Sunday, 1 December 2013

FIrst date questions

I'm not sure if I'm terrible at this...or fantastic.

Man: If you weren't a fire-eating bellydancer, what would you be?
Me: An Irish Parliamentary Party MP just before WWI. Ooh, or a unicorn.

Oh, Saudi

Saudi is so hypocritical it's crossed the line into ADORABLE. While its grievances aren't to be sniffed at, Saudi Arabia probably benefits more from double standards than any other state on the planet. I wish certain other members of the Security Council were in a position to give a response like "We are so sorry to hear of your righteous anger over 'double standards' and will begin redressing this starting with relations with your own country. We will be in touch soon regarding issues of gender apartheid, workers' rights, capital punishment, prohibition of non-Islamic religious practice and the persecution of religious minorities, imprisonment and execution of LGBT people, political imprisonment, restriction of free speech, discrimination against HIV/AIDS patients, racism toward Asians and Jews, and the assumption that all bellydancers want to fuck you for money. We've been overlooking this because it wasn't in our political or economic interest to point it out, and perhaps also because of some leftover colonial idea that Arabs are a bit childlike and not capable of meeting grown-up standards of civilised behaviour. But now that you have requested we end our double standards, we'll be over shortly with a team of lawyers, several armies, some copies of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (in case you'd like to finally sign it) and the collected works of the European and Islamic Enlightenments."

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Career Choices

Some time ago, the Wall Street Journal ran an article on the best and worst careers one could have:
By their criteria, I'm not doing so well.

-Environment: Ranges from luxury hotels to working outside in January in pants and a corset
-Income: Just over the national average, which would be more of an accomplishment if I didn't have three university degrees and a mountain of student debt to pay off.
-Employment outlook: If I know what I'll be doing and how much money I'll be making 24 hours from now it is indeed a good and lucky day.
-Physical demands include dancing, eating fire, hauling luggage and boa constrictors around the country. Also the aforementioned outside-in-one's-pants.
-Stress: See "employment outlook".

These are the standards set out by the article, which does not actually inquire into one's job satisfaction. This problem becomes clear when practitioners of one of the "worst" professions, lumberjacks, insist they love their job. And likewise, I cannot believe that income is everything or that physical demands are negative. Yesterday I danced to the point of exhaustion, but I got an endorphin high, made a roomful of people happy, had £100 of tips thrown over me, wore a series of luxurious and beautiful costumes, interceded in a dispute between two men vying to buy me champagne (solution: we all sit down at one table and drink both their bottles together), and was told ad nauseam that I am extremely beautiful and that I dance well. I then slept until noon, went to a costume-sewing social, and read a chunk of Jan Assman's Moses the Egyptian and learned about mnemohistory. I can't really complain.

What I dislike about the Wall Street Journal's criteria are that they suggest ideal work should be stress-free and physically easy. While extremes of stress, environment and physical danger/strain have negative consequences on one's health, surely that does not mean the complete absence of stress and physical motion is necessarily desirable. For example, stressful situations at work may also come with adrenaline and endorphin rushes (I'm an endorphin junkie to such an extent that more than 24 hours without an endorphin rush gives me a full-on existential crisis and generally makes me a pain in the ass). And stressful jobs - surgery, bomb disposal - often come with a great sense of achievement.

It's also helpful to have a job that people perceive as important or interesting. One of my best friends is an investment banker and it's often a social stumbling block that may well lower his life and job satisfaction. Another friend who composes music makes far less money and job security but has the social reward of everyone finding her profession laudable and interesting.

Perhaps it is possible to quantify and rank the value of jobs, but it would be more interesting if the article took additional factors into account, as well as a worker's job satisfaction.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Dear former lovers,

Please do not run into me years later while I am coming home from polo, drenched in sweat and wearing a stained shirt. It would be much more polite if you arranged to run into me on a day when I am strolling around in thigh high boots with my wife on my arm - perhaps whilst on my way to an awards ceremony to be given a prize.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Dads have the best answers

With regard to the stalker mentioned two posts ago:
Me: "Can you deal with him please?"
Dad: "Sure kitten, how many bones would you like me to break?"

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Helpful wife

Me: He's making me feel awful no matter what I do.
Wife: Perhaps you could mention your wife would not appreciate him speaking to you that way...and just got a new bone saw.

In which I regret ever buying a phone

As a bellydancer, I occasionally get stalkers. I did get rid of the worst one by being so ultraviolently obscene to him that he told me I was sick and never called me again, and the same treatment may be needed for this one, who has been ringing and texting from multiple numbers since October. I wasted some time begging a then-boyfriend to scare him off but that went nowhere. For months I ignored him but this week I tried replying. Today's exchange was as follows, and for the full effect one must imagine the Salad Fingers voice:

He: U make me feel funni when you do the bellroll
I: Your infantile grasp of the English language elicits far less positive feelings from me
He: U r funni. Thinking of u dancing makes me feel good.
I: Similarly, thinking of skull-fucking your mother's still-twitching corpse gives me a bit of a hard-on
He: Ur sexy