Wednesday, February 23, 2005

I Get a Cookie!

And snow too. Well now its all about singing “let it slush, let it slush, let it slush” and shouting at the guards that it is RILLY stewpid that they have shut the WHOLE of the Luxembourg gardens (which looks like winter wonderland) for about 1.5 inches of snow. But I can't even begin to tell you how his past week has been the bestest! And yes I left that last post up longer to get extra comments cause I am like that :) I promise to stop gushing sometime in the near future as you may all start to wonder what has happened to that snarky inner bitch and I can’t have that now can I?? Really though it is a complete convergence zone here in Paris. Between my loony aunt, and by loony I mean when I told her I was moving to Europe (where the family is FROM) she asked if I was going to become a prostitute. Cause that is what they do here… you know. A family that warns you against prostitution is the kind of family that stays together non?? Anyways one may have flown over her cuckoos nest a LONG time ago, but she has a heart of gold, in spite of it being misplaced. And it turns out that she has left me a small nugget of money for when I got married. Being that I am BARRELLING STRAIGHT at my expiration date (you know 30) without a man at my side, dear Mama Mao decided she would crack into the CD (that I knew NOTHING about, and seriously was set to expire when I turned 30) early and let me use it to pay rent this month. Finally those sexist family values do something besides bite me in the ass. That collided with the lovely French gender values. The one where one of the women who is on the team I will be joining is pregnant and her doctor has told her to go on maternity leave 2 weeks early. So I get a call asking me to start my job 2 weeks early. 2 weeks of EXTRA and unexpected pay!! Me I am currently a TOTAL money whore so that would be accepted with pleasure. What does this all mean for Chez Tink?? Well besides the dose of generally good merriment (which I am still slightly frightened of- this many nice things all in a row… is there an anvil about to fall on my head??) the prospect of more knitting content and the slinging of happy profanities, it means a few things. First it means I will shortly be able to send out goodies. I get to send a thank you cadeau to a VERY SPECIAL knitty-blogging friend (you know who you are and I am too sending it!) Thanks to Urraca I found a site that doesn’t charge me my prize teeth in shipping and that hopefully has enough of the Cecilia in Kaki to finish those bloody collars on the pointy needles for Pretty Wrappy Top. I get to trade with another special knitting blogger for goodies in the near-ish future. And I am going to treat myself with some of this “windfall” (or as close to windfall as I am likely to get, short of winning the lottery), the rest of it will be used in my endeavour to prove I am a responsible adult and do the responsible adult crap, like pay debts off. I'd rather avoid this but I am determined not to fall into that trap (it costs more in the end and puts out negative karma people :) So I have decided my first knitty treat is to get me one of those knitting bibles that I hear everyone rant and rave over. So since I know I just hit 10000 (and am going to change counters so I can let that person know that they were the 10000 hit :) I am going to attempt to delurk you who are out there in a very easy way, before I go back to trying to pick a Koigu colour and think about what in the world to make with it.
So without further ado I bring you the first poll Chez Tink: Unfortunately until I get can find a blog poll thing to insert that works with Blogger, let me know in comments (even just an anonymous number)
Which Knitting Bible should Tink get? 1. Montse Stanley's Knitter's Handbook 2. Nancie Wiseman's Book of Finishing Techniques 3. Katharina Buss' Big Book of Knitting

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Word of the Day: Brought to You by the Letter F

The Universe has BROUGHT IT IN for me people! Leya your number (167+) is next.

