31 mars 2005

When did I learn?

Rory in Corea has been wondering about children wanting to follow in their parents' footsteps, career-wise. Apparently, Corea has bucketloads of doctors, and all those doctors' children want to be doctors too.

I was going to simply post a comment, and then realised it was going to be one of those very long and very boring ones. So I decided to abstain and post on my own blog, because I am completely allowed to be verbose and boring here.
Well, let me tell you what, when I was wee, I wanted to be when I grew older (it's a complicated structure, that, I had to think so it would be understandable. Is it?) (also, I can't believe I'm about to spill this to complete strangers...).

Let me set the stage for the first ambition that I recall. In Algeria, the loo. Yes, I can't remember my bedroom from when I lived there, but I do remember the toilets. Any question?
The actual toilet thingy was facing the door, above which in the corner on the left was a shelf, with spare bog rolls, cleaning product and stuff.
The cleaning product. Trigger of my first ambition (if such it might be called...). Actually, it's even more pathetic, it's the woman drawn upon the bottle that did it for me. I was always - and I mean always - looking up at her like she was some kind of fairy or role-model or something.
I sooooo wanted the same hairdo.
So I set my heart upon being a hairdresser. Because then I would have no trouble resembling her.
Needless to say I'm not a hairdresser. Actually, it's quite laughable to think that I ever considered that line of business, given the obvious and rather painful lack of skills that I display in the capillary area. Most of the time I look like an unshaven armpit. Quite frightful really.

No, I'm not a haidresser because I've always been unstable, so after a while, I changed course. I learned to type (qsdf jklm (French keybord obviously) over and over, and I can't do it now) and smoke at the same time (pretend, of course, because I'm trash, but my parents never were) because that was my idea of a secretary and it felt so glamourous. I just couldn't wait to answer the phone going "blabla bonjour - let me put you through". And that passed too.

It passed when I had my first brush with police/detective fiction. I've been trying to find the English version of this (because apparently it was translated) to no avail. The guy's name was Larry J Bash, he drove a Studebaker and was a trainee PI. I was in love with him everytime I read one of the books in the series. Although he was a conceited little shit most of the time, in an endearing kind of way.
Plus I wasn't as passionately in love with him as I was with Marc et Thierry; they were the real thing.
After that, it was FBI FBI FBI. Because the way we pronounce CIA (cé-ee-ah) in French does not make it sound half as nice as FBI (eff-bee-aye). I really really wanted to be an FBI agent, or, if that failed (and I mean really failed, as in if there was not a chance in hell, which was not something I envisaged at all, I thought it would be a piece of cake, get married to an American, knock on Quantico's door, and in I was...) I'd become a police officer.

And then I realised that maybe that would be taking silly chances with the probability of me living to the ripe old age of 35, and decided that maybe the best course of action would be to be an actress. Well, duh. You get to be anything you want or ever wanted to be, you earn shitloads of money for that, and lots and lots of people take care of your every whim and fancy. I had it sussed!

I ended up being a translator.

Rory, it's no wonder children have no imagination or ambition anymore. They learned from our mistakes.

30 mars 2005

Now I need culture

I thought I'd wash the sin of last post off with a bit of sound culture.

Peter Carey, I love you. I'm reading "My life as a fake", and you're a genius. "True history of the Kelly gang" was amazing writing stylistically and story-wise, and you've done it again. I'm saving to buy your collected works.

Robbie Coltrane, I love you too. Have loved you since Cracker. That Fitz character... I was jealous of Penhaligon. Happy birthday (thanks IMDB, I'm not an actual stalker).

Ooh look, Australia and Scotland neatly come together. Sweet.

You have GOT to be kidding me

The most ludicrous scene happened in front of my very eyes - well, via TV - yesterday. Think a bunch of very reasonable-looking people (some might even go so far as to say intelligent-looking). Think laboratory. Think research. Think vivisection. No, stop. Think sex.
Well, it just looks like some scientists have gone and done it. They found THE research area. They're watching mice have sex. And commenting on it in real time. There's no way to describe it without going graphic (as graphic as I can be on mice, and it's on a par with my knowledge of goldfish physiology). On go the mice, and out comes the scientists' voice over: "Pénétration. Stimulation. Ejaculation" (I believe there's no need to translate here).
I kid you not. I'm sure they've triggered many a vocation in a few gullible teenagers' minds.
This was a pseudo investigative journalism programme on the shittiest, most outrageously brain-killing network in France, TF1*. They were actually interspersing** their report (on sex and how it's become so pervasive) with cheap clips from porn movies***. That's how far they're ready to go in the name of journalistic integrity.
I'm so impressed.

* I just happened to be watching it. For investigative reasons of my own.
** Said I would use complicated words. There you go.
*** Not showing anything, you understand, but I'd wager my wages that they were - shoddy camera work, ridiculously bad acting and slutty looks, what else could it be?

28 mars 2005

A myth crumbled

You're about to get some precious insight as to the origins of my insanity.

Battle of the Planets.

Yup, the anime series - same period as Goldorak, Captain Future and Captain Harlock, waaaay before the crappy and/or over-violent ones they're showing these days, and strangely a lot less famous in France (oh, and I hope you appreciate the research here, because it did take a bit of time to find links in all three concerned languages).

Anyway. Battle of the planets.
There were 5 of them: the girl, the chubby one, the little kid, and... drum roll, names in French: Marc et Thierry.
I was 6 or something and maaaaadly in love. With both of them. Cartoon characters, what else is there to say? Once my homework was done, I would rush to the TV, and nobody could have dislodged me. There was no point trying to talk to me for 15 minutes either. I was a goner. It was Marc et Thierry this, Marc et Thierry that.
It lasted a year or something, and then I moved on to Elvis Presley and Clint Eastwood. My legendary good taste in men was born.
But I always had a soft spot for those two unreal characters. And it wasn't always easy, because no one remembered Battle of the Planets. Everybody knew Goldorak, everybody knew Capitaine Flam, but 7-Zark-7 or the Phoenix never rang a bell in anyone. So there was no point in me talking about my crush to anyone as nobody would have nodded knowingly and gone "oh yeah, me too" in a conspiratorial tone because they understood the crush;
and I carried my burden alone.

And then my brother got me the DVD set. And last night, I was with some friends, and I had the urge to share. We watched. And boy did we laugh. There's no action, the voice-over is ridiculously elaborate for children (which is good, I guess, as it builds their vocabulary, but there's got to be a limit...), and I was waiting with bated breath to see THE boys. Oh I saw. Oh dear. How. Is it. Possible. To have lived in a LIE for so long. I've been carrying a torch for a quarter of a century (there, I've said it) for two ugly boys who aren't even real.
They'd need to be wearing their helmets all the time (because they are kind of cute in those), and that feels wrong, doesn't it? A bit like saying "HER?? Err, with a brownpaper bag over her head, yeah, maybe. Otherwise, it's a no-no".

