Scattered

A few days ago, I was looking through my extensive collection of photos from the past 3 years. I was struck with a paradoxical wave of happiness, nostalgia, melancholy and even a twinge of sadness as I relived some of my happiest memories.

Exactly 3 years ago I got my A level results and gained my place in the University of Nottingham. The past 3 years have been amazing, and I feel a single post couldn’t really do them justice. However, as this blog flourished as a result of my university life, I believe it is fitting closure to provide a summary of some of the highlights from the past 3 years. Once again, as with my previous review post, I think pictures would be more accurate in describing just some of what went down over this time.

So without further ado, I inundate your dashboards with epic gpoy and my own memories, from the old photo collection.

There was of course, the University of Nottingham - a beautiful place. many fun and brilliant times were had on campus, whether it be David generally goofing around, or meeting Josh for the for the first time - the first time I had ever met somebody from the internet.

Trent building at dawn

Sunset at Jubilee Campus

Sunset by Jubilee Campus lake

Sometimes, if it was raining at night, I’d wander around campus to gather my thoughts, and think. I like rain.

Midnight fog at the Queens Medical Centre

And the volumes of work that came with being enrolled there

All of the hard work that paid off in end, the hundreds of hours spent in the library, the all nighters, the frustration of difficult work, the satisfaction of cracking it - wouldn’t have been possible without some of the most wonderful people in the world

and of course, the musical times.

Rise Against at Rock City (Tim singing Swing Life Away)

Against Me! at the Rescue Rooms

LostProphets at Rock City

In the crowd at the Zippo Encore Stage at the 10th Download festival, with Aimingforthetemporallobe

Rise Against headlining the Zippo Encore stage at Download

And through it all, the amazing experiences that were had outside of university

Finding amphibians in Nottingham

Taking a nap in a Central London street

Dubai

Displaced Afghan refugees camped out on the steppe in the northern Punjab, Pakistan

Getting lost in the small towns and villages in Northern France in the middle of the night

Exploring rural Switzerland

Climbing a Swiss mountain overlooking Lake Geneva

Sitting on the banks of Lake Geneva, observing Montreux as the light of day fades

Now as a graduate, a long and uncertain road lies ahead. Life’s quietened and slowed down, as I work towards the next step towards a successful and stable life. Who knows what the future holds, but through these uncertain times I can look back and smile. To everyone who has helped me along the way so far in this journey; from the people around me to you glorious members of the Tumblrverse who actually followed, read my stuff, and kept this blog alive - thank you.

"Open the past and present
Now and we are there.
Story to tell and I am listening.
Open the past and present
And the future too.
It’s all I’ve got and I’m giving it up to you.”

-‘Scattered’, Green Day

Off to Download festival tomorrow with Aimingforthetemporallobe to see many bands, though the ones I’m most excited for are Shinedown, Dropkick Murphy’s and of course, the mighty Rise Against!
Exciiiiiiteeeeed!

Off to Download festival tomorrow with Aimingforthetemporallobe to see many bands, though the ones I’m most excited for are Shinedown, Dropkick Murphy’s and of course, the mighty Rise Against!

Exciiiiiiteeeeed!

A tale of two cities

2011 has been a magical year.

It’s gotten to the point where I’ve gained a fair few followers now, and I’m sure these kinda posts probably aren’t the reason the majority of you clicked the inconspicuous ‘Follow’ button in the top right-hand corner, but a roundup of the year has become something of a tradition of mine and it’s that time of year for me to post one. But seriously everyone, thank you people of Tumblr for all the support. All the likes, replies, reblogs, asks and recommendations - it really means a lot, and dare I say it, makes me feel a bit better about myself. And in the process I like to think I’ve gained a few more friends - have some love <3.

So thanks to all of you - even the bot-spammers who want me to see their ‘naked body pics’. Had you actually a body, I’m sure it would be beautiful.

I’ve been wondering how to sum up the year in a way that would express the journey, and I feel that 2011 in particular is a year I’d find hard to express in words. This year I think I’ll do something different. I’ll make it less of an essay, and implement more of a ‘year in pictures’ kinda thing. A snippet of some of the more personal (and tumblr friendly) pictures taken by me or taken of me, which help describe why 2011 was such an amazing year. I could’ve posted many more, but in the interest of your sanity, here’s just a few of my favourite snaps from 2011.

