Bunny who?

Why? Who? What's this blog about? It's about MEEEE!

Being a Widow

My experience of dealing with grief as a widow

Astrocytoma

About Jane's brain tumour journey: Astrocytoma.co.uk
 

Bloody Murder?

15 December 2006

This morning as JD and I walked out to the car, we noticed a pool of blood on the street, right on front of our house. The puddle looked like someone had smashed his/her head on the pavement and bled profusely. We were quite worried about this but what do you do? After all, we had heard no sirens in front of the house during the night so it could not have been a crime or accident that had required police presence.

We decided to wash it away with hot water and I went to work. JD rang to tell me she decided to call the police before washing the blood away and lo-and-behold, they told her to leave itt because there had been an incident reported in front of our house last night. Within 10 minutes the police arrived, cordoned off a section of the street and started to collect evidence from the scene.

In the end, they found a second pool of blood a bit further down the road and a bloody footprint. It turns out the victim is our upstairs neighbour. They are not sure what has happened to him but he is in hospital in a serius condition after indeed banging his head.

It looks like he smashed his head in front of our house on the pavement, then dragged himself along the road a bit and then was found by a lady and the police called.

That is probably the most exciting thing that has happened in my town in a very long time.
Keep Reading: "Bloody Murder?"

I am Weaver!!

05 December 2006


In some kind of weird lesbian fan-fiction scenario, I have today been compared to Kerry Weaver! There used to be a time where I would find this extremely nice and kind of cool. After all, who does nto want to be a red head, a doctor, a lesbian AND in a relatinship with the (in those days) ever-yummie Kim Legaspi (Elizabeth Mitchell)?

Now none of those things is of course the reason for me being called Weaver. No, it is much simpler and less exciting. I have rruptured some tendon/ligamentt in my foot at rugby this weekend. And so I am currently hobbling along with a crutch. I work in an office with all-blokes so I was a little surprised when one of them said: Do you ever watch ER, there is this doctor with a crutch, you remind me of her now.

Oh, it takes me back to the days when JD and I were only just getting to know each other. ER addicts we were. Rooting for Kim and Kerry to get together, shrug off the fear of being discovered and show us some good on-screen loving.

Oh well, one can dream. In the end, just as well that Kerry Weaver did not go witth Kim Legaspi. Because look at how Elizabeth Mitchell turned out: From hottie with curls to skinny woman with straight hair. Ugh!
Keep Reading: "I am Weaver!!"

New house

28 November 2006


Meet our new house. It is the flat on the far left corner of the building on the 4th floor. I am WELL happy with it. JD has not seen it yet as she had no time to come to N. at lunch time. So it is a surprise for her too!!
Keep Reading: "New house"

New job

23 November 2006

very busy but very nice place to work. Time flies during the week. Good blokes to work with, nice and relaxed. Yeah, I can see this happening here.

House hunting this Saturday. Northampton here we come!!
Keep Reading: "New job"

Craig

08 November 2006

When I leave on Friday, I will have to surpress the urge to send some people in my company an email telling them how I really feel about them. Most people who work here are OK, some are exceedingly irritating and one of them has actually become a really good friend.

But one person stands out in a not so good way. He irritates the hell out of me. And not just me in fact. He is supposed to be Production Manager. I think he does not know what that actually means because he does not produce anything, nor does he manage anything.

He spends most of his time moaning to other people, dissing his line manager, telling everyone how he is so undervalued and poisoning the atmosphere in the business.

Many times people have insisted he gets fired and none of his managers have done so.

He will come into the Sales Office and try to find out how the Sales are going, what projects are we likely to get and wehat not. His excuse is that he needs to know what is in the pipeline so that he can order any parts required.

He never orders sweet fuck all, even when he DOES know. The person who will tel lhim what is in the pipeline will tell him in a weekly production meeting. But because he does not like that person, he comes to us and complains that nobody tells him anything.

He DOES know what is going on. Like everyone else, he too hears loads of stuff through the grapevine. But to him, that is not good enough. His issue is that he has not been told officially. He feels someone should sit him down and say: Here are all the jobs the sales team has quoted for, these are all their probabilities. Now go and prepare your stock.

But since it is not up to him to get stock sorted without the sales team being more than 50% sure of getting a job, he is only on a need-to-know basis for anything that is still under 50%.

Simple, right?

Well, not for Craig (name changed to protect the innocent, and myself). He moans and moans and gets upset when he finds out that someone else knows but not him. He could of course just come up and ask. And we will most likely tell him. But he doesn't. He waits and waits, then comes into the sales office and says: I need to ask you about so-and-so. I have heard things floating around but nobody tells me anything here so what can you tell me?

Fuck off Craig! Go and do everyone a favour: go and work for a different company and stop making mountains out of the tiniest piece of dust. He is a bitter, twisted man who actually disses the company to suppliers who come to the door delivering their goods....

His favorite line is: Nobody ever tells me anything here.

Well, Boo-Hoo! Perhaps it is because you are a fucking useless twat.

*rant over*

And this afternoon he told me he would be missing me when I had gone.

Duh.
Keep Reading: "Craig"

And then it changes again....

07 November 2006

Instead of me leaving the band, the bass player has been told to leave. Turns out that he had a problem with me and that he was thinking of leaving anyway. The fiddle player then persuaded him to stay but when I decided to leave, it was a simple matter of him or me.

Now I did not really want it to become a him or me situation. After all, he apparently had a problem with me, I did not have a problem with him (I think). I just felt it was more his band than mine, hence I should be the one to leave if I was unhappy.

Turns out he felt like they were becoming my backing band, rather than a band without a leader where everyone is equally important. The problem is that this happens a lot when one person (me) is the one doing all the singing and talking on stage. He was more than happy to hide behind a speaker box on stage and let me do the talking. And yet, he was unhappy about me fronting the band on stage?

I am a little confused by all that. I admit I can be quite...well.....in your face. I have tried not to be like that too much and give other members of the band space to take the lead. But all too often I found that nobody wanted to take the lead, resulting in minutes of staring at each other, waiting for someone else to say: Let's get going.

I do not see the band as my backing band. But I AM the ONLY singer in the band. That makes me the focus of the band when we are on stage. That is not my fault, that is the way it is.

So in the end, the fiddle player called me and asked if I would stay if the bass player was to go. I said I would definately give it a shot. And so I am still in this band.

Let's see where this goes now. Hopefully we can now gel together a bit more, get a good new bassplayer in who can help to keep the drummer on track s othat I can ficus on singing and playing guitar and not sing, play guitar, remember lyrics, nod at the drummer when he needs to end the song or look at the fiddle player when it is time for his solo.

It will be interesting.

Stay tuned.
Keep Reading: "And then it changes again...."

Funny how things go

03 November 2006

Only 2 days ago I wrote about my band doing a nice gig, only for this morning to have written an email announcing I am leaving the band.

No, it is not an impulsive thing, more a case of: this is the right moment.
After my email, apologising for lashing out (a little) on Tuesday, I got a text from the fiddle player, asking him to call him to 'discuss a few things'. At that point, I decided to leave the band.

I did not feel like defnding myself or explaining myself, other than during the normal band-evenings on Tuesday. If there is something that needs to be discussed, then we can do it when we are all there, not in a fashion that makes me feel like there is something that needs to be discussed with ME in particular.

There is an important thing to note about this band: we did not get together as friends, making a bit of music.
I auditioned for a band that did music I liked. They liked my voice (I was in fact the only one that showed up) and I joined because I wanted to be in a band. We did not grow to be friends. Only speaking once a week on Tuesdays for rehearsals that have always been sligthly strained. Too many people in the band are playing songs they don't like, just to keep others happy.

And if you are not friends, and you are also not really enjoying most of the music you are playing, then what exactly is the reason to be in a band?

And so, instead of calling the fiddle player to discuss the things that happened on Tuesday, I emailed him to say I was leaving the band.

I just can not be bothred with doing something that is like pulling teeth, that lreaves me frustrated and angry every week.

I am not saying I was right and they are wrong. But compare it to this: you meet someone and on the first date she says: I don't want kids. You really do want kids. What do you do? Stay togethre and build something, hoping that when it comes to that point, things will magically sort themselves out? or do you say: Well, if that is the case, then we would both be better off finding someone who matches our desires?

I knwo what I would do.

And so left. Because if not now, then we would fall apart in a few months time.


I am far too busy to drag myself away every Tuesday and pay money to play in a band that will fall apart soon.

I'll find another band when I have moved to Northampton. Nothing much lost for me.
Keep Reading: "Funny how things go"

Re-think

01 November 2006

I am having a re-think about this blog. in the past few days there have been many things I have wanted to blog about. But I haven't blogged about them. Why not? Don't know. Nobody reads this blog so why bother writing things that I am thinking? if I am doing this only for myself, then I might as well stick to mulling things over in my own head without bothering to write them down, right?

But then again, some things are nice to share with the world and with the few family members and friends who read this blog to keep, kind of, track of what is happening in my life.

Hmm...should I start writing observations about The English? Should I stick to my private life?

Hmmm...well, not sure about the private life bit but in any case, I am VERY excited about my sister being pregnant. JD & I are going to be aunties.

