loudly at indiscriminate periods throughout the night, just in case I’d accidentally fallen asleep.
Comment by io – Sunday 6 February 2005, 12:22 AM
  Aww... Pretty.
Comment by Ned – Sunday 6 February 2005, 10:25 PM
  She is.

03.02.2005Thursday 3 February – Meet the Fockers

I showed Bronwen how I miss trains, before heading into uni, where I saw Peter Robinson for academic advising. It was a little pointless without having received my graduation check yet – I’d assumed they were near instantaneous, but obviously not. Many of my questions received answers “You’d have to ask the faculty, or Philip Machanick”, so I will. After these exciting revelations I sat in the sun under a bush, had a short chat to Shazia, and waited for Maz to come pick me up. We did exhilarating things like sit in front of a fan, before we both realised we had to have Cold Rock – the alternative was unthinkable. Fortunately, Maz isn’t scared of dying, so we drove to Indooroopilly, bought Cold Rock super shakes, and felt suitably sick. We then did the gentlemanly thing and dropped girls at chemists without their prescriptions (meaning they couldn’t actually get what they went to get) and jewellery stores, before deciding to breakdown in a no-standing zone. I’m not really into breaking down, so I abandoned Maz and caught a bus to Indooroopilly where I made the mistake of watching “Meet the Fockers”. Holly told me it was good, but it’s only worth a half of the latest Bridget Jones movie, and that’s not good – she will be reprimanded.
Comment by Maz – Saturday 5 February 2005, 5:47 PM
  You had better hope Hollie doesn't see how you spelt her name... That could be a death wish.
Comment by io – Sunday 6 February 2005, 12:25 AM
  My sister's cat is called Molly. What did you chat to Shazia about?
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 9 February 2005, 12:54 PM
  The weather.

04.02.2005Friday 4 February – A Series of Unfortunate Events

I trained to Maz’s, and we went and saw “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events”. It started quite well, but was unable to maintain its plot throughout, falling prey to the all too common Hollywood “sucky ending” syndrome, although it still managed to match five fockers, topping twenty two cat women. We then drove around to use up potentially faulty petrol and overheat the car, passing Bronwen’s, going up Mt Coot-tha, which has quite a nice view, and making illegal right turns, before I trained home again reading Nick Earls’s “Zig Zag Street”.

05.02.2005Saturday 5 February – Bronwen & BBQ’s

I caught the train to Maz’s, for rather complex reasons, staying there for a while before heading over to Bronwen’s, where I finished off my book and had a lovely evening and stayed the night. It has been so hot, and it doesn’t seem to cool down at night, as it should.

06.02.2005Sunday 6 February – Bronwen & DVD Burners

I had a pleasant day at Bronwen’s, followed by a pleasant evening at home. I had planned to buy a DVD burner tomorrow, but I made the mistake of doing a little bit of “quick research” to find out which model I should purchase, which went on for hours, and now I can’t buy any until I’ve figured out which is the very best for the money because none of them are perfect. I’m also sick of hearing about DVD’s and DVD players.
Comment by Jojo – Wednesday 9 February 2005, 10:59 AM
  let us know which one you buy and the reasons for it. i started research, but gave up when i realised i didnt actually 'need' it and therefore could not justify it... thanks

07.02.2005Monday 7 February – Ghosts, Invalid Debiting & The Secure Hash Algorithm

After sleeping for a ridiculously long time, I headed into the city, driving around with Maz finding computer places in faraway industrial estates. I also withdrew some money from an ATM – just once. I have, however, been debited the amount twice. I am not at all sure how to prove this, but I’ll drop in and have a chat to someone at the bank tomorrow. If they make an ATM eat my card again, I shall become incensed.
After developing several Hollie-powered complexes at Maz’s, I rushed home via Cold Rock, getting there just before they shut. I had planned to negate this excess with a healthy dinner, but when I arrived back here, Michelle was here, and as we’re both intelligent vegetarians, we had to eat lots of chocolate and drink strong coffee. After some Tim-Tams, a cream-filled chocolate egg, and three score eight chocolate-coated nuts and some “wog bread”, I felt too full to eat a healthy dinner. Joe regaled us ghost stories, including more information I didn’t know, or want to know, about why people won’t sleep in my room – not exactly what either of us needed to hear before bed, and I then escorted Michelle upstairs so the ghosts wouldn’t get her, and bravely shut myself in my room. Then I filled out Centrelink forms and replied to email, ghosts notwithstanding.
  Come to think of it, that’s quite enough about ghosts – I am not sure it’s just the coffee keeping me awake anymore, and I’m not sure whether I should look behind me to “face my fear” and prove it’s obviously ridiculous to even consider something could be there, or if looking around is admittance that something could actually be there, and hence not a good thing to do. Why does my room have to be full of windows and mirrors? I must play loud music and think about pretty butterflies and nice iced cakes... this is the first time I’ve freaked myself out since moving to Brisbane – even Winamp is teasing me, why can’t it pick mindless songs about nothing? Perhaps I’m reading too much into the randomly chosen song titles “Limelight Mix”, “Up around the Bend”, “Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing”, “Angel”, “Only You Know and I Know”, “The Ghosts that Haunt Me”, “The Nobodies”, “Graveyard People”, “Live and Let Die”, “A Warm Place”, “Real Things”, “Signs” – they’re probably not all supernatural references, but... why couldn’t they be totally boring titles about love or something? I want to open the door to see if Michelle is still awake, but I am not going to because the hall is out there, and it is long and dark. Ok – this is stupid, I’ve just gone through over a hundred songs, and my imagination is good enough that I can find a supernatural reference in almost every single one – although I’ll admit that the UFO reference in the farcical “I Saw Elvis in a UFO” is stretching the association a little.
I’ve just spent the past few hours messing around and re-implementing the authentication system used for my online journal. It’s now a much securer SHA1 based challenge/response system, which should, as far as I can infer in my current insane and sleep deprived state, be immune to all types of attacks, other than the obvious fact that someone could intercept the actual HTML coming back from the server allowing them to be able to view the page content – but that is not really a flaw with the login system.
Comment by Maz – Tuesday 8 February 2005, 3:43 AM
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 8 February 2005, 9:42 PM
  Beware the jabberwock my son. The slithey tomes that grimble.....
Comment by Damian – Friday 11 February 2005, 9:11 AM
  Ned, I wish you would turn your hand to writing some fiction, some poetry, some sort of prose. Have you read any Roald Dahl stories?
Comment by Reubot – Wednesday 16 February 2005, 7:03 PM
  Ironically, SHA1 has now porported to have been cracked.
Comment by Ned – Thursday 17 February 2005, 12:27 PM
  Collisions are not particularly relevant to the security used here.

08.02.2005Tuesday 8 February – Banks, Libraries, the Government & Bronwen

I entrained for Maz’s, meeting him at Toowong, where we went and joined the city library and I discovered that it costs 55¢ to put a hold on a book. Due to this preposterous cost on something I had assumed was free, I didn’t get any books out – although I did spend 40¢ photocopying documents for Centrelink. After the exciting trip to the library, Maz and I went to the bank, where I complained that they’d charged me twice for an ATM withdrawal. It ends up that it was most likely a delayed withdrawal on Friday showing up at the same time as another withdrawal on Monday. After this further excitement, Maz and I made our way to Centrelink, where I stood in a big queue until someone came and took my fares allowance claim from me. I then spent a little time at Maz’s place, before he dropped me over to Bronwen’s, where I spent the night.

09.02.2005Wednesday 9 February – Samuel

Woke up at Bronwen’s, went into the city, did some shopping, trained home. Drove and got chips for Joe.
It’s remarkably hot. It has been nastily hot all day, but it should have cooled down by now.

10.02.2005Thursday 10 February – Quiet & Relaxing

Quiet morning, slept in, did nothing, began reading “Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” and completed the first chapter, which is not much of an achievement as it is only one page long.

11.02.2005Friday 11 February – Courses, Vampires, The Closet & The Amazing Multifunctional Bronwen

I had planned to do many things today, but instead I woke up at midday. I found I had an email from Philip, so I rushed into uni to see him. Rushing via public transport is a very relative concept – a couple of hours later I arrived at uni and had a discussion with Philip about the role of the microkernel in a secure operating system, along with the IT degree’s role in the greater concept of things, and my role within it. I managed to bump into Lachlan as I came out of the lift, and as he was just about to open the sacred BITS closet, I hung around. My conversation with Philip went for a lot longer than I’d anticipated, and I ended up talking to Lachlan for a considerable time as well, meaning I got to Govindas far later than planned. A quick email and timetable check later and I was rushing to catch the one bus that would still get me to Indooroopilly in time for my movie, but I bumped into Michelle and got distracted, arriving too late. I also met Alex along with some geeky cohorts, making today a bumping into people from uni sort of day. Having missed the movie, I once again emailed and timetabled, heading back into the city, unsuccessfully phoning Bronwen several times before she answered (people who consider others in movies are all very well when I’m in the movie, but it’s a bit inconsiderate when I’m not) before meeting Tracy, Cassie and Sophie. They were, perhaps unsurprisingly, in King George Square, surrounded by confused Goths, at least one of which was unsure if she was a vampire or not because she only drank her own blood. Leaving them to their dilemma, I headed onward to Bronwen’s, who I’m fairly sure isn’t a vampire, and spent the night safely with her.
Comment by trace – Tuesday 15 February 2005, 2:22 PM
  pfft she wasnt a vampire. i am the TRUE vampire. but she is just crap. yayy for awesomeness!

12.02.2005Saturday 12 February – Topic temporarily out of order

Having got up around lunch time, and not feeling remarkably energetic, we lazed around the house until early afternoon, at which precise moment we walked to the valley, met the makers, admired a fishnet wedding dress, wandered around some more, saw dragons, watched what may have been a wedding and got bitten by ants, ate a pleasant meal, bumped into Cam, sat behind a church overlooking the city and admired the pretty lights (and me my stunning Bronwen), before wandering back to her place.

13.02.2005Sunday 13 February – Intimacy, Footballs & ...

After another energetic morning not getting up, followed by an afternoon of relaxation, I made my way home, being hit in the head by a football on the train, as one does on Sunday evenings. Michelle and her beau, Michael, are here. In order to recover from my alarmingly geek-free weekend, I spent the night updating my iLog mIRC log viewer to support the fine and still progressing year two thousand and five, as well as adding an auto-updating thing that auto-updates a thing.
It has just struck me that Metallica’s “Fade to Black” is an amazing song – redolent of Aaron and my early teen years.

14.02.2005Monday 14 February – Saint Valentine’s Day

Michelle and Michael are still here, and Joe and they are getting quite boisterous downstairs, while I’m having a quiet day inside doing computer things, phoning Bronwen, and emailing Mum.

15.02.2005Tuesday 15 February – Passports & Alexander

Despite my alarm, I managed to sleep in, getting to the city later than I’d planned. It seems doing more than one thing per day is too hard, and even that one thing ends up harder than it should. Today was renewing my passport day, so I went to the passport office, queued with my fancy ticket, and eventually talked to the passport office man in window number five. For anyone else, that would have been the end of the story – he’d have stamped the application, smiled politely, and wished them a nice day, but not for me. Starting by telling him that I did have my previous passport with me, but that I was pretending I didn’t because I didn’t want it chopped up may not have been the best way to start, but it was when he was unable to determine whether there were two of me, or I was born twice, that it became interesting. After going and chatting with his manager, his manager decided that he’d have to contact Perth to find out just how many of me there are, so we moved onto the next step, which was photos. Now, a normal person provides two signed photos, but not me – I needed more, and because it had taken so long to decide how to find out how many people I am, I had to run to a photo place, get four more photos, and run back before the office closed. I then handed over lots of money, and went searching for Citibank, which was remarkably difficult to locate, and remarkably unhelpful when finally located. After that it was a rush into uni to put a hold on some books, then back via Indooroopilly and “Alexander”, which wasn’t too bad – getting itself five Fockers.

16.02.2005Wednesday 16 February – Three Months

I went shopping, which was hot. I then caught a train into the city, which was air-conditioned (the train, not the city, unfortunately). Once there, Bronwen and I wandered around, arriving at the botanical gardens on sundown to see “Hero” at Bailey’s Moonlight Cinema, before heading back to Bronwen’s place, where I continued to forget that I had to be at uni by eight o’clock tomorrow morning.

17.02.2005Thursday 17 February – Lecture Theatres, Mobile Phones & A Drastic Lack of Sleep

After not sleeping very much, I realised at some ridiculous hour that I had to be at uni by eight o’clock. This was something of a problem given the circumstances, but Bronwen drove me to uni and I got there just on eight, and made my way down to Prentice, where I was given a tour of what I’ll have to do in the mornings. I then made my way to Govinda’s for sustenance, bought a mobile phone, and trained to Fairfield where I went to the library to pick up “The Snow Leopard”. It was here that it all of a sudden hit me – and I realised just how little sleep I’d had over the past few nights. I had just bought a milkshake, and got lost out the back of the supermarket somehow, so had just walked through a small service corridor and out into a courtyard – where I walked directly into another man. I literally walked right into him – our faces hit. I didn’t even see him, I’ve a feeling I may have been sleepwalking, although I’m not sure what he was doing. Unsurprisingly, my milkshake didn’t stop as fast as I did, and much of it shared itself with my unintended protagonist, who found himself in a dazed state of shock and wandered off insisting he was ok. I wiped myself off with a rag provided by a cleaner who had, ironically, just cleaned the area I cleverly sprayed with milkshake, and went and hid under a stairwell at the train station and had giggling fits.
Once I arrived home I found out that Joe had, coincidentally, also bought a mobile phone today. I also found out that my dinner was essentially inedible, so I essentially didn’t eat it, after essentially eating most of it, which essentially made me feel sick.
Comment by Reubot – Thursday 24 February 2005, 10:19 PM
  Did you get a job at ITS or something?

18.02.2005Friday 18 February – Stradbroke Island

Today, the great search for a phone case was begun. It seems my model is relatively rare – at least, none of the major phone shops had cases to suit, and I’d all but given up when I was walking past Dollars and Sense on the way to Maz’s, and popped in there – finding a case and hands-free kit, well below the cost the phone shops would have charged anyway. Loki was at Maz’s, where I stayed a while before being dropped at Bronwen’s, packing things, and heading out to Stradbroke. It was fairly late by the time we arrived, so we pretty much just put up a tent and went to bed.

19.02.2005Saturday 19 February – Relaxing in Paradise

A morning walk and swim in the ocean set the mood for a lovely and relaxing day, followed by a pleasant evening with Bronwen’s friends, sunburn being the only downside.

20.02.2005Sunday 20 February – The Case of the Great Gender Stereotypical Door

A morning walk and swim again set the mood, followed this time by a wonderful breakfast with Frank and Shirley. After this, I spent the afternoon helping John, apparently in a very gender stereotypical way, complete and hang a large door. We then risked bogging ourselves and missing the last ferry back, for an enjoyable final swim before catching the unmissed ferry back to Brisbane. Fortunately, we didn’t hit any left over mines from the war, although just as I was commenting to Bronwen on this, something moved and made a rather large bang. We moved away from the railing after that, just in case.
  Once back in Brisbane, it being late and we tired and a bit sunburnt, we slept.

21.02.2005Monday 21 February – Kieran & Hot Curry

I got a lift into the city with Bronwen on her way to work, wandered around buying a felafel roll and new hands-free thing for the phone, having apparently lost my other one at Stradbroke, before phoning Maz and catching a bus out to his place. Kieran came over and we drove in to uni where we had lunch, then to his new place, and then I came home. Amy is now here, so Joe and I go for Thai food, ordering half the shop. Michelle arrives, I phone Bronwen, the earth rotates, and my curry is remarkably hot.

22.02.2005Tuesday 22 February – Indian Curry

I had a relatively relaxing day, heading into the city around lunchtime, and eating a pleasing dinner at an Indian Restaurant in Paddington, followed by a pleasant night.

23.02.2005Wednesday 23 February – Market Day & Main Hoon Na

I headed into uni to see “Market Day”, the day that the various societies on campus show off to lure students to join them. It was hot and not that interesting, but I spent an hour or two wandering around, met a few friends, and joined BITS so I’d have a leg to stand on when banned from their IRC channel.
I went and saw “Main Hoon Na” at the Bollywood Masala Indian Film Festival at the Dendy. I had planned to watch a few films over this festival, but other things happened and I didn’t get the time. “Main Hoon Na” was a bit basic, and almost immature in spots, but had enough of a plot, coupled with suitable humour and action, to make it an engrossing movie – but only a quarter as good as Veer-Zaara, or three quarters of a true lie.

24.02.2005Thursday 24 February – Constantine & Microsoft

Up early after a late night, sleep in, and nearly miss train – good preparation for uni. Go to Microsoft security conference, but only attend keynote and first session, finding second session to be too Microsoft-orientated. Meet Clint, Kipps, Flash – sadly geeky, and Corrosive, at South Bank for lunch. Go to “Constantine” on Australia’s largest cinema screen. Walk around city with Corrosive, go to Maz’s, and go to “Constantine” again at Indooroopilly, surprisingly better second time around.

25.02.2005Friday 25 February – The Spook

I trained into the city, where we ate at Govinda’s and then saw “The Spook” at QPAC, which impressed me.

26.02.2005Saturday 26 February – Joe’s Barbecue

They’re doing track works, so trains aren’t running all the way, which actually turned out good, as we were able to catch an express train, which doesn’t normally stop at my station, but today did. Joe was just beginning his barbecue when we arrived, and as the evening slid into night, more people arrived, drank, and became increasingly stupid – but a pleasurable night was had by all, with no one sleeping alone, or sleeping at all for that matter. At some very early stage of the morning, much loud house-shaking banging on floors and walls was done, accompanied by joking shouts to silent others to keep quiet – by those making the noise. Fortunately, Joe was suitably anaesthetised, as I don’t think he’d have been very happy. Amy’s boyfriend had to fly back early in the morning, so people were up remarkably early after only two hours semi-sleep, and I didn’t feel sparkling bright myself.

27.02.2005Sunday 27 February – Tropfest & Joe’s Departure

Joe left on his holiday, and we left here for Brisbane, getting lunch at a small place in West End, where I appear to have lost my hat. We then watched sixteen short movies at “Tropfest” in South Bank, meeting Clint, Clus, Maz, Scruff and an Elliot I’ve not met before. However, of the five, only Maz was cultured enough to stay longer than five minutes, the rest disappearing towards inexorably beer-wards.

28.02.2005Monday 28 February – Uni, Work & Sleep

I attempted to wake up, got ready, and propped myself against a pole at the bus stop. I then made my way sleepily onto a uni-bound CityCat via Hungry Jacks, arriving in uni just on time.
I presented myself for my first day of work, on time and not entirely asleep.
I went to my first COMS4200 lecture, still mostly asleep. I had found myself apprehensive about the start of this semester, as I didn’t think I’d like any of the courses I had enrolled in, and wasn’t at all sure that attempting COMS4200 was a good idea. After the lecture, though, I found myself thinking ahead to what I’d do during the semester, and what I’d learn, and almost looking forward to it. I guess I should seek counselling now before it’s too late.
I discovered that it’s now impossible to access my email from the labs, and that they’ve implemented a quota system, which gives us 150 MB per month. While this new system has presumably lifted the annoying rate limiting that was previously in use, 150 MB seems amazingly stingy given the fees we’re paying and the status the university pretends to hold. Maz turned up for me to whinge to and we went and saw EPSA to figure out if we were able to undertake the course we’re enrolled in, and then went and found Clint so I could whinge to him, and check my email. Clint wanted to go to Umart, so we did, stopping off at Kieran’s on the way back, walking to Indooroopilly, and then a bus and train home. For the first time ever, I slept and missed my station, waking at the next station and having to wait for a train back.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 3 March 2005, 12:42 AM
  HAHA. i didnt know you missed your stop.
  You convinced me to do COMS after i missed the first lecture, it had better not be too hard.

01.03.2005Tuesday 1 March – House of Flying Daggers

I once again attended uni at 7 o’clock at the wrong end of the day – something that requires me to get up at five o’clock, which isn’t easy that early in the morning. After ensuring my section of the university was functioning, I went and saw Dr. Soon, who signed my bank stuff for me and chatted about next semester. I then attended my inaugural PSYC1030 lecture, missing the latter half, as I had to head into the city. PSYC1030 sounds as though it may be interesting, and hopefully not too challenging or difficult.
After relaxing in the Roma Street Parklands for a while, I became hungry so headed towards the city, buying a felafel roll and eating it in the botanical gardens. After this, I headed across to South Bank where I purchased and consumed a Cold Rock Super Shake while watching a Channel 9 helicopter filming traffic and CityCats, before watching “House of Flying Daggers” at what used to be the IMAX cinema. The movie was quite good, and although more believable than Hero, came across as more Western, which isn’t necessarily an advantage for a Chinese film. At times it was painfully clichéd, and I’d find myself thinking, “surely they won’t do that”, just before they did, but overall it was quite enjoyable, gaining six “Fockers”, for a total of 27 cat women or precisely three quarters of a true lie – the same as Hero.
Comment by DM – Thursday 3 March 2005, 9:54 PM
  I see you hold Cat Woman in wonderfully high regard.
Comment by io – Monday 7 March 2005, 3:23 PM
  Well Catwoman did score like the anti-best movie of 2004. I liked House of Flying Daggers more than Hero myself, and Hero more than Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.

02.03.2005Wednesday 2 March – Shopping

I caught a bus into the city, buying an apple turnover for breakfast, before heading into uni where I met Kieran, Maz and Clint, after complaining that I can’t access my email or the psychology website from the labs. I was originally going to print out lecture notes as well, but they are password protected, and the passwords are given out in the first lecture. I strongly disagree with this stupid concept, but there’s not much I can do about it. Kieran, Maz and I went to the Ville for lunch, for the first time in a while, and then we headed into the city with Clint, where we spent all afternoon walking around window-shopping.
Due to an apparent failure of its non-deducibility property, my journal has undergone a slight update.

03.03.2005Thursday 3 March – Lectures & Green Goo

Today I, amongst other things, attended my introductory CSSE3004 lecture. This course is not sounding like much fun. The lecturer set the mood well, first by ignoring a sudden influx of late people, then blandly asking several to close the door behind them, only to have it opened by the next person, and finally commenting that people should, in future, attempt to be on time and that he’d put this down to it being the first lecture. This was in spite of him knowing that this lecture had confusingly been advertised as occurring in two different locations – something that was probably his fault and that he’d been informed of prior but had not, as far as I’m aware, attempted to rectify, and it was obvious these people were those who had gone to the wrong location. Anyone with a personality would have made a little joke, or done something other than continuing to lecture about nothing much, in a management-tinged monotone; perhaps whoever told me that he had the “personality of an ant” was right after all. Then, after two mind-numbing hours, we traipsed to another lecture theatre where we were asked to fill out a form including what times we were available. This I couldn’t do as I hadn’t yet finalised, figured out, or even remembered any of my timetable, yet when I asked if it would be alright to hand the form in this evening, or some other time after I’d had a chance to check my timetable, I was told no – that I should just hand in a blank form if I was unable to fill it out now. That’s obviously ridiculously pointless, and smells nastily of process for processes sake regardless of logic, and I’m beginning to think that might be a lot of what we’re going to be learning in our assigned groups; here’s hoping I get a good group or this could be unbearable. We were also subjected to the standard plagiarism warnings – copy even two sentences, and rather than say “it’s only two sentences”, the lecturer will refer the matter to the school for disciplinary action.
Green goo, technically dhal, potatoes and spinach mush, and rice, were purchased and consumed by myself at Indooroopilly, while Maz ate unhealthy junk food and Kieran discussed the virtues of meat.
My evening lecture, the first INFS3202 lecture, was a stark contrast to the dull management-drone morning. Kieran, Maz and I walked into the lecture to find the lecturer having difficulty getting the projector to work, but making a few quips about it. We were told that team-based courses result in many students not learning anything, and that this lecturer doesn’t care if we copy things off the web if we feel like it, provided we don’t copy any other student’s work as the school will automatically discover that. Unfortunately though, he has taken several of the components I wished to learn out of this course and put them into a new course running in second semester. This is a bit of a problem, as I was relying on them to help me learn some skills I think I’ll need in second semester, and now I’ll have to learn them in private study. Kieran then had a chat about Microsoft, as he is wont to do, and we left, skipping the second half of the lecture as it was about such in-depth concepts as “What is the Internet” – not something I feel like learning on a Thursday.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 3 March 2005, 9:14 PM
  It was not unhealty junk food. It was chips because I wasn't really hungry.
Comment by Lucas – Friday 4 March 2005, 3:03 PM
  Good luck in the project, i'm sure you saw us slaving over sprinklers last year!
  Key to doing well: have a good group. Unfortunately it is something you can't control. Individual brilliance can't make up for a garbage group.
Comment by Ned – Friday 4 March 2005, 9:15 PM
  That being the main problem with group projects – I do not want my mark to reflect the aptitude, or otherwise, of others outside my control.

04.03.2005Friday 4 March – Work

I finished the book I was reading, “The Snow Leopard” by Peter Matthiessen, on the way home from work. Other than that, and my first night’s work, nothing else earth shattering happened.
Comment by little bird – Wednesday 9 March 2005, 1:40 PM
  I heard through the grapevine that your ITS working hours are going to be cut back to 10 a week. This is shocking.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 9 March 2005, 4:22 PM
  I am not sure who you are, or where you heard that, but as far as I am aware, my hours have remained the same as expected.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 10 March 2005, 9:30 PM
  But what has happenend THIS week? :P

05.03.2005Saturday 5 March – Kickboxing

I was driven up to the Ettamogah Pub, where we met my sister, Shan and Kylie – all of who were fighting in the night’s kickboxing.
Shan had the first fight out of the three – and he was knocked out within a second of starting – very disappointing for him but quite impressive. His opponent just walked up and knocked him out – appearing very confident and looking, at least to me, pre-planned. While it was his opponent’s first Kickboxing fight, he had apparently had “no rules” fights before, and while I suppose Shan should have blocked the punch, it was essentially a fluke.
Kylie-Anne was the next out of the three to fight. I honestly can’t remember that much about her fight right now, but I think she fought well, but was then punched or kicked and didn’t get up – not knocked out, but a “technical knock out”.
Sarah had the last fight of the three, and also lost her fight. She was clearly winning in the first round, but then a kick to the body left her unable to fight – a “technical knock out”, and, I suppose, a fair, but no doubt disappointing, fight.
After the fights we all went clubbing, except the queues were rather slow and large and the music expected to be uninspiring. Because of this, I ended up wandering along the beach instead, cuddling and watching the waves break onto rocks, after which I spent the night with Vince and Sarah.

06.03.2005Sunday 6 March – Relaxing

Vince and crew needed to be on a reasonably early plane, so we got up far too early and drove back to Brisbane, making up for this by spending most of the rest of the day in bed, before heading back to the current Joe-less insanity of home.

07.03.2005Monday 7 March – Renae & Shelly

Getting up at five o’clock is, to put it nicely, early. It was also a little nippy – a sign of things to come, global warming permitting. The journey on the CityCat is actually somewhat nice early in the morning.
  Once at uni, I worked, attended my COMS4200 lecture during which we went over the basics of C and I was pleased to find I knew it all already. Then Maz and I went to our COMS4200 tutorial, where we silently sat, knowing all the answers while others bumbled on about slightly related issues, quite managing to miss the point of most of the questions. This was followed by the obligatory visit to Clint’s room, which precipitated a visit to the poster sellers who seem to have taken over the Holt Room, before printing out some notes for tomorrow’s lecture and getting a lift to Centrelink with Maz. After admiring the interior of Toowong Centrelink for some time, I trained to Govindas for sustenance, having eaten very little all day – all weekend for that matter, and not feeling the best because of it.
Silas’s sister and her boat-mate arrived just as I did, so a celebration is being had.

08.03.2005Tuesday 8 March – Tortillas & Chilli

Today I learnt about babies for an hour, then about love, passion, commitment and something else – the name of which escapes me right now. Basically, I learnt nothing. If there was anyone in the class who didn’t already know the concepts of love we were being “taught”, then they should probably seek urgent counselling. I did take this course as it was supposed to be really easy, but I didn’t realise that meant it consisted of people explaining the most obvious statements to us. Still, it may make it easier for me to get a good grade.
  After spending half the day not learning anything, I headed into the city and had dinner at a Mexican place in West End, which, while not really my style, was actually quite nice.
I met Bronwen in the city and we spent a while walking around West End, until I chose a Mexican place. We then walked back to her place where I spent the night.

09.03.2005Wednesday 9 March – Cleaning & Work

We are supposed to have left the money for the cleaner on a mantelpiece, but no one did, so this morning when I got home I found a note there from the cleaner – “No money, no clean”, however I was too tired to care. Today would have been a really good day to sleep, given that it’s my mid-week weekend and how tired I was, but I had to work, so back to uni it was. I also have to eat, so I stopped at Govinda’s on the way to work.

10.03.2005Thursday 10 March – Long & boring, but with a lovely end

Thursday looks like being a long, boring, and unpleasant day. I have two hours of CSSE3004 lecture, followed by another hour of CSSE3004 “workshop”, which appears to be identical to the preceding two hours of lecture, followed by a short break then an hour-long tutorial, which fortunately doesn’t start until next week. Then, to top it all off, there’s two hours of INFS302 lectures – which don’t appear to be that fantastic either. A normal person would then seek psychiatric help, but I still have a few hours work to lurch through before I can get some sleep on the train home, or not, as it turned out.
I phoned Bronwen from the Bus Stop, and she came and picked me up. I stayed the night at her place.

11.03.2005Friday 11 March – Training

I’m actually not as sleepy as I should be, probably because I managed to sleep on the train, and I’ve been on the train three times today. I got up early, bussed into the city, bought breakfast from a patisserie in the Myer Centre, and then trained from there home via Woolworths. Then, after a short relax and some washing, I trained back into the city, bussing out to work, then the same back home again.

12.03.2005Saturday 12 March – Be Cool

I slept for a full eight hours, for a change – and it was nice. Now I feel pleasantly refreshed and can open both eyes at once without having to shut down other parts of my brain to conserve energy. One advantage of being tired that I’ve noticed recently is the insane, almost euphoric, sense of the absurd, where everything appears farcical: “Oh look, a small baby has just been run over by a bus – how funny it looks!” While this makes otherwise boring everyday life into an amusing blur of unimportant events, I have a feeling that it may not be the best way to remain permanently.
I caught a train into the city without sleeping – who’d have there were so many stations. Once there, I found the only remaining cheap vegetarian curry on a Sunday, sat, and ate it surrounded by people queuing to see Delta Goodrem. I then missed the bus to uni, so sat again.
Maz and Clint had been purchasing pineapples for a housewarming gift, as one does. Maz and I went to Chez Tessa for dinner, which we ate while walking to the CityCat to Southbank, where it appeared we’d missed out on tickets to “Be Cool”, but hadn’t; however, it was a sell-out session and very busy. “Be Cool” wasn’t a very sensible movie, but its farcical comedy was ridiculous enough to pass as insensible and I enjoyed it on what’s apparently Australia’s biggest screen. I give it a full one sixth of a flying dagger, which just so happens to be one “focker”. After the movie, Maz and I headed back to uni via the CityCat, called in on the very noisy Clint and Co at their housewarming, and then I headed home. There’s an extremely large, foul, unusual, cold cabbage-bubbling broth in the kitchen filling the place with a vile stench. I dare not ask why.

13.03.2005Sunday 13 March – Surfers Paradise

I had planned to drive to the beach with a few blokes, but that never happened, so I trained to Surfers Paradise instead. The weather was quite nice – a little overcast, even sprinkling a tiny bit at one stage, but still sunny enough for everyone to be out at the beach. I walked from one end of the beach to the other, which ended up being quite a long way, and then back – which ended up being just as long except the other way around, and then it was late so I caught the train back home again.

14.03.2005Monday 14 March – Uni, Stress & Connections

I finally got around to checking what I was supposed to have been doing at uni over the past week or two, and what I would have to do in the coming weeks – and it’s not good. All four subjects have things due in the week after the mid-semester break, two of which are quite large and likely to be challenging and time consuming. I suppose, in retrospect, I should have listened when one of my lecturers said in the first lecture, “start now, do not delay, do not put it off, start now”, and then again when he said in second week, “those who haven’t started now are now a week behind, and will find it hard to catch up”. Fortunately, I can delude myself into believing I’m far more intelligent than most people, so I am not too worried – although perhaps I should be.
  After realising how far behind I already am, I figured I should begin something, so I tried to write a business case study – which didn’t go very well, partly because everyone kept talking, and partly because I have no idea how to write a business case study.
I had a rather amazing series of bus connections. My bus left uni just as I arrived, and just as it was arriving in the city, they closed and evacuated the Queen Street Bus Station, causing general havoc. One side effect of this was that they placed my next bus almost right in front of me, and about to leave, something it normally isn’t. This would have made for a fast trip had I then hopped off that bus at the right stop rather than thinking I’d get off at the next stop, which might, or so I hoped, be a minute or so closer. I’d then not have had to ride the bus all the way to the next suburb, and catch another bus, which arrived just as I got off my previous bus, back again.

15.03.2005Tuesday 15 March – Psychologically

It’s ironic that, despite being so much closer to uni than home and leaving only shortly after I would have had I been out here, I actually got to uni later than I normally do. Such are the vagaries of public transport. Once at uni I learnt about infantile attachment and intrapersonal comparisons in my PSYC1030 lectures, then that depicted violence makes people violent. These psychology lectures are actually interesting, although often very obvious and far too slow-paced to keep my interest during the two drowsy hours they occupy. I was supposed to continue my business case thing after my psychology tutorial, but due to the prac tutor never arriving, and a great dearth of sleep last night, the required level of motivation could not be found, and I instead ended up visiting Clint, buying dinner from the Ville, and watching “The Price is Right”. College folk are weird.
While at Clint’s, I got an SMS from Bronwen’s Mum, and after another SMS and a phone call, I have arranged to meet her tomorrow morning for a coffee. I am a bit worried why, but after phoning Bronwen tonight, have concluded that either Bronwen does not know, or it is not important enough for her to have remembered.
Just as I was arriving at Central Station to head home, Natalie phoned and we had a short chat.
I arrived home to find five scary looking letters from Sydney. It seems Citibank have security high on their mind – all were from them, and contained things such as fancy hidden numbers with special rip-off tamper-evident sections with see-through plastic numbers. I was also impressed by getting onto a real, live, and helpful, human on the phone – within a minute of calling, and at half past eight. The interest rate they’re paying has also gone up one tenth of a percent in the few hours since I logged in, which, while a coincidence, is still rather cool.
Why are cats suicidal? Fruit-loop managed to climb outside a second-storey sliding window, but inside its flyscreen, becoming wedged and risking further tearing the already torn flyscreen and falling to a sticky end.

16.03.2005Wednesday 16 March – Ong Bak

Today is supposed to be my midweek-weekend, but as I had to be in the city early anyway, I figured I’d head out to uni and work on all the assignments I’m putting off. The heading out to uni part I managed, but the assignments remained largely untouched; a very unproductive day was had although I did attend the “Careers Fair”, where I discovered how expensive it is to get a government clearance.
I went and saw “Ong Bak” at South Bank, followed by green curry and Chinese vegetables, eaten at Kangaroo Point. “Ong Bak” was actually incredibly impressive, in a very brutal way – as they said themselves, “No stunt doubles, no computer graphics, no strings attached”. People are really falling, fighting and getting hurt – making this perhaps the most impressive martial arts film I have seen. Unfortunately though, it was rather average other than the action, the plot and acting letting it down to seven “fockers”, but a must-see if you like the sort of realistic action Hollywood just can’t make.

17.03.2005Thursday 17 March – Managers Suck Day

Today is CSSE3004 day, which, as a rough translation, says today is bad. I was there ready to argue with the lecturers, and even sat down the front for that purpose, but they managed to temporarily disarm me by anonymously reading out an mail, as an example of how not to write, and presumably to send a clear warning to others that we should “write professionally”. Darren read the entire email, emphasising spelling and grammatical mistakes – basically ridiculing the author, who I happen to know. I’d be seriously complaining to the faculty if it were I, because while it may have been read anonymously, it was still a public humiliation to the person in question, and I, for one, knew who it was. After this, they read parts of my email, and answered the questions I’d asked for the rest of the class, which nearly made up for the brusque way they’d replied to it earlier. I, and a few others, then asked several questions, and got answers for them (although I had to ask the same question twice and even had to ask two of them three times, and one a fourth time during the tutorial, before I got an answer that made sense – these people really are that bad). Since they’d answered my questions, I figured that perhaps they weren’t as bad as I’d originally thought, although I’d suspect that reading out the initial email in the way they did would be grounds for dismissal, or at least a public apology, if the author made enough of an issue out of it.
  Once I got to the tutorial, however, I was reminded of why I dislike these people – the tutorial answers are not available online, and we are prohibited from copying them in any form other than off the overhead projector by pencil, which is going to make it hard for people like myself to study tutorial answers prior to exams. I went and saw Ken and complained, but he said he wouldn’t consider changing that policy at this time, and that the idea is to force people to study the tutorials before the tute. While I can understand the logic, I would rather study the correct and official answers for my exam, rather than my quite possibly faulty interpretation. The tutorials aren’t assessable, so there’s nothing I can actually validly complain about, as there’s no policy governing the provision of non-assessable material – but I am back to disliking this crew again.
I visited Clint for a short while after work, before heading home, where I didn’t arrive until after midnight due to St. Patrick’s Day and the hordes of insane that use this as an excuse to get drunk and do things they’ll regret come tomorrow. Once home I discovered that my journal has problems if an update is done without sufficient disk space to contain the update, truncating output files. This shouldn’t normally be a problem, but the XSLT processor that reads the output XML has a heart attack when it finds invalid mark-up and dies, so I spent half the night messing around adding better error handlers.
Comment by joseph – Sunday 20 March 2005, 6:33 PM
  hey bro,
  i was in that lecture too. what questions did you ask 3 times? i know one was asked three times, but i cant remember what it was ...
  ta mate ... as you can probably guess ... im currently writing mmy business case now ...
Comment by Ned – Sunday 20 March 2005, 8:14 PM
  I don’t remember, but I asked some personally during the middle of the two-hour lecture, and again during the following tutorial.