26 mars 2005

Du sang et des larmes

At long last*, the French authorities have launched a campaign that shows blood and possibly brain matter (I haven't investigated that closely, to be honest) to "promote" the seatbelt at the back of the car.
Believe me, I'm not being patronising, I hate wearing a seat belt because it makes me feel trapped (and no, I'm not claustrophobic) and presses on my breasts, which is extremely uncomfortable. So I often don't - stop booing at the back.

Follow that link, click on the buckle to enter, click on the Campagne button and it will show you the video. If you don't speak French, the woman is just saying that something is missing from the car. What is it, can you spot it?
Suffice it to say that one of the guys won't have to fill in his tax form. And let that be a lesson to me and everyone else who is scratching their head trying to cope with that particular governmental torture instrument: there is a way out, people!

Now, because I like to launch debates in which no one else will comment, does anyone else feel like the belt can be a little dangerous too? Every time I do buckle up, I feel a little apprehensive that should I be in an accident, I'll be so panicky that I won't be able to undo the belt before the car bursts into flames and I die a horrible, slow and very painful death, trapped in the car in an Audrey-Rose kind of way. Shudder. Who else saw that movie when they were really young and got an actual trauma from it? I vividly remember the exact circumstances, and I was something like 10 (for those of you who are trying to figure my age out from this bit of information, don't bother, I saw it on TV).

* Actually they
had already done a similar stint for road safety, but I didn't have a blog then.So there you go, now you know, I will twist information so it fits my requirements. Be warned.

25 mars 2005

And I let fame fly me by

Running an errand (does that word use the singular?) yesterday afternoon, I was deep in thought and in my conversation with my mom over the phone.
On the way "in", I had kind of noticed that some people definitely had cameras and mike-thingies but I thought... Oh come on, who am I kidding, I didn't think anything, I just saw them and barely registered. Especially as there were not really all that many of them and no bright lights making my various blemishes stand cruelly out. I do digress, don't I.
So on I go, do what I have to do, and walk back to work in the brisk and determined canter that I have a liking for when in business. On the phone. Because it looks so much more business-like. No one needs to know that I'm talking to my mum, right? Also, I'm not talking to her in a whingeing "Mo-o-o-m" tone, but about culture: she's off rehearsing because she sings (not professionally, let me add, but that doesn't make her any less good. And she doesn't even read this, that's how good she is), and I'm asking her where the bugger the last two tomes of Alexandre Dumas's "Le Vicomte de Bragelonne" are, because the suspense at the end of the second book is just about killing me.
Oh and should I add that I'm looking down, because that's what you do when you're walking the Parisian sidewalks, the true owners of which are the little doggies and their numerous, treacherous, and sometimes enormous turds. And you want to avoid those at all costs (although, truth be told, sometimes it just doesn't work, and you put your foot in it, quite literally).
Now, I'm not telling you all this so you can look up to the sun and say "is she EVAH going to get to the POINT?". No, I'm actually going to the trouble of typing it all up so you understand what led to what.
Thus I was walking in the fashion described above, when suddenly this very pretty girl strides towards me, talking really loud, seemingly at me. I'm wondering. Understandable, I'm sure you'll agree: what have I done? Nothing, as it transpires as she gets closer that she's obviously talking to someone else. Someone deaf, considering the intensity. When she's close enough, I recognise her. Olivia Bonamy. That's when it all hits me. That's when I nearly hit the mike-guy as well. So I swerve extremely artfully, i.e. without letting anything on, in order to avoid the mike, the camera, everything; pull a face (not, thank gawd, caught on camera, I don't think) as I realise what's going on (but anyway that would be all right, because I'm on the phone, remember, so I could just be reacting to what the other person, which nobody knows is my mum, has just said... Ah, I've got it all sussed), and walk on. Toward a blond guy standing in a doorway. Looking at me like I'm so stupid I should be shot before I start suffering from so much stupidity. I think it might have been Guillaume Depardieu (son of Gérard). Although I'm not sure, because apparently (I've checked, how pathetic) they're not shooting anything together. Well, no film anyway.
You'll probably be pleased to know I didn't drop everything right then and there, shrieking in a Janice-from-Friends way "Oh.My.God. Huh huh huh huh." (the last part is my lame attempt at transcribing her... sound) and asking all of them to hire me, even for a very small part, even not a speaking part, even a silhouette in the crowd. Even to bring them coffee on the set.
No, not this girl. This girl just kept totally cool, went on talking to her mum, walked on and away from her obvious destiny as a French TV celeb, and back to the job she's leaving soon.
Just think though. Maybe I would have ended up really marrying George, after some very twisted but efficient networking. Well, it would have had to be twisted, right: it's not exactly a straight line from French TV to Danny Ocean. He-llo?
Oh well. I guess I'm meant for great things.
In my neighbourhood.

24 mars 2005


Scaryduck is ill and needs comforting. He's asked for jokes, and for the life of me I can't find one. If you know of a good one (and believe me, the ones I've read so far are fab), go tell him and the world.

23 mars 2005

Well, that was that

It's all going pear-shaped. And I'm not talking about my quickly deteriorating figure.
I've talked to the Rugby World Cup guy. Not gonna happen. I have a couple of other leads for the same event, but it doesn't look like it's on the right track. Sorry Andy.

I'll be off drinking now.

22 mars 2005


Moby has just been a guest on the French TV show "20h10 pétantes".
Without fail, seeing or hearing Moby brings me back to 2000, on a suburbs train in Sydney, coming back from Homebush with a couple of friends, one of which just hates Moby's guts. The conversation was flowing, intellectual stuff of the highest order, and then one of us brought Moby up. Or maybe it was just the PA system in the train. Whatever. The M word was pronounced, and with that, Alex got started. We just sat there and listened to him rant hilariously for a while, just going on and on. Bitching, fabulously so.
As this was one of the first times I'd actually talked to him, it's stayed with me - you know how first impressions last.
Since then, every time I've listened to Moby's music, I've felt a pang of guilt. Like, oh dear, I hope Alex never finds out. Rest assured, he has, because I just blurted it out once - and boy did I feel like I'd just admitted to my parents that yes, even though they had expressly forbidden me to, I had indeed gone to that party*.

So, Alex, if you ever read this, I'll give you one thing, Moby's not really funny in the flesh.

Still does good music though.

*Mum, Dad - of course I didn't go.

Ca ne nous rajeunit pas...

That's it. I'm old. And I don't want it to be known.
We were comparing scars with friends. Not, I hasten to say, in a Lethal Weapon 3 sort of way, but rather in a Freddy Kruger fashion, as it had all to do with burn marks.
I have a few scars on my hands, if you really must know. One from a nasty cut (no fingerprint on one of my fingers, eh eh, because I once tried to do a McGyver), some from burns, one from slamming a car door on my hand (which is quickly fading to nothing, I'm sad to report). And I was trying to figure out when I had burnt my left index when I went "OK, how old am I?" And stopped dead.
I'm this: young at heart. Nobody is allowed to say my age out loud from now on. Lest they be severely punished.

