Sunday, December 14, 2008

A busy weekend

Gosh, can't you just tell that Christmas is looming? My calendar - OK, my iCal - is loaded with exciting things to do, and it all kicked off on Friday…

I think my brain has already switched into Christmas holiday mode, because I've been counting the days until I finish for the year (this Wednesday coming) since the beginning of the month. And on Friday I was counting down the hours until the evening, because Yazzle Dazzle had organised a get together with some old friends and work colleagues: good times!

An aside:

Before meeting up with Yazzle Dazzle, I headed down to Hammersmith to grab something to eat. And on tonight's menu? KFC - YUM! (I haven't had a KFC in a while and I was pretty much gagging for one). Anyway, there I am, queuing up when this woman goes up to the till next to me and asks for (and please imagine this in a slightly chavvy accent) "chicken breasts - I doh whan no leeeeg, I doh whan no fiiiiiiii - I just whan breast."

I was very tempted to turn to her and say "look luv, you've in KFC, you'll be lucky if you get chicken."

Our venue of choice for the meet-up was Ginglik in Shepherds Bush, which is an awesome subterranean bar that, to cut a long story short, used to be a public toilet, and before that was the laboratory of a Victorian scientist who conducted experiments in an attempt to bring the dead back to life, apparently. Oh, and Robin Williams did a surprise stand-up routine there a couple of weeks ago - no doubt inspired by the Victorian scientist he was probably looking to bring his career back to life - ba-doom tish! 

Na-noo, na-noo, and all that jazz.

Anyway, so we got there and nabbed some sofas alongside a Christmas tree that had a toy monkey at the top of it instead of an angel, thinking that we had an awesome spot. Unfortunately, it turned out that our awesome spot was reserved but they'd forgotten to put any signs up, so we had shift and go slum it in the regular bar area with everyone else. Still, it was a good evening - caught up with a few lovely old faces, watched an old grey-haired dude massively perve at a young woman, and saw El Deanio lay down some fresh dancehall moves. Oh, and then there was the fact that a couple of workmates took a bizarre interest in my shirt; Scanner decided to that he'd pull open the press-stud fastenings (fortunately I was wearing a t-shirt underneath), leaving me looking like a male-stripper tidying myself up seconds after finishing a routine, while El Deanio decided it would be funny to rip out some of my chest hair (oh, how a v-neck tee leaves me exposed!); it hurt, and I now have a little baldy patch just below my collar bone. It looks like I've developed torso-based alopecia.

The best part of the evening was reserved for the moment after we stumbled out at just after half-twelve. One former workmate had brought along a friend called Aman, and when someone asked where another colleague was and someone answered "she's dancing with Aman," Yazzle Dazzle did not miss a beat in replying "yeah, and your friend too."

Good times.

I got up late Saturday, which was a tad annoying because I had lots to do. Nevertheless, I got it done! And what did I have to do? Why, wrap Christmas presents of course! Holy crap, I was a wrapping maniac - I think I might've even wrapped a couple of things I shouldn't have, like the kettle, the TV remote, and some cushions, but I'm sure they'll turn up at some point; hell, I can have a Christmas practice run by opening them up! Anyway, yes the wrapping went very well, aside from a few awkwardly-shaped presents but I compensated for screwing those up a bit by using more tape than was strictly necessary to cover all the gaps.

In the afternoon I braved the Christmas shoppers and atrocious weather (it was pissing down something chronic) to go pick up a few last bits in Kingston. Actually, the traffic on the way there was virtually non-existent, which was an unexpected Brucie-bonus, but the shops themselves were heaving. Still, I got what I needed, including a tin of chocolates in the soon to close Woolworths (I wonder if my plastic carrier bag will be worth anything when they do close?), and then it was back off home to wrap-up (heh) the wrapping.

I was late getting up today as well. Whoops, because I had an appointment in Reading to drive a Mini Clubman Cooper D (that's diesel). How late was I? well, my appointment was at 12, and I didn't leave home until, um, 11:50… and I've never been to Reading before so I actually didn't really have a clue where I was going. Ahem. Anyway, I actually got to Reading itself in about half an hour; good times, I thought. Unfortunately, I then spent another hour faffing around trying to find the Mini dealership. The directions I'd printed off were next to useless, so thank the baby Jeebus for the marvels of the iPhone - Google maps eventually had me heading in the right direction. I found the dealers an hour and 10 minutes after I should've got there, at which point the salesman told me that he didn't think I was coming so he'd put the car away. 

Luckily, he was more than happy to go get it out again.

