Monday, October 31, 2005


It's been foggy for three days straight. And I don't mean a little misty, I mean full-on, rainy, pea soup sad greyness.

And it's supposed to continue, this weather, through next Wednesday. (Not THIS wednesday, but NEXT.)

I don't think I can survive it. I really don't. And with the end of daylight savings time, it's getting dark really early, and it's just a total bummer. I remember now why I hate fall in Norway. It's so SAD and colorless.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Happy Halloween!*

*I'll give you a hint: Ever hear the song "I got you babe"?

Saturday, October 29, 2005

If I was 15, it'd be the ONLY beer I'd drink

This yahoo article is cracking me up.

I would totally buy any beer that was called Seriously Bad Elves, Very Bad Elves, or Santa's Butt. Totally. Whether I was 15 or 30-um, something..

It's all imported and distributed by Shelton Brothers. Who, of course, don't distribute in Texas. Arg. Looks like I'm going back to England to get me some Santa's Butt and some Seriously Bad Elves.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Um, wow. That was,um, fast.

Well, um, hmm.

I'm fairly flummoxed.

You see, yesterday I put an ad online to sell my car.

And I got a call today. One call. Guy wanted to see the car. I met him.

And he bought the car.

He signed a contract and will have the money next week. (My American cynicism says "Proof is when the money hits your account", but Norwegians are a very honest and honorable sort of people, and if he signed a contract, I have very little doubt he means what he says. Norwegians are way more trustworthy than Americans in many ways.)

A part of me thinks maybe I priced it too low. But then, the other part of me says that I just sold my 8 year old car for what I paid for it new in 1997. So, really, if I'm happy with the price I got, and he's happy with the price he got, isn't that just good all around? Why be greedy when you get what you need? I'm all about the good karma of this.

So, wow. That was fast. All told. I'm gobsmacked.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


I just checked the FUH2 website, and it seems like me and my Norwegian blog buddy Kjersti have made our feelings clear about Norwegian Hummers. I'm currently on page 13, and she's on page 2. (At least, Kjersti, I am fairly certain that is you!) I think they had a bit of a backup and didn't post for a while, as I sent in my picture way back in July. But it's there now. I feel better...and vindicated.
God, Hummers are stupid. Any car named after a blow job, you just gotta wonder. What's next? Naming a car the Fluffer?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Monday, October 24, 2005

...and a few more.

A view of St. Paul's at dusk, taken from the south side of the Thames. I love my new camera.

Me at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford. It looks like a movie set, doesn't it? So perfectly Gothic.

Me at Christ Church College, Oxford again, this time in the cloisters. I was workin' that dress....

This looks like 1982. But it's not, it's 2005. I like the Hemp Store sign behind them. It's at Camden Market, London. I think they sat there because they knew they were photogenic. I hid behind a rack of clothes and used my zoom to get them, I didn't want them coming after me for money or abuse.....


Pictures from recent travels in England

Richard and my Uncle Peter at Winchester Cathedral.

A dining hall at Cambridge. Lovely color.

Red London phone booths at night, in the Russell Square area.

Harry Potter's Platform 9 3/4. At King's Cross Station, London.

A view of a college in Cambridge. (Buggered if I can remember which one...Emanuel, I think.) Our tour guide prounounced some of her "r's" as "w's", so she pronounced it "Cambwidge". I had a hard time keeping a straight face when she spoke. I kept thinking of the scene in the Princess Bride where the Prince is forcing Princess Buttercup through a marriage ceremony and the priest kept saying "....And Wove, Twue wove..."

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Nooo!!!! I'm not ready!

It's snowing.

I am SO not ready for winter. Not prepared, not ready, not willing to deal. Just NOT. NO. Uh uh. (Throws herself upon the floor, fists flailing, legs kicking, hair flying in a stubborn childish temper tantrum.)

I've decided, actually, that I am not doing winter this year. I have determined it to be unfashionable, and not at all chic. Thus, winter is OUT. This I have decreed. Sun, you come back. Snow, fuck off. I've got fun and floaty skirts to wear, dammit!

