Thursday, 31 October 2013


We saved a guy this morning, you guys. 

(Sort of.  Not really. But that sounds so good, right?!)

Picture this: Tweedledum and Tweedledee merrily chatting on their way to work, approaching the motorway overpass.  Ahead: Striding Gym Girl.  Also Ahead: Bicycle Guy, chaining his bike to the overpass railing.  We look up; BG is collapsing onto the pavement.

It was a real slow-mo, boneless sort of collapse.  At first, I thought it was a joke.  But P & I must have registered what was really happening at the same time; we raced towards him past Striding Gym Girl.  P took the lead and I was fumbling for my phone to call the ambulance.  It must have been a faint; BG came round when P started speaking to him and we nixed the call to the ambos.  We gave him some water and SGG offered him some nuts if his blood sugar was low.  Poor guy lay out on the pavement for a bit - he eventually got up and shook us off.  I think he was terribly embarrassed.  After assuring us it was all downhill and not far to go for him, we left him removing his helmet and finishing locking his bike.  I gave him surreptitious glances over my shoulder for a while, until he was out of view.

I hope he's ok - must have been a hard cycle that morning.  He was about 30ish and otherwise healthy looking (my first thought was 'ooooooohhhhh no heart attack' when I registered that the collapse was real, thank god it wasn't that).

Lots of people stopped to help if they could - it made me feel good about our community / humanity etc, I suppose.  Much like the time we came across a bike crash in London, most people just stood around feeling helpless until they realised the issue was being dealt with, but I love to see that people cared (certainly wasn't just voyeuristic watching, we were asked if BG was ok as P had clearly taken control of the situation). SGG said to me that she'd been in her own world with headphones on when he collapsed - she was very confused as to why we ran past her until she clicked what was happening.  She felt really guilty, I think, though she needn't have.  We all just wanted to help.  I liked that. 

Note also: P & I immediately divided tasks by our strengths without discussion - he went to help the guy into the recovery position, I pulled out the phone as I am much, much better with street names and descriptions, not so good with people and crises etc.

So.  There's some excitement for you.  I felt the adrenaline for a bit, afterwards. 

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

this post just made the list, too

I think I saw the Coolest Guy in the World on the way to work this morning. 

He powered past me in in a shirt, suit pants, converse (hey, no judging the commuting converse.  I maintain my right to silence regarding what supremely comfortable shoes I wore to work this morning.  BITE ME), backpack complete with 1L water bottle, blaring his music at top volume out of his cellphone.  He was clearly getting pumped for the day (some kind of late 90s gym music, it would seem).  He was moving pretty fast.  Perhaps my dawdle would become a brisk, efficient pace if I picked the right tune to play in the morning?  Might stick with headphones, however.

My, I've got my cranky/judgy pants back on today!  Other things what have not passed muster today:

- Colleague who only filled the kettle enough for ONE MEASLY CUP. 
- Failure of workplace to install a zip so I needn't fret about colleagues and their miserliness with the jug filling
- People who dawdled over their sushi choices at lunchtime (if in doubt, salmon/avocado!  If you don't eat salmon/avo, just get the teriyaki chicken CHOP CHOP you know that's what you want anyway!)
- All of my shoes. 
- My breakfast.  When I found some of it on my skirt.
- The weather.


(PS I have become sadly addicted to The Block, NZ's most effective advertorial for DIY masquerading as a television show.  I know, I pity me too.  Live auctions tonight though people! WHAT A HIGHLIGHT, A)

Monday, 28 October 2013

aka oscar?

Oh hi blog.  How are you?  I'd like to say I've been off doing all manner of interesting and exciting things, but truth of the matter is I've:

- been sanding windows; and
- been avoiding sanding windows.

