pozorvlak: (Default)
Thursday, December 31st, 2015 08:18 pm

Last year I made three New Year's Resolutions:

  1. Get better at dealing with money.
  2. Run a marathon.
  3. Make a first ascent in the Greater Ranges.

Number 2 was an obvious success: I finished the Edinburgh Marathon in 4:24:04, and raised nearly £900 for the Against Malaria Foundation. I'd been hoping to get a slightly faster time than that, but I lost several weeks of training to a chest infection near to the end of my training programme, so in the end I was very happy to finish under 4:30. The actual running was... mostly Type II fun, but also much less miserable than many of my training runs, even at mile 21 when I realised that literally everything below my navel hurt. Huge thanks to everyone who sponsored me!

Number 3 was an equally obvious failure. My climbing partner and I picked out an unclimbed mountain in Kyrgyzstan and got a lot of the logistics sorted, but then he moved house and started a new job a month before we were due to get on a plane to Bishkek. With only a few weeks to go and no plane tickets or insurance bought yet (and them both being much more expensive than we'd expected - we'd checked prices months earlier, but forgot how steeply costs rise as time goes on), we regretfully pulled the plug. We're planning to try again in 2016 - let's hope all the good lines don't get nabbed by Johnny-come-lately Guardian readers.

Number 1 was a partial success. I tried a number of suggestions from friends who appear to have their financial shit more together than me (not hard), but couldn't get any of them to stick. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the end of 2014; I don't want to use that as an excuse, but it does mean that some things that come easily to most people are genuinely difficult for me - and financial mismanagement is apparently very common among people with ADHD. The flip-side, though, is that I have a license to do crazy or unusual things if they help me be effective, because I have an actual medical condition.

I've now set up the following system:

  • my salary (minus taxes and pension contributions) is paid into Account 1;
  • a couple of days later, most of it is transferred by standing order into Account 2;
  • all bills are paid from Account 2 by direct debit, and Account 2 should maintain enough of a balance for them to always clear;
  • money left in Account 1 is available for spending on day-to-day things;
  • if I pay for something on a credit card, I pay it off from Account 1 (if small) or Account 2 (if big) as soon as possible;
  • Account 2 pays interest up to a certain ceiling; above that I'm going to transfer money out into a tax-efficient Account 3, which pays less interest but which doesn't have a ceiling.

I'll have to fine-tune the amount left in Account 1 with practice, but this system should ensure that bills get paid, I can easily see how much money I have left to spend for the month, and very little further thought or effort on my part is required.

While I was in there, I took the opportunity to set up a recurring donation to the Against Malaria Foundation for a few percent of my net salary - less than the 10% required to call yourself an Official Good Person by the Effective Altruism movement, but I figure I can work up to it.

It's too early to say whether the system will work out, but setting it up has already been a beneficial exercise - before, I had seven accounts with five different providers, most of them expired and paying almost zero interest (in one file, I found seven years' worth of letters saying "Your investment has expired and is now paying 0.1% gross interest, please let us know what you want us to do with it.") I now have only the three accounts described above, from two different providers, so it should be much easier to keep track of my overall financial position. Interest rates currently suck in general, but Accounts 2 and 3 at least pay a bit.

I've also started a new job that pays more, and [profile] wormwood_pearl's writing is starting to bring in some money. We're trying not to go mad and spend our newfound money several times over, but we're looking to start replacing some broken kit over the next few months rather than endlessly patching things up.

What else has happened to us?

I had a very unsuccessful winter climbing season last year; I was ill a lot from the stress of marathon training, and when I wasn't ill the weather was terrible. I had a couple of good sessions at the Glasgow ice-climbing wall, but only managed one actual route. Fortunately, it was the classic Taxus on Beinn an Dothaidh, which I'd been wanting to tick for a while. I also passed the half-way mark on the Munros on a beautiful crisp winter day in Glencoe.

One by one, my former research group's PhD students finished, passed their vivas, submitted their corrections, and went off, hopefully, to glittering academic careers or untold riches in Silicon Valley. Good luck to them all.

In June, I did the training for a Mountain Leadership award, the UK's introductory qualification for leading groups into the hills. Most of the others on the course were much fitter than me and more competent navigators, but the instructor said I did OK. To complete the award, I'll need to log some more Quality Mountain Days and do a week-long assessment.