I'm screwed

First things first. I'm sprawled on my couch, with my laptop on my lap as it should be, and the dictionary is on the very opposite end of the room; I just couldn't reach it, unless I was Mrs. Incredible. So you're going to have to make do with my verbose explanations of things that would probably require only a couple of words if a normal person was referring to them.
I've just lost about three hours of my very productive and thrilling life to a meeting of flat-owners. See, there's probably a word for that. Warning. Verbose explanation ahead. In France, when you own a flat, you have a "flat-owner meeting" once a year. With a fucker called a "managing agent". I've already expressed all the love I feel for that particular sub-species. That's when you decide what works need doing in the building, with the "help" of the aforementioned fucker.
As the aforementioned have been doing bugger all for near-on 2 years, we've decided that before the next meeting is due next week, we would prepare. So we had us a little meeting, neighbours and never friends, being very careful to spew all the hatred we have for the managing agency and none of the contempt we might feel for each other. We were rather good, I dare say.
The upshot of this little get-together was this: we're giving them one last chance (and quite the bucketload of dough in the process), and if they screw up, we'll start looking elsewhere.
The more important upshot of the evening was that, as, I repeat, nothing was done for two years (this is not a figure of speech, I do mean nothing, sweet FA, nada, zilch), said building has fallen into a state of borderline ruin. OK, that I might be exaggerating a tad, but still. We need to fix and change (or change and fix) all the pipes in the building - 16 in all, yes, dear reader, that's sixteen, let me spell it out for you, s-i-x-t-e-e-n - and basically rebuild a wall that's allegedly leaking into the flats on my side of the building.
Now, as you can imagine, no-one is ever gonna do that for free. Or a piece of candy. Or my never-ending gratitude and appreciation. No no no. We'll have to pay. A lot of money. A loooot of money. For eight years. Or something.
I'm out of a job in 6 weeks. I'm not sure yet that I'm ever finding another one. I'll soon be living under the bridges, and that song has already been sung. I'm screwed.

20 mars 2005

Wish me luck

I said I was leaving my job soon, because of personal reasons.
Those personal reasons are "just" that I've reached that age or that stage when I need my job to be what I want it to be: not something I've happened to work in or something to fall back onto, but something I really want to do.
I'm going out on a limb here, because I'm very superstitious that way, and I certainly don't want those particular efforts to be jinxed by my talking about it, but I desperately need all the luck I can get. I worked for the Olympic Games in Sydney, and I really want to go back to that specific area. It's just extraordinary.
So I've started harassing the Rugby World Cup Organising Committee in Paris (it's happening in France in 2007) and I've just sent another letter cum CV to the Olympic Games Organising Committee in Torino (winter Games in 2006).
I'll phone the people in Paris tomorrow, and I'll be waiting with bated breath to hear from Italy.

Wish me luck.
Oh yeah, and mean it.

19 mars 2005

Je vis manifestement dans l'erreur

I was utterly convinced that the last day of the 6 Nations' Tournament was next week. Which would have been a lot more convenient for me; I was already planning on my drinking problem getting even better (or more pronounced, depending on where you stand - just not worse) at the pub, watching all three games. As it is, I'll be watching them on telly, getting gently intoxicated by the fumes of housework products and stuff. Something to look forward to.
France is obviously not going to win this one (even with a thrashing of Italy, I'm sure, err hope).
The Tournament, I mean, not the game, I just realised how confusing this sentence could be.
As for Scotland, well. I just hope they score.

Ireland on the other hand... It's only Wales after all.

I was misled

I have apparently been advertising a wrong date for spring. It seems it's due tomorrow, not Monday. So ever since I started that countdown thing, that had L'Oiseau so confused yesterday, I've been using the wrong numbers.

As I'm pig-headed stubborn persistent, I will go on using the same sequence. Also, it would be silly to go straight from 3 yesterday to 1 today.
So there are 2 days left till spring but really, this is the last day of winter.
One day can never, in my books, be accounted for.

18 mars 2005

Will today ever end?

Gaaah, I'm having the longest, most boring day ever. No, not ever, I can think of a whole week not that long ago.
I don't know if St Patrick's Day can ever have that effect in France, but basically, it's like everybody's on holiday again, or nursing their hangovers (why is it that I always want to spell that hungovers? I wonder). No e-mails (apart from ridiculously sender-ed spams), hardly a phone call to wake me from this mind-numbing daze I'm in, definitely none anyway that'll have me hang up the phone going "Arrggghhh, how bloody stupid can you get" or "Arrggghhh, how do I have to spell no for you to understand", or "Arrggghhh, oh hi, is that you boss". Nuttin'. Some of the blogs I read have not even been updated - as they SHOULD have been.
I have a bit of stuff to translate, but come on, that's not going to happen now, right?
The cerebral death of me. 30 more minutes and I'll run away screaming.

Politics and commercials

I am venturing into grounds that I do not feel comfortable in at all. Still, without risks, life is not worth living and so on.
Pacha Tours, a travel agent exclusively specialising in Turkey, has launched its new advertising campaign. "Yes to the entry of Europeans into Turkey" goes the slogan.

I find that extremely clever. And I like to think it's being wryly funny. What non-Europeans might not know is that a major debate was started a few months ago about
Turkey's EU entry. I fear it boils down to a we're Christians/they're Muslims kind of controversy (bordering on/well into racism for some), which makes me cringe a little.

Indeed, Turkey has been a holiday of choice for a long time, as it's cheap, it's sunny, it's cultural...
If I forget about Midnight Express for a second, I'd looooove to see everything that Turkey has to offer (which precludes it from being my holiday destination, because of all the energy that would have to go into it, unless I go visit Lilith first, in which case I'll probably be more rested coming back from Edinburgh - oh no, hang on, that's completely unlikely).

I seem to recall (but I was sooo young at the time, how can I be sure...) that the entry of Portugal, Spain, and Greece led to a similar debate, mostly because of how poor those countries were at the time. Now I can't vouch for Portugal and Greece, but I'm pretty sure Spain has enjoyed some kind of economic miracle... And then, if we're still going to try the poverty argument, letting all of Eastern Europe into the EU wasn't exactly going to increase the per capita GDP.
So poverty must be out of the equation.
That leaves us with some murky religion/race consideration.

Granted, I'd not necessarily be thrilled if Europe were to annex the rest of the world on the basis that we're all brothers and love each other, whatever race, sex or creed, because that would kind of smack of imperialism.

Turkey, come on. They're in the EUROvision song contest, for christ's sake.

I am very ill

All right, I'll admit, that title was here only to alarm you and lure you to read on. I'm actually on top form - save for the lack of sleep which is continuing, but now I don't really care; I've reached that point of tiredness where I'm close to full-time hysterical. People at work are having a fab time, I can assure you: extremely grumpy Mondays, then hyper-oxygenated and mad, and on and on it goes.

