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Re: stove top espresso

Posted by alexandra_k on August 15, 2014, at 17:26:18

In reply to Re: stove top espresso Partlycloudy, posted by alexandra_k on October 26, 2013, at 22:20:38

So... Things have gotten tricky, rather.

There aren't enough hours in the day to keep on top of all my classes. So it is about damage control, really. That is usually what happens... I'd been expecting it... But I'd been expecting it for week 4/5 not starting from week 3... The bugs thing f*ck*d things up considerably. Sleep deprivation and my needing to be out of my room so messing up my eating and studying habits, too...

The worst thing is that all three of my classes have major tests scheduled for week 6. Right before a two week study break / teaching recess. You would think they would schedule tests for AFTER the study break so you could use the study break to study for the tests... But I guess the idea is that first years will use the break as a party break so better test them before everything they have managed to learn thus far falls out... And so (once again) I feel like my learning (ability to demonstrate learning in testing conditions) suffers considerably because of the study choices of 'most people'.

To compound the situation... I have court that week, too. I have a lab that week. I have a physics assignment due the end of the week before. And a learning needs assessment thing that week. A meeting where I take evidence of my dx, at any rate. Learning disability office... A few people work there. They all say they specialize in 'hidden disability' like autistic spectrum so... We will see...

I've had a couple meetings. One with the biology first year convener that didn't go well... I posted about that already. One with a chemistry deputy head... That went quite differently. He is obviously... A poster child kind of PR person... He was very calm and reasonable etc etc. Managed to make me feel good about my B+ which is no mean feat, really. But he is going to ask if I can observe labs. Which will give me practice at wearing my lab coat and goggles at the very least. Get over my panic phobia of the place. But that will involve him needing to approach people from last semester who (apparently) found me to be 'confrontational'.

I've realized... Chemistry gets tons of students. Many thousands of tons of students. Tens of thousands... More... Because there is the perception of industry... Most people think that chemistry is a good thing to do to get a respectable job. And also labs are fun eeee! So...

There are 'hidden areas'. Whole buildings with swipe card access. It is like my old university used to be like (before a merger) with research schools being kept very distinct from faculties (where the later dealt to the undergraduate teaching). I found a newspaper article about how they found a guy who was pretending to be a medical student (he rocked up for classes including cadaver dissection laboratory and even saw patients a little bit) before they discovered that his place for medicine had been declined and he wasn't enrolled. So, that justifies the security... The swipe card building access...

Anyway... The grad students are imports. Not many come through from undergrad. So... The research school-y places... Don't bother so much about them. It isn't like they feel the need for a recruitment drive or anything like that... So... You do get tons of people who are employed to keep the happy kids... Uh... Happy. Herd them through, collect their money, redistribute that to the research schools as much as possible for cool equipment and so on and so forth so that people who actually give a f*ck might be able to make an honest contribution to science. Or, uh, something...

Anyway...

I met the course convener for Bio, too. In order for me to get clearer on his role / power as course convener. Whether I had to go through the first year co-ordinator or whether that whole situation could be bypassed. Anyway... He wasn't in the office where he said he would be holding office hours. That turned out to be the Tuakana (maaori and pacific island) help corner... I guess the thought being that lots of students would get chatting to one of those people and not bother him... And of course they told me that he had probably gone for coffee... And I'm not an idiot so I emailed him (because of course he thought nobody would actually want to see him who couldn't be diverted from a bunch of happy people wanting to have happy chats...) And then he arrived but I'd stormed off... So he needed to wait for me to come back... And he was pissy... But I could hold my own... And of course I brought a decent go of a mussel gill (which was a bit of work, actually) and a decent question... To demonstrate how I'm willing to work and am not an idiot... And then I asked him about his role as coordinator and told him that I was having some struggles with labs... And anyway... He was fairly alright, actually.

The lab didn't go so well. Lab partner hadn't done any of the pre-reading. She didn't bring an eraser (yet again) and she didn't bring any paper (they supplied it last week - but they expected people to have cottoned on to needing it and most people seemed to have). When she asked to use my ruler I lost it rather (since we need to draw at least 3 different things with about 15 structures a piece). I held it together to be polite but jeez...

She dissected my grasshopper, in reparation, i guess. They were tiny. Our demonstrator was very apologetic about that, actually. Turns out my lab partner is a virtuoso dissector. Her secret: She's got nice long fingernails... She doesn't like touching things... But she does a wicked job of dissecting them using her fingernails as precision instruments. All that could be seen was a long tube with white... fibre things that I forget the name of... None of the structures. ANd I looked and looked and looked. And started to get a serious headache... And I find out days later from other sources that the eyepieces were probably too close together for me because I was straining to look down a tunnel. Because... We don't actually get taught how to use microscopes, really... Just straggle up... Straggle things up, somehow. Sigh.

I lost my wallet. And... Lost it, really. Went to doc and got a small script for some diazepam since last lot ran out. She was good, actually. Took one last night and don't feel like it touched the sides at all. Usually I do get a nice floating feeling with is sort of... COnsoling or something. But not this time. But today I'm not thinking 'I'm having a meltdown I'm having a f*ck*ng meltdown I am NOT alright' all the time over and over so something has... Relaxed.