In July, we went to Mat Brown's wedding in Norfolk, and caught up with some friends we hadn't seen IRL for far too long. Unlike last year, when it felt like we were going to a wedding almost every weekend, we only went to one wedding this year; I'm glad it was such a good one. Also, it was in a field with camping available, which really helped to keep our costs down.

In July, I started a strength-training cycle. I've spent years thinking that my physical peak was during my teens, when I was rowing competitively (albeit badly) and training 15-20 hours a week, so I was surprised to learn that I was able to lift much more now than I could then - 120kg squats versus around 90kg (not counting the 20kg of body weight I've gained since then). Over the next few weeks, I was able to gain a bit more strength, and by the end I could squat 130kg. I also remembered how much I enjoy weight training - so much less miserable than cardio.

In August, we played host to a few friends for the Edinburgh Fringe, and saw some great shows, of which my favourite was probably Jurassic Park.

In September, we went to Amsterdam with friends for a long weekend, saw priceless art and took a canal tour; then I got back, turned around within a day and went north for a long-awaited hiking trip to Knoydart with my grad-school room-mate. There are two ways to get to Knoydart: either you can take the West Highland Line right to the end at Mallaig, then take the ferry, or you can get off at Glenfinnan (best known for the viaduct used in the Harry Potter films) and walk North for three days, sleeping in unheated huts known as bothies. We did the latter, only it took us six days because we bagged all the Munros en route. I'm very glad we did so. The weather was cold but otherwise kind to us, the insects were evil biting horrors from Hell, and the starfields were amazing. It wasn't Kyrgyzstan, but it was the best fallback Europe had to offer.

In October, I started a new job at Red Hat, working on the OpenStack project, which is an open-source datacenter management system. It's a huge, intimidating codebase, and I'm taking longer than I'd like to find my feet, but I like my team and I'm slowly starting to get my head around it.

That's about it, and it's five minutes to the bells - Happy New Year, and all the best for 2016!

pozorvlak: (Default)
Saturday, September 7th, 2013 11:29 pm
Ah've drank
the specials
that wur in
the fridge

n thit
ye wur prably
haudin back
fer the party

They were great
that strang
that cauld
pozorvlak: (Default)
Saturday, February 11th, 2012 03:43 pm
It was often uncomfortable, often painful, particularly for the first month, but other days were pure joy, a revelling in the sensation of movement, of strength and wellbeing. My regular headaches stopped. For the first time ever, I got through winter without even a cold. I felt incredibly well, began to walk and hold myself differently. When friends asked "How are you?", instead of the normal Scottish "Oh, not too bad," I'd find myself saying "Extremely well!"

How obnoxious.

On other days training was pure slog, the body protesting and the will feeble. The mind could see little point in getting up before breakfast to run on a cold, dark morning, and none at all in continuing when it began to hurt. Take a break, why not have a breather, why not run for home now?

It is at times like that that the real work is done. It's easy to keep going when you feel strong and good. Anyone can do that. But at altitude it is going to feel horrible most of the time - and that's what you're really training for. So keep on running, through the pain and the reluctance. Do you really expect to get through this Expedition - this relationship, this book, this life for that matter - without some of the old blood, sweat and tears? No chance. That's part of the point of it all. So keep on running...

The real purpose of training is not so much hardening the body as toughening the will. Enthusiasm may get you started, bodily strength may keep you going for a long time, but only the will makes you persist when those have faded. And stubborn pride. Pride and the will, with its overtones of fascism and suppression, have long been suspect qualities - the latter so much so that I'd doubted its existence. But it does exist, I could feel it gathering and bunching inside me as the months passed. There were times when it alone got me up and running, or kept me from whinging and retreating off a Scottish route. The will is the secret motor that keeps driving when the heart and the mind have had enough.

[From Summit Fever.]
pozorvlak: (Default)
Monday, February 6th, 2012 10:17 pm

"Would you like some money towards another Glenmore Lodge course for Christmas?" said my Dad, some time in December. I thought about last year's course for about half a second and said "Yes please!". This time I signed up for the five-day winter lead climbing course, and had five fantastic days climbing: Wednesday in particular was one of the best days I've ever had in the mountains.

Below are some of the things I learned. Usual rules apply: I am not a qualified mountain guide, and these notes may contain errors. Use your own judgement.

