Friday, November 30, 2001

Prayers for K'wyn, as always, but stronger for recent events' sake.
I came on to blog about the cool stuff in my life, like getting settled into the job and feeling like I'm finally finding my feet. But I'm having a negativity attack because I'km scared I won't pass my driving test on Monday, so I'm gonna stop before I whine way too much.

Wednesday, November 28, 2001


I just looked down at my garnet ring and one of the marcasites is gone. It's such a silly thing, but I'm really upset, I love this ring. I hope the others are more secure, I'm afraid to look into having the marcasite replaced, it'll prolly cost more than the ring did in the first place.

A friend of mine is about to have a baby. It's due on the 10th, but she's already having contractions, so maybe little Isabella is impatient. It's really exciting, I just wish I lived closer to Mon so that I could visit with her and take her flowers.

I admit that it would be scary if she were my own age, but she's 30, and already has a 5 year old, so even though we're good friends, it doesn't have the "Oh God, that could be me soon" feeling. I hope everything goes smoothly, she's been taking very good care of herself and has good docters, so she should be fine.

Tuesday, November 20, 2001

I met the mice today, they're cute. Poor little buggers. But the whole place is kept very clean, they're well looked after. I managed to avoid being bitten, buit it's only a matter of time.

Monday, November 19, 2001

Managed not to fall asleep at the confocal microscope, it helped that the imaging actually WORKED this time.
Heaven protect me from falling asleep in front of the confocal microscope. the combination of 3-4pm, working on 4 hours sleep, and a dark room with quiet machine humming sounds... = zzzzzzzzzzzzz

Lalalalalalalalaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. Nothing WHATSOEVER for me to do today. I got in a few minutes late to get introduced to the mice. My co-worker actually gets the same bus in as me, only I missed the 7.35 one today and got the 8.40 one.

So I'm sitting here at the workstation trying to look busy while figuring out if it would be bad of me to say I've got some errands I can go take care of while I'm not needed...
To get to work an hour later, I still have to go out the door only 1/2 an hour later than on Friday. Might as well do the insanely early thing then.

Saturday, November 17, 2001

The grumble monster is giving me shit again. Tempting me to rename him "Guilt-Trip Man", with his sidekick "Mudslinging Boy" I'm beyond the stage of anger by a long way, and I find my main response to all this is to shake my head ruefully and go on to the next email. I'm sorry that it's not getting better, and I worry about how badly he must be feeling to lash out so frequently but is it really worth making any effort when I'm going to get shit from someone no matter what I do?

I will not always be consistant, and I won't always be able to put my feelings towards someone into words, I am after all (mostly) human, but I try very hard to make sure my actions don't contradict what I say. It would be dumb of me to say I don't feel comfortable giving someone the opportunity to have constant contact with me, then hand them my cell phone number. Yeah, sure, I can chose not to answer, but even repetative voice-mailing can feel like harrasment. I am trying really hard to be fair, but I can't ignore my own misgivings.

When it comes down to it isn't it up to me how I chose to behave? If I give every sodding person I meet my phone number, apart from one, that's my perogative. Not a very good one addmittedly, but I don't see why I should feel guilty for sticking to what I'm comfortable with. I reckon I'm allowed to keep some things private if I feel I'll be harrassed if I share. It could be paranoia, but it's paranoia fuelled by direct experience. Oftentimes known as "caution"

Just because I'm saying I'm hurt and afraid of being hurt more, it doens't mean no-one else is hurt, or allowed to be upset. All I can legitimately comment on is me, it's the only thing I have the most direct experience of. And knowing me as I do, I can guarantee that guilt tripping, accusations, hissy fits and pouting are not the way to my heart. In fact they've been pretty conclusively proved to be the most direct route OUT of my affections.

Maybe I'm only trying to be civil to assuage my concience after supporting him for five months against my better judgement, then leaving him to fend for himself with nothing to show for it but a nice apartment, a new bed and a car. Maybe I'm only staying in touch so I can get my money back. If I wanted it back that badly, I would have a lawyer already working on it.

