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Matthew Chapman
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Posts from 01st Jan 2006 to 31st Jan 2006.
'What's that burning smell?'
   at 17:31 on Tue 24th January 2006
I did some washing up last night and left a little standing water on the surface where I was draining my stack of newly clean plates. When Erin arrived after work and said that she hadn't eaten, I offered to cook something for the both of us. So I turned the oven on to pre-heat.

A while later Stuart reminds me that my food is burning and I should probably check on it. After looking at the oven and sitting back down in the lounge I informed him that I hadn't even begun cooking and the burning smell was probably crap left from the pizza 3 days ago.

<Another few minutes pass>

Interrupting us from conversation, my oven fucking rudely (if you ask me) creates a loud bang, dims all the lights at it pisses around with my electrics and ejects plumes of black smoke from the oven door. I think it was probably a pissingly small amount of water leaked into the gap between the hobs and dripped onto/into the oven.

Fucksticks. One thing I hadn't budgeted for is replacing my white goods just 6 months into home ownership. Damn Bastard oven. It's going to be a bitching pain to replace as it's built in to a tiny gap in the fitted kitchen. Just what I really didn't fucking want right now.

[If you're easily offended by naughty words, please re-read this post skipping the words in red]

Four comments
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by Prudish McPrude at 20:21 on 24th Jan 2006
You forgot to highlight a "crap", "pisses" and a "Damn" :)

by lil rich at 20:23 on 24th Jan 2006
don't u have insurance matt?
surely that would cover the cost of the oven.

and btw i am -really- offended by those red words.

it makes the page look really weird!

by Reyhan at 18:59 on 25th Jan 2006
Bad luck mate!

by Robin at 22:21 on 26th Jan 2006
Apparently research has shown that the 24th of january is the most depressing day of the year. Maybe it was nothing to do with the water and the oven couldn't take it anymore.
Ps: what kind of funding body payed for research into the most depressing day of the year?

Disagnosis: Depression
   at 11:43 on Fri 20th January 2006
I forgot to write about my second doctors appointment. I saw my actualy GP this time and he said since my blood test results were all fine, we had ruled out most physical problems that could cause my symptoms.

He then proceeded to ask about my job, how stressful it was, if it was the right job for me, etc. He asked about my flat and probed various bits of my life. He went on to ask if I would consider myself "depressed" to which my answer was "No, just a bit stressed." I got a lecture in how depression is difficult to admit to and how people use the word "stress" to mean a wide range of things and how he though I was mildly depressed.

The physical symptoms are apparantly something that's called "anticipatory nausea" caused by my body not wanting to get up and face the day and making myself feel ill instead.

The appointment was on Tuesday and I still don't know what to think to this... It's ruled out my being pregnant and the possibility to make millions and have my fifteen minutes of fame. :-(

Two comments
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by Names at 09:30 on 23rd Jan 2006
And this is what is wrong with medicine today! Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy. If I could get my hands on your GP I would give him 'anticipatory nausea'. Basically Matt, you were quite ill before Christmas, and my guess is that you haven't fully recovered from it - speaking from experience, the physical and psychological effects of a nasty virus can take anything up to 6 months to go away. So just look after yourself.

by Matt at 10:48 on 23rd Jan 2006
*hugs* I am. I'm relaxing and taking things easy. Had a really nice weekend in Southwold and feeling a bit better for it. I even had some reflexology!

Train Fares
   at 11:34 on Fri 20th January 2006
I'm shocked and upset. I've been mugged, in broad daylight, in the middle of a busy station.

I'm spending the weekend at my parents and travelling by train. Therefore, on my way into Stevenage for work I purchased my return train ticket to Suffolk. When I last went up to Darsham station from Hitchin my ticket cost 13.45 (including my Young Persons discount) which I think was reasonable value for money.

However, this morning the chap behind the counter asked me for more than 20. I said "I'm very sorry, dear sir, there must be some mistake. Just three weeks ago this cost me 13.45". He tapped away on his keyboard for a moment and then swung his screen around and showed me that, indeed, the price has rocketed to 21.10.

That's a sodding 49.4% price increase. How the crazy hell can the train companies justify a hike in price just shy of 50%!? Not only does the trip now cost half as much on top of the previous price, I can't get to Darsham using the train service in quicker than four hours this afternoon. Doing the trip by car takes only two hours. And the Government wants to promote and get us to use public transport?! Christ!

