Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Marina to Jascha: "Have I ever told you that you're terrible in bed?"
Hercules is on a four-day school trip to the woods.
Me to Narcissus: "Do you miss your brother?"
Narcissus (dejectedly): "Yes." (a few seconds of silence) "There's no one to play Playstation with me."
(Narcissus doesn't know how to play Playstation, he just watches Hercules play. He can sit and watch for hours. And that's what he misses. Watching someone play.)
Speaking of Narcissus, he's currently watching Star Wars Episode III for the fifth time in three days. Where does this kid get his attention span?
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Monday, May 29, 2006
Pics of the day:
Saturday, May 27, 2006
The artsy interior: (the first pic is the staircase)
And finally, the Seattle Public Library. *barf* The inside is really cool, but the outside is just another blemish to marr Seattle's aesthetic (there are so many...)
Friday, May 26, 2006
- The deriving of sexual gratification or the tendency to derive sexual gratification from inflicting pain or emotional abuse on others.
- The deriving of pleasure, or the tendency to derive pleasure, from cruelty.
- Extreme cruelty.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
I was headed to the local supermarket in search of a box to send some unnecessary things home in advance. On my way, I was thinking about the fact that I don’t speak French as fluently as I had hoped I would. Before I came here, everyone said I would come home speaking fluent French. I do speak it way better than before, but I don’t feel like I’ve reached my goal and I only have…and that’s when I realized it. My big sister, Becky, my bestest friend and roommate for so many years, is going to be here in less than one month! I’m not a particularly smile-at-the-world person, and I feel stupid smiling when no one’s around, but I totally smiled when I realized that. I can’t wait ‘til she gets here, even if it means my sejour in France is over.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Saturday, May 20, 2006
I just saw the Mary J. Blige and U2 video for One. Why? WHY?? WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?????????
No, but seriously, why? Why did they need to reinvent one of the best songs ever written? Why did the (warning: personal opinion ahead!) best band in the world need to hire somebody else to make their song, one of the best songs ever written, fresh? Or new, or hip, or whatever it is they're trying to achieve?
To be honest, I thought the redo sounded alright, nice even. But it was different. I see no reason to mess with a good thing. Moreover, I see no reason to let Mary J. Blige come in and mess with your good things. If it ain't Baroque, don't fix it, and don't let Mary J. Blige "fix" it.
Throughout the video, Bono, The Edge, and Adam are all rocking out, apparently having a good time, but Larry, sweet Larry, looks like he's in agony. He looks bored and annoyed. I bet he was totally against this "bright idea."
I love you U2, but I can't understand what you were after with this.
Grading the career of Tom Hanks' Hair
By the way, I saw the Da Vinci Code last night. I haven't read the book(s), so I don't know how Robert Langdon should be played, but I found Tom Hanks' hair gross. It didn't fit with the way he played the character. Maybe the character is supposed to be slightly arrogant or sleezy or whatever, and then the hair would be perfect, but that's now how Tom played him, so it didn't make sense. All in all, the movie was...well...I'm not sure. My feeling of it matched what people have said about the book. I liked the intrigue and the mysteries, but the whole thing just flowed a little too easily. The twists and turns were expected. And Tom and Amelie were constantly getting into trouble, and at the very last second, Every Single Time, they miraculously escaped. But only sort of, because they kept leaving an easy-to-pick-up trail behind them. After being cornered so many times, I expected them to get smart and cover their tracks, but No! Eh. It was alright.
It also probably didn't help that I was watching it in French. Alas.
Friday, May 19, 2006
Isn't this the coolest picture ever? Narcissus and I were painting with watercolors the other day, and he made a bit of a mess. He was so proud of his "mega tatouage" (mega tattoes on his forearm, hand, and belly). He was very upset when I told him he had to take his bath.
I painted a picture of pirates...(yes, thank you, I know I'm very talented)
So Narcissus painted a picture of the island where the pirates buried their treasure.
At nighttime, of course. He actually painted the island, then painted over it in black.
First number of prefix is dating status
1- Single but in love
4- single and confused (that’s me!)
5- taken and Happy
7- Taken and in Love
8- Want Someone but taken
9- Have a Crush
0- Just Dating
Next number put your current mood
0- Other (I’m slightly bored and generally anxious; as usual)
Next number is the color of your top
0- Other (pink, of course!)
Next number is the month you were born in
1- Jan. or Feb.
2- Mar. (hey baby, what’s your sign?)
5- Jun. or Jul
Next number is your fave color
5- Green (yay chlorophyll!)
