Year: 2015

2015: year of this blog

In 2015, I hardly blogged as much as most people. I don’t even think I blogged as much as my mom (who has way more discipline and motivation than me in almost everything). But it was the year that I wrote on this blog, and kept writing, even when it took me a month to finally publish a post about something I had done 2 months before that… So I am declaring 2015 the year of this blog! According to the cute annual review WordPress sent me, I wrote 49 posts in the past twelve months, which, now that I’ve written that down, sounds super pitiful, but when you consider that those 49 posts make up a total of 91 total posts on the blog… I’ll just have to keep in mind that everyone starts from zero. And I’m definitely curious about what my 100th post will be!! To no one’s surprise, the most popular posts are ones revolving around the logistics of my year doing TAPIF, including my advice for completing the application, my guide to …

NaBloPoMo: How’d I do?

It’s the end of November and the end of the NaBloPoMo/NanoPoblano challenge, and I’m sure you’re all wondering : How’d she do? Answer: 20 posts out of 30 days. (I’m including this post in my 30 days because I did write it in November, even though I didn’t post it until December because of some technical difficulties….okay, fine I fell asleep before hitting the publish button.) So, I didn’t win the challenge, as much as that hurts to type out loud. But, I did write more posts in this one month period than I did since last winter, so I think I can still solidly count this as an achievement. It definitely showed me that I can make blogging a habit, and that even though my original intent for this blog was to document my experiences living abroad (for both myself and my loved ones still at home), I still have plenty of stories to tell now that those adventures have come to close. My “normal” life can still be adventurous even though I’m not …

File Under: my failed comedy career

Earlier this week I was going through old saved email drafts, when I stumbled upon something very special from about two years ago that I’d completely forgotten about. It was a page of jokes I wrote for a fake comedy sketch that someone a lot funnier than me should write one day. The concept is one of those parody advertisements for a new perfume called Congresshanel. Let’s be clear, at no point was there a possibility of this sketch being produced. I’ve never been in a comedy group, nor have I ever written a comedy sketch or even performed with an improv troupe. I just spent about 45 minutes one night writing absurd congressional pun taglines in an email that never got sent to anyone because I thought it was funny.  And since my blog doesn’t have enough government-related humor already, I thought I would share them with you lovely people. Please feel free to read them in an overly sensual voice à la ridiculously sexualized perfume ads, and make sure you whissssper the last word to get the full effect. You’ll never …

Learn Something Every Day

I goofed a little on the NaBloPoMo challenge this past week… I was on a trip to visit old friends in New York, then had to catch up on all the work I missed while I was away, then suddenly it’s a holiday and I just haven’t found the time/energy to write. But just because I haven’t been writing much in the past few days, doesn’t mean I haven’t been learning. Here are a few things I’ve learned since my last post. Friday, November 20 – I learned that Chocolate scented teddy bears are apparently in production. I wondered if scented stuffed animals started with Lots’O, the bear from Toy Story 3. Saturday, November 21 – I learned this phenomenal lesson in cause and effect from NYC parks. Sunday, November 22 – I learned that John Oliver love/hates the penny as much as I do! As well as this very important pop culture development. Monday, November 23 – I learned this very salient declaration directed at all “millennials.” Tuesday, November 24 – I learned that the internet literally …

Train Wreck

DC has the Tourist Trolley. Boston has the Duck Boat. France (and many countries in Western Europe) has the Petit Train. These are two- or three-car tiny trains that would fit in at an amusement park or an especially large zoo, meant to drive tourists past notable attractions in any given city.Walk around the city center anywhere in France, no matter the size of the town, and you are likely to hear the clang of the little train’s bell beckoning tourists far and wide to climb aboard. Chambéry has one of these “Petits Trains Touristiques“and from my arrival, I was dying to take a ride on it. Yes, it’s overpriced. Yes, it’s a ridiculous tourist attraction. But, c’mon! It’s just so darn cute! Not too long after I arrived, the train sadly went on haitus, making way for the Christmas market and waiting for the snow to clear up. It is very difficult to understand why and how these trains became such a weird obsession for me. Any time one passed, it gave me a little burst of joy. I think the thing …

Better Know a French…WOMAN!

I’ve been trying to regularly contribute to Better Know a Frenchman, my series about the people behind the names on streets signs and buildings all across France. Shortly after I started the series, I found out about a feminist movement to put more WOMEN’S names in those places of honor. FémiCité is a project by the group Osez le féminisme ! (roughly, Dare to be Feminist!)*. According to their website, out of 63,500 streets in all of France, 20,000 are named for men while only 1,270 bear the name of a woman! 1,270! That is barely 2%! Or as they say, “That’s 2% of streets dedicated to half of humanity.” They also note that of the 302 metro stations in Paris’ extensive system, only three bear women’s names. And of those three, there is a single station where that woman does not share the name with a man! (Interestingly, one of the most recently built tram lines has 9 stations with women’s names, among them Rosa Parks and Ella Fitzgerald.) The problem here is obvious. The names we …