Tom’s page

  • This is a blog post January 13, 2013 tom1

    With a twisted arm, my throat and feet sore from kicking and screaming, I write this blog post with the intention of describing to you the contents of my medicine box.
    Having been ill for about three weeks now with what may or may not be tonsillitis and/or glandular fever, this medicine box has been my source of respite which I have used and overused to hopefully aid my recovery but mainly just to dim the pain. It means a lot to me. The contents are as follows:

    – 12 penicillin tablets. These are to combat the possible bacterial infection of tonsillitis, but if it is the case I have the viral infection of glandular fever, there must be some quite confused and redundant antibiotics in my bloodstream.

    – 4 paracetamol tablets and 12 ibuprofen tablets. These are to pretend I’m not ill but just have something large stuffed down the back of my throat making my voice sound like I have something large stuffed down the back of my throat.

    – 2 remaining antihistamine ‘loratadine’ tablets for allergy relief. Pro tip: take one tablet 20 minutes before desired bedtime and you will find it pleasantly simple to drop off to sleep. Make sure you have purchased and ingested the tablets not specifically stating ‘non-drowsy’ or you will be laying in frustrated non-sleep, but you will be pleasantly hay-fever-free.

    – 8 sachets of ‘Lemsip Max’ cold and flu relief. Blackcurrant flavour. A  healthy and not at all unpleasant substitution for hot Ribena. Just don’t drink the bit at the botton because it is bitter and horrible and probably contains all the healthy stuff.

    – Somewhere between 100 and 150 tablets of Morrison’s multivitamins and iron tablets. Overall I am quite pleased with this purchase, because it really wasn’t very expensive and I won’t have to buy any more multivitamins in the foreseeable future. Although on the side it says it only contains 40% of my Recommended Daily Allowance of Vitamin B12 and that is just unacceptable.

    -Somewhere between 30 and 90 tablets of ‘Rosehips vitamin C’. These tablets are significantly larger than the others, and on the side it reveals that each tablet contains 1250% of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C. Taking 3 a day as per the instructions is giving you 3750% of your daily allowance of the Vitamin and I am not sure I comfortable with this. Then again, scurvy is more or less out of the question and this may have eventually been a problem for me because I live next to a lake.

    – Hand sanitiser, unused. I am not sure why I keep it in my medicine box as I have a sink, and the shape and size of the sanitiser are almost identical to my capsule of breath spray and there is definitely a foreseeable issue there.

    – 39 ‘washproof’ plasters that fall off shortly after application. Their use has now been limited to ‘comical sellotape’.

    – 1 pack of cheap throat lozenges. Used once. They are disgusting.

    – 42 ‘Pro Plus’ caffeine tablets. Have not made me feel more awake, but certainly prevent sleep. Possible application in mild torture.

    – Small bottle of liquid grapefruit seed extract. This is to be squeezed into your glass of juice every meal time. You have to sacrifice the flavour and the enjoyment of the glass of juice but apparently it makes you better. Although if just eating grapefruit seeds was an alternative I would choose the alternative.


    And that concludes the contents of my medicine box.

    All the best,

    Tom x

  • Settling in at York University October 22, 2012 tom1

    A week after the departure of my brother Joe to Durham University, it was time for my own journey – my life as a university student was about to begin.

    With my parents, my friend Tom (how very confusing), his mother and all our material possessions stuffed into a minibus, we drove the hour-and-a-half drive up to the University of York Overflow Car Park C where Tom and I  would find our new homes. Avoiding the enthusiastic mascot of James College, a comically large black swan, we dived inside the dining hall to grab our keys, our catering cards, a free mug or glass and a T-shirt for one of the events in the week to come. We then left the hall to search for our rooms.

    Now, if you are on your way to my study room, your walk will take you past the other James blocks and you might be fooled into thinking that I would be living in one of these – sadly not. The block I live in is known to all as the ‘Prison Block‘. Even to those who call it home.

    In the excitement of moving in to my room, I did not remember to take a picture of it before I had sorted out all of my stuff, but here is a photo of the interior of a prison cell which is surprisingly similar. Although this cell has its own toilet and unfortunately I do not have one of those. (If the lights are on it almost looks habitable – see this photo and this one. Also the view is quite nice.)

    Contrary to the stories I hear about prison inmates, my 13 kitchen mates are wonderful, kind and friendly people, and I get on well with them all. This admiration does not extent to our neighbouring kitchen, however, whose members succeeded in running away with our microwave and almost succeeded in their attempts to steal our kettle and also our fridge.

    My first week has been full of activity; we had a ‘School Disco‘ on the Sunday night which was so intense I had to stay in on the Monday night (whoops) and miss out on the bar crawl (which ended up with me looking after an ill member of our kitchen who took the pre-drinking a bit too far), Tuesday night was ‘Smurf Night‘ (a bar crawl with a twist – we all looked like we’d had an accident with face paint) where I, with some friends, decided it would be hilarious to slide down Clifford’s tower in the mud. White jeans were not a good choice. Wednesday night was our ‘Monte Carlo‘ (a bar crawl with another twist – we wore suits), and Thursday and Friday were very similar with an 80’s/90’s theme and a UV night.

    So, to conclude this first post, I’ll say I’m enjoying York University a lot, and add some of the things I have yet to get used to:

    • Unisex bathroom facilities
    • Waking up at 6 a.m. to the sound of York’s avian population (who clearly have a lot to say and enjoy doing it very loudly)
    • Introducing myself, saying I’m from James College, hearing them say “Oh, James College is lovely! Apart from that one block” and being from that one block
    • Kitchen mates pre-drinking themselves into oblivion and whatever is beyond that
    • Being one of 20 boys studying Psychology on a course of 170 students
    • The colossal prices of AA and AAA batteries (woah.)
    • My mysteriously disappearing food supplies after transferring them to the kitchen fridge


    Over and out,


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