Some things I've learned....

(1) An Engineer can do with 10 cent what a fool can do with a Euro.

(2) "Puff" - unimportant; insignificant; unworthy of study by engineering students; waste of time

(3) It's better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you're stupid than to open it and prove them right!

(4) Blockwork people and concrete people can never work on the same site... Apparently they don't like each other....

(5) It's official; I'm fantastic!

Friday 16 February 2007

Grinds My Gears!! - Special

This is a special issue of Grinds My Gears, I'll be doing these usually based on particular events that have effected me over the week(s). The regular issue of Grinds My Gears as you have no doubt realised by now is a gear grinding on a more public issue/event.

I'll start on a positive note first about the week in general.

My "Week" Rating: 8/10 - overall a good week for me, though I did feel it was going to be kinda depressing, Valentines Day mostly, I did actually feel good on the day that my package (thankfully) was delivered. Though I did hear of some other events relating to the Assumption and 'packages'. Managed to get someone talking online for nearly an hour. College was the usual cafuffle, sit in a lecture, crack jokes, slag the professor, eat food etc. The only downside, which is why I gave it a score of 8 was my phone has started glitching up and I need a new one. The biggest loss is the several quality games I have on it which I can't transfer over to a new phone.

Tell me your "Week" rating and why you gave it that in the comments!

Okay, that done and dusted, down to the ironworks. In case you aren't aware, I am having great difficulty in finding any remote interest in the "Mechanics for Engineers" lectures. This is a universal opinion shared amongst all first year engineers. I'll do my best to give you the blog reader an explanation for this skull drilling class.

Number 1 - The Material: Ignoring the fact that we did vectors for both Physics 1 and Maths 2 last semester, initially having to sit through the same crap is bad enough. What makes Mechanics particularly worse than the previous modules is that it takes vectors and everything about them to a whole new level. The concept of vectors is quite simple, that's not the issue here, it's the way the material is presented to us that is the problem. Overly complicated solutions and lack of the lecturer actually doing the questions is a good place to start.

Number 2 - The Lecturer: I couldn't tell you here name like I could anyone else. Why? Well, she mentioned it only once at the very start and hasn't mentioned it since. Now most of the time that isn't an issue, as the lecturer will have his/her name on the slides on the screen....but no...not her....want to know why? Well for a start they're not even her f****n notes!! Yes, believe it or believe it not I was oblivious to this fact until I printed off the notes and looked at them. Granted I was confused as to why the lb's (pounds) and inches were being used at the start but it was only on discovering that the notes are written by a 'Ferdinand P. Beer' from Texas University that it all made sense. What makes the whole experience worse is the fact that she learns the slides off my heart and never deviates from the slide material, not even to explain how to break down components and the likes. (I won't bore you with Mechanics details). The lack of particularly good English doesn't help much either, as she kept refering to a 'graph' in a previous slide, which we all looked back on to check only to find no such 'graph'. She was in fact talking about a 'picture'. Along with the exact re-iteration of the contents of the notes, the monotone voice hardly helps the matter. Needless to say, if she put in any kind of effort into making her own notes and using the blackboard once or twice, she might have more respect from us.

Number 3 - The Tutorials: Regretfully I have to say that this is the best part of Mechanics. Undoubtedly the assistants were not lectured by her and have a good working knowledge of the subject. They can do the question very clearly and I actually now have a much better grasp on the whole moments and lines of action of a force.

What can be done? I don't know. At one point in the lecture I said to myself: "Surely it must be over by now!", only to find that 20 minutes had passed. Master Sykes actually admitted to having dosed off, and if it wasn't for Kev having his laptop certain days I would surely grab a drill and drive it through my skull. We thought Maths for Engineers 1 was boring because the lecturer was boring and we thought Chemistry was just boring in general, but Vector Mechanics for Engineers is a combination of the two, an unstoppanle tidal wave of boredom, reeking of uninteresting rubbish.

The last thing I need to mention is a particular event which occured on the bus the other day. Breast-feeding in public. I'll take this opportunity to quote one Alan Byrne's (Wolfy's) blog on this matter from his Bebo page:

"You know what really grinds my gears (thanx damo, lol) Breast feeding in public. It's just not right. If i got half naked in public I think a few people would have a problem with it. So far I've heard maybe one or two really shit points in favour of it. First: "But it's a beautiful thing." Hell i agree with that one. It is a beautiful thing, but I don't wanna see a fuckin baby attached to it. Second: "But it's natural" Yeah so is taking a shit but I don't think I'd be allowed to drop my cacks in the middle of a shopping centre and take a dump. Erm that's all I got right now. But you get the point. It's just not on."

In my case, I was sitting on the inside seat on the left hand side facing the forward direction of the bus. Two Eastern European women got on and one sat beside me, the other in front of me. Both were carrying young children. At a particular point the child beside me started crying, and what did the mother do to shut him up??? She plopped out here left breast (the one nearest me of course) and started feeding the child. She didn't even try to conceal it through her jacket, instead right out in front of me. To make matters worse the woman in front seemed to think it was feeding time aswell! No doubt the person beside her felt just as uncomfortable as I did. The icing on the cake was that my stop was coming up in a few minutes!! I kept thinking about how I was going to get her to move. But thankfully the child had enough just in time and I was able to escape.

Wolfy couldn't have put it any simpler: "It's just not on!"

I'll be back for Breakfast!


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