Jun. 4th, 2015 02:31 am
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I’ve worn glasses since I was five. They’re not exactly my favourite thing.

I hated wearing glasses at school. They were ugly, they got in the way, they fell off my face, a particular little toad by the name of Natasha took delight in taking them off my face and throwing them away so I had to go looking for them and constantly got in trouble for being late back from P.E. as a result…
… You know, I was a bit of a thick child, it never occurred to me to tell the teacher why I was always late back. Anyway.

Then there was the time I was running around the playground, jumped off a piece of equipment, glasses fell as I jumped and I couldn’t change my trajectory in time not to land on them. My mum was PISSED OFF that time, as I’d just got that pair a week earlier.

I do remember the pair of glasses that had little cherries on the corners. Looking back, they must have been horrendously ugly, but I loved them.

I basically avoided wearing my glasses as much as humanly possible, until somewhere around age ten when I realised I couldn’t see anything useful, ever, and had to do something about it.

I had horrendous enormous glasses until I was about nineteen, when I got my first contacts and flatly refused to wear glasses ever again. Then Toby convinced me into a pair of remarkably fashionable frames (the year I was 23, I think?), which I’m still wearing eight years later. Plus contacts, except I work in IT, and staring at screens + aircon = easily dried-out eyes = contacts not my friend in the office.

So. Today, I had the initial “do you qualify?” appointment for iLasik surgery. Never expected to hear the line “you have lovely thick corneas”, but apparently I have lovely thick corneas. How about that.

So yes, in a couple of weeks, I am having my eyes lasered. I was amused at some of the warnings – no swimming, no makeup for a week, etc. I realise they do have to explicitly tell people these things, but … common sense really isn’t any more, is it? Like, yes, I’ve just had my eyeball CUT OPEN of course I will go sticking FOREIGN OBJECTS right up against it and risk eye infections. Durrrrr.

Laser eyes, baby! No more glasses! No more contacts! No more waking up blind going “where are the glasses, where”? No more fluffing about with contacts for dance events.

I am cheerfully excited about this. LASER EYES!!

Originally published at kiwi geek. You can comment here or there.


May. 1st, 2013 08:12 pm
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The weight loss is going pretty well. I’m a smidge over 10kg down – affected somewhat by the two pizzas last week.

I’m going to the dance congress in five weeks. The theme of the party Saturday night is “paint the town red”. Clearly, the only appropriate outfit is a red dress. So I hopped on the internet and found one second hand, that being one of my minor superpowers.

It cost me forty bucks.

It’s the first dress I’ve owned in years from a straight size shop. A shop that doesn’t aim itself at fat chicks, but at anyone who wanders in off the high street. It fits like a charm. It is, admittedly, utterly racktastic, but seeing as I have a g cup, that’s not entirely surprising.

I love it.

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I periodically get on DIY kicks. Sometimes it’s sewing, sometimes it’s food… recently, it’s – let me start back a little further.

What with the dancing and everything, I discovered a newfound love of makeup. And also how comparatively crap my existing, elderly, cheap makeup was. So, I gradually invested in better quality makeup, in the right colours for me, and generally the result makes me happy.

I have funny skin, sometimes. My face annoys me, because it’s greasy around the chin and flaking-off-terribly across the eyebrows. (Of all the things I had to inherit from Mum, why that?) So, moisturiser became a requirement. To be fair, this was one of the things that goes with realising that, at age 29, I should probably attempt to take care of my face and/or act like a grownup. Astonishing concept, I know.

But oh man, moisturiser is expensive, and smelly, and half the time it irritates my skin, and wah wah wah. Then, lightbulb! Why not make my own?

Some time ago, I’d bought a jar of coconut oil on a whim. I mostly use it as a deep conditioner for my hair. Then I bought some beeswax – I think I originally pondered making a candle? Then I had a lightbulb moment, put the two together (along with some olive oil and butterscotch flavour oil), and voila – lip balm. Which I also use as cuticle cream and t-zone moisturiser at night. Even my lovely husband has noticed the improvement in my skin!

I ran out of coconut oil, inevitably, so ordered more from that fine source of all random things, The Internet. The stash arrived today; and an hour or so later, I have two bottles and four jars full of moisturiser. Coconut oil, cocoa butter, olive oil, vitamin E, beeswax, butterscotch and coconut perfume oils. It’s a lovely consistency, I inexplicably smell like walnut instead of any of the other options, my skin is lovely and soft and happy.

