From zero to… what?

So, here I am at midnight typing out a blog post for no other reason than to hear my own voice. (read my own voice? idk someone should stop me I am far too tired for creative writing)

Today was a long day, for a number of reasons. The first reason, chronologically as well as in terms of importance, was that I had a 9am lecture this morning. As I am a slow morning person, I had to get up at 7am. This was a problem only because I decided to stay up until 2am the night before… knitting. Yeah, I know. I’m strange indeed. The lecture was uneventful, and the day passed without much excitement, although I did manage to bake 8 bread rolls.

The second reason, chronologically, was that I had arranged to go to a meetup this evening. For those not in the know (i.e. probably basically everyone; I’m not assuming you know anything because I don’t know who you are!) a meetup in this case means an ace meetup, i.e. a meetup of ace people. We went and hung out in a German bakery/cafe and I ate 3/4 of a delicious sandwich – for the record, I would have eaten the whole sandwich if it hadn’t been really weird being the only one eating – and talked about a number of topics, ranging from how weird straight people are to the ruin and horror that Moffat has wreaked upon our beloved Doctor Who. Oh, and music recitals, briefly. Then there was an extremely trippy art exhibition exploring colour and light – it’s called pinkyellowblue or something? Anyway, that was fun too. And then we all went home.

I think it’s nice, every so often, to just confirm that there are in fact other people like me and that they actually exist in England. It’s also good to just confirm that I am in fact capable these days of just talking to random strangers, even if it can be a bit tricky sometimes and you have to prop up the conversation with cake and tea. A good motto for life really: all problems may be easily solved, if only you have a little cake and tea.

Well.

So it’s literally been like, months. Or maybe even years. I don’t know, it’s been too long, frankly. Anyway, the fool that I am linked some people from uni to this blog, so hi guys! I hope you enjoy all the old shitty posts.

An Update!

Well, I think I mentioned about the whole “coming out via leaflet” thing? Here we go: an update! My housemate eventually found the leaflet (it helped that I, with the help of a friend from uni, moved the leaflet from under a pile of books on her desk to under her duvet) and she reacted really well. as well as you really can react to a leaflet under your duvet saying “so you think your housemate is asexual” with a glorious picture of my face underneath it.

Note: I’ve been trying to not describe my face as being hideous or ugly, which I do casually a lot like I’m trying to prove I’m not a narcissist. So if I describe myself as wondrous and perfect, that’s why.

This post is literally just an updating you (and by extension, me) on the goings on in my life. So… where to begin. Well, I went to a Buddhist meeting last week which was unexpectedly taxing on the old vocal chords (chanting for an hour. You really don’t appreciate how little you talk in day-to-day life until you talk constantly for an hour) but somehow calming. I very much lost track of time, which was interesting.

I’ve also started meditating again, which has had two effects: 1. I fall asleep so much quicker, it’s ridiculous. 2. I’ve realised how anxious and stressed and weirdly self-conscious I get on a daily basis. So that’s nice, and probably explains why sometimes I get so tired I just curl up on my bed and stare at my elbows.

my perfect, beautiful elbows.

er, what else. I’ve been eating so much soup recently that I’ve rediscovered my absolute loathing for broccoli. Broccoli does not deserve to exist on the same mortal plane as chocolate, I’ve decided. And no matter how much you dilute it with carrot you can still taste the fucking broccoli.

And then there have been a couple of exams. Guess what I’m procrastinating about right now? That’s right, medieval polyphony and German nationalism. How’d you guess?

oooh an update on the soup situation! so you know how ages ago I was like “ugh soup, I just eat it for the vitamins”? Well now I like it! I actually sometimes don’t even need bread to eat a bowl of soup, so that’s exciting. Not that bread is expensive or anything, I just don’t really want to be eating half a loaf of bread every lunch.

Well, I think that’s basically it. Have fun, kiddies. And as always, good night, friends. Good night.

Welcome Back

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? And so much has happened! Well, for starters I’ve done an exam. Yep, that’s right – a whole exam. Please, try and hold your fainting until the end of the page. I’ve got three to go, and a recital, and then a concert, so by the time this month is over I will be very very tired and very very stressed. Because I am the kind of person who won’t stop freaking out about their exam until they actually get the results back, and at the rate the music department works that won’t be until I’m about 95. 

No matter. 

In the meantime, I have to juggle a great many things. Rehearsals for the aforementioned concert, a rehearsal and a concert in a completely different place, revision for my three exams, and of course practicing for the recital. That’s on top of the vague fear that my laptop’s about to break, semi-crippling social anxiety, and the general weirdness that comes with outing yourself to a housemate via pamphlet
That’s if she ever finds it. 
omg I might sneak into her room and steal it back
Stay tuned for more news from me, at a more acceptable hour of the day. good night, friends. good night. 

