rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
I started using LJ when I was in university. Back then, I posted regularly (so long as it was a term-time weekday, since at home we were mired in the Dark Ages of dial-up). I haven't checked but I'd say it was usually every day. And since I went on to complete a Master's and a PhD, that pattern continued for a while.

Then I left.

And the postings dried up.

Now a bit of that is down to the internet situation at home. We're a slow-adapting household; as far as I recall, we were still using dial-up when I left uni in 2007. So I fell out of the habit of logging in on a regular basis. But the big reasons for the posting drought?

The loss of shared context. And confidentiality.

The latter is pretty obvious - or should be, given all the social media scandals. The former... lemme explain.

Education up to a certain age is compulsory throughout Western Europe and North America. Everybody growing up in those societies, therefore, has been to school at some point. So I could moan about my tutors etc. and be confident that most of you could nod your head sagely and say, "Yeah, I know the drill."

But once you leave the education system and enter gainful employment, that shared context disappears. Bar portrayals on TV or film, I have no freaking clue about the workaday lives of accountants - nurses - warehouse managers - IT technicians - police officers - lorry drivers - civil engineers - insurance staff - stockbrokers - fashion designers - dental receptionists - charity campaigners - town councillors - refuse collectors - fishing crews. And what the hell is a Special Advisor when it's at home?

But work takes over from education as the central day-to-day activity of your life. So if I were to write about my day... well, I'd have to spend some time setting up the context. I would have to explain about ICOS and FTR and what 'pulling the court' means. It's boring and long-winded and likely to end up in TL;DR territory. (Yes, I am aware that this entry is falling into that category too.)

***

I guess I'm old-fashioned in wanting/expecting my posts to be about my day-to-day life. 'Blogging' seems now to be about passing around quotations, stories, memes, photographs and pictures which originate with other people, not ourselves. Or it's an editorial column, made up of our musings on the topics which interest us. Or it's a reviews column on our chosen form of entertainment, from books to barbells, hardware to handicrafts, singing to sex toys. Or it can be an advertising hoarding for whatever it is we want to promote to the public.

Please note, none of these are meant as criticisms or as a in-the-good-ole-days moan. I'm only observing that social media has shifted away from the "on-line diary" idea that I 'grew up' with, and that I haven't shifted with it. I don't subscribe to Reddit or BuzzFeed or wherever else people get their "Share" links from, and besides, I tend to consume stuff like that and move on rather than telling others about it. I don't write editorials because I know I'm a poor arguer and am not prepared to handle any shitstorm that might result, even if it only fits in a teacup. I could do reviews, I suppose... but do I really read/view enough to justify it? I haven't been to the cinema in years and my TV watching falls into the territory of whatever-will-keep-everyone-vaguely-interested-and-or-entertained-but-not-necessarily-inspire-enthusiasm.

***

Lack of shared context is also why I'm crap at phone calls. I can't see what the person on the other end of the line is doing/experiencing, so I can't offer any comments on the same to gee the talking along. Once we're done with the obvious hi-how-are-you-this-is-the-news-where-I-am, I run out of conversational steam.

This inability to generate conversation is screwing up my chances with on-line dating too. My opening messages are banal to the point of pointlessness. Ugh.
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
TL; DR: I am not dead. My place of work is closing and I am stressed. Also, I don't come on the internet much, 'cos reasons.

The longer version )

I need to go; supper's ready.
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
First aid training makes me ver' ver' sleepy.

Don't you just hate it when a storyline you've been playing with runs off into depressing territory and you can't get it back? Do Not Want, brain.

I caught the tail end of Mary Poppins last night, and if Karen Hallion hadn't convinced me already, the movie itself is proof that Mary Poppins is a Time Lord. "I never explain anything", indeed. XD

We are painting the dining room in a colour I chose! Yay!

