Stupid redirect loop! I've been trying to publish this for about twenty four hours..! And now it is very overdue. I actually started writing it ages ago, but never got around to finishing it. And now it's so overdue, I feel like I just need to get it out there, even though it's substandard, and a more disappointing Christmas present than one holey sock (hey, the older you get the more exciting a proper pair of socks becomes because it means you didn't have to go sock-shopping, don't deny it. Everyone hates sock-shopping. Well everyone who's of a certain age anyway. And I don't want to hear any nay-saying from you young whipper snappers!). So anyway, happy Christmas, and merry holidays...!
...A tad late...
As of Tuesday [side note: last week, because I'm slack] I've commenced holidays, for a whole two weeks yay!! Although, if I'm completely honest, Monday at work was a bit of a write-off, since I arrived late, then spent about two hours at morning tea, which melded into lunch, which became a chat session, which was later followed up by numerous people skiving off early (including me, using the justification that I had to fly out ridiculously early the next day, and hadn't done my packing yet).
Now I'm going to put it out there that I don't like packing. In fact I really dislike it. I'm not sure what it is, but I will whinge about it for about three days before it, and then during it, and then even after it for a bit (I know you're all wishing you could hang out with me during these times). As an example of the extent to which I will procrastinate from packing, on Monday night I found myself taking all my clothes out of my shelving, re-folding them, and putting them back organisedaccording to their clothing type, fabric, and relative usage frequency (I contemplated colour as well, but since I don't have all that many clothes that'd mean I'd have ruined the usage-frequency ranking)... Which meant by the time I was actually finished placing things in my suitcase, it was 1 am, when I needed to be up by 5 am to catch the train to my flight then next day.
My flight was okay though; the plane was only about two-thirds full, which meant I had a row to myself, score! I booked on my favourite airline too, so they provide food, drinks and entertainment (double score!). This was slightly tarnished by the fact that the movie they showed us was incredibly depressing (Spoiler alert for the italicised text): Jane Eyre. Seriously, I know it's supposed to be a classic, and a pioneer for women's movements, but does it have to be so bloody bleak? Girl is orphaned (sad). Girl gets adopted by aunt, and gets abused by cousin (upsetting). Girl gets sent to finishing school, and is abused (disturbing). Befriends another girl, who dies in her arms (depressing). Girl escapes and gets job at a country school, then as a governess to a ward of a imposing-but fancy estate (should be happy, but somehow manages to be gloomy and ominous). In order to not "ruin" the movie (if such a thing is possible for such a depressing movie), let's just say other stuff happens, before (you guessed it), more really sad stuff happens.
Even positive things that happen are mired by some glass-is-not-just-half-empty-but-actually-contains-poison thing. Come on, when you're flying at 30,000 feet in the air you do not want to watch a depressing movie about how some poor girl with no personality gets the heart and soul beaten out of her by a cruel and unjust life. Is it to much to ask for an uncomplicated happy ending? I think not. It left a bad taste in my mouth. Another thing that left a bad taste in my mouth was my apple and walnut muffin. Thinking I was going to console myself over the latest depressing turn of events in the movie, I blissfully bit into my muffin (I keep spelling it "muffing"), completely unaware that the universe was playing a cruel trick on me... Salt. That's all I could taste. I had bitten into a solid lump, about the size of a large grape, which was comprised completely, 100%, of unadulterated (okay maybe slight damp, but that's it) salt. Ugh! Okay, I know I said I loved salt, but this is ridiculous!
The "apple and walnut" muffin (okay this is really annoying, my fingers just automatically write muffing). That soft white moist interior? Evil.
Ingredients: Salt (92%), other-stuff-that-makes-it appear-like-a-deceptively-delicious-sweet-muffing [I give up. It's easier this way] -from-the-outside (8%).
So besides a near-death NaCl poisoning, I landed safely in my home town. As soon as I step off the plane, I'm hit by 32-degree (metric) heat and a wall of humidity. We're talking 80%+ here. Ugh! You have to practically swim to get anywhere, and any remaining vestiges of makeup I may have had (I applied the basics at six in the morning to attempt to hide my lack of sleep and avoid scaring strangers, so I'm not sure if any of it actually made it onto my face at the time... I'm not at my most coordinated at stupid-o'clock) melted off my face. In fact I'm pretty sure my entire epidermis melted off. Uh ho... I think I'm becoming a Southerner.
And on the second day of holidays, my home town gave to me; a cyclone in the vicinity...
First off, I have to apologise for the lack of blogging recently, I've had it pointed out to me that I haven't blogged in about two weeks.
This is partly because I've been incredibly slack, partly because I've been struggling with some Trojans in my head a bit, and partly because I've been ridiculously busy, with both social events ('tis the season to be popular), and with uni. In particular, I'm trying to do six month's worth of work (or at least make it look like I've done six months of work) so that I can ask my supervisor for two weeks off in February. I'm hoping it's not going to be a big deal, but at the moment, she (I shall be creative and call her Supe), is quite disappointed with the output of another of her underlings, and as such is not in the best frame of mind for allowing said underlings to go gallivanting off. She really is an awesome human being though, and the main reason I continued with my Masters, instead of packing it all with all that's happened in the last year and a half.
So in terms of skin, I'm blessedly clear at the moment, with only a few whiteheads, some post-inflammation hyperpigmentation (PIH), and of course the evil scarring. I am still getting the occasional pimple (I got a small pustule in my eyebrow again the other day, that still bemuses me!), but only like a 'normal' 26 year-old might. I'm still on all medications (benzoyl peroxide/retinoid gel, 50mg antibiotics and the Pill), but am getting closer to finishing up the antibiotics course; I think I have two repeats to go, or just under two months. Which reminds me, I need to visit the doctor to get another Epiduo script because apparently it's recommended to stay on that for two years. Ugh. Hello, two more years of daggy bleached I <3 NY shirts and peel-y skin.
On a cosmetics update (I know 50% of the population will be thrilled ), I was running low on my previous mineral blemish-coverer stuff, so went out and bought some new foundation (Almay Skin Stay Clear foundation, in neutral) which specifies it is non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic.
It's pretty "sheer", but that's okay as PIH is my main issue at the moment. Salty Plums. Food of the Gods.
Despite buying a flash "feather light touch foundation applicator" (makeup brush), I have to use my fingers to apply it because I'm a makeup noob. I still want to find a non-comedogenic concealer (any suggestions?), for the rings under my eyes (and any suggestions on how to get rid of these? And if anyone says "sleep more", I will shove my brand-new feather light touch brush up your left nostril), and the occasional times I feel I need to cover scarring (i.e. when I'm likely to be photographed / having a bad-skin day).
Salty Plums; ten minutes of delicious tastiness, an hour of amusement when administered to others.
At the moment I'm licking another delicious salty plum, which is a salty-yet-sweet Asian delicacy from my childhood (sugar, salt, and some unidentified bright-red "all natural" powder substance, how can you not love that?!). I got my girlfriend to "import" into the state from home for me, and then proceeded to offer them around the office to my colleagues. I honestly thought they might like them, but their faces were frigging hilarious!! As each one tasted it, initially their faces showed polite interest, and you could see them thinking "Hmm, this is weird". Then as their mouths puckered and their eyes started watering, this soon turned to "Oh crap, what have I done??", followed by my personal favourite; "Eurgh, get it out, get it out!!", as they run around like headless chooks looking for water to douse the taste. This is invariably followed by "Why would you eat that?!", glaring at me with accusing disgust in their eyes. Needless to say by this point I am cackling with laughter! I really wish I'd recorded it, because the look on their faces was priceless. But despite their excessively dramatic reactions (think B-grade Western style), and their accusations that I was trying to poison them, I can assure you that they are delicious, and the only downside to them is the telltale orange stain they leave on your fingers.
The tickets, to make all of you who didn't bother to go extra jealous.
In my last post I mentioned having tickets to see a farewell tour of the fun music quiz show, The Spicks and Speck-tacular. Well, for those who missed out on the performance, prepare to have your wounds salted (there's a lot of salt in this blog, but I do love salt)... It was ah-mazing. Traffic was atrocious, so we arrived late (Okay I'm notorious for being late to social gatherings, but in my defence the other girls were late too!), and had to stand to the side until the warm-up band had finished their thing. So when Adam Hills (the presenter) was coming on the the stage we scuttled down the aisle behind an usher to our seats, trying to look as discreet and inconspicuous as one possibly can in high heels and LBDs, when moving to your seat in the middle of the row, right up the front. Next thing we know, Adam looks over at us, stops talking mid-sentence, points to us and says "You!". I'm pretty sure the three of us squeaked, and then looked behind us (as you always do, in the fruitless hope that someone else behind you is being singled out) and back at him, while the spotlight thrust the three of us under the hot gaze of a thousand other people. Then there was some verbal but good-natured sparring about where we were from and why we were late, before he allowed the show to continue on its course. Very embarrassing, but very funny at the same time. From that moment on, I barely stopped smiling and laughing the entire show, it was very entertaining. I won't bore you with the details, but after that my friend M and I went out for cocktails, where we spent the rest of the night chatting and enjoying each other's company; no dancing or anything, no guys, just friends. It was a lot of fun.
Since I'm so far behind, I might save some stories up for the next blog... "Next time, on Epiduo Gel, Estelle 35, and Doxycycline 50 mg... Public Indecency: A night of fun, debauchery, and unspeakable acts by unattractive people." Look for pithy updates on my ever-tightening jeans, super crampy-legs, and potential holiday plans.
Instead, for now I will give you a photo update, where I'm wearing my new sheer, low-coverage foundation (and mascara, of course).
I don't know why it is, but I'm always self-conscious about putting up a photo where I'm smiling. It's ridiculous, I know, so I'm trying to get past it.
To finish off, I thought I'd post the song that I'm obsessively listening to at the moment.
Well, I'm not feeling particulaly eloquent or funny tonight, so I thought I'd throw some photos at you guys until I can do a proper blog.
So for Movember (fundraising event for men's health, for those not in the mo know), on Sunday morning I helped Flatemate cook biscuits to take in for morning tea. He's not very adept at cooking (yet), and was also more than a trifle hungover under the weather, which meant that I pretty much did all the mixture-making and the cleaning, and four trays' worth of biscuit-shaping, leaving him to do two trays. The cleaning was the thing that really shitted me off; I was doing him a favour donating 6 hours plus of my time to bake these things for his morning tea, and he kept saying "I'll do the cleaning up in a bit", and when midnight came around and it still wasn't done I cracked it, and had to at least put away the perishables, wipe down the benches and rinse stuff so that we didn't get ants. And then when the end of the next night came along and the dishes still weren't done, I cracked it again and did all the washing up. Alone. Ragh! I love him as a person, but sometimes he's a selfish git of a housemate.
Anyway, despite me making up the ingredients, having to hand-cream the butter and sugar and not sieving the flour, etc. (I am yet to purchase a sieve), the biscuits turned out beautifully, so that night I once again helped him decorate the biscuits. We iced them with chocolate icing, then used chocolate sprinkles as the bristles, they looked pretty groovy, although Housemate admitted his looked like a small (hungover) child had done them, haha! Very occasionally I'd put a tiny sprinkle of coconut on one to give them a salt-and-pepper appearance, which was funny.
This weekend has been pretty average. Last week's bad news has set me back a bit, time to put the denial cloak back on (it's a bit like an invisibility cloak but more commonly found). Still, I've got the Spicks and Specks (funny Australian music game show) gig to look forward to tomorrow night, which is freaking awesome. And I'm taking along two of my closest girlfriends, S and M (hehe! S&M), so that will no doubt be a lot of fun and frivolity. Plus, I get to sit up the front and close to Adam, Myf and Alan! Can't go wrong!
