Top Ten Tuesday (I’ll Cry if I Want to)

It’s my Birthday! I’m starting to feel old when I see my own age in writing now (36). Will I have a crisis when I turn 40? Only time will tell. Apparently I’m getting birthday presents this year too, more about that later.

For some reason, this song, which (I realize) doesn’t even mention birthdays, makes me think of birthdays. Idk, the only parties that exist to me are birthday parties, or something?

Sooo. Top Ten Tuesday time! A pretty straightforward topic this week:

September 19Top Ten Books On My Fall TBR List

  1. Bad Feminist
  2. The Second Sex
  3. The Mists of Avalon
  4. Akata Witch
  5. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
  6. Born a Crime
  7. Scrappy Little Nobody
  8. Death by Black Hole
  9. Yes Please
  10. You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost)

I allowed two male authors to sneak in there, but only because the rest is pretty feminist, and they write about “real” things (growing up in apartheid, and science).

Excellent Customer Service

As I’m slowly inching my way away from doing customer service, it’s still been my line of work for the past 10 years (give or take a few months). Not only does this mean that I’m a VERY picky customer, but also that I mentally review/rate all customer services I am forced to contact.

Scandinavian Airlines – shit
KLM – depends on the day and person; ranges from shit to decent
KPN (phone provider in NL) – shit (the ones who sell almost everything) – great

Something I’ve learned during my years as an expat in the Netherlands, is that it’s not a strength of Dutch people. It’s just not in (most of) them. Living here, I also feel that I don’t really know the Swedes anymore – are they good at it? If I judge by SAS the answer is a resounding HELL NO.

However. I ordered some books from Upon receipt, one book was wrong. After having paid € 50 in shipping costs I was… let’s say unhappy. So I called them, and they were like “oh, we’re so sorry. please keep that book and we’ll send the right one straight away”.

And that’s how you keep a whining customer happy and coming back for more.

Environmental Awareness

I’ll continue with the Endless Blog Challenge, because it makes my blogging life so much easier!

FIVE DAYS OF ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS. I’ve been thinking of ThaTaylaa‘s 15 days of foundation, which is such a fun idea, but, as mentioned, I’m in the middle of Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything, and I’m not in a encourage-consumption type of mood. Instead, let’s take five days and reflect on our consumption

I’m horribly bad at preparing lunches for work days, and I almost always feel bad about it, because then I end up buying stuff every day instead.

This week, however, I have lunches! For all days! And they’re all vegetarian (2 days even vegan, how about that?). I’d share pictures, but while delicious, they aren’t very photogenic.

And also, this (NS is the train company here):


This Week’s Favorites

This is, again, for the Endless Blog Challenge.

THIS WEEK’S FAVORITES. Weekly feature at The Mustards. Who doesn’t like listing favorites? If you want to make it extra challenging, have theme.

It’s been an uneventful week so far, so this’ll mainly be music. Two songs I’m loving right now:

As I was working from home yesterday, I was listening to this week’s Discover Weekly on Spotify in the background, and suddenly I heard Dutch. It really made me aggressively angry with Spotify, mentally going “WHY?! I don’t listen to anything in Dutch, WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME?”.

Then, I realized it was Danish. *cough* So yeah. (I haven’t listened to anything in Danish either, but I can live with that appearing in the list.)


I’ve also started using VPN, like a sane person, and it annoys gmail and Youtube to no end. Gmail is all “SECURITY WARNING!!!! someone logged in to your account from another IP” and Youtube does this (note: I’m using a Dutch IP):

Screen Shot 2017-08-31 at 22.40.06

Woman Crush Wednesday

Lisa’s Endless Blog Challenge continues, and I hope this will be a recurring theme:

WOMAN CRUSH WEDNESDAY. The idea is to write about a woman you love for some reason. (..but it can’t be just because she’s attractive. Because I say so. Because it’s boring.)

I choose the author of a book I still remember fondly, more than a year after reading it:
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. All the quotes. *sigh*

“Some people ask: “Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights, or something like that?” Because that would be dishonest. Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general—but to choose to use the vague expression human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded. It would be a way of denying that the problem of gender targets women.”
― Chimamanda Ngozi AdichieWe Should All Be Feminists

The Circle – Book versus Movie #2

As previously mentioned, a college lent me The Circle. If not, I don’t think I would’ve read it (the name and cover do nothing for me, and it’s written by a man). This post contains some spoilers.

The Book:
I had some conflicting feelings when reading the book, mainly having to do with the (lack of) depth of the female lead. Throughout the whole book she is this receptacle who just accepts that the Circle (think bigger than Google & FB) are good, no matter what they do. Meanwhile, she’s surrounded by men who are telling her the TRUTH. But she’s basically too stupid to get it. And don’t get me started on her “relationship” with Francis. FFS.

“Mae knew the easy trick that had been played upon her. He was thin, and without any muscle tone, his eyes were weak, and he had a pronounced problem with premature ejaculation, yet simply because she’d seen the lust in Jackie’s eyes, Mae found herself wanting to be alone with him again. She wanted to bring him into her room that night.” (I don’t know the page, I was too annoyed to make a note)

“”C’mon. You can’t listen to a lunatic like that,” Francis said.
“What does she know? Some crank somewhere with a tin-foil hat.”
Mae smiled, not knowing what the tin-foil hat reference meant, but knowing she’d heard her father say it, and it made her smile to think of him saying it.” (p. 393)

However, if you ignore the poorly built characters, I enjoyed the storyline itself, and kept reading cause I really wanted to see how it would end.

The Movie:
While reading the book, I realized that Emma Watson was in the movie, so obviously I had to watch that as well, despite the 5.3 rating.

And I have to say, I didn’t find it that bad. Having read the book, you know what’s going on, but it feels like the story has some gaps. That’s of course understandable when turning a book into a (less than) 2 hour movie. Emma’s great of course, and Tom Hank’s alright (although in my head, Eamon looked more like ABBA-Benny). And I’m happy to report that FRANCIS DOESN’T EXIST. And Mae’s smarter than in the book.


Book Poetry

Part of the Endless Blog Challenge (week 35). This one worries me a bit, cause I just think “but poetry, I can’t write poetry”. Although, I guess this is technically not writing poetry, but more like the fridge magnets version, so what the hell!


Lost in a good book
first among sequels
thinking, fast and slow
I wish someone were waiting for me somewhere


I’ll give you the sun
half of a yellow sun
a little life
house of leaves

Ok, this was quite fun, I might do more at some point.