I guess this is the

I guess this is the feeling what you get when falling from the 15th floor towards asphalt: can’t stop it, crash. I try to get by, by very carefully being in denial – that my job is to sleep well, wake up tomorrow, have a nice breakfast, go to the hairdresser’s, not to forget my shoes at home, smile and look pretty, while someone else will be the one put under pressure tomorrow.
The time is rushing past so fast I can hear the howl. And the constant talking in my head. No wonder I can not sleep.
Brandy or Beta blockers, oh, that is the question.
I visited my parents’ house again – and got strangled by father using electrochemical gradients, Nernstian relationships and diffusion potentials. I *really* hope that the Opponent does not try that, since I know now for sure, I won’t survive.

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Insomnia. Don’t know how I

Insomnia.
Don’t know how I get through all the things I should today, with hands shaking and heart hammering. Was awake at least 6AM, woke up at 8.30.
Just so unfair. Yesterday evening I dwelled for a while in a positive and optimistic mood that I’d manage at least the important parts.
So unfair.

The hours pass, and the

The hours pass, and the lectio is still not ready. Most of graphics done, but the text is not – I am notorious in completly forgetting about how I was supposed to carry on the story if I don’t write it down at least once. I suppose I don’t have the time to sleep tonight before it’s ready…
Tried buying a handbag, and was told things that I did not want to – that a handbag that goes with a small black skirt is nothing I would consider a bag. I had secretly hoped there’d be something like a backpack that would have fit the picture, but alas, no. Why can’t I be a man? It’d be so easy. Just pull on the suit and that’s it. With pockets and shoes that actually cover your feet.
I went to pay a visit at an old friend’s homecoming-party – we’we known from something like 21 years. Seems that enough water has flown in the Vantaa river that when he presented me to other guests as his first girlfriend (we sorta dated 3 months in highschool) it did not feel anything but cute:) I had much better time than expected, even though – or maybe because? – none other of the ‘old folks’ were present. In stead, there were 6 or 7 persons working on their doctoral degrees and 3 of us, all neuroscientist, have the defences in the next 2 weeks. It was the first time I felt good in any way about the thing, even though it was clear that the others had much better grasp on their subjects while I kept talking about anything in neurosciences except the things I’ve been doing.
Another surprise – I chatted for over half an hour with a person working on his doctoral degree in finances. The discussion was hyper-interesting – I had never thought that anything related to financing and stock markets could even vaguely interest me! (The stocks values can be thought as an immense meter for millions and millions of individual stock dealers’ psychic state – on a minute time scale!) It seemed that both of us got new ideas on our own subjects as well as learned a lot about a completly alien field of study. Kewl.
The motivated mood I was in sank the moment I sat back in front of the computer screen.
Umm. I should most likely give some advice on how to get to Viikki Infocentrum, but the Reittiopas will still be the best bet.
The bus stops you should look for are ‘Viikki, Lahdenväylä’ (for busses 700-746 or something), ‘Viikin Biokeskus (Viikinkaari 8 or so)’ (for busses 57, 58 and 550) and ‘Latokartano (Pihlajamäentie)’ (for busses 70, 70T, 71V, 73B, 74, 75 and 77s)…
Back to work. No more ‘just do it’, rather ‘just endure it’.

Woke up at 7AM, having

Woke up at 7AM, having dreamed I was going to be so late for the defence that there would not even be time for questions.
Been sorta working since then with only brief pauses – managed to read 4 articles in the morning and make several figures for the presentation. Problem is, even though I’m so damn good at making clear and pleasant illustration, I still completly lack the story and the long-awaited inspiration. I seek help from several bottled dogs. Somebody tried to persuade me for a no-brains-evening of the movie Underworld – I’m actually sorry that I had the morale to say thanks but no thanks.

Please. No. No migraines, now.

Please. No. No migraines, now.
Having a proper red head feels good, anyhow. And talking several hours with Tiuku (Niina Alho, not the other Tiuku) while letting Goldwell Elumen (r) do its job was good, also. Was worth traveling to Järvenpää and back.
But no relevant work done. The lectio precursorae is still nothing more than a thought ’20 minutes. that’s, umm… max 8 slides, with the title and the ‘thanks for all the fish’-one’.
I better start finding the inspiration soon – I’m honestly running out of time. My boss called me and suggested I read some Douglas Adams.
And that, in spite of all the dreams I’ve seen about forgetting to invite the professors and the opponent to the Dinner, I’ve actually forgotten to do that.
Should start believing my dreams, I guess.

