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Oh, CWA...

Of course the first recipe I try is one of those recipes that isn't actually written down, but passed on by word of mouth. For example, ingredient amounts vary wildly (1/2 to 1 cup of coconut?), a lack of pan size (20 x 20 cm? 20 x 30? It's a mystery!) and a lack of baking time - just "bake until done".

Still, I guess that once I make more of these more free-form CWA recipes I'll eventually get good at the guessing ;)

Bake the Pain Away

What have I been up to lately? Well, I've been having some stressful difficulties at work that have been slowly eroding my soul. So I have fallen back on my favourite stress relief - baking.

And in a fit of madness, I decided to make a cooking blog.


Because clearly what I need is to put myself up for even more public judgement. YAY.

(Seriously, though, I love baking.)

I hate being not well.

I've been using www.patientslikeme.com to keep a track of my mood fluctuations and all that jazz. It's a great resource, but it makes me feel sad to see little graphs of my symptoms staring me back in the face, taunting me with "mwahahaha, see how miserable you can be on bad days".

Today wasn't bad, though. I wasn't an emotional wreck during Sensei Nagae's memorial service because I hopped myself up on xanax just before it started. Of course, this left me dopey and out of it for the rest of the day, but that's okay. The ceremony was lovely, and I think Mrs Nagae was grateful that so many wished to show their respects.

My knees are really shitting me, particularly going to the dojo. I can't put any weight on a bent knee at the moment, which cuts out sune cuts, seiza, jogeburi, happoburi, or even putting on my armor correctly. I can be hit by others as a motodachi, but I'm disappointed in myself that I can't properly spar or demonstrate techniques. I expect there will be a lot of instruction in my future, which is all well and good, but I'm worried that my form will slip badly because of it.

On the other hand, I am trying to be philosophical about it. I think it will give me more of a chance to practice shinpan, and therefore force my students to do more shiai and engi. I need to stop thinking of myself as a fellow student and more of an instructor. It's a matter of trying to make the best of a bad situation.

I'm reluctant to start on any stength training or physiotherapy for my legs until I've seen a specialist, but there are some things that I think I would like to do in the meantime. I think I will take this opportunity to start building up arm and upper body strength with weights, and abdominal strength with various types of sit ups and the like. Anything that doesn't put strain on my knees in any way. I think I'd also like to try out swimming and see how that goes. So, I guess I'm in the market for a new swimsuit :P


Writer's Block: Life imitating art

Which movie or book character are you most like, and why?

Honestly, I have no idea. The misunderstood Danish prince in me always had a soft spot for Katchoo from "Strangers in Paradise", but if you know the series you know how unlike my life her's is. I also identify strongly with Anne Elliot from "Persuasion", but again there are too many differences to say that I'm really like her.

I'm going to take a leaf out of krysadis; I'm super curious as to who you think I'm like. Screened for the time being, but I'll unscreen when it looks like I'm not getting any more.

It's all over!

Today I handed in the final, hard-copy version of my thesis. The PhD, and my entire career as a student, is officially over.

Choc cranberry cookies

Recipies to try... Read more...Collapse )



Seriously. For their sake, and for the sake of the rest of the population.


"Data 'faked' on vaccine dangers
January 7, 2011

AN INFAMOUS 1998 study that ignited a worldwide scare over vaccines and autism - and led millions of parents to delay or decline potentially lifesaving vaccinations for their children - was ''an elaborate fraud'', according to a scathing three-part investigation in the British Medical Journal.

The study has long since been debunked and dismissed by the scientific community, which points to 14 studies that have failed to find any link between vaccines and autism.

Last year, The Lancet issued a formal retraction and British medical authorities found the study's lead author, Andrew Wakefield, guilty of serious professional misconduct, stripping him of his ability to practise medicine in Britain.
Advertisement: Story continues below

Now, the British Medical Journal reports that Dr Wakefield, who was paid more than $US675,000 ($A676,000) by a lawyer hoping to sue vaccine makers, was not just unethical but falsified data in the study, which suggested children developed autism after being vaccinated against measles, mumps and rubella.

In fact, the children's records show some had symptoms of developmental problems long before being vaccinated. Several had no autism diagnosis at all.

Dr Wakefield could not be reached for comment.

Vaccination rates in England plummeted after his news conference to promote his study.


Thesis pictures

I even have pics for you :P Read more...Collapse )

Guess what?

