Thursday, December 26, 2013

Before 2013 completely disappears...

As 2014 slowly approaches, I wanted to take this time to share photos of all the marvelous Christmas trees I've seen.

Just kidding. I won't put you through that torture. I think one Christmas tree is enough for this year.

 Anyways, while reading Barb's post on spending Christmas alone, her recap of 2013 had me thinking of all the events in my life throughout the year. Even though certain events didn't come out the way I wanted them to, I must say that it wasn't a completely terrible year.

Every event taught me something new and the older I seem to be getting the wiser I am becoming.

That being said, here is a recap of my 2013 and the lessons I've learned.

1. I began my internship for a non profit and was bullied by the other interns.

What I've learned: Bullying doesn't only happen in middle school.

2. I started my new job in my chosen field.

What I've learned: I'm a winner!

3. I moved in with a couple.

What I've learned: If you have options, run!

4. I reconnected with an old acquaintance through facebook.

What I've learned: Facebook brings people together.

5. I graduated college and earned my bachelors!

What I've learned: You can finish school after all.

6. Saw my ex-boyfriend with his new wifey the same day I graduated.

What I've learned: Orlando is too damn small.

7. Went to New York with one of my friends to see this so called acquaintance.

What I've learned: Never EVER go to harlem at night again.

8. This old acquaintance became my bestie and soon my not by choice friends with benefits.

What I've learned: It's okay to say no. I HAVE a choice.

9. I went to Chicago with my friends with benefits and soon realized what it was like to be used.

What I've learned: no matter how well you know a person, always listen to your gut.

10. Got my heart broken.

What I've learned: I am the only one to blame for this, but at least I didn't pay for the hotel in Chicago or New York.

11. Guy I had a crush on last year (guy I also made out with) comes back into my life.

What I've learned: They always come back.

12. Old crush quickly becomes a fling and then ends up moving away.

What I've learned: My feelings for him weren't the same as last year. Moving was the best thing he ever did (at least for me).

13. Went to Seattle to see a friend.

What I've learned: No matter how far friends are, they still care about you.

14. Saw French bean and went to Georgia.

What I've learned: Adventures are always so much fun with friends! And never trust hotel pictures, they lie about their appearance.

15. I move again with the couple and a single guy to a bigger house.

What I've learned: Rooms being too close together calls for disaster.

16. A close friend hurts me.

What I've learned: sometimes even when you don't want to, you have to let go of the negative people in your life. Even if you really care for them.

17. I go on a 7 day cruise with one of my  friends and connect with a cutie on the cruise.

What I've learned: Never give him your number.

18. Cutie and I start to "date" but in the end  it fails.

What I've learned: Things happen for a reason.

19. I take off for Christmas to Budapest.

What I've learned: Office jobs are not for me and hopefully some day I will be able to find a job that lets me travel.

This year was a crazy one for me filled with good, bad and crazy events. Even though, I didn't move to New York as planned, it gave me a chance to reflect on some of the choices I've made and now that 2013 is almost gone, I will be applying the lessons I've learned to the next chapter of my life.

Now that I've tortured you with my list of events, let me leave you with one last torturous thing.


Have a Happy New Year!

Hanny the coffee bean

P.S. I did this whole post through my phone, so if something seems off or looks like gibberish, I blame the phone.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Merry Christmas...I Guess.

I have something to say that I never thought would be uttered in my adult life: for the first time ever, I shall be spending Christmas alone.

No family. No friends. Not even the slightest vision of sugar plum fairies dancing in my head.

Everyone that I know in France will literally be out of town on the 25th, and my dear mother remains sequestered in 80 degree weather back in Miami.

I don't quite know how to react about potentially feeling lonely on Christmas day, but I have several tasks to keep me busy.

1) Decorating the Christmas tree* with presents*.

*Actual Christmas tree and presents optional.

2) Relocating the mini poinsettia into a bigger pot.

