Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I am not making this up....

Dear London,

Really? Really?

Okay, whatevs.
Love,  olga

Monday, March 29, 2010


Haven't written in a while, I've been working lots of shifts! They haven't been long shifts, but I feel pretty worn out anyway... Thanks to my manager's super awesome roster making skills, I got two weeks in a row of six days per week. I remember us having a conversation where I said I couldn't work six days a week, but I'm starting to think maybe I hallucinated it? I have been having some odd dreams lately.

Then, of the twelve days I'm working, he managed to put eleven of them next to each other! What a thoughtful guy! My day off is on Wednesday, so luckily I've just got to get through tomorrow without stabbing any customers... I am optimistic, but make no promises.

When I talked to him about it, he looked at the roster and furrowed his brow, then said 'oh but it's okay, you'll only have three shifts next week.' And then I put the two rosters next to each other and showed him my lack of a day off, and he said that it was good for me - to which I said 'snuh?' and 'blkgjf?' and 'yeah, well it won't be that great for the customers once I start throwing things at them.' I don't think he heard me.

On a nicer note, the assistant manager offered to let me leave three hours early today. I told him about my roster hassles on Friday, so it was nice of him to try to look out for me. Unfortunately, it was another guy who was going to have to stay and cover my shift, and he didn't seem too happy about it. As I was about to clock out at three, I thanked him for staying, and he said that he was being forced to do it - but that next time I could cover his shift...
Anyway, I figured I may as well just stay and work, rather than making the other dude cranky and having to owe him. Still, I was pretty pleased that the assistant manager thought of it. I think that's what upsets me most about the manager - he just doesn't seem to listen!

Wanna hear a kind of funny story? There's this guy who works in the shopping centre (I think - or maybe he just likes loitering). He often hangs out near one of the entrances next to Costa, and smokes cigars.
I don't know if he's doing it on purpose, but he also paces back and forth, right in front of  the sensor for the automatic doors. So the cigar smoke wafts in and fills the cafe with a nice carcinogenic stench. Mmm. I'm not that fussed, really - I kind of like the smell - but it's pretty ridiculous to watch.


Oooh, in some non-work-related news, we have a show booked in May. We're supporting a math-rock band from Melbourne called My Disco, Andy LOVES them. It should be a real fun night - assuming we can remember how to play the songs!

Oh yeah, I almost forgot - do you need to see a dude dancing to Boys Boys Boys in his lounge room? Yes, you do.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tea Party Photos!

Self explanatory, really... Self explanatory AND AWESOME! Thanks for the photos, Daisy!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Good things!

Oh noes! I didn't take any good photos of the tea party, but I'm going to steal some off Daisy at the earliest opportunity, I promise.

It was heaps of fun, we all got dressed up and made so many sweet treats! Daisy made some great muffins - the beetroot ones were amazing (think carrot cake, that makes it less weird), Victoria and Maja both made sandwiches - we decided that savoury things let you eat more sweet things, because they act like a full stop. As Victoria put it: "Cupcake cupcake cupcake jelly sandwich. Jelly cupcake jelly biscuit sandwich." 
Hmm, we thought it was the funniest thing ever at the time, but maybe you had to be there. And high on sugary treats.

Victoria's sister Hannah brought ginger beer and fancy tea, and Anjay brought champagne (okay, okay, sparkling pinot noir. Spoilsports).

I made some cupcakes, cookies, pink lemonade and of course, the bunny jelly. It worked really well, and Daisy has a fantastic picture of it! I think the jelly here in England is more wobbly than jelly at home. It comes in cubes of concentrated jelly, rather than the powder that you get in Australia. Weird, but awesome. 

So yeah, tea party = success. Yay for my real cool house and the awesome people in it!


Here's another awesome thing - I bought it while I was out buying the rabbit mould. There are some very exciting shops in Islington...

Ross called him 'Tinysaur'. I love that man.


What else, what else? Work is okay, it feels easier as I get better at it. Our customers suck quite a lot of the time, but I guess that's life. Most of it just washes over me, but I think I might stab the next person who leaves gum stuck to their tray. I mean, really? Really? It's pretty ridiculous, especially when they've also grabbed a wad of napkins and left those completely untouched.
Sometimes I worry about humans.
And that's all. I'm going to make curry for dinner, but I had a late lunch so I'm not that motivated. There's still some leftovers from last night, but I think Ross would mutiny at eating chilli for the third meal in a row.  Curry will be awesome, I'm going to try to make it from scratch!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Gosh, Part Two: In which nothing really happens...