Read more... )

Fiacaill Buttress, taken after we climbed Jacob's Right Edge on Wednesday.

More and larger photos here.

pozorvlak: (Default)
Tuesday, May 31st, 2011 11:30 am
[All opinions stated herein are my own: I do not speak for SGP or any other environmental organisation.]

The journalist George Monbiot (whose work I have long admired) has caused a lot of spluttering among my Green friends this morning with this article, in which he argues that the Green movement should throw its weight behind anti-pylon campaigns in Scotland and Wales. Some background here: the best sites for onshore windfarms tend to be in remote, hilly areas, but electricity tends to be consumed in lowland, densely populated areas. Therefore if we're going to build windfarms we also need to build power lines through the countryside, and these tend to provoke opposition. The same is true for, e.g., Orcadian tidal power.

First off, he's dead wrong that nobody in the Green movement is aware of this problem. The Scottish Green Party has been arguing in cautious favour of the controversial Beauly-Denny power line upgrade for years, as a simple search of their website would have made clear. The Twitter arguments between SGPers and the anti-pylon John Muir Trust liven up many a dull afternoon. Did you talk to anyone at SGP, Mr Monbiot?

Monbiot caused particular ire with the line "If we are not against pylons marching over stunning countryside, what are we for?" - well, we're for promoting sustainable energy and limiting climate change. But I think this line is an anomaly in an article that's mostly saying something different: I think what he's saying is "we should campaign for underground cabling rather than pylons, or we'll be outflanked by anti-pylon campaigners in green clothing and then we won't get windfarms and then we'll get even worse climate change". Tactics rather than objectives. And countryside is pretty, but that's a relatively minor point - one sentence out of the whole article.

I think he's wrong, and here's why:
  1. People who object to pylons also object to windfarms, so appeasing them with underground cabling won't work.
  2. I'm worried about the ecological impact of digging dirty great trenches through the Scottish and Welsh countryside.
  3. Underground cabling is a nightmare to maintain - have you read this?
  4. There isn't a square centimetre of Scotland that hasn't already been touched by human activity (or that of our domesticated animals). You can call it "wilderness", but you'd be kidding yourself. I'm certainly not in favour of concreting the whole thing over, but nor am I bothered about a few pylons - and note, incidentally, that the Beauly-Denny line will mean a 100km net reduction of pylons in the Highlands and a 7km reduction in the Cairngorm National Park.
[I'm assuming, incidentally, that my "loving the outdoors" credentials are sufficiently established.]
pozorvlak: (Default)
Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011 10:43 am
I spent last weekend wild camping at the foot of Creag Meagaidh, a mountain in the Scottish Highlands noted for its ice-climbing. We didn't manage to do any actual ice climbing, but we did at least do a few easy snow gullies and spent some quality time in the outdoors. Those of you who've never camped wild may be wondering about the mechanics of it, and in particular how you take a dump in the wilderness. Large or long-running camps would of course dig proper latrines, and in areas of great ecological sensitivity like the Cairngorm National Park one should pack out one's waste (in the very secure containers available from the ranger stations), but for short-lived camps in less-sensitive areas it's acceptable to practice "cat sanitation". This is pretty straightforward, but there are a few potential (though thankfully not literal) pitfalls.

Those of a sensitive disposition may wish to look away now )

But does your khazi have a view like that? I thought not.
pozorvlak: (Default)
Tuesday, February 1st, 2011 05:33 pm
Last week I went on a two-day Introduction to Winter Climbing course at the National Outdoor Training Centre at Glenmore Lodge, at the foot of the Cairngorms. I'd done a few winter routes before, but I wanted to fill in my knowledge of the basics: I had a few specific questions I wanted answered, but I was mostly worried about the unknown unknowns. There were three of us on the course: a geologist from Heriot-Watt called James, who had lots of stories about teaching sailing in Belize and drinking with government officials in Tajikistan; a nurse and former merchant sailor called Brian; and me. James had done a bit of rock climbing but not much winter mountaineering, and so he was given an instructor (called Al, who I'd met on a previous visit to the Lodge) to himself to go over movement on steep ground, ice-axe arrests and so on (but by the end of the course he'd seconded the grade III route Hidden Chimney - good effort!). Brian had soloed some winter routes up to grade III and seconded The Message (grade IV), but wasn't confident with the ropework; he and I were grouped together with an instructor called Bill, who took us out for two fantastic days' climbing in perfect conditions.

