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Profile for Labmonkey:
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Graduate Biology student. Haven't been in a lab for the past 2 years because it's all computational for me now, which leaves me more open to this sort of distraction again.

The remaining bits from when I used to taytoshop. Badly.
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Best answers to questions:

» It was a great holiday, but...

Explorer Scout summer camp last year.
Beer, fires, everything you need for a good laugh. Scorched all the hair off my right arm at one point and nearly blew myself up with a dodgy gas-powered tea urn thing, but that was all part of the fun. Great up until the last day when Darren packed up his tent and found the cause of the odd lump under his tent was the sweet little hedgehog that had been wandering around the previous day. Yes, he'd squashed it flat by sleeping on it.
(Thu 21st Apr 2005, 14:44, More)

» Bad Management

Bah, the public sector.
I used to work at a quango, you'll likely guess which one. It had a long history of being above all oversight, prone to a religious bias in upper management, and with monumentally poor hiring policies. They'd take kids on for apprenticeships without proper interview, leading to us having some of the worst little emo oiks imaginable about the place, and we were continually plagued with former employees quitting to join a private competitor as soon as they finished their training period. In fact we were the only place that offered the necessary qualifications to work there, so the bosses really should have seen that coming more often.

In the end, the place went under when one of these time-serving managers decided that his parting gift to the company would be to downsize the entire training department and all our junior staff as a favour to his soon to be boss. I was made redundant next day, but at least I wasn't responsible for the office clearout!

Yours,
A former cleaner, The Jedi Order
(Tue 15th Jun 2010, 13:55, More)

» Best and worst TV ads

The "Carbon is the Spectre of DOOM" ads
Why? Because they look like they're a piss-take made by global warming denialists. I was all set to go into a nice rant about "How the hell is did that pseudoscience propaganda get on my telly?" until about half way through when I finally realised it was suppose to *raise awareness* of CO2 pollution.It's obvious that treating the entire population like 5 year olds listening to a fairytale and saying "TURN THE BLOODY GAS DOWN OR THE GHOSTS WILL EAT YOU!" is not the way to deal with a serious problem whose opponents' favourite tactic (short of cherry picked graphs) is to throw out accusations of scaremongering. I hope the ad agency behind it has a good excuse like "The animators stayed up all night watching the 6th Sense, stoned off their tits", or next we can look forward to more legendarily patronising public service ads along the likes of:

"Think. Don't drink and drive. Because the beer-pixies will possess you like Jack Nicholson in the Shining and you will die! OMG BEER PIXIES!"

"Benefit Thieves. We're on to you. With our Invisible Mind Rays.Yeah. Mind Rays. You're so fucked. Also we're telling your mum. Ooooooooh."

Click "I like this" if you think you can handle doing the Incredible Research! (like reading a popular science article written for normal people) that some PR numpty thinks you're too thick for.
(Thu 15th Apr 2010, 19:49, More)

» How I Skive Off Work

Skiving in General Studies.
It won't help me get into Uni, so I don't give a flying fuck. I therefore switch my hearing aid off (there are some advantages to being a bit of a cripple/insert PC term here), and listen to music with an earphone in my other ear. My longish, semi-girlie hair covers it up.
Backfired a couple of months ago when I didn't realise our teacher was telling me to "switch that music off", thought he was picking on me for answers, and kept yelling "referendum", and other vaguely politically related stuff.
Never realised what the hell was going on till lunch, when my mates hear about it and piss themselves laughing at me. Bastards.
(Wed 27th Apr 2005, 21:25, More)

» Protest!

Protesting after you've won...?
Back when I was an undergraduate, there were cuts at York to portering services, porters being a combination of handyman/security/reception for the colleges, and a protest was organised against it to top off a week or two of campainging. As a member of the student telly station at the time, I said I'd film the "action". I turn up at the protest meeting, listen the plan, how they're going to chain themselves across a passage in the early morning when people are coming back form the pub anyway so they're less likely to get caught and so on. One enthusiastic lad suggests spraying shaving foam over a security camera to block it, until someone points out that a mysteriously blocked camera would likely draw more attention than students dicking around.

Then, the big whammy. Turns out the University had just backed down on the stuff the Student Union had been contesting for the past week or so. Most people would think "Oh. There's no reason for us to protest any more, We've won". This lot decided to do it anyway, because they'd already organised it and bought a chain and placards, and gosh, they weren't going to let them go to waste. So, they turn up several hours late the next morning, chain themselves to a place where students just walk around them, and get trolled by a guy who keeps jumping over their chain and calling them wankers. Then they leave early.

The actual campainging, petitioning and awareness-raising by our often crap but sometimes efficient union before? Useful. Half-arsed protest, not so much. It was however a great example of people who want to be "active" for the sake of it, rather than because it's necessary. Similar to the protesters who picketed a BAE recruitment talk with "cake not bombs", and then when the University offered them a chance to present a counterpoint afterwards, sat about eating cake rather than sieze the chance to do what a protest is aimed at, and get their message across. These people wind me up, they lessen the impact of genuine campaigning, stuff with an objective to alert, influence and communicate, not simply "be there".
(Fri 12th Nov 2010, 11:09, More)
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