Sunday, September 30, 2007

Punk Piss and a Poodle

Thank God its a long weekend! I am severely hung over. Aktor nailed the next round at the Mona Vale on Saturday night. They were splendid in their alternative punkness. DrummerBoy went crazy, the fills were on time, the bass player was more animated than ever and Ocky's dreads copped a head banging hammering. They were fantastic and have made it to the finals at Sydney's Metro, one of the top alternative venues in the city. The winner there, goes to Germany for the world championships of the Emergenza International Band Comp.

It all started with the sound check, DrummerBoy was nervous and wanted to head down to the beach side suburb of Mona Vale a little early to make sure everything was in its place. Soundcheck at 5.00pm so of course we arrived at 4:10! I'd arranged to catch up with Busty Substances and TheEngineer in Avalon, have a few drinks and nibbly bits, grab some dinner then on to the hotel to watch the band at 9:30pm.

My arrival at Cockatoo Castle was therefore a little earlier than planned but it wasn't a problem. TheEngineer was in the garden finishing up his pottering, Busty just out of the shower so a nibbly plate was prepared and the biginnings of an 8 bottle rampage began. Seriously, we didn't plan it that way.

It was great to catch up. We all went to school together and have been friends for years. We don't see a lot of each other but when we do, it's like no time has passed at all. They have a fabulously renovated home with a glimpse of the sea through the trees. The house is modern but always a mess, full of interesting nick nacks from their extensive travels and arty farty conversation pieces. Then TheScot and Mrs Brady arrived, another old school friend arrived. Since the night's voting relied on a show of hands, the more the merrier. More chardonnay, more nibbly bits before packing into the car and down to the Noodle bar. Full of course and nobody had made a booking so we resorted to pub grub. Damn good pub grub actually. Coconut prawns, calamari and salad . . more chardy . . .

Met up with very nervous Aktor members who had just downed a foccacia and were limbering up to go on stage. We finished our meal, carried our bottle and glasses up to the Jaeger room. Were duly stamped as having paid in full with the word 'Room' and into the mele of punks, emos and would be rock stars. A brilliant little venue and all in all a great turnout. The night comprised 10 hopeful bands of various ilk, ours playing third last. Aktor had recruited the 75 strong rentacrowd so there were loads of familiar faces. Of course we had to resort to sign language due to the noise. The boys did their set . . .sound was good, stage presence was good, reception was good. They did a really great job and the new song sounded great. More chardy between sets . . we stayed and watched the last two bands which weren't a patch but left before the votes were counted.

TheEngineer, sick of sipping water, drove us back to Cockatoo Castle for . . . you guessed it . . .more chardy. He threw in the towel at 1:30am so Busty and I sat up squinting at each other, smoking far more than we should and reminiscing. Oops, out of chardy . . but there was a nice bordeaux in the bureau so to speak . . .sploshed more in clean glasses and finally crawled up the stairs -literally - and attempted to make up a sofa bed among much tripping and giggling. You know that laughter when someone starts you off and after that everything is fucking hilarious. Hysterical stupid girlish tears down the face, fall on the floor giggling . . . fantastic, my face still hurts. Bed made, that was it, the close of the night at a useful 3.00am. Good effort by the girly swats I say!

The only problem, we were still pissed at breakfast so sailing on a breezy spring day wasn't such a great idea.
a) none of us were in any condition to drive down to the mooring
b) none of us was sober enough to hoist a jib, let alone a mainsail

So we settled for a fried breakfast and the Sunday papers. I probably shouldn't have driven home as soon as I did, my head's still swooning and I'm thinking the only cure is hair of the dog. And that brings me to the Poodle. They have the most amazing steel grey standard poodle called Harry . . nothing particularly special other than he's just lovely. So Punk over for the night, still Pissed and now ThePrincess who is mightly annoyed at having been left alone for the weekend is taking great interest in my track pants which obviously smell like Poodle.

Well done boys, champion effort. Well done girls . . .even better effort 6 bottles of chardy, 1 bordeaux and a bottle of bubbly before we threw in the towel. Some sort of record methinks. I'm so proud!

Ooooh me 'ed.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Food Fight or Why Napisan Isn't Just for Nappies

Brianf has been travellin' with work and that means lots of meals in hotels, cafes and restaurant visits and I'm guessing he's becoming a bit of a culture vulture and a gourmet critic when it comes to American cuisine. I think he's moved on from squab stew (yes I had to look that one up in the dictionary). We have a standing joke about him not eating enough veg and downing entire pizzas with cheesy crusts . . . then feeling vomitous. He doesn't approve of pineapple on pizza or beetroot on hamburgers . . . you know Americans . . big servings of stodgy food. He would disagree but that was certainly my experience in LA, limited as it was. But as usual, I digress . .

I loves me food. I mean I really loves me food - good food that is - not necessarily big helpings but if I go to a restaurant, I want something that I can't be bothered cooking myself and without being too big headed, I'm not a bad cook so it has to be more than filet mignon or pepper steak. I like 'towers', things that take a long time to prepare or look pretty.

I'm not a junk food eater although last night I did succumb to BBQ ribs while DrummerBoy ate one of his weird Pizza combinations, something meaty drizzled with pesto and sweet chili sauce (the boy's a mutant). The ribs however were fantastic but not something you eat at a restaurant. There are some things that have to be eaten in the privacy of your own home due to the fact that drizzles of stuff end up on your shirt and you suddenly become very attractive to dogs and you have to resort to using Napisan long after the babes are out of nappies (I did use real ones with my little angels, not the environmentally disfunctionaly disposable type) in order to remove the unremovable orangy marks that result from BBQ sauces and soy. So folks, only attempt these at home:

Soy honey chicken wings. Love em. My kids hate anything with bones in it or 'chunks' of meat so I don't often get the opportunity but five or six honey soy soaked bony boys are delish. Wipe fingers on back of tracky daks when finished.

Ribs. I have a friend who marinates pork ribs on the bone in Coca Cola. I had the 'eeeuuuwwws' when I first heard about it but seriously, it tenderises the meat and gives it a sweet, sticky coating when barbecued that's just delicious. Again, not to be eaten in public. Invariably, they're devoured at home whilst wearing a white or pale pink T shirt which challenges the anti-stain commercials. Oops, nearly forgot the hyphen.

Crab. Never eat crab in public. The juicy bits spit out at the table next door where the guy is just about to propose and has placed the ring in a glass of pink sparkly when he is hit by a gob of 'mustard' from a wayward carapice. But Queensland Mud Crab . . .they're huge, sweet, messy and gently cooked in chili, garlic, black beans and soy are to die for. Crays, yabbies and scampi fall in the same category if served in the shell.

