I have always been told that when you receive flowers from a man for no apparent reason, it’s a sign that he is cheating on you. I don’t exactly agree with this theory, but I do find the whole flower-giving thing fascinating.
I remember being younger and always wanting a nice boy to give me flowers. Not some crummy bunch of roses or, even worse, a single rose, but a pretty, well-planned and thoughtful bunch of flowers, which may or may not feature lilies or something similar.
But the flowers I envisaged and the flowers I actually got back then were vastly different. The lilies were replaced by god-awful weed-like flowers and the beautiful, ribbon-bound box was replaced by clear and white flowery glad-wrap that screamed of having been bought in a hospital foyer or stolen from a cemetery.
As I got a bit older, I completely lost interest in flowers. I never expected them and never really got them, but when I was about 25, I started to notice that they were making a comeback. Gone were the days, however, of flowers bringing joy and happiness.
First, there was the bunch that arrived with the statement ‘I might have an STD…’ (please note that the might turned out to be a definitely did not) and then there were the ones that came shriveled up after being hidden behind the heater in the lounge room for an indeterminate period of time, resulting in me arriving late for work after being ordered to go to the florist to exchange them…
Yep, flowers weren’t so glamorous anymore. They brought disease scares, anger and embarrassing encounters with florists. But I am a girl and don’t we all, deep down, dream of one day receiving flowers from a secret admirer declaring their undying love for us?
What we don’t realise though, is that this is actually the behavior of sociopaths and serial killers… and holiday crashers… yep, holiday crashers!
I mean, if you really think about it, if a person has the ability to interact with people, hold a conversation and enter into a real-life relationship, why wouldn’t they just mosey on over and ask you out? Alas, hindsight is a wonderful thing…
Back in 2009, I was a few months into my current (recently resigned from) job. Part of my role back then was to do presentations to young people about living and working overseas. Me being me, this involved lots of goofiness, many bad jokes and technical disasters.
My main problem with these presentations was that if I told a joke or a story that should get a laugh didn’t, I would just keep on pushing… bad joke after bad joke… higher pitch… faster talking… and it would start getting just plain awkward.
For example, I was once talking about San Francisco and started telling the story about riding a bike over the Golden Gate Bridge, taking a wrong turn (can you even take a wrong turn?) and ending up going overland to Sausalito all the while turning right involuntarily because I get balance issues when riding in the wind…
Alas, after being met by dead silence, this story led to the one about getting lost on a ‘quick drive’ before returning the hire car, the one about accidentally offending a group of dutch backpackers after telling one that his friend smelt like cabbage and finally wrapping it up with a declaration that I love San Fran because the hills made me feel like I was in Full House…
You know, FULL HOUSE?
It must be my lisp, audience does not comprehend… Cue terrible attempt at singing the Full House theme song:
Everywhere you look… everywhere you go (there’s a heart)… There’s a heart, a hand to hold onto.
Silence… crickets chirping… tumble weeds rolling through the room… you get the idea.
To this day I tell myself the crowd were just too young. They clearly didn’t know Mary-Kate and Ashley when they were knee-high to a grasshopper!
But back to my story, I was having one of these HORRIBLE evenings where the crowd was giving me absolutely nothing. No number of cheesy jokes, funny stories or even crowd interaction was saving it and besides one over enthusiastic guy in the second row, whose fake laugh was way too elaborate to be genuine, the audience were having none of it.
So you can imagine my complete shock when a massive bunch of roses turned up at my office two days later with a card that read:
I saw your presentation the other night and have been thinking about you ever since. Do you want to go for a drink sometime?
My colleagues and I tried to think of who it could be, with one suggesting it was ‘probably that one person who was laughing at your jokes!’ and after some crafty investigation, I had a full name and an email address.
Looking back, I should have read between the lines, seen the unwritten references to kidney stealing and paid attention to the music that started repeating in my head.
But really, the guy had made a pretty big effort and as someone who cannot even remember having asked anyone on a date before, who was I to reject someone without even meeting them?
So, I went on a date with him and despite there being no chemistry whatsoever and him judging me for liking Simon and Garfunkel while saying his favourite type of music was ‘anything they play on Triple J’… I didn’t regret it. I told him I wasn’t interested, we agreed we would be friends, added each other on Facebook and caught up a few more times before he went overseas.
Fast-forward to early 2011 when I was planning a work trip to Canada, followed by a week of Tennizzlle-time in New York City on the way home. I was contacting a few business partners and customers who were over there to catch up, one of whom was this guy. He wasn’t going to be in the cities I was visiting in Canada, but was going to NY with some friends around that time. I sent him my dates and said we’d have a drink if we crossed paths.
A week before I left, he emailed saying he had great news, it turns out we were going to be in NYC at the same time, so we agreed to have a drink. It all seemed so normal…
We met at a bar downtown before dinner and had a quick beer. We had the quick catch up, how’s life, blah blah blah, and then I asked him ‘So, what are you even doing in New York?’
