Confuzzledom

Just a place for me to gather my thoughts


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The dreaded forms of doom

I have finally finished filling in my university forms. It’s only taken me four days. First there was the saga of the disappearing black biros. I managed to solve that one by getting the boyfriend to bring one round for me. I then managed to muck up filling in my module choice form and had to ask Jan to reprint it for me. I asked him on Thursday, reminded him on Friday and he finally printed it out yesterday. He actually typed in all the information for me before printing it this time – all I had to do was sign it. An excellent idea if you ask me. I would only have messed it up again otherwise. Unfortunately I stayed at his place last night and had no idea how much I have to pay so I wasn’t able to fill in the financial forms until this afternoon. I’ve probably mucked them up too and just don’t realise it. Quite frankly I don’t care anymore – finally all the forms are filled in and sitting in an envelope waiting to be posted tomorrow. After that I can forget about them… at least until they get in touch to tell me I’ve made a huge mistake somewhere and won’t be allowed to carry on studying there til I sort it out. That would be just my luck.

I hate filling in forms!


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Beelzebub in a bottle

Jan and I went to the Bierbörse again yesterday. We had to. We had to find beer for my dad. He’s a big fan of beer is my dad. Not just any beer though. Oh no, it has to be proper beer. No lager allowed. The kind of beer he has isn’t chock full of chemicals and – shock, horror – can actually go off. Over the last few years his friends and relatives (with the exception of my grandparents) have developed a kind of competition to find new beers for my dad. Everyone wants to be the one that presents him with the most beers he hasn’t already tried. Jan and I have a slight advantage here, being in Germany. Everyone else can only check out their local supermarket and hope my dad hasn’t already discovered the ones they find. The beers we find tend not to be available in England. Big points for us. So yesterday we headed to the Bierbörse and checked out the “113 beers from throughout the world” stand in search of interesting beers. We ended up getting three – one from Brazil, one from Ethiopia (cos it sounds dead cool, even if the beer turns out to be crap) and a French one that I chose purely for the name. It’s called Belzebuth and has a great picture of a demon on it. Beelzebub in a bottle.

Later we went and met some of Jan’s friends at Cafe Max. The group that he hung around with at university are planning a kind of reunion next weekend. Most of them still live here and we see them reasonably often, but some have moved away, so the Karlsruhe dwellers decided a reunion was in order. They are currently trying to plan activities for the weekend, so we met up last night to discuss it. A number of activities had been suggested, including clmbing, bowling, paintball and go karting. Personally I was for paintball (I’ve wanted to do that for sooo long) but I was outvoted. Boring gits! Bowling, they decided, is boring and can be done any time. So it’s been decided that climbing will be the first choice with karting as an indoor alternative for bad weather. Boo, the two things I least wanted to do.

Today we’ve mostly been looking at tourist activities in Scotland. The boyfriend and I are planning a trip to Edinburgh. In October. Are we insane? Yes, it is entirely possible that we are. Oh well, if it rains I suppose we can always just spend all our time in bed ;-)


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Poor camera

I’m devastated. My trusty camera – the one I’ve had for fove years, the one that consistently worked while other people’s randomly died, the one that could be dropped on the floor and live to see the tale – is now broken. Somehow the screen has been cracked, so when I turn it on all I see is a black square with white lines on it, folloing the lines of the crack. It actually looks quite cool – sort of moderny arty. What it doesn’t look like is the picture I’m trying to take. Luckily the camera itself still works – being a very old style digital camera it’s quite large and actually still has – *gasp* -a viewfinder, unlike newer ones that rely on the screen for everything. But still. It is broken. Not dead perhaps, but definitely injured. And I was so proud of being the one who had the indestructible camera that just refused to break. Spoke too soon I guess…

Gotta go have breakfast now, bacon and hash browns cooked by the wonderful boyfriend. It almost makes up for the breaking of Mr. Camera. Almost, but not quite.


