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Saturday, May 28, 2005
Social Soccer
 
I took a short break from all the lab work yesterday afternoon to head down to ISS for the monthly social soccer game (which occured directly after the first Knit and Yarn session that I unfortunately could not attend). Three strong, we paraded down to the Physics lawn that we call a soccer field with ball, orange cones, and refreshments in hand. There was already a game in progress on one side of the lawn, and we started to join them through OJ bribery, but within a few minutes another half dozen people showed up to play.

We set up our own field on the other side of the lawn, started picking teams and warming up and by the time we were done, the group had swelled to 14. With even teams, we played a slightly uneven game for about an hour before our unofficial halftime. At that point I was nominated to go find out if we could get any chocolate based refreshments for the players. After returning to ISS, I brought back some chocolates and jelly beans along with Sophie and her digital camera. We played for another 20 minutes or so while she took some pictures, and the game was called on account of darkness as the sun slid low over the horizon just minutes before 5.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2005
12 weeks
 
Another busy week, with lots of stuff to do in the lab, and not enough time to get it all done. This past weekend I went to the Super 12 Rugby Union Semifinals, the Waratahs vs. the Bulls. The NSW Waratahs beat the South African Bulls 23-13, and are on their way to Christchurch next weekend for the finals. On Sunday a few of us headed down to the oval on campus and tossed around a frisbee for a while. And once again the weekdays are quickly slipping by.

In home news, there is a new member of the Lange household, with the arrival of Gabby the Maltese. My mom got her late last week and from the pictures she looks adorable. I booked my ticket home- I'll be arriving on the 17th of August and will be sure to have a get together of sorts once I figure out who is around and what I will be doing with myself.

I'm sure there is more on the news front, but it's getting late and I'll be up early tomorrow so I'll put any more writing on hold for now. Hopefully more frequent updates soon.

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Sunday, May 15, 2005
Quick Update
 
I joined a crowd of 24,226 people at the footie game today, Sydney Swans vs. Port Adelaide Power. The low scoring match at the hallowed Sydney Cricket Ground left the local Swans with victory by a margin of 24, 69 to 45. The tickets were last minute freebies due to some cancellations, so myself, Jeff and one of his friends had a great time watching Sydney win. Afterwards we poured onto the field with thousands of others and took some pictures as hundreds of footies flew through the air in every direction. A quick stop at Zellini's for hot chocolate followed, after which we parted ways and I attempted unsucessfully to have a productive late afternoon/evening.

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Wednesday, May 11, 2005
Desperate Thursdays
 
Thursdays used to be movie night at the Meymotts, but since the shift to a new location (the Blenheims), we've had a content shift as well I guess. They have become desperate housewives nights here, at least for some of us. Despite it being aired on Monday evenings on free TV here, the magic of time shifting (the legality of which is still under massive debate in Oz) allows us to make Thursday evenings come alive with the mysteries of Wisteria Lane.

In addition, for a number of weeks there has always been a dessert of the evening, which has ranged from cheesecakes to krispy kreme to rum soaked bread with apple pie gelato. I may have to come up with some yummy cookies if I have a chance after I get back from the lab later today. It won't be the same as cheesecake from our former sweets guru, but I'm sure the hungry masses won't complain.

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Rose Michaels I'm Not
 
I got my blue card in the mail today, complete with holographic foil of three little kids with egg shaped heads. This card allows me to work with children here in Australia. I needed to get it for the Biofutures conference I will be working on this coming June. And the best part (of the card) is that it has a little star logo that looks just like one of those early 90's The More You Know spots on NBC.

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Sunday, May 08, 2005
Holy Cow!
 
Another fun filled weekend is almost over. Friday started off with coffee catchup at ISS. Although our numbers were few this month, we still managed to have a good few hours talking and eating tim tams. After we parted ways for dinner, a group of us reformed at the physics theatre to watch this years Medrevue, entitled Mary's Poppin. It is a wonderful combination of skits, and visual and audio presentations with a smattering of neofuturism thrown in for good measure. This year's top number for me was a delightful parody of "Build Me Up Buttercup" aptly called "Always Fail, CityRail". If you've ever had to experience Sydney trains, you'd know why it rang so true.

Saturday was spent studying throughout the day, after which 8 of us headed to Govindas, a Hare Krishna run indian vegetarian buffet / movie house where we ate to bursting and then headed upstairs to watch Sideways. Enjoyable in some ways, and frustrating in others, I still had a good time watching it. Afterwards most of us headed down to Bondi where we crashed a party for one of the international students and danced and talked till late. Then we piled into Sam's car and came home for a good night sleep.

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Sunday, May 01, 2005
A semester in the life
 
We all suffer from executive burnout from time to time. It's that point where you just have no interest whatsoever in continuing to work on whatever project you are on, and need to get away and work on something else, even if just for a little while.

Everyone has their own ways of coping with this event. Some people just get frustrated, but keep plowing on in hopes that they can finish it up just a little bit quicker and now have to worry about it. Others are able to put it aside for a while, and either focus on another task that needs to get done, or else concentrate on nothing important for a while, just letting your mind relax. Still others drop whatever it is they are doing, never to return again.

While an extreme case, Rootbeer Racinette of Gordon Korman's 'Losing Joe's Place' is a prime example of the last type. Whenever he gets stressed out with his current hobby, he immediately drops it, only to pick up a new one. Throughout the course of the book he manages to hit on photography, knitting, playing the harp, astronomy, philatily, charcoal drawing, competitive bubble blowing just to name a few.

I on the other hand, am much more of the middle type, unfortunately leaning towards the do nothing side of it, although I have been known to have fits of productivity while osstensibly avoiding some other task. Often times this appears in the form of cleaning, be it my room, the apartment, or even my email inbox. I have a slightly obsessive need for things to be neat. They don't have to be perfect, and I can tolerate a lot of disorder, but something in me just wants the corners of piles to be straight.

And to those in the first catergory, I'm often impressed by how you manage to stay on task, even when I know parts of you are screaming for something else to do. I know it's not easy, and its hard for me to do sometimes, but its something I'm working on. I think it is something I can do, as long as I push myself, and maybe as long as I don't post more on here to keep me in the middle group.

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