Next number is your favorite sport
4- Baseball (I’m not a sportsy person, but I’ve always loved playing and watching baseball)
7- Volleyball and/or Softball
Last number is your sign
1- Aries (I have no idea what that says about me, and I don’t care)
4- Taurus or Virgo
0- Scorpio or Pisces
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Before (his hair was actually longer than this, but this is the most current picture I had of long hair): channeling Tom Welling/The Beatles. He really was starting to look like one of the Fab Four. I loved the little curls over the ears.
After: channeling Alfalfa (Little Rascals), minus the insane cowlick thing. The hairdresser split his hair right down the center and put gel in it. It didn't last long.
Speaking of Narcissus, I don't want to jinx it by saying anything, but I think he's starting to like me. I've been here nearly 9 months, I'll be leaving in 5 weeks, and now he starts to like me. Actually, I'm not sure I could say he likes me. He expresses his hatred of me far less frequently, like only once every two weeks!
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?""Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.""Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit."Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt.""Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?""It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."
"Men," said the fox. "They have guns, and they hunt. It is very disturbing. They also raise chickens. These are their only interests. Are you looking for chickens?"
"No," said the little prince. "I am looking for friends. What does that mean--'tame'?"
"It is an act too often neglected, "said the fox. "It means 'to establish ties.'"
"'To establish ties'?"
"Just that," said the fox. "To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you, I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world..."
"I am beginning to understand," said the little prince. "There is a flower...I think that she has tamed me..."
"It is possible," said the fox. "On the Earth, one sees all sorts of things."
"Oh, but this is not on the Earth!" said the little prince.
The fox seemed perplexed, and very curious.
"On another planet?"
"Are there hunters on that planet?"
"Ah, that is interesting! Are there chickens?"
"Nothing is perfect," sighed the fox.
But he came back to his idea.
"My life is very monotonous," the fox said. "I hunt chickens; men hunt me. All the chickens are just alike, and all the men are just alike. And, in consequence, I am a little bored. But if you tame me, it will be as if the sun came to shine on my life. I shall know the sound of a step that will be different from all the others. Other steps send me hurrying back underneath the ground. Yours will call me, like music, out of my burrow. And then look: you see the grain-fields down yonder? I do not eat bread. Wheat is of no use to me. The wheat fields have nothing to say to me. And that is sad. But you have hair that is the color of gold. Think how wonderful that will be when you have tamed me! The grain, which is also golden, will bring me back the thought of you. And I shall love to listen to the wind in the wheat..."
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
driving through the night. I hate this
picture of me, though I think Becky
looks really cute.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Friday, May 12, 2006
I experimented some more with my camera. You can change the color that the "color accent" function focuses on.
Random Frenchness: The garbage is picked up at 11pm. Maybe that's not abnormal, but where I come from, the garbage man gives you an unpleasant wake-up call at 5:30 or 6 in the morning. Nighttime pick-up is so much cooler!
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
That's my purse. It's green, like most of my purses, my winter coat, and a good portion of my clothing. Yay, green! The pin on the right says "Legalize Frostitution," which prompted Izzi to ask what frosting is.
"You know, the stuff they put on cakes or cupcakes."
"You mean, icing?"
Same thing! Silly Brits... And speaking of Brits, when I say that's my purse, it means "handbag" in British. But for the record, my "purse" (or wallet, in American) is green, too, with a little yellow pineapple embroidered on the front. So cute! I will never replace it until the day it falls to shreds.
I learn so much from Izzi!
On Sunday, Aphrodite competed in a sailing regata on a small lake in the Gers region of France. We go to this lake often, as it's not far from Toulouse, and I love driving there. We drive through the most beautiful scenery I've seen in France. Granted, I haven't seen much of France, but still. It's pretty. It's mostly green farmland, with patchwork-y hills.
Here are Hercules, my host mom, and Athena (aka "Clop-clop," due to the crutches she's been on for a few weeks).
Random French weirdness: a side-by-side refrigerator, with the freezer and the fridge vertically parallel and often with a water- and ice-dispenser built into the freezer door, is called a "refrigerateur Americain" or "American fridge." If you want to buy one, you go to the appliance store and ask for an American fridge. Does this mean that other types of fridges aren't American?
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
My last few blogs have been riddled with emotion, mostly negative. The last two entries look tame, but that’s after serious editing. For over a week now, I’ve been struggling with mild depression and excessive fatigue. This is nothing new to me; I was diagnosed with idiopathic hypersomnia (IH) two years ago, after struggling with it for at least two years. After being diagnosed, my frustrations only increased. Being diagnosed with idiopathic hypersomnia is not like being diagnosed with many other conditions. The “idiopathic” means “we don’t know what causes it and we have only a very vague idea of how to treat it.” It’s a neurological condition, and it affects your brain’s ability to function properly. Knowing that you have it basically means resigning yourself to a decreased ability to function, for the rest of your life, with little hope of treatment. I was put on Ritalin, which made me more drowsy, then dextroamphetamine (basically, prescription Speed). The dextroamphetamine sort of worked, but exacerbated my very mild OCD and paranoia, and made me less hungry, so that I lost 20 pounds in a month. And then I was dropped from my father’s health insurance in March, 2005, and haven’t been treated for IH since. Not being treated isn’t really a big deal to me, because it feels exactly the same as being treated, except that I gained back those 20 pounds.