18.03.2005Friday 18 March – Sick & Tired

Staying up until after four o’clock last night wasn’t a good idea, as usual. I now have a sore throat and generally don’t feel one hundred percent. I had also planned to head into uni before midday and do some work on the many assignments that need to be done, but somewhat unsurprisingly, I didn’t feel like it and didn’t end up at uni until time for my INFS3202 prac. Ironically, it’s being tutored by someone I tutored with before, and currently covers the same material I tutored with her last time, so is really rather pointless at the moment. The lack of assignment progress is not a good thing.
The journey home was mildly more interesting than usual. I caught the bus to the station after work, as per usual, and it was full of drunken and self-centred idiots, it being a Friday. Tonight they were the worst type – American girls from Emmanuel, and they were “singing” (for want of a better word) very loudly. I managed to survive by imagining nasty bus accidents where I was the only one who had a miraculous escape. Then, on the train home, I had three young girls “serenade” (to use the word sarcastically) me with love songs and acrobatics – or perhaps more accurately, giggle and dare themselves to sing love songs to me, spill drinks all over the place, and tell each other how shamed they were. As can be imagined, I got very little sleep.

19.03.2005Saturday 19 March – Sunny & Pleasant

I feel terrible – not only is my throat sore, but I feel sick and achy. In theory I should probably sleep or relax or something, but I’ve this theory that giving in to aches only makes them happier and stronger, so I will probably go out and try shake it off.
The train into the city went a new route, due to track work. This isn’t something one can often say about trains, given how they’re restricted to very specific routes, but as there’s a loop, the Beenleigh line can cross over to the Sydney line and approach the city that way. Once in the city, I had planned to go to Govinda’s for lunch, but ended up sitting in a park discussing the meaning of life until after Govinda’s closed, so bought a kebab and Cold Rock super shake instead.
I attended a sixtieth birthday party, where I discussed everything from white jacarandas to the effect cheaper airfares have had on Western Australia to disciplining children, uninstalled Kazaa and installed WinMX, and generally had a pleasant time. Being hungry, it having got late, and most places having closed, a detour was made to a pizza place, which happened to be just across the road from channel seven’s restaurant, and pizza was eaten. A lovely sleep was then had.
Comment by Graham – Monday 21 March 2005, 9:53 AM
  How is WinMX going for you? Kazaa's seemingly lacklustre ability to do anything at all is making me lurgid. I intend to dispense of it and would like to know if WinMX is significantly better.
  New O'toole Project album 'Rockin in Bethlehem' out now at'tooleproject
Comment by Ned – Monday 21 March 2005, 12:19 PM
  Yes, it is significantly better, although not as simple.
Comment by Lucas – Monday 21 March 2005, 2:12 PM
  Yeah WinMX is heaps better. Bit of a crowded interface, but once you get used to it you realise how much better it is over Kazaa if only in terms of simple functionality (eg like showing what place you are in a queue).
  I still have both installed: WinMX and Kazaa Lite K++
Comment by Redbeard – Tuesday 22 March 2005, 9:32 AM
  I can't believe The O'Toole Project is being advertised on nedmartin. All the things I do on the internet to waste time are converging.
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 22 March 2005, 8:11 PM
  All the things you do on the internet to waste time, are a waste of time. Get a life. There is a moon outside. Remember? Is getting full at the moment. Try to drag yerself out and away from The Screen and into the Real World.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 23 March 2005, 9:53 AM
  Perhaps you did not notice... but I spent all day away from any computers. I did, in fact, spend some time looking at the stars. The only time I went near a computer was when I helped someone at the party install a program.

20.03.2005Sunday 20 March – Relaxing

I had a bit of a sleep in, lazed in bed all morning, bought an Indian lunch in the city, and headed back home. Once home I wasted valuable time by watching “Old School”, a terrible DVD I found downstairs, before eating muesli for dinner, paying the rent, and realising with an increasing sense of stress that I’m pretty much screwed when it comes to assignments as I have no spare time, and heading to bed.
Comment by mum – Tuesday 22 March 2005, 8:01 PM
  Enough "spare time" to watch "Old School" whatever that is. Might be just a matter of organisation. Including organising time out for yourself.
Comment by Maz – Tuesday 22 March 2005, 9:54 PM
  All the spare time is used up with planned activities. One of which includes watching movies like "Old School" (which really is terrible). Other activities may include girlfriends, irc, visiting people at college, travelling and holidays.
  We just need a few less assignments from the uni, like none, and it would be fine.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 23 March 2005, 9:48 AM
  I do not do uni work on Sunday. I do, however, watch bad movies.

21.03.2005Monday 21 March – Uni & More Uni

Uni normal time in the morning, COMS4200 lecture, meet Craig, skip tute and go down to the labs, Maz and I to do the server and documentation and RFC comparison, Craig to do the client. Maz and I waste time going to Ville and seeing Clint, watching stupid comedy things etc. then spend all remaining evening coding. Go to Maz’s place, forward Hollie’s email, back to uni to do more work, then train home via Subway. Sent CD’s to Mum and deposited Google cheque – which was ridiculously complex, cost ten dollars, took half an hour, and required half a tree of paperwork.

22.03.2005Tuesday 22 March – Psychology, Sam & Indian Curry

An unexciting day at uni was had, wherein I didst attend psychology lectures, where obvious facts were stated as if they were amazing breakthroughs. I came to the conclusion that psychologists are either very stupid, or so incredibly maladjusted that they have to rediscover things, through highly fallible studies and implausible conclusions, that everyone else has known forever. Maz and I then continued to reinforce the, perhaps not ideal, reputation we seem to be getting in the tutorials. Last week, Maz couldn’t help laughing at all the very wrong places – prompting jokes from the tutor, and this week, as a reason for why we rarely answer questions or enter any discussion, I told them we were IT students who don’t sleep and hence can’t coherently think. The tutor then concluded that we were just there for the women. I didn’t think it was a good idea to correct her – we are there because it’s apparently one of the easiest courses at UQ.
I bumped into Sam and Jess on the way to a nice dinner at an Indian place in West End. Sam says “Introductory Philosophy” is as easy, if not easier, than PSYC1030 – and can be passed by writing random things about random things without having ever heard of those things before.

23.03.2005Wednesday 23 March – Business Case Studies

I headed into uni and tried to finish my CSSE3004 business case study by four o’clock, but couldn’t, partly because I did my INFS3202 practicals, and anything else I could think of, instead, and mainly because I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. Clint, Maz and I went out to Kieran’s at four, but I had to be back at uni by five for work, meaning I couldn’t stay long. After work, Maz and I spent hours trying to figure out what we were supposed to do with out business case study, along with everyone else in the lab. The general conclusion was that it is a ridiculous waste of time, serves no real purpose, and we may as well make up whatever seems best at two o’clock in the morning, as that’s as good as anything else. The GPS stapler then ran out of staples, and the whole lab was faced with the dismal prospect of a staple-induced failure until Maz and I braved Leo’s College and valiantly returned with Kipps’s stapler, saving us all.
  We left some time after three o’clock and I spent what little was left of the night at Maz’s place, sleeping in between waking, and remembering things I forgot to include in my business case study.

24.03.2005Thursday 24 March – Management Bad, Must Die

I went to bed, on Maz’s couch, at four o’clock. I woke up when Hollie got up. I woke up an hour later when Cassie got up. I woke up an hour later when Sophie got up. This meant that I was not as refreshed as I otherwise may have been when Kieran arrived around nine o’clock, and that I did not feel a strong urge to concentrate during the three hours of CSSE3004 lectures (to put it politely) he drove me to. In fact, I felt a strong urge to lie down on the floor. Adding to the general badness of today, the air conditioning simply wasn’t, so it was also very hot and unpleasant.
I bought the usual dinner from Chez Tessa with Maz, before heading to work, where I spent more time calculating the instantaneous force on a piston and discussing exhaust systems, high performance materials, vacuum cooling systems, and the differences between the Australian and American electrical codes than working. I also discovered why modern high performance materials aren’t used to replace metals in critical applications. Just in case I should think that my day had suddenly made an uncharacteristic change for the better, the bus to the station was full of annoying drunken singers, making it late and meaning I had to run to catch the train. Why do people who obviously can’t sing try to sing when they’re drunk? Why can’t they do something useful to society, like attempt suicide or move out west and plant trees?
  I was in a bad mood on the train home, which was unfortunate as I arrived back here to find the place kitted out with ultraviolet lights, and a party going on. This made the whites in my washing appear very white.
Comment by Cassie – Friday 25 March 2005, 11:21 PM
  Pssh. I got up at 7.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 27 March 2005, 8:30 PM
  Oh dear, wonder what the whites in your eyes looked like?

25.03.2005Friday 25 March – Stradbroke

Natalie phoned to see if I could meet her in the city tonight. Bronwen also sent an SMS and phoned to see if I would head out to Stradbroke.
I, hereafter referred to as we, trained into the city, and from there to Cleveland, and from there to North Stradbroke, via a smallish ferry. We then drove to the other end of the island, set up camp, and proceeded to move sand into the tent, and relax.

26.03.2005Saturday 26 March – Stradbroke & Stuff

Stradbroke-style things were done, such as walking, swimming and discoursing.

27.03.2005Sunday 27 March – Easter

Markets, Swimming, Building, Four-Wheel-Driving, Sand dune climbing, and various other Stradbroke-esque activities were undertaken.

28.03.2005Monday 28 March – Brisbane Again

We caught the 7 PM ferry back from Stradbroke, after one last swim – a pleasant ending to a pleasant weekend, apart from the stingers that stung me.

29.03.2005Tuesday 29 March – Sleepy & Cold

I headed into uni, naively thinking that, as I was already in town, it would be more efficient to do some work at uni rather than head all the way home. I may have made a better decision had I taken into account the fact that I had no uni stuff with me, no motivation, and was too sleepy to think, but I didn’t, so I headed out to uni. Once there, I had a look at the burnt out block at St. John’s College, sat down in the labs and realised I didn’t feel like working, and headed back into the city for lunch at Govinda’s before having a short sleep on the train out here.
Joe phoned to let us know he’s still alive and enjoying himself. He will be back in two and a half to three weeks. I also phoned Mum to wish her Happy Easter, and Bronwen, who isn’t feeling well.
It appears that our hot water service is either out of service, or no longer a hot water service. This would have been funny, seeing as it was Tonya who discovered the icy cold that has replaced our hot water, except it’s not because I need to shower too.

30.03.2005Wednesday 30 March – Old Boy

I went and saw “Old Boy” at the Schonell with Maz, spending the night at his place. It was quite a disturbing movie, and very deserving of its 18+ rating, although perhaps not its three “fockers”. Somehow we managed to stay up until the wee hours of the morning, which, when coupled with the tiered waking habits of his roommates, leaves our hero tired.

31.03.2005Thursday 31 March – Bad Education

I had planned to do heaps of work on CSSE3004 today, but spent too much time messing around trying to do it “properly”, so didn’t end up getting a great deal done.
Continuing the trend of disturbing movies, I headed into the Valley and saw “La Mala Educacion (Bad Education)” at the Palace Centro. While it was a well-shot and thought-provoking movie, I can’t say I liked the plot, which dropped this movie down to half an “Ong Bak” or three and a half “Fockers”.
Bronwen and I had a good discussion and a Windmill’s Pizza, before heading to her place for the night.

01.04.2005Friday 1 April – Fool’s Day

I spent a disheartening day at uni realising I didn’t have a chance at finishing my CSSE3004 “deliverable” today, before shopping, heading home, and spending a heartening night – after recovering my girlfriend from a train that wouldn’t stop.
Comment by Mum – Monday 4 April 2005, 7:35 PM
  Do trains stop on April Fool's Day?
Comment by Ned – Monday 4 April 2005, 11:51 PM
  I didn’t come across any April Fool’s jokes, and forgot it was today until too late to do any of my own, unfortunately.

02.04.2005Saturday 2 April – Surfers Paradise

Relaxation and enjoyment was enjoyed, while relaxing.
I entrained for Surfers Paradise after a relaxing morning, going for a walk and chat along the beach, followed by a swim, and finally, as dusk chased the heat away, a kebab.
Bronwen went for a swim topless, impressing me no end.
I watched “Enter the Dragon”.

03.04.2005Sunday 3 April – Lazy & Freudian

Bronwen and I lazed around for most of the morning, eventually heading into the city in time for Bronwen to meet Alana, who she hadn’t seen in ages.
I had a relaxing morning, getting up some time later and heading into the Valley (having forgot to purchase a ticket, remembering only when the ticket collectors turned up), where I got a free Palace Centro Movie Club membership, veggie “Subway”, and a Cold Rock Super Shake. I then swapped twenty-five dollars in notes for twenty-two dollars in small change from some bloke with a fake gun and caught the train home – which seems to be a bad deal somehow.
I sat and read about Freud’s ridiculous theories on the development of children and their relationships with their parents, while a small boy on the train in the seat in front of me argued with his mother – he wanted to “get back inside” her, to be a baby again, and wouldn’t take no as an answer. The ironic homology between the two struck me, and then I was tired and slept, before arriving home and finishing off the Indian food we’d ordered last night.
Comment by Mum – Monday 4 April 2005, 7:38 PM
  Gah. Bah. Freud ought to have laid all the stuff he had envisaged for others, on himself, and then we would have seen how screwed up he became. Poor fellow.

04.04.2005Monday 4 April – Sick

I felt sick all day. Feeling sick all day is bad. Queuing theory is bad. The people in my COMS4200 tutorial, and the gormless questions they ask, are bad. “Gormless” is a good word. Cryptic hieroglyphic-like mathematics is bad. Vending machines without milk are bad. Having to work on CSSE3004 deliverables all day while feeling sick is also bad. Chez Tessa’s Mixed Veggie Satay is good. Not getting home until after eleven o’clock is bad. The three drunken girls on the train were probably bad, and the noisy lesbian on probation, avoiding her rehab, was almost certainly bad. But I’m a happy bloke and not judgemental.
Ice creams that melt and drip down the stick are bad, although good for sore throats. They are particularly bad on trains without tissues. Trains without tissues are bad, now I think of it. Pringles are good. Hot showers are good. Pringle powder in the eye is bad. Nearly anything other than eyeballs in the eye is bad, apart from sparkles. Having to get up in seven hours is bad.
Comment by Jojo – Tuesday 5 April 2005, 9:52 AM
  I concur, CSSE3004 is bad. simply bad. *shudder*

05.04.2005Tuesday 5 April – Schizophrenia, Persuasion & Project Deliverables

Being a Tuesday, which is neither a Monday or Wednesday, nor a Thursday or Friday, makes today somewhat special. It’s also the day before tomorrow and the day after yesterday – a unique position quite irrelevant to anything other than the present, which is always the past just as soon as you realise it. Nothing quite this profound was in my psychology lecture, instead learning the basics about schizophrenia and persuasion. Both lectures were interesting although the schizophrenia ones were sadly biased and narrow minded in the way typical of the medical profession. Maz and I, and two girls, did a practice exam in the tutorial. We came second, but the team who beat us cheated – looking up their answers in their notes, so I think getting seventeen out of twenty-three is a reasonable result for an unexpected practice exam when the only other team to do better still only got eighteen, even with checking their notes. This gives me a little confidence for the actual exam.
I spent the night at Kieran’s, after an unexciting night in the labs programming for CSSE3004.

06.04.2005Wednesday 6 April – Project Deliverables, Deliriously

Today is the sort of day that shouldn’t be, but was – or as a certain White Rabbit might say, “Oh my ears and whiskers, how late it’s getting”. CSSE3004’s demonstration loomed large and fast, tomorrow midday, while the deliverable I would have to demonstrate didn’t. Because of this, Maz and I ended up in the labs until four AM, which is great fun after two litres of iced coffee, but remarkably less so in the morning. I went to bed at Maz’s at about the same time as Hollie’s alarm went off the first time. She then snoozed it several times, so I had to stay awake listening for it to go off again. This might be a fun game under some circumstances, but it is not a refreshing one.

07.04.2005Thursday 7 April – Project Deliverables Demonstrated

Maz and I made our way to uni, incoherently tired, and found ourselves unable to find any parking other than the guest parking at Women’s college. After this brilliant start to the day, we attended our CSSE3004 demonstration – which was depressingly trivial. After spending so much time implementing, anticipating and checking everything I could think of, I was tested on four trivial operations – one of which failed, as it simply hadn’t occurred to me. No credit was given for any functionality, only detracted if any of the four tested functions didn’t work correctly. This is a really crap and uninspiring way of testing, but perhaps the only feasible one – and we were aware in advance it would be something like this.
  After the presentation, Maz, Craig and I spent the afternoon working on our COMS4200 file transfer client and server applications.
Work was quiet, as was the train home, and I’ve run out of Pringles.

08.04.2005Friday 8 April – File Transfer Server-Clients & Excellent Tutoring

I attended a presentation for tutoring excellence, where I was awarded for being an excellent tutor, along with three others, and four others who were nearly excellent, and where I nearly choked to death. After chatting to Ken and Darren for half an hour at the presentation, I headed up to their office to complain about losing half of half a mark for allowing the thirty-first of April as a date, and ended up chatting for another half hour, and gaining some insight into what they’re trying to do with this course, but not my half of half a mark.
I had read the entire FTP RFC on the train into uni, to get into the mood. Once there, Maz and Craig worked on their coding for our COMS4200 assignment, while I wrote the documentation and anything else still needed. It was due at three, and we submitted it on the dot of three, having not had time to write a makefile, and accidentally submitting a non-working version. We then rushed up to see the lecturer, only to find that all groups of three had received an extension until midnight tomorrow. This met with a bemused, although appreciative, response after we’d just spent all day stressing to meet a three o’clock deadline and then effectively missed it.
I rushed around at work, getting quite hot, as I’d decided to test many things because it was raining and there was almost no one at uni.
Bronwen called and invited me home, and then came and picked me up.
Comment by krait – Thursday 14 April 2005, 12:59 PM
  Congratulations on not nearly choking.
Comment by Ned – Friday 15 April 2005, 10:05 AM
Comment by kathryn – Friday 15 April 2005, 9:56 PM
  today i turned 20
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 19 April 2005, 12:34 AM
  Happy Birthday! :-)

09.04.2005Saturday 9 April – More COMS woe

We were supposed to have finished our COMS4200 assignment yesterday – or if I’d had my way, over a week ago, but didn’t. This meant that Maz and I had to rush into uni early and fix all the crazy bugs – which took quite a while, and the day was well on its way to evening by the time I’d managed to leave uni and get back to Bronwen’s place. We encountered exciting problems such as impossibilities, which simply had to be deleted and rewritten twice, and then worked fine. I wasn’t that happy when my team members hadn’t managed to get their code working while I’d had mine mostly finished nearly two weeks ago – or when Maz sent me a message around midnight saying he was drinking Vodka and unlikely to get to uni this morning, but it all ended well. I think we even ended up each doing a similar amount of work.
I ate, watched “Dune”, and pretended my throat didn’t have a horrible tickle in it, which it has had ever since staying up until four o’clock and drinking two litres of iced coffee.

10.04.2005Sunday 10 April – Relaxation

After a very needed relaxing morning, I went for a walk around the city, buying a kebab from a shop in the West End, eating it (unsurprisingly), and pondering the meaning of the rainbow colouring of Stefan’s phallic symbol, as well as buying a Cold Rock Super Shake and a Slurpee – which is not a good combination, and probably doesn’t go with felafel that well either.
I bought a bottle of wine for Bronwen’s parents as a thank you for Stradbroke, and a nice dinner was had.

11.04.2005Monday 11 April – Queuing Theory & Sahara

For some reason I got to uni remarkably fast – even though I caught what should have been the slowest bus. This meant I had time to have both a milkshake and Thai Veggie pie before my COMS4200 lecture, where I learnt more queuing theory. It’s nice to have a reasonably paced course for a change – I guess this sounds egotistical, but I think I was too intelligent for most of the courses I’ve done so far, not finding them challenging or interesting. That said, queuing theory isn’t interesting, it’s a pile of math. I also realised that the PSYC1030 exam is on the Saturday of the ANZAC long weekend. Having an exam Saturday evening in a long weekend effectively destroys the long weekend for any student required to attend this exam, rather obviously. Saturday morning would have been far better, and a date during the week, or on a normal weekend, far better again. I’m curious to know the justification for choosing the single worst available time for this exam, and the criteria one must meet to gain an exemption from sitting it, as I do not plan to ruin an entire long weekend for a single forty-five minute multi-choice exam – nor do I plan to be penalised for this. I wasn’t aware that university could, or would, sit exams on the weekend outside exam period, and I’m curious if they’re allowed to require attendance on the weekend.
After my exciting attendance at uni, I caught a City Cat with Clint, Scruff and Clus, stopping at the Regatta where I was picked up by Kieran and Marcus, and went and saw “Sahara” at Indooroopilly. It is a particularly bad movie, but as my mental state wasn’t at its most discerning (being around the level of giggling at the famous pineapple joke – Why did the bus crash? Because the driver was a pineapple!) I enjoyed it. It also managed to produce a few interesting fractions when rated against the other movies I’ve seen recently; “Sahara” gets one sixth of an “Alexander”, five forty-seconds of an “Ong Bak”, or five forty-eighths of a “True Lie”, which reminds me – I need to take my calculator to uni tomorrow. This reminds me that I need to get to sleep so I can get to uni, so that I’m awake enough to use my calculator tomorrow practicing for my COMS4200 exam.
  Joe was home when I got home, so he’s presumably back from his holiday, although I haven’t been here in days, so I’m not sure when he got back.

12.04.2005Tuesday 12 April – Chinese Portuguese

A train journey into uni, through the rain, was quite pleasant. Psychology lectures filled the drizzling morning, where anything I may have learnt was drowned out by a cacophony of somniferous blatancy. A psychology tutorial followed, where first years were told how to write an essay – and even given catchy phrases to use.
I began to write my CSSE3004 reflective review – something that should not have taken more than an hour, but due to distractions, a lack of inspiration, and its conversion midway to third person, Maz and I had to head towards the city before I’d written more than a paragraph. It seems that most of the east coast had also decided to drive into Brisbane, and the few who hadn’t were happily driving out of Brisbane. One of the unfortunate properties of a car is that it’s very solid and quite unable to continue when behind another car, which itself is behind another car, which they were, ad infinitum – or at least until Brisbane. It took an hour to get into the city, even with driving through roundabout back streets.
I had Portuguese vegetables at a Chinese place in the Valley. They were quite yummy, and not as scary as the fungi elsewhere. I then had a pleasant walk and sat in a park for a while, but it got quite cold – winter approaches.

13.04.2005Wednesday 13 April – Tired & Reflecting

I finished off writing my CSSE3004 reflective review. It was starting to sound stupid in third person, so I converted it to a radio transcript of an interview between myself and I – hopefully whoever marks it has some sense of humour. After submitting that, I spent the evening writing an index of my COMS4200 lecture notes for the upcoming exam, not doing as much as I should have, and having to cut them short to go to work. Work ended up being an easy night, as I had to stick around to do tape changes, and watch “Centre Stage”. All up, a pretty slack day – which is probably fortunate, as I’m so tired.

14.04.2005Thursday 14 April – Groups

Today’s CSSE3004 lecture began with a “feedback” session, which ended up being more of an opportunity for Ken to explain why he’s doing unpopular things, than anything else. Unfortunately I was busy designing a reliable protocol to run on top of UDP and entirely forgot to complain about the non-release of tutorial answers. On the bright side, I got back my half of a half mark that I’d lost for the demonstration, giving me full marks.
  We formed groups in the workshop after lectures. I’m in group Q, which is probably a far better group than I could have hoped for. There are seven members, all apparently intelligent high achievers aiming for high marks, and I already know four of them, at least vaguely. I’d been worried I’d end up with a group with some sort of major problem, but I think our biggest problem will be a power struggle, and associated problems getting any decisions passed – which isn’t half as bad as it could have been. I could have ended up with a group who barely understood English and couldn’t be understood themselves, or who just didn’t care.
After a rushed night’s work, I caught a City Cat into the city. It’s quite nice on the City Cat at night – the city lights on the river and the cool breeze flying past.
I met Bronwen and her parents at South Bank, and spent the night at her place.
Comment by Maz – Saturday 16 April 2005, 4:52 PM
  A crappy group would really suck for this project.
Comment by Jojo – Sunday 17 April 2005, 12:41 PM
  Your group is amazing. it has all of the smartest dudes in the class. and i think your analogy of potential problems is good.
  we'll all know at the end of the year, eh?

15.04.2005Friday 15 April – Not Studying Queuing Theory

Here I am sitting in the labs, the sun filtering through the closed blinds, tired and avoiding learning queuing theory. I feel mildly sick after eating a foot-long sub for breakfast, but am avoiding the cure of all ills – milkshakes.
I’m now hungry, and still haven’t started studying for COMS4200. I have, however, been discussing life, Excel, and CSSE3004. I think I’ll go for a wander outside and see if I can find something to eat, then I’ll come back and study hard.
Now that I’ve finished my strawberry thick shake, I think I’ll make a start on the queuing theory.
I’ve now finished my index of lecture notes and tutorial answers, and am facing the horrible prospect of having to actually summarise some formulae and learn things.
I’ve just got back from lodging a credit limit increase form and buying an apple turnover and chips, to find that I’ve been logged out, presumably by Scruff who was here with Corrosive before I left, being annoying.
I’m now entirely sick of queuing theory – but haven’t really studied that much. I’ve been showing Jervina my CSSE3004 demonstration, and she showing me hers, and generally procrastinating.
DM and I are off for a walk to the Ville, to obtain food before we begin work.
Work begins, and continues through to nine o’clock, at which point I wait for forty minutes until my bus leaves, whereupon I also leave, arriving twenty minutes later at the train station, upon which both I, and my Slurpy, entrain for home.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 17 April 2005, 11:02 AM
  Does Bronwen know about Slurpy and yourself?

16.04.2005Saturday 16 April – Barbecues & Phone Bills

I spent all morning putting together a gas barbecue with Joe, before discovering that the phone had been barred from making long distance calls, due to an unpaid bill. This did not make Joe remarkably happy.
I called the Cooktown Bike place about hiring bikes.
I caught the train into the city, reading some COMS4200 notes on the way.
I spent a nice night at Bronwen’s, marred only by myself getting into a mood as I’d thought we were going up Mt Cootha, but instead ended up having a quiet wine and dine.

17.04.2005Sunday 17 April – Connections & Insane Shop Attendants

After a relaxing and lovely morning in bed, I went and watched the culmination of “Connections”, apparently some type of music and arts festival orientating around the connections between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians, at the Judith Wright Centre in the Valley. I also met the self-proclaimed “friendliest Night Owl operator” on earth – who sold me a flavoured milk and breakfast bar for one dollar, a saving of nearly five dollars, and Bronwen a large frozen Coke free – a one hundred percent saving. I couldn’t help wondering if the body of the real shop attendant was lying out the back somewhere – one never knows in the Valley.

18.04.2005Monday 18 April – Networks Two Exam

I had planned to get to uni early and study for my COMS4200 mid-semester exam. I even set my alarm for half past six – and even woke up then, but experienced some technical difficulties getting out of bed, not arriving at uni until after eight o’clock. I made up some study time by catching the City Cat in rather than the bus, and studying on it. For the actually exam, I used up all the time given, but managed to answer all the questions, so am hoping for a good mark but only time (or the lecturer) will tell.
Noon, used here in its traditional sense as the ninth hour from sunrise, occurred around about the time I finally actually began working on my COMS4200 assignment.
I had my first CSSE3004 group meeting. As it was the initial meeting, I’d not prepared anything (not knowing what others would prepare and being too lazy to risk duplication of effort). We all chatted for an hour, not coming up with anything life changing, but arranging what we need to do for the coming week and next meeting.

19.04.2005Tuesday 19 April – The Interpreter

Today began too early, exacerbated by yesterday ending too late. PSYC1030 was its usual blatantly obvious self. I think Maz sums it up best – “first a lecture on mood disorders that women are more than twice as likely to have... then a lecture on sexism that tells me I can’t point that out...” I was actually quite annoyed by the propagandist assumptions; racism or women in the workplace, for example, may or may not be bad, but it is not the place of a psychology lecturer to teach that it is unconditionally bad, without any discussion, evidence, or proof – yet expect everything else to have some type of proof. I don’t care how politically incorrect an issue may be – unscientific and baseless assumptions have no place in a scientific course, particularly not when they’re used as the basis for other assumptions. I also forgot to give Maz a lead I had for him.
Maz and I bought our usual lunch from Chez Tessa before heading to our PSYC1030 tute, where we continued to keep our somewhat nefarious reputations going by turning up late with steaming hot food, skittles, strawberry milk and yoghurt, and blaming the distance to Chez Tessa for our lateness. At least Maz walked into the room first this time – eliciting a comment from the tutor that he’s not the sidekick today. I again forgot to give Maz a lead I had for him.
After filling out my timesheet for CSSE3004, reviewing our group’s draft project charter, wrecking our repository, and doing a bit more on our COMS4200 assignment, I felt the urgent need for a mindless movie. This was satiated by “The Interpreter”, which I saw at Indooroopilly with Raymond. The journey there was a little different – I chatted to three “secretaries”, also on their way to the movies, dressed à la stereotypical “porno movie” secretaries, and acting the part, but claiming to work at UQ. After the movie, which earned itself six Sahara’s, Maz came to get the lead I kept forgetting I had for him, and drove Raymond back to college and myself into Roma St, where I promptly forgot to give him the lead and caught the train home.
Comment by Dog – Thursday 5 May 2005, 8:32 PM
  update, Ned. PLEASE. We're dying...
Comment by Ned – Friday 6 May 2005, 3:08 AM

20.04.2005Wednesday 20 April – Curry & Credit

Curry at South Bank. Quite nice. Nearly paid using someone else’s credit card. Store manager not happy.

21.04.2005Thursday 21 April – I

I did not have a good day. I had management lectures, workshops and tutorials at uni. I had work at night. I missed the train home. I discovered it is a seventy-five dollar fine for walking when the red man says to stop. I sat and tried not to listen to a loud, incessant and annoying alarm at Central Station. I walked through the rain.

22.04.2005Friday 22 April – SMS & IBM

Last Night
I tried sending an SMS to myself, and the phone beeped. I removed it from the charger, and it didn’t beep. I reinserted the charger, changed settings, removed it, and so on, and now it seems to beep.
I was very sleepy, due to not going to bed until late. This is a known side effect. I caught the train into the city, reading my psychology notes on the way. Once at uni, a little later than usual, I began to procrastinate, read the newsgroups, and consider beginning my INFS3202 practicals, due this evening. In retrospect, I should probably have begun them about an hour earlier than I did, as I had all sorts of problems caused by not reading the instructions, and missed BITS’s IBM talk.

23.04.2005Saturday 23 April – Introduction to Psychology: Developmental, Social, & Clinical Psychology Exam

I had planned to head into uni early to study, but the best laid plans of mice and men are easily thwarted by beautiful women. Maz and I did manage to read the first eighth of the first chapter, and the headings for each section of most of the second chapter. This is probably not comprehensive study, but I was finished by the end of perusal nonetheless, and I got nineteen out of twenty-four correct. That is why you should never go to a psychologist. Maz went to sleep in his exam.

24.04.2005Sunday 24 April – Mount Barney

Bronwen and I walked up Mount Barney until it got dark where we, very fortunately, found a tent-sized flat spot amongst the rocks and cliffs.

25.04.2005Monday 25 April – Mount Barney

Waking up on the top of a mountain is actually quite pleasant, although somewhat hard on the hips. A little soymilk and muesli later, and we were off to conquer the remaining peak. This seemed like a good idea, until the cliffs we were climbing became steeper and steeper, threatening to throw me to my death hundreds of centimetres below. We had just come to the conclusion that we should turn back, due to a combination of my extreme unwillingness to crawl up slippery rock faces a kilometre above the ground, our uncertainty about what lay ahead, and the thought that anything climbed up would have to be climbed down again, when another climbing party descended from above. They had climbed up the easier route we mistakenly thought we were on, and were now on their way down to reconnoitre a far more challenging climb for another day. One of them, not being too keen to reconnoitre rope-less, walked back down with us. He happened to be an IT professional, so we had rather out of place conversations about the IT industry, Microsoft versus Macintosh, and so on, interspersed with talk about climbing, bush walking, and psychology students, while heading down through steep and slippery loose rock.
The drive back to my place was uneventful, although we were met with a Joe dilemma – whether to order fish and chips, or Thai takeaway. Fish and chips were decided upon, whereupon I drove to get them, meeting every possible red light on the way. Feeling suitably bloated after gorging on various forms of potato and grease, a drive through the city and an early night were in order.

26.04.2005Tuesday 26 April – Trash Video’s Crazed Short Shorts

Today is a Monday, at The University of Queensland. Because of this, I had my COMS4200 lecture, where I would have learnt even more about peer to peer computing, had I concentrated more. I then spent the evening realising how poorly coordinated and planned my COMS4200 group assignment is, and how much work it needs – all of which has to be done tomorrow.
I attended my weekly CSSE3004 group meeting, which produced two pages of minutes in thirty minutes, and then headed off to the city.
I slowly wandered towards Fat Boy’s, where I ate many thousands of nachos and watched some very unusual films at Trash Video’s Film Club “Crazed Short Shorts” showing. I then wandered slowly and painfully through the valley, towards bed – discussing the merits, or otherwise, of aiming to be employable in a niche market.

27.04.2005Wednesday 27 April – Defying Death & Cheese Pizza

I saw a man assault another man, and several other men then assault that man, while the ubiquitous insane female provocateur screamed abuse, before hauling them all off to the police station.
I saw a man practicing his swing with his umbrella, echoing through the hallway when he hit the wall of the lift, going up.
I got my PSYC1030 marks – nineteen out of twenty four, where the average is, according to some student on the psychology forums, just over seventeen with a standard deviation of just under three. This means I’ve just missed out on my preferred one standard deviation above average mark. I also found an almost dead baby gecko on the lab floor, and took it outside to enjoy the rain.
I’ve just got back from Indooroopilly, where I went with Kieran, Maz and Clint, and ate some nice “green goo” while they ate fried chicken. We then headed to a Microsoft talk, all about their hiring processes – and how bad human resources are. I then headed back to the labs to work on our COMS4200 assignment.
Now not feeling so well, probably due to eating most of a cheese pizza at the Microsoft thing, I’ve decided to head out for a little walk in the light misty rain that’s drifting down outside, before going to work.
Really sick. Still at uni. Still working on COMS4200 Assignment of Death.
My head is pounding. Standing up seems dangerous. Pointers chirp and tweet like shiny bluebirds, referencing and dereferencing themselves with gay abandon.
Maz and I are now packing up in readiness for leaving these cursed and damned hellholes of abomination, with their smugly satisfied, quietly whirring machines of madness.

28.04.2005Thursday 28 April – Sick

I slept right through until Maz woke me up. I was tired enough that the layered waking habits of his flatmates didn’t even wake me – or perhaps they were quiet. Unfortunately though, I didn’t feel any better when I woke. I attended three hours of CSSE3004, learning what to do if I’m ever forced to crash land on the moon, two hundred miles from my mother ship and with only fifteen items. I then went hunting at Indooroopilly with Kieran and Maz, bagging myself a small dhal, spinach, potato and rice punnet, which I ate on the bus back to uni. The bus stop was swarming with yellow-shirted union supporters on their way into the city on free charter buses, presumably paid by our union fees.
I sat at the uni doctor’s for three quarters of an hour, before being seen and told that I definitely can’t work on my COMS4200 assignment until at least Sunday. I then emailed the lecturer requesting an extension, as none of my group can work over the long weekend, and now I sit here, feeling terrible, and wondering if yoghurt from the Ville would help.
I’m going to head down to the Ville and use scientific analysis to find out if yoghurt is what I need right now.
Work wasn’t particularly fun while sick.

29.04.2005Friday 29 April – Work & Sick

Bronwen picked me up from work, which is really the only good thing to happen today.

30.04.2005Saturday 30 April – Buddha’s Birthday & Jazz

I woke up late, walked through the Buddha’s Birthday Festival, had a look at the climbing things at Kangaroo Point, and went to a Jazz club, which was quite good. I’m still feeling sick but a paracetamol every four hours does wonders.

01.05.2005Sunday 1 May – Downfall

We walked to the Buddha’s Birthday Festival again, where we met Kat, listened to a talk on reincarnation, and had some nice food. We watched the fireworks after buying a Sundae in a boat from Cold Rock, and then went and saw “Downfall”. This movie cannot be rated, and is diametrically opposite to the truth. Caxton Street was blocked for a wine festival. It looked more like a beer and rum festival to me, and made it hard to get around which isn’t good when it’s raining.

02.05.2005Monday 2 May – The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

After a lazy morning doing not much, we headed down to South Bank and saw “Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy”, which is hilarious, and enjoyable enough to be worth two old boys, or one Shaun of the dead. We found some practicing buskers and circus folk playing around after the movie and watched them for a while, before heading out to the airport to pick up people.

03.05.2005Tuesday 3 May – Assignments & Iced Coffee

I got a message from Maz, reminding me that our PSYC1030 essay is due tomorrow, something I’d entirely forgotten about, so I headed into uni to work on COMS4200 and this essay.
Maz, Craig and I are working on our COMS4200 assignment. It is not going well. We’re having many problems and very slow progress. I’m going to go buy my PSYC1030 reader now and visit the Ville for food.
I attended my CSSE3004 meeting. Chesapeake wasn’t present, and it went for an hour.
I’m going to the Ville for food. This code is slowly getting there but very slowly – too slowly. I’m also not sure where it’s getting.
The COMS4200 assignment is mostly working. I have drunk a little under two litres of iced coffee, and am now beginning my PSYC1030 assignment. It should be noted that drinking large amounts of iced coffee is not to be tried at home.

