Mixedmatt's Mixed Blog Just another opinionated blog...

11Aug/140

It’s Summer! Exams over!

My last post here was back in April. Aren't I terrible? Since then I took an Economics exam and came out the other side. Against expectations passed the module (feel like I could have handled the exam better), went to Brussels (again) and now am deeply engaged in my Politics module. I'm fast approaching exam time for Politics. I have only one assignment left which to be done under exam conditions and handwritten. Ah, I hate exams!!

I took some pictures from Brussels (You can seem them below). I've put quite a few up this time. I also went to Bruges for the day. Loved the boat tour on the waterways! I'd love to live there once I complete my degree.

I've decided my blog will contain more entries in the way of Politics and Economics in the near future. So look out for new posts. I'll try to set aside time to post some of my thoughts and ramblings. How Mixedmatt sees things in nationally and internationally :)

Aside from this nothing else has really changed. I'm still single :(
Waiting for my level 3 Economics module to start and a bit excited.

I'll make sure my next post will not be too long now! :)

Waiting for the Metro at Hôtel des Monnaies/Munthof.

Waiting for the Metro at Hôtel des Monnaies/Munthof.

Fancy one? :)

Fancy one? :)

Sweet tooth!!

Sweet tooth!!

On the way to the grand place in Bruxelles again!

On the way to the grand place in Bruxelles again!

Mussels and Frites! Yum!

Mussels and Frites! Yum!

Frogs legs :)

Frogs legs :)

Bruges!

Bruges!

EU Parliament tour!

EU Parliament tour!

Reading material for a nerd like me!

Reading material!

Juplier :)

Juplier :)

Buildings in Bruges

Buildings in Bruges


Best way to see Bruges!

Best way to see Bruges!

You been warned! Ha!

You been warned! Ha!

Belgian Street Art :)

Belgian Street Art :)

Touching the Berlin Wall.

Touching the Berlin Wall.

At the European Commission.

At the European Commission.

k

18Apr/140

Love being so busy!

Heavy reading? Aiming for 100% in everything :)

Heavy reading? Aiming for 100% in everything :)

As I said in my previous post, I think I'd be more then a little busy this year this has turned out to be true.

I've bought two economics books as I really want too boost my grades in Economics. Andrew Gillispies book seems to be more lighter and suitable to introduce newbies into Economics.

Doing two modules at once with the open university was always gonna be tough. Economics much tougher then politics but on the whole both very engaging, interesting and applicable to the real world.

Today at work I had what I thought was the beginning of a good conversation going with a customer. She asked me what I was studying I told her PPE and she then asked what career options am I thinking of. I told her EU or civil service. She told me to keep quiet it's a dirty word then told me how soldiers fought and died so dictators at the EU wouldn't make laws for us and how the EU is undemocratic. I didn't say this but was just thinking as she was mouthing off... The EU is an example of representative democracy. Like our nation is. It's not a direct democracy. It has stayed true to its founding principles as laid down by Sir Winston Churchill and Robert Schuman amongst others. It's by no means perfectly democratic but what institution is? We can act to improve it. She then started talking or should I say SHOUTING about Mr Farage and she wouldn't stop. Rambling on about him being a man of the British people. Looking out for British workers. Much how a certain German politician promised to before the Second World War I guess. She sounded like she was brainwashed unfortunately considering I wasn't answering her at this stage because she was so ill informed and seemed so ignorant to anybody else.

I couldn't believe all that reaction came from my career path to be honest. It's scary to think we have ignorant and the ill informed in the country who cannot even reason or disagree in a polite manner without raising their voices to be heard. If I had been a ex-soldier or if I said I wanted to join the army how would she have viewed me then? Presumably in a positive light despite the fact I may have ended the lives of people with a gun or maybe going on to. Really is this what has Britain come to? Hmmm. Something doesn't sit right :(

So as you can see politics comes up even without intention. Maybe more so because of my pathway. I'm finding I've learnt so much more though. When walking around shops or any public place my economics and politics knowledge seems to kick in! I read the economist and understand more and more week by week. It's all very exciting :)

My exams for economics are in June so a lot of prep ahead!

