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You say goodbye?

And I say hello!

I've been having a bit of a friends-list tidy, with the intention of removing everyone who either no longer posts anything, or who also posts it to Dreamwidth.

Anyone still left who I've removed in error please let me know.
Pen-y-ghent

Time for migration

Livejournal's new Terms of Service (which I've had to agree to in order to read about them and post this) are not to my taste. I've been here a long time, and have quite an emotional attachment to it, being a permanent member for many years, but from now on I'll be posting on Dreamwidth instead.

For the meantime I think this LJ will stay open, although I'm also copying the old content over there. I've not yet decided whether to crosspost between the two yet. I might be back some time later, but I'm not sure.

If you're over there and I haven't found you yet do drop by and say hello or add me. I'll be gradually removing friends over here as I confirm they're over there (if that makes sense) - if I've already removed you from my LJ friends but your main account is still your LJ one then let me know and I'll re-add. I'll still be reading here to keep in touch.

So long, and thanks for all the fish.

Pen-y-ghent

Thoughts on abortion on International Women's Day

Larissa Nolan writes in the Irish Times about being a non-religious pro-life supporter in the current climate, and how she finds the rhetoric of some of the pro-choice supporters to be off-putting: The Repeal the Eighth march will backfire

However I find myself utterly baffled, because nearly everything she describes herself as wanting is totally compatible with a pro-choice point of view, and with the repeal of the 8th amendment in Ireland (and the similar laws in Northern Ireland).

"I do not judge anyone who has ever come to the decision that an abortion is the best choice for them at a given time. That is their own business, borne out of their own individual circumstance."

She thinks abortion should be

"a viable last-resort option in a desperate situation"

And details some of those situations:

"women suffering the grief of carrying a baby with a fatal foetal abnormality should not have to travel to end the ordeal."
"if that mother has six other children at home to look after, surely the only right answer is to prioritise her life in the case of an emergency"

But most shocking for me was:

"I understand that there are woman out there who, deep inside, actually do want to go ahead with the pregnancy, despite the emotional, physical and financial struggle of single parenthood – and despite the shame and the social stigma. [...] It is harmful for women not to allow them this."

No-one I know who is pro-choice considers that abortion should be forced upon anyone. What we should be doing is making sure that all women who become pregnant are properly supported in their choice as to what to do next. And that includes making it easier in terms of support for those who want to keep their children in difficult circumstance.

Finally what could be more pro-choice than this:

"It is grossly irresponsible to push your own beliefs and agenda, whatever they may be, on anyone who finds themselves in a crisis pregnancy situation. It is a decision only they can make, as the only ones who have to live with it. It is not you and your political ideology that could be left with a lifetime of psychological damage."

I think overall she makes a very strong case for repealing the 8th amendment.

Pen-y-ghent

Work, and reviews

So, in October 2015 it was suddenly announced that there was to be a review of IT in the Engineering Department. This was met with some hostility, since we had in fact only fairly recently been reviewed by the previous Head of Department, but still, it went ahead, there were lots of surveys and interviews, and although we'd originally been told it would be ready around July it was finally published in October 2016.

The conclusion of the IT Review was that there was a perceived need for some Organisational Change, and they announced in late October that they had employed a Change Manager to produce a business case for the changes, and this would go to the Academic Committee (in a fortnight!) to decide. Obviously this was too short a timescale, and he asked the committee for more time, intending to produce a business case by January. Then in early December we had an email setting out a timetable:

Mid March - briefing paper summarising changes, and open meeting with staff
March 2017 onwards - formal consultation
Mid May onwards - implementation
Mid July onwards - Concluding the change period, and next stages.

So we've kind of been ticking over in complete limbo since then, although one colleague has quit and another is actively applying for jobs. We suddenly got some more rather unexpected news today though - the Change Manager has quit. He's working out his 2 weeks notice, and will hand over the business case next week. You couldn't make it up. I'm trying not to even speculate what the hell this means for us in practice.
pink hair 2006

Things

A short list of things

  • My mum's gall bladder is safely removed, hopefully good riddance
  • My phone has died again, and is on its way to Giffgaff to hopefully be fixed under warranty
  • I have a startlingly old-fashioned dumb-phone to keep me in calls and texts in the meantime - usual number
  • Am considering buying a new phone in the New Year anyway
  • I've booked the eye test Specsavers have been reminding me about since March - now only £7.50 instead of a tenner :)
  • I dyed my hair purple, coincidentally the same shade as 10 years ago, in just the week people are comparing old and new photos - it doesn't look quite as bright as it did on bleached hair of course
  • The Christmas tree is up and we have some lights in the garden too at Matthew's request, and a decorated office door at work
  • I have printed out the Christmas card list, ready to start writing cards, late as usual
  • I *think* I just did the last bit of present shopping, I gave in and did it online, couldn't face the shops

hair tree

Any phone recommendations welcomed - current phone is a Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, and I like the size and the general look and feel and so on. I'd like something with a little bit more power (mostly for Pokemon Go). Looking to spend around £200 again sim-free, or find something on contract for around £15 a month since that's roughly what the Samsung has worked out as over 24 months (including a fiver a month on 500MB of data, and the occasional top-up for calls and texts).

And if you'd like a Christmas card and are not on my usual list then drop me a line with your address!