I haven't neglected it. I tend to it every day and check to see if its soil runs dry. However, it's inexplicably dying and I've had the poor thing for only a week. I'm a horrible plant mother and therefore cannot be trusted with other plant offspring lest I want to have plant services called on me.

This is what a plant looks like when it has given up. 

3) Thoroughly cleaning and tidying my room.

I'm also a horrible room mother. Even I'm ashamed as to how much of a slob I can be.

4) Drinkin' booze.

There was a point in my young adult life in which I would drink orange juice only if it had rum in it. This week taught me that not much has changed since then.

Also: there is no more space in the booze compartment of the infamous bookcase/booze cabinet. I gotta be cold-hearted and evict some residents.

5) Pack my suitcase.

I'm headed to the Netherlands on December 26th and will celebrate New Year's Day in Amsterdam. No time to mope around the house this Christmas.

And, inevitably: 6) Light some candles and pray to the French strike gods that the SNCF and Air France don't decide to ruin my trip.

French Christmas cheer just wouldn't be the same without peppering a vacation with train delays and canceled flights.


Since I will not be in the country prior to the end of the year, let this message serve as my well wishes to all of you lovely readers.

I'm going to forgo the annual "Re-Cap of Barb's Year" to just a few notable highlights: decided to go to Ireland, went to Ireland, met an Irishman at the airport in Paris, kept in contact with the Irishman, spent time with the Irishman in Paris, had heart broken by the Irishman, celebrated 26th birthday, went to London with 19 French middle school students, went to a Franco-American wedding in Burgundy, went home for the summer, was a bridesmaid at a friend's wedding, went to visit Coffee Bean in Orlando and took a trip together to Savannah and Atlanta, Georgia, went back to France, went to Ireland a second time.

I'd say that this Karate Chop Ninja Squirrel year featured more ups than downs overall. Let's see if 2014 turns out to be surreptitious and unexpectedly life-changing, like Ninja Squirrel in the dark.

Je vous souhaite un Joyeux Noël et une très Bonne Année/Les deseo una Feliz Navidad y un Prospero Año Nuevo/I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Barb the French Bean

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Two Six Year Olds, the Grumpy Cat and the Hoarder

My house consists of three rooms and four people. Two of them are a couple and the other two are single.

When I first moved in with my friends/roommates, I only lived with the couple. At the time, I lived in a small apartment with my own walk-in closet and a private bathroom. Life was great until the couple decided to move and well having no where else to go and very little options, I followed. We ended up moving into a bigger house with higher rent and an extra room. And that is where the story of the two six year olds, grumpy cat and the hoarder begins.

Moving into a house that has all the bedrooms close in proximity, is rarely ever a good idea. Especially, when you live with a couple. This was not a problem in the last apartment, but once we moved into the house, everything became a problem.

From the temperature in the house to the dishes in the sink. The new addition to our little "family" was both a blessing and disaster in disguise.

Of course, I never had a problem with the addition, but I did have some issues with the couple or should I say the two six year olds.

The Two Six Year Old's

AKA the couple. They are the ones who argue day in and day out. One points fingers at others when he makes a mistake and throws fits like a child, while the other one stomps her way out the door when she doesn't get her way. There is a list of things they do that puts them in this category, but this does not affect me as much as it affects the Grumpy Cat.

The Grumpy Cat

He has been my entertainment for the past few months. While the couple are always huddled in their room, he has been the very person who has kept me sane. Although, his sarcasm can be too much to handle sometimes, it has never caused an argument between us. Grumpy cat also makes silly impersonations, one being the Grumpy Cat -- Same face and all! Grumpy Cat is a neat freak and having shared a bathroom with me, he has indirectly called me a hoarder.

The Hoarder

That's me! Okay so I am not much of a hoarder, but I do have a bunch of crap in my room, which in some odd way makes me feel like a hoarder. I am usually never home, but when I am, I get annoyed by the couple from time to time, especially when the heater is on. Not only is the heater a waste of money, but it also has me sweating to death.

