June 2007 Archives

Winter Solstice

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Today is the shortest day of the year in South Africa.

Since it also marks the official start of winter, my thoughts naturally turn to gnawing. Not just the suicidal gnawing of my own wrists due to Seasonal Affective Disorder (of COURSE I suffer from it – I suffer from every ailment under the sun except hypochondria, remember?), but the gnawing of actual food.

One of the things I’m pondering is this: If the saying ‘you are what you eat’ is actually true, and I like to eat bread, does that make me a loafer?

And don’t even dare to answer. Unless your answer was going to be a resounding: “Of COURSE not, Red!”, that question was entirely rhetorical.

If you’ve been one of my imaginary readers for a long time, you would know that I don’t cook. And putting it like that is still a gross understatement. Water? I can totally burn it.

In the good old days, when I lived in an actual HOUSE (as opposed to the tiny room I find myself in these days), that room which in other people’s houses is known as the kitchen, was known as my coffee maker’s private quarters. The stove was just a very large and potentially dangerous, decorative ornament.

Luckily for me, my sister cooks. Well, all of them do (see? It’s entirely their fault that I don’t. By the time my mother got ‘round to having me, the cooking gene had – thankfully – been depleted. As well as the looks, the talent, the charm, the intelligence, the bone structure… but that’s a sob story for another day), but the sister I’m referring to happens to live conveniently close to me.

She is married to an Italian. And in order to keep that part of the ancestry alive and well, she cooks almost exclusively Italian. She has become so good at it, it has spilled over into her personality, which has become increasingly feisty. And it must be from all that stirring of-a da Spaghetti, but she now can’t speak without gesturing wildly and passionately. Some people, like my brother-in-law and me, might even interpret the latter as an occasional slap in our general direction.

On the pantry door of this wholly Italian kitchen, the following has been written: “The trouble with Italian food is that five days later, one is hungry again!”

But since the Longest Night of the Year is about to descend leaving me no choice but to go to bed right now, some day soon (see? I’m so commitment phobic, I don’t even want to make a date) I’ll tell you why eating leftovers at that very sister’s house might just kill you.

Sorry about that last bummer, sorry excuse for a post.

I didn't mean to be so cryptic, but maybe it's a good thing that I was, because now I can't even remember why I went all back-of-the-hand-to-the-forehead melodramatic on you.

Okay, okay. Not really. Unfortunately I do remember.

As you know, my return to South Africa at the end of 2005 was anything but triumphant.

But upon my arrival I kind of had to hit the ground running (or rather, my very unfit, slow version of running), so there wasn't a lot of time to mourn the brutal murder of my American Dream and everything else that went along with it.

Being a bit slow on the uptake, I didn't realise this until recently, when I finally moved into my own place for the first time since being back. Suddenly I had time to think, and well... after getting over the initial shock of ME actually THINKING... it was as if all the unresolved emotional baggage that I've been lugging around with me suddenly bobbed to the surface. In the process, it overwhelmed me and dragged me under. (Makes me wonder why my emotional baggage couldn't have been stolen at the airport in Jo'burg instead of my laptop! Too heavy, I suppose.)

And well, you saw the pathetic result of that near-drowning.

Thank you for your incredibly sweet comments and concerned e-mails. It really helped.

How would you feel?

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If your biggest fear on earth was, say, a fear of heights.

And then one day, someone - who knows full well what your fear is and how serious that fear is - misleads you and you end up on a 'plane and when you're 10,000 ft up there (or however high), they suddenly strap you into a parachute and say: "Surprise!" and push you out the door.

Should they really be taken aback if you are less than thrilled and never, EVER want to speak to them again? Would you also be so upset and distressed that you would sob?

And no, the above is all metaphorically speaking. I hate heights, yes, but love flying. Won't go skydiving though.

Can't cope. Hate my life. Wish I could just "Poof!" vanish...

I suffer from every single ailment under the sun, except...

is a South African girl living in South Africa. That doesn't sound very original, we know, but you might find it remotely interesting when you learn that she has only recently returned to South Africa for the first time after a nine year, one month and two week (non-stop!) stint in the United States where she accidentally became an outlawed alien (also known, especially in immigration circles, as an 'illegal immigrant.' We prefer the term 'outlawed alien' ourselves). During her reversed exile from her homeland, she kept herself occupied by winning this website (but only after shamelessly bribing the judges) and thus being unleashed on the web where she slowly, leisurely became the World's Laziest Blogger; by being a nanny and by attending sci-fi conventions in search of other aliens. In the US, she also made her sailing debut, her international acting debut, tried and failed to learn the piano, and never learned to cook. She is hopelessly addicted to coffee, dogs (especially Labrador Retrievers), how-to books (with a particular fondness for her copy of the Time/Life A - Z Medical Encyclopedia), and she tends to grossly overuse parentheses (we're not kidding) during her attempts at writing, which you may - if you really have masochistic tendencies - subject yourself to by reading the words to the right of this column. If you REALLY and truly STILL want to know more, you can read her C.V. here.
Or you can stalk her send her some love via e-mail at: redsaid[AT]gmail[DOT]com

The Wish List (Because yes, she really does need more how-to books. Honestly!)


  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Terra: YES! Wait... you didn't think that I would be this possessed to post for NO REASON, did ya???... [go]
  • Terra.Shield : OH! ... [go]
  • Marco Author Profile Page: Be a bit like serving drinks at AA?... [go]
  • Marco Author Profile Page: I personally think it is a mindset that has been cultivated over the years, and one, if not stemmed,... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Ms. Crazy Cat Lady Pants!!! Squeeeee! Sooo good to see you! (I thought NO ONE was bothering to read ... [go]
  • Ms. Pants : Kitties don't get enough credit sometimes. (All times, if you ask me, but I'm a Crazy Cat Lady.)... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Hey Tamara! I know, right?? That is a tough act to follow indeed. I adored that dentist. He used to ... [go]
  • Tamara Tipton : Well, I am not sure how any dentist could live up to that standard! LOL! I hope your appointment was... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: I'm really really glad that I'm not the only one, Po! Sometimes I drive myself mad with all the what... [go]
  • Po : Those questions run through my heads for various times in my life too, that is for sure!... [go]
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