24 August 2008

Naa Naa Joutai In Da Club

This popped up on my iTunes today. It reminded me that I'd never gotten around to posting the video. Namie Amuro is one of the only J-Pop singers I really got into when I was there. She's originally from Okinawa, which is probably the reason why she's so cool (and why she sings part in English, because of all the American military bases there).

安室奈美恵 — Wowa

21 August 2008

The Worst Week of My Life

On Friday night, going home from a friend's house, I got in a bicycle accident. A car turned right and didn't see me in the bike lane. I braked to avoid crashing into the car, and wiped out trying to stop.

Since I was bleeding all over my favourite polo shirt, I had to got to the hospital to get stitches (two under my eyebrow). On the way to the hospital I lost my house keys. My roommate is in New York until the end of September, so the next morning I had to wander around for two hours to find a locksmith that was open on Saturday during August vacations. When I did eventually find one, he said he couldn't change the lock because it was lunch time! I almost jumped over the counter and strangled him!

After he had his lunch, he came over, charged me €800, and broke the lock. But then said that he didn't have the right lock to replace mine and would have to come back on Monday morning to finish it! AAAAAGHHH!!! WHY would you break a lock if you knew you couldn't replace it!?! I had to carry a screwdriver around with me all weekend so I could jimmy the lock open with it.

Then Monday, my bank card was declined when I tried to use it. Of course there is no Customer Service number to phone in France, so I had to go in to the branch and talk to someone who said that it would be fixed tomorrow — which, of course it wasn't. So I went back to the branch and was told I had to make an appointment with the branch manager to talk about my card. Now four days later –during which time I am unable to get money from my card– I meet with the bank manager and she tells me my account has been closed "on suspicion of money laundering". I had taken cash from my student line of credit at a bank machine to deposit in my French account to pay for tuition fees. Apparently, this is completely not allowed in France, to, you know, deposit money into your account, then try to use it later! Account closed — No ifs, ands or buts.

If it wasn't so bloody impossible to open a bank account in this country I would have simply said "Fuck you" and opened and account elsewhere. But instead I spent half an hour screaming and being a general asshole (because that's how to get things done in France) before the bank manager agreed to reopen my account with a €100 weekly limit. "But it's my money. Shouldn't I be able to access it whenever I want?" I said. "Non" she answered, "not in these circumstances."

I also got in a big argument on Wednesday with my loser ex-rommate who doesn't want to give me my €1100 deposit back because he wants me to pay to have the room repainted.

I think I've said "I hate France" more times in these past seven days than all the past twelve months put together. And it makes me wonder, did I actually ever, even once, say "I hate Japan" when I was living there?
Two adventures abroad that could not be more different.

15 August 2008

1, 2, 3, 4

Um, Feist is like, my new favouritest person in the whole universe ever!

12 August 2008

Castles, Cathedrals and Cheeses, oh my!

Only four or so months behind schedule, but here is the link to my photo album from my Mum's lovely visit to France in May.

We visited Normandy, Île-de-France (which isn't an island at all), and the imaginatively named "Centre" région. A great chance to get out of Paris and see a different côté of the country.

Thanks Mum!

08 August 2008

Canadian Humour

A French friend of mine asked me "What iz zee Canadian yumour?"

I thought I would have to go into this whole lengthy explanation of how Canada is stuck in some kind of grey zone between reruns of Are You Being Served? and sight gags with Balki and Cousin Larry. But then I realised, no, this is Canadian humour, and thank bloody God for it! :

Pure brilliance. Yeay Canada!

05 August 2008

Music Meme

I usually hate when people ask me what kind of music I like, because then I'm forced to answer "80s electro-synth-disco and cock rock", then have them look at me all judging like. Pfft – as if I didn't already know that they all secretly rock out to AC/DC when they think no one is around.

But, I've come across some cool stuff recently and decided to steal MA's music post idea thingy and try to pass it off as my own.

The rules are as follows:

List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they’re not any good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying now.

Sonny J

Teki Latex
Les Matins de Paris

Bow Wow Wow
I Want Candy (Kevin Shields Remix)


Simian Mobile Disco
I Got This Down
—I apologise for the lame-o YouTube. There's no real video and this is all there was. Best just to listen and not watch.

Nelly Furtado vs. Mika
Say It Relaxed

1234 (Van She Remix)