Day 1: walking in

The course was great fun, and I learned a lot; here, in no particular order, are some of the lessons I learned. )
pozorvlak: (Default)
Monday, January 24th, 2011 01:46 pm
0500 Dreams part briefly into wakefulness. Note that still cold, despite putting on all my jumpers last night.
0501 Notice that I am not in fact wearing any jumpers. Must have forgotten to put them on.
0502 Put on jumpers. Go back to sleep.
0600 Alarm goes off.
0602 Get out of sleeping bag, put on trousers and jacket. Roll up sleeping bag and camping mat, eat breakfast, brush teeth. Meanwhile Elsie brews coffee.
0630 Strike camp. Unable to see signs of snowmelt beneath where we'd slept. All hail the Airic.
0645 Depart car park. Drive past "No fires, no overnight parking, no camping" sign on our way out.
0700 Arrive in Coire Cas car park, already starting to fill up with skiers and climbers. Based on conditions, decide to change route to Milky Way (grade III, out of a possible XI). Text girlfriend to inform her of change of plans, so that our mangled corpses may be more easily located in the event of an accident. )

Edit: Reddit discussion thread.
pozorvlak: (Default)
Thursday, September 16th, 2010 09:45 am
The Pope,
Like a man from Bhop-
al, finds it tricky to cope:
can't smoke dope,
can't elope.
He must hope
will allow him to lope
to a place he can mope.

But nope!
That door won't ope.
Our unfortunate Pope
must instead climb a rope
that's been slickened with soap
(in a vile shade of taupe)
and not fall off (you 'ope).

[This page made with Zope.]

In case there were any doubt, I am perfectly aware that that's not how you pronounce "Calliope" :-)
pozorvlak: (Default)
Friday, July 16th, 2010 11:03 am
I've been living in Scotland for nearly six consecutive years now (around ten years in total), and in that time I've become increasingly open to the ideas that
  1. a viable independent Scotland is possible,
  2. in the event of Scotland becoming independent, I might well choose to become a Scottish citizen¹.
There's a kind of baseline respect for the life of the mind here that I've often found to be sadly absent in England, and Scotland resisted a lot of the worst excesses of the last Government - not charging University tuition fees, for instance, and not keeping DNA samples of suspects subsequently found to be innocent.

However, proponents of Scottish independence (this guy, for instance - recommended) need to stop doing the following three things if they want to convince me.

Assuming that Scotland will have ownership of the North Sea oilfields. First off, from an environmental standpoint we should be leaving the damn stuff in the ground anyway. Climate change is here and it's real and it's scary, and if we want to stand a decent chance of avoiding 2C of warming then we can't afford to exploit all our known reserves, much less start drilling new deep wells (and we all know how well that turned out in the Gulf of Mexico, right?). Secondly, England will fight, and fight hard, to keep ownership of the North Sea oilfields even if they let the rest of the country go. I invite you to read the CIA World Factbook's list of ongoing UK territorial disputes. Would they go as far as military action? Not likely, but not inconceivable IMHO. Thirdly, North Sea oil peaked in 1999, and more than 70% of the oil had been extracted in 2006, so even if we get the oil, we wouldn't get it for very long.

If you want to talk about the phenomenal possibilities for wind and tidal power in the Pentland Firth, however², then we could be in business.

Assuming that Scotland's entry to the EU would be unproblematic. Here, England wouldn't be the problem (they'd want cross-border trade, and EU membership would make that vastly easier), but you have to explain why every European country with a small secessionist region (which, to a first approximation, is all of them) wouldn't blackball our entry pour décourager les autres. Plus, timescales matter, and it takes a long time for most countries to join the EU. Even a short gap between secession and EU accession would hit us hard economically.

Showing Sean Connery. Yeah, yeah, he's a big SNP donor, and I liked Thunderball too. But if he likes Scotland so much he should fecking live here.

¹ I was born here, so I don't think I'd have any difficulty qualifying.
² Not to mention the fact that we already have substantial expertise and plant for heavy offshore engineering in place right now.
pozorvlak: (Default)
Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010 03:24 pm
There once stood a bridge on the Forth,
Connecting the South to the North.
The folk of Queensferry
Were ever so merry,
For they got it for less than it's worth.


