Sunday, May 29, 2011


Sooo, yeah. I got fired yesterday.
(Technology, what have you done? People don't even have the decency to call anymore.)

I could rant about how bad the management was there, how they are technically breaking laws, and how that job was close to being slave labor... but I would end up ranting for ages.

Let's just sum up everything to some life lessons I have learned...

1) Ask more questions about a job before you sign anything.
If I had known that I would be mopping floors until 1am whenever I had the closing shift, I wouldn't have taken the job. Heck, I wish they would have at least told me I was going to be a janitor. Looking back now, I probably should have asked what exactly the job entailed before signing all the necessary papers. Because I didn't ask, I got stuck doing backbreaking work nearly nonstop for 7-9 hour shifts for minimum wage... I could have just been sitting on my butt and managing phone calls and appointments as a receptionist somewhere, to the sweet tune of $12 an hour. Instead I was on my feet all day, cleaning sticky yogurt and toppings.

2) Stupid people don't like it when you make them look stupid... especially when that person is your manager.
I'm going to be blunt... my manager was an idiot. The very first weekend I worked, he changed my shift without notifying me, and proceeded to blame me when I didn't show up. This led to him being scolded at our employee meeting by the owner himself. You see, the manager was supposed to email us the schedule every single time there was an edit made. He didn't do that, and the owner embarrassed him in front of all of us by telling us it was "his mistake" and to do that next time. I believe this was the beginning of his grudge against me. When I tried to take a sick day and he accused me of all these crazy things, like not working for two days the previous week, and calling "every day" to take a day off (neither of which were true at all), I emailed the owner to clear up any problems. That must have embarrassed him again, seeing that he probably was getting his own employees mixed up. Pointing out discrepancies between what he said about breaks and the Employee Handbook was probably the last straw. People just don't like being wrong, and I guess being upstaged by someone more than ten years younger than you AND someone lower on the employee ladder probably led to some anger.

3) Customer service is the key to success, and good tips.
During my short employment, I was astounded how much a good attitude could affect the behavior of your customers. If you took the time to explain how the shop worked to new customers, greet them as they approached the register, and told them to "have a nice day" after their transaction, they were a lot more likely to leave tips. They also were more likely to return, recognize you the next time, and even talk to you while you were getting them their change. Incredibly enough, neither the owner or manager cared about customer service. They were more focused on cleanliness and how much money they made. After a lot of observation though, it was easy to see the difference in behavior between the customers who interacted with a bored cashier, and those that I was tending to. Making the kids happy was the most important part. Kids are sometimes intimidated by people who are older than them. If you can break down that barrier by asking them what flavor they got, commenting on their stack of gummi worm toppings, or just being nice, they start gaining an attachment to the store. One kid whose family I had spoken to on a few occasions exclaimed to me that he was at the store 4 times already, and it was his favorite place. Customer service really is where the money lies, not in having the store spot-free.

At least I learned something from being fired, haha.

Back to looking for jobs... and hey, at least I have cashiering experience now. That'll hopefully open up some more avenues of employment.

In other news, I'm going to Delaware to visit Jon tomorrow!
Hey, it's not like I have to worry about a work schedule anymore, right?
This is exactly what I needed... a nice, relaxing break with my favorite person in the world! <3
Definitely looking forward to it.

Until next time!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Little Birdie Told Me

Yes, it finally happened... A STORE UPDATE!
I have just added all my bird figurines to the Hello Interloper Etsy shop for you to view and enjoy! (And hopefully purchase? Hehe!)

Here's my personal favorite...

Isn't he cute? (and a bit crazy...)

Here's one that was inspired by... what else? Father's Day!

The little guy wants to grow up to be just like his dad! Don't worry, you'll one day have a fancy head-crest like your father... or not, since you're made of clay.

Also, my needle-felted tiger in a tie that I mentioned earlier is also up for sale!

He's ready for SRS BSNS.

 Check out the rest of the clay insanity by visiting my Etsy shop!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Artistic Updates

A quick update in my little world of crafting...

I finished my first needle-felting piece! It's a little bluebird!
Unfortunately, I can't post anything more about it, or post any photos... Why? Because it's a surprise for Jon!
(He insisted on guessing as to what it was, and evenutally wanted me to tell him once he couldn't guess... but still wants it to be a surprise in every other way)

I'm working on a new piece, but I'm unsure of what it's going to turn out to be yet.
Right now it's just a ball of turquoise wool with two white stripes around it. Probably will end up being the body of something.

