Archive for December 2010

Open wide...

26.12.10 § 0 commentarii

As the (admittedly rather dishy) emergency dentist was poking around in my agonised mouth at eleven o’clock yesterday morning, he asked one of the most asinine questions I’ve heard all year[1]:

“And what did Santa bring you for Christmas?”

Now, as you may have noticed, I am not the most patient of men. When in pain, my temper becomes rather short. Much like a wounded bear cub with priapism (the image is indeed apropos), I become intensely irritable and have a tendency to snap at people trying to help me. I glared at him and replied:

“Fucking toothache, you twat. Bloody get on with it.”

Yes, dear reader, I spent Christmas morning in agony at a dentist’s. It’s entirely my own fault: due to an aversion to dentists[2], I’ve let my dental health fall into a rather poor state, which led to me waking up at 0200 hours on Christmas morning with a throbbing pain caused by pulpitis. The dentist numbed the pain with a series of injections, filled the cavity with steroids and told me to get it extracted in the new year, which of course I will do.

Having provided a surcease to the pain, the dishy dentist became my favourite person in the world. I apologised profusely for having been short with him earlier, and he accepted my apology most graciously, grinning somewhat, which lent a boyish charm to his face. As I turned to leave, however, he was sniggering. Stepping out into the crisp Christmas morning, I immediately felt one hell of a draught around my rude bits. I’d been lying in the dentist’s chair with my flies wide open. Or open wide, should I say. That’s what the overpaid cunt was laughing at.

Fucking dentists.


1) Excluding, of course, the rather confused old gentleman who came into the bakery and, after spending ten minutes staring at a loaf of sliced brown, approached the counter and asked “do you sell this bread, or is it just for display?”

2) I’m not scared of dentists or dental work (although I admit to being something of a big girl when it comes to injections and needles), I just object to putting money into their seemingly bottomless wallets. In a country with supposedly socialised healthcare, the cupidity of the dental profession offends me.

Ding-dong merrily on fuck it where's the red?

15.12.10 § 4 commentarii

Christmas is one of my favourite times of the year, which is perhaps surprising for someone as bitter and curmugeonly as I can be. It goes without saying that, as for most of the population of the western world, all the supposedly religious elements of this time of year are utterly irrelevant to me, which essentially leaves a period in which one does not have to work, when you can eat as much excellent and unhealthy food as passes your way and when you can consume vast quantities of alcohol (which would normally have your friends and relatives booking you a place in rehab) whenever you please and without anyone so much as raising an eyebrow. And you get free stuff, as well. What’s not to like about Christmas?

Of course, the Fates do not tolerate unadulterated joy without exacting some kind of price. Christmas has, alas, plenty not to like. Aside from the fact that the rampant commercialism long ago crossed the line over into “irreparably tacky”, there’s also the ubiquity of Christmas music during this season, which is near-universally abhorrent[1]. And furthermore, there’s relatives. Even my normally easy-going family tends to squabble like cats in a bag at Christmas time, so by mutual consent the extended family only tends to get together at less pressurised times of the year. He Whom I Call beloved comes from a family which, unlike mine, is verb Big on Christmas, so most years when I’ve not been working the holiday season, we’ve generally spent the afternoon with his family after seeing my dad in the pub that morning. I’m normally too knackered and hungover to object, so it’s an arrangement that works.

An unexpected pleasure of working for The Bakery is that this year I find myself with five days off around Christmas. Being used to only having half of Christmas day off if I’m lucky, this makes a pleasant change[2]. So, for the first time in a few years, we are hosting them for Christmas lunch. Not only does this mean that I get to cook pretty much what I want, but also that if it all gets a bit much I can disappear into the kitchen with a book and a bottle of wine and claim to be doing something food-related. That was the intention, at any rate.

Now, don’t get me wrong: I’m actually very fond of my in-laws. They’re lovely people. However, my mother-in-law has Opinions on what a Christmas meal should be. One of the closest things my family has to a Christmas Tradition is the cooking and consumption of a ham. A big one, generally roasted with honey, mustard and a foolish amount of whiskey. So that’s what I was intending on serving this year. However, my mother in law a) won’t eat pork and b) wanted turkey. Leaving aside the fact that I loathe its bland, dry meat, there is no way in the three worlds that I am going to cook a sodding great turkey for four people. A turkey crown was suggested. Which is just the dry, inedible parts of turkey at double the price. I reasonably pointed out that, as long as I retain my strength, no fucking turkey, turkey part or turkey-derived product was coming out of my kitchen. We have therefore compromised on beef. I did initially float the idea of brisket, not only because I can just chuck it in a pot and forget about it, but also because it’s a lovely cut. My dear husband did point out that, while admittedly delicious, brisket isn’t all that festive. So roast rib of beef it is.

