Friday, 11 January 2008

Free the Rice!

Sorry, been feeling sleepy of late. Clearly the lengthy time-off I took has left me unprepared for the world of work - or, more specifically, the early wake-up time. I consider myself quite a morning person, but there are limits. Once I have a cup of tea inside me, though, I'm bright n' breezy.

Thought I'd share a couple of things today, in lieu of anything particularly bookish to report (though am immersed in The Mitfords: Letters Between Six Sisters and may not emerge for some time)

1) Handed in my Masters Application for English Literature 1900-Present! Yes, back here I annouced my intentions (sounds like I'm an Austen hero requesting a lady's hand in marriage) and, but a short 2.5 months later, I handed the forms in. Nine days before the deadline, mind, which in my book is organised. Should find out whether or not I've got a place in about two month's time.

Not in the sense of freeing injustly imprisoned rice (though that is also a worthy cause) or even the United States Secretary of State. This website, which can speedily become addictive, combines both a love of language and charitable giving. It's basically a game of synonyms - a word is given, you choose between four possible definitions/synonyms/vaguely-related-words-sometimes - ever
y time you click, the companies which advertise on the site will give rice to United Nations World Food Programme. I don't know the ins and outs of this organisation, but it certainly seems more + than - . And the worst that can happen is that I procrastinate for a few minutes.
Go try. The words get harder as you get more correct (and easier if you get them wrong) with a running 'vocab level'. This goes up to 50, but I haven't got higher than 45... very addictive game. But with the added bonus of absolutely no guilt.


  1. Is this an M Litt or an M Phil? Either way I'm sure you will be accepted -- they would be crazy to turn you down! I'm off to try free the rice now.

  2. Thanks Harriet! It's actually an MSt, Master of Studies. Goodness knows why it's called that. One year, anyway.

  3. 'Hero' I think!

  4. I've so far managed 42 in - and have pondered, since I read your entry, whether you had to look up Condeleeza Rice to see what her job was? As you can see, I'm none too confident on how her first name is spelled.

  5. Yes and Yes to the last two comments!

    Will change heroine to hero...

  6. Played freerice one afternoon before Christmas until I reached 50, said DP smugly!

    I hope your application is succesful, as someone who has been an academic since the mid-1980's I know who rewarding it is (and tough too).

    The flute playing Professor

  7. I also know HOW rewarding it is! I am about to do some proof-reading of a paper, so the silly mistake in the previous post bodes ill I fear.

    Dark Puss, the Professor's incompetent assistant.


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