Hopefully it is a nice kid that will love sport. My sister is not a fussy type and she has said that if it will be a girl, she will not be 'a girly girl'. Good. I shall take her to rugby games when she visits us.

I don't want kids. I think I am now resonably sure of that. I had to watch a 5 year old girl in the office last week (my colleague's babysitter had let her down and since I have an office to my self at the very end of the building....)

I tried all the Doctor Tanya methods of child raising but the kid still wouldn't listen to me. In the end I just got angry and threatened to put her toy dinosaur through the shredder if she did not retun my fluffy frog to me right away.


That worked.

But being aunty is a different matter. I wat to call my sister every day to see if all is still going well, how she is feeling, is there a scan yet, a picture perhaps. has she given up coffee, alcohol and cigarettes and so on and so on. I am probably worse than my mother!!

Winding up my last 2 weeks at my current job. I have lost all inspiration to be frank and I am not realyl motivated to do anything much at all. I really have to drag myself to the office. Not because I suddenly hate it, but because my mind is already elsewhere, worrying about how good or bad I will be at the new job.

In the mean time, my band, www.threeleggeddog.co.uk, is doing quite well. Had 3 gigs so far and they all went well. Rehearsals are still a bit like pulling teeth sometimes. Somehow I feel that I have been shoved into the role of band leader and I am not sure I like that. I have to nod at the drummer when his bit comes up, I have to nod at the violinist when his solo starts, I have to learn my lyrics, the chords and the melody and finally I have to front the band when we are on stage.

I have no problem doing the things I should be doing (singing, playing and fronting the band on stage) but sometimes I feel that if I do not say anything during rehearsal, nothing will happen. I tried it last night. I got ready, plugged my guitar in, got the mike set up and did not say anything. I waited for someone else to say: Righ, let's play this song or practise that part.......and nothing happened. So I cracked first in the uncomfortable silence.

And in the end, I just said: Look guys, are we doing anything or shall I just go home because I am wasting my time here I feel.

I did apologise for it this morning but still, it is a frustration I have had for a while. I am not saying that I am better than the other guys, that is not the issue. Because I make mistakes and forget the chords, words & endings too......

I don't know.......I am having doubts about where this band is going. Which is a shame because we seem to be doing really well once we are on stage.
Keep Reading: "Re-think"

New job

09 October 2006

Well, it has taken me a while to get back to writing something here (too much time spent on the website for the rugby club!!) but I am back (for how long, I don't know).

And I have a new job! I have finally managed to escape the clutches of my boring desk job. this job will require me to move to a new city. Not a problem. Northampton here I come. Apparently Northampton is much cheaper than Leamington Spa.

I shall now be working as a Creative Co-Ordinator for a Marketing agency. Sounds cool huh, but what the hell does it mean? No idea. I will be doing a large pat office management, organising the call-shoots for the creative people and whatever else one does in an office that is staffed by creative people whose job it is to be nothing but creative and think of nothing else.

I am looking forward to this immensely. Hopefully this will not mean that Ihave to give up playing for my current rugby club. In fact, one of the good things about the new job is that the office is only 10 minutes away from the Northampton Saints Rugby Stadium! Premiership rugby on my doorstep. Season Ticket here I come!!

More soon.
Keep Reading: "New job"

The world has gone mad...

12 September 2006

Up to 11 stingrays have been found dead and mutilated on Australia's eastern coast since the Crocodile Hunter's death, prompting fears that Irwin's fans are exacting their revenge on the normally docile fish.

From The Guardian.

So much for peopel supporting Steve Irwin is his effort to preserve nature. Aussies are just a tad short-sighted and blessed with an even shorter memory it seems. Well, some Aussies that is.
Keep Reading: "The world has gone mad..."

Steve Irwin's death

05 September 2006



I found this picture on StopLog and it made me laugh.

Obviously it is sad that Steve Irwin has died. It would be harsh to say 'he had it coming' but he kind of did really. Wrestling with crocs and deadly animals. One day you are going to come across ananimal that will win the battle.

However the above picture is from the CNN website and shows how well the automatic AdWords feature is working. The software scans the article for keywords and picks out the right ad to go next to the story. Clearly it worked here.

Update: Uberfeminist (or: Old Hag) Germaine Greer has written a little diddy about the death of Steve Irwin. Greer, who gets asked for her opinion on everything with the word Australia in it, feels it is all a little over the top. I totally agree with her of course.

There was no habitat, no matter how fragile or finely balanced, that Irwin hesitated to barge into, trumpeting his wonder and amazement to the skies. There was not an animal he was not prepared to manhandle. Every creature he brandished at the camera was in distress. Every snake badgered by Irwin was at a huge disadvantage, with only a single possible reaction to its terrifying situation, which was to strike. Easy enough to avoid, if you know what's coming.

Very true. But of course the Australian media, who were slaughtering Irwin only 2 years ago when he fed a crocodile whilst holding his baby son under his arm, were quick to aim their arrows at Greer. Her 'attack' on 'our Stevo' was unfair, unfounded, a disgrace, a national shame and so on. They must have forgotten that they themselves called him an idiot and accused him of child abuse. At least Greer did not attack Steve personally. She merely attacked his media persona and his actions.

The animal world has finally taken its revenge on Irwin, but probably not before a whole generation of kids in shorts seven sizes too small has learned to shout in the ears of animals with hearing 10 times more acute than theirs, determined to become millionaire animal-loving zoo-owners in their turn.

Greer is a scary woman who likes little boys far too much. but she is definately right with this one.
Keep Reading: "Steve Irwin's death"

It is over

29 August 2006

Thank the Lord. JD has finished her disseration and life has returned, more or less, to normal again in our house. No longer are weekends sacrificed to the God of Education. They are now spent doing things together again. It has been really difficult for both me and JD but I think we have learned lessons for next time.

Next time, I hear you say? Yes. JD wants to do a Phd. to become Dr. D. This takes another 3 year (ARRRGGGHHH) of studying. Not something I look forward to but I guess if we both take the lessons we hav learned this time around, things should be a lot easier.

But now, we are off to Holland for a long weekend. My folks are celebrating their 1000-or so-year wedding anniversary and we are going back to Vlieland. As a very young child, I spent a few holidays there. Most of the time I was too young to remember but I have seen the pictures and I look quite happy in most of them. My sister is extremely excited because she remembers much more than I do. She remembers running along the beach in the pouring rain, playing in the playground on the wooden see-saw etc.

The playground has now probably been made "child-friendly" (read: all risk of getting a scratch has been removed for fear of a law suit) with plastic equipment instead of the nice big wooden beams we used to play with.

Hopefully the weather will hold. The islands in the north of Holland are not known for their good weather.

In fact, a few years ago, they demanded that the weathermen on TV & radio stopped saying that the weather in the country was going to be fine, except for the Islands! They felt this was giving them a bad reputation. They wanted him to simply say: In most of the country, the weather will be fine. According to them, this covered the weathermen for any eventualities of bad weather.......

Hehehehe.

In the mean time, have a look at the website for my rugby club, Old Leamigntonians RFC. I have been working really hard on it and I am almost pleased with the result. All I need now is for the design to be changed and make it look a bit more rugby-like.
Keep Reading: "It is over"

OutsidePride update

10 August 2006

I couldn't resist and I wrote the lovely people of Outside Pride an email:

Dear Outside Pride people,

First of all I want to express my support for all the staff who now have to mop up the mess Mr. Hake has created with his email rant. You are the ones who have to wade through the spam, which I am sure will not be landing in HIS email box but in yours.

As opposed to Mr. Hake though, I am not afraid to supply you with a return email address. And since your website promises to send me a reply as soon as possible, I will be looking out for a response soon.

I want to strongly object against his email in general. Quite aside from the homophobic content of the message, he has violated the privacy of your clients by abusing the mailing list to further his own personal agenda of hate.

I am interested to know how many of your clients actually appreciate getting this email, even if they do agree with the contents of it.

Further more, I am quite worried about the mental health of his children. He seems to consider Cold Case and Without a Trace to be Family Viewing. We ARE talking about two police shows that discuss rape, murder, sexual abuse and graphic scenes of violence, right? Or is he talking about different shows? These shows are on later in the evening so his children must be going to bed quite late. This is something the Child Protection Services might be interested in as it may be seen as neglect and bad parenting?

I am interested in the textbooks about homosexuals. Can he please give me some titles so that I can buy them for my children and educate them on the contributions gay men & women have made to the United States? Especially when it comes to gardening, I think you will find a large number of gays & lesbians who have really pushed the sector forward.

Can you also please let Mr. Hake know that he really should check his spelling and grammar before sending out emails to his clients? It is so unprofessional to have obvious mistakes in your corporate communication.

CBS is not a public broadcaster so sending them complaints about public broadcasting will only make them laugh.

Now I am not a Christian-phobe but I must really strongly object to Mr. Hake using his mailing list to further his own agenda. I am not asking for his opinion about private matters. I really do not want him to flaunt his religion in my face. What he does behind closed doors is his free choice, but do not try to convince me that believing we were all created by some kind of spirit who can hear the individual prayers of 2 billion people 24/7 and answer them all, is normal behaviour.

I personally think that he needs help so that he can learn to understand the error of his way. So that he can learn to make his own choices and not shun all responsibilities by saying: it is what God says. Because God does not say gays are wrong. Remember David, who loved his friend more than he loved a woman?

