I won't be blogging for a bit, as I will be on a journey to my home and native land. The time has come for me to renew my work visa and come Tuesday, I'll find out if I have been granted another year to work in the USA.
Something to ponder in my absence is ATM's in churches. Yesterday NPR reported that pastors etc have decided that since most people just carry cards, ATM's will make donations easier for their congregation. The idea is mildly offensive to me, although there is nothing to say it's wrong. I believe that if someone is really committed to the continuation of their church they will make an effort to remember their cheque book or bring some cash. What's next? Credit card machines in the pews? One easy swipe and your conscience is clean for another week.
Best song of the week: Your Ex-Lover is Dead by the Stars. The vocals and cello are beautiful.
Want to change your hairstyle without cutting your hair? Do you have unexpected thinning of your hair? Well, look no further as Toni Bratten has teamed up with the Home Shopping Network to sell you this. I stumbled across these gems while flipping channels on my t.v. Unfortunately I can't remember how to block channels so QVC and HSN get several seconds of my time when I'm trying to find something to watch. Sometimes I stop for several minutes, fascinated at the junk that is being hawked. On top of that, the announcers are irritating, the guests are silly and the models look stiff. I enjoy the bright lights on the fake jewels that make them shimmer as though it's a solar eclipse. However, the part I find most interesting is watching the sale counter go up and up on the side of the screen. Several hundred people will drop a good chunk of change on something this awful. In what part of the country is this worth 200 bucks? If you want something this ugly, go to your local dollar store and pick it up for pocket change. Seriously, who buys this crap?
When I was younger, I thought that the only thing you did with dominoes was something like the video below. Granted I never had the patience or talent that this guy has. It's unfortunate that the lighting made it difficult to see all of it. However, it's still amazing.
I remember when I was a kid the feverish excitement of an upcoming birthday. The party would be planned, invitations given out, cakes chosen and a list of desired items. This year I practically forgot my birthday. My supervisor made an announcement in group supervision last week that two of the therapists had birthdays coming up and I had a brief wondering who they were. Thankfully my mouth didn't get ahead of my mind as I silently realized I was one of the lucky fools.
I entered my birthday weekend like any other. Since my birthday fell on a Sunday, I chose Saturday to be my token celebration. With much "excitement" I got up early to do some cardio and then yoga (ahem David). As I entered the garage, I discovered that my car also wanted to cash in on birthday gifts. Rather than politely asking for something, it passively aggressively made it clear by getting a flat tire. My workout was out the window and I headed off to Costco with my spare tire proving its worth. Several hundred dollars later my car got two sweet tires and drove happily away. Mother nature was the party pooper and showered rain/hail/snow so anything outdoor was out... such as hiking or the Indian festival at the Krishna temple. I thought I deserved to get myself a gift so I returned to Costco to buy myself a digital camera. In August I purchased myself a gift in Chicago but the realization that it was over a month ago gave me permission to call that a souvenir rather than a birthday present. Please note that my camera beautifully captures my purse that I designed myself. Well, I chose the fabrics which was so much fun.
Saturday ended with some good Thai food and an all-girl slumber party (that ended before midnight because we're "past our prime.") My friends got me some great gifts... a certificate to REI, an exercise ball and a painted picture from my uber-talented artsy friend. Also my family sang numerous versions of happy birthday, gave cookies, cash and a book. My birthday was like most other days except that I got to hear from close family and friends all in one day. The difference today is that I have to make a mental note that I am now 29. I don't miss the excitement of birthdays of yesteryear. I like the laid back style and the happiness I feel from the all the calls and cards. Thank you to those of you that made my day feel a little more special.
My friend finds one of my common phrases amusing. It's "good job" with something else... like "good job that board didn't hit you in the head." I never thought twice about it until she would laugh and mimic me. Recently when I was visiting my parents I heard my mom say "good job blah blah blah" and I realized it was either a family phrase or something that Canadians say.
I've noticed that people's word usage can either be endearing or aggravating. My tolerance is often dependent on my level of like or disdain. For instance, one of my less favourite co-worker's has a habit of using "deserve" in strange ways. She was talking with one of my clients and kept saying that he deserved to work towards attending an NA group. It seemed off to me, on top of her saying the word a half dozen times in five minutes. Then today I overheard her talking to another co-worker about applying for a part-time job. She said "I deserve to at least drop of an application." Say what? I'm beginning to question myself if it's just me or she is using it wrong. It's a good job that I don't have to be the word police. All I know for sure is that when she does say it, I cringe inside.
So phrases... what ones do you love, hate or are simply confusing?
My friend gets ready for work at the gym pretty much every morning. Recently she was getting ready when a stranger asked to use her deodorant. She was taken off guard and said yes but later was really grossed out by it. I too found it rather odd. That's one of those moments when you suck up the four bucks and go buy yourself some rather than swiping your pit on to a random person's hygienic product. If it was your friend or family, perhaps the communal sharing would be okay.
Friday we did a spin class at a gym closer to work, so I opted to get ready at the gym. I did a mental checklist of what I would need and was quite proud of how quickly I packed. As I got my towel to shower I realized I had forgotten my shower sandals. I was completely skeeved out as I stood in the shower barefoot. Thankfully I have not seen any strange growths on my feet since. Then as I was getting ready I shuddered when I realized that I had not packed one of the most essential pieces to a woman's wardrobe. I put my sweaty grey sports bra back on and was grateful it did not show through my shirt. I was not too happy with the uni-boob look but a bra isn't something I can quickly run in to target to buy. Why couldn't I have just forgot my deodorant???
I've often wondered about the criteria used for places to claim they are the "best." There is a dive down my street that states it is the best Chinese food in town. There are plenty of great Mexican establishments but Chinese food is not this town's forte. So anything claiming to be the best Chinese food is something to be wary of. I had first thought it was the best merely because it was the only, however I found a half dozen other Chinese restaurants listed in my area. The last time I went to a restaurant that claimed to be the "best" was an Indian place in San Diego. After listening to the same techno song looped over and over, I decided that the food could be incredible (which it wasn't) and I still would have wished I was somewhere else. I asked the server if he found the music annoying but he said he didn't really listen to it anymore. Perhaps that is how workers at Gap et al feel with their repeated CDs. Workers may develop an ability to block it out but as a diner, I found it impossible.
So my little neighbourhood Chinese food may indeed be the "best Chinese food in town" but I'm not going to risk finding out.