Archive for January, 2006

I Passed my driving theory test yesterday…

certified by
The Statto-JTA Mock Driving Theory Test

You’re a

Your passengers think you’re a little crazy.

Every road trip takes in a fanciful landscape of dreamlike imagination as you trip the tarmac fantastic. You’re still convinced that one day you will find the ‘man putting up an umbrella’ those signs keep warning you about.

take the test at

I passed the gay-ass DSA one, as well, which is marginally unimpressive, since I did bum all revision for any of it, and failed a Hazard perception clip for clicking too many times when a lorry suddenly pulled out, mainly because it was a rapidly developing hazard, so I reacted by clicking rapidly – mostly a result of my “Left Mouse Button = fire, truck = threat, react fast, shoot it, played too many PC games” reflexes, I think.

The DSA don’t like you reacting quickly to hazardous bloody great trucks, especially not ones that you’ve been able to see are going to shoot out of the layby in second gear since the start of the clip.

Still, it’s done now, and assuming I pass the real thing by January 2008, I won’t have to do it again, and I can go back to my ususal HazPerp style of “Anything on the road is a potential hazard, and the DSA are knobs to pretend there’s only one risk per 10 seconds of driving”…

Four Things Meme…

Four jobs I’ve had:

  • Cleaner for Ceredigion Council
  • Till monkey in Spar
  • Chocolate Packer for Halo Foods, Tywyn
  • Cleaner for Newport Police Station

Four movies I can watch over and over:

Four places I’ve lived:

  • Hadley, Telford
  • Newport, Shropshire
  • Hafan, Aberystwyth
  • Er, Colburn, N. Yorks, at a pinch…

Four TV shows I love to watch:

Four places I’ve been on vacation:

  • Paris
  • Cairo
  • Crete
  • Prestatyn

Four of my favorite dishes:

  • Fish n Chips
  • Cafe All Spice Shajadhi Gusht
  • Full English Breakfast
  • Sweet & Sour Chicken

Four sites I visit daily:

Four places I’d rather be right now:

  • Somewhere warmer
  • Somewhere with Ruth
  • Back in Hafan watching Lovejoy DVDs
  • In bed

Four bloggers I’m tagging

Christ, I need a car.

Also to pass my driving test, but I’m going one thing at a time here, OK.

Tomorrow I have a dentists appointment in Shrewsbury, at 11.
To get there I’m going to have to get up at half past bloody six, to catch the 7:30 train, to get me to Shrewsbury at half nine. Because if I get the 9:30 out of Aber, I won’t be in Shrewsbury until half an hour after the stupid appointment.

Reliance on public transport is possibly the most debilitating thing you can come up against, short of having something actually wrong with you, like a broken leg or something.


Good God…

…Does Abnib 3.0 not look like the pits of the Earth?

‘s bloody horrible, man! Stop the bubbly over-yellow yuckness!

Missing: one Work Ethic (his name is William). REWARD if found…

O dear.
Tomorrow, at 0930h, I have an exam. And I know for a fact I’m going to fail it, because – as a result of the Famous Housing Crisis of 2005, I was too busy stressing, hiding from bastardy housemates, looking for a new place to live and moving boxes to go to any of the lectures or seminars I had in the November-onwards part of last term.

All things considered, that’s still pretty much my fault; if I’d had the guts to actually put aside the rest of the trouble I was in at that time, and make it to the lectures, then I’d not be in the fix I am now. But I didn’t, so here I am, less than 24-hours to go, and I know that I will not be able to answer any question on the paper in anything looking like a meaningful way.

Strictly speaking, therefore, the proper course of action for me to be taking is the one in which I panic, and try to cram furiously.

Can I work up enough enthusiasm to do that effectively? Can I bollocks. Hell, I know I’m going to fail pretty much whatever happens; there’s no way I can get up to speed in time. So why stress about it?

If I were, for example, Sundeep, and had got myself into this situation, then I’m pretty sure I’d be staying up all night getting as much reading as possible done before it’s absolutely too late. Probably, that’s what I ought to be doing myself, but I’m just feeling no motivation whatsoever now.

Thing is, I cannot get nervous about exams. Despite the fact that, in the rest of my life, I’m a total wuss, and I stress about Ruth going off to work in case she’s knocked down by a lorry and killed, I can’t make myself get interested by exams.

Partly, I think, that’s because I cannot revise. Name a method of revision, and I’m betting you that I’ve tried it, and got nothing out of it. Re-reading? No use. Making lots of notes and condensing and condensing them until I’ve killed off a whole Big Mac’s worth of Amazonian rainforest? I should be so lucky. Making crackly tapes of things I need to learn and playing them in my sleep? I slept really badly, butI didn’t learn a bean.

