Sunday, March 22, 2009

Dear France,

Sidewalks are for walking on, not parking your effing cars right in the way of pedestrians or MAKING U TURNS on narrow roads.

Side. Walk. For walking on the side. In French? Trottoir. Not put-your-car-on-me-all-the-time-oir.

Also, I really appreciate how your sidewalks are low enough for cars to pull up onto without popping a tire, but just high enough to be handicap inaccessible. Even at corners and driveways. Bastards.

-Disgruntled Pedestrian

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Ew, gross

Some things are delicious, but should not be made available in canned form. Like this*:

Mushrooms. Blech.

This reminds me of when I used to go to Kindercare and they made us eat all our peas before we were allowed to go play, only they were peas from a can and I seriously had to suppress my gag reflex every day forever that I ate lunch there. Canned peas are not the right color and I'm pretty sure stored in some kind of preservative syrup to make them not only last longer but be swallowed more easily by babies and the elderly. Gross. Mush. Gross.

*From my roommate's shelf in the food cupboard. Silly Germans.

†We switched to Kindercare after the assholes at La Petite did mean things like not let my sister give me a hug when I got there after school. And then yelled at her when she cried. This event seriously influenced me when I worked with kindergarteners last year. I always let them hug their siblings in the hall or the cafeteria, and tellingly, this was not an uncommon request. This has been a long side note.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

New Conchords

Okay, I mostly love this song for the first line.

FOTC is putting out some good stuff this season. I think the music is a little bit less congruous with the episodes than it was in the first season (obvs because they're writing all new songs, rather than having years of previously-written work to choose from), but you can't not love Sugar Lumps. The dialogue continues to be amazing. I love Murray.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

No sleep til London

So, the adventure started late Friday afternoon when my plan was to go straight from work to the train station (okay, with a leisurely beer stop-off on the way, I had an hour!), but then I realized on the way to work that I had forgotten my passport. An essential item for international travel. So I had to trek the 20 minutes back home after all was said and done, though this did give me time to make some delicious garlic sausage sandwiches for the journey. They made my bag so stinky! But it was worth it.

Back to the train station I went, an uneventful ride into Paris followed, and then BAM, the metro happened. That is to say, it's always an adventure in trying to make it somewhere on time*. This time, there was some kind of medical emergency one stop down the line I was on, so everything was super delayed. Luckily I had hours until the overnight bus from hell, which I obviously wanted to be spending underground anyway since Paris is boring and ugly. Right?

La la la, finally make it to the bus station, wait around for a while, read some Tolkien, check in, get on, and have a seat to myself. That is, until an older man comes by and asks if anyone is sitting next to me. So I was forced (out of kindness) to give up the dual-seat luxury and allow this man to sit down.

This is what followed/what I hadn't considered beforehand. The seats seemed really comfortable because they reclined back to, like, 45 degrees. But then the person in front of me leaned back my knees were trapped. We had to get off the bus for border control. Luckily, I had brought the address where I was staying this time so they didn't give me any shit. We got back on the bus for about half an hour then had to get off on the ferry. Oh, right, Anne, you have to take a ferry when you're on the bus, it doesn't just float accross the English Channel. I got my only solid hour of sleep on a couch on the ferry. Then we got back on the bus and I was pretty sure I hadn't slept the rest of the journey.

Pretty sure. Except that I must have been asleep because at a certain point I woke up (therefore was sleeping, but dreaming about being on the bus), and dude next to me had his jacket spilling over onto my lap. So, annoyed, I toss it back over on him and OH MY GOD HIS HAND IS ON MY UPPER THIGH. This only could have happened if I had been sleeping. I am talking, fingers practically in my crotch, upper-thigh grope. I picked up that pervy old man's hand and flung it at him like a dead fish. He didn't wake up. Needless to say, I didn't sleep at all the rest for the rest of the bus ride.

Saturday morning, I got in early and went to my cousin Billy's for a shower and some breakfast, then headed out to day one of the workshop. Which was awesome. But I won't bore you with the details of my frustrations at not being open and playful enough to accomplish in one weekend what performers struggle for years to get past.

Saturday evening, instead of going straight to bed as my brain probably would have appreciated, I had some beers with the dudes I was staying with (friends of the Kiwi Doctor) and played some dice game I had never heard of before. It was ridiculously fun, and I was so good at the game until the alcohol very quickly took its effect on my fatigued brain‡ and I became a much worse at bluffing. They conveniently went out around 9, at which point I immediately fell asleep and stayed that way for the next ten hours.