I just submitted my PhD thesis.

I am a leaf in the wind!

Question for the Pig and Whistle Society

Does anyone know who Mollinda is, or who's alt they are?

List of Bloodrop Perfume Bottles

Blooddrop Clothing and Fineries perfume bottles in my collection. Read more...Collapse )

Violette Market Perfume

Descriptions of Violette Market perfume bottles in my collection. Read more...Collapse )

Possets Perfume

Descriptions (that I could find) of the Possets bottles I own.

Read more...Collapse )

Names and adventures

I've pretty much decided to name my girls Cinder and Tanuki. Cinder is grey, the colour of fine ash, and is a little aloof, and while she was the more boisterous of the pair she seems to be the most stayed at the moment. Tanuki (who will probably get called Nuki most of the time) has unbelieveably soft fur, and is terribly affectionate combined with being terribly skittish.

My arms ache from stretching them under the couch to pat the girls. Tanuki craves the affection, and will rub and purr against my hands (with the occasional, playful chewing). Cinder seems to disdain human contact at the moment, but this morning I had the small victory of having her sit quietly and purr as I stretched to stroke her. They are getting more settled and happier, then, if I can make them both purr. That's how I see it.

I'm keeping them closed in the front room until they feel comfortable enough to do some exploring. There was evidence that they had come out from under the couch last night - toys were scattered, some food was gone, the litter tray had footprints but no leavings in it. So, they're not completely terrified, which is a good thing.

I changed their food this morning when I said hello. I slipped the dry food bowl under for them, and they both had a nibble, but I've left it on the outside of the couch for now. So long as they know there is food, eventually hunger will bring them out. I'm hoping they work out that the litter tray is there for their use, not for decoration, while I'm out of the house today.

I know I'm serious about these two because I slipped Bunyip's favourite fluffy blanket under the couch for them. It's very soft and warm, and I hope that they like it.

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Watch this.

Even if you don't like Penny Arcade, watch this.


Tell your friends to watch it.

Goodbye, my sweet baby girl

To my bunyip_the_cat,

Sleep, my baby girl. Sleep now, and rest your weary head.

And may you awake in a place free of hurt and disease and fear, where the mice are always slow and fat, where the water runs in streams cool and sweet, where there is dappled shade and bright sunbeams a plenty.

May you pad softly in the shadows of gods.

I love you, sweetpea. And I will miss you more than I can say in words.

Confidant, loyalest of loyal companions, truest of true friends.

There may be other cats in my life, but there will only ever be one Bunyip.

Goodbye, my sweet baby cat.

Merry Cheesecakemas!

Happy Winter's Veil to all you pervy WoW fanciers ;) Read more...Collapse )

Cat Empire

"Car Song" - it's awesome, and you know you love it. Read more...Collapse )


This was something in the comments section of a post of mine in response to a question about the safety of the swine flu vaccine that is being made avaliable in Australia in the near future (thanks to delwyn for the suggestion). I am not a medical doctor, and I am not an immunologist, but this is basically a run down on how the swine flu vaccine works as I understand it.



Within reason, no company or government is going to put forward an unsafe treatment/control issue when it comes to disease. I say within reason because a) novel drugs may have unexpected consequences that weren't looked for in screening and b) chemotherapy, for example, is rather unsafe, you have to admit.

As I understand it, the development of the swine flu vaccine is no different from the development of the normal yearly flu vaccine; it doesn't take years to develope or go through screening, as it is effectively what was done for many years, just with a different strain. Because of this, as I udnerstand it, it is no less safe than the standard flu vaccine.

Which is it's own kettle of fish. The flu vaccine won't protect you against this year's flu strain, but last year's. The flu virus is a fast mutating beast that alters its outer protein coat - the part that the immune system sees and recognises as something it has seen before, and something it must neutralise - very fast. This means that there is no way that it can offer 100% protection. However, it can offer you some protecting - your body will recognise the virus as a disease faster than it would without the vaccine.

The side effects will probably be the same as when you have a normal flu vaccine as well - that is to say, you might feel wretched for a day or two afterwards. Which isn't the virus somehow ressurecting and making you a vat of disease, but is your immune system going into overdrive. Most vaccines have something in them - called an adjuvant - which your immune system sees and freaks out about, causing a very strong immune reaction, so that the body is more likely to develope a memory response to the antigen. That's all immunity is - recognising and remembering something as foreign.

