Archive | December, 2010

Today: A Girls Guide to the Ashes

28 Dec

The Ashes. The time of year when most blokes will claim to have man-flu, take time off work to recouperate and then come back after 5 days stating all they could do was stay in bed and “force themselves” to watch the only thing on tv.

This plan works wonders when they are playing in the Northern Hemisphere. However this time it was played in Oz. Which meant all you had to do was come into work very tired.

Girls, hopefully you have now linked that the Ashes is ENGLAND v AUSTRALIA.

Mainly for pride, but mostly for the ASHES.

The glorious ashes.

The Ashes are as literal as their name suggests. They are the burnt Bails (the two bits of wood on top of the 3 bits stood up) Burnt to commemorate the death of English Cricket after Australia beat England for the first time in 1882. Bit Dramatic don’t ya think?

Do not fret!

The Ashes are a series of 5 test matches. Each one lasting up to 5 days. One team  throws the ball at the other and tries to knock the wickets over, bowl it off their leg pad (if it’s in line with the wicket) or catch it in dramatic style.

Then the teams swap when everybody has suffered their fate.

The winning team is the one who gets the most runs without losing lots of wickets.


Good. Now ladies here is some of the England Team:


tight white trousers boys?


Currently England are doing very well to retain (and hopefully win back) these ashes. Ricky Ponting the Australian Captain is currently in teenager mode. ie, throwing a massive tantrum. He got fined 40% of his fee because he argued with the umpires.

So we poms are beating the leaders in Cricket. in Australia. In mencing style.

So girls. How about you call in sick? Trust me. They are still attractive with clothes on too…



Today: Christmas Cheer

26 Dec

It was an official white christmas for some locations in the UK today. Thankfully Reading wasn’t one of them. With everything tht had to be dealt with this christmas – a snowy one would really be pulling Santas rather large thigh.

My grandparents (dad’s side) came to visit us this christmas, and far from the usual family discussions (argumental debates) it has been a pleasent and fun time having them here. Yes we’ve had the typical “Harriet has gone off crying because (insert family name here) just couldn’t stop and think for 10 seconds” I got over it, and then carried on with a tradition that has been brewing the past 3/4 years where my Grandad and I never let our glasses empty…

This was just Christmas eve.

Staggering up the stairs and then trying to wrap christmas presents whilst in this erm… ‘state’ is a right laugh. Especially when your loving father doesn’t leave enough paper to wrap everything with… *eyeroll*

Morning comes and the delightful Waitrose bag that was used for stockings (i walked STRAIGHT past it the night before) contained some much needed neurofen a toothbrush and a meercat sylvanian family set… along with the standard socks and essential underwear.

Our stockings are odd. They consist of anything that we need in the month of December (shampoo, vaseline, chewing gum….) and have chocolate added to it. I also got a lovely pair of soft lazy trousers. LOVE THEM.

Traditionally my family have a full English brekkie. Which I cooked this year… I didn’t realise I had done it all till i realised that my mum had just focused on her Bubble and Squeak….. 🙂 WIN!

PRESENTS!!!! fun times. New straighteners, another Red Bull Jacket which will result in my mum having the other, and me having this one… At least she knows where the Bull Shop is 🙂 🙂

My grandparents (both sides) enjoyed their presents me and my brother got them and I felt I helped my mum out suitably today 🙂

I did make the starter. Prawn Cocktail. yum.

Exhaustion has hit me now though… 6 nights rubbish sleep tends to render you useless after  a while. I’ll watch the first few overs of the 4th Ashes test and then sleep i think.

Hope Everyone has had a lovely day, Bring on New Year!

Today: Day 4 of the cyclic Revision Process

20 Dec

Optics and Fourier Transforms: (prediction 60%)

  • My project in practice
  • My worst nightmare for maths
  • Non – applicable calculation of intensities
  • Requirement of Red Bull
  • Only applicable in Fourier Transform instruments and hence is useless in every other practice.

Techniques in Theoretical Physics: (prediction 50%)

  • Maths.
  • Matrices.
  • Application of Matrices
  • Matrices
  • The only lecture i read a textbook instead of listnening to a lecturer talk
  • Differential equation. (not plural… just one that you change letters in to change what it means)

Applications of Quantum Mechanics: (prediction 60%)

  • LIES. there are no applications.
  • maths
  • new maths
  • Integration of er…. Maths.

Electromagnetic Radiation Detection: (prediction 70%)

  • More things to learn than the bible off by heart.
  • Combination of every second year course
  • Actually interesting
  • Looooooooong.

Galaxies: (prediction 60%)

  • So much information in the course
  • All maths in the exam
  • No maths in the course…..
  • O.o


This is my christmas break. Plus the summary of the courses. 5 exams, 7 days in January, and that’s just because there is a Weekend in the way……


Today: Short and Sweet

17 Dec


Mass snow hits everywhere!


How will everyone cope!


O look i came home yesterday.



Today: The Value of Teaching

3 Dec

It’s a known fact that people have their favourite teachers at school. The one that lets you sit next to your friends and talk during class, gives you chocolates at the end of term and lets you watch a film in the last lesson.

My favourite teacher at secondary school was my physics teacher Mr. Jon Clarke, I had him for almost all 7 years of that time i spent at that ‘school’, he was one of the few consistent things i really had, one of the main reasons i am now studying physics and Astronomy.

I found my old year book when i was at home for a brief time over the summer, and i for the life of me cannot remember what he wrote, but everytime i think of it, it makes me smile. It’s rare you get somebody who is in that position of authority (at secondary school that is), that truely influences you in such a positive way. People only seem to remember the bad teachers. and they aren’t really the ones who put us here today.

I got alot of stick from my teachers (as i’ve said in a previous blog) nobody thought i would get into cardiff uni, and upon receival of my results they took me to one side and asked if i had contacted my second choice. I hadn’t and i wasn’t going to. Cardiff was my destination and I was getting there! Mr Clarke knew I could otherwise he wouldn’t have helped me sit an A-level in 1 year.

Now at uni, in my final year, counting the days down till the christmas break, i started to wonder who really were the ‘good’ lecturers/teachers i had here. Teaching is a different style at university, and even then that style is different from one lecturer to the next.

There are the lecturers which just talk at you. They require no real participation except mindless copying and listening to explanations and examples.

There are the lecturers who talk down to you. These i dislike the most. I get that they are cleverer than we are, but seriously, if you talk to me like that i will end up not paying any attention and not turning up to the lectures.

There are the lecturers which teach. They don’t leave to much to the imagination, just keep you that much outof the loop that if you stop paying attention, you’ll really miss the point.

There are the lecturers who couldn’t really care. They could be the most powerful person in the world but if they can’t be bothered to prepare, then why should we?

Then there are the lecturers who discuss with you. They are still lecturing, but it’s more an open topic. You ask questions and although the answer could be right or (in my case) wrong, they will entice the class to discuss why, and you learn new ways of thinking and new ways of looking at things.


Which one do I like the most? Well. That’s hopefully quite obvious.

In my 4 years at Cardiff I have come across all of these. You have different tactics for dealing with each, the assesment sheets, the revision classes, the exams, each require a different plan of attack. So although I may not know too much about Physics or Astronomy (I hope i know more than the average bear), I definately know how to get around most issues that come about. At least… I hope that’s what Applications of Quantum Mechanics hopes to acheive… because i have no idea what he is on about…..