04.05.2005Wednesday 4 May – Psychology Essays

PSYC1030’s essay still isn’t begun, but I have finished reading the reader, and am onto reading the online document. The sun has got up, and the only other non-Maz person in the lab just left. This, I feel, is an important milestone in the development of the morning.
Maz went home, with COMS4200 still very buggy. I am not happy.
Craig submitted COMS4200. Who knows if it even works – I’m not happy about that. I ran up to the psychology building, then back to the IT building to print out a coversheet, then back to the psychology building again, where I submitted my PSYC1030 essay, having written it at breakneck speed while liaising with members of my CSSE3004 group and helping Craig with COMS4200. I then went and saw Clint and relaxed for a bit, before heading back here to begin the CSSE3004 Project Plan Introduction, due tomorrow morning. What joy.
I “finished” my part of the CSSE3004 “Project Plan”. It’s a shocking effort though, but I just don’t know what I’m supposed to do.
Kieran, Maz and I saw “xXx – The Next Level” (or “State of the Union” if you saw it at South Bank) at Indooroopilly. It was a pretty shocking movie – lots of mindless action but bad enough to break me out of my dazed state from time to time. I give it an eighth of a true lie.

05.05.2005Thursday 5 May – Sleeping & Working

I came home last night, for the first time in ages. Also for the first time in ages, I had no assignments due the next day, so I slept in for most of the morning, missing all my lectures, and only headed to uni for work.

06.05.2005Friday 6 May – Wherein I buy a milkshake

Slept in, left around midday for uni, eating a six inch “Veggie Delite” subway on the bus for lunch. I then had a rather long meeting with Ken about CSSE3004 and went to POD and printed CSSE3004 stuff for a meeting tomorrow. Evening consisted of signing myself up as a PSYC1030 guinea pig and working. I also bought a milkshake. It was chocolate flavoured.
Comment by Maz – Saturday 7 May 2005, 2:06 AM
  About your milkshake, an inside joke and about a sandwich. Bonus points for that effort.
Comment by Jojo – Saturday 7 May 2005, 10:18 AM
  Ned's alive. woo hoo. you hadnot posted in weeks and i was worried you had stopped blogging!
  CSSE3004 is silly isnt it?
  May i ask (and you may say no) what types of things did you discuss with Ken? course things or group things? Cheers.
Comment by Ned – Saturday 7 May 2005, 10:38 AM
  What did I discuss? I had reported myself as unsatisfactory. To quote, “Ned was sick and unable to work for several days during this period, meaning he did not complete his assigned tasks on time. He also had two other assignments due on the Wednesday preceding the Thursday that the Project Plan is due, and as they are worth 15% and 20% of their respective courses, as opposed to the few percent that the Project Plan is worth, he gave them precedence over his assigned tasks for the Project Plan. Due to the delays caused by his medical condition and the other assignments which he has got extensions for, he has also stayed up all night and, while he can’t say for sure, he suspects that other group members may feel that he is unlikely to do a particularly good job with his assigned tasks due to this. Fortunately, however, he has two litres of iced coffee and hopes that this resolves all his problems – Allah be praised!” Ken wished to discuss why I felt I was unsatisfactory, and how I should go about resolving this. I also had a marks complaint to resolve, some general course questions, and a little chit-chat about life in general and the IT department and helpdesk here in particular.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 8 May 2005, 9:50 PM
  Twas only a little while. He is alive and well. Allah be praised. (I mean this)
Comment by Clint – Thursday 12 May 2005, 11:07 PM
  Good to see you're better uleh

07.05.2005Saturday 7 May – Group Meeting

I enjoyed a pleasant, relaxing day – apart from the unpleasant or unrelaxing parts. In other words, I attended uni, which is not a good way to start a weekend. At uni, I attended a CSSE3004 group meeting. This is an even worse way to start a weekend. We discussed relevant things, apart from Chesapeake who discussed overly complex, geeky and ugly document formatting systems and the superiority of the clearly inferior command line interface. After this I went to Bronwen’s, which would have been a far better way to start a weekend.

08.05.2005Sunday 8 May – Mother’s Day

After sleeping in until midday, putting washing out and bringing it back in because it began to rain immediately we’d put it out, eating breakfast, and drinking a coffee, I was ready to go back to bed, but instead walked to Chez Tessa. This took about an hour, and then another hour or so to sit and watch the river roll by while eating, and then another to walk back again. I then caught a bus to the train station, and a train from that station to my station, upon which I planned to draw Use Case Diagrams for CSSE3004, but instead wrote lists of things within things because Use Case Diagrams are stupid. After arriving home, I ate some chips with lots of vinegar and tomato sauce, phoned Mum, and applied for another Citibank Online Cash Manager account.

09.05.2005Monday 9 May – Monday

Every Monday a Monday comes along, which surely must be one of the greatest curses of our times. We live in hope that one Monday, just one Monday, it will be a Friday – but it is a vain hope, for every Monday brings another, as sure as today comes before tomorrow – and the day after that, except in February. Today, being this week’s Monday, saw me at uni trying to learn about network management. Sadly, at least as far as my learning was concerned, I had only five hours sleep last night, and wasn’t about to concentrate on abstract data representations with a foreign accent.
Clint had to buy two fish, because he didn’t have any. Because of this anomaly, Maz and I drove with him to Indooroopilly, where I ate green goo for lunch and Clint bought two fish, because he didn’t have any, and Maz couldn’t buy a stereo because they didn’t have any either.
I had my weekly CSSE3004 group meeting. We took half an hour to prioritise and rewrite an already written list of twelve or so items. This is a good example of why groups are amazingly inefficient, as I had already prioritised the list in my head in the same order we eventually ended up with, within the first minute or two – and I don’t think I’m especially gifted with client-sponsor interview question list prioritisation. We then spent the remaining half hour of our meeting wasting more time, and putting off until next meeting what we’d already decided to put off until this meeting last meeting. Just think how much more efficient life would be without Monday.
Maz and I witnessed a miracle. With the smallest of code changes, our COMS4200 assignment two supported concurrent file transfers, as required by assignment three. Everything synchronised. It had no problem trying to transfer two identical files at the same time. It handled packet loss. It had heaps of bugs. It was a miracle. It also took me two pages of diagrams and the entire train trip home to figure out how to solve the lost-last-ack problem.
Ned is remarkably cold. Ned thinks this isn’t helped by sitting wrapped in a wet towel with wet hair, but Ned knows it is too cold to get up and change this. Ned also knows he has to get up at half past seven tomorrow. Ned thinks he should go to bed.

10.05.2005Tuesday 10 May – Toilet Paper, Vomit & Psychology

This morning the people across from me in the train talked about toilet paper. They talked about toilet paper loudly. They talked about toilet paper incessantly. They talked about toilet paper all the way from my station to the city. Then, on the train to uni, a girl vomited. She vomited quite voluminously. But, onto uni – I attended my PSYC1030 lecture, where I learnt nothing (other than that psychologists are clinically stupid) but had a nice coffee milkshake. A coffee milkshake is the only way to survive psychology lectures after less than six hours sleep.
I spent the afternoon and evening working on COMS4200 and doing my INFS3202 practicals for Friday.
Kieran dropped me off at Maz’s and Maz dropped me off at Bronwen’s, where I spent the night.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 12 May 2005, 10:15 AM
  That is a perfect description of a psychologist.

11.05.2005Wednesday 11 May – Psychologically Surveyed

Arrived at Psychology survey on “Internet Use, Social Anxiety and Attitudes to Therapy”, and completed it in twenty minutes. Sprinkling and cloudy.
Spent in labs doing CSSE3004 and completing a psychological survey on “Males in Biological Families”.
Going to psychology survey on “Personality, Abilities and Attitudes”. I just finished a gruelling two-hour timed survey, where I was required to answer several thousand questions as fast as I could. My arms are exhausted and my back hurts. It would appear that I’m a racist homophobe who can’t determine when A does not precede B. Hopefully this information is useful to someone.
Had a CSSE group meeting, half hour long. Assigned tasks for SRS, then update the Wiki to reflect this. Now going to work. Before this, I had an “Attitudes” study for Psychology, about animal testing and so on, took half an hour and only I turned up.

12.05.2005Thursday 12 May – Management Discord

After a far too late night and nowhere near enough sleep, and no sleep on the train or bus either, three hours of CSSE3004 seemed pleasantly unreal and fuzzy. I had two hours of lectures, the first by Ken and the second by Lisa, who hadn’t lectured us yet. I then had an hour-long “client sponsor” interview, where Darren mimicked being the sponsor for our project, and answered questions we’d previously submitted. After this, I woke up Clint, got yoghurt, and walked to the Ville where I bought a veggie sub – the kebab place being shut. I then attended my CSSE3004 tutorial somewhat late, and headed up to argue marks with Ken.
Ned attended the project office on behalf of Q Group.
  Ned informed Ken that six members of Q Group had a clear recollection of Darren telling them that they would not lose marks for the late submission of their initial timesheet, which was supposed to be included in the initial project report.
  Ken informed Ned that he had a clear recollection of telling the entire class that marks would only be deducted for late submission, for the initial project report.
  Ned informed Ken that Q Group did not contest this, but that Q Group had received seemingly contradictory information verbally from Darren.
  Darren was called into the conversation.
  Darren informed Ken and Ned that he did not recollect precisely what he had said during the period under discussion.
  Ken reminded Ned that he is the course coordinator, and that what he says is definitive. Ken further reminded Ned that late penalties had been applied to all groups as applicable and that another staff member cannot contradict Ken.
  Ned stated that, in light of past contradictory information, Q Group would no longer accept anything as definitive unless it is in writing from Ken, including this decision.
  Ken informed Ned that he was referring Ned to the course profile, where this decision was already in writing, and additionally informed Ned that he would attempt to give Q Group any decisions and other such commands in writing, but that he may require prompting from time to time. Ken further informed Ned that if he felt it was unreasonable to do so, that he would not do so.
  Ned informed Ken that his group saw no other solution to this problem.
  Ned and Darren departed the project office.
  Ned apologised to Darren personally for putting him on the spot in front of Ken, Lisa, and whoever the young bloke is, and thus concluded an unsuccessful attempt to regain a quarter of a mark.
I am now going to head off to the Ville for dinner, and then head to work. On second thoughts, I might message Clint and find out if I can get yoghurt somehow. On third thoughts, I can always eat my yoghurt later – I should eat a proper meal, and it is rainy and a Thursday so I won’t be able to spend a lot of time checking rooms as they’ll either be full, or somewhere that would require me walking in the rain.

13.05.2005Friday 13 May – Black Friday

I slept in a bit, getting over seven hours sleep for the first time in ages, and went to the Telstra shop and Govinda’s on the way to uni. At uni, I went and saw Ken again about marks allocation, which was sorted out. He wants to meet the entire group after next Thursday’s lecture. It rained heavily with some lightning, I worked, and Maz and I decided that staying up tonight working on COMS4200 is a better idea than staying up the night before it’s due. This we duly did – spending all night working on our assignment and getting very little actually done. Around four o’clock we collapsed into bed, and by the looks, we’ll have to spend at least another all-nighter on it. As bad as it is, I still think two litres of iced coffee is better than two litres of L.A. Ice Cola.

14.05.2005Saturday 14 May – Kickboxing

I managed to wake before midday, and caught a train back home, from where I caught another train and bus to Southport. After not getting off where I should have got off, and having to walk for ages, I found the kickboxing venue, and my sister, and spent the next several hours there. The fights were amateur – no one who had fought over five fights was allowed to fight, which meant a lot less gore but not necessarily any less interesting. Both of the Full Boar fighters won, making it a success for the club. It is cool how there’s always a few people wearing Full Boar shirts, so far from home.
Comment by Damian – Monday 16 May 2005, 4:10 PM
  Maybe in the rarefied world of academia a psychologist can live in a bubble of theories and assure themselves that psychology is actually a science. But where I work, the resident chief pyschologist attests that pyschology is IN NO WAY to be considered an empirical science (as opposed to an experimental art), there are no absolutes about human behaviour apart from certainty of change (or its' potential) and for all his expertise and so on, for all his carefully crafted assessment tools, and all of his skills and knowledge, etc... the poor bastard in the seclusion room at the hospital needs help, and there has to be something, even if it's just the effort, in place to facilitate this. That's a skilled person, accepting the limitations but embracing the intent.

15.05.2005Sunday 15 May – Sesame Seeds, Cinnamon Sticks & Cheese

Tis the day for forgetting what I did, tralala, tra-la-la. Actually, I’ve remembered. I sorted out papers.
I stayed at Bronwen’s. I had planned to head to uni, but by the time I got to the city, it wasn’t worth it.

16.05.2005Monday 16 May – Mt Coot-Tha

COMS4200 was its usual self. He skipped the tutorial to work on CSSE3004, and attended a meeting for this, which he had to leave after only twenty minutes so that he could get to the city in time. He stood at the back, in the slipstream around the side of the City Cat, feeling like a dog out of a car window – and the spray lightly on his face.
  She arrived, as a beautiful mermaid, gliding through oceans of people as they faded into insignificance.
  They walked, talked, drove, and bought pides. They saw the city, as a sea of ghost lights – a stadium extraordinaire, without depth or end. Then they got cold. The funny thing was, Maz and Hollie arrived as they were sitting there, merely metres away – yet neither knew.

17.05.2005Tuesday 17 May – Prince Charles Hospital & Gay Mushrooms

Despite staying in bed longer than expected, I arrived at uni in time to print my PSYC1030 notes, buy a pie and get my ubiquitous milkshake – coffee and vanilla this morning. I then spent an hour at my two-hour PSYC1030 lecture, which was as bad as usual, except perhaps worse. Today we discussed what created gender – despite the answer being incredibly obvious, apparently no psychologist has yet worked it out. The second hour was on measurement – so Maz and I skipped it. Somewhat suitably, the morons from the UQUnion had put hundreds of little pink flags all over the grassy knoll near the main refectory. As far as I could tell, each one represented one gay student. Sadly, I couldn’t think of any way of burning or mowing them down without being mobbed or arrested. People are mushrooms. Union representatives are toadstools. I’m not sure what cane toads are.
I inadvertently caught the most indirect bus possibly to Prince Charles Hospital, which didn’t matter, as I still had to wait ages to be seen. It wasn’t quite what I expected – I lay in the lap of an attractive woman, while she smeared jelly all over me for half an hour. She then asked if I’d be interested in attending a sleep study. They call this an electrocardiogram.
I went to Govinda’s, slept on the train, and arrived home remarkably early – just after dark.

18.05.2005Wednesday 18 May – Nokia & Masala Dosa

I went to the Telstra Shop to send my phone away for repair, and was told that it would be far quicker if I dropped it off at Nokia Care myself, so I did, after spending half an hour finding them.
Kieran drove me into the city and I picked up my phone. Apparently, my complaint was a “2911 – Ringing Tone” or “Int. no alert or vibrate when SMS comes through” complaint, and the fix was, according to Dave, “Open and inspected phone. Cleaned and re-tensioned all contacts. Restored factory defaults. Deleted messages in inbox as it was full and was causing reported fault. Tested in workshop and on air, all okay”. This sounds like an implausible fix, so I’m suspecting the problem will reoccur.
  After arriving back from the city, I attended a CSSE3004 group meeting, which was rather uneventful, although the group member who compiled the final document after the meeting made a plethora of changes – which presumably no one else had reviewed or wanted, and which she herself had presumably not had a chance to review beforehand. This makes the entire point of having a group review process useless. All I can do is hope that the changes were for the better, as I had already signed-off on the marking allocation sheet.
After a pleasant City Cat ride into the city, I found an Indian food place that does an authentic Masala Dosa. I plan to return.
I stayed the night at Bronwen’s.

19.05.2005Thursday 19 May – Management Meeting & Hail

After the usual three droll hours of management spout, my CSSE3004 group and I had a meeting with Ken. As far as I can tell, the main, and perhaps only, purpose of the meeting was to ascertain whether it was just me being difficult, or if I was representing the wishes of the entire group. I have a feeling that Ken was suspecting I might have been acting on my own, or that I might not have been accurately transferring his thoughts back to the group, so he wanted to make sure everyone knew what was going on. Apart from that, I haven’t a clue what he said, as it was all in some kind of manager-gibberish. It seems it is impossible to get an answer from Ken – or at least one that is related to the question. He simply answers something different in some peculiar tangential manner, and ends up making little or no sense. I then went to Indooroopilly with Kieran and Maz for lunch.
I was just heading towards the Ville to get dinner before work when it began to rain, hail and thunder. This made going to the Ville somewhat suicidal, so I didn’t – instead finding new and innovative ways to use fire escapes to get to work without being struck by lighting or flying ice, although watching people getting soaked on the way to the buses was fun. After work I headed into the city, through piles of snow-like ice, feet thick in places. Roads were closed and cars piled into street signs and stuck traction-less in intersections. Trees were shredded and covered in hail – looking just like freshly fallen snow. It was also quite cold.
Comment by Lucas – Tuesday 24 May 2005, 10:01 PM
  haha, so true about Ken! At least with Darren he'll tell you he doesn't really know how to answer your question and THEN go onto talk about something totally unrelated.
  I just hope this year for you guys they aren't 1/2 hour late for the exam like last year. They teach us about punctuality, time-limits, deadlines, and organisation, and then screw us like that! Nice for showing us by example guys! See my blog entry from a year ago for my bitch and moan:
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 25 May 2005, 7:36 PM
  Apart from the ins and outs of computering and all that jazz, the heavens opened up with something a little different for Brisbane and environs. Something to think about, apart from this and that person who give you the , er, um, shifts. Shifts of a different sort. The real world rains, hails, shines. Might as well enjoy it. Suffer it. It is all God. Whether or not you actually LIKE it. Ma

20.05.2005Friday 20 May – Transport & Late Night Labs

I snoozed my alarm for half an hour before heading reluctantly into uni. There are still piles of ice around the place, and large amounts of shredded leaves. I’ve just finished a veggie roll and milkshake, and am ready to begin INFS3202.
I just got back from the city, having been to QLD Transport with Maz, to ask about bike licences. I’m going to the Ville for dinner, then to work, quite soon.
Maz, Clint and I are sitting in the labs working on an INFS3202 assignment. I have eaten five or so mint patties. We worked through to about 3 AM then went back to Maz’s to sleep. New Rembo reboot system is in place, with a warning.
Comment by Jojo – Tuesday 24 May 2005, 9:08 AM
  the new rembo is nice isnt it. it gives you >30 secs to save and run away.
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 25 May 2005, 7:39 PM
  5 or so mint patties! ! Holy Mackerel, one is toxic.

21.05.2005Saturday 21 May – Meeting and Lazing

I woke up at 9:30 and caught a bus from Maz’s into uni where I met my CSSE3004 group just on the way into the engineering library. We had a meeting through to about half past twelve. I then went down labs and drew up a draft entity relationship diagram for the group in Visio, and am now going to phone Bronwen and try not to think about uni.
I spent a lovely evening lazing about doing very little and repressing any thoughts of uni.

22.05.2005Sunday 22 May – Star Wars & Sarah’s Birthday

I slept in until midday. I then walked to the city and wandered around. “Star Wars Episode III – Revenge of the Sith” was sold out at South Bank until half past nine, so I had a nice Indian meal from a place in West End, before watching the movie. It’s surprisingly good – still immature and simplistic, but with a reasonably developed plot, earning it two Old Boys, or three quarters of a True Lie.

23.05.2005Monday 23 May – Networks & Information Systems

I attended my COMS4200 lectures, during which we were given an extension until next Wednesday. First, Maz and I thought the assignment was due last Wednesday, then found out it was due this Wednesday, and now it’s due next Wednesday. This is a good thing, as we really didn’t have time to complete it. I then spent the rest of the day starting my INFS3202 assignment – it is proving slower than anticipated. I stayed up a bit later than I probably should have.

24.05.2005Tuesday 24 May – Psychology & Bad Moods

I didn’t get as much sleep last night as I would have liked, and can feel it today. Two hours of psychology lectures probably didn’t help, although the milkshake did. I used the hour between my psychology lectures and their tutorial to finish off my psychology lab report, and submitted that just before the tutorial. I’m now going to try to get some work done on my INFS3202 assignment, which has fallen behind schedule and is proving more time consuming than anticipated.
I am in a very bad mood. This semester is two weeks too long. It should have ended last week. This week is too much. My INFS3202 assignment is proving to be horrible. I wanted to go see a movie tonight, but that fell through. I then wanted to go see what sounded like an interesting selection of weirdness at a film club, but that fell through too. I then walked to the Ville where I bought dinner – which hasn’t fallen through yet but I’m sure it will. On the way back I ran into several hundred stupid uni students, dressed up and boarding buses. It was the perfect opportunity to eliminate the lot, but unfortunately the most lethal items I had with me were two litres of chocolate milk and a punnet of mixed vegetable satay. I can only hope an overpass will collapse while all the buses are on it, and they will all fall through into the river and be eaten by Russian sharks. Actually, that’s no good because the sharks will be happy. Maybe the sharks will choke on all the tinsel. Now I go back to working on my assignment, as I continue to exist surrounded by despair and gloom, hoping that something terrible happens to everyone else, to lighten my night.
I am starting to lose track of things here. I can’t remember what I was editing, or why, so I’m just using the undo feature to get back to the last state that actually compiled.
So tired, can’t think. Can’t remember what I was supposed to do. Can’t code. Going to Maz’s place to sleep.
Comment by io – Saturday 28 May 2005, 2:17 PM
  Those college students you speak of boarding buses on Upland Road; it was the ICC Pubcrawl.

25.05.2005Wednesday 25 May – Oracle is bad, Tomorrow is Today

Kieran collected Maz and I, and we returned to the joy and happiness that abounds within the walls of GPS.
I just got back from Indooroopilly, where Kieran and I had lunch. Now, back to INFS3202, which I’ve been working on all morning.
Going to walk to the Ville for food and then go to work. Maz is heading off with Kieran, also to work.
Here I am back in the labs after an uneventful night at work. How happy I am that I can once again be with my SQL.
After spending hours trying to fix a stupid, spastic, horrible Oracle error, I am now back to actually getting some work done. Kieran has just left.
Showered and cleaned teeth – and am now feeling somewhat more human.
So tired. Going for a walk and to look for food.
CSSE3004 is not what I wanted this morning – I am so tired. Ken refuses to release any tutorial solutions. Ken refuses to provide a sample exam. Ken refuses to release past exams. Ken refuses to provide the sample exam question lecture slides we were shown today. I am paying for this course, and Ken is making it as ineffectual as he possibly can. Ken must go.
More INFS3202. What a horrible assignment – Java is a horrible language, and JSP has to be the worst server-side language possible. Oracle is a despicable joke, and Tomcat ridiculously slow.
Off for food then lecture to see Kieran lecturing. In retrospect, he did not do any lecturing, but I did get a free chocolate bar.
About to head off to work. In labs with Kieran, Clint, Marcus, having just got back from the Microsoft .NET demonstration.

26.05.2005Thursday 26 May – Sleepy

Well, I’m finally home, and I can finally get some sleep – something I haven’t been getting much of recently. As far as I can tell, most of today happened yesterday, so there’s really nothing more to say – see yesterday.

27.05.2005Friday 27 May – Oracle Dies, I Electrocute

I woke up when my alarm went off, and made one of those clever decisions one makes in the period between waking and becoming – that I would sleep in. I carefully weighed up the amount of work I had to complete on my assignment, the length of time it would take me, including how long it would take me to get to uni in the first place, and then I realised it was very cold. A few hours later, when it wasn’t so cold, I trained into uni, refreshed and ready to do a last minute panic for INFS3202 – and panic I did. Oracle, the crap joke of a database that it is, only worked one in a hundred attempts. It would seem it can’t handle being used as a database by more than one person at a time. I had done most of the work in my all-night stint, and only had testing and a few minor modifications to make. Had Oracle not failed most of the time, I could easily have done what I needed to do, but it is very difficult to test a modification that could have ramifications all over the place when Oracle will fail after three queries, repeatedly. There were people all over the place swearing and cursing. If Oracle are trying to give students exposure to their product by placing them in universities, I think they should reconsider. I will now attempt never to use an Oracle database, and most certainly couldn’t recommend one to anyone.
It is funny how stressful deadlines are. I submitted my INFS3202 assignment, hopefully working but largely untested, a minute or so before its four o’clock deadline – and I only forgot to submit one file. The lead-up to the deadline was not fun. Watching minutes tick by, database connection exception by database connection exception, interspersed with the occasional time when I could actually connect to the database, wasn’t my first choice on how to spend the evening. Looking on the bright side, I now have database error catching code in my assignment. I was sorely tempted to loop connecting until one actually worked, and keep a pool of spare connected connections for when it died, but I figured the people having noisy nervous breakdowns beside me would kill me if they found out.
I headed in to work after a quick trip to the Ville for Spaghetti Napolitana. Work involved much rushing around campus, testing things, experiencing electric shocks, and generally enjoying myself. I’m beginning to think that staying up all night occasionally is good – I felt rejuvenated and happy. Even when I should have been angry, upset and stressed, I saw it as a challenge and was amused by the anger of others.
The two men sitting behind me held a heated discussion about train control systems. They were particularly, and vehemently, interested in how they determine the length of a train, and what happens when a train isn’t that length. Their favourite phrase was “no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, that’s not what I’m saying”. A close second was “no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, what I’m saying is...” As exciting as their argument was, it couldn’t match the drunken football fans, who screamed, yelled, and either passed out or drank more in their admirable attempt at achieving a state as close as possible to that which any sane person would avoid, otherwise known as blotto. The bloke who woke up his passed-out girlfriend by blocking all her airways seemed to be a particularly innovative and caring type – I can’t help wondering why they never taught me that in first aid.
It is a quarter to four, according to “Banshee Screamer”, my clock down in the corner where the mouse pointer inexplicably jumps to when it runs off the edge of its pad – and I’m nearly out of jellybeans, so I should probably consider bed. In other news, Google have approved my next ad payment – but it breaks their terms of use to mention the amount. I suppose sleep must be got, so to get it I shall go.
I’d have thought I’d be tired after getting very little sleep all week, but apparently not. I am, however, now going to bed – tired or not. I’m also nearly frozen. I will use the “push” technique of sleep enforcement – setting an alarm so that I will only get five and a half hours sleep. This will mean that, eventually, I will be tired early enough to go to bed early. I may patent the idea (if I don’t die from sleep deprivation or jellybeans first).
Comment by Lucas – Sunday 29 May 2005, 10:36 PM
  I've used oracle at uni for 3 assignments in seperate courses over the past 3 years and really haven't much troubles... well at least nowhere near the amount you seem to be having!
  Maybe the DBAs are on holidays...

28.05.2005Saturday 28 May – Engagement Party

I slept in, having stayed up all last night and most of the week.
I entrained for the city, grabbed something to eat from Subway, and headed off to an engagement party.

29.05.2005Sunday 29 May – The Sea Inside, but not the Gold Coast

Today I had planned to go to the Gold Coast. I even went as far as walking to the city with nothing more than a towel. This seemed like a good idea at the time, but after wandering pleasantly around the city for a few hours, it began to get cold.
I went and saw “The Sea Inside” at Palace Centro. It was quite a powerful and moving movie, earning itself just more than an Interpreter – one and one tenth to be precise, which somehow works out as eleven sixteenths of a True Lie.
I spent the night with Bronwen at her place.

30.05.2005Monday 30 May – Uni, Unhappily

COMS4200 lecture, submit SQL for INFS3202, COMS4200 assignment until late broken only by a meeting for CSSE3004, Maz’s new car to McDonald’s, then home.
Demoi is the plural of demos, which is not the plural of demo.

31.05.2005Tuesday 31 May – Psychology and Networks

PSYC1030 lectures in the morning, followed by a tute of the same where my assignment was returned. I then spent the evening and half of the night working on COMS4200, writing an RFC for the reliable file transfer over UDP protocol I’ve developed. Maz and I left for his place sometime after two o’clock.

01.06.2005Wednesday 1 June – COMS4200

Maz, Sophie and I drove into uni, where another bad day began. I wrote test cases for CSSE3004, and then panicked on COMS4200, racing against the clock to complete everything my group members were supposed to have done but either didn’t or had done so poorly that it didn’t even work. I got an hour’s extension, but still had to submit a partially working assignment. I hate group work. I see no way to do it right except by doing the whole thing myself, and I just didn’t have the time to do that for this assignment. I am very displeased, but unfortunately too nice to mark my group members down, which doesn’t make me feel any better. I somehow feel as though it’s my fault, that I should have managed the group better; forced and encouraged them to work.
  I really am not happy about the pathetic attempt they made, and the way they’ve screwed over my marks in doing so. I put in a lot of time and effort into these assignments, only to consistently be let down by my group members. One group member was supposed to spend two days testing this code, which I thought was essentially finished. I come to the code, a few hours before submission, and after it has theoretically been completed and tested, only to find that it’s incomplete and doesn’t even work. It seems that almost everything my group members wrote doesn’t work at all, and neither of them tested anything. I spent all last night writing up the protocol I designed for this assignment, assuming that my group members had written and tested their code, as they had arranged to do, and then had to spend all today interleaving my own CSSE3004 group work and fixing their omissions and errors. Now I’ll get a poor overall grade for this course, because I don’t go well in end of semester exams and the assignments, where I had a chance to make up some marks, were sabotaged by my group member’s lack of care.
  I also haven’t had enough sleep for the past few weeks, and am beginning to feel rather incoherent. Fortunately, this is the last week of classes.
To celebrate the end of an awful day, I went and saw “911 – In Plane Site”, a documentary exposé showing at the Schonell. It was quite interesting.
Comment by Maz – Friday 3 June 2005, 2:11 AM
  I would have known some of my code didn't work if enough of the program had been finished so I could test it. Not being able to start testing after the deadline while I was working on something else.

02.06.2005Thursday 2 June – Blood, Beer & Bloody SQL

I slept in a little too long, missing my train and having to catch the next one. Fortunately for me, I don’t have any classes today – but still had to get to uni by ten o’clock for a group meeting.
I attended my CSSE3004 presentation, which did not go as well as expected. We lost marks for a superfluous database table left over from a past incarnation, and no one had actually tested the application itself, despite me tabling up sixty or so test cases, so it failed to actually save any data to the database. The lessons are obvious – organise better, and test beforehand.
Maz, Clint and I drove to UMart where Maz bought a DVD burner. We then had lunch at Indooroopilly with Kieran. I spent the afternoon at Maz’s place, before heading back to work.
Someone on the train thought it would be a good idea to run randomly up to people, point at them, and scream “blood”. He seemed disturbed. Then, half an hour or so later, someone decided to steal someone else’s slab of beer. The owners weren’t pleased, and decided to attempt to pulverise the thieves into small parts. The guards weren’t pleased either. Fortunately for everyone except those involved, the police were wandering past the station at the time, and happened to have a few spare handcuffs on them. Most of the original owners of the beer managed to remain on the train with their remaining slab but the most violent of them was handcuffed and left on the station, a bit angry. For some inexplicable reason, the scum who had stolen the other slab was also left on the station with the police – and the beer he had stolen. The bloke who had bought the beer was more worried about being killed by his sister when he got home than anything else.

03.06.2005Friday 3 June – Last Day of Classes

Based on a statistical analysis of a random sample of other mornings this semester, I believe it is safe to say that I woke up before I wanted to, left home later than I had hoped meaning I had to run to the train, and then dozed on the train, only to arrive at uni some time later. Of course, there’s always a chance that this morning was different, but that’s statistically insignificant.
BITS ran their last BBQ for the semester, so I got a free veggie burger and bought a can of coke, while chatting to Maz and Jervina about exciting and highly relevant things.
  I went and saw Mark Schulz to complain about the non-release of what I consider to be essential course information for CSSE3004. He took down the details of my complaint, and said he’d get back to me when he could, but that he was leaving for America on Sunday.
  I demonstrated my INFS3202 component. As far as I can tell, it all worked and nothing went wrong, but the whole demonstration was a bit confusing and not amazingly well organised, so I’m not entirely sure what happened.
I worked, uncovering an obscure bug in one of the control systems. Other than that, nothing overly exciting happened.
Comment by io – Friday 10 June 2005, 8:41 AM
  I am disappointed, sad and emo that you forgot that I was also at the BBQ with yourself, Maz and Jervina.

04.06.2005Saturday 4 June – Banana Cake

I spent the morning lazing in bed recovering from uni, now that classes are over for the semester. I spent the evening wandering around the city recovering from the morning, before heading back home. The train home wasn’t running all the way, so I got to sit on the articulating part of an articulated bus, which connected with a train that rattled happily past my station without stopping, leaving me to sit on a cold metal bench and wait for another train back.
  Due to my clever and fulfilling bachelor student lifestyle, the only food I actually had was a banana cake. It was quite a fine banana cake, but I wasn’t sure Bronwen would share my excitement about a purely banana cake based diet, so ended up ordering takeaway from The Curry Inn.

05.06.2005Sunday 5 June – Jaffles & The Gold Coast

After a busy morning eating breakfast and discussing bowls and the differences between Brisbane and Logan with respect to free dump trips, Bronwen and I headed down to Surfer’s Paradise. We spent a pleasant evening wandering down the beach and meeting a local astrophysics genius and his associated giggling Parisians, before training back into the city. The night was filled with jaffle creation, where we attempted to make jaffles the same as Mum makes them, except with a sandwich maker.

06.06.2005Monday 6 June – Indooroopilly & Cold Rock

Clint and I bussed into Indooroopilly, where I ate some green goo. We were tentatively considering seeing a movie, but nothing worth watching was showing, so we went to Cold Rock instead. We then waited for the bus back to uni, which never came – even though four Great Circle buses came and spent half an hour sitting at the stop. After waiting a ridiculously long time for the bus that didn’t come, we caught the train to Toowong and a bus from there – saying it was going to the city and driven by a driver who wasn’t charging his passengers and seemed happy to drive them wherever they wanted.
  I am now the proud owner of a litre of custard and half a litre of pure, unthickened cream and a mars bar. I’m not sure about the mars bar, but the rest complement my banana cake fantastically.
Comment by io – Friday 10 June 2005, 8:45 AM
  Where did you get the green goo from? I thought the place you got it from was replaced by Subway now?
Comment by Ned – Friday 10 June 2005, 9:36 AM
  One place was, another was not.

07.06.2005Tuesday 7 June – Bunti aur Babli

I had a pleasant sleep-in, catching a train into uni after midday. I haven’t really begun studying yet, but I am trying to get my mind into the mood. I’m now the proud owner of half a litre of custard and a quarter of a litre of pure, unthickened cream and a mars bar. Unfortunately I no longer own a banana cake.
I went up and saw Philip Machanick over my complaint about the non-release of course information for CSSE3004. It doesn’t sound like anything will happen – he said he’d have a talk to Ken, but that the way in which the course is run is up to Ken’s discretion and that there have been few past complaints and good results from last year’s exam, so he assumed that overall the course has been successful and students happy.
I shared a “Lollobrigida” (5 types of cheese, oregano, semi-dried tomatoes) pizza from the Schonell with Bronwen before heading into the city and watching “Bunty aur Babli” at the Regent. Despite being one of the poorer Bollywood films I’ve seen, it still managed to beat most things Hollywood, earning itself 8 xXx’s, or one True Lie.
Comment by Lucas – Thursday 9 June 2005, 11:17 AM
  Few complaints? Students happy? What the?!
  We complained till our lungs were sore last year about not being adequately prepared for the exam in last year's course, and of course got nowhere.
  Still got an ok grade though, but it would have been higher if it wasn't for the stupid grade capping from the exam. Are they still capping grades based on the exam result this year?
Comment by Ned – Thursday 9 June 2005, 12:23 PM
  But did you complain officially? Everyone I know who is currently doing this course has a complaint, but I'm willing to bet none of them has actually put their money where their mouth is, and done anything about it. According to Ken, I was the first person to complain personally to him this semester, and according to Philip, there had been few or no other complaints. People have no problem talking, but few actually do anything. IRC is the perfect example.

08.06.2005Wednesday 8 June – Haunted Washing Machines

I venture uniwards, passing Michel’s Patisserie where I am sorely tempted and stop to eat a slice of cake with ice cream before purchasing a six-inch “Veggie Delite” from Subway to eat on the bus. I then figure that I should indulge myself with a healthy, calcium-enriching thick shake from the ice creamery at uni to counteract my unhealthy breakfast. I wouldn’t normally have bought one, of course, but this is my eighth in a row and hence free, so I figured I should.
I’ve done very little study, but on the positive side I’ve half implemented a JavaScript calendar for my journal, eaten Mix Veggie Satay from Chez Tessa, chatted to Corrosive and Clint, put holds on textbooks, and still have one of the two yoghurts I bought from Coles left. It’s now nicely dark outside, and feeling somewhat guilty at my lack of study, I shall head home.
My phone cable arrived, but isn’t currently working – it seems I need different software for my phone, which I’ve now downloaded but can’t be bothered rebooting to try it out just yet. This living in a haunted house thing is starting to get to me, which is odd as I’ve never been bothered by it before. I put my washing in the machine, and sat at my computer working on getting the new calendar in my journal working – which it now is. I then went down to see if my washing was finished, and found that the machine was spewing out water all over the place, and all the knobs were set to unusual positions – positions they couldn’t get to by themselves. I fixed that, and as I was hanging out my washing, outside in the dark, I began to think... and the more I thought, the worse it was. Fear feeds off fear, and no logic can requite my imagination. I wasn’t sure if looking behind me was facing my fear, or admitting that something might be there. I tried reasoning with common sense – I’ve lived here for ages now, and only once before been afraid, so it’s silly being scared now. It seemed like good logic when I began to think it, but halfway through it occurred to me that the washing machine has never spat out water before either, and the very fact that I’ve never been worried before, but have now been worried the past few nights I’ve spent here, is actually more worrying than I had originally worried. Why the sudden change, or shouldn’t I even be contemplating that? And now, how can I ever get out into the hall to get to the bathroom to brush my teeth?
  Then I spilt my cream all over my seat. I had to go to the kitchen for cleaning things. I had no choice. The fact that it’s a quarter to three isn’t a good thing either, as I have to be up ridiculously early.
Comment by io – Friday 10 June 2005, 8:51 AM
  To the dark side young Padawan, fear leads.
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 14 June 2005, 9:07 PM
  Is no problem. Light incense, blitzkrieg the area with Mahamantra, make the sign of the cross through your self, and relax. Repeat at night and morning, especially before bed (dont really need the incense) and have faith. The Name of the Saviour sufficeth.