Actions really do speak louder than words, if you say you don't want something, but take it anyway, it's obvious you want it, but were trying to convince yourself or others that you weren't greedy (or needy, as the case may be). If you say you want to stay, but then leave, you wanted to leave all along. If you say you want to be friends, and then grouch and whine and accuse when someone doesn't fulfil your expectations or requirements, you want a servant, not a friend. If you claim to respect someone then violate their privacy, you never respected them, or you don't know the meaning of respect. If you say you're hurt and resentful, but still make some attempts at contact, then maybe, just maybe it means you don't want to sever all ties and pretend the other person doesn't exist.

Right now it seems like whatever I do or say I will be accused of being underhanded and playing "mind games" I'm not controlled enough to play mind games for fucks sake. I made damn sure of that after experiencing a fair portion of mind games from "friends" years ago.

I read somewhere recently that you can assess a man's character by how he reacts to a woman, a child and a flat tire. It seems trite, but it's a good analagy. That little "test" can show how they deal with people who are generally percieved to be of a "different species" (thus drawing analagies to both sexism and racism), how well they relax and play while still being responsible with a small person, and how they deal with an annoying inconvenience. That's the crux here: dealing with adversity is the biggest test of a person's character. Whether you stomp and rage at a small setback, or smile and get on with it, your whole attitute to life is encapsulated in how you deal when things go wrong. Or even when they just don't go right. Especially when it's something small. Throwing a tantrum at something small is easily the biggest brightest warning light possible. Responding to misfortune with bitterness and accusations comes a close second.

I was extremely angery and bitter when I arrived in San Diego, the angryness dissolved quicker than I expected, and the bitterness only rears it's head infrequently. The worst thing left is the feeling that I have been foolish and not taken care of myself or my future. I hate helplessness more than anything, and I managed to impose it on myself AGAIN. Not good.

Now I am trying my best to establish myself as an independant being, the financial aspect of indepedance being the most important for now because you can never be truly emotionally independent unless you're a hermit. It's not easy to suddenly have so many more things on my plate to think about, but I'm surprising myself by not being terrified and running back to Mummy and Daddy. There've been ups and downs of course, but the majority of it has been me bieng frustrated at myself, and at things not taking off. Now they ARE taking off my priority is to keep them going and to keep myself from going back into a hole. Yeurp, my priority is ME, becasue if I don't look after myself then someone else will end up having to do it, and that's not fair on them.

If that's offensive, then so be it. I think it's a pretty good balance, because if I take care of me, I'll be better able to help other people take care of themselves too, rather than making it harder for everyone. You help no-one by being self destructive, especially those who care about you.

So, no, I'm not going to do absolutely everything I can think of to assuage the wrath of the grumble monster. I can't if I'm going to be a happy sane person, I need to feel safe from harrassment. The grumble monster demands respect, but respect cannot be taken or demanded, it can only be earned. I'm beginning to suspect that he would rather have pretended respect than actually earn the real stuff.
Yay Harry Potter Movie, very cool. Lots of great Brit actors who hardly ever come out to play nowadays too.

Friday, November 16, 2001

Stinky stuff stinky stuff, oh how I love thee stinky stuff... my first job today was to set up and start running a gel, with the STINKIEST marker substance possible. Very ammonia-heavy, and there was only about 3ml of the stuff. Imagine a whole litre of it!

So far everyone is very nice, a mix of nationalities, a couple of Aussies, one english guy, and at least 2 italians (the italians are the bosses) Besides taking notes on the science of it all, and where stuff is, I'm tempted to write down everyone's names, so I don't embarrass myself later!

Hah, my gel is nearly finished running, I'd better go have a look at it.
I hate APPLES!!! I enlarged the window and it bloody well decided to reload the page and LOSE the blog I'd already typed out. I couldn't post before doing it because the window was too small to get to the post and publish button. Now I can't get my blog page to load. Strange. I wonder if it's something to do with the ftp or something.

Thursday, November 15, 2001

I start work tomorrow. Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

I'm really excited, and also nervous. Not looking forward to getting up and out that early though. With decent amounts of practice I should also be able to get my license in a couple weeks, so then I'll only have one stage left: purchasing a vehicle.

I've been running through lots of stuff in my head, but I can never remember it when I sit down to a computer. It's nothing big and scary, just filtering through the events of my life, the past year or so more specifically. At some point I'll prolly get round to typing it out.

