Tagged: high-five

Are You Insane? Let Me Guess How You Found My Blog… And a Little Bit of Blog Love Too!

Okay, so this week I am being totally boring because I’m having bloggers block and my attempts at writing my next post are not getting me anywhere! So I have decided to take the opportunity to respond to a blogging award nomination and also share some random nonsense, to justify this as a REAL post for the week!

So, when I can’t finish any of the gazillion drafts sitting in my blog, there is only one way out – to write a list! This week I have mainly been inspired by the weird and slightly disturbing search terms that have been coming up on my blog, but also by the many other blogs I have been reading and what I have learnt since I started blogging just over two months ago. The following are the top ten of these:

1. People, or more specifically, people who write and read blogs, are awesome and they brighten my life!

2. They are also sometimes insane… as is evident in the following search terms which have led people to my blog.

–      Tenis player not wear pant – okay, I guess I was asking for this one with all that talk of Marat Safin and his flood pants, but seriously, who were you hoping to find?

–      What is hi fives porn – If this is something that exists (and by the number of referrals, I’m guessing it does), I can guarantee this is NOT something you will be finding here. Move along!

–      Eating my ex on the couch – I’m fairly certain I do not ever want to meet you…

–      High five? Potato – If this was ‘high five? Mashed potato’ I would assume you were my arch nemesis. Alas, I have no idea what you were hoping to achieve. High five? Potato!

–      Ecards about stupid people – I think I have Googled this exact search term, let’s be friends!

–      What is the fear of high fives called – Oh. My. God! I am not alone!

–      Potatoes with cotton buds – I’m confused. Why does the potato have cotton buds?

–      I can count to potato – Good for you!

–      Women crapping – I am not even joking!

–      Some people just need a high-five. In the face. With a chair – Wow, you have a way with words. I suspect you may be the reason for my fear of high fives…

–      You call it madness but I call it love – Yes, and I call you insane. Have we dated?

–      Green balls – I think you should get off Google and get to the doctor… Now!

–      What is this shitload of mashed potatoes day – I think I had a nightmare along those lines just last week… a whole day of being chased around by a giant plate of mashed potato with legs… it’s all coming back to me…

3. I am not alone in my pug love – Yep, my blog has received visits from people using 31 different Pug search terms so far! Some of my favourites are ‘pug with backpack’ ‘thank god it’s Friday pug’ and ‘pug true love’. I feel my heart warming just reading them! This is from one particular morning several weeks ago:

4. WordPress is my friend – It’s true. I’ve actually found I spend more time with WordPress these days than with most of the people in my life. It makes me happy!

5. Twitter is not my friend – Also true. I Tweet… I get sweet nothing back… but I shall persist….

6. I wish I was cool enough to have a Facebook page for my blog – Alas, I am not, but I shall continue to sit back and silently envy those of you who do… Sitting there all smug in your popularity…

7. I want to start taking photos for my blog – I’m making this one of my missions in life. Having broken my iPhone camera and with minimal chance of lugging my SLR around with me each day, the likelihood of this happening is slim to none – so I’m aiming to post one photo I have taken by the end of 2012. Achievable? Achievable!

8. www.someecards.com is a sarcastic bloggers best friend – Seriously, the best resource ever! And they’re FREE!

9. There’s a fairly good chance I will fail in my attempt to blog every week of 2012… although I remain 100% committed to trying my hardest!

10. Blog awards are great for the ego – and a great excuse for spending an entire day reading other blogs… And on that note:

The rest of my entry today is to accept and pass on a little blog love with four (yep, FOUR) awards rolled into one… I don’t even know how this happens and am slightly overwhelmed, but I’m going to go with it and see what happens!

So, first and foremost, many many thanks to No Sugar, Just Spice for nominating me… in perusing your blog I see we share some embarrassing old music tastes… well, taste, I should say… I’m not at the point of publicly admitting to such a thing, but just for you *ahem*:

“Have you ever stood outside a picket fence… you’ll see through… but you can’t get to the inside… oohhhhhhh!”

I still remember all the words… how embarrassing… let’s never mention this again!