My living situation has been a rather interesting one with so many different characters in the house, it is no wonder that the house almost burned down! but that my dear readers is for another post.

Now that you are all well aware of my roommates, it will be much easy to talk about the crazy crap I've had to deal with this year with the two six year olds and the grumpy cat.

I've never had much luck with amazing roommates, but it's much better than the crazy roommate I had and her inmate boyfriend who used to stare me down...

I'm sure I am not the only one who has had to deal with roommates, so please share your stories and soon enough I will post about the day my house almost burned down.

Hanny the coffee bean

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Pétage de Câble (A.K.A. Operation: Coffee Crash)

The Pétage de Câble starts off with a minor incident which is then followed by a series of relatively innocuous annoyances. The catalyst incident could be, say, having your trusty MP3 break down in the middle of your workout which, as innocuous annoyances dictate, forces you to listen to the crap the gym blasts on their speakers for the whole time.

Mildly dejected with the realization that you now need to invest in a new technological device, you instantly feel remorse over the whole set of Harry Potter DVDs which you now deem to be a frivolous purchase. You resign yourself to go home and check out what the store has to offer the following day.

Of course, once you do get home, the fatigue of having exhausted your muscles in the gym crashes on you. You are so tired that you contemplate skipping dinner altogether to go straight to bed. You choose to eat a salad anyway.

After dinner, you are gladdened that you have the rare occasion of going to bed early. Judging from the time (eleven o'clock), you even have the delightful idea of waking up early the following morning. Your body clearly indicates that it needs a proper night's rest. You slide underneath the warm, comfortable duvet and wait for slumber to hit you immediately, still clutching to the hope that you will be relaxed and fully energetic the next day.

Except your brain has other ideas.

Rather than going to bed early (at eleven), your mind wills you to stay awake for several hours, and your body is helpless to its demands. Finally, at 3:30 a.m., the brain caves in and allows you to get some rest.

However, this rest comes in erratic intervals. Throughout the night, rather than granting you the full time to sleep until the alarm is supposed to ring, your eyes snap open and they immediately rove around the room. They see the time. The alarm is supposed to go off in two minutes. The alarm goes off.

You rebel and hit "snooze." One hour later, regret sinks in and you feel like a failure for not having woken up in time. Your limbs slide off the bed. Your feet touch the floor. You stand up.

Your arms hang limply to your torso while its heavy weight is likened to that of a bag of rocks. With the slight headache throbbing at your temples, you know instantly that in your current state, you are going to have a bad day.

Still, you attempt to make the most of your day and opt to look nice for work. For your attire, you choose something of your liking. You decide on a delicate, cream-colored top and go to work.

Throughout the day, the headache and fatigue persist. Not wanting to seem like a whiny, namby-pamby to your colleagues, you keep your predicament to yourself. For some reason, your body has also been set to "heightened klutz mode" which causes you to drop everything you touch. You try to cheer yourself up with the notion that at the end of the day, you will go to the store to replace that broken MP3 with a new one.

The morning doesn't seem to end.

Suddenly, it's lunchtime. You are hungry and are ready to scarf down the first thing handed to you. The food item happens to be served in a greasy red tomato sauce. Worried about ruining your delicate, cream-colored top, you are mindful about not letting a single speck of sauce make look like you are sporting the Japanese flag. Scarfing food is no longer an option. Mood slightly improved after lunch until the stress of work takes over. During one lesson, an impertinent student interrupts the lesson to ask if you are attracted to members of the same gender. You suppress the puerile urge to throw the student out the window.

By the end of the day, despite your best attempt to keep a smile on your face, the harbored combination of exhaustion, headache, stress and general foul mood has gradually grown and is at risk at exploding any second. You leave your workplace and head for the store.

You check out the MP3s and choose the one that calls out the most. It just so happens to be behind a glass display case that can only be accessed by an employee who wields a key. You approach the nearest vendor and ask to have the display case be opened. Said vendor promptly informs you that their colleague is the one who can open the case and asks you to wait patiently for them to return.

