changeling: (Default)
So we're getting rid of the car, like the hippies we are.

It's for a variety of reasons: the primary one is that I can't afford to keep it. I'm only making around $10 thou per year, so I can't afford to spend more than ten per cent of that on registration and insurance alone. Add to that the fact that the last service cost me over $800 and it didn't fix all the problems, and the rising cost of petrol, and the car is dead weight we can't afford to support.

The other reason is the fact that we have both tram and train in easy walking distance. And I have a bike (albeit rusting in the backyard at the moment, because the local Big Road scares the crap out of me). And we have three supermarkets within a ten minute walk. And we can take public transport to a market quite easily to do our shopping.

So yesterday I called up the charity to which we're donating it to find out what the hell's going on. The nice lady on the phone said, "It says here that it's been picked up already." My housemates and I, who have to squeeze past said car to leave the house (poor driveway design) can vouchsafe that this is not the case.

She amends the paperwork, and arranges for the car to be picked up today (Tuesday). She tells me there is a sign I have to place on the dash, and another form I have to fill out, and she'll email them to me. I also have to remove the numberplates, she says, in order to deregister it properly.

I spent yesterday afternoon emptying the car of crap, and throwing in the recycling bin all our old litre bottles of water (we used to have to keep a lot around for some time, before we had the radiator fixed). One was nearly full, so I took it through the house to the tomato plants out the back. Tomatoes are thirsty, so I like to top up the reservoir below their pots whenever I can with "spare" water. (We're on water restrictions.) I came back through the house, and threw away more plastic bags and other detritus that I'd collected into a big cardboard box. I realised I'd left my keys inside. And automatically latched the front door behind me. I had no wallet and no phone.

I had $9.25 in five- and ten-cent pieces that I'd scrounged from the car. We also had our old Yellow Pages sitting on the front porch. Monday nights we have morris rehearsal, and I cook dinner and bring it in. I had no dinner with me. I hadn't even started cooking. I looked up Nat's number and scratched it into the back of my hand with my nail. I walked to the RSL and tried to call her to let her know what had happened – Steph works for the government, so doesn't have her number listed in the Yellow Pages. The phone ate my 50c and didn't put the call through.

My only choice was to head in to the city. Metcard prices had risen again recently, and I knew that they used to be about $6. For those playing along at home, I had $8.75 remaining. I cut my losses and walked to the newsagency to buy a ticket – ticket machines always chuck a tanty if you try to pay with too many coins.

It was humiliating. I had to stand there for five minutes, counting out $6.50 in five- and ten-cent pieces. It also set off my poverty complex. Still, it was a stroke of luck (?) that I'd just pulled all that silver out of the boot, and hadn't taken it inside yet. I came into the city, met up with Steph, and we bailed on morris, so we could still cook dinner at home. It was a little relieving, since I was going to have to ask Steph to cover me for dinner.

Today I went to take off the numberplates. All the screws are rusted in. I manage to snap two of the ridges on our Phillips head screwdriver by trying to force it. So far I've managed to mostly get out one screw. One. Of four. I have NO idea how I'm going to get these plates off in order to take them down to VicRoads. Which, can I add, have no pages on their website about de/unregistering your vehicle. If you search, the only pages it brings up are about arranging for a temporary permit to drive an unregistered vehicle, and pages about reregistering. This says more than a little something about our society, frankly. Clearly I am a REBEL.

I also checked my email. I have not been emailed the sign OR the paperwork. Guess I'm chasing that up come nine o'clock.

changeling: (Default)
My boss has just sent me an email about Book B. The author has just sent a list of the order the birds should go in, so that the new and old material is admixed!

There are not enough synonyms for 'no' in the English language. The book is freaking well TYPESET already. It was due to go to the printer by the end of last month!!! It's just waiting on me to finish the SIXTY bloody maps! I don't want to waste another day rejigging the entire page order!

This is IT. This has TORN IT. Tonight I'm going to start applying for new jobs. Babe, want to help?
changeling: (Default)
I want to get the happiness-making thing out of the way first, to remind myself that not all sucks. This comic, particularly the final two panels, made me laugh. Funniest thing ever. I wanted to send it to my science-y friends, but I wasn't sure whether they'd sufficiently appreciate it outside the context of the larger comic. Maybe I'll send it to them anyway.

So: down to the suck.

