Mr. Big Bollocks & The Palatini Bros.

Thought I’d open with a bang, hence the catchy title. So, what’s been occurring?

Well, I’m stressfully approaching two assessments in cell biology, the first of which will take place this wednesday, and the other two weeks after that. The one that looms over my coming week is a presentation which, mercifully, will last only 6-8 minutes and have an audience of 5 people. Only thing is, the fifth will be some PhD (literal) world expert in what I’m talking about. Which means, unlike secondary school, I can’t just blag it with long words shoehorned into even more elaborate sentences. But what am I talking about? ‘The Squid’s Contribution to our Understanding of Excitable Cells’.

Yeah, I know, contain your excitement please, ladies and gents. What that really means is: physics.

My talk, if I, by some miracle, manage to say it like I’ve written it out, should last six and a half minutes… spot on. Continue reading!


The Philosophical Cow

It’s been yet another two weeks since I last wrote! Maybe it’s got something to do with the hordes of information flying in from every direction. No, it definitely has something to do with that.

But it’s what I signed up for, isn’t it? And it’s not all bad, of course.

Two weeks ago, I had a superb run of four days that finished earlier that 5pm. Absolutely magic. Did I get more done that I would have done ordinarily? Probably not, but boy did it feel good to slow down a little.

Those days, though they contained mostly bland-ish lectures, had some real gems of thought in them. For a start, they contained lectures on cell division, with the molecular basics of cancer… which in all honesty put a new spin on this famously sinister disease. …Continue reading!

Cowboys & Italians

I wrote this on Friday, and I can only assume that I forgot to publish it because my brain was so frazzled… but here we go!

So this week has been absolutely packed with stuff to talk about: the good, the bad and the downright ugly!

Monday was straight in at the usual 9am lectures for our entry into Veterinary Public Health. What’s that? It’s the line veterinary professionals form to hold back the thousands of zoonotic diseases from ya’ll. I’m talking the terrifying stuff like listeria, Hendravirus, ebola, anthrax… eugh. At every single step along the way from farm to fork and anywhere else animals interface with humans, there’s a vet. These lectures were one part dry, one part horrifying.¬†We’re putting pressure on our natural world, and driving animals into closer contact with people. And the result is a rapid emergence of lethal zoonotic diseases that previously lived harmlessly in the environment. …Continue reading!

Out On A Limb

Week four of Vet School saw an abrupt and merciful end to the onslaught of cell biology material. Although I recognise this as a brief respite, it’s fantastic all the same.

Monday was the final leg, where we battled through a full day of cell biology, starting with two consecutive hours of the different molecular diagnostic tools and then spent the afternoon carrying out PCR and Gel Electrophoresis.

I’m the kind of person who likes to do practical stuff, I like to learn with my eyes and my hands (this, apparently, is known as visual-kinaesthetic learning). And I learn best by seeing the things that I’m learning about. When it comes to anatomy, this is perfect. The more 3D models I’m given, the more I add to the 3D dog in my head. But molecular cell biology is an invisible art, that doesn’t always follow specific rules. …Continue reading!

I think I’ve been going to the wrong lectures

I’d be fibbing if I tried to glorify this week by saying it was amazing… because it was, mathematically speaking, very average. What’s the phrase? Regression to the mean.

In other words, the last seven days have been a hodgepodge of great highs and really, really bad lows. As a result, I can’t subjectively evaluate it as either good or bad on account of either set of events. Therefore, objectively, it’s been average.

The above is an example of how I like to break life down – scientifically. And I should hope so, too, given that I’ve committed to study for five years at one of the world’s top ten veterinary institutions under the tutelage of world leaders in clever crap like genetics.

And so I applied my mind to conclude something relatively simple: Freshers’ Week is over. I didn’t get Freshers’ Flu. I now won’t get Freshers’ Flu.

I astound myself sometimes. …Continue reading!