So, the awards are:

  1. Mrs. Sparkly’s Ten Commandments Award
  2. The Sunshine Award
  3. The Candle Lighter Award
  4. The Liebster Award

To roll all the questions into one, I’m just going to answer EVERYTHING in one go and then nominate those blogs I would like to pass the love onto.

So, here goes:

1. Describe yourself in seven words.
Small, Energetic, Loyal, Passionate, Impatient, Blunt and High-Pitched (although that’s kind of eight!)

2. What keeps you up at night?
Blog writing!

3. Whom would you like to be?
Noone, really. I’m pretty happy just being me.

4. What are you wearing now?
Tracksuit pants, a hoodie and my ugg boots… exciting, I know!

5. What scares you?
Mice and Horses.

6. What are the best and worst things about blogging?
Best: Interacting with other bloggers and getting feedback on my posts.

Worst: Writing a post when I’ve given myself a deadline. I always leave it until the last minute!

7. What was the last website you looked at?

I was Googling the lyrics to the song quoted above… I can’t believe I actually second-guessed myself!

8. If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

 I  guess being a bit more tolerant to stupid people…?

9. Slankets, yes or no?

I think you mean Snuggie… and I would go with a no.. except on little kids and dogs, have you seen the dog snuggie? So cute! I wonder if there is a photo of a pug in a snuggie somewhere out there…

Oh. My. God…

10. Tell us something about the person who nominated you.

She sorts her fries by size. True story.

11. Favorite Color:

Blue.

12. Favorite Animal:

Dogs, Elephants and Seals.

13. Favorite Number:

4

14. Favorite Non-Alcoholic Drink:

Sparkling water.

15. Facebook or Twitter:

Facebook

16. My Passion:

Travel

17. Getting or Giving Presents:

Giving

18. Favorite Pattern:

Pattern?? Weird question… any of Cath Kidston’s floral prints?

19. Favorite Day of the Week:

Sunday

20. Favorite Flower:

Lillies

And ten blogs to nominate:

http://theghostlife.wordpress.com/

http://undomesticatedhousewife.com/

http://beetleandswan.wordpress.com/

http://brookeandmckenzie.wordpress.com/

http://nevercontrary.com/

http://susielindau.com/

http://imnotfamousandneitherareyou.com/

http://livenerddierepeat.wordpress.com/

http://disseminatedthought.wordpress.com/

http://learnmesomething.wordpress.com/

Yay!
And to make up for this poor excuse for a blog post, I present you with a pug, to brighten your life!
Advertisements

Please Leave Your Shoes and Your Fake Hair at the Door

I have some serious issues with hair. Other people’s hair, to be more specific. Have you ever had someone else’s hair just kind of make itself at home on your shoulder, desk or face? I’m not talking about the hair of a loved one on the pillow, but the hair of someone you don’t know well invading your personal space in all it’s fuzziness…

While travelling in Europe several years ago, I found myself on a boat with a tour group in Italy. All was fine and good until the girl next to me started to doze off. Her head fell forward first and stopped momentarily, before it started to swing… I saw it coming right at me, the whole head with her long ponytail swinging straight for my face. It stopped just short, resting on my shoulder and making itself at home.

Panicked, I started yelling and shaking the girl awake while desperately trying not to dry retch. Once she was back in an upright position, I spent the rest of the boat trip watching her out of the corner of my eye, ready to fight her and her space-invading ponytail off if necessary.

It was on that fateful day that I came to realise my extreme hatred for involuntary contact with other people’s hair and I have tried to avoid any altercations ever since.

Being someone with very long hair and a tendency to malt like a Pomeranian on steroids, I have learnt to adapt to my own hair attaching itself to my clothing, skin and household items. It’s safe hair, I know where it came from and I know that it’s clean.

Wet hair, even if it’s my own, makes me dry retch like there’s no tomorrow, but this is fairly easily avoided through a combination of strategic household cleaning and carefully executed exiting of swimming pools/baths/showers.

In recent months, however, I have started to notice a growing trend, which is making me increasingly nervous. It’s something I can’t control, but something that for some unknown reason is taking over the world…

Fake Hair.

Horse or human, fake hair not only has the power to drop without warning, it can also instil fear from any distance and it must be stopped!

