Wednesday, 23 July 2008


Have nothing booked holiday-wise this year; has been difficult to book something when I've been going after jobs and waiting on my examiners to tell me if my corrections are OK. I've been waiting for noisms to tell me if there is a good time to visit him in Japan sometime in September.

Now, thanks to a link from Boing Boing (which is fast becoming my favourite blog, and I know it's been around forever but I only started checking it about three weeks ago) I think I might just go to Japan in September regardless of whether noisms is free...

Basically, girls in cosplay dress guide you around Akihabara! Genius!

(also on Boing Boing, an interesting post about raising a chimp as a human...)

Tuesday, 22 July 2008


Took the day off yesterday to do a few small errands, go on a little walk and then stand on the riverside with about a bajillion other people and watch the start of the Tall Ships Race as it left Liverpool. It's not that the ships weren't impressive, because they were something special to look at - it was just the waiting around, the delayed start... By the time a dozen ships had finally passed us (with the promise of another fifty something to come) my mum and I were just a bit fed up.

Oh well, at least it was a nice day.

A little too nice... Finally we got a little sunshine. Just before we left the house I thought it might be a good idea to take some sun cream, you know, just in case. While I was there, standing on the riverside, I thought it might be a good idea to put a bit of cream on my neck and arms, because the sun was shining down on them, and I was facing away from the sun.

I never thought to put any on my face or - and this is crucial - take my sunglasses off.

Cut to yesterday evening, 8:30ish. "Nathan," my family say as one, cracking up, bent double with laughter, "Go and look in the mirror." To use their (rather cruel) words, I "look like I've auditioned to be Batman's sidekick." I'm not really red, not badly sunburnt, but enough to really see where I had my glasses on.

Sigh. The little things are sent to try us.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

What To Do?

When I posted about Dr Horrible a few days ago (and by the way, you have until midnight tonight to go and watch it for free - it's brilliant, watch it!) I forgot to mention that I submitted my corrections on Tuesday. Quite a good feeling to get them handed in, but then comes the stress from just waiting to hear if they're going to be accepted. So far I've just had my external write to say that he got the file... No idea how long I'll be waiting.

Still, it's not all stress. Sent off my passport renewal form on Wednesday, so am hoping that I'll have my passport soon, have the freedom to travel. Have come up with a plan for the next few months (if the jobs that I'm currently applying for don't come to anything), and am sure that I will survive by giving maths tuition.

It's sunny today, but still pretty cold. Crazy that it's July and we've had virtually no summery weather at all this year. The wind's picking up again too. All probably the result of global warming, but well, one would hope that a side effect of global warming would be that it was warm...

Today: write postcards, write one piece of flash fiction, get down my plan for a piece of maths I'm working on (no rest for the wicked), and I'll also probably spend some time sorting through things for my other 101/1001 challenges.

So... How are things?

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog!!!

This morning I watched the first part of "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog" and it really is a winner. Great characters, catchy songs and a neat reversal of the superhero-can't-be-with-the-woman-he-loves trope. And it's also very, very funny! Act I was released yesterday, Act II goes live tomorrow and Act III follows on Saturday, and they're all online and free - but only 'til Sunday! So act now!

(after that I think you can get them from iTunes, and a DVD will apparently be out in due course)

Seriously, I can't recommend this highly enough for sheer entertainment value: go and watch Act I right now!!!

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Long time no blog

The corrections are almost done. Almost. This weekend I'm sitting down and reading through each chapter just to look for typos or clumsy sentences. Two down, five to go. Make the corrections Monday and Tuesday, send the drafts off to my examiners and cross my fingers...

I'd like to say that life then gets back to normal, but given that that will pretty much be the end of my PhD days, it won't really be normal any more. The job hunt goes on, but nothing has concrete has come up yet - I've found an opening in Edinburgh that I'm going to apply for, but I'm currently looking at going on an extended holiday of sorts in September. Hoping to come back and start providing private maths tuition again after that in order that I'm not hitting my savings while I look for more permanent employment.

Am hoping to also get into the swing of accomplishing things from my list of 101 things. One thing that I'm going to start working on is sending 101 postcards; if any of you want a postcard from Liverpool then let me know! Email me at "Nathan (dot) Blah (at) googlemail (dot) com" and who knows, in the near-ish future one could be winging its way to you...

Smells like dinner is almost ready, so I'd best be going. More from me soon I hope.