I think Christians are brainwashed, deluded and sick.

But I am not using my mailing list to spam thousands of people with that thought.

I look forward to a response from Mr. Hake. A personal response would be appreciated, not some standard one that everyone gets.

Kind regards,
Keep Reading: "OutsidePride update"

OutsidePride hates fags

This story has been doing the rounds for the past few days and it is too good to miss.

The CEO of a company called OutsidePride (Come on, tell me what your first thought is here?) has sent his clients his regular newsletter. Tony Hake usually chats about how to order seeds, how to fertilize your garden and how to help your grass grow.

But this time, the tone of his missieve was slightly different than the usual one. This time, whilst watching Cold Case & Without a Trace on CBS, he flew in to a rage. And this time, he felt he should reach out to his clients and speak to them directly about personal matters. What better way to reach many peopel than to use those wonderful email addresses of all those clients who have bought seeds and fertilizer from you?
OK, your company website says that the email addresses wil never be sold and that your privacy will never be invaded, but surely signing up to the newsletter means that they can send you whatever they want?

And so Troy Hake sat down and wrote the following email to all his clients:

This is not your typical newsletter from Outsidepride.com, Inc. In fact, this is the first one in six years which is not business related. I apologize for cluttering your inbox with an unsolicited email; however you are free to unsubscribe just by clicking the link at the bottom.

I want to share with you my television viewing experience the other night on prime time television. I ask those of you who agree with me to go to www.cbs.com and go to the bottom of the page, click the feedback link and express your opinion. I know the vast majority of you will agree with me as all polls indicate. We are the majority, not the minority as the liberal media would lead you to believe.

My wife and I sat down to watch television the other night with our children. Cold Case was on which is normally a fairly enjoyable show to watch; however, the last half hour of the show dealt with a young man who wished he had asked his male friend to come with him (long story short). The show ended with the two men hugging and obvious intimation they had discovered their gay feelings towards each other. The very next show was Without A Trace. The whole last half hour of this show was about two lesbians who were struggling with their feelings of lesbianism. It ended with full acceptance from one father and the two lesbians making out. Yes, they were kissing right at the end of the show on public prime time television. So much for wholesome family television.


Now, I am NOT trying to bash homosexuals and I am not a bigot; however, I feel homosexuality is morally wrong and should not be "promoted" as what is the norm for society. Text books are being rewritten as I am writing this to "highlight" every homosexual who has made a contribution to society. There are teachers who have been asked to make sure students know that, "This person in history was a homosexual." History is being rewritten to promote homosexuality and prime time television is doing its best to make homosexuality a "normal" behavior. If homosexuality was the norm, civilization would have ceased to exist thousands of years ago. Procreation takes a man and a woman. There was Adam and then there was Eve, not Adam and Steve.

There are literally tens of thousand of you reading this email right now. If you are tired of the way public television is going let CBS know! It will only take about 1 minute of your time. Again, just go to www.cbs.com and click the feedback link at the bottom. It is time the majority speak up and not let the minority run this country. The majority can bring back the Christian heritage this country was founded on because it is, "In God We Trust."

Thank you for your time,

Troy Hake
President
Outsidepride.com, Inc.




So imagine you have bought fertilizer off this bloke and signed up to the newsletter to keep informed about the latest developments on artificial shit. Well, this is it, it seems.

Now I have a few issues with this email. Apart fromthe homophobic-side of it.

1) Since when are shows like Cold Case & Without a Trace wholesome family viewing? They are about death, murder and violence.

2) What makes him think all his clients agree with him, just because they bought seeds, weeds & fertilizer?

3) What makes it morally right to spam people?

4) WHat made him so angry? I am sure there are far worse things on TV, with far more explicit homosexuality than these two men hugging and these women kissing each other? (Note: Perhaps not in the US, but in Europe certainly!)

5) He might want to look in to changing the name of his company. The name alone makes me think there is something gay going on there.

Maybe we should send this man an email: troyh@outsidepride.com
Keep Reading: "OutsidePride hates fags"

21k Today

No. That is not my new salary unfortunately. But my age according to Jane. Apparently you stop counting the years after 21 but you just add a letter to it. What happens after you reach 21z I am not sure. But I am feeling a little old. THe hairdresser cut my hair in a horrible cut, I can see the grey when I try to do my hair in the morning and the mirror shows me a picture of an 'older lesbian', the ones I used to look at when I was younger and think: surely by hat age you no longer have short spikey hair.

Oh well, the future is here and now. Great.
Keep Reading: "21k Today"

Pay Rise!

31 July 2006

Yay! I have just been given a pay rise! The board of directors agreed that I have seriously improved my work standards and that I have stepped up to the challenge when I got a new boss. It it true that I now work harder and do more. I am less unhappy. But that does not mean I am happy with my job.

I feel a bit of guilt though. My new boss has pushed hard to get me this pay rise, even if it is, in her word,s not as much as she had hoped for. She has plans for me to get more responsibilities so she hopes that in the future, there will be even more money in the pot for me.

Then why the guilt?

Well, last week, one of the other managers in the business needed help. All her admin support was sick or on holiday. So for that week, I moved in to her part of the building. We had a fantasitc week. Very very stressfull but so much fun. Obviously helped by the fact that I was not sitting alone all day, but still, I had good fun and did fun work. She mentioned she could do with a side kick and would I be interested....(This was before my boss told me of the pay rise). I said yes as it would make me more autonomous, more of a trouble shooter (something I am really good at), closer to assistant manager or something like that and I would be working for a friend, rather than a boss. (I know many people think that is a bad idea but I personally prefer it because I feel 'guilt-bound' to help my friend and do a good job for her. It is just the way I work).

So she promised she would float the idea with the directors because she really needs a side-kick.

The same directors who only a few days ago decided that I deserved a pay rise in my current job. The pay rise my current boss had asked for because I was doing so well....

I spun a web.....and now for the entanglement.....
Keep Reading: "Pay Rise!"

Bunny overload

25 July 2006

Seeing the name of this blog has bunnies in it, I give you:
Bunnies.
Keep Reading: "Bunny overload"

Adults behaving like children


I am 30. But I like playing outside. I like playing football in the street and frisbee in the park. I also like playing with my Super Soaker. I think water pistols are fun and more people should play with them. There are some really cool pictures of me and JD, back in The Hague, running around, hiding behind cars, bandanas around our heads, fighting each other with Super Soakers.

Last week, on our way to rugby training, I lowered the car window and soaked unsuspecting pedestrians and cyclists as I drove past. Bit of fun. JD was mortified. I thought is was fun and I was squeaking with glee!

Peopl eget really confused when they see adults having a bit of innocent play-fun.

Some people have taken this even further and have developed Street Wars.

It is an assasination game. At the start of the game you will receive a manila envelope containing the following:

A picture of your intended target(s)
The home address of your intended target(s)
The work address of your intended target(s)
The name of your intended target(s)
Contact information of your intended target(s)

Upon receipt of these items, your (or your team's) mission is to find and kill (by way of water gun, water balloon or super soaker) your target(s).

How much fun is that!!! About 150 at the same time play the game and some peopel really go all-out and stalk their targets, dress up to surprise them as delivery men etc.

Of course some silly old boring people think this is all very wrong, especially in this era of terrorism & fear blah blah blah. I think it is just people having fun with a water gun. Get over it. Some people just enjoy doing this kind of thing because they like the thrill of the hunt but don't really like the death-part of it all.

And some do it simply because they like spraying other people with Super Soakers. I would sign up for it if I had the time.

Now go outside and play. The sun is out. Go on. Play. You know you want to.
Keep Reading: "Adults behaving like children"

Holiday...

24 July 2006

JD & I escaped to Wales for the weekend. It was lovely and hot. We arrived in Barmouth on Friday night, 11pm!! Honestly, the bendy, winding roads of Wales slow you down but not to 20mph surely? The guy in front of us certainly seemed to think so and I was eating my steering wheel in anger by the time we got to the campsite.
The reception is closed but there is a phone number for late arrivals.

The guy on the phone said: We don't take new campers at 11pm. But I rang you earlier today and a lady said I could arrive late? We have no lady working here. But but but....what do I do now? Don't know but I don't take any new people at this time of night. You would wake up the kids from the other guests.

I had a bit of a rant at him and then hung up.

And there we were. Lost in Wales. But thank goodness, just down the road is another campsite. They happily take us at 11pm. And with a bit of embarrassement, I realise it was this campsite that I rang earlier in the day and not the other one. So I ranted at the poor bloke for no reason.....oops.

Being late, we had no real choice of pitch and in the dark, we picked the steepest hill on the campsite. Needless to say JD & I slept very little, trying not to roll down the hill.

In the morning, we picked up the tent and walked down the hill to a nice flat spot. The weather was lovely and we had a nice weekend. On Sunday, we went swimming inthe ocean and spent the next 3 hours bodyboarding. I really did not want to go home.

It is so nice to just get away from things, even if it is only for a few days. Walking around on a campsite, bare feet in the grass, cooking on a single-burner Camping Gaz-thing, sleeping in a hot tent, no cold food, melted cheese in your tent, walking down to the beach.....how can anyone NOT like camping?
Keep Reading: "Holiday..."