[Note also that the new Forth Road Bridge, if constructed, will probably cost considerably more than it should: the usual figure is £4.3bn to build a new one, or £120 million to repair the existing one. Guess which seems likely to happen?]
pozorvlak: (Default)
Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008 01:03 am
I'm going to Skye at the weekend, to spend some time with my parents and to do a section of the Cuillin with a couple of friends. We're going to try and link a couple of the cruxes (the Inaccessible Pinnacle and the TD Gap) in a day - the full traverse is apparently better attempted as a two-day trip. My Dad offered to hire us a guide, which struck us as both generous and sensible. Said guide asked us to fill in a form detailing our levels of mountain experience, and I thought I'd share:

If you're still alive at the end, it was mountain experience )

It was quite a fun exercise, writing it all out like that, and (like all such exercises) it's helped me to see both how much I've done and how much further there is to go. I've been consciously trying to push my grade a bit this summer, hence the A'Chir traverse and Curved Ridge, both quite challenging scrambles. I really enjoyed the winter climb I did back in February (a colleague took Michael and I up Ledge Route on Ben Nevis - great conditions, and lots of fun), and would like to be more au fait with technical terrain, ropework and general mountaineering skillz so I can get the most out of the coming winter climbing season. Sadly, the thesis (or rather, my inability to get anywhere with the thesis) keeps getting in the way.

By the way, I have a question of terminology: what counts as "mountaineering" to you? Any activity in the hills? Climbing hills whose summits are greater than a certain height above sea level? Anything involving a rope? Anything involving crampons? The intersection of the above? I veer towards the "intersection of the above" definition myself, and hence don't count what I do as mountaineering: it's either hillwalking, or it's rock-climbing. Stuff like Curved Ridge (where we were roped together, and mostly climbing with hands and feet) might count, I suppose. And what about the title "mountaineer"? I certainly wouldn't describe myself as a mountaineer - at best, I'm a hillwalker with ambitions to better myself. Maybe when I've done a guideless Alpine four-thousander or two.

My Munro-count has gone up by one this weekend, after a trip to Beinn Fhionnlaidh and Sgor na h'Ulaidh on Sunday )

You can see our route here: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=2100666 . Total distance a bit over 22km, in just under 10 hours.

Returning briefly to the subject of the dreaded thesis, I added an index this evening, and managed to add four pages with a couple of hours' work (bringing me up to 108 pages). I think it's a worthwhile activity: it's given me another pass over the whole thing, so I have a better handle on what's there; it'll be easier to find definitions when I'm looking at a printout; it should help the examiners; it'll help me to identify gaps; and it'll make it easier for me to demonstrate to my supervisor that yes, I do deal with that issue :-)

1 A col (also called a saddle, bealach or pass) is the lowest point on the ridge between two mountains, or, from the valley-dweller's point of view, the highest point you need to travel over to get from one valley to another.
pozorvlak: (Default)
Sunday, March 9th, 2008 01:07 pm
Its hailing outside. The forecast for the hills this weekend was -13C after windchill, and gusting winds of up to 50mph - we've been out in much worse, but there was also the danger of blizzards, which would have been a problem. Plus Philipp's away, and Michael and Jo are busy this weekend, so the walk would have been me and someone else less experienced. I'm not going walking on my own in a blizzard, and while Bart, say, is a sensible guy with his head firmly screwed on and a few walks under his belt, I really didn't feel like taking him out in those conditions1. So I'm sat here at home, failing to work on my thesis. Bah. My last hillwalk was two weeks ago now, and I'm starting to get the been-in-the-city-too-long shivers. Rock climbing's fun, but doesn't quite hit the same spot, particularly when it's indoors.

Going to the Adventure Film Festival yesterday didn't help, either...

[livejournal.com profile] firefliesinjune: I haven't forgotten about my promise to take you to the Highlands, but let's wait for the weather to improve, eh? :-)

1 Maybe I should have left that choice up to him, I dunno.
pozorvlak: (pozorvlak)
Monday, November 12th, 2007 03:14 pm
[Joint work with [livejournal.com profile] wormwood_pearl]

Due to an administrative cock-up, the £15 billion earmarked for Crossrail has been diverted into the Scottish transportation budget. The result is the construction of a London-Glasgow shinkansen-style bullet train.

