Here is a lovely vid of a guy bringing up a baby hummingbird, because I need a little pick-me-up after realising I'm not getting my Ps until december.

The guy also posted: "Yea after almost 2 weeks he looked like he was ready to go, and I walked him outside and off he went. And now whenever i walk outside he sometimes buzzes over to me and stares at me and then flies off. its definitely a touching experience”.

My heart is melting all over my keyboard.
Sometimes I think that my comfort viewings are not other people's comfort viewings. I have a cold at the moment, you see (so it must be the start of the cold months), and I've been distracting myself by watching videos of pillow lavas and thunderstorms. They are strangely mesmerising! The lavas especially, because I am of course a geology geek and because they are so interesting, they look like fiery worms and nothing else like them forms on the Earth. Thunderstorms are perhaps less strange but just as entrancing. In one of my lectures we watched a clip of 30 seconds or so of storm clouds gathering over the sea, and it was so beautiful that I could have watched it for hours on end. The thunderstorm vid here is not that one, unfortunately, but it's still pretty.

And I swear I'm not trying to turn this into the Funny Video Blog #43574037543, but if you're not held enthralled by lava or clouds there are the 26 Cats Who Love Beer. The 4th from the bottom is my favourite because I applaud anyone who can wrangle a cat into a harness.
There a plenty of worse ways to spend an afternoon than walking home to the sound of raindrops dancing on your umbrella. ^_^

Darwin Day

Feb. 12th, 2009 09:28 pm
Happy Darwin's Birthday! The Melbourne Museum is having a party to celebrate and this is the menu:

Course 1
The Precambrian Earth - No Life
Crusty arancini (representing the earth's hot, rocky surface 4.5 billion years ago) with a mushroom and goat's cheese centre and a green herb aioli.
Mini corn fritters (mimicing the coarse structural texture seen of the oldest rocks) with avocado and coriander salsa.

Course 2
Early Oceans
Shots of seafood bisque with a drizzle of spinach oil echoing the earth's early oceans 3.6 billion years ago.

Course 3
Origins Of Early Life In The Seas
Grilled scallops in the shell topped with dill sauce, peeled prawns in urns of ice with citrus wedges, oysters on seaweed salad topped with a tomato and dashi jelly represent the diverse invertebrate life in the seas 540 million years ago.

Course 4
The First Fishes
A mild blini topped with pearls of caviar and crispy white bait, shoe string fries and tartare sauce served in a paper cone pay tribute to the evolution of fish about 480 million years ago.

Course 5
Life Invades Land
Crocodile skewers served with a native finger lime and sweet chilli glaze mark the transition of life from sea to land 360 million years ago.

Course 6
Mini 'dinosaur drummettes' (barbequed chicken drummettes with a Cajun seasoning) represent the arrival of the largest life forms to evolve on land.

Course 7
First Mammals
Herb and parmesan crusted lamb cutlets with a tomato and olive tapenade, assorted barbecu skewers (satay beef, Teriyaki chicken, Middle Eastern lamb skewers) and lamb korma with basmati rice and a drizzle of yoghurt raita accompanied by grilled naan bread mark the arrival of mammals some 220 million years ago.

Course 8
The Rise Of Plants And Greens
Jungle curry - Malaysian vegetable curry and mint icecream in mini cones with mint represent the plant kingdom which evolved much the same time as animals some 2 billion years ago.

Course 9
The Killer Asteroid
Chocolate fountain with bowls of bits to dip (strawberries, dinosaur shaped meringue, Turkish delight, star fruit, melon, bananas, marshmallows), meteorites with churros with a lava centre and chocolate truffles with coco dust are the killer asteroid which wiped out animal and plant life some 65 million years ago.


Mmm, the taste of geekiness... Happy 200th Birthday, Darwin, even if you did call my country 'very dull and uninteresting'. XD


Jan. 14th, 2009 08:13 am



This is my newest geological aquisition: hammer!

MARVEL at the bluntness of the head! GASP at the sharpness of the other end of the head! SEE the horizontal bands on the handle which would represent series of geological intervals if it were a rock sequence!