Be a wanker

19 July 2006

I know, it contradicts my earlier post about sperm donation but why not combine the two events?

Masturbate-a-thon 2006

The idea is to break the US record of 8 hours of masturbation. Now surely it would be great if at this event, fluff-bunnies could walk around to collect the result of all this wanking? It could then be donated to a good cause.

If you don't want to participate, no stress. Channel"fucking"4 will broadcast the event in November this year.
Keep Reading: "Be a wanker"

Oprah is not gay

18 July 2006

...there is just no word to explain her relationship with Gayle King.

Fair enough. There are many women, especially in African countries, who live together like husband and wife (with or without sex) who would never consider themselves gay. It would be kind of cool if Oprah came out (why has she never married her long-time lover Steadman, I wonder???) but I agree: there are friendships between women that can not be explained within the normal terms of friendship or lover. Perhaps the word Soulmate was made more for that kind of relationship?

However, this is not the first time Oprah feels the need to let the world know she is not gay. After appearing the the Coming Out episode of Ellen in 1997, she also made sure everyone knew she was not gay. It appeared that everyone felt she was 'guilty by association'. Merely appearing on Ellen made her suspect. Duh!

I am still waiting for Whitney Houston to come out. But I am not holding my breath.

Update: Hmmmm... I am getting worried about Oprah's motives now. Found another website of someone who went to a taping of The Oprah Show in 2005. After the show, Oprah, once again, explained to the audience that she is not gay. Yes, we get the picture now.
Keep Reading: "Oprah is not gay"

Support the London Olympics

17 July 2006


Today I finally bought my first scratch card. I do not buy lottery tickets or scratch cards because they are a waste of money and you never really win much. Once you start, it is hard to stop, hoping you will win with the next one you buy.

But I support the London 2012 Olympics and the easiest way to donate money to the cause is the buy a scratch card. They cost £2 per card so, on an impulse today at the petrol station, I bought 2, donating a grand total of £4 to the Olympic Cause.

Unfortunately for them, they now owe me £16 as I bought a winning scratch card!! Yay! I matched the Golden Ring. It is a little cheap for £16 but hey, it is still a win. So instead of donating £4 to the cause, they are now £12 worse off. Does that mean I should spend that £12 on more scratch cards? If I don't, then the whole purpose of me buying one in the first place makes no sense......
Keep Reading: "Support the London Olympics"

..............

10 July 2006

Holland did not win the world cup, Zidane gave a racist Italian a headbutt and got sent off and Italy is world champion. ANything else happen overhere? Nope.

I got an award from the rugby team again. This time for Club Woman of the year. That award goes to the person who has done most to promote the club and who has done a lot of work to keep the team/club going. Obviously a mistake to give it to me but hey-ho, so far I have 2 awards for 2 years of playing rugby. Not bad.

The sponsor I had for the club's website has vanished. He literally no longer replies to my emails. Yet somebody is doing some stuff on the webserver so I can not just wipe it all out and start all over.

However, anyone here have any experience with Joomla! or Mambo? If so, then please help me out to set up our new website. Perhaps your company wants to sponsor us in exchange for a nice website?

Anyone? Hello??????
Keep Reading: ".............."

WOmen are anti-men

29 June 2006

Now I am laughing again!! It seems that male homosexuality is caused by women having some kind of anti-men antibody. And if a woman gives birth to a lot of boys, the chances of the next one being gay increase. the theory is that perhaps these anti-men antibodies kind of accumulate with every pregnancy. I reckon that by having more boys, statistically you simply have a bigger chance of having a gay son.

As usual, there is no mention of female homosexuality in the research....


Men and their sexual orientation
Keep Reading: "WOmen are anti-men"

Over

26 June 2006

Well, that was a short-lived World CUp for the Dutch team. Oh well, it was boring enough to have to watch onmy own, without any other orange idiots around me. It is a shame we did not get much further in the tournament but it was obvious that the young side misses experience to be smart and calm when needed, instead of trying to attack attack attack all the time.

Am more pissed off about the fact that some wanker felt he had to break off the orange flag I was proudly flying on the car. Why don't people keep their hands of other people's property? It really pisses me off. Out of revenge, I will not support England. Well, I will only support England out of love for JD. But christ, England are boring me to death this tournament. No passion, no good football, no red cards, nothing. Just boring. They won't last long this tournament. Shame. Now there is nobody left to cheer for.

I will pack up my orange goodies until Euro 2008. See you then.
Keep Reading: "Over"

Don't be a wanker!

21 June 2006

Keep Reading: "Don't be a wanker!"

I didn't get it

Unsurprisingly I did not get the job. They offered to give me feedback but I am afraid to call them. I am afraid I will try to argue with them about why I said what I said and why I think I really should be given a chance. I should just listen and try to see the positives I guess. But why did they ask me to come back, tell me I would have had the job the first time around if the other person had not accepted it? Why get my hopes up if I did not really get a chance? Or did I really do so extrordinarily badly this time that all the positive things from the first interview were forgotten?

They only advertised on their website and internally and got 3 internal candidates. I assume one of them got the job. If this is about my lack of industry specific knowledge, then I wonder why the hell they asked me back in the first place as they knew this was the case.

I guess I should not be angry until I know the reasons. But I am not sure they will give me the REAL reasons. And I am not sure I want to know because I am afraid it has something to do with the ADHD (we think you might be too direct, we think you might get bored, we think you may struggle organising your work load, we think......)

I am angry that they got my hopes up, I am angry that I didn't get it but I am more angry because I feel I am not given a chance to prove that I really CAN do it.
Keep Reading: "I didn't get it"

Fluffed it

15 June 2006

I think I fluffed it. I know I said this last time but last time at least I felt the interview went well. This time it started with the test (last time that was the last thing to do). I feel extremely bad about the test. For starters because I did not finish it. But also because I just did not know what to make of it.

The interview was a bit….well….difficult. And I think I ruined it when they asked me how I would prioritise having 7 different things going on at the same time. I messed up explaining that one completely. I am sure I left them with the impression that I do not like to be put under pressure and that I like things to be handed to me one by one. I saw the look on their faces when I fluffed it up.

Shame. I asked them why I did not get it last time. They said the girl who got it had more exact experience but that I had come second and would have been offered the job had the other girl declined. Nice to know. This time I feel it did not go so well during the interview.

They asked why I was still in my current job, 4 months after I told them I really wanted a new job. I explained that I had not been looking much lately as it was very very busy and I had promised the new boss to hang around until she had trained the new Sales Manager who is joining us next week. Loyalty, basically.

They had not advertised the job in the press this time. Only on their own website. About 5 people have applied and they will let me know in 7 working days.

But I think, again, my lack of knowledge about the agricultural sector will let me down.
Shit.

On the nice side, my boss texted me to wish me good luck and said: Be confident. Make sure they are good enough for you to want to work there.

Maybe she is not so bad after all. Actually, I know she isn't. It was all just a matter of us both getting used to the new working style after Old Boss left.

I WANT that job. I REALLY REALLY want it.

GIVE ME THE JOB!!!
Keep Reading: "Fluffed it"

Got the interview!

13 June 2006

Yay!! I got an interview for this job I applied for!! Now I am getting really nervous. I had to take the afternoon off to do the interview and when my colleague asked if I was doing anything nice that afternoon, I just said: Erhm....stuff. She immideately said: Oooh....where is the interview and who is it with.....:)

I explained the whole situation:

- 1st interview. Did not get job but was told I was fantastic and could they keep my details.
- 4 weeks later: phonecall to see if I would still be available for the job as they were restructuring the department and might have a place for a similar position.
- 4 weeks after that: Phonecall to let me know they had reviewed the department's needs and decided they needed another Press & PR Officer. The vacancy was about to be published on their website and they wanted to let me know I could apply if I wanted to.(Note: this time I did not see it published in the local press where I found the ad last time)
- This Thursday: job interview.

My colleague's reaction was: They have created a job for you.

I am getting nervous now. Last time I had to do a test and found it really difficult. I have already been told I will have to do the whole thing again: interview and then a test. What if my really good test was just a fluke? What if I just struck lucky? I really just bluffed my way through it (I thought).

Also, I have a dilemma. The last test revolved around the use of peat. I did not know that word so I had to be very general about the words I used, knowing roughly what peat was but not 100% sure. Peat could be turf but that is not exactly the same etc.

So this time, I am considering bringing a dictionary. If I do, I will have to inform them of this as you are not allowed any items in the room when you do the test. If I were to get the job, I would keep a dictionary on my desk, just to make 100% sure I understand the meaning of some words. To me, that just means I am thorough, rather than insecure. However, if I were to keep the dictionary handy during the test, would that make them think my command of English is not enough to do the job?

What do you think? Take the dictionary, ask if I can use it and hope they see it as a sign of wanting to be thorough, or not use it and run the risk of getting into trouble with words I might not know?

Help!!!
Keep Reading: "Got the interview!"

World Cup Madness

I have a little Orange flag on my car. Just to make sure they know I am not English. So far the world cup has been fun. Having been away from Holland for 3 years, I am not sure I have a bond with this national team. So I don't know what to expect. Their first match was, according to some, really good. I found it nerve wrecking!