Birth of the Psychopath Chain

Birth of the Psychopath Chain Murderer?
And the sun rises. Again.
Yesterday, while eating crappy Sodexo food with single-use plates and utensils I wondered with some of my collagues, how amazing it is that even though the mind wants to hide underneath a table and scream, the body calmly keeps on walking, eating, talking… and taking care of things like confirmations of post-execution coffee and submission of the abstract to a database.
Almost like the mind would not be needed at all. I suppose this is how psychopath murderers operate.
Weekend was mostly Good – sauna, massage, cheeses at Suvi’s, and reindeer meat, forest mushrooms, wine and scientific discussions at my parent’s house. Unquestioned adoration from the Dog.
The books came from the press on Monday – I had ordered 34 of them, thinking that would bu just enough – right now it seems an amount about 3 times too big. Well, I’ll be able to give away a few more copies of them, then. (The main publishing channel is the Net: it is available at http://ethesis.helsinki.fi/julkaisut/mat/bioti/vk/uusisaari/ in the University EThesis-series.) Spent most of the Monday waiting for the Boss to have time to discuss with me – when the time finally came, I was myself so tired and in low moods that I had lost all inspiratio for the stuff again. But, got some kind of a skeleton of ideas for the stubid lecture – should have already started working on it but no. As a light distraction after gym, I decided it was a good point to start going through Hille’s Ionic Channels of Excitable membranes. After doing that for several hours I realised I don’t anymore remember why I am reading it and went to bed with Robin Hobb’s latest. Fell asleep around 10pm and slept uneasily dreaming of intruders raiding my home.
Should rise, and start working. I have an appointment with my friend for dyeing my hair in Järvenpää at 1pm, so not much time… But still no inspiration for the lecture.
Interestingly, I am rather highly ranked as webpages go for “japan+friday+flash+fun” in google. For some time, I received lots hits from people searching for Yö (supposedly the band) and those looking for train timetables in Tokyo.
Dido says I’m no angel. But some of my friends – yes, that’s you – are.

The angst. Only barely can

The angst. Only barely can breathe.
I deeply regret all the time I’ve spent during the past 6-7 months for useless idling and stressing over personal emotional matters and saying ‘I still have time’. For the time has run out and I’ve not done everything I should to be able to say afterwards, “well, at least I did my best”.
Foolish me. To screw up an once-in-a-lifetime chance to do something well.
Snow. I dreamed the snowfall was so heavy it covered me entirely and then I was in peace.

Well. It HAD been already

Well. It HAD been already a week since the last itkupotkuraivari. Hit me around 3pm, only barely managed to get home from downtown without punching anyone. Gulped down Unicum and ate chocolate in such a frenzy that naturally drove me down into self-hate. Result: lost 3 hours of very precious time on needless fuming, physically and mentally exhausted.
Only 9 acnowledgements form the lab folks regarding the ‘party’ – 2 negative ones. With the RSVP tomorrow, I suppose I’m going to get through that part cheap, or, the Second Serving (at 9PM) will have more pies and booze left. Still, slightly annoying being ignored – as I worried days and nights over getting the invitations done and distributed in time.
Beats me. See the bruises. Siberia will teach.

This oatmeal porridge is too

This oatmeal porridge is too big – I’d need a bigger spoon at least… Waiting in vain for inspiration. Watching Willow on TV last evening did not help, surprisingly. I’ll try to read through the two previous doctoral thesis’ today.
But … there is no spoon?
Meep?

Could someone please stop the

Could someone please stop the time for a while? It’s rushing past me just too fast. This week is already almost gone, and it seems I’ve spent most of it mailing invitations and cancelling social appointments. I know I was supposed to be ‘taking it easy’ these last weeks, but no way. The only times I seem to be sitting quietly are the moments when I ponder upon which task to perform next.
Yesterday, I read for the first time the thesis text with my mind doing the same. And, was horrified. Not only there is a spelling mistake on the cover, but not a single paragraph is without a mistake – a linguistic one or real one – and figures are mixed around (I have two figure 8’s but refer in the text to two different figure 7’s etc), but the language is poor and sometimes sentences are incomprehensible. Maybe it’s just that I can’t read or think anymore (not very unlikely but not a very nice option) but more likely, it was not a very good idea to start deleting those sentences from the text that the boss asked me to refine. No. The real problem is that I’ve not been able to read the stupid text for ages and become blind to it, as well as too tired to care enough so that I would have thought of giving it for proofreading for someone else.
My angst over this matter is, for some reason, less than expected. The book went to press already, can’t help it. Still, I threw away my last hope of getting some acknowledgement if not on the substance of the studies, then on the precice and careful writing and good layout. I’m half-seriously thinking about what chances I’d have to get the opponent drunk before the thing, and what kind of stockings to wear.
I should start preparing the lecture. On Tuesday, I had an almost-inspiring talk with my supervisors about the subject. And, even though the conclusion was ‘well make up a powerpoint for Monday and we’ll discuss it then, I got a tiny bit of an idea about the storyline. Problem is: it is still a very vague idea, even though good one – and I don’t have the time. I spent the last 2 days sitting in cafées (I think the waitresses at Wayne’s think I am a piece of furniture already) and read through all my (or, ‘my’) publications and the bloody thesis, which was good but did not help in receiving heavenly visions about the lecture. Then I proceeded to the gym and spent time (and calories, as a nice counterweight for the cafées) going through the renowned ‘Interneuronal Diversity’ series from the Trends in Neuroscience. Learned a lot (though most of it has already escaped my poor head), but alas, still no inspiration.
Proceeding for Hille’s ‘Ionic Channels of the Excitable Membranes’, an exellent book with a stupid ending.
Everything would be just fine, if there just was some more time. But there is not.