30 May, 2011

On blog posting/blogging/whatever the trendy terminology is these days

I have been gradually refining my blogging into something that I am happy with. It started out as a personal blog, that I would pick up every once in a while and post whatever I felt like. Totally random.

Then at the beginning of this year, I realised that I was annoying the hell out of my Facebook friends by posting so many articles on stuff I liked. So I stopped posting so much political stuff (though I still do... can't help it, I'm a bit of a news junkie) on Facebook and started posting the "non-fun/more serious" stuff here.

Now however, I think I would like to try to re-post articles less, and actually comment on what I am reading more. Try to think and analyse things a bit better before I just spam spam spam and blah blah blah till the cows come home.

I think I will actually start to say what I think more.... but I am going to think more BEFORE I say it... or at least try.... cuz that's all we can really do. Try, and try again. And even when we think we've finished and solved whatever problem, and we think it's time to rest on our laurels and enjoy life a little more.... that's exactly the moment that we should try harder, and try again.

Thank you Sandra

Being a cop in Hoofddorp must be a really tough job. You know everyone, everyone knows you, people talk, etc. etc. So a lot of good judgement is required so that you don't go overboard and arrest people before they really, really should be arrested. Haha I just re-read my post, and realised that it sounds like I should have been arrested, but Sandra didn't, and therefore I am posting this. Loooolz not.


Sandra, you're too cool for words. Thanks so much for helping me. I seriously doubt I will ever forget you. Ook niet omdat ik wil wel terug in Hoofddorp komen, dus ik zie je zo. Een echt heel lange zo, maar... ik zie je zo. ;))))) Kx

24 May, 2011

Enda and Obama, analysed

This link is interesting: it shows the speech and inflection patterns in Enda Kenny's and Barack Obama's recent discourses.

I have been absolutely loving all of my friend's Facebook posts about the Obama and Queen visits. It was a fantastic time to be in Dublin at Trinity, that's for sure. Big ups to my friend Jane McGowan who had the chance to see the Obama speech at Trinity -- she is involved with Amnesty at Trinity like I was -- but who had her final exam for her law degree the same day!!! She was seriously considering bunking off her exam to see the speech, but she didn't, and now she has graduated, so good woman girl!!!!

18 May, 2011

NOT a post about DSK

Just a post about my own stuff, though there's plenty of turmoil in the world right now...

Now that I've opened a window and committed to a post, there's no turning back, even though I'm drawing a complete blank right now. Sometimes, when you have so many feelings and want to express so much, you can withdraw and end up not saying anything at all. I was never like this before, but then before, I never had so much insight. Now that I seem to have an awful lot, I am struck dumb. How apt.

Nuff said. Nothing to see here, carry on...

16 May, 2011

Great site for extreme word nerds and grammar nazis

Unfortunately I'm in the throes of a work avalanche right now, so I can't explore this site as much as I'd like to. Thanks so much to Felix for giving me the heads-up.

05 May, 2011

Alberta's biggest oil spill in 30 years is a call to action for Canadians

The message is clear: Get off oil.

Northern Alberta has become a big mess since oil sands began production.

"At least 4.5 million litres of oil have spilled across part of the Peace River watershed in northern Alberta. It's the biggest crude oil pipeline spill in that province since 1975, and it's being described as "a major, major spill involving a significant amount of product" by provincial regulators, who took five days to announce Friday's spill to the public. Incidentally, it was also the second pipeline spill to take place in Alberta last week.

How long it will take to clean up the spill and how badly it will impact the people and environment around it is still unclear. Oil gushed out of the pipeline within the traditional territory of the Lubicon Cree, who lead a largely subsistence lifestyle within the pristine ecology of northern Alberta's boreal forest. The school in Little Buffalo, about 30 kilometres from the spill, is closed and residents are saying they've experienced nausea, burning eyes and headaches since the leak began. Some community members report that the oil is still leaking into the surrounding forest and bog.