In their infitine wisdom, FIFA have decided today the close the roof of one of their stadiums. Earlier, it turned out a video screen in the middle of the stadium created a huge shadow on the pitch (Jeez, I could have come up with that! Just look at the picture!!). FIFA's response was not to remove the ugly contraption but to close the roof of the stadium so no sunlight could come in. FIFA said: Creating extra shade will make it cooler for the players and the fans. Clearly forgetting there will be 45,000 fans breathing for 2 hours underneath a metal & glass roof. Sounds more like a greenhouse to me.

Especially with FIFA's refusal to have drinks breaks during the matches, this is bordering on irresponsible. It is 37 degrees inside the stadiums for crying out loud.

I am really really excited about this whole World Cup thing and I will most definately be looking to watch more Holland matches with other Dutch people, if I can find them!! Anyone living near Birmingham? Have car, will travel.
Keep Reading: "World Cup Madness"

Finally!

09 June 2006

The World Cup is about to start. Finally. I have a neat Orange Flag on my car, to distinguish me from the English people here. Will be wearing my most Orange outfit and look like a lone fool on Sunday afternoon in the pub.

I am SO looking forward to it. Because I have been away from Holland during the preparations, I don't actually know how good or bad we are. So I have hopes but no expectations.

The blog has gone Orange and will probably stay like that afterwards as I quite like it.
Keep Reading: "Finally!"

Married...

07 June 2006

I am now officially Civilly Partnered (Married, I mean) to JD. Yippee. It was wonderful. How dare people deny me the right to stand in front of all my family and loved ones and say: This is the woman I love and this the woman I want to spend my life, or at least a good part of it, with.

It seems that George Bush has finally bitten the dust on the issue of trying to amend the constitution to ban gay marriages. This nitwit keeps saying he does not feel the federal government should interfere with state affairs. Except of course when it suits him and his Christian God Squad, the Happy Clappers.

US Senate blocks gay-marriage ban.

People do not realise it is not just the gays and lesbians who are under threat from this lunatic. He grants internships in the White House ONLY to pupils from a strictly religious school, does not fund family planning, unless they tell kids not to have sex at all, he does not give aid to Africa unless they
tell people not to have sex at all. He is dangerous in many more ways than people think.


Oh hang on, this was a post about my wedding. Well, it was lovely. And I have the ring to prove it! Stick that up your ass, you religious freaks.
Keep Reading: "Married..."

Writer

30 May 2006

I am writing for a Dutch national newspaper about life in England during the World Cup. Feels kind of cool to be able to put on my CV that I write a twice-weekly column for a national newspaper. You can find the columns on the internet if you look hard enough:)

In the mean time, the people I had an interview with back inFebruary have come back to me and have asked me to apply for the same job again as they have decided they need 2 instead of 1. They rang to say: We have a similar job available and we thought you might want to know so that you can apply for it. That is a good sign. I really want the job. But how enthusiastic should I get about this? I still have to send in the application form, hope to get an interview and then hope to be the best of the bunch that applies this time. I really want the job but I don't want to get my hopes up to high.

How hopeful should I be?
Keep Reading: "Writer"

Help!

22 May 2006

Oh my God. Less than 2 weeks before I am getting married.
Keep Reading: "Help!"

Contradiction?

This week is the National Hypnotherapy Awareness Week.

Now why does that strike me as a slight contradiction?
Keep Reading: "Contradiction?"

I think she loves me...

12 May 2006

There you are
Your beauty consoles me
I've gone far
And I almost didn't find you
And I almost lived without you
There is nothing in this world
I'd rather do
Than live in you
Here we go,
Our favourite adventure
You should know
I was never more complete
And I never thought I'd see
The meaning of my life
Wrapped in you
Next to me
If you ever fear
Someday we might lose this
Come back here
To this moment that will last
And time can go so fast
When everything's exactly
Where it's at
Its very best

Favorite Adventure - K's Choice
Keep Reading: "I think she loves me..."

Janis Ian

09 May 2006

Brilliant songstress Janis Ian has released a new album, called "Folk is the new Black". JD and I went to a concert last week and it was marvelous. Janis introduced a new song. It is about how she and her partner got married in Canada but once back in America, their marriage does not count and how the whole thing is just stupid. JD and I (and the rest of the audience) thought the song was totally fantastic and we were thinking of putting it on our wedding invitations.

[Update:]

Unfortunately I had to remove the lyrics as Janis was not happy about a song being published when she considers it to be unfinished. Fair enough I say. Is a painting considered 'exhibited' just because the painter may have shown the work in progress to a few people? Nope. So let's hope Janis releases the song soon so that I can point you all to the record shop where you can listen to it and buy it.

So, Janis, I apologise for jumping the gun and infringing anyone's rights.

[/update]


You could do a lot worse than to go to Janis Ian's website and buy yourself some of her albums.
Keep Reading: "Janis Ian"

Hot

05 May 2006


My impending marriage does not exclude me from casting an appreciative eye at the TV whenever Doctor Tanya Byron appears.

Thankfully JD agrees with me on this one. And so it is that we find ourselves watching an hour of reality TV about how to solve behavioural problems in children. Every day at 8pm, on BBC3: The House of Tiny Tearaways. 3 families with badly behaved kids move in to the house with Dr. Tanya for a week (HELLOOOOOO) and she helps them sort out the problems. Like Big Brother, there are cameras everywhere. (But not in Dr. Tanya's room…. :( And at first I thought I was imagining it (no pun intended) but after a few shots, JD and I are convinced that the camera regularly makes shots of Tanya that show her...erhm...assets in a very favourable light. SHots that really have no place in a show about child pshychology (but shots without which JD and I, and half the lesbian world) would not even bother to watch the show. I mean, who cares about kid anyway?)

Unfortunately she is married (Oh well, can’t have it all). JD and I watch almost every day, commenting on her outfit ("oooh...BAD, BAD skirt..." "NICE jeans Dr. Tanya!!").

Oh, and in the process, we have also learned how to raise children: Treat them like dogs. It really works: Give them freedom and they will be unhappy. Give them clear rules, expectations and boundaries and they will be happy.

Every day I am amazed at parents who swear and scream at their kids and then despair at their bad behaviour. Or parents who give in to the kids all the time and then complain about their demanding attitude. Example: Last month, a 5 year old boy who did not eat anything but yoghurt. His folks gave him 40 (yes, FOURTY) pots of fruit yoghurt per day. It was all he would eat. And so Dr. Tanya set to work and made progress. For every time he would eat a new kind of food, he would be rewarded with a yoghurt. And what do the parents do? They reward him by giving him 4 pots of yoghurt at the same time!! Instead of just the one. Are these people thick? And the number of people who are quietly sabotaging our lovely Doctor by not sticking to the rules because they feel the rules are too strict and their poor baby can not cope with being ignored during a tantrum...

AARRRGGGGHHHHH

But thankfully Dr. Tanya will solve all your problems and she will save the world one day. JD and I are thinking about having a child and spoiling it so that we can go to the House of Tiny Tearaways as well and tell Dr. Tanya of our problems.
Keep Reading: "Hot"

Part one is done

20 April 2006

Went to the Register Office this morning to give notice. We had to go in separately. I went first and had to answer loads of questions, simple things like where I live, my name, my partner's name, d.o.b. etc. I laughed and said that I had studied really hard on the difficult questions and that I could tell them that JD has 1 sugar in her coffee and brushes her teeth with her right hand....

I thought she was just completing details so that JD's turn would be faster. After all, I had already given them her full name, address d.o.b. etc.

Turns out that that WAS the test. JD had to answer the same questions about me: name, d.o.b., address, occupation etc....

Funny. I was waiting for The Test whilst I was in fact already being tested.

So there is now no legal impediment to our Civil Partnership. Or, as I prefer to call it, marriage.

Roll on June!!!
Keep Reading: "Part one is done"

You never know...

18 April 2006

...when a homosexual is about.

This little film was made in the 50s and warned boys against the dangers of hitchhiking: They ran the risk of encountering a homosexual. It is funny now but my God, imagine being a young gay man (or woman) and seeing this.

Ignorance still rules. At Christmas, the Radio Times (the commercial TV Listings Magazine of the BBC) gave away a free CD as part of a promotion. The CD contained bits of Chronicles of Narnia, stories, music, screensavers and other rubbish I did not look at. It turns out that this CD was provided by our old biggot friends of Focus on the Family. Of course FotF simply bought the advertising space and since the Radio Times is a good magazine that is editorially free from advertiser influence, they simply published it as a paid ad.

This week, the Radio Times has placed a notice in the magazine, stating that the inclusion of the CD does not imply that the Radio Times or the BBC support or endorse FotF in any way. Well, I think they really should have been more careful about this issue and refused the ad or at least made a point of distancing themselves fm FotF at the time of publishing.

Now it simply looks like RT/BBC agrees with things like Defence of Marriage, discrimination and hatred against homosexuals etc.

Very very stupid.
Keep Reading: "You never know..."

Let it snow...

Just returned from a little holiday in the snow. No points for guessing where I went to (See photo).


The holiday was fab. Crap snow the first 2 days and then 45cm of the stuff in one night. Obviously there was wonderful snowboarding after that. I am no real snowboarder in any sense of the word but it went quite well if I may say so. It is only my 3rd ever snowboard holiday so I was quite pleased.