Wednesday, November 14, 2001

I start work on Friday. Hello 7am bus.

If I ever saw an incentive to pass my driving test, it's the bus schedule. I'm contemplating calling the DMV and booking a test for 2 weeks time from now, but I need to find out what I'm doing about a car to take the test in, and about how it'll fit in with work. Meh, it'll work out.

Freeway driving. Eeeeeep. OK, it's not actually as terrifying as I thought my first foray into 60+mph traffic would be, but I was lucky, it was traf-FIC, not traf-FUCK.

I'm doing ok with all the principles, I just need more practice, I'll have to figure out a way to do that, and sort out what car I'm taking the test in. The guy that's teaching me will let you do the test in his car, but I have no idea when I'll be READY to do the test. The sooner the better, and I'm not far off really, I just need more driving time. Another thing: that "no hand over hand" thing they teach in the UK, it's CRAP, you make turns so much more smoothly by just moving one hand from one side to the other, no little push/pull movements. We finally figured out that was my biggest problem. Right turns too, because even though a left turn crosses traffic, I'm more used to making the car go to the left from learning in the UK and doing the "easy" turns there. I will try to subject Granny to my driving a couple times over Thanksgiving, that way I'll also be trying out a bigger car. Not exactly a land boat, but getting there.

As far as the rest of my life goes, I'll be very glad when I finally do have a car and I can do my own thing. It's not just that I know I'm getting underfoot and adding to the tension by my lack on independence, it's that the option of truly buggering off for a bit, going off for a drive, or just going somewhere for coffee by myself, isn't open to me, because to do that I have to cadge a ride, which defeats the purpose of me time. It's that whole house arrest feeling. I think it gets to me more because it feels too much like how I was in London, where walking to the local stores was fine, but if I tried to head out to the subway station to go into town prob=per, or into college, I was too panicky to even get to the end of my street. So even though this immobility is more from external sources, the echoes of my behavior when I was depressed make it worse than it really is sometimes. There's nothing that can change about it immediately, I'm doing the driving lessons and that's the way to go, it's just the most frustrating thing about not being fully mobile here. If it were only a question of getting to work, I'd be fine with the bus, it's cheaper, but going anywhere involves a car here.

It seems like no-one is happy with the status quo, usually being unhappy with something does bugger all to change it, but this status quo will not be quo for very long. Gargh, that's a horrible sentence. But you know what I mean. (hint: it's getting better all the time)
I went to the Gospel Choir concert last night, it was really enjoyable, Ken makes the audience not just be an audience, telling us to introduce ourselves to everyone sitting near us and stuff. It's a nice change from classical concerts where you're afraid to start clapping in case it's just the end of a movement, not the whole piece. K'wyn was nervous about her duet, but it sounded really good, I know how disorienting it can be to sing with a mic, add a big audience and a song you've had 6 days to learn and I'd see leaving the country as a better option than performing!

Monday, November 12, 2001

Yesterday was nice, I sat out in the back yard talking on my phone for a total of almost 2 hours. First was an old friend I'd all but written off, I didn't honestly think we'd ever really be in touch again. It's always nice to be proven wrong on those things. Then my parents called for the weekly update.

I even managed to sit out in the sun without getting burned, though my forearms do look a little browner, it's brown, not pink!

I just received an email from Dr Cirulli at the Whittier asking me when I want to start. So I HAVE A JOB!!

Which makes getting the driving license even more imperative, but till then there is the bus.

Friday, November 09, 2001


No particular reason, I just wanted to remind myself how to spell it.
Ah, Job update also: Aurora want someone with more experience. Scripps were just giving me a general interview so that they have more info on their files in case anyone likes the look of my resume. The Whittier has sent me an official application form, and that seems to be going promisingly. I'm not going to be happy until I have the contract in my hand though.
At what point did a car become such an important factor in my life? Oh...yeah...when I moved to CALIFORNIA!
The car verdict: second hand, preferably not much more than $4-5k. Yes it took me long enough to come round to the obvious answer, but I got carried away with the whole "I'm going to be earning" thing. Rosie needs reality checks now and then, and if I agree with em I won't be upset for having the obvious pointed out to me!

