Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Do you believe in Love after Valentines?

Ohh ho! Look what I did there! That title is snappy. It's almost like Cher is right here in the room with me.
Except not, because I changed the words and now I don't even know if you understand what I am alluding to...

This post is for you. Whether you are an "Ew gross Valentines is sloppy mush that I eat for breakfast!" person,
or an
"Ohh I wish I wasn't single so I could get a Valentines" person
or an
(-insert gruff male voice-) "Huh? Wha? That is for little girls and barbie dolls." person,
or even one of those rare people-who-actually-like-Valentines-all-the-time person.

Everyone has their reason. Mine were as follows (until something magical happened...)

1 - Singing Telegrams. Think pink bumble-bee outfits, an inappropriate song like 'sex bomb', and hearts drawn on your face with red lipstick.

2 - If you go to dinner with someone on Valentines, they might bring you flowers, and then you don't know where to put them during the meal, and they get all wilted and end up splattered with of spaghetti bolognese.

And that was all the reasoning I needed, until that marvelous day....

(You're thinking, oh, I can guess what comes next! Isn't this around about the same time that you fell in love?! No. Do read on.)

My flatmate... "Emmi" *(she doesn't have a stripper name, so I had to make this name up. I hope she approves)... received a secret Valentine.

The thing was, she had no idea about this, because when the Valentine was delivered, she was attending a party. Our other flatmate was at home instead. It went like this:

The flowers and chocolates got placed outside Emmi's bedroom door, the Admirer went sadly home, and the rest of the night was spent in an excited, "oh I can't wait for Emmi to come home and see her secret surprise gift! She got chocolates! And maybe she really likes that guy and maybe they are going to go out and then maybe they will get married and we will be her bridesmaids...?!"

When Emmi finally came home - still glowing from her I-Hate-Valentines-Party - she bounced merrily up the stairs to go to bed.

That was when the screaming started.

I was lucky enough to arrive home at this point, and was standing at the bottom of the stairs, bewildered and frightened.

Emmi had found the Valentine outside her bedroom door. She was deeply enraged and disgusted. Who even WAS he???!!

The Roses were limp and the card was stalker-ish with creepiness written inbetween all the lines! (there were 2 of them).

The house was in a commotion for about half an hour before the chocolates were abandoned on top of the TV because they were "guilty guilty love chocolates! I can't eat THEM!"

And the Roses sat on the table, looking up at us with sad little faces that said "We are unloved" or maybe, "we are inserted with spy-cams"?

It was all very mysterious and it turned out the Admirer was someone who's admiration was blatantly unwanted. Also he had never even talked to her face before!

She was tortured by his attention and the frightening possibility that he might expect something back, or try to pursue the 'relationship' further. (He did, later.)

What's the moral of this story, you may ask?

Am I going to paint you a picture of why I like Valentines, and why many people detest it, and what is and isn't appropriate, and how cruel women can be, and why men are incapable of romance, and what is the true meaning of Valentines, and what kind of gift you should get (not Cadbury Roses)...?

No. I'm just going to say that myself and the other flatmates really enjoyed our Valentines day that year - watching our tortured Emmi, solving the stalker mystery, and eating the Guilty Guilty Love Chocolates. All of them.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The European City that shall remain nameless incase I offend someone

I thought that this city was my friend. Not like an actual friend, but like a friend I hadn't met yet that was a city instead of a human.

But I was wrong.
(Disclaimer: This post is more about mocking our own high expectations of the city than trying to actually offend people who live there.. and I do know some of them!
My friend Natasha and I were hanging out in Europe, as you do, and decided to visit this city. (I'll let you guess - it starts with P and ryhmes with "Rague".).)

(P.S Her name is not actually called Natasha but she said that would be her stripper-name . More accurately, her concubine-name, which is possibly even worse than the fact that she has a stripper name, so in the interest's of internet-privacy... Natasha.)

We expected this city to look like it's picture - rich and fancy and old.

Like George Clooney.

... then we arrived at night on a train and it's like Hugh Heifner was waiting for us at the train station instead. But he was fat and his gold chain was poking through his chest hair and he didn't have his bath-robe on. On second thought he didn't look much like Hugh Heifner at all.

According to the map there was a tram line directly from the main train station but the little pictures with arrows on the walls could have meant any kind of vehicle so we ended up walking in circles over a bumpy park, in the dark, and there were dodgey looking shadows of men that could have been taxi drivers, but could have been something else too.

We were too chicken to find out, so we just kept walking, trying to use night-vision to see through the trees and make sure no-one was lurking.

That was when we saw the lights from a tram in the distance and sprinted (if you can call it that, dragging two suitcases over lumpy cobble stones) for it. It stopped and we tried to get on.

We didn't know that the tram driver would close the door on our luggage. We also didn't know that all the passengers on the tram would stare at us cold-blooded like an alien species. At least they stopped staring when we needed help with our luggage or when they wanted to elbow us out of their way...

Oh yeah and we were so hardened by life on the European streets that we didn't buy tickets.

By this stage we were kinda aware that we were completely lost, at night, in a foreign city. It wasn't the first time so we were a bit like, o big whup.

It wasn't a big deal until we found ourselves standing in a dirty street in the dark with no-one around except for these dudes. We could only guess what they were talking about...

Which would have been fine except the drawing doesn't do it justice. Did I mention it was night-time and no-one was around?
And that they reminded me of the scary dog-man-on-a-chain in Pulp Fiction?
And that probably hated jews and I'm about 90% sure they also hated us?
And that they kept watching us like they were discussing if we would taste better fried or bbq-ed?
In our zombie-exhaustion-state it was all a bit too much.

Luckily after an hour of searching we managed to find our way into the heart of the red-light district! Yay!

This could have been less great if it wasn't for the fact that our apartment was there. Wedged inbetween some sex-shops and some bogan-goths, we were very happy to find it, never mind that it was probably a brothel in the off-season.

The next day we went on a bus tour with a guy talking in a language that was supposed to be English but sounded exactly like this:

The informative-ness was amazing! We also got split up and Natasha sat at the back, looking sadly out the window except when I turned around to pull scared faces at her.

Not because I was trying to be funny, because I was actually scared. Scared that we had both gone insane and no longer understood what used to be our mother-tongue - English.

That night to celebrate our incredible foreign-city-ness we went out for a drink in the tourist-zone hoping to spot some hot bods and re-live our time in the cranking night-life of Berlin. But it didn't resemble Berlin very much at all.

And that was the end of our time in that country.

(Well, almost, we had to go on a train with urine-puddles on the floor, and THEN we were done.)