I bought myself a nice pair of snowboard boots. Perhaps next year I will get myself a board and some nice bindings. But for the moment, I have no more money left.

The trip home was exhausting. Clearly the fact that our car broke down about 100km before we reached the ferry in Calais added a good few hours to our journey (read: it added about 7 hours to it!). On the motorway, the turbo died (Never buy a Land Rover Discovery!!). I called the Depanneur and they put the car on the truck and took it to a garage. There I called the AA and they told me to get the car to Calais on the tow truck, get it on the ferry and on the other side, a tow truck would be waiting for us.

Unfortunately the ferry company we booked with did not accept cars that are broken down so we had to re-book to P&O Ferries. That worked fine so we got a ferry at 00.15 instead of 9pm. They gave our car a nice little spot on the cargo deck in between all the big trucks. I am sure our Land Rover felt very at home.



On the other side, no truck was waiting so we had to wait until about 2.15am before the tow truck showed up. He took us back to Warwickshire so on Sunday morning, I finally rolled in to bed at 7am. Very tired. But very exciting end to the holiday.

The worst part of this is that I lost the time to shop in Calais. I had planned to buy some nice French cheese and some good wine. A very long drive but definately worth it. Shame I had to go back to my job today. And, as expected, it started off shit.
Keep Reading: "Let it snow..."

New boss 2

05 April 2006

How much can your boss dictate how you work?

As an administrator, I understand that my boss can tell me what to do. But can they also dictate HOW I do it? If the end result is exactly the same, can X tell me how to get to that result? Or am I allowed to argue about that and state that I will do it my way?

Last week, my new boss X and I worked on a big tender document. X asked me to prepare a certain part of it. I went to work and when I had gathered all the info, I wanted her to check it, before putting it together in its final version.

I showed it her and she went ballistic: This is not what I asked you to do.....

I explained that I merely wanted her to look at the information I had gathered. Was this what she was looking for, am I on the right track? If so, then I would start putting it in the format that she wanted.

She kept on saying that I had not listened to her. I kept on saying that I was not showing her the END of the process, but merely an inbetween stage, to touch base and see if my info was correct.

She kept on and on about how this was not what she asked me to do. I got flustered and red and asked her to please let me FINISH my explanation and hear me out before telling me it was all wrong. It took me about 10 minutes before she even let me explain what I had been working on and how she needed to interpret it. (Just so you know, the argument revolved around something as banal as answering all the questions in the tender document whilst leaving the questions IN with the responses or taking the questions out. I left the questions in whilst pulling together my draft version, so that I could keep track of which ones were still left to answer)

I was close to crying out of frustration when she eventually started to read what I had written, shaking her head all the time about how confusing my method was and how she would not do it like that.

A few of the points I had addressed were things SHE had forgotten to address in her work so just as well that I had answered the questions one by one, making sure everything was addressed. I tiny tiny vindication for me although she did not aknowledge this.

At the end of the day, the document was finished on time, looking the way she had wanted it. She then said: I am sorry it was such a struggle for you today. Next time when you do this kind of thing, just do it like I told you to do. That is much easier because I do it X, Y, Z....blah blah blah.

I started to explain that I felt more comfortable doing it my way because it made me feel in control of my work. Her look and subsequent sigh indicated that she was thinking: Ah, she is disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing again. She really made me feel like I was being unreasonable for wanting to do something MY way.

In the end, I gave up and just went home.

Once again, I felt totally put down.
Keep Reading: "New boss 2"

New boss

Well, so far, the new boss has kept me busy. My nightmare came through when X was promoted into the job left by Z. She is keeping me very very busy. I like that. Not a problem. I have not been busy for a very long time and being bored has made me depressed to the extreme.

So no complaints there. In fact, this is all much better.

Unfortunately, I get the impression that she feels I am unable to deal with people and clients over the phone, that I am rude, unhelpful and stubborn.

Apparently, someone told her I had been unhelpful and rude and that he no longer wanted to deal with me. Instead of talking to me about it, X mentioned in the passing that this person said I was "an obnoxious cow" and that I should perhaps re-consider my phone manners.

Excuse me?

X did not ask what had happened, IF anything had happened (I have NO idea why this bloke thinks I am a cow, which makes 'considering my manners' really hard).
When I said to her that I was a bit dissapointed that she had not come to me to talk about it, she simply said: Well, I believe him because I hear you on the phone to me sometimes and you are rude to me sometimes.

Right. Clearly she feels that I am unable to differentiate between speaking to clients and speaking to co-workers.

Oh, she went on, and I heard from Colleague Y that another customer had told him you were rude as well.

Oh really?

Well, surely a real manager would come to me and discuss this with me, ask for my version of the story BEFORE making a judgement?

Yesterday a woman called with a query. She is not a client (yet) and was short with me because I had to tell that I had no answer ready and I needed about 15 minutes to find an answer. I asked X for some information and told her the lady I had spoken to had been short with me. X then said: Oh, I will call her back. I said: Why? I can call her, I just need the answer to her question.
No, said X, I will call because I know what you are like. You are clearly on the wrong foot with her.

Excuse me????

I feel angry and put-down by this kind of thing. I tried once to discuss it with her when I said that I would appreciate a conversation about it. And her response was that clearly people think I am rude sometimes, she thinks I am rude sometimes and I need to think about how I approach clients and how I tell them if I can not solve their query.

So whatever I say, she simply thinks I am rude to people so she is firmly on the side of whoever 'complains' about me.

Is it worth giving this new working relationship a chance? I wanted to give it a shot but I really feel personally attacked when she says things like that and it makes me feel that I am wasting my energy.
Keep Reading: "New boss"

The Wedding Planner

28 March 2006

So, we have secured the date. 3rd of June. Now we don't want a Big Wedding but we still need to do some Organising. YUK!

How do people get there?
Who gets an invitation to the lunch after the ceremony and who gets an invitation for the Walk-in reception in the pub afterwards?
Where do we 'do' the lunch and/or reception?
What do I wear?
Do we want new rings?
And legal stuff we need to think of?

ARRGHH.......

Civil Partnerships/Civil Wedding Ceremonies in England are weird. They are totally different than the ones in The Netherlands. In The Netherlands, a Civil Ceremony gets the same attention as a church wedding. But her it seems that a wedding in a Register Office really is like a step-child. No speech, no real ceremony, nothing. In The Netherlands, I am used to the registrar taking some time to write a little speech to make the wedding personal. But here they don't. Well, not if you get married in the Register Office because you only get about half an hour for the whole thing.

If you have your wedding elsewhere, in an Approved Venue, a registrar comes to the venue and takes more time for you. But that also costs about 8 times as much, on top of the cost of hiring the venue.

So we decided to just do it in the register office and then go somewhere nice afterwards for a bite of food.

I am quite looking forward to it actually.

Now we just need to find 2 nice places for the lunch and for the reception/pub afterwards.
Keep Reading: "The Wedding Planner"

What is it...?


Spotted at IKEA. So if it is not chocolate, what is it, I wonder?
Keep Reading: "What is it...?"

Wedding in the 21st Century

22 March 2006

Keep Reading: "Wedding in the 21st Century"

I am not alone anymore

21 March 2006

Laura posted this on her log:

Do not try to liquidise honey in the microwave without taking the lid off.
Otherwise it will explode once you take it out, leaving your ceiling, every cupboard and the floor with a irremovable layer of it.
And burn blisters in your face and neck.

Although I feel sorry for her pain, I am somewhat pleased. I did the same thing 2 years ago and badly burnt my arm. I wanted to make myself some nice honey and goat's cheese sandwiches and I put the honey in the microwave. Done it before but this time, I forgot to unscrew the lid of the plastic container. Not a problem as it was only going to be 10 seconds.

Then the phone rang. JD on the phone (this was before I moved to England). As we were chatting away, I suddenly remembered the honey in the microwave. It had by now been about a minute. I opened the microwave and removed the expanded plastic bottle just in time to avoid an explosion IN the microwave.

But remember this: When you turn a microwave off, the molecules in your food keep moving around for a bit longer. And so the honey continued to boil and then the container exploded in my hand. The honey covered my lower arm with a thick layer of boiling honey. I was screaming in pain and I dropped the phone.

JD was screaming at me, wondering what was going on, I was yelping in pain, trying to tell her it was nothing major, whilst trying to cool my arm in the sink. My flatmate heard the noise, came downstairs and assessed the damage. She picked the phone from the floor and told JD that I had burnt my arm and that she was taking me to A&E.

At A&E they cooled it with some nice cream but I could see the blisters popping up on my arm. And then the skin started to come off. They wrapped my arm up and then I had to come back every other day to have the dressings changed. It looked horrible. My dad even thought I was never going to recover from it. Poor man.

Of course I recovered nicely and you can hardly see it these days, apart maybe from the skin being a fraction lighter on that arm.


JD told me off for being stupid. But I am now pleased to know it happens to other people as well.
Keep Reading: "I am not alone anymore"

Paramedic it is (for now)

15 March 2006

So I have made a, preliminary, decision. As someone with ADHD, I know that this may very well change at any time, or may never happen again but hey –ho, for now, I have a GOAL.

