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Friday, June 30, 2006

Oh, the dilemmas...


When a woman is deciding on her ensemble for the day, there are several key factors to consider: the occasion, her shape, her colouring, what’s in her laundry basket and the weather. You get up in the morning, look out the window and start gnashing your teeth and emitting high-pitched squeaks. Women the length of the country pray for warm weather and blazing sunshine; to feel the joy of throwing on two items and striding out the door. Instead we have to undertake co-ordination of garments so complex it would make a certified genius weep. Top, trousers, shoes, gloves, scarf, coat, handbag, brolly, hat. The permutations are endless. Positively mind-numbing. It is a moment of great personal anguish when, once a suitable outfit has been chosen, you realise that you don’t have a jacket that goes with it. And of course going without a jacket isn’t an option. Unless you’re a masochist and enjoy freezing your nipples off. And then there’s rain. The fashionista’s constant nemesis. It’s sly. It’s clever. It’ll find the minuscule invisible-to-the-naked-eye hole in your shoes in about 0.01 seconds. The beloved Chucky T’s are out for starters. And what solution have we come up with to this style conundrum? Patterned wellies. I’m sorry, you could cover them in pictures of a nude Jake Gyllenhaal and rubber shoes still wouldn’t be a stylish alternative in my book. But you give in and buy the pink polka-dot wellies. But you can’t even hide the monstrosities under your uber-trendy boy-fit indigos, because the trailing denim has a better suction action than the latest model Dyson, and soon up to your knees is a squelchy, worryingly murky mess. And, let's not forget, to truly achieve the full effect you must also purchase the co-ordinating brolly. I mean, just imagine going out with clashing shoes and umbrella? Unthinkable!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Still I think I'm doin' fine...


Sigh. Well, I didn't get an interview for a job I was after. Not surprised - everywhere demands a degree, ten years experience, a drivers license, and the ability to walk on water. Ok. I exaggerate. But still, it's disheartening. I panic and think I've made the wrong choice and I should have gone to university this year instead of next, but that's the fear talking. And what do they say? Feel the fear and do it anyway. Yeah, baby! I repeat that mantra to myself and the subsequent enthusiasm lasts approximately 3.5 seconds and then buggers off again.

These events always set me off on a 'what if' train of thought. What if I had gone to university last year, as I had originally wanted to? Where would I be now? Well, living in Edinburgh for one. And how else would my life be different? Well, I know for one that I would have missed out on as many experiences as I would have gained. So, after much navel-gazing and introspection, I'm really none the wiser.

This year, things have changed on all fronts - where I live, what I'm doing with my time, what my friends are doing. Change can be disconcerting. But with it comes new experiences and growth - well, that's the plan anyway. And maybe that the point of life - to learn as you go and be able to laugh. Maybe that's it - nothing more, nothing less.

Anyway, today I could have filled in more applications, but I'll do that tonight. Instead I made muffins. And bloody good they were too. Though I am worried about the fact that I have rediscovered my fondness of baked goods. The chocolate espresso cake I made the other day also disappeared with a disturbing swiftness. I'm sorry, but it's simply not possible to extract the same amount of pleasure that you get from a fresh, still warm baked good than from a salad. Simply not possible. Believe me, I've tried.

PS - A prize for the first person to correctly guess where I stole the title from.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Untitled

I’ve finally starting sorting my stuff out - a mere three months after I moved. You know, there’s nothing more likely to incite a feeling of amazement than trawling through your belongings. I find this to be particularly true of one’s music collection. Unless you happen to be one of those freaky people that have organised their CD collection by artist, genre, chronology or artists haircut, there’s bound to be a few nasty surprises. The other day I started to tackle my own CD pile. I sat in slack jawed confusion as I tried to envisage any circumstance that could possibly have caused me to actually dish out my hard-earned cash for a Corrs album (ok, ok – two Corrs albums).

Or Britney Spears anyone? Nope? Didn’t think so. Mind you, having said all this, I appreciate that there will be people who will look at my most beloved CDs with the dog-eared sleeve notes and think I still need a serious taste transplant. My brother being one such person. Although, why anyone who paid good money to go to a Slayer concert has the right to comment I don’t know. Oh, how he loves to rip the piss right out of me for my (admitted) penchant for singer-songwriters of the female persuasion. I wonder if there’s a support group? Somewhere we can go and admit our guilty secret – “I own the entire Tori Amos back catalogue. Yes, even Strange Little Girls.” And then we break down and sob as everyone claps and says well done. Fiona Apple, Tori Amos, PJ Harvey, Martha Wainwright, Kate Bush and (even I hate to admit this) Alanis Morrisette. Although I draw the absolute line at Mariah Scarey. If you own even one single by that warbling diva I urge you to seek immediate professional help. Mind you, I have hung on to some, you might say questionable, CDs such as Justin Timberlake and Robbie Williams. And you know what? I’m not even slightly embarrassed. That ship sailed with the discovery of the long forgotten Atomic Kitten single.