Chocolate Brownies: I mean the super gooey ones that you make at home and daub with sour cream and dark chocolate topping . . . they will invariably break while being eaten due to the fact that you can't wait for them to properly cool. The offending chocolatey toppingy bit which has been a little too generously sploshed rolls down the front of the same white or pale pink T shirt and lands on the floor, making a 5 year old labrador very, very happy . . .she doesn't know that chocolate aint good fer dawgs. Another garment fit only for the Napisan bucket.

BBQ Green Prawns in Chili . . these are raw green prawns, marinated then lightly cooked in soy and chili in the shell. Same issue as the crab. Just as you break the head off, you catapult some of the mustard into your beau's eye. He screams because it's hot and bearing a chili missile. The whole thing ends in lots of eye bathing, prawns going cold and a red faced would be lover deciding that you're cuisine is too dangerous to deal with so he'll go out with someone who serves safe meat and three veg. It's hard to be blinded by a pea. Although my nephew once stuck one up his nose and got a nasty ENT infection . . .

Pork Crackling: You know, the crispy skin from a well roasted leg or loin. Lovely but sometimes so hard it resembles a roofing tile and no matter how sharp the cutlery, a shard manages to ricochet across the room and usually land in the host's Reidel glass filled with Grange Hermitage. Very embarrassing and you've not only managed to ruin his $50 glass of red but also duplicate the spatter effect normally reserved for the scene of an axe murder.

OK not a tag but . . being largely Al Fresco eaters from October to March . . (dogs pick up the bits that fall on the floor so outside is a safe venue) . . I'm interested in your anecdotes of embarrasing dining experiences . . . and thanks Bri for the inspiration . . I had nothing.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Quick I'm Hyphenventilating

I love the English Language . . I love its amorphous nature, the fact that you can get everything the wrong way round or misspelled and yet it still works. The fact that there are a thousand different words for the same thing . . just look at a lipstick or paint colour chart! I love that it’s this fantastic hybrid of thousands of years of invasion and influence. It’s rebellious and despite the Victorian’s best efforts to confine us to grammatical rules . . .I aint havin’ none of it!. As a student of literature, I loved it’s descriptiveness, it’s vaguaries, it’s versatility. I love the spoken word, slang, colloquial or otherwise. Yes, even that word has time and place.

This probably explains my difficulty with punctuation. I have no respect for it. I write as I speak, generally. I’ve always been a weak spellerer. Something to do with right to left brain exchange. So much so that whilst at Uni the now late Australian Author, Thea Astley used to deduct marks for spelling mistakes in my literature essays, no matter how good they were. She’d knock off half a mark for a grammatical error and one for spelling. I thought that’s what sub-editors and proofreaders were for! I was therefore very relieved to fall into a journalistic/creative writing career where someone else worried about all those commas, colons and full stops as well as my shocking spllig. As a result, my writing style is a little rambly but definitely narrative and conversational. A bit like me after three glasses of bubbly.

So it’s no skin of my nose to discover that about 16,000 words have succumbed to pressures of the internet age and lost their hyphens in a new edition of the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary.

Ice-cream is now icecream (we always knew it was Icecream, youscream, we allscream for icecream) but now it has even more companions. The word ‘email’ apparently yields more Google search results than ‘e-mail’. The poor old hyphen has been made obsolete through conversations conducted via text and email, spread on the interwebyness and seepage into newspapers and even books. Another factor in the hyphen's demise is designers' distaste for its ungainly horizontal bulk between words. Yeay, a victory for the arty farty.

Personally, I’m ambivolent about the hyphen although I’m not a fan of hyphenated names:

I mean one could retain Hilary Smythe-Bottomly . . .but it has the smell of the hunt about it. Besides, from a personal perpective, I fought long and hard for my married name. Ray had to chase me pretty hard before I caught him, it was exausting! I’m not giving it up. Had I married Mr Cocks or Mr Bottom, I might have thought differently.

So now Adam and Eve wear a figleaf and should get off their hobbyhorse and stop being crybabies about being castout from the garden for eating icecream. They’re lucky to escape with their pinmoney and something to cover Eve’s potbelly. Perhaps they should have considered testtube conception prior to doing the deed on their waterbed and playing sexual leapfrog, the lowlife outcasts. I hate to pigeonhole them but they did take it over the touchline!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Less is More

Not much time tonight, it's been ballistic and I've just got time to do something between demi glazing onions and adding Thai curry Paste:

Absolute Vanilla: (and whatever that chook is called). Chin up, get well the flu sux. Hugs all round
B3N: Where are you? Given up blogging?
Kate: Nice to have you visiting but where on earth did you get the time to write such a huge list! Maybe that's something I should do on Tuesday evenings
ClareBear: Nice start to a blog . . .even if it is a bit premature . . . Do they have internet cafes in Equador?
Grannymar: What would I do without you. . . I hope the walls aren't talking back and I'll listen to the Podcasts on Saturday.
Grandad: Glad you found your brain . . Guess what . . last night they had a doco on the Rose of Tralee. Apparently last year was won by a Queenslander and this year by an American . . .time to get your gun out.
Wordnerd: Whatever you do DON'T agree if Miss Priss asks you to match every dollar she saves to buy a pony . . . trust me, I'm really over this lunchtime feeding biz.
Jefferson Davis: Where are the kilos of craic? You have a 'parlour' how quaint. Can I come into it sometime my little spider?
K8: Please come over and clean my windows. I promise I'll put all the huntsmen in a jar and mail them to Daz and double spray the doggy snot with Windex
Kahlerisms: You've got 24 hours to change your mind . . .otherwise, your couch is mine *evil laughter*
Johnny Dodge: You play that trick again and, and, and . . .I'll fall off my chair laughing. I had no idea who it was for about 30 seconds until you snickered. Oh for and everyone else "John is Cool"
Nonny Mouse: Love yer work. Keep yer knickers on.
Brianf: Glad you're feeling better, get some fresh air, eat your greens and stay away from that rich food . . oh and pumpkin isn't just for pigs
Benchwarmer: Update your blog! And I think it's your shout for lunch
Daz: I'll stay up till 10:30 just in case. If I was your Digs Mummy I'd make nice lunches for you and a thermos full of caffeine.
Thommo: You'd better be available for lunch on Friday, I have so much venting about TMAPITW!
Merry Widow: Thanks for the email and I'm glad you're having a blast. L- o-o-o-n-g Lunch on the 12th! Although Ocean One has been bought by the Tandoori Sizzler so the seafood platter might be doused in cardomon.

