Wednesday, August 31, 2005

*gently snuffle-snorts* I am reminded to write a reminder of what I've been up to, by perception's recent self-reminder. How..... brain-dead.

Here's the list:

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I must write this down: today I got my watch battery replaced. Now we'll see how long it lasts.

And to think I woke up this morning and wondered how to spend the day. Gosh!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

I really, really hope this one (we all know which one) works out. *crosses fingers and all ten toes* It must it must it must.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Singapore2025. Link from

Sunday, August 21, 2005

This blog post is an attempt to reduce/understand mood swings and instead patiently wait, as W advises.

Bad things about transition period:
  1. You can't fall in love, because you don't know how the next day, or the day after, or the week after, will change you. Love changes everything, yes indeed, but it's a bit too much to ask someone to love me when I appear to be bordering on possible schizophrenia - will I be a customer service person, or a research assistant, or a regulator/paperwork pusher, or a brain-dead temp, or a budding masters student (?). I can't love back the way I would want to do it too; I'd like to do it properly.
  2. No money. No money no money no money. Enuff said.
  3. I end up going through a lot of books very fast.
  4. Scowls from parents who are perturbed that their daughter's 24k education is apparently not buying her a good job. Lalala. And concomitant issues.
  5. Friends who have jobs suddenly look truly professional and just that little bit scary. Yes I'm being silly.
  6. I get bugged when jobs I thought were sure things turn out to be impossible because of funding cuts at the company. This creates megalomaniac tendencies of wanting to rule the world just so I can give myself a job. I naturally do -not- have megalomaniac tendencies, so this then gives me indigestion. So on and so forth. So blech, I tell you. =p

Good things about transition period:

  1. I run through books so fast that I end up reading the ones I should have read ages and ages ago, by default. My mind improves, whenever it's otherwise not worrying over my unemployed status.
  2. I learn more about impossibilities and boundaries and grow just that little bit wiser.
  3. I have enough time to make friends, real friends, and to catch up with old ones here and there. =)
  4. I know the value of things better, so that I enjoy more what I have (except for the spasms of guilt that occur now and then, heh. and are ruthlessly soothed away by the ppl currently paying for my living expenses. or guilt-tripped further by said same ppl. ah so I'm not the only one who's a little schizo here. But the guilt-tripping has been forestalled by some other ppl now, so that's good.).

And that ends my 4 am giggly post for the week. I shall persevere!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Met Jnet yesterday, we had a nice time. But the chilli noodles at Thai Express were too hot. I have grown intolerant to too much chilli.

In other news, I found my way to aiyah(nospace)whatever dot com in high hopes of meeting people who would write as charmingly as their site name suggested, only to realize, same old, same old. Sigh. One can never escape as much as one wants, despite whatever's wishful thinking to the contrary.

Singapore Sling on Wednesday. While no one agrees what the "original version" currently served in Raffles Hotel truly contains, I google the ingredients list and come up with a whole lot of liqueur. That's all I needed to know...... it went down real easy though.

Well today I also struck up a conversation with someone who bore an uncanny resemblance to my palm tree in both looks and manner. Unfortunately it was for work purposes and no other, since there was a rather classy ring on his left hand's fourth finger. Well well. Eye candy is abundant when one gives up all hope; you simply meet, smile, and chat in a much faster time frame. Pick them, meet them, drop them, don't hope for anything more. It's so restful, as Jnet said. =)

My Jedi master relationship to my apprentice has been terminated.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

'I have nothing but the intangibility of love. And it is all I have to offer you.'

Monday, August 15, 2005

Lime juice with lurid pink jelly. *bemused* Only in Singapore.

(Charlie's Peranakan Cuisine, opposite the Holy Family Church in Katong.)

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Something my 2nd Aunt said made me very happy today, because she was truly sincere about it. =) *thoughtful*

I will persevere.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Another piece of my work during eetle freshie times. This was the first time I'd read a series of journal papers on a similar topic.... it got me hooked on the whole genre of scientific paper-reading.

The information and analysis is terribly outdated by now, but this is a one-page summary of about 20 pages of words. I was quite proud of it then.

BL1102 Assignment group A: Structure of ribosome, Nature, 400, 811, 833, 841 (1999).

Every living cell, even the now-fossilized archaebacteria from three billion years ago, has ribosomes as their centres of protein synthesis. Proteins are essential to life, some of their functions being enzymatic, structural, and in immunodefense. Thus it is relevant to find out how ribosomes translate mRNA into proteins. Since biological structure usually correlates to function, the high-resolution elucidation of the simplest (= bacterial) ribosome structure – Thermus thermophilus for 30S subunit and Haloarcula marismortui for 50S subunit – by X-ray crystallography signifies the beginning of full knowledge of the mRNA-binding and -translation processes in ribosomes.

