Angelic Paranoia

Paranoidangel's Website

Tuesday 30th October 2012 8:37 pm

I've been meaning to post about Rotary for a few weeks, but since this week is half term and I am in every evening I have no excuse any more.

I joined Rotaract when I first moved up here with my first job and didn't know anyone. I ended up staying in it for ten years. In that time I managed to hold every club position, be on the district exec and be part of the team that held the national conference. All the friends I have in the local area are from Rotaract. It was through Rotaract that I heard about Habitat for Humanity and went to Romania (when (if) I'm well enough I want to go on another trip, but that's going to be a long time in the future yet).

It was all great, but after ten years we'd reached the point where there were three of us in our club, we were all over the age limit, we'd all been in for years and done everything and needed a break. What we all wanted to do was leave and have the club carry on, but we didn't manage to find anyone else who wanted to join, so we closed it.

During this time we told any Rotarians who asked (ie most of the ones we spoke to) that we were having the customary year off. And that year off was strange at first, but I definitely needed it. Rotaract can suck up your free time if you let it. And it always had a tendency to be worse when work was busiest. But then I started to miss it.

We had two local clubs, one met at lunchtime, so was never an option to join, the other met in the evenings, but they were all old men, a description that does not describe me in the slightest. Not to mention the problem that they also had recruitment problems and saw us as a way to take over all their roles so they could sit back for a bit...

And then the lunchtime club closed. And decided to reform as an evening club based in the next town - the next town being the one I live in - but covering a wider area. One of the other Rotaractors had ended up involved, I went to one meeting and now, by the end of November I'm going to end up a Rotarian...

Part of the reason why I wasn't sure about joining Rotary is that I'd end up doing the website. On the second meeting I mentioned what I do for a living, someone mentioned websites and now I'm going to be doing the website...

I'll stop there, but the same way I talked about Rotaract a lot for the time I was in it, I'll end up talking about Rotary a lot. Because it'll end up sucking up my time, I know it will because I know what it's like and I know what I'm like.

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Monday 21st November 2011 9:45 pm

I have been meaning to post all week, but I've just been so tired. Work was busy and I keep getting woken up by the heating coming on. Which is bad enough usually, but was worse on Friday when I got up extra early to collect for Children in Need at 8am. I would have caught up on my sleep this weekend, if I hadn't been waking up early for no reason.

But I do have a meme from [info]selenay936:

Comment to this post, and I will list five things I associate with you. They might make sense or they might be totally random. Then post that list, with your commentary, to your blog/LJ/DW (or just add a reply back to me). Other people can get lists from you, and the meme merrily perpetuates itself.


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Monday 4th July 2011 8:31 pm

So that's the tennis over with for another year. Well, until the US Open in August, which isn't on TV and is mostly at night. The evenings suddenly seem so much longer, I almost don't know what to do with them.

Of course it helps to have some time in the evening. Last week was the end of the Rotaract year, so Monday and Tuesday I was out at both the Rotary clubs handover dinners, which took all evening and meant I had two late nights. Wednesday was ballet as usual, Thursday I had stuff to catch up with and before I knew it it was the end of the week. So then after all that I woke up dizzy on Saturday morning, which wasn't really a surprise.

As of last Friday I'm no longer a Rotaractor. And my Rotaract club no longer exists, which is the sadder thing of the two. We've been talking about it and sorting out closing it for so long it hasn't quite sunk in yet. And we stopped doing stuff every Tuesday a while back, so I won't even notice much on Tuesday. I do still have some website stuff to do, but there's no rush. Now I have all this free time I could conceivably do something with it. I have established I can go out two nights a week (but not three). I have lots of ideas, the trouble is having the energy to do them.

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Big Bang, ballet and Rotaract
Wednesday 11th May 2011 9:20 pm

I have finished the second draft of my Big Bang fic! I read it through and only have one plot hole now, and that should be easily fixed by adding a few lines. I have to get the word count up by 4500 words, but since it felt rushed and there are still a lot of words and sentences that need changing, that shouldn't be a problem. I just have five and a half weeks to get it done and into beta before Wimbledon. Which ought to be do-able, I'm just going to take a break to get it out of my head a bit and while I write something for [info]inmemoryofsjs.

Ballet was cancelled for the second time this term (and it's only week 3). The arts centre just give the impression of people who don't know what they're doing. I get the impression that they moved it from Thursday to Wednesday just because, which then meant the last two terms' teacher could no longer make it, rather than the other way round. I just want to go over there and organise them. Or tell them what I think about that, but I won't manage to do it politely, so I won't. But I was really enjoying ballet and it was helping, so I'm hating not going.

