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Archive for October, 2009

I lied

The Trivia night was not the highlight of the month.  Funny how when you look forward to something it ends up being disappointing.  I didn’t like the obscure questions and didn’t like the “money or the bag” game in between question rounds – waste of time, I thought.  We didn’t get enough time to work on the questions so we got numerous questions wrong just in a desperate attempt to put something down, knowing it was wrong.   I don’t think I’ll bother next year if it’s the same quizmaster (who apparently chose the questions).

The highlight of the month might be tonight, on the last day.  The kids are off to a Halloween Party which has been planned for weeks.  They’ll be playing in their band for the first time “in public” (among friends).  They’ve been working on their costumes as well as practising their music.  When they found out I wasn’t going to the belly dance thing tonight, they invited me along.  Apparently there will be other “oldies” like me there (my term not theirs) – some of the ‘cooler’ parents who like to dress up and make fools of themselves as well.  There’s a theme here don’t you think?  I like to dress up and make a fool of myself given half a chance (as long as others are as well).  So, I have a monk’s robe from my days in the medieval club, and a scary mask.  Last night I made a scythe out of bamboo and cardboard.  I’m all ready, just like that.  It’ll be good to see the kids play in the band – I never have done – they always had their practices at a friend’s house.

Tomorrow my older daughter is coming up for the day – mainly to bring up her budgie for us to look after since they’re going to China in a few days, but also to wish me a happy birthday (birthday on Monday).

I’d better get to and tidy up.  Didn’t get to do much housework last weekend.  I’m so relieved I’m not going to Wellington yet again today.

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It’s true! I saw it in the weekend. Three glorious days of warm sun – bliss!

I headed down to Wellington on Friday night and was pleasantly surprised to walk out of the apartment building and NOT FEEL COLD!!! I was momentarily shocked and after hesitating at the doorway, proceeded to park the car where it wouldn’t be ticketed and walked down Lambton Quay in search of a suitable gift for a five-year old girl into purple and fairies. ToyWorld came to the rescue in the form of a purple cupcake ‘box’ and a purple fairy wand, while Whitcoulls provided a suitably fairy-themed picture book. I have to admit to spending the afternoon inside playing a car racing game “Need for Speed Shift” which I rather enjoyed. We then headed off to the early evening party for the adults (the kiddies had had their party earlier in the day with daughter dressed as a fairy and doing face-painting. She was a hit.) Amazing weather for the barbecue dinner.

Too tired to drive back home I stayed an extra night and we made a leisurely return via Porirua to have lunch at Denny’s, which someone had raved about. It reminded me of an American diner and I half expected to see big American cars outside and waitresses on roller skates. But no, the waitress was a toothless Maori. The food was overpriced and unimpressive. I’d ordered a mixed grill. The one sausage was tiny and tasteless, the bacon strip looked like a piece of rind, it was so small, and the whole dish was lukewarm. We all regretted wasting our money and decided we would’ve been better off going to Burger King nearby. Certainly we wouldn’t have wasted the time waiting for the overpriced, overcooked, lukewarm offerings of Denny’s. However, we were in holiday mood and wrote off the expense as holiday expenditure and headed over to the Warehouse. I can’t recall what we had originally gone there for but we wasted another hour or so looking at books, CDs, DVDs, shoes and toys. It’s always interesting to compare one city’s branch of a nationwide store to our own. We eventually got back home about 4pm.

The holiday Monday was spent in the front garden weeding, and chopping away an overgrown hebe… as well as relaxing on the deck with a shandy.

I went to belly dancing last night. I’d missed the week before as well as several practices for the performance we’re supposed to be doing this coming Saturday night. I can tell when I haven’t done belly dancing for a couple of weeks – various muscles protest! I was still reluctant to do the performance in Wellington. Our teacher then told us she couldn’t make it and two of the other dancers either weren’t ready or pulled out so that left 6 of us. They were still planning to go ahead with the dance but it needs an odd number of dancers so I’m very happy to be the one to pull out. Yay!

Tonight’s the trivia quiz night at work, which I’m quite looking forward to. Is it rather sad to call it my highlight of the month?

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What a dick…

I have a new category “Insanity”.  This is reserved especially for the insane suggestions and comments uttered or written by supposed experts, etc etc.  I have two today:

First, fashion guru, whoeverhemightbeIdon’tcare says Barbie dolls have fat ankles (aka cankles).  What an idiot.

Secondly, research by a couple of idiots who have obviously never owned a cat or dog or any other pet companion.

Save the planet, eat the dog

Yeah what a couple of wallies.  They reckon a dog leaves more of a carbon footprint than an SUV.  B*s*!  Save the world by getting rid of pets…  What price companionship?  Here’s a thought – why not eat people?  They’re the ones responsible for the mess the planet is in.  I suggest we start with these two researchers.

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The work environment

I often wonder if there exists a positive workplace even if you enjoy your work because, as we know, you can’t account for other people.

I’m often amazed at the way people treat each other with such unkindness. There is a lack of tolerance of others’ foibles and differences which displays itself in bitching and moaning about that person behind their back. I dislike it intensely. I can think of one in particular at my work place who moans daily and is currently expressing her anger at something or someone by slamming items down as she deals with them.

