Rambles, rants and raves

A lot of opinions spilling out of my brain


Shorthand has taken over my life

SHERLOCK JR.This is what I should be doing. This would benefit me in many ways, it would help me with the whole journalism thing, it would help me with my blogging and it would help me not feel like ripping my hair out because I have to master the ability of writing at 100 words a minute.

Shorthand has taken over my life and sadly it is a necessary thing to pass the course (the exam is this Friday!) and also a requirement of many, many places.

Wait, you say. You already have a job at your local paper, you say. And I would smile at you with a painful smile and say: “alas I do but I still need my 100 words a minute, I have to have it. It is an expectation.” Then I would hang my head out of exhaustion and the reluctance to face up explaining further as I lock myself in a room and listen to shorthand passages about pubs called The Rose and Crown and planning permission for an old folk’s home.

Shorthand is taking over my life. I seem to have reached my limit somewhere just before the 100. When people speak to me I see the shorthand symbols coming out of their mouths like some weird, journalistic Alice in Wonderland experience. I am practising until either my hand hurts or my brain cannot take any more words and so I can no longer understand what is being said.

If I fail this exam I will carry on until I can retake it in two weeks time, like a weary traveller because that’s how I feel. If I pass, I will rejoice with the biggest celebration I can contemplate in my tired mind, it sounds almost too good to be true: cheesecake, wine and the boy. Perfect.



I feel like this guy right now. Well my brain does.

He looks a lot more relaxed than I feel. He's also doing the splits so we're obviously less similar than I initially thought.

He looks a lot more relaxed than I feel. He’s also doing the splits so we’re obviously less similar than I initially thought.

You know him, good old roadrunner. My brain seems to be imitating him at the moment, trying to work extremely fast. And then there’s my body, which is the coyote and is trying very  hard to catch up but always seems one step behind. This causes me to panic. It means that my brain is reminding me of a thousand things I need to do, say or write while my body tries not to hit my head against the wall to quieten my brain.

You see my predicament?

I have also seemed to lost a week at some point between now and the beginning of the year – which I only realised now means I must have lost last week, or am in the process of losing this week. I don’t know anymore. All I know is that my exams are next week to qualify me as a journalist/reporter. I am prepared but more needs to be done: more notes taken, more books read and more things highlighted. It’s a work in progress and anyway, revision never really ends.

I am also starting my first real journalism job as soon as my course ends where I will be a reporter for my local newspaper. (Pause for screams of hysteria). It’s so exciting that I get butterflies every time I think about it.

It means I am officially on my chosen career path and I’m one step closer to getting that dream job.  It also means there are a lot of things I need to read, sign and then give back in. Another thing my brain is screaming at me to do. Screaming so loud in fact, that my fingers are trying to type this so quickly that I’m expecting either they keyboard to set on fire or smoke to come out of my fingertips any moment now.

Okay so I have created a mental to-do list. A mixture of guilt, pure adrenalin (from realising how fast time can go when you’re not paying attention to it) and the need to revise to ease my inner-geek means that this blog post is short, pointless, probably doesn’t make much sense and is ending right here.


Brain Fart: I surrender

I have written nine different types of blog post. From these nine I have written at least seven drafts of each type of blog post (with various subjects). Each of these posts varied in length, some I didn’t get passed three sentences. Others were almost finished and hundreds of words long. All were doomed to go into the trash and be wiped clean from their virtual existence. That’s a lot of effort with nothing to show for it.

Thinking about it frustrates me because I have effectively written sixty three different posts, hated them, and thrown them away. In that time I could have trained myself to become either an international spy, a ninja, or written a novel. Roughly speaking.

That, I can tell you with much sadness, is the result of a brain fart.

This is a brain fart. The only difference is that my brain looks frustrated, tired, and nowhere near as happy at such a moment. But this was the best picture I could find. Oh well. (http://arthurdailies.blogspot.co.uk/2011/09/brain-fart_76.html)

Your brain tries, fails, self implodes, tries, fails, self implodes until it can not do anymore and a post like this comes out.

Today I have spent most of my time working my brain, more than should be allowed on a weekend. I have been studying for my course like any awesome student should. I have also been trying to blog whenever inspiration struck me today. Inspiration was a little elusive this Saturday and it’s now 8pm and my fingers and brain have not been able to work together to type up something at least a teeny bit interesting.

I blame the beginning of my course, the endless job applications and thinking of new ways to get employers to give me work experience (more on that another time) and all the shorthand, which is effectively another language (a rant on that will be more than likely in the near future). Oh and the boy arrived yesterday so my brain is just pooped from all the emotions and work it has been through in such a short amount of time. I think it was a shock to the system after a pretty laid back summer.

I guess it’s true: too much work and no play will make my brain crappy. Is that how it goes? No? Well, something along those lines.

This is my official surrender to my brain fart. I am waving the metaphorical white flag. It’s fine, whatever, I don’t even care.

This is my deal: I’ll give my lovely little neuron filled grey matter a rest tonight. I will eat cheesecake, make the most of the rest of tonight relaxing with the boy, possibly play the wii and watch my mum and the boy sob as I destroy them on it, and tomorrow I will be fresh as a daisy to work on journalism things, blog things and work things.