Although tonight I got some Rotaract stuff done. It's just starting to feel like a long drawn out death at the moment. I used to come away from Rotaract meetings feeling all excited about Rotaract and now I come away feeling depressed. It makes it really hard to do the jobs I need to do for it because I don't want to. Partly because they're the usual things to keep it running that seem pointless when it's closing, but aren't because they still need to happen for the next month and a half. Or they're things to close the club and I don't want to.

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I aten’t dead
Monday 21st March 2011 5:50 pm

I've just been ill. All last week I kept waking up really early and being busy, so I just got worse and worse. To the point where I went to the Rotary District Conference on Friday and slept better than I had all week, despite the room being hot, the window being open and my roommate snoring on and off. Of course after that I didn't sleep so well and Rotary likes to start early, so I'm back to being dizzy again, although not as bad as last week yet, but then I haven't been back to work yet.

On the plus side, I finished the first draft of my Big Bang fic. It comes to 17,600 words, which is quite a lot considering the first draft is more of a plot outline with dialogue. I have to go back and change bits of plot now. Well, I say now, I mean after I've done Remix. But I have already decided what I'm going to do, I just need to find the energy to do it.

I also got my Ebook Reader (but not the cover, but that's a long story). It's great having so many books on it and I'm loving that you can change the direction you swipe your finger to turn the page - I always went the wrong way on Dad's. So far I've filled it with a couple of books from Gutenberg and a load of fics from last year's AU Big Bang which I've been meaning to read for months.

Speaking of, while I was looking for the 2010 masterlist for AU Big Bang, I looked at people signing up and what they're intending to write. And I thought there should be a Lynda Day at the Chalet School...

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Protected: Rotaract
Wednesday 26th January 2011 9:41 pm

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Getting things done
Monday 10th January 2011 7:48 pm

I used to be really good at getting things done, and then over the years I've got better at putting it off. Over Christmas I wanted to update the Rotaract website and move the calendar over to Google Calendar. I never quite got round to it.

I was going to do it last week, but I spent it writing [info]fandom_stocking fics. So I thought I'd do it this weekend. So I spent Saturday reading [info]fandom_stocking fics and responding to comments, and playing Lego Harry Potter on the Wii.

Sunday afternoon I was going out for tea. So I sat down in the morning and got it done. In an hour. It was painless (mostly). Why couldn't I have done that sooner?

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Still here
Monday 4th October 2010 8:28 pm

My plans for the last week and a bit were derailed by waking up the Sunday before last really dizzy without me having done anything to set it off. So I've done an awful lot of nothing at all recently. Well, except for watching all of Make it or Break it, for which I blame [info]jedinic.

But it was the perfect thing for when I had no brain. I do have a secret love of teen dramas, although usually high school based ones. This one's just the same, only centred round gymnastics. It's completely OTT drama-wise, but that's what I like about it.I can forgive some of the gymnastics for not making sense (it helps not to think about it), but I can't forgive Sasha for saying he won an Olympic gold for England, as that's impossible and I can't believe that none of the writers or the actor (who's English) spotted that.

The characters took a while to grow on me, but Sasha (who's a bloke and played by an Englishman - I'm still not sure whether the character is Romanian or English) started a teasing relationship with Summer and then he became my favourite character. He's also the hero-type, which [info]hhertzof pointed out are the ones that tend to be my favourites.

Fortunately just before I was dizzy my Gmail account got hacked. Gmail spotted it and stopped the emails from going out, but I did then spend a whole day changing all my passwords. Some of them are a nightmare to find where to change, some of them just didn't work and I ended up emailing to get them changed. I now have more passwords and more secure passwords than I did (I should have changed them long ago really). Some of them are so secure it takes me a few attempts to log in while I fail to remember what they are.

My friends' wedding was on Saturday, which was good. The actual ceremony felt never-ending and was really boring (seriously, it was 45 minutes and it only took 2 minutes to actually marry them), but it was good to talk to people I hadn't seen for ages. The official photographer took a picture of all the Rotaractors and that must have been at least half the people there. I definitely established that the whole thing isn't for me - that would be my idea of hell making such a big deal of it and being the centre of attention and all the formalities you have to do. The only part I like is getting to see all your friends at the reception.

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Summary of my life
Wednesday 25th August 2010 8:50 pm

I keep thinking I should update, but then I have nothing to say. I feel like my life has nothing going on it at the moment. Or at least nothing interesting. Which I've just realised is a terrible lead in to this post, which is a summary of what I'm up to... Read more...

