Open Thread

This OT Gets Around

Another week almost down, kiddos, and it’s been a doozy.

Come on in, tell us what you’ve been up to, and while you’re at it, have a little dance party to celebrate the nearing of the end of the week. Here’s a little something to get you started:

58 replies on “This OT Gets Around”

I wanted to thank everyone – ESPECIALLY Hattie – for welcoming me to Persephone so warmly. You are all awesome, amazing people, and I wish I’d come out of lurkdom here far sooner than this. I’m really happy that my article was so well-received, and everyone who commented… Sometimes, the best thing in the world for someone with disabilities is just knowing that there are people out there that understand.

So, everyone here? You fucking rock. Here, John Barrowman wants to give you all flowers.


Guys! Gals! This freckle has a temporary full time job at her old boss’ again, hurray! All right, six days a week will be tough, but at least it’s work in my field ago and nice on my resume and money (which is why I immediately started looking for holidays) and it’s probably only six months. I’ll cope and might even enjoy it the majority of the time.

It may have snowed as recently as last week-end here, but I didn’t need gloves for the first time this spring when out for a walk yesterday, and today, it’s warm again! Hence, I am cleaning my winter boots and laundering my warm coats to store them away until hopefully November. Woohoo!

On another note, I like and respect my uncle the politician, author and human rights activist , but… dude sure sounds like a middle-aged fool sometimes. He’s turning 50 this year, and lately, in his writings about his work trips, when he’s describing the people he met, he tends to make mentions of hanging out with the lovely young ladies that are usually assigned to people in his line of work as on-location guides and translators, to a degree that’s becoming sort of too noticeable. I guess it’s nice he’s honest enough not to censor himself, even if it’s making his wife livid, but still, reading this stuff is giving me second-hand embarrassment.

This week has been busy and wonderful for me. I started it off by making delicious sweet potato muffins though I now have extra mashed sweet potato in my fridge. I might end up just making another batch of muffins as the weather here is weird and sometimes seems not cold enough for mashed potatoes. Due to a computer error, I’m having to count my pennies and can’t go grocery shopping like I want to yet, but I should get a nice tax refund that should help.

I’ve got amazing job news that keeps making me blink at the world in amazement. Wednesday I had a phone interview, two hours later they called me wanting me to come in. I’ve moved around my current job stuff and will be having an in-person interview on Sunday and Monday. Its the perfect kind of job for me as they want someone who’s just out of grad school.

I though yesterday started out poorly.  Today started out worse.

I walked into my classroom to find one of the classroom guinea pigs dead.  I am distraught.  They are like my children.

I don’t know how he died, he was fine yesterday.

Hold me and help me get through the day with the kidlets.

Advice needed!

I have a friend in another country who is facing into a super-stressful next few months: she has a toddler and runs her own business; she is having her second baby (by c-section, based on what I think is bad stats from her doctor, but anyway, her body her choice) very soon, and she has to start working again about a week (!!!) after the baby is born (i.e.: a week after major surgery, while breastfeeding a newborn). Her husband will be at home full-time for a few weeks and they have some family help as well but it sounds like a crazy situation. Given that I can’t fly over to her and physically hold baby/entertain toddler, is there anything I can do/send from here that might help?

Sending things that would help entertain the toddler could be one way to go. When friends of ours had their little ones, I gave the older ones little journals and packs of crayons/pencils. For the parents, vouchers could be helpful, even something basic of the Boots or Mothercare kind. Or maybe something like a Lush giftbox for the mum? Or maybe something like a Green & Blacks subscription or a Biscuiteers box?

I literally cannot think about anything besides hockey (playoffs!  Blackhawks!  HOCKEY!) and sex (hockey often gets me all hot and bothered) right now.  The Blackhawks just lost their first playoff game, and I am moping hardcore, but already making plans for a victory on Saturday, and my contingency plan should they be in the Stanley Cup Finals in June when I’m supposed to be out of town.  I don’t know what it is about sports (especially hockey) that can make me simultaneously so upset I could cry and so optimistic all at once, but it happens.  Constantly.

At least Toews kicked a whole lot of ass his first game back.  I will still spend the next two months freaking out every time he gets hit and desperately hoping he doesn’t go the way of Sidney Crosby.  Goddamn tragedy that is.

Also upon editing this post I realized I had typed “Blackhawks won” instead of “Blackhawks lost.”  It’s like my subconscious thinks if I want it and believe it enough, it’ll happen.

A) The fact that hockey gets you hot and bothered is awesome.

