Thursday, May 29, 2008

Working Late Dinner Break

Just a quick update as I temporarily duck away from my first work deadline since I've been working here. They're ordering-in... *drumroll* ...pizza! The more things change, the more they stay the same. It's the universal tech employee one-button feed-the-mob solution. I wonder if overtime employees in Japan get pizza ordered-in too.

Drugs

My family continues to get hammered by angry winter-time antipodean virii that have our carefully collected North American antibodies shrugging and turning out their pockets in resignation. While everyone back home was out enjoying Memorial Day Weekend in the heat and sun, we were holed up and sniffling with headaches and sinus pressure in the wet and cold. I felt (and continue to feel) like there's an ill-tempered monkey in my head boxing the backs of my eyeballs.

I was at the chemist (Drugstore) across the street poring over their selection of cold medication and came up with a few observations:

  1. Codeine is available in over-the-counter pain medication. You can get your codeine with ibuprofen or with paracetamol (another name for acetaminophen) in non-trivial amounts.
  2. They have real Sudafed here (I think I mentioned this once before) and not the speed-lab-safe kind they sell in the states.
  3. Anything you buy---over the counter or from the pharmacist him or herself---eventually gets wrapped in a small paper bag which is taped shut with a piece of cello tape and thus becomes a "packet."
  4. Just about nothing comes in bottles. The preferred keeping device is a blister-pack. This extends to just about everything in the store save adult undergarments.
  5. I saw cough drops that offered an active ingredient called "flurbiprofen."
Flurbiprofen.

I picked it up and flipped it over, halfway expecting to see the Swedish Chef from the Muppet Show, having doffed his chef's cap in favor of surgical scrubs.

Flur-dee-proo-dee takee doo-ee en callee de mornee bork bork bork.

Nuts

Anyways.

I just now had a piece of the ordered-in Hell pizza that had nuts on it. I think walnuts.

I hate walnuts.

Walnuts are covered with a mouth-dessicating brown film that, when bitten into, releases powerful neurotoxins that penetrate the blood-brain barrier instantly, lighting up the "yuck" section of my cortex like a huge roadway sign that says "last flavor for 500 miles." Maybe I'm overstating that a bit.

I've never had nuts on pizza before and frankly never considered that pizzas might want or need nuts. Having had a piece now, I can say with some astonishment that contrary to what I originally may have thought, it's actually pretty terrible.

Facelift

Before I get back to work again, I also wanted to mention the new look of the web site. Joanne and I were becoming more and more annoyed that the Blogger template we were using had the body text flowing into a narrow strip down the middle of the window. She changed it to something else, then I changed it something yet again, and then I carefully custom-edited the style sheet HTML until it was painstakingly tweaked into a highly refined state of very very green. Then I tried several times unsuccessfuly to revert it back to the way it was before this all started and just gave up and just left it the way it is now.

I don't know if it's better because I spent too much time looking at it to tell with any certainty, but at least it's no longer flowing down a narrow column in the middle of the window.

All to serve you better. And that's the kind of service you can expect here at 4kiwiwannabes... and I'm sure there's more where that came from.

2 comments:

mark said...

Well, in my current work experience in Japan for the past 6 months food has not been catered to the office once.

Cathy said...

Steve,
After the small shock at arriving at the blog and observing the change, I agree that it IS better and easier to read -- especially the colored (or is that now coloured) text that appears occasionally for emphasis or as a link. I had a few laughs over the walnut pizza topping comments and the Swedish muppet image you conjured up. Knowing you so well (I thought) does not mute the extreame pleasure I feel as I stumble on something new about you --write on!
Mom