Such tensions create an unpleasant atmosphere. I long for the sunshine and conviviality of my previous workplace even though the salary was shite. You can never be completely happy wherever you work, it seems.

I reflect on this at the same time as just having read some research about music sharing at work enhancing social relationships between colleagues. According to this research, managers now promote relationship developments between colleagues by allowing (and even encouraging) the exchange of non-work-related information between colleagues. Where is that, I wonder? More often you get little cliques of people who barely acknowledge your existence. As for music, I’d love to be able to feel free to listen to my music at work but feel this may be frowned on.

We spend so much of our lives at work and it can be enjoyable or not, all dependant on other people. Lately, I’ve been reluctant to get up in the morning and don’t care if I’m late to work. This is generally a sign that I’m not enjoying my work but I think it is more likely to be a result of continual crappy weather and the often negative environment in which I work.

I need a holiday.

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I’m sick of this weather – the cold and the rain.  What use is spring-fever when the weather’s crap?  I can’t get motivated to do anything as I sit, feeling cold, with dark clouds outside.  The inside of the house never gets above 15 deg C (unless of course I put the heater on and I’ve had enough of high electricity bills).

The most I’ve done this weekend is some washing and transferring more photos from sticky albums to pocket albums.  I’ve reached 1997 and still have about 3 large albums left.  The question then comes – what do I do with the (admittedly smaller) pile of albums?  Stick ’em in a box I suppose.  Then what to do with the box?  I have no cupboard space in this small house.  It’s such a pain.  I have often regretted buying this dump.  So much needs doing to it and I just haven’t the money.  I envy people with two incomes.  I’m sick to death of continually struggling on one very average salary.

Yes it’s a post of moans.  Nothing can seem to get me enthused except arranging a team for a work Trivia quiz night.  That was a struggle as well.  Apathy seems to reign supreme.

I’m off to Wellington next weekend for the 5th birthday of the girls’ cousin’s daughter (the family of the ex-inlaws).  I don’t want to go but I should do my duty I suppose.  My daughters will be obliged to go so I’ll have to as well.

The following weekend there’s a belly dancing performance to do also in Wellington.  I don’t want to do that either.  I don’t particularly like the dance (which lasts about 2 minutes) and couldn’t get up any enthusiasm to go to the practice session this week (over and above the normal class).

I just hate Wellington.  It’s a miserable dump of a city.

I’m a total grump.

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Purchases

There’s always something that needs buying and a few pays have now gone by since the dental treatment to recover a little financially.

So it was time to buy a new bed. Initially I was just going to get a new mattress (the old one dating from the early 80s when it was second hand). The old base was long gone and I had a cheap metal frame. So I decided in the end to get mattress and base at the local “Bed Barn” which are reasonably priced. I just got a double – no need for anything bigger.  This meant the spare room had to be “spring-cleaned” to put my old bed in there. This, of course, led to lots of recycling, rubbish and goods-to-be-donated. And there I was yesterday, with a boot-load of donations and nowhere to leave them. The Red Cross used to have a drop-off shed for donated goods but this was firmly locked, now only open during working hours (which is not convenient at all for those of use who work and can afford to donate!). One of those charity donation bins came to the rescue. I ignored the Methodist Social Services clothing bin (I had no clothing) and pounced on the “Africa Arise” (never heard of it) who accepted basically anything including everything I had – ie soft toys, bags, shoes, books and small toys. Yay!

My next planned purchase was a new digital camera. My ‘current’ one insisted that any battery I put into it was expired, no matter how new it was. I was also constantly frustrated at its delay in taking photos once I’d pressed the button. The zoom, while theoretically useful, wasn’t particularly good. When I looked at my daughter’s digital camera (bought for the same price about a year later) I was envious of the quality of pictures and the amazing macro images, as well as video with sound. Then my ISP sent an email offering specials on numerous electronic devices including a Canon digital camera. I priced the model elsewhere and it looked to average between $350-$390. This special was for $315 and came with a case and 2GB memory card. Seemed like a good deal. Ordered it online Monday and it was delivered on Wednesday morning. I call it my early birthday present to myself. I haven’t had a decent play with it yet. Daughter’s boyfriend gleefully told her how much better it was than hers – now she’s jealous. But I only saw marginal improvements – it did pretty much the same as hers. Naturally she grabbed it and took a few photos and discovered you can crop the photo on the camera. Amazing. I’ll need to read the thick manual to find out about it, but there’s daughter, ‘click click click’, and she’s done all sorts of things. Sigh. I feel like an old woman not able to work new technology…

That leaves the final planned purchase – a new lawnmower. The engine of the current one is probably ok but it’s the plastic bits which have broken that now make it unpleasant if not dangerous to use. I’ll have to wait a few more paydays. With this constant rain, I’m not going to be able to mow the back lawn anyway. (I get a man to do the front lawn to keep the neighbours happy.) Perhaps it’ll be my Xmas present to myself – yeah, na.

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