Flipping Coursework

One of the downsides of being a student is that they do expect you to do coursework, occasionally. They probably also expect me to do revision, but I’m way too cool for that stuff. And also I’m extremely lazy, so shhhhh.

Anyway, something I can’t really get out of doing is my composition assignment. And there are a lot of questions I have about that. Like, why did I choose to compose as one of my modules when I’m an absolute shite composer? And, why did I choose to compose a piece in a style that I hate? And, why did I even choose composition given that it was completely optional this year? Questions indeed.

So, I’ve done approximately 1:30 of the damn thing and I’m pretty sure it’s a bucket of rubbish. But hey, at least I’ve got a semi-decent essay to reassure me that I’m not terrible at coursework, so that’s something.

Things I know about myself

I am vain. Ludicrously so, in fact. I can barely go past a mirror without examining my face in it to make sure I still look the same as I did half an hour ago when I went and got my last cup of tea. (generally speaking I do) I have to double-check my face in the morning just to make sure it hasn’t done anything weird while I was in the other room doing whatever I was doing. Breakfast, possibly. I often have breakfast in the morning, and I hear that’s actually quite common. I will spend quite a long time every day fluffing my hair up to the appropriate degree – the downside of having hair as soft as a baby duck is that it sometimes does weird things, like all gathering together in the way that baby ducks do – and if it isn’t right I have been known to wash it again just to make it do the thing. DO THE THING.

I am petty. Oh man am I petty. There are people I hate in my year for the reason that they did something very small at the beginning of the year and I never forgave them for it. But what was the thing? I have no idea, because I forgot. You can see the huge impact the thing had on me. And I’m not just petty, I’m vengefully petty. I will remember that you did a thing six months ago that I didn’t like – even if I don’t quite remember the details – and then when you need something I’ll be mysteriously unavailable. But I’ll make it seem like I really would have helped, if I hadn’t just suddenly organised a trip to London. Good god I am a terrible person. Oh well, I’m sure the orchestra rehearsal went on fine without me.

hmm, what else. I’m controlling. In a very empathetic sort of way, or a moral way. You know, for your own good. Oh, you haven’t eaten dinner? Let me make something for you. Oh, you have a lecture tomorrow morning that you often miss? Shall I wake you up? Like you’re a tiny child?

OK, so that’s basically just a list of not totally positive features, but you know it’s important to own things like that. So if someone accuses you of being petty in a fight you can say “yes, I am!” rather than “no! I am upset and angry”.

Anyway, that’s that. Basically, just an exercise in naval-gazing, don’t bother reading if you don’t want to. Wait, too late.

Classic Student Things, or The One With a ‘Dinner Party’

I’m calling this a music student activity because I’m a music student and I’m doing it. shhhh that’s totally logic ok?

Tomorrow (today?) I’m hosting a ‘dinner party’. I don’t really know if it counts because we’ll be eating non-dinner party food and we’ll all be drinking schloer and water from a jug. We may well end up using cups instead of just drinking from the jug, but that’s not the point. The POINT is that even though it feels kind of not-fancy due to just being six of my friends (and my dad and my sister. Can I get an “aaaaaaaaaaah”?) who will probably be on someone’s phone the whole time I’m in the kitchen, and I feel like that damn balloon video is going to get a lot of screentime. Most of the views on that thing must be from us, I’m sure of it.

Well, despite all that, I still don’t want to give anyone food poisoning. As a completely random and non-specific example. And I don’t want them to hate the food I’m doing, even though I’ve only ever actually made one of the courses – fuck???? why did I choose things I didn’t know if I could make? oh well how hard can rice pudding be – so I don’t really know how they’re going to go. Hopefully well.

Anyway, if you’re interested, here’s the menu: Stuffed red peppers, chicken curry, rice pudding. It’s a bit more dressed up than that, but that’s essentially it.

Never mind the fact that 9 (or 8. it’s complicated) people will be eating this so I’d better not mess it up. Never mind the fact that I should probably be putting the rice pudding on at the exact moment I’ll be serving up the starter. NEVER MIND ALL THAT IT’S GOING TO BE GREAT

probs

The Philosophy of Philosophy

I’ve been having a load of fun over the last few days recovering from a fluey bug I caught last week (thanks dad) and doing my references for a philosophy essay. I’m determined that this time I’ll actually know what the references are about rather than just skimming the first page like I usually do, so I’ve been reading all the way through and making notes to refer to for the essay. It’s 100% coursework, OK, there isn’t an exam for this module (!!!) so I really need to do well.