I also attempted to draw again, which I haven't done in a while... turns out I didn't lose my skill! Woo!
I doodled a stupid cutesy cat in Sharpie, and then sketched an owl-guy with pencil.
The owl-dude actually turned out really well, so I'm now in the process of going over all the lines with ink.
I finished the hair, eyes, beak, and now I'm starting on the eartufts.

In addition to all of this, I still need to photograph my clay figurines, buy some pinbacks, and receive my ACEO blanks in the mail.

Look for some updates in the next coming weeks regarding more craftacular stuff... especially since my manager decided to cut my hours.

...Until next time!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Miffed About Management

Complaining about work can get you in trouble, as far as I've seen in news reports where some people tweeted insults about their bosses and such... so I'm trying to be careful.
But I'm very upset right now.

The manager didn't send me this week's schedule until today... as in Tuesday. (I know it's past midnight, but I haven't gone to sleep yet so... yeah.)
He sent it by TEXT.
My hours have been cut in half, and he wouldn't reply as to why, even though I asked twice.
If he had told me this on Monday, or even Sunday, I could have booked a train ticket to Delaware and visited Jon for 3 days.


So now I can't see Jon, I'm only working 14 hours this week, and at minimum wage, that's really not much.
I guess that gives me more time to do crafting, but I really would have liked to see Jon... or at least be able to work.
Guess there's nothing I can do about it.
It sure is disappointing though.

I just hope things don't continue on like this at my job...

Monday, May 23, 2011

Pokederp #3

Our next installment of... POKEDERP!

This is 90% BRAND NEW! Yep, you can definitely tell that this is a counterfeit item just by the fact that the seller doesn't grasp the concept of "contradictions." Furthermore, this item is really defective.
Compare with below...

 This is a REAL Giratina pluh, and the one the counterfeit above is based off of. Note that the fake is missing the headpiece on its forehead, has a strange "crack" stitched onto it's face, and its wing is twisted. It also appears that the red dots on the twisted wing are actually missing.
The listing for the fake admits that the item is defective, and claims that transportation is responsible for the defects. Yeah, more like shoddy sweatshop stitching machines.

Wouldn't you love to take this monstrosity home with you? It looks like a cheap teddybear that you win at games at a fair. It probably is. Not only that, but it's also USED! Isn't that totally worth $6 of your money?

The listing says "VINTEGE!" Just that enough makes you wary... The fact that its facial features appear drawn on with a Sharpie further makes you suspect it might just be a fake. Then the miscolored felt arms... that seals the deal. A horribly crafted fake. How much does the seller want? How does $7.50 sound?

More to come... because the derp never sleeps.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Work vs Crafting

Since I got a job, I really haven't been crafting much. I made a few clay pieces (which I really need to photograph) and started toying around with needle-felting, but really haven't produced much at all.
In fact, it isn't until I come home from work, nap, and unwind for a few hours, that I actually feel like crafting.
This is starting to annoy me like crazy.
It's 4am, and I'm just itching to continue needle-felting... which I obviously shouldn't do, because I need to sleep. I have to be at work at 4pm tomorrow, and I'll probably be there until 1am again, mopping the stupid floors.

It seems like my life now revolves around work... either I'm at work, or recovering from work. I don't have any time or motivation to be productive outside of my job.
...and that bothers me.

I can't wait until I can go visit Jon in Delaware. I miss him like mad, and I need a week off to relax and for my body to recover.
I also hope I'll gain some muscle mass soon so I can actually get through my shift without feeling like roadkill. I have never excercised, and I'm definitely paying for that... Being on my feet nonstop for 8 hours, mopping and scrubbing, and so on is painful.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

An Update on Life and New Vegas

Things truly never get easy.

In terms of crafts, I really haven't been crafting too much lately. I've been busy with work and trying to sleep a lot to help my muscles and body to recover. I've been doing a lot of cleaning at work, and it's taken an enormous toll on my body. I don't do any physical labor, and I don't exercise either. Basically, a day at work is like a workout, and I'm a beginner.
I did receive my wool roving in the mail, and have started a small little project. I'm really not too great at it since I'm still learning. I'm going to give Jon my first creation, so I can't say anything about it... I want it to be a surprise. :) Once I'm done I'll post a photo though!

