16 November 2007

Friday, blessed Friday

I have finally made it to Friday again. I've just finished up a set of Atterberg Limits at the lab. Crystal and I have continued watching Aeon Flux. It just keeps being weirder in a lot of ways.

The weekend is supposed to have very nice weather. Maybe Crystal and I will go do some more walking in the park or something. We had a very good time a couple weekends ago when we went around town towards Parnell.

I've gotten a presentation together for the Geotech Colloquium at the university. I just need to run things past my supervisors before the date of the presentation. I'll be sending a draft along to my supervisor in the Engineering Faculty.

14 November 2007

Not a whole lot to report on today. The ring shear test finished yesterday. I've got some plans to do other work. Right now, I rewriting some of my older work. I'm having to change it around because we've changed the focus of the work as a whole. Really, that change in focus happened awhile ago but I just haven't gotten around to revising things before.

Crystal and I watched two episodes of Aeon Flux last night, and it really is just as weird as I remember.

I think I'm close to finishing Phatom Hourglass now. Only about two temples left as far as I can tell. I have plenty more things to find though.

13 November 2007

Another day at the lab. and I've almost finished the ring shear that I've had going. Sorting through the data I've looked at for the last year has shown some interesting possibilities of trends. I've got a lot more work to get real trends, but there is some promising stuff.

Crystal has started drawing again, which I think is a really good thing. She's had me buy her a drawing journal too.

For some reason, my eye is continually watering today. I don't have any other allergy type symptoms though.

Not much else to report on. I've been playing a lot of Phantom Hourglass. It's a really fun game and I definitely recommend it to others.

12 November 2007

So much for the field day

I went back to look at the tide tables for today, and realized the tide comes an hour later than I previous had thought. So, I won't be going into the field today after all. I have some planned time at the end of next week that should work out better though. I'll take two days then, and after that I'll have the 26th with both Colin and Warwick out in the field with me.

I had a good weekend though. Started out a new D&D game with my friend Brandon at the helm. It's really little more than a sort of Fight Club, but still a lot of fun. Mostly, we just have it to fill in the gaps between our regular games when we don't have some of the players. This week we had a party of three (rogue, fighter, and sorceror) vs. and Ettin. Turned out pretty good. My character, the rogue, managed to get the killing hit in on the ettin before it took down our fighter.

On Sunday, Crystal and I went to see our Mel's new flat. She's got a pretty nice place now. Our chilis are growing well so far.

09 November 2007


I feel much better after my meeting with Warwick and Colin. Better, though it has more or less just changed the panicky feeling. I've gone from lost with little idea of what I should be doing to worried about the huge amount of things that I ought to be doing. Having a direction to take my research is a lot better though.

I'm going out to the field again on Monday to do some testing, and probably some sampling as well. I also just found out that there is meant to be a geotechnical symposium at the university for all the researchers who have done work in the geotech lab during the previous year. They've asked me to present my work there. I'm not terribly keen on it, because I haven't really done a whole lot. Especially, I haven't even begun to answer the questions that I'm looking to answer from the tests that I'm doing. All that I really have is some raw data. I should probably try to find some way to relate things.

Enough about that though. Crystal and I are having steak tonight for the first time in months I'm sure. We found some sirloins on clearance at the grocery (I assume because they were old). We've had them sitting in the freezer. Tonight, I plan to grill them up with some portabello mushrooms. It should be tasty. I have no guarantees of the tastiness, but everything promises to be good.

I just thought of another little story that I haven't related yet. Crystal and I went to Blockbuster last Saturday and got ourselves signed up. They've got a pretty good special there as long as you can wait for things to be 7 day rentals. 4 for $10. Anyways, we got Blackadder 2, The Dark Crystal, Dogma, and V for Vendetta. V had to be watched since the Nov. 5 is Guy Fawkes night. I hadn't seen Dogma and Crystal hadn't seen Blackadder 2 since I watched it without her. And it has been a long time since either of us watched The Dark Crystal. The movie still looks good by today's standards.

I think I'll end this post there, since I've run out of things to say. I keep meaning to add Crystal as a person who can post to this blog, but I don't think she is the type that ever would, so it's probably a moot point.

08 November 2007

Ring Shear Tests

So, I'm working on a ring shear test in the geomechanics lab. The whole test takes several days, though I don't have to be around the apparatus very much. I only have to take a reading exery hour or half hour typically. If you are interested, have a look at an article by E. N. Bromhead from 1979 in Ground Engineering. It describes the apparatus and the test procedure at least.

I should finally have a meeting with my supervisors today. I've been trying to get this going for awhile. Hopefully, we'll have some good progress towards funding opportunities for me. I suppose that at the very worst, I will have $3000 per year from the University. I'd really like to have some more so that Crystal and I would have less to worry about in the financial area.

Not much else to talk about. A friend I met last year at IH came to visit yesterday so that Crystal could finally meet her. We had some tasty pizza.

06 November 2007

Missed Appointments

So, yesterday, I went back and forth between my two supervisors (which is ridiculous in the first instance since their offices are next to each other), and I set up a meeting for today starting between 2 and 3 PM. To put it simply, one of my supervisors hasn't been in all day. Don't know if he's sick or what, but you would think he could call or send an email or something to let me know that he's not going to be around.

This really annoys me, because now my primary supervisor can't meet tomorrow, which means the meeting has to get pushed back to Thursday. I have generally been trying to get a meeting together for the last two weeks, ever since I returned from Australia. I don't know why it is so difficult to get three people together, especially when one of their schedules is almost completely open.

This really annoys me, because I need to talk to my supervisors about funding and field work. I need funding to keep this project going, but I have no idea where to start looking for it, or I would go about applying for it if I did find something. I also need to get some more field work done. My trip on Friday was a demonstration of why I'm better to go out with someone more experienced. I got myself lost (or at least missed my turn) twice costing myself on the order of 45 minutes of valuable time in the field. With that much time, I could have had a brief look at the second outcrop that I travelled to.

What it comes down to is that this event highlights my concern about how much my supervisors care about my research and my success as a PhD student. I feel that one of them is generally preoccupied by his family and teaching and the other by his research.

I feel that this problem has lead to me not getting as much work done this year as could be hoped. I know that my own tutoring schedule has been somewhat to blame for that, but I also feel that my supervisors could make themselves somewhat more available to help out.