Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Grad School and Other Things....

Forgive me blog for I have sinned.

It's been almost a month since my last posting!!!

Well the first thing to dispense with is an update on my grad school situation. As I mentioned in my last posting, I really wanted to go to McGill. I spoke with a professor from the Cognitive Psychology program 2 or 3 times over a couple of weeks in April, thinking that the path to grad school next year was being paved for me. Unfortunately I had caught this professor at the wrong time, as she is pregnant and expecting to give birth at some point in the beginning of the school year. This would mean that most of her time during the school year would be devoted to her baby, facilitated by maternity leave. She would consequently not be able to spend much time being there for her graduate students, and doesn't like that prospect. She still expressed interest in me applying next year, and even said that she'd help me apply for scholarships and the like along the way. I'm going to take her advice, but I'm not going to like certain givens of my new situation.

Given A: Starting September I will be responsible for making payments on my OSAP loan :(
Given B: I have to work hard this summer to secure an RA job in Academia which I could work at for the whole year
Given C: The cost and uncertainty of applying again to Graduate School!!!!


Anyway it is not all negative. I will get to pursue my reading interests, and my hobbies, throughout the year! One hobby which I've been pursuing since last summer has been learning Hebrew. I've very much enjoyed it. My Dad made a comment about language learning once which I very much agree with. He mentioned that he wanted something to keep his mind active, and language learning fit the bill. I find it to be a constant challenge, as I always seem to be learning more about Hebrew. I've been lightly reading a couple of grammar books throughout the year. In addition to that, I've made weekly efforts, large and small, to understand the weekly Torah portion using a Hebrew-English dictionary. Lately I've been chatting with Hebrew speakers on MSN/ICQ, or e-mailing them when necessary. I've also found a number of great Hebrew language resources off the net:

Babylon-Pro: Computer program that can translate English to Hebrew and vice versa

Milon-Morfix: VERY Comprehensive online Hebrew-English dictionary, with nikkudot (called diacritical marks in English)

Hspell: An excellent online Hebrew conjugation utility
Site: Hspell

Hebrew@Stanford: A fantastic collection of videos that can familiarize you with the spoken word
Site: Hebrew@Stanford

Tikva BarOn: A hefty series of Hebrew e-books with mp3s of someone reading them in Hebrew made available on the site
Site: Tikva BarOn

Hebrew WordReference Forum: A great online forum where you ask native Hebrew speakers any questions you have about how to translate anything into Hebrew (Mostly for English speakers)
Site: Hebrew WordReference Forum

Morim - Videos: A Hebrew education site - in French! They have an interesting video section, where not only do they make Hebrew language videos available, but they also have typed out the dialogue from each video into individual PDF files so that you can listen and read! If you don't mind the French, it is a pretty decent site.
Site: Morim

Those have been my favourite Hebrew resources I've found on the net. If anyone reads this and knows of an equally excellent resource that I'm forgetting, don't hesitate to leave a comment with its web site address!

Another hobby of mine that I only started up recently is biking. I got a nice new bike (Trek 3700) for not too much money, and have been getting some good exercise. I'm hoping that even once I start working more often during the summer (which I hope will be soon) that I'll be able to go out biking at least 2 or 3 times a week. So far I've been getting more than that, because I've been less busy. I put an odometer on my bike to track my performance each time I go biking, which I think helps a lot!

Well that's all for now.


- Inkhorn

Friday, April 07, 2006

Multiple Sclerosis


I'd like to interrupt my regular pattern of blog posting to advertise an issue that affects many people around the world. This issue is Multiple Sclerosis. I actually don't know much about it, so if you could read this blurb below then that would be fantastic!

Fundraisers like the Super Cities WALK for MS helped establish a ground-breaking $4.3 million study of MS in children. In Canada, 45-55 children are diagnosed with MS each year.

Please join us in our efforts to end this disease by making an online donation. Secure online donations can be made by VISA, MasterCard, American Express or Diners Club. A non-alterable electronic tax receipt for your donation will be sent to you by e-mail.

