February 8th, 2005


Top one, nice one, get sorted

Not writing very much at the moment because I'm neither doing nor thinking particularly exciting things right now. Four Two more long shifts at work, then I fly off to spend two weeks with dezzikitty, which may involve some exciting adventures.

Mum has been very ill recently; happily, she has kicked her breathing difficulties almost completely and apparently the crisis is over, though traces of the infection linger on. Mum is mentally strong, but physically weak; like Wells' Martians, it will probably be a completely ordinary, unpredictable and unpreventable infection that carries Mum away some day. Happily, we don't think it'll be this one.

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2. Mrs. Coulter, you're looking for kisspeptin. Now please leave those poor kids alone.

3. The WPC off-season is getting better organised than ever, with the Puzzle Ratings site (with a blog syndicated at puzzleratings) seeming to be the hub. The French and Indian national qualification tests are online - very good they look, too, for anyone who either has their eye on 2005 qualification or who just likes logic puzzles. Anyway, the results from PQRST round 12 are out - and top of a strong 214-entrant field is Luke Pebody from the UK. Luke would have been in at least one of the last two UK teams had it not been for theatre commitments, so the UK puzzle fraternity really, really ought to tap him up now. I note that Luke pipped one (four-time World Puzzle Champion) Wei-Hwa Huang in both the 1992 and 1993 International Mathematical Olympiads, so perhaps it might be possible to sell him on it that way. More of that later, though.

4. Am rather disappointed to hear this extremely cautious advice that blogging is a "paedophile's dream". I recognise there are some sociopaths out there, but I feel that so long as the young take proper precautions about real-life encounters and personal information then I see no reason for panic.

5. Am also rather disappointed by the methodology behind Olympic funding decisions; Olympic medals are very difficult achievements indeed, so I feel the UK may be setting requirements extremely high by aiming only to fund Olympic medalists. Given how small the UK is and how widely spread our sporting pedigree is, I think the goals of "top eight" in the Olympics, let alone "top five" by a spurious count involving the Paralymics and much more are unrealistically optimistic. Oh well.

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7. The sky is definitely getting lighter, now we're half-way between solstice and equinox. (It's Pancake Day here in the UK, too!) It's starting to be early dawn, rather than pitch black, when I return home after a night shift. Here comes the sun!
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    1992 mix tape in my head