Posted on August 5, 2005.

There have been eight weeks since my last entry, and you'd be sensible to expect something interesting to have happened. However, exams got in the way for a large amount. The exam boards, in their wisdom, decided to timetable all of my exams (bar practicals) in the space of ten days. While it is true that there were plenty of people worse off (Ali for one, who had eleven hours in two days), seeing some people finish their exams before I had started mine that I actually cared about (Physics, Chemistry and Maths, which I need for Cambridge entry) was disheartening to say the least. However, thanks to the cushion that I had built up over the last two years I didn't have as much pressure on me as I might have had otherwise (50% for an A is a good position to be in). Nevertheless, I felt that I couldn't justify anything less than three hours a day revision. This I stuck to, but nearly killed me. Looking back on GCSE and, indeed, AS level, I find it difficult to see how I managed to put in four hours a day. At GCSE, I think the variety of subjects kept me on my toes and maintained my interest levels in them, but justification for four hours a day at AS remains a mystery. It's possible the January exams reduced my immunity to the debilitating effects of revision, but they were six months ago and thus seems unlikely.

The exams as a whole went fine, starting with Computing and progressing swiftly through Maths, Physics and Chemistry (and - grudgingly, for nine marks - three hours of General Studies). Occasionally, of course, we entertained ourselves; definite mention going to Phil looking like Hitler (due to the hair and forcefully drawn on mustache) going into a Science and Culture exam. The AEAs in Physics and Chemistry on the last two days were - as expected - tough, but most of the questions were just about doable. Obviously, we'll have to wait until Results day for any indication as to how well we've all done. Interestingly, AEA has three grades: Distinction, Merit and Fail. To be honest, so long as I get AAA I won't care how I've done in the AEAs. They were put on my UCAS form, and so I had to do them; they've done their job by being there for university applications.

After exams, of course, we were now at the beginning of a three month holiday. I have counted twelve parties in the first four weeks, multiple excursions to varying locations, six hours of driving lessons (at last) and a day hawking, which I won and was thoroughly enjoyable. The party-concentration has been immense, but understandable - we're not seeing each other any more every day in the morning, which was arguably one of the best aspects of school, so now we have to use the 'excuse' of social events to catch up with each other. It has been great. Almost surreally, we've even been keeping in contact with some of the teachers; we had the Chemistry "Dinner" (pub crawl) and a whole clatter of teachers were spotted in Route one evening. Perhaps best of all, Doctor Jones showed up at Jacko's barbeque after we invited him at prizegiving although he, despite our best efforts, was able to leave in his car without any real difficulty. I've even received a postcard from Doc J on his holiday in America.

It's taken an astonishingly long time (18 months) but I've started learning to drive, and it's not going too badly and though I'm not one of these people that enjoys it I am getting the hang of it. It's conceivable that I could pass before university, but it seems unlikely. The first hurdle is the theory test; should I fail, passing before university goes out the window. It's right at the beginning of International Camp - at which I'm helping run the computer room with TPJ. It looks as if it's going to be great fun; three hours of work a day (each) and whatever activities we want to do the rest of the time. The only forseeable problem is that TPJ and I (so Paul - our contact - claims) will be the only people with keys to the room, and it is 'our' room. We're also telling them what hardware they need to buy to get everything working the way they want. Once it's all up and running, however (by the end of the first week) it should be a doddle compared to the computer rooms at school; eight computers in total should be peanuts, especially given that we'll be having one of them as our admin machine!

I haven't really looked forward to a movie for a long time. The movie in question isn't one that I would have ever guessed would be one that I'd look forward to, but everything about it that I've seen is simply hilarious. I am, of course, talking about The Aristocrats. Everything I have seen regarding this movie makes me laugh hysterically whilst simultaneously being disgusted at myself. Apparantly, if you have ever been offended by any joke ever, you shouldn't go see it. The way it's going, those members of the public in the UK mightn't have a choice; it "might" come out "before the end of the year" (translation: Never)is the closest thing to a release date over here that we posess. It's on limited release in America at the moment and gets a full release 12th August. Annoyingly, the pirates haven't got their act together yet and so there are no copies of it on the net, but as soon as there are I'm going to "acquire" it and then arrange a viewing somewhere. Check the soundboard out at the offical site - you'll need speakers up, but ideally no family members in the vacinity.

Well, we did it again. We won tickets to V - this time, weekend tickets. The lineup is even better than last year. It looked as if I was sitting pretty until, annoyingly, I discovered that it's during International Camp, so it looks as if I'll be unable to go. Alana is, of course, overjoyed. I also won a "Pro" account on Flickr (albiet by being the only entrant in the competition) which I am using with my new Digital Camera to a pretty full extent.

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It's also the site that Phil uses for storing his gallery photos and is where he gets all his stats from, including the eloquent "most perved over photo". It's a fantastic site and I would wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone who can either win an account or is willing to pay the $25 for a year's subscription. A free account lets you upload a small number of photos, but pales in comparison when looked at against the Pro account. You'll also be able to comment on photos, but probably best to hold off that - Phil is supposed to be getting a comment system on his site - it "might" be "before the end of the year". It'd be more convenient for everyone concerned to look at them if they were all in one place. Browsing the photos on Flickr isn't as easy as it is on his site, either, though I'm not ashamed to say that if he'd listened to me at the start, it would have been fine and all the photos would be in groups. He's doing the ones he can be bothered to do manually, but it is, frankly, an impossible job.

I wish everyone (all two of you who will read this) the best of luck in their results