There’s precisely one exam I ever got nervous about in my entire life, and that was the 11-plus I did to get into AGS. And mostly I was nervous about that because I was taking it at the school (I ended up in S7, actually) and I’d never been there before, which was unnerving.

That’s it. GCSEs? Yeah, I did ’em. But I was never worried about doing them. I wasn’t even worried afterwards, because, once you’ve done the exam, the result you get is what you get. It’s even less use stressing over that than it is stressing over the exam in the first place.

A-levels… Just didn’t bother me. Even Biology which I knew I was going to make a mess of, because Coff and Ben Michael lured me away from the lessons, I wasn’t really bothered.

O, sure, sometimes, up to a fortnight or so before the actual exam, I’ll worry that I’ll make a mess of it, but never for long enough to make me actually do anything about it. And in this case, not even that, really.

I know that I will never pass this exam. In the summer, I will have to re-sit it, and that will be a phenomenal pain in the arse, and will probably be both costly and a logistical nightmare. Tomorrow, I’m going to go and sit in the Great Hall, make a total cock-up of the whole thing, and go back to Hafan and have a cup of tea, because, really, what else is there to do?

Nothing can change the fact that at the point last term went down the tubes, I stopped going to lectures. As a result, I just don’t have the base of information on which to construct a realistic argument, even under the lack-of-critics-happy friendly environment of a closed-book exam.

But I just can’t work up any real interest in it. I’m going to fail, which is a fact. If I don’t, then it’s a bloody miracle, but it won’t be down to a late surge on my part, because, firstly, my brain doesn’t work like that, and rejects and attempt at self-induced knowledge in favour of someone better qualified telling me and me scribbling it down furiously in A12, and, secondly, I have not got, and possibly never have had, the sort of personality that allows me to get excited about exams, or deadlines, or work in general.

It’s a major, major failing. Most people who know me fairly well are probably aware that I’m capable of pouring as much energy and effort as I can muster into something just as long as it’s something that’s either captured my interest or which I’ve reason to care about, and that, I think, is probably a good quality.

Where it goes arse-over-tit, however, is when I try to make myself have an interest in something – like, say, doing an essay. My brain’s not that stupid, it can tell when I’m trying to put one over on it, and I just get dispirited with the whole thing and lose the will to do anything at all. That is most certainly a very bad quality…

…But it doesn’t appear to be one I can do anything about, and I don’t know why. I’m just not built right. Ruth, somehow, is not only able of getting involved with pretty much any bit of work she’s got to do, but feels bad about it if she hands it in and feels she’s not put as much effort into doing it as she could have. I don’t know how she does it, but I wish I was able to do it as well.

I am, basically, an incredibly lazy person, and tomorrow I will fail an exam, and will that teach me a lesson about doing more work in future, and always going to lectures regardless of other issues?

Don’t be so naive. I wish it would, but it won’t. I’m lazy and pretty much usless when it comes to work, and for all my life would be much easier if I only had a bloody work ethic, I haven’t got one, and I don’t know where to get one. Bollocks.

Still… I wonder if hypnotherapy could fix me up?

101 Ways To Start 2006, #29: Get Thrown Out of a Caravan.

Well, more or less. Strictly speaking, I’m only being thrown into a very similar caravan a hundred yards away, but even so…

[Wobbly effect to denote flashback]
Returned New Year’s eve to find boiler dead. Lone porter left on duty (covering Cwrt Mawr, Rosser, Trefloyne, Hafan, Llanbadarn Campus, Pantycelyn &c) finds me small electric radiator to keep token suggestion of heat in van. Promises to get gas man out ASAP.

Gas man arrives Tuesday, delayed by Bank Holiday, which fair enough. Opens boiler, notes rust, points out where boiler has leaked onto pump and buggered it. Notes boiler 24 years old. Spare parts for said boiler no longer made or in stock. Condemns boiler, cuts off gas. Suggests new boiler will arrive. Goes to tell Accommodation Office.

Wednesday starts with me dreaming I’ve fallen over and had a pile of earth fall on me. Wake as result of conviction I can’t breathe. Knock on door: Porter. “We don’t know if we’re going to replace the boiler at all. Move into another van”. Boiler in new van just as old as the old one. No landline socket in new van. Annoying promise of no cheap calls to landlines. Prospect of having to redirect letters and such all over again. Ah crap. Porter later explains new boiler would be £1,000. This unlikely, as Hafan past it’s servicable life anyway. Phonecall from mother: Sister fallen down stairs, probably has concussion, had trouble with vision, was sick, was sick again later, is eventually taken to A & E.

[Wobbliness again]

And so we come to now, when I’m sat in Llandinam feeling thoroughly sick to the teeth with the lot of it. Spent most of week huddled up to little radiator in thick jumper watching DVDs of the second series of Lovejoy and drinking large quantities of ale.

That’s about it, really.

Stupid sodding boiler.