In their 5.5 A resolution electron-density map of the small 30S ribosomal subunit, Clemons et al. have firmly identified all the seven proteins of known structure and tentatively identified those with unknown structure, using well-defined a-helices and double-stranded rRNA regions in their map as well as previous biochemical and neutron-scattering data. However, their placement of (unknown) protein S20 is still in doubt as it is backed up by the predicted secondary structure of S20, while contradicted by the same neutron-scattering data they use to place the other proteins. (pp. 837)

Ban et al.'s 5 A resolution electron-density map of the large 50S ribosomal subunit similarly determines its structure, though their crystals are imperfect in the sense that the electron density of proteins L7, L11 and L12 (of known position) do not appear in their map (pp. 845). Nonetheless, based on their model, they have suggested a mechanism for the binding of elongation factors EF-G and EF-Tu to the subunit, and thus partially explained the 50S subunit’s peptidyltransferase activity.

Both teams have attained a resolution of 3 A for some sections of their crystals, and they suggest that an atomic-size model of the bacterial ribosome is within reach in the near future. This would provide an accurate foundation for later study of ribosomal conformation changes during protein synthesis.


* A = armstrong, 10^(-10) metres. I couldn't get the symbol out here on Blogger.

Monday, August 08, 2005


A prime example of incoherence when i was a eetle freshie. Stored here in case I lose the paper.


Module Code CM1111 Basic Inorganic Chemistry. Taken in the year 2001.

The Use of Lithium Carbonate as Prophylactic Treatment of Bipolar Illness

Bipolar illness, also known as manic depressive disease, is a psychiatric disorder where the patient has distinct periods of both mania and depression, which may or may not be interspersed with periods of normality. Mania is characterized in a general way by a distinct period of elation or irritability, over-activity, increased talkativeness, inflated self-esteem and decreased need for sleep [1]. Depression is characterized generally by at least two weeks of the following: apathy to usual activities, lethargy, appetite, weight change. [2]

Since 1949, lithium has been used in psychiatry as a long-term mood stabilizer, in the form of Li2CO3 orally-administered tablets. The carbonate ion is easily removed from the body via the red blood cells, blood plasma and the lungs, using the same biochemical pathway as CO2.

Li+ enters cells through Na+ channels and other channels, but is removed less efficiently than Na+ by the Na+-K+ transport system [1]. Thus it accumulates within cells, where it affects the second messenger chemicals inositol-1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) and Ca2+ as shown below.

IP3 is a molecule that when bound to Ca2+ transmembrane protein channels in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), allows Ca2+ from ER reservoirs to diffuse into the cell cytosol. The increase in cytosolic [Ca2+] indirectly triggers glucose liberation through glycogenolysis, and muscle contraction, amongst other effects. To stop the action of IP3 when, for example, enough glucose has been liberated, IP3 is dephosphorylated. But in the future when IP3 is needed again, it has to be regenerated, and Li+ inhibits the action of one enzyme (inositol-1-phosphate phosphatase) involved in the regenerative inositol phosphate cycle [3]. Thus when there is abnormally high cytosolic [Ca2+] leading to hyperactivity in manic episodes for bipolar patients, the production of IP3 needs to be blocked, which is what Li+ does.

A possible mechanism for enzyme inhibition by Li+ is the binding of Li+ to the free enzyme and/or the enzyme-substrate complex, perhaps at the active site itself, and changing the shape of the site due to its high polarising power, thus reducing the enzyme’s catalytic activity.

One drawback of lithium is that it is not as good at preventing depressive episodes as manic ones. However, the treatment alternatives – carbamazepine and valproate – also have this disadvantage. Problems also arise when lithium is used in combination with antidepressant drugs; the final decision lies with the physician.

The majority of patients on lithium treatment experience at least one side effect, common ones being high 24-hour urine volume, excessive thirst, fine tremor of the hand, and a 10-pound weight gain [1]. However, there are apparently no long-term effects i.e. kidney damage.

There is no definitive study on lithium withdrawal thus far, but it has been observed that when lithium treatment was discontinued abruptly, the patients relapsed and tended to be completely resistant to further resumed lithium treatments. It has been suggested that doctors wean the patient gradually off lithium instead.

Lithium's benefits outweigh its disadvantages at present, and it is still acceptable in preventive treatment of manic or depressive episodes in bipolar illness.

1. Checkley, S. (ed.) (1998) The management of depression. Blackwell Science, Oxford.
2. Montgomery, S. and Rouillon, F. (eds.) (1992) Long-term treatment of depression. Wiley, Chichester.
3. Voet, D. and Voet, J.G. (1995) Biochemistry, 2nd ed. Wiley, New York.

Sunday, August 07, 2005


ISPCAN = International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.

Together with the Debate Association (Singapore), the 6th ISPCAN Asian Regional Conference will be featuring a Youth Debate.

Date: 16 November 2005 (Wednesday)
Venue: Suntec International Convention & Exhibition Centre, Singapore
Time: 7pm (Pre-debate refreshment will be served at 6.30pm)

Motion: This house believes that caning children makes them better adults.

The Youth Debate is open to all and admission is free. However, as seats are limited, allocation will be on a first come first served basis.


Monday, August 01, 2005

There are so many things I could say, but I don't know where to begin nor whether there will be an ending.

So I won't say it here, yet.

(mass oil spill incoherent junk ocean the wide winds there's so much light! :)

Inexplicably happy, though.

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