I went to Paris on March 25th. It's a beautiful city but not as beautiful as Brussels! It was a rainy day but still it was nice to be away from London for a change. I can't believe it being only a train ride away I never been. Take a look at the assortment of photos below.

It was lovely though, didn't want to return home. Day trips do feel really long though. I'm planning to go racing again and go gym after I finish DD209 - Running the Economy. Then I can focus just on DD203 - Power, dissent, equality: understanding contemporary politics. Once DD203 finishes in September 2014, I will be moving on to DD309 - Doing economics: people, markets and policy this looks to be interesting.

I probably won't post again till after the 6th June 2014. When I actually stop going full-time and go part-time with my studies again.

Till next time. See you :)

28Jan/140

Full time student now & good result for TMA 2 DD209!

TMA-2-Hand-Drawn-Diagram

One of my TMA 2 hand drawn diagrams for DD209 - Running the Economy. Output and demand increase!

Happy new year readers! Hope you had a fattening Christmas and great new year. I've only got round to writing this now as I have been extremely busy :( .

First I feel I need to explain why my posts may be fewer this year. I am now a full time university student again with the open university and one module in particular. DD209 - Running the Economy is particularly taxing being so technical, it's consuming my time. I'm about to start DD203 - Power, dissent, equality: understanding contemporary politics this week!! My free time will be limited this year.

Anyway, so far so good with my Economics module. I made a reasonable start but really excelled in the recent TMA before Christmas. Achieving 80% which was a surprise to say the least. It was all about the situation facing the UK in spring 2013 economically. Quite interesting :P .

I need to crack on with DD209 - TMA 03 now which poses a even bigger challenge it seems. More diagram drawing. A collaboration exercise and an extract. The workload for this module doesn't feel like a level 2 it feels more level 3 to be honest. ICMA 42 (Online Assessment) is also due in on the same day as the TMA! I love DD209 but it's so time consuming. What I have seen of DD203 so far looks the opposite.

My DSA equipment request made by my assessor was approved and I received a printer/scanner, Dictaphone, Claroread plus, and a book stand amongst other things all without charge!! Very happy.

2014-01-15 13.12.05My DSA goodies :)

I want to get out and go gym and run. I want to be fit for when the go-karting season comes round but I have such little time it's irritating me to the max. I need to try and eat healthy!

On another note, just guess how long this blog has been running??? Seven years this February!! Amazing. I never intended to start this and have it up and running forever! Till next time peace and if I'm not back before Valentines day. Enjoy the day haha :P

9Dec/130

Assignments complete! Mixedmatt is back online.

Chocolate Birthday Cake

It was my Birthday on 7th December!

All my assignments for DD209 - Running the Economy are now complete and I'm back. I neglected the blog because I simply had too much to do. To think this run up to Christmas I was only studying part-time. After Christmas I will begin preparations to start DD203! My politics module meaning I will be running two side by side. I can't guarantee I'll be posting much at all :(

Anyway to other news before I return to this. On Saturday 7th December I turned 25!! Yup, I'm officially old. Please gimme some cake and congrats below :)
I don't feel old. I'm hoping to give myself a birthday pressie next month before I start DD203. Maybe go to Paris. I love a Eurostar journey.

I'm looking forward to next year. I am to take go-karting more serious (if I have the time), that means getting fitter physically and mentally.

Back to university. I've enjoyed the first run of this new module few gripes here and there. Apart from that I've enjoyed it. I've found out a lot about fiscal and monetary policy. How the different policy options such as government spending, reduction in tax rates, increases in interest rates, and quantitative easing work. I understand how the 2008 financial crisis began and why certain people didn't see it coming. So, Don't let the government tell you the last government left them with a huge deficit!! There was a global crisis. I understand unemployment and GDP a lot more. I also understand what Keynes was in favour for in terms of Economic policy for the UK. I can understand more articles in the economist and much more! So, I'm very happy.

Have a Merry Crimbo.

Till next time :)

16Oct/130

Season over.. No more racinggg! :(

Sorry I been slow to post here. I've got up to speed with my new university module and got my books sent! The focus of this post will be about my final lotus cup championship race at rye house on September 28th.