I am going to have to offload some of the results onto my mother, because otherwise I will still be using this in Christmas 2015. But you know, I’m OK with that.

Originally published at spinneretta

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Today, I got so happily engrossed in work that I nearly missed my lunchtime leg&eyebrow-wax appointment. I got there about three minutes late, and realised on the way back to work that wearing tight jeans, in midsummer, on the day you get your legs waxed, is a really stupid idea! It was hot and my pores are complaining and my jeans stuck to my legs for the rest of the afternoon. I had a cold bath when I got home to give my poor legs a chance to cool down.

I got complimented on my makeup, which is funny for the following reason: I couldn’t get last night’s eyeliner OFF, so I cut my losses, tidied it up and put some eyeshadow on before I left for work. (Also, I love the Urban Decay palette that I acquired over Xmas, it’s fantastic.)

I went to a bar with workmates to farewell a workmate who’s disappearing to Australia, called my mum while I walked to the bus stop; I am now happily ensconced in the snug with Tigra, a Coke, and my husband has been sent out to acquire dinner.

It’s been a pretty good day.

I’ve started teaching zouk now. I am thrilled by this. See, the social nights I go to at a local bar start with a free beginner class. November-ish last year, I turned up early (ie, in time for the actual class – for hopefully obvious reasons I had been skipping it). The teacher was on his own, so I dived in to help. After that, he asked me to keep teaching with him, and hello YES PLEASE. I love teaching anyway, I love zouk, and this way I can give a little back to the hobby that’s given me so much. It’s basic basic beginner’s stuff, which I can do in my sleep, and I’m thoroughly enjoying teaching.

I suspect that there is another advantage to someone like me teaching. I am not intimidating – I am overweight, I am going to turn thirty this year, I am approachable for most of the women who show up for the first time. (Opposed to the slim twenty year old blonde stereotypical dancer.) I do have gorgeous hair, even if I say so myself.

So, people show up, they laugh at my jokes (all stolen from other dance teachers), they learn the steps, they go “you make it look so eaaaasy” at me, I generally feel good about myself.

As well as Cyclenut’s mum, who puts in regular appearances at the bar – did I mention that Cyclenut’s mum started turning up? She did, and I felt a bit awkward at first and then I got over it – I ran into a manager from my previous job. I got along well with him when I worked there, and we chit-chatted quite a bit last night (which was his first lesson). I even got a hug when he left!

I got some compliments on the class, which is always nice, and more importantly, several people cheerfully told me they’re coming back next week.

It’s been a pretty good week, actually.

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It’s been a mildly productive weekend. Mount Washmore has been re-vanquished, and new laundry hampers obtained. One is black, one is white; the uses should be pretty obvious from there.

We actually operate three hampers; darks, lights, and my delicates slash stuff I’m going to wear again but isn’t clean any more. It works well.

I also got my crafty on. Coming up to giftmas, I knew I’d have to reorganise the cards, envelopes, wrapping stuff, etc etc etc. Last time I juggled the snug, I’d tidied via the method of “put things in a drawer, worry about it later” and last night was “later”.

After four shelves in my Expedit were rejuggled such that their contents were a) accessible b) sensibly arranged, five drawers ditto, I was left with a pile of tidy things. Two large Tupperware containers were called into service, and two Pringles tubes have been modpodged with fabric, sealed, and commissioned for the purposes of holding tape. Said tape was previously corraled in a ziplock bag, which did work, but made the drawer an absolute arse to rummage through.

I also bought some decent eyeliner, for the first time ever. One of the things that became apparent with the round of dance performances in the last month was that either my makeup-application abilities were sorely lacking, or my actual makeup was sorely lacking. I bet on the latter, bought some decent brushes, a gel eyeliner; found the makeup mirror hiding in a drawer in the spare room (why?), repaired it (the plastic support frame had cracked), and this morning experimented with my new eyeliner.

A webcam is not really an ideal source of eye photography, but I’m quite pleased with myself. Eyeliner! where it belongs! unsmudged! Hooray!

