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Hi there. I'm Yumemi, I'm 28, and this is my first time participating in the Holiday Wish-List community -- I was pointed here by a friend on Twitter. I haven't a lot of money to put towards sending things out, but I'll certainly see what I can do about snail mail and card requests. My wish-list is bound to be odd; my secret 11th meta-wish is that y'all derive some small amount of entertainment from reading through it.

  1. Books! Any books! Any language! I'm a linguist, among other things, and living in the US means it's surprisingly difficult to find anything to read that's not in English. I read with varying degrees of skill in French, German, Spanish and Japanese, technically I know how to read Arabic (because of the way it's written, it's rather difficult to decipher things with my small vocabulary), I'm learning Mandarin Chinese, and I'm afraid I'm forgetting most of my Esperanto. I'd happily take any kind of book in any language, though -- if I have it around, I'll learn some! I'm particularly partial to mysteries and pulp novels, so if anyone has any elderly Arsène Lupin novels they want to get rid of, I'd love to take them in.
  2. Music! I collect music in a variety of languages; it's one of the main ways I learn, especially slang and colloquial stuff. The more obscure the language, the better. Throw together a bunch of things you think are neat and send them my way! (This community is not keen on file-sharing, so if you don't wish to send a physical CD, please contact me privately.)
  3. E-mail pen pals! If you speak English as a second (or third or fourth or fifth...) language, and want someone to practice with, I would love to help you. I realize that English makes absolutely no sense a lot of the time, and I'm pretty good at explaining grammar and usage, so you can even ask me technical questions. I hope to teach English abroad someday, so explaining will be good practice for me, too.
  4. Video games! I collect computer and video games. Mostly second-hand, and mostly RPGs, although I have some of everything. If you have old Playstation games that you can't seem to sell to the local games store and don't really play now that you have an Xbox 360, forward them my way and they will get a good home. Currently in the apartment (spread among three roommates) are things that will play games for: Windows 3.x/95/98/XP/Vista, SNES, Playstation, Playstation2, Playstation3, GameCube, Wii, GameBoy, GameBoy Color, GameBoy Advance, DS and PSP (including UMD games). With the exception of the SNES, GameCube and Wii games, it doesn't matter what region the games are from, or what language they're in. Any playable condition welcome -- manuals and cases are nice but unnecessary, since you can almost always find out what the controls are from someone on GameFAQs. For computer games especially, the older the better -- old CD-ROM games are awesome!
  5. Yarn! I knit and crochet. If you also knit or crochet, you probably already have a cabinet full of all the half-skeins leftover from previous projects that you swear you're going to do something with and never do. I do things with them! Box them up and ship them out, and you can have your closet space back for... er, probably more yarn, if you're like me. If they have no labels, I'd appreciate knowing what kind of fiber they are (I'm clever enough to only give washable blankets out to people with small children), but I'll happily take anything.
  6. Writing jobs! I keep a personal LJ, which I update regularly, and which you are all more than welcome to take a look at. If you happen to be attached to a publication where you think my style would be appreciated, please let me know, and let them know I'm coming! I know I still have to go through their normal evaluation process, but not getting lost in the flood of submissions really helps. One of the hardest parts about trying to pick up freelance writing work is trying to figure out just what on Earth the job is supposed to BE from just reading posted ads, and whether the person writing the ad has ever actually read anything from the publishing company in question. I'm also available for translation work, primarily French, German and Japanese, and I have extensive (amateur, unfortunately) experience in translating and localizing pop culture bits like songs and comics/manga.
  7. Vintage clothing! My sense of style has been stuck in the mid-60s since I was a teenager. It's one of my life ambitions to dress like Jayne Mansfield whenever possible. My measurements are (roughly) 34D-29-40, I'm 5'2", and I wear a modern misses 6/8 most of the time; my shoes are all ladies 6 or 6 1/2. I have an undying love of hats, scarves, shoes and coats. I also love old costume jewelry, especially earrings, since my ears aren't pierced and a lot more of those were made with clips/clamp backs in the day. (If I get anything that really doesn't fit, it'll be passed on to someone else or donated to charity, so don't worry about things going to waste.)
  8. Candy! Candy is one of those few things that are still very regional. I live in the desert Southwest, so we're swimming in tamarind and dulce de leche here, but I've tried a variety of things from all around the world, and so far the only one I've ever regretted is the salmiakki (it's definitely something, but I think it's rather unfair to call that candy -- I had a German instructor who loved the stuff). Particularly difficult to find in the US are things flavored with blackcurrant (the equivalents here are usually grape) and Middle Eastern candies flavored with rose, which is not really considered a food item here. It would be nice to have some idea of what it is, although if you tell me it's squid that won't actually stop me from eating it.
  9. A Mac! I don't hold out a lot of hope for this one, but you never know with the internets. One of the many services I provide for friends and family is converting things they own into formats that will work on other things they own. It started when one of my now-roommates bought a bunch of R2 PAL stuff from the BBC and wanted to make it work on her R1 NTSC player, and it's grown by leaps and bounds since then. The one thing that none of us in the apartment have is a Macintosh computer for reading Mac-only file and disc formats, and playing old Mac games. It's not such a problem for new machines, but if anyone has an old pre- or early-OS X Mac laptop that they would like to get rid of, I would love to have it around. (Generally working condition with AC adapter, of course, although the exact specs are unimportant and it doesn't matter if the battery no longer holds a charge, as it would live in the house and be plugged into the wall all the time.) Between uses, he can sit on the shelf and keep company with my Zenith Z-Note 386 notebook, constructed ca. 1992. =)
  10. Be randomly nice! When I was an undergrad, I used to pick up what I called 'pet freshmen'. I worked in the campus computer labs, and every so often, I'd run into a first-year student who was smart but totally confused. I adopted them, helped with their homework, got more than one of them a job as a replacement for someone in my department who graduated and left, and badgered them to eat and sleep when they forgot. People forget how much it helps when they're lost and by themselves and someone does something as silly as give them some free cookies. So wherever you are this holiday season, hand out free cookies, or free balloons, or free help, or just free smiles -- you might turn someone else's day around completely.

The easiest way to contact me is to send an email to yumemisama at gmail dot com. Everyone have a happy holiday!
I can go on a hunt for some blackcurrant things (like starbursts!) Email me your address (..and a reminder of what I said I'd send)

brandi.french @ gmail.com :)
I would love to send you a physical, foreign-language CD! Could you E-mail me your address at Trishxthexfish@gmail.com ?