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Full of busy

This is going to have to be a quick post cos I have to go out in a minute. My ex-colleagues from where I had my last internship have asked me to go to the Bierbörse (annual beer festival) with them. Jan and I are also invited to a party later on, so I’ll only be able to stay at the festival for an hour or so. Busy evening ahead and all I really want to do is sleep! It will be nice to see my ex-collaegues again though so I’m not complaining.

I was sent home from work at 10 past 4 today. The bosses wife was just saying to Kristi and I that we could leave at half past as it was the weekend when the boss, who was walking past and overheard her, stuck his read round the door and said “well I think you should all start the weekend now”. So we did. I still didn’t get home til nearly six though what with having to wait ten minutes for a tram, half hour journey to get here then needing to go shopping. And naturally there were queues in Aldi. I arrived home to find a bunch of people sitting outside having coffee and cake. Steff and Jo had come to introduce their two month old daughter, Emily, to everyone, so I stopped for a chat before coming inside to get ready. Emily was the fifth child to be born to someone I knew this year. Since then only one more has arrived – a school friend had a daughter yesterday – but still, six babies in one year is a lot. And three people I know (one due in October, two in September) have yet to have theirs. 2008 really is the year of babies… either that or I’m just friends with the wrong people.

I’m off now to drink beer with my friends. Those of us that aren’t going around having babies can still do stuff like that…


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Little Bev in big woods

I’m so tired I can barely even summon up the energy to blog. The only reason I am blogging is because I’m hoping it will stop me from falling asleep. I need to stay awake because my dad is supposed to be ringing me this evening. I hope he hurries up. I need to make myself some food, but can’t because it’s impossible to hear my phone ringing from the kitchen, seeing as it’s at the other side of the building through two thick doors.

I went for a walk this afternoon. I’d just finished a particularly difficult translation so the bosses wife suggested I go and get some air for a bit, so I walked down to the next tram stop along from the one I get off at in the mornings.
The office I work in is technically in Ettlingen, but only just. You only have to take about eight steps before you come to a sign informing you that you’re now in Waldbronn. But even for those who don’t know how close we are to not actually being in Ettlingen it’s pretty obvious that we’re not exactly in town either. The office is on a kind of industrial estate, but it’s not an industrial estate in the sense that we know them from England. Actually, here they call them industrial parks, and this particular one is surrounded by greenery. Seriously there are trees everywhere. And the buildings are all set down in a little dip, below the main road and the tram tracks, and waaay below the trees. As I was walking along I glanced up at the trees on the opposite side of the road. I was down in the dip and the trees were way up on a hill. Suddenly I had a sensation of being very, very small. It’s amazing how insignificant nature can make you feel.
No wonder so many humans seem to spend half their time thinking of new ways to destroy it…


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Pencilcase psychology

I tried to fill in my forms for uni today. Yeah, that’s right, I said tried. Meaning I did not succeed.
How hard can it be? Is probably what you’re thinking now. Very hard apparantly – if you’re me.
I looked up the module codes, found out how much I have to pay, gathered together all the information I need then looked at the top of the first form and read the words “Please complete this form in black biro.” OK, I thought. That should be easy enough….
WRONG!
How is it possible that I have two whole pencil cases full of pens and not one single one of them is a black biro?? I have blue biros, red biros, green biros, pink biros. I have glittery gel pens. I have pens that write in highlighter colours. But I don’t own a bloody black biro.

