29 septembre 2006

hallelujah... or... is it?

Sleep and I are finally reunited. It's been a week now, and I can't keep my hands off it. I don't know how I could live without it so long, because it's the only thing I'm interested in right now. I wake up in the morning (in the morning! not 'several times at night'!) and I think of joining it again the following night. I go to bed in the evening, and I marvel at the softness of my sheets.
Yes, everything's better now and my sheets are softer. Sleep is magical like that.
So after a week of newly found bliss, I think we're good. We might even be in it for the long run.
Except sometimes, I wonder whether our relationship is healthy. I mean sometimes, it feels like if I'm doing anything else that is remotely boring, like, say, working, sleep will be the only thing I think of. That's a bit excessive, isn't it? Shouldn't I be thinking of chocolate every now and again?
And yesterday, I was watching 'The Meaning of Life', which, even though John Cleese hated it, is my favourite Python movie, and guess what. I fell asleep. Right in the middle of it. On my couch. Before M. Creosote's segment. And I even turned the volume down at some point during my sleep.
So now I'm a bit scared. Will I have to turn my whole life around to accommodate it? Will I have to give up everything that I care about because it cannot stand to not be the only one in my life? What if I don't and it leaves? Oh god. I'm going back to bed now.

27 septembre 2006

It's official

I am a great person.

OK, so it's not really official, but I hereby proclaim that I am a great person, and surely that makes it official.

Also, I'm a very tired person. I suspect this explains that - or vice versa.

Also, after mulling this over for about 3 seconds, it transpires that I might not be quite that great after all.

Still, it's good to be deluded every now and again. Not only because in those deluded and delusional moments, one can believe in one's own greatness, but also because if one plays one's cards right and with a little help from one's friend, aka the right medication, one might believe in it forever.

It's difficult to sustain a sentence with "one" as a subject, isn't it. Yes.

God, I wish I could go back to bed.

24 septembre 2006

Content may be unsuitable for sensitive minds

My eye itches every now and again. When that happens, I usually rub it. As a rule of thumb (ta da...), I'll use my index finger. However, it sometimes strikes my fancy to use my pinky. Which, as is the case with everyone, I believe, is a lot smaller than my other fingers.
The other day, my eye was itchy. Fancy struck, so I rubbed it with my pinky.

Now is a good time for squeamish souls to look away.

The sneaky bastard slid right underneath my eyelid.

Now, those of you who didn't believe the title or subsequent warning, or believed both but thought that you could handle the truth, and went ahead and read anyway, if you found that was a leetle too close to information overload and went 'ewwwww', well, that'll teach you. But know that it reads a lot more icky than it actually felt.

Still. It did feel icky. Also unsettling. And, in Carrie Bradshaw's own slightly overused words, I couldn't help but wonder. Shouldn't my own pinky finger be grateful that I have use for it every now and again, instead of turning on me like that? Will the infernal cycle of death ever end?
Nah, don't answer that.

21 septembre 2006

Well, hello, sunshine

8:20 a.m., the phone rings, caller unknown. Now, class, what does this spell? Anyone? Anyone? Telemarketer. Or my mum, but she's learned not to call at such ridiculous times.
"hello my name is robert langdon* i work for bleuargh marketing company
* would you mind answering a couple questions this won't take long" (audible lack of punctuation.)
"(Chuckles (more like snorts) in an annoyed (and possibly annoying) way.) Er, yes, actually I do mind. No time, too early."
"OK, then I'll be quick. What do you think-'
"I'm hanging up now. Bye**."


* Names made up because I didn't think I would need them and they didn't register. Infuriating as it was, believe me, I wish I could spell both out.
** I also wish I would have been less polite.

19 septembre 2006

Oh. Good. God.

Yeah. Whatever, right?

OK. I've calmed down a bit.
So. Who's in for a huge big hearty laugh straight from the belly?

You know the company that contacted me back in December, from a country that is never ever getting named on this site again? The company that made me take three tests, all of which I apparently passed? That made me sit two interviews, both of which were apparently conclusive? That, every time I called them, all the way to that country that is never getting named here again, told me that they were still very much interested in my application? That sort of offered me several cities to choose from? And that just dropped off the face of the bloody earth?

Yeah. Them.

They've just posted another job offer on a professional board.

Something is obviously not quite right with me, karma-wise.

17 septembre 2006


Yes, two weekends in a row, I know, deal with it.
And just so we're clear, I know it might be annoying for you, but you really do have to realise how much fun it was for me.
You may however take comfort in the fact that the weather was gorgeous only one day out of the two, that no excessive amount of beer was consumed, that no excessive amount of waffles was consumed, and that no amount of mussles or chocolate was consumed at all. We did make up for that seeming exercise in moderation with an orgy
of fat, there can be no other word, on Sunday. Even though the sausage, fries and churros were all organic so, really, healthy, right?
Still, I suppose that actually feeling your bloodflow slowing down is as good a sign as any that now is the time to start enjoying the car-free day and walk all over the city. And man, walk we did. And pictures were taken - not all of them good of course, but some even with people in them!
And then it was already time to go. Oh how time flies when you're having fun.
However, for some of us, the fun didn't quite stop in Brussels. I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank the really very pretty girl on the train for providing us with some mean-spirited entertainment as she slept, oblivious to the fact that we could almost see her tonsils, while we eagerly waited for either some healthy snoring or some light drooling. Unfortunately, neither came, but the suspense does make for a very short journey.

