Look! A Bright, Shiny Blog!

There was a time when I used to spend obscene amounts of money on books. Books are pretty gnarly things. Words on paper that take me to another world and make me miss train stations.

Unfortunately, I’m in a country that deems it perfectly reasonable to dub movies and translate everything into Russian because God forbid they fucking learn a different language (Sorry, that was just me being a bit tired of living here for almost a decade.) This means that if I want good books to read, I’ll have to haul them from Malaysia once a year and pray that I don’t have to pay for excess baggage (which also takes up obscene amounts of money.)

This also means that I have to trudge through the dumpster that is the World Wide Web for good things to read once I run out of books. I’m like that homeless guy with a trolley, except that he collects old tins and I score myself some sweet blogs.

Good blogs are not easy to find, and sometimes it’s not the first post you read that gets you hooked. This is what today’s post is all about: THE one that got me thinking, “I’ve got to start from the very beginning!”

1. Poor Stupid Cat – Books of Adam

This guy is precious. Not only does he write awesomely, he draws well too. Sure, illustrations may not matter to some of you, but if you’re anything like Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, you’ll appreciate the pictures. Heck, if you have something resembling sight, you’ll appreciate the pictures.

Why did this post do it for me? If you can make something as dull as a cat drinking anti-freeze funny, there’s no way I’m not going to be loyal.

2. The Immaturist’s Guide to Birdwatching – The Sneeze

I found this blog when in a moment of desperation, I Googled “funny blogs.” What can I say? It was one of those days when I even read the hell out of the milk carton.

I’m not the most mature of people; I still find Uranus funny, and I still giggle when I listen to Blink-182’s live album. Needless to say, when I found a blog with pictures of swallows and tits that I didn’t have to close as soon as someone walked into the room, I was excited.

Sadly, the writer doesn’t blog anymore, but there’s a whole pile of posts that are wildly entertaining, especially the Steve, Don’t Eat It! series.

3. My Damaged Penis – Yossarian Lives

I came across this one when I was studying for my Public Health and Healthcare exams, which was basically a pointless paper on how to issue medical certificates for Russians (ADD moment: for a country that dishes out prescription drugs like candy, they sure are stingy with sick days.)

It all started out with a Mathorgasmics post, which featured an equation so well worked out that I only WISHED I had math questions like that for my A-Levels. I know I would’ve done so much better. While that post was all good and fun, it was the tale of a penile injury that sucked me in. I’m pretty sure it was the picture of the poor phallus, but I like to believe that I’m not shallow and will go with the “He’s been writing entertaining things consistently, why the hell wouldn’t I keep reading?” angle.

4. How to Lose Male Friends and Fatten Your Hooha – Aiming Low

I can’t be sure, but I’m almost certain that the discovery of this page was a result of some frenzied Stumbling (you know Stumble Upon, right?)

I like this page because I can relate to it. I’m not an overachiever, and on a good day I can push myself to be a regular achiever. You can see why a site called Aiming Low would appeal to me.

The reason this post got me hooked was simply the fact that I’d TOTALLY have that sort of rubbish conversation with a male friend. My first thought was, “holy crap! People like me exist!”

5. How to Use a Semicolon – The Oatmeal 

My friends sometimes refer to me as a grammar ho. Those friends are cunts ( I jest! I love them…maybe.)

When I was in school, English classes were a joke. I learned absolutely nothing there, except that a lot of people in literature died of STIs. Actually, I’m not even sure of that, I might have made that up to make class more interesting. In short, whatever grammar I know, I know because English is my first language and I read an insane amount of books as a kid. This also means I’ve been sorta kinda figuring stuff out as I go along.

The semicolon has always bothered me. Sure, they look cute in emoticons, but I’m pretty sure they serve a greater purpose. It was on my quest to find out why the hell semicolons exist that I found The Oatmeal. Complete with examples of usage and an image of a party gorilla, I knew I was in for a good time here.

And that’s that, folks. Are there any blog posts out there that got you hooked on to a blog?

 

No Queen In Sight

I hate travelling. I hate looking for flights, I hate looking for accommodation I can afford. I especially hate trying to pack for a trip. I hate the way I try to take the bare essentials because I hate lugging a heavy bag around, and I hate myself more for realising that something I considered a luxury while packing is actually something necessary when I’m already at my destination.

