Matter of Fact

I’m chuffed to have received the One Lovely Blog Award! I was nominated by reader, writer, editor, minimalist poet, new blogger WREADITOR–  go check out his blog! The honour came with the responsibility of carefully selecting seven facts about myself to share. I hope they surprise and amuse you. Some contain facts within the facts, giving you even more inside knowledge!

1. My dosha is pitta-vata

2. I keep a gratitude journal 

I write in it every night. I find that even on the shittiest days, I’m not short of things to jot down. The joy I get from blogging and  connections I have made here often gets a mention.

3. Decaf soy flat white, please

Although I favour a long black when aero pressing.

It is possible to be a coffee snob while drinking decaf – only swiss water method thanks! I think I’m a bigger coffee snob now in fact…There are the usual factors of barista ability and brand of soy, but add to that their approach in heating the soy and the rarity of a decent decaf blend, and one has to either drop their standards or limit their options. Of the plethora of cafés within the vicinity of my Melbourne CBD office (exhibit A below), there are only two that do my order to my liking. A third is a tram ride and walk away but worth the trek when I have time, and it also happens to be where I get my beans from to make my own.

In case you are wondering, I don’t work at  Coles (a supermarket), Sea Life (an aquarium), Crown Melbourne (a casino), or St Paul’s Cathedral (a place of worship).

4. I’m a Leo born in the year of the dragon

Consider yourself warned.

5. Paris was my home for a year

I worked 6 days a week at a supermarket (Franprix in La Motte-Picquet Grenelle) with barely any french,  earnt a pittance, and didn’t have time for language classes that I couldn’t afford. Consequently, mon grammaire est merde, mais j’ai un trop cool vocabulaire des fruits et legumes. Tu vas deux kilo des pommes de terre?

I supplemented my income by advertising my English language skills on a site called Kelprof (a play on quel professeur, meaning which professor). Most of my clients were after English conversation exchange or editing of their resumes they’d drafted in English.

The experience of being a broke Parisienne living almost exclusively on cheese, bread, wine, coffee, and cigarettes (it’s okay, I’ve been a non smoker for close to 7 years) for a year was one of the best times of my life to date. The bread was occasionally from the batch of baguettes that were given to Franprix staff on the closing shift. The wine was normally a ridiculously good and cheap Côtes du Rhône, also from the supermarket.

Looking it up on Google Maps to potentially add a pic here, I came across reviews of the supermarket (who reviews supermarkets? 8 people apparently)…anyway, it seems the store has been on the decline since my time there, with  comments including:

  • Very rude security guy and shop assistants.” Okay, I did say “vas tu faire futre” to a customer on my last shift, but that was long before the reviewer’s comment
  • Another customer, unhappy at buying very old yoghurt for his daughter says: “Le 18 août 2016 j’aurai dû ne pas faire confiance à Franprix quand j’ai acheté des yaourts pour ma fille … Date de péremption : 28.12.2015”

6. My adorable little boy lights up my life

He’s always turning the switches on in our house. This is my attempt at paraprosdokian…a word I love and a humour style I love even more.

Great examples of paraprosdokians are:

My wife – it’s difficult to say what she does – she sells sea shells on the sea shore. – Milton Jones

Marriage is a great institution, but I’m not ready for an *institution – Mae West

I saw a sign that said “watch for children” and I thought, “That sounds like a fair trade” – Demetri Martin

I was asked to name all the presidents…I thought they already had names. – Demetri Martin

I have used Demetri twice because he is one of my favourite comedians and according to Entertainment Weekly, is the ‘reigning king of the palindrome and paraprosdokian’.

7. I’ve dipped in Lake Baikal

At Gremyachinsk in fact, as I chickened out on Olkhon Island. The water was 10 degrees celcius, but worth the pain as it is said to add 10 extra years to your life. With bonus years to this life, it’s just as well I have plenty I’m grateful for! Here’s to plenty more…

 

I am supposed to nominate 15 other bloggers, but every blog I read is lovely and choosing only some would be like picking a favourite child (well, I only have 1, but you know what I mean). I’ll leave it up to you, dear reader, to take the baton if you choose and give us seven facts about yourself, either in the comments below or in a post accepting this award.

If you do accept the award, make a mention of who gave you the award, share seven facts about yourself, and nominate fifteen bloggers to whom you’d like to bestow the honour of the One Lovely Blog Award.

