Stuff

Thursday, 16 January 2014 20:30
lea_hazel: The Little Mermaid (Default)
I'd like to write a serious, contemplative post, but...

Chores continue to be a pain in the ass, mainly when combined with family issues. Really, I'd rather just put it out of my mind if that's at all possible.

I picked up a translation job through a Facebook friend, mainly to occupy my time productively. The article actually deals with a lot of the same stuff I was studying (less than a year ago!) so it's bringing up some mixed emotions. The subject matter is very interesting, but I think it might be out of date.

Speaking of higher education, holy shit! In six weeks the OP semester starts. The only course I'm in is discrete mathematics, but given my tenure as a mathphobe, I think that's plenty. Somehow, two thirds of an OU degree is less intimidating than 12 credits at the "closed university".

Because I can't maintain moods for any discernible period of time, I have no idea how I feel about my writing. I have been reading a ~classic pro slash fic that I'd been "meaning to read" for the last decade or so. Let me tell you, if I'd read these books when they were published... my fandom career would have unfolded quite differently.

My computer has been freezing regularly and I can't figure out why. Time for another cleaning as a catch-all fix?
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
Low available synaptic serotonin in the prefrontal cortex can lead to increased aggression, inappropriate hostility, and screaming your head off at people who push you on the line for the lightrail.

Chronic stress can cause fluctuations in the immune system, an increase in pro-inflammatory factors in the blood, and a gross psoriatic patch on your ankle.

Altruistic punishment motivates people to sacrifice their own gains in order to maximize an opponent's loss, due to the opponent being perceived as anti-social.

Up to 40% of the variation in temperament and personality between identical twins who shared a placenta can be accounted for by unshared (chiefly peer) environment.

I've slept poorly three nights in a row, I'm stressed and nervous, and I studied less hours than I had intended due to life interference and emotional volatility. I am still pretty sure I'm going to ace the fuck out of this test. Which is good, because I have to leave in about twenty minutes and there's no summary document for me to do a quick review from.

Crossing fingers that I don't mix up vasopressin and oxytocin (or worse yet, 5-HTTLPR and DRD4).
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
I have two major papers due before I can finish my degree. I had a brilliant energy-saving plan of focusing one of them on a subject I already dealt with once a couple of years ago. I would have a good portion of the research done and available, and I could look at very recent developments, and it would be interesting and cool. Now I'm looking back at the work I did two years ago, and oh mercy lord. It's not that I didn't know I had a problem, it's just that it keeps becoming stupidly stark in front of my eyes and somehow that never fails to amaze me.

No matter how many times I remind myself that it's terrible, I still keep picking up projects with far too wide a scope and failing to narrow them down properly. I was skimming the bibliography of this work to get an idea of the material I'd need to review, and I think I lost count at fifteen. Why would a work of this scope need a bibliography that deep? What was I thinking? Also, I misspelled dysregulation. Sometimes I just get so angry at myself over such things.

Focus

Tuesday, 11 June 2013 12:36
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
Glad to see this project is starting to come along, finally, given that it's due in a stress-inducing week. Prioritizing and scheduling are ongoing learning curve skills, for me. Also glad to note that the Ritalin appears to be taking effect -- pretty dramatically. I still have to rally my self-control, naturally, and I still have to restrain myself from pacing, or opening tabs, or switching between articles in the middle of a sentence.

But if I try to do it, it usually works.

Follow up with the neurologist should be interesting. I've been wanting to avoid using words like "anxiety" or "agoraphobia" but it appears there's no way around it. Once again I'm thwarted by the lamentable fact that ignoring problems doesn't make them go away. Maybe next time it'll work?

If I manage my deadlines, and get my Pilates schedule back on track, and remember to eat meals... and if, and if, and if... by the end of August I'll have a degree. And I refuse to rack my brain over employment until after I've done that. I have no time to be anxious about resumes and job prospects, not until I've wrapped this degree up.

