Tuesday, 24 May 2011

And so third year comes to a close...

...I have finished my third and final year of University.

I haven't been on here for awhile and it has been because since my birthday work, life and sleeping has taken a frontseat.  Yeah that might seem a bit weird but when you get to dissertation time nothing but the things that focus you on to work and then after that it is all about trying to have a bit of fun after all the pain of 4000, 3500, 3000, 7000 and a 2000 essay most of which are due in the same day.  The readings, the research, the writing, the editing, the re-writing and the re-editing all take your toll along with the late nights, the lack of sleep and the fact that from the second day of lent to two days after lent I had been sober! that was a length of 44-days.  And a bloody help it was in trying to focus on essays. I think I went to more parties without drinking than I did with drinking, which is certainly not a good thing.

Along with the general essays, my dissertation proved to be extremely difficult and extremely time-consuming.  The amount of Relentless (Energy drinks that come in Pint-sized cans) that were drunk during the duration of my dissertation and assignmnets must've had enough energy to power a small car from Lambert Street to Cottingham Road... in other words, a lot of energy.  The diet that had been taken on during easter holidays (the two weeks I was home with the parents in Belgium) was ruined on day one of coming back to Hull. 

As I approached the end of the year and subsequently the end of my dissertation, I began to feel fed up with everything university related.  I began to give up on the essays I was writing and to hide away from them.  However this thankfully didn't last long and I eventually plucked up the courage and strength to finish off and from therein out I became a Graduate (all things considered).  So to all those who have read this and continued to read and wonder how third year went: It went ok! It wasn't easy, but it didn't kill me.  It wasn't boring but it never beat the previous years and it was never fully educational academical but it was fully educational in the capacity of a lifestyle and of the future.  The future is grim but hey I'm from Grimsby, the future's got nothing on me. Keep tuned for a new blog on the search for a job and a place to leave post-graduation. Take care.

Joe Anderson

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Things are changing.. but can I keep them positive or will they destroy?

I promise it's not all doom and gloom.  However it is 4.04a.m on Thursday the 24th of February, two days before my twenty-first birthday and I'm sat at my desk thinking.. what have I accomplished at this self-proclaiming moment?

Your 21st birthday is that final "Man-up" moment, if you don't grow up and become a man now.. when will you ever?  So the question for me really is "Have I 'Manned-Up'? Or do I need to anytime soon?". 

There are a lot of things changing for me at the moment.   Personally the biggest one for me is that for the first time ever, the desire to succeed is finally paying off.  For the first time ever I have recieved an outstanding grade ... infact two outstanding grades.  I got my first ever first at University and my first ever modular first too.  this puts my Average for this year so far at 63.5% so far (2 completed modules out of 6) and including last years average at I think 57.7% which is on track for a 2.1 overall and will stand me in good stead for life after university.  But with every silver-lining there must be a cloud right?  And for me that cloud is always "Was that a false-hope?" I don't want this year to be like my sociology A-levels where I got an A in one module and then ended up with a D overall because I just took my foot off the gas and expected them to just fall into place. I can't afford to do that but at the same time I'm terrified of the future that I'll just shrink into my nuclear-shell and hope that everything blows over.  So for my own-emo sake I'm hoping that my 21st birthday will that mental kickstart (or my friends' voices telling me ...) to MAN UP. 

So in order to help myself "man-up" I'ma head to Rome to meet up with my father and enjoy a weekend of Drinking, Eating and Watching rugby and not just any game, not just any rugby, but ITALY VS WALES in the SIX NATIONS!!! A proper lads weekend just doing and watching the things we've been enjoying for many a fine year.  It is a weekend that I'll never forget and it will tee me up for potentially one of the best ever week of my life... quickly followed by months of pain and agony (dissertation, essay, case study and other works).  Next week I will have two days of recovery from Rome before my best-friend comes over to catch-up, chill, party and wreak general havoc before the rest of my best-friends come over for some pretty serious celebrations.