*Mind you, those who are in same-sex relationships are, so if you are in Australia, do the right thing and vote ‘Yes’. Kudos to WordPress for the rainbow banner that has been on the site of late. Screen Shot 2017-09-06 at 3.58.28 pm

Postscript: It’s always a surprise how images show up in reader. The result in reader on the mobile app was brilliant so I had to share (along with pics of Derrick’s mum’s 70th,😊 although now that I’ve added the screenshot, the image in reader has changed): 

Screenshot_2017-09-06-22-32-37

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55 thoughts on “Matter of Fact

    1. Thanks David. So glad you enjoyed reading. I had fun writing it, particularly uncovering the supermarket reviews 😂

      Yes to black coffee! How do you make your coffee at home? Is Cafe Nero still any good? When I lived in the UK that was one of few places I trusted for a decent coffee. I guess coffee culture has taken off since that time so probably lots of hipster cafés about that take it all very seriously.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. These days I have an espresso machine. We usually get the coffee through subscription services. They can be expensive. But once you’ve tried them it’s difficult to accept anything from supermarkets. I’ve got a Belgian coffee maker sitting on the kitchen shelf that I once received as a leaving present. It seems a bit too pretentious, I haven’t gotten around to using it. I never really go to coffee shops, but Cafe Nero was certainly my preferred place a few years ago. Where in the UK did you live?

        Btw I was impressed to hear about your year in Paris with little French. As a sworn Francophile, I’ve not nearly spent enough time in that country as I would have liked. Sounds like you have some ‘bons souvenirs’ though. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Who cares about pretentiousness if the coffee machine does a good job? What were you leaving at the time?

        I lived in Warrington, Manchester, Hove and Canterbury. My favourite time was in Manchester…such a great city. I had a brief stint in Buxton too but quit the job that got me set up in the UK after only 2 weeks in. Then made the move to Warrington after my broke Paris life till I could afford to move to Manchester. All other moves were for work.

        I would have loved to stay in Paris for many more years but only had a 1 year working holiday visa. The lifestyle I had wasn’t sustainable long term and it was just too hard to get a professional job for a range of reasons- language not necessarily being the main one. It is a funny society – the racism was more intense and overt than I’d been accustomed to in Australia, with an unabashed sense of entitlement of those who were racist to carry on as they did. Working in the supermarket was an eye opener in terms of the class divide. Having said that, it was an amazing experience still, liberating to start life fresh and fit right in, but quickly learnt the limitations of how ‘in’ I could be. Still, if circumstances were right, I l’d move there in a heart beat. There is so much I could write about that year. I didn’t keep a journal but I could trawl the long emails I sent to 2 friends for reminders.

        You’re so close – no excuse to not doend more time there!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Not sure if the coffee’s good until I try it. I’ll let you know when I do 🙂 It was from my job as Business Intelligence Architect (fancy name for someone who designs data warehouse and reporting solutions). I loved the team, but hated the work. It was an overworked, understaffed, demoralised corporate affair. Thing was I had left ten years of freelancing behind to go permanent for it. Ooops.

        Manchester’s a lovely city with some rich history. Great music history too. I see The National there later this month. Buxton is nice too in a different way. The Peak District isn’t far from us and is one of our potential retirement places. 🙂 What kind of work did you do here?

        Sounds like you did build very fond memories of France despite the unfortunate racism you experienced. And it doesn’t sound like it’s improved. Over here too. But hopefully these long emails will remind and inspire you enough to write some blog posts about it (hint, hint 🙂 ). BTW did you get my email reply? I’m having email problems. Was just curious how your 3rd redraft and course are going.

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      4. Yes, try and keep me posted. Aero press is pretty amazing and not reliant on electricity- you just need boiled water and muscle power so you could take it on treks in the laje district with a thermos of water!

        Sounds like you’d fit in to the organisation I work in- we deal with a lot of data. I’ve recently had fun with python coding which shall interface with an oracle database to QA the data and perform calcs that humans once did (who needs humans??). Sounds like you made a good move leaving…so are you a full time student now?

        Ah, I think we’ve spoken about The National before.

        Peak District is gorgeous. I had an engineering job at a lime factory oened by LaFarge…I was excited for the French connection but really wanted to change industry from construction materials to something with an environmental focus, and that I did!

        Yes, I have many lovely memories of my time there, particularly of the great friends I made who 13 years on are still friends. I’ll dig out those emails one of these day…just not sure when.