Why is everything so difficult?

At least I can say I'm making progress, even if it doesn't always look like it.

Neuroblah

Thursday, 18 October 2012 18:30
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
Hello children, it's time for another "good idea/bad idea"!

Writing a semester-long research project on the neuropsychological aspects of sleep paralysis: good idea, or bad idea?

Groan. I swear this university will drive me to drink.

Joints

Sunday, 27 May 2012 13:45
lea_hazel: Arthritis: It does the body bad (Health: Arthritis)
I pinpointed an orientation that my right arm can't hold, while reading an article about visual perception for cognitive neuroscience. I feel unreasonably proud of this.
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
According to neuro lecturer, "neurological noise" in the synaptic networks is responsible for creativity. As we get older, he says, brain cells die out, and older people have fewer solutions to problems available. Or, are less likely to find novel solutions. I didn't 100% get it because he's kind of weirding me out now.

And all of this is because of Connexin-36.

On a different note, 36 is one of those numbers that haunts me.
lea_hazel: Kermit: OMG YAY *flail* (Feel: OMGYAY)
Last night I finally installed Dragon Age: Origins. I was going to set up my character and play for like an hour or two, just to get a good feel for the game. During the character's introduction mission, I got stuck in a fire trap and had to repeat an escape sequence 4-5 times before I managed to avoid getting myself and my companion killed by guards. By then it was getting kind of late, so naturally I just went and played for three more hours. Mysteriously, while I was trying to save and close the game, my mouse flipped out and I had to change the batteries.

Read more... )

Maybe I'll play all night tonight. That's what the holiday of freedom is for, right?
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
Kandel 4th edition:

"The [smooth pursuit] system requires a moving stimulus in order to calculate the proper eye velocity. Thus, a verbal command or an imagined stimulus cannot produce smooth pursuit."

File under: "Ways in which smooth pursuit eye motion differs from orgasm."

"Drugs, fatigue, alcohol, and even distraction degrade the quality of these movements."

File under: "Ways in which smooth pursuit eye motion and orgasm are pretty similar, actually."

This is how I memorize things that don't interest me.
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
If I was a killer robot and you needed a logic bomb (warning: TV Tropes link) to incapacitate my processor, there's one question that would probably work best: What's the opposite of "antagonist"?

I'm sure many fanfic-writing neurobiologists sympathize with my plight.

This post brought to you by the fact that I should be studying amoeboid movement patterns right now.
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
That song "don't hate me 'cause I'm beautiful" has become inextricably coupled, in my mind, with playing Minecraft. It is simply impossible for me to think of one without conjuring the other. I imagine Pavlovian hijinx are at play here.
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
Holy shit! It's February!

My physiology exam is tomorrow morning. It's the next-to-last in this round, and after it's over I'm giving myself a short break before throwing myself into five days of x-treme biochemistry cramming. It's amazing how I can go from mostly pretty confident to feeling totally unprepared and shockingly ignorant in under an hour, often several times a day. I've learned I have to sort of just plow through it and accept the role of random chance in what topics the lecturers choose to focus on in the exam.

I have so much shit to do in terms of chores. I have so much non-chore shit I want to do but have been putting off. I haven't written in what feels like centuries. Not just the dropping of little vignettes with almost no editing, like my Homestuck ficlets. Real, honest-to-fuck writing that takes time and effort and produces discernibly awesome results. I want that. And movies, and parties, and meeting my friends just to sit in a coffee shop and gab like nosy poultry. And going places.

Anyway NC has 51 followers and I figure I'll make either chocolate balls or rice crispy treats to celebrate, but that's on Friday. First I have to do the stupid test and get some chores done, including doctor's appointments because I am getting sick of wheezing, and a well overdue package. Oh noes. Once that is over and done with, perhaps I'll read the actually fascinating articles for next semester's seminar?

