Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone. May you find all your heart's desires beautifully wrapped under the Christmas tree with your name on the label...


Saturday, December 23, 2006

That's the spirit!

Overheard at my local shopping centre: "I can so see myself slapping someone today..."

Christmas shopping two days out = bad idea!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Love is...

Do you remember those cutesy-pie ‘Love is…’ cartoons from the 70s with the little naked couple? I had a book full of them as a kid.

I’ve been thinking a bit about love since we’re coming up to Christmas day when love is supposed to be wrapped up in the perfect package under the Christmas tree. And I was reflecting on the fact that I’ve never had a boyfriend who really wowed me with a particular Christmas gift, and that the times in my life I’ve felt most loved have had nothing to do with commercial holidays and enforced gift giving or romance.

It’s not that presents aren’t important, because it's a thrill to receive a well thought-out gift that delights me. I have a very particular aesthetic and when someone gets it, it makes me feel like they really know me. (I think receiving gifts is definitely one of my love languages.)

But it’s the simple moments, the everyday gestures small and large, that linger in your memory long beyond the birthday and Christmas presents. That’s what’s really important.

Love is…
  • Creating a guitar-shaped Christmas shortbread for your band-playing boyfriend (Katrina!)
  • Taking your new husband’s surname, even when that surname is Butt. (A girl who went to my high school married a Butt and did just this.)
  • Delighting in the fact that you’re cuddled in bed with a man you adore and you couldn’t be more content - even though you’ve just woken up in the middle of the night to discover him mysteriously making the same loud snuffling noise as the pig you were just dreaming about.
  • Moving back home after breaking up with your live-in boyfriend of four years and being welcomed at the door with a big hug and a ‘rough day, huh?’ from Dad, and an ‘I can’t imagine how you must be feeling’ note from Mum.
  • Your boyfriend surprising you by bringing a kitten home when he’s never wanted to have one, because he knows that you do.
  • Arriving home to a bitter NZ winter after four months in glorious Southern California to discover your mother has filled your fridge with your favourite treats, left you fluffy ugg boot slippers (pink and embroidered with flowers) to ward off cold feet, put flowers all through the house and written you a note to welcome you home and promise you that the winter won’t be so bad.
  • Driving to your girlfriend’s flat in the early hours of the morning to check her car’s there and that she got home safely (even though you abandoned her in a bit of a huff earlier in the night).
  • Being able to rely on your father to plant trees and fix broken things and drill holes and assemble cabinets and hammer nails and move heavy furniture as and when required.
  • Having a close network of great girlfriends who've grown up with you and shared in every important part of your life: awkward teenage phases and first kisses, early bumbling relationships and inappropriate boyfriends, milestones like moving in with someone, and weddings, and first homes, and babies, and career changes, and country changes, and horrific break-ups, and failures and successes, swings and roundabouts. And knowing there’s still so much more to go through together.
I'd love to hear what's on your list.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Oh, and PS:

Finlay texted me today. It was so good to hear from him, it definitely put a smile on my face for the afternoon.

Thank you, Secret Santa!

We had our Christmas party last night. The festivities kicked off at 6pm at the office with handing out of the $10 Secret Santa presents we bought for each other.

I love Secret Santa and our office makes it a lot of fun. We had Gregory, this great outgoing gay guy who used to work for us, come by to play Santa. Actually, he showed up as Santa's Chief Elf in head to toe green (stockings, knickerbockers, pointy slippers - the works!). He handed out presents and as people received them he set some rules: once you'd opened your present he'd ask you "and what did Santa get you this year?", whereupon you'd show & tell and then the rest of the room would chant "Thank you, Secret Santa!". Sounds a bit naff but Christmas spirit and Veuve Cliquot were both flowing freely so everyone really got into it.

My turn came and of course I was dying to see what I'd gotten. Our office manager, the one person who knows all the secret santas since she had to make sure everyone got their presents under the tree on time, had told me that whoever had pulled my name out of the hat had sworn her to secrecy to never reveal their identity to me - so I figured I was getting something controversial.

I'd seen my present under the tree earlier in the day and had given it a good prod and a rattle but had no idea what it was - it was pretty small, just two inches square.

So I'm perched on Gregory's knee, ripping into my little package and I pull out one of these:

I burst out laughing and Chief Elf asks me "So what did Santa give you this year, brunette?".

"Why, Santa gave me a stimulation ring for him and her."