No, I'm a bit curious actually: I have apparently grown a cyst. In my hand. It's like my little pet, like a little fat blob or something, that I can feel, right at the basis of my left-hand ring finger. So I often stroke it, just to make sure that it's still there and it's happy.
Well, some people adopt a cat, I grow a cyst. Each to their own, I'm not judging you, don't judge me.

Also, I really don't have that much to talk about (so why do I post?? well... fame, money, easy lays, all these answers come to mind).
Spring is here, at long bloody last (I'm still doing the countdown thing for the sake of integrity). I'm going to do some major houseworking this week-end. Especially since I'm going to a paaartay saturday evening, so that means I'll enjoy a clean flat for at least 36 hours straight. Hur-ray.
But I'm not sure you really want to hear about how I'll go about spring-cleaning. Do you? Do you? Naah, I didn't think so.

Anyway, it's 8:00 now, in the words of Zoolander, I really really ridiculously don't want to go to work (a recurring moan, isn't it), and I'm late as it is. But it's Friday. I don't really care.


17 mars 2005

Grillée par la fraîcheur*

I was going to post something about Saint Patrick's day, knowing full well that I'd not be the only one. Although I don't know any other blog sporting the colour theme 24/7. AH! got you there, didn't I.

However, lots of people have already posted. So I'll just plod on, finding something else to talk about.
Actually I do have something else to talk about. Might not be interesting though, be warned.

I'll be twiddling my thumbs in about 8 weeks now. I'm looking for a job as I type, but nothing's for certain. Also, because I'm a fussy, choosy, picky cow, I want THE job, and I NEED the timeframe. Ideally, I'll be leaving work mid-May (just in time to enjoy the warmer weather, yay), and ideally I'll have found THE job starting around September. That's 3.5 months doing sod all, which sounds like
just what the doctor's ordered. Come to think of it, that's too long, it's aeons since I've been a student, and I don't think I can handle that long a period of inactivity, so I'll be happy starting in August. Or July. Or even June. Just May's out of the question.

So that's when you come in, dear readers... I need ideas for a holiday. Ideally still, I'd go back to Oz or Scotland, but it would never be long enough**. So I'll have to settle for something else. As I won't be too comfortable budget-wise, I'm thinking of a week somewhere, the catch being that I really need to be doing fuck-all, so that means no visits of temples, no hikes at sunrise just to see the sun rise over the tops of the hills, no intensive sports to get rid of all that tension. Fuck-all. The sun. And the beach. And the pool in case I can't be bothered going to the beach.

Then the people I'm hoping for will call me and say "Thank god you applied with us, we've been looking for someone just like you and couldn't find anybody". I'll refrain from asking whether it was neuroses they were looking for, thank them
humbly and politely, hang up in a trance. Start with them a couple weeks later, on an unbelievable pay, for an incredible job, where all my talents will be recognised and widely admired, get quickly promoted. By the time I'm 45, I'll rule the world. My husband will be George Clooney (who never could resist a woman with a personality), and I dare say I will be a happy bunny.

Haven't I got it all sorted?

* Reference to a French commercial. Can't translate. Sorry.

** Yes, I have tried to find a job there, and have failed miserably because I have been very consistently unlucky in love, game, and work. I also have a working visa for Australia, would you believe, with a company that so screwed me over that I'm now in writing therapy all over the interweb. Anything else? Oh yeah, and if you happen to know an Aussie pining for European citizenship, send them to me - although why he would be is beyond me.

Is there really a point?

That's all you're getting.

16 mars 2005

Blogger, if you're listening

Get your act together, darling, it's getting a tad annoying to not be able to post like I really want to. What is it, blatant anti-IE-ism? I've Mozilla at work, IE at home, and I have to use my remote connection to work if I want to be able to post from home. Silly, incredibly time-consuming and unbelievably annoying.
So you win, I'm trying to download Mozilla as I type, but as you can imagine, it ain't easy, what with being remotely connected and all.
So I'm asking of you, please. Get your arse in gear and find a way to fix this. Or I'm going to Blogware.

Apparently, it was my mistake. So, Blogger, if you're still listening, heartfelt apologies - not quite heartfelt, but you get the jist. David, merci.
It did feel good to whine though.

Update - bis
No no no no, you're not off the hook. It's still horrible. DO SOMETHING.

My print on the planet

This is a bit scary. I was talking about that with my friend in Toulouse and thought, OK, let's bite that bullet and see how much of the planet me, myself and I truly waste.

How much of the planet do YOU waste?

The link is in French, because I tried to find it on the UK, US and Australian WWF sites and couldn't. Please let me know if you find it, I'll update this.

Basically, I scored 4.2, i.e. I require 4.2 hectares of the planet. If everybody scored the same, we would need 2.2 planets to accomodate us living on it, and 80% of the population requires less than 4 hectares.
Now, to assuage the guilt a little, if I eat a little less meat, I'm below that threshold - I'll switch to soy proteins anyday now.

I'm running out of titles here

But I said I would and so I do: 5 days to spring.
To be fair, it seems to be here already, temperature in Paris is in the low twenties, sun's definitely out, sky's blue... Spring for all intents and purposes, yay! Just waiting for trees and teenagers to burgeon now.

Links galore

Boy oh boy, the Bloggies frenzy has caught up with me belatedly*.
Having seen Zoe win best European blog, Scaryduck not win best tagline (robbed blind, and the only one I'd voted for to boot), I decided that I would have a little read of all nominated or awarded blogs whose title appealed to me (nothing on telly, what can I say). So I started, cheerful and unaware. Little did I know I had opened Pandora's box. Not to say any of said blogs are evil, quite the contrary m'dear, but once I'd started reading What's new, pussycat, I thought it was quite good, so I looked at her blogroll, and went on to Scottish blogs (because I'm a sucker for all things Scottish anyway), had a wee look at that, came back to the Bloggies page, went on to La coquette, had a good read of that, tried This fish, had a go at Bookslut, forgive me but I passed on the tech/info blogs (no point reading what I don't have a chance in HELL of understanding a single word of, is there), went on instead to Tom Coates (life-time achievement award, and he looks like he's EVEN younger than me...) and on and on and on I went.
It was all really good, and I'm not passing judgement here - merely saying, if you want to know how the other half lives (and we've already been through that conversation), you might as well give those a go. Including and not limited to the ones on the right-hand menu. It's fun, it's light, it's heavy and a little scary at times, it's you, me, them, everybody. With a knack for writing that is. And that makes it so bloody pleasant.

* Hopefully after this post, I'll be done blog navel-gazing. Can't promise anything though.

15 mars 2005

A couple of morning thoughts

First, we're only 6 days away from spring. That's less than a week. We've never been so close, right? (The first smart alec who says that 16 March last year was closer gets a severe I don't know what yet, but it will be severe.)

