Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Senate special election in Alabama, December 2017

In a few hours or so, Alabama will have decided its next Senator:

The Democrat is Doug Jones, who would be expected to lose in normal circumstances but the Republican, besides being a bigot, is facing claims of sexual assault, rape and child abuse, which have severely hampered his candidacy and the race is close.

The Republican, whose name is Roy Moore, should not be a Senator. He shouldn't even a candidate given the sex crimes allegations that are surrounding him. Unfortunately, Alabama is an extremely backwards state, given its support for the current president, its support for Barry Goldwater in 1964, for being a state that supported segregation and for being an ex-Confederate state. It has a history of backing awful people like Moore.

But, Alabama may surprise us yet. May it be on the right side of history for once and elect Doug Jones as its next Senator.

Monday, 11 December 2017

The housemate departs

This afternoon, I went to visit a former housemate of mine at her room here in Clifton. This particular housemate is from India and was on a Master's course here at Nottingham Trent University; her graduation was a few days ago and tomorrow, she will be returning to India. She will be travelling to London after midnight and her flight back will be in the early afternoon.

I will really miss this housemate of mine. We took several walks together during the summer and became good friends as a result. We shall still be keeping in contact, however, as there are several venues we have open to us to talk but sadly, it will be some time before we see each other again in person. I wish my friend the best and I look forward to when I next see her!

Sunday, 10 December 2017

The BB-8s

Until a couple of weeks or so ago, the only Star Wars material I had in my room was a Darth Vader figurine. For my birthday, my girlfriend's mother me a BB-8 plush toy (at the request of my girlfriend) whereas my girlfriend herself bought me a BB-8 cushion.

I like both items, of course! BB-8 is cool and, as a droid who looks like a beach ball, he is regarded as one of the cutest characters in all of Star Wars. You can't go wrong with BB-8! As the plush toy is small, he is next to my Vader on a shelf whereas the cushion is on my bed.

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Winter break 2017

As term 1 ended yesterday, students at NTU again have a month-long break, spanning exactly from the 8th of December until the 8th of January. Last winter break, I didn't have a lot to do; my assignments weren't terribly complicated and many of the plans I'd made that month were cancelled when people annoyingly backed out.

This year, it will be different. The biggest change is my girlfriend, as I will be spending quite a bit of it with her; both of us want to spend time with each other over the break. The other difference is that while my essays aren't much more complicated, they are larger, which will mean I will need to complete some of them during this break.

Friday, 8 December 2017

Another term ends

And so, another academic term ends. My fourth term at university has finished and the winter break begins; as of this writing, I have completed ten terms of education in the United Kingdom. My university course has five more terms until its completion.

Classes do not resume until January 8th but I'll be working on existing assignments before then; if I don't, I'll have too much to do in January and that would not be productive.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Another diet attempt

Over the course of this year I've made a few attempts at dieting. While I've lost a few pounds or halted weight gain throughout 2017, in the past two or three weeks I've regained some weight. My girlfriend and I have talked about this and I have more motivation than before to lose weight and slim down a little. Ideally, I'd like to return to the weight I was at during Pre-Access; I was much more comfortable at that weight.

I am no longer caring only for myself and need to consider that my girlfriend is part of my life; as such, losing weight is more important to me than ever.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Filming day December 2017

With advice and observations from my girlfriend, my video production group and I filmed most of the scenes we need for our Media creation. The only problem we encountered was that we thought we had permission to film at one of our locations but when I double checked, it turned out we did not and so I am now properly seeking that permission.

My girlfriend helped because she is a Media student herself - a year ahead of me and is working on her dissertation. Since one member of the group has had to temporarily return to her home country, my girlfriend offered to support me to help us get back on track.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

The cleared ear

After almost a week of cleaning it, my ear is, at last, cleared of wax. I used the device tonight on it after continued use of the drops and once the wax was released, my hearing was restored. This comes at a good time because tomorrow, I'll be working with my video group to film some of the major scenes for our project and I need my hearing to be back to 100% to be a fully effective member of our group.

Monday, 4 December 2017

Rep assembly December 2017

This evening, the last rep assembly of this term took place this evening. I attended the second one at the City campus, as the first one at City and the Clifton rep assembly were both last week when I was away. While attending our home assembly is preferred, we are allowed to attend any provided that we attend one.

The next rep meetings and assembling will likely be around February or March time.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

A better ear

My grandfather flushed out my blocked ear but was only able to clear the upper layer of wax. Unfortunately, there is a still a lump of it attached to my eardrum, which can only be removed via use of more drops and additional flushing.

To help with the latter, he has given a device that I can use to clean my ear. I'll be able to use it to flush out the remaining wax lump as well as use it to clear both my ears on a regular basis so that they don't become blocked every couple of years or so.

Saturday, 2 December 2017

White House maintenance

I thought this was an interesting article with regards to the ongoing maintenance issues the White House is facing:

The pest infestations and structural damages are problems that go back years. Regardless of who occupies it, the White House is a magnificent building and an iconic piece of American history; it ought to be kept in top shape.

Friday, 1 December 2017

Blocked ear 2017

My right ear is blocked. Unfortunately, every so often, even with cleaning my ears, one or both of my ears becomes blocked with wax, which results in muffled hearing and pain in the afflicted ear. To clear it, I have to put special drops in to soften the wax over a few days and then someone has to clear it out with water.

I'll be going to my grandparents' house on Sunday, both to visit them and for my grandfather to clean my ear. He cleaned my left ear last year and should be able to clean my right ear just as easily, too, since I've been putting drops in to soften the wax.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

The days away

I've spent the last few days away, as evidenced by my inactivity here. On Monday night, my girlfriend and I went to her and her mother's house in Newark from then until this morning, when we had classes again. During my visit there, my girlfriend, her mother and I walked around the area with their dog and visited the local castle. We had a wonderful time and it is the first occasion I've been away since I started this academic year.

I shall be visiting them all again next month, although I'll see my girlfriend several times before then and will see her mother before that time, too.

Saturday, 25 November 2017

The joint birthday dinner

This evening, I'll be attending a joint birthday dinner. One of my Access friends had his birthday the other day and mine is also this month; while today is not either of our birthdays, we chose this evening to have the meal.

With us will be at least two other of our friends from Access; I don't know if anyone else is coming but as far as I'm aware, it will just be four Access people in attendance.

Friday, 24 November 2017

The film production team

In my video project workshop this afternoon, every student present had to take part in an exercise that involved us forming a film crew to record a short interview. The purpose of this was to give us feel for what it would be like working in a real film crew, to give us practice with the various forms of equipment and to test out camera angles.

My role was the sound technician. I tested the camera to ensure the sound was working and while the filming was in progress, I wore headphones at all times to ensure that there were no problems with sound. The sound did drop out at one point, which meant we had to reshoot a scene.

It was a lot of fun! The exercise really caused us all to feel as though we were on a proper film set, making a movie or TV show.