Oh and thanks to all of you for your thoughtful, funny, entertaining, heartfelt and rude comments. I wake at about 6.00am and log in to check out comments and take a peek at your blogs. You get me going in the morning. *Bless*

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Tiresome Tuesday

I hate Tuesday nights . . no I really do. To the point that I'm looking for a course, a hobby, a pastime to occupy the hours between 7 and 10. DrummerBoy goes to band but before he does, he manages to decimate every room in the house with stray shoes, dirty washing, wet towels and infuse the entire house with garlic thanks to the 4:30pm pizza (he's landscaping again so comes home like a ravenous beast and devours whatever is available). ClareBear goes to the gym and invariably ends up at someone else's house for natter night, catching up on post weekend goss.

I still haven't learned. I drop into the shops on the way home, buy something nice for tea. Tonight Chicken Kiev and end up cooking for myself ThePrincess and two microwavable lunch boxes. Television is terrorist Tuesday with programs on Palestinians trying to cross the border, much in the same way as Mexicans run the gauntlet to get into the USA or a plethora and I mean plethora, on three channels of American crap such as CSI, SVU and NCIS . . .then the last station has the best offering . . Dancing with 'some celebrity you've seen on a magazine in the Dentist's surgery'. Gawd, it's so depressing. So I went back to the Bronze Horseman then realised that my glasses need upgrading and I can't read more than a chapter without my eyes watering. So, I see who's on Skype . . nobody . . check the blog . . . everyone's at Uni, work, tennis, watching CSI, SVU or NCIS or lying-in cos they're retired. So here I am at 9:14pm thinking I might as well go to bed. And the world thinks that Wednesday is hump day!

There’s a tag or a meme or an idea going round at the moment. Your ‘Eight Rules To Live By.” I found 8 a bit restrictive and since I don’t mind being tagged, I’m not much of a tagger so consider yourselves all tagged and have a go. After thinking about my rules for life, they weren’t vastly different to this Nepali Tantra Totem which I’ve had for quite a while, tucked somewhere in the recesses of my C Drive:

  • Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
  • When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
  • Follow the three R's: Respect for self. Respect for others. Responsibility for all your actions.
  • Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.
  • Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.
  • Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
  • When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
  • Spend some time alone.
  • Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values.
  • Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
  • Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back,you'll be able to enjoy it a second time.
  • A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life. Do all you can to create a tranquil, harmonious home.
  • In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don't bring up the past.
  • Share your knowledge. It's a way to achieve immortality.
  • Be gentle with the earth.
  • Once a year, go someplace you've never been before.
  • Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.
  • Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
  • Call your mother.
  • Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon

Monday, September 24, 2007

So Where the Bloody Hell Are you

I got nothin . . .work was manic so have a giggle on me:

Sunday, September 23, 2007

My Auntie Marian

She doesn't want me to write this post and has sabotaged my first attempt. But . . .My father was one of three children. He had two sisters, Daphne and Marian. Neither ever married, largely due to their financial circumstances, the blinding of their father and the need to keep the bakery alive during the late war years, they say, took away opportunities for romance.

Whatever their excuses, neither married. Daphne was the 'masculine' sister. The one who took care of affairs, registered cars, the chief adminstrator. Marian was softer, sweeter, the teacher, the empath. A well respected teacher, department head and eventually head mistress of a school near Luton. They lived distant to us Cheshire folk so visits were restricted to Whitsun and Christmas, baby births and funerals or fantastic half way visits at Twy Cross Zoo in Wales where I remember picnics of Scotch Eggs and cold sausages (ah English cuisine - what an oxymoron that is).

My Auntie Marian took me to Switzerland when I was 7 on a school trip full of 16 year olds . . . she bought me a high school uniform for the occasion so that I'd fit in . . I felt very important. I sat at the staff table and mingled with the 'big girls'.. I walked across the original Lucerne Bridge before it burned down in the 80's. Ate Swiss Chocolate and fondue. Marvelled at the Gornergrat and Jungfrau and learned the legend of Mt Pilatus before dancing with Lederhosen clad mountain types and I hated their unsalted butter.

She, her sister Daphne and my Grandma lived together in a little thatched village called Shillington. Their view was farmland and they were within spitting distance of a Medieval church with a spooky graveyard and brasses on the floor. I loved the place. We visited when I was 16 and I went again as a loner when I was 21. After my Grandma died, there were two, and in 1989 there was just Marian. She was alone . . no reason to stay in England, her selubrious and popular career long gone (how quickly people forget) . So after my Dad had settled all the affairs necessary after the demise of a loved one, she visited. It was nice . . she told stories we hadn't heard . . . she liked a gin and tonic . . she was eager to learn but slightly outstayed her welcome. A six week stay ended up being 4 months and my poor mother was about to tear her hair out. Our ageing aunt was not good at walking and actually seemed to quite like being dependent on others. Marian and my dad would have drinking bouts which turned them both into aggressive monsters and sometimes it was simply beyond the pale - him whiskey doused, her supping from her 'gin tray' of Gordon's and a jug of chilled water.

Marian duly returned to her lonely life in England. Then came the request for sponsorship. She wanted to emigrate at 70 years of age. She had the means, the health (although highly dubious, I think some forms were 'embellished') But come she did. My dad, filled with brotherly duty sponsored her, found a home for her and she lived with us for 2 years before passing.

My point . . .I remember her as vital, educational, instructive, friendly, warm. The times we spent at her house were full of arty dramatic young men and women, sherry before dinner and a bath so deep you could swim in it . . she taught me how to 'take tea' from Shelley China and how to identify a neolilthic flint and she introduced me at a very young age to home brewed ginger wine and chocolate digestive biscuits.

My siblings remember her as a demanding and debilitated old woman who wanted to be the centre of attention . . . in the end she was frail, and the most exciting thing about her was her motorised wheelchair. Sure, the older she became and the more gin she drank the more demanding and laborious she seemed. It was a chore to visit (she didn't tolerate young children well) . . .but she was a warm and loving person. She taught me so much about my family, my history, my origins . . sadly she died one week before my mother and any thunder she had to weild was stolen.

Grannymar recently posted about the value of knowing where you came from, your history and the stories that your elders have to tell. Often they're tiresome, some you hear over and over again but when they're gone, they're the anecdotes you pass on to your children. They're the things that make our short tenure on this planet important because they show connection and give us a tantalising hint at the answer to that proverbial question "what is the meaning of life".

We forgot about Auntie Marian . . . just for a little while . . . other events placed her in the background although now I think about her influence on all those hundreds, maybe thousands of young lives and whether they give her a passing thought. Then again the first post I wrote about her . . she disapproved and froze my PC. I think she's a little happier about this attempt.