Second, is it part of a www conspiracy against my poor feeble defenceless self or are there simply soooo many bloggers out there that the eponymous (hurray*) blogger.com can't keep up? Because I've been experiencing more than my share of problems with it lately. And I don't deserve that. I'm feeble. And defenceless. And I won't even consider being one of those too many: when I started, it was fine. All the trouble started in the past fortnight. So there.

Third, on a related note, why is everyone changing their template? More to the point, why aren't I and how are they all doing it? Am I a fraud because blogging should be reserved for computer people and nobody even knows how I got in in the first place? Could somebody help me revamp my thingy? I'd be grateful. Forever. Well, for a wee while anyway.

* I shall endeavour to use difficult words, either in spelling or in acception, regularly, and not only on other people's blogs.

14 mars 2005

I hate skiing

I had hoped for slopes and beaches, secretly wishing that if a choice had to be made, the beach it would be. The slopes it was. I'm beginning to see a pattern here.
Remember how I had to get up at 6.00 on Friday to catch that plane (c'mon, people, this was a mere 2 posts ago)? Well, there was a slight improvement on Saturday. 7.00am. "I want you for Toulouse army".
Two hours and change later, spent in the car listening to some very very bad music, as you do, and one very intellectual radio programme on Virginia Woolf (which in turn led to some lively conversation about feminism, but I digress), the stunning Pyrenean landscape appeared. Snow-covered domes and peaks, the length of the border between Spain and France, amazing. The sight in the station was equally fabulous: snow all around, dotted here and there by lush green fir trees.
If it wasn't for the skiing, it would have been a truly fantastic day. Nuff said.

Brief encounter of the Toulouse kind

People in Toulouse are lovely.
Some of them are also bizarre. On Friday, I stopped off at a florist's for some cacti on the way to meet my friends (I figured it was as good a thank-you gift as any for a lovey-dovey couple planning their wedding), and w
e struck up a conversation with the little lady in the shop - because I'm nice that way (not any other way but that).
So we talk, I tell her I'm visiting some friends, and she infers from that single bit of info that I'm foreign. "Your French is so good for a foreigner". Yeah, thanks a bunch. I AM French, you nice silly woman.
The cheek. I swear. I didn't even have the heart to set the record straight.
And to top it all, as she'd told me she'd barely slept the night before, I wished her good night when I left, as a little "inside joke". So, 'bonne nuit', I go, slightly chuckling because that was so clever. That's when she replied 'Non, non : bonsoir, bon - soir', enunciating it like I was 6. What could I do but apologise and repeat after her?

Lonely Planet - Toulouse

You'd THINK that going down south would be a clever way to find more clement weather in winter. You'd THINK that 10 days before spring's official ETA, the weather down south would be even more clement. You'd THINK that packing light jumpers, a scarf and a mid-season jacket would not be taking too much of a risk. You'd think, wouldn't you? Well, think again. I freezed my butts off down there the first day.
Good thing I walked all afternoon while waiting for my friends (working, poor souls). That warmed me up.
And here's my conclusion: Toulouse is gorgeous in many aspects. Really. Extremely rich, history- and architecture-wise. There are a great many truly beautiful buildings (Musée des Augustins, Cathédrale Saint-Etienne, Les Jacobins, Lycée Pierre Fermat among many many others), the streets are lovely, old, paved, sunless, very romantic.
I, however, wouldn't want to live there. Ever. But that's just me.

Tripping out

This threatened to bear an uncanny resemblance to a very long and very boring actual diary entry so I censored myself before you got sucked in, and you're now safe.*
As all of you faithful readers know, I was away for the week-end. Missed me?
OK, let's start with the flight to Toulouse. At around 12.45am the night before, I was going to bed as I thought to myself, 'now would be a golden opportunity to have one last look at the flight details', and so I do. Take-off 10.25, Check-in 8.25, Orly Sud. So far so good. Double take. Orly Sud??? I was going to go to Roissy (opposite end of Paris, as it happens). Now that would have been fun.
Fast forward to 6.00am. Definitely not my time. Oh no. Pack my bag, have a coffee, shower, re-pack my bag (of course...), check that everything is OK in the flat, do not worry about how Arthur is going to feed it(him?)self anymore, and off I go into the unknown.
Turns out the strike was over, buses and RER galore, I get to the airport one hour early.
Which is all right because I love airports. I just do. Apart from the fact that I was nearly converted by born-again Christians while having some very welcome coffee, I saw Marie-José Perec. Took that as as sign that my life was meant for great things, and then remembered that she rather nastily crashed and burned in Sydney, which can never be a good sign when you're about to board a plane, right?
OK, out with the suspense, I'm still alive.

* Actually just chopped it into smaller instalments. Cunning or what?

11 mars 2005

Countdown, ooh how time flies

By the time I come back, spring will be 7 days away.
To think that when I started this, it was still 11 days till guys got all hormonal and girls started showing some skin. I'll say it again, but boy, how time flies.

10 mars 2005

Now it's personal

Tony, I hope this is of interest. I had my first Yahoo!Search hit today (yay!): somebody was looking for blonde bimbos in thongs, I kid you not, and got me instead (I was going to highlight the incriminated words, but let's not push it). 86th in the list and he still checked it out - man, was he desperate. My guess is he was looking for Paris.

Andy, I really do hope that Ireland wins the Grand Slam this year, but I can't not be cheering for France on Saturday. No way. You understand, I'm sure. Still, I'll put up a brave face if Ireland is still on course come the 80 minutes whistle. Likewise, I won't be rubbing it in if France wins, however unlikely that is.

Woohoo! and urgh...

The day got off to a cool start, with a ride to work on a friend's scooter - not the one where people in suits look a bit daft standing on their toy and, as it was, pedalling against the pavement, the one with an engine that people have when they're too short on dough to buy a Harley. I love riding (passenger, not driving, that'd be dangerous) a moped, motorbike, scooter; I ain't fussy: as long as it's got 2 wheels and an engine, I'm a happy bunny. I look completely stupid with a helmet on but I don't care. It's one of those things, you don't really know why you really really like it, but you really really like it. So today being the height of the transportation strike in Paris, I threw a tantrum on the basis that it would be the surest way for me to get to the office. And it worked.

Tomorrow however will be an entirely different kettle of fish. I'm going for a long week-end (the only form of vacation I've been having for the past three years so don't go saying I'm spoilt rotten), and the plane flies at 10:25am from Charles de Gaulle airport. Now, on a good day, Roissy is about an hour away from my home. Check-in begins at 8.25, so you do the maths, I should leave at or around 7.30. On a good day. The strike officially ends at 8.00am tomorrow. That means we don't really know what the traffic will be like for public transport. That means I have to leave home at 7.00 at the latest. Lots of people have told me time and time again that it's OK to get up early when you're going away somewhere nice.

No it's not.

I'm starting a countdown

Apparently some software do that automatically. Being computer-illiterate, I'll post each day.