It’s a great deal. Please take it.

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Lost Brain. Replacement Planner.

Yesterday I became aware that at some point between September and now I lost my brain.

My brain...or at least the mess it left behind when I lost it.

I’m not sure where I left it. On a bus maybe? (I have lost a wardrobe worth of clothes by leaving new purchases on the bus). Unlikely now that I drive. Maybe it just dropped out of my ears, melted due to not being used as much due to the long summer months university students like myself are blessed with. Maybe my brain froze? It has been awfully cold, or maybe it’s hibernating. Maybe it was taken during the night while I slept by a mad scientist or a very quiet, discreet zombie. Possible. Maybe it just decided to leave, began packing its things as soon as I bought my little purple planner.

I have never really used a planner. Mainly because I didn’t trust my brain to get jealous if I began using other methods to plan, organise and remember my things to do (my to do lists are acceptable however because I continuously lose, rewrite then re-find them). However before the academic year started, I was walking into my final year of my degree and two student jobs. There was no way in hell I was going to remember everything I would need to do. I wandered into WHSmiths and bought myself a lovely diary, marking out each glorious day that stood before me.

It was surprisingly easy to get used to using a planner. I never lost my to do lists because I put them all inside that bad boy. It’s amazing. I can plan in advance without saying I’ll be in three different places, with different people at the same time (it’s happened so often, it’s no longer awkward for me). It’s wonderful. I can tell people straight away if I am busy. I know where to go and when. I carry my planner everywhere. If I forgot it, by some horrible turn of fate, you’d find me sobbing in the middle of the street not sure of what I was doing at what time.

I am now completely dependent on my planner. I think I have been for a while and as a result my brain gave up. Thought ‘why bother, when she has her little purple planner. She doesn’t need me anymore.’ Want to know how I know this? Because I forgot to write down a meeting I had for work yesterday at 3pm, when I checked my planner (which I do every hour or so) I saw my Tuesday as being completely free to work on essays. Which I happily did until I got text messages asking where I was for the meeting. My feeble excuse was that it wasn’t in my planner.

And that was my brain’s last dig at me, a final YOU NEED ME. So I’ve lost my mind and I’ve replaced it with a small purple planner. I can’t risk dumping the planner in case my brain is stubborn like it’s owner and wants to make me suffer. I’m hoping if I plead and apologise, my brain will return. As much as I love my planner, I love my brain more.

Brain if you’re reading this, I’m sorry for cheating on you with a little purple planner. It isn’t a betrayal, more a beautiful thing we have created together. Something that means that neither of us look stupid for forgetting something. This little purple planner hasn’t created distance between us but only made us closer. I hope you can see that. Come back brain. I miss you.

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Isn’t it ironic?

So I finally get internet on the second day of the second month of 2012. Halleluiah! Then I get so busy, my diary has numerous appointments, meetings and reminders written on top of each other as there is no room on the page. Which is funny because then I can’t read anything and end up sobbing in the corner in a hopeless panic that there’s so much to do, I may as well do nothing.

I then get so many tasks; so much work and a load of crappy circumstances mean that I literally have no time to write for fun. Not due to having no internet but due to having no spare time. It’s ironic really considering I’ve been waiting for the privilege of having the internet at home so I’d have time, then I have no time even though the privilege has been bestowed upon me (for a fee!)

A light bulb moment occurred on the day that lovely man with the power to get me online came to my house. I was in a lecture and suddenly my brain started screaming at me all these great titles and fantastic ideas for blog posts and articles and just general writing for fun. I wrote them all down speedily, while still trying to listen to my lecturer chatter excitedly about human’s linguistic rights (surprisingly, it’s even more interesting than I thought it may be).

I wrote everything down, all these ideas. Ideas, themes, images, themes, concepts: everything all onto a little folded piece of A4 paper. And today I finally managed to give myself a little time to write. I was extremely productive all day. Productive to the point where I was having an out of body experience and my ghost was tired for me.

I’ve finally come home through the dangerous ice and snow (I feel a rant on the dangers of ice and the inability for the council to really do much coming – but that can be for another day). I am exhausted, I want to rest, I’m hungry and all I want to do is be a little selfish and do some writing for me.

What happens? I sit on the sofa and my laptop breaks. It won’t switch on. Fantastic. I then go to get my inspired from the heavens notes with ideas, titles and whatever. And lo and behold it’s missing. Must have left it in the office. Or somewhere where I have been working today. Great.  So I have no laptop (thank God my boyfriend doesn’t mind sharing) and no brilliant ideas on what to write. My mind is too tired to think of anything itself.

Ironic really. The one time I get a little time to write and I don’t know what to write or have my own laptop to write it on. Maybe it’s a sign. But I’m a determined and persistent fool hence this post.

Hopefully they’ll grow in quality and topic as soon as I’ve rested my little rainbow coloured brain and my anti-exercise body. May your tomorrow not be filled with as much irony as my today has been.