I’m sure this probably says something fundamental about me. Something like “fond of bright colours, likes glittery things, doesn’t want to grow up.” Either that or it just proves I’m the least organised person in the world, ever.
I’m sure I used to have a black biro…


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Legal texts versus humour

Oh dear. I seem to have been very unfair to my boyfriend in my last post. In this one here too come to think of it. So I’d just like to state for the record that he’s not as selfish as I make him out to be. Really not. This the wonderful guy who came over to my place at stupid o’clock at night to look after me when I had sunstroke. (See this post). See. Not selfish or mean. It’s just that he’s really not the kind of person that thinks about the future very often. Coe to think of it, he doesn’t really think about the past either. I’ve never known anyone remember so little of their childhood. He’s very much a live in the moment type of guy. So when he started looking for a flat he was acting according to how he felt at that very moment. And he never thought about what he might want in the future. Which is why we’re now in a situation where he has a flat he wants to stay in for the next four years and I’m trying to figure out where I’m going to live for those four years since it can’t be with my boyfriend. I don’t resent him for it. Not at all. I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that he loves me, and for now that’s all that matters. But it does get frustrating at times, and then I have to write about it otherewise I’ll scream, which probably won’t make me feel any better and will only result in a horrible sore throat.

Anyway…
Is it really Tuesday already? It feels like it should be at least Thursday the amount of work I’ve done already this week. I could do with a nice long lie in. A glass of wine would be nice too.

I have to fill in my university forms today. Jan should be bringing them with him when he comes round. I had to send them to him  to print because, while he was kind enough to leave me his computer, he took the printer away with him. I’m not sure what he thought he was going to do with a printer and no computer, but that’s men for you. They never did make any sense! Anyway, I sent him the forms for him to print and work and hopefully they will be arriving at my place sometime this evening. Then I’ll have to fill the bloody things in. I hate filling in forms! There’s about 3 pages or financial form to fill in, then a registration form and finally the module choice form. I wanted to do two modules this year. German translation in a social context, otherwise known as GETS, and Translation of humour. Turns out they’re not doing the humour one this year, so unless I want to wait a whole extra year to get my masters I have to do Text linguistics. According to the UWE website, the main topics that will be covered in the module are:  *Stylistic variation *Language in the media *Professional registers of the language (the linguistic characteristics of legal text will be examined in detail). *Textual cohesion. Linguistic features? Legal text? Examine? In detail? Oh my god, I’m officially doomed!


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Gotta get out of this place

I made a decision over the weekend.
I decided that I have to get out of here at the next available opportunity. I have to.It doesn’t matter whether I have a real job or not, even if I have no idea where I’m going to be 2 months after that date I am moving out.

Back in December, when my boyfriend decided it was time to move out of this student residence, we made the decision not to live together. He didn’t want to and I didn’t want to. The difference between was that I didn’t want to then but thought I might want to in the future. Jan just just knew he wasn’t ready to move in with me – he’s not the kind of person that thinks about the future. But that didn’t matter then. Mostly I was just jealous – why was it that he, who didn’tmind living in this building and had never even thought about moving out before, was going to be getting his own flat whereas I, who had been talking aboout wanting to move out for months and months, was going to be stuck here – possibly forever? No fair!

So fast-forward a few months. It’s April. He’s moved all his stuff out, the key to his old room has been returned, I’m forced to sleep in my own bed, cook in my own kitchen… and Jan has a flat mate. A flat mate who actually uses the flat. Meanwhile Jan doesn’t actually spend a night at his flat until May. So where did he sleep during that time? In my room of course. He might not have wanted to live with me officially, but he didn’t have any problem with sharing a bed with me every night. (He doesn’t mind me doing all his washing for him either, but that’s besides the point).

So now it’s August and here’s how things stand:
Jan is still living with Maik and is now starting to think that maybe he would have been better off living with me after all. Maybe. But he’s very cleverly set it up so that we won’t be moving in together for a very long time.
He told me at the weekend that he didn’t want to be moving around all the time, so he got a flat with the intention of staying in it until he finishes his phd… in four years time. Guess what? So did his flat mate. So that means Jan has no intention of moving out of his flat for the next four years and neither does Maik. Four years! I’ll be nearly 30 be then. (29 is nearly 30 no matter what way you look at it). I pointed out to Jan that he’d basically set things up so that there was no way we’d be moving in together at any point. He didn’t say anything to that, just looked at me. Then when I told him to stop looking at me like I’d slapped him round the face he replied “I’m looking at you like that because it’s true… and I feel bad.” So now I feel bad that he feels bad and… it’s all a big mess.