09.06.2005Thursday 9 June – Masala Dosa

I went and saw Dr Zimmerman (actually one of his assistants) at Prince Charles Hospital. He said that I should now be back to normal.
So basically I went to this place where I was told to do things and did them and saw someone about something. They said that the thing I saw them about was okay now and that I need not worry anymore.
  After that I was at this place where I was for a while. I had to go see a person about a report I had submitted for a course they are running. They talked to me about it, and I talked to them about it. I then went and saw somebody about a course they aren’t running yet and we talked about it. Later I went with somebody else to a tutorial for an upcoming exam. I also saw someone about my complaint about a course that is running. They said they had talked to someone else and had a discussion with them and discussed my complaint and talked about it. They told me several things about their discussion.
  I then went to this other place with these people who took me to the other place, and stayed there for a bit with the people who took me there. We did stuff at this other place, and then one of the people who took me there dropped me off at another place. I didn’t stay there long and went to another place where I met another person; this other person and I went somewhere and did this and that before going to another place and doing other things. I then went somewhere else with somebody where we did something else. I think that about sums it up.
  The Masala Dosa was nice too.

10.06.2005Friday 10 June – Mr & Mrs Smith

I am tired and do not feel like studying.
I am still tired and I still don’t feel like studying. I suppose I should wander up towards the CSSE3004 exam preparation tute.
I sat through the exam preparation, which hopefully prepared me for the exam.
Clint and I city-catted into South Bank, where we bought Cold Rock and saw Mr and Mrs Smith, equalling The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy at three quarters of a True Lie, although inflationary imagination stretch means that three quarters of a True Lie today is not the same as three quarters of a True Lie back when Cat Women came out.
Comment by kathryn – Tuesday 14 June 2005, 12:42 PM
  i'm tired and don't feel like studing either. It's been a long time since i visted this site and it's comforting to see not much has changed. The side calender is cool. I have animal physiology and development exam tommorrow and i feel so under prepared and generally stupid. I cant wait for some much need holidays as well. I hate group work too. Good luck with it all.
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 14 June 2005, 9:18 PM
  Am only typing this as it seems the only way to get a word to you as cannot get any emails to go. Anything that goes (this eg) will be in triplicate. Sigh. Hope all is well with you dear one. Will have to communicate via old fangled tellie phone until you get up here. Love Mum.

11.06.2005Saturday 11 June – Relaxing & Amanda’s

I slept in – something I badly needed, and spent the rest of the morning relaxing. I trained out to Amanda’s in the evening, and spent a relaxing night playing cards with Rodrigo – who won.

12.06.2005Sunday 12 June – The Incredibles

I watched “The Incredibles” on DVD, headed into uni to study, did very little study, and headed back home again.

13.06.2005Monday 13 June – Psychology Study

I slept in a little longer than I normally do, but still arrived at uni before midday – even after eating my breakfast subway.
I tested my mobile phone cable with Maz’s laptop, and it worked. Maz and I then met Bridget at the library and spent the rest of the evening trying to study PSYC1030.
I went to Kieran’s with Maz, and later to Bronwen’s.

14.06.2005Tuesday 14 June – Advanced Information Technology Exam

My alarm went off. This is a bad way to start the day.
Here I am at uni, trying to start study, but checking the internet first, in case it’s changed. I went to the bank and deposited my Adsense Cheque. I also found out what the mysterious new account was. I then went to Coles and bought yoghurt.
Now going to exam soon – panicking, have not done enough study.
I sit my CSSE3004 exam. We’re only allowed one piece of pink scribble paper – this is strictly specified. Some people had their calculators taken off them because they had too many buttons. We are only allowed the most basic calculators. People look sort of funny, all serious and third year, but with their younger sister’s primary school calculator.
Maz gives me a lift back to Bronwen’s, where I spend the night.

15.06.2005Wednesday 15 June – Introduction to Psychology: Developmental, Social, & Clinical Psychology Exam

Ned’s alarm went off ten minutes ago. Ned didn’t hear it. Ned’s alarm goes off again. Ned wakes up. Ned is confused – his alarm has gone off ten minutes late. Ned remembers that Maz is coming any time after seven. Ned runs to the shower.
Anytime after Seven
Maz comes. Maz’s driver-side windscreen wiper has cleverly stopped, and his passenger-side windscreen wiper obligingly hasn’t. This causes a regrettable conflict between the two, leaving Maz and Ned with a blurry and inaccurate worldview where cars loom suddenly into sight, only to disappear again when their brake lights go out.
Ned attends his PSYC1030 exam. He sits in the purple section, and answers half of his sixty four multi-choice questions by the end of perusal. Due to there being no logical answers for any of the remaining questions, Ned uses clever techniques such as imagination and “What would Clint do” to answer them, and leaves twenty minutes into the exam. He finds out later that Maz used episodes of Law and Order to answer his, so perhaps this technique is more standard than he originally thought.
Ned and Maz go and visit Kieran. They all go to Indooroopilly, and look at large televisions at Harvey Norman. Ned is hungry and orders Green Goo with Hungry Jack’s Orange Juice. Kieran has removed all the keys from his keyboard, and neatly laid them out in rows. He then spends the entire afternoon putting them back in, one by one and some upside down. Ned reads a computer magazine and watches Maz playing Xbox. Maz plays Xbox and watches Ned reading a computer magazine. Both of them occasionally watch Kieran putting keys back into his keyboard.
Ned goes to Govinda’s for food. He then meets Bronwen, who is cold, and they head back to her place. Ned had not originally expected there to be any trains running today, as they had planned a rail strike, although as it turns out, this was resolved.
Comment by io – Monday 20 June 2005, 1:47 PM
  Haha, so Kieran doesn't know where his keys go without laying them out meticulously in order?

16.06.2005Thursday 16 June – Ned Does Not Have a Good Day

Ned awoke to find himself facing a large, rather blue, dilemma: To get up at half past six when it’s horribly cold, sit on a cold bus, head to a cold uni, and sit underground in a computer lab surrounded by scary, unintelligible geeks... or to cuddle up to a beautiful, and nicely warm, woman? The answer, as usual, is wrong – so here he is at uni, trying to thaw so he can type with more than one finger at a time.
Ned went to the Ville to get Subway for breakfast, mint patties for energy, cheese ball chips for yellowness, and yoghurt for whiter, stronger bones and teeth. He accidentally bought vanilla yoghurt, which is not as good as strawberry yoghurt. He then began his study of INFS3202 by going to POD, where he found that he didn’t know the password to print lecture notes. This didn’t surprise him, as he wouldn’t expect anything to work out right. When he got back from POD, he found that his computer – the one computer in the almost empty lab which was locked, had been unlocked and was now occupied by an Asian flash game player, ignorantly playing his flash game. Ned considered fire-extinguishing the offender, but restrained himself and instead accidentally restarted his own computer while determining whether remote rebooting was really blocked. This made Ned angry, so he went and sat in level five and ate his cheese ball chips, feeling utterly yellow.
Bronwen phoned – she is in bed tired.
Ned wanted to see “Madagascar”, but no one else did, so he headed to Indooroopilly alone. Once there, Ned ate some food and considered seeing a movie, but no times did not align. This did not surprise Ned as he had not expected anything to go well, but he bravely decided to make the best of a bad situation, and got Cold Rock. This made him cold while he sat waiting for the train, which did not arrive for ages. He nearly froze. The train door made loud hissing noises. No one except Ned could stand the noises, and all moved. Ned felt superior and looked down upon the other weak people. Ned nearly froze again in the city waiting for the bus. Ned has not had a good day.

17.06.2005Friday 17 June – Procrastination

Another half past six morning left me cold and at uni remarkably early. Had I actually done any study, this might have been a good thing, but instead I slightly redesigned the front page of both my sites, read several friends’ sites, and generally avoided study entirely.
Maz and I headed to the Ville for food, and then I headed back to the labs to pretend to do more study.

18.06.2005Saturday 18 June – Batman Begins

I had a lazy and relaxing morning, after having had to get up early all week. This was followed by a pleasant walk around the city, the ubiquitous Cold Rock Super Shake, Pasta, and “Batman Begins” at South Bank – which I quite enjoyed, equalling “Mr & Mrs Smith” and “Revenge of the Sith”, at precisely twenty seven cat women.

19.06.2005Sunday 19 June – Sleep, Rain & Study

It’s raining. I’ve had a lovely sleep in, and am now heading into uni to study INFS3202 with Clint, as its exam is tomorrow.
For inexplicable and illogical reasons, or quite possibly a total lack of reason, I stayed up until half past four doing almost nothing. This could make me a little more tired than usual tomorrow, and could mean I don’t feel as enthused about waking early and heading into uni to study as I might otherwise have felt. Looking on the bright side, I feel as though I may have had a pleasant night, even if I can’t actually think or remember anything about it.

20.06.2005Monday 20 June – Web Information Systems Exam

Staying up until half past four last night ranks as one of the more stupid things I’ve done recently – right up there with eating a whole banana cake I bought on special. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I didn’t feel all that enthused about getting up early and heading to uni, but as my INFS3202 exam loomed fearfully close, I had no choice.
I bravely trained to uni and spent the morning studying INFS3202. “Studying” is perhaps not the right word – I simply indexed the lecture notes and tutorial answers. I didn’t have time to try to understand anything, and as I haven’t attended a single lecture or tutorial for this course, there was a lot that I didn’t understand. The theory is that, as the exam is open-book, if I can develop a comprehensive index, I should be able to look up anything fast enough that I can work out the answer during the exam. This is probably not the best study technique out there, but it’s the only one I know that doesn’t require a lot of time or effort.
Clint, Maz, Kieran, a girl I met in the library, and my fantastic self, tried studied past exams for a while but actually spent more time arguing about decidedly irrelevant things.
Kieran recommended me to Marius, and I got asked if I wanted to tutor COMP3502 next semester.
I sat my INFS3202 exam. I’ll have to wait and see what result I get, as I can’t predict how well I went, but my index worked well and I finished the exam with twenty minutes to spare. I had two questions I was unable to make sense of, and a third that had almost no information about it in the lecture notes or tutorials. I got the first struck from the exam as it actually was nonsensical, the second I was told I’d just have to “pick one” so I’m guessing my understanding was at fault, and the third I guessed and may get part marks. One questionable advantage of getting almost no sleep is that I couldn’t be bothered to stress or worry, or even check my answers.
Clint, Kieran and I drove to Indooroopilly, where nothing was open, and then back to the Ville, where we bought dinner. I then wasted some time with Clint until I noticed how late it had become. I got the second last train home, arriving well after midnight, which won’t leave me with a lot of sleep tonight either.

21.06.2005Tuesday 21 June – Sleeping & Studying

I had meant to get up at a reasonable time and head into uni, but didn’t get out of bed until after midday. By the time I got to uni, saw Clint, went to the Ville for food, checked that the internet hadn’t changed, and printed my notes for COMS4200, there was no time left to actually study so I went home again – stopping by JB HiFi to buy some blank DVDs.
In my attempts to get this horrible phone connection cable I’ve bought to actually work, I downloaded Oxygen Phone Manager – which seems to work just fine apart from being a kind of crappy and confusing program. I suppose the problem is Nokia PC Suite’s intentional lack of support for third-party cables (or the fact that the cable I bought is some dubious clone, depending on which way you look at it). It’s also somehow become one o’clock, so heading to bed I shall be.

22.06.2005Wednesday 22 June – Studying

After my abortive attempt to study yesterday, I figured I’d better make sure I actually got some study done now or I’d fail. With this in mind, I actually managed to get to uni by around ten o’clock, where I spent half the day studying, interspersed with procrastination. I discovered Google Maps, which are good but use up the limited download quota we’re given in the labs at an alarming rate, went to the Ville for food, visited Clint, read forums, newsgroups, emails... To prevent ourselves from overstudying, Maz and I went to Kieran’s in the evening, where we discussed important concepts, such as how to seduce women in computer games.

23.06.2005Thursday 23 June – Networks II Exam

I set two alarms just to make sure I didn’t sleep in, and then managed to sleep in anyway – fortunately for only ten minutes or so. Joe drove me to the train so I wouldn’t miss it, and skimmed my COMS4200 lecture notes on the way to uni.
I sat my COMS4200 exam. It wasn’t as bad as I was expecting, although I finished with only minutes to spare. I felt that I had gone well in the mid-semester exam, and then got an awful mark, so I’m not going to draw any conclusions from this one until I see the results.
It was very, very cold. I walked to a nice and warm Indian place for dinner, but nearly froze getting there.
I spent the cold night warm with Bronwen, at her place.

24.06.2005Friday 24 June – Not Packing

I semi-woke at six o’clock this morning, dozing semi-asleep under a warm doona, which was very nice until a quarter to eight when I had to get up and out into the icy cold. I then made the mistake of buying a slice of cheesecake in the city – it seems I can’t eat a whole slice anymore. I then headed into uni to pick up some stuff and finalise a few things, backup my data, and lock my PC for the break.
I stopped via Govinda’s on the way home. They were really full and out of tables. Tonya and her boyfriend are here, so Joe and we had Thai food and a quiet celebration of my completion of another semester’s studies, during which Joe scratched a winning scratch-it, having already won some cash and a stereo last night.
I ate too much chocolate and now I feel sick.
I had planned to pack things for heading up north, but have decided to treat it as the simple holiday it hopefully is, and just throw some clothes in a bag tomorrow. The most time consuming thing will be putting my spare HDD and this DVD drive into the computer and copying data I might need across.
Comment by io – Wednesday 29 June 2005, 3:55 PM
  You have a DVD writer now? Which one?
Comment by Ned – Thursday 30 June 2005, 12:52 PM
  The latest LiteOn-IT/JLMS – I forget the model number.

25.06.2005Saturday 25 June – Packing

I slept in considerably longer than I had planned, and copying data across to take up north also took longer than I’d expected, meaning I didn’t get into the city until later than I’d hoped. I’d figured that packing clothes wouldn’t take long, which it didn’t, but I didn’t take into account just how long it can take to remove a CD drive, install a new DVD burner, and find, backup, compress and copy a hundred gig or so of data across to another hard drive – in small and confusing chunks. Michelle and Michael had also arrived back, so talking to them took up some more of my time.

26.06.2005Sunday 26 June – Cairns & Home

We all woke up and got ready, leaving for the airport shortly after half past.
Our Virgin Blue Boeing 737-800 executed a successful takeoff, flew for a couple of hours, and successfully landed in Cairns.
We met Shan and Kylie at Cairns airport, picked up our luggage and drove to Cairns Central for a milkshake and breakfast. Unfortunately, Cairns doesn’t seem to have any good milkshake places, so it was a small, expensive, and rather average milkshake. I then bought some shoes.
We drove home via the coast road. This was perhaps not the best idea, as the creek crossings were only borderline passable for a conventional vehicle. Fortunately, we didn’t actually have any problems – lightly hitting some rocks and taking on a little water but nothing serious.
We went for a quick walk down to the Home Rule Bridge and then spent the evening talking to Dad and Mum.

27.06.2005Monday 27 June – Cooktown

After a pleasant sleep in and waking to birdsong, we drove into Cooktown where we had a quick walk along the main street, did some shopping, ate nachos, and then headed home again. We went for a walk out the Home Rule road in the afternoon, before a eating a nice dinner and watching “Pirates of the Caribbean”.

28.06.2005Tuesday 28 June – Relaxing

We’ve had a lazy morning, sleeping in until eleven o’clock. It is lightly misting, but hardly enough to make the trees drip. I’ve managed to connect Bronwen’s Macintosh to this machine, so we’re all online and suitably geeky. The midges and mosquitos are annoying though.
We went for a walk down to the pump and along the creek. Bronwen went swimming in the icy cold water – apparently it’s nice, but I wasn’t falling for that.

29.06.2005Wednesday 29 June – Walking, Climbing & Terrible Movies

We slept in, going for a walk up to the Home Rule Falls and then down the creek from there to the small waterfall and back home again – making for a pleasant, although somewhat exhausting, evening.
We went up to Shan’s and watched “100 Mile Rule” with him, Kylie and Ella. The movie was remarkably bad, but the night was good.

30.06.2005Thursday 30 June – Cooktown, Snakes, Kickboxing & The Flat Dog

After a quiet morning broken only by the necessity of pumping up – braving, as Clint put it, “500km [...] over 3 chasms filled with sharks”, we headed into town with Shan and Kylie. Bronwen bravely held a snake while Shan installed antivirus software, and later bravely tried kickboxing – sparring with Vince while I bought sweets at the supermarket. To celebrate such tales of bravery and survival we bought a pizza from Joe’s and splattered Kylie’s burger all over the road before running over a dog on the way home.
Comment by io – Sunday 3 July 2005, 4:12 AM
  Oh gno a dog!? How was the woof-woof?
Comment by Ned – Sunday 3 July 2005, 11:25 AM
  We never saw the dog after running it over.

01.07.2005Friday 1 July – Cooktown, Bays & Black Mountain

We drove into town to book Bronwen’s flight and spent a pleasant evening exploring Finch and Cherry Tree Bays and Grassy Hill before finishing off with chips from the wharf and stargazing at Black Mountain – where we weren’t taken by a panther.

02.07.2005Saturday 2 July – Cooktown Markets

To town to see the markets I go, and meet Sarah and Vince I do. A milkshake from the Mad Cow Café I have, stopping at the Lion’s Den Hotel on the way home to pick up Mum. After such a morning, a relaxing evening thinking is to be had.

03.07.2005Sunday 3 July – Mandi’s Birthday Party

I walked up to Dad’s, where I spent a relaxing afternoon after a relaxing morning, and then headed up to Shan’s for the night. They were having a party to celebrate Mandi’s birthday (which is actually tomorrow, I think); I ate rich food and played Unreal Tournament.

04.07.2005Monday 4 July – Quiet, Relaxing

Quiet, relaxing, walking through the misting damp to Terex Dam and around the power line track discovering that someone is camping halfway along it.

05.07.2005Tuesday 5 July – Cooktown: Touristy & Wet

Bronwen and I drove into town where I paid $73.70 for my airfare to Cairns. We then spent the rest of the day avoiding the rain and doing touristy things, except for when Bronwen insisted on walking into an obviously impending rainstorm. We visited two art galleries, one museum, one cemetery (although it’s quite large and split into several sections, including old Chinese and Jewish sections), one supermarket, one Mad Cow Café (who made me some quite nice Nachos), one video store, and finally, kickboxing training where Bronwen ran away and couldn’t be found. We’d bumped into Shan, Kylie and Damien on their way to kickboxing and as movies are two dollars each on a Tuesday, we got out a few DVD’s and watched “The Whole Ten Yards” up at Shan’s place.

06.07.2005Wednesday 6 July – Results are Released

I spent a quiet and relaxing morning getting Bronwen’s computer to see my Windows Shares, and then made the mistake of checking my marks and calculating my GPA. The GPA averaging technique seems unfairly biased towards low marks – get a shocking mark once and it’s almost impossible to get your GPA to go up again. It seems to me that there should be some way of discounting once-off failures and obtaining a more indicative result. It seems wrong to penalise someone just because they went badly in their first year, even if they’ve gone really well in all their subsequent years, although looking on the bright side, even if I get abysmal marks next semester, my GPA will be reasonable.
My results have been released for the past semester’s studies. I’ve achieved a distinction (6) in both COMS4200 and PSYC1030, and a high distinction (7) in INFS3202. CSSE3004 is recorded as “In Progress” (IP) as it is a yearlong course. By this stage of my illustrious university career I’ve learnt that results are not that closely related to anything useful at all – UQ really needs to introduce some method of normalization across semesters. I attended a total of no lectures or tutorials for INFS3202, began the assignment at the last minute and didn’t have time to fully complete it (due to the Oracle server being absolutely crap) and my only study consisted of writing up an index of keywords in the lecture slides, yet I can get top marks. For PSYC1030 I attended all the lectures and tutorials but paid no attention, began its assignments a few hours before they were due (and after spending all night working on other subjects), and would have got a seven had not the exam been sixty-four multi-choice questions. UQ needs to ban the use of multi-choice questions as they quite obviously don’t really test anything at all – someone with a good knowledge of the subject matter is somewhat more likely to get higher marks, but that’s about as indicative as they get. I had hoped to get higher marks for COMS4200, and actually put a lot of work into the assignments (in my own slack way, even starting them earlier than the night before they were due), but sadly I was let down by my group (which was partly my fault for not organizing it better I suppose).
  In summary, I got what I was expecting for PSYC1030 and INFS3202, and while it would have been nice to get a seven for PSYC1030, I didn’t think it feasible given its exam so didn’t try. The courses themselves were a waste of time – I learnt nothing I hadn’t already known since primary school from PSYC1030, and INFS3202 was far too simplistic to be a third level course. COMS4200, on the other hand, was much harder, but still a disappointment – it had the same failing I’ve come to expect from all IT courses, falling firmly into the software engineering basket and not really providing much useful long-term information from an IT perspective. The assignments, while interesting, were group based and hence useless as a way of obtaining marks or measuring my skill and the mid-semester exam was also terrible, containing a stack of trick questions and failing, I feel, as an adequate indicator of anyone’s knowledge of the course material. That said, the lecturer was good and the course well taught.
  I’m not sure what the deal is with CSSE3004. I got eighty-five and a half of twenty-five percent out of one hundred... That’s typical of this course and I’m not sure what it means or if it’s good or bad, and they refuse to release any averages for the exam so I’ve no way of telling how I compare. I’m not even sure if this result has limited my marks or not. Having the final individual exam for a group-based course halfway through the course seems wrong, as a poor mark in the exam limits the possible grades for the rest of the year, and people who get poor marks are hardly going to be productive members of their groups.
Comment by io – Wednesday 13 July 2005, 12:13 AM
  Well done.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 13 July 2005, 12:43 AM

07.07.2005Thursday 7 July – Cold Swimming & Relaxation

Bronwen went for an early morning swim in the icy cold water – which I was too intelligent to try. After that, we spent yet another relaxing day relaxing, which is what holidays are all about I suppose. In the afternoon we went for a walk out the Home Rule Road, checking out an old camp we lived at for a short while and taking some photos.

08.07.2005Friday 8 July – Jungle Walking & The Lion’s Den Hotel

We went for a walk through the rainforest out near Home Rule, following a few old mining tracks, heading across the hill at end of airstrip and randomly exploring. There’s a nice cross-section of different types of bush found up here, all occurring in a small area, and it’s a bit reminiscently nostalgic for me as it’s where I used to play all sorts of games with the Joneses when I was younger.
We had pizza, chips, and in my case, chocolate mud cake, at the Lion’s Den Hotel and stayed chatting until they closed.

09.07.2005Saturday 9 July – Shane Edmund’s Benefit Concert

We drove into Cooktown where we went and picked up Ricki and headed down to Shane Edmund’s Benefit Concert in the Lion’s Park. A pleasant night it turned out to be, complete with a walk up Grassy Hill in the dark to look at the lights of town and wedges with tomato sauce. Or it was pleasant, until on the way home, just after dropping Ricki back to her place, the car broke down. Fortunately, after a quick analysis, I found that the regulator had simply become disconnected from the alternator, leaving it rather unexcited, and the battery had subsequently discharged. Sarah rescued us by finding someone who was still packing up from the concert and who had jumper leads, and we proceeded home.

10.07.2005Sunday 10 July – Mount Cook & Archer Point

After a quiet morning doing exciting things such as sorting and tagging photos, we drove into Cooktown and walked up Mount Cook. This took considerably longer than I’d expected, as we walked up the long route – I’ve only ever gone directly up the steepest way before. Surprisingly, the wind at the top was only blowing at gale force, so we got a good view without being blown to our deaths. We then bought some traditional potato wedges, cleverly cooked, battered, and topped with time-honoured tomato sauce, and ate them on the way to Archer Point where Bronwen kicked and crunched poor innocent crabs.
Jade, Shan, Kylie, Damien and Ella turned up unexpectedly with Lion’s Den Pizza so we went back to their place and ate that before heading out to Home Rule where we laughed until three o’clock.
Comment by io – Saturday 23 July 2005, 3:18 AM
  I thought Bronwen was a nice little girl! :O

11.07.2005Monday 11 July – Bronwen Heads Home

A lazy day spent talking preceded a drive into town, and subsequently the aerodrome, where Bronwen departed.
Comment by io – Friday 15 July 2005, 3:31 AM
  Aww.. How sad.
Comment by Ned – Friday 15 July 2005, 3:08 PM
  It is, but I am surviving!

12.07.2005Tuesday 12 July – Cooktown & Matthew

I spent the morning messing around with my website. It now has fancy pop-up “nice titles” all over, and my “Amused” section almost freezes this (rather slow) computer, so I’m happy. I spent the evening at Matthew’s in town, having got a lift with Shan on their way into kickboxing. His car is broken, so Damien drove us in his. Matthew has bought a rather impressive computer/guitar interface, but hasn’t yet bought the computer to go with it. I spent the night arguing that wit is the best measure of intelligence with someone who was arguing that intelligence is intrinsically innate but intellect is learnt.

13.07.2005Wednesday 13 July – Videos at Shan’s

Citibank still hasn’t approved an account application made months ago, claiming we haven’t sent appropriate forms, so after reapplying I headed up to Shan’s to borrow his printer. We ended up having an enjoyable heart-to-heart chat and watching “Spiderman 2’ and “The Village”, interspersed with me returning home for dinner and to make a phone call, resulting in quite a late night.

14.07.2005Thursday 14 July – Cooktown & Kickboxing

This morning, when I turned on the computer, I noticed a striking lack of graphics. After turning the video display unit on and off a few times, I realized that it was actually displaying very dim graphics somewhat smaller and blurrier than expected for ten seconds or so, before turning itself back off. Being electronically adept myself, I used a clever trade secret – turning it on and off lots of times and hoping it would somehow fix itself until it did somehow fix itself, eventually staying on and slowly brightening and coming into focus.
I was driven to town by Shan, who also drove Kylie and Damien while Jade and Ella drove Craig’s Ute, which we filled with cement powder, rusty steel reinforcing and threaded rod from what was formerly “The Big Shed” but is now Mitre10 “Handy”. After this exciting diversion we headed to the Reef Café for sustenance and oral pleasure. Due to the low quality of the before mentioned sustenance, Jade, Ella and I walked up to Malee’s Thai Takeaway, where I met Peter and had a chat. Thai food is not my favourite, consisting mostly of meat and various Asian weeds, so I refrained from purchasing – discussing instead the various merits of Ella’s phone versus my own.
Shan and Kylie went kickboxing, with Damien watching, while Sarah, Jade, Ella and I went shopping at the supermarket where I managed to buy the two remaining pure, unthickened cream cartons. I then became hungry and desirous of wedges, so we all walked down to the wharf where I could, and did, satisfy my craving. After this, we walked back to kickboxing, which had morphed into belly dancing. We cleverly guessed that the rest would have gone to Sarah’s, where we did indeed find them. The girls then spent the next hour or so trying on various spare clothes Sarah was giving away, while Shan, Damien and I bought, and ate, pizza from Joe’s. Then we all drove home.

15.07.2005Friday 15 July – Ella, Not Concreting & Jianshe Updating

I slept in, as I occasionally do, before driving out to Home Rule where I chatted to Ella for a while. Jade has gone to Lakeland concreting, which is a little amusing as she’s only gone because I declined so as not to use up one of my few remaining days. I’ve received email confirming that I have been selected as a tutor to COMP1800, which brings up an interesting dilemma – how to handle time dependant acronyms?
Mum and I watched “Wake of Death”, a very average DVD. I then chatted to Bronwen for a couple of hours, during which Mum fell asleep in my bed, and as I’d been slack and not updated a website since being requested to a few days ago, I stayed up making the requested modifications until Mum woke up, which was quite late.

16.07.2005Saturday 16 July – Party at Shan’s

I added rather pointless comment addition form hiding code to my journal site, which rather pointlessly hides the comment addition form. Ella brought Sarah out from town and stopped at Shan’s. Jade was already at Shan’s. I drove to Shan’s. The girls tried burning marshmallows over gas, but claimed this did not work, so we lit a fire. Shan and Kylie disappeared and it was widely rumoured that Kylie was sulking or sick. Burning marshmallows over fire didn’t work much better. People partied, Kylie and Shan eventually emerging, Kylie having sculled something and being more the merrier for it. We all sat around the fire, alternating with going deaf inside with Shan’s new speakers, until four o’clock or so, at which point sensible people like me went to bed, and Jade and Sarah stayed up until the wee hours of the morning.
Comment by Not Thei – Friday 22 July 2005, 2:08 PM
  There are 10 types of ppl in the world ... those who know binary, those who don't
Comment by Mum – Friday 29 July 2005, 8:28 PM
  Yah, Binary. Good bloke. Not bad by half.
Comment by Not Thei – Thursday 4 August 2005, 4:20 PM
  Me not a boi

17.07.2005Sunday 17 July – Dinner at the Den

I had a quiet morning, waking at eleven. Jade and Sarah didn’t wake until after two. I took my hard drive up to Shan’s place and copied some data around. Unfortunately, he hadn’t installed the most recent service pack, so didn’t have support for drives over 137 GB. This meant that the data he had put on was all corrupted when I got it back to my place, and I had to spend an hour or two watching numbers scroll past while Windows fixed pointless things like invalid security descriptors on every file on the drive. This was particularly annoying, as I had had a nice family dinner at the Den, and was quite tired and hadn’t really planned to watch scrolling numbers for hours.

18.07.2005Monday 18 July – Relaxing

Quite probably my last truly relaxing Monday for a while.

19.07.2005Tuesday 19 July – Silas & Cairns

I packed, chatted to my parents, was driven into Cooktown, and flew to Cairns. The flight was nicely uneventful. I took many pictures of an amazing sunset as we were flying over the clouds. Once in Cairns, Silas picked me up from the airport and we drove out to one of the beaches where he bought a car, which I then drove back to his place. Silas himself went to bed at a reasonable time, but I stayed up until very late chatting to one of his flatmates.

20.07.2005Wednesday 20 July – Cairns, Silas, Darryl & Raymond

Silas woke up, we had a chat, and then he headed into work. I went back to bed, not feeling remarkably awake. I woke up some time later when Darryl woke up, and showered and got a lift with her to Westcourt and a bus from there into the city.
Raymond forced me to eat an Indian curry as fast as I could, by insisting on coming and seeing me with exactly ten minutes warning. We went for a walk along the Esplanade, and then drove out to Earlville where we spent the afternoon watching “Bewitched” and “The Fantastic Four”. Neither were very good, with “Bewitched” earning itself three quarters of “The Fantastic Four”, which in turn earned itself one and a third of “Bewitched”, at a quarter of a true lie. Still, they filled the evening and were entertaining, which is their purpose I suppose.
My Jetstar Airbus A320-200 was twenty-five minutes late, due to a 180 kilometre an hour headwind, not arriving until after eleven o’clock. I had a nice sleep on the way down, and a very nice Bronwen waiting for me.
Comment by io – Sunday 31 July 2005, 11:33 PM
  Well you could have suggested 15 minutes before I arrived...
Comment by Ned – Monday 1 August 2005, 5:30 PM
  But you insisted...

21.07.2005Thursday 21 July – Bronwen & Uni

I stayed at Bronwen’s, arriving too late last night to head to Joe’s. I went to uni during the day, where I couldn’t install Apache on the lab machines due to an obscure installer problem and had to borrow Maz’s laptop. After getting sick of uni, Maz and I went and saw Clint in his new place.

22.07.2005Friday 22 July – Joe’s & Uni

I headed out to Joe’s, where he somehow saw me coming through a solid metal sliding door. I unpacked and, having my priorities right, put the hard drive I took up north into the computer and started it. Unfortunately, my USB hub then went insane and the computer randomly reset. I figured that it was overloading the power supply, so removed two DVD drives and tried again. This time it worked but I didn’t have a modem, and trying to install one resulted in a BSOD. I re-seated the modem, which seemed to make it happy, and now have the hard drive sitting on the top of my PC and can listen to great songs like “Technologic” by Daft Punk – the song itself is repetitive and boring, but the lyrics are brilliant: “Buy it, use it, break it, fix it. Trash it, change it, melt – upgrade it. Charge it, pawn it, zoom it, press it. Snap it, work it, quick – erase it. Write it, cut it, paste it, save it. Load it, check it, quick – rewrite it. Plug it, play it, burn it, rip it. Drag and drop it, zip – unzip it. Lock it, fill it, curl it, find it. View it, coat it, jam – unlock it. Surf it, scroll it, pose it, click it. Cross it, crack it, twitch – update it. Name it, rate it, tune it, print it. Scan it, send it, fax – rename it. Touch it, bring it, obey it, watch it. Turn it, leave it, stop – format it.” I think that pretty much sums up the life of most IT students.
This uni before uni begins thing isn’t that good – I feel as though I’ve just completed an assignment. I’ve just spent hours at uni fighting broken computers, to make an Apache, PHP and MySQL auto-installer which isn’t drive specific and is small enough to run on the limited space we’re given at uni. Apparently something big broke at both ITEE and ITS today, meaning hardly anything worked, usually right when I needed it. Running programs tend to do strange things when they go to swap some of themselves into memory and find they’re no longer available. Ironically, after being told that the IT folk were quite unhelpful, overworked, and would not provide any assistance, meaning lecturers have to get people like me to do their job for them, I was told I could personally install my stuff into the lab image if wanted. It would be nice to turn off all the annoying Windows things, like the firewall, auto-updates, desktop cleanup popup, etc.

23.07.2005Saturday 23 July – Brass, Percussion, Fireworks!

I, along with Bronwen and half of Brisbane, went and watched the Lord Mayor’s Gala Concert “Brass, Percussion, Fireworks!” held at River Stage. It was a bit cold and the areas of me in direct contact with the ground weren’t as happy as the rest of me, but it made a nice change from a normal night.

24.07.2005Sunday 24 July – War of the Worlds

I went and saw “War of the Worlds” at Southbank with Bronwen. I quite enjoyed it, even if its title is something of a misnomer. I bestow upon it three and a half fantastic fours.
Comment by Aaron – Saturday 30 July 2005, 6:44 AM
  Have you ever read the book? If so, did you enjoy it? I have, and I did, and I'm sure there's a place in hell for Steven Spielberg -- as if 'A. I.' wasn't enough to ensure that.
Comment by Ned – Saturday 30 July 2005, 1:47 PM
  I think the movie was OK – it just wasn’t a remake of the original.

25.07.2005Monday 25 July – Uni, Spiegeltent & The Genes

I attended uni, where I finished building an Apache, PHP and MySQL installer for COMP1800. This theoretically simple task has been hindered by ridiculous installer problems and several university hardware failures – but I think it’s all finished now.
Bronwen and I went and saw two bands at the Spiegeltent. It is a strange thing – an ornate (apparently hand-sewn) wooden tent from Bavaria, full of a lot of mirrors and stained glass. I can’t remember what the first act was, but the second, “The Genes”, were quite energetic and enjoyable. A pleasant night was had.
Comment by DM – Saturday 30 July 2005, 11:54 AM
  What installer program did you end up using?
Comment by Ned – Saturday 30 July 2005, 1:46 PM
  The installer I was having problems with was the Microsoft one.

26.07.2005Tuesday 26 July – Course Enrolment

I am back at uni. Someone had mentioned yesterday that I might not be able to do more than two first year free electives in my degree, so I went and asked at the ITEE office. They told me that I could not do more than four units (two normal courses) of first year free electives. This was a major problem, as I had enrolled in three first year free electives this semester, and had also done one last semester. Fortunately, rather than just believing the girl from the office, I chose to look for loopholes. I went and saw Philip Machanick, who spent quite some time going through my current and past studies and mapping them over to the new degree plan. He concluded that I had done everything I needed to graduate, and could do whatever I wanted now – but he couldn’t guarantee it so I went and saw Peter Robinson. Peter ran quickly through my course list and agreed with what Philip had worked out, but also couldn’t guarantee it. I wasn’t willing to risk getting to the end of the year and finding that I couldn’t graduate, or had to pay full fees, so I went and got an official graduation check from the faculty. This normally takes an exorbitant length of time at this time of year, but I needed to know by tomorrow, so I could finalise my enrolment without missing everything. Fortunately I was able to find the lady who handles ITEE graduation checks, and she gave me one on the spot – if I pass all my courses, I will graduate under the current plan, and can select pretty much any major I want, not that there’s a very large selection.
I am enrolled in “PHIL1000 Introductory Philosophy”, “PHIL1020 Introduction to Logic”, “PSYC1020 Introduction to Psychology: Physiological & Cognitive Psychology” and still “CSSE3004 Advanced Information Technology Project”. I am also tutoring “COMP1800 Information Technology Project” and working evenings. This should keep me reasonably busy. I am fairly happy with this selection of courses, although only time will tell if they’re any good. They should be a lot more fun than IT courses, and I think they’ll look as good as anything else on my record. The psychology course, in conjunction with the one I took last semester, will demonstrate my skill and understanding of the nature, functioning and development of the human mind, and prove my superior understanding of human emotions, perception, communication, and so on. The two philosophy courses, and in particular the one about logic, will show any potential employer that I’m a logical and discerning thinker, interested in more than just programming, and that I’m passionate about the pursuit of wisdom, truth and knowledge. Of course, I’ll probably not learn anything from any of them, but I’ll not phrase it quite like that on a job application.
I went to Clint’s, and we walked to Guyatt Park and caught the City Cat from there into the city. Cold Rock was closed, so today I didn’t have a milkshake. We then went to the Spiegeltent where we met the beautiful Bronwen and watched crazy people dancing crazy dances until Clint had to catch the last City Cat back to his place and Bronwen and I walked off into the night.
Comment by Maz – Saturday 30 July 2005, 2:07 PM
  Thats such a load of crap. But seeing I am doing the same courses it's handy to know the bullshit to spin.
Comment by Reubot – Saturday 30 July 2005, 5:36 PM
  The #4 level 1 free elective max is actually for the BE. Also, I assume you are going to get the Systems & Networks major?
Comment by Mum – Thursday 4 August 2005, 7:07 PM
  Good onyou Maz, whoever you are. "Superior understanding of human emotions, perception, and .. " whatever it was. Oh yes, perceptions, communication etc. Sigh. And you are doing the same courses? Poor fella you. Wonder what your Mum would say. Very much a whole load. Only life itself gives one any sort of "understanding".
Comment by Mum – Thursday 4 August 2005, 7:11 PM
  Understanding means "standing under" as in humble. As in "standing under" a learning experience or a life tutor and by life tutor I do not mean necessarily that which one meets in class at Uni. To "under stand" one has to "stand under" and be humble and to accept. Okay, that is enough to embarrass Himself and get me into trouble.