The mighty hammer needs a name, of course. So far I've thought of:
  1. Thor
  2. Mjolnir
  3. Captain Hammer
  4. Grond
  5. Smitenator
Any ideas?

And it's also springtime here, proven by our nectarine tree being in flower:

How is your week, friendlings?

17/9/08 - Thanks for all the suggestions and admirations of the hammer! I've decided to name it Mjöllnir, because 1) it will be fun to watch people try to pronounce it; 2) it will be fun to watch people try to spell it; and 3) it's a boomerang hammer*. How awesome is that? And my handlens will be named Odin, having one eye, and my compass (when I acquire one) will be named Loki because I always manage to use the damn things incorrectly. :D *As long as I remember that MY Mjöllnir is not a boomerang hammer. Important point.
I had my atmospheric science exam today, eep. I think that I passed, but I'm not sure by how much (and if I didn't pass then that's it, I'm taking another subject). As far as my subjects go it rates at number 3 out of for, and that's because geography somehow managed to be even worse. It probably would have helped my understanding if I'd started to read the textbook at the start of semester and not three days before the exam. In any case, our lecturer was brash and generally unsuited to teaching (although the tutors were very nice, and actually competent) and there was too much maths and obscure physics for me to really enjoy it. Whatever my score, I won't be doing the sequel unit next semester.

I say I think I passed because last week I got struck down by the mother of all colds - not flu, thankfully, but a more concentrated dose than the last sickness. It reduced me to sleeping for about seventeen hours each day and feeling muddle-headed for the rest, and I was getting seriously worried when friday rolled around and I still wasn't over it. I felt better on saturday, though (and then fell victim to my finely-honed procrastination skills - seriously, I need something that will block my computer from the TV Tropes website) so I guess it's good timing, in a way - at least it didn't happen this week, because I would have been completely screwed then. Exam was still exhausting, though, even if some kind god answered my prayers and there were no questions about the specific and saturation specific humidity. But three hours is a long exam. For a while there I thought I was going to lose all feeling in my arm.

In any case, it's done now, and I'm going to have a much easier time with Geology 2: Electric Boogaloo on friday. And I can redo all my case studies from IB Geography for that exam on monday.

Vaguely interesting fact one: I saw a new bird in the garden today, and it turns out to be an Eastern Spinebill. I've never seen one before, and they're pretty cute.

Vaguely interesting fact two: the moon is rising, and since my bedroom window faces east I can see it as I write this. With the lights turned off it's amazingly luminescent - must be almost full - and there's a faint star near it. Sometimes you forget how awesome nature is, and then it leaves you going 'dude, wow' again. We have an awesome natural satellite.
It's cold, the train was late, the bus was crowded, I had a geography essay due today and it's not in (and yes I've known the due date since the semester started and yes I left it until last night shutupshutupshutup), I panicked for an hour during Latin when I thought I'd left my USB containing said essay at home, I had it all along but I still didn't finish the essay on time, it's cold, I missed my Latin tute because I thought I had a test in atmospheric science and I didn't, one of the buttons on my jacket came off, it's really bloody cold, I'm tired, and I have 'Beyond the Sea' stuck in my head.

I never knew mondays could be such... mondays.
I feel as though I haven't updated my sadly-neglected journal since christmas, which is broadly true, because three words and a link do not an update make, however awesome the news. I was not eaten by zombies, declared an enemy of the peace, or awarded the Nobel Prize for Being Awesome, which doesn't exist but should. I guess it's a bit late for bragging about christmas swag, so I shall say only this: owl calendars, Spamalot t-shirt, and all four seasons of Blackadder ftw.

What happened...