In general, I am against pretty much anything fake; fake boobs, fake labels, fake nails and fake chicken to name just a few (and yes, fake chicken exists – trust me!), but I accept that other people enjoy these things, so I generally don’t judge. When I started to realise that fake hair was causing me some serious distress, I thought I was alone… until the other day.

I was walking from one side of the city to the other in a hurry, so wasn’t paying much attention to anything and had stopped to wait to cross the road. I looked directly ahead of me, where a well- groomed girl was standing. She was power-suited up, and in normal circumstances I would have been envying her shoes (generally power-suited people have shoes that I cannot afford), however the second I saw her hair, all I could think and see was ‘FAKE HAIR! FAKE HAIR! EXPENSIVE BUT FAKE HAIR!’

I was overwhelmed and started to feel unreasonably angry and slightly ill, so I took an emergency right and added an extra block to my walk to get away from her. That night, I started talking through the bad experiences I have had with fake hair.

Surprisingly, I  realised that I am not alone in my hatred and the anti-fake hair movement started gaining momentum.

A buddy of mine, who shall remain unnamed, quite eloquently summarised them as ‘borderline shazza (girl bogan)’ and encouraged me to ‘let others know about this common fail’. While another emailed me this little chestnut:

On the fake hair note, I was at the hairdressers last week and was telling my hairdresser that I wanted to grow my hair long and was complaining about having thin, boring hair. She was all like “you should totally get extensions” and I was like, “Ahh no. Blond extensions always look tacky and would make me look like one of Hugh Hefner’s girlfriends.” She then pointed to the tackiest looking fake haired, fake nailed, fake tanned girl in the room and was like “I did her extensions – they look so real. Not tacky at all right?” I immediately broke out in a chorus of “oooh, ahhh, so lovely!”

I would like to add in here that I am not talking about wigs. Wigs serve a purpose, whether it is because of hair loss or for a dress up party. I would even go so far as to say that I don’t have any major issue with someone giving hair extensions a crack every once in a while.

However, there is a line, which is getting crossed, and we need to take a stand against it.

So, I am offering a community service to anyone who needs it.

– Do you know someone with bad hair extensions and you don’t know how to approach it?

– Have you encountered someone with bad extensions, openly criticising someone else’s bad extensions?

– Do you find yourself asking – if the hair is fake, does it matter if it’s horse or human?

– Are you genuinely concerned that this person is unaware that society is judging them for whatever they have hanging off their head?

If so, please email weneedtotalkaboutyourhair@gmail.com, providing the contact details of the person you would like this message passed on to, along with a reason why and your own contact details. I will happily send the following email on your behalf*:

Hello there

Someone who cares a lot about you has requested that this email be sent to you anonymously. Maybe they’ve been meaning to raise the issue with you for some time or maybe they just don’t have the heart to tell you to your face.

You’re a great friend and you mean a lot to the people around you, but there’s something you need to know…

Your hair extensions aren’t working for you. Your friend believes they (please select) [look fake/look cheap/don’t match your hair colour/just don’t do your pretty face justice/look damn horrendous] and would like to suggest you remove them.

Unfortunately we cannot pass on the details of the person who nominated you to receive this email, but if you would like a response passed onto them, please feel free to send it through.

Yours sincerely

The We Need to Talk About Your Hair Team

Additionally, to lead the movement, I am introducing a ‘No Fake Hair’ zoning on my house. Visitors please note – When you enter, please leave both your shoes and your fake hair at the door.

*I won’t ACTUALLY send anything to your friend… Geez, I’m not a total bitch! However, I will enjoy you sharing your fake hair stories with me and may add them anonymously to this post.

Ending the Week on a High!

So I’m not counting this as a REAL post and will post some usual ranting mid-next week, however I did have to share the highlights of my Friday.

I woke up yesterday and undertook my usual weekday morning ritual: Hit snooze – fall asleep – hit snooze – fall asleep – hit snooze – roll over – have a silent whinge to myself about how evil any hour prior to 9am is – fall asleep – hit snooze – check Facebook – check gmail – check work emails – roll out of bed.