The second hurdle came with dessert. Last time they came over for Christmas, I ordered in a Paris-Brest from the pâtisserie down the road. A lovely, delicate choux pastry ring filled with a light crème pâtissière. Perfect after a heavy, filling meal. Unfortunately, the verdict on this was that, while undoubtedly delicious, it wasn’t really very “festive”, and what a shame it was to miss out on the traditional Christmas pudding and flaming brandy butter. Discreet enquiries revealed that neither husband nor father-in-law particularly like Christmas pudding. I’m not keen on it myself. I went through a cavalcade of suggestions for alternatives: zuppa inglese, galette des rois, syllabub, croquembouche (seriously, at this point I was willing to make a whole sodding croquembouche, which would have taken up the best part of the day, just to avoid Christmas pudding), tarte aux amandes, which were all nixed as being “too French”, despite at least one option being Italian. What do they expect? I was trained in the tradition of French cuisine, ferfucksake. They’re lucky I’m not insisting on a cheese course (I might do, actually. No fucking Stilton, though.) Finally, it was suggested that we have a Christmas pudding anyway and I content myself with an individual portion of profiteroles or similar. Seeing this as something of an insult to my hospitality, I retorted that in that case the ham was back on the menu and the mother in law could have a single breast of turkey. With unexpected tact and wisdom, my poor husband (who was acting as go-between) decided not to pass this on, but rather suggested Christmas cake. Mollified somewhat by his assurances that I make excellent fruitcake, and that I could put as much marzipan and royal icing on it as I please, I gracefully acceded.

So, with these parameters in mind, I can actually start to plan out what I’m going to cook. The starter will probably be a spread of small nibbly things, like parmesan and chili biscotti, plenty of cured meats, miniature pains de campagne, cheeses, spanakopiti, gougères, etc. Festive tapas, basically. Followed by roast parsnip soup. Easy enough to throw together and plate, and most of the stuff I’ll be making from scratch can be done in advance. The main is going to be the rib of beef, served with roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, garlic and butter mushrooms, a Brussels sprout and chestnut gratin, petits pois à la française and braised cabbage. Again, stuff which can be done in advance. With Christmas cake to follow, probably with a citrussy crème fraîche affair to cut through the sweetness. Given the five days off thing, I’m fully expecting to spend all day on Christmas Eve cooking, with just reheating and chucking the beef in the oven on Christmas Day. Which gives me ample time to get sloshed on red wine. Hurrah! Merry Christmas to one and all, etc.


1) There are, of course, some honourable exceptions. I would be happy to listen to Fairytale of New York at any time of the year. And this version of everybody’s favourite ode to festive date-rape, Baby, It’s Cold Outside, from Glee’s Christmas episode is utterly adorable.

2) I encountered another pleasing difference from the Trade only yesterday. I’m currently laid low with a particularly vile cold, and was sent home from work, with the firm admonition that I shouldn’t have come to work in the first place. In the hospitality industry, about the only acceptable excuse for being ill off work is missing a limb, and even then only if blood is still dripping from the stump. Once it’s cauterised you’re expected to be back on the line. Taking time off work is simply not done: I’ve described before how I’ve been to hospital after maiming myself and then gone straight back to work and finished my shift. Of course, we all pay pious lip-service to the idea that if one is struck down with some kind of gastric problem one shouldn’t come into work in order not to pass it on to the customers, but in practice this rarely happens. I’ve heard (possibly apocryphal) tales of chefs with the shits keeping a bucket to crap in behind the pass and continuing through the evening service. If you ever get food poisoning from a restaurant, it’s more likely to be an ill chef than bad shrimp.