I'm Kart 12! Story of my season!

I'm Kart 12! Impossible to pass there!

So, Round 6 ended with my best performance of the season.

I started 16th and finished 12th. I was determined to have a good race and come through. I pulled off some really good overtaking moves and enjoyed battling with a few other drivers!
I managed to pick up a caution for banging into someone (not intentional!) but it was eventful.

By race end I had caught 11th and 10th place drivers. It's a shame we ran out of time as I felt I had the pace to attack and pass them. Nevermind, it was just a great 55 laps on the edge... soo amazing. I have a few pictures I am intending on purchasing from the photographer. I will leave you with a few samples for now..

Click here for the race results.

I intend on racing in the Lotus cup next season. Lot's of preparation time ahead. I hope to be fitter for next season too. Looking forward to it! Take care..

Concentrating intensely! Story of my season!

Concentrating intensely!

Into the corner we go.. Story of my season!

Into the corner we go..

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21Sep/130

University panic and decorating to do!

Bye bye damaged graphics card!

Bye bye damaged graphics card!

University panic and house decorating leaves mixedmatt flustered.

This week I had a huge panic. Created by a email received from the open university. Panic over now. Although I'm still praying the student loan company pay me for the second of the two modules ill be doing. Otherwise I'll have to think of fundraising :)

The decorators are in the house, doing the hall. Getting in the way! I'd just started sanding my room down. I will put it on pause until they've gone. The amount of dust in the house is horrible.

Unfortunately my graphics card also failed on Sunday. So, I'm writing from my iPad. I purchased my super duper pc from pc specialist last year in January. So haven't had my build long. Lucky I still got manufacturer warranty on my GeForce GTX 570. I hate writing on my iPad so much. Difficult what?!

Well, my graphics card has been sent off now and I received an email today literally the day after sending it! Saying a replacement has been sent! Well done PC Specialist!!

My module materials for DD209 Running the Economy have been sent. They should arrive along with my graphics card tomorrow morning. Excited :D

Of course I'll take some snaps of the module materials!

Also next weekend is the final round of the Lotus cup go-karting championship that I am competing in. Can't wait just want the last race to end on high.

Have a good weekend readers.

2Sep/130

How things can be misunderstood :(

Well, Some of you will know I really got to liking to someone a lot over summer.

Anyway, She went away for a few weeks but we promised to meet when she returned. Things were going well. She came back and everything was okay for a few days. I was planning to go and see her the following week until I screwed up and sent a message that wasn't worded too well. It looked like it was meant for another girl but it totally wasn't.

If you want to know what I really said it was along the lines of "Hey sexy lady, you didn't come in my store at all today?" I understand how this can be taken the wrong way especially when your not in the same area. I should have thought about what I was texting. I only meant it as a joke because a friend said someone matching her description came up to him and said I was good looking.

Needless to say it's all been misunderstood. It's been a week and I'm missing her like mad. Trying to keep busy so I don't think of everything too much. The worst thing is she won't give me a chance or take a chance to understand. I can understand if shes been hurt before and guys have lied... but I would never hurt her. This was a mistake. Over the time I've known her I just think shes simply amazing.

Everyday something reminds me of her. Something she said. Or the country shes from and it's sooo upsetting. I feel lost. I really miss just talking to her. I'd do anything. I'd go drive down and see her tomorrow but she won't respond to me or even understand or seem to know how I feel. Oh well.. I'm not gonna assume anything. Just miss her.

:( :( :( :(

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29Aug/130

Books for my next OU module arrive next month!

Well, I actually can't wait to get stuck in really.

Everyday I login and check to see if anything has changed on my studenthome. I'm counting down the days till I receive the module materials and the module website opens!

I've got the materials dispatch date in my mind but I do know from previous experience they tend to arrive a little earlier. The fact this is a new module also wets my appetite in anticipation. Other modules that have run before have books that students have read and exam they have taken etc. The books are at the regional centre but as this is a new module there are none unless you want to use the rather poor DD202 Economics and economic change as a reference. However, There is a huge difference between that and the new module! So, I feel like a guinea pig but I am excited to start! To see what the material is. I've had a little information from the faculty of Economics about what the first two weeks will cover. I'll attach that too for any fellow DD209ers or those interested :)

The materials dispatch date looms closer!!