On Facebook, I had been sent this little treasure:

Considering the last similarly themed linked I got from this particular FB friend, which was something along the lines of ‘I’ve found you a husband: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2071127/Bankers-1-615-word-email-woman-didnt-back.html’, I wasn’t expecting much. But this had me giggling out loud to myself.

In all honesty, it wouldn’t surprise me if my dogs were running a similar operation of sabotage in my life. In the current absence of a boy in my life, they have free reign of the house, get unlimited attention and half of everything I cook (I suffer serious eyes-bigger-than-stomach issues).  When I am dating someone, they become lounge-room sleepers, are made to sit on their own couch, get fewer walks and have to feign interest in a new person for at least a few hours every time they see them. It’s a hard life and they’re not exactly subtle about their disapproval when someone new comes into it.

Having worked myself into a slightly paranoid state and half expecting them to be watching the video over my shoulder while taking notes and giving each other knowing looks, I turned to see what the little darlings were actually up to. Ginger Dog was curled up at the end of the bed, like the perfect puppy that he is… while Midget Dog was sprawled out next to me on my bed, with her head ON my pillow, fast asleep. Note to self – this sleeping arrangement is not conducive to ever meeting a mentally sound husband.

I went to move her off… looked at her taking her little breaths, remembered the difficult night she’d had on Thursday, which involved an itchy leg and an unplanned haircut after I realized her overgrown fringe was impacting her ability to judge distances (only after she twice underestimated the jump from floor to couch and slammed head-first into the side of it) and decided to leave her where she was… I’ll train her off the pillow on the weekend.

So back to the ritual – next step was my emails and this is where the day really kicked off. I admit that I’ve become somewhat addicted to WordPress lately and after smashing my own visits-per-day record on Thursday, I was thrilled to see I had a new comment on my most recent post. Then it got even better… a lovely blogger called blondgirl008 had nominated my little, semi-psychotic blog for the Versatile Blog Award! Considering I have been blogging for less than a month, this has not only made my day, but my week, month AND 2012 so far! Woo hoo!

It has taken me a bit of researching to work out exactly what this is, but to be honest, I am so thrilled that anyone is even reading my blog that I would take any award you’re willing to give me… including the crazy dog lady of the year award. But alas, the Versatile Blogger Award is a way to show your support for blogs of all varieties. So, here goes my response to my much-appreciated nomination:

First up many thanks for the nomination, Blondgirl008. Everyone should check out your hilarious blog at:

http://frugalistablog.com/

Then, for seven things about me:

  1. I am very new to blogging. Yep, although I set up my account back in September 2010 (from memory), it wasn’t until December 2011 that I actually started blogging. Needless to say, I am addicted and commited to posting every week for the next 12 months.
  2. I have two dogs (mentioned above) who I am fairly obsessed with. Ginger dog is 11 and is a little ball of Pomeranian-Cross love. He enjoys food, cuddles, staring longingly into peoples eyes and once punctured my eyeball in a moment of cuddle grabbing desperation, which saw me end up in the Eye and Ear Hospital and him feel quite guilty for a few hours. Midget Dog is equally lovable and if she was a human, I’m fairly certain she would actually be me. She is only 3 and is strong-willed, bossy and squeals when she doesn’t get what she wants. However, at the end of the day she is a happy little girl who has a pretty sweet life and just wants to eat lots and curl up on the couch.
  3. I live in Melbourne, Australia and I love it! Although I travel a lot, and have lived overseas in the past, I don’t imagine I will live anywhere else for a prolonged period of time. I also hope to stay in the same local area I currently live in and am very grateful to have grown up in such a diverse, beautiful and fun city.
  4. I am a dating disaster. It’s true. I won’t go into too much detail here, I have a separate (anonymous) blog all about the many crazy dating experiences I have had in my life. Having said that, I am a firm believer in learning from your experiences and that the worst dates always make for the funniest stories!
  5. I am totally addicted to soda water and sparkling water and I really need to invest in a Soda Stream this year. This addiction has developed since I quit soft drink last year. I just can’t get enough of the bubbly goodness.
  6. I am attempting to be an owner-renovator. So far, it’s been challenging and my house is currently covered in about 3cms of plaster dust. However, I love my little house and get excited by the smallest things. Note – do not ever get me talking about blinds, light switches or any other house-related item. I guarantee I won’t stop talking, you’ll be confused and you will regret ever starting the conversation.
  7. I have an inability to keep things brief. Most of the posts on my blog (including these seven points) were intended to be short and sweet. Eek! I attribute this to having a lot to say and expect that as the weeks roll on, I might stop crapping on so much! Taking a moment to pause, I realize this post is already at 1137 Words… Sorry!

