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Foveaux  ·  9 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski Craft Fair v1.25 - January 8, 2020

Alright! So, garden. Please ignore the messy soil etc, we've had winds so strong someone is in hospital after a branch fell on them walking down the street - all kinds of crap has made it's way in but it shall be tidy again! I would like to pour one out for both my spinach and my capsicum. The spinach grew well. Too well. It went to seed rapidly and we had to remove it before ever trying some.. Next time we'll be better prepared! The capsicum, well I planted four and one by one they literally disappeared. I don't know what happened to them. Maybe a large enough bird took a liking and just ripped them out?

Firstly, my peas. Growing nicely, got them on stakes but they're producing pods and becoming full without getting much taller so it may have been overkill.

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Now, the carrots - and some chives in the bottom left, apparently chives help keep some sort of bug away that will otherwise consume my precious carrots. The carrots are far too bunched together but I planted them in a very hectic time and we weren't able to visit for a while, they have been thinned at least! The tiny ones I unearthed during this process were delicious.

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The spuds! I planted 9 spots, only three have taken. Apparently the soil has been used as a dumping ground for a few years, so it's time to make it happy again. This is a good trial run at least. I worked the soil over initially and I found plastic, beer bottle caps, glass! So in time I'll be able to get it cleaner.

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The cat! Elvis is settling in nicely. Even handling the various visitors we've had over the past couple of weeks. Normally he'd shoot away as soon as you sneezed but now he sticks around to receive pats from strangers. Still can be skittish and does not like to be looked directly in the eye. However, he has this fluffy gray blanket he loves, and my partner's mother got us this floral bit of fabric for him to scratch up, ideally saving our furniture. Gonna come in handy as we're replacing these light brown seats for a larger L-shaped sofa and I have no doubt the wee man will tear it up. But look at him! He's so comfy now.

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To a slightly different project, the road to the 140kg bench has begun. I was meant to have this done last year, but it was a very messy year and training seriously fell by the way side. Below, is 115kg - a weight I've dropped down to focus on some technique tweaks I want to try. Basically revamping my entire setup. My current max is 137.5kg which is frustratingly close to 140 but, gotta earn it I guess. I know this and the cat aren't exactly a craft so I won't be updating on these part, but they're a "project" of sorts so I included them once for my peace of mind.

Foveaux  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: It Was a Good Run

    When the cuts come, they won’t come for the administration or the diversity staff. Academic programs will be the first to go, which raises some interesting questions about what the purpose of a university is.

Interestingly, I work at a University and we have just finished phase 1 of the dreaded "restructure" in our division (Health Sciences). All they've done so far is cull about 180+ administrative/non-academic jobs and reshape those remaining so they get paid less. Hilariously, we're now woefully understaffed, performing poorly and morale is at an all-time low.

Apparently the Academic roles are next in the firing line but they will have so much more negotiating power so I anticipate them being better off than us. Having said that, the division I'm in is the gem of the University and the Arts/Humanities programmes are slowly being destroyed so my experience might be odd the exception to the articles prediction.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

And as I recall, aren't you in NZ?

Foveaux  ·  11 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Indeed! I am seeing the same things unfold here though. Massive hike in numbers during an economic downturn etc. So found it interesting reading nonetheless.

kleinbl00  ·  11 days ago  ·  link  ·  

What does tuition look like over there? Just curious. I know much of Europe is subsidized to various degrees but I"m pretty well out of my depth when it comes to international higher ed.

Foveaux  ·  11 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Hmm so I guess it depends on what you're studying - when I was at Uni 2008-2011 that cost me about 35k, standard 4 year BA. Definitely less than 10k a year.

However, say you wanted to get your MBChB, a 6 year course in 2020 you'd be set back a little over 90k by the end. Though that's for a domestic student, an international student doing the same course would be paying 70-80k a year for most of the 6 years.

The domestic student prices listed are the subsidized versions of it, but I couldn't tell you what the true number is. I know a majority of the Universities get about 30% of their funding straight from the Government but they will allocate that as they see fit/according to their programmes.

Foveaux  ·  30 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: December 18, 2019

THE CAT HAS EMERGED.

He likes my partner a little more but I think that's because I'm bigger/clumsier/louder. If I'm not moving too much he'll come sit on me, like so: https://imgur.com/a/PtPS5SO

We've been systematically introducing him to our new place room by room so he doesn't feel overwhelmed, last night we left our bedroom door open a crack and he barged through at 1am purring like a V8 and slept pretty much on my face. It was rather endearing even if I didn't sleep very well. Knowing he's becoming more adjusted is well worth a bleary-eyed morning. Usually he won't come out during the day, and stays under his chosen couch of solitude. But yesterday he came out as soon as one of us got out of bed, meowing for the first time and generally getting under our feet like a regular cat.

