Thursday, November 11, 2004

good stuff

Excitement all round today. It seems like I’m going to be able to go to Ireland for 3 weeks with work to help set-up some new stores. I was pretty much ready to write off the next few weeks as a head-down crazy crimbo rush: exhausting, unrewarding, creatively unproductive and, put simply, something which you can’t wait to be finished with. And I did so used to love Christmas.

But now the 11th hour reprise as an opportunity which was briefly mooted a few weeks ago then lost to fate reappears. It may actually turn out to be harder work, days and days of just putting a new shop together, but they’ll be no irate Christmas shoppers and I’ll be (hopefully) in some picturesque locations. Bizarrely I might also end up saving some money as my transport, accommodation and food is all paid for. Things you’d never think could happen when you just work in a shop. So jet-set darrrrrhling.


The second bit of interest today was an email from my potential PhD supervisor in Chemistry with news that she has been awarded funding for a new project which could be my new project if I decide to work in Chemistry. So now I have a title: electron-nuclear dynamics and coupling in polarized vacuum ultraviolet laser ionization of optically prepared molecular states. Yeah! Check out the uber-geekness of it all.


Still not much happening on the creative front, hell, I haven’t even been blogging much these last couple of weeks. I tried to write some more about the election but the words weren’t flowing and I’m sure that everything worthwhile has already been said, only a nauseating feeling of sick certainty remains at the back of the stomach, rising bile driving forth the urge to rant and rave against the lunacy, but the words gagging me, stuck in my throat as I contemplate the full horror of where we go next.

I did manage to put together a few copies of my morgue book (as mentioned about a month ago) thanks to getting hold of a beautifully crafted long-arm stapler. It’s not quite perfect, some dodgy margins and a couple of pages that are far too dark, but once assembled into an object it’s actually quite satisfying. I’m now in two minds about whether to keep working on it and try to make some improvements, or just leave it to fester for a while (as usual!). If anyone wants a copy let me know.


Some other good things over the last couple of weeks were: Sufjan Stevens and Gravenhurst at the Maze (read more on my brother's blog), White Post Modern Farm Centre (not White Post-Modern Farm as I initially thought), lunchtime jazz in Leeds, gloves-on-string and silly hats at the fireworks (and curse global warming for it not being cold enough to properly enjoy getting wrapped up!) and The Algebraist by Iain M Banks (of which more in a later posting, another good but not great novel).


And finally, turning to the subject of unregulated free-market capitalism as championed during the industrial revolution and, latterly, by Regan and Thatcher and, to a lesser extent, Bush and Blair:

The rights and interests of the labouring man will be protected and cared for – not by the labour agitators, but by the Christian men to whom God in his infinite wisdom has given the control of the property interests in this country.

So quoteth an American mine owner in 1902, so quoteth Francis Wheen in How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World as he dishes out righteous beat-downs to ‘the voodoo revolution’ of the free market.


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