27.07.2005Wednesday 27 July – Uni

Another day at uni, back into the grind – I’m checking tutorial things for Soon and making sure everything runs nicely.
Back at work again.

28.07.2005Thursday 28 July – Uni

I slept in until ten o’clock, which I needed. I then headed into uni where I met my CSSE3004 group and we finalised our reflective review and project report, which are both due tomorrow morning.
I worked.

29.07.2005Friday 29 July – Too Early & Too Projected

I had to be at uni by eight o’clock for a CSSE3004 lecture, which meant getting up at six o’clock. Unfortunately I didn’t go to bed until three hours before that. I had a sneaking suspicion I wouldn’t feel like getting up, so I set three staggered alarms, five minutes apart. This seemed to work, although I did have to run for the train. My CSSE3004 group wasn’t scheduled to sign-off on our optional functionality proposals and individual components until eleven o’clock, so there wasn’t really any great reason that I had to get to uni by eight o’clock. Darren agreed with our optional functionality proposals, but not our individual components. He wouldn’t let me do the “XHTML PDA Interface Only” option I had selected, claiming that this was not “proper” programming. While he does have a point, his alternative, which I chose against my will, was to develop the PDA Menu Viewing component, is actually considerably simpler in scope. I tried to argue that this was no longer an “individual” component, as my marks would now depend on the development of other components in the system, but was told that it was an individual component that had to be developed entirely individually except in a group, based on the work the rest of the group has done... I’m not very happy about this, as I did not want to develop this specific component in this way as it forces an inefficient task breakdown and will result in extra difficulties, a lack of cohesion and duplication of effort. We now have a situation where two people are responsible for almost identical components, which rely on various shared components. My group were starting to look a bit askance at my argument by this stage, so I thought I had better drop it and accept Darren’s alternative option. Stupid course.
Kieran, Maz and I drove to Kieran’s, where he and Maz went all geeky. I walked down to Indooroopilly, met Clint and bought lunch. After our lunch, we all drove to Umart where Clint bought a computer. Maz put it together back at Kieran’s, and Kieran dropped me at the Ville, where I bought dinner and headed into work, which was reasonably hectic – I ended up running all over campus and running out of time. Hans drove me to Roma Street, where I caught the train home. For some reason, the train was full of a ridiculous amount of young girls, all seemingly very stupid and obviously on their way somewhere.
Comment by io – Sunday 31 July 2005, 11:58 PM
  You seem to have a fair bit of luck running into young girls.
Comment by Ned – Saturday 6 August 2005, 1:18 PM
  Yet I never seem to have my pitchfork with me at the time...

30.07.2005Saturday 30 July – The Island

I come into city and meet Clint at Kipps’ room and Clint and I go to city and we see “The Island” at South Bank. It gets one and a half fantastic four’s. I then go to Bronwen’s, being unable to phone her due to obscure phone problems, which makes me angry.

31.07.2005Sunday 31 July – Relaxing

A quiet day, finished off with a lovely dinner at an Indian place in West End.

01.08.2005Monday 1 August – Typical Monday

What a disaster... Just after I arrive at uni I get an email (and I paraphrase): “Ned, can you go to a tutorial starting in 10 minutes, which is an entire lab full of first year students, almost all of who are going to have problems because the helpdesk is stupid and hasn’t updated the access database or some other obscure problem”, to which I reply “sure, sounds fun, just what I need on a Monday when I’ve got heaps of project stuff to do”.
  So here I am in a lab full of first years. I’ve logged half of them on as my account, which is a clear violation of university access rules. I’ve had the IT staff down here, but there’s nothing they can do right now... and this is a compulsory tutorial... It’s just great, just fantastic. To top it off, Soon has asked me to turn up for all the other tutes this week too, to sort out similar problems, so there goes my free time, which I was, of course, counting on to get other important things done.
  Not only that, but I’ve had to skip a lecture and am now going to skip a compulsory tute as well – I can hopefully make up for it by going to a really late one on Wednesday, although I’m not signed up for it.
I go to McDonalds with Maz. Then I look for houses. Then Ville with Tim. Then meet Johnson and try to do CSSE3004 with little success.
Met Bronwen in city around seven to discuss moving out and so on. Went back to her place, looked at places on her laptop.

02.08.2005Tuesday 2 August – Layer Cake

Tutoring again today, two tutors (including me, although I’m really just there for backup until next week) and two help staff, and the two library staff. This proves to be an overreaction – nothing goes wrong.
I meet Bronwen in the city and we bus to Indooroopilly, where we meet Clus and walk to Cold Rock for my daily milkshake. Clint misses his bus and can’t come. We see “Layer Cake”, which was brilliant, although I’ve no idea what happened. It earns one True Lie. On the way out of the movie we meet Clint with Corrosive and a pile of others, just on their way in.
Comment by Clint – Monday 8 August 2005, 2:25 AM
  Point of order - that wasn't the way I would have preferred. I have a complete inability to catch buses.
  Definitely not the way I would have preferred.
Comment by Ned – Monday 8 August 2005, 8:25 AM
  I think it has a lot more to do with the bus than you. Expecting a Brisbane bus to be on time is an exercise in futility.
Comment by io – Wednesday 10 August 2005, 2:12 AM
  I must be an expert than, cause I have the ability to catch buses and city cats on even a Sunday. Multiple times - early or late.

03.08.2005Wednesday 3 August – Work & Uni

Due to horrible CSSE3004 interface design crud being due horribly soon, I headed into uni early and worked with Johnson for a few hours, between talking to Maz and changing my timetable. I then attended stacks of lectures and tutorials and things, as I have moved all my classes to Wednesday. Tutoring means I still have to attend uni for the rest of the week, but I don’t actually have any classes. I also forgot that I’d arranged to meet someone and discuss web design, so had to leave my first PSYC1020 tutorial after getting a message ten minutes into it.
I renewed Clint’s old internet account, so I can keep using it, and then headed into work, as Martin couldn’t work tonight.
Amanda phoned while I was at work and asked if Bronwen and I would be interested in looking after her place for a weekend while she goes to Sydney. I got an old 28-inch monitor from work. It apparently cost eleven thousand dollars when it was new, but is now too old to be of much use. Maz came and picked it up (while security wandered down the end of the street) and we dropped it off at Clint’s place.

04.08.2005Thursday 4 August – Stupid Interfaces

I had to be at uni by nine o’clock for a tutorial, which was unfortunate as I’d actually gone home for the first time in ages, and had to get up early to make it in time. I’d also stayed up late, so not really a very good start to the day. If I’d thought the day would get better from there, I was sadly mistaken – but fortunately I’m not that optimistic. Johnson had a splitting headache and hadn’t eaten all day, and I went and had lunch with Clint instead of helping him. This made him invent interesting new ways of killing me. I then worked writing descriptions for interfaces until I had to go to work, leaving Johnson to finish of Robert’s, resulting in more interesting ways to kill both Robert and myself – and probably not doing his headache any good (or bad, depending on which way you look at it). This will probably result in a loss of marks too, as some of Robert’s interfaces weren’t submitted. Oh, and we lose marks because we didn’t do our kindergarten-style chop-and-sticky-tape Gantt chart correctly – what a crap course this is.
I had planned to go home tonight, but such is as such were, so it was, and I didn’t.

05.08.2005Friday 5 August – Eric & Clint’s Housewarming

I walked around West End for most of the day, before heading to Maz’s. I got to see the fabled upstairs, and some of the people who inhabit it. I also met the newly bought “Eric” – orange, striped and entirely traditional ginger cat.
Maz and I drove to Clint’s, stopping to pick up waffles and ice cream for a suitably Clint-ish housewarming gift. The night started quietly, but got quite rowdy and blue for a while – I’m not sure who brought the food colouring, but in retrospect, it probably wasn’t the best idea. I suspect the white carpet isn’t quite as white as it was before. Bets were placed on when Corrosive would vomit, but she didn’t. Unfortunately for her, someone stole the pool, so she didn’t get a payout. People sang every Evanescence song in existence, but they weren’t rich enough to bother recording for future blackmailing. Other people tried outdrinking each other in the kitchen, but none of them were rich either. Clus pulled the power on the internet server. Someone played Sonic the Hedgehog. I came out of the closet several times (it being the only place quiet enough to talk on the phone). Some sat outside and pretended to be normal. Sausages were cooked, burnt, dropped, eaten. The waffles were nice. Screaming contests were contested. Hearing loss occurred. People slowly began to leave, pass out, or otherwise disappear. I got a lift with Bronwen back to her place.
Comment by Reubot – Saturday 6 August 2005, 4:16 PM
  Must have been a pretty wild party to knock down a brick wall.
Comment by io – Wednesday 10 August 2005, 2:09 AM
  Les Miserables was also good.

06.08.2005Saturday 6 August – South Bank

I had to get up before seven o’clock, as people had an island to attend. I trained home to do my washing. Tonya is back from her holiday.
Clint informs me that the neighbour’s fence was knocked down last night, resulting in threats of police. It is a brick fence, and they are attempting to get it fixed before midday, in order to impress the neighbours enough that they may not prosecute.
I trained to Clint’s, getting lost on the way and walking the long way there. They had just finished their fence. Clint, Scruff and I bussed it into South Bank, where we didn’t see a movie as it was too late and nothing good was showing, but we did get Cold Rock. I later trained home.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 6 August 2005, 7:36 PM
Comment by Clint – Monday 8 August 2005, 2:21 AM
  Mrs Martin - don't worry, your lovely son wasn't involved. In fact, we don't know who did it - it's a possibility that the neighbours did it themselves to get it fixed. The wall was 3/4 fallen down anyway.
  To prove that we're great and stuff, we had the father of a friend's girlfriend play brickie all that day (with suitable compensation) and the combined effort saw the wall up (in better than ever condition mind you) by 7pm that night. When you're a tad under the weather, there's nothing better than spending from 10am until 6pm in the hot sun mixing mortar.
  In other news, I think I have a lung infection.
  Clintos Pastonovik
Comment by io – Wednesday 10 August 2005, 2:15 AM
  I was also not involved for I was enjoying a live Les Miserables concert at the Schonell Theatre, UQ for most of the evening. Earlier, I only noticed one sausage get dropped.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 13 August 2005, 7:32 PM
   Clint. Have already heard from "lovely son" that you are "great and stuff". Hope so that all in all, your brick in the wall, is only just. Am impressed by io that only one sausage got dropped. Geez. Don't youze blokes know how to party? Salutations, Mum. wish to insert one of those awful smiley faces in here but this is really taxing my computer literacy.

07.08.2005Sunday 7 August – Sunday Live

I slept in. This was enjoyable. I eventually caught a train into the city, and a City Cat from South Bank. The amount of people who get on at South Bank, just to get off a minute later at North Quay is ridiculous. I finally arrived at West End, from where I quickly walked to the ABC Centre for a Classic FM Concert and met Raymond. Bronwen managed to turn up, after saying she wouldn’t be able to make it.
Bronwen and I caught the City Cat from West End into the city, then the bus back to her place, where I spent the night trying to figure out what Descartes’ Meditations are without actually reading them, and answering questions such as “Do we know if we are dreaming?”
I spent the night at Bronwen’s.
Comment by io – Thursday 11 August 2005, 8:41 PM
  Lucid dreaming is fun.
Comment by Ned – Friday 12 August 2005, 4:43 PM
  Do I exist?
Comment by Mum – Saturday 13 August 2005, 7:41 PM
   was there a time
   when you were not"
   ...............Bhagavad Gita (1st chapter)

08.08.2005Monday 8 August – Friday Approaches

I tutored, before attending my PHIL1000 lecture. I found it very boring and had trouble concentrating. I looked for more houses online. It seems there’s a galloping lurgy doing the rounds. I met Scruff, who has broken his tooth. Friday approaches.
I spent the night at Bronwen’s.

09.08.2005Tuesday 9 August – Pasta

He tutored. He met with his CSSE3004 group. He had a nice pasta dinner at a nice Café. He slept.
I spent the night at Bronwen’s.

10.08.2005Wednesday 10 August – Academian

Today is my sole uni day, at least every second week. This means I was quite busy. I tutored a practical, and then I attended a PSYC1020 tutorial, then a PHIL1000 tutorial, then a PSYC1020 lecture, then to the Ville for dinner, then to work. The PSYC1020 tutorial was reasonable – perhaps not what I’d call exciting, but not dull either. The PHIL1000 tutorial was quite interesting in its way, and the tutor seems to be a cool bloke. The first hour of the PSYC1020 lecture was dull (I think, I didn’t really listen), but the second hour was quite interesting. I learnt that swearing is biologically different to speaking, and that it is possible (and not that uncommon) to suffer brain damage in such a way that speaking is prevented or severely impaired, but swearing isn’t.

11.08.2005Thursday 11 August – Which may not exist

I’ve no recollection of today, which would, as far as I can tell without actually bothering to read any of my PHIL1000 writings, mean that today didn’t exist. No, wait – a recollection has come to mind. Today I tutored and worked. Perhaps today did exist.
Comment by Mum – Monday 15 August 2005, 9:16 PM
  Heaven help those poor bods who were on the receiving end of such well thought out and considered tutorial as that what you (who were not there, as this day did not exist) gaveth them. Poor fella them. Or it could be that PHIL1000 (whoever he is) does not exist. Are there 1000 of him. Aghast and horror. I shall recline neath yon bananana tree (which does not exist perhaps) and swat aimlessly at mosquitoes which mayhap do also not exist, and scratch at non existants on my legs and...oh well, all that. Wonder how Clint of the brickinthewall ameth. All in all, was not too bad it seems.

12.08.2005Friday 12 August – House Hunting & Amanda

Bronwen and I went house hunting. It was remarkably cold – the coldest day in ten years, someone said. I worked. It was still remarkably cold. Amanda drove me out to her place, where I stayed the night, along with a nice warm wood fire, and learnt how to give dogs epilepsy pills.

13.08.2005Saturday 13 August – Layer Cake

I ate apple crumble for breakfast, and then Amanda dropped me at the train station. Once back in the city, I went and looked at a few rooms in West End. I then went and chatted to Maz for a while, until he had to go to work. I then went to Clint’s, until we had to go to a movie. I then went and saw “Wedding Crashers” at Indooroopilly. They don’t do UQ Student Deals on Saturday evenings. The movie was actually brilliantly fantastic for its genre, which, given that it was a Hollywood comedy, means it was an enjoyable but rather stupid movie, with a good few laughs here and there. I think it was roughly half as good as “Layer Cake”, although a comparison between such diverse genres is near impossible.
I caught a train with Clint to Toowong, and then headed onwards to Bronwen’s for the night.

14.08.2005Sunday 14 August – Sunday Live

I spent a relaxing morning avoiding the cold, before heading into uni, meeting Raymond on the way to the Sunday Live concert. I decided I had to check my email first, so we ran to the labs, where I didn’t have time to do anything due to a stupid antivirus program that took ages to disable. We ran back to the City Cat, caught that to West End, and walked to the ABC and watched “Australian Voices” make unusual noises, including some singing. After that I had to head back to uni again to do my PHIL1000 journal entry, before training home through all the people coming home from the Ekka, and now I’m back at Joe’s again, trying to rip CD’s for Mum. Unfortunately they’re very scratched – this one has been going for nearly two hours now, rereading nearly every sector several times until it gets a match.
Comment by Mum – Monday 15 August 2005, 9:09 PM
  Really appreciate it, thanks Ned.

15.08.2005Monday 15 August – Buses & Houses

I don’t like buses. I got about three hours sleep. I had to get up early to get into the city to look at a house. I slept through my station, ran through the city to get back to where I should have been, and watched my bus number appear and disappear off the sign, with nary a sign of the bus itself. I arrived late and angry at the house, looked, and headed into uni and tutored.
Having decided that we wanted the place, I rushed into Drakos to see if there was any way to get it immediately. There isn’t, and I didn’t have enough identification on me to fill out a lease form, so I went to Govinda’s for some food, before rushing back to Joe’s to get enough identification. Joe had ordered me dinner, so I had a quick dinner before heading back into the city. Bronwen was working late, so I went back out to uni and read a stack of the “Autobiography of a Yogi”.

16.08.2005Tuesday 16 August – No Houses

Bronwen nearly backed out of wanting to move out with me, so we had a bit of drama before we finally headed down to Drakos. Once there we found that someone else had already put in an application sometime yesterday, but apparently they haven’t yet checked that application; we have, according to Drakos, a 50/50 chance – although they get first preference, all things being equal. I then headed into uni, and sometime later Drakos phoned to say we didn’t get the place – this house hunting is getting me down.
I tutored today’s normal tute, and then an additional prac due to tomorrow being a holiday, and then had a CSSE3004 group meeting. I’m the minute taker this fortnight, which means I have to submit our fortnightly project report – not something to look forward to with the lecturers as ridiculously pedantic as these.
I met Bronwen in the city and we headed to Windmills for fantastic finger-warming pizza.

17.08.2005Wednesday 17 August – Royal Brisbane Show Holiday

I had a pleasing and much needed sleep-in. For some time now, I’ve wanted to see the beach at Wynnum; today Bronwen and I figured we finally would. Getting to Wynnum was easy, finding the coast was easy – finding the beach wasn’t. We did find a lot of mud and mangroves though. Clint (who is currently empowered with a car) and Clus turned up after a while, and we drove around looking for beaches – concluding that there aren’t any, just a lot of mud.
Clint, Clus, Bronwen and I stopped by South Bank on the way through the city and saw “Kung Fu Hustle”. It’s a rather strange movie – but I like the warped slapstick humour.
Comment by Mum – Thursday 25 August 2005, 9:50 PM
  Clint is "currently empowered with a car"? Holy mackerel.
Comment by ascian – Wednesday 31 August 2005, 12:25 AM
  There are actually beaches at Wynnum, trust me, I lived there for 11 years :) You do need to know where to look though :P

18.08.2005Thursday 18 August – Tutoring & Web Site Design

Nine o’clock is a horribly early time to tutor, but I bravely did. I then procrastinated for a while, visited Clint, drove with him to Indooroopilly for lunch, and finished up by working.
I worked on a website back at Joe’s, getting to bed late.

19.08.2005Friday 19 August – Worked

Worked. Probably did other stuff too.

20.08.2005Saturday 20 August – House Hunting

Bronwen and I went and saw a house at 10 o’clock, then wandered around the city and ate at Govinda’s. We then went to see another house but no one turned up – their system is apparently down and someone ran away with the keys. We did come across the “Green Flea” markets, which are pleasantly authentic, right in the heart of West End.

21.08.2005Sunday 21 August – Sunday Live

Bronwen and I had an argument on the way to the city. I ate some curry, she left. I called her and we wandered back to her place.
Bronwen and I went and looked at a fridge and washing machine before going to the ABC Classic FM Sunday Live Concert, along with Raymond, Reubot and UltraHighGecko.

22.08.2005Monday 22 August – Nothing much

Tutoring. Meet Maz in tute. Go to PHIL1000 lecture after. Maz leaves at the start. I meet Maz after and drive to QU Books where I buy my PHIL1000 text for $78. I recharge my phone on credit doubling deal, catching least direct bus possible from Indooroopilly to UQ – the 414 weaves back and forth ridiculously and is full of rich and unpleasant schoolgirls.
Kieran turned up for a short time. Clint and Scruff turned up; they’re working on something due tomorrow. I headed back out to Joe’s, via Woolworth’s in the city for cream, custard and bananas.
Comment by io – Friday 26 August 2005, 2:43 AM
  Haha I know what you mean about the Taringa 414.. bl.

23.08.2005Tuesday 23 August – House Hunting

Into the city to look at a house with Bronwen. Six or seven other people end up looking as well. We checked out another house after, but preferred the original one. We team up with another girl who was also looking at the house, and submit an application – however someone else had already submitted one that morning, so now we wait.
Went to tutor, found that a quarter of the lab wouldn’t re-image, went up to helpdesk. Tutored anyway, with lots of problems. Jon came down to help.
Group meeting for CSSE3004. Typically boring. Went to the Ville for a kebab after.
I met Bronwen at her place at and drove to get a trailer with her Dad, then to pick up her newly purchased fridge and washing machine.

24.08.2005Wednesday 24 August – Uni

I arrive at uni, and procrastinate until my 11 o’clock prac. This if followed by exam preparation for PSYC1020 with Maz in its tutorial, and then our PHIL1000 tutorial – which only went for ten minutes or so as no one had anything to say. Maz and I then had two hours of PSYC1020, one of which was about sleeping – not necessarily the most exhilarating topic out there, although it must be better than the INFS course Maz had to attend after, while I was buying dinner at the Ville before work.
Comment by Maz – Sunday 28 August 2005, 11:26 PM
  Uni sux. Exams suck.
Comment by Ned – Monday 29 August 2005, 9:44 AM

25.08.2005Thursday 25 August – Sleepy

I had to tutor. This is a really bad time to tutor, or in fact do anything other than sleep. I had planned to study for my upcoming PSYC1020 exam, but this didn’t end up happening. For some reason I feel stressed and burnt out.
I worked, and ended up staying up late working on a website, getting very little sleep for my early morning tomorrow.

26.08.2005Friday 26 August – Sleepier

This is a ridiculous time to get up. Whoever thought getting up early made a man healthy, wealthy and wise clearly didn’t own a computer.
I had to attend a compulsory CSSE3004 lecture, which was a waste of time. I went up to see Philip after the lecture, and complain about the course – particularly the way I’m losing marks for menial things that are of absolutely no academic merit.
I went with Maz and Kieran to his tutorial and did a tutor peer-evaluation for him. I had again planned to study for my PSYC1020 exam tomorrow, but instead Maz, Kieran and I drove to Clint’s place where we all chatted happily for a while before lunching at Indooroopilly. I ended back at Clint’s crazy house after lunch, but couldn’t stay long as I had work, where I discovered such exciting things as broken VGA leads.

27.08.2005Saturday 27 August – Introduction to Psychology: Physiological & Cognitive Psychology Exam

Ned found himself at uni, walking through throngs of huddled women, sitting, hiding themselves away against the walls like so many pretty-coloured mushrooms in a field. He half expected to stumble upon a baby-faced black and white cow, chewing on a grass straw with a soulful expression of peace and tranquillity – a stark contrast to that the women bore as they waited for their PSYC1020 exam. Ned found his PSYC1020 exam surprisingly stressful, but not because of its content; rather, he wished to be the first to finish the exam and so worked fast, fearing that if he didn’t someone else would beat him. As it turned out, not only did he manage to complete the exam during perusal and be the first out of the room, he only got two questions wrong. This would be as impressive as it sounds if the exam weren’t a twenty-four question multi-choice exam and the average mark over eighteen. Ned can’t help wondering if panic studying works; despite his best efforts, he managed to avoid any study at all until this morning, when he fit in about an hour’s worth of note reading before becoming sick of it.
Ned went back to Maz’s with Maz, and then to Kieran’s for cake delivery. After this, he made his way out to Griffith’s Nathan Campus, then from there to Joe’s house. He ate Indian Takeaway for dinner and discussed Joe’s new television.
Bronwen spent the night at Joe’s with me.

28.08.2005Sunday 28 August – Pizza & Cheesecake

A short sleep-in then a train trip into town, rushing to the ABC music thing (Griffith Trio, minus one, and some extremely energetic Russian pianist who I’m surprised didn’t hernia and die), nearly missing it and having to throw out an uneatable pie on the way started the day. A craving for cheese quickly developed, resulting in a trip to Windmill’s for pizza and a meeting with Gus, who was on his way back from a soccer game at Suncorp Stadium. The pizza needed a piece of cheesecake to fulfil its fulfilling purpose, producing a pleasingly full feeling, bordering on sick, and a pleasant end to the day.

29.08.2005Monday 29 August – Pasta

Just for something different, I went to uni and tutored. I then tried to get nasty CSSE3004 project stuff to work in Eclipse and Tomcat, but it wouldn’t, so I went to Kieran’s and Indooroopilly for lunch with Maz, dropping in at Clint’s on the way back with Kieran. We then drove back to Indooroopilly so Clint could buy food and not die, and then back to Clint’s again, before going to uni again and finally getting the nasty CSSE3004 project stuff to work in Eclipse and Tomcat.
Pizza hadn’t quite quenched my cheese desire, but Bronwen’s beautiful pasta did.

30.08.2005Tuesday 30 August – The Rising – Ballad of Mangal Pandey

Back at uni once again (who would have thought?), I borrowed out the PocketPC for most of the day, stopping to tutor in the middle. Q Group had its fantastic weekly meeting in the evening, superbly managed by none other than their illustrious group manager, followed by some more coding, and a quick trip to Clint’s place to discover fantastic movies to see and watch snippets of Monty Python. Unfortunately nothing bad enough was showing for Clint or Clus to watch, so I missed the bus into the city where I met Bronwen later than planned, and watched “This Rising – Ballad of Mangal Pandey” at the Regent. Once again, Bollywood had no trouble beating Hollywood for sheer enjoyment, and while not quite as explosive as I’d hoped, its epic proportions made for a good movie.

31.08.2005Wednesday 31 August – Uni

This is a terrible time to arrive at uni. I borrowed out one of the PocketPCs and wrote up a list of things to get done before the Friday demonstration – I suppose I have left it to the last minute again, as usual, although this is a little worse than the usual because I can only work during office hours when I can borrow the PocketPCs.
I tutored. I then went to my PSYC1020 tutorial with Maz and learnt that Brunette women who do not wear makeup are more likely to get a job (and a higher salary) than those with makeup; blondes and redheads are, according to this study, less attractive to employers regardless of their makeup. This was followed by a PHIL1000 tutorial, where our tutor disagreed with our lecturer, readings, and most other things he could think of.
Maz and I attended a two-hour PSYC1020 lecture, where we were supposed to learn about something but I can’t really remember what, and then headed to the Ville for food – Spaghetti Napolitana in my case.
Maz and I made our way to our PHIL1000 lecture, where we had a new, and eminently quotable, lecturer. We discussed dualism – the separation of the mind from the body, and the “animal spirits” Descartes believed responsible for carrying sensual data along our nerves, although as the lecturer reminded us, “they’re not really spirits, no more than vodka is a spirit... in the supernatural sense”.
  We progressed to discussing how an object can exist independently of another. I believe the point was to illustrate how the body is separate from the mind, but our lecturer chose two nearby whiteboard erasers to illustrate his point – passing one behind his back while holding the other high, claiming that this illustrated something, or in his words, “the world could be destroyed leaving this one whiteboard eraser”. He then paused to think before continuing, “but it would probably explode because of quantum theory, so maybe that’s not such a good example... but back to the mind and body”.
  Back on the topic of the mind and body, we were told that someone seeing a rose would see a rose. That is, their eyes would register red light reflected from the rose, which would in turn trigger a memory of a rose in their brain, but at this point, the mind would take over, turning the memory of the rose into a beautiful flower. Or as our lecturer put it, “you just stop jiggling nerves... and you start to see red... ok, so you’re jiggling away at nerves...” Somehow, this didn’t paint the picture he was hoping for. Add in the “animal spirits pouring into the brain”, and... you probably had to be there to appreciate it.
  We went on to discuss what constitutes a conscious, soulful entity; our lecturer claimed that animals weren’t, prompting one of the students to claim that their cat would disagree. This resulted in perhaps the most unique way of passing a course at UQ – an offer to “bring [your cat] in and see if he can pass a PHIL1000 test. If he can, high distinctions all around”, and a claim that perhaps some cats would “want to be an altruistic cat, a cat for other cats”. Our lecturer then went on to claim that perhaps some people weren’t really conscious either, perhaps only he himself was, and everyone else was a machine, a zombie, programmed to respond like a person, and that perhaps the person beside each of us was really a zombie – “[we] ask them, but what if they just think they’re conscious, they’re really a zombie”. It’s funnier when you’re sitting there, and you’re used to dead boring IT lecturers who almost certainly are zombies.
  After claiming people have souls, but animals don’t, our lecturer made the further distinction between people and chairs – “everyone listening is a thinking thing... well the chair’s aren’t... but they’re not listening”. This was a relief to some, who were no longer sure if they were zombies or not. To answer a question some student raised, he finished off with an explanation of pure logic – something that’s certain and understandable even if nothing physical exists; mathematics, for example, relies on logic and not our senses – or as only he could put it, “you know one plus one equals two, you cannot get that wrong if you’re paying attention... unless you’re on drugs, except then of course you’re not paying attention”. We then had a ten-minute break and I discovered that the only vending machine that takes notes was out of order.
  The second hour wasn’t anywhere near as amusing.
I should consider bed, as I have to be up in less than six hours.
Comment by Mum – Thursday 1 September 2005, 7:40 PM
  Holy Mackerel. Who are these mob? A rose is a rose is a rose. By any other name, it still smells as sweet.
   A blonde is a blonde (well, okay, maybe..maybe) is a brunette, a redhead, who cares. Under the exterior is another soul. A dog is a dog is a dog. A cat, etc. Look into the eyes of a dog and tell me that there is no soul. Fools, who think otherwise. Who are these idiots who are supposed to be your teachers?
   "Everyone listening is a thinking thing.."....???? a thinking THING!! A thinking THING!. Holy riot.
   I am disgusted. A cat would do the sensible thing (if brought in to attend a PHIL1000 test and (hopefully)_ piss on the nearest cable or electrical inlet and then settle down nicely to gleefully watch the ensuing mayhem. (Can an "entity" be gleeful
Comment by Mum – Thursday 1 September 2005, 7:43 PM
  And is "glee" a sign of soul? I applaud any and all of you who studiously or nonchalently ignore these so called teachers.
Comment by Maz – Friday 2 September 2005, 11:44 PM
  It was good for a giggle. If we were on acid we might have taken it all a bit more seriously. The problem is that we need to answer a tutorial question on that crap and all I remember is the stupid quotes.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 3 September 2005, 8:45 PM
  Just as well you were not on acid, lest you had "taken it all a bit more seriously". Commiserations re your having to answer a tutorial question on all that crap. Honestly, I sometimes wonder re those who are supposed to be your tutors/teachers/etc. Just guess it is a matter of getting the "have dunnit,gottit, here is me certificate" Do REAL mob put any real kudos on this sort of thing. Guess I dont know, living up here in the bush.
Comment by Ned – Sunday 4 September 2005, 1:06 PM
  He also claimed that anyone who did not believe in God was stupid.
Comment by io – Sunday 4 September 2005, 10:55 PM
  Then that must mean you're a genius.
Comment by Mum – Monday 5 September 2005, 8:10 PM
  I am glad he said that.
  God just is. Despite all the kerfuffle of discussion. Whether or not one believes in God or not, God just is. And that is that.
Comment by Maz – Wednesday 7 September 2005, 6:54 PM
  He's going on about soul-less animals who don't have emotions either. No doubt nuggets of information. Excuse me while I walk out now.
Comment by Kipps – Friday 9 September 2005, 2:58 AM
  Why are you studying that trainwreck of a unit? Sounds like a disaster to me. Hell, your attendance alone is increasing that damn lecturer's ego.
Comment by Ned – Friday 9 September 2005, 8:45 AM
  I think it is quite an interesting course – sure beats law or IT.
Comment by Maz – Sunday 11 September 2005, 12:16 AM
  Flipped a coin and ended up there. It is kind of randomly interesting and the room the lecture is in has wireless.
Comment by Ratty – Sunday 11 September 2005, 2:42 PM
  Write about how feminists suck - please? :P
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 14 September 2005, 8:53 PM
  Geez Maz, does this mean you are all wired?
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 14 September 2005, 8:53 PM
  <Ned: edited duplicate comments>
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 14 September 2005, 8:55 PM
  3 times the abo vementioned cameth uppeth. Holy riot, you must all be wired.
Comment by Ned – Thursday 15 September 2005, 9:42 AM
  Hmm, the comments system should no longer cache POST data, making it theoretically impossible to post the same comment thrice without actually rewriting and reposting it three times.

01.09.2005Thursday 1 September – Amanda’s

Tutoring, work, and so on. Can’t really remember so can’t have been too important – or is repressed, perhaps. I do remember the evening, though – I drove out to Amanda’s after work, to learn how to feed her dogs, one of which has arthritis, and the other epilepsy. Sadly, none of them have milkshakes.

02.09.2005Friday 2 September – Amanda’s

Drove into uni, via Amanda’s work, borrowing her car. Did things at uni, then work, etcetera, etcetera, driving out to Amanda’s to feed the dogs and spend the night.

03.09.2005Saturday 3 September – Amanda’s & Riverfire

Waking out here in the sticks looking after Amanda’s while she’s away, where it’s quite peaceful and the horses roam, sort of free-ish. In the evening Bronwen and I drove into the city, parking at her place, and heading down to Riverfire which we saw with Raymond and his brother. After this, we walked back to Bronwen’s place to get the car and drove to a friend of hers for a housewarming. We weren’t able to stay long as we had to get back to Amanda’s to feed her dogs, and thus ended Saturday.

04.09.2005Sunday 4 September – Charlie & the Chocolate Factory

Still looking after Amanda’s. Drove to Bronwen’s and then Southbank, where we saw “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”, before rushing, late, to the airport to pick up Amanda. She dropped us back at Bronwen’s place.

05.09.2005Monday 5 September – Murderball

This story begins at uni, where I completed my PHIL1020 assignment with Maz, before heading to Indooroopilly for lunch. It then follows me as we go to Kieran’s, after which I headed into the valley.

06.09.2005Tuesday 6 September – Insanity

“LA Ice”, the Cola of the poor, induced my insanity, following an already bad morning at Bronwen’s where I had to leave horribly early, arriving at uni where there wasn’t anything and it was cold, and from there to Griffith Nathan Campus for a change, lunch, and to read my philosophy readings (of which none make sense, let it be known and posted far and wide). Following this, tutoring, then a CSSE3004 meeting (which I forgot and was late for), then the Ville with Maz for food, where I bought my “LA Ice”, the Cola of the poor, and where I began what was a long night working on my PHIL1000 essay, broken by a run to the other side of campus to submit my PHIL1020 assignment, during which the Rembo of doom shut down all our machines. Several hours later, I got a lift to Clint’s with Maz, spending the night there. We went to Dave’s Ampol for ice cream, and I got to sleep not long before four o’clock.

07.09.2005Wednesday 7 September – Sleepy & Busy

I had a busy day at uni, tutoring and attending my tutorials and lectures, followed by work. This resulted in me feeling a little tired, perhaps because I didn’t get to bed until half past three last night, and then had to get up at nine o’clock this morning, or perhaps because I hadn’t eaten anything better than a bucket of chips, or perhaps because lectures are mind numbing.
I now have no table. I knew I’d have no table, but arriving home just before midnight, already feeling rather tired, and knowing I had to get up at half past six tomorrow, as well as do my washing so that I’d have something to wear to uni, and then finding all my stuff (which, I admit, should have been sorted away somehow ages ago) all over the floor and having to put my computer back together, also on the floor, so I could find out what time the train left in the morning – it isn’t conducive to a state of happiness and wellbeing.

08.09.2005Thursday 8 September – Sleepier

This is a very bad time to get up after very few hours sleep after a busy day, which was itself preceded by very few hours sleep, ad infinitum. It is a good time for Latin.
I tutored. I did stuff for my CSSE3004 project. I stared blankly at walls, screens, PocketPCs, people... and made many ridiculous jokes with Johnson.
I headed to Bronwen’s after doing almost no work at work, because Hans talked about cars, electric energy, public transport...

09.09.2005Friday 9 September – Tra-la-la

I went to uni and did very little (also known as “PocketPC development for CSSE3004 lar”, followed by work, after which Hans dropped me off at Bronwen’s.

10.09.2005Saturday 10 September – From Russia with Love

I had a pleasantly quiet and lazy morning, and went looking for a “Brisbane Settee” in the afternoon. I had planned to see a movie, but that didn’t work out – fortunately, as it turns out, because I had a lovely night with a lovely woman, lovely nachos, and watched James Bond “From Russia with Love” instead.
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 14 September 2005, 9:08 PM
  Was my favourite James Bond movie (with Sean Connery, who is not as predictably snide at Pierce Brohaha.)

11.09.2005Sunday 11 September – Wherein I have a milkshake

Here I am at uni, having just booked myself a flight up north – although it’s not yet confirmed. Annoyingly, I have to miss the first part of the mid-semester break, due to CSSE3004 having compulsory assessment on the Friday. It’s only worth a measly three percent or so, and is a ten-minute presentation amongst seven people, but failing to attend is, apparently, a failure to pass the course. It’s rather annoying missing the Wallaby Creek Festival and half of my mid-semester break due to a two minute, three percent presentation.
Maz has arrived, for great justice.
I have a lollipop – may the infidels shake in their infidel equivalent of boots.
My tongue and mouth hurt. Lollipops suck.
Nothing has really happened. I wish I had a milkshake.
My wish has come true. We are going to Cold Rock, internal combustion permitting.
Maz, Clint, Lisa and her flatmate drove to Cold Rock, ate Cold Rock, and dropped Clint and I back at his place.
I was shocked to find that it was somewhat early in the morning, and rushed to bed.
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 14 September 2005, 9:03 PM
  Beware the Cold Rocky my son, the lollypops that bite and and the slithey tomes.
Comment by Who knows – Monday 26 September 2005, 10:44 AM
  I can't believe that you would rather go to Wallaby Ck Festival than stay down here! I don't think anyone could even pay me to go there, coz it's as boring as bat shit. I wouldn't want to miss out on the hippies plaiting each other's pubic hairs. I guess different strokes for different folks.

12.09.2005Monday 12 September – Sleepy & Confused

Around five o’clock this morning I noticed that it was five o’clock, and rushed to bed. Around seven o’clock this morning, before my brain had awoken, I noticed that it was nine o’clock, so I jumped up and started to get ready for uni. Two hours later, when it actually was nine o’clock, I again got up, having not got back to sleep, and headed into uni. Around ten o’clock I finished my iced coffee and tutored. Now I’m sleepy for some reason.
I am having an unproductive day, joking with Johnson while he should be studying for his COMP3502 exam. BITS had a BBQ, which fed me my lunch, and Kieran turned up looking for Clint, who apparently hasn’t turned up for his exam.
Kieran and I rushed off to Clint’s – who had slept in and missed his exam – and brought him back into uni under “exam conditions”
Clint and I went around to Kieran’s place, where I ended up spending the night, and had dinner there.

