Showing posts from September, 2006

Ode to my new hometown

May I walk you home tonight On this fine and lovely night tonight - We'll walk past the luscious houses, Through rolling lawns and lovely flowers - Our nice new town where the curtains are drawn Where hope is started and dreams can be borne. Let us share our insanity Go mad together in Community Boys on the corner looking for their supper Boys round the green looking for some slaughter - We used to chase dreams now we chase the dragon Mine is the semi with the Union Jack on. In our paradise lost we'll be finding our sanity In this paradise found we'll be losing our way - For a brave new day. May I slash my wrists tonight, On this fine Conservative night tonight - I was looking for a job so I came to town I easily adopt when the chips are down - I read the ad about the private schemes I liked the idea but now I'm not so Keyne. Courtesy of Paul Weller and The Style Council

My new thing

After the hullabaloo that Lulu made about the Martini vs. the "vodka martini", I decided I should try to pure up my cocktail taste and get used to the classic (gin) martini. The thing is, I hate gin martinis. I've tried, really, I have. But I don't like the gin/vermouth blend. It's just too much for me. I like the gin/vodka/vermouth fusion, but we've already established that the vodka pollutes the classic M. I'd resigned myself to softening the gin with the brightness of lime or other citrus, and perhaps the metallic fizz of tonic as a balance. And then I was shopping at M&S the other day and I had a brainstorm. Perhaps the problem with the gin martini was the flavor war between the gin and the vermouth...perhaps I needed another strong flavor to make peace. The answer was there in front of me....COCKTAIL ONIONS! Sure enough, the verve-y sweetness of the pickled pearl kicks that vermouth into overdrive...shows that gin who's the boss...adds a b

I am a Comma Whore

They called me a name at work today. American Comma Whore. Ouch. I use too many commas. I know I use too many commas. I like commas, plus I like to use commas to help approximate the cadence of my speech, and I am a fan of long-winded sentences that go on endlessly, with lots of descriptors to ensure you catch every nuance of my topic or story. You read me. You know whereof I speak. The English, they're not really fans of the comma. In fact, they hate the comma. They hate the comma almost as much as they love the "u". Since I write for a living, the spelling and the punctuation can be quite critical. For instance, they would not separate, "Since I write for a living," from the rest of the last sentence...they'd just run it on into "the spelling...." That just seems wrong to me. I've consulted my grammar books, and the comma is a legitimate separator of two sentences when joined by a conjunction, as I am doing in that sentence above (and

The King likes Sexual harassment Law and other lessons

It's been another busy week at school, hence the light posting for the last few days. These week-long sessions are a bit overwhelming. There is so much to know and so much to think about. And there is lots of stress and usually some awful deadline and it usually means a week of five hours of sleep a night. We had a finance exam on Friday, scheduled for the mid afternoon. I had about 20 people approach me about moving it to the session that happened at 9AM instead, and though I am not a morning person I started asking around and could not find a single person who thought this was a bad idea. So, being an efficient stream rep, I went with the majority and got it moved. Of course, after I did I found the 10 people who did NOT want it in the AM because they were planning to skip lectures to study. There was a lynching. Being one prone to excessive guilt I felt terrible, as this was the first time I'd not taken a vote on something that seemed so trivial...I mean, if you're not


The following list was created by my tutor, Ruth. I saw it posted in her office last week when I stopped by to review my first term and to discuss electives for next year. Ruth is a faithful reader of this blog, and I asked if I could share it with you. She has kindly agreed. Those who know me will realise that the sort of person who would write this is very much the sort of person who should be advising me. Thanks, Ruth. Things I wish I’d known when I was 30 Don’t avoid talking to people who are dying. Don’t avoid talking to the bereaved. Most people don’t want to see you fail. Everyone’s scared sometimes. Bad things happen, but you do get over them; or replace them with other bad things. Take comfort from the fact that most people don’t care enough to notice. Never be arrogant enough to assume that impressions don’t matter. They do. A lot. Never lose your temper in public. The customer’s always right, but he’s not always the right customer. Ditto the boss. If you can’t do anything

Another week of school

I am one day in to seven consecutive days of school. When it's done, I'll have two more weekends of classes, one weekend of revising, and three days of exams and then I'll be halfway through my MBA. I am feeling a lot of pressure today.