Now if only I can make the heavens and the earth's rotation on its axis understand my decree.....I AM kind of evil, I should be able to work SOMETHING out. Lessee...I've got a tambourine, a few loyal evil minions, my dual weapons of mass distraction....Hmm.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Made my day

Dave was in the Vatican Museum and saw this image. He sent it to me in an email in which he joked I "had inspired god-like devoting in some artist there..." (No we've never met, so it's actually nice to think that my mojo carries so far that people whom I haven't even MET yet notice the god-like devotion I inspire!! Or, am I just that much of a caricature?)

Obviously she is a Tambourine Wielding Angel of Death. A No Bullshit Musically Mediocre Sidekick in the Wars of Good vs Evil. She will take her Tambourine of Power and she and Mr. Tambourine Man will save the earth!!!! Or jingle it to death. She never got the hang of the Guitar of Pain, you see. Or the Drums of Lust. And believe me, she worked HARD on the Drums of Lust.

Now that I look at it, it could be that comedian, Carrot Top. You know the guy with the red hair and the props? Does he do jokes with tambourines? Oh my God. Dave, DAVE, what are you trying to tell me here?

She asked for it!

Fofusa has asked us to post pictures of our desktops on our blogs. So here is mine. The middle image comes from Bookhart's blog. I stole-ded (what is the past tense of "steal" anyone?) it, because I remember this poster very well from college and it oh-so-still applies. I can't believe she still has it. So cool.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Not so Gentle Reminder

As the traffic visiting my blog has increased, I've started getting the infrequent mean comment. The world is a big place and not everyone is nice or has manners. I know that. I also know that maybe my brand of humor and bravado doesn't tickle everyone. So be it. Go somewhere else.

Usually the comments don't bug me, and if they do, I delete them. I, for one, do not believe in making nasty comments to blogs. Aren't we all supposed to be friends and supportive of one another? I will admit that the increase in traffic here is freaking me out a little, and I am not sure how to deal with it. I liked the idea of a cozy little family of folks, all blogging and commenting. But Google has seen fit to send me more hits than I have ever dreamed of, and it's actually making me nervous.

Anyhow, today I found a comment to this picture of me, the first I ever posted. I'm really not at all sure what it means, though the person mentions my big nose, "for eyes" and general ugliness. Dude, Duh? Have you looked even a little at the picture? It's a grimace for chissakes. It's supposed to be ugly. And yes, I wear glasses and no, my nose is not petite. I bet you ain't no beauty prize, either, and for DAMN sure you can't write or spell. And you are kind of icky, too. (I also checked out your IP address and know where you come from. There are ways of finding these things out, you know.)

Anyhow, just as an fyi, though I am laughing at this one, mean or obscene or generally nasty comments are not tolerated here. And I am the final and absolute judge of what is considered mean, nasty or obscene. Unless, of course, you are talking about Dubya. Then it's a free for all.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Slyly naughty

My random surrealism generator (left side bar) gave me this little nugget of wisdom today:

My father always told me I shouldn't bury treasure beneath merkins.

This is very true, especially once you know what a merkin is. My my, what a double entendre the ol' generator is cranking out today!

People who are cooler than myself

So there's my friend Julia who lives here in Oslo? And works for a major record label?

Yeah, well, she's just too cool. Two weeks ago she brought over the new Madonna album for me to hear. (It's not out til November 15th.) It's so secret and they are so worried about it being pirated, that not only have they watermarked each copy that is out so they could identify it if it got ripped and sent out on the web, they also have the cd's hand carried to wherever they are sent. So a guy flew in from London just to bring the cd's to Julia's office! I was one of the first few hundred people in the WORLD to hear it. And it's GOOD, people, like, "Music" good. (We'll pretend that "American Pie" one just never came out, shall we?) It's disco with an electro-Abba edge. (Just go with it.) If you don't move your ass and dance, well, then you are dead.

Of course, the coolness with Ms. Julia continues next week, when she gets to fly to London to MEET Madge herself! Yes! Bitch! Also, next week, she goes to the Nordic Music Awards in Copenhagen, where she will meet Shakira, Coldplay and (ladies in England, hold yourselves steady) Robbie Williams! (Americans don't get the Robbie phenomenon, but believe me, he is THE SHIT in England. He's got a few songs I like, and I also like him because he's a little rough around the edges in a manly-man way. Nothing effeminate about him.)