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

In many ways my position could be seen as roughly parallel to that of a recent divorcee, though I am much more fortunate than many in that situation. I don't have completely crap credit for one, I just have none. But I am learning to think of myself as an individual (again) and realising what's important to me. I also have the whole "newly graduated" life adjustment to make. No more exams and essays, now it's job seeking, flat seeking, and figuring out how I'm going to pay for it all...which leads back to job seeking. Once I get one of them sorted the others will become easier, though I'll have a few problems trying to buy a car with a blank credit history and no job!

I thought that I was doing well, and I guess realistically I am, but I didn't expect to be crying so much. I'm getting upset more often than I was even when I felt there was no going forward. It's a very different kind of crying though, it's just a way to vent the pressure, and the emotions that built up over the past months of going in the wrong direction. I'm learning the difference between normal tension and when it's time to start back on the meds (dahlink). It's hard to accept that being upset and tearful, even at random times, doesn't mean I'm on my way down again. There's a subtle difference in the things that run through my mind when I'm crying, even if I'm downright sobbing it doesn't feel so...desperate?

Is it because I know I'm finally on the right track? One of them anyway. I can actually look ahead and realistically see things working out. This time last year I was picturing myself being either in SD or Atlanta, looking for a job, but I didn't really believe it, it didn't feel real, because I couldn't honestly imagine what it would feel like.

Ladies and Gentlemen I give you...Graduation, the best antidepressant of them all.

Although the last blog was posted in response to something that was taken somewhat out of context, I'm leaving it up because I felt that way before, I just wasn't near a computer at the time. I won't feel whole until I have a job and am as self sufficient as I should be. That means not imposing on people more than one can help in the normal course of sharing a house.

Yesterday evening K'wyn, Lia and I went for coffee and we got to talking about cars, and the purchase thereof, this has been one of the many things weighing on my mind, as I know I've got very little clue how to pick a car, the pros and cons of new versus used blah blah. I took the opportunity to ask both of them why they chose the car the have, and what they'd do differently if they could. During the course of the conversation it became clear to me that my parents way of thinking won't work in California, as I will be driving an average of 40 miles a day just going to and from work, so spending a couple thousand on a car and having it last 4-5 years is not really going to happen here. So point one is:I will have to take out a loan to get a reliable car whether or not I get a used one.

Of course, this made me think of the position I would be in if I still had the money lost over the past year, and lead to much internal wrangling between resentment of another, and anger at myself. Suffice it to say that from my research today, that money would have enabled me to get an extremely comfortable compact car, with all the fixings (not leather seats, I hate em) and have paid for it entirely inside 2 years, with lower interest rates too. All is not lost of course, I have the ability to pay one off in 5 years easily, but it's the principal of the thing. I just thank the Money Gods that my credit rating has not been affected, better non existent than actively bad. The global community hasn't grown efficient enough to use my British credit as an example. I suppose I could ask for a reference from my bank.

The seeming magnitude of the task of preparing myself adequately to make the "right" decision terrified me, and that combined with general fear of falling off the ladder with the weight of these new burdens made me extremely upset. I'm afraid that it lead to me snapping at K'wyn and it took much patience on her part to help me figure out what I was really upset about. Life in general would be a fair diagnosis, but breaking it down into little tasks always helps. For one, I need to tell her or Lia, or any good friend when the subject matter is making me upset, it's a hell of a lot better then running off in tears with no explanation. On the practical front, I need to decide what car I realistically want, and go to a couple dealers and see what they can offer me. If there's something coming off lease that still has some of its warrantee left, that would be perfect. That I have pretty much done today, going to independent consumer report sites on the web and starting out with the safest small cars, and going from there. I found that a new bug wouldn't be THAT frivolous for me to get, but a Toyota Echo would prolly be the best bet. It would be a trade off between safety rating and reliability. Oh, and funkiness versus price.

Now I need to find out about getting my parents to cosign and stuff like that.

Monday, November 05, 2001

I am a non-person right now. I can walk to the grocery store, or phone around gathering information on apartments, but anything beyond that requires transport, and I don't have that yet.