[livejournal.com profile] jellostar! Currently watching 5ive's video for "Keep On Moving"! So many good memories to that song... :)
rhondacrockett: (scribble scribble)
This week has been... really really weird. Due to my sister's insistence that we record the racing at Royal Ascot for her, I've spent the week binge-watching the shows I had recorded in order to ensure that there was room on the hard drive for pretty dresses and prettier horses. Also, the white shoes I had ordered have been arriving in dribs and drabs all week, so they had to be opened up, tried on, rejected and re-parceled, and then I had to decipher returns policies. And... my head is in a strange place as well - has been for the last couple of months - it's personal and tmi and not something I want to get specific about *frustrated sigh* - so I've been distracted by that as well.

Anyway, upshot is, I've done no drawing :( so I will be skipping Sketchy Sunday this week. I will try next week to do two drawings per day to catch up.
rhondacrockett: (loneliness & the assassin)
What did I tell you people about reminding me not to do anything insanely detailed again?!?

Sketchy Sunday 23 photo SketchySunday23_zpsd6fe0089.jpg


Ok, so it's not just as detailed as week 18, but yeah. I am partially blaming this on the radio station in work, which seems to play John Legend's "All of Me" on a constant loop (as if work isn't depressing enough). The song itself is not responsible for the story-idea behind this sketch - that was already running around my head - but it fed into it.

Oh, the shit I put these people through... )

I am aware that their joined hands are weird. Honestly, you'd think it would be easy to find a reference of a pirouetting couple! There is nothing; NOTHING!!!! Lots of dancers pirouetting on their own, but nothing of two people together D:< So I had to make it up, which led to lots of erasing, which led to the paper getting worn away and I had to put a piece of sticky label over it :( Also, Anonymous Husband has clown feet and his expression is... just not quite right. I had it better, but it was so very smudged and I was trying to clean it up and it went wrong :( And her kicked-off shoes look too small for her feet, and yeah, now I'm done, all I can see is the stuff that's wrong with it... Bah!!

Musings

Mar. 27th, 2014 09:05 pm
rhondacrockett: (loneliness & the assassin)
I've spent all my evenings this week at home alone. I can watch what I like, read what I like, do what I like.

... It's been rather boring. And I'm not doing anything much different from what I would do if mum was at home. I am no party animal and I don't socialise easily; I'm generally a loner. But I'm generally a loner who has people around her. Being ALONE-alone is unsettling and demotivating.

March has been a weirdly depressing month. Weird because the weather has gotten so much better lately - warmer, brighter and drier - and because nothing obviously bad has happened. But the story I'm writing has stalled, I haven't been sleeping well, and I haven't been happy with my doodles recently.

Watching a lot of music TV isn't helping. See, our dog Lottie like to play tug-of-war but she's very noisy when doing it, so turning on a TV drama or whatever in the background doesn't work. Music TV, on the other hand, is just radio with pictures, so that's what I've been doing. The channels I prefer seem to have turned into semi-permanent My Chemical Romance memorials. I have no problem with My Chemical Romance - truth is, I didn't know any of their music until this week and I have enjoyed what I've heard. But it gets repetitive after a while and then I find out the reason they're playing it so much is cos the band split up a year ago (yes, I am spectacularly out of touch with popular music culture, sue me), so it just becomes sad then...

]:/

My brother's wedding plans continue apace. The date is set for the end of August and we've booked ourselves into the same holiday bungalow we had last year. It's a beautiful house and big too - there will be six of us in it, possibly seven. I'm not going to be part of the bridal party which is (mostly) fine by me; at the same time, if I was a bridesmaid, I wouldn't have to worry about what I'm wearing. Yay, formal clothes shopping, be still, my beating heart. -_-'

Remember the stray cat I talked about back in February? The one we were going to get a new home for cos we couldn't possibly take on another pet? Yeah, big shock, we ended up keeping her *rolls eyes, shakes head*. Her name is Maggie. Holly and Ivy are increasingly not impressed at her presence but they'll get used to her, same as they got used to Oliver, and Holly has at least stuck around rather than vanishing as we feared. Lottie thinks she's great, though, because Maggie plays chase with her. :)
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
In 2013, I...

- turned 33.