I was playing on my newly built PC with some friends, and they were using Discord to chat so I hopped into their server - I normally only play with other New Zealanders because of connectivity but there are a bunch of Americans in their chat so I was talking to them, and man the accent is actually adorable. I think they feel the same about mine but they had to get me to repeat things as a result of the Kiwi tendency to blunt vowels whenever possible.

Two more days of work - today and Friday, and I've just sat down at my desk with very little to do. I reeeeeeally need to finish the present shopping..

Foveaux  ·  86 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 23, 2019

Less than a month till Japan - woo.

Rugby World Cup has entered it's nail-biting stages. I thought NZ v Ireland would be a huge task, but we won convincingly. Onto England in the Semi-final and if we overcome them, it's either the old foe South Africa or Wales in the Final. Before the whole competition began, people were picking NZ v South Africa as the final so there's an almost inevitable feel about what will happen. Still, two matches to decide what really will eventuate. Japan have been, undoubtedly, the coolest hosts this sport has seen.

Their fans have been routinely printing off the lyrics to other teams anthems, attending the matches in the outfit and singing along. They don't have to do that, they don't even have to attend but they rock up to every match and add their voices to the occasion. It's just so damn wholesome.

Also, the NZ Haka got drowned out by the Irish singing Fields of Athenry which never fails to send chills down my spine:

Finally got in to see a physio about this weird lower back pain I've had for a month. It's been affecting my training which affects my mental health so I'm glad I finally went in to see them. She's been great, really understanding and has a very clear plan in place. So far, I've noticed less pain on a day to day basis which is excellent. Turns out, the injury is probably not what I thought it was. I assumed I was being foolish while warming up but she thinks the culprit is my SI joint as the pain seems deeper than ever before, and I can still quite literally bend to touch my toes without any pain. As well as squat with a heavy load. Turns out I may have been exaggerating some kind of pelvic tilt in an effort to save my lower back from aggravating an old injury, then the joint took too much on board as a result of the tilt. She popped me on the table and used an ultrasound to watch my transverse abdominal muscle work which was cool. We were initially confused as she thought I may have neglected glute work and so perhaps they were the weak link, but she got me to do an isolation exercise and was expecting me to find it hard after 20 reps but I wound up getting to 55 before she made me stop, so clearly that wasn't the case. I wouldn't have minded having such an easy answer, but hey at least I'm thiccer than a snicker.

TBH, I think training will take a big back seat until the New Year. I'm shifting our Dept across campus once more, then shifting things into my new place, then Japan for two and a bit weeks, as soon as I come back I properly move in and clean up the old place. Then it's Christmas! Hoping I can launch into training with a belly full of beer and Christmas ham, then set a PB by squatting Jupiter.

Most of you are in the States right? Always wanted a winter Christmas, but mine have all been beach related. It's really nice but there's something magical about snow on Christmas, everyone tucked up next to the fire.

Does Hubski do a Secret Santa at all? Was wondering about that - not sure if the logistics are too difficult for people to take part but I've always enjoyed sending gifts to other parts of the World.

goobster  ·  85 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The RWC has been amazing. I wish Japan had been able to give RSA a closer match, but the score line didn't represent how close the game actually was. Japan has put Tier 1 on notice, that it is coming for them, and coming at them hard and fast!

I'd like to see England put away New Zealand. They've worked hard for it, and if they can keep their head together and just execute execute execute 80 minutes of focused rugby, they can do it. But those damn Barrett brothers are a force to be reckoned with...

Sadly, I don't think Wales can beat Faf de Klerk. That guy is unreal. Wales is a solid team that gives other Tier 1 teams a very strong competitor, but they aren't a world-beating side yet. RSA is.

So I could see an England vs RSA final. If it came down to that, I'd bet on RSA, but cheer for England...

Foveaux  ·  85 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I am hoping that Japan can join the Rugby Championship - SANZAAR would be insane not to want them in. So much money to be made and Japan can clearly foot it with the best of them now.

I am a little nervous about England - NZ playing Barrett at 6 leads me to think they're going to try and get parity in the set-pieces. If NZ can do that, it's their match to lose as they have too much firepower out back to be contained. However, if Underhill and Curry can pressure the 9-10 axis in Smith and Mo'Unga they're in with the best shout of any team.

Though if NZ do win, I'd expect them to beat either Wales or South Africa in the final - Faf de Klerk won't have the awful game he did when the two met in the first pool match, so that will be a bruising encounter but I do think NZ have finally laid their cards on the table and it's up to someone to try and counter it.

goobster  ·  84 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My excitement for Japan is two-fold: another culture represented at the highest levels of rugby, and a model the US can follow to build a world-class rugby program.

15 years. Japan dedicated themselves to it, and in 3 Rugby World Cup cycles they went from a joke to a semi-finalist that has earned the respect of the Tier 1 nations.