Graecum est; non legitur

§ 0 commentarii

Tephato it, ā Zeptes, sā chetūs dronthūs rocotriūs, aides cecleset zātrā zaurītrā nain harpeonta de ho Trouisa ton gobran chāleion. To gobrāt epiot asodonta, po to iramūt therrumais epeois sasathet; potho zeiaphet epano hūs garilās ges phoreleot d’ erexatin astaphatin·tho zera hendūt ampha maitara; nan phorelonteia tel eira rexatin to hendūt, zardona tancor zera marritīn, mamāngor de to rīnnīt Pharnoi; chēa·tho namusthonta tos tānus te de rondezoi. Tephato deio it, ā pharsī Pharnoi, sā chēas radreiās, ī chemeasthaus sathēs.

As any classicist will immediately spot, the above is not Greek. It is, however, the invocation to the Muse from the beginning of the Odyssey. In fact, the language above is Classical Tailancan (or, in its own terms, tos thialos arezios the common language), one of my conlangs. Essentially, it is to Greek as Sindarin is to Welsh. An a priori constructed language, designed to echo something of the beauty of the “target language”. Just as Sindarin is not simply a pastiche of Welsh, having its own distinctiveness as well, Tailancan is not identical to Greek. For a start, those u’s are back rounded vowels, not the front rounded vowels found in Attic. Grammatically, too, there are some significant differences. Tailancan’s typology is VSO- in fact, the grammar derives significantly more inspiration from Old Irish than it does from the language of Homer.

Like Sindarin, though, Tailancan was not created in a vacuum. It has a history, relatives, a location in time and place. Of all the areas in linguistics, the field of historical linguistics interests me the most: as such it’s no surprise that this is the aspect of the language which is most elaborately developed. The phonological development of Tailancan from its parent language is by no means identical to that of Greek from Proto-Indo-European: Tailanca’s parent and PIE were not identical after all. In fact, the phonological development owes a lot more to the development of Proto-Celtic from PIE, which means that Tailancan is considerably less “vocalic” than Greek: intervocalic and initial *s are retained, for example, which means there are far fewer crazy diphthongs. Also, following a vaguely Celtic path gives some cool vowel alternations. As an example, let us take the Tailancan word suptūs husband, the dative singular of which is suptāru, with a ū/ā alternation triggered by positional reflexes of *ō in the parent language: the nominative *sutbōrs, with *ō in the final syllable gives ū and the dative *sutbōru, with *ō in a non-final syllable gives ā.

Tailancan, along with Thaerskan, Chegdaran, Posian and Nemassic, is a member of the Kalpan branch of Kalpo-Lacaran family. Proto-Kalpo-Lacaran was spoken some four and a half millenia ago in the Tâgar Highlands, to the north of the Great Lake. After acquiring the wheel and the techniques of horse domestication from the Ḫansu, the community underwent something of a population explosion and started expanding, primarily into the fertile grasslands of the south-west. With their language already diverging significantly from that of their cousins who remained in the Tâgar, these Proto-Lacarans settled in the western Plain of Lacara about -500 NhA (nain hūs ardanās, “after [the foundation of] the city”, referring to the foundation of Šawniq, an Achaunese city. The current year is 2578 NhA, so the Proto-Lacarans settled the plain around three thousand years ago.) Here they set about happily stealing vocabulary, cattle and land from the nameless autochthones, who promptly fled to the northern mountains.

Fast-forward about a thousand years and the dialects of Proto-Lacaran had diverged to the point that it would be fair to refer to them as separate languages. During the intervening period, they acquired rather more than just words for “garlic” (scorda < *ksordā) and “wheat” (drista < *dritsā) from the displaced “Eteolacarans”. Proto-Kalpo-Lacaran had been a rigorously head-final language, with an active-stative morphosyntactic alignment: both traits retained by the Kalpan languages descended from those Kalpo-Lacarans who stayed behind in the Tâgar. Presumably due to areal and substratal influence, the Lacaran languages developed accusative alignment and head-initial typology (with the exception of the outlier Čegdaran, which remained head-final: an example of “archaism of the fringe”).

For reference, and to break up the wall of text, the following map shows the relative positions of the Lacaran-speaking peoples about 450 NhA:

Lacara 450

Lacarans are noted in bold: the Lacaioi are the people who spoke Tailancan. The PKL Urheimat is just to the north of the large lake near the Čegdarai. Non-Lacarans are shown with italics. The area covered by the map is about 2,200,000 km², which is about the same size as Greenland. Greenland’s actually pretty big.