She has hired me as her personal shopper/dresser. Cuz you know, I am one stylin' kinda gal and all. I offered to accompany her to London and Copenhagen for any last minute adjustments in style and/or shopping tips, but alas, her per diem does not include "style managers/drinking buddies" on the payroll. Damn.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Very cool website for readers

What Should I Read Next? This looks fun.

You may have noticed the paucity of stories of late. Sorry about that. I'm just kind of hanging around and stressing about a few things. Much to take care of, but nothing of interest to post about here.
Think of this as an "entertaining pause" in our normal programming. I'll post some pictures and stuff later today and in the next few days.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Links with non-verbal comments


Eeek! Aack!




Tee! Hee!

Thank you for visiting and come back again soon.

(So far, over 30,000 folks have come to view my nonsensical silliness. Hey, it's YOUR time wasted, you know. What you do with it? Up to you. I'm just glad I can be there for you.)

(By the way, those of you who keep googling images of "panty sniffer" and "peeing"? You're not exactly getting what you had hoped for, are you?)

NOW I remember

All fall thus far, I've been fairly proud of myself for being a tough girl and oblivious to cold. I've been wearing light jackets, cute wraps, long sleeved t-shirts with vests over them, you know, traditional fall clothes. (These are winter clothes in Texas, I know, I KNOW!.) But I've been feeling like I've finally got this cold weather thing under control and have become Norwegian and hardy, with veins of anti-freeze.

Oh, yeah. That's right. Now I know why. It's because it WASN'T cold. It was warm.

NOW it's cold.

Todays high is around 36? or so? And. I'm. Cold.

Luckily the sun is out and it is nice out. Well, cold and nice.

My cousin and his girlfriend were here for the weekend. He's British, but lives in Germany, and his girlfriend is German. She's been learning English. She wouldn't let us speak German. (Well, she wouldn't let my cousin speak German, or me say "Ja! Ja? hast du hunger?" which is pretty much all I've got left of my four years of German in college.) And dudes, I give her TOTAL props for speaking English the WHOLE time she was here. It must have been very hard for her to do that, and I am sure her brain just hurts like hell. But I admire her fortitude and stick-with-it-ness. She rocks.

They just left an hour or so ago and I am now going to be lazy and do nothing. Read a book, huddle under a blanket. Ah.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

It's the small things that cheer you up.

I think I've mentioned that I have a fairly LARGE collection of clothes and shoes. Well, today I put on this outfit:

and realized I didn't have any shoes to match.

Or did I?

I dug around curiously and found...a really cute pair of nice leather boots I had forgotten about.

Yes, I forgot I had a pair of boots! Isn't that awful? I think I remember buying them, now. They are really nice boots, lined inside with glove leather and all soft on the outside too. They were on sale down from $300 to $50. So I bought them. And, um, apparently forgot I had them.

In honor of Badger and her blog Lipstick is my Crack, I hereby give a rundown of today's outfit:

  • Orange skirt with sequinned waistband I bought yesterday on sale at the mall in Sandvika.
  • A long sleeved peach t-shirt from Gap, on sale.
  • A orangey salmon colored shrug sweater from Noa Noa in Asker. Yup, on sale.
  • The forgotten boots, from the Walking Store in Barton Creek Mall, Austin.
  • A cashmere wrap from Kashmir, hand embroidered and woven. I got it a couple of weeks ago in Camden Market, London. I adore this wrap. It was fun buying it as the guy was really nice and brought it out from his "special stash" of things.
  • Narcisso Rodriguez's perfume, For Her. My favorite. Smells like heaven.
  • Diamond stud earrings and a diamond circle necklace I call my "birthday bling".
I got it all on sale, now that I think about it. I even talked the guy down a bit for the wrap.

I'm a cheap mother fucker. But damn if it don't work out sometimes.

Friday, October 14, 2005


The guy came to look at the dryer yesterday. It basically, he says, self destructed. No way to fix it.

Under the warranty, I can get a brand new one. Or, after asking if it was possible, they will give me my money back. So that's what I will do. Get the money. I went for three years without a dryer here, and it seems that the appliance gods are telling me something. They are telling me "Drip dry! Drip dry!"