Originally published at spinneretta


Oct. 28th, 2012 07:44 pm
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I have another video of myself dancing, now. Today’s, from rehearsal. I feel better about things; I’ve had some pull-head-out-of-arse time, I went out dancing Thursday, rehearsal Friday, then dance partying Friday and Saturday nights, plus had today’s (Sunday) rehearsal – what WAS I thinking seriously, my poor feet.

The point of all that is that I’ve shoved the warghle into some sort of box, and am periodically aiming projectiles at it so that it gets progressively uncomfortable and hopefully dies in there.

On Saturday, a woman that I’ve never met before came over and asked where I learned to dance zouk. I gave her my teacher’s details, and she said “thanks! Because you are AMAZING”. Ego: boosted. And I got to dance with a whole bunch of people, the music was amazing, the performances were amazing, the crowd was lovely and warm and welcoming, I had fun, and came home at 1am on Sunday on top of the world and ended up playing Torchlight II for an hour until I wound down enough to sleep.

Rehearsal today didn’t go terribly well for me, for tiredness reasons, but in the video I have improved on Tuesday’s efforts. That makes this a win.

Tuesday did start me thinking, though. I did a bit of navel gazing, as you do, and I came to the conclusion that I’ve never really had a good body image. This is NO fault of my mother – I doubt she ever had any awareness of my self image.

I remember being bullied because I had dark arm hair, and detesting that as a child. I remember detesting my short sight and my stupid glasses, detesting the ill health that made me breathless and unable to keep up with the other kids in sports. (Undiagnosed asthma, eventually diagnosed in my teens.) I remember constantly wishing that I was a bit taller (youngest in my class), a bit faster, a bit fitter, a bit more tanned. I distinctly remember sitting in church with my mother, thinking about how exotic I’d look if I was the colour of the hymn book. I wanted to look different, to not be me, even back then.

Then I went through the inevitable teenage-girl-body-hatred, with a side dish of “not-eating the year I was sixteen”, fucked my metabolism quite thoroughly as a result, packed on thirty kilos in three years, settled at my present size and weight for the subsequent six, and here I am.

It’s no particular wonder that the idea of body acceptance was new and novel, when I ran across it in my early twenties. I’d never accepted my body as it was, and it had never occurred to anyone around me that I had such a problem with myself. It had never occurred to ME that it was unusual! As always, the retrospectocope is a powerful device.

Progress is being made. I guess that’s the important point.

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I’m struggling tonight.

I have a video of myself dancing. Practicing, at tonight’s performance zouk rehearsal. I’ve never seen myself dance before.

What I see? 200 pounds of blubber. Flapping about on the stage and it is not a pretty sight. If I continue with this it will be in spite of myself, not because I’m enjoying it, but because I’m not going to let myself be such a FUCKING IDIOT as to stop doing something I love just because I hate the way I look doing it.

It’s no-one’s fault but mine. If I lost weight… or if I wasn’t up on stage, I wouldn’t care.

What I see is not how I feel when I’m dancing, what I see has absolutely nothing to do with how I feel when I’m dancing. And there are bits of me that can see that watching the video of myself over again. I can see someone who, despite the fat… I can do the moves, I’m moving in time, I’m not heavy on my feet.. I’m flexible and I’m capable of doing what I’m asking my body to do. I’m in the right spots on the right time. Admittedly you can’t always see that I’m making all the right moves because the blubber’s hiding the muscle. But…

I don’t know. I’m proud of what I can do, I’m proud of the work I’ve put in, and I’ve put in BLOODY hard work. I have worked my ASS off. And other people must be able to see it, I KNOW they can because they say so! They ask me for help, and the girls ask me how to do things, and it’s not because I push my nose in although I suppose maybe I have and I’m just not aware of it? But they don’t have to keep coming back, they could just ask each other rather than asking me. So no, I’m not incapable.

And my teachers could have let me drop out when my partner pulled out. They didn’t have to keep me dancing. They had an easy out and they COULD have taken it and they DIDN’T. So that means that me being on stage is worth something. It’s not worth much but it’s worth something.

Just because I hate the way I look doesn’t mean other people do, it just means that I hate it. And come to think of it, one of the reasons I love watching my first ever zouk teacher dance is that she’s overweight. She’s … slimmer than me, and more muscular than me, and she has far more of a defined waist than I do because apparently I carry fat there, but you know what? She looks GORGEOUS when she dances, so why shouldn’t I?