To put some faces, as it were, to all the names mentioned so far, let us pause for a moment and take a quick sampling. Let us start with Proto-Kalpo-Lacaran:

*qʷʰeditraī tʰersa lakanī nadʰasa qǝqlesa. gʰedʰa ʕigʰan ɢʷʰoqʷaī gʰotnutu ʕikʷa dʰebʰemi.
qʷʰeditra-ī tʰersa-Ø lakan-ī nadʰa-sa q~qles-e-ti. gʰe-dʰa ʕigʰan-Ø ɢʷʰoqʷa-ī gʰotnu-tu ʕikʷa dʰebʰ-e-mi
first-ATT tribe-PAT broad-ATT river-ABL PRET~travel-IND-3SG. DEF-LOC I-AGT old-ATT fish-PAT.PL many remember-IND-1SG

The first tribe travelled from the broad river. I recall many old fish there.

Here note the verb standing at the end of the clause, and modifiers preceding their heads: *lakanī nadʰa “the broad river”, as opposed to the normal word order of Tailancan tos dolus lacanios where the adjective follows the noun. Also to note here is that PKL adjectives did not exhibit concord with their heads: rather they indicated whether they stood in an attributive or predicative relationship (the suffix *-ī, glossed as ATT). The typology here is still active-stative: note that mood is indicated only on agentive verbs, i.e. those with an ergative subject, as in the second sentence. Now for the same sentence in Proto-Lacaran:

*tʰersas kʷʰeditri-ɣos naδasa lakani-ɣos keklesa. ɣeδa eɣan ekʷa ɣotnuta wokʷi-ɣot δewemi.
tʰersa-s kʷʰeditr-i=ɣo-s naδa-sa lakan-i-ɣosa ke~kles-a. ɣe-δa eɣan-Ø ekʷa ɣotnu-ta wokʷ-i=ɣot δew-e-mi
tribe-NOM first-ATT=DEF-NOM river-ABL broad-ATT=DEF-ABL PRET~travel-3SG. DEF-LOC I-NOM many fish-ACC.PL old-ATT=DEF-ACC.PL remember-IND-1SG

Phonologically, the voiced aspirates of PKL have become voiced fricatives, and the uvular consonants have merged with the velars. Note also that the pharyngeal approximant has been lost, lowering adjacent vowels. Typologically, Proto-Lacaran is still mainly head-final, with SOV word order. However, something interesting is happening with the adjectives. Not only have they migrated to a position following their heads, but they also appear to have acquired demonstrative postclitics: it is not unlikely that the two phenomena are related. It seems that what has happened here is that instead of saying “the broad river”, PK speakers have begun to say in effect “the river, the broad one”. Unlike PKL adjectives, the demonstratives did mark case: so here we are seeing the beginnings of case concord.

Next up is Chegdaran, grammatically the most archaic of the Lacaran languages. The sample below is somewhat anachronistic: our first attested samples of Chedgaran date to about 1600 NhA, which is almost 1200 years after the other languages on the map. Aside from something of a tendency to greater analysis (but also greater synthesis: both person and mood are indicated by one morpheme), there’s little remarkable about Chegdaran.

Tarras kedžiřas nās lakeňas klasa. Tara ą aka ľembut vačat dzavą.
Tarra-s kedziřa-s ež nā-s lakeňa-s klas-a. Tara ą-Ø aka-t ľembu-t vača-t dzav-ą.
tribe-NOM first-NOM from river-GEN broad-GEN come-PRET.3SG. there I-NOM many-ACC.PL fish-ACC.PL old-ACC remember-IND.1SG

Thærskan is slightly more interesting. Below is a sample of Common Thærskan, which finds its first attestations in writing around the 11th century. The word-order has become SVO, and the language in general has become more analytic, developing a definite article þaz and using prepositional phrases instead of case forms. In fact, Thærskan reduced PKL’s nine cases to just three: nominative, accusative and prepositional. Note also that reduplication no longer marks the past tense, instead a periphrasis with the PKL verb *ʕot- “to do” has been grammaticalised.

