Friday, December 31, 2010

Good Intentions

And so we arrive at the very last day of this year. As always, there is that feeling of Where ever has the time gone by? I swear, we were *just* doing this last year......

Although I'm a not a resolution type of gal, I decided to go ahead and make some erm... guidelines for the upcoming year. And so, in no particular order, here they are:

1. Try something new as often as possible.
Beer Baron once told me that according to his grandma, trying or doing something new added an extra 72 hours to your life. We are still trying to figure out how that would work when it comes to sampling new brews; would the extra 72 hours cancel out the 72 hours we were probably loosing due to liver deterioration? In any case, actively seeking out new experiences seems like a good way for me to ensure that the adventures continue. And hey, they make for very good blog posts as well!

2. Don't spend more than 48 hours at time in my PJs.
Please note, I'm not saying that lounging around in one's PJs are not a good thing. I'm just attempting to put a cap on the number of days (at a time) that I remain in them.

3. Do NOT keep watching sappy movies like Love Actually or Sweet Home Alabama. They do nothing other than shine a very large and bright spotlight onto the fact that I am (and will probably continue to be) in a state of singledom.

4. Dance. All the time. Anywhere. Everywhere. Even if people are watching. Especially if people are watching. Something like this.

Happy New Year Readers. I've loved having you follow along on my mad little journey so far, and hope to see you again in 2011.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Mega Christmas Wishes Post

Some years ago a friend came up with a very unique idea for a Christmas email. This year, when sitting down to compose mine I remembered his plan and decided that the statute of limitations on the rip off had expired and went ahead and created my own version of a Christmas message.

When thinking about Christmas, its always the memories from your childhood that tend to take centre stage. Good and bad... they come tumbling to the forefront. Whether it is that horrible dress your mother forced you to wear (Bandra girls on this list... you know the one with the bows and itchy fabric) or the excitement of making Christmas sweet with your Nana and the cousins or the thrill of the first notes of the Christmas choir. 

I could have written a deep and insightful (and sometimes humourous) account of my best Christmas memories... but that's not going to be any different from the rest of the festive greetings is it? So, thanks to the wonder that is You Tube, this is going to be an audio visual trip down memory lane!

When you sing in a Christmas choir, the festive season begins long before Advent Sunday. In fact, I remember one year when it was not even Diwali and we'd already begun with weekly practices. Through trembling tenors and shakey sopranos and with 80% of the singers not even able to read music, we somehow each year managed to pull off a fantastic performance the Christmas Eve service. Unfortunately, there are no recordings to share with you, so instead I give you The Carol of the Bells
 performed by a very unique ensemble.

Anyone growing up in North American will be very familiar with TV Christmas specials such as the Peanuts Christmas and A Christmas Carol and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. We didn't have TV specials in Bombay. What we DID have were uncles and aunties and random relatives and family friends who lived in various parts of the Middle East who would tape (yes as in video) various programs and pass out these cassettes to their India based rellies. And thank goodness for their unabashed bootlegging and totally infringement of copyright because otherwise I would have never ever known about The Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, A Christmas to Remember.

There are so many wonderful songs from this program, both the old and well known as well as new (well, for 1984) ones that Dolly and Kenny belted out in true country style. My all time favourite that I'd like to share with you is a song who's lyrics are so apt, even all these years later. And yes, I Believe in Santa Claus!!

Whatever your personal Christmas traditions, the season is all about getting together. Friends and family from near and far. And over the years, Christmas has been the reason for some amazing musical collaborations that have produced some of the finest tunes ever. There's one such match up that I absolutely love. Here's David Bowie and Bing Crosby and their take on

 The Little Drummer Boy

To all of you on this list that have kiddos (or are about to pop some out), I say to you: Make sure your kid is introduced to the wonderful world of the Muppets as early as possible. Heck, I'd say that EVERYONE should know about the Muppets. The world would certainly be a much better place we all just did things like they do in Jim Henson land! (manamanah!)
So, I end this with this, the best of Christmas wishes to you and yours. May it be merry, may it be bright, joyful and triumphant!  But most of all, may it be filled with the joy and laughter of loved ones. Here's hoping that 2011 brings you the best experiences and wonderful times to look back on at this time next year.

Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo and the rest of the gang have this special wish for you. 

