Tuesday, July 29, 2008

It's raining, it's pouring

Good news, the dress I bought at the online auction fits! And it looks nice on me too, apart from being about 4 inches too long.

It means I should be shopping for some nice shoes to go with it, because it wouldn't do to wear it with sneakers, combat boots, ankle boots or boat shoes.

Unfortunately, I don't think I'm going to have time to. Because:
  • TLM has another cold,
  • my mother needs an overdue ride to the bank to collect her pension,
  • TLM's babysitter has quit (she found a full-time job) so I have to find a replacement,
  • I need to get the car to the panelbeater's,
  • my contract is finishing up and I need to finish a handover document to give to my successor,
  • I have several presents to buy for birthdays and the wedding,
  • I have to work next Wednesday, which is normally my day off to catch up on the laundry and everything else,
  • And I badly need another haircut.
Phew! I'm glad I didn't have to say that in person, because I wouldn't have been able to draw breath.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Darjeeling Limited

There was a time, pre-the boy, when I frequented the DVD rental shop to grab whatever arthouse flicks took my fancy. Sometimes my choices were grim, other times they were almost life-changingly inspirational, most of the time they were sub-titled.

But two things happened to change that weekly arthouse DVD-choosing ritual: 1. the boy, who only tolerates a very limited amount of exposure to pregnant silences, tangential plotlines and lack of references to graphic novel characters; 2. the boy's preference for buying DVD's instead of renting them.

But it's a joy when we find something that pleases us both - The Darjeeling Limited.

Quirky, it is.
The mini-movie at the beginning (which appears to be an enactment of the writer-brother's new short story, a stylised-version of his actual past) was a bit odd. But that was not helped by the fact that we were having dinner at the time and couldn't make out most of the too-quiet dialogue. Bill Murray, as an almost-background figure, appears for about 2 minutes at the beginning and 5 seconds near the end. Owen Wilson shows he can do stuff that isn't just silly-funny; he can also do poignant. He's the one who has a PA on board the train, organising every moment of their soul-searching train trip, and the one who, it turns out, sounds just like his mother. The middle brother purloins items from their dead father's wardrobe, including a pair of over-sized prescription sunglasses. The younger one, the writer, lusts after the train stewardess. All three of them have brought on board over-the-counter drugs to get high on.

It's quirky, but it's all heart. It's really a story about family relationships - between brothers, and between parents and children - and about accepting that those relationships aren't perfect but should be cherished anyway.

I did have one nit-pick though. Why on earth did the head steward of a train in India, have an American accent? I'd have expected an Indian accent or a British one.

Friday, July 25, 2008


I was slowly reversing my car out of it's tight angle park (tight because the car on the left was about 6 inches away from mine), when - bam! crunch! holy fender bender, Batman! Someone had snuck up behind me, into my blindspot and right into my carboot.

It was a little traumatic, following as it did three straight nights of broken sleep (it's them damn bad dreams that make TLM scream and yell) and having to turn down a beautiful blood-red party dress that was one size too small. Oh, and TLM in the back seat whining for elderflower cordial and acting like a sleep-deprived little so-and-so.

The car bumper was in a terrible state. But you shoulda seen the other car. It had a big dent on the front left panel, and wide scratchy stripes all down the left side - we're talking three full panels here.

The good news is that I'm fully insured and I won't lose my no-claims bonus.
The bad news is that there is a $300 excess (that's almost a blood-red party dress!).
The good news is that no-one got hurt, the lady driving the other car was very nice about it (probably because it was a company car and not her own), and the boy is looking after me tonight.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Wedding wear sorted. I hope.

After a week of 2-hour lunches in which I hurried from one frock shop to another, and went through an entire collection of flouncy, floaty and entirely unflattering floral creations, I gave up on my hope of finding something suitable to wear to my mate's wedding.

Well, there was one really lovely dress I found - a long-sleeved wrap number, rather like a less cleavage-driven version of the classic Diane von Furstenburg wrap dress. But the scarlet dress was slightly too small, and the one that was the right size was almost menacing in it's blackness. So if I was looking for a sexy Goth look (and I know the boy would've been right into it), that would have been the perfect dress. But as I was actually looking for something festive, it wasn't.

So I decided to accept defeat and fall back on my trusty black-trousers-plus-really-nice-top combo. Which would have looked great, sure, but I'm oh-so-bored with that look now.

But wait, there's more. I just won an online bidding war (well, more of a scuffle really) on a lovely little dress which might just do the trick. (That's the one in the picture.) It is black, but with a colourful print all over.
I just hope it fits me when it arrives in the mail.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

No, I haven't got a fancy-man

If your spouse has taken to dressing better than usual, sexier even, but whose libido is still not quite up to scratch, you'd be forgiven for thinking that he or she might be seeing someone else.

You might be right. Or, you could be terribly, terribly wrong.

It might be that your sartorially-improved other half has started a job outside the home, and suddenly has an excuse - nay, the opporTUNity - to wear something other than a thermal undershirt, a faded black tee and a pair of jeans with dying Lycra. It might be that your spiffier spouse is still too tired for sex though.