I'm behind sending three – THREE! – books to the printer due to pleurisy, and, frankly, the authors. One (book A) is over a month behind because I didn't get the Ms for typesetting until half a week after it was due to be sent off. One (book B) is a heavily picture-based book, that I'm having to create over SIXTY bird-territory maps for. One (book C) is a novel, the third this author has published with us. It has been dragged behind deadline due to my boss's insistence on getting the first and second books done.

Now book A's author has sent me an email that, teehee!, she has forgotten to include some stuff in the book! And book B's author has emailed to say that there's a bird he's completely forgotten to include, and he wants it in! These are books, by the way, that are pretty much typeset already. If you don't see why this is a problem, you've never used any typesetting program, and have never worked for a publisher. MS Word does not count.

Right now I'm starting to get sympathy for the American culture of ultraviolence. Book B already has one bird that I'm not sure we can include, because we have text for it, but an image for a similarly named bird. We won't have an image for this new bird. And I haven't even finished all the maps for the birds that we already were including.

I think I want to just finish the novel and get the other two to the printer when I can – hopefully sometime before next year.

Maybe Steph is right. Maybe I need to find another job, where my cortisol levels aren't so high that they live in Amsterdam. It can't be any good for my immune system.

As Charlie Brown would say: Good grief.
changeling: (Default)
I am fricking tired. Once again I end up tireder at the end of the weekend than at the beginning, but I suspect that the end of Daylight Savings may have something to do with it.

I have been so tired lately, as I have been working two jobs (both part time). So today was my last day at The Nursing Home, and I manage to agree to work at Another Nursing Home for two days this week. I only agreed to Mum passing my mobile on because I thought I'd be a last resort. I guess I was. At least I can leave early. I have them at my mercy, mwaha.

This means that his week, I will be working three jobs: the first nursing home, that I've just finished, the second nursing home (Wednesday and Friday), and my Actual Job (Tuesday and Thursday). And let's not forget the freelance editing I have to do for my Actual Job (just worked a bit on it right now, as a matter of fact, but it's hard to concentrate with V upstairs having TV louder than humanly copable), and the edit of an academic paper for smooth use of English (author is Danish), which I said I'd do this week.


I'm not allowed to worry about money. Whenever I do, I get myself woefully overcommitted. Whether the overcommittedness is my fault (through money worry) or the universe's (she's worried she doesn't work enough! Let's give her LOTS to do) seems a moot point.

I can't wait for next week, when all I'll have to do is ... pack and move house. Argh.
changeling: (Default)
I just applied for an editorial assistant position with an educational publisher ...

... and left an excerpt of the job ad attached to the top of the letter. I am a fucking moron. Well, at least this time I attached my resume.

It's a bit nerve-wracking, sometimes, applying for editing jobs. It's like applying to be God. If you let your omnipotence slip for one second ...
changeling: (Default)
I am so stressed. My shoulder muscles have moved beyond "tense", through "burning-muscle tense" into "white-hot pain tense". Ow.

What has caused this tension, I hear you ask? Well, I have been wrangling a design book for [ profile] cupiscent (or rather, her workplace), cooking Mexican food for dinner (a mistake; far too many dishes to wash up, especially sans [ profile] earlymorningair, calling [ profile] daharja to arrange the catering for her birthing ritual, emailing with various people re: same, wrangling with the stupid laptop, clearing out leftovers from the fridge, doing stupid amounts of washing up, packing for class tonight, packing up dinner, and doing an approximate tidy of the bedroom.

I have not fucking stopped. Now, I'd better get back to writing up my editorial report. I have to leave in twenty minutes, and what with going in to the city tomorrow to deliver the job & doing the shopping for the ritual, I need to get as much done tonight as possible.


Jul. 5th, 2006 02:01 pm
changeling: (Default)
I wish I could knit, because I want one. Not for a kitty, but for me. I would wear it all the time. It would be AWESOME.
(P.S. Sylvia:

I went for a little trip yesterday, as I'd left my wallet and phone behind at my parents' (not the first time this has happened. GAH). I headed in to meet up with my dad in between his millions of meetings (my parents seem to spend all their time in meetings at their various jobs). He was late, but my essential items were retrieved, and I set off on a Tram Journey the like of which I have not undertaken for some time.

First was a trip to Bridge Road. Not knowing which route I needed to take, I hopped on a Swanston St tram bound for Flinders, figuring I could ask someone at the station. There was no need, though! I had carefully forgot that there are little tram maps in most trams, so I scouted out the route and discovered that it ran along Flinders St, so the interchange was straightforward.