But I NEED to make it work because I do not really get a second chance at my age (God, I sound old)

Coventry University do a Degree in Paramedic Science (as do a few others but Coventry is close by). I have about 1 million things that I am interested in but throughout my life, only one of them has been more or less constant: Nursing.  I have thought about it a great deal and I have realised that, even though I am very interested in Nursing, I feel I would get bored with it pretty soon. I think I would struggle to deal with the hospital-structure and paperwork etc. Only one job in particular makes me sit up and say: YES. I want to do THAT.

Paramedic. I applied for a training position last year but was rejected out of hand because I do not have the correct category on my driving license that allows me to drive a minibus/ambulance. That is easily solved for a mere £1,000 (cough).  So that is step 1. Where do I get £1,000 from I don’t know yet but I am not letting a silly thing like money put me off my plan for now.

I am too late for a start in September 2006 so it will have to be in September 2007. Good. That gives me time to get that licence and do volunteer work for the Red Cross and St. Johns Ambulance Service perhaps.

Then all I need to do is apply, get in, study 3 or 4 years and I am a Paramedic.
Problem 1: The courses are over-subscribed every year so I may not get in for a few years.
Problem 2: Money. The course would cost £2,000 in tuition fees per year. Add the cost of books, say £1,000, per year. So it would cost, with all kinds of things thrown in for good measure, £4,000 per year. But it is a full-time University degree course that will make me a Bsc in Paramedic Science. That means I can not work (much) whilst studying. JD will still be in University as well, studying for a Phd for another 3 years, so neither of us will be making any money. JD gets money from her folks and has a bit of savings so she is OK to get by. (In fact, we split all the costs 50/50 at the moment and she still has more money than I do and she does not even have a job!!)

So, that may well be the biggest hurdle: No money. At least not until JD finishes University and gets a full time job.

So what to do now? Go for it, follow the dream and take the risk of crashing out at the last moment when there is no money? Or should I decide now that we can not afford it and find something else to do? What if I do not get in in Coventry? Should I apply elsewhere? And if I do and I get into University on the other side of the country? What about JD and me?

This would all not be such a problem if I wasn’t already paying off a student loan from when I thought Journalism was the thing I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I only have a mere £10,000 left to pay on that loan (cough) so I am not really willing to add another £10,000 to that. Although hen I listen to students here, having a load that big is the norm rather than the exception so maybe I should just throw caution to the wind and do it.

I am feeling quite excited about this idea. People who know me will know that it is not just a fluke, not just a thought that has suddenly occurred to me. They will know I have mentioned Paramedic many times before. I just never thought about having to go to University to do it. But it seems to be the easiest way to get there. The hardest step is not studying. It is getting in and paying for it.
Keep Reading: "Paramedic it is (for now)"

Hail Police!

Well done to the Leamington Police. They rang me this morning to say they have recovered the medical bag from the rugby team that got stolen from my car last week!

They 'turned over' an address in Stratford-upon-Avon and they found it there. I am aboutto go to the station to pick it up and give a statement.

So for those of you who think it makes no difference to report a car crime, it really DOES make a difference. The police have been extremely helpful in this case.
Keep Reading: "Hail Police!"

The thirst for change

13 March 2006

It is no secret that I am unhappy with my current job.  I want something more challenging. But what? I have always admired people with a dream. People who know exactly what they want and work to get to their goal. I know, there is a downside: if you do not make it, you have nothing to fall back on. But not knowing what you want is just as hard. Employment agencies always ask: What kind of job are you looking for? And my answer really is: I don’t know, something fun, active and creative. And that does not really give them much to work with.

So I am looking for something else that I would like to do. And that is a problem. Because there are so many things I think I might like to do. Because I just like learning new things. So I might like it for the next 3 years but then I might be bored and wanting to learn something new again in 4 years time. So what to do?

Go to University and start a new study? That would cost money and time and with no assurance that I will still enjoy it in 4 years time.

And how would I pay for it? JD keeps saying she wants to contribute to it. But my pride is in the way. Am I just being too proud? I feel extremely uncomfortable with the idea of a 22 y/o student paying for my University. Especially as long as she does not have a job herself. She has been lucky with her parents gathering some really good savings for her so she could afford it I guess but I don’t want her to spend all her savings on me. Not that I don’t have faith in our relationship but what IF we break up in 5 years time? After she has put me through University? She will have no savings left.

But the real truth is that is depresses me greatly to think that I, at 30 years old, would be reliant on a 22 y/o student to help me with my finances. I have improved greatly since I moved here but it is still very hard for me to keep control over what I spend.
(See: Money Management for Adults with ADHD). At 30, I have £1200 to my name and actually that belongs to the government as it is to pay off my University loan.

The only course that would go some way towards solving this pride-problem is Nursing. It is paid for by the NHS. We would have to live on a severe budget for 3 or 4 years, but at least JD would not have to pay for me to do it.

Nursing is interesting. But is it my career? I enjoy playing with computers. So would IT be a career for me? I am fascinated by plumbers. But a career?

So many questions. But even worse: too many answers.

I wish I had a dream job. Something to focus on. I just like too many things. I like to learn all the time. I think I may have come across one of the most difficult aspects of ADHD. I can learn tricks to concentrate better. I can learn tricks that will help me control my finances. But I can not find a way to make myself stop searching for things to learn.  The thought that I might forever be searching for ‘something different’ is quite depressing.
Keep Reading: "The thirst for change"

Nerd Alert

Feeling smug yesterday. Nothing special but I managed to re-install Windows XP Tablet Edition on my Compaq TC1000. You think that is easy? Try booting a system that has no CD-Rom player, nor a bootable CD-Rom or a USB device that will do.

On EBay, I had bought a set of Compaq Recovery CDs for £15 as my TC1000 had ‘fallen off the truck in a remote village in Italy before I obtained it.

So I had to do it via a LAN network, using my desktop as server. True, someone on the web had written a manual on how to do this but there were still minor issues that were not in that manual that I had to sort out myself.

In the end, it worked just fine.  I guess that makes me an anorak. Oh well, anything that gives me pleasure these days will do.

Oh, and I requested an info pack be sent to me from the NHS about a university degree in nursing. Hey, one has to at least try and make a change.

Keep Reading: "Nerd Alert"

Employment agencies suck

10 March 2006

They are fucking rotten.

When they think they have a position for you (read: When they think they can make money by putting you forward), they are over you like a rash. They promise nice jobs, good pay, blah blah blah.

So you go for an interview and call them back to let them know how it went. They promise to call you back with feedback and then....you never hear from them again.

She promised to call back Friday afternoon. Last week. I heard nothing so I rang today. Some intern said she was busy but that the system said that I did not get the job. Yes, she would call me back with some feedback. She didn't of course so I rang back. Intern again. Can I speak to Suzanne this time? Well, let me see if she is busy (I KNOW his desk is next to hers so he can see that right away!) After 30 seconds, he gets back to me and says: She is on the phone but there is no real other feedback. You did not have enough PA experience it seems.

Well thank fuck for getting back to me you bastard wankers!! Clearly as soon as I am not going to make them money, they don't ring back. They don't ring back to perhaps help me with some feedback on how I did. Feedback that could help me with my job search. No.

You have to fucking call them yourself, wait for the non-existent return call and fucking speed to their office next time they think they can make money out of you.

This has happened to me about 10 times now: Yes, I will call you back with some feedback right away. And then you just don't hear from them anymore. Not even to say that you did not get the job.

Fucking bitches they are. Fucking bitches.

And yet, they seem to be my only way out of here.
Keep Reading: "Employment agencies suck"

Business antics

My boss has resigned. He has been headhunted for a high-paid job and will be making loads more money in a job that is loads more stressful. Fair play to him.

The mood in the sales team has just plummeted. And I don't understand why. The two other sales managers seem to be angry, disappointed and spiteful about his decision. Yesterday the whole team was in and you could feel the anger in the air. Little was said and conversations were limited to short sentences and blank stares.

Why? What is his crime? Leaving? Not telling people sooner? When do you tell people you are leaving? Right after you have signed the new contract? Why should you? You hand in your notice, serve your notice time and that is it. You tell your team when you hand in your notice. Unfortunately the rumour mill had already leaked the info to the world and I guess finding it out from our trade partners will have pissed the other sales guys off big time.

But why does that have to lead to them treating him differently all of a sudden? Is it because of some misconstrued notion that we are all friends instead of co-workers who happen to get along quite well?

When a manager leaves for a different job in the same market, surely it is in the best interest of both parties to end the contract asap. Surely keeping someone to 3 months notice will create nothing but tension. If anything because our trade partners know he is leaving and might use the info he is still gathering whilst he is here to help his future employer, who happens to be another one of our trade partners.

The business is going to struggle without him. Not even because he was so fabulously brilliant but because there is nobody else with the abilities needed to lead the team. He was sitting in the middle between 2 other managers who are both a tad volatile. Now that he is leaving, it will be me sitting in the middle.

It has started already. I am already feeling shit. I am very sensitive to mood changes and silent tension. I can not handle it very well at all. I have rung the employment agency to let them know they should increase their efforts to find me a new job.
Keep Reading: "Business antics"

CSI Warwickshire

09 March 2006

Well, the good news is, I did not forget to lock the car after all. The bad news is: they punches a tiny hole through the door to open the lock and get in.