I’m never going to be like her, but nothing stopping me being like me.

And I keep thinking, every time I’m out socially, that I’m… why should I be put off because I’m the second biggest girl in the room? No-one else seems to mind; I still get invites to dance, and by strange guys as well as friends. So it’s not like I’m repulsive to the male part of the human race. I need to get over myself, right?

Get out there and be proud of what I can do. Even if I can’t be proud of what I look like, I can be damn proud of the work I’ve put in.

So maybe that’s what I go out and do.

Maybe that’s the answer.

Stay up!

Oct. 1st, 2012 03:37 pm
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What is it with clothing manufacturers this season? I went looking for trackpants. I dance, I need workout clothes that don’t fall down. It’s not an unreasonable request, right?

So why on earth don’t trackpants come with drawstrings at the moment? I mean, seriously. My hips are wider than my waist, which is not an unusual circumstance among women. Elastic is all well and good, but elastic stretches. I want a drawstring! so when I’m dancing or running, my pants remain IN PLACE.

I have given up, and resorted to the purchase of pajama pants. Those at least have drawstrings and will reliably remain where I tie them.


Glam queen

Aug. 10th, 2012 11:15 am
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Yesterday, I wore my harem pants to work. Black harem pants, black tshirt, my favourite yellow heels (which my lovely husband calls my banana shoes) and a dark pink merino shrug.

The receptionist oohed and aahed at me, and told me I was a real glam queen.

Server admin colleague (female) – “it’s not that I was looking at your bum, but those pants are fantastic.”

Dance teacher / friendly acquaintance out dancing – “where do you find such amazing clothes?”

It was a good day.

Also, about half of my bras are getting uncomfortable. I finally realised that it’s because they’re too big – I’ve lost circumference at the rib cage. So the straps are sitting wrong, so my shoulders hurt, because the band isn’t taking the weight it should.

I realised last night that my stamina for social dancing is much, much improved. When I started out, I couldn’t do two songs back to back – my ankles and legs would hurt too much. I’d be out of breath. I’d also be panicking a little, owing to my general inability to follow a lead. I also couldn’t do zouk and salsa on the same night – it was too hard to rewire my brain. I had to pick one style of dance and do only that.

Stepping off the floor after song five last night, gasping for a drink of water, I realised that hey, I’ve come a long way. Zouk, salsa, bachata, one after another after another, and the only real reason I took a break was thirst. I wasn’t even short of partners! I go regularly enough that the men know I’m … well, they know what level I dance at, and while I might not be skilled enough for the epic spins and so on, I’m reasonably competent. I even ask men to dance these days. The ones I recognise as regulars, anyway.

It’s nice, driving home late, contented with the night. Getting up the next day, in no pain (other than mild dehydration occasionally!).

I went to a zouk party last Friday. They had a social competition, and I entered – at intermediate level. Didn’t win, of course, nor did I expect to! But I had fun, and I had friends cheering me on from the sidelines (not just my teachers!) and it was a fantastic night. I crawled in the door at 2am, having been awake for 20 hours on the run.

This makes me happy.

I’ve gone back to zouk classes, starting last Monday. I’m getting sloppy, I’m not working as hard as I should. As hard as I can. It’s time to step it up.


Jul. 27th, 2012 09:23 am
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It’s my birthday tomorrow – I will be 29.

I realised last night that I really have grown in confidence in the last couple of years. See, there’s a party coming up, and the theme is Jungle Fever. And Mum had given me a hundred bucks, with strict instructions to spend it on something frivolous.

So I bought this top (from City Chic, one of my favourite fat-girl-clothing stores).

It’s loud. It’s LEOPARD PRINT. It’s strapless. It is many many things that I would normally not wear, and yet I am going to wear it anyway.

And you know what? I feel really good wearing it. It’s sexy, pretty, flattering.

What the hell, right?

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I have a new little resolution. I’m going to make more of an effort to compliment people, if I notice things that are compliment-worthy.

Being winter, I’m back to wearing my Gallery Serpentine Coat of Awesome. This morning, the following has happened:

  • Random guy in Starbucks: “That is a fantastic coat.”

  • Lady standing beside me at traffic lights: “I just love your coat. Where did you get it?”

  • Colleague in elevator: “That is an awesome coat.”