After decade of the MLR in the USA, I expect we field an Eagles World Cup side every bit as exciting and competitive as Japan. Heck... with our population and the NFL talent pool to pull from, I could see the US being competitive in the next RWC, and a semifinalist in the one after that. TODAY's high school kids would have grown up with rugby in schools, pro rugby on TV, and a mature league to play in... if the sponsorship dollars start flowing in ASAP, of course. Rugby in America dies in 24 months if the big names don't start opening their wallets...

Foveaux  ·  81 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Ahh well, I can talk about it now. England did eactly what I hoped they wouldn't - Curry and Underhill dominated the breakdown and the entire team got in our faces. A deserved loss but one that stings given how ready we must have thought we were.

A silver lining though, the 2007 loss entirely revamped the NZ rugby structure and mindset, the 2019 might do the same.

goobster  ·  80 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have never seen another team so effectively take all of the All Blacks toys away.

It was an heroic effort by England, who were firing on all cylinders that day.

It's what I love about rugby: Any day can be any team's Good Day.

Foveaux  ·  127 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Down the rabbit hole of 4chan, we find: Death.

That was a hell of a read.

I don't know if I should thank you for posting it.

Man..

Foveaux  ·  136 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: First I lift. Now I teach the lift.

I'm really finding that to be the case. I have a blast learning about it all and applying it, but being able to watch someone, tweak things and watch them go about it is a whole 'nother level.

Foveaux  ·  1346 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 11, 2016

I've been on holiday for my birthday - here is a photo from up Mt Roy, in Wanaka - New Zealand. A magnificent backyard to have, I assure you.

thenewgreen  ·  1345 days ago  ·  link  ·  

gorgeous! Enjoy the journey

Foveaux  ·  1377 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Deeply Moving Message from Bernie Sanders - YouTube

I still get so.. overwhelmed when I realize how hard obtaining medical treatment it can be for people in USA.

Let's say, here in NZ - I damage my knee playing Rugby. It's an accident, no previous history with knee injuries, and I've torn my meniscus. The government funded scheme would cover my Ultrasounds, eventual MRI, surgeon meetings, the surgery itself and all the Physio/rehab required until I am fully fit and back at work. The same scheme will also cover my wages/salary while I'm off work (at 80% of my normal pay). I mean, they'll even cover taxi rides to and from appointments if I live alone or am otherwise unable to get transport for myself.

My Dr visits at most cost me $30 (much less for students, children and the elderly), I dunno what the dental care funding is like there but mine was free until I turned 18 - prescriptions are no more than 5$ for 6 months of antidepressants, or things like Omeprazole. Shit if I needed ambulance transport in an emergency the most I would be charged for is bang on $88 dollars.

It's scary to think there are people out there who literally have to stay sick or injured so they can afford the rent, and food, and heating.

thenewgreen  ·  1377 days ago  ·  link  ·  

When this happened:

A few months later we were given a $500 bill for the ambulance ride. Luckily with some finagling and a consult with an attorney friend of ours, we were able to get it waived. But this is because we are educated and know attorneys that could help us craft the letter.

Imagine being poor and getting that bill. $500 is a lot of money to many people. The system sucks. It makes no sense.

Foveaux  ·  1376 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Fuuuuuck me that is nasty. You had to seek legal advice because your child arrived and an ambulance was required.

I'm sorry you had to deal with all of that. There are some issues within NZ, like any country, but these stories make me very thankful to be in a country that bends over backwards to make healthcare easier for it's people.

I just remembered something - that govt scheme I was talking about? That applies to people who aren't NZ citizens. If you're in NZ, on a working holiday VISA or similar and are earning/paying tax - you're eligible for cover. You can come here to travel, work in a fruit orchard for a bit of cash, get injured and we will patch you up and cover you until you're ready to go back to work/travel. It blow's tourists and immigrants minds alike and it's something I totally take for granted.

briandmyers  ·  1376 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Just to be clear - this accidental-injury coverage (it's called ACC) applies to everyone in NZ - including tourists and illegal overstayers. Everyone.

Foveaux  ·  1375 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yes, very true. Sorry I'm never sure how much detail to go into with it. I actually work for ACC so I quite often get focused on small things and forget to explain the bigger, main picture - and quite often do a terrible job of it

briandmyers  ·  1375 days ago  ·  link  ·  

No need to apologise! I became a big fan of ACC when my son broke his neck a few years back. They covered everything including 80% of his salary for the three months or so he was in a halo vest. Without that support, he would have been financially ruined; instead, he didn't even lose his job.

OftenBen  ·  1375 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That's so great to hear. I used to work in insurance and sold policies that did essentially what you described.

Saved more than one family from a serious financial crisis.

steve  ·  1377 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Dang dude... $500 for an ambulance is cheap! I know a guy who got three bills for one ride: $850 for the ambulance ride (less than 3 miles), $280 for the paramedics, and $125 for dispatch service or some such thing.

This is a guy in his 70s who is on medicare... it's insane.