Welcome to the general thoughts and feelings of a twenty-something British Research Scientist living in the USA.
Okay, so there have been a few films of interest out in the summer months and it would be remiss of me, as something of a film fan/addict, to have not seen some of them. Suffice to say, i've been a few times to the cinema of late and have a few thoughts on some of the films i've seen - both blockbusters and otherwise. SO here they are - reasonably succinctly.
Okay, so this was intending to be a post on how the three year anniversary of my arrival in Charleston was approaching, and how i was going to be celebrating it with my annual cocktail party (with three parties in a row - this is officially a 'trend' in scientific parlance). Anyways, as you've probably guessed if you've been checking the site out from time to time, i've been extremely lax in updating my blog of late. This is not through lack of want, nor of lack of interesting things happening to me. Nor, surprisingly, is this because i've been over run with work (okay, so i have had work to do, a fair amount, but still, it's not all been that). No, this is that typical confluence of events where small amount of lots of things add up to a great big amount of stuff going on, or rather, a great little amount of free time and/or energy where i actually want to spend time thinking about what i'm going to write. Anyways, profuse apologies all round. I will hopefully do better of late.
With the establishing of the MUSC postdoctoral association last May, i had volunteered my services as an executive officer (secretary officially) to try and help get the association on its feet and start things slowly moving. As you can imagine, this is often an uphill goal - a lot of postdocs want things to be done for them without putting in effort whereas others feel that it diverts time away from the lab which is where they should be (in some ways, a point of view i can agree with). With the first year all but over and done with, the time came for elections to be held and some shuffling in the 'cabinet' as it were. Some of us decided we were happy to stay on for the next year (as we'd actually be here) and the voting was done pretty quickly (a smaller group of people means that things do get done decisively for a change).
Of course, things in the world being the way they are right now, it comes as no real surprise that one of the major topics of conversation both on the news, around the watercooler and, frankly, anywhere is the rising cost of petrol over here in the US. Now, i'm sure i've commented before on how the price of petrol over here seem to fluctuate wildly and sometimes on a daily basis. I'm sure i've also covered how i often point out to my American colleagues on how much petrol is costing back home in England right now (of the order of $10 a gallon, i think) and let them know that we do have it lucky over here in that sense. However, the problem lies elsewhere in that the cars have generally bad gas mileage over here compared to other places in the world. And also that people like to have the big cars that squash pedestrians as soon as look as them which doesn't help. They haven't quite got the economic sensibilities yet.
With the Democratic Presidential candidate finally decided (and congratulations to Barack Obama), i guess the only thing left for us to do is settle in for the long, hard race to November. Already the sniping has begun (admittedly on both sides) and the battle lines are being drawn. With such a political atmosphere at the moment, it's perhaps no surprise that virtually everyone is talking about it in some way, shape or form. Despite my best efforts to, frankly, ignore it all, i finally admitted defeat and began to listen to other peoples opinions. Suffice to say, i was rather surprised by some of the attitudes out there.
A (somewhat random) thought occurred to me the other day, as is often the case. As i was laying on my bed half asleep, waiting for my eyes to eventually close, i was busy stroking my cat Jasper as he paraded back and forth in front of the bed. As i stroked him, he meowed at me, so i scratched behind his ears and then his back. I was somewhat surprised to find that when i stopped, he meowed at me until i started again. This, coupled with the fact that i used to play fetch with him when he was a little younger bought me to the conclusion that Jasper is having an identity crisis and thinks he's a dog. Now, perhaps it was the drowsiness talking, but it seemed like a perfectly logical thing to think. Of course, the main thing now is how to make him think more like a cat again. Any suggestions? Write them on a postcard and send them my way!