Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Personal Update

It's been a bit busy here, and posting has been lights, but I thought I would give you an update on how things are going with me.

Shillingford was fantastic. At 400 acres, it is quite large for a family farm, especially since much of the planting and harvesting is done by hand. The vegetables were simply the best I've ever had. The difference between live, fresh organic vegetables and supermarket vegetables is the same difference between freeze-dried camping rations and supermarket vegetables. Incredible. If you live in the Exeter area, they will deliver weekly for reasonable prices.

While I was there I ate an entire head of lettuce in two meals. Now, if you are only familiar with iceberg lettuce, this will of course sound disgusting, but this is real lettuce. Like in this post. I had one of my faviourite sandwiches: toasted bread with hummus, tomato puree, tahini, lots of crushed chili flakes, and about 20-30 layers of lettuce. The bread was organic spelt grown and baked on the farm. I can feel it scrubbing my insides whenever I eat it. Mmmm...

I'm pretty busy doing more marking. This time it is 60 stats exams (regression and factor analysis) I need to finish by Monday. It's going alright, but it is very mind-numbing to read 60 responses in a row to each question. After these, I should be done for the term though.

I'm still looking forward to teaching Intro to Psychology on Friday. It'll be my first time with a class younger than university-age, which for some reason is more intimidating than teaching masters students.

I just finished a longitudinal study with 150 participants completing all parts. Retention rate was +80%, which is fantastic. I'm really looking forward to analyzing the results, but that may have to wait for a week or two. I'll tell a bit more about the study and the results in the next few weeks.

I've been exploring all the fun that can be had with a pressure washer. No, I'm not speaking of colonic irrigation, I'm talking about using it on my back patio and finding out the concrete tiles are not actually gray as I always thought, but are instead a chessboard pattern of yellow and pink (WTF?) Yes, that's right. My back patio was an awful pink/yellow pattern the whole time concealed by decades of gray accumulation. The only possible explanation I can think of is that it was the 70s. If I lose enough pride I'll post pictures. I've also discovered that a pressure washer is great for cleaning interior bathrooms... just make sure the walls and ceiling are waterproof.

Yesterday I developed some kind of eye-infection. I got the exact same thing in the same eye at this time last year. I've got some antibiotics for it, so it should clear up soon. The antibiotic is chloramphenicol, which is in eye drop form. It's pretty freaky because it goes through human tissue like water through soil. When I put a drop in my eye, about one minute later I can taste the drop in my mouth as it trickles down through the inside of my head. Now that's pretty cool. I wouldn't want to teach my first high school class with freakin pink eye.

And what else? Oh, yes, our house nearly burned down yesterday. The toaster decided it would keep toasting indefinitely. I heard some, shall we say, colourful exclamations coming from Sita in the kitchen so I ran in and found 1 ft flames coming out of the toaster and so much smoke that I could not see the wall on the other side of the room. It could have been bad if no one had returned to the kitchen for a few minutes. Crisis averted though; however the house still smells of burnt toast.

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