We also asked X what good it was doing for mankind to know about these extraordinary birds which use compost to keep their eggs warm. And there doesn’t seem to be any answer, except ‘It looks good in one’s CV’!
And I suppose it teaches her something about scientific method, which is probably good for her and could be applied later in life to some really useful research.
X phoned the other night to see if we’ll be seeing them over Easter for long enough for her to do one of her psych. tests on them – last time she did this she sat on the stairs outside their bedroom and heard them planning awful things and didn’t tell the fond parents. They weren’t amused!
I must do a little practice on my bass recorder as we have a new player with us who plays a flute and is much better than we are, in that he plays at sight everything we have laboured on for years without getting much better! Still, very good for me to have some incentive to practise, I know quite well it is lack of practice which is why I never get any better, but don’t manage all the same to do it!
The Professor is rather dry but with an obvious interest in the subject and the odd ray of humour: ‘Now to come to another aspect of English; I’m going to write an obscene word on the board. Er… just give me a few minutes to think of one.’!
If you need to put any stamps on letters to us and the Stephenson rocket ones are still about, could you use those? They tell us scrounging is the first thing to learn as a teacher!
This is a new sort of letter which I hope in a moment to illustrate – not done with my word-processing program but with another called ‘gem’ which includes a facility for ‘painting’. One of the problems is that it shows no margins and does not seem to wrap around like the W.P. And another is that I can’t see how to go backwards except with the mouse, which is not very accurate.
No news here re X yet either – he has another gruelling weekend with umpteen interviews – he was told unofficially at 11 p.m. that the ‘assessors felt v. positive about the application’ – I s’pose it could be positively NO but he didn’t take it thus – I fear he’s going to be very hurt if turned down.
I spent two days making a spread sheet on the computer summarising my expenditure for the last two tax years: only to find yesterday evening when I turned it on again to add a bit that the first year has disappeared altogether. It’s maddening: but at least I have one copy printed out to prove that I did do it once! I don’t know why it happens, but think it is something to do with being given the choice, when you start to save the programme [sic] between making a back-up and ‘Over-writing’ which the book says ‘Use with caution’ without explaining why. Or it might be because I thought to save time by making a copy of the first programme and then deleting all the figures to leave the description of what I had spent them on, and then renaming that with a new file name, and filling in year 2’s figures. Perhaps I forgot actually to copy Programme 1 when I had loaded it, so that it was the working copy which I deleted. Anyway it was very annoying, and undermining to my self-confidence!