Do NOT ask me how the fuck I am able to sit still long enough to have written any of this out. I have NO control over any body functions right now. Am atom completely the fuck out of control. PING BING ZOOM- yup that’s me WHIZZZZ. The only thing not defying me is the capacity to utter the word fuck A LOT. That and holding the phone still for long enough to get a hold of a friend to tell her we are DRINKING tonight! Otherwise I cannot compose coherent thoughts, let alone string enough words together for sentences and in true polyglot fashion I am barking around my flat in 4 different languages. Again NO Control!! Instead I have 2 words. HAVE JOB. Tengo Trabajo. C’e Lavoro. J’ai Boulot. That is right y’all, I am ROCKING the Kasbah. I have a mother fucking job, with the international organisation of my choice, that will help fill the time till a PhD starts. And it pays BANK. That’s right- I be: Shakin dat ass. Shakin dat ass; Shakin dat ass. Shakin dat ass. Itchy pants dance step aside, the movement over here has hit a whole new level. And I have photos for you of La Defense (1, 2, 3), cause biznatch that is where I am going to be WORKING. I went in and I BANGED that interview like no one's business. (Karma and I spent the night before together with some meditative moments). They said we will let you know on Friday. Friday became D-Day for both of the “maybe you could get me” jobs. Whatever, (I attempted to exude) I had a Brambleberry Tazo Tea at the Starbucks, I was happy. Within 45 minutes of leaving the interview (at my Phildar no less) I get a call from HR. We are pretty sure that directorate will be calling to offer you the position within the next hour, though we may have to resolve some visa issues- they say. VISA Fuck off, I have weapons and I am NOT afraid to use them. This JOB is MINE, serious don’t mess with me. (I say :) That call sooooo took the stinging hate off of the fact that Phildar no longer makes the Pretty Wrappy Top yarn in the color I made Pretty Wrappy Top and I have to go prayer hunting that there is an extra 2 balls of it somewhere. If not there is no collar and lift off is denied. And really that is no fun! I headed home empty handed but skipping round the place. Yes people SKIPPING (on cobblestones again). Two hours after I left the interview I got the call to pop my ass a bottle of champagne cause they are bringing me on fucking board. Oh yeah and they have already taken the pleasure of scheduling me for those internal organisation only software trainings. Profanities are pouring in pure pleasure (hey how the fuck did I alliterate when I can't even control the language coming out my mouth?) And holy fuck I can make a budget. I can eat something besides couscous for dinner. I can have a long term plan (i.e. longer than 1 month which has been my life for a while now).

I CAN BUY YARN IN THE NOT SO DISTANT FUTURE. Go me, it's my JOB day. Go me, this is way better than a birthday! **edited to add that when I came into type this post for posting this morning, I found out that I WON a contest. A RAOKing contest. I had a slight advantage (I worked for Victoria’s Secret during undergrad, quitting over 3 years ago), but the contest judge didn’t think less of it and I WON. I won Koigu!! I now have to pick a color and think about what I will be doing with that yarn. I have never touched Koigu!

I know that the Yarn Harlot thinks February is a forsaken month and all. But for me I am now developing a special fondness for February, the 16th in particular. And since goodwill was spread I can now go make a donation (that I have been wanting to for a long time, to compliment my donation to UNICEF) to Medecins sans Frontières. I am so bowled over that I quite simply do NOT know what to do with myself. I am in happiness and joy, and marinating a BIG VAT of relief (that is not spelt by the letters of ANY antacid brand). I am sure the reality of heading back to work and shifting my schedule will settle in at some point. But for right now I am enjoying this moment to the utmost, how often do I actually INHALE on a repetitive basis, oxygen??