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The good, the bad and the surreal
Thursday 8th July 2010 8:41 pm

Today has been one of those days. I woke up to find three fire engines and a police car at the end of the road... By the time I left for work it was two police cars and a fireman van type thing and a fire engine that tried to get into the road as I was going out. Except that it's just not wide enough for that...

Then I thought work would be relatively quiet so I could get some stuff done, but it was ridiculous instead. I needed to start on a new project, thought I could do it in the morning, then thought I could do it at 4pm, then 5pm and eventually started ten minutes after home time...

But on the plus side, our Rotaract handover/16th charter celebration last night was good, especially to see some old friends. And I got home to find [info]altariel1's Doctor Who book on my mat, which I am saving for my train journey to London on Sunday.

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A post about nothing
Thursday 22nd April 2010 8:16 pm

I was thinking I ought to post as it's been a while and then thought, what do I have to say? I feel like I do nothing at the moment. Which is mostly true. I have a social life on Tuesdays with Rotaract. Last Tuesday we went bowling. I did pretty well and didn't get too dizzy - but I did have to walk up to the lane with the ball in both hands, bend down, make sure I wasn't going to fall over, then throw the ball.

I feel quite good at the moment, which is pretty much related to work calming down and me getting some sleep. I keep going through phases of waking up at 6 or 6.30 and if you do it occasionally then you could argue that you didn't need that much sleep. But when you keep doing it and get tireder and tireder and have to go to bed earlier and earlier, that's not a help. So far this week I've only woken up at 6.30am twice, and once dreamed I had, which was a bit surreal.

Since I actually have a brain for a change, I have managed two drafts of my Remix fic. I'm quite excited about it and quite happy with it, so hopefully I'll get it finished soon, before I start feeling terrible again. Staying up late for the election in two weeks isn't going to help with that, but that's life.

I have decided that Sports Resort is my new favourite game on the Wii. I love archery on it - you hold the remote in your left hand and pull the bow back with the nunchuck, so it's much more like archery in real life. It keeps your progress like Wii Sports does, so you can see how you're improving (or not in tennis in my case), but there are other goals you can get (like getting 10s with your three arrows in archery for example), which makes it fun.

Speaking of, I think I'll go and do some Wii playing now, before HIGFNY and Outnumbered...

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No more curling
Monday 1st March 2010 8:29 pm

There is no more curling and I am sad. I watched about six games at the weekend and we lost most of them which was depressing. Especially as we didn't get to the semis, despite the men being the top team in the world and two of them being full time curlers. Rubbish. There'll be no more curling for four years now - I can't imagine the BBC will show the wheelchair curling at the Paralympics. If there's some International curling in Scotland at some point in the future I make go on holiday and watch some curling while I'm there, though.

On the plus side, I now have time to do things other than watch curling and ice skating. I just have two weeks worth of TV to watch instead. Which actually won't take me a week - there's not really much on at the moment.

Saturday night I helped run the bar at the annual Welsh evening (it being St David's Day today). It consisted of quite a bit of singing in Welsh... We had a whole load of beer left over that we couldn't take back to Tescos, so I took it into work because I know people there would go mad for free beer. And, I brought it all home again. The reason: they'd have to get it out of my boot. Despite my car being parked a whole two minutes walk away, it was a sunny day and I was parked in the same place everyone else parks. I knew people at work were apathetic, but not being able to get off your arse for free beer is something else. So I'll be throwing that away now.

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Friday 17th July 2009 11:28 am

I do mean to update this more often, but I'm so behind on everything in my life it's just not funny. The last week of Wimbledon was so hot - around 30C, and humid - that it was just too hot to do anything. Well, I watched Wimbledon (and am now sad it's all over - no more tennis till the US Open and that's only on the radio), but my TV puts out a lot of heat. I could only use my laptop or netbook if I sat back from them and used the wireless keyboard, so my hands didn't get too hot. And I even got hot sitting under the light. But I did a lot of reading.

Then it got cooler again and I planned to do lots, but I had a busy couple of days at work and that nearly wrote off last week. The crowning glory was being really sick that I thought was a stomach bug, but might actually be an intolerance reaction to something. I don't know what, but I can't find out until all my symptoms go away, once my system's cleared of whatever it is.

