Thursday, December 31, 2009

Annual Meme

2009 Meme
This will be the third time I've answered these questions - first in 2007, then again last year. It's very nearly the only New Years tradition I have. First, though, my favorite picture from the series of holiday parties I attended.

Dancing with a friend of the Explosive Neil's at The Family Guy Christmas party. It was absolutely brilliant and I'm so glad the party photographer sent us the pictures. See how giddy I was? That's what dancing does to me.

Onto the questions...
1. What did you do in 2009 that you'd never done before?
I went to Australia! It was fantastic and brilliant and I'm so so happy I went. I also shot a gun for the first time, a Glock, and I was good! Turns out all those video games weren't such a waste of time.

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
As is typical every year, I probably did make a resolution and forgot what it was by February.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not this year.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Someone who was close to my brother passed away.

5. What countries did you visit?

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
I'm pretty happy with the things I have this year. There's nothing I lack for - but there are things that I'd like more of, please. Namely, clothes, shoes, and money.

7. What dates from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Most of this year was pretty memorable for me. I met a lot of people, did a lot of things. It was a good, eventful year.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I think it would have to be getting my life a little more sorted out. The process started last year but was still pretty unstable, job-wise. I feel much more solid about it going into this new year.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I don't feel as though I failed this year.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
A couple of colds and then, a few weeks ago, a spectacular bump on the head. My brains were scrambled for days.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Being very, very poor, I haven't purchased anything amazing this year but, again, I've gotten some very nice gifts.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Quite a few people really impressed me this year. My friends are brave, brave folks.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
No one's really appalled me but there were a couple of people that got me sad. That's how it crumbles, cookie-wise.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Australia, rent, and keeping Clementine running.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Again, Australia. Seeing Gogol Bordello over the summer. Christmas parties.

16. What song will always remind you of 2009?
I fell in love with this song and listened to it constantly over the summer.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder?
b) thinner or fatter?
fatter -
c) richer or poorer?
about the same.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
I did a lot of living this year. I maybe should have taken more time to be creative but I don't regret the time I spent running around like a maniac.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
I deffo wish I'd spent less time job-hunting/working at terrible places.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent the holiday with my family. It was lovely.

21. Did you fall in love in 2009?
It would have been no fun at all if I hadn't.

22. How many one-night stands?
None, as always. I'm very well-behaved.

23. What was your favourite TV program?
I've become obsessed with 30 Rock. It's genius.

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nope, still don't hate anyone.

25. What was the best book you read?
Jonathan Saffron Foer's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close blew me away. It's been making the rounds among my friends but as soon as it gets back to me, I'll be reading it again.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
There were so many discoveries this year! Some of them are bands/singers that have been around for a while and some of them are new but there were at least thirty or forty different musical obsessions this year. A couple of the current obsessions include Florence + The Machine, Mariachi El Bronx, and Amanda Palmer's solo album.

27. What did you want and get?
Lots and lots of fun.

28. What did you want and not get?
There were a couple of disappointments here and there but nothing permanent.

29. What was your favourite film of this year?
This is always a tough one. I have a few favorites: The Brothers Bloom, (500) Days of Summer, and District 9.

30. What did you do on your birthday?
I went to Disneyland with my parents!

31.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I think this year might have been a little better if I hadn't spent half of it in a panic because I couldn't get a good job.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
It really hasn't changed - a little bit quirky, a little bit retro, a little bit punk, feminine, and this year, lots and lots of red.

33. What kept you sane?
My friends

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Simon Pegg is still the favorite, even though he hadn't done anything memorable this year.

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
Health care.