Aren't you glad you read this blog? I tell you what, it's scintillating posts like this that get me up in the morning. Wowee.

Tell you what. Forget reading this boring blog. I've obviously let it go to hell in a handbasket. Go buy this book. Read it. It's good. And the title will make you look smart when you carry it around to the local coffee shop.

Movie to go see, if you are in Texas

A friend of mine from SXSW has steadily and prodigiously been winning awards and recognition for his film Screen Door Jesus.

The movie (which I have seen and loved) is now opening in Austin and San Antonio on Friday. I hope you guys all get a chance to see it. It had a run in Houston , unfortunately at the same time as Hurricane Rita. Ah well, you Houstonians will just have to go to Austin. You know you want to anyhow!

And no, despite what some people might think on the forum part of the website, it's NOT a movie that's all "praise Jesus" and "Christians are better than everyone" and shit. It's not a holy roller movie. It's not anti-religion, either. It is, however, a thoughtful and humorous story about attitudes towards religion in a small Texas town, with a certain amount of strange goings on and religious miracles thrown in for spice. Makes you think, makes you laugh, makes you wonder.

It was all filmed in Texas with a Texas cast. Kirk Davis, my friend, wrote and directed it.

Go see it at the Regal Arbor in Austin, or at the Regal Fiesta in San Antonio.

You guys get all the good movies. We don't get ANY fun stuff here in Norway.

UPDATE: It's getting good reviews. As it has all along. Here's the one from the Austin Chronicle.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Colin Firth is in this picture

Image002.jpg, posted by karlakp.

Somewhere. I think he's the guy in the middle, in the distance. See the chick in the short white dress? Directly to the right of her.
Crappy phone cam. Dammit.

Sunday in London

Sunday I got up about 9 and was out of the hotel by about 10, hitting the Starbucks again.

I caught the Tube again at Earl's court, getting off at Aldgate. I walked up from there, through the lengthy Petticoat Lane market, on the way to Spitalfields. Petticoat Lane market was hopping, and I bought a cool Indian shirt for 3 pounds. I'm wearing it now. Petticoat Lane market can be kind of tatty, but if you have a sharp eye you can find fun stuff.

Spitalfields market has been all changed around. Still good stuff to be found, but the re-arrangers have left almost NO room to maneouvre. The aisles must have been narrowed by a good couple of feet, and they took away about a third of the market space, from what I can tell. It was WAY too tight and I found myself annoyed constantly. Moms with giant strollers, slow moving people, gawkers, folks just standing. God, get OUT of the WAY and let me PASS! It used to be least there was more room to move. They did upgrade the bathrooms, and moved them, which was an improvement. The food stands were still there, though rearranged. I ate my usual Indonesian plate, with the chicken satay and noodles. Yummers. Eating something helped me overcome my annoyance, and after eating I burped my way out of the market for a wander around the hood.

My intention had been to go check out the International Tattoo Convention that was happening that weekend. I definitely walked by it, but got so sidetracked with the VERY happening scene that I just never made it inside. Man, East London was buzzing for sure, and it felt like the epi-center of all that was hip. Market after market, hipsters everywhere, folks in funky glasses (at least I fit in that way) and tattooed people everywhere (Ok, so I've got those too.) That crowd was so trendy and young and hip and arty, it was almost sick making. But I enjoyed it. I found another three markets, all new, and wandered for hours just looking at stuff and people and vintage stores and wierd random shops under railroad tracks. It was very gritty and urban and cool. I also passed by some big sample sales by famous designers, such as Paul Smith. It felt like everyone there was "in the know" and I accidentally wandered right into the coolest club in town. Miraculously, no one found out I wasn't hip, and I wasn't kicked out. I ended up in Shoreditch. Found my way back to Liverpool Street staion, and went to Leicester Square, where I wanted to see the movie, The Aristocrats. (link has sound)

