Category: Uncategorised

  • This is so hard (2020 edition)

    By this, I might simply mean writing this blog post, but I could be talking more generally about writing anything, or communicating with people in any way, or doing anything much … or even just existing. It’s been that kind of year. *sigh* It’s been a year when I haven’t managed to blog much at… Read more

  • The photographer’s error

    I could get my phone out and take a picture. But I realised in that moment that looking at the photograph later would never conjure up the sense of being here. Never again would I feel the same warmth of the sun on my face and body, or the same cooling breeze as its counterpart.… Read more

  • Prospecting for employment

    This can be thought of as a companion piece to my earlier post To PhD or not to PhD. I haven’t made a firm decision yet on whether to continue with my doctorate, but I am leaning in the ‘not to PhD’ direction at the moment. However, whether I choose to change track completely at… Read more

  • To PhD or not to PhD?

    In 1997, I abandoned a PhD in mathematics, which I had begun in 1993. It had started to go seriously wrong in 1996, if not earlier, but I persisted for a ridiculously long time with the illusion that I could still finish. I was completely unaware at the time that a combination of anxiety, depression,… Read more

  • Out of place, out of time, out of date?

    Thrice recently I have had feelings of not fitting in – for different reasons. (I rarely get to use the word thrice! I wish there were a similar word for ‘four times’ too.) Read more

  • Chinks of darkness: a visual postscript

    In my previous post, I described how my mood had sometimes felt almost totally dark, but with occasional chinks of light breaking through, while at other times it had seemed almost relatively ‘normal’, except that there were chinks of darkness bursting up from somewhere. This is what depression looks like at times, when I’m in… Read more

  • Commuting on the Number Line

    You almost certainly came across the Number Line at school (even if you didn’t pursue mathematics or the history of underground railways to an advanced level). Let me refresh your memory and take you on a few scenic detours. The Number Line began with the construction of a station at Zero (which at the time… Read more

  • Café culture

    My last blog post was written almost entirely on the number 24 bus. I began this one sitting on a bench in the freezing cold waiting for a building to open. That seems apt in a way, because I’m thinking about public spaces where we can sit and relax, away from our domestic or work… Read more

  • Assumed normal

    People always seem to assume other people are ‘normal’ (i.e. like them). Here’s a random list of five ways I’ve been assumed normal. 1. ‘Hope the roads are clear!’ I told at least a dozen people we were going to Inverness for Christmas, and without exception, they expressed concern that the A9 (the main road… Read more