I needt o go food shopping which I can't face. Not after having found the courage to do it yesterday then finding I couldn't pay since I didn't have my wallet. Had a horrible day of security and police and so on and so forth . And of course I checked my bag 3x.

Then last night when I went through it for something unrelated... There it was. And I am losing it. And I felt awful. Truly horrible. And I don't know what to do... Only I do... I'll phone the police on MOnday and tell them I found it. And I'll go back to the student office and be apologetic about the ID card and offer to give them one back or ask if I can save it for future incidents or whatever... Pay for it, maybe. Because they gave me a free replacement with police incident number. And I should apologise to security too, I guess. For wasting their time (they looked at footage because I thought I left it on the photocopier in the library...)

Anyway...

It will be okay.

I like physics best. Because it is clear and precise. Focuses on what is relevant / important. Because of the extra help from 10-2. Because I can study there... And I find that motivating... And it helps me ask for help - and I'm not very good at that. And the people are nice.

Chemistry is... Cold. There isn't extra help. Unless you want to pay for one on one tutoring. And I think the students might be inclined to be a little bit mean and competitive and jostly... Because there are so many of them.. So fighting over attention and so forth...

Maths is... The extra help situation over there is a mad-house. It is a really really really really really noisy group working environment. I couldn't study in such a madhouse (the way I can study in the physics helproom). I couldn't get the attention of the tutors... The tutors aren't really able to help you understand so much as give you answers since there are so many people queing for help...

Biology is... I see that the labs really are trying to reward individuals. Aspects of that... The test that is supposed to be done individually at the end (though there is in fact a massive wandering eye situation they really are doing their best to prevent that). I just... Had a bit of a meltdown because we got a slide of a transverse section of a gill. That was prepared in 1995... And it looked NOTHING LIKE the one the demonstrator showed on the board. And so I started drawing what I could see from my slide... And the demonstrator was like... Uh... Telling me that what I was seeing was wrong. Something something abotu artifacts of staining. And you can't tell which is part of the inner or outer gill from the slide anyway... And you can't see sh*t at only 400x mag anyway.. So I got pissy that we were just expected to copy from teh board. ANd they tell us clearly ONLY draw what you see DON'T draw what you think you should see. But we are told to label 15 f*ck*ng things and if you don't see them (e.g., I only saw a long f*ck*ng tube on my baby cricket at 400 mag) then DON'T LABEL THEM. but you have to... So... Meltdown.

If only I were GOOD at physics. Sigh. The current biology lecturer is... A bit scattered, honestly. HIs powerpoints are all... Like the chem people last semester with tehir shell notes. All the crutical bits of actual information we are supposed to learn is left off the slides. His audio visual recordings haven't gone up. He rushes through things at a considerable pace. So what we are expected to learn is... Very up in the air. Which makes it.... A pain in the *ss. We're learnign old Cladestics, anyway... Because of the whole impossibility of getting new textbooks in this part of the world.. Because of the inconvenience of (actual researchers) teaching the course and having other things to be getting on with instead of updating their notes...

Sigh.

I suppose the physics help people can do math, too. Or: all the math you need for physics. I wonder if there is hope???

I'm pissy that I still feel like people are... Happily delaying delaying delaying happily wasting my time... That summer course at Harvard... Teaching intelligent people with no chemistyr background chemistry... So they can go on and get an A- in organic. We have nothing like that over here. Consensus: It can't be done. Nobody will teach you. I learn more from watching primary school kids dissecting stuff on the internet in the US than I'm getting from first year university biology classes over here. But, hey, at least I'm taking someof the pressure off the demonstrators by providing at least one student with paper and an eraser... huh.

i don't really feel there is a place for me...

anyway... physics assignment today. then some damage control for biology... biology test 33% so significant. law test...

law... i'm not in a study group. i... i'm not up to the social negotiation happy puppy game right now. i'm not up to being able to be appropriately assertive. and that's what you need to be do develop good working relationships with people who are willing and able to pull their weight. instead what will happen as i'll end up carrying some group... giving model answers to people who haven't even done the readings or whatever. of course i know they probably won't do a great deal better because of it. but it will be a time sink for me. and the risk that i snap and lose my temper with at least one of them is so very high that it simply isn't worth it. also... law is a general ed for me. and the test is plussage... it is a bit risky... but i care less since my exam can count for 100% of the course and it can be about more interesting conceptual stuff rather than history stuff in nz... though we are supposed to focus on LEGAL issues... i honestly don't have the time to cram a bunch of facts abotu the date of magna carta and so on and so forth right now... do you have any idea how many f*ck*ng phyla there are? (or were thought to be)? how many impossible to spell names? how many major transitions / adaptations or whatever for every mutant critter / new type of critter they find... sigh. enough with the animals already. i never was particularly interested in them. only did this course because first year coorinator reccommended it. yeah mmm hmm this is SO TOTALLY going to help me with cell biology next year. oh, i forgot. i can't do cell biology next year. don't you have any idea how many years of high school you need to be competent to do things at that level? i mean the fact that US primary schools are teaching (willing and able) kids to do it at primary thus I could probably learn in f*ck all time if someone competent actually took the time to show me how... well... silly me... i'm supposed to be writing people model law answers and giving them free paper. just because thinking of such things themselves would mess up their social lives. silly me.

sigh.

 

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poster:alexandra_k thread:1053049
URL: http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/social/20140718/msgs/1069844.html