The materials dispatch date looms closer!!

There doesn't seem to be a need for any set books to purchase. Like my previous philosophy module.

One thing that does concern me though is the assignments and assessments. The interactive assessments are due in on the same day as TMAs. Bit of a worry.

The last few days personally I've been upset. I did something silly and didn't word something correctly in a message. So, the girl I like so much just doesn't want anything to do with me. I miss her a lot. It's a pain just talking about it.. Ah well. Hope things are better by the next post.

Thanx for reading.

10Aug/130

Changes and a visit to Brussels :)

I've just had a busy few weeks. I paid another visit to Brussels in July.

I haven't been there in 13 years but this is the first time I stayed there for 3 days, so I guess that's what counts right?
Spent time loving the country, the European quarter in Schuman (where all the important EU decisions are made), and eating good food. Travelled on the metro numerous times and visited the nice suburb of Stokkel, enjoyed lunch in a nice cafe there.

I travelled on the Eurostar it was quick comfortable and easy to check in. I can see obvious benefits over any form of air travel. Some characters do ride on trains (they will have you laughing inside).

I brought you readers a few pics. Btw, I did buy Chocolates and have Mussels and Frites ;)..

The Grand place and it's amazing grandeur..

The Grand place and it's amazing grandeur..

Manneken Pis

Manneken Pis

Another famous Belgian. Tin Tin!

Another famous Belgian. Tin Tin!

The Grand place

The Grand place

I loved it and am planning to do European Voluntary service there. Will see how everything pans out.

Got a few good reads before I start my next university module.

Got a few good reads before I start my next university module.

I'm trying to learn French again. This time to fluency and will do this with German again eventually.

I'm also doing a bit of pre-reading before I start my next OU module in October. I'm really looking forward to starting again after a difficult time with philosophy. This module DD209 - Running the Economy sounds really interesting and sounds like something I can engage with.

I've been applying for new jobs. Sick and tired of where I work now. Looking for something PA/Admin based in London. If you know of anything kind readers. Do link me up! :)

Getting better at go-karting event by event too. I don't have any practice time though which puts me at a disadvantage. Last weekend I suffered a high speed accident in qualifying when a wheel came off. I did run wide and bounce heavily over grass and a kerb two laps before which I think broke something. Then in the high speed corner the wheel came off. It was a big impact. I went to hospital after the race. I had some headaches and felt sick as well as neck, back and foot pain! My foot still hurts now it's very tender. I really should massage it to be honest.

I'm looking forward for the next event. I've progressed a lot though despite having little practice time!

The blog is on a much faster server. I've switched to VPS.net and they have impressed so far. Still got lots of things I want to install and configure but not much time!!

On top of that I've kind of developed something with a nice lady. Shes gone away for six weeks now so have to see how it goes when shes back but good times all round :)

How are my readers doing?

28Jun/130

Holiday for next year

A Da Vinci holiday

The Vitruvian Man (c. 1485) Accademia, Venice - One of Da Vinci's most famous works.

I've been thinking where to go on holiday next year. I want to keep it factual and just be in awe.. One of my heroes is Leonardo Da Vinci, just a genius in my eyes and I'd love to go to one of the Da Vinci museums in Rome or Florence.

Then there is Sweden where I'd like to spend a week or two. It's a country I've always wanted to learn more about and I'd love to tick it off my list :)

I think Italy might be winning me over simply because of the Da Vinci factor. If you don't know who he is. Please read about exactly who Leonardo da Vinci is.

As for Sweden I'd like to stay in Stockholm visit the city and the countryside if possible. I'd love to see the old town in Stockholm. Try some local food (something other then meatballs!) and I'd love to explore the very cultural heart of Sweden too.

I guess I'll visit Sweden after Italy. Just gotta begin the big save!! :)

Anyway have a good weekend all. I should be doing stuff today but I've done nothing... been so lazy. Have fun and stay safe ;)

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