13.09.2005Tuesday 13 September – Carpeted

I trained back to Joe’s, where I cleaned up some hard drive space so I could copy off data from my spare hard drive onto my other hard drives, and take the drive into Maz.
I tutored, having met Maz and given him my hard drive. I then read through my CSSE3004 group’s project plan, attended the group’s group meeting, booked an airfare from Cairns back to Brisbane, and headed back to Joe’s, via Indooroopilly, Woolworth’s and Cold Rock.
While the bohemian freedom one achieves from living without tables is thrilling, the dead arms and difficulty typing one experiences while lying on the carpet in front of one’s computer fixing up one’s journal comment system so it doesn’t cache post data or allow people to enter comments longer than they should, is less so.

14.09.2005Wednesday 14 September – Uni

Sleeping in would have been lovely this morning, and was something I had counted on. Unfortunately, though, I had to be in town to look at some possible rental properties, neither of which met with my approval.
I tutored, which is rather easy at the moment, as practicals have finished and the technical things I am supposed to be tutoring haven’t actually been released yet.
Today’s PSYC1020 tutorial was a chance to discuss our fast approaching essay, and submit an essay plan for review by the tutor. Maz and I had to improvise, having not yet thought about the essay, or even chosen a topic, let alone written an essay plan. Scribbling “Essay Plan: I plan to write an essay” for Maz and “I plan to buy an essay” for myself, while perhaps not the most productive use of time, seemed to do the trick. The class was then split into two groups – those planning to discuss the accuracy of flashbulb memories, and those planning to discuss sleep deprivation with respect to alcohol consumption and driving. Maz and I, having not yet chosen a subject, sat in on the flashbulb memory discussion simply because it happened first. I had then planned to sit in on the second topic discussion, but decided I would rather go and buy something to eat, and as this seemed to be a good way to choose which topic to write my essay on, I headed to POD to print out the required reading. POD didn’t have the flashbulb topic’s readings printed, but had two copies of the sleep topic printed. This seemed like an even better reason to choose a topic, so Maz and I are now planning to write an essay on sleep deprivation.
My PHIL1000 tutorial started with the tutor walking into the darkened tutorial room and frightening himself to find that I was already there. He then made witty comments about the Greek on the whiteboard being “all Greek” to him, before “translating” it into a risqué and slightly anti-American limerick (but not before the three American exchange students had arrived). We then discussed the relative worthlessness of the week’s reading, and began to fall asleep, at which point the tutor explained that he was actually sleepier than any of us, as he had last night written eight thousand words less than the thirty thousand he was supposed to have written before yesterday. He went on to explain that he was planning to write the remaining eight thousand directly after the tutorial, so we should all feel sorry for him, at which point Maz (who had submitted his essay late last week, after being told every tutorial prior to that not to leave things to the last minute) suggested that the tutor should not leave things to the last minute. The tutor explained that, as unlike Maz and I, he did not do IT, he could submit his incomplete work and by the time his supervisor had read to the bottom, he would have finished the remainder and could claim that the submission was actually complete but had been cut off due to some inexplicable technological wonder totally out of his grasp. The tutor then requested that we all come up with an analogy for life and the individual, which none of us did, because we are all “the worst class I have ever had”, to quote our illustrious tutor, at which point he put on his stern tutor face and demanded we have the best analogies ever by next week, and we all left.
The first hour of PSYC1020 was not thrilling enough to keep me awake, so I don’t actually remember what it was about. The second hour, however, was taken by our humorous lecturer, and was interesting enough that I actually remember it. We were told the current theories on why people eat; apparently, it’s not because they’re hungry. The lecturer explained that the act of eating itself satiates a person, and that bottle-fed babies, when their teat becomes worn, require more milk to satiate them, as they’re no being forced to suck as hard to get their milk. This, according to our lecturer, results in the “little swine” screaming and screaming, which in turn results in their distraught mother feeding them another bottle and in some cases a third. At this point, the “little swine” is overfull and vomits up the milk; but not because he is full, we were told, it is because he is a “little devil and hates his parents”. This was coming from his personal experience, I believe.
I’m not working tonight, and I’m also skipping tonight’s PHIL1000 lecture; instead, I am heading into town, where I will dine at a nice Indian place in West End.
Comment by Mum – Friday 16 September 2005, 9:14 PM
  Yes, nice Indian place at West End, but.....are you REALLY HUNGRY? It might be that you are a little devil and hate your parents. Yeah, okay, all that broccoli as a child. Sorry. Dont hate me. Broccoli is good for, um, good for, er, good for...something. Sulphur I think. Dont devils like sulphur?

15.09.2005Thursday 15 September – Sex & Biological Waste

I tutor. I go to the labs and do CSSE3004 crud. I see Ken to complain about marking criteria for said crud, due tomorrow. I go to the Ville for lunch cum dinner, having only eaten a vanilla slice from Grinder’s for lunch, and then to work. I saw a bloke kitted out in protective gear and mask removing biological waste. I saw lovers loving in an abandoned lecture theatre. They got a shock.
I’ve been playing around with “Authentic” view in XMLSpy, to make creation of XML journals easier. I’m considering developing XSLT to convert Word document to journal XML, but am not sure how much effort I can be bothered expending.

16.09.2005Friday 16 September – Unproductive & Sleepy

I woke up, very sleepy, having had four hours sleep.
Here I am at uni preparing to prove my use of our project plan with Ken for CSSE3004. This goes well, I am not asked any questions and do not need to say anything. Overall, our group is treated far better and more leniently than the other groups that I’ve questioned.
I’m just starting to read my psychology stuff again.
I’m going to the Ville for food before work. I have just spent hours playing around with PHP and XML parsing my journal via PHP, instead of doing my assignments which are due horribly soon.

17.09.2005Saturday 17 September – City

I slept in, not getting up until after midday – something I really needed after my recent sleep-lacking week.

18.09.2005Sunday 18 September – Wallace & Gromit

I had a relaxing morning and saw “Wallace and Gromit” in the evening. It’s quite a fun movie.

19.09.2005Monday 19 September – Aching

I got up earlier than I wanted to, and blew my nose. This, as it turns out, was a bad mistake. Blowing my nose did all sorts of internal damage, and all day it has been hurting, and every time I chew. I managed to tutor without any problems, or many students for that matter, but writing my PSYC1020 essay just wasn’t going to happen. I did eventually manage to get eighty words down, but coherent thinking wasn’t an option; concentration requires a clear head, and a clear head requires unclogged internal canals that don’t constantly ache. Looking on the bright side, I managed to finish off my journal’s online editing and updating functionality, and it all seems to be working nicely as far as I can tell.
Several people on the train home were very sick, with running eyes, sneezing mouths, and generally unhappy all over. It must be that time of year again – cold and flu season. I hope I get better in the morning, because I’m now down to absolute critical period, where there’s just enough time to finish my assignment before it’s due, but only if all goes well.

20.09.2005Tuesday 20 September – Essaying

I arrived at uni, having got nearly a full seven hours sleep and being freshly invigorated and eager to write, at least in theory. I then met Clint and Maz, walked to the Ville where I wasted highly limited time, and bought yoghurt. Then, an hour after I arrived a uni, I opened my PSYC1020 reading and began summarising it. A few hours later, I was finished. I turned my summaries into English, wrote a conclusion, and wished I’d had time to write some critical analysis.
I’ve just handed in my PSYC1020 essay, which I’ve just written in the past few hours, rather too hurriedly – even having to skip tutoring. Still, the stress of an impending deadline was the only way I was going to develop the motivation to read and write about studies into the effects of sleep deprivation on driving ability, and its comparableness to alcohol induced driving impairment.
After a CSSE3004 group meeting and some more procrastination on my journal updating system, I think I’m ready to go home and pretend I don’t have an assignment due tomorrow. The scary people who run ITEE have installed a monitor in the foyer which shows statistics such as UQ being the fifth best university in Australia, how full each computer lab is, and even the foyercam.
Staying up late was a bad idea, although all the cool things I implemented on my journal updating form were good ideas. As much as I dislike JavaScript, some of its dynamic capabilities are rather cool. I need to limit myself so that I am not too carried away, or I’ll end up spending all my time making this entirely, and somewhat pointlessly, dynamic. I have to get to uni tomorrow as early as possible so I can do my assignment, due tomorrow, and also attend at least some of my uni classes, my whole week of which are also tomorrow. Washing is now finished, only showering and packing my bag to go, so I can get up and leave without actually waking up.
Comment by DM – Wednesday 21 September 2005, 8:12 AM
  I didn't notice that foyer monitor yesterday. I'll have to check it out today.

21.09.2005Wednesday 21 September – Busy

I arrived a whole hour before my tutorial, having read on the train all about “Standard Form” presentation of logical arguments and how to break these down into trees – all of which I understood quite clearly right up until I printed out my PHIL1020 assignment and tried to do the first tree question. I managed to do all the other questions without too many problems, but it would seem I haven’t quite grasped the concept of the trees yet, something of a problem given that this is due by five o’clock today.
Tutoring, during which Julie wasn’t able to help me with my logic trees either.
Maz and I attended our PSYC1020 tutorial, in which we performed a paper-stabbing exercise. We had to alternately tap two dots drawn on paper as many times as we could in five seconds, once with our right hands while silent, then again with our right hands while saying out loud “She sells sea shells by the seashore”, and then the same again with our left hands. This will form the basis of our written report, no doubt due nastily soon. I don’t seem to be statistically useful, gaining roughly the same amount of dots for all the experiments, and Maz was still writing his PSYC1020 essay, due yesterday.
Maz and I attended our PHIL1000 tutorial and got our essays back. I am very unhappy with my fourteen out of twenty; although I’ve no one to really compare with I felt that I deserved better for the effort I put in, and the huge amount of semi-colons that I used. I felt a little less gloomy when the tutor pointed out that he has an hour-long presentation directly following our tutorial, on a paper he only wrote last night. I also popped next door to our PHIL1020 tutorial and clarified a few things about our logic assignments.
Maz and I attended our PSYC1020 lecture, during which I worked furiously on my PHIL1020 assignment and Maz on his PSYC1020 assignment, leaving half an hour into the lecture so he could print and submit his.
Maz and I met Kieran near the lolly shop and we all went and submitted our PHIL1020 assignments.
I caught a bus to the Ville and bought Maz and myself dinner, dropping his back to his lecture, and then heading off to work.
I made my way to Bronwen’s after work, spending the night there.

22.09.2005Thursday 22 September – Uni & Not Much Else

I tutored, and then borrowed out a PocketPC and spent far too long working developing help menus and things, broken by Nachos at Grinders.
Hans dropped me off at Bronwen’s after work, where I spent the night.

23.09.2005Friday 23 September – Early & Nasty

To be at uni by eight o’clock for my exhilarating CSSE3004 group problem presentation involved getting up now. This is not a good thing.
Robert, who is presenting our whinge, worried us a little by not turning up until one minute past the hour. We presented our two problems (this being perhaps the only course where we get marks from having problems) as the second group, then sat through another few presentations, before heading back to GPS and the labs, where I (and most of my group) now code.
In theory, BITS had a barbecue at noon, free for all, sponsored by the centre for complex systems or some similar academic money mover. In reality, Lachlan had all the food in his car, and his car wasn’t there. Fortunately for starving lab-people like me, he arrived shortly after and burgers flew free.
While I was sitting in the labs feeling like I’d somehow forgotten something, it all of a sudden occurred to me – work; work starts at five o’clock, it was half past, I wasn’t at work, I hadn’t got anything to eat, I hadn’t finished what I was doing... I rushed off to work, grabbing dinner from the Ville a little later.
An interesting display I hadn’t noticed before – a piece of aluminium from a Land Rover door with a large inch hole burnt through it by a two second pule from a 50,000 watt CO2 laser.
I rushed down to the labs after work and updated the pricing for Georgie’s prints, before catching the bus to Bronwen’s and spending the night there.
Comment by io – Friday 23 September 2005, 11:00 PM
  Where was this display?
Comment by Ned – Friday 23 September 2005, 11:07 PM
  Parnell, along the wall facing Steele.

24.09.2005Saturday 24 September – Howl’s Moving Castle

I spent a pleasant day doing nothing whatsoever – which is exactly what one is supposed to do during the mid-semester break, of which today is the first day.
I went and saw “Howl’s Moving Castle” at South Bank. It made an interesting change from my traditional movie fare, but I can’t say I was overly impressed by its confusing lack of coherent plot, contrasting strangely with its childish simplicity – still, it was an enjoyable, and different, film. I spent the rest of the night playing around with the code that generates my online journal and wishing there wasn’t something painfully stuck in my eye.

25.09.2005Sunday 25 September – Relaxing

Joe held a BBQ. I held a sleep-in.
I trained into the city, getting my combined breakfast and lunch at South Bank, walking around the cliffs at Kangaroo Point, and finishing up by dining at “Tastes of India” on the Boardwalk.
I spent the night at Bronwen’s, both of us being bloated from our dinner.

26.09.2005Monday 26 September – Uni & Centrelink

The bus to uni was full of sports students from various universities around Australia attending the University Games. It also contained an advert for the UQ Business School, containing the embarrassing misuse of English, “its not to late to apply”. Even ignoring the lack of apostrophe, a university that uses “to” instead of “too” in its advertising doesn’t really inspire much confidence in the quality of education they’d provide.
I went and saw Soon to get my tutor timesheet signed and to let her know I’d not be tutoring for a few days next week, and continued figuring out a more efficient method of replacing acronyms for my online journal.
I met Kieran and Maz at Wordsmith’s where I had a caramel milkshake before Maz drove me to Centrelink where I dropped in my greatly overdue rent assistance form. I then trained into the city for lunch at Govinda’s, before heading back out to uni through what appeared to be a gathering storm but only resulted in a few isolated ominous, large and cold raindrops.
I’m about to go home, having just written up an instruction guide on creating an installer for Apache, PHP and MySQL, should COMP1800 require one again. Hopefully the large raindrops are no longer.
I’ve now rewritten my journal so that it uses DOM-based XML functions instead of XSL, making it more flexible. XSL worked well for simple transformations, but was starting to get overly complicated whenever I tried using it for string parsing or various other complex manipulations. Now the journal can be viewed as years, months, days, or in theory, any arbitrary period. I’ve become too sleepy to iron out the remaining logic bugs – perhaps it’ll give me something to do over the mid-semester break.
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 27 September 2005, 8:24 PM
  "Something to do over the mid semester break"?? Far out. Might be better to make the break a real break and plunge into the Wallaby Creek, sit outside under the Far North Queensland stars in a non polluted sky and stir the embers of a good old fashioned fire out the back, and forget parsing and thising and thating. Watch the orbs spin etc. Cant wait to see you and be with you again.

27.09.2005Tuesday 27 September – House Hunting

I had a very late night last night, and don’t feel at all good now. Sitting in the labs at my CSSE3004 group meeting along with five of my group members, each in their usual jovial moods – Robert with donuts because he broke code, Johnson telling everyone his jokes, Jervina modifying her remarkably long and confusing code, Mark working on the PocketPC code, Matthew suffering Johnson’s wit, and myself drinking my milkshake and trying to feel alive – perhaps isn’t the ideal way to spend the morning.
I’ve fixed up most of the bugs in my journal code that I couldn’t be bothered fixing last night, and am now beginning to feel rather like a bite to eat, and hopefully get over my “stayed up far too late last night” feeling.
I bought some rice and limp green Chinese vegetables swimming in greasy fried onion from the noodle bar, as nothing else was open. I then caught a City Cat (which was very full of the La Trobe University soccer team) to West End, sat on a hill and ate half my rice mess, and inspected a house. The house was, like many of the others that I’ve seen, not quite what I’m after. I guess I’m being too stingy, too strict, and too fussy.
I bought a veggie burger from Hungry Jack’s to recover from my mistake at the noodle bar, some bananas, custard and cream to eat for dinner, and trained out to Joe’s. Once there, I phoned Mandi to arrange my lift in Cairns, and re-added a few features I’d removed from my online journal during its upgrade.
I need to be up horribly early tomorrow, so I’m going to pack as fast as I can, and get to bed.

28.09.2005Wednesday 28 September – Cairns, Sun, Cars & Bikinis

What a day. I’m nearly delirious and have half lost my voice. It all began at four o’clock, which is a horrible time to have to get up, particularly after only a few hours sleep. I woke up, finished a little bit of packing, and walked through the dark to the train station. I was surprised to find that there are actually quite a few people on such an early train. I drank half a litre of milk on the way to the city (which kept me awake nicely) and changed to the airport train with only a few minutes spare, but arrived with plenty of time – even getting a blue early arrival ticket. The flight itself was non-eventful, and partially empty. The middle few rows of seats were closed off to keep the plane balanced, and I got a whole row to myself so could lie (or at least slouch) down and get a bit of sleep.
Cairns is hot. I began my return by getting ripped off by a taxi driver. I shared a cab with another girl from the plane, assuming we’d split the fare down the middle, as per usual; however, the cab driver asked the girl sitting in front if she’d be happy paying $10 each, which she was, and then didn’t turn the trip meter on – it was still cheaper than a single fare, but more expensive than it should have been. Once in Cairns, I found the only shady spot at the Esplanade and read my philosophy text for PHIL1000. It was incredibly busy – hundreds of nearly-nude women, several topless, were occupying every available piece of grass, doing their best to permanently ruin their complexion. I got sunburnt legs because, for an hour or so until the sun moved over, they didn’t quite fit under the shade I had found – I hate to think what lying in the sun all day does to people.
Silas called, and I headed slowly to Cairns Central, where I had an Indian curry lunch and a chat with him.
Kylie called, and I met her and Mandi at Cairns Central. They were panicking, trying to get a lot of shopping done in time for an optometrist’s appointment at five. They ended up having to leave their half-filled trolley at the service desk, and rush off to the optometrist. Mandi and I sat and chatted for over an hour, waiting for the optometrist who was apparently also gasbagging. We then rushed back to the supermarket to finish shopping, and then out to the airport to pick up Jade, arriving just in time. Jade hadn’t eaten all day, so we went and bought pizza.
I used a paring knife to strip back the insulation from a piece of wire, which I then taped with electrical tape, bush mechanic style, directly to the battery terminal, so that we’d have spotlights and be able to see cows and kangaroos before hitting them on the way home. I noticed another wire hanging loosely near the battery terminal, already bared back and looking as though it shouldn’t be hanging loosely. As I soon found out, the switch controlling the electric radiator fan had broken some time ago, and instead of being replaced or fixed, one simply connected this wire to the battery before driving anywhere that one expected would overheat the engine, and removed it when finished. This task was made a little more difficult by the bonnet – it took two people to open it, as someone had to press down on it while someone else activated the opening lever inside the cabin. Suitably enlightened, we left Cairns and began the windy drive up the Kuranda range, the car getting hotter and hotter on the way up. We kept planning to stop, but Mandi kept saying that the top of the range was just around the bend. We reached the top of the range just as the temperature gauge reached the red, and pulled over anyway – but it was too late. The car boiled over spectacularly, steam hissing from everywhere. Needless to say, we didn’t have any spare water, or even containers. Fortunately for us, a gentleman kindly stopped on his way home from work and, gloomily predicting the permanent demise of the engine should we attempt to drive it anywhere, gave me a lift to the nearest service station. Being closed, and having only managed to find a litre or two of small drink bottles, forced me to resort to emergency measures – I eventually managed to find a large twenty litre bottle of water, which I stole from amongst the oils and other scary chemicals behind the service station. Water in hand, or boot actually, we drove back to the girls, who were hiding in the car with all the lights off – not a good idea when stuck right on the edge of a cliff, with traffic flying past. It had looked a little grim for a while; water that had collected in ridges on the engine kept boiling off in such a way that it looked like the head had cracked, but after refilling the radiator everything seemed to work fine and we headed merrily on our way, keeping a close eye on the temperature gauge and remembering to connect the fan before heading up the next range.
I arrived home after a semi-delirious drive, which felt, as Jade put it, like being in a movie. For some reason nothing quite seemed real; it seemed that, after I was sick of it, I’d just walk out and catch a train back to Joe’s – rather like, and probably for the same reasons as, the insanity caused by an all-nighter before assignments are due at uni. For some reason there were heaps of wallabies too, although we managed not to hit any. Unsurprisingly, once home I went straight to bed.

29.09.2005Thursday 29 September – Cooktown & Kickboxing

I woke up, having had a pleasantly relaxing, and very much overdue, sleep-in. My throat is still not working properly; while it doesn’t really hurt, it is quite an effort to speak and requires me to drink copious amounts of water.
Shan, Damian, Kylie and I drove into Cooktown and went kickboxing. I watched for a little while, went to the supermarket (which is newly enlarged) and had a wander around town, coming across an extremely large, very expensive, privately owned catamaran at the wharf – amusingly named “My Way”.
I’m surprisingly tired, so might head to bed.

30.09.2005Friday 30 September – Hot & Busy

I spent the morning playing around online, fiddling with bits of my journal generation code. I spent the afternoon out at Home Rule moving piles of lumber and assorted junk around in the hot sun, preparing for Shan’s party tomorrow. I spent the evening up at Dad’s, discussing life, cooking shows, and various other important topics.

01.10.2005Saturday 1 October – Philosophically Late & Revelling

I woke up before nine o’clock, for no apparent reason, which surprised me. I then spent a while doing the usual – messing around with my journal code, implementing a backup to Gmail feature for extra paranoid protection. Then, to satiate my rising guilt at spending my sunny holiday inside at my computer, which is pretty much what I do when I’m not on holiday, I went and philosophised on a rock. Unfortunately, as fate would have it, there were lots of green ants on the rock, directly resulting in causal sensations of pain and discomfort to parts of what I identify as my anatomy, in direct violation of my freewill. I supposed that the green ants did not exist, and that the pain was merely a causeless sensation in my body, quite distinct from me, but I still believed that I experienced pain, even though I had now supposed no cause for it existed. This deeply shook my belief in my philosophy text, to such an extent that I moved to another rock, entirely surrounded by water and on which no world-roving sailor green ant had yet set its grimy feet and sharp pincers. Then, to add insult to injury, when I got back to my computer, I found that the question I had to answer was on fatalism, yet the closest my readings had got to that was determinism – oh, the pain I endure for the betterment of humanity (and my grades, which, based on the way these philosophers are “proving” their arguments, I’m sure any good philosopher could prove were the same thing).
Dad, Mum and I drove out to the Home Rule Homestead for Shan’s surprise birthday party. The hard work I (along with others) had done yesterday paid off, and the place looked quite nice. Shan arrived an hour or so after us, and was quite shocked – he had thought that a dinner had been organised for him, and had even suspected that there could be a small surprise, such as Sarah being there or something similar, but wasn’t prepared for a large-scale party. People ate lots of food, drank many drinks, went skinny-dipping in the dam, roasted by the bonfire, sang, played guitar, drums and sitar, and generally had a party.
Comment by Reubot – Sunday 2 October 2005, 12:36 AM
  PHIL1000 is really rubbing off on you...
Comment by ned martin too – Friday 28 October 2005, 7:51 AM
  This is my first visit to your journal. My name is also NED MARTIN. Didnt think there were any others, but wow. nice
Comment by Ned – Friday 28 October 2005, 6:02 PM
  I guess there are a few others with the same name out there. Both the dot com and dot net versions of have been registered by people.

02.10.2005Sunday 2 October – Swimming, Dining & Writing

I didn’t feel as good as I normally should when I woke, unsurprisingly, but any thoughts I had of dying silently somewhere in the shade were shattered when Shan, Kylie, Jade, Ella and Vasco arrived shortly after I had got up, on their way to the Little Annan Waterhole. When we arrived, having stopped at the Lion’s Den for an iced coffee on the way, there were already a dozen or so girls swimming. Vasco promptly climbed up a rock and jumped into the water, nearly breaking his foot, while the rest of us floated around sedately or sunbathed on the beach. After a while, I decided that more excitement was required, and climbed down a waterfall, swimming at the bottom. Shan and Vasco joined me shortly after, and we spent the rest of our swim exhausting ourselves, being thrown around by the waterfall.
Dad, Mum and I had dinner at the Lion’s Den, surrounded by insane (and very noisy) football supporters watching the rugby league grand final. The pizza was, as usual, fantastic, although I felt terrible. I hadn’t felt the best before Shan’s party, because of my throat, and after it, I felt even worse – add a gruelling waterfall endeavour and I ached all over, particularly in my ears and head. I dropped by Shan’s after dinner at the Den, where we watched a bit of TV before deciding we were all quite worn out.
I’ve just written a four-thousand-word email in under two hours, including getting distracted regularly and surfing the web, chatting on MSN, and reading friend’s rants, and am now going to go collapse into bed. It would have taken me all night to write anything that long for uni – why can’t I write my uni assessment this easily?
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 4 October 2005, 12:10 PM
  Testing the new client-side comments validation script.

03.10.2005Monday 3 October – Frail & Delirious

Mum found a snake in the garden just outside the kitchen window just before, and threw water on it to make it go away. I even bothered to get up and have a look, but felt frail so I lay down again.
In retrospect, I think I might have been a bit delirious last night. At the time, it seemed normal, but now that I think about it, the hours I spent fighting the bed sheets and tossing and turning to get my ears and head aligned correctly (so that the mysterious passages inside my head that run from my teeth to my ears would unblock, letting the pressure inside my teeth out, as I had become convinced this was what was wrong with me) probably weren’t normal. Then, when I woke up, I was lying nearly sideways on the bed, and feeling frail. It’s now afternoon and I’m still feeling frail. I’ve been lying on a couch for half the day. In a strange way, it’s almost nice being so lazy, but I do hope I get better quickly as it’s probably not nice when I’m in town and trying to do things.
Damian, Kylie, Jade, Vasco and I drove into town in Damian’s car, where we met Ella in her car, and Shan in his. This caused great confusion every time we went to go anywhere, meeting different people at different places in different cars, but they then running into other people halfway there and being told that other people were somewhere else, so going there instead, only to find the other people had gone to the first place after meeting someone else.
We had planned to have dinner with Sarah, but one of her dogs, which had been missing for some time now, had just been found, so we drove halfway out the Archer’s Point road and walked up and down in the dust and dark, trying to locate the wafting smell of a dead animal, and calling for the other missing dog. It wasn’t quite the same as a candlelit dinner, but Jade and I did get to have a bit of a chat with Sarah on the way there. Riding along such a dusty road in the back of a Ute, peering through clouds of dust into the gloom, isn’t very good for my eyes.
Mum just came, hugged me, and cried, and I wasn’t sure what to do, so I phoned Bronwen and told her I loved her.

04.10.2005Tuesday 4 October – Back to Cairns

I spent a semi-relaxing morning packing my entire travelling wardrobe of three changes of clothes ready to head back to Cairns this afternoon. I then ate a nice salad lunch with Dad and Mum, discussing relevant things such as how easy it would be to bypass security at airports, and hence what a waste of time the entire domestic airport screening process is, and wondering why, if they’re so worried about terrorism, they don’t screen passengers on city trains. I’m now waiting for Jade and Mandi, who was originally going to leave around three o’clock, but that was pushed back to four o’clock, and Jade’s now saying they’ll probably leave around half past four or five o’clock because they’re doing some last minute work on the car.
Mandi and Jade arrived shortly before five o’clock, and we set out – pausing briefly to find out what the thing hanging out the bottom of the car was. The drive to Cairns was uneventful and unexciting, stopping to connect the fan after the engine began to get a bit too warm driving slowly through the dusty sections before Lakeland, stopping again for Pizza in Mareeba, and finally arriving at Silas’s, where I spent the night.
Comment by Maz – Wednesday 5 October 2005, 6:19 PM
  Hehe.. Last minute work on the car before a drive doesn't sound so.. reliable.
  Anyway. Uni work!
  1. PSYC1020 has a lab report due next tuesday. It has to be 500 words. I have the information you need to complete that on my laptop.
  2. PHIL1000 tutorial - I wrote down your name and he didn't seem to notice so you might still get the mark. LOL.
  3. PHIL1020 needs to be done sometime. I haven't done the textbook either so it looks like we're both going to be needing it at the same time. We might need to sit somewhere and work on that.
  You should also change your text at the top of this, "not longer than 185 characters MORE."
Comment by Ned – Thursday 6 October 2005, 9:01 AM
  Sigh, back to the grind...
  Thanks though, I will have to get stuck into uni work.

05.10.2005Wednesday 5 October – Serenity, Cairns & Brisbane

I caught the bus into Cairns, sat on the Esplanade reading for a few hours, saw “Serenity” at Cairns Central Cinemas, and got a lift back to Silas’s when he knocked off work. This filled in the day nicely, without me getting too hot – not an easy thing to do in Cairns. “Serenity” wasn’t the worst Hollywood movie I’ve seen, although nothing to rant about, and the Esplanade isn’t the worst place to read my philosophy text.
My flight out was delayed forty minutes while Jetstar changed their broken plane for another broken one, and then fixed the second one. The flight was full, even though several rows of seats were closed off to increase efficiency, and they boarded from both ends of the plane, so I sat in the middle in the over-wing exit row, which has a lot more legroom, and slept.
I arrived back in Brisbane, three quarters of an hour later than I should have, met the Beautiful Bronwen, and wished it wasn’t so hot.

06.10.2005Thursday 6 October – Uni

I just managed to get to uni in time to tutor. Ironically, my relaxing holiday up north has made me more stressed. I didn’t feel as though I was stressed prior, but as soon as I got to my parent’s, I felt so much more relaxed and realised that things in Brisbane had actually been pretty hectic. Now that I’m back, I’m realising that not only are things hectic, but they’re getting worse – things are due, things have to be done, time is running out...
I worked, having rushed down to the Ville for dinner and overheated. I figured the labs are actually not the worst place to be when it’s this hot, so I spent an hour after work beginning the PDA help system, so I hopefully won’t have to embed myself in the labs over the weekend.

07.10.2005Friday 7 October – Hot & Bad

I slept in, leaving Joe’s around midday. It is so very hot, but at least the train is air-conditioned. The bus went the wrong way, having to turn around in a side street and backtrack – not the most exciting thing that’s happened, but a little different to the usual trip to uni.
  Now that I’m at uni, things aren’t going well. I need a PDA to develop and test the interfaces for our CSSE3004 project, due Friday, but they’ve all been borrowed out. The code, which hasn’t changed since last time it worked, wouldn’t work – or more precisely, the stupid environment in which it (sometimes) runs randomly decided not to cooperate, which took ages to fix, and now I’m writing this instead of working.
I bought pasta and yoghurt from the Ville, and headed to work. The weather is still far too hot for working outside, and air-conditioning around UQ isn’t very logical – half the rooms seem to be heated, rather than cooled.
I was planning on going home to Joe’s, but after Bronwen gave me a call and asked if I could come over so we could talk, I ended up at her place for the night.

08.10.2005Saturday 8 October – Just as Hot & Even Worse

I spent all morning at uni, working on the PDA component of my CSSE3004 project. It’s a pain with the great dearth of JavaScript support on the thing.
I bought dinner at the Ville, having spent seven hours solid on the PDA interface and help system. I guess it’s a good thing I happened to head into uni, rather than the beach as originally planned, as I’d never have had enough time to do this, as well as my rapidly looming PSYC1020 assignment, on Monday.
I caught the train most of the way to Joe’s, travelling the last few stations via an articulated bus due to track work. Several rail staff were kept quite hot carrying prams and strollers up and down stairs and on and off buses. I’m not sure what would happen if someone with a wheelchair travelled on the train, as the station was entirely wheelchair unfriendly. Once back at Joe’s, I ate a muesli bar and some custard and cream for dinner, fixed up the journal’s comment’s validation, and now that it’s one o’clock, I’m planning to get to bed and get some sleep so I can get up for breakfast – something I haven’t done in years.

09.10.2005Sunday 9 October – Surfer’s Horrors & a few Grammatical Ones

Today, because I can’t sleep until my custard has gone down a little more, I am going to use, not just my usual commas, but colons, semi-colons, and—in a first for me—actual em dashes as they were originally intended to be used: Waking early enough to eat breakfast was, in theory, a good idea; theory, however, is theoretical—getting out of a comfortable bed in the morning is not. To say that another way, I decided to sleep in, although not for long as I had a train to Surfer’s Paradise to catch. It’s strange how track work, and the delays, detours and bother it causes, actually make people friendlier; on a normal train journey, no one talks, no one makes eye contact, no one really does anything, but the change from the norm gets people chatting. Speaking of strange, a few of the people on the train to Nerang were a bit that way: I sat behind a group on their way to Dream World, who had found a bug, named it “Bob”, and were teaching it the meaning of life; I chatted to two young girls, who could barely stop laughing, and who were avoiding a strange man calling them “nuts”, and who they believed was trying to touch them; I was told that Nerang was the “freak’s station”, and then laughed at by two young girls when I got off, who I later met at the beach, they having forgot to get off at Nerang...
Surfer’s Paradise was busy and stifling hot; walking along the beach, waiting for people who were nearly two hours late, all but killed me. A large orange juice revived me, and—the people having finally arrived—we set off for another walk along the beach, finishing up at a less packed beach with great waves. The water looked lovely, the waves looked pleasant, and it all looked quite inviting; expecting a pleasant swim, I dived in, only to find the water was deathly cold, the waves deadly, and the water infested with lice—but perfect for bodysurfing, which is what I happily did, until I began to get stung, and very, very cold. When I began to shake uncontrollably, I decided I had better get out and get warm. I sat in the sun for nearly an hour before I stopped shaking, feeling as though I was going to throw up, and coming out in a rash all over; it was rather strange, and not a little disturbing; fortunately, after an hour or so, I was mostly back to normal and again able to control my muscles.
I sat on the sand at Surfer’s Paradise talking until the darkness rose over the horizon, changing the waves into frothy trains, careering crazily down the beach before disappearing into a spray of noxious, shiver inducing, lice ridden, jellyfish laden “water”—with an eerie green tinge, colouring the sand. The world’s tallest residential building—now nearly complete it would seem—has a large light that beams out over the ocean, and a flashing red tower on top, making a good marker to head for when one sits on a beach until it’s dark. The—to change the topic without changing the paragraph, and give me one last excuse to use two em dashes—train journey back home again was less eventful (or so I’m telling you, my fine (and not so fine (to put it rather nicely (or so I think (assuming (getting philosophical for a moment) that thinking (as we think of it) is, indeed, thought))) readers (by which time you’ve (I assume) forgotten where they (the readers) came from (or have you?))) than the one down. That, I am afraid, is the end.
Comment by Mum – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  I(that is me) think (if you dont mind my saying so) )and of coarse it is just two dam bad if yew due)):, that it is (saying sew)>>< ! (and with grate empharsis)) that I (and might I suggest, menny uthers) are grate full that that is< you am afraid? the end. BSecause we might (be, if one could dare sujjesht) that it mite be quiet naice that that is indeed (you am afraid) the end. Sigh.

10.10.2005Monday 10 October – Corey

I, very conscientiously, got up early and was at uni shortly after nine o’clock, and actually did some work on my CSSE3004 project before tutoring at ten. I then went on to spend the rest of the day, apart from a short trip to the Ville with Maz for lunch, sorting out crazy problems with our PocketPC interface, order printing, and various other usually reasonably simple things made horrible by the extremely over-complex object oriented nature of the code I’m working with.
I spent all day working on CSSE3004 PocketPC software, and then headed into Indooroopilly for a quick dinner and to see “In Her Shoes” with Bronwen. It hadn’t looked like the sort of movie I’d normally bother to see, but in the end I quite enjoyed it and had a pleasant night.

11.10.2005Tuesday 11 October – Transporter 2

Uni all day, working on CSSE3004 again, followed by “Transporter 2”—a mindless but enjoyable action thriller, ideally suited for overworked, brain-dead uni students—with Kieran and Maz at Indooroopilly.

12.10.2005Wednesday 12 October – Uni & the Storm that Wasn’t

I got up horribly early and managed to get to uni in time to get a PocketPC, only to find that the Oracle server had died, making it impossible to test the PocketPC software. Fortunately, a quick whinge to the helpdesk staff got Oracle back online while I still had the PocketPC, and I was able to test what is, hopefully, the final incarnation of this CSSE3004 project’s software. I then tutored, attended my PSYC1020 tutorial, my PHIL1020 tutorial, the first hour of my PSYC1020 lecture (skipping the second hour to head back to GPS to watch the non-existent hail and strong storm we had been warned about), caught a bus to the Ville and bought Maz and myself dinner, and then headed in to work.
I had planned to go home directly after work, as per usual, but various emails from my group indicated that at least a few of them were far from happy with the help manual I had written, and the pictures Johnson had added. Now I am down in the labs with Maz (who is having many problems with his group’s system), looking at getting home not much earlier than midnight, modifying the help manual.
I’ve just got home, showered, and am eating breakfast as fast as I can because there’s no way I’ll have time in the morning. It would be nice to be able to get more than five hours sleep for a change.

13.10.2005Thursday 13 October – Tired at Uni

I got up horribly early, after too few hours sleep, getting to uni by half past eight, tutoring at nine, meeting all my CSSE3004 group bar Robert at midday, and meeting Robert two hours later—apparently it’s his birthday. In theory, we would have gone through our well-tested software, developing a flawless planned presentation. In reality, stuff broke, no one planned anything, and I’m not happy. The PocketPC component that Mark and I worked on is, as far as I can tell, well tested and ready for the demonstration, and my demonstration agenda is written, planned out, and practiced; however, the desktop component and its demonstration seems to be anything but prepared. It’s frustrating, as my marks depend on everyone else, yet there’s nothing I can do to change what anyone else is doing.
I worked, not getting home until after eleven—I have to get up early (again) tomorrow, so this isn’t a good thing.

