Monday, July 9, 2007

The tag stops here...

My mate Chris tagged me to do a meme. Here are the rules:

We have to post these rules before we give you the facts.Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves.People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules. At the end of your blog post, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.

Well, me being me, I'm not going to burden anyone else with this tagging business. But I've done my bit and written eight random facts about myself. Hope you don't get too bored reading them. Please feel free to post random facts about yourself in the comments section.

1) I’m a chocoholic – I love almost ALL forms of chocolate – dark, milk, white – I can even come at compound chocolate in a desperate situation, and kinda crave the stuff around Easter when so many cheap eggs are made of the compound stuff. Valrhona chocolate is my favourite brand, but I will stoop to the level of Lindt when necessary ;-) I also have become hooked on Koko Black, since my return to Melbourne, and am a fan of the work of the Belgians in the chocolate world. When I started working at Harvey Nichols in London I was told my duties would be these (based on some very correct assumptions made about myself by my rather hideous boss Steve, who took being compared to David Brent as a compliment and even danced a bad dance like him at the HN Christmas party):

· I was to work on the Valrhona chocolate counter, selling amazing chocolates that went for the bargain price of 40quid per kilo. I was told I could eat the chocolates, and was encouraged to do so in order to recommend flavours etc. I insisted they clarify exactly how many chocolates per day would be acceptable to eat, given they cost at least 50p each. We agreed on four a day, and four high quality chocolates sated my chocolate cravings in a way that it takes a half block of Cadbury’s to do so. FYI, the Valrhona dark chocolate with pear ganache was my definite favourite.

· I was to sell Wusthof knives. These are my favourite knives in the world. I have quite a few (less than I used to thanks to a certain Brazilian failing to send some home from Portugal, which in some ways hurt me more than his infidelity). The Germans know what they’re doing in the knife department, and I just love them in their fully-forged glory. Good cookware is to me what porn is to others – I can drool over a saucepan (like my gorgeous Le Creuset). Going into the cookware section of a high end department store gets my heart racing in a very special way.

· Based on this cookware-induced excitement, I also got to be in charge of selling Alessi gear, which I also love (and only own one piece of due to the prohibitive expense). I one day hope to own a set of the gorgeous Big Love ice-cream bowls with their matching heart-shaped spoons.

Still on the food thing (yes, I am borderline obsessive about it), I am a bloody good cook – it’s one thing I know for sure about myself – and I used to host a cooking show on Channel 31 called The Generic Gourmet. I was only 19 at the time, and we filmed it in my dodgy student kitchen in Fitzroy. At the time, TV chefs were all still filming in studio kitchens, so I was years ahead of Jamie Oliver and all the rest. I got fan mail and my minestrone episode was the most popular and frequently repeated for more than a year or so, until Channel 31 started to get some decent programming and could stop running little old me.

And I love Milo. Used to have to get friends to bring it back from Australia for me when I lived in Europe for five years.

(Gosh, I better try and make the rest of these things short or you’ll be here all day reading!)

2) I love my friends. I treat many of them like family. I love helping them wherever and whenever I can. I especially love expressing my love for them through cooking. (See above for food/cooking obsessions). I put a lot of time and effort into my friendships and can sometimes end up disappointed when that effort isn’t reciprocated. But that’s the risk you take when you emotionally invest in other people and there’s no way I can change that aspect of my personality – it’s a key to who I am, ie a generous and loving person. I do, however, need to get better at both adjusting my expectations and learning to stop being too bloody nice to some people who don’t really deserve my friendship. I also need to learn to stop expecting so much from myself.

3) I am the classic eldest child. I’m the one who worries about meeting my parents’ expectations and making them happy, even through periods of my life when they weren’t making me very happy. I can’t help but feel I let them down by almost getting married last year and almost giving them the grandchildren they so desperately desire, but then breaking up with my fiancĂ© and taking that away from them. But then again, I think it is unfair to expect your children to marry and provide you with grandchildren – as a parent, it’s you choice to procreate, you should not expect your children to do the same – hope maybe, but not expect that of them.

4) I’m a serial long-term relationship girl. I don’t do casual things well – I can do the dating thing for only a few dates, then I know whether I have feelings for the bloke or if I have to ditch them. It’s just who I am – a boots and all kind of gal. I need a strong man who is not intimidated by me being strong too, who can let me have my way when it’s important to me but pull me up when I need to be. When I was with my ex-fiancĂ©, we really struggled because he was Brazilian and used to being a macho man and I’m a strong, ballsy Aussie chick. He was used to getting to be the man and having his way, I want nothing short of 50/50 equality (I’ve been the dominant person in a previous relationship and I didn’t like that either and ended it. I don’t want to be the boss, I want to be someone’s partner).

5) I love shoes. I have a real problem with them, or a problem with buying lots of them, to be more specific. I have at least 60 pairs, probably more, I don't count them often. I just can’t help myself with shoes. But I am disciplined and only very rarely let myself spend more than $50 on a pair, as I can invariably get cute shoes on sale for much less than that, often around the $20 mark. Exceptions being boots and very comfortable leather walking shoes.
I’m a brilliant shopper, if I do say so myself. I have NEVER met anyone who can hunt down a bargain better than me. It’s a gift, I’ve tried to teach it, but have only been moderately successful on that front.