Finally, fifteen blogs that I would in-turn nominate (most of which I am already following and a few I have sourced for this purpose!):

NeverContrary – Funny, open hearted ponderings on life

36ixty5 – Every time these images pop up on my ‘Read Blogs’ page they make me happy

Fibromy-Awesome – A lovely blog

I’m Not Famous and Neither Are You – This girl reminds me of myself, haha! I think her name is Sarah (I joke, I joke!)

The Dissemination of Thought – Hilarious

The Insanity Aquarium – Also very funny

Viciously Sweet – Originally I wanted to illustrate my blog. I failed and admire anyone with such artistic flair!

Cramp My Style – Recently on Freshly Pressed

Brooke and Mckenzie  – I just discovered this one yesterday

Blank Stares and Blank Pages – So, so funny

Damp Squid – I don’t really know how to explain this one

Hyperactive Inefficiency – I’ve only just started reading this one

The Waiting  – A blog about pregnancy with a really cute ‘About’ page

The Middest Sister – Another funny one with pictures

Consider the Sauce – Omg, a blog dedicated to food in the Western suburbs! What more could a West-side Melbournian need?

Thanks again for the nomination, it was a great chance to discover even more awesome blogs!

Nose Whistling, Mashed Potato and Other Totally Reasonable Fears


It's Mashed Potato Time

Image via Wikipedia

My nose whistles. Not all the time, but probably for a full day once every month or two and I have no idea why.

In between whistling fits, I don’t generally give it much thought, kind of like having the hiccups or the flu, when it’s not actively destroying your life, you forget that it exists. But when it does re-appear, it is always at the most inappropriate of times. Most often at work and always when it is so quiet that you could hear a pin drop.

I’ll often be halfway through a staff meeting or trying not to laugh at something or someone in a serious situation when the nose starts whistling like an angry kettle and it will generally last the duration of the day.

I had totally forgotten about this affliction until I was re-watching Arrested Development last week and the episode came on where GOB broke his tooth and kept whistling (freaking hilarious!), which is pretty much exactly what I sound like when having a nose whistling attack. It got me thinking about quirks in general and the funny things that make people themselves. As we all know, I have a fear of high five-ing, which has plagued me since my teen years. I also have a fear of mashed potato.

I’d like to pre-empt this by saying that I love potatoes in general. Give me a chip or a roast potato any day. Baked (jacket) potatoes – love them! Even boiled potatoes bring me great joy. But mashed, or boiled to the point of mash, is just never going to fly with me. It’s a total crime against the sturdy potato!

I have had issues with it for years, but it wasn’t until about six years ago that I finally admitted it to other people. I was a vegetarian at the time and the cases of unintentional mash eating were becoming too much for me. Once I had announced it out loud to those closest to me, I was finally able to move forward fearlessly in my life.

It’s not generally accepted without questioning, in fact every boy I have dated since then has said (I quote) ‘That’s just because you haven’t tried mine. I make the best mash’ Yep, I’m sure you do and I’ll even pretend I enjoy it… but really, it makes me want to throw up. On myself.

The worst mash-related incident I have had was when travelling in Chile in 2006. I was traveling with a Chilean friend and we spent a fair amount of time with her extended family, eating until we couldn’t move. Vegetarianism wasn’t openly accepted in Chile and I was quite used to picking meat out of my sin-carne food while responding to comments of ‘that’s not meat, that’s ham’ with ‘oh, sorry, my mistake, muchos gracias’.

One day we were going to an aunt’s house and my friend had emphasised the whole sin-carne situation beforehand, clarifying ‘you do eat everything else right?’ ‘Yep, anything, just no meat!’.