Raagh!! Accidentally went back and lost my entry. Hate that!
Okay, you may want to sit down for this. Oh, you're already sitting down? Good. Well, I developed acne out of the blue just under four months ago, and today is my one hundredth day of acne treatment. Yup, exciting stuff. I'm waiting for my surprise party, any minute now. Just let me know about it beforehand so I am wearing something respectable. A tad disappointed with my skin at the moment. Back and chest are fine, nothing serious new there (although ever time I get the slightest mark I freak out), but yesterday I had a couple, and then this morning I woke up to half a dozen fresh sites on my face, scattered in various locations. Happy anniversary, acne! Friday night I didn't do my usual routine because I was too inebriated tired, but I'm not blaming that for the outbreak; I think it's probably more likely to be a stress / hormones thing (4th white pill).
So the story behind my tiredness is that Friday night the professional association I'm a member of had its Christmas lunch, which involves and open bar, and a large group of very thirsty professionals. The lunch started at 12:00 pm, and needless to say at 12:01 pm there was a lineup at the bar. The beer was lovely and cold, and the venue very nice (an upmarket pub, with wooden tables and benches and absolutely gorgeous stone benchtops). Although we were in a private function area, our table was close to the schmucks public bar, so we couldn't hear all that much of the speeches/prize awarding, etc. But that didn't seem to matter all that much, because at about 2 pm the compere (excuse the lack of accent) had to be relieved because he was slurring too much). After the bar tab was run dry (at about 4 pm), we hung around and chatted a bit more, then eventually moved on to this very seedy bar, where further drinking and dodgy dancing took place until about 2:30 am. All in all, about fourteen hours of beer drinking (that's got to be a record for me), so needless to say the next day I was feeling, as my mum would say, "a little tired and emotional". It was certainly an... Interesting night. Being a minority (female in a male-dominated industry) meant I had to fend off more attention than I would like, which always requires a certain amount of tact and decorum (that I don't have). Yesterday I woke up to a text and two emails from three "colleagues", which is rather interesting since I don't give out contact details and they would've only had access to my first and last name from the name tag I was wearing. Not sure how to deal with that yet. I guess try to be aloof and professional, reply to the emails saying I had a lovely time and looked forward to catching up with them at the next industry event, and pretend I didn't get drunk and dance to "Get Low" on the dance floor of a seedy bar in the Valley.
I avoided the dreaded death-warmed-up hangover by sleeping in until 5 pm (Resery / AyeAye will be very impressed / disgusted by that), so that when I woke up I was dehydrated but nothing more. Score! I did however miss the brunch and video day I had planned with the girls though, so that was disappointing. Instead I had a quiet night in front of the TV and talking to an overseas friend on Skype. Today has been pretty busy;
Breakfast in the morning with housemate and his friend (I love this little cafe so much, but it's getting pretty popular these days. Boo, mine!)
Cleaned the house in preparation for a visit by the rental owners for them to install the now-fixed dryer (I seem to spend half my life cleaning, whereas my housemate mysteriously disappears whenever it is required).
Next I'll have to help my housemate bake moustache biscuits for a Movember morning tea he told everyone he would hold at his work (He doesn't bake. Or cook. Or know how to operate the oven), before
Going for a jog (hopefully this will happen, although I'm running out of time!), then
Going to the cinemas with my friend to see Breaking Dawn in Gold Class, which I've not tried before. Yes, I know it's terrible, but sometimes terrible is what I feel like.
I was thinking of putting up a photo montage of my skin over the 100 Days Of Acne, but that will have to wait because I'd rather not look in the mirror at the moment. Instead you can see what I had for breakfast (wilted spinach & eggs benedict, flat white), yay!
Whoops, I'm late with this entry.
So I think in the last update my skin I was still getting fresh spots, but since then the ones I've had have calmed down, and are now at the healing stage, with no new ones. Normally I should be happy about that, but it's at this stage that I can't help but notice all the scarring I have. Maybe it's rose-coloured glasses, but only three months my skin used to be so smooth, and without the bruising of acne, that it's kind of hard to take. At first I was hoping they'd fade into oblivion (which reminds me I really want to play Skyrim, but won't let myself get it till I'm on holidays), and they have faded, but not enough. Not that I'm taking the lack of fresh spots for granted, of course *nervous glance*. For all those true skin fans, my regimen is still the same, no changes there. I am also still battling seb derm, but I'm hoping it'll be like an ex; initially you're drowning your head in toxins (in this case Selsun, not alcohol) to no apparent avail, only to realise down the track that you're no longer having to "medicate" as often, and in fact you kind of forgot they were even a problem*.
Now onto the fun stuff!! This weekend I had a busy, fun-filled weekend (alas without the tentatively-scheduled phone date, I'm sure you'll all be disappointed to know. In fact datee is considering opting out, the wuss), starting with Friday evening birthday drinks for my Ranga friend. Turned out he was there with all his boss and workmates, which I thought might be awkward, but it was actually hilariously fun. His boss is an absolute scream, and was very excited by my Long Island iced tea (soo yummy), so decided to join... Which meant everyone else felt compelled to as well, and in no time we were chatting away like best friends and sharing intelligent debates on the wearing of lederhosen (traditionally they are worn and passed down generations from father to son; oh, and did I mention this is all without washing??), and weird foods we've eaten, etc. Since those guys had been going since work, we called it a night comparatively early, which suited me because I was pretty worn out (and starting to get stiff) from my jog beforehand. Oh, and I wore The Dress (finally!), and got zillions (SI unit) of compliments about how nice I looked, despite the small horn-like feature on my forehead (some people actually pay to get implants for that, and I get it for free- score!) and forgetting to apply mascara beforehand
The Dress. And me in it. Without mascara. Shocking, I know. Don't judge me for my bed being on the floor, I'll get around to getting a frame eventually, I've only just moved in! (Okay it was two years ago, but the bed shops are so far away...)
Saturday I slept in until after lunch (I am not a morning person), and then in the evening went for a sushi dinner with a friend (I tried eel for the first time, which was weirdly slimily-textured), then went to see a movie. We saw Crazy, Stupid Love, and it was hilarious. I highly recommend you see it. It's a good balance of tongue-in-cheek humour, romance & Ryan Gosling for the girls, and Emma Stone for the guys. There's a few awful Hollywood moments (e.g. valedictorian's speech, for those in the know), but even so I laughed msot of the way through (I'm one of those people that just can't help myself and so I frequently burst out laughing, quite boisterously I'm told). The "photoshop" scene was particularly exuberant on my part. Anyway, I digress... Umm Sunday I had a quieter day doing some domestic stuff, but mostly spent it killing the Zerg in SCII.
Since then it's just been uni-ing (so jealous of the underlings- I mean undergrads having the summer break [3 months!] off), incrreasing to attempt to fight Jeans-Tightening Syndrome that seems to be afflicting the female population at the moment. To add to this problem, this morning I baked the chocolate chocolate-chip biscuits I promised for my South African friend's birthday (I don't know why I offered to, his wife is an absolute demon in the kitchen and as soon as I said it I regretted it. On top of that last night I got some more bad news, so couldn't face baking, mean I had to do it all first thing in the morning, which for me is kind of a chocolate-filled hell); and in the process needed to lick the spatula after creaming the butter and sugar (there goes my daily energy allowance), then periodically sample the mixture (just in case the flavour or consistency changed throughout the shaping process), and then sample the cooked product to make sure it wasn't poisonous (despite my best efforts it wasn't).
These biscuits are low fat, vegan, gluten fr- oh buggerit. They'e chock full of butter, cocoa and dark brown sugar, and they're all soft and chewy in the centre with big lumps of dark, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate throughout. I call them Murder By Chocolate.
Since this entry's getting quite long I'll save the remaining material for the next one, and leave you all to get fat just by looking at the biscuits, of which I made about 40 (some for birthday boy to take home, the rest to be decimated by the morning tea crowd. Apparently "too sweet" isn't in their vocabulary).
*I realise this makes me sound like an alcoholic, which isn't an accurate description because although I love alcohol (beer, wine, vodka, port, etc.), I do not like hangovers, which really put a damper on my spirit (ha!) and are sadly becoming more and more likely with each addition of a year to my age... Although maybe I'm just out of practice, and need to conduct a desensitisation course for my liver? <- I chose this one because he's nice and seedy and green, just like me with a hangover. Which, you'll be proud to know, I did not have on Saturday despite the deliciously refreshing Long Island iced teas.
I'm writing this from the office so there's no photos in this blog, so the full extent of my lack of blogging skill will shine (I just wrote "shite" then; Freudian slip?) through, sorry!
Yay!! I have been waiting for this moment for a fair few days (like maybe five). It's finally the weekend! I have been sleeping so badly that the thing I am almost looking forward to the most is the sleep ins... Booyah!
So on a skin update I am still getting a fresh lesion every couple of days, so am never without a spot on my face. The nodule in my hairline has gone right down though, and despite being more red now is actually a lot better. I'm getting a new one above my eyebrow now though, but I've been gelling it morning and night in the hopes that it'll go down faster, the bastard. I'm hesitant to say it, because each time I do seems to tempt fate, but I haven't had a breakout on my back for a little while, and besides a few discolourations on my chest and a weird "what the heck is that?!" burn-like mark I had earlier from a scratch or something (photos to come), there's nothing else to report.
Now onto the fun stuff! Last night I had a very surreal experience. After an incredibly shit-tastic day, I was carrying a couple of green bags with groceries ready to board the train, and this nice young guy saw I had full hands, opened the door and stepped aside to let me in before he did. "Wow, how chivalrous" I thought, since manners and courtesy in someone my age are sometimes a rare thing. So I smiled at him, and said "Thank you very much". Then, after exiting I gave him another (full-wattage) smile, and headed on my merry way thinking "Gee, maybe the world isn't such a disgusting snake pit of lecherous humans after all". Next thing I know, I'm almost out of the station and I hear this "Excuse me!", and when I turn around there he was, a sheepish grin on his face.
"Yeah, um, I kind of jumped off the train. I'm supposed to be going to (insert further stop down the track)" - Doorman.
"Oh." - Me. (I'm very articulate when put on the spot).
"This is going to sound weird, but you have the most amazing smile." - Doorman.
"Wow. Haha [awkward laugh]. Gee, thanks. Wow, that was unexpected. ...Did you get off the train to tell me that? " - Me. (incredibly observant, I know).
"Yeah..." - Doorman. Something, something, I can't remember what else he said (I know, I'm an awesome story teller) but then he ended up asking for my number and I was too shocked to think, and gave it to him, because he was quite good-looking with a nice smile himself (I know, I'm super shallow) and totally caught me off guard. ...Whiiich meant I ended up having to text and apologise to him (my friend helped me word a friendly, non-bitch message, which seemed to go down well) and explain that I wasn't interested in dating anyone for now, and that I'm being selfishly single for a few months. So, what could have been the most amazing story for how I met a guy, turned up into the incredibly awkward story I promised to include in my blog, haha! Oh well, he was really nice about it, so that was good, and hopefully no harm done. On a side note, another embarrassing story is that I perpetually spell "embarrassing" incorrectly, unless I really stop and think about it. So every single time then. Thank goodness for spellcheck / autocorrect!
This weekend I have lots of plans, including definitely going for a jog after work, and then possibly joining my friend at a new little boutique bar The End, for his birthday (This is the same birthday friend of the last blog entry; he's decided he's having a birthday week). On my spotty friend's suggestion, I am contemplating finally wearing the dress I bought, but haven't decided if I will yet, depends how full I feel after dinner, since it's a 50s-style dress and is a little toight. If I do wear it I'll try and get a photo with me in it.