11 days to spring.

Can't. Wait.

09 mars 2005

History repeating Posted by Hello

L'important, c'est de participer

That excellent drawing dates back to Sydney. I was there in 2000, and loved every single second. There were quite a few people who didn't share my view of the matter, however, and were dead against the Olympic games - hence the work of art above (I'm still very very peeved that I never got that "Fuck the Olympics" mug).

After London and New York, the IOC are in Paris right now, checking out whether the city can really hold its own as olympic host, despite the French's die-hard anti-doping policy and all. All my fingers and toes are crossed. I hope we get the Games, I hope I get to work in that environment again, both in the run-up and during the Games, and I hope they're as excellent as the Sydney games were ("the best Games ever"...).
Still, let's not forget that a major strike is going on right at this specific moment. It's to do with the 35-hour week and how the current government wants to abandon that disposition, and with the fact that for the past three years, every action the government has taken was a blatant corporate suck-up and a very tall finger in the face of workers every where. But I digress.
That strike is obviously happening right now because it's meant to have leverage, as the powers that be don't really want anything jeopardising the Paris bid, but no one seems to be really threatened by it. Not the right-wing government, not the left-wing mayor. Bizarre. I do hope, in some very selfish way, that it won't harm the city's position in this particular competition. I also hope that France will, at some point, get out of that no-exit situation we seem to be in economically and socially.
I've heard that winning the games could be the one giant leap that's needed in that direction too, considering all that's implied, in terms of economic development, construction, employment, etc. I'm no expert, but wouldn't that be getting the best of both worlds?

Comic relief twist contest

OK, not quite a twist contest, but Mike at Troubled Diva has started a song listing for a virtual blogmeet. Is that something to look forward to? Yay!
Especially as it's all in the name of Comic Relief - which we don't have in France (no comic, nor relief...) so I thought I'd chip in in what little way I can.

Now, I really need suggestions for this because otherwise it's all gonna end up in obscure French songwriters or not necessarily golden but definitely oldies or rap crap*. Please tell me what you think should be played at this "blogmeet to end all blogmeets". Much appreciated. Ta.

I'll decide what gets posted on Mike's entry du jour, because as everybody else seems to be saying these days, it's my blog, and I never said it was a democracy.

* Of course not, but I just can't think of a really really interesting tune. I'm weak.

Ah the inequity

Things I hate about my Flatmate is a collection of details about that John Doe's flatmate that irritate the hell out of him.
I'm a bit perplexed by that blog. The total lack of niceness is obviously to be expected, but I also thought it would be funny, and to me, it just manages to sound prissy. Which is very disappointing, especially when you read the comments and they all seem to find it hilarious.
Maybe it's a question of age. I'm so mature now. Aye right.
Anyway. My question is, this blog is so hugely popular - and I mean hugely: it's gone over the 116,000 hit-mark in its two months of existence. How??? How is that possible, when I've read quite a few others that are way more profound, extremely well written, numerous times as funny, and show fewer typos (most of which - blogs, not typos - are on the side-bar, but I've still got a few up my sleeve) and still ten times less visited.
That might be because this blog is the best study
I've seen - or cared about - in marketing efficiency. (Not that I really care about it that much, it's just that I don't have any inspiration this morning, and I have pledged to try and bore you senseless at least once a working day. So that's that.) If you have a Blogger blog and go to the dashboard, said blog is prominently displayed among the "blogs of interest". Given the title, even I clicked the link - I'm nasty that way. So if everybody does the same, his stats are necessarily gonna go through the roof. But still, the mystery remains as to why we come back.
Because, let me not kid myself or you, I am coming back. Every day, dutifully, I'll go and check what she's now done to propell his blood-pressure to yet unreached levels (and nothing posted so far today, I call it utter disrespect of the reader).

So another question would be: Have we reached such a stage in boredom, ennui, and disinterest in our own lives that we need to go and check out others'? What has made this blog fad so huge, apart from the obvious trend nowadays to want to know how the other half lives? Reality TV programmes, for instance, they've already done it all - always trashy, never quite the same target, and the audience keeps coming. Another case in point for marketing efficiency I suppose, as that success is certainly not based on quality content.

Now, my other really important question is this: why aren't I a blog of interest? Huh? Huh?
No, don't answer that.

Typical... the Things I hate about my flatmate blog is now defunct. The guy is moving out. Now I get to live with the guilt of this coincidence.

08 mars 2005

All I want is a good night's sleep!

Well, truth be told, I want so much more than that. But sleep is my more immediate craving. See, it has been eluding me lately. I don't know if it's the stress of leaving my job and soon having to fend for myself, my ambitions, my dreams, and most of all my illusions, or if it's something else entirely, but the fact is, it has.
I've been having the worst nights in a long long time. I'm just waiting for the nightmares now - now that would definitely ice that cake.
I can never be tired enough to go to bed, and once I've finally put my feet in gear because I want to put them up, I can't put my book down (Le vicomte de Bragelonne at the moment, last part of Les Trois Mousquetaires - incredibly brilliant). When, at long last, my eyes feel like they'd require matches to keep them pried open, I turn off the light, and ba-boom, that's when the two little sods decide that after all, it's way too early. So I'm left to wait it out. Thinking. Tossing. Turning. For a wee while.
But that's not the end of it, oh no. I'll sleep for a couple hours, and wake up, kind of. So for a while it'll just be me thinking very very loudly "GO BACK TO SLEEP!" (which never helps, does it) until I just get up, get a drink of water, curse a little, OK a lot, under my breath (wouldn't want to wake the neighbours), go back to bed zombie-like, and wait some more. Then I don't know how that happens, but the radio goes off, and it's time to get up for good...
That puts me at around 5 hours of fitful sleep per night, and I heard that it wasn't good. Less than 6 and you're screwed. Mind you, more than 8 and you are too. Still, somehow I self-pityingly feel that those who do sleep over 8 hours are a little less screwed. Well, they do suffer if they're in the office when I'm there too. What goes around...

I found that while looking for sleep. Let me tell you flat out: it's crap. But it let me feel sorry for myself and that was goooood: I apparently suffer from sleep apnea, insomnia and narcolepsy. Narcolepsy? Because I fell asleep once at the movies (during Apt pupil, of all films)?
At least I don't snore.