If you would like to find out more about the Super Cities WALK for MS, please visit

With your support, we can move one step closer to finding a cure.


Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada

My girlfriend is raising money for the Super Cities walk for MS. If you'd like to help her cause out then go to this website.

Thanks everyone. Now back to your regular-everyday surfing!

- Inkhorn

Anxious for a Decision!

I am awaiting the response of McGill university to my application to their cognitive psychology program. I already have the support of a professor there, but she needs the university to make a decision on my application (whether they think it's kosher or not) before she can accept me.

I'm very nervous and am checking my email almost every second!!

Wish me luck,

- Inkhorn

Sunday, April 02, 2006

It's all coming to an end!!!!

School is quickly coming to an end! I feel very consumed by it at this point so it's pretty much the only thing that i'll be writing about until things get settled down.

I have a Therapy and Counselling essay to do today and tomorrow, due on Tuesday! I've decided that i'm going to write it on problems and their treatment in Psychoanalysis and Gestalt therapy. After I finish this essay all I have to do is write up my results, for my honour's thesis research, in a paper and then hand that in on April the 10th. I'm still allowed to collect data after I hand this paper in. The only difference is that the modifications that I make to my paper with the newest results get handed in to my honour's thesis supervisor, whereas the April 10th one goes to an official "Reader", a random professor from the Psych department who will mark my paper *gulp*.

In other news, I am very close to finding out whether or not I am going to McGill next year for Cognitive Psychology. I've been chatting it up with a professor from the psych department there who seems very good natured and multitalented. All I have to do is read up on some neuroscience, show that I can gain a functional understanding of it, and tell her what aspects of her research interest me. I'm really hoping to go to McGill next year - I very much like Montreal!

I think it will be hard being away from my personal life when and if I'm at McGill. This goes especially for the very sweet and funny girl who i've been dating for about 2 months now. I wasn't expecting to start up a relationship before I moved away, but it looks like it is for the best anyway. One thing I know I'll learn while away is how to keep in contact with my loved ones without paying too much money in the process (I love you Skype :D).

Anyway, I don't want to get my hopes up concerning Grad school. I'll cross my fingers but at the same time will remember my back-up plan just in case!


- Inkhorn

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Conveniently Timed Backpain

For the first time in a while I had a terrible sleep last night. It seems to have come at a convenient time too, considering I have a big presentation to do today at about 1ish.

I know my back-pain well enough now to know that it doesn't act up out of sheer chronic dysfunction. There is usually a reason for it. I think that having something big to do like this presentation, added to all the other stuff that I am responsible for in the near future, creates a certain stress level that aggravates my back muscles. I think what this would indicate, as I've concluded in previous times, is that I REALLY need to take up some relaxation methods for use during stressful days. I think I'll try meditating for 20 minutes on days like yesterday, and see if that helps me to any degree.


- Inkhorn

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Hebrew Word of the Day 4

After a long hiatus my Hebrew Word of the Day series is back!

In today's posting I will compare two words that can mean 'to telephone'.

התקשר (heetkashair)
טלפן (teelpen)

The first verb is a reflexive conjugation of the verb 'to connect', whereas the second one is a definite borrowed term from English meaning 'to telepone'.

The reflexive conjugation is used to connote an action that you do but has more bearing on you than the outside world. When 'to connect' takes a reflexive conjugation, it is taken to mean 'to connect with', or simply, 'to telephone'. This word works better in Hebrew, in my opinion, because its conjugation into past or future tense is much clearer than the borrowed term.

For example:

התקשרתי החבר שלי ביום שני
אתקשר אותך כאשר אני רוצה!
אני חושב שתתקשרו האמא שלכם כאשר השמש בא לסוף שלה

I phoned my friend on Monday.
I will phone you when I want!
I think that you will call your mother when the sun comes to its end!

That's all for today!

תודה לקראות את הבלוג שלי!

- Inkhorn

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