Then tomorrow night I have tentative dinner-and-a-movie plans with a girlfriend that I don't get to catch up with very often these days. Originally we were planning to go to the markets, but I'm hoping that's no longer the case, because that would involve me relinquishing my sleep in.
I have this internet friend that I think is really funny and attractive, and she wants to take our relationship to the next level by having a phone date. Now I'm really nervous, because I'm worried my personality is only pixel deep, and what if she doesn't like me, or I become completely unfunny due to performance anxiety? I really want to talk to her, but every time I think about it I get sweaty hands and need to run to the bathroom... What do I do??"
Okay this is only going to be a quick update to make sure I don't fall too far behind, and to act as an incentive for my spotty friends to blog.
Following on from the issue of allergic reaction/irritation, this was me by about 2 am on Monday night:
Schematic depicting extent of discomfort resulting from contact dermatitis. Subject was medicated with antihistamines (Phenergan 25 mg), which succeeded in subduing symptoms significantly.
So I have a shower and become intolerably itchy (everything was itchy; my back, my skin, my eyeballs?! I wanted to rip my hair out just to be distracted from the goddammed itching!), and at 2 am when I couldn't lie still let alone sleep I dosed myself up with Phenergan (an antihistamine). Now I don't know if you guys know Phenergan, but let me tell you it's fantastc. This stuff knocks you out for a solid ten hours, and since I'd set my alarm for 6 and a half hours later, I was a complete zombie when I tried to get up. I'm talking incoherent, zero motor skills (I was completely unable to open coffee container, and so just stood there looking at it for about twenty minutes), brain-dead shell of a human. Okay even more than human. But after about two hours and several coffees later (okay four. It was four. Don't judge me, okay?!), I began being semi-human again and dragged my sorry bum into the office. Oh yeah, did you see my calves on this one? I'm having calf (calves?) envy, so took artistic licence to make mine a bit perkier.
Tonight was really nice. It was my friends twenty-nin *cough* I mean twenty-second birthday, so we went around to his place for a glass of wine and to watch a movie (West Side Story. Yes, he is gay). Despite being "a classic" that one like ten Oscars or something, I'd never seen it (I'm not a big one for musicals), but I actually enjoyed it (less for the musical part of it and more for the ridiculous hairstyles and hilarious fight scenes- really, they're terrible). But the real winner of the night was the triple-layered chocolate cheesecake my girlfriend made for him, containing white, milk and dark chocolate layers. Godly. Ah-mazing. Seriously, death by cheesecake (*drool*... but what a way to go!).
The Cheesecake. Needless to say I now can't move, and am pretty sure I am now experiencing the sugar comedown. It's not pleasant. I am going to need more. This feels wrong. Gotta fix it. Where can I get me some sugar?! Maybe I can steal some...
To cap off the night my girlfriend and I drove up the mountain (in her incredibly scary tiny car with questionable breaks and weird smells that percolate through the car whenever she tries to accelerate from stopping at the lights) to the lookout, which overlooks the city, river, and surrounding suburbs. The view was breathtaking, and it made me so grateful to live in such a beautiful city (despite it being really freaking hot during the day at the moment. Oh, and did I mention my light/fan is broken? Horrible). It's one of those things that you really should do as a romantic date though, since everyone else is all so... couple-y, and smug. Granted I had a moment of insanity when I wanted to pour my bottle of water over the several couples that were making out in their cars in the car park (purely out of issues of modesty, and not spite and jealousy at all, of course), but I resisted, it was beautiful and cool, the view was spectacular, and so all was well with the world.
View from the lookout. What you can't see is the thousands and thousands of lights, some stars (including Orion), a beautiful heavy ripe moon the colour of maple, the river, and a dude that looked quite a bit like fellow-blogger Om. Seriously, I actually did a double-take.
Now I know you'll all be jealous of my superior photography skills, but it takes many years of practicing blurry shots to get this good, so don't hate the player.
I am so itchy. This must be penance for an evil deed I did over the weekend. Or I could be having an allergic reaction. Either way I need to handcuff myself to my desk so I don’t scratch all the skin off my back. The reaction started a couple of days ago, but at first I was paranoid it was a fresh crop of spots (it looks somewhat similar to when I started breaking out) so kept applying the Epiduo. And now it’s not improved I’m concerned it might be that that I’m irritated/allergic to.
I have helpfully attached a diagram illustrating the location of the contact dermatitis, as inspired by another member's post, which was bought to my attention by a fellow spotty blogger. Now I know it's scarily life-like, but please be assured that's not me standing butt naked in front of you, sorry. And before you ask no, that's not arm hair poking through, I have long hair!
Schematic depicting extent of contact dermatitis. Cause (irritant or allergy) of reaction remains unconfirmed.
I might just see if it goes away on its own accord, since I went to the GP just a couple of days ago (to get a referral to a dermatologist), and I can't face sitting in a room full of sick people for an hour, thumbing through dirty copies of old-lady magazines (e.g. Reader's Digest. Or worse... That's Life, or something equally as hideous) as I wait for my appointment that I was ten minutes early for. Seriously, who wants to read five pages about TV presenter's "gorgeous white and pink wedding" with a hundred photos of sickly-sweet flower girls and white chiffon-adorned tables, or how to clean your entire house with only lemon juice and saliva, or how to save thirteen cents a year by making your own toothpicks from old icecream sticks?! Not me, that's who.
In other news, my weekend was reasonably enjoyable, at least it was until I heard about some other person's exciting weekend, which totally eclipsed mine, and stole mine's thunder. Friday night I had the Poster Presentation, which went extremely well, in that it ended up with everyone standing around getting drunk, and none of us had to give our spiel that usually accompanies it. Score! This time I went straight for the red wine, with experience telling me that the beer was pretty bad, and the white was worse. There was practically no food too, which was a mistake. I think the only food I saw all night were these bland steamed chicken sates (that I think had probably had a peanut wafted over them in a previous life) and these teeny tiny cake things, which I ate a couple of before realising they were equally bland). Also, in honour of the occasion I visited my second-favourite retail place at the moment (the first being the one that gives me coffee, naturally), Cue, and bought myself a highly sophisticated pencil skirt, which was on sale, and a flattering blouse (by flattering, I mean made my boobs look amazing and at least a C-cup). I really like that shop. It costs an arm and a leg, but I can put on practically anything in it and it'll look like it was tailored for me.The only thing I don't like (besides the prices) is that they seem to use larger than normal sizing, so I always end up having to go back and try on a size smaller than I usually wear.
Posting this outfit makes me feel guilty for eating too much tonight and not going jogging... Whoops...
Anyway! So I'm having a craptastic day (like an actual break-down, call-my-mother type day, shh...), but pull myself together after work, whack on some makeup (at this stage it was just mainly damage control-I was red and shiny, it was warm enough that my makeup was sliding elegantly down my face, and it probably looked like Homer Simpson had shot me with his makeup gun), chuck on some heels and slip into my new outfit. And then waddle like a sophisticated penguin to the function room (the skirt was really quite fitted, and I'd forgotten about the whole need-to-walk thing). Once there though, it turned out all right. I got heaps of compliments on how "professional" and well-dressed I was (the ladies), and how I looked like a "sexy hot secretary" that was "about to pull her hair out" (the boys). And that almost made me feel confident and professional enough to rise above the fact that there was a typo in the title of my poster. Yup, that's right, right there for everyone to see. And judge. Dammit! Oh well. Only a few people noticed it (my old lecturer and friend gleefully pointed it out to me, since he knows what a stickler for spelling and grammar I am. Usually am. I really am, I promise!), and the not-having-to-give-a-spiel thing was a huge relief.
This is my unhealthy dinner, as requested. Spicy mushroom, ham and tomato pasta, dressed salad with sweet potato croutons. The sweet potato was easily the hit of the dinner, it was so easy and way more delicious than the pasta that I slaved over, which kind of only tasted spicy (I may have gotten a little overzealous with the chilli. Oh, and the cheese on the pasta. I love cheese).
I've just started watching The Wire. A friend of mine has been trying to get me to watch it for about six months. At first I couldn't even give it a shot, because it's so... gritty... There really is no other word to describe it. And it's real, at least for the hour you watch it (or two, because I can never seem to watch just one episode). You get totally sucked in, right down to getting immersed in the jargon they throw around. The characters are real, nothing's black and white, and despite them being seriously flawed you can't help but empathise with certain characters, whether they be cops, druggies, dealers or prostitutes, you name it. I love this show. There is one downside... I have recently caught myself wanting to use some of the more colourful descriptions the show employs, and "y'all ugly ass bitches shouldn't be fucking around with this shit" doesn't have quite the same ring to it coming from a skinny white girl.
On another note, my skin is still plugging along, the previous nodule thingies starting to heal. The one on my forehead is still under pressure, and quite painful, and I think may stick around for a while. I've also got a couple of boily-looking ones on the side of my nose, staring at whoever has the misfortune to glance in my direction. I'm quite self-conscious about them, and so even used a bit of concealer on the today as well as putting on a bright distract-y necklace (attached) and doing a double coat of mascara. Whoops. Hopefully that doesn't cost me too much. I'm seeing my doctor again tomorrow, but I haven't decided whether to ask her for a referral to a dermatologist, or just straight up order the DKR. Do I tell my doc if I do decide to do the DKR? Hmm... My seb derm is still being a pain. Hopefully I'll get on top of that soon. A bit too much of a coincidence that both skin afflictions seem to flare up at the same time, methinks.
Testosterone alert: The following paragraph is on cosmetics.
So today my friend brought me back a bottle of the "blasted" black nail polish, that cracks when you apply it, exposing some of the undercoat (I did warn you fellas!). Sooo cool. Unfortunately the new nail polish didn't instantly make my nails longer and stronger, or suddenly make me awesome at putting on varnish, so it probably looks a bit dodgy. Oh well! I'll upload a picture when I've done them. I need to get a few really bright colours (e.g. bright yellow), because they're the most effective. Hmm, just finished doing the crackle. It looks pretty awesome, but I'm going to need to find some better quality undercoat, because it's coming off with the crackle. Could be that it wasn't 100% dry, like they say it has to be (I'm not so good with the patience thing). Please excuse my ugly, spidery fingers. Seriously, digits are so ugly up close, they're all wrinkly and stuff.
My crackle polish and burnt finger (you should've seen the oven though).
Umm... Tonight I cooked stuffed eggplant (I was totally going to call this entry "Get stuffed", but decided against it), which was quite delicious, but also burnt the roof of my mouth (again with the impatience) and my finger (oven element, gets me every time). I'm trying to eat more healthily (with more vegetable matter, less chocolate etc), as well as getting back into the exercise (I struggled quite a bit with the heat during my last 6 km jog, the weather is definitely warming up. I mustn't have been too hideous though, glowing with sweat as I pounded the pavement, because a fit dude cycling was like "Hey" to me as he passed. So what if it was dark?! That means nothing I tell you, nothing! Of course I, in all my class and elegance, faltered and almost stacked it (I'm not used to cyclists acknowledging me), but managed to fit in an eloquent "Hey" in amongst the heavy breathing a couple of meters down the road ). So far the vegetable thing is going well, but I really failed on the chocolate front. I consumed two different types (dark chocolate and peppermint, and Crunchie), as well as some icecream. And I didn't even go for a jog, because my knees were a little twingey after yesterday's effort, so I'm feeling especially fat tonight. Ah well, I'll just make sure to go tomorrow. The Watch is keeping track of my distances/heart rate/calories burned etc., which is cool. My mate (that gave me the watch) is amazed that my max. heart rate is so high (best guess is 215 at the moment), but I keep telling him that's because a) I'm a girl, and b) I'm not very fit in comparison to how I was a month ago. He says that the min. heart rate is what depicts your fitness, but I'm not convinced. If you're not fit, your heart is working harder, right? I thought so.
