Monday, November 29, 2004

fine food dublin

What a w/end. Spent Saturday running around town buying delish food to scoff - bread in the boulangerie near George's St. Arcade, salami in the sausage shop opposite the entrance to Powerscourt Shopping Centre, cheese in Sheridan's Cheesemongers. MMMM. Imagine if you will, me on Saturday morning, never having tried Tomato and Fennel Bread. The pig ignorance of it, the bloody unneccessary wasted years. Now, having feasted on both the plain old, here I am with a smear of Dairygold, and the toasted with posh cheese and a smidge of oregano and tomato relish, I snear upon Foccaccia from Tesco, with its excuse for rosemary.

Tonight we were discouraged to note that they've stopped selling the Cuisine de France variety of mince pies. Now they put their own ones all dolled up with icing sugar, in the 'Cuisine de France' pop-up bin, in essence passing their pretty average mince pies off as those buttery melt in your mouth moments of heaven. Of course, I had to buy them, and I recommend you don't. That time of year again, when the fake santas beacon from neighbouring roofs, when all you want is the sofa and a nice tipple of sherry or port. So homey and comfy. Last night we went to a kickass amnesty gig - kickass describing Tommy Tiernan's performance, which rocked Vicar Street and left me with lockjaw - and I, ever the nerd, was so glad to be home in my warm little gaf with arthur the cat.

Aw winter, how I love thee sometimes.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

sincerely l cohen

What is the story with senior managers? Is it only my humble experience, or does ineptitude and indecision ensure the next rung on the corporate ladder? Now, allegedly I was employed due to my qualifications and experience - I went through a competitive process that only stopped short of setting rabied dogs on my ass, and today my first half an hour was taken up with opening emails from my boss with the attached msg:

Pl print for me.

Hump off and print it yourself you incompetant idiot. Sadly no, like the snivelling wretch I am, I dorkily printed them off and duly dropped them on his desk. Then, and only then did he deign me ready to be tossed two documents carefully marked with illuminous post-its and ask me to 'photocopy that'. That being three pages on each. The exertion of emailing me, post-iting and using his cakehole to verbalise culminated in the need for an extended tea break on his part and excess energy on my part being expressed through fuming. Later, I was taken out of a meeting with our designer to be asked to try and find a slot with the head-guy next week for him. Very professional.

When I rule the world all senior management will be forced to shred all the paper they wasted over the course of their career with 'immediate effect'. When they achieve this, and only when they achieve this will they be allowed to retire. Satisfactorily for the taxpayer, a sharp decline in the cost of pensions to the economy will be evident and many forests will be saved and most entertainingly they will all die slowly and painfully and like me, bored. For yes, I will be an angry leader.


Tuesday, November 23, 2004

cruddy tuesday

Just helped fit out the folks for a seventies party they're going to on Saturday, my father in a purple wig and an afghan, who would have thunk it.

Also watched The Ladykillers, wasn't as funny as I had hoped. Maybe my expectations of the Coen Brothers are a little too high, but I accept no blame for it, they are responsible for raising them in the first place. Blood Simple, Fargo and The Big Labowski being my top three. There were some good moments, I'm not sure if it was just that my relationship with Tom Hanks is a little strained following years of over-exposure, or that the pacing didn't suit the comedic haminess of the caricatures...

Momentous occasion, we booked flights to Capetown today. So much to see, I reckon I'll be googling Table Mountain until we head off. Can't believe how lucky I am (despite the continual griping) to have this opportunity. Four of us are heading off, so it should be interesting to say the least. I'll have to invest in a digital camera (seeing as my original one was stolen - joke is on them, didn't have the CD to install it with it).

Went to the alma mater to do background research into my café idea, but spent an hour reading consumer research journals. What is it that compels me to be attracted to the Machiavellian world of marketing despite my sensibilities?


Monday, November 22, 2004

elfing great

Just watched Elf - starring the great will ferrell of Zoolander splendour, who can forget Jacobin Mugatu. Elf, not so memorable, but laugh out loud - spagetti and maple syrup, eating cookie dough and snuggles, perfect mood lifter for a dark night in november.

Ireland is so dark at the moment - my friend's kid apparently asked why it is always night time., he'll learn It also started to get cold (read colder) recently which, depending on how you're feeling of a day, means bitter depression or homely comfy fun - or so the marketers would have us believe. Mostly I dwell in the former camp with an occasional flirtation with the latter.

The worst of it is that it rarely snows and that sucks, because we all could do with a good snowball scrap.


Sunday, November 21, 2004

satisfaction

fantastic roast chicken, jamie oliver stylie with alotron's mum's distinct twist - substite orange for lemon. result: sweet, delicate chicken - moist, not dry. accompanied by roast winter root vegetables and pan fried potatoes (a less fussy but equally delish take on nigella lawson's hasselback potatoes) mmm. spent the afternoon in the kitchen talking about this and that with his folks and grandmother. perfect way to get over a hangover.

family meals rock. that's not the coolest thing i've ever said, but nonetheless i stand by it.




hangover sunday

this old familiar pain. maybe i should lay off the booze for awhile. good night last, went for lunch to café metro (one of the best dublin cafés) had three cups of coffee and a great natter with two friends. tried to go for a pint to grogan's which was as usual too full, so headed on to the long hall. the buzz there is great, from the famous mirrored walls behind the bar to the lack of music and the eclectic clientele, very comfortable and easy to relax into. chatted all around the houses, the usual from politics to makeup and religion to fatalism. outside for a ciggie or two, having chats about movies with strangers. later headed out in the rain in search of food, ended up in salamanca on suffolk street for a spot of tapas. lucky they were still serving, it was well after eleven. i had a degustif, amaretto of course.

ollie stayed over, had to drop her home this morning as she was having a bit of trouble with asthma, hope it wasn't arthur the cat's fault. delighted to discover we've been invited to alotron's house for dinner this afternoon, i didn't fancy cooking. just started watching 'revenge of the pink panther' the fourth disc in my pink panther box-set, but didn't want to get too stuck in as we have to go to collect alotron's wee brother from the skate-park out by the airport. decided to write here instead, and maybe browse around the internet for awhile. here's hoping it's roast chicken for dinner!