B) Rejoice that your Blackhawks actually made it; my Hurricanes are in the midst of what feels like a multi-year rebuilding project and the only thing that is letting me keep my sanity is the hope that next year will truly be better.  Then again, I hung onto that hope last season and here I am watching playoffs with no Hurricanes.  *wistful sigh*

The Wings lost their first game too, so I am also the sad right now. Also, I am not ok with Shanahan only giving Weber a fine for slamming Zetterberg’s head into the glass with 5 seconds left on the clock for the game. I don’t care if he cross checked you, shoving a guy’s head into the glass hard enough to crack his helmet is not ok. Bah. At least Zetterberg is ok.

Yeah, it’s not the best way to start a playoff series.  Of course, Preds are my favorite team after the Hawks, but on the other hand, anything that will remove the possibility that we would have to face them at any point in the playoffs is good, but on the other other hand, as a diehard Blackhawks fan, I don’t feel right supporting a team we refer to hereabouts as Scum.  I’m very torn on how I want that series to go.  But I do feel your pain – there was a nasty, nasty hit on Seabrook during the Hawks/Canucks series last year that I was REALLY pissed didn’t get more attention.  And the guy who did it, Raffi Torres?  Playing for the Coyotes this year.  Lends some extra fire to my desire to win this series.

It has been a decent week and a pretty darn good day. Today I had a fantastically relaxing, yet still fairly productive day.

Tonight I had red chard! I feel so healthy. Of course, I cooked it in bacon, which is just about the only way I’ll eat it. But it turned out actually yummy! And then I updated my portfolio and applied for three whole jobs! And found a fourth at a place a friend of mine works; so I have to wait until I talk with him.

There was a point when that would have bothered me a little… but then I started watching some porn and don’t mind anymore.

For me, it’s only a problem if the porn is infringing on your sex life, or the expectations associated with your sex life. I did date a guy who kind of wanted to make the porn imagery happen when we were having sex, and that became an issue, but it was one of many, many total issues.

Pretty okay.  Boyfriend doesn’t do it when I’m around or anything, but he’s open about watching it when I’m not around.  I actually found it a good conversation starter for what kinds of things he might be interested in us trying.  I think, like Liadan said, I think the big problem if it’s infringing on your sex life or your place in the relationship.  If not, I don’t see any harm in it.  I watch (and read) porn too, so I’ve got nothing to complain about.

Mine doesn’t, although I know he has when he was younger. He knows it woudn’t really bother me as long as it didn’t negatively affect our sex life and he was being ethical about the source of it i.e.: preferably from porn companies with good health&safety records, etc etc.

Mine doesn’t watch any that I know of. I guess it would depend on what kind of porn it is, and what “regular watching” means in terms of frequency and how much of his time it takes up. The little I occasionally look at (and don’t show him because he wouldn’t be into the particular genre) doesn’t constitute a problem in our relationship.

Tonight, I had chicken & waffles at dinner with my uncle and my boyfriend and had a discussion with them where we delved deep into the awesome mystery of human consciousness and theorized about what would happen to the human race if we cracked the code to immortality by figuring out how to upload our consciousness onto computers.

So, now my brain hurts in a good way and I really like this song!

Tonight, I bought a bookcase headboard that I’m really stoked about. It needs just a little tweaking. It has a light socket that needs replacing and it has some semi circle swivel drawers that have a magnet latch. One of the drawers is missing it’s latch. I absolutely LOVE fixing this kind of stuff although I should have tried to negotiate a little because it’s a little broken. It’ll need about $6 worth of parts and another hour of my time to get it in tip top shape. Oh, also, my bed is on risers…which means the headboard will also need to be raised up. I’m thinking about just putting it on cinder blocks and if I can find some not-ridiculous scrap lumber, cutting it to size and using liquid nails to attach it to the exposed side of the cinder block. Oh yeah, I’ll probably get some thick felt at the craft store and glue it to the back so it doesn’t fucked up any walls.

I’m going to look at a bedroom a lady has for rent in her condo. It’s $400 all inclusive (incl. cable & internet) which is a FANTASTIC price. However, she’s been posting it on craigslist since the beginning of last month so it makes me wonder why she hasn’t found anyone yet. Hopefully this pans out and I’ll be able to get finding a new place to live taken care of before vacation, which starts next Tuesday.

For once, there is some exciting shit going on in my life and I am fucking STOKED about it!

I have a confession. I’ve never been able to make mashed potatoes. I’ve tried so many times and it doesn’t seem to matter how closely I watch those little bad boys. I either don’t boil them long enough and end up with weird chunky uncooked potatoes or (like tonight) I boil them away to little strands of potato fibers. It’s not like I’m a bad cook – I’m generally successful in my endeavors but I have never hit this one. To me it’s the culinary equivalent of being able to do complicated origami but not being able to fold a crane (also a problem of mine).