It's all very dull.  On the plus side, my finger pads now feel rough enough to do all the sanding for me.  Who needs sandpaper when the mere action of running a finger lovingly down my husband's five day old stubble causes HIM to yelp?  I attempted to remedy the situation by the regular application of moisturiser.  This was all going swimmingly UNTIL...I realised I'd been applying the Holiday Skin fake tan tinted moisturiser compulsively and my palms were stained a lovely shade of burnished orange.  Just charming.  I have now lost a further 20 layers of skin trying to re-achieve a natural color on my digits, with only slight success.  I look like I've been prepped with iodine for a serious bout of hand surgery, only without the added benefit of actually getting rid of that weird lump on the back of my hand.

I have also been looking at paint samples this weekend.  The Lavender Love Nest (Purple Palace?) is having a make-over this summer and it's kind of like she's entered her golden years: we're going with something sensible.  We think.  Shade of grey, most likely.  Har har, I said, when the inevitable 50 Shades joke was made about the test patch situation out the back.  It's possible I no longer have a sense of humour about it, though.  I found myself squinting at the patches and at the colour swatches muttering about "blue tones" and "half Rakaia, no, quarter?" and seriously debating the merits of different shades of white for the accent.  I think I need a hobby.  I shall be rainbow-arraying my skeins of yarn until further notice, OK?

So, yes, home improvement proceeds slowly at the Mauve Manner.  It is quite clear as I type this that I'm in a terrible mood - I tried to think of something else that stood out from the long holiday weekend and the first thing that sprang to mind was the time I busted that cat scratching up my radishes.  I gave the neighbouring dogs a run for their money in the feline-terrorising stakes, I can tell you.  I'm so....curmudgeonly (ish?) at the moment.  I suppose that's what you get at the grand old age of one-and-thirty (!)

I'll cut my losses and end this here given how sneery I'm being - nicer, positive A next time, I promise!

Monday, 21 October 2013


I wasn't feeling particularly glamorous this morning.  In fact, I was feeling washed out, a bit frizzy and frumpish.  'I know what will solve this problem', I thought.  I reached into the depths of my make up bag (comprising: offcasts from my mother circa 1987, some crappy mascara and pharmacy specials) and pulled out Boots' finest red lipstick.  I plastered it on, thought "self, problem solved!" and headed for the door.

My husband looked at me a little oddly, but recovered to smile and said "You've made an effort today".  He gently reached up and thumb-smeared the corner of my mouth to remove some excess outside the lip line.  He walked with me to work and even held my hand for a bit.

I reached work.  ('Love is A Battlefield', 8am at the cafe today.) Got in the elevator.  There's a mirror in the elevator, unsteamed and under fluorescent light.  I look like Chuckles the Fucking Clown, guys.  It's not good. 

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

plagiarised bits

You know, I find a new good blog and I'm immediately composing posts in my head completely bastardizing the author's voice.  I think it's a hang up from reading Bridget Jones, oh about 50 years ago, and writing forevermorethereafter: 'v. good'.  (Helen Fielding may not have been the first person to abbreviate 'very' to 'v.' but god, she did it so effectively.  Almost all of my most 'London' moments while living there were based on feeling like I was living just like Bridget - WWBD, if you will.  Except with less crotch-cam-on-a-fireman's-pole.)

Today's find was Bend it Like Becker who made me giggle.  Rigging up a system to get the rubbish into the bin from the second storey deck to avoid having to go downstairs is actually frigging genius but having the commitment to buy carabiners to achieve said goal? I've got nothing but snorts and applause.  Brilliant.  I immediately wanted to rip her off which must be the highest accolade I've got in my (admittedly limited) Positive Praise Bank.  (What I've got stored in my Disdain and Contempt Bank is extensive.  I don't even save it for special, I apply it liberally). Anyway, Sarah has a thingo she calls 'blurbs' which appears to be a conglomeration post of bits and pieces and I'm totally ripping that off today.  Credit where credit's due and all (um, assuming this counts as credit?)