I caught the tram along Bridge Road. [ profile] bottleofred hopped on and we chatted for a bit. I accidentally gave him the cold shoulder in one of those "What's he leaning over for? What's going on? Oh, he meant to give me a hug. Whoops" sort of moments that you always feel vaguely guilty about. I was searching for the Mexican food shop that [ profile] aphephobia had said was on Bridge Rd, but I confused all my geography, and when she said "Passionfruit" I assumed "Passion Foods", and then got Passion Foods (which is near South Melbourne Market) confused with Macro Wholefoods, and got off at (probably) the wrong stop.

Needless to say, though I walked quite a fair way up and down Bridge Rd, I didn't find the Mexican food shop. It was a bit of a mare’s nest, really. I mean, how was I going to find a shop I didn’t know the name of on a street I wasn’t even sure of when I didn’t know where on the street it was? Still, I got a look around Macro, which was very exciting. It was so nice to have a supermarket stock things I want to buy, like three types of dehydrated sea vegetable, and pomegranate molasses. I didn’t even know there was such thing as pomegranate molasses! I also bought my first black beans ever (very exciting as our favourite vegan cookbook, Vegan Planet, is American and uses them in half their recipes), and put some in to soak so I can use them today. I also bought a plain soy yoghurt, because I’ve been wanting to make Greek wraps for ages and no-one stocks plain soy yoghurt.

After exploring the breadth of Macro Wholefoods, I popped back on a tram and headed back into the city. I figured (remembering the “Passion Foods” clue) that the Mexican shop was probably near South Melbourne Market. I found out from the driver that I needed to catch the 112 tram to get there, and hopped off the tram by Spencer St, just in time to see the 112 glide up and await me.

The driver of the 112 was useless, and difficult to hear over the traffic noise, but an overly helpful woman told me that, yep, this was the right tram, and I needed to get off just here for the South Melbourne Market, or you could try the next stop, but no, this was best, and by the way, South Melbourne Market was closed today. I had an internal snort of annoyance, as last time I’d tramped down into South Melbourne (on a scorchingly hot day), SMM had been closed then, too. It seems unlike Queen Victoria Market, which is damn near always open (S-T-T-F-S, if I remember correctly), SMM has a more exclusive set of opening hours (W-F-S-S, and it’s only open until 4 on at least two of those days). Still, I was here to see Passion Foods, and possibly a Mexican Food Shop.

Although my Mother-in-Not-Law has been telling us to visit both Macro and especially Passion Foods for ages, I had no idea where Passion Foods was, except for “just by South Melbourne Market”. It wasn’t. I walked all the way around SMM, bladder fit to burst, and found no Passion Foods, and no way of getting to the number 96 tram (the other tramline that goes by the market) as it was up on an embankment. I stormed back around the market the other way, looking for the 112, little red warmths of pain in my right knee and ankle (I knew I’d been overdoing the walking thing at morris practice when I had constant twinges). I found the tram, but no Passion Foods, and no Mexican food shop (unsurprisingly, since I have since checked the comment and confirmed that yes, it was on Bridge Rd, though I still can’t search for it on the Yellow Pages or Citysearch until I have a name). It was a bit of a washout, except as an endurance test for my Iron Bladder, which made it back to Flinders St Station, and the appalling concourse toilets.

I then returned home, put the veggieloaf I’d prepared earlier, sliced up the pumpkin and potatoes for roasting (I was making a more “traditional” meal for the Not-In-Laws as apparently our love of spice had given M-I-NL stomach trouble) and cooked the strangely orange “brown sauce” Hedda had cooked for Yule (still very tasty. I love you, orange-brown sauce. I love you so much). I made it refined-fat free, too, with the addition of a little tahini in place of two tablespoons of margarine. It was all tasty. BOOYAH. Wer ist deine Hausfrau??

Afterwards, I used up some of our leftovers (some delicious chickpea patties from earlier in the week) and made up a vegan “chicken” Caesar salad for today’s lunch. It was very delicious, though I can’t vouch for its authenticity, as I’ve never eaten a Caesar salad, vegan or otherwise. I think the dressing was a stroke of genius. I’ll have to put the recipe up on my foodblog. Mmm. I’m still hungry. I should go start tomorrow’s lunches, though. Not sure I'm going to be able to top the Caesar salad, though.


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