13 septembre 2006

Caution, self-linking ahead

Haven't talked about the building from hell for a while now, have I.
Changes are afoot in the landlords' council, or whatever this thing is called. I for one am going to escape this thing soon, although they don't know that yet. It's a matter of life or death, or sanity, or something equally important like that, you understand. I fear they're trying to do me in. In fact, I believe they have cunningly planned this so that I will do myself in and they'll be a bunch of happy bunnies frolicking over the ruins of...
Hmmm. To think I was so close to being certifiable, all they had to do was wait...
My neighbour - the infamous err-ing and emm-ing person - has stopped phoning, lord be praised for small blessings, but she's now taken to sending several emails in quick succession, most of which say the same thing.
Even though, to her credit, she doesn't spare her efforts for the building, this particular trend annoys the shit out of me. Call me quick-tempered.
My other neighbour, the previously cool guy, is making a mountain out of a molehill these days, and he's been calling everyone with the same quavering voice that I used on the electricity repair men. I'm obviously not about to swallow that particular line.
Back to my favourite neighbour of them all - the infamous err-ing and emm-ing person. She's found a new ally. And this new girl, wow, she just takes the cake. I'm not going to hold it against her that she plays trance music all day loud enough that I can sense the bass in the back of my throat, three floors up*, but she speaks in such a high-pitched tone that it's a wonder she's not being constantly followed by a pack of dogs howling at the moon. And the two of them together... well, wow, really.
In two weeks, we'll all be gathered in the one room. And there'll also be all the other neighbours. Good times.

* might be a slight exaggeration.

12 septembre 2006


Extortionate prices - check.
Works complicating an already complicated underground network
- check.
very cute hotel receptionist, who looks so young that you wonder whether talking to him qualifies as statutory rape - check.
Blue skies and balmy temperatures the whole time - check.
Indecent amounts of money spent on all those good book and DVD deals - check.
Many a picture taken while my friend frowned at the silliness of most of them - check.
Reasonable amounts of beer consumed, all things considered - check.
Sore feet from all that walking - check.

Fish 'n' chips - not check.
Supermarket visit for day-to-day groceries - not check.
All the other books and DVDs that I had thought of - not check.
Buying those really very cool clothes in Camden Lock - not check.
Getting to talk more than fifteen seconds to that seriously charming guy at the restaurant on Friday evening - not check.

I'm just gonna have to go back soon, aren't I.

06 septembre 2006

Crossing over to the dark side

There is something deeply disturbing to waking up to absolute darkness, turning your head to check the time on your usually very bright digital clock, and being uncharacteristically met by more darkness.
Yeah, OK, maybe not deeply disturbing, but I was hoping it would sound cool, in an "oh my god, some guy invaded her home and slashed all the wires and he's probably wearing night-vision goggles now, which means he can see everything, oh god, is that a thread of dribble down her chin?!" kind of way.
Still, when you have a lot of words left to translate, a limited time to do it, and, in the immortal words of Derek Zoolander, all of "it's in the computer!", a block-wide power outage does tend to trigger a vague, but definite (is it antithetical to use 'vague' and 'definite' together?), sense of panic. Not to mention the fact that your kettle, microwave and stove
all being electric, lukewarm instant coffee with water straight from the tap is not an auspicious start to the day at the best of times.
Panic notwithstanding, however (is it pleonastic to use 'notwithstanding' and 'however' together?), a phone call to the power provider informed me - at 6:45 - that the A-Team of electric repairs was already on their way.
At 8:30, there was still no trace of Hannibal and his buddies. I began to wonder whether my deep-freeze was going to last long enough for them to find that shortcut that David Vincent was still looking for. I'm digressing a lot, today, aren't I.
When I finally spotted the blue vans, it was 9:30 and my blood pressure was at least twice that.
After they informed me that my computer and kettle would only be working again some time in the afternoon, I did something that I'm not very proud of. I looked at them all doe-eyed and,
with a very clear hint (is it...? never mind) of despair, said, "That's awful..." - slightly quavering lip - "I don't mean to be a pain" - apologetic smile - "but, you see, I work from home, and this... this..." - more quaver - "this is really bad for me" - I believe a tear glistened in the corner of my eye. Or maybe it was a glint of something darker, but we'll never be sure.
Anyway. At 11:30 a.m., I was switching my computer on.

05 septembre 2006

Reincarnation. It's a bitch.