Cheers to a wonderful today, and an even better tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pink. Not my Favourite Colour.

Pretty much all of Scotland has been getting slammed with the worst kind of winter weather. Snow, sleet and ice is all that the weather fairy is offering on the menu. It has caused the worst kind of chaos as this country is so not prepared for the ravages of winter storms.

And yet there were a small group of us that still managed to trudge in to work every single day. From 6pm to 10pm every night, we toiled away. There were at time anxious glances out the window as the snow started to accumulate to alarming proportions. Over the radio we heard repeated announcements for folks to get home early as there was fear that most main highways would soon be shut.

Last Monday, as the snow was gathering to alarming proportions, we asked if there was the possibility of getting off work early. After a lot of hemming and hawing, permission was given to leave 30 minutes early *only* if we made up the time later on in the week. Very thankful, we scampered off. The next day, we each got a call from work telling us that the back shift (that's us) was to be temporarily suspended due to the weather.

I must admit that I did enjoy the unexpected night off. It was actually the night of the epic foot-in-mouth moment, but hey it was still a night off and it felt wonderful to out and about like a regular person! But as the days went past, and the snow and ice melted and we still didn't get a call back to work, there was a stink in the air. It wasn't until last Wednesday a whole week later that we were finally recalled to action.

By this time, I had a sinking feeling about the whole situation. And right enough. As we all sat down at our desks, the manager came by and handed us all a letter. It's just about your contracts he drawled. It sure was. And the fact that this was our one week's notice of termination as the back shift was being cancelled.

Its not the fact that we've been laid off. Its not the fact that I've lost a job that I was counting on to see me through the next six months. Its how it was done and the really lame reason (change in company dynamics) that we were given. The reality is that we were asking too many questions, making too many "demands", actually bothering to question how things were done.

Today was our last day. Not one person from management stayed behind to acknowledge that 12 people were leaving. Perhaps even to thank us for our efforts? Wish us good luck? A Happy Christmas?

I'll miss the fun times with my colleagues and the security of a regular pay. But I cannot say that I'm sad to be out of there. I've been working for 10 years now and that was truly an interesting experience. But I am slightly thankful that I do not have to be part of that environment any more.

I am instead, going to focus on spending Christmas with my friend and everything else that the holiday season has on offer.

Pixy out.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Kiss and Tell

Every year in the run up to Christmas, I always have that one special moment that seems to define the season for me. Its something, often a tiny and mundane act or event that is the trumpet blast The Holiday Season is on hand!!!! This year's was just a little extra special.

Last night I was at a bar with some friends when someone pointed out that I happened to be standing right under a bunch of mistletoe. All conversation came to a screeching halt as every single person in the group (and some from adjacent groups as well) turned to see who was going to do the deed. The seconds ticked away feeling like an eternity and I stood there just looking into my drink and wishing that the earth would open up and swallow away my public embarrassment.

After what seemed like an eternity and as people were starting to feel bad for me, my pal leaned over and gave me a loud *muuuuuah* on the cheek. Everyone laughed and the tension was broken and people were turning back to their conversations. Then, the unthinkable happened. Another guy - the undisputed charmer/bad boy/man whore of the group - turned to my pal and loudly exclaimed, Terrible! That's no way to kiss someone under the mistletoe. This is.....and before I or anyone else could react, proceeded to kiss me long and hard and if I'm utterly honest, very very well.

When he finally broke it off to the loud cheers of the bar, I wasn't sure if I was dizzy from the beer, the embarrassment or the fact that I had just had a total overdose of Christmas cheer!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Hello Mouth, Meet Foot!

The scene: Comedy night at the local. Booth in the corner with some of my pals. Boy sitting in corner is a newbie; colleague of a friend.

The situation:
I am sitting diagonally across from boy-in-the-corner. At one point, I shift position and in doing so, slam my knee against something under the table. Puzzled, I look down knowing that it can't be the table supports. Turns out, its boy-in-corner's leg. He's so tall that his legs stretch right across the large pub table and that's his knee I've just slammed into.

Still peering under the table I exclaim, Good heavens... that was you. My, you certainly are one long fella.

There is dead silence as everyone at the table processes that sentence, followed by a gale of laughter as me (and boy) turn very red.

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