You agree to wait.

You wait two minutes. Then five minutes.

You see a gentleman approach you and your spirits soar. He walks past. You sigh and resign to wait some more. The man comes back, makes eye contact with you, yet says nothing. You continue to wait by the glass display case.

After fifteen minutes, you approach the man.

"Excuse me," you begin, "are you the one who can open the display case so I can buy an MP3?"

"Yes. Right this way, please."

A tirade of profanity-laced diatribes scroll through your head as the man, in fewer than a minute, retrieves the MP3 you want and leads you to the checkout counter.

Before going home, you feel that you are in desperate need of a pick-me-up. You enter the neighboring bar and question the bartender if they have hot chocolates.

They don't.

You ask if they have Irish Coffees.

The so-called bartender has never made an Irish Coffee before. What else would you care for? A large café au lait, you reply. You slump your tired body into a plushy booth and wait for the beverage to come. It eventually does. You thank the bartender.

Your cold hands grasp unto the mug.

The really hot mug.

The really hot and heavy mug.

It slips out of your hands.

The contents spill on your jeans.

And on the delicate, cream-colored top you had so carefully protected from red sauce at lunchtime.

If you weren't in public, surrounded by strangers, your reaction would have probably been like this:

Instead, you sop the lukewarm liquid, drink whatever is left in the mug, pay, then walk home.

As if the weather also wanted to get in on the action of spiting you, it begins to rain.

When you finally do get home, you have the rather unpleasant surprise that someone, somehow, managed to slip your dirty welcome mat underneath the front door.

This normally wouldn't have been much cause for concern, and yet, after having an MP3 device stop working, after not having had a proper night's rest, after having to work the whole day sustaining a splitting headache, after being ignored by a salesclerk, and after having a nice top be RUINED when you had tried to protect it earlier on, seeing the amount of dirt and dust that had trailed onto the spotless floor that you had cleaned merely a day before was the fucking last straw.

But this is certainly not "the drop which overflowed the vase."

That is when you experience the dreaded "pétage de câble." The pent-up rage harbored in your being explodes upon ignition. Hot lava streaks down your cheeks as you holler and howl like an unruly two-year-old.

Then, as quickly as the anger had come, it subsides. It's over.

You decide to eat dinner. Perhaps you'll have another salad like last night. You open the fridge.

The lettuce has spoiled overnight.

Sodium-drenched ramen noodle soup is a better option on a cold night, anyway.

Barb the French Bean

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Tale of Stalker Cat

Shortly after setting foot on French soil at the CDG-Roissy airport, I took a couple of trains and headed back to my homebase in Sablé-sur-Sarthe. What I currently refer to as "home" is a small, furnished room complete with two faucets and a shower. Prior to leaving the premises to spend nearly six weeks in Miami, I had to vacate said room of every one of my possessions.

Every. Single. Thing.

I had only resided in my room for eleven months, but I soon figured that had been enough time to accrue what I now fondly refer to as "having way too much shit."

The belated spring cleaning took place over the course of five days and it involved several plastic containers and cardboard boxes which were graciously stored in someone's basement.

Arriving once again in Sablé, I found myself with the task of not only settling into my vacated room once more, but also having to move ALL of my possessions across a bumpy terrain so I could progressively organize my items.

This move occurred over two days, in which the first day I opted to take out only items involved in cleaning off body and hair travel residue and clothing a naked mattress so I could collapse into a well-merited rest.

Being a perpetual optimist, rather than complaining about the unavoidable labor of moving items under the hot, summer sun, I viewed it as the opportunity to redecorate my very humble abode. I had the genius idea to move some furniture around, which cleared out some space on the floor, enough for me to never have to side-step and trip over the veritable minefield of books, clothes and boxes ever again.

On the second day, I loaded a flat barrel with some plastic containers and made the first of multiple journeys from the basement to my room.

