Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pole Dancing Is What Frogs Do Best

You guys are so good. Almost everyone got almost every post-it picture right! Or at least somewhere in the vicinity of right’s general direction. I’m so proud of you. The correct answer was:

#1 Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow (I’d do him.)
#2 Marilyn Monroe (Or Anna Nicole Smith if you’re into that kind of thing.)
#3 Robert Pattinson as Edward The Sparkling Vampire (Or James Dean if you’re older than 16.)
#4 M

Midsummer is over and while I’m happy everyone survived, I have just that much more emotional baggage to carry around after seeing my dad jump into the sea naked. We had a great time, though. There was lots of wonderful food, the Americans didn’t think we were entirely crazy (although they did look very stunned when they realized the frog dance wasn’t a joke), and the sunset was beautiful. I’m a little tired and have to get up for work way too early tomorrow, so instead of telling you about the evening I’ll just show you the most important parts.

First, the pole dancing:

The tall green skinny thing in the middle is the pole and the people holding hands are dancing around it. Ignore the guy in the kimono, he’s our neighbor and his elevator doesn’t go all the way up.

Then, the frog dance:

I have no comment, I’m just happy I’m not in the picture.

Next, I’ll impress you with our big fancy boat:

It floats.

And now, let’s compare our boat to the neighbor’s:

Theirs doesn’t just float. It can also house a big Mexican family while communicating with Mars and negotiating world peace.

Then we all took a sauna, first the guys, then the girls. This here is when the guys decided that a swim sounded like a good idea. It was 11 pm and the sun was just setting.

Later my mom and our female guests also wanted to take a swim, but luckily, my self-preservation kicked in and I kindly declined a swim amongst the blocks of ice still floating around. Hypothermia is not my friend.

But the sunset was actually not half bad once the naked people were out of the water:


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Post-It Pop Quiz

I’m back and it hasn’t even been a month since my last post! I’m on a roll this week. Sadly I’ll have to cut the rolling short on account of midsummer. Every year we crazy Nordic people celebrate the solstice, the longest day of the year. Where I live this day is about 19 hours long. Add two hours of twilight and you get three hours of dark and therefore three hours of decent sleep. And people ask me why I don’t like summer.

Anyway, midsummer is kind of a big deal around here, and the entire population of Finland flock to my neck of the woods, namely the archipelago. They swim, take saunas, eat lots of barbecued food and drink lots of beer, dance around big poles covered with flowers and leaves and pretend to be frogs, some even go out with their boats while drinking the beer and pretending to be frogs, and often end up with a small case of drowning as a result.

This is the midsummer pole Muschu decorated at work. It’s a miniature version of the real thing. All that’s missing is Jesus.

This midsummer M and I will be spending at my parent’s summer place with people from all over the world (as long as you call Albuquerque, New York and Ireland all over the world. Oh yeah, and Finland.) It will be very interesting to see the New Yorkers reactions to the frog dance. I’ll try to take a picture of their faces when they realize we’re serious.

Due to this whole midsummer thing I will be away the next couple of days, as will Muschu, M and the rest of Finland. But while you’re waiting for me to come back I will leave you with a very special game to tide you over. This is a game prepared by Muschu, inspired by your love of her Post-It art. She was very flattered. So flattered that she channeled her inner artist once more, got out her Post-Its, ignored work and worked some magic. What came out of it is sheer brilliance. All you have to do in this horribly simple game is figure out who the Post-It art is supposed to be. Frankly, I think she made it too easy for you, anyone can see the first one is Frankenstein.





Happy Midsummer! *

Monday, June 21, 2010

Post-It Art

My sister came to me today at work and told me my blog echoes and made me promise I’d post something tonight. (I think she might have overreacted, though – everyone knows my blog doesn’t echo, it’s like a duck.) Nevertheless, I’m sitting here, posting something tonight. Except it’s been so long since I posted anything that I’m starting to feel the pressure. With every day spent procrastinating, the expectations grow higher and higher. The way I’ve been going I should be posting the great American novel today. Or at the very least some minor poetry. Sadly, my brain is too tired for anything slightly resembling classy writing, so I’ll just focus on me, my work, Muschu and karate.