*Sigh*

Sunday, 16 January 2011 21:25
lea_hazel: A frowning white theater mask (Feel: Sad Face :()
Today was a frustrating day. There was a revision class for my next test, but it was scheduled at 8 AM and I could not coerce myself out of bed. Then I planned to study from about 10 AM until about 4 PM, and then go to a free enrichment lecture at the campus. I got a bit of studying in and then I needed to spend most of the rest of daytime tending to urgent family business. I missed the lecture, which I'm okay with (I haven't had much time for campus events this semester), and I got home a little before six.

I'm a lot more wound down now, but I haven't done nearly as much studying as I'd like. And yesterday I did none. At least I remembered to mail in my last statistics assignment at the last moment this morning, after finishing the last five annoying square sums. :( I still have to do my last abnormal psychology assignment, which probably would have been interesting if I wasn't so busy. They're rewriting the DSM and there's a whole to-do about personality disorders, I could have easily lost myself in the documentation if good sense didn't call me off.

Tomorrow I have a meeting regarding the seminar next semester.

My friend got out of the hospital today (or is it yesterday your time? *waves*). I guess I will have to entertain her while she convalesces?
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
I'm working on statistics. We're studying two variable analysis, which involves making tables of numbers and then checking to see if they form sets. Series of numbers are the sort of thing I find oddly relaxing, although today it was a setback because I found it easier to fill the table out right than to explain (or understand) why that's the right way. Interactions are also easier to understand geometrically (the two lines are parallel) than arithmetically. Then I start thinking about how I process numbers and I get distracted.

Once, a while ago, I posted (on my old journal) about gender and color coding, and how I thought green was more masculine-coded than blue. Just not it occurred to me that maybe it's because it's farther from pink. This is a weird idea, I guess, and it doesn't explain everything. But, when we were little girls at school we went through an obligatory pink-liking phase and then an obligatory "I am too mature to like pink and purple" phase. During that second one, it was fashionable to like blue, which is the next over from purple. Green is the next over from blue, without veering into the orange-yellow spectrum which was the favorite-color territory of eccentrics.

My brain is a very strange place to live, sometimes.

I have not yet watched the finale of Lost Girl. I was all pumped to watch it yesterday and then I somehow forgot, IDK. Tonight I have to deal with some laundry issues so maybe I'll watch it Wednesday. Maybe if I put it off long enough, this whole finale business will turn out to have been a big misunderstanding, and there'll be a new episode next week.
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Basic: Science)
So today I had a biochemistry quiz and it wasn't as bad as I was dreading, and tomorrow I have a physiology quiz that I may not have time to study for :( because I am so tired and behind on everything. As part of an exercise in not working myself to a crying frenzy, the only thing I absolutely have to do tonight is finish my Excel exercise and mail it in, and that's only because it's, um, due. And tomorrow afternoon I'll have Happy Fun Catch-Up Time where I do a bunch of work so I'll be ahead next week.

Gretchen Lieberum is an amazing jazz singer who I discovered in high school through a music-loving internet friend, listened to constantly in the army, and then pretty much forgot about. Brazen Girl is one of my favorite songs ever.



These dudes made a book and it sold better than Glenn Beck's for one day, and now he's all pissed at them. I looked up Glenn Beck and now I wish I hadn't.

This dude tries to talk to evangelical Christians who are sincerely worried about gay teen suicide, but still believe gayness is a sin. While respectful and forthcoming, he in no way cuts them any slack (or sugarcoats, as he puts it). It's a fascinating read.

Jack Chick says that Halloween is Satan's birthday. I thought it was like All Saints' Eve or something? *shrug*

I feel that LOLtapirs pretty much speak for themselves.

Check it out, this dude doctor of philosophy (!) does pretty much exactly what I'd like to do. With my life, I mean. Altered intracellular calcium signaling!

To do: Eat soup and watch Lost Girl.