Foot In Blog Disease

Keeping it real 'ish on email and blogs is pretty difficult. Things can be misinterpreted, humour can be misgauged as sarcasm and caustic humour considered as rudeness. It's a real trick to get your personality across without voice or expression don't you think? That's also why I like talking to some of my bloggy pals on Skype, at least a little vocal intonation gives the game away. I don't take too much time over my posts . . . I work full time, raise two kids and do all the things that working mums do . . .and especially at the moment trying to fatten up the old fella, time is at a premium. I type pretty much in the same way I speak. I'm a fast typist so the verbosity just pours onto the page as the words form in my brain probably much quicker than I could ever say them - hence my restrictive vocabulary. Occasionally the words bypass my brain altogether and I just talk shit. (I can say that . . .you can't) Then again, sometimes I pour over the draft and edit it so that I'm sure that my message is understood, particularly if it's more than a blithering but most times, I just rant, joke, reminisce and vent and sometimes, just sometimes, it turns into something worth reading or hanging on to for my littlun's to read long after I've fed the worms - I hope. Although sometimes albeit rarely, I realise that what I've written isn't quite what I've meant, other times someone tells me what I've written isn't quite what I meant.

Not so long ago, I did the unthinkable and sent an email about someone to them. It was serious stuff and almost cost me my job . . .the only saving grace was that the remarks, whilst disparaging were absolutely true. Phew a close call.

I'm not overly guarded on the blog, but I'm very keen not to offend anyone. I don't delete comments unless they are derogatory to someone I know or another commenter. Say whatever you like about me, I have thick skin unless you go for the jugular and if you do, you'll know about it.

So for the record if you're referred to as a bugger, bastard, git, slut, boofhead, paduan, youngling, ratbag, redneck, twit, ginger, redhead, bluey, wingnut, ankle biter, bloke, dag or a dill . . . I really like you. Even if you come in as a drongo, dipshit, dipstick, jumped up moron old fella or a mongrel . . .I'm not really having a serious go. If I call you a racist, extremist, biggot or patronising asshole . . .then I'm probably not too happy with you but I will never call you a 'C'.
    The long and the short of it, apologies to anyone I've stuck it to unintentionally. I will be more sensitive to transcultural interpretations of what I consider to be gentle pokes. Hey, I'm well known for foot-in-mouth-disease so what's so different about a blog. What you read is what you get. I do however, reserve the right to insult Il Diablo . . . but I don't think he'll mind . . . he doesn't read my blog!

    Friday, September 21, 2007

    It's a Dog's Life

    One of the things I really enjoy, is walking my dog, patting my dog, rumbling with my dog. Either close to home or packing her in the car and going to my sister's where there are two other labradors that enjoy a rambunctious romp and getting as wet and dirty as possible.

    I just watched a TV show on our multicultural channel about people on 5th Avenue in New York and similar selubrious addresses, they live in luxurious apartments and pay dog walkers to take their pampered pooches into Central Park three times a day. Apart from the unpleasant pooper scooping it looks like a pretty nice job. Chocolate labradors, standard poodles, Bichon Freise and the usual pyjama cases (any dog less than 20cm tall with long hair that should really have a zip down the middle for you to stuff you're nightie in). They get paid $600 a week . . to walk a dog! I'm in the wrong job! Then there are dog nannies, dog chefs, dog groomers, owners of doggy birthday party venues (you get to keep the balloons for $250). I'm talking US dollars here . . . it was funny but it did point out the fact that we do so much for our dogs whilst the poor canines in other countries are considered food, not to mention the plight of humans.

    We think little about the bush dog, armoured to protect it from being attacked by pigs, or the country dog that survives, chained when it's not working, on castrated testicles and table scraps or the guide dog that knows it's working once the harness is engaged, or the police or sniffer dog that will do just about anything to be rewarded with a rolled up hand towel and play.

    When I die, I want to come back as a rich man's dog . . . As a dog lover, I spoil my pooch. It's obscene . . .but I still do it. ThePrincess sleeps on my bed . . . she is my companion, my pal, my live teddy bear . . . . She showers with me, (well once every six months) eats the stuff that the kids don't turn up to eat. (She enjoyed soy basted salmon tail, peas and new potatoes last night because ClareBear preferred a Big Mac) and listens to my pillow talk. I don't really care what people think, she never gives me cheek . . .she sits by me when I'm in tears with an understanding look in her eyes . . she forces me to exercise . . . she barks at marauders (read rabbits) . . . I even spent $3,000 on her to replace a ruptured cruciate ligament when so many other things around the place needed repair. And she's a gun soccer player . . gets a stick in the mouth and rolls a ball around the yard until her nose bleeds. I don't know why they afford us so much pleasure, but they do. I loves me Lily - booyakasha!

    Computer Bugs and Free Hugs

    No proper post today. Everyone seems to be angry, abusive, melancholoy or conspicuously absent . Work has been tough this week so I’m heading home for a chota peg and a smoke!

    Skype me if you like me . . I could do with some virtual hugs. Or maybe I'll get on this guy's bandwagon . . . he gave free hugs, got banned, developed a petition, sense won out and now he's begun a world-wide phenomenon!

    Thursday, September 20, 2007

    Three Americans, Two Irishmen and an Australian walked into a bar . . .

    Jefferson Davis (and yes that's one of his real names) has a podcast. He's a poetic and creative, sensitive southern American (thats southern states not the hersute Colombian type). He says 'Yes maam" and "How are you sir" then goes and beats the shit out of some interloper because they insulted his girlf. But don't be misled by his politeness, he has opinions - strong ones and get those hackles up and he'll reveal all. He's had a podcast for a long time. Long before I joined the Blogosphere. He and a ratbag redneck gunslinger IT geek with a heart full of mush and a mind full of opinions started it ages ago. They roped in a 19 year old angry Irish lad with an intellect and humour that still surprises and thrills me on a daily basis and then a mature gentleman with a penchant for shooting tourists or directing hikers towards the bog who also has a soft accent, a popular blog, and a droll sense of humour that renders me giggling in the early hours. Damn this time difference. I shouldn't be laughing at 6.00am.

    There's another participant that I don't know at all well, he says little but is a close relative of JD's and I think he takes it all in . . . maybe waiting for the right moment to make a poignant point or maybe we just don't talk enough about cars. I think he'll make his presence known over time . . .