Okay this is a seriously boring update, I apologise. I think I got completely sidetracked and didn't end up saying anything I meant to, haha!
I'll start off with an update on my "progress", which is not good. I have developed three cysts on my face, one on my hairline (which is quite painful), one on the side of my nose and one on my eyebrow. Gah! I'm doing nothing different; I'm still taking antibiotics once a day, and using the benzoyl peroxide/retinoid gel, and taking the Pill. So I think I need to seriously consider seeing a dermatologist. The longer I leave it the more scars I accrue. I don't think this is the flare up from makeup use that I was worried about, because of the style of the breakout and the fact that it coincides with my scalp also suddenly becoming bad too, yay(!). Another weird thing is last night I developed a rash on my back and shoulder blades, which meant I couldn't apply the Epiduo. I've taken photos of it, so may post them later, as well as some awful update photos. Bleh.
So, now onto the more cheery stuff, yay! Have I mentioned how much I love weekends? No? Well, it's a lot. Not that I've done anything especially exciting; Friday night I declined an invitation to the pub with the boys, and watched DVDs with my housemate.
On Friday I also witnessed a drug raid at the local train station, which in theory was very exciting. In reality, despite the ten cops, sniffer dog, six security guards and two transit officers, it was pretty anticlimatic. I know, talk about being prepared, right? The raid was much less dramatic than I expected (I guess I have false expectations from watching The Bill many many years ago, and COPS now [i love COPS so much]), and those that were busted were disappointingly well-behaved. Is it too much to ask for someone to try and bolt, only to be tackled by a cop, or attacked by a police dog? I don't think so! Anyway, I've attached a sneaky shot I took once the hubbub had died down, and the possession citations were being issued. Obviously the dodgy quality is me trying to be surreptitious, hehehe.
Saturday I got up before 9 am (it was a lot more difficult this week), and went to breakfast (I had French toast) with the girls, one of whom told me that she and her partner are going to start trying for a baby(!!). Woah! She's younger than me (just turned 26), so that was a bit of a shock to the system. And I'm not extremely traditional, but she's not married... And, oh wait, there's also the tiny little fact that he's still married to someone else!! Say what now?! Yup, he's not technically divorced yet to his wife. Hmm, that's more than a little messy, right? Well it gets even worse, because the reason he hasn't got a divorce is apparently because he "doesn't have the money to pay for it". Yup! He doesn't have the money to pay to pay for a lawyer or do the online thing, but yet they're planning to get pregnant. Uh huh. Confused? Yeah me too. So that was extremely exciting, and it was one of the rare moments when I have no idea what to say to someone...
Okay I just realised this is a lot more interesting than I thought it would be. Ha! I'm full of excitement. Well. Now anything else I say is going to pale in comparison. I did have more to say too, but can't remember what that was, I got distracted by the drug bust and the potential knockup-to-a-married-man thing. Maybe I'll post this now, and then think of doing another update tonight, with the dreaded photos attached, and whatever else I was supposed to report on. Bye!
So on Tuesday the whole world (okay just most of our country then) was put on hold for approximately one hour to watch a bunch of horses race around a grassed oval. The downside of this, is that for approximately one hour (or more often the majority of the worknig day), companies shut down to watch the race on TV/being streamed, eat finger food, and drink cheap champagne. Actually what was I thinking, that's totally an upside! The downside is actually that I invariably enter about $5 in the office sweep and regardless of which horses I draw, (from the favourite to the wooden-spooner), I lose my money. But that's okay, I'm not much of a gambler and probably spend about $5 a year in total on gambling, so each year I chalk it up to one hour's entertainment, and eat another cube of cheese.
This year, however, my luck changed for the better. No, I didn't win hundreds of dollars, like some unknown blogger, but I did win "best hat" award (being a presumably rather cheap and nasty bottle of wine), for my highly sophisticated foray into the world of millinery (see attached photo). I am disregarding the fact that I was one of only two participants to don headwear, and chalking the victory up to the quality of the article in question.
Umm... Skin-wise I am yet to pay penance for my excessive makeup usage on Halloween (yay!!). Pretty lucky, actually, but that could be because my skin is biding its time, laying in wait until the the most inopportune moment, such as any potential social gatherings on the weekend. I think it's been a bit to long since we had a gross out, so here's an in-depth acne update: My chest is still clear, except for scarring, and my face only has a couple of healing spots on my hairline. My giant pores (they remind me of that desert thing with teeth in the Star Wars movie, they're that big [in my mind, anyway]. Must watch those movies, I'm not sure I've actually seen them through. And I feel judged for not having watched them. Stop judging me, people!) seem to have shrunk a bit, yay! And I'm not getting the obvious sebum plugs as often these days, which is awesome. Really trying not to scratch or mess with anything, because I'm hoping in time (over geological timescales perhaps) the scars and PIH will heal. Back-wise I still have scarring and a few older sites. I have a feeling one lump which I thought was dying is actually a sleeper, and is planning to assassinate any hope of wearing a singlet soon.
Hmm, today I should be creating a poster for next week (poster has to be submitted tomorrow, whoops), but I'm much more interested in the layout and design, rather than the content, and as such have still not written it. In researching layout tips, I found out that there are actually people out there who are paid to make scientific posters (for conferences, etc.) look pretty. I would love to do that job. I mean being paid to be simultaneously fun, creative and anal retentive, whilst getting a taste of a variety of different research fields? Sign me up!
Anyway I guess I better get back to it. Here's the layout I've played with so far today. Hard to critique it yet, due to the lack of content
Happy Halloween everybody!
As a special seasonal gift I am ditching the mask for the day (I do appreciate the irony of being unmasked to wear a costume), partly because my full glory can only be appreciated without it. To achieve this glamourous look, I used skin-toned mineral concealer, light-toned powder foundation, black and silver eyeshadow, black eyeliner and mascara, a couple of leaves and a lot of hair mousse. Seriously, I used a ridiculous amount of hair mousse to mimic the tousled look that could be achieved by one *ahem* sleepless night (or alternatively roughly two to three days of being undead), and even then I could easily've done with more. So now I'm hoping the acne gods will be amused by my attempts and reward me with clear skin, rather than the hideous breakout I suspect will come from being such a heathen.
Today I turned up to the office, and realised once again I'm the only one dressed up. And I had to remind people what day it was (sigh). It's actually quite disturbing the number of people who didn't recognise I was actually "in costume", and thought I just wasn't getting enough sleep. Yup, I am deadly (sorry, couldn't resist!) serious, I turn up to the office looking like that (-> see picture below), and people don't see the difference between me being zombified and the normal me...! Kill me now (tee hee! It never gets old).
I saw three people dressed up across the entire campus, and that included me. It's pitiful really. I know we don't celebrate Halloween Down Under, but come on! Students should at least put in a token effort, they're always keen to dress in costume, right? I'm really surprised I didn't see heaps of blue-painted college students (it's a thing here), and scantily-clad undergraduate girls in various sexy animal / "occupational" costumes. Ah well, hopefully I gave a little bit of entertainment to people who saw me (...even the ones that looked a little frightened and backed away slowly).
I can't wait to go to another Halloween / horror-themed do, I have an awesome costume in mind which should be really easy to achieve; I need to keep an eye out for a long white dressing gown and a cassette tape...
Now I know you guys missed me, it's been so long since my last entry, so here's a quick bullet-point entry to bring me back up to date (hehehe);
I did not go to the shopping centre and buy all the things I meant to (blender for smoothies/margaritas, sieve and mixer for baking chocolate-chip biscuits, non-comedogenic makeup, toothpicks)
I did not wash my spare towels, or do my ironing, or go to the supermarket and buy healthy (or indeed any) food
I did not go for the 8 km jog I wanted to do (or in fact go jogging at all)
I did not manage to avoid scratching the spots on my face and my back (whoops)
I exfoliated using a new back scrubby thing. I'm sure you need to know this. It's exciting stuff.
I did however, sleep in until after lunch, and then joined a few of my friends at the pub (two hours "late", naturally), and dressed up as Where's Wally using the shirt, blue jeans, red/white/blue (AFL team) beanie, giant candy cane (I'm serious this thing is huge, and yes, it's made of actual candy!), and black plastic glasses with the 3D lenses removed. I looked hot, if by hot you mean could potentially be confused with an eccentric hobo (is there any other kind?) with a penchant for stripes. So it turned out I was the only one dressed up, which was pretty hilarious. I walked into the pub and stood behind a group of people doing the Wally pose (with straight arms and cane extended), until my friends noticed me. It was pretty amusing, if I do say so myself. I also did this periodically as I passed by restaurant windows. I like to think at least one person saw me and said to their dinner partner "Was that Where's Wally?!". I enjoyed myself, despite not being able to have dinner, or go for a run, despite leaving the pub at about 8.30 pm (shortly after I got home a storm struck. Touché, weatherman). I do enjoy jogging though (and more importantly the benefits of being able to eat icecream whenever I want to), so am feeling a bit fat and lazy at the moment. My jeans feel a little too tight ...
Warning! This post may contain material which is unsuitable for individuals that are easily offended. Rated R18+ (Restricted to persons 18 and over) due to frightening scenes, crude content, images of gore and disturbing content.
(May also include material of a tedious and anticlimactic nature. Frightening scenes, images of gore not guaranteed. Care should be taken to avoid viewing with the zoom function).
Hi All. Well I'm kind of cheating with this one, and doing a quick entry for yesterday, since I'm a bit behind (I have no excuse for this except pure laziness. I notice some other unnamed bloggers are also supsiciously quiet, what're your excuses, hmm??).
So since I last blogged I've broken out a bit more, with a couple of new additions on my forehead (naturally) and my shoulder (ditto). Not sure what these are from (everyone always seems to attribute breakouts to certain things; foods, makeup, change in regimen, etc.), so I'm just going to chalk it up to my acne-tastic skin. I was on the phone to Mum yesterday (actually we were on Viber, which is always a hilarious activity since Mum's a bit technologically disabled when it comes to her phone. When she finds a message on her phone she is always extremely guilty, and says "Oh no, I missed a message!" completely seriously... Every. Single. Time. No matter how many times I tell her you can't miss a message, only a call, and that's kind of the whole point of messages)... Oh crap, where was I? That was a long segue, even for me! Ah yes, I on a call to my mum, who is extremely suspicious of the whole acne diagnosis, since I've never had it before, and it came up so quickly. She thinks I should go to a dermatologist for a second opinion, and in fact told me after that that I needed to ask the doctor for an "abdominal ultrasound" to check for "polycystic syndrome"- Thanks Mum!! Seriously, it's amazing I didn't turn into the biggest hypochondriac on the planet, with the amount of obscure diseases Mum knows about (she's health obsessed, and was doing things like boycotting plastic containers long before the potential carcinogenic link was mainstream).
Still, in saying that it's a little surprising I'm not convinced the antibiotics are doing the job, and I don't want to take them unless it's imperative, so I may have to schedule a trip back to the doctor. That could totally be a movie made about my skin journey; Back to the Doctor. It would be a horror, of course, and star Anne Hathaway, who I apparently look like when I'm all made up (I think it's something to do with my big mouth and presence of teeth, hehehe).