I then enjoyed a half hour drive in the Clubman diesel, and very nice it was too. The one I drove is the manager's car, which they're looking to shift because he's getting another one soon. It's only three months old and it's got all the bells and whistles on it (more than I would spec on one if I was buying new). It's also got that funky stop/start function on it that cuts off the engine if you're sitting in traffic or not moving for any other reason - or, as I like to call it, the idiot function because I kept thinking I'd stalled it, so kept muttering "shit" under my breath. Anyway, my love of Clubmans (Clubmen?) and Minis in general is well-documented, so I won't rattle on about it too much. Just need to decide if I want to buy it now…

Oh, and I got a bit lost on the drive home too. Stupid Reading.

By the time I did get home, it was too late to have any lunch, so I satisfied my hunger by having another go at making the world's best milkshake. This attempt was much, much better than my last go, in so much as I actually blended the biscuits up good and proper this time, so it was a lot smoother and not as much like drinking lovely tasting vomit.

And now? Hmmm… 2.5 working days until Christmas break. Bring it!


CyberPete said...

Sounds like good times all around. I didn't do anything this weekend which scares me, but I did get into the spirit of Christmas having watched three and a half holiday movies. The half one was Capt. Jean-Luc Picard starring as Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. It was both disturbing and unintentionally funny.

You must pose for us all stripper like in that shirt.

T-Bird said...

I can't believe you've wrapped everything. I have to go get all my lay-by thingies off this week.

That subterranean Frankestein bar sounds fecking awesome!

*sulks* There's nothing so cool here...

Tim said...

Cyberpete - Oh, I've kinda half seen the Christmas Carol on TV, but I did see Patrick Stewart perform it on stage a few years back and it was AWESOME.

There'll be no posing, stripper-stylee.

T-Bird - What are lay-by thingies? EXPLAIN!

Yeah, Ginglik is great. Unfortunately the local council are trying to get it shut saying there's problems with the roof … they want to fill the entire bar with concrete!

CyberPete said...

I imagine that would be awesome. He is a great actor.

Pouring concrete into a building is not how you fix a wonky roof. I hope they don't succeed in shutting the bar.

Tara said...

Now I'm hungry for KFC, but I'll have to pace myself and get it later this week since I just had McDonald's last night.

I'm surprised I haven't ever wrapped up Skittles in wrapping paper, because when I have it out, she lies right in the middle of it.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

OK, seeing as you've already poo-pooed the stripper-style posing, how about a non-stripper-style picture?

I must admit to sniggering somewhat at your KFC *and* Ginglik/Robin Williams' career witicisms.

Tim said...

Cyberpete - He is, and no, it's not the solution, is it? Silly local council - there's a petition to save it going on as we speak!

Tara - Have one! Give in to the KFC… I think if Skittles insists on sitting on the wrapping paper you should at least give it a whirl - she's asking for it really!

Inexplicable Device - Um, how about not?

missy&chrissy. said...

no step-by-step milkshake making instructions this time? rats!

and you gave us a serious craving for KFC too! i haven't had it in years, but now i imagine i'll be having dreams of fried chicken tonight.

the projectivist said...

Tim, i wish you'd helpfully pointed out that bit of chicken breast advice to the KFC lady. I think she would have been ever-so-pleased.

Also - what is it with you and the biscuits in your milkshake?
Tim, biscuits don't belong in milkshakes. It's just WRONG.

There's probably some Milkshake Makers law against it.

I bet you dunk biscuits in tea, too.

The Tall Red Head said...

I love Milkshakes but I am allergic to milk. As in any milk. Even shitty goats milk and lactose free milk and soy milk...and even rice milk. And oat milk. Ripped off. And don't get me started on butter or margarine.... So I make do with Fruit smoothies. But I think if I added biscuits into a fruit smoothie it would end up a freakin disaster. I am so jealous of you right now.

Tim said...

Missy&Chrissy - Ah, sorry! It was kind of a spontaneous thing - I will defo do a step-by-step one for you though! It's been too long since a 'cooking with Sparky!'

Maybe I should do a KFC milkshake - y'know, just chuck a zinger tower in there or something!

The Projectivist - Biscuits in milkshakes are AWESOME! Seriously, if you blend 'em up enough you get a quality taste without any lumps! I was inspired by this place:

And yeah, I am a dunker … and a Tim-Tam slammer!

The Tall Red Head - Oh dude that sucks! You can have oats, though, right? There's a really nice fruit smoothie available in shops over here that has fine oats in it - sounds weird, but it really works! Give it a whirl!