14.10.2005Friday 14 October – Final Demonstration

I arrive at uni before eight o’clock, pretending not to be mostly asleep, and head down to the labs where I find Q Group preparing for our nine o’clock demonstration, extremely stressed. Robert, our presenter, hasn’t turned up yet. Mark has run out of print quota, and has to submit things ten minutes ago. I give Mark some money for print quota. The printer has run out of paper. Matthew finds paper. I phone Robert. Robert arrives. Jervina discovers that the desktop application won’t run without Eclipse, and we’re not allowed to run the system from a development environment. Robert and Jervina manage to write a batch file that runs the application without Eclipse. We all run for the lift.
Q Group attends their CSSE3004 final demonstration, where their demonstration runs flawlessly, right up until they run out of time. In fact, Ken and Darren were interested enough in the system to allow the group to run ten minutes overtime, only stopping them when there is a logical break in the demonstration. This is fortunate, as had the group been stopped precisely on twenty minutes, they would have been unable to demonstrate a large proportion of their programme’s required functionality. As it was, they were unable to demonstrate their XML database backup and restore functionality, and, much to Johnson’s distress, the fancy scrolling Winamp-style “about” screen. Ironically, the XML backup and restore component along with the “about” screen had both been Johnson’s responsibilities, meaning that very little he himself built was actually demonstrated. Overall Q Group feels that their demonstration was a success, being told at the end that it was “nearly commercial quality”, well thought out, simple but comprehensive, and that it was obvious the group had invested considerable effort into the project, which had paid off in the form of a well-presented, successfully “sold” product, containing more than the required functionality; but still simple, logical, easy to use, and meeting the business requirements. The only criticism, coming from Darren, was that the colouration used in various reports was not what it probably should have been—an ironic statement as the same colouration had elicited praise from Darren during the individual component demonstrations.
Half of Q Group went their separate ways; to work on other assignments or whatever it is they do, while the Jervina, Mark, Ned, and later Johnson, had lunch at Grinder’s, discussing the project and life in general. In some ways, this is a sad moment—essentially the end of Ned’s IT degree—as the only significant assessment he has remaining is in philosophy or psychology.
Ned cleverly bought himself an airplane ticket from Sydney to Brisbane, on the correct day, at the correct time, with the correct flight number, and precisely one month too early. This cost him $89, and would have cost him $75 had he not decided to check another fare halfway through the ordering process, and then accidentally choose the wrong month when renewing the order. He then discovered that it would cost quite a lot more to change, so he rushed to a phone, pleaded plaintively to a girl at the airline, and managed to get the changing fee waived. Unfortunately, even with the fee waived, his $75 flight cost him $104. This is why he should never do anything when running on no sleep and directly after frying his brain with stressful assessment.
  After his exciting trip to the payphone to discuss airline economics, he sat in the hallway at GPS and chatted to Mark and Kieran and whoever else walked past for the rest of the evening, until he had to go to the Ville for dinner (getting a lift with Kieran) and then on to work.
Comment by io – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  Well done with your achievements in your IT degree and may you reap rewards from your lack of sleep next year. I however hopefully am about to start a new degree geared around music or ARTS aka bludging.
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  Thanks ;-)
Comment by Clint – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  Following your three years of studious study and achievement, I hope THE PLANE CRASHES AND YOU DIE!
  You have to admit, it'd be funny for the rest of us. Sort of.
Comment by Jojo – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  so your saying because they liked your demo and product theat you were allowed to go for 30 mintues of presenting.... and were not capped exactly on 20 minutes....!!!???
  this sounds interesting indeed!
  (as our group was capped right on 20minutes....)
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  I urge as many people as possible to complain about as many facets of this course as possible. I don’t think it was possible to demonstrate full functionality in twenty minutes without unrealistically reducing the spoken component—it wouldn’t be possible to both demonstrate and “sell” the product in twenty minutes, and given the length of, and importance attached to, this course, not being given enough time to demonstrate such a significant component is an insult.
  An “independent review” of the course is being conducted over the summer semester. Also, Ken is running the first year IT project (COMP1800) over the summer semester, and attempting to take over its running for subsequent semesters. He plans to introduce industry components into the course, claiming that this is better than the current academic manner of running such courses. I urge everyone to strongly oppose this.

15.10.2005Saturday 15 October – Birthday Dinner

I had a lovely, and very required, sleep-in before heading into the city and, after waiting for a very long time, to a birthday dinner.
I had to wait for over an hour at Bronwen’s, as everyone had gone to climb the Story Bridge. They have bought a new car, which arrived today. Bronwen’s Mum’s birthday dinner was quite nice, and rather expensive at $555 for sixteen people.

16.10.2005Sunday 16 October – Raining, Relaxing & the Existence of God

It’s been quite cool, overcast, and raining lightly most of the day, which is quite nice. Accordingly, I have spent most of the day inside, reading, relaxing, and talking. On the train back to Joe’s, I overheard two young girls who had lost their twelve-year-old friend, but couldn’t tell anyone because they weren’t supposed to have been wherever they were in the first place—bad mistakes begin that way. Oh, I guess I should mention, today I had a milkshake; I hadn’t had a Cold Rock super shake in living memory, and the bus went via South Bank... the rest is, as they say, history.
I’ve just finished writing my PHIL1000 journal entry for tomorrow. Recently I’ve had to answer, “What can we know about the existence of God just ‘from the armchair’” and “does the existence of natural evil (such as tsunamis and earthquakes) prove anything about the existence of God?” Combining and paraphrasing my two answers provides, I think, a simple answer to those who think there is no God (which, ironically, is itself a logical fallacy).
  I easily see that it is impossible to prove that God does not exist, and, upon a little reflection, that it is impossible to suppose that God does not exist. To do this I suppose that there is, perhaps even must be, an entity greater than any other, and that such an entity, if indeed one exists, is, by definition, God. Further, I suppose that, for any change to occur, for any creation to be created—in fact, for anything at all—there has to be some root cause, some creator, which itself has no root cause or creator, and that this root cause or creator is, by definition, God. From this, I infer that if anything at all exists, then God does indeed exist—although why or how I cannot conceive. Now, a subset of something obviously proves its superset’s existence, and everything is a subset of God; the existence of anything, including evil, proves the same as that which the existence of anything at all proves, namely, existence itself, and thereby, God—or, as God says, “I am that I am”.
  It would seem that I am that I am tired, or as Descartes may have thought after seeing clearly and distinctly that it was late and dark outside, “I am too sleepy to think”—which reminds me of one of my favourite absurd quotes, “’Oh dear,’ said God, ‘I hadn’t thought of that,’ and promptly vanished in a puff of logic.”
Comment by Clint – Tuesday 18 October 2005, 10:00 AM
  aaaa+++ would read journal again

17.10.2005Monday 17 October – Milkshakes

Today, I had two milkshakes—and some nachos; but first, I tutored, discussed summer work, honours, modelling, meta-modelling, model-driven architecture, and various other exciting sounding things that actually have nothing whatsoever to do with women; I wasted lots of time, banked my Adsense cheque, photocopied tutor evaluation forms, visited Maz at work, went shopping at Indooroopilly, and that about sums it up. I think I’ve been at uni too long when I can jump the queue at POD because the staff pick me out by name. I had planned to get home early and go to bed early, but it’s nearly midnight. I guess one out of two isn’t too bad.

18.10.2005Tuesday 18 October – Faces, faces, faces…

I fried my brain, for no reason. I have to undertake several psychology experiments as part of my psychology course, and I’ve surprisingly left them to the last minute, so today I attended two. The first, “A study on personality and job performance”, was rather boring—I clicked the centres of various length lines, answered whether A preceded B, or B followed A, or A didn’t follow B, and so on until my mind was empty, and then answered a questionnaire (roughly) about work, job satisfaction and personality. The second study, “Individual Differences in Visual Search”, was the one that fried my brain. I spent nearly an hour viewing faces—upside down faces, right way up faces, happy faces, sad faces, angry faces, normal faces, faces followed by nice or unpleasant words… After trying to pick the odd face out of a seemingly endless array of nine upside down faces, as fast as possible, for twenty minutes, an inverted face begins to look scarily like a normal face, and most other mental faculties shut down to save themselves. I then made the mistake of attending my CSSE3004 group meeting, only to find that my whole group had been looking through my site, and apparently been very “impressed” with my “naked” photos. I shall perhaps have to kill them.
I bought six doughnuts for 50¢ from Woolworth’s; this seemed like a great idea at the time, but I shall find out tomorrow that it was actually a very, very bad idea. I then had an extremely nice dinner for two, for the price of one, followed by a lovely night with Bronwen.

19.10.2005Wednesday 19 October – Blackout

Today’s tutorial was the first busy tutorial I’ve tutored this semester—IT students are a rather sorry lot when compared to Arts students, caring only enough to pass, starting anything only at the last possible moment. This was followed by my psychology tutorial, which was as it usually is, and then my philosophy tutorial, which wasn’t anything different either. Maz and I then went to our psychology lecture, sitting through two semi-interesting, semi-amusing hours, eating doughnuts that taste exactly like dough, solving mind games, learning about the endocrine system and various hormonal effects, and many other things I can’t remember anymore.
My philosophy course ended suitably; the power failed, plunging us into darkness and giving the lecturer the ideal finishing phrase—“now that you’re enlightened”, which he somewhat ruined by following with “we’ll all just have to grope our way out of here”. Maz and I made our way through the dark to level six of GPS to check the reach of the power outage, and then to Maz’s car, jumping an orange warning fence and running into another orange warning fence while wondering where the next orange fence would be. Apparently it’s harder to see in the dark.
  Maz drove me to Toowong station, through dark unlit streets and heavy traffic. It’s surprising how many people can pour out of UQ at night. So much for police—a young woman was directing traffic at Toowong intersection right up until my bus arrived—half an hour or so—surely a dangerous and risky thing to do in today’s fast-paced, anger-laced litigious society.
It is raining lightly. I know this because the washing machine is too slow, and I get home too late. I would be in bed, sleeping in preparation for an early journey to uni tomorrow, but I’ve only just finished my washing, haven’t showered, packed, written my journal, eaten a mint patty, or any of the other numerous and highly important things a growing young man has to do before he can snuggle himself into his bed and dream of world conquest.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 22 October 2005, 9:21 PM
  Mint pattie! Gah!

20.10.2005Thursday 20 October – Tutoring & Chainsaws

What a day. I arrive at uni for my nine o’clock tutorial, where I have my photo taken for next week’s demonstration, sitting at one of the computers, tutoring and drinking in direct violation of half a dozen rules—of course, very sleepy because I never get to bed when I should. The tutorial is supposed to finish at ten o’clock, but I stay until eleven, when I rush off to a ten o’clock meeting to discuss the marking of the course. I then rush back to the labs, and tutor again until just before two o’clock, when Maz and I rush off to the psychology building for some “Word Games”; fortunately, it isn’t too mind-bending, and I emerge with most of my faculties still operational. After this, we attend “Views on Dating Relationships”, in which we express our views on dating relationships, all so someone else can figure out if the role of the family is more important for Japanese. I then rush to the Ville for dinner, emailing my group on the way to tell them I can’t do my part of the presentation, as I simply don’t have the time. On the way back from dinner, I find that student’s are panicking about tomorrow’s deadline for their COMP1800 website, and proffer the advice that a cheap chainsaw from Bunning’s would solve many a group problem, and then accidentally forward this sane advice to the lecturer instead of the student—I suspect chainsaws are not a university sanctioned group motivation technique. UQ, university for the real world, and it’s a jungle out there.
Work is hectic too—things are collapsing, people are demanding, it’s raining, I’m out of yoghurt and my chocolate makes me thirsty, and there’s nothing interesting to watch. It’s a shame how everything is backwards—when I first came to uni, I didn’t really know what to do. Now I’m at the pinnacle of my university student career, and I’m about to leave. I now know how to get good marks without expending any undue effort, just who to complain to and precisely how, and I pretty much have guaranteed tutoring and after-hours work on campus, for as long as I want it. I’ve even worked out how to avoid the annoying predatory union election canvassers, by wearing a bright pink “Jolt” shirt (“Jolt” is one of the slightly less-insane parties running for student union positions, roughly Liberal as far as I can tell). Wearing a “Jolt” shirt not only stops the insane left annoying me with their cancerous dribble, but they actually smile ironically when I walk past. It even stops the Jolt people from bothering to talk to me. I also (surprisingly, given the amount of complains I’ve submitted to them) seem to be immune from the scary men who roam the labs in search of rule violators—today, continuing in my carefree way, I tutor with food and drink while chatting to the helpdesk staff, while they’re wandering around removing drinks from other people and getting tutors in trouble for not enforcing the lab rules. I suppose it will all end sadly; I’ll fail a course and be done for inciting violence, continual complaining and harassment, have my lab access revoked, and end up sleeping in a wet gutter, dreaming about the days when I was only minutes from a vending machine and had spare change.

21.10.2005Friday 21 October – Tutoring

It has proven to be another hectic day. I was up at half past five, and at uni not long after seven. This meant I had less than five hours sleep, yet again. My CSSE3004 group and I gave a “Post Implementation Presentation”, or more accurately, Robert gave it and we watched. We apparently went thirty-two seconds overtime, losing ten marks. I personally think this is absurd, but I am not sure if I have grounds for complaint. I then headed down to the GPS labs, and got caught by some students and dragged in to tutor COMP1800, where I stayed until just before midday.
I completed ninety minutes (although it actually took me less) of surveys about jobs, handedness, job satisfaction, and other related boring things, had my inner ear temperatures taken, and went back down the labs to tutor some more. The labs were chaotic—entirely full, people panicking, girls crying, blokes having high-pitched breakdowns… it was all action. I spent the afternoon doing what could only be called “extreme tutoring”—trying to help as many people, as fast as possible, in several different ways at once, and still get them to learn. I like to think I’m very good at it—and I quite enjoy it—but unfortunately, I don’t think fulltime job prospects for a non-research “extreme tutor” are very good.
I arrived at work half an hour late due to my “extreme tutoring”, mentally exhausted.
Comment by io – Saturday 22 October 2005, 4:35 AM
  olol - bl.
Comment by Ned – Saturday 22 October 2005, 3:07 PM
  What does that mean in English?
Comment by grape seed – Saturday 22 October 2005, 3:09 PM
  rtfm rofllofl
Comment by io – Tuesday 25 October 2005, 7:55 AM
  Sorry, IRC has turned me into a "leet speak" tragic. Please wish me to get well soon.

22.10.2005Saturday 22 October – Lazy

Coming soon...

23.10.2005Sunday 23 October – Lazy

I slept in until well into the balmy afternoon, finally being roused from my fitful and rather overheated sleep by a phone call, and then heading into the city where I attended a nationalisation party. Last week has been pretty stressful, and sleep wasn’t really happening, so hopefully this sleep-in fixes me up.

24.10.2005Monday 24 October – Demonstrations & Storms

Today was the first of the COMP1800 demonstrations, which I had to setup. This was actually a little stressful as I wasn’t sure if they’d go technically smoothly—which they, to my relief, mostly did. It also meant I had to be at uni reasonably early.
I watched the city, with lightning striking around it. Some lightning hit somewhere near me, and the power failed. It was quite windy and wet.

25.10.2005Tuesday 25 October – Pride & Prejudice

I caught the train out to Joe’s, got an hour’s sleep, and headed back into uni where I attended COMP1800 demonstrations, rather tired. I then bussed into the city, met Bronwen, and saw “Pride & Prejudice” at South Bank.

26.10.2005Wednesday 26 October – Introductory Philosophy Exam

I arrived at uni early, picked up the projector from the funny people who live at the helpdesk, and set it up in the labs for more COMP1800 demos. Today was rather busy, with three hours of four groups per hour, each being given fifteen minutes to demonstrate, then half an hour for the next four groups to setup, leaving no time for mistakes—or food.
I had nachos from Grinder’s with Maggie, then walked down to the Ville, where I met Clint and bought a bottle of Pepsi (it being on special) to keep me awake for my upcoming PHIL1000 exam, for which I’ve done almost no study. I spent a little under half an hour in the exam room before the exam, looking up each article I was supposed to have read (many of which I had, but could no longer remember), reading the first few lines and the last few lines, and trying to remember the rough gist of it. This probably isn’t a very good study technique, but I didn’t have time for much else. The exam was forty multi-choice questions, with five marks awarded for each correct answer, and one deducted for each incorrect answer, and all questions having to be answered. I’m hoping there were no trick questions, because I answered them based on the “oh, I vaguely remember that sentence, so it must be the correct answer”—which will fail miserably if questions had realistic answers, but not for that particular question.
Maz and I caught a bus to Toowong, where I bought Subway and he some chicken thing from “Superchicken”. We sat and chatted to Cassie and a friend of hers for a while, before I caught the train home. Getting in was difficult, it seems the front door has swollen up from the recent rain. There was a bloke at the train station playing the harmonica, and it got me thinking—rather than feeling elated at having completed another exam, I actually feel a little sad; as each exam is completed, I come closer to closing another chapter of my life. I have become quite used to, and quite good at, this uni thing. I’m not a straight-seven’s student, but then I don’t try to be. I can pass with what I consider reasonable marks with almost trivial ease, investing the bare minimum of effort. I’ve become used to the social scene, for want of a better word, and overall it’s quite an enjoyable, slack lifestyle—and one that’s fast ending. That said, I don’t think I could bring myself to do honours, which would give me another year at uni, as I’ve yet to think of anything I’d be passionate enough about to bother achieving my full potential; a boring honours project would see me struggling to find the motivation to complete it. There’s so many other things I’d like to do—there’s a whole world out there that I’ve yet to see—but I’m still sad that this university phase of my life is finally coming to its end.

27.10.2005Thursday 27 October – Scaffolding & Robots

Once again, I had to be up early—needing to be at uni by eight o’clock. I’m not going to get any sleep tonight either, with work not finishing until late, and having to again be at uni early. Once at uni, I set up and helped run another COMP1800 demonstration, which Ken from CSSE3004 attended. Fortunately, things went smoothly, and the students invited me to Grinder’s for lunch after. I’m not entirely sure of the ethics of this, right before I mark their work, but it’s nice that they like me—not something that happens too often in IT, as far as I can tell. We then went for a bit of a look around the “Innovation” displays, showcasing the mostly terribly boring things post-grad students have spent inordinate amounts of their time creating—although the robots are always interesting. I even dropped into Mark’s ivory tower, but he wasn’t there.
I began marking COMP1800 implementations, which is going to take a long time. I also popped up to see Ken to try to get him to concede that losing a fifth of our presentation marks for going thirty two seconds over the ten minute limit is ridiculous and makes a mockery of the term “academic merit”, but unsurprisingly he didn’t agree. Maz, Kieran and I then drove to the Ville where we ate dinner, after which I headed off to work and spent the evening erecting scaffolding.
There’s some lightning landing very close, but fortunately, the power is still on. In fact, this building is, in theory, probably the one place on campus that’s fully lightning protected and connected to backup power. I had an interesting conversation with a bloke from work, about the time I was knocked out by lightning. I had always assumed that an immense discharge somehow “shut down” my brain in such a way that I continued walking for some time without any memory, then fell over and became conscious shortly after. But apparently, I would have been hit by “spray” (as anything else leaves exit burns), and it would have caused my brain to knock itself out by violently jerking and hitting itself against the inside of my skull, and my other muscles quite possibly would have done similar things and thrown me some distance.

28.10.2005Friday 28 October – The last day of semester

I had to attend a “post-implementation review” lecture for CSSE3004, which roughly translated, means nothing. My group and I, along with everyone else in the course, sat through two hours of management mumbo-jumbo, including a demonstration of the desktop system of the group who won best project—which wasn’t at all impressive, so I’m curious why they won—and listen to all the other students selling their souls to the course goals.
Julie and I began marking COMP1800 websites. This is going to be painful and slow.
I attended my last day at work.

29.10.2005Saturday 29 October – 48 Hour Films & Into the Blue

I slept in until midday, heading into uni, and later to South Bank with Clint, where we watched the “48 Hour Film Project”—teams are given forty-eight hours to create a complete film, from pre- to post-production; to make it even harder, their film’s genre is randomly chosen. Some of the entries were terrible, but some were quite good, with the winner (a musical about Brisbane) being fantastic. After this, simply going home seemed a little insufficient, so we went and saw “Into the Blue” at the South Bank cinemas, sitting behind a row of girls dressed up as princesses. The movie was terrible, with the plot consistently getting in the way of everyone’s bikinis, although at one point they managed to have pirates, kidnappers, bikini-clad girls and drug dealers all onscreen at once, in a high-speed car chase.

30.10.2005Sunday 30 October – Surfer’s Paradise

I woke up at ten o’clock, expecting a call from Clint, dozing until he called an hour or so later. I then got a lift down to the train station with Joe and slept until I arrived at Surfer’s Paradise, where I met Clint and Ana. Unfortunately, the waves were small, choppy and dirty so I didn’t actually bother swimming, but the sun and beach were pleasant, and it made for a nice afternoon. Clint and Ana had driven down, but I quite enjoy the train journey, as something interesting always happens, so trained back to my place where Joe had ordered pizza.

31.10.2005Monday 31 October – Marking & Walking

Michelle and Joe took Bijou on a one-way trip to the vet, and later laid him to rest in the garden. He was sixteen—and becoming a very doddery cat. I then trained into uni, where I continued from Friday’s marking of COMP1800 assignments.

01.11.2005Tuesday 1 November – Marking, Police & The Flu

I headed into uni bright and early, planning to get the rest of this marking out of the way, and ended up finalising my complaint against CSSE3004 before bumping into some of my group members and talking to them for ages, not getting the marking complete until late in the afternoon.
I suddenly began to feel quite sick, so headed home. On the train, I felt awful—coming down with what seems to be a sudden, hopefully not galloping, Asiatic, avian, or Spanish, flu. Interestingly, the Spanish Flu is thought to have killed, in a matter of weeks, more people than World War 1 did over a matter of years. When I got home, I found I couldn’t actually walk up my street due to it having become a crime scene. This may have been interesting on another day, but I felt sick and wasn’t pleased having to walk all around the block just to get to the front door. Criminals should consider things like this before they attack people in the middle of roads.
Comment by Clint – Wednesday 2 November 2005, 3:17 AM
  Needs more milkshake.
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 2 November 2005, 8:11 PM
  Needs more shake

02.11.2005Wednesday 2 November – Sick

I slept in until midday, which seems to have done my sick little self some good—I can even walk in straight lines again. Not wishing to trust my newly found ability to walk in a given direction to too much scrutiny, I got a lift to the train station with Joe, where I cleverly caught a train going the wrong way, and then caught the express into the city. Feeling weak, I decided food should be had, and having run out of chocolate, I went to Govinda’s. After eating, and still feeling rather weak, I caught a bus into uni, had a meeting with Soon, and went over my marking again, adjusting it slightly to better match expectations.
  As night came on, I again began to feel poorly, and, figuring that letting a common flu get the better of me would be embarrassing and inappropriate, I caught a bus to Indooroopilly, where I bought a Cold Rock Super Shake—just the thing to shake a pesky super flu. Unfortunately, despite tasting very nice, this clever self-therapy didn’t entirely work, as I still felt sick and my nose was still blocked. Now at a loss—my self-help techniques exhausted—I figured I would fall back onto the old wives’ tale about veggies being good for health, and buy a nice, healthy, salad sub from the cheaper Subway at Roma Street. This didn’t seem to help either, although everyone else there seemed healthy, so I went to sleep on the train, and ate piping hot Thai veggies for dinner to quell the angry troll-fired throat fires—they, like any sane person, try to avoid Asian greens.
Comment by Mum – Friday 4 November 2005, 7:03 PM
  Bad. Bad. I warned you to avoid dairy. Also, being an "old wife" i.e. me, the best thing for flu or colds or any flaming thing is cayenne pepper. And I mean overdose. It cannot do you harm and is even good if you explode with sweat and collapse sneezing etc. Put liberally in soups or veg or whatever. Ordinary supermarket cayenne will do . Is like a homeopathic dose of Vit C and Vit zeeee. Any mob reading this should try it. Double dare you.

03.11.2005Thursday 3 November – Not Remembering

I may, or may not, have done anything productive today. According to some philosophers, if I can’t remember it, it either never happened, or it wasn’t me who did it—or more confusingly, it was a different me.

04.11.2005Friday 4 November – Studying

I studied at uni with Clint, reading my PHIL1020 text, printing Maz’s PSYC1020 notes at POD, seeing Soon to get my tutor timesheet signed, and giving the lab key back to helpdesk.

05.11.2005Saturday 5 November – Great Expectations

I had a relaxing sleep-in, did almost nothing, and headed into uni via an articulated bus (they’re doing track work again). I never actually arrived at uni, but the thought was there.
I watched “Great Expectations”; I didn’t have any, and it managed to exceed them, proving to be entirely unlike what I was expecting—yet interesting, although a bit light on realism or plot.

06.11.2005Sunday 6 November – Studying

I had another pleasant sleep-in, followed by discussions about the origins of church pews, their pricing, the sexist way in which they’re moved, and so on.
I had planned to go to uni early and study, but somehow this just didn’t happen. I blame Bronwen.
Well, here I am at uni, having just done a minor update of my website and feeling guilty for procrastinating.
Off to the Ville, through a light rain, for sustenance. I will then study hard.
Back from the Ville, with twenty Milky Way bars (they were on special), two small punnets of strawberry yoghurt, a litre of pine coconut fruit drink, and a bag of “yellow”.
My journal is up-to-date; Clint has rushed off to study, having slept in until three o’clock; Maz has rushed off to work, having just realised he’s late; and there’s only Ella left online—I think I can handle one person, and can now safely begin my study.
The view from the balcony on level six of GPS is quite nice. It has been raining, so everything is shiny. There are lights reflecting off the lakes, the coloured lights of the city shining brightly and clearly in the distance, and little lights peeping through the trees everywhere. Unfortunately, my study isn’t going that well—I’m reading my philosophy, but still have no idea how I’m going to turn it into an essay.
Scrap study. It doesn’t work. I’m going home.
The journey home was a little more interesting than normal—a city cat into the city, rather than the usual boring bus, then a dimly lit (not lit at all, really) luxury coach through roads I’m not used to, instead of the train. I should get to bed, but first, a little relaxing web browsing and a titch of sleep-inducing music while I check what time I need to get up for the train tomorrow and synchronise my phone with Outlook, so I’ve some chance of remembering when and what to do.
It looks like I won’t be getting much sleep—six and a half hours if I go to bed five minutes ago—so off to bed I am.
Comment by Mum – Wednesday 9 November 2005, 8:40 PM
  Gasp. A "bag of yellow". A bag of yellow? Holy mackerel, yellow what?
Comment by Ned – Thursday 10 November 2005, 10:04 AM
  They’re cheese chips a little bit like “Twisties”, except softer and cheaper.

07.11.2005Monday 7 November – Procrastinating

I awoke after my six hours sleep, feeling as bad as could be expected, and headed into uni, arriving around 10 o’clock. Almost unbelievably, Maz and I managed to procrastinate away the entire day, getting almost nothing done. This was a remarkably stupid way to spend the day, given that we both have two exams we need to do a lot of study for fast approaching, and an essay we were supposed to be writing due on Wednesday. We made the terrible mistake of going back to Maz’s place and getting out-of-date, probably recalled and deadly poisonous apple flavoured Fanta, which made things go all woozy after half a bottle, and did not help my essaying efforts.
Clint came down for a while, preparing for his COMP3502 exam, and helped us procrastinate more efficiently. We went up to the sixth level balcony in GPS, where Maz took some photos of moss, birds, and life in general, while I finished off my philosophy reading, and then walked up to the Holt room for his exam. Maz and I then popped down to the Ville for dinner, cleverly continuing to avoid study, and discussed women, cameras, and definitely not essays, before heading back to the labs where we met Lisa, who had just finished her exam.

08.11.2005Tuesday 8 November – The Mind is a Macintosh; The Brain is a Bulldozer

I had meant to be at uni by ten o’clock, to work on my philosophy essay, but I slept in and missed the train twice, not getting into the city until half past ten. Once in the city, I decided that I should eat something real for a change, so made my way to Govinda’s, who were closed—apparently nothing worth eating opens until eleven o’clock. I figured I’d wait until they did open, rather than collapse on the bus to uni, but then decided that I’d collapse before eleven o’clock anyway, so I bought a milkshake to sustain me until Govinda’s opened. This proved to be a bad idea, as I wasn’t hungry when they finally did open and subsequently didn’t really enjoy my meal.
I finally arrived at uni around midday, and spent the entire afternoon slowly writing my philosophy essay, alternating between procrastination, insanity, and actually writing. My writing also seems to be alternating between actual writing and insanity, something I’ll probably regret when marks are released.
I had planned to stay until the last possible moment, but a few minutes before nine I decided to make a run for the bus and get some sleep, mostly because I had written the same sentence three or four times, and it was getting worse, but more amusing, every time, and I didn’t think the tutor would appreciate a farcical essay.

09.11.2005Wednesday 9 November – Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang

I arrived at uni, and wrote, rewrote, and cursed much essay all day, amidst great waves of panic and woe. Discovering that you’ve begged the question in a circular argument to infinity, while negating your previous arguments in their entirety, all in the concluding paragraph at roughly half the word limit, and with only a few hours until submission, is not a joyful experience—although perhaps one the philosopher I’m writing about was familiar with.
I have just witnessed the last death throes of my stillborn “learn philosophy and get good marks—win, win all round” attempt, as it slipped through the essay submission slot, into the sadistic hands of the tutor. Looking on the bright side, I put $2.20 into the drink machine for a $2.20 bottle of pineapple juice, and got $2 change.
I bussed to Indooroopilly, dropping Clint (who I met coming out of his “Philosophy of Economic Thought” exam) at his place on the way, and saw “Kiss Kiss, bang Bang” with Bronwen and some friends. It was quite an interesting movie, with a fast moving, farcically poor taste plot. I’m in two minds whether I liked it or not, but as both minds have been weakened beyond recognition by a concerted assault of philosophical thought, it really doesn’t matter.

10.11.2005Thursday 10 November – Not Swimming, Studying

I was hoping to go to the Gold Coast with Clint today, and study down there, but it’s not looking good, as he’s not even awake yet—despite me calling him. Today isn’t going very well actually; I’ve been in here at uni since around nine o’clock, urgently needing to study for an exam tomorrow, and still haven’t done any study, although I did go to POD and print out everything I could think of that related to PHIL1020.
I went to Indooroopilly with Clint and Scruff, who were questioned for twenty-five minutes by the police at their bus stop—apparently, they look like the criminal type. I ate my traditional “green goo” for lunch, followed by Cold Rock for whiter, brighter teeth and bones, and then headed back to uni where I had thought that I might perhaps consider study.
I did indeed consider study. I considered study very hard. Having considered study for some time, I concluded that study would be a very good idea, and went home, stopping at Woolworth’s on the way to buy healthy study aids—tropical fruit juice and corn chips.
Once home, I realised that study was not only a good idea, but also something of a necessity. I thought about this for a while, ate two vegetarian hot dogs, tried going into denial, and eventually decided that the only way to get any kind of reasonable result in my exam tomorrow was to get to uni as early as possible, and study as much as possible before the actual exam. With this in mind, I did the unheard of, and went to bed before eleven o’clock.

11.11.2005Friday 11 November – Introduction to Psychology: Physiological & Cognitive Psychology Exam

Getting up at five o’clock is actually quite invigorating; I think I may do it again some day. The zombies on the early morning train don’t even make annoying noises like in the movies—or the afternoon.
Fancy being at uni at this time of the morning without having stayed all night, it’s unheard of. At this rate, I confidently suspect I’ll be able to start study by around eight o’clock.
Internet, go away—it is time to study and I must learn all of PSYC1020 before eleven o’clock.
Study phase one now complete. All notes read without thinking, as fast as accurately possible, and information hopefully suitably transferred from short-term memory to long-term memory and linked to high-speed stressful conditions similar to an exam, for easy recall during exam. I am now in standby awaiting the arrival of Maz.
Final study/panic phase now commencing—walk to exam room and sit outside somewhere quietly panicking and reading notes. Just before exam, try to think about something unrelated in an attempt to relax.
Maz and I attended our PSYC1020 exam. I have no idea how I went—seventy-two four-option multiple-choice questions, so I’m very unlikely to have failed, but probably fairly unlikely to have got good marks. I think multi-choice should be banned, as it doesn’t accurately test anything at all. On the plus side, multi-choice is less stressful.
Interestingly, there was a girl in the exam with her breast exposed. I assume it was an accident, but a little odd nonetheless.
Kieran, Maz and I had a long lunch at a café under the Institute for Molecular Bioscience, meeting Tim and Clint there.
I studied PHIL1020 with Kieran and Maz for an hour or so in a study room at the engineering library, before moving up to level six of GPS until it got too dark to see, and then going down to the Ville for dinner before heading home. I am not in a very good position for this exam, as this is the first time I’ve even looked at the subject matter for this course, and it’s all logic and set theory rubbish.
I didn’t manage to leave uni until nine o’clock, getting home late. There was a spunkily dressed (or scantily clad—I like “-ily” words) girl zonked or otherwise incapacitated at the station, which is roughly equivalent to a neon “rape me” sign, so I felt uncomfortable leaving her there and didn’t actually get home until ridiculously late, meaning it was going on one o’clock by the time I actually got to bed.
Comment by Mum – Friday 11 November 2005, 8:38 PM
  Whilst the orbs slowly spin, and the world goes on.

12.11.2005Saturday 12 November – Introduction to Logic Exam

I woke up, after roughly five hours sleep, and, strangely enough, didn’t really feel like going to uni.
I arrived at uni, having decided to sleep on the train rather than study in the hope that I’d then be more alert at uni and able to study more efficiently.
Study in the labs isn’t working. Study without answers isn’t much good either, although I did find a somewhat satirical, but probably quite brutally realistic, site about the “Ladder Theory” of human relationships. I think I better head up to the social sciences library and see if I can find the text that actually contains correct answers in high use, and panic rather severely.
I only stayed in the library for quarter of an hour or so, having found the textbook in high use just as Maz messaged me to say he was coming in with his textbook, so I walked back down to the labs, where I am now, struggling to learn a course in a few hours.
My PHIL1020 exam was rather uneventful. There were seven questions, all of which I attempted, although I’m not sure to what standard as I’m not confident enough with the subject matter to say whether I was correct or not. Still, just being able to attempt them all is probably a good sign—a few hours ago, I didn’t understand a thing from this course, and my study wasn’t really what anyone could call thorough, what with trips to Subway in the middle and innumerable unrelated conversations.
Finishing what is, theoretically, my last ever exam was something of an anti-climax. I don’t feel euphoric, or in fact, anything other than tired. Everyone else had exams to study for, dinners to attend, and various other things to do, so I bussed into the city and went for a walk around South Bank via Cold Rock, watching what looked like a gathering storm, although it hadn’t broken by the time I left.
I went and saw “Inside Deep Throat” at the Dendy. As far as documentaries go, it was poorly done and presented very little in the way of coherent information, but was actually interesting and had some good discussion on pornography versus censorship, and ironically, showed good evidence that pornography does widespread damage to society while arguing it doesn’t do any to individuals.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 13 November 2005, 9:43 PM
  Individuals all massed in a porridge together make up "society", so whatever damage is done to one of the individuals or several of the flamin things, bleeds into the porridge mass of "society" and....."a little leaven, infects the whole stupid mob" (my version of The Script)

13.11.2005Sunday 13 November – Relaxing

I slept for most of the day, and spent the rest in my room relaxing. I don’t think I actually went outside at all.

14.11.2005Monday 14 November – Pigeons & Terrorists

Today isn’t my day. I had to go to uni to finalise a few things, and had some shopping I had to do before flying to Sydney tomorrow, so I caught the train into the city, and the bus from there to uni—at least, that was the plan. Everyone was asked to get off the bus before it left the city, and the bus was checked. We were then allowed back onto the bus, but halfway along Coronation Drive, the bus pulled over and we were all again asked to leave. We stood around the bus for a few minutes, before being asked to stand at least one hundred metres from the bus. As the Regatta Ferry Stop was only a few hundred metres further, everyone walked up and caught a City Cat to uni. Apparently, all buses in Brisbane were ordered to stop and maintain a one hundred metre safe zone, due to bomb threats.
  Once at uni, I went and had a chat to people at ITS, before heading down to the labs where I attempted to print out an honours entry form, but the printer had an unknown error and the browser, in keeping with the terrorism theme of the day, came up with “This page has an unspecified potential security flaw. Would you like to continue?” After finally getting things printed and going to EPSA to find the honours course code for Centrelink, cleverly hidden on the front page where no one from ITEE could find it, I went up and managed to break through the tight security to Sky Net at the Ivory Tower, and see Mark. We chatted for ages about things, while watching pigeons flying in and out of the ceiling—something of a contrast for a place full of random wandering robots, attempting to become self-aware—before heading down to the labs to print and sign complaints, and chat to some of my students.
  I posted my complaint to the head of school, forwarded it to a few other people, and found out that all Brisbane transport had again been shut down, effectively preventing me from getting into the city to do my shopping. With no way of getting home, I went and joined Clint, Scruff, and a few others, at the Red Room, and watched them burn their fingers on light bulbs, sing loudly and very poorly, spill beer, and otherwise celebrate their suspected recent exam failure. This probably wasn’t the best idea, as I had several things that had to be done, which weren’t, but I blame the terrorists.
Comment by Mum – Sunday 20 November 2005, 9:37 PM
  Clint spill beer? Tch.
Comment by io – Monday 21 November 2005, 11:54 PM
  Clint dropped his can of beer twice one afternoon a year or two ago. We were playing BITS Soccer.
Comment by Damian – Tuesday 22 November 2005, 8:03 AM
  Well done! Congratulations on finishing your exams, and your studies. You rock, Ned!
Comment by Ned – Thursday 24 November 2005, 4:12 AM
  Thanks ;-)

15.11.2005Tuesday 15 November – Terrorism & Sydney

I got up, having had less than four hours sleep. Joe drove me to the shops, where I did the shopping I had been unable to do yesterday due to stupid bomb threats, and then onto the train station where I caught the train that would have taken me to the airport had not a hundred or so police swamped it at South Bank station. Someone had reported unattended baggage, and in their paranoid way, they evacuated the entire station and several hundred metres all around its perimeter, and filled it with several different types of police, bomb squad, strange federal agents, Queensland Rail agents, and various other exciting people. It was very ridiculous—there were so many various forms of police and security people that it was hard to walk between them; had a bomb gone off, there would have been more security personnel killed than there were passengers on the train. This also had the more serious side effect that I was, for the second time now, stuck at an evacuated train station on my way to the airport. Some demanding, and a $46 taxi fare to the airport (paid by Queensland Rail) later, I found myself at the airport, fortunately still before my flight departed.
The doors on the Virgin 737-800 were closed, and we departed for Sydney, with me sitting in seat 17C. There are two wheelchairs, and one stroller onboard, which probably isn’t relevant to anything but there’s nothing else to do sitting here so I might as well notice that.
I land in Sydney, where all the times are an hour wrong. It is quite cold. I am picked up by Bronwen, Brian and Judy, and driven to their place, where I eat dinner and head to bed.