Scum of the earth

How is it possible to show so little respect for the people that pay you to deliver a very specific service? I am so pissed off right now I feel my insides wanting to pop right out of my chest. Ever felt that way?
Details. I bought my flat 2.5 years ago. There were some works to do, which I waited a bit to do, obviously: I needed time to save a little bit, I wasn't about to pay in kind. Eew. I have to stop visualising.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, my bathroom was retiled and repainted at the beginning of October. Mid-December, I noticed the paint was starting to peel on the ceiling. Within two months of the job. Slightly amused bordering on annoyed, I called the artisan (can't be bothered looking up that word, sorry - if anyone reads that and knows, please can you tell me?). He came round, checked the peel, and declared it to be due to a leak from the flat upstairs.
So I go, cheerful and nice and polite and courteous, at that point, because after all, it was a leak and paint peeling, not a bona fide flood, to my neighbour, point at the damage, and we both agree that something needs to be done. Insurance-wise, for instance. Call them up, they send me a statement and tell me that I need to talk to my "managing agent", that a leak needs to be investigated by them bla bla.
To try and cut it short again, I phone the buggers, they tell me they have everything under control, that everything will be done as requested, that they are on top of things yadda yadda.
Well, one month and umpteen messages later, they have never called me back. My insurance on the other hand has, saying that 6 weeks is a bit long to fill in a statement, and I'm once again chasing the bastards at the agency.
I want to yell at them to go f*ck themselves backwards and that they'd better not hope I'll pay them at all this year, that their reputation is done for, because I'll be personally taking care of that, and that I very very much want to line them up against a wall and just shoot them all, no warning.
Do I need lithium or a hitman?

Journée internationale de la femme

Bonne journée, les femmes !
Bonne journée, moi...

07 mars 2005


No, not what I do all day, silly, the movie.
It's been so long since I lived in Scotland, I need the subtitles now. However, rather typically these days, they won't come on. Well, it is a rather visual film, innit. And I still understand the vital words being uttered - choose life, sex-craze, constipation, heroin dot dot dot.
I wish I were good at critiques. I'd come up with some wonderful analogies, in-depth analysis, and all.
As it is, I'm just going to go with "Bloody brilliant, man!" and off to bed.

Can't find an adequate title

OK, this is probably the weirdest news bit I've seen in a long long time. Go see BoingBoing now before it's drowned in other, just as quirky and interesting, info. Just so you know where to look, it's about monkeys and crack.
I realise that we're missing essential details, but that's what makes it weird, quirky and interesting, is it not?

How a single post can ruin your Monday morning

Oh ok, it didn't actually ruin it, but Synonymous* has made me think of Australia, Scotland and Cameroon in the 10 minutes it took me to read his latest entry, and boy is that cruel.

Funnily enough, I miss all the countries I've ever lived in, but I don't really miss France when I'm abroad. I guess it's due to the fact that France has always been a holiday place more than a "live-in" country, but still, I feel like a bit of a fraud when I say I'm French, and then I'm told I'm arrogant when I describe myself as a citizen of the world. A no-win situation as you can see (also I do admit, it is being a bit of a pretentious arse to describe oneself thus).
Now if you want to understand how schizophrenic I can be, or rather why I'm so screwed up (take my word for it, I am), I'm 32, and I've lived in Algeria, Cameroon, France, Germany, France, Scotland, France, Australia, France. In that order, and 7, 11, 1, 0.5, 0.5, 2, 4, 1, 4 years in each. Apparently one year of my life was spent in planes because that definitely doesn't add up.
I've lived overseas more than in France, and I've hated it at times, but really, I treasure every minute, looking back. Whereas in France, and I don't mean to sound ungrateful or silly or whatever, I've never really felt like I belonged. Really quite strange. Every time I go to Scotland, or England ('cause I'm a bit of a traitor that way), or each time I was in Australia (hopefully I'll go back soon...), it felt like coming home. It doesn't ever do that when I'm flying back to Paris.
And... the clincher... Every time France plays Scotland or Cameroon, in football (soccer) or rugby, I'm torn. I just don't know which side I'm on. I'm honestly cheering both teams on. Now, strangely, that doesn't ever happen with Australia. I love the country, and the people, and still, they just have to lose. But then, I was older when I flew to Oz, not as impressionable or malleable as I was in Scotland or obviously in Cameroon. So maybe that's it.
I don't have a clue. All I know is I'm not a big fan of Mondays, and Synonymous's gone and made sure today starts like a gem. Thank you, petal...

* Have you read his blog? Fun and educational, don't miss out! Also, everything I've always thought of talking about, he's already blogged on. So you're better off switching to his altogether. No, don't. Please.

06 mars 2005

Eternal shinespot of the sunless mind

That film is flawless, isn't it?

Everybody's got to love sometime...

Le lièvre et la tortue ?

Just watching the end of the Australian Grand Prix (not live), and I'm wondering if Ferrari have decided to let some suspense prevail this season. Of if the new rules have really taken their toll on Schumi, of which I'm not a big fan.
I've precious little technical knowledge on Formula 1, and could not have a proper conversation about it and hold my own, but a few people will agree I'm sure that Schumacher was really a major party pooper last season.
That's it with pretending I know shit about men's toys.

05 mars 2005


That's what I am.
I found this link on one of Zoe (of My Boyfriend is a twat fame)'s comments.

If you can't be bothered opening the title link*, here's the jist of the thing. According to Jalopnik,

the market of “menage-a-trois weekenders” in France is large enough for automakers to make a point of addressing.
That is so unfair. Thinking that France is the country of sex, lurve and depravity is one thing, but pretending that we're open-minded enough to actually go on week-ends with Boyfriend #1 and Boyfriend #2, or for Hubby (not ours, understand, but hers) to treat us both to a romantic mini-break, however cool the new car's name is, now that's just plain silly. The whole point of a ménage à trois is to have your cake and eat it, but not at the same time, nor in the same place, except in poorly written theatre plays.
And were our Hubby ever to suggest such a preposterous idea as a romantic mini-break à trois, our Hubby would instantly find himself out in the gutter with the rest of his stuff in a sodden and probably ripped to pieces pile next to him. But our Hubby would never even think of having a bit on the side. And as long as our Hubby stuck to that rule, he'd be fine.

* But I do recommend that you give Zoe's site a visit, even several, because she's really good at that maintaining-an-interesting-website-dash-blog thing (unlike me**).

** If you could dispel this clearly unfounded belief in the comments***, that'd be much appreciated.

*** Also, if you stumble upon this site and read even one of those silly paragraphs, feel free to comment anyway. You don't actually have to butter me up, and I might even edit or delete your comments if they in any way, shape or form are offending or make me appear wrong or stupid, but I fear the five people who've been commenting (for which I'm very grateful by the way) might feel a leetle beet lonely.

04 mars 2005

Arthur n'est plus

Came back home from work and the fish was no more.
Arthur has now passed.

I'm thinking of getting another one. I'll call it Derek Zoolander.

Yes, I have decided to go for "it". Less commitment, less pain when they leave.

Fini de jouer

Two things.
First, let's not pretend I'm ever going to do some work today. No more than I have for the past couple of long-drawn eight-hour periods I've spent at my desk, just roaming different blogs and increasing the stats of quite a few fellow wannabe writers.
You see, everyone from work is on vacation, sliding down snow-covered slopes, drinking mulled wine and eating melted cheese with various assorted side-orders. I'm left manning the phone and doing bugger-all much else. If that's valid syntax.
It's on the one hand quite guilt-inducing to be so unproductive. To be sure, if really thought about long and hard, something valid would be found that clamours to be taken care of.
On the other hand, much as I'm loath to admit this, I am one lazy cow. In dire need of a holiday. Leaving her job in a couple of months. Not much of an incentive to work, eh.
So I just spend the days doing the odd bit here and there. And come 6, 6:30, I just go. Feeling an ever so slight pang of guilt. Ever so slight.
Whoever reads this and cares... please tell me that's happened to you.

