Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence (of the Lambs)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence (of the Lambs)

In response to WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence.

I do wish we could chat longer, but I’m having an old friend for dinner.

—Dr. Hannibal Lecter

Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence

Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence

In response to WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Silence.

The words the happy say
Are paltry melody
But those the silent feel
Are beautiful—

Emily Dickinson

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7 More Days, 7 More Instagram Snaps

7 More Days, 7 More Instagram Snaps

I’m continuing in my non-challenge of taking and posting a non-photo on Instagram every day. I still haven’t figured out what I’m trying to achieve, but I have patience enough, so I’ll just wait and see what becomes. While we’re all waiting for me to figure out what I’m up to, here are seven more photos covering seven more days.

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8 Jan: I’ve been fascinated with balls recently. Especially fluffy balls. And colourful balls. Bonus for soft balls. I must ask the ghost of Freud what that means.
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9 Jan: Balls!! The cat got a new toy ball. She’s nonplussed. Never mind, I like to play with balls. And step on them in the dark because there are 10+ cat toys strategically placed around the flat. Ostensibly for the cat to play with, but, see above, she doesn’t care. So home decoration it is.
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10 Jan: In case there was any doubt, I have a crotch. It’s hard to take a selfie when you don’t want to capture your face. So I figure the crotch is a pretty neutral subject. 
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11 Jan: I made myself tea with slivovitz and, much to my alarm, discovered Apple product placement in the tea. They’re everywhere, trying to get me. But they won’t because I’m paranoid. Which doesn’t negate the fact that they’re after me.
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12 Jan: This cute piece of graffiti says motherfuckers in the local language. I think it’s very cheerful and uplifting, though I didn’t confirm with the owner of this wall. 
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13 Jan: I was playing around with JavaScript. I didn’t achieve anything, but it’s kind of nice to know that you can write a JS object, should your life depend on it one day. You know, like the day when the computers take over the world.
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14 Jan: The cat is either incredibly stupid or incredibly bold because she attempted to join me in the shower.  Don’t even ask what I was doing with my phone in the shower. (I take it everywhere, so.)

 

Getting Tattoo Number Three

Getting Tattoo Number Three

The other day I saw a wonderfully fitting comics, which I can’t be bothered locating again, so I’ll retell it without pictures:

Getting the first tattoo: Oh, it must be something deep and meaningful!
Next tattoos: A unicorn? Sure, I like unicorns!

(I don’t personally like unicorns, as you might remember from my old blog tagline, which said that I’d feed any unicorn in my proximity to my cat or, even better, sell it on eBay.)

Currently on tattoo number three, I didn’t attempt to invent anything deeply meaningful and entirely new because, duh, you can’t do that, everything’s been here already. Also, we’re all going to die anyway (that’s my deep personal motto) and a permanent tattoo is about as permanent as life. Which is, not much. So I just ripped a prefabricated design I liked off the internet. Shrug.

Since I’m a self-declared Buddhist, I picked what’s called the ensō, a hand-drawn circle achieved by a single stroke of the brush. It’s symbolic of Zen or anything you want, really. The image that I brought to the tattoo artist was computer-made, but the guy turned out to be less incompetent than I’d feared and suggested he’d do it for me with an actual brush. Hey, so I ended up with a unique pattern after all!

My appointment for the deed was at 8 AM. What the actual fuck. I don’t normally get up until noon, so this was an act of torture. I walked in the studio zombie-like and proceeded to undress with machine-like movements (not to undress completely, just partially, because I’d freeze to death, duh). As the man prepped his junk (no innuendo intended) and switched on the tattoo machine, the device started to make sounds like the dentist’s drill and I freaked out. (I’m terrified of the dentist.) I may or may have not yelled:

Aw, fuck, I should’ve taken Lexaurin before THIS!

The man made me promise I won’t swear at him dirty, which I did (promise), and I also promised that I’d just cry quietly and that he needn’t mind me. Besides dentists, I’m terrified of pain, which, it turns out, is entirely idiotic and superstitious because during the one-hour tattooing session, I didn’t experience worse than gentle discomfort (only as the needle hit the collar bone—I’m having this circle shit circling my shoulder cap) and it was just nice, wholesome physical pain, which is laughable when compared to the stuff I deal with courtesy of my depression slash anxiety.

I had a lovely chat with the tattoo guy though. What a social occasion for me who doesn’t have a life! The man turned out, surprisingly, to be able to digest my very black and mean humour, which I rarely encounter in people (or in animals, I suppose). So, I seated myself in a comfortable cross-legged meditation seat, ready to go:

He asks: Uh, how long do you think you can sit like this?
Me: Uh, hours on end, I guess?