In which case, at least you can rest assured that you aren't being cuckolded.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The joy of being abandoned

Sometimes, I take TLM out to a playdate and she spends a whole hour wanting to sit on my lap; sometimes, her little friends visit us and she spends a whole hour trying to prevent them from getting their eager little hands on her precious toys. But when I take her to her friend's 3rd birthday party at one of those preschool-oriented indoor playgrounds, and I barely see her for 2 hours, that's what I call a good time.

Out of the 20 kids there, she knew three of them well (one of them being the birthday boy). So well, in fact, that as soon as they showed up she ran up to kiss them. Then she circled the kiddie town in her ride-on, stopping at my ankles every few laps to say hi and steal my snacks, came back in time to sing Happy Birthday and eat cake, and then I didn't see her again until we were all kicked out of the joint.

I don't know about you other parents, but that's the kind of playdate I like.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Like a lady of leisure

Now that "month-end" is over, I'm back to scratching around for work to do i.e. excuses to stay at the office, charging my hourly rate. But I when I ran out of stuff to do about 20 minutes after I got in this morning, I worried that I might set a new record in shortest-ever-working-day.

In the end, I managed to busy myself until late-afternoon. But then, I did have a long lunch break - like, from 11.30am till just after 1pm. And I didn't even go shopping.

I went to the library and browsed the fashion magazines. I tried out the new self-issue machine. I wandered up and down food halls, unbothered by school holiday busy-ness, when my low blood sugar jitters started in. I went up steep flights of stairs to have lunch at cafe that used to make scrumptious lamb and kumara pies, and spinach and fetta pasties (the food's gone downhill slightly).

I felt only very slightly guilty that TLM was in daycare so that I could swan about with nothing in particular to do. It was probably the first time I've really appreciated the flexibility of my work hours.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

I never knew I was a tomboy

No longer can I sneer at fellow bus passengers caught reading their gossipy women's magazines, the ones filled with useless (and probably less than half-true) information about Brangelina and TomKat. Because I bought one today - willingly parted with four perfectly good dollars for one.

Though I will say in my defense that I didn't buy it to find out whether Madonna and Guy are on the brink of divorce, or what Kelly Osborne is wearing to the school ball.

I bought it because the magazine promised to show me 100 fashion items that would encapsulate the current womenswear trend and not cost a whole mortgage payment each.

All the same, I confessed my guilty purchase to the boy, who comforted me with the words "Don't worry, you're just getting back in touch with your feminine side" and added something about getting myself material for girly bonding. It's true that, until I had TLM, most of my friends were men. Maybe this is a sign that I'm finally ready to have girlfriends.

Monday, July 07, 2008

In my comfort zone

After working at this place for just over 2 months, I finally feel like I'm not just the new girl. I know my immediate workmates well enough to joke with and about them, and the dreaded unreconcilable spreadsheet has been conquered (at least, for this month). I still don't have anyone to go to lunch with, but that's no big deal because I'm not that much of a lunchtime socialiser (I prefer to go to the library or shop).

I'm here now, in my cosy comfort zone. And I reckon I'll probably have a new work assignment elsewhere by the end of the month.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Two new things about TLM

1. She can spell her name. And her name isn't some retardedly easy little 4-letter one either. It's got more letters than that, and they're all different. She's so clever.

2. I have found a new way to encourage TLM to put her poos where they should go. Now, I'm all for positive reinforcement, but the ice cream rewards just don't seem to be working that well. Maybe she only feels like having ice cream every other day, and on alternate days she has no incentive to do what she oughta.


I told her that every time she does a poo in her pants, I get an M & M. I tried it today and, considering it's not physical punishment, TLM sure did get upset when I waved a orange M & M in front of her eyes and popped it into my mouth.

I'll let you know if it works.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Tricks with mirrors

So the other night, an old friend rang up and invited me to her wedding (after what must be the longer engagement in history - a decade?). And, as it is every time I get invited to a wedding, I started to fret about what the hell I am going to wear to it. I fret, because in general I don't feel comfortable in dresses, and yet feel that I have to turn up looking glamorous.

I was in one of those up-market fashion boutiques today (bonus - there are winter sales on everywhere) and ended up spending an indecent amount of time admiring my legs in the mirror...

I know! I've always hated my legs for being the short and chunky lil tree trunks that they are...but in that dressing room, in front of that mirror...I didn't have tree trunks - I had gams. Pins, even.

It got me thinking that maybe I'd look pretty damned fine in short skirts after all.

And then I remembered that this incredibly flattering reflection was probably due to three things:
1. high heels,
2. opaque tights in the blackest of ultra-slimming blacks and
3. that old warhorse, the slimming mirror.

Of course! I was about to be conned into buying that skirt by a dirty, lying mirror. Like the mirror that Snow White's stepmum had, but the opposite. More like...a salesman's mirror.

I got outa there before I bought anything. Whew!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

I can be a gamer too

The boy, who just won't give up on the idea of converting me into a game-lovin' wifey, bought me a new Nintendo DS game. It's called Professor Layton's Mysterious Village or something. I was a bit cynical, after the fiasco of the last game I tried.

But no, I've actually been enjoying it. It's full of puzzles and I can move forward in the game by applying logic, rather than the kind of non-linear thinking that I believed only hallucinogens or dizzy-blonde-ness could produce.

The only bad part was when I didn't bother to save the game for several hours, and then accidentally ejected the game cartridge (Noooooooooo!)

And that's another reason you haven't much heard from me lately.