My Disgusting Toes

Saturday, 3 July 2010 21:38
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Basic: Science)
Social psychology exam is tomorrow at 8:30 AM, which means a 6:00 AM wakeup so that I'm absolutely, positively not late. Right now I'm at the point where looking at the material I have to study makes me slightly queasy, and I'm only at page 11 out of 38 of the summary of the book. The summary, not the actual book. And I slacked so hard this semester, I was all like, "Pfft social psychology fuck that noise, I have naptimes! genetics homework."

Spotlight effect: People are not horrified by my totally disgusting toes even if I'm absolutely convinced they're staring at my feet and judging me.

Overjustification: Apparently if you have an objective (?) external incentive to do something, you preceive it as less fun? Seriously WTF-inducing, what is wrong with the human brain, IDEK. I wonder if it's related to the effect of not perceiving an action as altruistic/healthy/moral if you enjoy it.

This cover of that one song is pretty-sounding and also hilarious. A winning combination!

ETA: Ben Franklin effect: "I was rude to you, so you must be an asshole. Oh yeah? Well, FUCK YOU, ASSHOLE!"

For Science?

Friday, 2 July 2010 11:06
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
So this history channel documentary about neuroscience was actually pretty interesting, but then they switched from talking about athletic skill and body memory to talking about ESP, "sixth senses" and John Edward. Yeah. They recorded his brainwaves.

Bad scientist! No cookie.

Cognitive Bias

Wednesday, 9 June 2010 20:08
lea_hazel: Neuron cell (Science: Brains)
I am going through the visual guide to cognitive bias and cataloging all the ways I have noticed in which my brain is broken. I'm probably missing a ton, but it's still interesting (and daunting).

Augh.

Monday, 10 May 2010 20:15
lea_hazel: Kermit: OMG YAY *flail* (Feel: OMGYAY)
So exhausted constantly. Hope it's the heat (32C high today) and not something drastic.

The presentation went all right, I knew the material a lot better than last time and so was only typically nervous. I misspoke a few times, but it was only (what I have just looked up and learned is called in English) metathesis. I got a couple of compliments too, even though most people don't really listen that much. The article chain we were working on was pretty interesting. I posted to [community profile] pfc about the first one. I consider that my contribution to 3W4DW, since I post to this journal exclusively, so this "content" doesn't count.

Today I got blood drawn and now I have to try and put off my doctor's appointment by a week or so, because there's no way my bloodwork will be done on time. Tomorrow night is the Students' Day show, which should be super-awesome because they brought Kool and the Gang, and it's absurdly cheap for an international caliber show. Next week is Shavuot and I am looking at cool recipes for dairy-related products.

Oh! I almost forgot why I meant to post to begin with. My social psychology lecturer totally redeemed herself in today's class, where she very gently and evenly went off about positive thinking theory. She basically said that she doesn't know what merit it has, but that saying that people get/stay sick because they aren't thinking positively enough is victim blaming. ♥ Dr. R.
lea_hazel: The outlook is somewhat dismal (Feel: Crash and Burn)
Here is a list of things that will have to wait until I've finished my bacteriophage lab report:

1. Blogging against disablism day, reading and relinking thereof.
2. My Dreamwidth bloggaversary, which is either today or tomorrow.
3. Posting to [community profile] pfc, which I have been putting off for about a week and a half.
4. Pants. I seriously need new pants.
5. Reading comics. I am sadly behind and don't have time to catch up.
6. Replying to comments? I don't even remember if I'm behind or not.
7. Going to the market to stock up on fresh fruit and vegetables, not to mention other non-approximate food.

Here is a list of things that can't wait until I finish my lab report:

1. Statistics homework, due Monday afternoon. Pairs assignment.
2. 3/4 page summary of an article about "anger and the behavioral approach system", due, as a presentation, in two weeks. Group assignment.

I swear I will post about something more interesting than school, someday soon.

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lea_hazel: The Little Mermaid (Default)
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