See, I work at a hospital. I write invoices, transcribe the nonsense the doctors dictate, pay bills, keep track of the book keeping, and other miscellaneous duties mostly performed by a secretary. My mother works at the same hospital. She's the head of the long-term ward and scares the crap out of people has earned the respect of the 30-something people she's the boss of. One of those 30-something people is my sister. She works as a nurse at the same ward and is not afraid of mom. Patients love her and she loves them. She's not a nurse for real, though. She's a recently graduated designer. She paints and draws and sews and builds tables and a whole bunch of other stuff. The other day she came up to my office just to say hi. I love it when she does this because I can take a break from not working to talk to her, but at the same time it's very dangerous to have her visit. The last time she visited my office she drew pictures of germs on post-it notes and stuck them all around the room.

The other day was a good post-it day for Muschu, and she started by drawing "silence of the lambs".

Then she decided Hannibal Lecter was a little too morbid for her tastes, and channeled some good old Survivor with...

..."eye of the tiger". You guessed it.

Next, I told her I wanted a picture of a rabbit. Sadly, I think she misheard me.

I don't know if that’s roadkill or dinner, but it's still kind of pretty. Don’t worry, though, she actually is a very good artist. And probably adopted. This is what M and I have hanging on the wall in our bedroom. Muschu painted the gorgeous prima ballerina, while the wonderful still life was painted by my good friend Jenn. The naked lady I won in a contest. I love her.

Now as if I don't get enough good vibes with Muschu visiting me at work all the time, Linda gave me a blogging award! Thank you Linda, you’re the sweetest.

It's a karate/mastering different things kind of award, which is very ironic, because I've never mastered a thing in my life, karate being at the very top of the list of things I haven’t mastered. M and Muschu, however, have both mastered the art of kicking ass. M has a brown belt in karate and Muschu has a something-something belt in taekwondo. What do I do, you ask? I play the piano (badly, I might add) in the background while they’re working up a sweat, saving me from the bad guys. Wanna hear?

If you listen carefully you can hear M swear in the background when he stubs his toe doing some kick-flippy-doo-dah. I was going to perform Bach’s Air for you, but then I chose Celine Dion because I know how much you all love her, plus, I have a bunch of Canadians reading my blog who will just love me for reminding them of what they let loose on the world.

Oh yeah, the award. I’m supposed to list six things that I have mastered in my life. I asked M if the whole thing with bleeding five days a month without dying might count towards things mastered, but he didn’t think so.

1. I’ve mastered the original Super Mario Bros for my good old 8-bit Nintendo.
2. I’ve mastered the alphabet. (If I’m allowed to sing it.)
3. I’ve mastered the art of appearing deeply fascinated when I couldn’t give a crap.
4. I’ve mastered the art of avoiding all cameras at any event.
5. I’ve mastered the stick shift.
6. I’ve mastered the very fine art of procrastination. (But for the life of me, I cannot spell it correctly on the first try.)

So there you have it. A new post, some art, some music, some awards. Life is good. *

Thursday, June 10, 2010

No Trips, No Questions, No Weed, No Blogging

I’ve been caught in a bit of a slump lately, not really knowing what to blog about. I guess it happens to everyone but you never realize how silly you feel until it happens to you. Luckily, I came up with a great idea on how to get me out of the slump. I would look through my old posts for some inspiration. Original, I know.

The post I did about our trip to Rome was quite fun and I thought about doing one of those. That could be fun, right? I’d tell you about killer scooters and losing my wallet and you’d laugh and say “shit happens”. But then when I started writing I realized that M and I haven’t actually been on any trip lately, so that was sort of out of the question.

Then I remembered the one about the pile of burning money. That would be fun, right? You’d ask me something interesting and I’d make up some bullshit story about running towards or away from the burning money. But then as I started writing I realized that it was an “Ask Ziva” kind of post and people just aren’t asking me any interesting stuff.

