Sunday, 28 September 2008

Women's CHAFF: Issue 23

OK, I'm not actually sure if it's Women's CHAFF or Woman's CHAFF, but the result will be much the same: CHAFF for (and probably a bit about) ladies! I'm hoping this will be a really good/interesting CHAFF: there was a Man CHAFF last semester, which had things like the "Man-O" game with Testosterone cards, etc. Apparently there will be a Fem-O game this CHAFF, but thankfully William (the editor) and his exclusively male team didn't orchestrate it — William's girlfriend and her friend made it.

Anyway, on to my contributions to the team:

  1. Girly horoscopes
  2. This week in history, covering Jacqueline Pascal (Blaise Pascal's sister), Catherine Booth, two prostitutes killed and dismembered by Jack the Ripper, and the fishwives' march on Versailles
  3. DVD review of Calendar Girls
  4. Quiz: Are you a bee-yatch?

Having quizzes was my idea, since most girls' magazines I've seen have quizzes. Ang and I put our heads together and came up with some awesome questions, so you'll have to take the quiz to see if you are a bee-yatch. And William, inspired, made his own quiz too: Are you a woman?

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Friday, 19 September 2008


I don't think I should be allowed to "window-shop", especially when I have my Visa in my pocket and a penchant for impulse buys.

Yesterday, waiting for Dan to finish work, I wander into a second-hand bookstore to pass the time, and come out with a book I've never heard of. Today, wandering through town, I had a look in a store with a closing-down sale, and found two beautiful dresses, both of which are far too pretty to wear in the foreseeable future; sadly, I just don't have the kind of life where I need little elegant dresses.

To be fair, I didn't buy the dresses; and I didn't buy that cute little miniskirt I like at Instinct Clothing either. But I might buy them tomorrow — which is almost worse because, knowing that I have several unworn miniskirts already, and knowing I have no events to wear these dresses to, I still may be stupid enough to spend my money on them.

They're just so pretty.... But I've bought so much lately, and I hate being in debt. (I'm just waiting for my new Shopaholic book to arrive; when I first heard of it recently it sounded too similar to me not to get.)

I guess it's not too bad if I do buy a dress; they're so pretty, and on such a good deal. But I don't want to be tempted by any more; so I'm seriously considering a policy of no longer allowing myself into stores until I'm out of the red. I'm clearly just not very good at the "window" aspect of shopping.

And now I want a hoody and a tee from Threadless, too... which reminds me: check out this new t-shirt store I just discovered. I promise faithfully not to buy anything from it. But some of the slogans are funny; someone else should buy one instead. Let me shop vicariously through you!

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

#5: Sunday Star-Times competition

Woo! My hundredth post in this blog, and it feels like it should be a momentous one: part of the reason I've held off from blogging lately (although not most of the reason: I've just been too busy and haven't had huge amounts of stuff to write about).

But I entered the Sunday Star-Times short story competition today.

I'm really pleased: I've been wanting to enter it for so long. I didn't submit a particularly great story, but it's one I like: a true story about something that happened when I was six. I almost submitted another story, which I'd originally intended for the competition; but it's not finished, or polished to the same degree. My problem with the one I entered is that it's only 700 words long. It won't win, but that's OK. Maybe the judge will enjoy it.

I don't really feel I put my best effort into it, which is disappointing. With the BNZ competition, although again I didn't enter the story I'd originally intended to, I put a lot of effort in; I felt I submitted a good story. Well, I guess I do think the story I entered this time is a good story, but that was more due to the fact that it had been an assignment for a writing paper, than because I'd actually polished it hugely for the competition.

But, deadline's over; hopefully I'll enter it again next year. I almost wondered if I should cross this goal off my 101 list, but that's silly; I did accomplish it. Just maybe, hopefully, next year I'll do better.

I'm kind of glad my 100th entry is about writing and competitions and my 101 list. That's what I want to be focussing on. It's not really true of what I do focus on; but I need to stop being so busy, make more time for it, and, as Kerryn's blog constantly reminds me: "No excuses. Just write."

Friday, 12 September 2008

Nihilist CHAFF: Issue 20

Coming up next week in everyone's favourite Palmerston North student newspaper (unless you prefer the UCOL one):
  1. Nietzchey horoscopes
  2. This week in history on Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvarayya, circus elephants, Tolkien vs. Lewis, women's suffrage in New Zealand (and why we were not, after all, the first country to give women the vote), and Napoleon's invasion of Moscow.
  3. Six Pack review — have you bought YOUR copy yet?

All exciting stuff, and if you haven't bought your copy of the Six Pack Three yet, then go do it now! And then read my review of it and see if you agree.

Off to write more articles now! I'm such a willing slave.

Thursday, 11 September 2008


Dan and I are going to go visit my Grandma this weekend.