Work is not going well. I don't want to say too much because I don't want to violate any non-disclosure agreement, but basically the manager and assistant manager really don't seem to like me. I've slipped up on certain things a few times, which is entirely my own fault, but other things have happened that just don't make any sense. I've been blamed for things that even the owner said I'm not responsible for, been accused of taking days off when I haven't, (and which my timecard can attest to) and stuff like that. I don't know what I've done wrong, but I have a bad feeling that I'm going to get axed sometime soon.

I also got my new HP laptop in the mail (did I mention that already in an earlier post? I forget...) which I've been extremely thankful to have. It's so much faster, the graphics on my games are unbelievable, and hopefully will last me a lot longer than my Alienware... which I also recommend everyone NOT to buy from. In fact, don't buy anything made by DELL. The quality of their laptops is really sub-par compared to HP.

I just installed a bunch of fun, yet lore-friendly mods for Fallout: New Vegas. I'm going to make a new character and play through the game again. Some mods I got were:
FOOK - Basically an amazing pack of retextures, new items that stay true to the game, bug fixes, and other things to make the game better. I had the Fallout 3 version before and was very satisfied with it. I hate altering games dramatically, but this one stays true to the Fallout universe and improves upon certain things the game developers missed.
Existence 2.0 - A radio station run by a robot that plays strange, creepy electronic music. I had this for Fallout 3 as well.
Mr. New Vegas' Secret Stash - 100 extra tracks for Radio New Vegas, all from the same era as the original tracks.
Sunny Smiles Companion - Allows you to have Sunny as a companion, as well as her dog Cheyanne... if she survives the tutorial, that is.
Melissa Lewis Companion - Allows you to have a pre-existing Great Khan as a companion. The creator spliced sound files to build her dialogue options, wanting to make it as true to the game as possible.
ED-E Light Step - Gives ED-E the Light Step perk so he doesn't set off mines all the time.
Centered 3rd Person Camera - self explanitory
Companion Sandbox Mode - Allows you to tell you companions to chill out, so they don't just "wait" in the same spot forever, but actually sit in chairs, walk around, go to sleep, and other things like regular NPCs. No more standing around like statues.

Can't wait to test those out in-game. Probably will tonight. I'm not feeling too well, so I probably won't be able to play for too long.

That's all for now!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Home Sweet Home?

Its a strange feeling. I'm sitting in the basement of my home in Delaware. There is a storm ensuing outside, and through the door the lighting periodically illuminates the whole room. It reminds me of when I'd sit in my room back in Jersey and watch the storms rage on outside. Its...more than just a memory, but not quite a feeling, of summer? Its hard to explain it. Its like a deja vu I guess.
Its strange to me because this is something I remember, and its always been in one certain way; as in everytime I've had this kind of feeling, the ingredients have been the same(I guess this is nostalgia, of sorts?).
But now, living in DE, its like I'm looking through a one-way window. Maybe I'm just not used to living in DE yet? I'm sure living in CT 9 months out of the year has something to do with it. Do I really have a "home" now? My first thought is "no", but I'm going to give that question some though.
Til next time...
Safety and Peace.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Life Musings (+ some grendels)

I forgot to post these pictures of colorful grendels.

Yes, they are pretty colors.

I've recently been thinking about how much my life has changed in the past few years... in fact, in the past month.

I remember being in high school, struggling with my schoolwork and fighting off the worst depression could throw at me... especially that feeling that I'd never amount to anything. It was a helplessness that I thought I was doomed to feel for the rest of my life.
Really, I now think that the reason why I felt so trapped and hopeless was because I was working at everybody else's pace, and not my own.

College proved that to me. I really couldn't handle college full-time. I found it impossible to balance spending time with my boyfriend, classwork, being social, and my free-time activities. Either I wasn't spending enough time together with Jon, I was neglecting my friends and roommates, I couldn't do anything enjoyable like gaming or listening to music, or I was skipping homework.
In other words, I was miserable, constantly letting someone or myself down.

