Wednesday, June 30, 2004

The Day After Tomorrow

Although the science (especially where temperature was concerned) was quite dodgy, this was a very good movie. I hope the governments of the world take note, but I doubt they will pay attention as it is a fairly radical and sensationalistic representation of a possible future. The effects were most impressive, apart from the wolves, which seemed to be developed on outdated cgi models for all aspects (movement, muscle interplay, fur movement, etc). I don't think they added anything to the story and probably would have been better left out.

The most unbelievable aspect of the movie was the snap freezing in the eye of the storm. With no air movement, everything completely snap froze from the top down - ground level was last to freeze. The explanation put forward was the supercooled air from the top of the atmosphere was flowing downwards, causing a temperature drop of 10 degrees per second (IIRC). However, I did love the water effects through the streets of New York (although I don't think those buildings would have withstood such flooding).

There is a novelisation available by Whitley Strieber, which has received mixed reviews. I am unlikely to read it as I have found that novelisations tend to lack the depth implied by the movies, by good acting, good soundtracks and scenery. You need a very experienced author who is capable of writing with depth of description, expansion of story and character and extreme clarity to achieve a good novel based on a movie.

A neat movie, with believable acting, a good but not overly memorable score by Harald Kloser, and decent effects. Even though there were some horribly flashing lightning scenes, I did not get a headache (possibly as I saw it in a smaller cinema, which is typically not as completely dark as places like Village and Hoyts). I hope many people see the movie, and are encouraged to look after the environment more than they currently do.

Leave taken

With the doctor's encouragement, I've taken 3 weeks of annual leave (only 7.5 days as I'm part time!).

This is partly to aid recovery from the long term virus that I've had for nigh on a year now, and partly to try to get somewhere with the outstanding honours work that I wasn't able to get done during this past semester.

I'm still having horrific nightmares which leave me quite dead emotionally, and exhausted physically. At least I'm not having much trouble sleeping for a decent amount of time each night, as I used to.

My annual review went well, my new supervisor is experienced with long term health issues, which is a huge benefit when dealing with my situation. I caught up with the honours supervisor and now need to update my medical documentation (Thursday) to support a case for extension till the end of the year which will be put before the education committee (or at least the chair of that committee).

My duties in second semester will most likely be able to be blocked into chunks (no teaching), apart from attending an honours subject and consulting for various first, second and potentially third year subjects. All additional duties would probably be able to be done from home, so I may only need to attend uni for one to two days a week. Hopefully that will help honours and health. Due to the increasing flexibility requirements of my health, I don't feel comfortable asking for the third semester teaching bonus, especially as I won't be lecturing over summer in future.

The last few weeks have been pretty horrendous in most ways (pain, depression, virus, and a possible UTI for the first time in years). In an effort to reduce the overall background (really foreground at the moment) pain level, I'm completely off dairy again, and trying to cut down on sugar, salt, fat, meat and processed foods.

The pantry is slowly being converted to organic produce and cleaning chemicals are gradually being replaced with natural cleaning solutions. I'm trying to reduce the amount of chemicals (especially parabens) in body and face care products, having made my own toothpaste and found an organic mouthwash.

As usual, at the start of an extended period of leave, I exhausted myself rearranging rooms, gardening, cleaning, etc. My hours are shot - I don't manage to get to sleep until it is light, which is fine for watching UEFA 2004, but not for the days where I need to get up around 9ish.

Maybe I should swing my hours forwards, rather than trying to hold them back. I need to be at uni at 9 on Thursday!

I, Robot

Isaac Asimov - I, Robot

Having recently seen the preview of the film version of I, Robot, I was intrigued enough to read the book. It is presented as a collection of short stories, or memorable encounters with complications caused by interplay the three laws of robotics. It was very engaging to try to guess how the problems in each situation occured, some were quite convoluted. The style of writing is quite conversational, with minimal scientific jargon, many political and social overtones, and was very easy to read. I was left trying to puzzle out other potential dilemmas, which was probably the aim of the novel. I will certainly be reading the whole series.

There doesn't seem to be much of a connection with the book, and the preview of the movie, apart from the title and the three fundamental laws. But the effects look neat, so I'll probably see it (but not before I finish the series).

Monday, June 14, 2004

Faint...

For those who are squeamish, probably best to not read on...

Mirena (IUD) and a fairly large adenomyoma do not coexist peacefully, at least not at the beginning, and especially not when the IUD was inserted with NO ANAESTHETIC!

Thursday was the most painful day I have ever had, even tripling doses of Mersyndol Forte didn't completely get rid of the pain, although it did get rid of my insomnia.

I think I passed out at some stage, there are gaps in my memory between screaming. I could sit up later at night in front of the TV still majorly medicated with pain killers and not moving. If I moved, that was the trigger for much more pain.

Friday wasn't much better, but I slept for longer and therefore needed fewer pain killers. Bowel movement was extremely painful. Migraine had developed during the night, and stuck around all day.

Saturday I was ok-ish in the morning, but every time I started doing things, the pain got bad enough to curl up back in bed. Migraine still just as bad though.

Sunday, a bit better again, pain pattern has changed from the aggravated Mirena pain, to more of a period pain. I was able to wander around the house and do bits and pieces, as long as there wasn't much bending or lifting involved. Migraine cleared up sometime, although there is still pressure around my eyes.

Monday (today) I fainted in the shower. Last I remembered was reaching up to put a bottle on the top of the door, then found myself on the floor, water running quite cold, the shower door cracked, right toes killing and broken plastic bottles leaking outside the shower. Don't know how long I was there. Cramps came back with a vengeance so I went back to bed and slept. Unfortunately that meant I missed consultation, and other important work things.

I haven't read anywhere of symptoms of missing a dose of Effexor (anti-depressant) including fainting. There are lots of mentions of brain 'zaps', which is not very descriptive, as that could mean brain jumps subjects - hard to concentrate, or pain spikes in very localised areas.

Anyhow... am taking it easy, and hoping to be at uni on Wednesday for the final consultation session.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Ow

Recommendation, don't get adeno then require a Mirena (IUD) for treatment, and get it inserted without some kind of anaesthetic. It hurts like hell... the worst I've ever felt. Now am just dealing with the after effects of lots of painkillers and still feeling like my abdomen has been repeatedly hit by a very heavy meat mallet. I got my first smurf comment tonight, thanks to shorter blue hair. This post courtesy of Wiruen, my wireless CF net connected Zaurus. Gee, too much geekiness... goodnight!

Monday, June 7, 2004

New hair

Fan

Spikey, short, punky, blue hair. Neat! And so much lighter than the long plaits.

I still have the plait, I'll hang onto it until photos are taken, and then look into selling it to a wig maker (although, blue hair really isn't in demand, and it will not bleach!).

The hairdresser at Brandon Park (Quadro) did a good job, although it's a little longer than I expected, the colours actually look brighter - almost newly dyed.

Therefore I will not be re-dying for a little while to give the hair a little more time to recover and discover it can be messy and stick upwards. It's so used to sitting flat that it does not want to be spiked and stay spiked, no matter how much gunk is there holding it ;>

Saturday, June 5, 2004

Questions

I seem to be getting many questions from family and friends (and even from online people) about what to do about their health, and the side effects of medications (including when mixed with other medications and alcohol). It feels strange to be answering these questions, especially when I get specifically phoned by my family. It shows their complete lack of faith in the doctor that they have all used over their lifespans. This doctor mis-diagnosed me too many times as a child, and I have been telling them for years that he is crap. Although they agree with me now, they refuse to see a new doctor. I don't understand it.