    So as a newcomer and guest participant with this motley crew, I have found myself as part of the once-known Jefferson Davis Podcast. (Damn you Johnny Dodge for linking me) Soon to be renamed and relocated Kilos of Craic. Now my point? Well the new site, as yet unadvertised has a great name. Kilos of Craic (sometimes its measured in milligrams but when you get a kilo of it . . well worth the wait) and on a good night it is indeed funny, elucidating and informative. On a bad day, it's a bunch of cross-continental idiots talking complete crap . . . and saying "Are you there? Are you still here? Have you gone offline?" Even that can be funny if one of us smashes a champagne glass or brings up an hilarious reminiscence.

    My problem, the tagline for the site. Ok we all voted and love Kilos of Craic but . . . it needs an erudite description of exactly what the thing is about . . .the trans-oceanic ramblings of time challenged lunatics? An old git, a young git, an upside down git and a few American gits who just don't git it? So . . . . sorry Jefferson but . . we need a tag that's gonna really reel em in . . . or more importantly make us laugh 'cos basically I don't give a shit who listens . . I just have fun doing it . . . so here's a synopsis on the participants for those who haven't heard it:

    Baino: Rants blithery about things antipodean, insults Americans and smashes glasses because the time difference means she's pissed when they record late on a Saturday night Aussie time.
    JD: The ultimate adjudicator, owner of the Podcast, recorder and editor who manages to make a silk purse out of a sows ear
    Dr Don: Who knows? Southern relative of Mr Davis that says little but takes it all in. I have a feeling he'll be more involved over time.
    Brianf: Can talk the leg off a chair, talk under water - but always has something reminiscent, patriotic or policitically challenging that can set the agenda (and a heartful of mush for a gunslinger)
    Grandad: Softly spoken Wicklow type, erudite, cutting edge and sometimes just plain silly with the best cooked breakfast description I've ever heard . . .
    Daz: Used to be angry until he got back on the Rugby team . . .now he's just plain boofhead, impetuous, intelligent, incomprehensible (due to his total reluctance to buy a decent microphone) and impatient . . .if it doesn't happen when it's supposed to . . . he's got better things to do than play with us c**ts (his words not mine).

    So . . the new podcast has been recorded but not yet posted. Apologies JD but I think we need some creative input. I'm an itinerant. If there are more than five, I'll take a back seat but . . . we need a tag line that reflects the ramblings, twitterings, warblings and wankings that make us smile (and hopefully some of you) each time we post. Any suggestions?

    Kilos of Craic - . . . . . . . . . . .(complete the sentence)

    I Don't Get it . . .

    I don’t get the dress over the pants thing. Seems to be a new fashion statement here. Get fully dressed in trousers/jeans, singlet or t-shirt then put a dress over the top . . what’s that all about?

    I don’t get why men don’t see splodges and baked on stuff on counter tops, bathrooms sinks, cooktops, toilet seats. I have a theory that their eyesight is just pathetic and they don’t admit it. Then there’s a lot I don’t get about men . . .

    I don’t get spam . . not the compressed meaty stuff although that’s pretty mystifying. . ..I’ve just deleted over 5,000 captures from our spam filter . ..all the same . . .offering online degrees, penis enlargements, viagra or naughty times with nice Asian lady . .. . .I assume someone’s paying to send all this stuff but what’s the point?

    I don’t get vegetarians who eat fish . . surely you’re not a vegetarian if you eat fish, wear leather, use cosmetics made out of animal fat or eat cheese which is made with rennet?

    I don’t get advertorials. If I’m not sleeping well, I’ll get up, make a cuppa and watch a bit of telly . . four out of the five free to air channels have advertorials that go on for hours and usually involve some skin product or other and a top model who’s never had a zit in her life or some jolly American couple demonstrating their incredible food muncher scruncher that you can buy for quadruple the price of a Bamix in six easy repayments . . . who buys this stuff?

    I don’t get those puffy jackety things with no sleeves. The sort that you see horsey types or shooty types wearing. When did your torso get cold and your arms not?

    I don’t get handkerchiefs. You blow snot and boogies into them and smear that all over your face and pocket before tossing them in the wash! Then all the clothes in that washload become covered with the byproduct of your mucous membrane . . it's disgusting.

    I don’t get five cent pieces. If everything is rounded up or down by five cents what do we need these annoying little coins for? And I don't get prices that end in .99 cents . . . except when you use a credit card and some devious trader gets all those odd cents. Seems wrong in a country who's lowest coinage denomination is five cents.

    I don’t get why police officers can’t just speak plainly. “We know who the hoons are and they’re gonna get their asses kicked” . . . no it has to be, “We are being assisted in our enquiries as to the identification of these alleged offenders who will be brought to justice at the earliest possible convenience.” (Plodders).

    I don’t get people who have big yellow zits and just ignore them . . . I know that’s what the magazines tell you to do but it looks horrible. Give em a squeeze and a dab with some Clearasil . . don’t sit there with pustules on your face all day! Sheesh! . . . and least but I suspect not the last

    I don’t get mullets . . .never have . . .never will . . .

    So . . what don’t you ‘get’? (keep it clean folks)

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007

    Two Words that Rock My World - 'System Rebuild'

    A conversation you don't want to have outside a disaster recovery simulation:

    Him: The Legislative Update script has a flaw and is causing the server to keep rebooting before the desktop builds
    Me: Um well call COIN and get a resolution
    Him: I'm analysing the disks now so the server will be down for about 2 hours, I should be able to find the offending file.
    Me: Ok everyone, might as well take an early mark. We won't be up until after close of business
    Him: It's no good. I have to do a complete . . . .system restore . . .
    Me: That's OK we can retrive data from the tape
    Him: Um . . .the last successful backup was last Thursday . . . do you have any floppy disks?
    Me: *floppy disks? WTF*

    Actually, it was slightly more technical than that . . .the upshot. . . total system REBUILD of our 2003 server. He is still at work reinstalling. I am at home having hot flushes and working out how to explain this to a staff that have no interest in IT, are completely blindsided without an operational server, no understanding of it's idiosyncracies and wondering why the last four days data has gone screaming off into the ether like Darth Vader after a brief conflict with that Skywalker chap! I don't know who to blame . . .Microsoft, Him or . . I'm having a nervous breakdown . . . .


    Tuesday, September 18, 2007

    Aww Stick a Pin in Him!

    There was an item on the news tonight as a repercussion of police vs protester scuffles during last weekend's APEC conference. Apparently, some Police Officers had removed their identification badges. These are traditionally laminated badges providing their name rank and local command adhered to their gear with a pin. Much like the badges you receive at posh conferences, the ones you like to keep because they're substantial, not just a piece of paper wedged into a cheap plastic safetypin clasped holder. The intimation by protesters was that they couldn't identify their abusers. (All in all the protests were peaceful, off the main path and just a storm in a teacup). However a couple of the hire a hippy bunch were thrown roughly to the gwound centuwian . . . and nobody called to welease Wodger.