So we rocked up to lunch, sat down at the table and aunty puts a plate of food in front of everyone. When my plate came out, she was looking thrilled to bits with herself as she placed it in front of me and I looked down in horror. In front of me sat a plate at least 20cms wide, piled high with nothing but grey, sloppy mashed potato. I looked at my friend in horror and had a small panic attack, before taking a deep breath and hoeing into it.

I still feel sick remembering it and when I hear the words mashed and potato in the same sentence, I still remember the sight, smell and taste of that plate full of mushy hell.

I was discussing quirks with my friend today and went through these main ones of mine, the mash, the high fives and the nose whistling. Hers were an inability too cross the road without a green man (kissing goodbye our chances of ever getting on The Amazing Race) and a serious hatred for chicken. The chicken thing is understandable as it’s a fairly hit and miss meat and was actually the last thing I returned to eating when I came to my senses after 7 years of vegetarianism, however my friend consciously buys and eats cage eggs without hesitation. Apparently she’s breaking even on the chickens she’s saving from being bred for food…

I realised during this discussion that the people I love the most are the ones with the funniest quirks, fears and passions. Fears of buttons, fear of cotton buds and an addiction to tuna are a few that spring to mind amongst my friends.

I’m now on a mission to discover the strangest thing about each of my good friends… Expect to be grilled, people!

11 Things I Learnt in 2011

1. Every year goes quicker than the last

If I had a dollar for every time in the past few months that I have said ‘I can’t believe this year is almost over’, I would be a very rich girl (by rich, I mean I could afford a coffee and muffin every morning for a week without scrounging around the floor of my car)! 2011 has literally flown, courtesy of four trips overseas, work chaos, the continued disaster that is my love life and just life running at full speed. I started the year having an unexpectedly big night at a pub in Warrnambool, which seemed to set the pace for the year.

When discussing this with a friend recently, they said to me, ‘it’s not that this year has gone fast, it’s just that every single year goes quicker than the last’… I’m torn as to whether I agree with this statement and as a result, I intend to make 2012 go as slowly as possible… Yes, I may be in denial, but I WILL slow down time, damn it!

2. Take compliments graciously and without hesitation

Me and tact do not have a relationship… it’s just not a skill I ever learnt. As a result, I don’t dish out compliments unless I mean them and the people around me know this. Having said this, I still encounter people who I give a compliment to and they insist on rejecting it.

My lack of social prompts means I’m never sure if they’re fishing for me to elaborate, think I’m mocking them (not an unreasonable assumption) or if they honesty think their uber-expensive shoes are actually not pretty at all. Seriously people, I don’t go dishing them out, take the compliment or you won’t be getting another one.

I actually learnt this lesson several years ago, but it came up many times in 2011. Compliments are easy to take and the more graciously you take them, the more often they’ll come. Now let’s practice:

Me: ‘Oooo, I love your dress!’

You: ‘Oh, thanks!’

Success!!!

3. If you like someone, tell them

Although this primarily goes for matters of the heart, it’s become my approach to everyone in my life. I would consider myself a fairly up-front person, but this year I learnt the value in just putting yourself out there.

If you think someone is awesome, tell them! If someone is kinda cute, tell them! If someone makes you laugh, tell them! And if someone makes your heart jump like it’s trying to leap out of your chest, tell them… chances are they feel the same. If not, you’ve lost nothing, you’ve saved yourself potentially months of wondering if they like you and above all, you will have most likely brightened their day with the compliment!

4. Babies are awesome

Okay, so I did already know this before 2011, however having not been around a new one for years and years, I had been kind of convinced that babies were maybe a little bit boring. It wasn’t until a good friend of mine had her first baby in the second half of the year that I realised that I am OBSESSED!

Despite living in a completely separate State to aforementioned baby, I have managed to buy her more clothes than I have bought myself this year… okay, slight exaggeration there, but definitely more than I have bought myself in the second half of the year! And equally as exciting – next year I will be an aunty for the first time! Yay!

5. Weddings are a big deal to some people – do not judge them

I would like to start off here by saying I LOVE weddings. I especially love when people I care about get engaged, married or even just happy, it warms my heart! However, in recent months I have realised that there is a fine line between a bride who is ‘excited’ and one who is ‘obsessed’ and that I am not to judge when it is crossed. Doing so will only end in awkward conversations… Even more awkward than those which you will be having with them once their all-consuming wedding has wrapped up.

