It's been quite a while since a decent post and I think it's largely because a post-trip breakdown of my experiences in Guizhou has proved daunting enough to keep me from committing an hour or so working on it.
Nonetheless, a lot has still happened since then and time has become such a scarce resource I'd pay for it if I could. Doing work and earning keep via hourly pay rate jobs gives me loads of flexibility but it totally permeates itself into the fabric of my life so much that it no longer becomes clear what's work and what's not. And because there's freedom in flexibility, I tend to overload my days with stuff to do, resulting in late nights rushing out deadlines.
But this isn't a complaint - I love the lifestyle now. And as for the kind of work that's keeping me occupied, I wouldn't ask for anything else.
At the moment, I've got my hands full with a couple of interesting research projects, some paid (the less important ones) and some not (the more important ones). I'm helping a favourite sociology professor of mine with his foray into China's food regulatory regimes. I'm assisting my TWC professor with some business market literature reviews. I'd just completed a set of data analysis for a very friendly psychology professor, whose experiments revolved around the positive and negative memories of student participants over the course of the semester.
These are all paid work.
But the fun stuff really happens with my evolutionary psychology professor, who is trying to establish some psychologically-rigorous studies on gaming - the art of seduction - and the pick-up artist society. As such, Kokleong and I have been tasked to read up on as much gaming information and literature as possible, starting with The Game and then moving on to the PUA forums. The potential rewards? A chance at academic co-authorship even before hitting graduate school.
This is what studying should be about.
Chinhong has also thought of a great idea to establish an online psychology digest which features regular bite-sized articles on interesting psychological facts with the hopes of getting listed on http://www.researchblogging.org/.
All this stuff isn't paid, but this is where the real deal lies.
I should bust that China update soon.