Please note that I’m a girl and a yogi girl, and hence it’s totally normal for me to sit cross-legged. It’s the best because I don’t topple when I have the extra support of the crossed legs.

On this note, the tattoo man was quite trusting and didn’t seem to mind that I had my knee in his crotch half of the time. No one got hurt though, I mean, except my shoulder, apparently, which didn’t even hurt. Some way into it, I started to doze off. Yawn. I really should be sleeping:

You okay? asks the tattoo guy.
Yeah. Just bored. I retort.

On which he offers me the tattoo machine:

Wanna try it?

I’m considering it. But:

Nah, I’m good. Wake me up when you’re done

In case you’re dozing off reading this, yawn, let me conclude that all seemed to go well, I love the result, and since I had such a good time, I’ll be coming again. As to a picture of the result, I didn’t take a good one when the tattoo was fresh, and now it’s not a good time, since it’s healing and peeling and whatnot. But I assume you can imagine a circle around the shoulder, right? Also, an afterthought: the priceless response of my friend, whom I bragged and who isn’t into tattoos:

But won’t that show too much in summer? 

Hmm. That’s sort of the idea, no?

7 Days, 7 Instagram Snaps

7 Days, 7 Instagram Snaps

I’ve been diligently taking a photo a day since the beginning of the year. It’s not like I’m doing a 365 Project. I’ve completed two and abandoned one two thirds along the way. It’s rather that I have no idea what I’m doing and I keep on posting it on Instagram.

Scroll down to view the evidence and read my elaborate photo descriptions. Or don’t, I’m not telling you what to do. I would, but no one listens to me, so I won’t. Or will I? I have decision paralysis, so decide on my behalf. Problem solved. Or not.

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1 January: Went to see fireworks. Was so foggy that I couldn’t see where I was going, not to mention the fireworks. The fog-amplified noise nearly gave me an epileptic attack. I’m not even epileptic.
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2 January: I’m trying to read. That would be commendable, except it’s so boring I mostly just fiddle with the Kindle app, which has a Dic(k)tionary. I don’t know how I managed to graduate as a Literature Major.
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3 January: I went to the post office but I can’t remember what I wanted there. That much to documenting my life so I could remember what the fuck I was up to. Probably nothing as per usual.
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4 January: My new yoga mat arrived. I ordered it specifically because of the box, which is cat-sized. Kidding. Kind of. The cat however approves, and she’s the queen.
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5 January: That was a bad idea. I okayed Windows Update and had to take a day off because my Windows couldn’t even. After crunching for half an hour, Windows presented me with this. You know what. FY.
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6 January: I was asked to get drunk and send nudes. I did get drunk. Nothing said.
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7 January: Got a hangover, couldn’t stand sharp light, used a candle. I can do candles. Anytime. Also, none of this is true. Maybe. You wouldn’t know.
Weekly Photo Challenge: More Weathered

Weekly Photo Challenge: More Weathered

In response to WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Weathered.

As per request, here’s another weathered snap from my hometown. I guess now is the place where I provide you with details about the image, what’s in the picture and what the heck it’s all about, alas, I have no idea.

I’m not very home in my hometown. All I know is that this is a detail on the facade of some building or another. Maybe a musician lived there in the Middle Ages, but now it’s a pawn shop. An appropriate downward spiral. Here you go.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Weathered

Weekly Photo Challenge: Weathered

In response to WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Weathered.

I’m fascinated with the American fascination with historical architecture. Where I live, everything is by default ancient, or at least old and weathered. Even the perfectly insignificant and uninteresting small town where I’m currently residing dates back to the twelfth century.

It has all the obligatory medieval props: remains of the city wall, cobblestones everywhere and the plague column. The poor clueless people built it to ward off the plague, rather than building a proper sewer system. Duh.

So I Was Trying to Cook…

So I Was Trying to Cook…

I cook every day. Still, I’m even worse than the worst cook ever. In cooking, I follow strict principles:

  • the dish must not require more than two ingredients
  • no more than two pots and one piece of kitchen utensil are allowed
  • it has to be done in under ten minutes

I usually end up with cooked frozen veggies and tofu.

I was feeling ambitious today, though, so I procured exotic ingredients to produce a shockingly complex meal. An omelette.