þaz tærraz kʷeðirþijaz χlæzijaþa ju naðuną laχaniją. ejā ðāumi jeχʷa ʒaþnuþ falsijaþ ʒeþrað.
þa-z tærra-z kʷeðirþ-i-jaz χlæz-ijaþ-a ju þą naðun-ą laχan-i-ją. ejā-Ø ðāu-mi jeχʷa-þ ʒaþn-uþ fals-i-jaþ ʒeþrað.
DEF-NOM tribe-NOM first-ATT-NOM travel-PRET-3SG from DEF.ACC river-ACC broad-ATT-ACC. I-NOM remember-1SG many-ACC.PL fish-ACC.PL old-ATT-ACC.PL there

Posian, Nemassic and Tailancan all form the central core of the Lacaran languages, and differ only slightly in their grammatical structures: some have even gone so far as to describe Nemassic as a particularly divergent dialect of Tailancan. As such, we shall content ourselves finally with only a sample sentence from Tailancan:

Ceclesa tos therrumas thedirios ī tūs dolūs. Dēn traza epiot hontut ocriot.
ce~cles-e to-s therruma-s thedir-i-os ī tūs dol-ūs. Dē-n traza ep-i-ot hont-ut ocr-i-ot.
PRET~travel-3SG DEF.NOM tribe-NOM first-ATT-NOM from DEF.ABL river-ABL. remember-1SG there many-ATT-ACC.PL fish-ACC.PL old-ATT-ACC.PL

All three languages have fully adopted VSO word order, although Tailancan is the only language to have fully developed the definite article. All three retain the old attributive/predicative distinction in adjectives. An interesting phonetic development common only to Tailancan and Nemassic is the simplification of the old labiovelar consonants: in both languages original * changes to b. The fate of *kʷ(ʰ) is somewhat more complex, becoming a simple labial in Nemassic, but undergoing a conditioned split in Tailancan, becoming a dental before front vowels and a labial before back vowels. Thus we have Tailancan thediros for Nemassic peditros.

Going back on ourselves, the map above dates to about the same time as our first written records of Tailancan. By this point, the easternmost Lacarn peoples, the Posiī and the Lacaioi, had fallen under the cultural domination of the far more advanced and civilised Achaunese (the Aqawin of the map), who supplied not only a wealth of loanwords, but also their syllabary to write them with. While the Eteolacarans supplied loanwords for local flora and fauna and agricultural terminology, the Achaunese bequest was words relating to civilised living. The Lacaioi learnt music (armūcū flautist < ǝrmuxkun), seafaring (cemachis fleet < kemaq “boats”), mathematics (zairo number < dzayǝr) and writing (carthū scroll < karṭun). They also learnt about ostenation and domination: much of the Tailancan vocabulary relating to government and power derives from Achaunese, such as mencolis throne, from the Achaunese men-t-kawli “place of gold”.

After half a millenium of Achaunese dominance, the Lacaioi eventually got their act together and conquered the plain, arranging the untidy city-states and petty kingdoms of the Achaunese and their Lacaran cousins into a neat empire, based in the city of Carasta (which was situated about where the a of Lacaioi is on the map). By this point as well the Carastans (as we should rightly call them now) had developed the Achaunese syllabary into a true alphabet, ho rhalma. Coming full circle, the first few words of the passage quoted above would look like this in the Carastan script:

Swiftly falls snow, white as silver

4.12.10 § 2 commentarii

Like most of the country, Moriconium has until recently been under a blanket of snow. I do rather adore the snow, although only a very specific few subtypes of snow. Snow falling gently while I’m inside, in the warm and preferably with a glass of something warming, is fine. As is a crisp white blanket of new-fallen snow under a steely grey sky. Unfortunately, the most typical species of snow here in Moriconium over the past few years has been snow which has partially melted and then re-frozen overnight, becoming a treacherous death-trap of disguised ice. The novelty of snow wears off quickly when one falls upon one’s arse three times in ten minutes. My coccyx hasn’t been right since.

Happily, it’s pissed it down all day today, melting away all the snow. We’re back to a dreary, damp and ice-free seaside winter, so reassuring in its familiarity.

Nevertheless, snow can be one of the most beautiful natural phenonomena to occur in the British Isles. It’s unfortunate then, that phonoaesthetically, “snow” is such a bloody ugly word[1]. The Welsh word eira is far more fitting in my opinion. Finding cognates only in the other Brythonic languages (Breton erc’h and Cornish ergh: both phonemically /erx/, which rather like someone undergoing the Heimlich manoeuvre), it can be confidently traced back to a Proto-Brittonic *argyo-. Ultimately, the P-B form derives from the PIE *h2érĝ-, which (with varying suffixes) is also the root underlying various Indo-European words for “silver”: *h2érĝ-ṇt-o- gives Welsh arian, Latin argentum and Classical Armenian arcat’, while with the suffix *-u-ro- we have the Greek ἄργυρος and the suffix *-u-no gives Sanskrit árjunaḥ. Matasović (bless him), believes that this suffix variation in the daughter languages indicates that the PIE form was actually a heteroclitic stem. Unfortunately, Matasović sees heteroclites and ablauting paradigms pretty much everywhere. A somewhat more conservative (and realistic) idea is that we’re seeing a Caland-like alternation of suffixes, which indicates perhaps that the words are all independent formations on the same root, rather than a common inherited lexeme.