I’ve also had shop assistants in my favourite clothing store demand to know where I bought it – they were quite upset when the answer was “Australia” and thus “not easily accessible”.

Anyway, the upshot of it is that a) compliments are great, and I believe in paying it forward b) this coat was worth every penny of the nearly six hundred dollars I paid for it.

I’m a bit stuck with dance. The zouk and salsa classes that I want to do are both on the same nights – and not only on the same night, in different places, but at the same TIME. As a result, I’ve settled for doing a lower level of salsa class (improvers rather than intermediate), just to have SOMETHING. Somewhat to my surprise, my salsa teacher told me not to bother paying – just show up, practice, and help out the newer dancers.

My zouk teachers aren’t teaching intermediate right now, either. So, in order to have something, I stepped back to their improvers classes (and, you know, I’m still learning/improving/refining the basics). Last night, they told me not to bother paying – just show up, practice, and help out the newer dancers.

I’m really chuffed. It’s nice to feel like I’m competent at something, albeit at a lower level. Really nice.

The dance studio are running a zouk performance course, for the Salsa Ball in August. The routine was created by William and Paloma (the world champs) and I’m going for it. It’s bound to be hard work, but I actually think I’m ready for the challenge.

Originally published at

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Some of the 34 boxes that shipped over from the UK contained my Ikea Expedit, Expedit-desk and Expedit-addins. I have wanted one of these for YEARS and I am really rather happy to finally have one.

The how-I-have-one possibly requires more explanation. When we visited the UK last December, Tobermory rather unwisely introduced me to IKEA. It was Christmas, after all, and the family were shipping stuff over from the UK, after all, so… if we asked nicely, and paid some of the shipping, and it was Christmas… please?

Of course he said yes. And my in-laws graciously included the IKEA in the shipping of Tobermory’s other things, without charging me extra. That was nice!

So, the boxes got home just before I went to visit Nay, then I went to Congress. Two weeks spent looking longingly at IKEA boxes.

The day after Congress, I built the bookcase; which, as predicted, involved a certain amount of swearing, bashing-it-with-a-hammer, and finally giving in and begging Thaqui for help because I was both too short and too weak to get the bookcase from horizontal to vertical by myself. I’ve spent a few hours after work and most of yesterday getting it all loaded up and banishing the old furniture from the snug.

The snug is now tidy, has a 2 seater couch and an armchair, and all my craft stuff is a) accessible b) tidy. The desk is protected with a piece of perspex custom-cut by some dude off Trademe, so that I can e.g. get paint on it and not fret that I’ve damaged my desk forever.

I’ve had great fun organising it. Figuring out what addins to put where. Reorganising the various shelves and boxes I already had. Realising I had an entire drawer full of ribbon, because I inexplicably love wrapping gifts so much that I have enough of a stash to last me for the next six Christmases. Discovering my sewing machine fit perfectly into a cubby, and stashing it promptly out the way. Putting a cushion in one of the shelves for my Tigra. Stashing little yellow highlights here and there, because I still love having yellow and grey throughout the snug. Labelling my fabric scissors so that no-one else uses them. Moving the wrapping paper out of the blanket box that holds my fabric stash.

The next Project on the list? Patchwork upholstery. The chair and couch are in here now, easily accessible; all I have to do is get started.


… sometimes I worry about myself. When did I turn into an adult?

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Our second wedding anniversary passed quietly, but pleasantly. The year has had several ups and downs – but I am proud of us. Instead of letting problems overwhelm us, we’ve closed ranks and worked together.

Tobes was outside work a couple weeks ago, and saw something he liked. Old man on a mobility scooter, his wife with a walker. Wife presumably got tired going uphill; sat on her little walker seat, and husband pushed her up the hill with his mobility scooter. He came home and told me that that’s the kind of marriage he wants to have.

I’ve had a photo printed for my desk at work. It’s from L&V’s wedding last December – Tobermory looks most handsome in his usher’s suit, and I’d chosen a nice dress. It’s a pleasant picture, a pleasant memory, and I like having things like that around in my workspace.

Anniversaries and things always get me thinking. In this case, it was realising that I’m not all that far from thirty, so why on earth am I still using a facewash marketed at acne-ridden teenagers? I’ve switched, and after a fortnight my face is much happier.