...almost a month ago:
we flew to Adelaide on christmas day. I don't know why either, the plane was packed anyway. I miss the good ol' days of travelling to Europe when you could have three seats to yourself because everyone was afraid of SARS. In any case, I bought Hogfather at the airport so all was well. It was nice to see the relatives, and my little cousins are growing up to be very cute. They have the same set-up as my brother and I: girl and boy, two and half years apart. I think it works well. Adelaide itself feels more like a big country town than the capital of a state, but I will say this: the sky is beautiful there. They have a special sort of afternoon light that makes the hills red and orange, and it doesn't exist in Melbourne. I think it's because of the humidity in the air, but it's beautiful, and makes for great stargazing. My inner scientist is slowly taking over, because I was mostly excited about stargazing and investigating an old quarrey up in the hills. Geology and archaeology in one burst, huzzah! I convinced my brother to come with me, and we started off up the hill. It was steeper and less tree-ish than I remembered, but we pressed on. We eventually gave up about halfway up to the top, but the views were nice. We learned later that it was not, in fact, the way to the quarrey at all, and we'd tried to walk up there at midday, in mid-30s heat and 5% humidity. Sometimes we're kinda dumb that way.

Howl's Moving Castle was on the tv on Christmas night, and it was a nice end to the day. They may have taken a few liberties with the plot, but the art made it awesome. Dammit, I want to live in a house that can change locations, walks on two legs and has a snarky fire demon. I think by this act I introduced my aunt to anime, which is all good. I just hope she finds the tamer shows first.

...two weeks ago: more holidays, this time to a beach house on the coast of Victoria. While Melbourne sweltered under 40-degree days, we sat back and laughed and, er, sweltered under 40-degree days. But we had sea-breezes, so hah. I got sunburnt and it still hasn't faded, but such is the price I pay for English skin. I burn faster than an oil-soaked wad of tissue paper in the Sahari desert. We walked along the beach and waited for the New Year, and aliens tried to abduct us*.

We drove along the coast to see the Apostles Of An Indeterminate Number, and my inner geologist squeed. My family winced as I took a multitude of pictures of the eroding coastline, and listened rather unwillingly to me pointing out the layers in the rock and how the beaches were formed, etc, etc. My father and brother will warn you against travelling in a car with me along the Eastern Freeway in Melbourne, because I will not shut up about geology. Is it my fault that the freeway has an awesome collection of geological features? Seriously, they have a monocline and layered beds and synforms and antiforms and faults in the rocks and erosion and a completely different set of dark volcanic basalt rocks, I could make a geology bingo game if I could find some other people to play with...

I'm doomed, I know.

*well, surveillance helicopters. But they had large searchlights like all proper aliens.

...a week ago: I thought that my efforts to cover my local shops with resumes had finally been useful, because I got a call asking me to come in for job training. 'Huzzah!' said I, 'I will have money and a reason to get up before midday!'

The experience made me swear off shop assistant jobs for life.

I disliked wearing make-up and heeled shoes, but I could accept that as necessary. But I would have been all alone while I worked, and I am not naturally talented at selling things to people. I did six hours of training last week, and wondered if the store owners would look down on me for doing the crossword at slow points in the job. Besides that, it's been a week and no phone call, no email, no nothing. I don't even know if I've got the job, and at this point I'm inclined to decline it. I'll go back to Wholefoods and practice serving food instead. I don't mind being paid in food stamps.

On the plus side, I spent a book voucher on Reaper Man (the book that changed my views of shopping trolleys forever) and Feet of Clay. I feel like a true Discworld fan. I've read all the books apart from FaustEric and Wintersmith, and I am the proud owner of:

Guards! Guards!
The Wee Free Men
Good Omens
Reaper Man
Going Postal
Feet of Clay
Making Money
(which I'm disinclined to include, because I didn't enjoy it.)

...this week: I have not done very much apart from reading [community profile] metaquotes and [community profile] fandom_secrets, and visiting the library. My goal this year is to read fifty new books, and I'm up to four so far, although I went to the library and came back with... er... seven. My backpack is a thing of beauty. Spacious! Red! Padded straps! Multiple sections! Pockets! And what I like most is a little carabena hook for keys. It is awesome.