Second. God, I've forgotten what the other thing was. See, that's what happens to people who do nothing all day. Their brain atrophies.

03 mars 2005

L'heure est grave

My goldfish is fading away, I'm afraid. I don't really know what to do, considering I've no idea how to do CPR on a 5x1cm creature. Plus where IS the heart on those? The fact remains: Arthur is currently lying on its (his?) side, dangerously close to the surface.
Now, don't go thinking I'm not devastated. I am. This is my way to cope.
Depending on its (his?) state tomorrow (ie, if it's (he's?) floating belly up), I might not be able to post. I just thought I'd let you know, give you time to prepare psychologically for my absence while I recover.
Because let's face it, I will recover. But I will probably never be the same.

Update - 4 March
Well, Arthur is still alive. Not quite kicking, but hey.
It (he?) is only 6 months-and-a-bit old. Strange. My guess is constipation (and not, as is being strongly hinted at in the comments, bad treatment), but I don't have laxatives, much less in homeopathic, fish-compatible form.

02 mars 2005

Oh heaven

The third season of the French Bachelor is about to start.
I. Can't. Wait.
A string of bimbos desperately trying to look like they've got half a brain. An orange-tanned moron pretending to be everything every woman has ever longed for. A piss-poor excuse of a scenario for a half-assed trashy reality TV programme. Something to look forward to.
I'm laughing as I type. This cannot be for real. Oh wait. No it isn't.
Ok, let me describe this. He's 27, he's had the most wonderful life, lived several years abroad, has run his own company and is now a head-hunter. He's so romantic it hurts him to be alone in his 120 sq. meter flat. Ooh ooh, close up of him, looking into the vague, obviously dreaming of the sweet days to come when the TV programme will be catering to his every whim and fancy, and oblivious to how stupid he looks. He's looking for a bride and a mother to his children. He's doing a TV show for that. For fuck's sake.

Let's cut to the chase and let me brief you on the 20 girls as they get introduced.
First bimbo. 32. Actress. Blonde, big-tittied, and showing them too. With an ugly lip-job. No, actually, her whole face is scary.
Second. 20-year old. Her biggest problem is that there is no pillow like she likes them.
Third. 36. Showing her thongs off on TV saying "that will probably win him over".
Fourth. 26. Hurray, she has more than half a brain. French manicure though.

We're being shown some very groovy footage of a bowling alley.

Fifth. 22. 22 and she's allegedly looking to settle down. Looking for love.
Sixth. 22 also. "Looking for a man who isn't looking for his mother". Need I say more.
7th AND 8th. They have twins. They have twins. They're 20. Isn't there something vaguely illegal about that? Oh, they're orange too.
Ninth. 29. Lingerie model and PR in a Paris night-club. She looks OK (can't accuse me of blind jealousy, can you!).
Tenth. 22. Foreign. Ah the accent.
Eleventh. 23. Firewoman.
Twelfth. 21. Barmaid. She looks fun.
Thirteenth. 21. Student in communication. Talking of her parents and already you can tell she's ready to cry before it's even started. Oh now she is bawling. Because she gets to meet the bachelor. Oh boy.
Fourteenth. 25. Fitness instructor. Looks cool.
Fifteenth. 28. Events hostess. Loud (the word they used was spontaneous. I say loud.) And a bit naff.

Sixteenth. 23. Beautician. Nice in a Melanie Hamilton sort of way.
Seventeenth. 24. Nutritionist. Brain-dead. On lithium.
Eighteenth. 20. PR. Extremely pretty. Drenches her lips in lip-gloss.
Nineteenth. 24. Jewelry salesperson. Very pretty. Relatively classy.
Twentieth. 29. Designer. Vulgar.

OK, there was supposed to be 20 of them. Something went wrong and I'm not even drunk.
Twenty-first. 22. Business school student. Pretty. Looks bright.

Come to think of it, they're not only silly, they're scary, in a "fatal-attraction" risk kind of way: apart from the obvious lure of hard-earned overnight TV fame, they all claim to be ready for love, and hope to meet the man/woman of their life and are ready to fall for whoever they meet.
Oh and most of the girls have porn-star nails.
Oooh, which one of them will get the rose? (and don't you just love that ceremony?)

One evening well spent. Hope you enjoyed that, cos I sure ain't doing it again. Ugh.


I don't want to go to work. I sooooo do not want to go to work.
Why can't I just take a sickie? Oh, 'cause I've got a conscience, that's right.
I want to stay home and veg about like any 32-year old trailer trash with badly bleached, badly permed hair* and a smoking habit.

* This is just an example. My hair is fine as it is. And some of my friends' is bleached and permed. They're still my friends.
No they're not.

01 mars 2005

Who said it was antisocial?

I'm a bit annoyed. What is it with wanting me to stop smoking?
I can totally understand that people would want to kick it, because it's so bloody expensive, for one thing. Or, yeah, because it's unhealthy, dangerous, lethal, you name it. But some of my friends have stopped smoking of late and it's like they're born again.
Suddenly they've got this compulsion to just explain to me how free they feel, not to mention the horrible horrible things that smoking does to me. Well, I've seen the pictures. I've seen the blackened lungs and rotten gums. I've watched Dead Again with Andy Garcia smoking through his trach apparatus thingy. It's not deterred me so far, so do you really think a do-gooder attitude is going to help any? Yeah? Well think again.
To be honest, Andy Garcia making smoke O's through his throat almost did the trick. But then I was on a plane at the time, so there wasn't much decision involved. And the moment I hit the ground, my hand was on auto pilot, rummaging through my bag for my ciggies.
And I did stop smoking once. It lasted all of six weeks. You wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere around me at that time.
So quit and be done with it, but don't try to drag me down with you. I want to inhale and feel the nicotine mellowing me from the inside. I want to huddle out in the cold on my breaks during working hours and just puff away at my cancer stick.
And I get to meet lots of lovely other addicts while I'm at it.
I'm not alone.


Today is the first of March, as I'm sure most of you are already aware.
Did you start your day by saying "White rabbit, white rabbit, white rabbit"?
If the answer to that seemingly insane question is yes, can you explain why you do that?
Because you see, ever since I've lived in Scotland, which I left 10 years ago, I say that on each first day of the month.
All that because somebody told me one day that it was a surefire way to have a great month.
I believed that (at that time I guess I would have believed almost anything) and I'm very sorry I did. But then I'm afraid if I don't actually say those stupid words, I might spend the worst month ever.
And we don't want that, do we.