Wow I’ve somewhat neglected this blog so I probably ought to say a little about what i’ve been doing these past days. Monday and Tuesday were spent pretty much just relaxing reading a book about Qumran and the dead sea scrolls – very interesting and useful for my dissertation next year, but hardly a break from work. Had lunch with Felicity on Tuesday which was good fun. Wednesday was quite hectic as I went to the language center to learn some mandarin (as I’ve done on several other days too), then had lunch with Solveig at Clown’s cafe which serves really nice food. After that I went to the course-choice session at the Div Fac. So many good choices to choose from but for technical reasons I’m not allowed to do them 🙁 Then saw Ellie and we went to Kings Evensong which was quite nice although hard to hear anything because of the acoustics. I guess thats not really the point of it though. Then went to college group – also good fun and we had a picnic and played croquet after.
Today has been spent having a meeting with Ruth and Anna about arrangements for China, then started reading the “Da Vinci Code” which is a very gripping book. Read something like 300 pages in just over 3 hours and then had my one-to-one with Kim looking at Isaiah 54. Then went to the Barn and stayed outside chatting until about 12:20 – always good fun! Luke was teaching me how to juggle and I think I might take a few balls to China in the summer and try to learn properly. It’s something I’ve always quite wanted to do but never been able to learn the trick of.
Only 10 days…. wooooo!!!!
Ian found another funny demotivational poster.
It’s soo good to have finished exams. Saturday my family came up and we punted to Grantchester even though it was threatening to rain. In the evening I saw Star Wars 3 with Zishan and Dave which was really good although proves that George Lucas cannot write a love scene. I think someone should do a study on Yoda’s lines throughout the series; I swear in this final film they were even longer and more messed up than in previous films, a trend which seems to be true all through.
Sunday I went to Eden and then went to have a picnic with Lydia and people who I’d not seen for a while. Only a few people turned up but it was good to see Lyd before she headed back to the States this morning. In the evening I went to Eden and then went to Heather’s birthday meal at Bella Italia. Was a very funkey place and good food. After that I went to play bridge with Tom, Paul and Rachel until about 2am when we just stopped and chatted for a while. Got in about 3:15 and sat around doing emails and so on until I got to bed at around about 4. This is what student life is meant to be – no silly work or exams!
Finally finished… I worked out that out of the 56 hours, I spent 12 in exams writing 5 commentaries on passages and 14 essays on about 65 sides of paper… My hand now aches rather a lot! At least it’s done. Went to the Barn on Thursday night which was very good; one guy I met was very interested in theology and asked me to explain certain phrases in Matthew (eg ‘son of man’) which was exactly what I had to revise for my exam that morning! The exams this year seemed rather more straight forward than the mathematics exams last year. Perhaps this was because I’m better at theology or perhaps I just think I did OK because I don’t realize how bad I am. Either way; just glad they’re over for the moment!
This evening I went to Harry’s and learnt some Mandarin from some of the Chinese guys there. Also talked to someone who had read a theological book in which the author was trying to unite existentialism with the Bible, so we looked at some parts of John’s gospel to show that that’s just not possible. After this we all went to Jesus’ green for a picnic and had a good game of Frisbee and then Ultimate Frisbee. After this I went to see Ruth, Ed and Nat had a good chat, squeezed oranges and then watched a really good film which was quite like Shawshank’s redemption at the beginning and what I imagine Wuthering Heights to be like (only read the book). Arrived home at 1:30ish and have been reading emails etc for the past hour. Research for dissertation will probably begin on Monday.. will China never come?!
I’ve locked myself in my room the past few days doing revision… I’ve been reading a commentary on Matthew’s gospel, lots of old lecture notes and research that I did, and also I’ve just finished reading all of the letters of Paul.
Sunday evening was good – we had a party to say good bye to Barbara, a German student doing a language-year in England. It’s good to have got to know her the past year and it’s good to see how she got very involved in the international work in Cambridge – we’ll miss you!
First proper exam is tomorrow morning so I’d best go do some more revision. It will all be finished on Friday afternoon.
Revision is soooo boring.. For some reason my brain has just lost any will to work today. Was planning on getting up early but that failed after I was round watching the end of Pride and Prejudice with Rachel, Ellie and Alastair. Before that I went to Harry’s cafe and then we went to Jesus college formal hall which was ace fun.
I’ve been reading some of Luz’s ‘The Theology of the Gospel of Matthew’ today but it just doesn’t inspire me. He thinks that Matthew is writing for a Syrian community of Christians and doesn’t actually have that much relation to the church or the rest of the New Testament and doesn’t think that much of the ‘Historical Jesus’ actually exists in the book – quite a few things perhaps based on original Jesus sayings but no direct quotes really. I find it quite sad that so many theologians seem to think that because it does seem quite unnecessary – just comparing the gospel accounts, there are an amazing amount of parallels. He seems to swing quite a lot between calling Matthew a literary genius eg what he sees as Matthew’s wonderful crafting of the Sermon on the Mount (Matt 5-7) but then there are some places where he says Matthew just looses the plot or forgets where he is and what he’s doing. Such a shame.