Now that I'm moving through life at my own pace, I realized that I am capable of doing things... not the way people want them to be, not the way most people go through life, but I'm doing it nonetheless.
I have a job now!
Not a high-paying or well respected job, but it's a JOB.
I'm getting up in the morning, getting ready and arriving on time, and being functional again. It feels so good to know I'm capable of that, especially after all of the times I believed I could never do anything with my life at all.

I also have a fun and creative hobby of crafting, and the possibilities of what I can do are endless.
Maybe some day it could potentially become profitable, but right now I'm just happy with creating things.
I'm especially excited this weekend because I just received my needle-felting needles today, and my wool roving will most likely come in the mail on Monday.
I absolutely can't WAIT to start my hand at 3D needle-felting!

Best of all, I feel like I've attained somewhat of a balance to my life.
I have a job, which schedules out my week and gives me a source of income and accomplishment.
I have an incredible boyfriend, who gives me the continued support and confidence I need when I begin to doubt myself, or am hesitant to go forward.
I have a very supportive family, who is proud of me for the first time in a while.
And, of course, I have my creativity, which I had lost for a while and had feared was gone forever.

And when I compare that to my quality of life years ago...
...Change is good.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Tweeter, Twitter, Twatter, FRO-YO!

I'll start by saying that I have added my Twitter feed to the top of the page, so you guys can be updated on the latest events that happen in my crazy, yet still generally uneventful life! Aren't you all so lucky?
I'll also take this time to tell you all that the reason why I have been inactive in updating the blog lately is because...

Yes, I am now an employee of a new self-serve frozen yogurt chain!
Minimum wage and a 35 hour workweek, but the tips you get for working the PM shift can sometimes bring in an extra two hours of wages.
I cashier, clean the store, and slice up fruit.

Cashiering is fun because it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside when you see people enjoying themselves. Some people are extremely nice and even joke around with you while they pay. I've only had one grumpy customer, a guy who brought his cup to the register not saying a thing, shook his head angrily when I told him the price, (he filled up the giant cup to the top, what the heck did he expect?) and then left without a word. He was fat and had a mustache though, so I wasn't offended.

Cleaning is for lack of a better word, a bitch. There are so many things to clean.
There's the feature wall, which is basically one wall that is carved to look like waves... dozens of waves that kids can't resist rubbing their greasy, sticky fingers all over.
You have to keep the front room swept and mopped.
The toppings bar needs to be neat and constantly filled with each topping.
One of the machines needs to be cleaned each morning, which means that you need to pour six buckets of water through it, one sanitized bucket of water, disassemble the front, and scrub the heck out of all the components. Then you have to refill it.
The windows need to be cleaned, the tables and chairs need to be wiped down, the doors, the window, the door's window...

And slicing fruit makes me feel like a ninja.
Especially cutting pineapples.
I take out a big, sharp knife, and slice that thing up like a warm, not-so-sharp-knife through butter.
And then I put it in a bin and put it in the toppings bar, and go back to being a cashier/janitor.

It's really a lot of work for minimum wage, but when you see how much the money adds up at the end of the week, it's all worthwhile... especially in this economy, where 9% of people are unemployed... crazy stuff.
Plus you get a free cup each shift, with no weight limit.

And THAT, is sweet. Pun totally intended.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Pokederp #2

The derpiness continues...!

Does this actually have one ear, or is one folded back? You think the seller would try to make their product look as legitimate as possible, and fold that other ear back into place. (If there even IS a second ear.) I also always thought that Cabbage Patch Kids would eat me in my sleep, but perhaps I should have been more worried about what they could do to my Pokemon toys... because honestly, this must be the spawn of some indecent acts between the two. The crossed derp-eyes may be the result of incompatible genetics.
All joking aside, the seller wants $22 for this... thing. That's honestly the scariest part of all.

Speaking of horrible combinations of toys and such, am I the only one who feels this has an uncanny resemblance to Tommy from Rugrats? Maybe it's the lighting, but something just seems off about this one. Perhaps it's that strange, off-center bulge where its mouth is... or the fact that it looks like the recipient of a face transplant. (Look at the stitching on its right side, going up to the ear, and you'll see what I mean.) The diagonal stitching on the head-coin and the fact that the two pieces that make up the "whiskers" aren't glued together show its shoddy craftsmanship.
How much for this one? $26.

