The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.

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12:22pm on Monday, 4th November, 2013:

To Cornwall


I'm sitting in seat D04 on the 12:06 from London Paddington to Penzance, although whether I'll remain here for the whole journey remains to be seen. The seat is booked in my name, but also has a sign next to it reading "Priority Seats: Please offer these seats to disabled people". I think maybe I'll wait until there are no other seats free before I offer mine.

I'm actually not feeling very well myself. [Warning: skip this paragraph if you don't want to read a litany of icky symptoms]. I don't know whether it was the book fair or the games playtesting session that was the source, but I caught a cold. My colds are pretty bad, usually involving a streaming nose that leaves me with scabs where there used to be skin; such colds are responsible for the broken veins on the side of my nose that make me look as if I drink too much alcohol (whereas in fact I don't drink alcohol at all). This cold is a little different in that my nose didn't run as much but it came with a bad cough. It's irritating and tickling and involves the hoiking up of much chewy mucus. It's so bad that I'm in serious danger of regaining some muscle tone in my lower abdomen from coughing so often and so forcefully. My voice has been affected, too, so whenever I speak I don't know what it's going to come out like except that it won't sound like me.

It's therefore quite lucky for me that I'm away today and tomorrow, because otherwise I'd be croaking my way through two lectures. I'm not actually going all the way to Penzance, though, I'm changing at Truro for Falmouth (or Foulmouth, as I'm sure some people somewhere must call it). This is because I'm one of the two external academics participating in a validation event for the Computer Gamejust above s degrees at Falmouth University. What this means is that I look through their paperwork and assess whether or not they're up to national standards. Given how low national standards are (I was part of a team a few years ago that validated two universities' games degree schemes that were, to be honest, pretty dire), this is unlikely to a problem; my main purpose it to point out ways in which the degree scheme might be improved and to mention any contradictions I spot. As the scheme has an excellent pedigree, I don't expect I'll be having to shout at anyone, which is just as well given that I can barely speak.

Only another 4.5 hours on this train before I get off...

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Copyright © 2013 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).