Archive for November, 2008

The drugs make me woozy and upset my stomach, but the volume on my sadness and irritability seems to have been turned down.  Thank goodness.  I have another doctor’s appointment in a week to check on my progress, so we’ll see what he has to say.

It’s dark and dank here in England, but Francis is lovely to me, and I’ve been getting out more to see a friend here and there, and to see Francis’s family.  Mom is coming on December 17th, and Matt is coming on the 23rd, and I always enjoy Christmas.

Not much progress on the job front, but I do have a phone interview on the 2nd (my brithday!), and my friend Laura is gunning for me at her place of work.  Keep thinking good thoughts.

And thanks for all your comments here, I really love to hear from you!


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Adventures In Cooking

Please share your stories!

The jalapeño incident:

Many years ago, I was making samosas.  Samosas are fried Indian dumplings filled with curried potatoes and peas, nice and spicy.  Making them from scratch in quite a production.  Lots of chopping and rolling and crimping and whatnot.  Anyway, I was carefully dicing the jalapeños and talking on the phone with a friend, the phone propped on my shoulder.   As I was talking, I got a tiny itch just under my nostril.  Without thinking, I delicately scratched a little with my pinkie nail.  I immediately realized what I’d done, said “Oh shit, Philip? I gotta go!”  I ran to the bathroom and washed my nose with soap and rubbed it with olive oil to dilute the pepper oil, but it was in vain.  My nostril burned and burned and burned and the entire side of my nose turned bright pink.  When my boyfriend got home three hours later, he said “Hi, ooh those samosas look good OH MY GOD what is UP with your nose?!”

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I think it’s just one of those things that hit me just right, but I literally had tears in my eyes. Check it out. (Sorry, Robert, but I think this would take too long to download for you!)

Oh, and my mirth has nothing to do with the drugs!

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This is my brain on drugs.

I started taking Prozac today.

I’m terribly disappointed that the amino acids weren’t enough to do the trick any longer, but hey, better living through chemicals, as my dear auntie says.

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Dear Maxim,

Hi there,

I hope you can help me: I mysteriously have a subscription to Maxim that I did not sign up for. I am currently living abroad and have had all my mail forwarded to my mother. Since I’ve been gone, she’s been receiving Maxim in my name on a regular basis.

I have never had a subscription; I don’t know how you got my name and USA address. What is particularly odd about this all is that I am a heterosexual woman. While I am certainly not a prude (in the past I have used clippings from your and others’ fine publications to make a large boobie collage which currently hangs on the living room wall of my friends Tom and Tony’s apartment), I do not want you to send me or my mother unsolicited mail.

In short: please stop sending your magazine to my mother. (She is also a heterosexual female and not a prude either, but you know… it’s a little weird.) Please also IMMEDIATELY remove me from any lists, as now my mother is receiving invitations for subscriptions to Playboy. I really really want you to make sure I’m not on any lists.

My main concern is this: I would like to be reassured that I am not somehow being charged for your magazine.

My USA contact info is as follows:

Adrian O’—
[Kristin’s address went here]

Thanks so much.

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Francis and I own our flat. The shareholders (flat owners) of the building hired a management company to take care of the building. Each of the twelve flat owners pays them a lot of money to look after general stuff. Which they don’t seem to be doing.

Dry rot was discovered in the building last year. Massive construction ensued, some of it on our flat. The management company was incredibly uncommunicative and unresponsive when we started complaining that the work was not being done on schedule. Even the customer service manager for the company made it clear she didn’t give a rat’s ass. No one would tell us anything.

Now we hear from the contractors that the management company’s checks are bouncing, and they are in breach of contract. The contractors are threatening to pull off site, leaving the roofing unfinished and two flats at risk of water damage.

The management company has called a meeting to talk about “cash flow issues”. I’m very interested to see what they have to say for themselves, given that the contractor manager expressed great surprise that the we, the owners, hadn’t been told anything about delays or problems with money.

I’ve been on the phone with Trading Standards Central (UK equivalent of the BBB) and ARMA (Association of Residential Management Agents) and have been finding out our options. Soon to be contacted: the shareholders’ insurance company, the management company’s insurance company, and hopefully some ombudsman’s something that can help referee. We’re also having a meeting tomorrow night for whatever shareholders can attend (and hopefully the contractor manager) so we can compare notes before we meet with the management company.

Oy vey.

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Pictures of Obama

Four years ago Time photographer Callie Shell met Barack Obama backstage when she was covering presidential candidate John Kerry. She sent her editor more photographs of Obama than Kerry. When asked why, she said, “I do not know. I just have a feeling about him. I think he will be important down the road.” Her first photo essay on Obama was two and half years ago. She has stuck with him ever since.

(Each time you get to the bottom of the page, click “Show More Images”.)

I like this man more and more. He cleans up after himself even when there’s no one around to see it. He can do pull-ups. He is as sweet as honey to his wife and children.

Also, he’s now one of my Flickr contacts!

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