I hate sitting in a plane for hours, I hate the fact that I might develop a blood clot in my leg that could kill me (this one’s a bit of drama; I’m so short that any economy class seat on any airline feels like I’ve got business class leg room) and most of all, I HATE the way I look rubbish in all my holiday photos because I lacked the essentials that I considered too luxurious to pack.

I love being in new places, though. I love sightseeing and taking pictures of stuff, captions all formed in my head. I love observing people do what they do best and I love gobbling down local cuisine.

This winter hols, I decided to get off my wobbly butt and leave Moscow for a week. My friends chose all sorts of exotic places where you’d need visas and a phrasebook. I’m a lazy git, so I chose London.

Well, that’s only half true. I chose to go to London during my final winter break because I wanted to be around people who speak a language I know well and I wanted to see people I’d been dying to meet, like my cousin who I’d not seen for almost 11 years and friends from Twitterland.

I could do the whole day-by-day thing and bore you to death, but I’m nice so I’ll write stuff worth mentioning. And you’ll be happy about it because if I write everything I remember, you might get fired for spending your entire work day reading a shitty blog post about a place so many people have been to before.

Best Place I Visited

Hands down, this was the ZSL London Zoo. Okay, I admit I have a great fondness for animals and to be perfectly honest, the zoo was the only place I really planned on visiting. You could throw me any map of London and I’d be able to spot it.

It was worth all that anticipation. I spent four hours gaping at all the animals and taking crappy pictures. The crappiest of the lot was a picture of a cockroach which cemented once and for all that not even a glass enclosure was going to calm my feeble katsaridaphobic heart. Look:

The Best Picture I Could Take With Shaky Hands

And this is a picture of a tarantula I took right after:

The Insect I Wouldn't Even Mind As A Pet

 

To top it all off, the weather was great and I managed to take a nice long walk through Regent’s Park and saw a squirrel making friends/ harassing a baby in a stroller.

Best Purchase

The closest to a souvenir from London that I bought is probably the fridge magnet and postcard from, yup, you guessed it, the zoo.

Of course, if you knew me well enough, you’d know that I’m in heaven when surrounded by books. I attacked bookstores with a passion and probably would’ve bought enough books to wipe out a rain forest if I didn’t have a tiny-ass bag. I may have bought a gorgeous evening dress, Jamaican cock flavoured soup mix and a hairbrush in London, but this book is the BEST thing I own at the moment:

Source Of Joy

I was so excited about this book that I started on it even before I was done with Cat’s Cradle. The only reason I stopped reading it was because people at the airport were looking at me funny when I kept laughing out loud.

Strangest Thing Heard In Public

“Shut up, you fucking Christian whore!”

This was on a bus, said by a guy who bumped into a woman with groceries. Why was this strange to me, you ask? Fine, you didn’t ask, but I’m going to tell you anyway.

I have no fucking idea.

How NOT To Tackle Exams

For the first time in two weeks, I’m up before the sun is. Seeing that sunrise is at 9.54a.m., you know what I’m getting at. I wish I could say it’s because I’m hard at work, drinking in page upon page of my Surgery textbook, but the truth is, my friends and I have never been this lazy before an exam, especially not one this important.

Today is the day I attempt to do work instead of sitting around like a House-addicted twat (yeah, I know. The show’s not even cool anymore.)

But before I do that, let me pull some wisdom out of my bum and tell you how NOT to prepare for important state exams that determine your future.

1. Get At Least 10 Hours’ Sleep

I’m usually a person who only needs about 5-6 hours of sleep and some coffee to function somewhat well. While I was happy that classes were over and I wouldn’t have to wake up before birds did, I was confident I wouldn’t sleep more than the luxurious 7 hours I normally give myself on weekends.

What rubbish.

My body has been a pathetic disappointment. I’ve been sleeping at 5a.m. and waking up at 2p.m., followed by a 90-minute nap after brushing my teeth and reading the news. Add my chores like cooking and laundry to my day and I’m left with very little time with the books.

2. Eat Lots

This is my procrastination method of choice. I could read while snacking or having tea, but this person who used to sneak a book to the dining table as a kid now has issues with reading and eating at the same time. Let me give you an example of how I use eating to ruin my chances at a decent exam results AND fitting into a Karen Millen dress:

2p.m. – Roll out of bed

2.10- Weigh out the pros and cons of my breakfast options while reading tweets and Facebook notifications

2.30 – Have breakfast

3p.m. – Brush teeth and make myself look generally presentable for human interaction.

3.30 – Realise that I could’ve had lunch as soon as I woke up. I mean, it’s the afternoon, right? It makes perfect sense.