        Yes, got your email. I read on my phone and wanted to reply via computer instead…will do later today. Happy Friday to you! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I was impressed with an aero press when I used one. I might get one just because I have a desire to possess all kinds of coffee brewing equipment. Cool about the coding. I did get some enjoyment from working with data. We were just getting into big data and cloud solutions as I was leaving. Would have been interesting. But just not as interesting as creative writing. 🙂 It is amazing the advancement of tech in the last decade alone. Skynet is not far away now! Is that what you do now still? Engineering? Part time studies still at the moment, full time would be too expensive. I’ve got your email so I’ll reply to that shortly. Have a great weekend! Hope you enjoyed your pub dinner.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Yes, not as interesting as creative writing. Strictly speaking, I’m not working as an engineer but the background helps. I’m more a hydrologist these days. Pub meal was great! Had a fish curry, my partner had a gnocchi that I was jealous of, snd my son had fish and chips but really only ate the chips and tomato sauce which he followed with vanilla ice cream topped with chocolate sauce, sprinkles and marshmallows…a nutritious meal for a 3 year old.

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Hydrologist sounds cool. We tend to take things like water for granted. Haha, usually when we go out my wife is always jealous and picking at my plate. Glad to hear the meal was a success. No instagram snaps though. Booo. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Sandy. Some amazing examples out there. I saw that site but didn’t use examples from there as they were not cited. Not sure if you noticed a shout out I gave to another blogger in this post for their funny onliners but I’ve since deleted that comment after following my suspicions and googling some of those lines to discover that they’d been plagiarised! Would you like to accept the One Lovely Blog Award? 😊

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  1. Fun to learn these facts about you, and thanks for introducing me to the words “chuffed”and “paraprosdokian”!
    ….more reasons to be happy to have met you via this writing and blogging thing😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome. So many reasons why I’m happy to have met you too! So…would you like to accept the One Lovely Blog Award? Because you know your blog is lovely, right? Plus nice to see you are back with new content after the long summer break 🙂

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    1. Thanks Kathy! Glad it made you laugh 😊

      Yes, of course I loved Paris and my time there, just thought I’d give a glimpse of the not do rosy elements of my time there which still didn’t take away the magic of the city for me. As a blogger witha LOVELY blog, would you like to accept the award? 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Fabulous post :)! I’ve never heard the word paraprosdokian before but I’ve been a fan for years! Tim Vine is an English comic who is great at these jokes. Here are a few of his:

    I saw an advert in a window that said: “Television for sale, £1, volume stuck on full.” I thought, “I can’t turn that down.”

    Velcro? What a rip-off!

    I’ve decided to sell my Hoover… well, it was just collecting dust.

    I phoned the local gym and I asked if they could teach me how to do the splits. He said, “How flexible are you?” I said, “I can’t make Tuesdays.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Barb (sorry I have assumed that is your name until you tell me otherwise 😂) Yes, I’ve heard of Tim Vine. Great examples- thanks for sharing! I’d like to pass the award on to you…care to accept? On the condition that none of your facts mention your Dave Grohl obsession because I am already aware of that 😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Many thanks, Mek. I didn’t realise that wasn’t a link? I am honoured that you have nominated me, but I really cannot do justice to the requirements of acceptance. (I am today working through reading three days of blogs I follow because I have spent a night away)

        Liked by 1 person

  3. What a generous read; so glad you posted it. Parisian grocery stores, coffee, dragonhood–it’s no wonder I’ve enjoyed your work and conversation! But you’ve also demonstrated the wonders of the haibun, something I wish we would all attempt. Until then, I’ll read yours. ☺️ You ever watch the comedy of Richard Ayowade?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. So glad you enjoyed it. Thanks again for the kind nomination! I have a haibun in my half a haibun series in the works…a blogger friend submitted the prose but I’ve been slow with the haiku. I’m never really sure if I’m doing haibun or haiku correctly, but I’ve stopped caring (kind of). No not heard of him but will look him up 😊

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  4. Congrats Mek! I am also a Leo, the year of the Rat. I guess I’m ratty, lol! I’m not big on coffee, I’m a tea drinker. I love that you keep a gratitude journal, there are truly many things in everyday life to be grateful for. I’ve been to France once, I think I’d gladly live there broke, ah…just to be there. I had no idea what a paraprosdokian was, but I can tell what a gem your little boy is. My little boy was the light of my life, now he is a sporadic light since he is so busy with his college life, sigh. Thanks for sharing about yourself, I enjoyed reading it very much.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yay! A leo! I knew that from one of your recents posts actually. College is ao far away for us…still gotta deal with the letting go when mine starts school in a couple of years. Thanks for reading, I’m really glad you enjoyed it x

      Liked by 1 person

    1. e you always make me smile when you drop by. Thanks so much. Please accept my heartfelt nomination for your lovely blog. It is lovely in so many ways, but in essence it is the positivity and light you shine on whatever has moved you enough to write about. Also, I’m so so sorry I still haven’t listened to your debut podcast, althougb it’s downloaded. Btw, it’s the first podcast I will have ever listened to, like EVER 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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