6) I miss my grandparents so much. I totally adored my grandmother and grandfather on my Mum’s side. I spent a few periods of my life living with them when my sister had operations when I was young. I’m very like my Nana – multi-talented, good with money, smart, opinionated (I’m not full of myself, but am aware of my gifts – I don’t believe in false modesty. Don’t fret about my ego – my friends will tell you I’m very hard on myself too). My Nana died when I was 18 – she had a massive heart attack. Pa called to say she had collapsed. I jumped in the car and drove over there while my sister called an ambulance. I beat the ambulance, and gave Nana CPR for about five minutes until the ambos got there. She was still so warm, I thought I could bring her back. But the damage to her heart was too severe. She almost died as she’d wished. She always said she wanted to go in her sleep – a massive heart attack where she barely knew what hit her was the next best thing, really. Pa was lost without her – Nana was his whole world. I hope there’s a heaven and they’re reunited up there, with Pa still bringing Nana breakfast in bed. I’d love to climb into bed with Nana again and have Pa bring me breakfast – a hot Milo and quincey jam on toast (my standard order – I was about 10 before I found out that Nana’s quince jam was not really named quincey. I guess they thought it was cute and never corrected me).

7) I’m legally blind in my right eye. I can detect movement, and can see blurred blocks of colour, but that’s about it. Meant my Top Gun fantasies were shot down just like Maverick and Goose were in the firefight with the Migs.

8) I’m good with languages. My parents always tried to push me on them when I was younger, recognising my gift, but I wouldn’t give in. Have never been one for sitting down and studying vocabulary, prefer to learn in a more hands-on way. Took me about six months of living in Portugal to reach a decent conversation level, and was relatively fluent by the time I left after a year in Lagos. I make the effort to meet up with Portuguese speakers here in Melbourne, which is not always easy. My Portuguese has pretty much overwritten my once relatively fluent Italian. I can still understand Italian without any problems, but when I go to speak it, it comes out in Portuguese. Didn’t affect my French, though. Weird.

So there you go, eight random facts about me. Fair play to anyone who's made it down here - true dedication, I like it!


Rebecca said...

Your parents tried to push YOU onto the languages??? Those poor languages... how did they cope??

I LOVES me those icecream bowls.

becstar said...

Ah, the joys of a slightly misworded sentence, eh?!

Yeah, those ice-cream bowls are pretty special. If only they didn't cost $50 each!

Rebecca said...

mmm yes. I'd need at least four. $200 worth of icecream bowls? Probably not this year.

Karen said...

Sixty pairs of shoes! You should definitely take a picture to display. I'd love to see where you put them all. Hmmm. Very interesting facts. We don't get to hear much about you with all the fugly couches and all. A mighty fine cook, eh?

becstar said...

The shoes are kind of spread out between my bedroom and the spare bedroom. When I moved recently a friend came around and saw a rather large box of shoes and said "gee, that's a lot of shoes." I was proud to say it was all the ones I owned, until she turned around and saw one of those Ikea shoe cupboard things full of shoes and said "Um, Bec, what about all them?" Like I said, it's a problem...

I guess we can thank Chris for the tag and making me reveal a little more about me. Felt weird posting this on here, given it's not fugly couch related at all!

Yep, am a mighty fine cook, indeed. Though am very hard on myself and am rarely 100% satisfied with my dishes - if it's not at restaurant quality, then am not truly happy.
Which reminds me of my friend Sarah in Italy. She's married to a Tuscan bloke and soon after arriving in Italy said to her mother-in-law that the meal they had just eaten was good enough to be from a restaurant, thinking that was about the highest compliment you can pay someone. The mother-in-law was insulted. She said: "Sarah, in Italy we don't expect to eat as well at a restaurant as we do at home. Restaurant food is not prepared with love like the food at home." Helped Sarah understand why men never raved about food in the restaurant she waitressed in - they didn't want to upset their wives.

ZUBA said...

I can definitely vouch for Bec's culinary expertise, although sometimes the dishes aren't quite sweet enough for my liking ;)

Nice choice of random facts, although I think I knew most of them already, but it was goos to get your take on them.
And yes you do have a problem with shoes Imelda. ;-)

becstar said...

Not all my readers know me quite as well as you do, Chris!

If there's anything else you want to know, feel free to ask. And that goes for other readers too.

And as for your habit of adding sugar to my savoury dishes - well, you know you're barred from my kitchen for life!

Karen said...

What? No Sugar? How about for coffee? Do you drink coffee? And if so, how do you fix it?

becstar said...

Chris is referring to an unfortunate incident at my house a few months back. I was making my lemon and garlic stuffed freerange chicken. I'd lovingly rubbed the skin with olive oil, salt and pepper and mixed herbs only to have Chris take me seriously when I jokingly answered his suggestion of sprinkling some leftover sugar on top of the chook with a "yeah, sure, of course you should sprinkle sugar on top of my chicken". That'll teach me for being so bloody sarcastic.

As for coffee - milk and sugar, please. The first dot point about chocolate should have given away my sweet tooth!

Hannah said...

Can I just say that I almost didn't get past the first fact. I was so overjoyed to find another sole (get it) who loved the cheap and nasty easter chocolate as much as I do! it is the most delicious chocolate in the world and i particularly like the red tulip variety. I also have an easter themed true tail about a mouse as well.... mmmm how many months until easter?
By the way, loved the facts about you Bec - a great selection! :)

becstar said...

Thanks, Hannah. Always good to know another chocolate obsessive...