- asked a lot of mysterious and random questions of my LiveJournal friends, as I fact-checked elements of a story.

- got slooooowly back in touch with Ruth, Lesley and LJ, my old university friends, in an attempt to make human contact outside of work.

- discovered the time-wasting potential of TrendHunter.com...

- ... and via the above, discovered the joys of mash-up fan art by Amy Mebberson, Karen Hallion and Hyung86.

- spent more money than I ought to in The Works.

- realised that I need to put a time limit on how long I write, because spending too long leaves me grumpy and depressed. On that basis, I made a deal with Mum to stop her nagging me about writing, but she has recently started again...

- tidied my wardrobe (well, most of it).

- went on holiday to Jersey and learned that four-star hotel menus are not all that.

- got new bosses at work and watched an already-bad situation get worse, ugh.

- and as a result of the above, got more and more cynical and sharp-tongued.

- got rid of the task of clerking the Coleraine family courts!... then got it back again, thanks to said new bosses >.<

- got obsessed with paint colour names and colouring-in books.

- read a lot (but then, I do that every year).

- re-started using my local library, although most of the time I borrow books with absolutely no intention of reading them. *guilty look*

- bought a re-useable calendar of "calming thoughts" and promptly started to disagree with them.

- watched Strictly Come Dancing for the first time and loved it. My only quibble is that it's on too early in the evening, which leaves you scrabbling to find something to watch from 8 o'clock on...

- watched "The Day of the Doctor" on 23 November and fell in love with Doctor Who again (I had drifted away from the show following a... family incident which had been started by this episode).

- started listening to my pop and rock CDs again, after several years of only playing instrumental and classical music. I blame the pop radio station which my workmates tune into (and which I can't stand).

- applied for two new jobs and a transfer... didn't get any of them.

- got a bonus woohoo!

- gave up on taking packed lunches to work.

- did NOT join any dating websites... but thought about it. A lot.

- made a necklace.

- bought the same style of shoes as I had last year.

- wrote in pink.

- FINALLY got a passport. And still haven't used it.

- err, downloaded spyware like an idiot >.< Luckily in the middle of doing so, I mentioned what I was doing to my brother, so he got straight on to removing it.

- wrote this list.
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
Ever heard of getting 'brained'? And if not, what other term might you use for getting struck on the head?

Today is dark and miserable. We have yet to put up any Christmas decorations at home, and it's alarming to realise that it's only two weeks away D: I haven't done any Christmas shopping at all; I'm basically paying a share in presents which other people have bought. The atmosphere in work is still wretchedly toxic, which isn't helping me to get in the holiday spirit :(
rhondacrockett: (Take a bite)
I... have not had a good day today. Don't ask about the details, please; it's exhausting just thinking about the whole mess in my head, never mind trying to put it in words and communicate it to others.

Besides, I don't want to talk about me. I'd like you guys to talk, if you can. Tell me about something that cheers you up. A memory, a song, a book, an activity, a person. Just happy things please, in comments. I'd really appreciate it *watery smile*
rhondacrockett: (Default)
So, while avoiding the shouting match between Dad and Sharon over the Gyp issue (see last entry), I took a nosey through some old notebooks. Originally they had been used for revision notes for my GCSEs (standard exams taken at age 15/16), but once the exams were over, I had scrapped the notes and used the remaining blank pages to write blurbs for story ideas that had been boiling in my head since I was about ten or eleven.

Reading over the "Books I Want to Write" now is hilarious. Certain themes pop up again and again; my younger self had an slight obsession with slavery, prostitutes(!), and unsustainable future dystopias (one of them involves a society which has "outlawed all forms of pleasure" *rolls eyes*). There are plagues and repressive cults and psychic "chosen ones", a smattering of dragons and vampires, several nuclear wars and unlikely environmental disasters. Most of the stories are firmly in sci-fi/fantasy/thriller territory, but there are a few "real-life"/general fiction tales, including a Jackie Collins rip-off called The Stud Farm. *cringe*

I will never write these books now: the concepts are poorly thought-through, the characters overwrought, the plotlines left annoyingly vague. I don't have enough time left anyway - there are sixty-seven blurbs, and some of those are general sum-ups of a series, length unspecified. Kalynder Girls is supposed to be twelve books, and I'm still slogging through the first one - which is the only one that I have a clear plot for.