I bought my ticket to the movie, and it was at this wierd theatre that was on the third floor of the building. Whatever. Before the movie I had some time to kill, so went wandering around Leicester Square, where I found a movie premiere happening. The movie was "Nanny McPhee" with Emma Thompson and Colin Firth. As I was standing there (well, ok, it was about 20 minutes of standing, because I. Wanted. To. See. Mr. Darcy.) a big black car (not a limo) drove up into the cordoned off area in the square and out popped Colin! Yes, I was rather thrilled. And yes, ladies, the mere word "handsome" does not do him justice. Two things about him struck me: the brilliance of his smile and his way of walking. His smile was just gorgeous, and his walk was a cross between a swagger and a lope, very manly and strong. In fact, just like that scene in P&P when he walks across the field just before he dives into the pond? Like that. Rangey, healthy, cool way of walking. He smiled at me, I waved, he waved back. I swooned. At least, never having swooned, I think it was a swoon. I sure felt swoony, though, if that's what it feels like.

Sigh. Pitter pat pitter pat goes my heart. First thing me and the lady standing next to me did was call our mothers. We grinned like maniacs at each other while doing it. It's just a "call mom" moment. My mom's reaction? "You BITCH!" Pretty classic.

(I've posted a phone cam picture of him at the premiere, though Firth is pretty damn small in it. Why is it that I have this brand new 10x zoom camera, and when the gorgeous movie star shows up not 20 feet from me, I don't have it? I've met scads of famous folks, and never ONCE gotten a photo out of it. Am I the anti-papparrazi?)

After that I trotted over to see "The Aristocrats" which was hilarious. And filthy. And hilarious. I'll never look at Bob Saget the same way again.

After that I hopped back onto the tube at Leicester Square and got off at Russell Square, where I went to the Bloomsbury Theatre to catch Omid Djalili. I can say that it is unreservedly the best comedy show I have ever seen. (Sorry, Eddie.) This guy is brilliant, and he riffs fearlessly on every topic. He totally skewers everyone: white, black, jewish, muslim, chinese, german, french, american, canadian. Whatever, he's got you pegged. He's Iranian, so of course there were alot of terrorism jokes. THOSE were good, and sorely needed, I think. (Like the terrorist who really just wants to get his suicide over with so he can get that blowjob from one of the 72 virgins in heaven? Because even the sight of an ankle peeking out from under the burkha makes him masturbate for three days straight? Oh, you just gotta hear it done right.) He has done an HBO special, the only British comedian besides Eddie Izzard to have done so, and all I can say is try and see it, get your hands on it, whatever. He is hilarious, and very truthful too. He's been in some movies, too, many of which I have seen, so he's definitely going places, but fast.

The show was over and I was on my way to the hotel by 10:30.

The next day I caught my SAS flight home, and it ended up that one of the flight attendants is my neighbor here in Norway, and she gave me a free bottle of champagne during the flight. (A mini bottle.) What a nice surprise! I'm so glad I took the spontaneous route and took this trip. It really helped cheer me up. Sometimes a girl needs a bit of spoiling, especially when she can spoil herself however she wants. Comedy? Not an indulgence, it's therapy!

Website o' the day

Please enjoy.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Saturday in London

I woke up Saturday morning and after showering (masses of hot water, yeay!) I hotfooted it to Starbuck's. Yes, I know Starbuck's is the McDonald's of coffee, but I call those coffees my "American moments" because there is no Starbucks in Norway. (I know! Amazing! They've infiltrated everywhere but here!!!!!)

I caught the Picadilly Line from Earls' Court down to Embankment station and walked along the Thames. I am pretty much to the point where I know some parts of London well enough that I don't need the map anymore. It was a gorgeous day. I crossed over to the Tate Modern via the Millenium Bridge. I had hoped to catch the Frida Kahlo exhibit, but the earliest ticket they were selling was for 3pm and it wasn't even noon yet. So instead, I wandered over through Southwark and the Borough Market. The Borough Market is a wonderful old Victorian market, full of food sellers with all sorts of gorgeous foods from all over. French cheeses, wild boar, seafood of every kind, beer from all the littlest microbreweries in England, organic everything. I stopped at a foodstand and had a "steak and mushroom bap" which was BAR NONE The best steak sandwich I have ever had in my life. Jesus it was good. I actually went back to tell them how good it was. You know when something is so good tasting you moan your way through it? Yeah, that good.