Monday, February 14, 2005

Hello and Goodnight Gracie

Life abroad made me think over the past couple of days. There are the conceptions of others about it (prominent is the life is a bowl full of cherries approach, and that you shouldn’t ever be able to complain about a bad day cause you are abroad experiencing that which others dream about) and then there are the realities (which include the fact that you live there wherever it is just like anyone else does anywhere else in the world, you are in most cases functioning in things that are in relative stages of foreign nature to your system, and let us not forget the isolation you sometimes feel). Of course there is the in between, and a fair amount of entertainment value to it all too. In all good, bad and ugly- I love living abroad. Importantly I am of the belief that your perspective on matters changes with the parameters of your borders, regardless of what you may think of your “home” country. And if/when you go “home” you do so with a distinctly different view on life. Not to mention the whole new set of experiences that you accumulated along the ride, that define that stage of your life. But what I am not (yet, if ever) accustomed to is the repetitive feeling that you have been tripping on acid in your sleep. Cause really, I am not sure that there would or could be any other explanation for this shit. Seriously even if I were creative, and I am not, I could not make this shit up if I tried. We will step away from the non-technicolor person who thought it was ok to let Grandma walk out of the house (in Italy) wearing the Flags of the World tapered balloon pants- the kind that make you wonder if MC Hammer is going to bust a move out the next alley breaking it down with 2 Legit, 2 Legit 2 Quit (sadly I remember the hand gestures for this, I am terrified…). Topped with a BLINDINGLY yellow bolero jacket. Stepping away… I have made the unilateral decision in the Empressdom of my territory to forget about the person I overheard last week here in Paris talking about their “vintage jacket.” Which for the record was not Channel, it was denim and had New Kids on the Block screened across the back of it. (VIVID flashbacks occurred thanks to that jacket; again frightened to the point that really, someone… hold me) I am having to come to terms with the fact that there are a fair amount of days in my life where I am left with no other option after waking up but to contemplate on the Dalai Lama and wonder What the Mc Fuck?? I have lived the past almost two years in Fashion “Capitals” of the world… I HAVE to be dropping acid in my sleep. This is the only reasonable explanation for any of this that my theory searching brain could come up with (feel free to amuse yourself if you think you can do better) But this weekend left me asking out loud- “Did I smoke Crack in my sleep” and “Who the hell hooked up the black tar heroin IV??” This moment in time is brought to you (via me) thanks to my television and TF1. Growing up I thought my legal name was a tortuous burden. It is one of those names that as an adult or under personal choice is not as bad as it could be- but with out choice and in the proximity of children… all I have to say is that children are cruel and one day I was POSITIVE that I wanted to change my name to Barbie. And it is bad enough for me, the quasi-feminist, to admit it… Nuff said. But these parents have taken the cake on Mama Mao. Serious, they need to have CPS called in on their asses, for wanting to have physical harm inflicted on their children. Incessantly. People someone in the 1960s thought it was ok to name a little French boy PLASTIC (ironically enough with a last name that sounds like it could be the first name- Bertrand, which lead me to think that someone typed things in wrong on the screen. Until the called him Plastic!). Even more eye popping are the parents who named that innocent little girl who grew up to have a plastic rack- Douchka (say it Douche-Ka). And they became celebrities. And they put them on TV. With a transvestite in a competition, dancing hip hop (say it eep-opp) after the show flashed me an up close and personal of Ms. France’s crotch THREE times using slow mo replay. As if life in France (with La Duree macaroons which are more addictive than popping X) wasn’t enough, it is now confirmed that there is something in the water. And really god help me if I ever need an IV, who the hell know what they are going to put in it. Me I am going to go back and hallucinate about waves, waves that are done and waiting for the kitchener. And to follow up: before you all go being frightened for my friends I have to add that one of them has known me through highs and lowest of lows for over 5 years and traveled through India. He hath no fear of neither a car nor me (well he does of me but not like that). The other is from Mexico City, where cars think you are there for moving target practice and honk in horns that sing. The third of the trio had already crossed the street so really I wasn't scaring the shit out of anyone as much as I was entertaining them. That is me the center of entertainment :) next post MIGHT have a photo and will reveal the music thingy I was tagged with by the ever so sweet Susie, cause you know I was starting to feel all left out and stuff.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Year of the Rooster and Much More