It involved eggs, bacon and onion. (This breaks the rule of maximum two ingredients.) It took half an hour to make. (This breaks the ten-minutes-tops rule.) I had to dust off a plethora of kitchen utensils I own just so but never use. (This breaks the two pots/utensils rule.)

In short, I wasn’t recognising myself. I forgive myself though for I did not know what I was doing. (Literally.)

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Guess what! An omelette.

I needed to Google the recipe. Why, no, I don’t really know how to make an omelette. The recipe called for a pan, but fuck that, I don’t keep such devilish devices at home. So a pot it is instead. The instructions demanded that I beat the eggs. What? I’m pacifist, I don’t beat anything. I compromised though and massaged the eggs for a bit in a mug with a fork. That’ll do.

I was also peeling and cutting an onion. I couldn’t believe what was happening. It was seriously surreal. Onions might be nice, but they’re optional and I don’t remember ever going for the option. (It goes against all that my minimalist cooking code represents.) I was trying to make small cubes from half an onion, alas, I somehow ended up with thick crescent-shaped slices. Whatever.

I vaguely remembered from my random observations of people cooking that you put the onion in first. Which I did. It well quite well to start with. Then I put in the bacon and poured the eggs over it. Only then did I attempt to add salt and pepper, which turned out to be a bit late because it didn’t mix. Oh well.

I proceeded to hypnotise the pot and wait.

The recipe claimed the omelette is ready when the top gets crusty. The top refused to do such a thing and while I was willing to wait for it, I was increasingly disturbed by the smell of something burning that started to emanate from the pot. I tentatively poked the work in progress and found that it got stuck to the pot. *shrug* I peeled it off and discovered the omelette’s bottom is burnt and the top is raw. Interesting.

It tasted better than it looked but you’d better not try this at home.

A Quick Log

A Quick Log

Bought a new yoga mat. Nothing wrong with the old one, but the cat needed the box.

My WordPress Highlights of the Year

My WordPress Highlights of the Year

Those ill-advised individuals who follow my blog know that I don’t have a life. It won’t therefore come as a surprise that in the balancing act, my highs of the last year are pretty low. Perhaps not incidentally, they are all associated with WordPress in one way or another.

In 2017 I did not get featured on Discover, or whatever they call Freshly Pressed now. I used to covet this caveat before I discovered (and freshly pressed) that I’m too subversive to get publicised anywhere (unless I invite myself, see further below).

On a side note, I’m so wiped these days that I spent five minutes trying to remember the word subversive. It’s ridiculous because, as I rarely fail to mention, I have a PhD in literature (in-yer-face), and, furthermore (and is the same as furthermore, hence it’s pleonasm—I am aware of it and yes, I just spent five more minutes trying to remember the word pleonasm), subversive is my middle name. (Kidding. Slavs don’t get middle names.)

What I did in 2017, however, was WordPress user testing. You might or might not remember my enthusiastic, carefully crafted (and subversive) post on my experience. If you missed it, read it (because I wasted so much time and effort making the post), and if you’re not up to it, please be advised that user testing didn’t involve testing on humans (or pets). Wait. It did. Never mind.

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Picking my poison

What I got from this user testing (no humans or cats were harmed in the process, or not too much anyway), was an Amazon gift card (I’ll be buying self-help books on how to make myself, the world and the web a better place) and a one-year extension of my WordPress subscription. Hey, I got to do what I love and I got rewarded for that! Now, that I call a sweet deal.

My another not-too-dazzling highlight was when I was a speaker at WordCamp. Keep your pants on, though, it’s not what it looks. There indeed was a national WordCamp in my area and I did actually speak on the stage, but it was part of lightning talks, a free-form session in which volunteers from the audience were encouraged to come up and talk. No one volunteered but I invited myself (see above for not getting invited anywhere unless I invite myself).

I blame the great coffee that they offered for free (well, included in the price of the ticket) at the event. Considerably better than my generic brand coffee. IT people are known for their coffee after all. (I’ll start buying better coffee when I earn as much as IT people.) Well, where was I? I took the microphone fearlessly (I was high on caffeine and anti-anxiety meds) and said: “They say that each day, you should do something you’re scared of. So I guess I can check this box for today.”

The audience was well pleased and applauded me, but, much to their dismay, I went on and couldn’t be stopped. I have photos to prove it. I won’t be posting them here because that would not be exactly in keeping with my idea of blogging anonymously and enjoying the privileges that come with it. Duh. Huh. So these were my WordPress highlights. That’s all, guys. I’m going to get high on caffeine or benzodiazepine, I’m not sure which yet.