I decided that I’m going to start wearing some makeup regularly. I spend a lot more time in user-view than I used to, and I feel a bit more confident if I have some war paint on. I don’t wear too much – eyeshadow, mascara, lipstick which is a shade or two darker than my natural lip color. I can put it on correctly without needing a mirror, even, which is nice. I’ve also ditched all the old or unused makeup. The remainder is corralled in a train case, and I invested a little bit of money in buying some new things in nice grownup brands – eyeliner, foundation, some new shadows, that kind of thing.

The dance performance fell through. Insufficient men.

Operation 2012 hit a roadbump, but has resumed progress. My mother visited for a few days, and with her help the Piles of Crap in the spare room were vanquished. She also springcleaned for me, so things like the skirting boards were washed. It’s lovely, the house is actually maintainably clean now.

With Psycho’s help, we got into the garden over the last few weekends. Four trees are demolished, in piles pending hiring a skip / pending transportation of firewood to his house, and their stumps have been drilled and poisoned. (Then covered so the cats couldn’t get into it.) Thaqui’s side of the house is now accessible, having had all the over hanging branches / plants / bits of tree removed. We really need to get a skip in, so that the section can be cleared of miscellaneous tree, but at least it’s tidily piled now. I even mowed (half) the lawn.

T and I rejuggled the chore allocations, which is helping. He’s now master in charge of laundry – provided it’s pre-sorted into lights and darks (which is a no-brainer with three laundry hampers – light, dark, and delicates, which remain my responsibility), he stays well on top of the laundry, unlike yours truly. In return, vacuuming has become my problem. I wouldn’t say I’m thrilled about the exchange, but it does result in more cleaning being done more often, which is the idea.

As well as the misc gardening, I sewed a new duvet cover, hemmed a too-long pair of jeans, got a lead on replacement bobbins for my long-suffering Bernina – it’s older than I am – and made muffins and mini-crustless-quiches for the workweek.

It was quite a productive weekend, really.


Jan. 7th, 2012 02:19 pm
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Periodically I get the urge to do something ridiculously girly. I’m not the girly-girl type; I rarely if ever wear makeup, I find dresses and skirts mostly impractical (at work, anyhow). But today, I decided to attempt marbling my fingernails. I kind of like it.

Obviously it’s not the best job ever. I’ve never marbled nails before, and you can see that some of my efforts were decidedly sub-par. Still, by the time I’d worked around all ten nails, I was pretty pleased with my efforts.

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Dance has done interesting things for my body image. I am far more conscious of my excess weight than I used to be – three hours a week in front of full-wall mirrors will do that for you, I suppose. With one or two exceptions, all of whom are older women (in their 40′s or 50′s, I’d judge) I am the largest woman. And whether it’s right to do it or not, women do compare themselves to each other; and compared to some of the beauties I hang around with for three hours a week, I am frankly a heffalump.

I know I should go to the social dance nights. It would be good for me as a dancer, and it would be a way to make acquaintances, or possibly even friends. There are some really nice people in my classes, and I know I’d have fun. Last lesson, my dance instructor practically demanded that I start turning up – when I confessed that I had been chickening out, he cracked up laughing, told me my dancing is perfectly good, and thus I should appear on Sundays forthwith. He should know, right?

(I was given a BGP ACTIVATED shirt for Christmas, as a nod to my tendency to require Big Girl Panties before I will get off my butt and do something like an ADULT.)

Chickening out is still easier, though. That way I don’t have to endure my brain going “haha, you are fat and unloved, no-one will ask you to dance because you are ugly”, etc. Yeah, I know it’s stupid and wrong – after all, I got asked to dance at the Christmas party, by different men, only one of which was a classmate, two of whom asked me to dance twice. And I am capable of assessing myself fairly academically, and I am not unattractive. But, the hindbrain is harder to control.

Washing my hands at work a few days ago, I saw myself in the mirror, and realised that my own face is unfamiliar to me. I know that’s an odd thing to say, as I look in the mirror on a regular basis. But it’s not my face I’m usually looking at – it’s my general body (outfit), or a specific feature (zits, plucking eyebrows). My hair is growing out again – I wanted longer hair for dancing, which has given me a bit of an odd in-between fluffiness around the shoulders. I mean, I’d be able to recognise pictures of myself, it’s not that I don’t know what I look like. But my image of myself isn’t what I look like in the mirror at the moment, and that realisation was a bit disturbing.