Okay. So I talked to my assistant manager when I worked on Wednesday, having had Tuesday off to fume and develop some arguments. (As a refresher, assistant manager is the one who's rude sometimes, and manager guy is the one who calls me sometimes.)

I wasn't going to hassle him about it, I just asked where I could find a copy of the policy handbook, and he said that the manager could get one, but that if I had any questions I could just ask him...

So I said it was about the till fiasco, and he said yeah, it is a sucky situation, but it really is the policy. I asked him about whether it was supposed to come from your pay rather than your pocket, and then only if they proved you were responsible. He was a bit evasive about it, but I think that might be the policy -  he said he prefers to just fix it straight away, then you don't have to worry about them taxing it or making a big deal out of it.
(I can't figure out how to represent one in text, but imagine me with skeptical face... Yeeeeah. Right.)

After we'd talked for a while, he said that really did want me to get the money back, so he was going to do it by adding some extra hours to my pay - half an hour for the next few shifts... I don't know if I want that, it seems kinda dishonest - and I told him that - but I think he was feeling quite guilty by this point and wanted to make it right...

He then went on to talk about how crap the policy is, and how the whole chain is like that, and after several minutes of solid ranting, he concluded with "You should find yourself a better job. Really. I'm saying this as a friend, as a brother, however you want to think of me, but you should get out of this place and find somewhere better." Heavy, huh?

I'm sort of starting to understand the guy -  he was pretty understanding and nice, if totally misinformed about the right way to deal with this kind of thing. I think he's just been there too long without the training and support to make it worthwhile, so now he just feels like he's fighting the bosses. Which of course helps no one - I think once you get to that point, you just have to get out and stop inflicting your misery on everyone else*.

So that's it for now. I'm going to get the handbook from the manager when I see him next, and in the meantime I might print out some more CVs and have a look at what's available...

* Yes, yes, I have been the poster child of how not to resolve these kinds of things, but I've finally learned from experience! Honest!


Enough of that. I've got a day off today, so I'm going to go into Islington and buy a jelly mould in the shape of a rabbit. That's what everyone does on their days off, right?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Just playing around while watching Glee... No pattern - therefore, it's all MINE!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Skypey with sisterface...

We could both use a haircut. 
I tried to dare her to cut it online ("I will if you do!"), but she refused.
Good call.
Love her.

Monday, March 15, 2010


So today at work, the till was 40 pounds down at the end of the night. Apparently company policy is that that money gets repaid by the staff. Since there was just me and the assistant manager closing, I put twenty pounds of my money into the till. Um, what?

I have calmed down now and am no longer fuming, but I think I probably should be. First of all, I'm not convinced that company policy says that all employees who touched the till have to chip in to fix it. I have a feeling that the manager or whoever's in charge is 'responsible' but even so, I don't think they should have to pay it back, either.
At previous places I've worked (hello Dome: in hindsight, I love you and all of your  stupidly detailed systems and policies!), if you're the supervisor/manager/person in charge, then if the till is down, you try your best to find out why.
You talk to staff, you count everything three times and if it's still wrong, you tick the box on the computer that says "counted everything three times and cannot find reason" (Yep, that's actually what it said).
You take note of it, and if money keeps going missing, you look for the common factor and hopefully find out who is stealing or lacking in basic maths skills.
At no point in this equation do the employees put money in the till. That is just dumb; it leaves you with some resentful employees who might as well start stealing from the till, because at least that way they're not losing money by coming to work.

Screw that place. I'm going to start looking for something else. And then I'm going to call in sick every day on my last week, so that they can't take any more of my hard earned money/time.


Phew. Let's try not to end on that note, shall we? We are going to have a high tea on Sunday as a very belated birthday celebration for me! I don't know how 'high' it'll actually be - I'm fairly sure we'll dress up and cut the crusts off some sandwiches, but let's face it, we'll still be in Walthamstow.

This is from afternoon tea that I had in Perth with some very lovely ladies.
Oh how I miss you, sunshine and Perth friends!

And also, I have a day off tomorrow! How awesomely fun and nice - I will enjoy every second of it!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

"It doesn't take much for us to treat every other person in this world first with respect and then with kindness, if possible."

So... I have been reading (and quoting) this great book called 'Memoirs of a Master Forger', it is pretty interesting and set in London. I really like the way it's written, it pretty much hooked me from the first page. And then, after I finish that book, I have a sci fi novel by Stephen Fry to read! I didn't even read the blurb, but I'm sure it'll be awesome (and also, it was in an op shop, so it was only a pound anyway).