Suddenly, I heard a faint "mew" emanate from behind me. I craned my neck and spotted a thin, dark cat, eyes intently fixed upon my being.

I didn't think too much of this stray and continued with the task of hauling heavy plastic containers back to my room. I made it to my building, gradually unloaded the cart of the boxes and dumped them into my room.


I turned on my heel toward the glass front door. There, peering inside, was the cat patiently waiting for me to open the front door. "Mew," it beckoned once more as it blinked a couple of times.

"Sorry, cat, I can't let you in the building," I replied, hoping it would somehow magically be able to interpret human language. "It's against the rules, you know."

I opened the glass door, shooed it away, and continued with a second trek to the basement to repeat my previous actions.

Thirty seconds passed when I had the impression that I wasn't alone with this venture. I stopped in my tracks and turned to look behind me.


There was the cat, trailing a mere ten paces away from me. I took pity on its lithe form and forlorn calls. I headed back to my building (the cat following me) and fetched a small bowl of milk in the kitchen. As I made it out of the building once more, I saw that the cat had once again patiently waited by the entrance.

I placed the bowl of milk in a few feet away from the entrance and the cat eagerly lapped its free meal.

I went back to the basement, loaded the cart with more plastic containers, then headed to my building.

The cat was still there, stationary, by the front door.

"Mew," it said, in a more forceful tone.

I sighed and in my inane quest to make stray animals understand human speech told it to run off and catch of a couple of mice. I shooed it away and unloaded the plastic containers into my room.

Like that will happen with equality of the sexes. 
I paused for a moment, took a sip of cold water, and mentally prepared myself to follow through with a third trip to the basement. I reached the front door. My jaw dropped.


I dawned on me that I had acquired my very first stalker.

I huffed and told the cat to go away and leave me alone, for I was allergic to his kind.

"Listen, cat, this isn't going to work. I can't adopt you as my pet. It's not going to happen, so scram."

"MEW," it uttered sternly.

I ignored its scornful tone and continued the move toward the basement. I checked behind to see if my furry stalker trailed me.

He did. He stopped the instant he realized that I had spotted him chasing me in broad daylight. I harrumphed and kept walking.

Even when I went indoors to gather my things in the basement, stalker cat patiently waited for my return to gaze at me with those big almond-shaped eyes.


I loaded the containers onto the cart and rushed back to my room, stalker cat in tow.

"MEEEEEEEEEEEEEWWWWWWWW," he screeched when I made it to the front door. This time, his call was filled with accusatory animosity. With that one, brief sound, I interpreted his speech to translate as "Bitch, you gave me milk. You're just as well MINE from this point on."

From outside of the glass door, his baleful expression was cut with a fleeting glance of being in confused pain. Why was I rejecting him? Why couldn't I appreciate that I finally had someone who was willing to stick by my side?

Probably because his relentless chasing freaked me out. I bid my stalker cat good-bye and closed the door to my room.

Within a few hours, my abode took on a new air:

It may not be much, but it's quite cozy. 

Content with my work, I took a well-deserved shower followed by a jet-lag induced nap.

Barb the French Bean

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Date That Almost Seems Forgotten

Twelve years have passed from that day when I was a high school Freshman sitting in my second period geography class. Twelve years from the moment when the vice principal's voice emanated from the speakers to announce the news that struck me dumb.

The events of September 11, 2001 have since been marked as the day that will not be forgotten.

It's also hard to forget considering the repercussions that ensued shortly after the attacks: stricter airport security measures, a burrowed fear permeating people's consciousness, fright at the thought that perhaps some loon with a bomb sought to take a life worth living in mere seconds.

Yes, we were afraid in those fledgling months of trying to make sense within the chaos. United over the loss, the people in my country were linked by invisible threads of hope, courage and resilience. So were our allies. "Today, we are all American," Jacques Chirac quipped at the time.

The following year, I took French as one of my high school elective classes. Little did I know that such a relatively minor decision would guide me to where I am now.