There can be no other explanation for this... complete, blatant, and absolutely outrageous injustice that is my life. None.
You be the judge. Arrested Development is finally being shown on cable in France, on a channel that does not require paying too much money to get and that allows you to choose what language you want to watch (most) foreign (
read US. And, if you're really really lucky, British) programmes in. So far so good, I hear you mumble, what's she on about then?
Several things really. First off, I programmed my VCR - do NOT make fun of my technological challenges - to record the first evening as they were showing several episodes and a behind-the-scenes doc, and apparently forgot to select English as audio language. I say "apparently" because I know I did select it. It is clear to me that the cable decoder thingy just canceled my selection to spite me.
Second, checking on things about forty-five minutes into the recording
(which, considering there were three episodes that night, makes it half-way through, really...) I realised that this was going to be in French and, after much cursing, switched the languages, so that for five seconds, there's a big blue selection screen of concentration's death on Jason Bateman's face. That's a little annoying, but I guess in the grand scheme of annoying things, I can live with it.
Third, I then proceeded to watch said show, got 45 minutes of it in French and thought I was going to tear my own hair up and eat it
in protest, in true trichotillomaniac fashion, and then probably move on to someone else's toenail clippings - that's how bad it was.
I just don't get this. When they started showing Friends in France, there was an uproar at how bad the subtitles and voice-over were - you'd think they would have learned... No they didn't. Or they did, but thought they could fool us again. But, in George Bush's immortal words, "fool me once, shame on... shame on you...
If fooled, you can't get fooled again." Well, I have news for you. George Bush was wrong. We can. That dubbing is a shame, a shame!
Fourth, a couple days ago, in fact, I applied for a job, with a company somewhere in a country that will never ever be named on that here site again, that does exactly that: translate and subtitle and/or dub TV programmes. They didn't even think it fit to acknowledge my application. That country is seriously never being mentioned by name here any longer.
Fifth, you are not going to believe this. I was recording Some Like it Hot and The Misfits a while after that incident. I checked the recording. It's in English. Apparently, I learn from my mistakes. NO! NO, I DON'T! The blue screen of f#&@rhaaaaa#ing death stayed on for the whole first film and half of the second. What is wrong with my brain???
Honestly, whatever horrible, horrible things I did back then when I was a Pharaoh's whore or the lord of all that he surveyed, I certainly hope I had mucho fun and didn't care one bit for the
diseases or misery I was gleefully spreading. Because I'd hate to think I was paying for the quart of milk I stole once from my sovereign in the dark ages. That would seriously be adding insult to injury.

02 septembre 2006

White rabbit, white rabbit, my foot...*

Yes, this thing is slowly dying due to lack of care and general ill-treatment. Someone call the WSPCB before it's too late.
Thing is, I'm up to my eyebrows in work, and although it's actually a very enjoyable translation, I'm not exactly in the mood for more computer usage after my ten hours' grind every day.
However, due to the guilt that's been dogging me for a while, I'm using up precious minutes of my Saturday morning to try and come up with something remotely readable. Except it is Saturday morning, of course, so there's no way that would ever happen.
Admit it though, I had almost fooled you into believing it.

In other, interesting news, Carl V. has started a... thing, to needle us slackers into reading a little more. It's not exactly a contest, more of a challenge sort of thing - duh, it's in the title: The R.I.P. Challenge.
Right. Anyway. Pick a list of five books that you feel embody the spirit of Halloween in some way ("
gothic, scary, moody, atmospheric stories", he says) (let him know in his comments once you have) and try to read them. Preferably before Halloween, but who cares as long as you read them.
Here's mine then:
- The Moonstone, because I loved that book, and I'll take any excuse to reread it.
- Frankenstein, because I hated that book, but I'm willing to give it a second chance, and I think that is mighty good of me.
- Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Stories, because it's been so long since I read that book that I can't actually remember it.
- The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Writings, because I still haven't read any Poe - don't hold it against me, I knew not what I was (not) doing.
- The Lord of the Rings, because, having neither read the books nor seen the movies (I just heard your collective gasp. I haven't seen Titanic either. There.), now is as good a time as any to commit to it, innit?!
- And if one of those (probably Frankenstein, I guess) really doesn't do it for me, I'll switch to The Hound of the Baskervilles. This I'm sure I liked and would enjoy again.
And now, as Alice's long-eared companion once famously said, "Oh, my ears and whiskers, how late it's getting!" In fact, I might re-read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland too.

* Yes, I started this yesterday. But look how beautifully it ties in with the end. I'm so clever.

- Oh dear. I'd forgotten Wuthering Heights. Yeah, well, it's not scary, but surely it's
gothic, moody and atmospheric, right? And the Stanley Kowalski-esque 'Cathyyyyyys'? Or is it the Heathcliffesque 'Stellas'? Hmmm. Think of the possibilities had those four ever douple-dated. But I digress.