Anyway, I'm writing to National Rail requesting an explanation and justification for this theft. I'll let you know what they say.

Three comments
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by Neil a.k.a. a-v0id at 16:35 on 20th Jan 2006
Can you not board the train without paying?

I used to commute to college a couple of years ago and being in a financial predicament of having nothing to my name and cycling being out of the question and bussing the journey being too expensive i decided to commute by train. It worked for 6 months, showing my expired train ticket which was 18 months old whenever anyone asked for it, they generally looked at it smiled and looked away.

Be confident and carry the money just in case. 6 months worth of train commuting cost me a 10 fine.

by ..... at 11:46 on 28th Jan 2006
you didnt see the news ages ago about the price rise then. lol

by Matt at 12:00 on 28th Jan 2006
I saw the news. But the reports were citing increases of up to 5% on saver tickets.

My shock is that the rise is nearly 50% which by any measure is far more than the "news ages ago" reported.

Blood Test Results
   at 14:14 on Sun 15th January 2006
There was me, walking to the surgery on Friday afternoon nervously anticipating an exciting course of some experimental drug that was going to fix my equally exotic disease.

I got a confused look from the nurse as she told me that my results were ok and my blood hasn't disclosed any illness I may have. I think she expected me to be happy. But I wanted some excitement. I rarely get a sniffly nose, this was my chance for a big break in the world of being ill!

Oh well, I guess a clean sheet isn't too much of a bad thing. The only real down side to it I can tell is that I don't know what's causing me to feel sick in the mornings, faint at times and almost always exhausted and lathargic.

It would be nice to know if it's stress (as the doctor suspected in my initial appointment) or if it's something I'm missing in my diet or if it's bad washing powder or something. All I can do is see how I'm feeling during the first couple of days this week and make another appointment if I'm remain under 100%.

Five comments
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by Lardy at 09:09 on 16th Jan 2006
Morning sickness? Feeling tired? Sure you're not pregnant? If you are, I'll be your agent!!

by Matt at 09:42 on 16th Jan 2006
Haha! The theory has been discussed. My girlfriend doesn't quite like the idea of mothering my child at the moment.

I've not started craving any food yet, so I can't be that far along. Perhaps she'll come round in time.

by lil rich at 18:51 on 16th Jan 2006
well some good news then matt.

get a diet book or somethin to make sure ur eatin right maybe

by MrLobster at 18:25 on 19th Jan 2006
Stop eating fairy dust!!!

by Neil a.k.a. a-v0id at 15:55 on 20th Jan 2006
Reminds me of when I had my blood tested when I donated blood. I was hoping that my result was going to return with some obscure result hoping a non-existant blood group or characteristics of a super-hero... sadly I'm but a mere mortal.

More protein, especially white fish.

University of Hertfordshire
   at 13:29 on Thu 12th January 2006
Now correct me if I'm wrong but the press over the past couple of years has been stating quite loudly that Universities are struggling to fund themselves with the pitiful Government help they current get, hence the rise in tuition fees.

I sent an email to the University of Hertfordshire asking two questions. The first was about the application process for mature students (do they go via the admissions department directly or via UCAS) and the second was regarding the start dates for the course in question.

Now I don't usually try contacting humans as most of the information I seek has been placed on the Internet and Google has indexed it sufficiently for me to find the answers to my questions, however the University of Hertfordshire website contained after a fairly decent read no details on my two queries.

I find it quite insulting to have an automated responce sent to me this morning. It doesn't even address me as Matthew but instead begins "Dear Enquirer,". The opening paragraph assues me that the email contains the answers to the most popular queries and I'll find what I'm looking for.

But I don't. And my point is, if this information was for myself I'd be put off taking things further. I remember when I was applying to Universities and had silly questions, they would answer politely, directly and promtly. None of this automated faff.

In my exhausted state I dispair at their response. I just don't quite fathom how the admissions department who are trying to sell the University to us can't be arsed. It's bollocks. No, UoH, the emails does not answer my queries, you lazy bastards.

Anyway, blood test results tomorrow. I breifly looked up the symptoms of Liver Disease and they match quite closely to mine. Wouldn't that be exciting!