    It's not often I take the side of the police although my experiences with them have been fair and pleasant. I am not a lawbreaker and I don't go out of my way to antagonise. However, the police defense was that the pins in the back of these badges could be used as a weapon. (If you managed to grab one between the AK-14 pointing at you and the pepper spray).

    These complaints reminded me of a story my father used to tell me about his Uncle Billy. This man was a stocky textile factory worker. Lived in Great Harwood which no longer exists since the boundaries of Greater Manchester were re-drawn in the 70's. He was about 5' 7" chunky, wore a navvies pea jacket, a flat cap and leather clogs and undoubtedly rode a bicycle to work. The only photograph I have of him is with my diminutive 7 year old father, looking for all the world like my NaughtyNeph at the same age and two enormous black labradors which I suspect were actually Newfoundlands. Uncle Billy was unremarkable except for two details which have stuck with me all these years. He died in the second world war in some battle in France and I now have his medals of honour and he once pricked a Police horse with a pin and started a riot during a union protest.

    As a horse owner, I abhor the act. As an act of protest, what a great way to put the wind up a 16 hand hunter, just stick a pin in it's flanks and watch the poor rider flummux (now there's a word you don't hear very often) about what to do with his protesting horse whilst surrounded by flat capped Mancunions on the rampage.

    So, after an internal enquiry, the protesters are threatening to release photos of those police who did not wear their ID and the offending police have been cleared and cloth badges ordered to be adhered to their riot gear so that protesters know who's beating the shit out of them.

    What I want to know is what sort of name badge will the rent a crowd be wearing so that they can be identified as the horse pricking, antagonistic, flag weilding, shit heads they are . . .apart from one rally involving school children . . the APEC protest was all the usual suspects, the same idiots showing up, they're known to police. The career protesters who put themselves in harm's way for their 15 minutes of fame. I've been banging on about doing something re human rights but for crying out loud. . . putting yourself up as a professional protester and being caught on the evening news with your hands behind your back and four policemen on top of you isn't the way to do it. Unfortunately, the news camera also captured a picture, albeit in the background, of a very, very young officer bleeding from the head. He should have used his badge and stuck a pin in the buttocks of the dreadlocked loser on the ground. No handcuffs required.

    Basher Bainbridge Toxic Warrior

    OK K8 posted in her pretty party dress and masquerade mask . . .we do things a little differently down here!

    Well it was bound to happen - although our "boys" haven’t been near any other horses for years . . we have Equine Flu. Not so much a problem for Chippy who is the younger of the two and definitely more robust, but thanks to a loss of paddock fodder and underfeeding through the Winter, Laurie has become very thin and obviously susceptible to the virus. He’s coughing with the snots and as of this afternoon, has a temperature that needs medical attention. So this afternoon, it’s an early mark for me to swan off to the vet and purchase some Bute – more correctly called phenylbutazone a Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug (NSAID) which relieves all sorts of discomfort from flu symptoms to arthritis (I might keep a sachet handy for the future). Unlike anti-biotics, I don’t have to administer it with a needle! My sister has a broken finger to prove how tricky it can be! That's right, the vet just leaves half a dozen 'horse sized' syringes, gives you a 2 minute lesson on how to administer and departs. Easy peasy . . . You should try playing darts with a pissed off pony’s neck! They don't like it one little bit.

    So . . . lunch hours are a thing of the past. We're already feeding three times a day - a $235 a week habit! (ah, maybe eating Marijuana would be weight gaining . . . certainly cheaper than friggin' hay!) But spesh thanks to Babysis on who’s property they now dwell, she's doing the morning and evening feeds.

    The sensible thing would be to move them back home where I can easily feed, water and medicate three times a day because there's always someone on site. Just need to do a little fence mending. However, thanks to our newly quarantined status . . we’re stuck for 50 days from diagnosis. That means they aren't going anywhere for quite some time. We now have to spray shoes and car tyres, scrub fingernails and change our clothes each time we leave the property. Even blow our noses, before we wash our hands, before we touch our horses. Tomorrow I will be buying a very attractive pair of King Gee pony snoteralls which I can leave in the feed shed.

    ThePlumber has been very good lugging feed up their 500metre driveway to his little shed because the feed dudes can’t go within 800metres of horses. Seems weird, ours got the flu anyway . . .even Dishy Douggie said it was just as likely to spread on the wind as via contact with humans and other horses.

    So my life for the next 50 days entails daily round trips to Glenorie during my lunch time to add a third daily feed to help the old boy gain weight, sticking a thermometer up two horses' rectums twice a day to make sure they're not overheating and decide whether Bute is required. Without doubt, the stupidest thing I have ever done in my entire life, without any question, inexorably, is buy these two horses. Three years of pleasure . . . 20 years of . . . expense, heartache and husbandry!

    Monday, September 17, 2007

    I Demand a Little Sympathy Mkay?

    OK I'm in the oestrogen zone. PMT, PMS whatever you wanna call it. That uber grumpy week before you know what. So today the world is conspiring to piss me off and it's succeeding. My boss is lazy, my daughter's a slurry, my son smells and has a five day growth that looks like he hasn't had a wash for a fortnight. My horse has the snots and my PC won't connect to the colour printer. My friend with the lovely long, silky hair has shaved his head and looks like Dr Evil. My desk isn't big enough, I have too much work, not enough fun, my friends have deserted me, I need a holiday and now I have to decide what to cook the ingrates for dinner! My jaw is sore (I think I slept funny or perhaps it was the labrador on my head) and my boobs hurt. If only men had to put up with this shite for 35 years of their adult life!

    Sunday, September 16, 2007

    Kellyville Chainsaw Massacre

    Prunage . . that's what's been going on this Sunday. Severe prunage. Someone should tell Babybro that pruning should be done in autumn while plants are latent to encourage new growth in spring. But no . . out he gets first with a foikn great chain saw and slices the bejeezus out of a flowering Tibuchina tree before arming himself with hedge cutters and dicing and slicing his way through a fully blossomed May bush, Azaleas that are in full bloom, a freshly green sprouting Japanese Maple and a 50 metre Gardenia hedge. There are now no buds on the hedge. It was all I could do to pull the plug on him before he axed the Plumbago that trails along our bedrooms and shelters my little miner family . . . So now, our pretty Spring garden looks like a green marine with a flat top, brutalised by the 'slasher'. Fortunately, because the seasons here are so mild, the buds should grow back by Christmas and we'll have our Gardenia hedge in full fragrant bloom. Either that or he'll have killed the lot! I guess I should thank my lucky stars that he didn't try topiary!