3.35 – Surf the Net for lunch recipes that are healthy and not boring.

4.30 – Decide that everything on the Internet is too fancy and settle on making anything that has the chili supply of a small country in its gravy.

4.35 – Have a cup of coffee and biscuits before I begin cooking (you know, because cooking is such a taxing task and breakfast may not be able to sustain me till I’m done.)

5 p.m. – Start cooking.

6.30 – Have lunch

7p.m. – Have tea and Kinder Bueno for dessert

7.20 – Hang out with friends while food makes its way down the GI tract.

8p.m. – Have coffee so I can stay awake to study

8.30 – Realise that it’s late enough to have dinner…

You can see where I’m going with this, right?

3. Live On Social Networking Sites.

Imagine Twitter is a bright shiny thing. Well, I’m the fucking magpie that keeps flying to it. I swear, the tab is always open and I check every.bloody.new.tweet. Heck, if Twitter were a person, they would have a restraining order out for me. What’s worse, I talk to my roommates about tweets I find funny. I bet they’re looking for a Twitterholics Anonymous in Moscow or something.

4. Find New/Interesting/Creative Music Videos On Youtube

Every time I have an exam, I create a playlist of about 400 songs that I’ll never be able to listen in one sitting because I have the attention span of a goldfish with ADD. This year is no different, except that I’m a little bored with the songs on my iTunes and the world is not coming out with anything worth listening to. Thankfully, the good people I follow on Twitter sometimes share music links. While I may not like the song they’re sharing, the related videos featured on the page may have some gems. Here are my current top three favourites:

1. Utah Saints – Something Good
( I prefer the High Contrast remix, but this video is pretty cute)

2. David Armand (as Johann Lippowitz) and Natalie Imbruglia – Torn

3. Gotye – Somebody That I Used To Know

Okay, I probably should use my burst of early morning energy to read about pancre….Oh, new tweet! Gotta go.

Before 2012 Ends

As always, I’m late. I wanted to write a post about the ups and downs of 2011, but was too busy having fun. That’s a good way to jump into a new year, don’t you think so?

Right. 2011 in a nutshell.

1. Twitter Friends

The primary reason I got myself a Twitter account was to get away from people I know personally. It’s sounds awful, but trust me. When you live, study and do almost everything with the same people everyday for almost 6 years, you need a break. 

Boy, did I get a break! In the past 12 months I’ve got to know so many interesting people with amazing lives. I’ve been stuck in a rut for so long and these people got me out of it. Let’s be perfectly honest: would you expect a med school student to know about stone sex toys, krav maga, erotica writers with little sexual experience or pretty much anything that happens off-campus? Twitter has been my free pass to all of that, and I’ve never been more grateful.

2. Maroon 5 Concert

I waited NINE friggin’ months for this one. You see, the concert was supposed to be in March 2011, but Adam Levine decided to be an attention-seeking twat and had to be on NBC’s The Voice instead. Thankfully, he’s hot and the band’s performance more than made up for the torturous wait. Plus my friends and I had pretty decent seats.

It was a pretty big deal for me, since it was the first concert I’d been to in Moscow and the second concert I’ve ever been to in my life. Yeah, real ‘Dear Diary’ moment right there.

Holy crap. That’s all worth remembering about 2011? Excuse me while I go make 2012 the bee’s knees.

Boys and Eyes

This blog is moving so slowly, snails want to give it a ride. I’ve been wanting to post stuff for a while, but nothing good has come to mind. Until now, when I’m on sick leave and probably experiencing mild intoxication.

For reasons unknown, I’ve been ogling guys like a lusty wench (far more socially acceptable than a crazy wench.) Most of my lusting takes place sat in front of my laptop, which makes me kinda loser-ish but whatever. My latest loin-crush is thanks to @nosweetnothings on Twitter, who mentioned a player from the French rugby team during the Rugby World Cup finals. Curious to see her specimen of choice, I Googled the team and came across a very lovely calendar called Dieux du Stade (Gods of the Stadium) instead. This is where I found him:

He is Thomas Combezou, the something for Montpellier Hérault Rugby Club. Okay, okay I’m not that shallow. He plays centre. From my “research” I’ve gathered that his job is mainly to tackle anyone who has the ball. What else could I come up with after seeing practically every photo of him playing with his face in somebody’s ribs?