Friday, November 19, 2004

friday evening

sitting here in work waiting for alotron to come and rescue me, i feel like rapunzel without the long hair. also it is likely that i'm boreder (if such a state or word exists) than she. everyone else has gone home. that was him on the phone, better dash.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

enamel

i thoroughly recommend dentistry as a pastime. it was delightful to learn that my teeth are in tip top form in spite of years of abject neglect save for the occasional flash of the minty stuff. apparently if you pay prsi, which i thought was just another form of taxation, one is entitled to get the chomps viewed and cleaned every six months. who says ireland is a rip off (okay i admit i have whined so myself from day to day)? after five months of paying a few quids a paycheck, i get payback.

the economist has said that ireland is the best country in terms of quality of life and all i've heard is people griping and moaning that it isn't. what are they on about? so, we don't have any public transport as it was all ripped out in the early days of the republic (viva la republic), it currently gets dark around 3.30pm, and there is a monsoon of rain outside. but we do have endless entertainment in the form of drinking and now i discover free (or almost) dentistry. fantastic. best country ever i reckon, we should smugly and gleefully revel in our wonderfulness, until the fickle world of the media judges us otherwise.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Abhaile

I'm just home. Picked alotron up from football at the astropark in tallaght. Driving on the M50 at night can be beautiful - vacant concrete office blocks, shimmering lights, empty smooth road, the joy of overtaking a truck or two. Never thought I would like driving, avoided it until I was 24, when I had to learn to drive for work where I had to visit our offices, or sometimes duties involved ferrying my boss home. I worked so far away from home, and the public transport is so inadequate in Dublin (actually in Ireland generally, even in spite of Iarnróid Éireann's aspirational slogan 'getting there' - come on folks, lets face it, we're simply not getting anywhere - enough ranting).

There I was, ideologically and financially opposed to driving, not least due to crippling fear, when it was forced upon me. My Driving Instructor, Christy, laughed and said I had 'a dead woman's grip' on the steering wheel. He stopped when I told him I had an urge to turn into oncoming traffic.

Ten lessons on (yes folks, we have a slow learner) I bought my first car, which is my current and only car, a 1997 Ford Fiesta, on occasion referred to as betsy. Forced to drive across the city daily, I soon mastered the skills of road rage, and gained a massive superiority complex regarding my level of skill in comparison with other drivers. Sad really, I've become my worst fear.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004


arthur the cat (when he was younger)

arthur

arthur the cat, named after a pint of guinness because he looks like one being pulled (see photo above), had a bit of an incident this morning as a result of swallowing some string last week.

he barfed all over the floor of his room. gruesome. alotron, the perfect boyfriend that he is, cleaned it all up.

anyway, when i got home from work today, i discovered that the dumb spiky fur machine has swallowed more string, which i a dumb bald idiot machine left lying around.

i await future puking with dreaded anticipation.

feed the world

now don't get me wrong, i think liveaid was fantastic in terms of getting all that money and everything, not that i can remember much of it, being seven or so at the time.

still, is it really necessary to destroy that song and ruin all our western christmases with the baleful wailing of busted, who i believe are going to be gushing on the remake? i've joyfully taken the approach of ignoring that tat (you know, all that pop idol/shooting stars/ celestial celebrity search rubbish) and resent being forced to listen to crap out of guilt.

thought it was funny that bono was coerced into singing that line again, 'well tonight thank god it's them, instead of you-hoo'. not that i think it's funny that it's them and not us - although i have to admit i'm glad that i'm sitting here in front of my pc with the central heating blasting, tummy full of ginger cake (mmm, ginger cake). i'm not sure if i thank god particularly, but i suppose that's just me being pedantic, pompous and awkward about my beliefs and so on.


My mouth.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Ireland calling

I'm listening to Air America Radio... in my little house in Dublin. Strange after all the hype and media coverage of the elections to be listening in to what's happening there now. Growing up here, it was America we looked to for cultural references. That was before we became rich here in Ireland and our self confidence grew. Marty McFly was my hero, a McDonald's birthday party was an aspiration. Now in such a short space of time, my perceptions have changed. It was naive to think that the world was progressing, hell I studied postmodernism over and over again in college (not that it sunk in or anything). But I did, I believed we were striving for a better, more inclusive world that acknowledged our differences and built on our individual strengths as nations.... not for the first time, I was wrong.


A photo of a house where I lived.


This is where I used to rent... Don't have a photo of where I live now, maybe if I get one I'll put it up here. Just fooling around really, trying to get the hang of putting things up.

oíche maith, codladh sámh

november, middle of. dreary weather, work's falling apart. stew for dinner, mmm tasty.

this is my first time writing here, a virgin so to speak. second time this week i've been referred to as a virgin, the fortune-teller on saturday, camp as christmas said i was one too.

as you can see i live an intriguing life. talk soon.

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