    Cunna . . .where?

    I don't know why I'm playing other than it's too nice a day to sit in front of a computer and I like affirmative action and anti-ads. Brianf has nominated me for this dubious award for the "Best Blog South of Cunnamulla". Then I've always known he's as mad as a cut snake. Mmm . . complement or insult . . .I'm not sure and it's all Grandad's fault.

    Saturday, September 15, 2007

    Tweety Pie

    Well on a lighter note, since my last post received the attention of 3 in a blogosphere of over 5 million! My little Noisy Minor Mum as begun feeding three hatchlings. Two of the ones in my hanging basket are strong little tweety pies, one is a runt and she's stopped feeding it. Now I have the documentary dilemma. Do I let the nature take its course or rescue the little fledgeling with some mealy grubs? (They don't feed regurgetated food so it's quite easy to hand raise them). There's also the strong possibility that another will meet the same fate since only one normally survives. It's so heartbreaking when this little family drama is taking place right outside your bedroom window.

    As adults, they are the best alarms ever. They alert us to snakes, lizards, dogs, people and birds of prey . . .they are the most reliable alarms nature has to offer . . . so try to save, or let nature take its course? Since God is not interventionist, dare I?

    Thursday, September 13, 2007

    Where Do I Start . . .

    Where to start? I'd rather do this as a world wide round table but the blog will have to suffice. Absolute Vanilla recently posted about the atrocities taking place in Sudan. We are all aware of them, unless you've been living under a rock for the past 10 years. The increasing number of refugees (although still very small by comparison) in Australia are testament to the problems there. We're all cogniscent of the plight of Zimbabwe and remember the awfulness of Rwanda. We abhor human rights violations in China - where they make the families of execution victims pay for the bullets that kill their relatives for Christ's sake. We are constantly remined about the treatment of the Tibetans, corruption in India, and as a citizen of a country that is part of the Coalition of the Willing - no matter what you thought of Saddam Hussein, his country is in a worse place now thanks to our baseless and ill-informed invasion.

    I haven't even touched on third world farmers who are being ripped off whilst growing tea, coffee, cotton and cocoa or the poverty in Brasil or the constant subjugation and mutilation of women in third world countries - dowry bride murders and female circumcision - or the hundreds of bloodlust conflicts all over the world that will be fought . . .lost . . .then drizzle into the 'what was that all about category' (Ireland, Serbia, Croatia, Vietnam, Cambodia, East Timor) and I'm a pathetic geography student so I'm sure there are more. Even our own Aborigines live in third world poverty, stricken with conjunctivitis, deafness caused by untreated ear infections, glaucoma and malnutrition, damned to a life of endemic chroming, petrol sniffing and physical and sexual abuse. We have homeless people, abused children, impoverished elderly in a so called welfare state. Yet our trainee doctors, occupational therapists and physiotherapists would rather tag their regional studies onto an overseas holiday and spend 6 weeks in an African village drinking cheap beer or go surfing in the Solomons. With little intention of returning to do some real good. Although massive kudos to Thommos daughter for asking for pledges to the Moshi Disabled Network and Tuleeni Home for Orphans in Tanzania instead of 21st birthday presents. Love you for it Strawberrygirl.

    So, feeling shameful that I don't do enough beyond the odd donation to the Make A Wish Foundation or sponsoring a child through Care Australia, or paying for the odd guide dog for the blind, Australian Conservation Foundation, Cancer Council and Heart Foundation . . what do we do about these bigger world conflicts? One of my favourite - no - oft used sayings is "Good people do nothing while bad things happen". I know so many 'good' people. Those who genuinely yearn for world peace, an end to poverty and war but how can we contribute in a meaningful and genuinely helpful way?

    There must be something positive we can do. Amongst us are eloquent writers, political commentators, military men and women, angry youngsters with the energy to follow through. We have a collaboration of talent, youth, experience and realism so why can't we collaborate and form a useful, noisy and productive united front.

    There are those who are afraid to give money to war-torn nations for fear that their donation will simply educate and raise another little suicide bomber or machete toting anhilator. Those who believe that 'charity begins at home' and use it for an excuse to do nothing, those who throw money at the plethora of charities that ring them each night just around tea time out of guilt rather than philanthropy. Those who knit blanket squares and woolly jumpers for children in Mongolia who are freezing in the winter, those who make up food packages for sunami victims in Indonesia and Sri Lanka. Others who support their Church charities to bring help to third world nations. Hell, I've even sent clothing packages to Fiji for children who can't afford a school uniform (although what the fuck that matters I don't know). Indeed, I am one of these fairweather philanthropists but is my contribution really making a difference?

    The conundrum is where to start. There are a zillion organisations, charities, good causes . . . what we need is one . . . it used to be called the United Nations. It used to have the power to embargo, the power to make a difference, the power to intervene but has become a paper tiger. Now there are countries where it's representatives won't venture. Then there's Medicines sans Frontiers . . . even they have no go-zones although the work they do is simply amazing. This isn't a lecture, this is a plea . . .I want to help . . . I want to contribute . . . but beyond just throwing money at corrupt governments I don't have an answer. I don't know how to stop the bleeding, the hurt, the heartache, the abuse, the murder, the brutalisation, the separation, the marginalisation. I often feel guilty for moaning about my own situation, guilty for being happy, healthy, educated and most importantly safe.

    My kids call me a snob and on the surface I guess I am. Asians can't drive, Abo's can't dance or sing and Lebos scare me shitless . . . but comedy aside - I want to make a realistic and meaningful contribution. I now have time on my hands and time is free right? I can't afford a big financial contribution but I can do some service. I just don't know where to start . . .It makes me weep. DrummerBoy may have it right . . humans are a virus dedicated to over consumption, slowly killing the planet, not with carbon but by sheer weight of numbers, cruelty to each other and will be the shortest living organism in evolutionary history - it's a self-fulfilling prophecy of destruction and decimatio thanks to the obscene consumerism and materialism of western culture. He's even reviewing whether he would like to have children and he's only 20 years old!

    But in the interim . . . if anyone has any ideas of how we can contribute to really help, not just soothe our egos or feel better that we are making a difference, please let me know. I started today with Amnesty International but it means a blind kid won't get a dog this month. !

    The Tim Tam Slam

    I have a dark and considered post brewing which is probably driving me to chocolate. I’m constantly saying to people that I’d rather have cheese than chocolate. That I don’t have a sweet tooth but as I sit here pondering how I'm going to attack a rather serious subject, with a lovely strong cup of coffee and two Tim Tams, I’m thinking there isn’t a better biscuit in the world!