Came across a really clever idea – a leak detector for IE. It’s amazing how some of these simplist ideas (both to come up with and to implament) are some of the best. Havn’t used IE in many years but still its very cool and should be straightforward to do in moz/konq or whatever other c++ browser people use. Really ought to get back onto this ‘AJAX’ programming circuit – was fascinated by it about 5 years ago but things have moved on rather a lot since then.
Last night was really cool – saw Sam, Lydia, Serena and Emma for a few minutes because they were doing some mad jazz revision thing/party. Then went to the Barn where there was an Irish evening. Never realized the Irish had such weird phrases – out of the four that they said, the only two that I could vaguely understand were “top o’th’man’n tu ya” and “wh’z th’craic?”. Had a good look at Acts 3:11-23 with Yumi, Rena and Felix.
Spent this morning trying to learn to remember historical facts so as to write essays for my Church History exam next week, and also been revising some of the Matthew’s gospel paper… I find that very difficult as well. For some reason all the gospels seem to blur into one in my head – it wasn’t really meant to be like that, otherwise the early church would have accepted one of the “condensed” versions (there were several floating around by about 200ad).
Found an article about removing Bible’s from hospitals for fear that they would a) offend people of other faiths and b) spread the superbug. I think the second option has been disproved and as for the first one – how does just having the offer of being able to read a Bible offend someone? As far as I understand, hospitals stock all sorts of different “holy books” so if you’re a Muslim in hospital it’s no difficulty to ask for a copy of the Qur’an. I’m sure that if Muslims wanted to start up a Gideons type organisation to put copies of the Qur’an by every hospital bed, people really wouldn’t have a problem with it. (However, Muslims might well have a problem with it because they have a much higher respect for the physical copy of the Qur’an than Christians do with the Bible; for example it’s considered very bad to put the Qur’an on the floor). It really is Political Correctness gone mad.
Have been revising quite hard the past few days and had a bit of Greek revision last night. Exam this morning went quite well – some of the stuff was a bit hard to translate as it had lots of irregular aorist verbs but nothing amazingly difficult.. Finished in 2h and then spent the rest of the time reading through the dictionary we were given.
Bumped into Dave Mac in Sidney and had a good chat with him – first time I’ve really seen him all term. Then bumped into Emma which was cool just got back from having lunch with her 🙂
Really, what is it with people doing stupid things which anyone with more than a pinch of common sense would realize that they would probably get killed by? I just read about a 19-yearold from Manchester who tried to make explosives in his garage. This follows hot on the trail of the two lightsabre fighters in Essex who it seems got strip-light tubes, filled them with petrol and then attempted to light them and film the resulting fight. Needless to say they didn’t get much further than the lighting stage. Is the human race doomed to self-destruction? Fortunately these people didn’t achieve Darwin Awards yet (or perhaps unfortunately given they’re still in the ‘gene pool’…)
Sunday was good fun. Got about 2 or 3 hours sleep on Saturday night for no apparent reason – I’d allowed myself about 7 hours to sleep but my body just didn’t want to. Went to church on Sunday morning and met up with Jim from Oxford which was good – hadn’t seen him in ages, and won’t see him all summer due to China. We then went to Jesus Green where the 30 or so Eden people were joined by the Holy Trinity student lunch, a few random StAG guys and the CLC posse were over the other side of the park. Thanks to Widge we had a BBQ though which was the highlight. There was a (i think 3-way) football match, some “French” cricket, frisby, rounders and then some ultimate frisby at the end (Jesus college vs). Then went home to have a shower and back to church for the evening service which was Marvin speaking on Jude 17-25.
Monday was very lazy – listened to some more NTW lectures and read through some essays I wrote. Started learning a bit of Haskell due to boredom and then started doing a mock test. I’d just got 1/4 of the way through when Ellie phoned me asking if I wanted to go to a jog; the former being worse than anything i accepted. Was really nice and sunny and we ran along the river to Fen Ditton. Took about an hour and 10 min but we did walk quite a bit. I really ought to do more jogging – a healthy body leads to a healthy mind and all that.
Found some cool links:
An ‘Open source’ Cola recipe… looks somewhat dangerous though, and cola is pretty minging.
A really sick piece of modern art which is a dead frog in formaldehyde spliced open with a web server and electrodes which lets you trigger its legs to jump, ovr the internet…
A DIY laser which is basically a spark-gap in the air which uses the nitrogen to generate the laser beam. Might give this one a try sometime.