But then I look at just how much stuff my imagination was churning out back then and I'm kinda envious. Read more... )

Ugh, I started writing this hoping to give you all a laugh at the ridiculous hyperbole of my younger self. Didn't mean to degenerate into this cynical and self-defeating crap. Sticking it behind a cut; if you only want the laugh, stick with what you see :)
rhondacrockett: (blood & claws)
Goodbye, 2011. You were not a great year for me - too much work, too much digging myself into a hole and then wallowing there. But I am alive, so you were not irredeemably bad, I suppose.

I doubt 2012 will be any better, unless there is a spectacular change in either my circumstances or my attitude. Comments disabled for this one, folks; I don't need any ego-stroking or nagging about this. I hope I'm wrong...

Have a happy New Year.
rhondacrockett: (Am I addicted? - dava)
Jipp is doing ok, folks; no more scares since that Sunday. Her sister, Sheba, however, has developed a skin infection - something that has happened to her before. The possibility was mentioned that she may be allergic to grass. Grass. When she lives on a dairy farm in Northern Ireland. She might as well be allergic to oxygen. Why couldn't it have been peanuts?

And me? I'm tired, I've got a nagging discomfort in the middle of my back, and I'm becoming increasingly intolerant of idiots. I need a holiday. A long one - three to six months, maybe, somewhere pleasantly warm but not very hot, fresh breezes, the ocean in easy reach, with lots of dancing, swimming, museums and historical sites to visit. But I'm not going to get any of that, so I'll make do with a long weekend over Hallowe'en and hope it'll be enough.

I am not planning to do NaNo this year. Yes, I had a really good time doing it last year, but I've been feeling so discouraged and down this year... Which I suppose is all the more reason to do it, to cheer myself up *groans* Can't a girl be lazy without her conscience kicking her ass? :P I was kinda hoping that I would have last year's NaNo project finished by now and could use this year to start on the second Kalynder Girls. But that didn't happen, for various reasons - some beyond my control, but also some which were my own damn fault. I know I could use this year's NaNo to finish January Blues, but - it's hard to explain - it feels like I wouldn't be making best use of this year by footering with a project from last year.
rhondacrockett: (Default)
Since this is my own personal NaNo, I'm just going by the word count tool on the laptop here. I started with a count of 50 546, and I now have...

50 806 out of 100 000.

Poot. I'm tired and distracted by television and still feeling unmotivated. I've been feeling that way most of January :/ I'll have to give myself a kick up the ass.

I've got soooooo much stuff that I wanted to talk about - photos to post, damn, I have never even mentioned Oliver, our three-legged cat, and he's been around since August!
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
Day 17: 30 317 out of 50 000
Day 18: no change
Day 19: no change
Day 20: 32 400 out of 50 000
Day 21: no change
Day 22: 33 155 out of 50 000

Yeah, I've fallen behind again :( And I can't get into it this evening. I've been feeling impatient and down all day. In work today I just wanted to knock people's heads together; I couldn't be bothered with their crap :( Bah! Maybe tomorrow will be better.

[Edit]: So they got back to me about the job. Yeah, I didn't get it. And because they got so many applications, there will be no feedback offered :6
rhondacrockett: (I need a hug - dava)
I feel sad.

No reason for it. Nothing bad has happened. I was perfectly content all day. Yet, reading through my friends page, this melancholy has just crept up on me. And now I feel quite glum.

:(

I don't like feeling sad for no damn reason. It's unsettling. It's not like any of you have upset me. Actually, it came over me while I was reading the entries of one of my more happy-and-light friends. (Not that you aren't all happy and light, but some people are more regularly upbeat than others.)