The communis opinio states that the root *h2erĝ- didn’t mean “silver” at all: rather it meant “white”. So silver is ’the white metal”, while snow is ’the white stuff”. Which, given that among the root’s other reflexes are Hittite ẖarkis “white” and Tocharian B ārkwi “white”, is pretty certain. So the Welsh word for snow has cognates meaning both “silver” and “white”: the Gaulish form argio- also seems to mean “white”. For example, the turbulent river Ariège in France is from the same root, probably *argyā- white water, perhaps. However, and quite interestingly, there is also a set of cognate IE words meaning “swift” which also point to a proto-form *h2erĝ-. Now, this could either be a homophonous but semantically quite separate root, or it could be a metaphorical extension of the basic meaning of “white” (consider how we describe something vanishing quickly as “disappearing in a flash”, perhaps?) Either way, it’s a fascinating example of the poetry in etymology.


1) In one of my constructed languages, Classical Tailancan, the word for “snow” is lāt (nom. sing.), which I also think is bloody ugly, but that’s the downside to modelling naturalistic soundchange. The parent language had *lawak-, which I rather like.


2.12.10 § 4 commentarii

I was sitting in the staff room on my own earlier, having finished my shift and closed the shop, waiting for He Whom I Call Beloved to come and pick me up, the trains back to Moriconium having been cancelled due to the inclement weather. I had turned most things off: gone the comforting hum of the ovens, no more heat from the radiators, no light save that from the municipal Christmas lights outside. Only the radio was still on, as I find the silence of an empty shop (like that of an empty restaurant or pub) somewhat unnerving. The obviously bored DJ, making his selections from a cold buffet of predetermined inoffensive pop, announced ''coming up, Robbie William's Strong''. Reader, I lowered my face into my hands and wept.

I think it was probably at this point that I thought to myself ''Jones, my boy, you're depressed again.'' (Yes, it's going to be one of those posts[1])

Thanks to extensive therapy, I can always recognise the triggers for these episodes of melancholia. In this case, I'm giving far too much emotionally to my job, a job I don't particularly care for and am only sticking with because of the somewhat obscene remuneration[2]. It's not the job itself: it's not really difficult, but the hours are long and the pressure is fairly constant. And, fucking hell, I just don't want to do this kind of shit. I speak six languages to a reasonable degree of fluency and am competent enough in a further eight or so. I know more about my chosen field of study than your average postgraduate student. I want to do something with all this. I have a bloody plan. Unforutunately, waiting is not my strong suit and what I must do in the interim is making me frustrated. And self-pitying, which is never an attractive trait. Feh.

Happily, I'm also aware that episodes of this sort do pass with relative alacrity, so I'm sure that normal service will be resumed shortly.

A further frustration over the past fortnight or so has been my computer. The hard-drive died, wiping itself entirely. It was easy enough to fix, and thankfully my backup schedule means I only lost two weeks or so of work. However, this is particularly vexing as well as ill-timed: it was my intention to begin a series of posts on the ritual year. Some of you may remember the Brythonic calendar I came up with last year, the fruit of a few years of sporadic research into the Coligny Calendar as well as British and Indo-European calendric customs. Well, having beta-tested the calendar last year, as it were, I decided to document this year (which began on the 7th of last month) on a new blog. Unfortunately, I lost everything I'd written up for this month, as well as half of a document on sacrifice that I'd been working on for the best part of a month. I'm a month behind and do not foresee much available time in which to re-write what I lost.

It has not been going well.


1) Having the slightly Asperger-ish trait of a craving for constancy, one of the few reassuring things about Bipolar II is its cyclic nature. Depression, like winter, taxes and attacks of wind, comes around on a regular basis- sometimes earlier, sometimes later.

2) Seriously. A quick straw poll of my fellow graduates from UoS reveals that I'm currently earning the most money (among those who are earning money at all). I'm the only one paying back my student loans, for a start.