In a life update I spent pretty much all of yesterday cleaning the house, while my housemate had a massage and champagne high tea, the freaking bastard. Did a proper spring clean (e.g. vacuum and mopped everything, moved drawers to clean behind them, did skirting boards and switches, etc.), which took about five hours. It's so annoying, my housemate will "clean" for about ten mins (take out the vacuum cleaner, and then push it around for about thirty seconds in each room), and will expect constant praise for it (last time he did that he mentioned he'd vacuumed no less than five (5) times!), but when I spend the entire day actually cleaning the place, he's like "The place looks good, Oh, did I tell you about the hundred and ten dollar bottle of champagne I bought at high tea??(!!)". Seriously?! Sigh, anyway, it needs to be done because the owner might be popping in to survey our broken dryer at some stage soon.
Yesterday I gave myself a manicure (partly out of necessity because my weak nails mean they constantly crack and partially peel off, requiring filing back to practically the quip of the nail), and attempted to achieve a Bali-inspired manicure pattern with the wrong tools (I used a bobby pin instead of toothpicks, which is all I had but is vastly inferior, and also have a very limited range of polish colours, due to the fact that I'm a bit of a tom boy). It was somewhat effective, but it's a lot harder to do it on my dominant hand, so I'll have to do a proper one on one of my girlfriends at some stage, when I get the proper gear. Anyone willing to be a practice dummy? I also asked my friend to get me some crackle nail polish from the US when she's there, so I can't wait to have a play with it when that arrives, it looks so cool!
Oh, also, for the past few months I've been getting really bad cramps in my feet and calves (aargh!!), I'm talking every day, and sometimes twice a day. I frequently have to suddenly jump up and hope around whilst cursing in front of people, who often look quite alarmed and back away slowly, hehehe. Anyone have any ideas on how to help?? I'm trying to eat bananas (for the Potassium, which is one of the things that's suggested to help), but as far as I'm aware there's no scientific consensus on what causes them and how to cure them yet.
I'm attaching the requested disgusting picture, so those that didn't heed the (somewhat melodramatic) warning at the start , prepare to be shocked and horrified (or underwhelmed, if you were expecting Saw-type content). I did kind of cheat though; this light is actually afternoon light, and as such isn't strictly the ugly light required. In my defence though, I didn't get up till after midday so didn't have access to morning sunlight, muahaha!
...And I'm feeling quite relaxed and content. I apologise in advance for any errors. I'll put in photos when I get home.
You know what I love? Seminars. Adore them. You sit down, and hear a few (in this case five) presentations for a couple of hours, and then afterwards? Catering. I love catering. Perhaps it comes from being a student, or maybe it's just a boredom thing, but the whole time in seminars I'm thinking about what food and drinks they might have on offer, and how long till they'll let us get to it.
And this spread was pretty impressive, with a combination of sushi, fresh and dried fruit, heaps of cheeses, cold meats, biscuits and crackers galore, and antipasto. Yum! Oh, and beer and wine (of course. My office doesn't do anything it wasn't people to actually turn up to without offering some beer).
Hmm, so update-wise I have a new pimple on my cheek, which I'm positive is facial karma for the makeup I wore on the weekend to mask my true identity (sometimes I wear the black mask, sometimes makeup). I can't overload it with BP though, my skin is pretty sensitive there, and previous experience has taught me that pasting it on there only irritates it more. Otherwise my skin is okay (not great, but okay), with my back still recovering from the latest couple of outbreaks and still quite scarred. I guess everyone else has this problem as well, but I'm worried I'll never get rid of the scars. I have noticed my chest is looking awesome though, and I totally wore my (comparatively low-cut) Where's Wally shirt today, just because I could! I know my back and shoulders're not perfect, but these days I just look like a normal uni student walking around with a few spots , not the horrible riddled pimp-monster I was before. It's such a great feeling! Of course part of that could be the wine talking, but shhhh Hehehe.
Speaking of which, I'm hoping to go for another jog tonight, but am feeling pretty relaxed at the moment.
Okay well, now I'm back home and de-wined again. Surprisingly, I did manage to make it for a 5 km jog (I got guilt tricked into it by my friend who gave me Garmy, The Watch), despite the half a kilo of cheese, kilo of fruit and little bit of wine a couple of hours ago. I am yet to christen my route (with the expulsion of stomach due to over-exertion), like so many before me have done. Then I got home, where my housemate had his date over for dinner. In fact that's why I'm writing this; to avoid the "good night" scene, which is one of the most awkward things to spectate. Generally there's at least one person that wants to "stay over", and then there's the kissing thing, and the sexy banter, and- It's just not something you want a third wheel for. Okay I just had to turn on my music to avoid awkward kissing noises, haha! I'm probably just jealous Hmm... Quiet now, but I can't tell if they've left. I really do not want to walk in on their private moments. Okay housemate has just come to tell me that he's gone. I don't think housemate is thrilled with potential suitor, which is a relief because I think he's pretty annoying (one of those always has to be right about everything kind of people, that can't take the hint everyone else is annoyed with them because they all just want to have a casual discussion).
Still having technical issues (ID10T User Error detected) with The Watch; after getting instructions again on how to operate the bloody thing, I manage to correctly start the timer and heart-monitor side of things, but lose the distance and speed recorder thing. Ugh! How annoying. One day I'll get it, one day...
I'm now attaching photos of my clean workspace, as promised, and offering up a bonus photo of the amazingly unique environment that is my office. As you can see here, we're not numbers, we're people. Bahaha! Ah well, I personalise my desk to simulate being on a tropical beach overlooking crystal clear waters, volcanoes, and beaches... You know, just minus the sand...
The next photos are me grumpy with the latest additions (yesterday); and then today, in my Where's Wally shirt that I haven't been able to wear for months, because of my chest. Still leaning towards getting the DK Regime, for when my prescriptions (Epiduo and Doxy) expire. Partly because of the success of some unnamed person with perfect eyebrows
I really feel like a fraud posting every day. Seriously, my life is not interesting enough, nor does my acne change dramatically enough to warrant it. Be that as it may, I want to set a good example so that others may follow in a similar fashion, and keep me entertained in the mornings when I intravenously inje- drink my coffee.
I forgot to take a picture of my pristine desk, and since I'm pretty much solely relying on pictures to provide any substance to my blog (they're worth a thousand words each, remember?), you are going to get some randomly interspersed photos from my trip instead. I'm sure you're all very disappointed!
Look, a tiny pineapple!
Skin-wise, I ended up accidentally scratching pretty much everything, which is a bummer. The eyebrow lurker is healing, but I suspect the one on my forehead is calling all his friends to come party for Halloween. I've been BP-ing the heck out of the sites on my back, so the sore one has flattened out quite a lot. As much as I'm whinging, when I posted the update photos yesterday I could see there has been a vast improvement over the last 67 (gasp!) days, and I guess the fact that I'm sweating the small stuff shows that progress is being made.
There, see? Did I fulfil my quota of optimism and acne updates? Good. Now on to the real stuff! I'm a little torn at the moment, because a friend of mine has asked me to go to his house for a BBQ and beers on Saturday, which is my kind of thing. However, his contact with me has dramatically increased recently (mostly a message every week or two about what I'm up to on the weekend), and I'm starting to think it's because he's interested in being more than just friends. It's quite complicated, because I used to be close friends with his ex girlfriend, and although I haven't seen her in about two years, I still feel that it's all a bit... Wrong... Besides that, at the moment I'm really enjoying just meeting new people, and find that guys that I don't know can be a lot more attractive as romantic prospects than when I do know them, haha. I guess it's the old "want what you can't have / grass is greener" thing. Anyway, the crux of the matter is I'm not sure whether to keep accidentally-on-purpose avoiding him, or bite the bullet, go to the party and see if he urinates on me to mark his territory to all his other friends.
Halloween is coming up. Now here Down Under, Halloween is mostly a non-event (commercial Hallmark holiday, and all that jazz), but I've got to admit, I love Halloween. I love everything from the kids trick-or-treating and the kitsch decorations, to the boozed-up scantily-dressed young women giggling and taking photos of them in their pussy cat / sexy witch / naughty nurse costumes. I don't know why it is, it shouldn't be my kind of thing at all, but I'm just fascinated that a) it suddenly becomes acceptable for a full-grown adult male with chest hair to wear a dress, and b) by what people decide to wear (Examples of costumes and what they mean: Lazy? Devil / pirate. Last minute? Hippy / fairy / pirate. Need a cheap costume? Pirate / name label that says "God". Somewhat organised? Greek goddess / Egyptian Pharaoh / Pirate. Letting your hair down? Some kind of uniform or pirate). Uh, how 'bout that? I guess the fact that pirate fits into so many of those categories is why so many people wear it, huh?. Last year I went to an awesome party organised by a Yank that even had dry ice to make the jungle juice (for those not in the know, that's a noxious combination of every alcohol under the sun mixed with fruit juice to make it taste deceptively delicious) fog, with bubbling eyeballs for icecubes. Man it was fun. This year? No plans as yet (besides the Saturday BBQ offer and the ever-standing offer to visit the local). No Yank to organise it, unfortunately. And I even bought back duty free for the punch, and started contemplated grotesque recipes I could get away with people eating (I'm thinking I'll take some inspiration of Mrs Cropley in the Vicar of Dibley and try to do some vegemite-themed baked goods for all the visitors in the midst, muahaha)! Sigh.
I'm trying to be better about getting to bed on time, so I'll keep this relatively brief. Oh, actually that was part of what I wanted to say. I'm going to get back on the healthy living bandwagon (such a fad), and eat healthily, sleep more, and get back into regular (5 times a week) jogging. I started this off very well today, by eating leftover home-made pizza for lunch and baked veggies and rice for dinner, which was ruined with a visit to one of those charity boxes of chocolate that they have in offices- gah! They're killing me. Then I went for a 5.5 km jog (once again serious some ineptitude on my part with Garmy [The Watch] meant that whatever I did manage to record will be completely useless), and ruined that with subsequent bowls of sugary cereal and chocolate icecream. I have no will power. It's like I say to myself "Well I ran soo far today, I deserve at least five extra servings of whatever strikes my fancy!". Ah well. Aaand, I showered really early but ruined that too by mooching around reading and writing blog entries. Whoops!
Delicious raw Arabica coffee beans. The ones on the left have been ingested and pooped out by civets (similar in appearance to what I imagine you'd get if you crossed a cat with a gremlin). These defecated beans are hand-harvested from the fecal matter, cleaned, and roasted to make a deliciously smooth and bitterness-less coffee. This is also the most expensive coffee in the world.
I've noticed that my other blog-buddies have become quite popular on the .Org (taking out awards for Most Commented, Most Viewed, Top Blogger etc.), and since I can't hope to compete with them in terms of quantity or quality of writing, I thought I'd put my stamp on my own, equally important award: Longest Blog Titles. I'm sure you're all sufficiently impressed, and understand that this is a highly coveted award only offered to blogs with extremely high impact factors. Good, that's settled then.
Okay then, moving on. I had heaps of exciting things to write, and during the course of the day I'd say to myself "Ooh, I must put that in my blog". But sometimes my memory is about as effective at holding in information as a taco is in holding fillings, and by the time it gets to blog-writing time (also known as "pumpkin-turning time", "witching hour", and "too late"), all the good stuff (the cheese, guacamole, etc.) has fallen out, leaving some slightly wet lettuce and a couple of pieces of tom- I mean, the boring stuff. So, here is the Bad Parts version (totally ripped that off the Princess Bride too, if anyone noticed):
Was woken up at sunrise (about 5 am) by the pesky little noisy miners. This time they decided to congregate outside my door, in what I would like to coin a 'grievance'. A grievance of noisy miners flocked outside my window; specifically, a family of three, the noisiest of which is obviously an infant. Taunting me with their incessant "chip chip chip chip-ing"... Raagh! I took photographic evidence of the little blighters this time, for those mid speed-dial to the nearest psychologist. But, since I am not a morning person (unless there's three barrels of coffee or a date with John Krasinski involved), I thankfully managed to go back to bed (later hitting the snooze button a few too many times, of course).