I have also learnt the following: Buying a charity goat for someone who has asked for gifts of cash is apparently socially unacceptable, having a gift registry for your kitchen tea is normal and asking your nearest and dearest to invest a month’s salary in honour of your celebration will not result in you losing friends.

So, in light of this new-found knowledge, when the time comes, I now plan to elope. Or at a maximum have 10 people on a beach with no shoes on, no presents and no stress. I hereby promise this to everyone in my life. Hold me to it.

6. Having good tone is not so vital in life

In addition to lacking any tact in my life, I also struggle with tone. I had never given it much thought until one of my staff got a look of complete fear in his face when I was complimenting him on his work. Apparently my facial expression, tone and words were all contradicting each other and as a result, instilling fear in the poor guy.

So I started asking the people close to me for their opinion on the issue and sure enough, my tone issues were widely acknowledged, unbeknownst to me. So I set out to correct it, emphasising various words and attempting to add an inflection to my sentences.

After several months of experimentation, I came to the conclusion that good tone is over-rated. Bad tone often results in hilarious miscommunication and is a great conversation starter. The simple solution is, if I’m conversing with someone and they start to look confused, I exclaim loudly ‘I have bad tone!’, everyone laughs and a friendship has begun!

7. The ability to be blunt is a virtue

My most recent realisation is that bluntness is not a bad trait, I even believe it to be a virtue. I have always thought that my tendency to cut straight to the point was something that had to be changed, and spent years chit-chatting and prancing around whatever topic needed to be discussed.

In my most recent employment, I speak to a wide range of people across numerous fields. In an industry where everyone is trying to win each other over and impress each other, I start to feel like I am suffocating in fake niceties. Earlier in the year, I accepted that this approach just wasn’t me, I’m blunt in my personal life and decided to try a similar approach in my professional life.

The result – if you’re up-front with people, they’ll be up-front with you, communication is open and issues are overcome. PLUS, once the topic is dealt with, there’s more time for getting to know the person you’re meeting and enjoying your time with them!

8. Never assume people care about the minute details of your private life, because most often, they don’t

Okay, so I know this one sounds a bit harsh, but it is an important lesson. We all spend so much time worrying about what other people think of us and missing out on opportunities for fear of being judged. I personally will go over a conversation a thousand times in my head if I think I have offended someone (unintentionally), or said something out of line or inappropriate (a common occurence).

But when I actually think about the people close to me and their behaviour, I realise it doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you’re fun and happy and are making the most of life. I can barely remember the conversation I’m currently having with someone, let alone one that took place a week ago.

Stop mulling things over! If you have an opinion, share it! If you like someone, go for it! Don’t assume that everyone is focusing all their attention on you, because you’ll miss out on the opportunities that are presenting themselves to you.

9. Getting stuck in a snow storm is not such a bad thing

I am 100% a summer person and I absolutely hate the cold. Despite this, two friends and I went to Queenstown this past winter for a week spent learning to snowboard. It was a very fun and crazy week and we headed to the airport with heavy hearts, all not wanting to head home. Apparently Q’Town also didn’t want us to leave and after an epic snowstorm and many failed attempts to get out, our 7 day trip turned into a 12 day adventure.

Despite cabin fever setting in on about day 8 and each of us consuming our body weight in alcohol, our time there became one of the most memorable periods of 2011. By the time we had accepted our fate and let ourselves just enjoy the extended break, we had been lucky enough to see a once in a lifetime snow storm, eaten awesome food, met some fantastic people and become even closer friends for it.

10. See the humour in every situation

Being able to see the humour in every situation makes life bearable. This year so far I have had a staff member question my morals on Facebook (and get abruptly asked to resign), been delayed on numerous flights, had an immeasurable number of IT issues, had the entire work database and network die, be threatened by angry customers and had the most disastrous dating experiences, including on one occasion when I actually thought I was going to get my kidneys stolen…

At the time, what can you do? You can laugh about it, and remember the finer details so you can recount the story with accuracy next time you’re out drinking with your friends.

11. I will never learn to high-five

Ever. So please stop trying.