But all of that isn’t the point. That’s just background. The point is… four years. Four bloody years. That’s how long I’m going to have to wait for my boyfriend, unless he or Maik has a radical change of opinion in the meantime. And I refuse to spend that time here. I am not living in a student residence until I’m 29. No way, no how. Not happening.

So I’m moving out. At the next available opportunity. Which will be March.
Phew. I feel so much better now I’ve made that decision.


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Answering the questions that you ask.

Well not you personally. The general public type of you. Or more specifically that part of the general public that types questions into Google and ends up at my blog.
I actually kind of stole this idea from Katyboo, but I’m pretty sure she’s not the only blogger that’s ever done this so she won’t mind me stealing it… will you Katy?

So for those who don’t know the concept, I shall explain.
Basically wordpress has a statistics page where it tells me, among other things, how many people have looked at my blog and what link they clicked on to get here. It also tells me what people typed into search engines that led them to me. This blog will be a sort of question and answers session, where I take some of the search terms and answer/comment on them.

And now, without further ado, it’s time for me to answer the world’s questions…

1. What to do when bored at midnight?
You could try to going to bed. That’s traditionally where people are at midnight. Unless they have something better to do, which you clearly don’t otherwise you wouldn’t be bored.
Wow, that was easy. Next question please…

2. How to make my crap smell worse.
Why? Why would you want to do that? Personally I think crap already smells bad enough, even the less smelly varieties. It’s a waste product for goodness sake! If you really, really want to go through with it try eating lots of Mexican food. All those spices have to have some effect, right?

3. Why don’t babies blink often?
Don’t they? I haven’t been around enough baby babies to notice. My guess would be becasue they have smaller eyes.

4. How do the Brits cook their tea?
Do you mean tea as in cups of tea? Cause in that case we don’t. Why would you want to cook tea? You just put it in a cup or tea pot (in one of those strainer things if it’s loose) and add boiling water. Then you leave it to stew for a while. No cooking involved.
If by tea you mean the evening meal – which I doubt because only people from Northern England call it that and they wouldn’t need to ask – we probably cook it the same way you do, in an oven or on a stove. Unless you’re a caveman, in which case you cook your meals slightly differently…

5. What is the German law on naming babies?
I’ve done a post on this before, so this time I shall be brief.
Basically it says the name is not allowed to harm the child in any way, so no calling your kids Talula Does the Hula from Hawaii (this really happened, by the way…). Oh, and it has to clearly state the gender of the child, so names that can be used for either sex either have to combined with a middle name that’s one or the other or made into double (hyphenated) names. If the officials don’t believe your choice of name is actually a name you have to prove it. And no, saying “but Frank Zappa named his daughter Moon Unit” does not count as proof.

6. What can you do when you turn 25 years old?
- Panic
– Get incredibly drunk and go around telling people that you’re actually not 25, not at all, it’s just a vicious rumour.
– Stay in bed all day and pretend it isn’t happening
– Or you can choose to embrace it. After all, being only 5 years away from 30 isn’t that bad… right?

7. What to do if you drank too much water?
Stay near a toilet would be my advice. You’re going to be needing it. You could also try eating some mashed potatoes or something – that might soak up the excess.


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Men’s socks mystery

Why do all men’s sock look the same, except for tiny differences in the shade and the size of that little band at the top? I spent an hour last night sorting out Jan’s socks. And no, I’m not exaggerating. Seriously.
Why does he even have that many pairs of socks anyway? Who needs that many pairs of identical socks? If they were at least interesting socks I might be able to understand it, but they’re all black. Or grey. Or navy blue. And in the electric light it’s almost impossible to tell the difference between the black and the navy blue ones.

Aarrghhh!
I think in future I might save up all his clean socks and make him sort them out.
That’ll learn him… ;-)

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