You say potato, I say grilled shrimp with mustard and goat cheese drizzle

February 11, 2011 § Leave a comment

Here I am, in the land of association again. First, it was a bag of Miss Vicki’s Jalapeno flavored chips reminding me of a college friend. Now, it’s online “window” shopping at Bed, Bath & Beyond reminding me of Saturday morning catnaps in the sunbeam on my parents’ living room floor.

It took me back to the time I transitioned from kid to preteen, when my Charlie Brown bedsheets just didn’t make me happy any more, when they were no longer enough. I remember once picking the sheets at the top of the pile to make my bed, and they happened to be the yellow set. The set that I didn’t typically use, but since I was in the midst of the onerous task of making my bed, I just went with it. That night, I remember turning down my sheets, and suddenly the vast yellowness in front of my eyes made me think of sunshine.

From that moment on, I relished the idea of sleeping in those sheets. Of course, associative memory being what it is, it’s only now that I realize the correlation between those yellow sheets and my catnaps in the sunbeam. Those catnaps were the bookends to my Saturday morning cartoon viewing. Whenever there was a sunbeam to be basking under, I’d plop down on the floor and luxuriate under the radiating heat. I still get giddy when a patch of sunbeam streams across my desk at work, like it did this morning. Best way to start the day.

All this to say, no matter how trendy a color scheme, no matter how often I wear it, I will never buy gray sheets. I’m sleepin in sunshine, whoahoa!

P.S. The title is in reference to an appetizer I had at a Latin restaurant just yesterday. Delish!


Gettin nerdy with it

December 17, 2010 § Leave a comment

I used to be one of those tragic cases of human being who believed that to participate and get into whatever the social committees were up to wasn’t cool. I thought by not participating and not getting into anything requiring “spirit”, I kept my cool cred intact. I was wrong, as I’ve realized quite often lately.

That would be me at the bottom

You know what’s cool? Letting go of all that BS about being cool by being anti, putting the inhibitions aside, and saying “I had a freaking blast decorating my department for the office Christmas decoration contest.” I can’t remember having had that much fun at work, with my coworkers, ever. That’s why I love nerds. I love when someone can unabashedly throw themselves into something, be it stamp collecting, Star Wars, knitting, math jokes (my own personal brand of nerd-dom) whatever! Anyone who can fully immerse themselves in an activity or hobby, inform themselves of all the minutiae of their chosen interest, learn the lingo, and cite fun facts has become a card-carrying (sometimes literally) nerd, and they should celebrate the fact that they lead a passionate life that disconnected, anti-everything people do not. Life is too short to pretend you’re above letting loose and having fun. Screw the aloof act and get nerdy with it!

The Room of Requirement

November 28, 2010 § Leave a comment

I’ve had a realization of late. It seems whenever I need something – a friendly chat, money, an epiphany – it has somehow become available to me. There have been times, especially the last few months, when I’ve needed a reason to be positive, and/or to get out of a funk, and suddenly my eyes catch onto articles discussing the exact issue I’m dealing with, a friend sends me an email of a cartoon that happens to have a message I should listen to. If you’ve looked up at the sky and asked the Universe to throw you a bone, a sign that you’re on the right path, or a push in the right direction, you’ve been where I’ve been. The best feeling in the world is when you really need that certain something and you get it. It might not be the exact destination you want to get to, but the road to your destination suddenly clears, allowing you to forge ahead confidently.

In honour of American Thanksgiving…

November 19, 2010 § 2 Comments

I am thankful for many things. My family and friends. My health. My ability to provide myself with the basic needs (food, shelter, clothing) and then some (travel). But on a day like today, at the tail end of a week filled with work issues with contractors, I have to stop and say thanks to the people I see most in my life: my coworkers and boss.

When I graduated from university 6 and a half years ago, I thought I’d get a cushy job in Dubai, learning the ropes in my field, and making a mint to bring home at the end of my 1-2 year-contract. I thought I’d move back home, buy myself a nice condo, have zero debt, and travel anywhere my heart desired. Of course I’d have another cushy job supporting myself so the money flow would be endless. Very little of my expectations had to do with the work I’d be doing to obtain all these goals.

Things didn’t turn out as I thought they would. Life lesson #1: nothing will turn out as you thought it would. Quote Conan O’Brien. My lavish expectations were swept under the rug as I had to deal with work. Life lesson #2: you will never get something without nothing. I started working in my field, learning the ropes, almost painfully slowly. Life lesson #3: you have to learn to walk before you learn to run. I tried not to make mistakes, but collided with them head on regardless. Life lesson #4: don’t try not to make mistakes, because you will make them anyway. Oh and let’s not forget Life lesson #5: if you thought you were the shit because you graduated from university, come back down to earth and have yourself a helping of humble pie, cause, my friend, you ain’t seen NOTHING yet.

That’s what I’ve learned in a nutshell. Post-graduation has been one learning experience after another. One glaring fact is that I’ve been extremely lucky where workplace is concerned. While learning the ropes, I could have fallen under the hands of a cruel boss (and from the stories I hear my friends tell, there are many), I could have dealt with competitive and backstabbing coworkers, in an environment that screams “every man/woman for him/herself!” But I didn’t. They have been there for me every step of the way, answering all my questions without rolling their eyes, offering me support when I needed it and even when I didn’t, and most importantly, allowing and encouraging me to grow. To each and every one of them, I say thank you. Thank you for checking my work. Thank you for being my cheerleaders. Thank you for calming my meltdowns. Incidentally, the last two apply to my family above all else. So what does that say about my 2nd family? Pretty awesome stuff.

Thank you for making my workplace a place of envy.

Putting a smile on my face

August 11, 2010 § 2 Comments

I just pulled an airhead move and ran across the street while a cyclist was riding past. He calmly said “Watch out sweetheart!” Smiling. I laughed and said sorry. It’s not always you get this kind of calm interaction when you cross cyclists. Nice people rock.

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