Twelve years later, I am in France on September 11, 2013. Apart from a few media blurbs on the T.V., newspapers and radio, it's a fairly normal day. People go to work, greet their co-workers, take their kids to school without the faintest qualm that perhaps it may just be the last time they see each other. Life goes on, and the contrast of how I experience every anniversary of that fateful back home versus here comes off as almost irreverent to me.

Over the years, I have slowly, even begrudgingly, accepted that such American customs as Halloween, Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July go by without a second, if any, thought here. However, the way that life has gone by tranquilly on this September 11 almost seems...wrong. I can't wrap my head around it.

And yet, living tranquilly is exactly how I've spent this day. I got up, had breakfast, worked, had lunch, went to the gym, showered, went grocery shopping, and had dinner. The normalcy is striking and blunt. It makes me want to turn to those around me and ask "don't you remember what today is?! I can't be the only one!"

Of course they must remember. Who could forget news like that?

Perhaps I'm simply having a difficult time with the acceptance that things will always be perceived differently abroad, especially something that has forever been etched into my underlying way of being.

Time goes by. Life goes on. C'est la vie.

Barb the French Bean


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Something to Get Out of My Head, A.K.A. Mocking "Sharknado"

There's been an endless stream of mockery about the infamous American D-list soon-to-be-an-instant-classic Sharknado. For those of you who have no idea what I am talking about, then, clearly, you haven't seen the movie's trailer with the tagline of "SHARKS...TORNADO...SHARKNADO. 'NUFF SAID."

Yes, some freak meteorological event causes a horde of sharks to be transported into the swirling death funnel and cause havoc upon the streets with their ruthless, meat-tearing ways. Humans can only defend themselves with guns. And chainsaws.

In the aftermath of mindless drivel such as Twilight, Fifty Shades of Grey, LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, the Kardashians, the Jersey Shore, any form of half-assed, brain-numbing entertainment that attacks our feeble minds under any and every medium, I have to say that I am hardly, and sadly, surprised that such a shitastic movie managed to be produced in the first place.

I guess what I am trying to say is...I'm getting old and really tired of all of this shit. I refuse to let the insufferable term "YOLO" replace carpe diem. Every day, a piece of my soul dies then decays over the thought that children will become so dependent on technology that they won't even be taught to think for themselves. They'll have knowledge at their finger tips, access at a mere click of a button, yet they won't LEARN anything.

But I digress. Sharknado.

I thought to myself, why sharks? These creatures have become so traditional and expected in semi-horror movies that I wondered...what if the animal were replaced by something you wouldn't expect?

Like narwhals.

Think about it: narwhals are whales that have a long tooth growing out of their skull. THEY HAVE A BUILT-IN HARPOON, people. They are unicorn whales, only slightly less magical and charming. How cool is that? I can envision it now: with the mighty force of the tornado, the narwhals are lifted into the sky. Using their harpoon-tooth, they mercilessly spear their victims like they were some sort of human shish kabobs.

And do you know what the tagline of Narwhalnado will be?

Due to an F-list budget of pixelated cartoons , the special effects for Narwhalnado are restricted to copying and pasting in MS Paint.

Okay, who cares if narwhals technically live in the Arctic circle and thus have never even seen a hurricane or tornado? Why should science and nature put a damper on how cool it would look?!

Or perhaps the film could feature Portuguese Man o' Wars. To put it in layman terms, the sting from those badass colony polyp motherfuckers will fuck you up, either by giving you excruciatingly painful red welts, or an allergic reaction or, in rare cases, even attacking the lymph nodes which will eventually result in death.

Then again, Portuguese Man o' Warnado is quite a mouthful to say. So is Australian Sea Waspnado. Those creatures are even worse than the Portuguese Man o' War.

Or, perhaps both creatures can be combined to make a new film: MedusApocalypse.