"Thank you, Secret Santa!"

Monday, December 18, 2006

Holiday reading

I went to the library yesterday to stock up on some reading over Christmas, since I'm going to have some time to fill - as of this Friday I have an entire MONTH off work! I am so excited...

Anyway, I picked out a whole bunch of books on creativity and writing (I intend to be prolific during my break), and also some self-help books, because I do love me some self-help (and Don Miguel Ruiz's books have such lovely cover art) but decided I needed some fiction to round out my selection.

I have a hard time picking out fiction - there's so much of it and who knows if any of it's any good. So I chose a few random paperbacks (I only had room for
light and compact books - the Julia Cameron books I got were all hardbacks and big and heavy). Then I noticed the 'recently returned' shelf and this one book caught my eye: Fever by Christine Feehan. Specifically, the quote on the cover that called her "the reigning queen of paranormal romance".

I didn't even know there was a 'paranormal romance' genre, let alone one with a reigning monarchy. That all sounded like a bit of fun so I grabbed it. And I got a good chuckle as I read the back of it during red traffic lights on the drive home:

Sensual half-human, half-leopard creatures stalk the
lush rainforests of Borneo...

And they mate for life.

Excellent. Needless to say it was the first book I dived into, I'm already halfway through and there have been many extended descriptions of feline-like loving going on in the jungle. Grrr baby, very grrr.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Oh good lord, what have I gone and done?

Last night I had a great date with a great guy – let’s call him Finlay, in honour of his Scottish heritage – and get this: there’s every chance in the world that he’s going to read this.

Before I get to that, let me tell you a bit about him. He’s smart and funny, good looking and articulate and a snappy dresser. He has a creative job as a graphic designer, which I find really appealing, and he even tells me he can cook. In short, he’s just the kind of guy you hope to meet but rarely find all in one package. And he was terrific company. We met at Honey Bar in town, ensconced ourselves in a big comfy couch in the corner and talked for hours.

I liked his profile when I read it and even went so far as to message him first – because of the cooking thing, for one (how sexy is a man who cooks!), and also because next to the ‘watching sports’ question he said he rarely does – this is a true bonus in a kiwi male, who often want to watch every game on TV. (I don’t mind the odd game, but the rugby season can be so long and tedious.)

Now you might think I’m giving him a rave review because of the chance he might read this, but the cause and effect actually runs in the other direction – it’s only because I liked him that I felt the desire to confess to the fact that I blog about my love life. I never would have told him about it, much less given him the name of it when he asked, if he was a dud. But he mentioned his own blog in conversation and I didn’t want to hide mine so I told him about it. And when he asked me the name of it, I even gave it to him. And he’s a smart cookie so my guess is that he’ll find his way here if he wants to.

And yes, that does strike a little terror into my heart, if I’m going to be honest. Especially when I found his own blog this morning and discovered it to be utterly innocuous and not incriminating in the slightest (in direct contrast to mine).

This could prove to be the most ill-advised dating move I’ve yet to make because let’s face it – in reading this he’s going to be privy to a lot more than he otherwise would. Is there a chance it could be a stroke of genius? A bold, risky move that pays off? I hope so. I’ve found the blogging process to be quite confessional – I’ve only ever wanted to be completely honest – and in the safety of anonymity I started sharing things that I would never say out loud to the majority of people. It would actually be really great to meet someone who could read my innermost thoughts and be okay with them.

Ah well, I look forward to seeing how this all unfolds. I’ll keep you posted.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Things I would rather not be asked immediately following a $105 haircut

"What did you do to your hair?!"

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Make love not war

Yes, I know... I've been a very bad blogger - and not for a lack of stories to tell either, more a lack of free time and the necessary discipline.

So apologies for that - I'll see what I can do to bring you up to speed with recent events in the next week or two.

But for now, I want you to mark this date in your diaries
and do your bit for world peace: Friday 22 December. This kindly organisation aims to create world peace by changing the world's energy field through a synchronised global orgasm. And really, world peace has never been so much fun.

At worst, it's a pleasant way to pass some time on a Friday. At best, you could actually do something good for mankind. Me, I think there might just be something in it. There was an experiment done in Washington DC where 4000 people descended on the city with the sole intention of meditating daily for the good of the city. During the experimental period of eight weeks, violent crime decreased by 23%.

So come on (literally), grab a friend (or battery operated device) and join in...