So my dizziness hasn't really improved much over the past couple of weeks therefore... But I saw an ENT yesterday who said it can take 5-6 months and it's only been four and a half so far. But every doctor and ENT I see say something different, so who knows. But it says something that I've become resigned to it now. Well, I am today, when I'm having a bad day I'm not so much. But I am typing this on my netbook while lying down having a break from packing because I got too dizzy to do any more.

In other news, Wallingford Rotaract won Club of the Year within the district, which was great and unexpected. I'm still quite thrilled about it and we found out at the handover on 4th July. I finished my remix fic, although it's annoying the archive goes live this weekend because I'm away till Tuesday on the annual windmill trip, which should be nice and relaxing. Then when I come back I really need to write my who remix fic, since that's due in on the 3rd...

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Life, for a bit
Tuesday 2nd December 2008 10:58 pm

I actually had some time at work today where I wasn't trying to do a million things at once by the end of the day. I almost didn't know what to do with myself! So when I got home I had plenty of time to listen to the six o'clock news on Radio 5 for once, make muffins and watch Chuck. And then my TV guide (aka my dad) told me there was a programme on about time, which put paid to my plan to actually do some writing tonight. And as interesting as the programme was it featured quite a few physicists, none of whom were fat or bearded. One of them was even female. What is the world coming to?

For the next couple of days everything gets put on hold for Rotaract. Tomorrow I am not looking forward to venturing out into the cold (not that it's that warm in here) and breaking my car out from under a load of ice, while the car only gets even colder than the outside air. But I am driving far enough that not only will it warm up before I get there, but I might also be able to get warm air on my feet too! It's very hard to drive when you can't feel your feet, your hands and you're shivering.

Thursday I get to spend several hours outside in the evening selling chestnuts (bonus: I like chestnuts). I discovered last year that two pairs of trousers keeps you warm, but it looks like this year will be colder than last year...

But on the plus side, because I have a long weekend to do moving things, this is my last five day week before Christmas!

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Still about moving
Sunday 23rd November 2008 5:19 pm

I tried a different tack with BT today - I rang them up and told them exactly the same thing. Now, instead of not wanting to know, they are sorting out putting a line in, since the one there can't be changed back to BT and without a BT line I can't have internet. They tried to sell me broadband as well, but given that they cut my phone off completely twice in two years I don't trust them. And I want to go with Zen.

Last night was our Human Board Games Event and I have the bruises to prove it. Well, not bruises exactly, but my knees really hurt from kneeling down on a hard floor to tape out a 8x8 grid for Snakes and Ladders and Draughts. My legs ache from walking around the Snakes and Ladders board picking up the big dice (although I've seen bigger) and passing it to people. And I have a couple of cuts on the inside of my fourth finger (what everyone else would call their ring finger, but then everyone else counts them wrong too). Those I have no idea how I got.

But I had great fun watching Snakes and Ladders and I got to play a couple of games of Hungry Hippos and one of The Game of Rotaract (loosely based on The Game of Life). Everyone has had great fun too, which was the main thing. Even at the end when there were four of us left on our hands and knees, polishing the floor that we'd cleaned with the masking tape...

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Children in Need
Friday 14th November 2008 8:45 pm

It's Children in Need again, this time a week early, for some inexplicable reason. It's a big event in the town I live in with people collecting money on the streets from 7am to 6pm. Normal street collections are only usually from about 9am till 3pm, but because this is a nationwide thing it means everyone knows it's going on. What's also extra for this one is that we collect from cars stopped at the traffic lights.

This morning I got up at 6.30am when it was still dark to go and run around in the road. Which sounds like a crazy thing to do, but it's good fun. You have to run when the lights turn green and you have to get back to the front by the time it turns red again, so you can get as many cars as possible.

Although some of the interesting parts come later when you compare stories. I had one bloke who told me he didn't believe in it, one who forgot he hadn't wound his window down and hit his hand on it giving me some money, one lady who gave me a bag full and someone who gave a £20 note.

Every year I get hot doing it, so I tried to not overdress. But I got hot just walking to work to dump my stuff and I then I got really hot running around for an hour and a half and nearly ended up just in a long-sleeved shirt and my tabard. Except that my coat would have been a pain to carry, so I left it on. The sun didn't go in until later, so it was lovely and warm.

When I went out to the pub at lunchtime I could see loads of yellow where people were collecting. Although because I know most of them I ended up rationing my change so I could give each of them a bit while I spoke to them.

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Human Board Games
Wednesday 12th November 2008 11:08 pm

Have you ever wanted to play chess with real people like on Harry Potter? Well, at Rotaract we're holding an event where you don't get to do that. But you can play the likes of Hungry Hippos and Snakes and Ladders amongst other games.