Okay I'm sorry, I still don't know how to make the image smaller, my apologies!
With respect to skin, I celebrated too soon. I got another eyebrow lurker (seriously? ! It's so weird! I'm a freak), and a newbie on my back (who's a decent size) about five minutes after writing my last entry. Sigh. Haven't managed to avoid scratching the eyebrow one (whoops), but I'm trying to leave the other well alone to avoid spreading the infection. An embarrassing but hilarious aspect to the eyebrow lurkers is that you have to be extra careful when applying BP so as to avoid bleaching parts of your eyebrows, (I'm sure it's a great look on someone who's albino, but not so great for me).
The rest of the day consisted of minor work, considerable procrastination (shout out to Resery for her incredibly exciting and gossip-filled emails which sustained me throughout the day), and talking to Pansy, who's being such a good plant. I found out that while I was away on holidays for a week and a half, no one watered him (even though I specifically asked them to). Poor thing probably put all his energy into flowering as a last-ditch attempt to spread his seed (or whatever it is hybrid spathiphyllams do; I'm pretty sure they're asexual) before he curled up his toes. Luckily I got to him in time, and he's looking pretty healthy.
This was my evening, which did not consist of the long and energetic jog I intended to go on, as shown by the timeline:
Got on train. Headed to shopping centre.
Serenaded tomatoes in supermarket (don't judge me).
Supermarket staff had to reserve any judgement, since they were all wearing dusky pink and/or feather boas.
Actively attempted to avoid line containing extremely attractive male staff member my age so as to not be mortified by own, less-than-attractive appearance. Failed.
Added to mortification factor by telling attractive staff member he looked "extremely fetching in pink", like the 70 year-old woman I am.
Died of embarrassment.
Purchased items for home-made pizza and made a quick exit.
Got to train station. Did inventory- missing minor ingredients.
Re-entered store to purchase pizza base and tomato paste for sauce (groan!)
Returned to train station and got home an hour late.
Still, house-mate and I had delicious home-made pizzas for dinner, and I even had the foresight to cook an extra one for furture lunches; Go me!
The one shown here is the well-done lunch one, that I may have forgotten about when I was munching away on the delicious dinner one that I forgot to take a photo of.
There is an extremely annoying bird that chooses to sit on my windowsill right next to my head and mock me with the loudest and most annoying high-pitched chirping noise in the world, starting at about 5 am, and finishing at sunset. Seriously, it squawks at me until I "tssh!" loudly at it, where it moves to a tree next to my window and waits five minutes before returning to its rightful position in the world; annoying the crap out of me right next to my eardrum. I think it's called a noisy miner, and they're not effing kidding! Raagh!!! Must_buy_water_pistol...
So, anyway... this weekend has been extremely eventful, and a lot of fun to boot. First it started with me getting a package in the mail from a friend containing an extremely exciting piece of second-hand hardware which is going to make me instantly fitter just by owning it... A 305 Forerunner Garmin watch. Yup, a proper hard-core, GPS-fitted heart rate/distance/calories/velocity-monitoring piece of equipment which is about the size of a small elephant. So that was a big, scary moment for me, since now there's no cheating on my jogs, since everything short of my bra size will be recorded and ready for upload and analysis. I took it out on Friday night for a slow jog (oh god I'm so unfit, three weeks of food and cocktails destroyed anything that remained of my four-pack), and was not disappointed. Besides a few slip-ups (I managed to turn it off mid-run a couple of times, and pressed a few buttons I definitely wasn't supposed to), and the fact that it's ginormous, I think once (if) I work it out it'll be quite useful.
Then Friday night I tarted up and went to my favourite pub, Archive. This involved applying face makeup, which I haven't done for over a month, so I'm a little bit apprehensive about how my skin will respond to that. However, that turned out to be totally worth it, as guess who I ran into at the pub, my pub? That's right, the very same ex who broke it off when I developed acne, citing that he "wasn't ready for a relationship". And guess who he was there with? That's right, his new squeeze; a less than fun-looking blonde. It was a lot less awkward than I thought it might be. I ran into him (not actually; he's extremely tall so it'd be quite an achievement to miss him), said a very brief "Heyo... yooouuu!", did the perfunctory "I haven't seen you around in ages" "Oh, I've been on holidays" thang, and then quickly exited the stage to the left. And I actually didn't realise he was with someone else until my friend "A" told me, which was good. I hate the awkward meeting-the-exe's-new-girlfriend thing almost more than I do coriander (no, that's a lie; coriander is the herb of Satan, nothing trumps that). The good news is, I'm pretty sure I looked insanely hot (the long island iced teas and pints of over-proof beer had nothing to do with my vision, I'm sure), and I had a lot of fun with my friends even though I knew he was there. In fact I forgot about him completely most of the time, so that must mean I'm missing him terribly, right?
Actually one of the highlights of the night was one of my mates (A) telling me that I looked so much more relaxed and better, and my skin looked great, which was very sweet. I think he might've used the word "perfect" which is a gross over-exaggeration, but I'm chalking that up to us both being slightly (cough) Foo the Noo, and me wearing redness-reducing makeup. But still, when I guy notices and comments on it, that tends to indicate a decent change. So yay!
I ended up chatting with my girlfriend at her place for ages when I dropped her off, and didn't get home until 5.30 am (don't tell my mother)! Which meant I didn't get up until late that afternoon, but when I did? No hangover. That's right, people... Not even a headache. I don't know if you younguns will appreciate this, but when you reach a certain age (in my case about 24), this event is about as likely as the Camping's Rapture prediction actually occurring. So I think the combination of talking until sunrise and passing out for eleven hours must've helped... Or maybe it was just karma?
This is me not hungover, read it and weep Obviously skin-wise there's still a lot of work to be done, but I have noticed most of the marks now are red PIH and scarring. I think it's been a few days since I've had any serious new additions, and thank goodness the ones on my eyebrows are going. Seriously, I had three or four on each side, it was so weird.
Then yesterday I pretty much woke up, showered, had a bowl of cereal (thus providing evidence of my lack of hangover in the form of; hunger [i find it hard to stomach water when I'm hungover], a lack of greasy food, and the consumption of dairy products), then went to a friend's house for a party. This was a pretty relaxed affair, involving wine, cheese and biscuits, cake, and discussions on such important issues as the scientific potential for dinosaur cloning. And so since I did nothing that I should've yesterday (on the list were shopping, cleaning, baking chocolate-chip biscuits and doing multiple loads of washing), I had to do them today. Alas, except the baking. Turns out you some kind of a whisk or mixing device to cream butter and sugar together, who'da thunk it?
It occurs to me now that my anonymity is pretty much destroyed by the amount of personal detail I now include in my posts. This is extremely unlike me, and I blame all you lot for that!
...Yeah, well that's kind of what happened to me today. Except without the reappearing thing. Okay I shamelessly used a pop-culture reference to hook you in, so sue me. It worked, didn't it?? And now I've got you in my evil clutches, I bet you can't wait to find out what happens in my exhilarating story.
So I head into the office, all bright and early (ha! I'm totally lying. I got a text message from a friend super early this morning, and when I read it I must've turned my alarm off. Ugh! I do that more than is probable. My subconscious wants me to sleep in... Okay my conscious probably does too, but that's besides the point! I need to stop including so many side notes in parentheses. And stop making them so long. They get longer than the actual message, which ruins the flow a little [or a lot]. Ha! See what I did there? Intra-parentheses parentheses; I seriously have a problem here! I need intervention!), and then during my lunch break head off to my appointment for permanent hair reduction. See? I told you I'd be honest. It's your choice if you read it
So anyway, I tried calling them half a dozen time to confirm my appointment (they usually send me a text to do this. Oh Crap- again with the parentheses. Sigh), and the phone is disconnected. "That's weird" I think, "They must be having phone issues". So I turn up at the place, and BAM! Nothing. I swear, I walked up to where this shop used to be, and dust bunnies were blowing across the drive, while the wind whistled softly through the... lack of trees. This is in the middle of the city, after all. "What the-" I think to myself, as I approach where the entryway used to be. At this stage I'm feeling a little concerned, but still slightly hopeful. I mean, maybe the roof had a leak or something, and they had to temporarily evacuate? I'm a trusting kind of a person. Anyway, I walk up to the door, only to see this note:
Once I saw this I had a feeling of dread. Coupled with the phone being disconnected, this does not look good for my scheduled appointment. Yay! So the company's disappeared, taking with it my six months worth of pre-paid sessions... joy! Ugh. Probably gone into liquidation too, knowing my luck. So that's it; people are actually packing up their companies and leaving without notice, to avoid touching my skin, hahaha! Nah I'm just kidding. But I'm still pretty surprised that that could happen. An email from the company would've been nice! I guess they don't want people contacting them asking for their money back. Crazy!
So in a pseudo-acne update my face is still shitty, partly because I can't help but scratch at it, which stops the existing sites from healing before the new ones crop up, the shitty little bastards. Yes I'm cursing, because I'm cranky. It's so annoying! I don't even realise I'm doing it until it's too late. I'm vain enough that this does affect my confidence, so I had to slap on a bit more eye makeup today (nothing on my skin in terms of foundation, etc., of course). I did wear some of my new wooden beads I bought in south-east Asia for a couple of dollars each though (probably an entire family's food allowance for the day, ugh!), which cheered me up. It's nice wearing something bright when everyone around you is in serious grey and black work suits. I noticed a few eyes drawn to my necklace (I'm sure it was my necklace, because I'm not very well endowed in the chest area, haha!), and I like to think they weren't thinking "Sheesh, even those ridiculously bright beads don't distract from her spotty face!".
Now I thought I'd try my hand at dot-pointing something, as all the cool kids seem to be doing it these days! So, in no special order you get a regurgitation of whatever spills out of my head within the next five minutes;
Tomorrow my task is to wake up on time, get to the office on time (ha!), and clean my desk... And get back into data interpretation. Sigh. The desk cleaning will definitely be more fun! I like cleaning my desk, it makes me feel in control.
Also, I need to remember to bring in the treats I bought in Indonesia tomorrow for morning tea, including weird-flavoured Oreos (peanut butter and "ice cream" flavoured, haha!) and some coffee-derived lollies. Mmm, coffee...
Not sure what my weekend plans are yet, but they may include a visit to the pub, and will probably include a brunch on Saturday or Sunday morning with my bestie at my favourite brunch place.
Also, I plan to bake something this weekend. This is a pretty big deal for me; I come from a line of good bakers and craftspeople, and I have the domestic ability of Martha Stewart's prison guard. Or possibly less, I'm not sure. So I will try to attempt to cook something vaguely edible, like chocolate chip biscuits. I have successfully cooked chocolate slice previously, so I'm hoping it won't be too much of a disaster. Never fear, I shall post gloating photos if it is successful! If it's not, I will just never mention it again. Huzzah! Gotta love the monologue
Now I feel like I don't have enough dot points, so here's another one. Ha! Tricked you, muahaha!
And just because I can't rely on my witty repartee like the other blog writers I'm competing with for your attention, and as such want to win over people's affection with irrelevant photos, here's a photo of my messy desk;
Hi All!! Okay, okay, I'll be honest... Hey to my one blog reader! Unless I have a stalker, which'd be kinda cool... My sister had a stalker for about 6 months, which is such a fashionable thing to have. I heard all the celebrities are doing it.
As you can see I have been a tad inactive for a few (cough) days. This is due to me going on the most amazing holiday to an exotic tropical destination, and having very limited access to the internet (countries are still using dial-up speeds?!)... although somehow I did manage to do a few smug status updates attached to pictures of crystal clear lagoon pools, and scandalously-named fruit-adorned cocktails, of course. Are you feeling jealous yet? I've got to say, a large part of the joy of being on holiday for me comes from excessive self-satisfaction to the detriment of others in the form of "Wish you were here!" messages and the like. ...Too honest?
