Personal archive

Health, relationships and more besides. Read about my battles with PMDD, my mental health, surviving both childhood sexual abuse and a 12 years of emotional abuse as well personal projects and challenges, and anything vaguely Jem-related.

Nothing’s Simple!

I can’t have a crochet hobby without some wool.

Pretty obvious statement really, but a good point all the same. I went surfing for wool on the Internet yesterday with the preconception that I’d be able to find a website, specify whether I wanted thick or thin, choose a colour and have it sent. I don’t think you know how wrong I was.

I surfed into Kemp’s Wool Shop via Google. I wasn’t reassured by the amateur looking layout but they were using a 3rd party payment system and appropriate security/etc, so I decided to go further. Pick a manufacturer they suggested, and offered a drop down of 8 choices. Not too hard — even I can choose between 8 different options. Next was wool styles, and here’s where I expected to choose between thick or thin…

There were 56 wool style choices! Some of them didn’t even sound like wool at all. I mean, what’s “Supersoft 3ply” in wool-terms? Sounds like luxery toilet paper with added bottom-soothing balm to me. “Aran with Wool”? “Aran”? “Baby Aran”? I see no thick or thin there!

Safe to say, I looked at a few pictures and made an uneducated guess. Here’s hoping I haven’t spent £7.64 on a 3 inch piece of string and a snotty rag.

Home from Holiday

I would say it’s good to be home, but it’d be a lie. :( I love being by the seaside, even in rainy Wales.

I know some of you are probably bored titless by holiday posts, so I’ve prepared a comment for you to copy and paste. Because parts of it are generated randomly by PHP, all comments will be different and therefore I’ll think you lovingly hung on every word It didn’t actually work because of my crappy weblog system (which will be rewritten) so here (and I’ll just pretend you read everything)..

Hii Jem!

I’m glad you’re home! It wasn’t the same without you.
I’m glad to hear you had a great time, your photos are just amazing!

[insert your name here]

Anyway, let’s go back to Friday. First was the early morning rush-packing because none of us packed earlier and I don’t know why. After getting everything packed into Karl’s Mum’s car we set off… 30-odd miles down the road someone coming the other way starts flashing his lights and doing a ’round-y round’ motion with his finger. After resisting the urge to do a certain other motion with my finger, I listened to Karl debating the sanity of this weird wave-y guy and then came to the conclusion that there was probably a speed camera-wielding maniac police officer further ahead or some dickhead driving too fast in the piss-pouring rain had crashed.

Unfortunately for them it must have been the latter because moments later we were over-taken by a noisy multi-coloured blur which I assume was a speeding police car. We watched lots of people turn around in the road and pulled in to consult a map — deciding to take a back road which, looking back, was probably a stupid idea… we almost had a crash of our own due to a close encounter with another car coming the opposite way on a single-lane road.

Arrive at the caravan after another few hours and unpack. Wrap myself up in a giant orange condom (waterproof poncho) for a quick trip to the beach where I collect a few shells, grab some disgustingly greasy fish and chips from a disgustingly greasy chip shop ‘salesperson’.

wall painting

Saturday was fun, we went to Portmeirion (where the Prisoner TV series was recorded) and that was interesting. The buildings were groovy and we went for a long woodland walk where I was crapped on, and where Robins performed tricks for peanuts. Alright, I lie, they didn’t perform tricks, but the cheeky buggers certainly didn’t hesitate to approach us for them.

Sunday.. we took a trip into Barmouth (oh, yeah, that’s where we stayed) Town and took a picture of “arousal cafe”.

arousal cafe

We popped in to the Centre of Alternative Technology for a bit of “you should recycle more” guilt tripping — funky chicken more walking and a bit of interesting education on clean living and the benefits of solar power/etc. There were some interesting chickens…

After what seemed like a never-ending journey we arrived home to discover that the electricity had been ‘tripped’ while we were gone and the two fridges and the freezer had been off all weekend. What little food was left from before the holiday was ruined, so we had to go emergency shopping.

So now we’re home. I have a new rainbow cup, some paintbrushes that Karl’s Mum bought me and a desire to go and run out into the sea. Not quite possible on the outside of Shrewsbury though.

Addendum

I think my post yesterday was somewhat misleading and I left you all (or most of you) with the impression that I was worried about other people’s opinions on my site. On the contrary, it’s not other people’s opinions that are bugging me — it’s my own! One half of my head is saying “prove your skills with professionalism” and the other is saying “do what the heck you like because it’s your damned website”.