In chronological order, here goes

[warning: extreme gpoy ahead]

JANUARY

Birmingham shortly after New year

FEBRUARY

Jubilee campus lake, a favourite haunt of mine, generally a nice place to go and think.

MARCH

Exploring the extensive grounds of Newstead abbey

APRIL

MAY

My Notts people! Some of the most amazing people I’ve ever had the pleasure to meet. Much love for these guys. A shame therealisticpsychic isn’t in here too.

May - the month of exams. The science underlying energy in biological systems is one of the most profound things I have learned in my time at university.

JUNE

Following the Birmingham canals into abandoned industrial estate with Lee. A vestige of Birmingham’s former glory as a major centre of industry.

JULY

With Lee in Sutton Park, a nature reserve just North of Birmingham

Zombie walk, Birmingham - with Bozzy.

AUGUST

I seriously don’t know how we ended up here. Lee and I were just walking and chatting and we somehow ended up in the middle of some farmland.

SEPTEMBER

This guy in B’ham city centre was awesome. I actually put some money in the donation box for this. He deserved it.

OCTOBER

Making my Rorschach mask for Halloween

NOVEMBER

One of THE greatest nights EVAR. Will, aimingforthetemporallobe and I went to see Tom Morello (of Rage against the Machine fame) and Rise Against at Rock City, Nottingham.

Tom Morello and Tim McIlrath on the same stage. They went on to sing ‘World Wide Rebel Song’ together, at the Rise Against gig. I may have just died from euphoria.

Me and  aimingforthetemporallobe at Underground Rebel Bingo! I met this wiley young medic on Tumblr, and like to think he is the newest addition to the Nottingham family. 

amisanthropichumanist harking back to his Devonian roots. Yes, you CAN use the CD-tray as a drinks holder if you really want to…

A neuro-social with some of the other neuroscientists.

Against Me! at the Rescue Rooms! They were awesome. Can’t believe I only discovered their music within the last couple of months.

And after Against Me! aimingforthetemporallobe  and I (along with a couple of other friends) went to Hey Hey Hey! - an Alternative/Rock/Metal night at Rock City.

DECEMBER

I was learning about the wonders of shoe shopping. We actually weren’t posing for this.

…this was just a bizarre night in general.

And if you’ve gotten this far, thanks for bearing with this uber-personal post. I hope each and every one of you has a smashing new year - and stay beautiful!

"I’ve got some friends, some that I hardly know
But we’ve had some times I wouldn’t trade for the world
We chase these days down with talks of the places that we will go.”

- ‘Swing Life Away’

Rise Against


Off to see Against Me! at the Rescue Rooms! And then meeting up with  AimingfortheTemporalLobe for Hey Hey Hey! at Rock City. :D

Off to see Against Me! at the Rescue Rooms! And then meeting up with  AimingfortheTemporalLobe for Hey Hey Hey! at Rock City. :D

My attempt at being all artsy and hipster-like. Will return to your regular science programming now. 

My attempt at being all artsy and hipster-like. Will return to your regular science programming now. 

This Album

Is amazing.

From the album cover design to the order of the tracks, it’s so well engineered… I’m glad I pre ordered the limited edition CD, with the CD and badges. This band just gets me.

The cover looks kinda patriotic, which the album certainly is not. It’s more of a photo of depicting the American Dream that’s supposed to be fading away in favour of excessive modern capitalism and the lust for oil and power, as alluded to by the cracks at the bottom of the cover.

And that’s just the narrative this album follows. It’s all about the decline of modern civilization due to our fighting, intolerance and disregard for each other and the enviroment. (It has a simply sublime anti-homophobia anthem entitled ‘Make it Stop’)

But more than simply a pesimisitic ‘you’re fucked’ piece, this album is also one of hope. Not only does it describe mankinds nigh on inevitable downfall, but it alludes to new hope that can be found. The title track, which makes the oh-so fitting finale to this epic masterpiece of an album, just gives me chills. It pretty much sums up the theme of the album.

All is not lost. Things can change.

(Also makes for good study music, which is something I’m kinda trying to do a lot of currently.)