Anyway, in light of my departure from this country into a distant and exciting land of the extraordinary, I have decided to write off the last x number of days (where x is an exceedingly large number attached to extreme guilt) in terms of the acne part of my blog. The good news is... (drum roll)... my acne is just as bad as when I left! Huzzah!! I'm sure you're all extremely relieved that you didn't have hear any irritating stories of improvement, or any aggravating messages of positivity and hope, am I right?! I thought not. No, instead you can all breathe a sigh of relief knowing that in the last three weeks or so, there has been little change to the quality of my skin except the addition of a healthy brown glow* resulting from the natural and organic addition of vitamin D that comes to spending lots of the day walking around perusing marketplaces, then from treating yourself for possible over-exhaustion by lounging in a sparkling pool, which is cleaned (skimmed, vacuumed and tested for chemical balance) every single day. Yup! That's the kind of amazing service you get from ubiquitous cheap labour and rock-bottom (or lack of) minimum wages. Poverty be damned! Whoops, I got side-tracked again. Yup, skin is at about the same level as when I left..
This is me today. Hey, quit whinging. You're lucky I didn't put up the one with a toothbrush sticking out of my mouth! So as you see, I was also having a daggy, icecream-filled day. Add to that the acnetastic skin and the lank hair; stick a fork in me, and call me sexy!
In case you're interested, I maintained my regime throughout the trip, which involves the following:
AM - shower with Cetaphil gentle cleansing bar, apply Cetaphil moisturising lotion, take antibiotic
PM - shower with cleansing bar, apply topical bezoyl peroxide / retinoid gel, then moisturising lotion, take Pill.
So I got more sun exposure, whilst using sun screen (okay I may have gotten very slightly burnt during a ten minute walk one afternoon after I forgot to apply sunscreen one time, but other than that one incident I was very good, and applied about three petrol tankards of sun screen throughout my trip each day. For any interested parties (ha!), I used Auscreen sensitive, low-irritant SPF 30+, which is one of the few non ridiculously-expensive sunscreens that I'm not allergic to. Seriously, it's such a pain in the arse! If I apply normal sunscreen my skin burns like the flames of eternal damnation (or equivalent to one moderately thick coating of BP gel on the cheek region ...of the face, you dirty-minded coots! ), and about five minutes I look like I've been roasted in about four full hours in tropical sunlight, which is probably the equivalent of about 24 hours of summer exposure in other latitudes. So anyway "to make a long story short (Too late!)**", I stick to the sensitive skin friendly stuff.
Another disruption to the regime is the addition of chlorinated pool water, as I swam almost every day. I say almost, because there were two days I was laid up in bed with an International Cold (far worse than a domestic cold) kindly shared with me by my sweet sister, where I could not stand the idea of swimming around in something cold and wet like a pool. I'm hoping pool water, like the increased Vitamin D uptake, may actually have a beneficial effect in the long run. What is likely to be deleterious (man I heart that word so much), is the copious amount of sweating I did in the 30+ degree heat (I have no idea what that is in weird-people measurements) and 80+% humidity we experienced. I'd like to think this could "clear my pores", but I think the air pollution from the ridiculously ingested traffic (I'm looking at you, motorscooters and people movers), and the constant irritation from wiping it away would not help.
Also, I'll admit that I partook in a few beverages, of the alcoholic variety, which is probably not super beneficial. Although I did do very well in trying to moderate my drinking, considering I'm on antibiotics. Go me! My dairy consumption was down quite a lot; milk and cheese and stuff is not widely consumed in south east Asia, so my dairy intake was mostly limited to two cups of white coffee each day.
Okay now I feel really bad re-reading it, all that time waiting and it's such a boring entry! I'm sorry, I promise I'll try harder!
Heyo, (*warning, bad pop-culture reference within)
Well this has been a rollercoaster of a ride! I was doing so well, with my acne appearing to clear up, and then real life comes and kicks me in the Jimmy, haha. So it turns out a diet of stress, coffee, chocolate and more coffee is not conducive to good skin. Gee, who'd a thunk it?!
My back continues to torture me, with the few Big Blind Lumps (Ha! That sounds like a really bad band name) and a few fresh ones giving me grief. I've been generously applying the BP gel to them at night, trying to kill the feckers before they start infecting the rest of me. I'm also really disheartened because my almost, almost clear chest (just a couple of scars remaining), has since had the suspicious-looking tiny red spots turn into proper pimples! Ugh. So pissed off. I've been doing all the right things with the BP gel, so I have to attribute this to stress, and probably hormones, since last week I entered the "white pill" stage. So I have a question for anyone fellow Pill-popping women (haha!): Do any of you bicycle or tricycle your pills to avoid hormonal breakouts? I am considering doing it, at least initially until things get under control; I imagine it would help because it would further regulate hormone levels.
The good news is my Selsunning the cra(-dle ca-)p out of my scalp seems to be getting the seb derm under control. Urge to scratch the skin off my hair is subsiding... The down side is I have extremely long hair, so doing any kind of regular treatment regime is a pain in the arse, and takes about an hours when you take into account the stopping and starting of "lather, rinse, repeat". Seriously, why does every single hair product need to be "rinsed and repeated"?! Why can't they either just make the stuff a little stronger, or let you lather for a bit longer? Is the first rinse stage really that important, I ask you?? Or is it a ploy so that you use it up twice as fast, hmm? Okay maybe I'm a little cynical But anyway, I've been Selsun Golding initially to get it under control, which has worked. The down side of this is that is smells like the Fire Swamp (no ROUSes in my hair, I promise), and every time I do a sexy hair shake (ahahaha!) I'm sure everyone around my must cringe and wonder what on earth I rolled in. Ah well, I still love you Selsun! You save my skin.
In good news I re-filled my doxycycline script (yay!) so hopefully that will help bring my skin back into line. Yeah, hear that skin? Get back in line! I'm now somewhat concerned about the longevity of this treatment method though... When I go off doxy, will my acne come back worse? I've heard it can even come back with a vengeance, which would be about as fun as stabbing myself in the eyeball repeatedly with a hot poker. I'm also actually not sure when that's supposed to be, as I have 5 script refills; I need to find out from the Doc if I go through the entire course, or re-evaluate after the 8 weeks, which is coming up scarily fast.
Umm, in other non-acne related news (which is so much fun in other people's blogs, hehehe) I'm thinking fondly of my upcoming holiday, as well as doing all the normal life things that I haven't had time to do thus far, including catching up on three weeks worth of washing, cleaning the kitchen (my flatmate is domestically challenged in the cleanliness department, and as such did sweet FA whilst I was insanely busy with the Dreadline), bringing some semblance of order to my desk, etc.
So I was just putting away some clothes, and noticed my gorgeous dress from Cue for a nice dinner that didn't eventuate (sigh). I don't think I've told you guys about this dress. I bought it in a fit of low self esteem when I thought I might actually venture out into public with someone who would care how I look, and it was such an effort to find it. Everywhere I usually frequent that caters to people my age had unsuitable dresses, and the only places I could find a dress which actually covered most of my back and chest (my arms and shoulders are okay) was at the up-market name-brand establishments. So I ended up buying this gorgeous and flattering, but hideously expensive, dress which I probably won't be able to wear before it's put on the sale rack, sigh. The photo doesn't do it justice, but it's this cute feminine cut that makes someone my build (somewhat flat and boring, although considerably less flat at the moment, post-chocolate binge) look petite and girly, and the colour (mustard; the least flattering of the colour names except maybe for "puce", which sounds a little too much like you-know-what for my liking) compliments my ivory (read: pale) skin and dark features quite well, and looks lovely when cinched with the wide black leather belt I bought. Ugh! Sad again.
Actually the shopping expedition really made me realise the different *cough* styles of clothing out there, most of which aimed at my age bracket are quite revealing, not necessarily warranted. I'm by no means a prude (I've been known to "flaunt what ma Mumma gave me*" and indulge in shorty-shorts and tight dresses at times), but it does make me shake my head when I see young women revealing far too much of everything.
Well, this has turned out to be a deeply relevant, scientific blog entry! I definitely blame my lax attitude to blogging now on my incredibly entertaining "spotty friends". I will also attach more pseudo-scientific photos at a later date (probably), but I think we all know the important one is the dress
To make it slightly more appropriate, I think my back coverage this time has averaged 80**% with a few big offenders, my chest is back to 35 - 40% (sob!), and my face is at about 40% coverage, with lesions mostly on my forehead and hair line, and a smattering of others on my nose, chin and cheeks-ish. **These percentages subject to revision once I upload the photos (I'm writing this in retrospect, and am feeling pretty pessimistic). Still getting that repeat peely spot-thing on my nose which isn't healing, and I have noticed pickaxe scarring on my forehead (double sob!). Sigh, stupid skin.
Good Evening, hope you're all having a wonderful weekend.
Well... I survived the dreaded deadline... Barely. At least the scarring from the experience won't be noticeable in comparison to my existing scars Since I last wrote I had one more night of <4 hours sleep, and then even after the deadline had passed I still had issues sleeping for the first couple of nights. But last night I slept in until 2 pm!! 'Twas awesome, totally worth it. So the house is a mess, I subsisted on tomato pasta and chocolate for a week, and I was getting to the bottom of the clean-clothes pile... But I survived!
In this time my back has decided to wage civil war, and has cropped up more new lesions on my shoulders and upper to mid-back range. My face is equally disappointing, with my hairline and forehead being the main focus of attention. Joy(!). And in all the stress I ran out of antibiotics, and didn't have time to fill the next script, so I've now been two days without taking the doxy. Stupid! So tomorrow that has to be my first priority; get that script (and the next Epiduo script too) filled!
So this last two weeks or so have definitely not helped my skin; I don't think many dermatologists would recommend subsisting on coffee, chocolate, tomato pasta and a healthy dose of stress for a prolonged period. I was surprised by the relapse (is that the word?) on my back though, I would've thought that the antibiotics would've prevented any new infections from forming? ...Bearing in mind that the fresh breakout started before I'd run out of doxy tablets. So that's a little disappointing. I know there are ups and downs in any "journey", but I guess with the progress on my chest and stuff I was still hoping for smooth sailing. Speaking of which, today I noticed tiny red spots on my chest, they better not be freaking acne spots! If I start breaking out on my chest again I am going to be severely unhappy. In addition to this, my scalp has joined the skin party at my expense, and flared up. So hard not to scratch!! I'm not sure if I've mentioned (i.e. complained) about that yet, but as of about two years ago I periodically get seborrheic dermatitis (or "seb derm" to those people in the know ). It seems to be reasonably common to get this together with acne ...maybe it's lucky it's taken me this long to get acne as well?
So next weekend I head off for a bit of a holiday with friends and family (which I desperately need), but a tiny bit of me is not looking forward to facing my family and friends like this. Going from clear skin to this is a bit confronting, and normally I wouldn't have thought twice about putting on my bikini and going for a swim, but now I'm so self conscious about my back I'll probably have to put on a shirt. Maybe I can use sun exposure as an excuse? Hmm.
Taking my regime with my might be interesting too... "Excuse me guys, I've just got to slip off, pop some pills and lather on various creams and lotions which bleach my clothes, don't mind me!". Bah. Stupid skin.
Oooh, new option to attach pictures! Might have to give it a go.