Of course, most flu symptoms are actually your immune response trying to clear an infection, which is why when people get achey and feverish following vaccination they assume that the vaccination made them sick. Strictly speaking, yes, but not in a lasting way - most flu vaccines are called "killed" vaccines, because the virus has been heat-killed and is incapable of reproducing and spreading. It's just little virus corpses with an adjuvant, and your immune system freaks out.

So, I'd say that the vaccine is going to be as safe as the normal flu vaccine - it might make you a bit under the weather for a while. It probably won't give you complete protection against swine flu. If you have an egg allergy, you might feel a bit sick and the doctors will want to stare at you for a while. But weigh that against the risk - what's feeling a bit crook for a while against the chance that you could get seriously, dangerously sick later?


I can't tell if this is awesome, or full of suck. Read more...Collapse )

Bordering on political.

I've heard a lot of USicans talking about their health care system recently, largely due to President Obama daring to suggest that the current system needs to change. From what I've seen in the US news, there seem to be two schools of thought on the matter. One, that the system needs to change and two, the proposed changes will lead to a socialist society.

This is a comment I made on someone's lj, and I thought I'd share it with you to put this idea of socialism in perspective:

I'm going to talk about the socialist healthcare system in communist Australia for a moment, comrade. I don't have private health insurance. Last year, I had a variety of appointments with a variety of specialists - each one costing me about $90.00 Australian. Of that, I usually got about $60.00 back from Medicare. I ended up having to have surgery on my heart. As this was non-life-threatening surgery, I was put on a waiting list that was predicted to be about 3-6 months long. It ended up being about 3 months.

I was in hospital for about 24 hours. During that time, I was in a cardiology ward. I was prepped for surgery by two nurses, during surgery I was cared for by three nurses and two (!!!) surgeons, after surgery I was cared for by two other nurses.

This entire procedure cost me $30.00 Australian. That's about $20.00 US. For heart surgery.

If this is socialism, I don't see the problem with it.

Tell it, preacher!

Woops, forgot the cut! Read more...Collapse )

Peppermint cream

Peppermint Cream Cocktail

1 part Creme de Menthe
Creamy Soda

Pour Creme de Menthe over ice in a tall glass, top with creamy soda. Tastes like the inside of peppermint patties or mint creams. Tasty!


i r sik

I probably have a cold. I possibly have a mild case of flu. I almost certainly don't have swine flu.

But, I work in a hospital, and I feel like a bag full of disease (over-hyped or common garden variety), so I am in self-enforced isolation for a few days. I'm feeling better today than yesterday, but I still have some muscle soreness, some sniffles, some coughs, and a considerable amount of feeling like crap.

However! I have no fever, and I've been checking every few hours, so like I say, probably just a cold. This is mostly to let the DnD people know that I might have made them sick (sorry!).

Cat Yodelling.

You know you want to. Read more...Collapse )

Filling couscous for the empty soul

I was craving couscous, and this is what I came up with. Read more...Collapse )


Cut it!

Especially for nuwishas_tail.

Perfume Companies

I was asked this somewhere else, but I thought I'd post it as it's own entry...

My personal primer on perfume oil companies. Read more...Collapse )



Some of you may have heard me use the phrase "fear my vaginal tyranny". While I did steal it from a webcomic, I think it's fair to say that one should not underestimate the powers of my hoohah. At least, the powers of my hoohah over straight women and gay men. Read more...Collapse )


Comfort food of the now; polenta.

Creamy Polenta to Ease a Troubled Mind.Read more...Collapse )

Nice, bland, comforting polenta needs a rich, tasty thing to go with it. Here are two options.

Oven-roasted Tasty TomatoesRead more...Collapse )

Rich Random StewRead more...Collapse )


Feb. 28th, 2009

"Realize that being an honest person, whether you die a hundred years from now or the in the next five minutes, is really the only way in the world for a person who isn't a clinical psychopath to sleep well at night without a fifth of bourbon or a fist full of pills in them. There are billions that have lived and died on this planet, here for a little while, and they're ash a lot longer. Even stone pyramids get ground down by the wind. Die on your feet as an honest person - it's what you should do, because in the grand scheme of the universe, you're a tiny ant. Best to be an ant with integrity, than a stealing, lying cockroach. Either way, you're not God, you're a bug. Be a good bug. (Fark)"