"…The paranoia gripped us
The rain turned engines to rust
The panic set in like a cancer to our hearts
Spreading through
We bet on finite genius
Or prayed for gods to save us
But there was no antidote
Disease tore us apart

We left bodies in the fields
So numb that we forgot how to feel

The city lines are down
The kerosene’s run out
The fracturing of all we relied upon
Lets shed this unclean skin
And start to feel again
Cause all the shoulders
On which to cry are gone

He looked at the fields and then his hands,
"All I need is what I have."
Then fell a tear of happiness
Oh…
She watched the world crumble away
"Is this the end of yesterday?"
"Lord, I hope so," is all he said

Gone are the old guards
Gone are the cold, cold wars
Weightless we go forth
On wings of amnesty…”

-Endgame, Rise Against

gpoyh (gratuitious pictures of your hand)
Spring is surely on the way. Was taking a break from work and spending some time by the lakeside. It&#8217;s nice. The sight of new life. The earthy, damp smell. The quacks and honks of wildfowl, primordial shrieks of the herons, tweets of the passerines and cawing of the corvids. The waxy, albeit slightly furry feel of new leaves. The taste of&#8230;. well, chewing gum (not spring related, but it was the only sense which I hadn&#8217;t described). Trent building looms in the background. A mild breeze ruffles my hair. A wayward dog sniffs my shoe and looks at me expectantly. I smile at it, and its passing owner smiles at me, probably appreciating my smile as a change to any derision a bench-sitter may feel towards shoe-sniffing dogs. The birds go quiet. I put in my headphones to listen to a couple of songs. &#8216;Survive&#8217; by Rise Against. &#8216;Westbound Sign&#8217; by Green Day. &#8216;Daylight Lucidity&#8217; by Delain. Satisfied, I trudge down the muddy path back to the medical school to continue learning about Toxoplasmosis, Oxidative Phosphorylation, Hypogonadism and Synesthesia.
Here I am. And now, back to work.

gpoyh (gratuitious pictures of your hand)

Spring is surely on the way. Was taking a break from work and spending some time by the lakeside. It’s nice. The sight of new life. The earthy, damp smell. The quacks and honks of wildfowl, primordial shrieks of the herons, tweets of the passerines and cawing of the corvids. The waxy, albeit slightly furry feel of new leaves. The taste of…. well, chewing gum (not spring related, but it was the only sense which I hadn’t described). Trent building looms in the background. A mild breeze ruffles my hair. A wayward dog sniffs my shoe and looks at me expectantly. I smile at it, and its passing owner smiles at me, probably appreciating my smile as a change to any derision a bench-sitter may feel towards shoe-sniffing dogs. The birds go quiet. I put in my headphones to listen to a couple of songs. ‘Survive’ by Rise Against. ‘Westbound Sign’ by Green Day. ‘Daylight Lucidity’ by Delain. Satisfied, I trudge down the muddy path back to the medical school to continue learning about Toxoplasmosis, Oxidative Phosphorylation, Hypogonadism and Synesthesia.

Here I am. And now, back to work.

The Sufferer and the Witness

Listening to Rise Against! This band rocks too much.

The Sufferer and the Witness must be one of my favourite albums ever.

rise against

*and breathe*

My Current Music ‘All-time top 25’ : 15

#15 - Tribute, Tenacious D, “Tenacious D”

Such a funny song, and excellent guitar work. I like how it builds in from the acoustic guitar intro, right into the hard rocking electric finale. A work of pure comedic genius, combined with brilliant music. Jack Black is generally a funny character and his voice is perfect for this type of song. A song telling a tall tale, about the greatest song in the world - which they seem to have forgotten. So they’re singing a tribute to it.

Be you angels?

And we said NAY! WE ARE BUT MEN! ROCK!

Some of the best lyrics in music.

Classic.

My Current Music ‘All-time top 25’ : 22

#22 - Saturday Superhouse, Biffy Clyro, “Puzzle”

For a while, I thought Incubus sang this  -  I really don’t know why. Either way, tis a great a song - though it is weird in the way that I can’t quite put my finger on what it is about the song that I like so much. Probably the vocals. hmmm

My Current Music ‘All-time top 25’ : 25

#25 - At The Library, Green Day, “1,039 Smoothed Out Slappy Hours”

I must guiltily admit that this song has applied to me in recent times… *blushes*

*cough*

A classic, from Green Day’s first album, which was released back in 1990. A song older than me! (not that I’m actually old or anything)