So, anyway.  We're having a house warming this weekend.  (OF COURSE you're all invited, internet stalkers! Um, your invitations are in the mail! Yes, that's it!) P has purchased about half a beast (half a lamb anyway) to feed guests with and I am in that stage of concern that reads: 'well we're going to look ridiculous when only three people turn up and we've catered for the population of a medium sized town'.  Those three people aren't even a given - my Mum's not in town.  But look on the bright side: when have I ever been upset about eating leftovers for a solid week?! NEVER.  NOT EVER.  I cry when the Christmas ham runs out four weeks after the event. 

Also, I am going to see Beyonce in concert (as opposed to over tea, you know) tomorrow with a veritable gaggle of women.  One, a high school teacher, has already emailed to express concern about the reaction of a class of 15 year old girls - 'YOU listen to Beyonce?!' 'Destiny's WHO?!'.  Look, I remember 2000 clearly when Say My Name was the only thing we'd play on the high school common room stereo (which if I recall rightly was so wrecked it had to be sat on the foam cushions from the broken-ass common room couch in order to work).  I'm now however quite concerned that I will be the oldest, saddest woman at this concert because I've already ditched the idea of wearing heels in order to be more comfortable and I'm planning how to get home after.  Shit. 

On the plus side, at least we're having dinner first at quite a nice restaurant so I'm guessing it won't be like the heady days of the 2007 JT concert where we destroyed ourselves on Lindauer Fraise (exactly as classy as it sounds. EXACTLY). 

Tuesday, 15 October 2013


Usually I love my office.  It has a lovely northeasterly aspect with views of the harbour.  Plenty of cupboard space.  Quite a large desk.  It's near the kitchen.  It gets lots of sunshine but no glare on my computer screen. 

This morning, however, it's been horrendous.  There is a gale blowing and the building is swaying something chronic.  I tried turning my back to the window to combat the nausea (there's nothing like watching the horizon move from the 21st floor) but I still feel abysmal.

This has been compounded by the fact I accidentally drank the first half a cup of coffee I've had in about five or six months.  I gave up drinking coffee one day just because.  It was really easy for me (I'm much more partial to Earl Grey tea or Diet Coke).  I didn't need it, I decided.  Extra money on a vice I didn't really enjoy.  Well, let me tell you - half a mochaccino has made me feel like I'm recovering from 12 rounds with a bottle of vodka.  I am NEVER drinking that shite again! (coffee, not the vodka.  I know my limits.)

Sunday, 13 October 2013

fandamily gatherings

I ate meals at me new table this weekend!  How very grown up.  I also reverted to eating dinner on the couch however on Sunday because P and I were engrossed in the television.  How very sad.  I am going to have to start binge watching the rest of Breaking Bad, I've decided because SPOILERS.  Usually I don't have much pity for people who whinge about internet spoilers (don't go on the internet if you don't want to know!) but as someone who is at Season 2, Episode 9, I'm feeling very pissy about the number of headlines on magazine style sites ruining the ending for me.  We've been very slow Breaking Bad watchers because it's so intense I find I need to space it out.  Hence, we're well behind.  Bear in mind that I've decided that one of these days I should really watch the West Wing.  I'm about 10 years behind the curve on everything.

Well, that was far too many words about television. 

Big fandamily weekend with my family this weekend, rather than P's.  At least I came home with my phone and my dignity when I was with mi familia...ohhhhhhhh I hadn't told you about that.  P's cousin was turning 28 and scorned us for our age and inability to party so I proved her I didn't.  I went to Kingsland, finished getting completely soused and then fell asleep on my bedroom floor when P played party pooper and poured me into a cab.    Some kind stranger found my phone and a friend who called me the next day picked it up for me...that, right there, gives me some serious faith in humanity.  The guy reckoned someone had done it for him - phone karma, he thought.  I love him.  So true though - I've saved someone's blackberry before (scrolled through the contacts and called 'Wifey') so maybe I was due a cosmic good phone turn?  I also thought I'd lost my glasses and spent four very squinty, bloodshot days at work last week, but they turned up on Friday. 

(Let's not even discuss the Drunk In Charge FB behaviour shall we?)

I embraced my age at my cousin's 21st this weekend, accordingly.  Safe at home by 11.30.