16.11.2005Wednesday 16 November – Sydney, Bondi & Sculptures by the Sea

I walked around the city. My shoes hurt severely and are, I think, faulty, so I went barefoot; buying shoes fifteen minutes before catching a potentially bombed train not all the way to the airport is probably a bad idea, as is going barefoot around Sydney—but so is pain. It rained on and off, and was surprisingly cold and windy. The far lower humidity is quite noticeable. Funny people who walk barefoot through Sydney in the rain seem to be noticeable too. I walked through the botanical gardens, ate Chinese food, caught a bus to Bondi, walked through “Sculptures by the Sea”, and got lost walking back from Bondi, eventually catching a bus, as it got too late and dark. It was very cold and windy at Bondi, and I have blisters on my left foot, but it was quite a pleasant day, and some of the sculptures were quite good—as was the cake.
Today marks Bronwen and my first anniversary.

17.11.2005Thursday 17 November – Relaxing in Sydney

I had a quiet day relaxing at Brian and Judy’s while Bronwen attempted to teach the wonders of computing, without having to explain the wonders of computing. In the evening, her and I walked to the shops, had a yummy lunch, and cooked dinner.

18.11.2005Friday 18 November – Parramatta, Manly & Govinda’s

I caught a bus to the city, train to Circular Quay, jet cat to Parramatta and back, ferry to Manly and back, walked to King’s Cross, and then caught a bus back to bed. The journey to Parramatta was quite interesting, I was surprised how small the river got, and there’s quite a bit of history lying around. Manly was also interesting, walking along sandy beaches and barnacled rock outcrops. The pleasant day was finished off by dinner at Govinda’s.

19.11.2005Saturday 19 November – Newcastle & A Birthday Doof

My alarm wakes me, and I head off to the city after some cuddling and a shower.
I catch the Newcastle train from Central, on my way to a rave party. The journey is quite scenic in spots, travelling through secluded mountainous bays and a few tunnels, one of which was quite long. It is a little expensive though, at seventeen dollars.
I detrain at Broadmeadow and meet Dale, who gives me a short guided tour of Newcastle before going to his place and then onto Karuah where Ragnhild is working. Five litre V8s are good on hills.
Dale goes to work, leaving me to wander around Karuah until Ragnhild leaves for the party. There is a scenic river, a park, and a handful of shops struggling to come to terms with the fact that what used to be the highway is now several miles away, bypassing the town.
Four girls, who had been playing in a park where I was sitting, rode their bikes down a fenced circular path past me. One of them was unable to make the corner and hit the fence, landing sitting in the fence, as if posed—something she, in her shock, then did before collapsing onto the concrete while the other three laughed uncontrollably, unable to help. It had to be seen to be believed—she went from riding far too fast around a tight bend, to sitting demurely poised, stationary in a fence, in an instant; it’s a wonder nothing was broken at the speed she stopped.
I hid from a sudden thunderstorm under a bridge, watching small boats fighting the storm, had chips for dinner, and then drove to the rave with Ragnhild. The party was held in quite an interesting place, on a large farm, owned by a professional inventor. It was the ideal place for it really, with a large circular hall filled with lights, lasers, and more smoke than air; and outside large gumtrees, icy-cold fresh air, open paddocks, a large swimming pool, and small river. Littered around the place were various unusual things—prototype perpetual motion machines, scarily powerful super-magnets, frictionless magnetic bearings and drive-trains, Australia’s best preserved Cobb & Co Coach, still with its original straw mailbag, a monster truck able to knock non-trivial trees right over, and a lot of people doing a lot of strange things in a lot of cars. The hot seat of a Cobb & Co Coach (or whatever it is called), is an awful lot smaller and higher than one might think—travelling fast in one of those things would be seriously scary.
I spent most of the night talking to Ragnhild and the blokes doing the front gate, wandering from the cold bar area to the fire at the front gate to the bonfire near the pool, keeping warm and avoiding the increasingly insane dance floor and car park. Surprisingly, many of the younger people flaked out around two o’clock, with a lot departing, leaving the older—and far more interesting—hardcore ravers to continue all night.

20.11.2005Sunday 20 November – Much Doof, Stolen Cars, Police & A Birthday

The sun is up. This is not particularly good. No one has slept, and no one is looking forward to its bright, hot rays, forcing daytime upon their pumping nighttime world. Ragnhild has just gone to bed, as she has to work in a few hours.
I had to be back in Sydney by a specific time, for a BBQ and birthday. I knew how long it took to get to Newcastle, and how long it took to get from there to Sydney. I knew how to get to Dale’s place in Newcastle, although only the one way, meaning I had to drive there that specific way or I’d be lost. Ragnhild had even lent me her car to drive there. What could possibly go wrong? Someone could steal someone’s car, as a joke. They could then decide that the police would take a very dim idea to car-theft as a joke, or their lack of licence and current off-their-guts-on-drugs state. This could result in their taking evasive action, followed by an ultimately unsuccessful police chase. The car’s owner could then discover that his wallet, and more importantly, cigarettes, are in his stolen car, and that the only possession of his still on his person is his credit-less mobile phone. He could also be the only person at the rave who happened to urgently need to be somewhere else. Obviously, the clever chap who stole the car would have a flat battery in his phone, so no one could actually find out what had happened, apart from his garbled text message saying something had gone wrong, and I would be the only coherent person around able to both focus on moving objects and move at normal human speeds. Clearly, something like this would only happen if Ragnhild’s car didn’t have enough fuel for the long detour involved in chasing up this stolen car; needless to say, it didn’t, and I arrived in Newcastle via a road other than the single one I knew, meaning I had to be very fortunate to find Dale’s.
Fortunately, I’m a very fortunate sort of person, and found Dale’s place with the help of some maps ripped out of the front of a phone book, dumped Ragnhild’s car, got a taxi from there to the train station, and a train back to Sydney, arriving at the BBQ just as the last guests were leaving. Apparently thinking all this is fortunate is the sign of an optimist, which, I’m pessimistically sure, must be a bad thing. After an abortive attempt at going to town for dinner, I eat a few of the myriads of yummy leftovers, and retire to bed tired from my all-nighter last night.

21.11.2005Monday 21 November – Museums, Fireworks & Pasta

I wake up and eat breakfast, something I don’t do that often. I then headed leisurely into the city and spent the evening at the Powerhouse Museum, which was really quite interesting. I also found what I believe is the only Cold Rock in Sydney, and had a super shake.
I explored a few of the older areas of Sydney, walked across the Sydney Harbour Bridge, twice, and then made my way down to the botanical gardens overlooking the finale of “Australian Idol” at the Opera House, and watched their fireworks, before walking to King’s Cross for a scrumptious pasta dinner.

22.11.2005Tuesday 22 November – Birds, Babies & Brisbane

I went for a walk to Centennial Park and saw skateboarder signs, swans, geese, other birds, flowers, many babies, and various other things. I then went looking for a milkshake in King’s Cross (at Bronwen’s request, who would have thought?) but was unable to find anywhere that sold both milkshakes and nachos, eventually finding a place miles away which apparently didn’t have a suitable “atmosphere”, but which did sell good nachos and milkshakes—and good they were, nearly forty dollars good.
Brian and Judy had driven us to the airport, where we are now sitting on the plane while the staff attempt to locate two missing passengers, eventually having to find, and presumably incinerate, their luggage.
Doors are closed, and we’re off towards Brisbane, on another Virgin 737-800, sitting in seats 9A and B.
We arrive in Brisbane, where the time is again back to its correct self, an hour before where it has been, and are whisked off to Bronwen’s place for dinner and much-needed sleep.

23.11.2005Wednesday 23 November – Washing & Pizza

I caught a train out to Joe’s, collapsed into bed for a couple of hours, did a lot of washing which I cleverly put on the line just before a thunderstorm, watched some absolute garbage on TV, sorted out my email, drove and got pizza just a few minutes before the pizza place shut, and stayed up until nearly five o’clock—I blame the coke I got with my pizza, and the Bavarian chocolate cake, and my computer and the internet.

24.11.2005Thursday 24 November – Mysterious

As far as I can tell, I left Joe’s around two o’clock, and didn’t get back until nearly midnight. Where I went, and what I did, remain a mystery—although I reserve the right to have a perfect alibi should the need arise.

25.11.2005Friday 25 November – House Hunting & Tit Bits

I went house hunting, but they all got away. The agent never turned up to the first house, and due to miscommunications and a forgetful organiser, I had arranged to see the wrong houses, and by the time this had been corrected, I had no idea how to get to the right house, or enough time to find it without directions. Then, at the third house, I was accosted by someone who thought I was someone else, was very disturbed to find I wasn’t, and wouldn’t go away, making me feel rather awkward.
I had dinner at an excellent Asian vegetarian dessert place in the Valley, who made a very nice and creamy soupy thing. I don’t usually like Asian food places, as the only vegetarian things they make seem to consist almost entirely of nasty green weeds, but this place was fantastic—not only was it cheap and entirely vegetarian, but it was an ice cream dessert bar as well. After dinner, I went to the final “Tit Bits” for the year, which is a rather eccentric, somewhat disturbing semi-impromptu performance down at the powerhouse, or as they put it, “an adults only evening of vacuous variety, gaudy games and super silly segments”. It was, apart from disturbing, quite interesting, and had a brilliant professional acrobatics display.

26.11.2005Saturday 26 November – I Love you, you’re perfect, NOW CHANGE!

I took Bronwen to “I love you, you’re perfect, NOW CHANGE!” at the Roundhouse. It was really, really good—I’d go as far as to say, great—an incredibly amusing, satirical look at generalised relationships, the irreconcilable differences between men and women, and the crazy ways with which we deal with those differences.
Dinner was had at “Tomato Brother’s”, followed by desert from the fabled Freestyle, resulting in a very over-eaten, but satisfied, me.

27.11.2005Sunday 27 November – Stormy, Creamy Times

I had a relaxing day at Bronwen’s, weathering a large and rather exciting electric storm, buying Tim Tam ice cream, and eating too much.

28.11.2005Monday 28 November – Maz, Rain & RSS

I went and visited Maz, collecting my hard drive and wishing him well for his trip to America, walked around the city in the rain for a bit, and then trained back to Joe’s.
Because everyone whinges, I made an RSS feed with complete journal entries, rather than just a tease. Having wasted time doing this, I then ran out of time to add a few things to another site, which isn’t very good, as I’m being paid to do it, and collapsed into bed.
Comment by DM – Wednesday 30 November 2005, 7:38 PM
  Yes, but where can I find it (the amazingly special RSS feed)?
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 30 November 2005, 9:41 PM
  Try the syndication page (available from the top menu)

29.11.2005Tuesday 29 November – Uni, Paperwork & Dinner

I headed into uni to sort out paperwork. It seems I can still logon and use the internet at uni libraries. EPSA threw my honours application in the bin, literally, and told me to go see ITEE. ITEE told me I needed to complete an honours application… After sorting this out, I went and saw student services to find out why the online gown hire site says my credit card number is invalid, only to find out that they apparently never bothered actually implementing the part that allows you to submit orders online. It would be nice if they mentioned this some place. Such is the efficient bureaucracy at UQ.
Bronwen wanted to make me dinner, so I caught the slowest possible bus from uni to Indooroopilly, visiting most of the streets in West Brisbane on the way, and then the slowest possible bus from there to the city—so slow that the driver waived our tickets as an apology. There was some fantastic lightning off over the coast, which I watched for a while, and dinner was yummy. The only downside is my foot—for some reason it hurts quite considerably, and has been slowly getting worse all day.

30.11.2005Wednesday 30 November – Hot, Muggy, Shoes & Lethal Weapons

I trained back to Joe’s, put some washing on, and got a lift with Tonya down to the shops to return my shoes. Uni results have been released. I’ve achieved two high distinctions (7) and two distinctions (6). I achieved the high distinctions in “Advanced Information Technology Project (CSSE3004)” and “Introduction to Logic (PHIL1020)”, as expected. The two distinctions were for my other two courses, “Introductory Philosophy (PHIL1000)” and “Introduction to Psychology: Physiological & Cognitive Psychology (PSYC1020)”, rather obviously. I’m not happy with this result for PHIL1000, but there’s very little I can do—the tutor didn’t like my writing style, and I wasn’t able to change it to match what he wanted given the time and the entirely fuzzy and subjective nature of the subject. PSYC1020 shifts the cut-off for a high distinction five percent higher than other courses, and has huge multi-choice exams, so I got what I was expecting for that. Given my almost complete lack of study or effort, I suppose I can’t really complain. That one can graduate with good results, without even trying, does say something about the degree though; I believe it should be a challenge to gain high marks, and an effort to actually pass, neither of which it was.
I got a refund for my shoes, bought new shoes, hired out the first three “Lethal Weapon” movies and four other semi-random movies to make up seven for their special seven deal, and collapsed in front of a fan. It is very, very muggy.
I went and saw “Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride” at South Bank, something I probably shouldn’t have done, as I wasn’t really in the mood when I got there, but it seemed a good idea when I left here. It’s a bit too strange to really enjoy (marrying a corpse just isn’t romantic, no matter how you portray it), although the cinematic production and animation is nothing short of exquisite.
Comment by Mum – Thursday 1 December 2005, 10:05 PM
  Congratualions. Will be lovely to see you soon. Dad and Sarah and I all very happy for you.
Comment by Ned – Friday 2 December 2005, 2:41 AM
  Thanks ;-)
Comment by Tara (ratty) – Thursday 2 February 2006, 9:58 PM
  You are such an interesting character. I've commented before that I've seen you ALL THE TIME at uni and know who you are and occasionally read your journal. We are often on the same late bus to the city at night, and get off at the same stop (Quay St). Freaky, no? I'm not a stalker, but just interested in the coincidences. Was also interested to see how you put together your results from past years. Incredibly anal and yet impressive, because I am no less anal myself... mmm. I am rambling but you're interesting. Hmm.
Comment by Ned – Friday 3 February 2006, 7:24 AM
  Thanks, I think...

01.12.2005Thursday 1 December – The Brother’s Grimm

I didn’t get up until late, relaxing and lazing about—in short, doing nothing.
I trained into the city, had a quick lunch at Govinda’s, and met Clint. We walked, talked, whinged, and looked, eventually ending up at South Bank to see “The Brother’s Grimm” in the late movie session, catching the last trains to our respective homes after. The movie was a rather peculiar and confusing mix of fairy tales, ending up slightly incoherent, but still enjoyable. Back at Joe’s, it appears that a large rain came down from the skies while I was not present, as some of downstairs is flooded.

02.12.2005Friday 2 December – Bed, Internet, Chips, Bed

On this day, Ned got out of bed, searched online and made phone calls between watching “Die Hard” while Optus drilled holes in brick walls and installed more cables, drove to a chip shop, bought chips, scallops, and fried pineapple rings dipped in cinnamon, ate them, updated a website, and then went back to bed.
Comment by bored – Sunday 11 December 2005, 11:36 AM
  Hmmm a suggestion. A mandatory preview button may make comments more insightful and well thought out. There isn't a lot of emotionally charged writing in this journal but still.
  Take this advice witha grain of salt.

03.12.2005Saturday 3 December – Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire

I entrained for the city, and viewed some potential rentals. I then wandered around the city, vainly pretending it wasn’t one of the hottest days yet, until the evening, when I watched “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” at South Bank, at full adult price—this whole being a non-student thing is expensive. It was a long, large, exciting movie, but overly simplistic and didn’t have any conclusion—very much a teaser for the next movie in the series. I made the mistake of drinking three quarters of a litre of iced coffee, two cups of strong tea, and a little wine. It would appear this combination is not good.
Comment by B. – Monday 5 December 2005, 3:35 PM
  The lack of conclusion wasn't too much of a problem. The lack of any real story line was. He was competing in a competition that he was selected for inexplicably and the competition tests were long and drawn out but ultimately trivial. I am giving it 4/10ths of the book (which i haven't read).
  PS. why do you need to collect email addresses, so that you can send them on to a spamming database?
Comment by io – Monday 5 December 2005, 9:26 PM
  He wants to stalk you.
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 6 December 2005, 11:39 AM
  There is no way of enforcing that the email address entered is correct, so in some respects it is pointless, but it provides commenters with a method of me getting in touch with them, should they wish, and tends to validate their identity.
Comment by reubot – Tuesday 6 December 2005, 10:36 PM
  Where's the relativistic review!?!?!?
Comment by io – Tuesday 6 December 2005, 10:38 PM
  Are you referring to ladder magic?
Comment by reubot – Tuesday 6 December 2005, 10:40 PM
  No I mean Ned's trademark rating system of rating movies relativistically against each other.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 7 December 2005, 5:28 PM
  It suffered from severe longitudinal shift, bordering on four excel spreadsheet pages, and became unwieldy, difficult to use, and irrelevant. Put simply, a true lie is no longer a true lie.

04.12.2005Sunday 4 December – The Constant Gardener

I woke still feeling unwell, having gone to bed feeling poorly. I’d figured it was from my exciting drink combinations, but Bronwen wasn’t feeling well either, so I’m now going for the secret lover poisoning us both because he or she can’t have her or me. It was also still very hot, so Bronwen and I tottered off to the river, where it was a little cooler, and relaxed there for a while, before heading to Palace Centro to see “The Constant Gardener”. It was quite a moving movie.
Comment by B. – Monday 5 December 2005, 2:14 PM
  You’re an absolute fool. But, (and don't take this as encouragement in any way shape or form), what happens if you have a split personality. Can the jealous love interest be your alter ego? With a Shakespearian love-murder-suicide thing going? …
  It is pointless you having these complete journal entry feeds now. Because you’re hardly writing anymore, the text of the day’s events could practically fit into the one sentence grabs that you give in the normal feeds.
  Anyway, as you can tell boredom has set in at work, but I better go.
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 6 December 2005, 11:44 AM
  Some are long, some are short. Somewhat ironically, the more eventful my life, the less time I have to write journal entries, and the shorter they tend to become. At the same time, the less eventful my life, the less there is to write, so the longest journal entries tend to occur when there is something to write about, but not so much that I do not have the time to write it.

05.12.2005Monday 5 December – Hot, Bible Codes & Amanda

I trained back to Joe’s, having been unable to renew my student ticket due to my student card having expired. I then put the hard drive I got from Maz into the computer and copied a few DVD’s over to the computer for smoother playback, did some washing, and tried my best not to move, as it’s very, very, hot.
I trained back to the city again, then bussed out to uni where I attended, along with Clint and Scruff, a talk about the “Bible Codes” from a member of a committee attempting to disprove that they actually exist. Interestingly, while trivially easy to show that the “codes” seem to be irrelevant in that it is possible to find similar “codes” in any text, including, as demonstrated, “Moby Dick” and the lyrics from popular songs; yet it was not trivially possible to scientifically disprove their validity, and even after a six year attempt, the best disproof this committee could come up with was, at best, unconvincing.
I caught the bus back to the city, then a broken train towards Bowen Hills, arriving late due to its brokenness, and from there out to Amanda’s with Amanda, where I spent the night.
Comment by Damian – Wednesday 7 December 2005, 2:37 PM
  Ned, please come to Melbourne. The invitation will always be there.
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 7 December 2005, 5:27 PM
  Melbourne is definitely the next place I’m planning to visit. No firm times, dates or plans, but pretty soon after I get settled in to work and can get some time I’m thinking.

06.12.2005Tuesday 6 December – Uni, Airports, Gowns & Graduation Tickets

In the morning, after a bit of a sleep in, I drove from Amanda’s into uni, picking up my graduation tickets and checking that gown hire had actually hired me a gown. I then drove out to the airport, waited at the Sir Charles Kingsford Smith memorial for a while, and picked up Dad and Mum, dropping them back to Amanda’s where we all stayed the night.

07.12.2005Wednesday 7 December – Dinner at Joe’s

I dropped Dad and Mum off in town and went and inspected a rental property with Bronwen, which took longer than I thought, before rejoining Dad and Mum for a Govinda’s lunch and a quick look around the city, trip up the clock tower, and so on. We then drove out to Joe’s for dinner, being joined by Bronwen after she finished work, and staying the night there. All had a fairly late night.

08.12.2005Thursday 8 December – Storms & Dinner

I drove Bronwen to work, having slept in longer than planned. Dad, Mum and I left Joe’s and drove back to Amanda’s shortly after midday, and it is so hot that we’re now all having a sort of siesta.
A severe storm warning, along with dire threats of large, damaging hail and a warning call from Amanda resulted in us waiting until after six when all the storms had passed before driving in to Bronwen’s place and having dinner with her and her parent’s, and then driving back out to Amanda’s to sleep.

09.12.2005Friday 9 December – Mount Coot-Tha, City Cat & Curry

Dad, Mum and I relaxed throughout the morning, trying not to move as any movement threatens to push one’s body temperature into fatal heights. We drove to the Mount Coot-Tha lookout, had a look over the city, and then parked at uni. From there we caught a City Cat to South Bank, where Dad and I bought Cold Rock Super Shakes and Mum bought some crazy whistles, and then continued on the City Cat to Brett’s Wharf, and from there back to uni. We then drove into West End, meeting Bronwen at the Punjabi Palace, and having dinner there before driving back out to Amanda’s, where it was surprisingly—but pleasantly—cool.

10.12.2005Saturday 10 December – Hot, Late & Lots of Photos

Amanda dropped me at Ferny Grove, where I would have caught a train into the city had they not all been cancelled so they could install lifts on stations; instead I caught a non air-conditioned articulated bus into the city, where I met Bronwen, went to Govinda’s for lunch, did some shopping, and wandered around in the extreme heat sweating.
I stayed up most of the night cropping individual photos from scanned photo album pages, where all the photos are on slight angles, overlapping each other, upside down, and so on. I got incredibly sick of the monotony after several hours, although I also got amazingly good at using Photoshop’s crop tool, ending up able to rotate and resize it to the precise borders of an image almost subconsciously.

11.12.2005Sunday 11 December – Hot, Relaxing & Somewhat Funny

I was a bit worried my DVD burner wouldn’t work as it has been causing peculiar problems that I suspect are related to not having enough power to run everything, but I removed a DVD reader and hard drive to save power, plugged it in, and it burnt my photo CD without any problems. It is another incredibly hot day—perhaps this is just how hot summer is? I think I’ve wrecked my neck cropping photos all night—bending it isn’t a good idea right now.
I watched “Beverly Hills Cop 2”, which, as stupid as it is, is quite funny and filled in time enjoyably. Now that it’s finally cooled down, I have to entrain city-wards, ideally finding something to eat if I have the time, and then onto Amanda’s.
I trained to the city, catching a roving sub from Subway on the way, met Mum and Amanda at Bowen Hills, drove to Amanda’s, and collapsed into bed rather tired.

12.12.2005Monday 12 December – Graduation

I forgot a belt, so we left Amanda’s earlier than planned, arriving at Bronwen’s earlier than planned, and borrowed one of her father’s belts. From there, we drove out to uni, where I picked up my gown, hood and trencher and watched an instructional video detailing just how to wear them, including showing a woman placing the tassel on her trencher to the left side, from several different angles, just in case someone couldn’t fathom this complex procedure. Being early, we wandered around the union complex area for a while, before heading down to the UQ Centre. I found the “marshalling area”, sat in my prescribed numbered place in a row of many other penguin-looking graduands, and shuffled into exhibition hall. Once seated, we watched several ads for UQ—learning that it is one of the top three universities in Australia, and definitely where you should go if you want to be successful, good looking, or operate complex looking equipment in a biotechnology laboratory—before the university elite arrived, signalling the start of my graduation.
Various dignitaries said a few dignified words, and rows of graduands shuffled up onto stage, had their name announced, and were presented to the chancellor, who in turn presented them with an empty tube. They then shuffled around the back of the audience, collecting their official award certificate and then seating themselves again. Halfway through, Mark gave his valedictory speech, and shortly after I shuffled onto stage myself, had the degree of Bachelor of Information Technology with a major in Networks and Systems given under the common seal of the University of Queensland conferred upon me, received my empty tube, walked behind the audience, was given someone else’s degree, swapped this for my own, and returned to my seat, now a wise, learned graduate. Some eminent someone, whose name escapes me, spoke about giant shoulders for a while, and we all shuffled out, getting chaotically lost for a while, and eventually meeting up with our parent’s, loved ones, and various friends. I wandered around for a while chatting to other graduates, and having photos taken, before wandering around uni to take a few more photos.
Dad, Mum, Bronwen and I walked down to GPS, took a few photos from upper level balconies, in a lab, and from the duck pond; walked back to the great court and took a few photos from there and the main university door outside Forgan Smith, and nearly died from heat exhaustion. I returned my crazy penguin gear (designed to ensure the occupant overheats in the shortest possible time, while being unable to move fast enough to get to an air-conditioned area), picked up my refund, and we all drove to South Bank, where we didn’t find anywhere to celebrate, and ended up at a nice café in Paddington instead, which made very filling nachos, as well as nasty pumpkin things that Mum and Bronwen seemed to like. I was impressed to find that my official academic transcript is printed on a polymer base, complete with see-through window, very similar to Australian banknotes.
Back at Amanda’s, Dad, Mum, Amanda and I argued about everything from the French Revolution and the relative scientificity of psychological paradigms through to present-day terrorism and the differences between American and Australian education, and I realised that I miss intelligent conversation—most of the conversations I have with people are really quite shallow, probably largely because of their age.
Comment by DM – Wednesday 14 December 2005, 2:03 AM
  Congrats Ned.
  Or should I say Ned (BInfTech)?
Comment by Ned – Wednesday 14 December 2005, 9:30 PM
  Thanks ;-)
Comment by Lucas – Wednesday 14 December 2005, 10:32 PM
  Congrats Ned! Do you feel a little reminiscent yet?
Comment by Ned – Thursday 15 December 2005, 12:51 PM
  Thanks. I thought I would miss uni, or feel reminiscent, or something along those lines, but so far I haven’t felt any different—it just feels like I’m on holidays, the same as any other time. My life has been fairly busy though, the past couple of days are the first few I’ve actually had nothing much to do, and I suspect that I wouldn’t like that for too long—but I’ve got a lot of things coming up, so I should be busy again very soon.

13.12.2005Tuesday 13 December – Exhausted

Amanda drove Dad, Mum and I to the airport, where I saw off my parent’s. Amanda then drove me to some shops, where I had only the second milkshake I’ve had since graduating, before dropping me near her work. I caught a bus into the city, had breakfast at Govinda’s, and slept on the train out to Joe’s.
I drove Joe down to his club, sat and relaxed in front of the TV for a while, and walked down to the shops. I bought ice cream, cream, custard, pizza, hired the fourth Lethal Weapon DVD, and then had to battle my way home through a thunderstorm.
Comment by Maz – Tuesday 13 December 2005, 11:46 PM
  So it did storm? That's lucky. I was worried that my doomsday predictions weren't going to come true and I would like like some miserable bastard. Phew.
  Seems like a lot of trouble considering what you bought but at least the ice cream would melt less in a thunderstorm.

14.12.2005Wednesday 14 December – Upstairs

He slept in until it was too hot, then he got up and turned on his fan. This clever move let him go back to bed for a few more hours, until his head began to sweat on his pillow and he was forced to again get up. He decided it was far too hot to move, so he rewrote his syndication feeds generation system, read many pages of random internet wisdom, watched “Beverly Hills Cop 3”, tried ripping “Lethal Weapon 4” multiple times, but was unable to copy the entire movie, and ate lots of ice cream. He then went to bed, feeling strangely unsatisfied with his day, and realising that he has not even been downstairs once the entire day.

15.12.2005Thursday 15 December – Felafels & Sickness

I slept in, caught a train into the city in the afternoon, and bought a felafel roll. This was a mistake, as I felt sick immediately after. I then caught the city cat out to uni to pick up my tutoring evaluation responses, didn’t do the rest of the things I had planned to do due to feeling sick, and instead bussed back to the city and ate dinner at Govinda’s, before training back to Joe’s and watching “Dumb and Dumber”, which truly was dumb.

16.12.2005Friday 16 December – He Died with a Felafel in his Hand

I met Clint in the city and wandered around with him for the afternoon, before going and seeing “He Died with a Felafel in his Hand” at the Roundhouse with Bronwen, Clint and Scruff. I wasn’t overly impressed—it was too farcical, but it was entertaining.

17.12.2005Saturday 17 December – The Globe

Bronwen and I went shopping, looking for, but not finding, a Christmas present, before I met up with Clint and headed down to the Globe to watch “Pulp Fiction” and “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas”. The Globe seems like an interesting movie venue—it’s an old cinema, run by a non-profit club currently interested in cult cinema.
Comment by Jojo – Friday 6 January 2006, 4:53 PM
  Where is the Globe? and does it have a website for screening times?
Comment by Ned – Sunday 8 January 2006, 12:58 PM
  The Globe is next to Brunswick St Station,

18.12.2005Sunday 18 December – Shopping & Packing

I again went looking for a Christmas present with Bronwen, this time purchasing one. I spent the rest of the afternoon packing, or more accurately, watching Bronwen pack.

19.12.2005Monday 19 December – Hay Fever

I trained back to Joe’s, just in time to meet him before he left for a holiday. I seem to have developed hay fever, presumably from the dust and so on from packing.
I looked for amazingly good internet access plans, finding nothing remarkable. I also dropped a DVD back and bought some lollies for my hay fever and some potato biscuits. On the back of the docket there was a special pizza deal, too good to resist, so I also bought pizza, and now I feel sick and have a box of potato biscuits I can’t eat.
Comment by Mum – Saturday 24 December 2005, 1:38 AM
  Alas, alas. Box of potato biscuit not good. Box of wholesome greens much better. Sigh. What shall we do with the lad?

20.12.2005Tuesday 20 December – Paying Bond

I ran around packing things, sorting through thousands of pieces of paper, throwing out lots of old rubbish and getting hay fever. I then caught a train into the city, had lunch at Govinda’s, and went to the bank to try to change a card access number only to find out that I no longer have enough identification to prove ownership of that account, despite having had more than enough when I set it up. A short train ride and a rather hot walk later and I was at the real estate with Bronwen, paying bond and forgetting my hat. We picked up the keys, walked back to the new place, and wandered around in it, thankful it was as good as we remembered in our hasty peruse the other day. The rest of the night was spent packing Bronwen’s things back at her place, and honing my hay fever in the resulting dust.

21.12.2005Wednesday 21 December – Moving In

Bronwen and I packed a full truckload of her stuff, slowly and inefficiently, into her Dad’s truck, and we dropped it down to the new place at Auchenflower. We then drove out to Joe’s, threw my stuff in the back any which way, carefully packing my computer in the back seat, and dropped that at the new place. It is big enough that even with stuff thrown all over the place and mostly still packed, it is neater than my room was when set out—not that my room was the neatest room around.
Bronwen’s Dad, herself and I borrowed a friend’s trailer, packed the large things into it, and dropped them off at the new place; surprisingly managing to get large things I thought would never fit through a small door and around a narrow passageway, through that small door and around that narrow passageway. Bronwen and I then spent our first night in our new place, which was rather hot and sultry (although no more so than anywhere else, apparently something to do with the earth going around the sun) and required the able assistance of a fan.
Comment by sef – Thursday 22 December 2005, 1:20 PM
  What sort of fan? Please include pictures of fan.
Comment by Ned – Thursday 22 December 2005, 2:22 PM
  Dimplex Turbo Tilt with Whirl Feature
Comment by Tom – Sunday 25 December 2005, 7:01 PM
  Congrats to both of u ^^ and congrats on ur graduation.
  I flew to HK right after my exam so i had to miss the grad ceremony of all those gradding this semester :'( I'll visit u guys when i get back ^^ and tell browen the new ipod sux >_< and that the anime is on the way >_< (i remember saying that last year...)
Comment by Ned – Monday 2 January 2006, 4:01 PM
  Thanks, and consider her told!
Comment by B. – Tuesday 3 January 2006, 4:03 PM
  Hi Tom
  Told, translates into sending me URL link to this page. I think it is way of getting me to read himself's journal.
  I'm not really an ipod fan. The only Mac thing that is widely used and I don't go for it (perhaps I just like being different). But $300+ fashion accessories aren't my thing.
  More Naruto would be greatly appreciated, but don't feel hassled. Getting someone else to source and deliver anime to me is lazy even by my standards.
  But yes come visit.
Comment by Maz – Thursday 5 January 2006, 2:04 AM
  B: I think, compared to ned sending you here to be 'told', having someone else deliver stuff is fine.
  Ned: Good luck with the new place and if you need any help with internet sharing and stuff I'll be online.
Comment by Lisa – Thursday 5 January 2006, 7:54 AM
  B: being the girlfriend of a nerd means that all information comes in weblinks. If he's going out tonight, he'll send you a weblink. You ask how his day was, he links you to his journal. Its just the way it is, its like the pony tail, comes as part of the package. I dont really mind it though
Comment by Ned – Thursday 5 January 2006, 8:55 AM
  Thanks Maz. Just waiting on ADSL at the moment.
  Lisa: I am not a nerd! I am not a geek! I am an artiste! Google knows!
  P.S. Ponytails are superior.
Comment by Lisa – Thursday 5 January 2006, 11:45 PM
  You computer types are nerds. Don't take it as an insult. Remember our discussion on Maz's site about nerds being sexy now, which led to the whole geek points thing i think. And i dig the pony tail, I'm trying to grow mine too :P
Comment by io – Saturday 7 January 2006, 1:45 AM
  *shakes head slowly*
  It's no wonder I'm trying to escape into an Arts(Music/?) degree. :-p
  thei: How's Bronwen?

22.12.2005Thursday 22 December – Shopping

I went shopping while Bronwen was at work, buying household things and beginning to turn the new place from a vacant flat into a home.

23.12.2005Friday 23 December – Fireworks & Mary Poppins

I returned the entry condition report to the real estate, finding the nearest corner store in the process. In the afternoon, I caught a train to South Bank and watched some fireworks, followed by “Mary Poppins” on the grass. The fireworks were fantastic, centralised on a single pontoon directly in front, and close enough that sparks and burning embers were landing on Bronwen. While technically inferior to large-scale fireworks such as those used during Riverfire, the proximity made these amazing. They also had heart-shaped red fireworks—I’ve never seen shaped explosions before—and one where heaps of white fireworks went off at the same time, filling the sky. It was amazing.

24.12.2005Saturday 24 December – Hot, Shopping & Cleaning

It was very hot. I went shopping with Bronwen, and had ice cream with unusual black Asian jelly at Id Café. I did my first load of washing at the new place (how homely and exciting!), some cleaning, and some moving of things, slowly getting the place looking normal.

25.12.2005Sunday 25 December – Christmas & My Birthday

Bronwen and I walked to her parent’s place, where we helped set up for dinner, and later, once guests had arrived, played “smash and grab”. Smash and grab is a somewhat unusual take on present giving, where everyone brings an unnamed wrapped gift not worth more than some set value, twenty dollars in this case. People draw numbers from a hat, and the first person gets to choose and unwrap a present. The second person then has the option of either choosing and unwrapping another present, or smashing the first person over the head and stealing their present, and so on. If someone’s present is stolen, they can then choose themselves to either select a new present or steal someone else’s. It was quite a laugh.

26.12.2005Monday 26 December – Woodford

Bronwen’s parent’s and some friends come over for breakfast, later giving us a lift to Di’s, who gives us a lift to Woodford. Traffic was crawling nearly all the way there, so it turned out to be quite a slow lift. We were dropped off in a grassy camping area, setting up our tent and then making our way to the festival shop so I could attend a short training session. There we met Cat and Kat, Kat offering us camping at her camp. We nearly died carrying our esky and other gear to the new camping area, and that pretty much sums up the first afternoon at Woodford.

27.12.2005Tuesday 27 December – Cloud Nine

It is extremely hot and dusty, which is not doing anything good for my moving-induced hay fever, but everything other than that is wonderful. I enjoyed volunteering as a checkout chick, I enjoyed the spectacle that is Woodford, and it’s good to be out of the city, camping on a hill called “Cloud Nine”, along with hundreds of other volunteers.

28.12.2005Wednesday 28 December – That1Guy & his Magic Pipe

Bronwen and I went and saw, amongst many other things, “That1Guy” and his “Magic Pipe”. He is a one-man band with an “instrument” made from large metal irrigation pipe, around seven foot high, with an interesting twist at the top, and on this he plays an amazing synchronicity of rocking funk, forcing the audience to move by his sheer stage presence. I was immensely impressed.

29.12.2005Thursday 29 December – Amazing Woodford

We saw many things, including vaudeville acts, a circus, a twelve foot high Scotsman, ten-foot kangaroos, a very large and apparently out of control robot, a “Feetbus”—a bus carried by human feet, and innumerable stage acts, making for a satisfyingly exhaustive day.

30.12.2005Friday 30 December – Amazing Insanity

Woodford is crazy. One minute you’re watching Spanish flamenco, the next you’re wandering through dusty crowds, and then you’re witnessing a bus without wheels, carried entirely by its occupants, being boarded by fiddle-playing pirates—a scene directly out of an insane movie. Then, just around the corner, there’s a circus performing on the side of the road, and a little further, there’s a twenty-foot high dragon, spitting light and smoke. Then I wander down to the festival shop, and pretend I’m a checkout chick for four hours, after which I venture out into the amazing insanity once again.

31.12.2005Saturday 31 December – Hilltop Camping

Another amazing day of sensual overload, followed by an amazing night, surrounded by unrealistic creatures that waft through the night, made for another amazing Woodford experience.
We carried our mattresses up to the hilltop stage, where we slept the night surrounded by other crazy people doing the same. It is somehow nice, in a rather primal way, to sleep unprotected, surrounded by trusting humanity.

Summary| Highlights| 2005 (Year View)

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