The worst thing is, that the sadness had drained all enthusiasm for activities which would help cheer me up. Read? Can't be bothered. Write? No. Err... and I've run out of ideas of cheering-up activities. I'll be going to bed soon, anyway. What's the point?

Oh, don't worry, I'm not fishing for sympathy or a coddle session. It's just a random spot of the blues. I'll wake up tomorrow and be back to normal again. It's just annoying while it lasts.

:(

I'm sure the football* on tv all evening doesn't help.

*American audiences should substitute the word 'soccer' at this point.
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
Once more, job-hunting, particularly talking about job-hunting, has ruined my mood. This has not been a good day. Oh well.
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
And I hate looking at job advertisements. The terminology confuses me. Then I go to the net to see if I can find a glossary anywhere and it doubly confuses me.

...And I've just noticed they've put a SixApart jobs advert next to this box. I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Back to the topic at hand, the worst thing about writing my CV is trying to twist my skills set. Since I have only a little work experience, compared to 20-odd solid years of education, I put the emphasis on listing and describing the skills I've developed/demonstrated. But it's exhausting, trying to twist things into specific examples that are (kind of) relevant to the job being applied for. And for every job application I have to make a new CV. Ugh. And then a cover letter. Double ugh. I never seem to have anything new to say in my cover letters.

My brother gave my mum a mini-lecture about my jobhunt, saying I should be phoning up the people I apply to, asking about my applications and stuff D: I'm not that pushy and the thought of cold-calling someone like that puts my stomach in knots. But I do need work. I need the money. The bank balance, while slightly helped by teaching, is steadily depleting, and next semester I only have two classes, so that's even less money. I should look into unemployment benefits and what I can claim. Gah! I hate the world of gainful employment!
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
Ugh, Tricia. It's too early in the morning to be patronised by her.

Leon is in SCOTLAND!!! ARRRRRGGGGGHHHHHH!!!! *Bangs his head off a brick wall* If you were going away, WHY didn't you get back to me?!? Ok, so I know he's got other stuff on, I imagine he's in Scotland for a conference where he's probably giving a paper, plus he's got his usual teaching and admin duties here at Queen's, but STILL. He's the one freaked me out with unsolicited e-mails and phone calls, pushing me to have the stuff ready for after Easter, and then when I finally deliver, he DOESN'T TELL ME ANYTHING!!!!

House hunting is still blah. It's getting me down. Stupid expensive places that aren't worth the money. I was in a place yesterday that didn't have cable. Didn't have cable!!! Every house I've rented before had cable. I paid, what, £120 a month for Meadowbank Place, and it had cable; I'm not paying £210 for no cable. (Television is important to me, ok? It probably shouldn't be, but I realised yesterday that yeah, TV is very VERY important to me.) There are just so few 2-bed properties available at the moment. And then I need somewhere to live by July 1st, and everyone is looking either for a immediate let, or a date in August and September.

And I'm still not 100% convinced about living with Leaonia.

Going this evening to look at a flat on the Botanic side of Queen's. The landlord was very scary. He was really brusque with me on the phone, and when I asked him for the address (so I could take a look at the building from the outside), he nearly leapt down my throat!!! "I'm not telling you that, because you're not going to get viewing it without me there, no way, you can't get to see it." And then he was all, "And no parties either, I'm very very strict about that," and I'm like, "Are you going to be living with me?" Yeesh. He was so rude and ... SCARY!!!
rhondacrockett: (Lookit me)
Going to Ruth and LJ's tonight to watch my shows so I don't get gurned at.

Feeling oddly disconnected from things. Probably been on the net for too long. *rubs eyes* Tired. It's not like I haven't been sleeping. I have. Probably too much.

What on earth does "exanimate" mean, anyway? Is that even a real word? I have a weird feeling it should have a "d" on the end of it, "exanimated". You talk about being "animated", not being "animate". "Animate" is the verb, right?

Y'know, that "current music" thing is really no use to me. All the computers I use really belong to someone else (university, James, home), so I'm never listening to music when I'm online.

Need to buy portable CD player. With headphones which hook behind my ears, so they don't fall out.

Meh.
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