Luckily there were a couple of good things to redress the balance. One being a great poster designed by the team who are Warwick Anti Sexism Society (WASS) for their campaign against Page 3 profiles and to ban selling the Sun. The other was a video clip somebody has put up showing how Ash Beckham, who is a lesbian, deals with a four year old girl who asks her if she's a boy. I so recommend you check it out, but have your Kleenex at hand. It's on Upworthy and its lovely.
Tomorrow I have 2 hours, yes, 2 whole hours, in a statistics lab in the maths department to get to grips with the wonders of SPSS. No, me neither! Taking a wild guess I imagine at least one of the S's must stand for statistics. I'm not a student for nothing you know. This joyous affair will be my lot until the end of term as far as Social Research Methods are concerned, and to demonstrate one purpose of statistics, we had a guest speaker from Chester Zoo (who is also a fellow of the University of Warwick).
By the time he had finished I decided that statistics are not the awful concrete collar you might imagine; he made them sound fun and interesting. He was not a boring anorak at all, which is certainly the picture that flashes before me whenever the S word is mentioned. I was even driven to ask a question. In a lecture. We don't do that at Warwick.
My family are steadfastly synchronised in their interruption to my study, appearing in unison to ask the most mundane of questions.
We have had some new doors fitted in the hall and kitchen. The third is to be done next weekend. It takes a whole weekend to fit one door and so statistically I think that makes 3 weeks in total. I will run it through the SPSS programme and get back to you on that one! The existing doors are imperial, the new ones are metric. Consequently they DON'T FIT. The whole time has been spent shaving a bit off here, sanding a bit off there, rubbing a bit down somewhere else. These doors come already painted but now they have a patchwork effect since there are intermittent bits of bare wood where the paint has been systematically removed. My heart sinks when I hear them say "Now don't worry, we'll tidy up."
Yeah, right. However I did have my crowning moment when it was decided that the kitchen door which had been on and off its hinges yoyo like all day, and was about to be removed yet again as it still wouldn't close, when I suggested they might like to remove the threshold strip betwixt hall and kitchen and replace it with a metal strip thereby giving that teensy bit more clearance that was needed. I felt so smug when they tried it and the door actually shut.
My family are steadfastly synchronised in their interruption to my study, appearing in unison to ask the most mundane of questions. When the dynamic duo can't be together, they have a rota to ensure I am never left alone, and take it in turns to make coffee, make lunch, make a mess, make like a tree and leave perhaps? I have been driven to distraction and back; so much so that I have applied to go into halls in my third year. They don't of course know this yet and I am deliberating the best way of breaking the news. I think a postcard will probably be the most humane.
I am currently on a course, 3 days this week and a further day early in the New Year. It's something called a Spring Programme and is designed specifically with women in mind, to achieve confidence, learn interview techniques, get the best out of yourself and not be reticent about singing your own praises. This afternoon we are actively encouraged, nay forced even, to blow our own trumpets and to be as overtly flamboyant as we could realistically get away with when speaking for two minutes about ourselves. No deviation, hesitation or repetition, just get stuck in. We had to think of a word which we felt best described us; we had four minutes to put a story together around that word and then bingo we had to speak for two minutes. No prep, just speak. Go! Clock ticking. Speak. Now.
Our performance was then evaluated by the members of our house group. I would never have thought I would be able to do such a thing, but I did and whatâs more I liked it and want to do it again. So liberating I can't begin to tell you. Wow. I hope I catch up on the lectures I have missed as a consequence, but do you know what, I don't care. That's how good it was today.