The reason for the slightly emo/self-destructive title to this entry is because of the music I've been listening to lately.  On my facebook the other day, Soundcloud posted a playlist of 40 songs don't know who by or why but there were some including one called heartpiece2 that absolutely sounds like a work of art.  It uses quotes from american politicians (I believe one of the quotes to be from Nixon destroying Senator Joe McCarthy's final political power) and also a simple but evocative quote from the character Tyler Durden (off of Fight Club) "Gentlemen... Welcome to Fight Club".  The music is great, it is simple, it is long some 7minutes, some 5 but some like the heartpiece [1 and 2] are 11 and 20 minutes long respectively.  The reason these songs have led to the title before is that they evoke feelings of change, feelings of renewal but also feelings of despair.  They would work great in movies, they would work great in Television and they would work great to relax too, to let the real world disappear and be taken over by your own tranquil world.  A friend told me once that with music for films you can hear what's going to happen in the action of the film through the music and he played me his piece of music and I could hear the car chase, the man shooting and getting shot and eventually dying. The same can be said with these songs, the speeches help the music to set the scene but they don't tell the story.   This is why I chose the title for this piece, not just to reflect on my grades and my chance to "Man-up" but also because I feel those ideas in the music I've been listening to lately. Will the music tell me a positive story or will it be a story of destruction?  Will it be a story of struggle and sadness or of struggle and happiness? 

On that note and also because I need to sleep.  I am going to end this entry and hope that I have entertained and interested anyone who reads this blog.

Saturday, 22 January 2011


It's been a long time since I wrote on here, well over a month ago, fast approaching two months ago.

Writing seems to have dried up for a number of reasons; my four thousand word essay and revision (which is still on going) for my exam on monday, the holidays and the fact that not a lot of interesting stuff happens over the holidays but also because the Power, the will, the desire to write is sucked out of me during this period.

The problem is that when exams come around, they take over you. They control you, doesn't matter how many you have whether it is six or seven like GCSEs or A-Levels or three, two or one like at University but the power from you controlling the level of work you do is shifted from you to the exam.  The stress of exams takes people over in different ways, but I'm sure a lot of people I know will agree, you eat and eat to stave off the angst that you may not be prepared. For me that is just one way of dealing with stress and not the worst. I let the exams' power take over me and pressure me into doing anything but the revision needed, don't get me wrong I still manage to revise but the will-power that would generally occur is diminished. If I'm offered the choice to go play football or go for a drink then I'll go and tell myself "You need to get out, it'll be good for you".  Although this does sound like a good idea, I would much rather be able to spend a whole week locked inside my room doing nothing but going over and over revision notes for the one exam I have this exam period, but I don't have the Power. I can't just read and read, I hate plans for revision because I don't believe you can plan revision, I don't believe you can plan what sticks to your mind because it has never worked that way for me before. For me, revision is torture. I don't know what way suits me best and every different way irritates me each time I try it.  I wish I had a photographic memory but I don't, if anything I have a memory activated by sound, I remember books, games and text's that I've read or played by the music I was listening to at that time, but that won't work in an exam as you're not allowed to listen to music, incase you're listening to your revision notes.  The exam period is a terror time for students, obviously there are some that can walk away from it and feel so confident, get a 2.1 or a 1st even but there are some like myself who are terrified that they won't even get a 2.2 and their whole degree'll be, for lack of a better word, fucked.  The paranoia that is caused by this exam period... it's amazing there isn't a anti-depresenant for it.  I mean Robin Williams had an amazing idea with Fuk-it-ol.  Sometimes I wish I could take Fuk-it-ol and just breeze past all the exam rubbish, the 2 hour exam in a silent room where all you can hear is pens scratching and feet tapping, let alone the occasionally cough or sneeze and then the horror and laughter of someone's mobile phone going off in an exam.  That has actually happened to me before, thankfully not at University but during a mock GCSE Math exam, and I was lucky not to be completely bollocked then. 

I started to write this blog as I was listening to Kanye West's Power the theme song for the Social Network trailer, a film I still haven't managed to see yet but winner of 4 Golden Globes and possibly my favourite for the Oscars.  It's competitor, The King's Speech, is close behind but also I haven't seen and yet the only two films I did see over the Christmas period was Little Fockers, the third and, unfortunaltely, not the last instalment of the Meet the Parents series, and Tron: Legacy, which if I was to choose a film of the last 12 months then Tron: Legacy would be it.  Great soundtrack, great storyline, great acting, great action scenes and I haven't even seen the original.  Jeff Bridges as both C.L.U and the Maker, Kevin Flynn was amazing and Garret Hedlund and Olivia Wilde were both powerful and believable characters.  The use of 3D animation at key parts, not the whole way through, was well done and this along with the inclusion of Daft Punk in both the soundtrack and the film was hilarious and ingenious at the same time.