Bridget Jones lived at the Borough Market in the movie version. Here's her apartment building:

Her window is at the top left. And yes, it's right by the trains. See the train going by in the background?

After that I wandered down the Borough High Street to an old pub called The George Inn. It's the last remaining galleried coaching inn in London. Wonderful old creaky wood, smoke stained interiors, giant old stone hearths, crooked floors, and a large area outside with picnic tables. It's what you imagine an Olde English Inn to be. I hung around there for a while had a Guinness or two, and met a young Norwegian woman doing site scouting for a film. Norwegians are EVERYWHERE once you recognize the accent. She was pretty nice. She was setting up shots in the part of the pub I was sitting in. We talked movies.

After that I wandered back over the Thames and caught the District line out to Hornchurch, to have dinner with my aunt and uncle. Turns out that Peter is an amazing chef and he made the most incredible Indian food. A lamb curry and a bean dish and those little fried chickpea and onion things that I forget the name of, and poppadums (I just wrote poopadums, haha.). I ate until I was ready to explode. It's always nice to see Tine and Peter, they are so great to talk to.

I caught a train back into London and made it back to Earl's Court by around 10, and crashed. It was a nice day. One of those days where you let your feet go where they want, and you just follow along. I usually have my best experiences when I do that.

Tomorrow I'll write about Sunday. And Colin Firth fans out there? I've got a story for you.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Sad Girl in London

Well, I've got my sad ass over in Merrie Olde England.

I saw "Serenity" tonight. (Sorry Dave, jumpeed the gun.) It was great, but depressing.

I had a couple of Guinnesses. They were...well, try as I might, there is nothing depressing about a Guinness. Except maybe an empty one.

I got a ticket to see a comedian on Sunday night. His name is Omid Djalili, I saw him once do a short bit on Leno, and he was HILARIOUS. Sort of a Middle Eastern Eddie Izzard, but without the cross dressing. I got the last ticket. I seem to be lucky with getting last tickets for comedy shows. Also on Sunday is a big tattoo convention/gathering over in Spitalfields/Brick Lane area. I might go check that out, since I will be in the neighborhood that day anyhow. Who knows, I might get another tat. Might wake me up a bit.

Tomorrow I will put on my walkin' shoes, walk alot and go see "The Aristocrats".

The hotel I'm staying it is quite nice for the money. Clean, with no more nor less than I require. I am pleased. I think I can recomend it. We'll see how the bed and the hot water work out.

I know it's early (not even 9pm) but I am going to retire. This internet cafe is PACKED. Here are all these beautiful young college students, sitting and staring at computers instead of experiencing the greatest city in the world. Mind boggling. GET THEE TO A PUB! (Ok so I am doing it, too, but I've been here, like, 1000 times by now, so I'm excused. I can be on the internet if I want. Jeez, I'm old enough to be some of these kids' mother. Oh crap, I've just depressed myself even more.) Sigh.


Thursday, October 06, 2005

Spontaneous? Me? Nah....

Remember this post?

I'm doing it.

Booked a flight to London for tomorrow. SAS, man, they have some of the best deals in flights anywhere. Staying at a hotel recomended by my friend Jennifer. Cheap and nice. Coming back Monday afternoon.


But also, Spitalfields Market, King's Road, St. Jame's Church (I've got some serious thinking to do and though I am not religious, that is my thinking church) and a walk along the embankment. A visit to the Tate modern, too. Whatever. It's just me alone in London.


In Which Her Plans For Evil Domination Are Exposed.

One of my minions has mistakenly exposed my stealth plans for world domination. She has, of course, been dealt with summarily. There was little blood shed but much pain.

The plans for the Bank of Karla (slogan: No Cash Goes Unspent) have been put on hold until I can place everyone at McAfee into my evil thrall. It might take some time. And alot of vodka.

But lately? After the few days I've had, I am TOTALLY in the mood for some evil thralling and a bit of senseless maiming. I'm gonna kick some ASS.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Pantheon of Suck

I sort of keep a running list of things that suck, and the big ones get listed in my Pantheon of Suck.

I'm not going to print that whole list today. I'm too...too....sucky.