I'm quite worried, I don't know how it'll be. From what Dad said (Grandma and Granddad visited my family last week), it sounds like there's already been some pretty rapid deterioration. I'd hoped to catch up on those times that I should have visited but didn't; visit her while the dementia's still in its early stages. But I don't know if it is still in its early stages. It's early enough that she'll remember me and be happy to see me, but I don't know — I think she'll mostly just be forgetful. "Not herself". Being "not yourself" is fine if it's a temporary thing, but this is just going to get worse and worse.

It doesn't sound like she knows/has been told she has dementia — but how would you tell someone something like that?

Dad said I'll notice the difference in her. I'm worried as to what that means.

I love my Grandma, I don't want this to be happening.

At least I'm visiting her now. I just wish there hadn't been all those free weekends when I thought about visiting them but just couldn't be bothered.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

NaNoWriMo approacheth

I can't wait for NaNoWriMo.

Each year, lately, I lose a little more enthusiasm; wonder if it's worth doing again; sigh over the sleep I'll lose.

Not so this year. This year, my subconscious decided to give me a story idea. That's right, ladies and gentlemen: It came to me in a dream.

Sadly, because my first exam is on 1 November, I won't be able to do my usual stay-up-till-midnight-and-see-if-I-can-be-the-first-person-in-the-world-to-post-a-word count (last year I tied with one other person).

But the good thing about my exams is that this year they end on the 5th; last year I wasn't able to start till halfway (literally) through November, and ended up having to write 50,000 words in 18 days.

The other awesome thing is that this is my last semester. Done! Gone! Finit! Therefore, after exams I will have NO STUDY to do after work; I will have hours and hours and HOURS to devote to NaNoWriMo. Having done summer semester for the last two years, I really haven't had a break from studying since summer 2005/06. It feels great to be almost done with that, as much as I honestly do love studying. But I'll actually have a holiday! Eee! Not from work, which is pretty mindless anyway, but from study; my evenings and weekends will be mine, all mine!

And in other fantastic news, I got 96% on my first sub-editing assignment. Y'know, the paper where you have to be incredibly anal over punctuation and grammar and everything... 96%! That's an A+, baby. Only one other person even got an A. And I got ninety six percent.

On a side note, when I apologised for missing our last tutorial, our lecturer said they'd missed me... because she'd forgotten her dictionary! I don't know if that's really a good thing....

And Dan's comment about my 96%? "You know this means you're 46% more anal about punctuation than you need to be...."

Sunday, 7 September 2008


I'm angry. This makes me angry.

A little back story, for anyone who doesn't know: Tony Veitch was a TV/radio broadcaster until it was found out that, in 2006, he had reportedly beaten his then-partner till he broke her back, and then paid her $150,000 so she wouldn't tell anyone. When the public found out, there was outrage, resulting in Veitch leaving his job.

And the latest update is that he's tried to kill himself.

I think suicide is a cowardly thing to do, and a very selfish thing to do — it's giving up on life, saying you can't do it any more; and leaving every person you love or who loves you, with no regard at all for their feelings.

But in this case, the population of New Zealand must have contributed to it so heavily that Veitch just couldn't take it any more.

Don't get me wrong, I think it was a horrible thing to do; but it's between Veitch, his ex and the police. It's not the public's duty to lynch him. And remember, this was two years ago. Some people can change in two years. And his ex accepted the money he gave her; she felt that was compensation enough. That doesn't mean the police shouldn't get involved, but if she's happy, why shouldn't we be?

And now you, the New Zealand public, have hated this man to the extent he felt he had no option other than to leave this life. Yes, it was his choice, and it was cowardly and selfish; but you drove him to that point.

Well done, New Zealand. Good job at innocent-till-proven-guilty. Good job at bullying a guy to the point of suicide.

Monday, 1 September 2008

September goals

OK, I feel like I did a little better last month in my goals. Three out of five goals accomplished; three out of eight books read (and one given away). I think I need to set fewer goals for myself, though; lower expectations. Once I can achieve those low expectations, maybe then I can rise higher. That's what I tell myself, anyway. So, my low September goals:

Tasks to complete
#1: Complete crossword task.

#5: Enter SST short story competition.

#29: Back up "Personal" folder.
#52: Make jam!
#91: Complete sponsorship task.

Reading goals
Killing floor; The client; Far from the madding crowd; In my father's den; The eleventh commandment; Solaris; A Christmas Carol; Six Pack Three.

Writing goals
Send a story off to Takahe; write 1000 words of The Snow Dragon.

Tasks to work towards
#17: Complete six chapters of Russian textbook. (0/6)
#25: Sort out one "Unsorted" folder.

#33: Sort out one box of crap.
#58: Knit 22 more rows of my jumper. (0/22)
#67: Go for walks with Dan twice a week each week. (8/8)

#69: Have a "date night" with Dan each week. (2/4)

#78: Burn 1000 calories at gym each week. (3/4)

#82: Use plaque stuff ten times. (3/10)

#90: Donate ten items to a charity. (0/10)