I remember the very first time I poured out the boiling water into the strainer and there was nothing there. I just stared. And stared. How could all those potatoes JUST DISAPPEAR?

Tips? Hints? I am craving me some fluffy potato goodness.

Generally I boil potatoes until they’re fork tender. So you should be able to easily stab them with a fork but they shouldn’t break apart. I tend to have better luck if I don’t cut the potatoes into itty bitty pieces. I leave them about the size of my thumb from middle knuckle to the end of my nail. Also, they turn out fluffier if, after straining them, you put them back in the hot pan and toss them around just a bit to dry them off. I have no idea how or why but I heard it on a cooking show, tried it, and it worked.

After the potatoes are cooked, strained, and dried in the hot pan, I put them in a mixer safe bowl and add a big spoonful of butter (give or take) and mix that in. Then I very, very carefully add milk. If I’m gonna f-up mashed taters, this is where it happens. You can’t add too much milk and if you keep whipping them with the mixer trying to add just another splash of milk, you’ll end up over mixing them. I have no idea how much milk I actually end up adding. I just keep splashing more in until it’s the right consistency, just beware of the overmixing. At the very end, I add a dash of salt and then they’re ready for eating.

Good luck!

I am incredibly lazy when it comes to potatoes. I just cut them up fairly small since it takes too long to boil whole potatoes. Then when they are fork tender, like chryster says, I drain them, add a bit of milk (if I’m not constrained by dietary restrictions – an alternative is chicken broth) and some butter and smash them all up with a wooden spoon. Starting with small pieces means I don’t need to use a mixer. Add the extras slowly and it should all be good. Other add-ins that help ensure yummy potatoes is cream instead of milk, or cream cheese.

Just one thing to add to the other hints . . . Get yourself a potato ricer . . . About $20 . . . After you boil the potatoes mash them through the ricer, then add any milk/ cream/ butter and mix well. Then it will be easier to achieve a beautiful creamy texture!

Hi everyone!  I’m new around here, but I thought I would try actually commenting on one of the blogs that I read, and this seems like a friendly place :).

I’m trying to decide on a graduate school…I’ve got it narrowed down, but I have to pick by Sunday.  Even though I know that I would be in a good place at either of the schools I’m considering, it’s hard to not stress out about picking where you’re going to spend the next five years of your life.

Flip a coin.

If you are relieved at the answer, then go with what the coin says. If you look at it and go “But… I wanted the other one!” then you know that the one that didn’t win is right, and you can go with that one.

(To be fair, I base a lot of life decisions on coin flips, rock-paper-scissors, picking out of a hat, etc.)

I use a similar technique, only I ask a friend or family member (someone I know won’t get offended if I ignore their choice) what they think.  Sometimes I’m like “great, awesome” and sometimes just hearing it from someone else makes me think “eh, not what I want.”  I don’t know why it works, but it does.

I did try a pro-con list, but it didn’t really come out decisively – so it might come down to flipping a coin today.  I think I’m more nervous about it because there’s relationship stuff all tied up in it too – one of them would be a good place for my boyfriend, and one of them wouldn’t.


I have been failing at online dating. Or online dating has been failing me.

I’ve also been very self-indulgent and not giving as many fucks as I should be, lately, because of it and because I’ve gone a really long time not being a quite functional adult. Tomorrow during my lunch hour, I will spend 15 minutes writing and sending all the emails I need to. Or at least getting started.

Everyone fails at online dating, honestly. It’s kind of a matter of exposure and probability. So most of us go on lots of terrible to mediocre dates before either finding someone online or giving up and looking elsewhere. Just have fun with it and collect amusing date stories!

The way I found it easiest to approach online dating was to think of it as researching material to add to my memoir/future chicklit book about the world of female musicologists (that is a book no one will read because our stipends are too low to afford fab shoes.) That way, if all you end up with is a mediocre date and a funny story it’s not as big of a deal. That said, I met my partner on okcupid but it took some really weird and awkward dates first. Mainly, I had a guy phone me outright bawling after I sent him a message saying I didn’t think things worked on our first date/ I didn’t feel we were compatible. After that I became about 300 times more cautious about giving out my phone number.

Hey, anybody out there?

So I replied to one of those mortgage refinance ads this afternoon, and I had no sooner hit “send” than my phone rang. And rang, and rang again, and I got like 5 emails – in less than a minute.  There are some hungry hungry salespeople out there, y’all.

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