Let's just say that these past few days are very, very high on my all time list of Days That Suck. They are getting into the Pantheon of Suck for sure.

A small sample of things that belong in the Pantheon of Suck: George W. Bush, Hummers (1,2 &3), Celine Dion, Today, Yesterday, The Patriot Act, that time I had my appendix out on New Year's Eve, prices of everything in Norway, and the time my brother got into a near fatal motorcycle wreck.

That is all. Today sucks.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Karmically Fucked?

I obviously was very cruel to electronic appliances in a previous life.

I'm trying desperately to get the house tidied for a friend to come over tonight. Thus far:

The dryer (two months old) overheated and now won't work and is getting worriesomely hot.
The washer is smelling funny, the ozone smell you get from overworked appliances?
The vaccuum cleaner WILL NOT stay plugged into the wall and keeps turning off. This tells me to just stop cleaning, as it is obviously not in the cards for me today.

I hope the oven does not break. I'm making sour cream chicken enchiladas for dinner. We Texans eat like Texans when we gather.

Still no word on the car, though the dealer guy called me this morning and said some money guy is coming over to look at it. I told him my price, and that I would not take any less. Screw it, I'm tired of feeling like somebody is taking advantage of me. If they won't pay a fair price, I'll sell it myself. Even if that's the last thing I really WANT to do.

I also could not sleep at all last night, I was too wierded out. One, it's my first night here alone without Rich. He's in the US. Two, I am reading "The Historian" which is an excellent, but strangely nerve-wracking read. I kept envisioning strange, scary bloody men peering in my 5th floor windows. Though I am pleased that I have been to many of the places, now, that she writes about and so can envision her places and scenes.

Right, so that's the end of the cleaning for the day. My friend will just have to deal with a dirty house, some rich fattening food, and a couple of damn fine margaritas. Somehow, I think she won't mind.

Monday, October 03, 2005

The $500 movie.

I'm considering flying back to London just so I can see "Serenity".

It's not frigging playing here until December! I can't wait til December! I've been waiting over a year as it is!

So, I figure, around $160 for the flight, find yet another cheap crappy hotel room placed close to the theatre. (That's $200, give or take $50. A hotel room in London that costs much less than $100 is a scary, scary thing.) Spend two nights in London (must hit a pub or four, after all, ($40)), eat at Pret and Chinatown ($60), and fly back, having paid $12 for the movie and around $488 for the peripherals. I left myself $28 for incidentals, like, oh, water. And Starbucks.

Is that crazy? Does that show how much I want to see it and how ANNOYED I am that it will take another TWO MONTHS to get here?


I try to keep things all happy and cheery on this blog, but sometimes you just gotta whine. So, if you don't wanna read it, go away. Really, it matters not to me.

So, I'm just stressed and all out of sorts. I'm in this wierd period of limbo...waiting for some big stuff to happen, but not knowing when or how it will come about. I know that our lives will change soon, but the not knowing, and the waiting, and the feeling that others have my future in their hands and I have no control over that is very, very unsettling. I know this all sounds very vague, and that's the point...and the problem. It's all very vague on my end as well. People keep asking me about when and where and how...and I can't give them answers as I don't know myself.

Plus, adding to my angst, I took my car to a dealer to sell it. They offered me a fair price (pending a check-over of the car), lower than what I wanted, but ok. In accepting their offer, I turned down another offer I had gotten that week. I left the car with the dealer while I was in London.

I called them this morning to see what was what with my car and the pending sale. The bastards have dropped their offered price by 28%!!!!! Lower than the other offer I turned down! Fuckers, the lot of them. They say that there is a "crack on the fog light", a dent, and that I haven't had any service on the car since 2002. That is a total and complete load of bullshit. I TOLD them I had complete records. And I am having them faxed over as I write this. And for them to drop the price that much for a dent, a cracked headlight and a lack of service records? When I told them about the dent, I told them I had complete records, and that they knew the car is 8 years old but in good shape? If they are THAT worried about a fog light and an oil change, fuck them, I'll go have it fixed myself. I don't see those things being worth over $4000!!! They are totally trying to screw me.