Lucky or accurate?

CANCER (June 22-July 22). Self-awareness is high, which will allow you to pinpoint your preferences. Personal development pays off in unforeseen ways. Tonight you could give an impressive performance. This is my horoscope for the day. I don't put a lot of stock in horoscopes, but I am a religious reader of them. I mean, just in case they are harbingers of my future, it can't hurt to be prepared, you know? But I am ultimately a bit of a skeptic and feel they're mostly just party tricks like balancing a spoon on your nose or opening beer bottles with your teeth. And then sometimes you live your day and you read your horoscope at night and you think OOO! That's a little spooky. Today is one of those days. I just spent the day (830 - 6) at school in an Assessment Centre. It was brutal. Make that BRUTAL. Here is a summary of the day. If any of this sounds easy or uncomplicated, let me assure you it was not. Plus it all just kept coming at you, a seemingly endless

How to enjoy a Thursday Night

After a long day at work, I recommend the following: Change clothes. I picked yoga pants and a glow-in-the-dark tshirt from here . Run to the gym. Work out your frustrations on the treadmill. Come home sweaty. Pound a glass of water while you make dinner. I chose a "Count-On-Us Ham and Mushroom Pizza" from M&S and a salad with cos lettuce, tomatoes, spring onions, and a basic mustard vinaigrette. Eat dinner. Drink another glass of water. Go in the kitchen and grab the Makers Mark. Ice the shaker. Three parts MM, one part plus a kiss of sweet vermouth, three dashes bitters. Cap the thing and shake it like a hurricane, preferably dancing about to Soul City.(If you've got my 40@40 it's on there.) Serve up with a cherry, or a strawberry if that's what you have. Sit down on the sofa and watch the new season of Extras whilst you sip your delicious nectar of gods.

The Wonders of Fark

I seem to have mistakenly accused our friend, Bubs, of being a Farker. I suppose that sounds dirty if you don't know about this . The smartest people on the internet are on Fark, or so says my friend Brad. I think he's onto something. So sorry, Bubs...but with your encyclopedic knowledge of ridiculous news stories from obscure sources, I just assumed. And if you weren't before, I'm thinking you might be now. Oh, and it was the tinfoil hat thing that made the connection.

The Essence of Evil, Part 2

My, my....such a little post causing such a ruckus! I can't defend myself. Everything you say is true. I used to be a triple-americano-with-room twice a day. I was on a first name basis with every barista at Uptown Espresso on Queen Anne . If I splurged on a cappuccino, one even made an "M" in the foam for me. Hell, I actually SAY barista, for god's sake. But I don't say "Ven-Tea" OR "Ven-tay"... I just call it "the big-un" to piss them off. I am well aware of the evil in my life. But frankly, it's sometimes just so much WORK to make coffee in the AM. I blame the tea culture. Kettles boil water almost instantly. With lightening fast PG Tips Pyramid Tea Bags , you can brew a strong cup in about 20 seconds and be merrily sipping away whilst you watch the morning chat shows talk about what the "world-famous Haircut One Hundred" is doing these days , or about some couple in York whose dog taught their cat to fetch. Yo

I am a sinner

I don't know what came over me. I don't know why I did it. I know better. I really do. I didn't even want to do it, it just kind of crept up on me. It started innocently enough...I told myself it was a one-off situation....I promised I would never do it again. But then the next day came, and I did. I have started drinking instant coffee. And I like it. I am so ashamed. And even worse...I've expanded into decaf now.
To CP So after a rather heavy post yesterday, I am going to lighten my mood with this one. I dedicate this to my dear CP.(We're the one in the pink.) xxoo