His response: ‘I came to New York to spend the week with you’
This guy had driven from Montreal to New York to holiday with me… without me knowing.
After a few deep breathes, I talked myself into it. I’m the queen of miscommunication and I probably misunderstood something along the way. I’m sure it’s fine, when he says SPEND the week with me, he doesn’t mean SPEND the week with me. Nervous laugh, nervous laugh…
That was Thursday night.
By Friday, it was clear that he did actually mean spend the entire week with me…. Every single second of it…
‘Oh, you want to go to Forever 21 and try on seventy dresses? I’ll come!’
‘Oh, you want to purchase outfits for your dogs? That sounds like great fun!’
‘Should we plan out all our evenings in advance and buy tickets to everything?’
‘Let’s go to the farmers market and buy some food to cook in the luxury Soho apartment I have rented for us to hang out in’
By Saturday, I had lost my shit. Somewhere between Canal Street and Union Square, after being dragged around by his know-it-all self all afternoon trying to find ‘the best coffee in New York’, I had had enough. I hadn’t spoken to him for at least an hour when I made my escape, yelling something along the lines of ‘Space! Tennizzlle time! Forever 21!’ before throwing myself into the midst of a crowd of fast moving locals and running for my life.
A few months later, I was at work one afternoon and received a text message from a US number.
‘Hey, are you free to catch up?’
Assuming it was someone from our US office, I responded ‘Yeah, sure, but I have no idea who this is!’
‘Oh, sorry, it’s Michelangelo*, I’m in Melbourne but still using my Canadian number’
These days, if I want flowers, I just go buy myself some damn flowers. They’ll always be tasteful, they won’t be on the verge of death, they won’t die overnight and I will be able to sleep soundly in the knowledge that my kidneys will still be attached when I wake up in the morning.
NB – In doing a little Google research for this post, I typed ‘Flowers from a man’ into the search bar. I love the predictions Google comes up with and where they lead you. This time, I got ‘flowers from a man who shot your cousin’… as you do!
Also, if you were thinking about sending me flowers, feel free! I like lilies (just in case you didn’t get that) and I will accept them graciously. Just don’t be expecting me to go on a date with you afterwards!
*names and numbers have been changed, though not very well
Last week I quit my job.
Most people who know me saw it coming, but for the many people I know through work, it was completely unexpected. So far, everyone has reacted with ‘Omg, what’s happened?’ and I suspect, knowing my tendency for dramatics, they are assuming that I cracked without warning, slamming the manual lift door while screaming ‘I QUIT!’ and storming off down La Trobe Street.
Alas, it was not so exciting and unlike the time someone put spag bol all over the bin in the midst of a bug infestation or the time I realised someone was stealing the toilet paper (I still have my suspicions, but no proof), there was absolutely no hysterics.
Resigning was a massive relief and although I had a TINY panic attack in between being offered my new job and quitting my current one, it wasn’t long before I was getting excited about taking a huge step off my current career path and throwing caution to the wind.
There’s something liberating about having absolutely no idea what the heck you will be doing a year from now, and, to quote my ever-unreliable Fortune Telling Fairy Cards, I am moving forward fearlessly!
Gone are the days of work-related panic attacks and swatting bugs as I sit at my desk – it’s time for freedom, creativity and full, uninterrupted nights of sleep! Woo hoo!
As mentioned above, I do have a new job lined up, which I am very excited about, but leaving my current role will also allow me to look into new opportunities, to focus on my blog and what I really want to do – to DANCE!
Okay, that was totally a joke, but I have spent a fair chunk of the past few days thinking about the future. Now is the time to work out exactly what I want to do and how to do it… But in typical Tennizzle-style, I have become overwhelmed by the decision.
Ideally I would win lotto and spend the next few years jetting around the world, renovating my house and volunteering my time to the greater good… however accepting that this is not going to happen and that the chances of anyone paying me to hang out with my dogs for a living are just as low, I am going to need a more realistic plan.
I have decided to focus on copywriting, but without it being part of my everyday work.
So far, I have taken the massive steps of purchasing my blog domain (check it out, I’ve dropped the ‘wordpress’ from my site, la di da!) AND getting my own personal domain for the future… I haven’t quite worked out how to set up a website or get it hosted, but I’m on my way! I can feel success in the air!
I’m starting with a bit of blatant self-promotion to people I know professionally and am hoping to start putting a portfolio together in the coming months. As a result, my blog will be growing and although my regular, neurotic posts will continue, I will also be using this page as a means of collating writing until I have a proper website.
In the meantime, if you see someone with a sandwich board reading ‘Will Write for Food’ standing outside Flinders St station next month… please stop by and say hi!
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:
Then, for seven things about me:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
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!’
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.