Posted on December 07, 2013
I love facts and statistics. But, I’m not a very mathematically or scientifically-minded person, so I mainly love facts and statistics when they are presented in an attractive visual format. I understand graphics. I’m a designer.
Lately I found out about an app called Sleep Time, which apparently monitors your movement when sleeping to determine if you are in a light or deep sleep. Or if you’re not asleep at all. I’m not exactly sure how it does that using my phone, other than the fact that it wouldn’t work if I slept with someone else because it would detect the movements of both people in one bed. Luckily (er, I guess) nobody shares my bed with me (insert your “awww, poor perpetually single Ling“s here) so I was able to get a month’s worth of sleep graphs that should be fairly accurate if the app does what it says it does.
Below, you may see what it came up with. The bottom of the graph is when I go to sleep, and the top is when I wake up. (Ooh, shiny graph.)
As you can see, my average bedtime is that of many elderly people. I do get a decent amount of sleep and that amount is apparently “efficient.” I don’t really see any patterns, but I suppose if I were to prolong the experiment, I might. But, I probably won’t continue, as in a few weeks I will be quite busy, and as a result will be sleeping at opportune moments in between activities and travelling. Plus, probably sharing a bed at least thrice. Not exactly the best time to be making sure I properly set up an app that tracks my movement overnight.
Plus, one of the number one reasons I decided to try this app did not work for me. One of its main features is that it monitors your sleep, and then triggers an alarm when it deems your sleep to be “light,” within the timeframe you request. For example, if I set my alarm for 7:30, it would set off the alarm while in a green phase within a 20 minute window. This hasn’t been my experience though, since it seems on many days I have been in a blue/deep sleep when I was due to wake up (see: er, all the days with blue at the top). I suppose I can’t blame the app for my sleep patterns, but it just didn’t help me with that purpose. So I basically just kept it around for the pretty graph.
It has been fun though. I do feel a sense of accomplishment when I look at results for days like the 29th of November where, quite frankly, I should be given an award for my amazing sleeping skills. And I get to look back at all the days that I woke up in the middle of the night for an hour or so with great anger and rage.
Posted on December 06, 2013
Nothing like your block of flats/apartment building being evacuated due to a “suspicious device” to set the weekend in motion. Funnily enough, around lunch time a colleague heard sirens outside that he did not recognize to be a usual emergency vehicle and he looked down on the street below to see the bomb squad van going past. An hour or so later I saw on Twitter that a section of my road had been closed off, but it’s a rather long road, so what were the chances of it being near my flat? Well, joke was on me, it was on a wall AT my flat. Go figure.
You probably know how jumpy I am, and how much I hate loud and sudden noises. Even though I arrived home to no fanfare– the police had long since cleared out from the look of the empty streets– how does an exceptionally easily frightened person calm down after something like that?
Well, I’ve turned to Ludovico Einaudi’s absolutely brilliant Divenire (yes, this is a link to a playlist), which I highly recommend if you are a fan of classical music. If we’ve conversed regularly, you’ve probably heard me gush about this album before. It is one of my absolute favourites.
Sometimes you can’t make the noises in your head stop, but you can keep them at bay with something louder, and a lot more beautiful.
Update Dec 7: Turned out the mystery object was a biscuit tin….
Late during the summer when I settled into Brighton I decided that I simply had to see The Book of Mormon on the West End. Like with Once, this is a show with which I was not intimately familiar, but came highly recommended by my brother. And it’s well-loved by audiences all over, it seems, as I did need to book quite far in advance.
Since I needed to finish my Christmas shopping (parcels to North America need to be sent on Monday), I arrived in London a bit after 11am and spent the early afternoon wandering around Camden before doing some shopping along Oxford and Regent Streets. Conveniently, the Prince of Wales theatre is just steps from Piccadilly Circus.
Firstly, I raided the souvenir stand and picked myself up a program, in which I found this lovely advertisement:
The show starts with a bit of Mormon backstory and the highly energetic “Hello,” and the energy does not stop. The songs are hilarious, with completely over-the-top choreography to match. My favourite numbers are probably “Turn It Off” and “Spooky Mormon Hell Dream.” But I found most of the songs to be enjoyable, quotable and catchy.
Three major points stand out to me:
- This show is highly inappropriate.
- I felt bad for laughing.
- I laughed so much I could hardly breathe.
So there’s a bit of a contradiction here. For those of you who do not converse with me on a regular basis, I will let you know that I tend to stick to the side of the politically correct, and this show was anything but. It was crude. But, it’s also created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, so you know what you’re getting into. There will be problematic things, but there’s also a kind of truthfulness to the way much of the Westernized world views developing countries. And I felt the end message justified the rather shocking phrases uttered by every character in the whole show.
Luckily for me, while I can be quite opinionated on a lot of issues, I can also appreciate controversial material and the value of being shocked into laughter by rude jokes. While I tend to say things like “effing” instead of the actual “f-word,” I am generally un-phased by potty mouths. If you can’t handle hearing the “c-word,” you should give this a miss.
On the nice side of things, December 1st (today!) is World AIDS Day, so the cast were collecting donations in the lobby after the show. So, I got to say a quick hello to the actors who played the General and Elder Price, respectively (I made two donations because I am awesome). It’s always nice to be able to personally thank an actor for a performance.
In a kind of ironic turn of events, I arrived home just prior to midnight and found an envelope addressed to “The Resident” at #4 (my flat). This was strange to me because I had received an identical handwritten envelope for the resident of #4 in the building next door (our buildings have similar names) about a week ago, and I had been meaning to take it over. However, I probably won’t anymore, since I opened my identical one and found this:
It’s old school Jehovah’s Witness spam! Which I suppose means if an evangelist cannot ring your doorbell (because you live in a secured block of flats), they will just…. systematically send handwritten notes to the entire city of Brighton and Hove? Strange.