February 7th, 2001



Well, I'm sitting here somewhat bored so thought I'd wibble at you all a bit. Cafe is shut for admissions day stuff (prospective undergrads coming to look at our lovely department) so we can't all go for coffee - so I'm sat infront of the puter spodding (as if I need an excuse ;) ). Getting annoyed sounds from my colleague sat at the puter across from me coz this keyboard is a clicky one and I can type faster than he can so it goes clickety-clickety-click. This is the best puter the lab has though, so I'm gonna stick to using it when I can *evil grin*. (Best is relative - we bought this one recently so it's not old and falling to pieces, thassall).

Not done very much so far - set up the experiment and it's now incubating for 2 hours. Also set up my SDS-PAGE gels for later, I don't like setting them up early coz it means I'm hogging the equipment when I don't need to and someone else could use it in the time I'm not. But everyone else does that, so there's never any gel kits left when I want to run a gel coz they've all poured gels to run later on this afternoon *grr* *fuss*. And now I have nothing to do for another hour or so (well, a little, but not much). Trying to work out if I'll bother going to the group meeting at lunch time - I hate lunch time meetings, and there're 40 of us so no-one's likely to notice, but I'll feel guilty. Not that guilty though, so I probly won't go.
  • Current Music
    The sound of someone else typing (no stereo :( )

"Singer from the Sea" by Sherri S. Tepper

Sherri S. Tepper tends to have a strong theme to her books, either feminism, ecological issues, or both. In a lesser writer this would get very tedious very quickly, however she writes interesting stories that keep you wanting to know what happens next and even though they may share themes each story is unique.

"Singer from the Sea" contains both of Tepper's themes and is influenced by Maori culture (I don't know anything about the Maori so I can't vouch for her accuracy!). We follow the life of a girl called Genevieve who is one of the pampered women of the aristocracy of Haven. This planet was settled several hundred years in the past of the story, and seems to be run along fuedal lines with a strict religion. This religion requires women to be submissive to their menfolk, and basically allows noblewomen no life of their own. Arranged marriages are the order of the day. They are however allowed their 'youth' and are not required to marry before the age of 30, though they seem to do nothing but spend time at a type of finishing school where they are educated in the ways of appearing suitably brainless and decorative. As the story progresses it becomes clear that, as in all of Tepper's stories, something very nasty lurks below the surface ... not only are the women restricted by society, but all too many appear to die young and in child birth despite the attentions of offworld (and advanced) physicians. Oddly the peasant women don't seem to be nearly as frail, but there are tales of raiders who steal women away and they are always those who are still nursing ...

I liked this book, I think that Tepper's characters are believable, and although the situation is fantastical in many ways it brings her point across without hitting you over the head with it too hard! Having said that, I don't read her books often, or soon after one another, as the repetition of the themes begins to distract from the differences of the stories.