These jellyfish cling to their victims faces like the face huggers from Alien. Or some poisonous neurotic ex who simply can't accept the breakup has happened.

Fear them. Fear them ALL.

Barb the French Bean

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Growing Up Sucks Balls

When I was younger, I used to have this huge desire to grow up. To do everything everyone older than me did--going to concerts, driving, traveling, staying up past 11 p.m. and all the other things I couldn't do as a child. I would sometimes throw temper tantrums screaming "I CAN'T WAIT TO GROW UP!"

Oh how wrong was I...

                                                 photo credit: Ahoova via photopin cc
                                                 (Nope...not me. I'm a woman)

It was foolish of me to think that my life would be easy and to overlook the very things that stress me out.
Bills, bills, and more bills. As a child, I did not comprehend the way of life, to me it was just a world of playgrounds, cartoons, swings and food. Nothing else existed to me and on occasions I would throw hissy fits when I didn't get what I wanted. Of course, as I started to grow up, so did my responsibilities.

Below you will find the growth of my responsibilities:

Age: 1
Responsibilities: Pooped, ate and slept.
Job: Cried

Age: 6
Responsibilities: Pooped, ate, slept, smiled and looked pretty.
Job: Eating McDonald's Fries.

Age: 10
Responsibilities: Pooped, ate, slept, annoyed brother, occasionally smiled and rarely looked pretty.
Job: Watched cartoons

Age: 13
Responsibilities: Annoyed brother, never smiled, hid from bullies, chores and observed (Yes...I still pooped, ate and slept).
Job: Referee for fights in my house

Age: 16
Responsibilities: Chores, homework, walking the dog, screaming, applying to colleges, pooped, ate, and slept.
Job: Breaking out of my house every so often.

Age: 20
Responsibilities: Gym, homework, driving, boyfriend, working, paying cell phone, rarely slept, looked pretty, and ate.
Job: Worked in Retail.

Age: 22
Responsibilities: Gym, homework, driving, working, paying several bills, rarely slept, dated, looked like a disaster and ate.
Job: I had temp. jobs (at least...I made them temp.)

Age: 25 (NOW)
Responsibilities: Gym, driving, working, pestering the mailman, paying A MILLION BILLS (SCHOOL LOANS....NOOOO!), rarely sleeping, looking alright, dealing with a few stubborn guys, snapchatting people, and  finding ways to make more money (yes yes yes I still poop and eat).
Job: Marketing and Business Development for a good company.

I must admit, looking at this list, I have come a long way from where I used to be, but the fact that I can't seem to pay off

Thus, I have come to the conclusion that growing up sucks balls, a phrase that a friend used to say on a daily basis. A phrase I have come to know as:

sucks balls- An expression used when things are shitty (according to Urban Dictionary).

 While I do have a job that pays, I still do not make enough to pay off my credit cards, loans, car loan and everything else that is on a loan. So for the next few days I have gone Google "insane" and have spent a few days looking for ideas...

How to make money according to Google:

1. Become a gold digger
2. Sell your body to advertising companies so they can tattoo your forehead.
3. Become a moving billboard- wear ads on your shirt, use their pens and use your car to stick their ads on.
4. Sell items on Ebay (I have plenty going on...this can only get me so far, unfortunately).
5. Do another persons dirty work by joining a site that everyone seems to be on and have no chance of even getting that job to begin with.
6. Garage sale! (I have no yard and no garage...I live in a cave somewhere).
7. Pan Handling
8. Write Reviews (unfortunately this doesn't pay all that all).
9. Sell your photography (I have yet to find someone who will buy any of it).
10. Sell your soul to the pawn shop (I don't even have gold or anything worth pawning).

I read plenty of other ideas that were well...a bit...disturbing. At some point I was waiting for someone to say that the best way to make money was by selling unicorn milk.

Gladly, there isn't anyone twisted enough to think of that, except for me. Maybe I should start selling unicorn milk, possibly do a false advertisement of how magical you'll feel in the mornings after drinking unicorn milk or how unicorn milk will make you sparkle just like the vampires in Twilight.