What we do know is that no matter how many times oil companies tell us that practices and technology are improving, we'll never stop having spills so long as we depend on fossil fuels and the devices — including pipelines — that move them between coasts, countries and continents. The spills in Michigan and the Gulf of Mexico are a few recent examples, not to mention iconic disasters like Exxon Valdez. As old pipelines age and new ones are proposed — including the Enbridge pipelines that would tear tracks across Alberta and British Columbia to provide oil to American and Asian markets — the likelihood of spills grows.
What can you do about oil spills?

Get off oil. Reducing our dependence on oil means switching to cleaner energy sources and cutting energy consumption as much as we can.

But preventing oil spills requires more than individual action. Northern Alberta is being hammered by oil and gas activities, with few plans in place to make sure that industrial development happens in a way that protects the environment, or the people and cultures so intimately connected to it. This is particularly true for First Nations, who with the help of Amnesty International are raising the issue as a matter of international human rights."

And, in slightly related fish news... Fish retail labels 'inadequate' say conservationists

I especially appreciate the last quote:

Consumers are not being given enough information on labels to allow them to make the choice to buy sustainable fish, according to conservationists.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) said it is still "virtually impossible to tell precisely where most fish and fish products have been caught".

But the British Retail Consortium said retailers do "give consumers as much information as possible".

The MCS's views come amid the launch of its new website aimed at consumers.

Where labelling by retailers is concerned, the MCS said information that is more detailed than the species, the ocean it comes from and the fishing method is needed to help people discriminate between sustainable and unsustainable seafood.

The MCS has published comprehensive updated advice on buying fish caught from sustainably managed stocks.

The latest advice issued by the conservationists shows improvements in the management and status of stocks in some fisheries, including cod from the eastern and western Baltic and the north-east Arctic, and anchovies from the Bay of Biscay.

Sustainable fish

* Mackarel
* Pollack not caught by trawling
* Red mullet
* Sardines, except those caught in the Mediterranean and Bay of Biscay

Source: MCS

However, the situation has worsened where other fish are concerned.

Dover sole caught by the destructive method of beam trawling in the western English Channel, the Irish Sea and south-west and west Ireland has been listed as a fish to avoid.

And consumers have also been urged to avoid yellowfin tuna caught using purse seine nets or long lines in the Indian Ocean.

But eating skipjack tuna caught using poles and lines in the Western Atlantic has the green light thanks to improvements in data on the stocks.

Dr Peter Duncan, of the MCS, said: "If supermarkets could get their produce from well-managed fisheries and label it as such, it opens up new opportunities for the public and fishermen. It's a win-win."

Next time someone calls you FishFace, don't be offended

This is QUITE freaky -- Watch the video on the link!

It may seem strange that humans have evolved from fish, but the evidence can be found not just in fossils but also within our own bodies.

Your face is your most expressive feature; it tells the world what you are feeling, who you are and where you come from. Although no two faces are exactly the same, they share a number of common characteristics; a couple of eyes, a nose, a mouth and a philtrum.

The philtrum is the groove on your top lip that lies just beneath your nose. You see it every day in the mirror so you probably never think about it

It has no obvious function. Instead it is an accident of our origins, a clue to our fishy past and how our faces first formed.

Your face is formed in the womb in the first couple of months of life, from when you were the size of a grain of rice to when you were the size of a kidney bean.

The video (above) of a growing human face shows how this process happens. It has been created from high quality scans of human embryos at early stages of development, provided by universities and hospitals.

This unique time-lapse video shows the face developing from a one-month-old embryo to an age of 10 weeks.

If you watch it closely, you will see that the human face is actually formed of three main sections which rotate and come together in an unborn foetus.

The way this happens only really makes sense when you realise that, strange though it may sound, we are actually descended from fish.

02 May, 2011


I love her, I hope her message gets across and isn't clouded by her irrepressible cuteness.

Which will be extremely difficult, because her cut-glass accent plus her attention to diction and over-enunciation plus her utter earnestness and passion multiplied by having a huge snake wrapped around her head equate to an overdose of ultra-cute braveness and 21st century chuzpah.