PS - I am really crap at thinking up post titles. Will work on it.

Transitional Analysis

Yesterday was spent in the company of some of the loveliest people I know - A, Rl, N and baba A, and I took a lot of photos (as usual). I was worried that I was annoying them, but I think they're now used to me hollering, "Wait!" Hold it there! Don't moooooove!" I like to think of it almost as a public service - in years to come we can look back at all the (many, many) photos, reminiscing about our youth and the wonderous experiences we all went through together, while saying "I can't believe I went out in public wearing that."

So, the day started off in the Curlers. When I walked in I couldn't see anything for a good ten minutes, due to the transition from bright sunlight to the relative pitch-blackness of the pub. So it's just as well they were sitting next to the door, really. Didn't stay there for long though, tempting as it was, as N couldn't bring the wee man into the pub. So we went to - if you've ever met any of us, you could probably hazard a guess, here - the Tinderbox. We had much fun eating cake and drinking chai while A bemoaned the ridiculous amount of money she spent on toiletries and such for her trip to Uganda. Though, as we pointed out, she may be poor, but she'll be very healthy and smell fantastic.

Then it was home for a spot of tea - I may as well not have bothered, though, because by the time I got home I had a full twenty minutes to relax and unwind before it was back out again, for an even of chilling chez A. Where we consumed even more cake. And quite a lot of pringles as well.

It was all lovely. But there won't be anymore nights like that for a while, sadly - everyone is off globetrotting and doing exciting things or being a mummy. And, God, I'll miss them. But I also couldn't be more proud of them.

And they say pigs smell bad...

Isn't it lovely when you get unexpected presents? Today I got this:

And they say that pigs smell...

which combines my love of all things pig-related, that have a nice smell and are presents. Thanks, M!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Chai, Cake, and Weirdos on the Subway.

Yesterday, N and I decamped to the Tinderbox for a latte and a natter - well, chai in my case, but anyway - and it took forever. Why do people - baristas in this case - say, “I’ll be with you in a minute” when it is patently a lie? Why not just be honest and say “I’ll be with you whenever I can be arsed. Say in about an hour.” I’m doing them a disservice - Tinderbox is still one of my all time favourite places to stuff my gob with calorific treats. And it is not, I repeat not, because the manager is hot, in a sulky, moody, “I’m-hot-and-don’t-I-just-know-it” kinda way. You see I get cranky when I have a chai urge, and it must be fulfilled right away, goddamit!

So anyway, we had a blether about men and hair (what else?) and it was delightful. (N, I’m still gutted I missed the “Where’s my ice-choc!? Where’s my ice-choc!?” episode.) And then the two random guys at the next table started asking me if I was a photographer, because I was photographing the loose change on the table (well, I had to amuse myself somehow when Nik was out for a ciggy.) Only then did it occur to me that not everyone whips out their camera and takes photos of spare change and empty glasses in the middle of frou frou trendy-arse coffee shops. This obsession has taken root well and truly, boys and girls.

Oh, and I nearly forgot the weirdo on the subway who felt compelled to ask us what stop we were getting off at, and to point out we both had red curly hair. No shit, Sherlock. Evidently I missed the best bit, though - after I alighted at my designated stop he gave N an unprompted, and I’m sure most educational, talk on septicaemia. A good effort on his part, but he didn’t quite top silver deely bopper guy in the spectacular weirdness stakes.

As mentioned, my camera obsession continues apace. I actually topped my best efforts yesterday and combined my love of cameras with my love of food. (No, I didn’t eat my camera.) I did however bake an utterly bloody delicious (if I do say so myself) chocolate espresso cake and then I photographed it. And then put the photo up on Flickr. Rock on.

Hm. When writing this a bird flew smack bang into my closed window. Christ on a bike, it freaked me out.

Friday, June 23, 2006

I've caught blog fever.

Well, it's here. Never thought I'd actually get myself a blog. And, being an Aries (if you hold with that stuff, which I don't, but anyway) and simply being me, I'll probably post twice and give up in a fit of boredom.