Ground Zero + 40 blocks

There is a blog effort to remember the victims of September 11, 2001 called Project 2,996. Their main website is inundated and seems to be down for the day, so instead I'm linking to Beth at Cup of Coffey , has links to other bloggers who are participating. Bloggers are taking time today to write a little bio and pay tribute to the people who paid with their lives when the planes downed the WTC, smashed the Pentagon, and hit a field in PA. My heart aches for their friends and loved ones, who have to live with this sadness the rest of their lives. I'm so sorry. I didn't get my act together to enroll, so I don't represent one of the 2,996. Instead, I'm going to tell you my story. I don't talk about this often...even if you ask me directly...and I'm unlikely to start anytime soon. But I think of it. All the time. It informs everything I do. It's one of the happy stories. I am lucky. I am charmed. I ramble, so this is long. You don't need to read


Bush Was Right My friend Brad sent me this as a response to the Meat Purveyors video, so I figure I'll post it in the spirit of bi-partisanship. It's deluded, but it's better than that moron Toby Keith. I mean, it's hard for them to compete, bless them. What with all "the gays" and "diversity" on this side of the aisle, everyone knows our side has all the talent. Consider... Liberals = Spielberg, Stewart and Colbert, Springsteen, Fountains of Wayne, They Might Be Giants, OK Go Conservatives = Tom Selleck, Kelsey Grammar, Drew Carey, Pat Boone (not to mention Britney, K-Fed, and Jessica Simpson) Must I go on?
Look On Your Face This is good music AND a good message from The Meat Purveyors.
Kim Lenz See, this ain't so bad!
S.C.O.T.S, This is what I'm talking about. I decided this Conan clip was best, because even a toned-down S.C.O.T.S visual (as opposed to a live show clip) is better than just sound. (I'm lifting my Makers Mark to all y'all as I type.) Oh. And have I mentioned that I think Rick Miller is the sexiest man in rock?

Brits don't get country music

I had a couple of friends over for a beer. Put the iPod on a mix of some of my favourite alt country and rockabilly basics. Here are a few of the artists that grace that mix: Hem Gillian Welch Neko Case Cigar Store Indians Caitlin Cary Kim Lenz and her Jaguars The Honeybees The Paladins Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys The Bad Livers The Meat Purveyors Damnations TX BR5-49 Hank Williams III They wanted to know what it was and when it would stop. Sigh. They just don't get it. But there's an American expat event tomorrow night in London at an alt-country bar, and if I can get out of work on time I'm going.

No good, very bad day

Everyone has one now and again. But as no-good-very-bad-days go, this one was one of the no-good-very-baddest of them all. I am under serious deadlines at work. And I'm working on most of them with the same guy. Who is, shall we say, not my favourite. And the thing that amazes me is that he can spend hours telling you what you must do to earn his trust and respect, yet he does not once stop to consider that he also has to earn yours. I cannot fathom being that boorish. How can one not even pause for a second to acknowledge one's culpability for the fact that no one enjoys working with you? You'd be proud of me...I kept my temper. (Okay, you can be a little disappointed, too, as my tempers make for better blogging.) I listened to him, and I continued to attempt to make my point even when he wasn't listening to me. When he asked me why I'd been repeating myself for 15 minutes I explained that it was simply because he'd yet to hear what I was saying. When I su


I was tagged a week ago by CP, but with way too much going on at work and too many things in my personal life to distract me, I have not had time to respond. This is a hard assignment. Since most of my fellow bloggers have already responded to this, I know you understand when I say that books aren't a hobby or a part of my life, they are an integral part of who I am. Narrowing the list of books I've read down to a few influences or opinions is like asking a parent to pick a favourite child. You mig ht get a joking reply, but the reality is way more complex. My opinions of books change with time, as well. I make a habit of rereading important books periodically, not necessarily for what the book has to say but as a way to assess my personal growth. For example, as a young adult I found the work of Milan Kundera to be profound, honest, and beautiful. I read The Book of Laughter and Forgetting when I was in high school, and moved on to The Joke, and The Unbearable Lightness