Sunday, was a bit of a repeat, except minus the drinking in the evening, and with another bus to catch home. I did not get groped this time. Thankfully. I got back to my apartment in Flers for just long enough to brush my teeth and change my underwear before I had to go to my first class. I must have looked a sight, my hair all greased into whatever position I had (not) been sleeping in all night, and I'm pretty sure I probably sounded drunk at moments. I hope it wasn't too weird when I showed up again that afternoon, all showered and well-fed.

So that was my weekend. Met some awesome people at LISPA, and definitely a place I might try to go sometime in the distant-ish future for their two-year program. If I can get over my crippling voice of analysis and self-doubt. Working on it.

Sorry I was too lazy to find pictures for this post, and also that all the links are just to other stuff I've written. I just really want you to read it, because, like, I wrote it.

*Though I still maintain that le métro is far superior to the tube.

†They tv screens actually said, 'Someone is ill,' but I can only imagine that there was some kind of heart attack happening. I hope they wouldn't have stopped the metro over a cold. But maybe someone just barfed.

‡This is my official excuse.

Friday, March 13, 2009

High rollin'

Hey Kids,

Not that I ever seem to need an excuse to not blog for several days in a row, but I just wanted to let you all know that I'll be jetting off to London for the weekend, so I probably won't be posting anything. And by jetting, I mean sleeping on buses for two nights, on the way there and back.

But it will all be worth it! I'm going to a Collaborative Theatre Workshop at LISPA, which is a school that I'm super interested in if I ever decide to stop being so lazy and get my MFA. Also, I feel that this is a first step in my movement away from being a (fake) teacher, and towards being an artist of some merit. Second step, get off my butt and submit a piece to the Dublin Fringe. This is totally going to happen, folks.

So, anyhow, think of me tonight (or, like, midafternoon if you're over on the other side of the world) as I am trying desperately to catch a few minutes of sleep on the 8-hour ride of discomfort. And then get up and move all day for two days.

Adventures to follow,


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Effing Amazing

Look what I got in the mail today:

Yes, that's right, my ridiculously talented* friend, Guy, knitted a doll of me!! Or rather, of me as the character I played in this† sketch:

Do you see the remarkable similarities? I mean, other than the fact that Guy's craftmanship is much finer than my own. But the doll even has the same problems with top-heaviness that I had when I was wearing that giant, paper-maché head!

Guy is an amazing knitter. Without his permission, I am going to show you some other things he's made.



I know, ridiculous. If you want something professionally knitted, he's your man. Only you might have to be his bFF‡ to get it.

I'm just glad that this guy finally has some company.

Also, I think I am in grave danger of becoming one of those adults who has lots of stuffed toys. I'd better keep myself in check.

*His other talents include being super hilarious, choreographing 20th-century drama into dance, and growing a really sweet mustache.

†They effing disabled the audio on our video! Just imagine some Green Day and then Aretha Franklin in the background...

‡better Friend Forever

Monday, March 09, 2009

Highest Self-Esteem Ever

One of my students (age 8) came up to me in class today and handed me this note:

On the envelope:
"Je t'aime Anne de la par à Chahrazad mon prénom anglais es KETE"
"[Translation mine] I love you Anne from Chahrazad my English names is [wrong conjugation] KETE [it's actually Kate]*."

On the other side (in case I missed the first one):
"Pour Anne de la par à Chahrazad Tu es trop belle et trop gentilles"
"For Anne from Chahrazad You are too† beatiful and too kind [plural adj]"

On the outside of the note:
"Pour Anne de la par à Chahrazad Je t'aime beaucoup Tu es trop belle Je t'aime tu es trop belle De la par à Chahrazad"
Need I translate? Plus lots of hearts.

The note itself:
"tu es trop belle Anne
Chers Anne
vous êtes trop gentille et trop jolie vous êtes la plus belle englaise que je connaise du monde. tu es trop gentille et tu es parfois rigolote mes dans ton sourire tu es trop belle. et dès que tu es heureuse je suis heureuse. mes dans tes yeux je sais que vous êtes sinsère. Chahrazad"
Translation [ignoring awesome 8-year old spelling]:
"you are too beautiful Anne

Dear Anne
you are too kind and too pretty you are the most beautiful Englishwoman I know in the world. you are too kind and sometimes funny but in your smile you are too beautiful. and as soon as you are happy I am happy. but in your eyes I know that you are sincere. Chahrzad"

So despite (or probably a little bit because of) the numerous mispellings, the repetition, and random changing from the formal to informal "you," not to mention that she thinks I'm English and that I'm probably the only one she knows, this note made me infinitely happy and amused. I am too beautiful and too kind. Who else will ever tell me that?

*This was actually kind of helpful because I don't know any of their real names. They all have fake English names. But she handed the note to me, so I totally knew which one she was.

†Typical French exaggeration. Everything is too good or too delicious, but I like to think it was sincere. Just like my eyes.