But I’m also kind of proud of myself. Sure, I might be overweight, and that’s not ideal. But I’ve learned something new in the last six months, and I’ve learned it well. I mean, I’m no expert dancer or anything, but I can do the beginner-level things that I do and do them properly. I have excellent timing, probably due largely to my existing musicianship. I have fun, I am regarded well by my classmates, I am getting fitter and stronger.

Those are achievements I can be proud of.

Originally published at
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I have a capacious bust. It’s apparent to anyone that’s ever met me, it’s the bane of my life when buying clothes, and we won’t talk about how difficult it is to buy a bra that fits properly.

Of course, as every girl with a Bosom knows, your bra becomes a logical place to stash things, in the absence of pockets. And, women’s clothing being as helpfully sans-pockets as it inevitably is, I use mine semi regularly. (Yes, I do have, and regularly use, bags and backpacks and things.)

(Also note: I have never been guilty of handing over bra-sweaty cash or cards. That’s just gross.)

But, one’s bust can conceal a multitude of things. Keys, phone, etc. To date, I have lost a small Leatherman – I tucked it into my bra while tidying up, went to work, came home, wondered why my bra went CLONK when I got undressed that night and threw it on the bed. Surprise, Leatherman!

I’ve lost my phone. Generally in that “argh where are my glasses oh hey, on my head!” fashion, except it’s “where is my phone WHERE oh hey, in my bra”.

Today, I lost my headphones. The in-ear earbud type. I picked them up, ran around the house, drove Tobermory to work, looked for my earbuds so I could save myself from the monotony of the bus trip the rest of the way to work. No earbuds. Not in door of car, not in backpack, no pockets. I even HAD a rummage in my bra, and nope.

Got to work, endured bus ride with Apple headphones generously donated by husband, sat at desk. Noted itchy spot in region of pectorals, had surreptitious scratch. Noted rubbery texture, not common to skin or bra strap. Extracted earbuds. Applied head to desk.

The cleavage toll rises.

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I’ve always dreamed vividly. Very vividly. And I’ve been prone to nightmares, too. Recurring nightmares, dreams that pick up in a sequence… there are dream stories I’ve been having chapters of for, quite literally, decades.

But last night heralded something new in the brainspace. I had a nightmare, woke up flailing and sweating – but rather than being absolutely drowned in terror, I was able to go back to sleep.

When I did get back to sleep, I had the same nightmare again. But this time, my brain had obviously registered “wait, something odd is going on here” – instead of the same nightmare, my brain played with an alternative outcome.

And then another alternative outcome.

And then another.


Periodically I’d wake up again, and stare at the ceiling going “what the hell, brain”, and fall asleep again. (And re-live the dream again.) By the time the alarm went off, I was exhausted. Boomer was snuggling on the far side of Tobermory, Tigra had departed for another room entirely, so I must not have been a pleasant bedmate. But it’s a sign that something in the depths of my brain has made a shift for the better.

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So. Tobermory is on his fourth course of antibiotics in five weeks. He shared one of his bugs with me, so I had nearly a week off work, which was complicated by a really bad reaction to the first antibiotic my doctor prescribed and holy shit, I do not ever want a drug to put me in that much pain again in my whole life please. Ow.

I was grumpy as hell because I missed the first of my new series of salsa lessons, meaning that when I went back this week? I sucked. A really large amount, although thankfully all the men in the room were patient with me. And I did mostly get it together by the end of the lesson and feel less shite about it generally. In fact, I came home really happy with myself.

I intend to work up to doing Sunday and Monday and Thursday classes / salsa social thingies in the next month or so. I really enjoy this, so much, and it’s also good exercise, which is handy.

On an unrelated note; I’ve been a nailbiter all my life. I’ve managed to stop a few times – about six months before the wedding, Tobes had a dreadful migraine and I bit all my hard-won nails off with stress. Never grew them back right, wore fakes for several reasons and then finally destroyed my nails with the fakies I wore to look pretty for the wedding. Well, I finally managed to grow out all the nail damage WITHOUT resorting (much) to nailbiting, so I treated myself to my first ever manicure on payday.