Poor Meowth just can't get a break.
I honestly don't know what was going through the manufacturer's head when they cleared this one for production. What on earth is up with those LIPS?! The one on the left also has a deformed head with loose fabric, making it look fat and wrinkly. All I know for sure is that if I had gotten this as a present back when the Pokemon fad was raging, I would have been horrified.
So how much is it for your own big-lipped cat thing? The one on the left will set you back a whopping $30... The one on the right, $45.

There WAS another Meowth derp, but sadly it was removed from eBay... probably for being a counterfeit piece of crap.

If I find any more, there will be a Pokederp #3... and trust me, where there are idiots, there is derp.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Pokederp, Gotta Derp Them All!

I'll admit it... I'm a dork.
A dork who still buys the latest Pokemon games.
A dork who still thinks Pokemon can be cute/cool-looking.
A dork who bids on $3 Pokemon plush toys direct from China on eBay.
A dork who has a collection that's slowly taking over the end of my bed, and spreading like a diseased rash.
But I'm a happy person, and that's what really counts, right?

Well, thought I would use my dorkiness to my advantage, and post some of the most hideous, most defective, and just overall most retarded-looking Pokemon plushes I've found while searching on eBay.
A lot of them make you wonder why the seller even bothers.
A lot of them make you wonder how the maker could ever think their product doesn't blatantly scream "knock-off."
A lot of them... well, they just make you say "WHY" in general.

So here goes! A few of the worst Pokemon plushes on eBay!

This poor, poor thing. It just looks like it's unhappy being alive... possibly begging for a merciful death. In USED condition, asking price being $11.

As if the craftsmanship alone didn't scream "I WAS MADE BY 3 YEAR OLDS IN CHINA!"'s PINK. Pikachu is not, and has ever, been pink. Not only that, but it looks like its legs are like... wheelchair wheels or something. I don't know. This is just wrong. Plus... it's USED! Asking price ~$10.

What is wrong with this one? Jon thinks it may be an extra chromosome. One thing's for sure, it has this one derpy eye just going off to the side there, and I'm not really sure what that crease under the eye is about. And that red squiggly thing? That's not a stray thread. That's an eyebrow. Asking price? $10.

Here's a fine example of Chinese bootleg laziness. The one on the right is what it's supposed to look like. The one on the left... the Chinese knock-off. Not only is it missing two pom-poms, but its missing a part of its hairpiece too. Guess the bootleggers didn't seem to care enough. Honestly though, how could you possibly think a fan of Pokemon wouldn't notice a missing NOSE? The most depressing part... they want ~$7 for this thing.

Trust me. There's more.
But I'll save them for tomorrow...

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Secret Critter Battlefield in World of Warcraft

I was playing World of Warcraft yesterday, and came across an interesting little place... I just HAD to film it.

It's a field where three different zones meet, and it's apparently a battlefield for... critters.
The prairie dogs of Mulgore, the rats of the Desolace, and the rabbits of Stonetalon Mountains all fight for "dominance" here.
At first they seem like normal critters, but then a few grow in size... and suddenly are wearing armaments of BATTLE.
In the video the rats are currently dominating, and you can see a rabbit and a prairie dog defending their lands as well.

I wonder what other little pieces of hilarity the newest expansion brought?

Ribbit, Zibbet...

Well, I got my Etsy bill in my email this weekend, and I'm not too happy.
Another $3.20 of renewal fees, whoop-dee-doo.
I'm coming close to breaking even with profits/listing fees.

Soooo, I finally decided to give in and make a Zibbet.
What's a Zibbet?
Exactly. I had no idea until a little while ago.

Zibbet is basically Etsy's little cousin.
It's the same thing as Etsy, but they make money differently.
Rather than collect listing fees and a cut of your profits, they limit your features and allow only 50 items per shop... that is, until you pay $10 a month for full benefits.
Honestly, I don't freaking need to make my profile and shop fancy, so I could care less about the premium program.

So yeah.
I'm still on Etsy... but heck, if somebody finds my shop on Zibbet and buys something, I will be a happy, happy person.
I just want to craft without a hole in my pocket, y'know?

Hop on over to my Ribbit... I mean, Zibbet shop.
(I haven't listed all my stuff yet because I'm tired... but they'll be up there soon enough.)