English announcer: On behalf of ScotProRailCorp Limited, we'd like to wish you a warm welcome to the Carling FA Premier London to Glarsgow high-speed expressway, departing London King's Cross at 1307, calling at London St Pancras at 1308 to give you a chance to change your mind, stopping at somewhere called... I think it says "Manchester"? Somewhere Northern, anyway - and arriving in Glarsgow Central at 1437. If you decide that it's all too grim and Northern for you, the next train back South leaves twenty minutes later at 1457. They use the same time zone as us up in Glarsgow - yes, I was surprised too! - so there's no need to re-set your watches. A range of sandwiches and some perfectly delightful little cakes are available from our on-train branch of Carluccio's in coach E.

Scots announcer: Awright, bawbags? This is the 1307 London tae Glesga Get-It-Right-Up-Ye-Bawbags Express. We'll be crossin the Scoattish border at 1420, at which point there wull be a short burst o pipin and a wee dram will be served tae wis all. Onybody no jinin in wi the singin o "Scots wha hae" will be taen ootside an gied a kickin. Yous can git yer Buckie, yer Bru and yer fish suppers fae the chip shoap in Coach D. Any c**t starts any'hin wi any o ma staff, and we'll chib ye and throw ye oot the windae at three hundred mile an ooer, so gonnae no dae that? Enjoy yer ride. Yer maw sure did last nicht!

Gaelic announcer: <For those of you who have the Gaelic, welcome to the Fairy King Iron Messenger From the South, leaving one big city in the Godless South at 1307 and arriving into another at 1437. The connection for the remaining twelve hours of your journey home will be departing fifteen minutes later. When you arrive home you will learn that while you've been off gallivanting down in London the girl you loved has married your worst enemy, your sister Mhairi has given her maidenhead to the local laird and then drowned herself in the well, little Murdo has taken sick and died from drinking the well water, and your mother has killed herself over the shame of having her eldest son down in London and going into pubs. Meanwhile, your cattle have made veterinary history by developing myxomatosis; and consequently the family farm has gone into receivership. We hope you have a pleasant journey.>
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Monday, May 15th, 2006 03:45 pm
I went to see STAG's production of Gogol's The Government Inspector on Thursday with Philipp and [livejournal.com profile] wormwood_pearl. It was great: the production was good, but the play's excellent, and you should go to see it if you ever get a chance. The plot is as follows: the corrupt officials of a small town in provincial Russia receive word that a government inspector, travelling incognito, will be arriving to inspect the town. Terrified, they latch onto the first outsider that arrives - a wastrel from St Petersburg of no importance whatsoever - and start treating him like royalty, with the now legendary hilarious consequences. The interesting thing about this translation was that the provincial characters all spoke in Scots, and the St. Petersburg characters spoke with London accents. It wasn't just accents - lots of the references had been changed, so the dialogue was an odd mix of square sausages and samovars. I'd seen it about ten years ago in London, and then (despite there being many Scots in the cast) the atmosphere was very much "Who's our equivalent of the people who live in the middle of nowhere in provincial Russia? I know, the Scots! Everything's dark and wet there, they talk with a funny accent and they eat square sausages, don't they?" When I heard STAG were performing it in Glasgow, I couldn't quite believe it. But the atmosphere was different here: I think we all identified more with the provincial/Scottish characters than with the London/Petersburg ones. I think I picked up on a lot more Scots humour than I had done last time, too, but that's just because I've been living here for a year.

On a marginally different note, I've started reading the epic of Gilgamesh, in Stephen Mitchell's translation. The poem's pretty interesting. And relatively short. I can't quite get my head around the priestesses of Ishtar, who apparently had sex with any man who asked, regardless of age, ugliness, or anything. Can that be true? Gilgamesh was a historical king, but that bit could be a wish-fulfilment fantasy added later. If they were real, they must have been astonishingly effective disease vectors. Actually, Neal Stephenson uses that as a plot-device in Snow Crash. Anyway, I'm not too impressed with the translation: somehow
As he listened, Enkidu's face went pale
with anger. "I will go to Uruk now,
to the palace of Gilgamesh the mighty king.
I will challenge him. I will shout to his face:
'I am the mightiest! I am the man
who can make the world tremble! I am supreme!' "
doesn't quite catch what I'm sure he actually said.

So, ten points to the first translation of Gilgamesh into Scots dialect :-)