I think my least favourite part of it was the part where two of the books only exist as hard copies in the library at RHUL, 40 minutes away from home. Thank god I realised before I went up to Yorkshire, because there’s just something about a 4 hour drive to the library that doesn’t appeal, you know? As it was I had to spend half an hour checking the same damn shelf because I’d mixed the two books up and I was looking for the wrong three letter code.

Anyway, the question I’ve chosen is about knowledge in art. Can art give us knowledge? My instinctive answer is, of course it can! But I’m starting to think that maybe that knee-jerk reaction might not be entirely correct. In fact – and this is a good one, I’m thinking I might throw something like this in – the mere assumption that artistic quality has to be associated with cognitive brilliance is indicative of the privileging of intellectuality inherent in European society. This elitism regarding standards of media possibly limits our appreciation of art to that which is ‘traditionally’ cognitively brilliant. tl;dr: we think stuff has to be clever to be high quality, but maybe it doesn’t.

Wow that paragraph was a mouthful. almost as much of a mouthful as some of these readings. Well, I’d better get back to it. Lamarque isn’t going to read himself…

Deadline Day, the last lecture, and potentially too much sushi

Yesterday was deadline day! Some departments have lots of days where they have to hand essays in, but the music department just simplifies things. “everything in on the last Wednesday of term, kids” they say. “Two hard copies and submit in online and WRITE YOUR CODE ON THE COVER SHEET WITH YOUR CANDIDATE NO. THAT CHANGES EVERY YEAR. what are you talking about this is easy stop crying”

I mean, there’s also my composition techniques exercise which is due on the first day after the Easter holidays. And the philosophy essay that’s due in on the day of my first exam. Apart from that, we’re done.

Oh, and of course options selection day on Friday. For those not in the know, the options selection form must be submitted by email at 8.30. Attempts to submit the form before 8.30 will be met with your form being sent to the back of the queue. ??? Its a baffling system to me, particularly as the form itself is approximately 50 miles away from a sensible format. And of course all the lectures are on a ‘first come first serve’ basis, which doesn’t really work if everyone’s frantically submitting the damn things at 8.30 in the morning. I digress.

Oh, not to forget handing in the accompaniment for my recital! Yet another thing to have to photocopy and sellotape together, because paper & ink & sellotape are cheap.

Fortunately, today was my absolute last lecture of the year, so we celebrated afterwards with some sushi rolls and a cup of chai latte.

Recipe: Cauliflower Pizza (…)

Memoirs of a Music Student | A bit of this, a dash of that

You know those days where you suddenly realise you’ve bought too much cauliflower? (yeah, I know this is a very unlikely situation. Just roll with it, people!) What could you possibly do with all that cauliflower? Assuming you don’t just want to burn the cauliflower, here’s a great recipe for using up excess evil vegetables:

You will need:

1 large head of cauliflower
1 egg
Loads and loads of grated cheese (mozzarella or cheddar are my usual suspects)
A small tin of tomato (or a large one if you plan to freeze half of it. you nerd)
Pesto
Some other toppings to disguise the hateful taste of cauliflower

Method:

1. Remove all the weird bits from the cauliflower. You know, the leaves, the stalks etc. Or whatever.

2. Grate the cauliflower. This could take a while, so make sure you allow plenty of time for existential crises on where the hell your life is going

3. Boil the cauliflower until its tender. If you like the taste of cauliflower, this step will be easy because you can just eat a small amount to test it. If not, it’s probably done after 10 minutes.

4. Drain it. Seriously, use a sieve.

5. Pour the pulpy vegetable into a tea towel (or a cheesecloth, depending on your level of fanciness) and use that to squeeze out the rest of the water. Yeah, this is really hard. But you have to do it! The fate of the world rests upon your ability to squeeze the maximum liquid out of the damn sodding cauliflower.

6. Continue with step 5 until your hands are really really painful.

7. Whisk an egg in a bowl and mix the cauliflower into the egg really thoroughly. The egg helps it all to bind together, presumably.

8. Line a baking tray with parchment or greaseproof paper (hint: tin foil is a bugger to get off the underside of a pizza, but that could just add to the fun later on???), and smooth the ‘dough’ onto the tray. Make sure to press it down firmly to be all smooth and whatnot. Make it as thin as you like, or don’t. Do whatever, dude, I can’t tell you what to do.

9. Bake in the preheated oven (at 200 degrees, CELCIUS!!! can’t stress that enough) for about 25 minutes or until it’s golden and crunchy. The crunchiness of the base is pretty critical, otherwise it goes all limp and weird.

10. In the meantime, prepare your tomato. I like to blend mine with a bit of garlic, but whatever floats your boat dude.

11. When the base is done, put the tomato, general toppings (and pesto in dribs), and grated cheese on the pizza. Bake again for about 5-10 minutes, until the cheese is melty and hopefully golden-crispy

12. Enjoy, if you can.