In retrospect, yes, I should have taken the time to get my driving license while I was at UCSD, or while I was still in the UK, but it just didn't fit in, it seemed far less important than passing my degree, or avoiding Westminster Bridge. So for now I'm an invasive pain in the ass.

I don't have a bank account, because there's no point until I get a job. Nor do I have a US credit rating because I've lived in the UK almost all my life and having a credit card with a high limit there for three years without getting in debt doesn't count for anything over here.

I'm afraid to touch anything in case I break it or move it to the wrong place. As of today I'm not too keen on talking either. Perhaps it's the problem of living with someone more exacting and sensitive than me, up until now, I've always been the picky one, now I'm the nuisance. Until I can be sure I'm not going to be taken the wrong way I might as well stick to my room and pretend I don't exist.

That pretty much sums it up: I do not exist as a person. I'm a collection of noises and inconveniences. Right now this irritation has some flat hunting to do.
Aw, fuck. Apparently I'm still weak and cowardly. Pardon me for realising that I didn't want to spend the rest of my life with someone who is so concerned with his pride that he attacks me when I'm ill for not "trusting" him. Every other issue aside, that one single incident is enough to show that there was something seriously wrong.

Friday, November 02, 2001

I guess I'm officially single then. Am I a complete idiot for somehow expecting him to end up agreeing with me that we had irreconcilable differences? All very well to keep saying we can talk it through, work it out, blah blah, but some things will never change no matter how much you run verbal circles around them. What it comes down to is how someone makes you feel, about life and about yourself. I felt like I was continuously being patted on the head for saying something dumb, being called a coward for seeing what I wanted to do and going towards it, even if it meant walking away from other aspects of my life. A month or so ago I posted something about "taking the easy way out" on Sept 30th in fact.

I don't understand how anyone could see the way I have chosen to live my life "taking the easy road" I have not exactly given myself ridiculously large challenges, but I have never gone for something because it looked easy, I make my choices according to what feels right. so far it has worked well for me, I have managed to get to 21 with no regrets, aside from the usual wishing I'd studied harder. I mean that, absolutely no regrets, and it feels so good to be able to say that.

If I had wanted to take the easy road, I would have stayed in Edinburgh, had my Mum feed me all through university, avoided hassle form Kenny about going to London. I would have not gone on the exchange to UCSD, I would have stayed home (again) and would quite possible still be with Kenny right now. No offence intended, but that would just be so WRONG. Time and time again, I'll say to myself "OK, I'll stick this out, see if it gets better" and a day, or three days or maybe even an hour later I will find myself coming back to that decision and worrying at it, because it feels wrong. Out of place, dishonest, whatever you want to call it, it feels wrong to me.

There's some part of me that will not allow me to stick to a decision that is wrong for me, I used to think I was good at fooling myself, I still do, but when it really comes down to it, I cannot keep blindsiding myself. The upshot of that is that it will take me a long time to realise that something is not workin gout, but once I realise it, I know it for certain. That is hard on those around me, and I am trying to get myself a nice little "early warning" system so I don't end up changing tacks out of the blue.

Is it taking the easy way out when you fix on the decision that leaves you at peace? Any other solution I've tried for this has left me churning and unable to get on with anything else, because I keep coming back to it as a piece that doesn't fit.

I'm repeating myself. Partly because I'm upset, even though I know it's the right thing, it's always emotional to make such a big change. I regret nothing, but I am sorry to have hurt someone who helped me through such a hard time. It's a trite phrase to use, but Blessed Be, I hope you realise your full potential someday, and that you find someone to be beside you when you do.


Thursday, November 01, 2001

Boy trouble still rules supreme in the world of the Combat Faeries. OK, maybe not quite so much for K'wyn, she's got some potentially good boy stuff going on too. But in general, the consensus is: they cause WAY too much trouble.

I am having extremely mixed feelings about the concept of relationships as a whole right now. As much as I miss being able to curl up safe with someone, the knowledge that it's highly unlikely that you actually ARE safe keeps me from missing it that much. Despite being a romantic at heart, I'm turning into a cynic for now, so don't be surprised if any advice or opinion I give on romance is tinged with "why bother" sentiments.

HAH! first step on the way towards a driving liscence is complete. I've passed my written test, so now I can get lessons.