So now I have to pay £160 to have the car repaired.

Had to go to the police and they fingerprinted the car and some random other bits they might have touched.

CSI sounds better than SOCO (Scene Of Crime Officer). My SOCO was perhaps no more than 25 (photo here soon). Blonde hair, nice friendly woman who said there should be more police in my street becasue there had been so many break-ins recently.

By the way, they also took the rugby team's First Aid bag. Some junkie is now getting high on Freeze Spray and Deep Heat. I hope their nostrils burn to a crisp!!
Keep Reading: "CSI Warwickshire"

Sexism

I seem to be turning in to a feminist lately. But yesterday I got really annoyed again.

At JD's university, a place of open minded people you would assume, JD walked in to the toilets. Some American girl followed JD in and said: Excuse me, this is the Ladies' toilets. (suggesting JD was a bloke). JD turned around and said: I have boobies. The girl apologised and said: oh sorry. I thought...you know...with your short hair...

JD then spent 5 minutes looking in the mirror, feeling insecure and complaining about the hairdresser having cut her hair too short and now she looked like a man. I don't think JD looks like a man at all. But this stupid cow only saw the back of JD's head and just made an assumption.

When she said: "It's just...the short hair...", what she was really saying was:: "You do not fit my image of how women should look." It is extremely insulting because she did not say: Excuse me, are you a man, because if you are, are you aware that these are the Ladies' toilets?" No. She just said, as most people do: "Sorry, but these are Ladies' toilets." Leaving the insinuation hanging in the air as some kind of accusation. Suggesting that the other party does not belong there. This leaves the other party the responsibility to say: "But I am a woman, can you not tell?"

You think that is funny or over-reacting? Well, let's turn it around. Let's do the stereotype that all lesbians look like men or have short hair. If I said to a woman with long hair: "Sorry, this is the Ladies' toilets and you do not fit my image of a woman", the woman in question would be extremely offended and accuse me of being so narrow minded that I would only see people 'like me' as women.

So why is it OK for others to just assume someone is not a woman, based ONLY on looking at someone with short hair from the back?

These days just about 50% of the women have short hair so this American cow was clearly not very intelligent (what was she doing at University???) or she is plain ignorant, rude and even sexist.

I found it all extremely insulting. It happens on a regular basis that people assume, without looking properly, that either JD or I are blokes when we walk in to a toilet. I never used to think about it much and would just laugh it off. But seeing JD getting insecure about her hair being too short, looking like a bloke etc. after the throw-away remark from an ignorant American, it just made me think.

It is insulting. If you think a bloke is walking in to the Ladies' toilets, make sure you know it is a bloke and not a woman who does not fit your stereo typical idea of what a woman should look like. Because an ignorant remark like that can really hurt someone.
Keep Reading: "Sexism"

Burglary

07 March 2006

JD insists on having a huge metal lock around the steering wheel of the car, to deter people from stealing it. I forget to put that on sometimes but last night, I put it on again, after forgetting it for the past 3 days.

Clearly my brain has got space to remember only 1 safety measure as I promptly forgot to lock the car.

When I got to the car this morning, there was stuff all over the front seats, the glove box had been emptied, the back seats were down and stuff strewn around. It took me a second to realise someone had been going through our stuff.

Hey had clearly used our own torch to help themselves to a bit of light whilst looking for valuables.

On the front seat was the ripped envelope that contained two cheques, made out to me, so useless to anyone else. I found the cheques on the floor. I bet the thief was disappointed.

Sometimes I forget my wallet or phone in the car. But not this time. So no luck for them there. Dissapointed again I reckon.

As he must have been with the contents of the boot: a medical bag for the rugby team, two rugby balls and 6 empty water bottles. Needless to say they were all still there.

Nothing seemed to be missing, apart from the Bluetooth hands free headset, which I only bought last Friday!!!! It made me smile that they did not take the car charger for that and the mains charger is in my house. So unless they have the correct charger, the thing is useless to them.

And they left all the CDs on the front seat.

Why? Is my music taste so bad that nobody even wants to STEAL my CDs? What is wrong with Indigo Girls, Janis Ian, Emmy Lou Harris and a copied collection of English folk? Huh? Well?

I am very insulted by the fact that a thief did not bother to steal my CDs. Was he trying to leave a message: Your fucking car is useless and your music is rubbish too?

I am picturing it like this: Would-be thief walks around, looking for car to break in to. Sees car with big steering wheel lock which is unlocked. Excellent, a chance of some loot without having to break in to the car. In fact, he can sit down in the car, turn the light on, pretend the car is his. So he pushes the front seat back, takes the torch from the glove compartment and feels a warm glow of victory. Bring on the cash! And as he goes through the stuff, his anger grows. This car is useless. Ah! CDs. Instant cash. Janis Ian? Who the fuck is that? Can’t sell that on the market. Shit, a built-in stereo that won’t come out. Ah, an envelope. Some cash? Crap. Cheques made out to a person. Useless rubbish. Shit, crap. I’ll have this ruddy Bluetooth earpiece. Let’s try the boot. Waterbottles? Rugby balls? Geez…this car belongs to a dyke!! Gets up, walks away in disgust.


Strange. Someone broke into my car and I am not sure if I am angry about the break-in, pissed off about his judgement of my music taste, or smug about the fact that there was nothing for him to steal?
Keep Reading: "Burglary"

Careful

03 March 2006

My little toe still broken. After 5 weeks, it still rotates in an odd way and, even better, you can feel the bones snap around when you move the toe. Great party piece but not very useful when it comes to rugby.

So I went to the doctor yesterday who told me off for having played rugby with it for the past 5 weeks. I told her that her colleague had failed to tell me the toe should be strapped and so now would be a little late to start strapping it. Even so, I was told to strap it for another 4 weeks and absolutely no rugby and, if possible, no shoes. If it still has not healed by then, I need to go back to the doctor. Not sure what will be next because they just do not treat broken little toes. I don't mind having a non-healing fracture. But I just want the pain to stop. I am going on a bloody snowboarding trip in a month and I really really really do not want to jeopardise that.

I did not realise this of course. Otherwise I would have not played rugby from the day I broke the bastard toe. Now it will be a bit of a race against time, hoping the toe will heal enough for me to go snowboarding. The problem is that it is the little toe so it gets lots of pressure from shoes on the side, as opposed to the other toes.

Over the next 4 weeks, I will be kissing my toe (yes, I am THAT flexible), carrassing it, keeping it chilled and elevated, give it nice strapping and wear my nice open-toe sandals.

I am getting quite attached to wearing sandals actually. They are very very comfortable. I look silly with the woolley socks. Like a vegetarian.

See you later, I am off to the Organic Market for some Patchouli Oil and some Tofu!!
Keep Reading: "Careful"

No man needed

22 February 2006

Time for my feminist-lesbian activist self to wake from its deep, deep slumber. This part of me rarely wakes up so forgive me if I am a little rusty.

Paris Hilton, famous for…well…erhm…I can not think of what she is famous for, erhm…a women’s rights activist? No, that’s not it. Is she perhaps an eminent scientist? Nope, that is not it either. Indeed, I can not for the life of me think of a reason for this person to be famous.

Actually, that is probably a very sad reflection of today’s idols: None of them have done anything to deserve their fame.

Anyway, drifting off topic here. Paris Hilton has made a sex video. She claimed it was a private video that leaked out onto the internet. Yeah right. Her 'career' has exploded since that video so I firmly believe she would of course rather have kept it private.

And now, paris Hilton has made a new one. With a woman this time. In some hotel (Hilton??) she did the dirty with some Playboy model and filmed it. Fine. Whatever floats her boat (read: whatever keeps her career afloat).

What bugs me is that some Dutch newspaper put this news on its front page. And it is so clearly aimed at horny men. How do I know? Well, because this model said:

Paris had brought loads of sex toys along. We needed them of course because there was not a man around.


Excuse me?

[Feminist Activist Lesbian Comment]

I can get so enraged by this kind of thing. This just perpetuates the male myth that all a lesbian needs is a nice bit of cock. That real women really want a man and all they do is play a little bit. For the real thing, a man is needed.

There are plenty of stories of lesbians being raped or sexually abused by men who believe that all these women need is a dick and that they can be cured. Braindead women like Paris Hilton & Co encourage this kind of thinking.

Hilton is a porn actress but she can not be seen as such as she would perhaps lose the family fortune? If she was really a lesbian and her escapades with her girlfriend were filmed, you really think a man would be interested? I doubt it because the only thing that men are interested in is the thought that he can, in the end, come in and ‘finish the job’. They need the feeling that they are needed, that a real woman can not do without a man.

I was once asked by a wanker in the pub if he could watch me and my girlfriend having sex. I said no as we did not need him for our enjoyment. Instantly he changed his attitude and called us stupid dykes.

But perhaps I can not blame blokes for this kind of thinking when women like Paris Hilton etc. keep telling them that they would really prefer a man to be there when they do it with a woman.

[/Feminist Activist Lesbian Comment]

So, what do I think of Paris Hilton etc?

Well, to be honest, it is just not worth the energy so I won’t say anything about it.
Keep Reading: "No man needed"