Well the story is into crow. I was born in the year of the snake and here we go: Despite the odd setback this is a satisfying time in almost every respect-- apart, perhaps, from money. Your efforts are recognized at work (does this mean I get a job?? HUH HUH???), but risky financial ventures should be avoided. Domestic life is harmonious and although social life involves a few difficulties this is a good time for romance (Really cause after a go around with Frenchie who stalked me I am not so sure I am hot to trot on that dating thing... though I did go out last night with a very nice visitor that works with my friend- see below). Find out yours here. Link from Siow-Chin (found through Crayonbrain). Where is the knitting content you ask? Where are the pictures? How I wish I had posts full of pictures again. Where is the laughter- well I did have a good Monday, Tuesday and a KICK ASS Thursday (dude Bill paid for everything I ate meat and drank me the happy juice. I got to smile thanks to my dear, dear friends who have the all important two words. Expense Report :) So I am posting despite the fact that technology is fighting me and my apartment is a big black 190sq ft vortex eating everything I ported across that blasted ocean for a reason. So… until I can find that itsy bitsy memory card that they sell the camera with for the camera (which I haven't been able to download the photos from- because the puter is still comatose and still on the continent) I can't make the scarf parade post really parade like. Nor can I show you the Natalya that I made/in process (trying to figure out what to do on the finger bits, I want fingers, but not sure about plain StSt fingers...) which made me FALL IN LOVE with the Classic Elite Inca Alpaca. I sure wish I knew where to find that stuff on sale, cause I am thinking if one of the "we are recruiting you" interview jobs finally comes through (one of them might be a coup de foudre next week… PLEASE) a Clapotis in black would be great for the in the office toss around item. Nor can I show you how the French (well not the French, but me in France) make waves. In a sock people, actually on a sock (language proofing it teaches you the importance and utter caprice of prepositions). And currently made me barkers on its travel to cover the top of the instep, but I beat it into pulpy submission. That is right people I am back and that sock it is my BITCH. I am now onto sock two my friends, and hoping I have enough yarn to make it match. Socks my friends they are my current passion. Why you ask?? Cause they are time intensive, and not yarn intensive. Two keys in the current political economy I live it. They keep me knitting and help trap that last bit of my sanity that is doing its best impression of a helium balloon. And this pair might just have me going until the next millenium if I ever tried them!! What knitting content I can give you before I turn all social anthropologist, attempting to be humorous on you, I can now tell you I am feeling remorseful shame. Yes I am. Adele posted a link to a French blogger (I need to read more French bloggers I know, the head is already hanging low and swinging to and fro) Laeticia. Laeticia who has finished the Pretty Wrappy Top. OH.MI.GOD. It looks gorgeous! Really go look, I'll wait. What better to make me face up to the shame of my all but the collar finished bits with an offer from a divine person to finish it for me… So tonight I am ripping out the collar (I had a flub in it, it has been in the corner on a time-out for two months and well hey ripping it out means there is more knitting time coming my way…). While watching Nip/Tuck. People why have I never seen this show. I LOVE IT. 1. Julian McMahon- HOT, 2. Funny and 3. Not from the late 1970s (seriously the first sign of the apocalypse (Dallas in French) is upon us. And for reference the second sign is Dynasty in Japanese, and that third horseman is going to be riding in with Knots Landing in Afghani. at that point just let it go there will be nothing you can do) Now for the rest of you I give you the social anthropologists version of a "how to": "How to scare the SHIT out of your visiting friends." First be a really nice friend and take them around town. Play walking tour guide pointing at things. And if they ask you what is that building, and you don't know... Make something up, the more creative the better. Next impress the hell out of your friend with your ability to make a Parisian driver go from a full speed ahead barrelling bullet to a grinding halt; by giving them the eye. It is all in the eye people. And to seal the deal. Be at an intersection with lights that you know direct the circulation of traffic. (Best done at night) Start crossing said intersection and when that vehicle starts edging up to you, giving whole new meaning to the phrase- "don't get all up in my grill..." Pound the vehicle on the hood stare down the driver and yell "FEU VERT" (Green Light in French). For the best added gasping effect the hood should be attached to an RATP (Parisian local transport) Bus. Yeah people I have balls the size of Jupiter. I can cross the streets in Rome, Athens, Istanbul, Cairo, and Mexico City without blinking an eye.

