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Friday, 27 June 2008

hurrah for summer vacation

I'm officially on "annual leave" now for the next two weeks and two days. Hurrah.

I'm not planning on going anywhere in particular, certainly not anywhere away, as funds and dog-care do not allow, but I am not feeling bad about this one bit - quite the opposite. We live in such a beautiful part of the Kentish countryside, and I feel like I only see it from the train window on the way into London. It will be perfect to spend two weeks here, cycling, walking the dog, hanging out, reading the papers in assorted beer gardens, getting some summer fruit wine going, starting the Rumpot (more on that one later!) - my list is long. I want to try making soap, do a bit of painting again, and fix the dining room table and that leaky tap that is driving me nuts in the bathroom. It really is the little stuff, you know?

I feel a bit odd at being away from work for so long. I've been deeply involved in my projects (one major one that has recently ended) - I can't quite believe they can still live without me! The projects, that is - not the people. I know the people will be just fine. I've put messages on my work phone and my mobile, and switched it off. I've put on my out of office and left my laptop at work. I've even left my blackberry at work. I'm not sure how I became the sort of person who would ever even write a sentence like that last one.

The most important thing I want to do is think, and that needs space and time.

I'll keep you posted.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Yup. What he said.

Socketh unto others
As you would have them socketh to you

- Sly and the Family Stone, "Fun"

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Perhaps an intrinsic part of growing a thicker skin

is never getting that involved in the first place.

An ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure and all that.

just a thought.

I tell myself, when I am blindsided by yet another storm-in-a-tea-cup at work, and I am tying myself up into knots of anxiety, that I must develop a thicker skin. Perhaps stepping back is just as important. Before the storm, of course.

I am blessedly unencumbered by work crises at the moment, but that's usually a reliable sign that one will hit imminently. I think I will take precautions and care less now.

Any tips?

Saturday, 14 June 2008

When you know beyond a shadow of a doubt our drug policy is insane...


Creation of drug-free jails too expensive, say consultants
Alan Travis, home affairs editor
The Guardian,
Saturday June 14 2008

The creation of drug-free prisons in England and Wales is too expensive and not a practical option with more than half the record 83,000 jail population misusing drugs, according to a consultants' report commissioned by justice and health ministers.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

you say it's your birthday

well almost, anyways. Tomorrow.

I know it's not cool - hell, I know I'm not cool, but I still get frissions of inner delight about birthdays. My spell checker is telling me that should be fissions of inner delight, but I disagree. Sounds too insubstantial without the 'r'.

OK I had to check. I actually mean frisson. I think it would be better with that extra 'i' but the dictionaries of the world have passed their judgment. Frisson. Sounds like salad. Or an Ikea kitchen cabinet. or an art movement.

I think I have pretty much proved the uncool point, anyways. Coincidently, if you type 'frisson' into wikipedia, you get an article about 'cold chill'.

Did I have a point?

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Seven Songs

"List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they’re not any good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying now, shaping your spring. Post these instructions in your blog along with your 7 songs. Then tag 7 other people to see what they’re listening to."

1. Avila by The Wailin' Jennys
I love the Wailin' Jennys - they're a three woman folk band from Winnipeg and they sing beautiful songs in harmonies that make me ache, in a good way. Also, when everything gets on my nerves, their music always feels right. Avila is fun to sing along to. I was singing it to my dog this afternoon. He was not that impressed.

2. Call it Democracy by Bruce Cockburn
containing the immortal lines
"See the paid-off local bottom feeders
passing themselves off as leaders
kiss the ladies shake hands with the fellows
open for business like a cheap bordello"

3. American Wedding by Gogol Bordello
"Have you ever been to American wedding?
Where is all the vodka
Where is marinated herring???"

4. Loose Lips by Kimya Dawson
"We're not gonna stop until somebody calls the cops
and even then
we'll start again
and just pretend that nothing ever happened"

5. Bach's Goldberg variations
and no I can't pick just one, thank you.

6. Time to say goodbye (by ?)
I just picked up the sheet music for this - it's sappy neo-operatic schmultz for people who can't handle real music and I love it because it reminds me of a long weekend in Maastricht where it played in every bar and restaurant we went into.

7. We built this city on rock and roll by Starship
I have no idea either. If someone has suggestions for getting rid of this I am all ears. I find myself singing this in the shower in the mornings often. Perhaps I need a new alarm clock.

Being new to blogging, I don't think I can tag 7 people - but I can tag Geo :)