But then I remembered the Easter grass thing that I did way back in, well around Easter time. That was fun, wasn’t it? Something we could all share, a little miracle being born, and then invaded by cheap plastic toys. I started writing, but soon realized that I would have to grow something before I could write about it. And since it’s obviously not Easter now, I had to find something else to grow. Something that grows rather quickly and is pretty to look at. At first I thought about tulips, but the neighbor threw rocks at me when I tried to steal her tulip bulbs. Then I thought about strawberries, but M wasn’t too fond of the idea of turning our balcony into a vegetable garden. Then it hit me, the perfect thing to grow; weed! But apparently one of my nosy neighbors saw me bring up the lamp thingy that I needed and the little baby marijuana plants because the next thing I knew I had a cop knocking on my door, and then there were handcuffs and jail and bail and blah blah blah. So yeah, that didn’t work out.

So now I’m sitting here again, with nothing to write about. Could I be more boring? *

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The One In Which I Tell The Truth

The other day I did something completely un-Zivalike. I told six outrageous lies and one outrageous truth. Usually I never tell the truth so this was a very important day for me. A milestone, even. From now on, I am determined to tell at least one truth every single day. Onward, I am here today to finally put you out of your misery and tell you which ones were lies and which one was the golden truth.

1. In the 80’s my parents were millionaires, having invested in Nokia many years ago, but lost most of their fortune in a bad game of poker. Daddy played and lost and mom had to spend the night with an Arabian Sheik. 9 months later I was born.

False. My dad and I share enough DNA to feed a small horse. Also, I don’t think he’s ever played poker, and if he has, he certainly has never lost.

2. Then mom and dad gave me away and I was actually raised by a pack of wolves. They taught me excellent surviving skills. Ask me anything about how to kill a hare.

False. Sadly, I was not raised by wolves. But mom and dad did a great job with me anyway. Ask me anything about how to kill a hare.

3. I’m pregnant!

False. I just threw this in here to confuse you. I’m sneaky like that.

4. Chuck Norris comes to me for hair care advice, that’s how awesome my hair is. I’ll tell you what I always tell him; lather, rinse, repeat and occasionally stick a fork into the toaster for extra volume.

False. Chuck Norris doesn’t come to me for any advice at all. But if he did, I would tell him that a knife works way better than a fork, contrary to popular belief.

5. Due to my time in the wolf pack, I have a very close relationship with all animals. Sometimes I even feed moose and deer straight from the barbecue. They love my teriyaki-marinated steak.

False. The moose that came to my barbecue party didn’t eat my steaks; it just looked at them for a while and then left again. Talk about bad manners.

6. I’m extremely intelligent. I once participated in a game show on TV and got to answer very interesting questions about flounders and Norse Gods. I won the entire thing, winning a book with 1001 jokes and a gift card to an electric shop. With the gift card I bought a lamp in the shape of a desk.

True. Well, the extremely intelligent part might have been a bit of a stretch, moderately intelligent would probably be closer to the truth, but the rest of the statement was true. At the ripe age of 11, I participated in a TV game show for kids. The grand prize was a book with 1001 jokes and a gift card to the local electric shop. The lamp that I bought might have been the ugliest thing ever made, but sadly, I can’t find a picture of it. I left it at home when I moved away and when mom and dad erased every memory of me from their home remade my bedroom, the lamp mysteriously disappeared.

7. Ever since M and I started dating, I have told him I need Sundays to myself for my goat sacrifice and naked moonlight dancing. He doesn’t know this, but I just tell him that because I am horribly embarrassed about telling him the truth. Actually, I spend Sundays knitting and crocheting with my Grandma. I’m so embarrassed.

False. I once tried knitting a pair of gloves and one of the gloves ended up with four fingers while the other one had six fingers. I’m better with goat sacrifice and naked moonlight dancing.

And it seems like we have a winner. Actually two people were smart enough to guess correctly, Mike and Mrsblogalot, but we can only have one winner and Mike was the first one to say it was #6. And because I felt kind of bad about giving him absolutely nothing, I had Zelma make me this fabulous award. It’s a very special award, and Mike will quite possibly be the only person ever to receive it. Therefore, I recommend Mike to take it, hide it and forget all about where you hid it. That is the only way people won’t storm your blog, trying to get one for themselves.


The Flaming Flamingo

Cherish it, Mike. It’s all yours. *