I was willing to drop the price maybe 10%, but 28%???? I have a massive credit card bill to pay, and selling the car was going to be my way of taking care of that. God I'm so frustrated.

I could sell it myself on the classifieds, but that is a whole other set of problems, dealing with wierdos calling, wanting to drive the car, etc., plus there is some Norwegian rule that if someone buys the car and something goes wrong, I am responsible for it, or something. I don't know the whole details and I am finding it very hard to get a whole story. It's times like this when being an expat REALLY SUCKS. The helplessness you feel when dealing with another culture, set of rules and language is really soul-sucking.

Rich left for the US today. And I'm kind of jealous of that, and the fact that I will be here for more than a week, by myself and, frankly, bored out of my skull, is a drag as well. I feel so vibrant and alive in London, and when I come back to Norway, (sorry Norwegians) I just feel closed off, bored, and lonely. Everything is expensive, everything is the same, and there are only so many brisk and refreshing walks you can take. Not having a job is killing me. I need to get out of here, somewhere I can work, ** and soon.

I wonder if I can get a cheap flight to Amsterdam this weekend. A visit to a coffeeshop is sounding damn good right about now.

** If you go to the "reader's respond" link on the left sidebar of the Aftenposten, and scroll down a bit, you'll see some interesting letters from frustrated people whave written about the lack of jobs for us "furners" here. I'm not saying that it's IMPOSSIBLE to get a job, but it damn sure feels like it. And I don't want to work at an old folks' home or as a maid! I gave up trying to look for jobs long ago.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

That Bitch, Hurricane Rita

I was really worried about Hurricane Rita when I was in London. It was supposed to hit Saturday, and we were en route to London and with no access to the news. Then I really didn't hear anything after that. Imagine my chagrine when I got the following email from a friend of my brother's:

With all the news lately about Hurricane Katrina, we shouldn't forget that Houston has had its share of devastating weather also.
The attached photo illustrates the damage caused to a home when Hurricane Rita passed through the area a couple of days ago. It really makes you cherish what you have, and reminds us not to take life for granted!!!

Warning: The attached picture is quite graphic and may not be suitable for younger viewers.

Back from London

Sorry for my absence of posts. It's been a helluva busy week. I have not been on the computer since Sunday. A week of emails and blogs to catch up on.

That first hotel we were at was pretty bad. The sad thing was, it could have been good. Lovely building, with original ornate plaster, tall ceilings etc. It had so much potential.

Unfortunately, it had been renovated recently, and obviously very cheaply, so you can tell in just a couple of years it will be pretty bad. It was run by a bunch of middle eastern guys who ran around the halls slamming doors and screaming at each other. Our room was on the ground floor, with reception upstairs. This did not make me feel at all safe, as they left the front door WIDE OPEN at all times, and it was a straight shot from the front door to our room. And with reception upstairs, what's to prevent someone from coming in and messing stuff up but good? (Girls, you do not want to stay at the Radnor Hotel* (on Inverness Terrace, Bayswater) by yourself. I did not feel safe.) Also, when I asked for a hairdryer, the guy at the front desk acted as if he had never heard of such an appliance, even as I pointed to my wet hair and made circular hairdryer motions and buzzing noises, thinking maybe his English was not so good. His English was fine, but it was obviously not a hotel that thought of the feminine point of view. (I see, now, after a google search that they advertise hairdryers in the rooms. Lying bastards.)

The "continental breakfast" was white bread still in the bags which you then toasted, packets of jam and butter, a box of Corn flakes, and some hard boiled eggs. Al Jazeera was screaming from the large flat panel screen at the front of the room. It was a gorgeous room, lovely proportions, it must have been a great drawing room or possibly even a small ballroom.

And, piece de resistance, there was no hot water on Sunday morning. I had a very cold sponge bath. Rich was brave enough to take a shower. The goose bumps on the man were the size of real gooses.

Luckily, we spent only two nights there, before we moved to the Thistle Euston, which, with its big king sized bed, quiet room facing a park, hairdryer and HOT WATER, was just about as luxurious as I could have ever wanted. And there was not a screaming middle eastern in sight.

*I see there is also a Hyde Park Radnor hotel, which gets great reviews. Do not confuse the two.