Pet Peeve

Ok it is no surprise that I have a "no yarn diet" going on. It is not voluntary per se in a de-stashing effort, as it is well documented that I have no stash here in Paris. I have remnants that I wish I had my stitch guide books to play with. But that is neither here nor there. This yarn diet is extended until the next contract comes along or something else is firmed up. I am hoping that will happen in the next month. If not I will try to guilt my mother who in her "I make Mao Tse-Tsung look like a warm fuzzy bear" kind of way, has decided to impose a visit with no warning (before everything was paid) for next month. Additionally what ever of any stash I may have ever had is in a storage unit in Seattle (not much use to me here in Paris obviously). Which in honesty never was that much as I kind of like to get yarn with something in mind. Otherwise I end up with a ball of Muguet that I have no clue what to ever do with and a ball of that there. You get the picture. I can be quite impulsive; it is not that far of a jump from my natural fidgety nature. And it sucks those nasty green infected and oozing donkey balls as I have enough Cascade 220 in a color I love for a sweater plus scarf (Rogue or it's likes) and enough alpaca for a sweater (thinking lacy cardigan-ish sweater there) in there too. But I digress… So my current theory is since I can't buy, I can look. Everyone needs a break from trying to make gender mainstreaming, policy learning and development behave like anything other than kindergarteners in the sandbox (which if you don't remember it is where you whacked Sally Sue upside the head with your pail for stealing your blessed shovel, before you poured water on her castle trying to bat your eyelashes out of trouble when she went screaming to the patrol warden by saying "but I was only trying to make a moat") in under 1500 words. I recognize that this is kind of masochistic I know but hey… better masochism than sadism- non? And since I can't touch and be tempted to abscond with it, online works great. I have only bought yarn once online, but it turned out fine. Once I get through this latest commission to language proof a friends PhD, I am going to have her send some payment in kind from the socks I fell in love with online. They have a color called Paris and Regia is CHEAP in Germany, nice bit is that is where she is! And I am all up for the risks that are associated with color choices etc. But I have a pet peeve. Like you are surprised... and if you are- read the title and then call me. Now I like variegated yarns. Mostly for accessories, but if one hit me right I'd probably make something bigger out of it. I particularly love making mind numbingly boring but zen socks out of the stuff :) That said the peeve is as follows: if you just stick a bunch of strands of the yarn together I haven’t got a freaking clue what it will look like knit up. Vendors- make a swatch and photo that; pretty pretty please avec une cerise on top. I will take my chances with the color, but I'd sure like to see the variagation pattern. Next question- has anyone ever used Knitpicks yarns? They seem so darn reasonable for the prices that I wonder if it is too good to believe. If I am going to have to trade someone into the slave market to be a shipping expiditer (that sounds like a job for Momma Mao if I ever heard of one...) then I don't want it to be for yarn that isn't up to standards. Cause the lady knows I am broke.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Bueller Is Not In Leave A Message After The Beep

Ok so I know things have been high on the stress richter scale over here and I have veered from the knitting and Paris to the grad school broke/job bitching. I have decided however, if I can't say nice things I am just not going to say them at all. I have two posts on two projects that have taken up all knitting time to come, and one on tidbits of Parisian life. I'll get to them right after I finish that analysis on gender equity, policy learning, gendermainstreaming in developing countries on social policy in under 1500 words by tomorrow for that "interview."

Serious I am starting to be of the opinon that to get one of these "you are under consideration- be grateful and worship our rhinestoned pinkie toe," international organisation positions that you are well qualified for: you have to teleport yourself in time, backwards through the hoops fire in hell, wearing a crocheted Nepalese sari yarn bikini, whilst reciting the theoretical implications of Weber's conceptualisation on ideals in Pig Latin. Sufficeth to say I am ready to say get it over with already. Go ahead tell me the color saturation of the yarn was off and be over with it. But for your benefit, tomorrow is that D-Day so next Monday I should have a real post for you guys on knitting and how I have managed to do some of it and what I am trying to do. Until then I give you this. Now I like to think of myself as cultured, and I like to think I am hip and with it, I remember pop culture right... But I thought she was making license plates last time I checked. And had a few *erm* image issues. I may not get much of American reality television recently, I never read Living, and I sure as hell don’t get why Donald Trump is where he is or why he has a (even remotely popular) television show; but really this is all 16 kinds of wrong.

Someone hold me.