I’ve also taken up having regular haircuts. I’d never had my hair washed at a hairdressers before, having patronised the $20 haircut bars in malls, mostly, but splurged on my birthday. And oh, having the thorough head massage is just bliss. I’ve dozed off twice, which gets me giggled at by the hairdresser and her assistants, but it’s so nice!

It’s funny, that whole mall is full of scarily efficient little Asian ladies, and I feel dreadful every time I go in because most of the customers are European. It feels like I’m being inherently racist, but… then I feel like I am being racist for thinking it in the first place, and hell they’re right near work, and convenient, and cheap, so…

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May. 29th, 2010 09:54 pm
emsk: (Default)

I am twenty six years old.

This is how I spent my evening.

I had a lot of Lego as a kid. My nappy bucket (having done it’s duty and been thoroughly cleansed) subsequently became the Lego bucket – fifty or sixty litres of Lego, some from kits, some in bulk, all of it well loved. At about thirteen or fourteen, when I hadn’t played with it in years, Mum suggested – completely well-meaning – that I might want to consider giving it to a couple of young lads, whose parents weren’t terribly well off. At seven and four, respectively, they’d get more use out of it than I did. I agreed, and boy oh boy, those kids were SO HAPPY. I got thanked, again and again, for about six months thereafter.

I regret getting rid of the Lego now. It made sense at the time, but I do wish we’d kept it.

One of my fondest memories of my father isn’t really based on the recollection I have from childhood, but what I remember being told about it later. I love Lego. Always have. And when I was three or four, Dad bought the Lego police station.

Now, the Lego police station in 1988 was a bit different to the Lego of today. There was a helicopter, for a start, which the modern station doesn’t have (much to my disgust). It was seriously cool. And Dad happily hauled all the parts out of the box, and started building my Lego! I toddled over to ‘help’, as small children do, and was politely told to go and help my mother.

I, being an obedient and sweet child, toddled off to Mum. When asked exactly why I was there instead of playing with ‘my’ new Lego, I innocently explained that Daddy said Mummy needed my help!

I was promptly frogmarched back to my father, who had it explained to him that it would be very nice if he would perhaps play with the Lego, with his daughter, with the Lego that he had, of course, bought FOR his daughter, hadn’t he?

I remember, from the time, the bouncing between my parents that day (mostly because OMGSQUEELEGOSQUEE); as an older child / adult I’ve come to appreciate the real humour of the incident. Poor Dad, just wanting to play with the Lego he’d really bought for himself, on the excuse of having a four year old.

As far as I’m concerned, one of the advantages of being an adult is that I’m allowed to act like a child if I want to. Tobermory and I spent a day of our honeymoon at Legoland Windsor. We elected not to go on any of the rides in the end – it was a pleasant day walking around in the sunshine, we squeed at Miniworld, and spent far too long in the Lego store.

There was a child of about six in the store while we were there. He came in, and promptly lost his tiny little mind in utter glee – “look theres the! and the! and the!!! and!!!! and look!!!!!! andtheandthis!!! and look Mum this!!!! LOOOK!!!!!!! and eee! and the eee!!! eeee loook!!!!!”

You get the drift. His parents were looking a bit shamefaced, though I don’t understand why, so I commented fairly loudly that it was lovely to see such a happy kid. Hopefully they heard.

So, Tobes and I spent about, oh, forty five minutes in the store. We came home with the Police station, the current one. It won’t be the same as the one I remember, but I’m pleased to have it.

And, uh, we bought the Fire Station too. It just didn’t all fit in the luggage. My mother in law is posting the rest home.

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emsk: (Default)
The one thing I don't have more-or-less nailed down about my Appearance For The Wedding is my damned hair.

Hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair argh argh raaagrh.

I don't want it curly. I don't look like ME with curly hair.

I don't want it all up. Tobermory likes my hair. I like my hair! And it helps cover my back, which is always handy.

I have a veil, so I need some sort of hairstyle to poke the veil into. I kind of like my hair all out, but then I end up with it in my face, and, well, veil. I suppose I could leave off the veil, but... I like the idea of having one.

I don't like hairspray. I don't like backcombing my hair. (I detest backcombing my hair, in fact.)

All I want is to find some hairstyle that looks faaabulous, that I can do for myself, that doesn't require me to undergo torturous routines with hair curlers, hair spray, or a hair dresser, because I am doing this myself in the UK.

Whee, wedding.

We fly out in a month...

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