I do want to create a proper portfolio to entice potential business clients at some point — this is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time though. While I don’t intend to try and kid myself into thinking I could survive on freelance work, a few bits on the side would certainly be a boost to my savings. Savings? Sorry, I meant spendings. ;)

I went into the local town centre today to hand out my CV to any poor sod willing to accept it. Currys.. or was it Comet? I don’t know, one of the two: said they’re looking for some Christmas workers and they’d give me a ring at some point if they need me. Super duper. I know a job is a job at the end of the day, but I don’t have the patience to deal with stroppy customers who think they know best. So, while I’m hopeful because it is work, I won’t be disappointed if they don’t ring. Apparently lots of spotty college kids have been applying anyway (that wasn’t the exact words of the lady I spoke to, but it was the impression I got.)

Heyho.. it’s the weekend! Not that that is much to celebrate, I’ve got work to do. *groan* Still haven’t finished this football database and it was supposed to be done weeks ago. I will get it done this weekend, damnit.

The Cricket

We won the cricket! Some silly Ashes thing that only happens because the Australians beat us and so we burned the wicket — or something. I only found that out last night. Hoorah!

Anyway: why am I celebrating this? No, it’s not because I’m a sporty person. I miss when I try to kick a football when I’m standing still and the ball is in front of me. No, it’s not because I’m overly patriotic. Oh, and no, it’s not because I think it’ll benefit the British in any way.

So.. why? Because it means that Channel Four will finally stop interrupting The Simpsons and will actually put it on when it’s supposed to be on. When they tell us it’s going to be on! Three cheers for England.

PS. Anyone visiting surfing for ROMs (man, am I getting a ton of hits for this) check out D’oh Games. I’m not sure about the quality of the majority of their ROMs but I downloaded Super Mario 64 and it rocks.

Dirty Geek Joke

There are advantages to being in a ‘geek’ couple:

Karl: Ooh, a left boob and a right boob!
Jem: My boobs are relatively positioned.
Karl: Well, as long as the margins are the same..
Jem: No, I think my left margin is slightly bigger than my right.
Karl: So you could say that they’re marginally different?
Jem: Or that I’ve just got a bit of extra padding?

I heart my geeky Karl. He knows how to cheer me up. ;)

Luckiest Girlfriend

I felt somewhat like the luckiest girlfriend in the world last night. Karl started his Summer Holidays on Monday, but because I was sick and didn’t go to work on Monday, yesterday was his first day alone. I left him two things to do: pick up a shelf-thingy from Homebase that they had on sale and peg the washing I’d started on the washing line.

I got back last night to not only discover that he’d bought a set of shelves and pegged the washing out (he did a good job too — I have high standards and I don’t like peg marks on clothes) but he also tidied and hoovered the bedroom, washed the bed linen and pegged them out to dry too. He had the kettle hot ready for a cup of tea for when I walked through the door and he’d started repainting the lean-to shelter on the back of the house.

I can just see him as a househusband.

Not a Real Woman

It occurred to me on the way home (ten minutes of random thoughts) that there are more advantages to not playing to society’s idea of a “proper woman” than I originally thought. I always enjoyed baffling those who choose to criticise what I wear/how I look with tongue-twisting and witty retaliation. However, thinking about it, there’s a whole load of other advantages too!

For example: it’s a time saver. I don’t waste an hour in the morning and then more time throughout the day applying and re-applying make-up. This also helps me avoid having to scrape shit off of my face with a knife — because apparently it is trendy to apply your foundation with a shovel. Not using make-up also helps keep away unsightly giant boils and blocked pores which the tarts females at college seem to enjoy having. (That doesn’t mean the hormones don’t affect my face.. *groan*)

It also helps avoid unwanted attention. Dressing down in huge (yet comfy) t-shirts and my boring black trousers/jeans is a massive turn off for most men, which is an absolute God-send! It means I can walk through the street without being stared at/whistled at. Knowing that people find me attractive is all well and good, but that is what Karl is for — making me feel loved.. he does it so well!

I don’t have a reputation for being a slag/slapper. It is so nice to be able to sit and get on with my work in class instead of getting involved in teenage drama and slanging matches across the classroom. It also means that other females don’t tend to feel as threatened (as they so often do), and ignore me (a huge plus; teenage girls are so bitchey.)

Relaxing. Definitely relaxing! I don’t have to worry about who’s looking down my top, or up my skirt. I can sit and relax without worrying which way my layers of flab are falling out of my clothing. I don’t have to worry about shaving my legs three times a day because I am wearing a belt tiny skirt. I can be myself, wear what I want and because I feel comfy — I have the confidence to do new things!

So cheap too. I don’t rush out to each and every store I find to try and find designer clothes and trendy trainers. I don’t spend

Sunburn

I made the mistake of reading my book outside in the warm sun yesterday — the sun was hotter than I realised and sitting facing it was probably not a good idea. I am now pink. In fact, pink is an understatement.. I am glowing red and it bloody hurts. There was me saying “I don’t burn” — bah.. obviously been a while since I’ve been out in the sun so apparently yes, I do burn. Bastard bra straps rubbing my shoulders!

