Monday, 17 September 2012

first time

for once, i thought of competence, of blatant self-esteem,
a sight for sore and cold-dried eyes, enhanced with a sly gleam;
but, smile, oh dear, that wicked smile, that cunning cheat you use,
and sway this heart a million whiles, and wiles, a wildly ruse.

and silence plead, in silence plead, worse than how this heart bled,
for knowing that your wound is worse, unless it's in your head;
for once, i thought deserving that i would, i could for more,
that all stopped short of turning up and begging at your door.

for one more chance, for once i hoped, i would and may find heart,
that feeds, and stops my poetry, though ever we're apart;
i never prayed for silly whims, i never played for empty wants,
for once, i'd wait for days and years, for moments and for months.

and all i did, for if you may, had asked was all i'd wish,
but voiced it none, my dearest one, oh, fragile hearted kiss;
an ode! a line! oh, matters not, for one, for two, for all,
i swore you this, again i do, from gracious leap and fall.

for once, i'd seen the callous soul, that frigid, lifeless heart, that sings behind a veiled blind smile, which quenches with a rhyme -
for once, i'd thought, that maybe love, that even though apart, that this would be the only once, the last and for first time.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

expiry date

i have been conducting more experiments on inducing bacteriophages in Moraxella catarrhalis recently. for those who find these words a bit outlandish, the theory isn't all that complicated - M. catarrhalis, or how we'll abbreviate it to for now, is a bacteria. though any bacteriologist (or biologist) will point out quickly, not all bacteria are bad for you, this one pretty much is. it causes a range of diseases, most notably ear infections (otitis media) in children, and lung infections (pneumonia) in the elderly. a bacteriophage is a virus that 'eats' the bacteria (phage being latin for 'to eat') in the sense that the virus infects the bacteria, and causes the bacteria to explode (the technical term is 'lyse') somewhere down the line. in essence, the bacteriophages (or phages, in short), infect bacteria the same way bacteria infect humans, the relationship being parasitic in nature.

induction here means i am trying to get the phages to lyse by manipulating the defence system. i've done this simply by exposing my to low concentrations of an antibiotic called mitomycin c. anyway, the whole idea is that under specific conditions, i can cause this induction to occur, and the phages will run rampant, something like if you were to shower your friends with flu virus, then take away their immune system. then hope the flu virus becomes so prevalent in the population that you can randomly pick a section of air and have enough virus in it to do whatever further experiments you want with the sample. not that i'm saying one would want to do such a thing to friends. but i'm just saying. sometimes.

in any case, the induction process was supposed to get me a high concentration of phage. but, as with all trials and tribulations of this world, science is no exempt. today, i have conducted a series of sub-experiments in order to determine what had gone wrong. kind of like how a computer technician troubleshoots or debugs codes. i think.

my conclusion thusfar it that i have been using samples of that have been kept in the 4C room too long. i find this rather... unsettling. that for the thousands of procedural and technical complexities of the experiment, my problem may have been simply that my samples had gone stale. this is both elegant and simple. but, there is more troubleshooting to be done, and only time will tell if occam's razor has struck once again! oh, thee, blade that cuts me deep.

Monday, 3 September 2012


when we were younger, the elder folk used to tell us that it's the simple things in life that are most enjoyable; that money doesn't buy happiness, and that if you learn to enjoy the mundanity in what chaotic lives we live in, everything seems relatively okay. what makes you get up in the mornings, and drive down to some god-awful job? is it so banal as paying the bills, or filling the days, or putting bread on the table? or could it be something simple as the figurative smelling of roses (or a literal in figurative saying, the smelling of coffee?). even the most majestic of reasons sometimes fall under this category, from a love one to religion (or at least religiousness) to dollar bills to that sweet retirement home in madagascar, something small and simple that keeps us toiling through the days.

i cannot attest to anything too grand, and for this i apologise. but, life is a constant detriment of ease and simplicities, so one must always try his very best to find the little enjoyments that make the stress of the world that much more manageable. of recent, here are a few things that do such:

1) keeping an empty bottle of peanut butter open on my reading desk at dawn, so that when i come home, the room smells amazing.

2) reserving the last piece in a block of amazing chocolate and keeping it stashed away in my work desk until i forget about it, only to serendipitously discover it while i'm stressed doing work. this is not really recommended if you're living in an area that's particularly hot / has an ant problem / etc.

3) reading just a bit in a foreign language every day, such that one day if i meet a greek person on the bus, i at least have something to say. maybe a german or a sri lankan, too.

4) sleeping in. this is amazing. sometimes i take the day off just because i can. i'm a horrible person that way.

5) chasing the little ducks around the pond until they can't waddle any more. they need the exercise. i nearly got in trouble the other day because mommy duck came to snip at my toes. i reckon this isn't much fun for the ducklings or the mother, but there is no malicious intent. i don't scare them too much. i think. i hope?