Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Okay people, you get news not elegant prose. Also, what you get is dependent on the whim of my dictation software. Although the tendinitis which has been crippling my arm of late is gradually beginning to heal, I am trying to be very careful not to use it too much. Hence I am sat on the sofa wearing a headset, as though I work in a call centre, dictating to my laptop.

Personal News:
I am 30! Happily this is something I'm pleased about, rather than otherwise, not least since CB prepared me the most wonderful birthday ever. It featured a cooked breakfast (with real English bacon), followed by shooting Nazis on Call of Duty: World at War on the Xbox, and then a nice lazy bath. Then we had a picnic with champagne in the sunshine, in the grounds of the Villa Doria Pamphili, with a quick stop for shopping on the way home. Then out for dinner in my favourite restaurant, which is really more of an enoteca with expert sommelier, where I had a surprise cake after dinner -- my first time ever -- followed by drinks in a nice cocktail bar with friends. All of this was a complete surprise, since he hadn't told me anything about what he was planning. 10 out of 10. He has now amassed enough boyfriend credits to sit in his pants on the sofa for a year playing FIFA and calling for tea and biscuits. And I haven't even mentioned the tan leather knee high boots which he bought me yet.

The tendinitis is apparently almost entirely connected to my awful back, which has been creating problems for me for nearly a decade now. Basically because the upper part of my back, neck and shoulder is so immobile, it cuts off the blood flow to my right arm. This not only causes pain to the nerve, giving the diffused pain up and down the entire limb, but makes it harder for the tendon to stay healthy as well: any slight inflammation of the tendon doesn't heal as it should do. Disney is brought to you by my lovely physiotherapist, who is now back from doing good works in Tanzania, and who I shall be going to see regularly in the hope of not being quite so crippled.

Work news:
I have been asked to devise a seminar course on the First World War for the spring semester, which is in the process of being approved by the Academic Council. All my colleagues in the Department seemed to like it, and I'm really excited about the chance to actually teach my very own subject. I'll also be teaching the course on memory from last spring once again.

I went to conference in London in early September, which was extremely successful and interesting. I have been asked to join the editorial board of a new journal dedicated to the study of the First World War, which is both flattering and exciting. Even more flattering and exciting, a friend of mine has asked me to put forward a proposal for a research project, and to start applying to research councils for funding grants with an eye to holding a post-doc fellowship at his institution. I'm currently trying to cobble together my rather vague and ill-defined ideas into something a little bit more concrete, more on this process as and when it happens.

Teaching is quite quiet this term, since I only have three courses instead of four, so I'm trying to get some research done while I can. I'm doing some stuff on the wartime illustrated children's gift books. Rackham, Dulac &c.

Flat News:
we have a new telly. It is very large. I find it a little daunting, but it makes it easier to shoot Nazis. We also have a coffee table. Heady times. Oh and I finally bought a telephone, which means that the landline, which was installed last month can now actually be used as such. Perceive my efficiency. Those of you who have been asking for my landline number will shortly be receiving it! Try to contain yourselves.

There is also of course lots of football news, far too much to be incorporated into this post, and it will hopefully follow over the days to come.

it's nice to be writing again.


Reed said...

Can you tell me more about your dictation software? I'm in the market for such a thing, I think. Feel free to OTF PM me or send a note on Facebook.

Happy Birthday!!

AT - Melbourne said...

Tanti auguri a te.. Welcome back!

Martinus Scriblerus said...

Bon compleano! Also woot to returning. Also yay to shooting nazis.

Spangly Princess said...

the incomprehensible insertion of the word Disney into this post notwithstanding, the dictation thing is great. I'll PM you, Reed.

thansk for all your birthday wishes

Juventino said...

Happy Birthday, SP.

Martinus Scriblerus said...

I thought it was some nifty figure of speech that the kids were using these days, saying that "the cartoon world of fun and delights that is tendonitis recovery is brought to you by...".

joejoejoe said...

Welcome back, happy birthday, congrats on the giant TV, etc.