Me lusting over him and making it known to the whole world even before blogging about it has resulted in two things: bacterial conjunctivitis and the catty side in guys. Well, the latter has always been there, but Combezou is the one that helped me get some clarity on the matter.

First, let’s talk about the conjunctivitis. I didn’t want to admit it at first, but I think prolonged staring at hot/cute guys results in me getting some sort of grotesque eye issue. You may think I’m being silly, but when it has happened three times, people stop laughing.

1. In November 2007, I discovered the awesomeness that is Gerard Butler in the movie “300.” He was big, ripped, in minimal clothing and killing other men violently. My knees were liquid. I also had a subconjunctival hemorrhage that took 2 weeks to get better.

2. In January 2009, I watched Seungri’s music video for “Strong Baby.” It’s not much, if I want to be honest about it, but something about him and that slight hint of developing rectus abdominis made me like him. Bam! Kerato-conjunctivitis for 3 weeks, followed by another subconjunctival hemorrhage. That was a total of FIVE weeks with a shitty looking eye.

3. November 2011 (are you seeing a pattern here? I am.) I am blessed with the knowledge that a sculpture like Thomas Combezou exists. After just a week of gazing upon his (insert any word that describes Adonis-like perfection) I have bacterial conjunctivitis. My eyes are spewing colonies and their by-products, and I’m praying that it will be gone in a few days.

Now, about boys being catty.

I’ve gone on about how crazy and ridiculous women can be sometimes, but I’ve never really touched on the topic of male behaviour. I have a fairly decent number of guy friends, and they’re all lovely chaps. Some girls even want to date them. *snigger*

These guys are also the ones who call us girls petty and jealous when they point out an attractive woman and we don’t agree with them. This is their classic line:

“you girls can never admit that another girl is beautiful, there’s always some justification. Look at us guys; if another man is handsome, we have no problem admitting it.”

BOLLOCKS.

Guys can only say that another man is attractive when THEY are the ones pointing it out. If us girls point a handsome or physically attractive man out, these are the most likely responses:

“steroids”

“gay”

“small penis”

“what the fuck is wrong with you?!!”

Usually, these words further prove to me that my eye-candy is indeed hot and bonk-worthy. I heard all of the above when I showed my guy friends that picture. Perfect.

Not only that, it shows that men and women aren’t very different when it comes to being envious. Women are capable of looking at other females and thinking that they’re attractive too, just not the ones you fellas point out.

Oh, my snail’s here. I’ll see you around!

When The Uterus Drops

If I were to translate the topic I’m supposed to be reading now, it would be something along the lines of, “Incorrect Position of Sexual Organs”. The textbook has no pictures, and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not, because my imagination tends to run with reckless abandon.

Imagination or no imagination, I’m inclined to do a little bit of random blogging because this chapter is only nine pages long. Quite a treat, I would say.

1. I realized that I never blogged about my trip to Myanmar, and that’s just sinful. No credit cards, no mobile network coverage, dodgy “unofficial” money changers and a 2km walk uphill to Shwe Dagon Pagoda in the rain where there’s no proper sidewalks. I can’t believe that slipped my mind.

That's where we were headed to on foot. My idea, naturally.

2. I am such a sellout. I’m pretty sure about two years ago, I was ranting on and on about finding Twitter and the need for people to tweet every bloody thing they do utterly ridiculous. Now, I have a Twitter account and I’m on it more than I am on Facebook. My cousin Hera called me a “conformer to society” but completely understood when I said I was following sex-bloggers. Sometimes I wonder what sort of impression I leave on that 17- year old. Truth be told, I’m having lots of fun on Twitter because I’ve made it a point not to follow anyone I know from my uni or school. Part of the quarter life crisis nonsense I’ve mentioned before. Wait, I seem to have lost the plot. All I wanted to say was I’ve been following some really interesting people, especially bloggers (erotic and otherwise) and I’m pleased to say that I have a swamp of good blogs to read nowadays.

3. I am seriously considering going somewhere for my next winter holidays. It’s ridiculous, isn’t it? I’ve been in Moscow for almost 6 years and I’ve never gone anywhere besides home. The problem mainly lies in the fact that I like being in places, I loathe getting there. I must be such a disgrace to my Nanna, the woman traveled around Europe alone at the age of 65. At 25, I’m sitting on my wobbly ass complaining about wanting to go places and not actually going. I’ve been leaning towards visiting London, but we’ll see where my bank balance takes me.

Okay. The remaining five pages are giving me dirty looks. Till the next short, visually disturbing chapter.