I also bought new sunglasses, because my old ones have been with me for at least five years and I was getting sick of tightening the screws constantly, even if doing so with my penknife was interesting on the bus. The new ones are black, and apparently have seven layers of protection, which makes me feel better about the price. 'Forty dollars!' quoth I, 'this is a sore price on a uni student budget!' But they sang sweetly* and convinced me.

*the constant stream of strange music at K-mart may have influenced my mental state at this point.

...this weekend: Apparently, the wildlife of the eastern suburbs of Melbourne loves me. While out walking during the last two days, I have crossed paths with kookaburras, a turtle, a tiny possum and two Tawny Frogmouths (and as I now know from my perfectionist brother, they are not in fact owls, in the same way that daddylonglegs are not spiders. But I digress.) I got within two meters of the second one, and it was beautiful, if rather stupid. It flew down onto the gutter, and then didn't move when a car approached. I had to shoo it away, silly thing. I have also had to escort a grasshopper from my bedroom, and a spider from the living room.

And now I must go away and beat my muses into submission if I want to get anything done at all. Yes, Beruthiel, I am looking at you. And it doesn't help that I want to write The Muse's Guide to AuthorsWriting Slaves.
I've had a rather boring day and not much is going on right now, life-wise or fic-wise, but I was amused by this news article: chartered cruise to Antarctica runs into an iceberg. Nobody was hurt, but the ship sank. I can't help thinking that this is the planet's revenge for global warming.

EARTH: Increase my CO2 levels, will you? ICEBERGS! ATTACK!

NINJA TRAINED ATTACK ICEBERGS: ph33r our l33tness! *float into major shipping routes*

SHIPS: Argh! Nooooooooooo!

EARTH: All shall love me and despair.
There was no repeat of yesterday morning, which was somewhat of a relief. I haven't seen our hairy friend since yesterday morning, but someone who bears a striking resemblance to him decided to visit the toilet. Bro bravely took on the mantle of Man Of The House and escorted him outside. I went to investigate my room yesterday, and found it completely spiderless. I was armed with a broom, and damn. You have no idea how much more empowered you feel until you have a way of dealing with spiders while being five feet away from them. I'm much more confident about them in general now, but I'm still opening drawers and doors and boxes and cupboards warily, because I'm sure there is a Spring Coiled Ninja Attack Spider behind one of them. It's just one of those things.

The only other thing I did today was go over to see the cats, who almost chewed my legs off. I forgot to feed them yesterday. *is ashamed* (But in my defence, I had to wait at home most of the day for the bed and the oven man to come. Both are fixed now, btw. And I spoil the fuzzbuckets more than I should, and they are not going to die of starvation any time soon.) I walked home instead of catching the train, and it was nice. Along one stretch of street, it was almost silent apart from the wind in the trees and half a cicada buzzing mournfully in the gutter.

Yes, half a cicada. As in 'has no lower body but is still alive' cicada. I was going to put it out of its misery, but the buzzing must have been the poor thing's death throes, because it went quiet. Damn birds.

And I've just been reorganised my lj memories. Now I have a chance to actually find something! Huzzah!

*goes back to reading [community profile] metaquotes*

Ooh! And Happy Turkey Day to the people who are celebrating it! If like me you are not, Happy Day! We need an annual Happy Day...
EL: *wakes up to sound of rain on the roof* Ah, thank you, weathergods.

RADIO: *plays soothing music*

EL: *gets up* Waitaminute... something is different here.


EL: *blinkblink*

SPIDER: So yeah, it's really wet out there and can I crash at your place?

EL: You are very lucky that I'm not awake enough to freak out about this. Not on the bed. Wall, and stay where I can see you.

SPIDER: waaaaaaaah why do I get no love?


SPIDER: IT'S NOT MY FAULT I WAS BORN LIKE THIS! Or hatched. Whatever. El's the scribe, and she doesn't know biology.

EL: I am not awake enough for this. *goes off to get coffee*

What is probably happening right now:

SPIDER: Hey guys, she said it was cool if we crashed here! Party at El's place!
We have a visitor of the family Sparassidae in the lounge room. I have named him Septimus, since he only has seven legs, poor thing.



May 2012



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