It's on the evening of Saturday 22nd November and if anyone wants to come it's £6 and my sofa is apparently very comfortable. BYObreakfast.

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Sunday 15th June 2008 6:15 pm

I thought that since I talk about it a lot (55 times so far) I'd explain about Rotaract, what I do in and what I get up to. Specially since I don't remember the last time I did and I've definitely had more people reading this since then. Read more...

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A few dates for your diary
Wednesday 4th June 2008 9:18 pm

In reverse order of how near they are:

Rotaract National Conference 2009
Next year's Rotaract Conference is in Cardiff over the May Day bank holiday weekend and I know it's going to be great fun because they always are and because I'm on the committee that's organising it. Although I don't expect non-Rotaractors to come (although you're welcome!) the part that I'd love people to come to is the Gala Dinner on Saturday 2nd May. For those that can remember back a month, that's my birthday weekend, and next year I'll be turning an age ending in a 0...

The Gala Dinner is a black tie do, although really couldn't be said to be posh. Well, ok, so it's in a 4 star hotel and there'll be a few courses, so you get to grapple with cutlery etiquette. But there are always all sorts of toys on the tables, such as party poppers, bubbles, those balloons that you blow up and let go around the room and try to hit people with them.

The dinner is £36, but if you pay £99 you can stay in the nice hotel on the Saturday night too and have a weekend in Cardiff. And you can pay by standing order and spread the payments out, so you only have to pay a bit per month. There's more information on the website, including booking forms and no photo of me.

Eggheads quiz
This is a fundraiser for the Conference. The Conference itself gives its profits to charity (although we're having trouble trying to decide which of the many worthy causes to support), so in order to make the biggest profit without charging too much and making sure we are covering our expenses, we have a few fundraising things going on.

The quiz is on Saturday 12th July in Theale and costs £10 including a fish supper. I am told my sofa is very comfortable if anyone wants to stay over.

Knickers 4 Africa Launch party
This is a new charity being set up by a friend of mine who went to Sierra Leone last year and discovered that many people there have no knickers or have to wear second hand knickers. The launch party is in Marlow on 14th June. For more information and tickets see their website. The sofa offer goes for this one too.

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This weekend
Monday 5th May 2008 7:59 pm

How is it nearly the end of the weekend already?

On Saturday I went to EUCO 2008, which is the European Rotaract Conference, which was held in London. I was quite surprised to find how warm it had got all of a sudden. I was standing outside in just a t-shirt and considering moving into the shade.

The afternoon was the ordinary RGBI (Rotaract in Great Britain and Ireland) part, where my club won an award for weirdest place to eat breakfast. This was a national challenge to eat breakfast in an unusual place. The club that won ate theirs on a raft they'd just built in the middle of the Thames. The last time we did it we had breakfast at RAL with lasers, so to top that we had breakfast in cyberspace.

The evening was the Gala Ball and there were 1000 people there from all over Europe! I ate, danced a bit, but mostly chatted with people and had a good time.

The hotel I stayed in was one that was definitely an experience. Don't ask me why, but it was ages away from where everything was going on. Only four of us stayed there, everyone else being much more sensible and staying much closer.

So we left the Ball about 1.45ish and made our way to Hammersmith bus station. The night bus we wanted turned up at 2.15am. We'd worked out where we needed to get to to change buses for one that ran 24 hours. However, we had no idea where that actually was, so we stayed on until we got to Heathrow. Thankfully we only had to wait ten minutes there for our bus. But it ended up being 3.45am by the time I got to bed.

I was rudely awoken by my alarm at 10am. When I got up I found that no matter how many times I pressed the switch, the main room light wouldn't turn on, despite it working the previous night. Also, the bathroom light wouldn't turn on. There was a light above the sink, and I'd established the previous night that didn't work anyway. There was a light above the desk and that one worked. So I had a shower with the bathroom door open and there was just enough light to see.

However, towards the end of my shower I realised I was standing in quite a bit of water. I worried that it was going to go above the level of the bottom of the shower, but it didn't and I assumed it would go down. I went back in there once I was dressed and had my glasses on and noticed the water was still there. I had a shower the previous night and that hadn't happened, so I don't know what was going on.

The most worrying part came when I cleaned my teeth and turned the cold tap on and some water bubbled up out of the shower. I looked at it and it was quite disgusting. It reminded me of the horrible water that comes out of the washing machine. Remembering that made me realise what the smell in the bathroom was - old water.

Like I said - it was an experience.

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