Since I graduated university last June and moved to
I was doing my best to deal with all this as if nothing was wrong, when I stumbled upon a weblog where someone was describing hormonal troubles. She mentioned something called “adrenal fatigue” that has to do with your kidneys having trouble producing the right kinds of hormones in the right amounts, causing fatigue and lack of energy. She gave a list of symptoms from some doctor’s book, and these symptoms were all very familiar. Now I’m curious if what I have is really IH, or something related to my kidneys. Instead of being on stimulants, should I be on hormone additives? I’ve been scouring the internet for hours now, and have found no helpful information whatsoever. I can’t even tell if adrenal fatigue is a recognized caused of hypersomnia, or if it’s just some crackpot’s theory.
Sigh. Every time I’ve ever done a sleep disorder search on the internet, I’ve become seriously frustrated. I can’t remember ever searching for information on the topic without crying at some point during the search. There is very little info to be found, and you have to search carefully and tirelessly in order to find it, but you suffer from freaking fatigue, making careful, tireless searches impossible. Plus you have to sift through medical jargon, infinitely harder when your brain is perpetually fuzzy.
I know I have an awesome life, and God has given me so much to be grateful for. I feel kind of ungrateful complaining about this, but I HATE HYPERSOMNIA!!! I just want to be me again…
Sunday, May 07, 2006
Needless to say, I miss my Asian friends (don’t worry, I miss all my non-Asian friends, too!) Last spring, before I knew I was coming to France, I had planned to (someday) go to Taiwan with my friend Tina. I’ve never before had an interest to go to Asia (no offense or nothin’), but thinking about going with her, and buying tons of cheap rip-off purses and sunglasses got me really excited to go. Maybe it was just the shopper in me coming out.
Speaking of shopping, I had a rough week and was looking forward to getting in some shopping therapy today. I headed to Toulouse but only lasted two hours. After one hour, I was getting overwhelmed and anxious (and not finding anything cute), but I forced myself to stick with it for another hour. What is up with me lately? My hypersomnia must be kicking in again. I’ve been an emotional wreck. It’s like I’m PMSing, but it’s not time for that yet. I felt fine on the way to town. I walked to the train feeling all bouncy and content and enjoying France for the first time in a week. The trees that line the path were in bloom. After being cranky for the last two days, I was feeling remarkably better. And then it dissipated while shopping. Isn’t shopping supposed to make me feel better, not worse?
Sigh. When I thought about it, I realized that I always get this way when I shop alone. So clearly, I can’t go shopping alone. But the only people that I enjoy shopping with are my sisters. When I go with other people, I’m too shy to go in all the stores I want to check out. Why, Kusems? Why?? Note to self: add that to the list of things to get right on over.
Well, I bought some gifts for the fam (no, I’m not telling what). I can’t wait until I have money and can actually buy things for myself when I go shopping. It’s not that I don’t buy things for myself, it’s just that I shouldn’t be buying them. I have a three week trip around France to pay for, for goodness’s sake!
Random French weirdness: In the French-dubbed third Lord of the Rings, when Pippin sings his song for the kind of Gondor, the song is dubbed in French. What's up with that?
Friday, May 05, 2006
- I’m a temporary expatriate (who hopes to someday be a more permanent expat), and I blog to keep my friends and family posted on what I’m doing in
. Actually, it’s more like, I keep them posted on how crazy or bizarre the French are. France
- Blogging, like writing, helps me sort out my thoughts. My brain doesn’t work in a logical, orderly fashion. I realize that I could write, or type, privately and not expose it to the world, but I am weak and need constant ego-stroking and the Almighty Internet so graciously has provided a fun outlet to satisfy that need. It’s only right that I take advantage of that, right? Right??
- I’m addicted and I can’t stop. Before I fall asleep every night, or anytime I do anything remotely interesting during the day, I start mentally writing weblog entries. I call this “bloghead syndrome” and hope to one day beat it, but doubt that will happen anytime soon. As an au pair in a foreign country, I have way too much time on my hands to not be addicted to blogging. When I join the real world again in a month and a half, perhaps I will get a life and no longer have time to blog. One can only hope.