Friday, 11 October 2013

the shared experience

You guys!  Have you seen the #penisbeaker thread on the British site MumsNet?  I'm not linking to it from this computer but I don't think I've laughed so hard in ages.  It's totally NSFW and if you're commuting, I think you'll embarrass yourself laughing so save it for home!  By way of background, it's about post-coital cleanliness practices...consider yourself warned.  If the word 'fanjo' causes you to writhe in shame, I wouldn't go there. 

Poor old P - "I'm feeling fruity tonight darling.  FILL UP THE PENIS BEAKER" is going to become a staple pick up line in our household.  I'm not even joking! (You think I'm joking? It's like you don't EVEN KNOW ME!)

It's making me smile to think about the shared parts of the human experience that you wouldn't normally ponder.  Every day I do things that millions of others are doing and yet I never stop to think that someone might do it a little differently than I - when I brush my teeth, for example, I always start at the back left.  Do you?  I hate hate hate that P wipes his electric toothbrush handle on the handtowel after rinsing it - I find it so disgusting - yet P thinks my toothbrush handle is the grottiest thing of all time because I simply set it down after rinsing.  Do you have a mug for your toothbrush?  Isn't the grime that collects at the bottom revolting?

I love hearing about people's alternative routines - there's so much that's interesting about how other people lead their lives.  Navigating the Mothership leads a quarterly 'Day in the Life' post, where she (and others) photograph and document the course of an entire day for posterity's sake.  I haven't participated, as I'm a real online stalker and not much of a commenter, nor do I use many pictures of my life on here (at least, not recently).  But I absolutely love reading those bad boys - seeing what the day to day looks like for a pregnant mother of two in Minnesota.  I have been actively searching out diverse blogs because I love reading about other peoples lives, heavily edited or not.  When I found myself reading a review of a book entitled 'Passionate Housewives Desperate For God' the other day I had to laugh - while I vehemently disagreed with nearly every sentiment expressed by the blogger reviewing the book (& every sentiment she said the book contained), fuck me the internet has broadened my horizons.  I wish I could find it again, but I believe this is the site of one of the co-authors.  Knock yourself out obtaining Help for the Hopeful Housewife, guys.  (Oh seriously, I just read further. Don't do it.  The Lies Feminism Spreads, Y'all!)

Anyway, Penis Beaker made my day.  Read into that what you will!

Thursday, 10 October 2013

i may know what boundaries are, after all. maybe

I typed out an excessively wordy blogular thing about KiwiSaver and retirement plans this afternoon and then I realised:

(a) you're going to put all that personal financial information on the internet? and
(b) who the fuck cares?

It turns out my boundaries with the internet are finances.  I don't mind boring you all to tears with the state of my eyebrows (slightly furry - never going back to Benefit Brow Bar at Smith + Caugheys again, the face torturers, we're in recovery mode over here) but for whatever reason, I can't bear to bore you with my savings goals and retirement plans and mortgage details. 

EVEN THOUGH I would read the shit out of that if someone else wrote it on their blog.  Because NOSY. 

It did get a little bit feminist ranty when I reflected on income disparity over a lifetime and the total income cost of childrearing, so.  Even worse: political. 

Actually, I think part of my real problem in writing it up was I realised how privileged I am.  Middle class white girl problems, you know?  That's not a gloating shout of 'I'm riiiiiiiiiich', by the way.  It's more that when I worked out my biggest issues, they weren't that big.  I have access to contraception and choice regarding children, I have independent parents who probably won't require my financial assistance in their retirement, and I live in central Auckland, for fuck's sake, so my long-term financial hurdles are really up to fuck all.  Comparison is the thief of joy, I've seen bandied about on those framed quote posters that all of Pinterest appears to have a hard-on for.  I believe that was Edison, or someone like that.  But Comparison is really the Source of All Your Self-Flagellation, too.  OK, OK, you can frame that if you like. 

(I kid!)

