24 October 2005

At long last, fall

It's great out today. I got to wear long pants and a jacket! I could be really warm walking home this afternoon, but walking to uni this morning was great.

But I'm going to spend the rest of the day mired in university bureaucracy. The Dean didn't approve some policy changes, I'm trying to get some colour printing done, but while checking that the computer files would work, I learned it has to be approved by university relations, and so on, and s on.


Thought of the moment: "Carefree" and "careless" both mean "not having a care," but one is a good thing, and one is a bad thing.

18 October 2005

Overdoing it?

Last week, I said I should have gone to the beach. Today, I wasn't planning to, but I ended up going. I'm not sure if it was a success. I was mainly looking for sand crabs. I found one, and it was in two pieces (I cleaved it with the shovel). After about an hour digging and looking for sand crabs, went in for a break, then went back out to look for mud shrimp. That was more productive -- they were pretty easy picking, though a lot of them were very small. That might not matter for the project I have in mind, though.

But now I'm looking at my hands and hoping I didn't overdo it. I'm pink. More than usual. Ugh.

12 October 2005

Should have gone to the beach

Yesterday, I had originally planned to go to South Padre Island to collect animals. But when I got up in the morning, it was raining heavily. I looked at the weather forecast, which predicted thundershowers on and off for the whole day. I though about it, and decided not to go, since I didn't want to have to spend hours shoveling sand in the rain. Of course, things cleared up and most of the rest of the day was fine. I so should have gone.

There was good news yesterday, though. I got a copy of my latest actual printed article, in the Texas Journal of Science. About the first thing I saw was that "status" got spelled with an "i" in one table, but what the heck. You can't have everything. I worried this would happen, because it was a change the editor suggested at the proof stage, so I knew it was going to get typeset again without me checking the pages.

I was rather enjoying having three papers in press. It made me feel so productive. I still feel pretty good about having two papers in press, but I really need to have more getting into journals this year if I'm to succeed.

04 October 2005

Rip! Boom! Score, baby!

Just opened an envelope less than five minutes ago and found out I've got another manuscript accepted and now on its way into press! That officially makes today a good day. I am even more pleased than normal (which is already a high level of being pleased), because this paper had actually been rejected once by a different journal.

I've already gloated to about three of my colleagues and a post-doc. I don't think I'll be able to stop for a couple of hours. Better get back to work while I'm motivated!

Music for the moment: "Rolling Sevens" by ABC.

03 October 2005

Zero day weekend

After a wonderful weekend off last week, I was back at uni on both Saturday and Sunday this week, due entirely to the monster event that is now known as HESTEC. HESTEC week ends with community day on Saturday, wherein we throw open our doors, have booths, presentations, funnel cake, music, and Cheech Marin(?). I was involved in organizing a few things, mainly student posters, and was in helping. After a slow start (which rather panicked my colleague Jon, who was the main organizer), things picked up late in the afternoon, and we had a couple of display rooms packed to the gills. We actually ended running about an extra longer than we planned. (This rather messed up some plans for the evening, but that's another story.) It was actually rather good, and this morning I got some ideas for something we might do next year.

Of course, after having tens of thousands of people on campus Saturday, what does that mean for Sunday? Clean up on aisle three! I came in and was taking down the posters and doing a few other odds and ends. Wasn't here for long, but I was here.

I'm hoping that now that this unexpectedly hellish September is over, I can move on and start getting a few other long delayed tasks done in October. And now I've found a secret weapon. On Sunday, I found a clip on the 'net that I can play at those times when I need to dig deep to keep going. I have 14 minutes and 55 seconds of a soul-stirring, make-you-believe-you-can-go-on, video of... a pick-up truck. (Requires RealPlayer to view.)

Yes, I know this sound terribly "new laddish" or "bloke-ish." But it's wildly out of character for me -- I don't even like pick-up trucks! Always been more of a sports car driver myself. But this really must be seen to be believed. It's a clip from the BBC's car show Top Gear (now showing in the U.S. on the Discovery Channel), which I've taken to watching for its incredible good humour and inventiveness, even though cars don't interest me much.

I hope there won't be too many days where I feel the need to watch that video. But it's nice to have something to rev you up, so to speak.