An extremely busy week (what weekend?!), with an average of about four or five hours sleep a night for the last six nights, and the dreaded deadline (yeah there's a reason it's called that) looming meant I have had a relapse on my back (and especially shoulders), which was previously starting to look better. Oh and my chin tells me my face hasn't gone unscathed either. I missed one morning doxy tablet during that time because I was too queasy to take it (lack of sleep and food'll do that), but I'm attributing the setback to lifestyle and hormones, rather than missing one pill. Which reminds me, I need to fill the next script.
Okay technically I have been eating... Whatever's in the fridge/freezer; so there's been lots of coffee, tomato pasta and cheese, more coffee, crispbread, coffee again, chocolate and coffee to finish off. Which I'm sure doesn't help. And will probably give me scurvy, but hey, acne's worse
So all in all an incredibly fun week! On the bright side, I got it in, and now the next deadline isn't unti- Oh wait. 35 hours away. Sigh.
On a side note, I lost it the other day when someone asked me with sympathy in their eyes "So how's it going?" for the forty-second time that week. Seriously?! Every one in the office asks me that even though it's written plainly on my face how not well I'm going, and after the tenth time that day you just want to stab someone when they do. I think I turned around and growled "It's shit, leave me alone!" the last time, haha! Which is pretty out of character for me. I do not do well with lack of sleep!
Speaking of which, I better hit the hay. I'll post a proper update later with progress and stuff, and I will also add more photos. I promise. I know, I know, I promised last time, but I will! I think I'm ten days behind, that'll be fun(!).
By the way, it's getting warm and so when I did a short jog today (first in days), my socks were extra evil and bunched under the ball of my feet / toes even sooner than usual (after about 1.5 km!), stupid things.
Hahaha I am feeling so smug at the moment! For some reason this time I decided to save my most recent entry as a .txt file, which means I have a backup copy of the blog entries I missed, yay! So this just means I'm only half a week behind, because I'm insanely busy with a huge deadline looming over me... breathing down my neck like a vampire (and we're not talking about Angel or Damon here, by the way) with halitosis. Eek!
Wow, I can't believe it's been a month already since I started treatment! That is scary. Now I'm wondering what I've achieved in that time, since I still seem to be struggling with my research. Ugh. Anyway, I've got to add photos! I'm getting behind.
Hmm, where to start? Bad face day (~45% coverage), again. I'm starting to think the initial breakout (or IB as it seems to be somewhat affectionately termed) started later for my face, since it started off clear and then got worse. In summary; new, old and scarred sites on my forehead and hairline, a couple of small spots between my eyebrows, a couple of new spots near my mouth, one on my chin, nodule on nose is slightly smaller but still there. Besides that I've got a peely spot on my nose which is where a lesion used to be, that just keeps re-peeling.
I have one small fresh papule on my chest; this is the first new site I've got in ages (a week?), so I'm still pretty happy with the progress there (40-45%?, and mostly scarring and old sites at that). Back-wise, still not happy (probably at about 75% coverage). New large pimples are cropping up, dammit. My skin is itchy quite a lot of the time, probably due to the Epiduo, so it's hard not to scratch these ones and spread the infection. I am still noticing most new spots are concentrated in areas that are obviously from scratching.
I'm still gently exfoliating every other day, I'm not sure if it's good for my skin or not but it sure feels a heck of a lot better afterwards.
Today I had to wear a long-sleeved shirt when I was outside, since I haven't yet found a sunscreen to use (I welcome any suggestions!). I probably looked a little odd, since it's mid summer and gorgeous and warm, but oh well. Everything I've read says you need to be extremely careful about sun exposure when on these antibiotics, and I'd rather not risk it. Although I am Vitamin D deficient apparently (whoops!), so I will need to do something about that at some stage.
I think I'm actually down to about 30% coverage on my chest, yay! It's hard to tell, because the retinoid/BP cream leaves you pretty red and shiny, I'm guessing from the fact that it's, you know, bleaching your skin. Actually the shininess is something I'm really starting to notice in the last few days. I'm not sure if it was there before and I just didn't notice because of the pimples, or if it's a more recent thing. I don't mind it, because it's a whole lot better than it was, but I'd be interested to know how long it stays that way. Plus my chest is now almost smooth, with just a few tiny bumps from old spots/whitehead-type things.
Back is looking better, with about 65% coverage, and most of that is scarring. I think I only have two or three active spots, and am trying to avoid scratching them to prevent them from breeding.
Well, they weren't kidding about the sun exposure risk; I got sunburned on the strip around my collar where my skin was apparently exposed. Not too bad, will post a photo of it to show it. I'm glad I decided to wear the long sleeves though! My chest is looking really good, about 20% and that's mostly fading scars. There are only a few tiny bumps, so my skin is really smooth, it's amazing! I haven't had any new proper lesions in ages, just one or two pretty tiny sites that fade pretty quickly, and a handful of tiny whiteheads over that time. Face-wise (30-40% with scars) my forehead is still giving me grief. I have nodule-type pimples within my hairline, and putting the BP/retinoid gel on them is bleaching my hair! So I may have to starting avoiding those sites; I really don't want to get a bald patch there! My back is improving (I hope!) and is at about 60%, with two fresh papules on my shoulderblade/shoulder. Resisting the urge to scratch the lower back ones seems to have worked, with no further spreading.
Despite being ridiculously behind on something that's due tomorrow(!!), I might post this as a bi-weekly entry, since I'm now up-to-date and writing in it most days. I do need to get up to date with photos, but with the site being down last night that didn't happen!
Oh, by the way, I really recommend jogging for those who need an escape from reality. It's great for my frame of mind and self confidence. Even when I'm make-up free, acne-tastic and glowing with perspiration, I feel good when I'm pounding the pavement, with thoughts tuned solely to my body's movement, my breathing, the music, and the path in front of me. ...Man! That totally sounds like an advertisement for women's sportswear or something. Sorry about that! So the general gist of that is yes, I like jogging.
Which reminds me! If anyone can point me in the direction of some runner's socks (I mean proper, hard-core moisture wicking technology-type stuff) I would greatly appreciate it. At the moment my socks are driving me nuts (bunching and rubbing after about 3 km). I have some cheapish runner's socks at the moment but they're just not cutting it... I'm not sure I can bring myself to spend $35 on one pair of socks though, which is how much the good ones are in the shops!
So this week I return to my doctor for a checkup, and explain that the acne is spreading down my back and towards my stomach. She advises me to take antibiotics, and writes me a prescription for 50 mg Doxyhexal tablets. The first pack of 25 is to be taken twice a day, with each packet thereafter taken once a day, at night. I am not a fan of using antibiotics when they're not strictly necessary, for obvious reasons, so I am somewhat hesitant to do this. I must admit she freaked me out when she suggested I try the antibiotics for six weeks, and then if I don't see a change she would give me a recommendation to a dermatologist who may consider Roaccutane... No thank you! My acne is not nearly severe enough for me to consider that at this stage.
The tablets are to be taken "with a glass of milk or food". Milk? I thought that calcium can impact the adsorption of antibiotics, so may try to limit dairy in the few of hours before and after taking the dose. The other instructions are to take the tablet with a full glass of water (and daily increase water intake is recommended), avoid lying prone for at least 30 mins beforehand (to avoid damage to my oesophagus- wow, scary!), avoid sun exposure, and avoid taking iron preparations within two hours of each dose.
Really, really bad face day (~45% coverage). Yesterday I got another one of the weird burn blister-thingies, this time on my nose, right there for the world to see. Yay! As well as this, I also have a delightful new addition to the "What in the world is that?!" folder, with some kind of a weird infection thing in the corner of my mouth, which almost looks like a cold sore. ...Except I know it's not, since I've been extraordinarily careful (and darned lucky!) to avoid cold sores my whole life. And in truth, I think I know what caused it; yesterday I noticed large white (gland?) things, probably associated with dry skin, and I scratched them, probably causing infection. Despite only applying the Edpiduo to my chin, nose, between the eyebrows and forehead area, other places are experiencing dryness (e.g. my lips are very dry these days, and weirdly enough my eyelids too!). Chest and back look much the same (about 65% and 90% respectively), with a couple of big sore spots on my back that I'm trying to leave well alone. So at the moment I'm quite disheartened by everything, so I fill the script for the doxy, and take the first dose in the evening.10/09/2011Doxy is making my stomach a little funny, but I'm finding that eating something directly before it (as simple as some Vegemite on dry wheat crispbread) beforehand, and heaps of water during and after taking it helps a lot, and limits it to what feels like very mild heartburn. For me the biggest impact is having something to eat for breakfast with it, as I am not a morning person, and can only stomach coffee in the morning usually. This is where my increased appetite from the Pill is actually helping, since before I would not have been able to stomach food! On a side note, before I started the Pill I weighed 52 or 53 kg, and since starting I've put on three (3!) kilos... in the last two weeks! Since I was jogging regularly beforehand I was pretty slim so am not too worried, but I would like to be able to get back into the jogging for my mental health (I sleep so much better at night after wearing myself out).
The corner of my mouth is healing, but my face is still a disaster zone (~40%). I've got new pimples across my forehead, one on the edge of both eyebrows, and a few in my hairline on each side of my face. I also have a lovely huge pustule on the side of my nose, which I'm trying to leave alone... but it's so big...! My chest has seen a surprising improvement, and is down to about 60% coverage. No big lumpy spots any more, and the only fresh spots are pretty tiny, which is great! Redness almost gone too, with some of the scars maybe-possibly-hopefully fading. My back is still pretty bad, with scarring (ugh!). It's at about 85%, but there are still fresh infection sites, some of which are sore.
Pretty similar today. Face is still bad (35-40%). My forehead is still breaking out, so I've got fresh sites as well as scarring (yay!). I couldn't stand it anymore, so disinfected a needle and relieved some of the pressure from the pustule next to my nose, which appears to have an underlying nodule, joy. Chest is still looking pretty good (still probably at about 60% coverage), with only one or two new sites. My back, although very difficult to see in the bad photography, is on par with yesterday (about 80%?), and is still getting new pimples. It gets itchy, so I'm trying really hard to resist scratching it; I can see where I have scratched one I get a breakout of little spots around it. Easier said than done though, when scratching is such an automatic reaction!
So I'm pretty stressed with my research at the moment. I have this massive deadline looming in a matter of days, and I find myself on here blogging instead. Whoops. In a way I guess it's therapeutic; even though I'm pretty sure no-one else reads it, it's a way for me to put my progress on paper and organise my thoughts. I'm trying to be better with my diet (well at least I'm eating more fruit), although the stress eating of chocolate (...it's there & it's easy) is probably not helping. Not that chocolate is bad for acne, per se, but I'm sure the sugar, fat and lack of nutritional value doesn't help! Jogging really helps my mood though, I feel so much more in control and self-confident after a decent jog. I've been considering getting a gym membership since it keeps raining here, so that I can exercise every day. I'm short of time though, so that may have to wait until I finish this project thing.
Okay none of that had anything to do with acne, whoops! So still having bad-face days (are there anything but?). I had my supervisor comment the other day that she's never seen my face so "red". Gee... Thanks? Haha. But I am pretty peel-tastic at the moment; not sure if it's because maybe I did a more thorough job of the retinoid/BP cream, or perhaps because I did a pretty thorough wash with pHisohex, which dries my skin out a lot. Okay probably both, come to think of it!
I'm going to add some photos about the delightful drying effect of retinoid/BP creams, as well as the usual progress update ones. Acne-wise I think my chest is probably down to about 50% (most of that is scarring and healing), with no new breakouts (sweet!). The community on my back is still happily multiplying away, with the spots decreasing in intensity and density towards my lower back. I would guess my upper back is at about 80-ish percent, towards the small of my back there's about a 10 to 15% coverage (probably an overestimate on actual areal extent, but it's all qualitative anyway, so oh well!).