(frame it, take a picture, stick it on Pinterest and I'll give you $20, for realsies)

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

malt biscuits and mow-lawning

I just spread butter on a malt biscuit, and smooshed another one on top.  There was fruit in the bowl next to the bikkies, but I ignored it. God that's gross. 

Aaaaaaaaaaanyway.  I mowed the lawns this weekend.  I even strimmed the edges and tried (for the love of god, tried) to mow in straight lines.  This was momentous because thus far in my life my lawn mowing activity has consisted of:

- watching my mother or father mow the lawn
- wathing P mow the lawn
- letting my horse mow the lawn

You will note that none of the above involved me handling a lawnmower.  My mother (and by extension my father) didn't trust me with a mower (or in the kitchen, in the tool shed, with a saw etc etc - with good reason - I am the girl who just today managed to slice her little finger on the edge of a the clip from a manila folder, for crying out loud).  It wasn't only that I was useless and couldn't be trusted not to damage myself, but Mum really has a thing for a properly mown lawn, with the edges done right and all in straight lines.  I am not very good at straight lines. 

I usually watch P mow the lawns because, well, is there anything better than sitting on your deck in late afternoon sunlight watching your husband be all domesticated and vaguely sweaty? I think not.

And Bert, well, he was GOOD at keeping the grass down.  I just had to scoop the poop afterwards.

So, yes, I did it myself this weekend (I had P trapped inside slaving over a hot stove - on a par with watching him mow the lawn, I must say).  No one lost a toe, the grass is cut and I came away with a sense of satisfaction that I have not for one day in my life received from cleaning the loo, or washing the floors, or any other indoor chore for that matter.  Not that those things can't be satisfying, because they certainly can - usually in a I-vanquished-you-lurking-germs, begone-and-darken-my-bowl-no-more-or-for-at-least-48-hours kind of way.  But I really, really liked it. 

Thursday, 3 October 2013

courgettes are the same as zucchini, right?

Sunshine! Sunshine! Hallo SPRING! You and your copious snails are here!  I'm sneezing all over the show!

If it weren't for the sunshine, I think I'd have hamster-on-a-wheel-itis right now - you know, same day, rinse, repeat thing?  Groundhog Day (never really saw that movie all the way through but Bill Murray references are always, always apt even if you're not entirely sure about whether basically everything isn't a joke that Bill Murray is subtly winking at).

Aaaaaaanyway, what I'm saying is: I feel a bit stuck in the rut right now.  It's pretty much unjustified, it won't last.  I think it's a Gen Y type symptom, maybe.  (I *think* I'm Gen Y.   Spend a lot of time thinking and talking about ME ME ME? Yep, sounds about right.)  I'm always on the lookout for the next big thing, for all the talk of being in the moment.  Some fishing recruiter sent bait to P a few weeks ago offering him the opportunity of the big time in Luxembourg.  Despite all my professed contentedness back here on the Mothership Kiwi, the rut meant I found myself writing emails to P saying things like:

- 3 hours from Paris by train
- London.  Right.  There.
- We could get tenants.
- We'd be rich!
- Oh wait, scratch that, what the hell would I do all day?
- Baguette!
- Wine!

etc, etc. 

P rationally pointed out that if we moved to Luxembourg we wouldn't be able to enjoy the fruits of our courgette plant.  A valid point; well made sir.  I've grown quite fond of the old zucchini plant, purchased hastily in a spur of the moment garden centre trip (who on earth does that? Just me, I suspect.  Young people don't go to the garden centre; old people don't do shit like that spontaneously because planning and seasonal planting in your garden is key, I hear).  I would hate to think I've battled the snails but otherwise neglected the plant for not a single ratatouille.

Plus, P continued, we've bought a fuckload of furniture recently that we'd like to enjoy (fuckload = must be an imperial measure).  We're talking a table, chairs, couch, outdoor table, benches, bbq - that's right people, when you come to our shack you're not going to have to eat squatting on the floor anymore!  ALL CLASS. 

So, let the sunshine through.  Onwards, upwards, zucchini-wards.