Unfortunately, I don't think unicorn milk can stop my responsibilities or pay all my bills...Growing up definitely sucks balls.


Hanny the coffee bean

(and yes I really had to emphasis the balls part).

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Signs You *May* Be Turning French

After several months of pondering, and at the insistent elbowing encouragement from my pal King Stu at Invading Holland, I present to you a list of signs which indicate that you *may* be turning French.

-Your stomach has survived one of those five-hour long French dinners and lived through the cheese course.

-You actually have hosted one of those infinite dinners yourself.

-The thought of skipping lunch is UNACCEPTABLE. Got work to do? Too bad. Your stomach comes first.

-You unconsciously eat said lunch in multiple courses: entrée, plat, fromage, dessert and le p'tit café for last.

-You have finally achieved that perfect, elusive dietary balance which allows you to eat creamy/stinky cheeses, buttery croissants, crusty baguettes, sumptuous foie gras, and to imbibe copious amounts of wine while NOT gaining weight.

-You know very well that the humble potato is bread's sworn enemy on being the country's food favorite.

-You have a favorite cheese, which is no small task considering how the country is known for producing over 400 different cheeses.

-Said favorite cheese will always find a place in your fridge, along with a glass of moutarde and an ever-present jar of cornichons.

-You scoff at Spanish tomatoes and strawberries. And pretty much every other produce that doesn't come from France and its overseas regions.

-Before agreeing to an outing with friends, you first consult with your "agenda" to make sure you are free and therefore won't inconvenience anyone with last-minute cancellations.

-And you take out a pen from your ever-present "trousse" to write down said date.

-You make it a habit to carry several passport-sized photographs with you for identification and paperwork purposes.

-You always keep an ever-so-handy RIB (relevé d'identité bancaire) in your wallet for whenever you need to hand your bank account information over to a complete, but authoritative, stranger.

-When completing a file, it no longer surprises you when you are asked to provide more documents and photocopies than was previously required.

-Nor will you raise eyebrows to make photocopies of documents you could have sworn had already been provided.

-Seriously. You won't even bat an eye when hearing that the minimum delay for ANY legal documentation will take at least six weeks.

-You no longer break into cold sweats whenever you hear the SNCF's doon-DOON-doonoo chime in the train station over the worry that your train was delayed/cancelled/mysteriously abducted by aliens*.


-You start to consider that any place that takes more than a three-hour drive is "far."

-You often opt to take a vacation within the country as opposed to travelling abroad because you reason that France's beauty is unparalleled and it is therefore pointless to go elsewhere**.

Nope. Not even Sherlock Holmes in the London Underground could surpass the wonders of France. 

-It's perfectly acceptable to have furniture that you would never have considered owning before, such as a combination bookcase/booze cabinet.


-You no longer giggle whenever you see a bidet.

-You actually get mildly peeved whenever you see a bathroom that has a toilet in it, instead of seeing the porcelain throne in a separate water closet.

-You have willingly used the dreaded "toilettes turques", a.k.a. the "WTF toilet," on more than one occasion.

-You once hated how French windows blocked all sources of light with the "volets." Now, you can't imagine life without shutters, particularly during those long summer days that start at 5 a.m.

-You've been lucky enough to go to a French wedding and managed to party for most of the night.

The lovely bride is my friend Emily.  The pink thing on my head is a fascinator.  
-You actually know someone who plays the accordion.

-You know very well that mentioning the Mont St Michel to someone from Brittany is a big no-no.

-You manage to find something to do on Sundays.

*When my mother came to visit me last year for Christmas, our train to head back to Paris was delayed, THEN cancelled. According to the SNCF message (which was preceded by the chime), this "inconvenience" was due to an "incident de personne" which happened to someone;"incident de personne" is often code for "suicide."

And I had purchased First Class tickets, too. Harrumph.

**New York City is the apparent exception.