36. Who did you miss?
It's always the same - my brother and my grandparents.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
So many people this year! The best?... ... ... I don't know. They're all tied for first.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009:
It's okay to be selfish once in a while. This is the only life I've got and I'm allowed to enjoy it.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year
This night is winding down but time means nothing. We're all right where we're supposed to be.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Australia, Part 2

I bought a Christmas tree last night. It's tiny, scraggly, crooked and I love it very muchly. It's also the first tree I've had in five years. I'm going to decorate it, and the apartment, tonight and then I will be living inside the twinkly Spirit of Christmas.
I've been going to holiday parties and that's always fun. There was the Fox TV Animation Holiday Party! and the Come To My Giant House In The Hills Holiday Party! and both of them were fabulous. The Fox party was a swanky, super-Hollywood affair - Seth McFairlane sang Fly Me To The Moon with the big band, Seth Green was hanging out at the mashed potato bar, THEY HAD A MASHED POTATO BAR, everybody was dressed up and there were open bars and buffet tables spread throughout the massive venue.This is Laura, myself, The Explosive Neil, and (I wanna say Scott? Sam? Angus?) Guy with Gold Tie being super-swanky.

The second party, last weekend, was smaller and just as fun. It was held in a gorgeous house in the hills, killer view of the city, lots of pretty people and good friends.

This is the wall the host insisted everyone pose in front of ("We just tiled it!"). There are lots of photos of people standing in front of this wall and while it is very pretty, I think it looks like everyone was standing in a giant shower stall.

That's it for the recent news: Party, work, party, tree, work.

More Australia!!

This is something I didn't know - the money is made of plastic, with a little clear plastic window built right in. You can wash the money, spill ketchup on it, stir your coffee - DOESN'T MATTER!! The money, it is indestructible. I was hugely impressed.
My friend is a professor of law at the University of Melbourne and I got a little tour. It's the loveliest place. That gorgeous building covered in vines? That's a classroom. The corridor below? That's just one of the passageways. It felt a little like Hogwarts.
I think this was the courthouse... I kinda don't remember anymore. But it looks very courthouse-y, right?

At the Victoria Marketplace I saw rows and rows of stalls selling candies, cheeses, fruit, and yes, fresh kangaroo meat. I really wanted to try some but my friend is a vegetarian and totally against the eating of the kangaroo. Normally, I would have disregarded any and all obstacles between me and the eating of Something Strange but I got the feeling that in this instance, eagerly shoving Adorable Kangaroo into my mouth would have cost me the friendship of the only person I knew in the country. I made do with a meat pie. And it was delicious.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Australia, Part 1

It's pretty early and my brains aren't really awake yet but I wanted to start writing a little bit about my trip last month.
After about twenty hours in different airports and airplanes, I was in Melbourne. There was only a little bit of walking around that first day - I was pretty wiped out - but one of the first things I noticed about the city was how much street art was everywhere. Very little gang-style tagging (not in the parts I saw, anyway) and lots of really cool paintings and stencils. And lots and lots of old churches.
That was day one - church and graffiti.
Days two and three was more walking around, looking at awesome buildings, taking a squillion pictures, and drinking a squillion Long Blacks, the Aussie version of an Americano. If I didn't have a coffee addiction before the trip, I certainly do now. I had at least one every day, usually two or three. Some of the coffee houses there (most notably, Proud Mary's in Collingwood, the neighborhood I was staying in) had the coffee-making and serving down to a science. They'd give me little cards with information about the type of coffee bean that made up my drink, the growers, how the coffee is made. I was impressed.

That's the view from my friend's office. Gorgeous, no?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Just a quick one

I still haven't said anything about the trip - it will happen, I swear! Just not right now. Right now, I am full of Smug because my car broke down (again) and I, myself, and me fixed it. All by my lonesome. This is entirely blog-worthy because my car breaks down ALL THE TIME and usually, it takes a team of seven to nine-hundred-and-sixty-three scientists from NASA to fix it. Tonight, I have fixed the car.
I'm not going to go into what exactly was wrong with it because it was so pathetically easy to fix. My Masterful Feat of Engineering Brilliance is that much more impressive when you don't know what it was I did.

Also, I was supposed to babysit tonight but, because of the car, I canceled. An hour after the cancellation, I got a phone call from the mother, asking me to come anyway, she'd pay for a taxi, because her son was really looking forward to seeing me.

Smug and beloved. Ah..... Being me rocks.