Three comments
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by lil rich at 19:22 on 12th Jan 2006
well less than 24 hrs left for u matt. let us know how it goes and if ur gonna be around long :p ur too young to have liver disease

by Matt at 11:30 on 13th Jan 2006
But still, that takes effort. And if their competition is willing to answer my queries in emails and on the phone they're more likely to get my tuition fees and goverment subsidies. I don't think it's much to expect a company to provide you with their products details when you request them. But perhaps I'm old fashioned in expecting friendly, polite and helpful service from a company.

by Smudge at 00:29 on 14th Jan 2006
Good luck for blood test results, hope its all OK

Doctors Appointment
   at 23:20 on Tue 3rd January 2006
The appointment went alright. There was no magic cure from the lovely lady doctor which let me down. It's ruined my childhood vision of doctors miraculously healing anyone that walked through their doors. I've got to go back on Friday for a blood test and we'll take things from there. I've outlined below what the test is being taken for but she said it could also be stress related and to take it easy for a while.

I shall try walking into work again in the morning and hopefully I'll get further than the station. It's really frustrating that I feel ok when I'm lying down reading or idly watching the telly but when I get active and do anything I get faint and feel sick again. I'd appreciate being able to concentrate sitting up all day so at least I could do a full days work from home, but I'm so exausted all the time.

The Blood Test

I've been told that I could have a stomach infection called Helicobacter Pylori which causes the symptoms I've been experiencing. Noone knows where this comes from but it's easy to treat. I'm having a blood test to, at the very least, rule this out.

At the same time my blood test is being used for a "U and E" which stands for "Urea and electrolytes". It's a routine blood test to assess fitness of the liver. I actually felt a pang of worry in the hope that I've not done any damage to my liver whilst at University. On top of that, it checks for levels of potassium which indicates the electrical activity of the heart.

The third test I'm having done on this blood sample is a "CRP" test. This stands for "C reactive Protiens". The check is for these protiens and an elevated level of these is a very accurate indicator of future heart problems and double chances of a stroke.

And, of couse, a complete examination of my blood wouldn't be complete without the FBC, the Full Blood Count. This is very common and tells a great deal about the state of the persons health. It can help diagnose problems with bones, lungs, the liver, the kidneys, etc.

I'm not a hypochondriac at all. I don't say all this because I wish for something crazy to be wrong with me. It would though, in a strange way, be exciting for something to be wrong but I mainly think that because I'd like to know why I've been feeling so energyless and down for ages.

Anyway, I thought I'd decypher the scribbled doctor written codes on this form I have to take back on Friday and share with you the suspicions of the Doctor.

Two comments
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by Arleen at 10:26 on 07th Jan 2006
Oh Matt :( poor little thing, let us know the results. When will you hear?


by Matt at 11:31 on 13th Jan 2006
Thanks. Will do. Getting them this afternoon now. Not long. If I'm dieing I'll make a spectacular final blog post for you!

Still Feeling Ill
   at 00:28 on Tue 3rd January 2006
I'm really annoyed. I was, as I have previously said, ill before Christmas but I felt fine at my parents. But I continue to feel ill again.

I've been waking up most mornings feeling sick and it's taken a good hour or two until my stomach settles and I feel ok. That's been happening for about 6 weeks now. I can't find any correlation between what I've been eating, what I've been drinking and if I've had any alcohol. It just seems to be consistent that I wake up feeling ill.

On top of that, recently when I've had alot to eat I've felt very sick. And most of the time that I'm not eating I feel unusually hungry. The feeling sick puts me off eating a great deal and the past two weeks I've been feeling very faint alot of the time. Today I walked about 200 yards from my flat to Zizi's restaurant and had to come home straight away as I was on the verge of collapsing.

My diet hasn't changed a great deal since finishing Uni and my drinking has decreased dramatically. So I can't find any explanation for my feeling crap. But the whole thing makes me feel a bit down and drains my motivation for pretty much everything. I would rather curl up in bed and sleep the days away.

I've not taken in a great deal of food today mainly for feeling sick after just a couple of mouthfuls and this probably means I'll wake up feeling no less faint. So tomorrow morning I'll look up the surgery's number and make an appointment to see the doctor.

One comment
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by Clare at 09:28 on 03rd Jan 2006
Ugh, that sounds no fun at all. Definitely get checked at the doc's, it can do no harm!