Anyway, I just wanted to tell everyone so they could sympathise with my terrible aches and pains.

Organ Donation

Since I was a kid, I always remember seeing a card in my brothers wallet stating he was an organ donor. I decided when I first saw it was something I’d like to do to — but is something I’ve never got ’round to doing. However, I saw something the other day which pointed out that you can now register online if you wish to donate organs should you die (err, well, when you die rather..)

I have signed up. I’ve signed up for me — because although I refuse to give blood (another argument for another day) I am quite happy to donate my organs when I die. I’ve also signed up for my brother (in memory, if you like). His organs couldn’t be donated, and therefore I feel I am at least doing something he may have wished for. Quite a nice touch, I think.

Anyway — if any of my British blogging friends are interested, the link is: uktransplant.org.uk.

Learning PHP at WE

So, my week started with three slow days — I basically spent the time waiting for other people to get off their arses so I could get on with what I needed to do. However, yesterday picked up and I ended up doing an entire weeks project in a day. Well, a morning if you want to be really precise. The afternoon was spent troubleshooting and drinking coffee. I ended up not using mySQL, but I did get chance to learn about switches and cases (thank you Noir!)

Anyway, let’s skip back a bit to earlier on in the week – I had a meeting with the Vice Principal (randomly selected student, apparently) about my feelings regarding the college. What I liked, what could be improved on, my thoughts on the staff, facilities, etc. I feel I was as honest as possible, which she seemed to like. At the end of our meeting (after we’d discussed what I want to do after college) she mentioned she could get me an interview with a local employer should I change my mind about the direction I want to take (the employer doesn’t do web).

Yesterday was equally interesting. After showing AB (guy who is running work experience) what I’d done in the morning, he started chatting to me about what I wanted to do after college and then mentioned how interested he was in employing technically minded students who didn’t want to go to University. He discussed the possibility of a summer job. So hopefully that’s another possible-job deal thingy. Working here would be very convenient too!

To top off a rather good week, I got my college report yesterday – glowing, of course. There were two typos at the bottom which I was not impressed with. ;) Anyway, that’s been my week in a nutshell. Rather positive. I’m off to get my lunch now — I’m bloody starving!

Merry December!

Pinch, punch, first post of the month!

I guess I can now officially announce I failed my first NaNoWriMo. In fact, “failed” is an understatement. While most of you participants were busting your guts to get to 50,000 words, I was watching TV and forgetting all about the challenge I’d set myself. I obviously have the excuse of college work too, but that won’t hold up for too long. I will be adding my pathetic 1,709-word incomplete story to my personal site for you all to laugh at, at some point in the future.

Ahh. December. The month were everyone feels the need to add crappy falling snow javascripts to their pages, and web designers create the obligatory Christmas layout. I think if I add a few ‘snowflakes’ here and there, I can get away with calling this layout a Winter layout, right? Anyway. Christmas shopping is well under way, and the weather has taken a turn for the worst. Neighbours are sticking up their tacky outdoor lights, and all is festive and funky.

On the topic of outdoor lights; some crazy person has stuck a MASSIVE (absolutely huge.. is the same height as the house, and almost the same width) lit-up cross on the front of their house near to Karl. I am assuming he’s making a statement about his religion or something. It doesn’t stop it from being absolutely wacky though. Karl took a picture of it with his phone, but it was dark and came out pants.

Anyway, Karl will be here soon, so I’ll sod off and finish spell-checking CSR.

Edit: Oh God. MSN have decided to go into the blogging ‘business’.

Fat Coppers

Turns out my new website look/thingy might not be up when I come home after all.

Karl and I were woken at 11ish this morning by a group of fat policemen. Ok, so not all of them were fat but they were certainly coppers. Apparently someone has signed up to Ebay and has sold/was selling a camera that they *THINK* was stolen from Telford (where I live) in July. It’s now mid-August and they’ve raided Karl’s house in Shrewsbury to look for this stolen camera.

They’ve taken ALL of the computers from Karl’s place – that includes my laptop (with my new website, my new VB work, my hand-written piece of Javascript from last night..), Karl’s laptop (which contains the school website he’s been working on all summer), Karl’s main PC upstairs, Karl’s spare crappy ‘server’ in the shed, Karl’s Mum’s PC (with all of her accounts work on).. everything.

I am just really fucked off because I only got my VB.net trial yesterday. I NEED to use it, practise/etc.. so I can do Programming Year 2 in college which I can only do because the lecturer has got me on the Programming course as a favour. I didn’t do Programming Year 1, which is why the lecturer has done this favour, and why I’ve had to study over Summer.

Anyway. How fucking ironic that the knob who has taken this stuff away was the wanker who drove my brother to kill himself. *sigh* Heyho.. I’m going to go rant and whine some more. Fucking bastard fucking coppers.. fucking fucking fucking..