Haven't got any mega news or anything, just been having some nice times around the place... And I've finished phase 1 of my knitted gift to Anna. If I knew how to lj cut, I could maybe post a picture and give Anna strict instructions to not click on the link - but a) I don't know how to do that and b) that's just a little bit mean, isn't it? So everyone's in the dark until she gets it!

Nice times in the past week: catching up with Anjay on Monday for pizza in East London, and then some going away drinks for Emily, the NZ girl who's been staying with us. She is an awesome lady, and she fitted in really well here in Walthamstow - she shall be missed (although I think it sounded like she wants to be back here soon!) For a hermit like me, it has been a busy week!

 Emily's going away was awesome, we went to GBK for dinner. It's a New Zealand owned gourmet burger place in London Bridge, and it is totally awesome. Ross couldn't make it because he was working Saturday morning, but I will definitely take him there some other time.

After dinner we went to Shunt, which is a weird art space /venue /bar in the tunnels underneath London Bridge. It's such an interesting space, and there's lots of cool interactive art around the place - they had these beams of light pointing at the ground, and if you put your hand into the light it triggered samples and controlled some other spotlights around the place. Imagine a big harp with no strings, and instead of making harp type sounds, it makes drum type sounds. Pretty cool.  

Apart from that, I've just been working a bit, playing some video games, crocheting a little. I got an email from mum (HI MUM!), and she said that she's definitely coming to Iceland in Autumn - yay!! I am very excited, and hopefully that'll coincide with the holidays that I had to book when I first started at Costa! Something to look forward to - which as we all know, is the secret to true happiness!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

"Dear Diary, today I was pompous and my sister was crazy..."

"... Today we were kidnapped by hill folk, never to be seen again. It was the best day ever."

I have been watching Firefly again, it's been ages! I had forgotten what an awesome show it was,  it made me laugh out loud... P.S. I kind of resent the internet for making me feel lame for using the phrase 'laugh out loud'. I mean, how else could I put it?
I guffawed!
I chuckled?
I definitely thought about it too much, that is for sure. 


What else?  My grandma is going to send me the pattern for some awesome slippers that she made for me - ooh look, I found a photo!

Although maybe I should start with some plain ones... I'm still don't quite know how to switch colours. Oh well, I'm sure there's some info on the internet, and it's can't be that hard once you get the hang of it!

Ross has worked six days this week, and they've all been at least ten hour shifts! Poor love - but his cold is definitely getting better, thanks to our good friend pseudoephidrine. (Well, you know. Not that good a friend. No speed lab in my basement [Not that I have a basement {but if I did, I guess I could hide it in these brackets. So many brackets.}.].) 

Um, and I think that's it. My work has been pretty okay apart from a few truly stupidly annoying days.  I think I'll stick with it, though. At least until I find someone who will employ me to wear a poncho and write blogs and eat Tangfastics all day. That day will come. I know it will.

Thursday, March 4, 2010



Finally I have a day off - I just did eight days straight, although admittedly some of them were pretty short working days... Still, it is lovely to have nothing in particular to do, and no rush to do it.

I'll probably do some washing, grocery shopping, buy some hardcore cold and flu drugs for Ross - he's got a killer cold at the moment, it sprang up out of nowhere on tuesday and he was all fevery last night. Poor love.

Of course it hasn't stopped him from working twelve hour days at his new work; they're just getting into the really busy period that they hired him for, so he doesn't want to let them down. I have tried arguing the point that they would rather he called in sick than drop dead from the plague at work, but he remains unconvinced that that will happen.


What else? I have been crocheting like a fiend before and after work! I've nearly finished a cupcake for my friend Jade* and I have the most amazing pattern that I'm knitting from now, but I can't tell you what it is because it's a secret surprise for Anna. It's intended to be a birthday present, but it looks like I'll finish it way before then, so I'll probably send it early!

I gave the lobster to my housemate Victoria as an early birthday present, and it was a big hit. Daisy told me that she used to collect knitted toys in New Zealand, but she didn't bring any with her to London. Victoria was suitably impressed with the lobster, there were lots of high pitched squeals and heart palpitations - she is a great person to give presents to!

Anyway, I should go get some stuff done! Yay for a (hopefully) productive day off!

*let's hope she doesn't choose now to start reading my blog...