    If you don’t know what a Tim Tam is, you’ll have to ask a resident Aussie or come over and buy some. There’s nothing like them in the world. I can soothe my conscience too because the double dipped chocolaty goodness comes from the MS chocolate guy who put a few in the little charity chocky bin on reception. . . conscience-free chocolate. No wonder I’m feeling less aggressive and more pensive today.

    This legendary biscuit is, or so I’m told, a little bit like a UK Penguin Bar but was named by the Australian Arnotts biscuit magnate in honour of a Kentucky Derby Winner.

    In recent years, Arnotts have developed variations of Tim Tams including Chewy Caramel, Mocha, Double Coat (in milk and dark chocolate), Chilli Chocolate (fanfuckintastic!), Classic Dark Chocolate, Black Forest Fantasy, Creamy truffle Temptation, Choc Orange and the latest with a pink chocolate and strawberry centre with sales proceeds supporting Breast Cancer Research - what better reason to eat chocolate biscuits? "I'm sorry Officer . . . I did it for Charity!"

    And seriously folks, there's only one way to eat these and that's with the Tim Tam Slam. It's messy but ultimately satisfying.

    The Tim Tam Slam, also known as the Tim Tam Suck, Tim Tam Explosion, Tim Tam Orgasm, Tim Tam Straw, Shot-gunning a Tim Tam, Tim Tam Party, or just plain Tim Tamming involves biting off opposing corners of the Tim Tam and then using it as a 'straw' to suck up a hot beverage (usually tea, coffee, hot chocolate, milo or liquor such as irish cream or Dom Benedictine or even a nice sticky wine or Tokay).

    Then, just before the biscuit falls apart, it is placed in the mouth. The thicker chocolate coating on the Double Coat Tim Tam offers a more stable exoskeleton to help ensure the biscuit does not collapse prematurely. The Chewy Caramel variety also has an advantage for performing the Tim Tam Slam since the caramel centre helps to hold the biscuit together for a slightly longer time. Although if you eat either of these you will go to Hell for your sin as these particular varieties are the work of the Devil. Nothing good and virtuous could ever taste like this!

    Seriously, if you want to try some for yourself, just say the word and I’ll oblige.

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007

    Insighted to Violence

    Today I had a brain explosion enduced by someone at work. I don’t normally bitch although I’m known for being very forthright. I won’t say things behind your back that I would’t dare say to your face and I’ve never hated anyone in my entire life. Although, this week, my resolve has been truly tested and it’s only Wednesday. The progaganist:

    TheMostAnnoyingParaPlannerInTheWorld. (TMAPITW)

    I am assured by people who know nothing, that this hopeless woman is a gun ParaPlanner and used to punch out five plans a day. We don’t operate like that. Our plans are customised to each client so now we're lucky if we see one plan in 2 weeks! Slothful cow. Not only is she unproductive, she's bloody annoying.

    She has one of those porn star kinda names like Misty Fuentes,or Dusty Fairplay but doesn't look at all like her name. Apparently, she found God a few years ago. That in itself isn’t enough to condemn her but get this - Her husband is unemployed but apparently he works for God. When asked “What does he do?” she replied “Whatever God wants him to . . .“ Obviously God wants him to sit on his arse being sanctimonious all day.

    She’s one of these people that spends so much time talking and complaining and reinventing the wheel that we all sit here with visible hackles raised. She feels it’s her right to laud her opinion over everyone and has said as much. Subsequently, we feel its our right to tell her to shut the fuck up and go away . . . she doesn't seem to get it. Water off a duck's back - over the top and caught behind!

    She is A Position Description Snob. Despite the fact that she’s is a working-class try-hard, she looks down on the administrative staff as if they are lackey’s installed to do her bidding. She is blissfully unaware that I am actually earning about $25,000 more than her but I'm too humble to raise that point. If she wants it, she wants it now – we delight in making her wait. Her work goes directly to the bottom of the in-tray, does not pass Go, does not collect $200.

    She is a Hoverer: Whether you’re on the phone, finishing some correspondence, in the middle of a discussion or in the toilet - she will hover– well within the 1 metre mandatory personal space grid.

    She Constantly Interrupts: If you don’t cease what you’re doing immediately she ALWAYS says “Hello . . .” then pauses pregnantly as if greeting you for the first time and you didn’t know she was there, or couldn’t feel her breathing down your neck. She then begins to poorly articulate whatever it is she wants whether you’ve given her the go ahead or not

    She Speaks in Tongues: You know the type, you listen to them talk for 10 minutes and then think “What did she say?”. A sort of roundabout boardroom speak with very few nouns so you feel like you’re listening to a foreign language and can't even pick out the gist.

    She Eavesdrops- I work within a quadrangle of workstations and occasionally the ‘troops’ will have a break from work and discuss life the universe and everything. It’s between them but . . . TMAPITW will come out of her office and attempt to join in the conversation which is invariably ‘about’ her. The phrase ‘mind your own business’ has no resonance. And the attitude 'we don't care'. . doesn't make an impact.

    She Passes the Buck: Multi-tasking is a necessity in a small business. She is incapable of 'pitching in'. The last to assist, the first to put her hand up for a freebie. She is never seen punching a hole and fixing correspondence to a file. The filthy mess of potage is just dumped on one of the assistant's desks for them to contend with,complete with coffee stains. If her PC crashes she is useless. She won’t answer the phone. She is incompetent in Word so passes her work for formatting. She refuses to use electronic client management system. In fact, all she does is Financial Plans.

    She challenges EVERYTHING: It might be the way you speak, the way you write, the layout of a letter, the position of the watercooler. The type of coffee, the calibre of the biscuits, the procedures in place, the organisational structure, the meeting format . This morning, I was even given some unsolicited advice regarding the title for a new staff member and was told that one of the photographs I used in a client promotion was ‘unsuitable’. Fuckwit. Where did she get her credentials!

    She Talks Too Much: If the time spent hovering, gossiping and providing unsolicited advice was condensed each day, there would be an extra three hours in which she could improve productivity.

    I’m well over my word limit but this woman incites me to violence why? Because she gets away with it. If I complain, I'll be the cow that upset her so I sit silently, saying nothing then venting on my blog which I know she'll never find. The woman's a technodolt and thick as two short bricks. . . .I can’t look at her without imagining my fist swiping across her face and her ugly mutt flying across the room and that is indeed an extremely rare thing for me as the penultimate pacifist. She is infuriating, annoying, troublesome, untrustworthy, lazy, disrespectful and unempathic - everything I hate in a human being and to top it off she doesn't do her friggin job properly and nobody seems to notice or care.

    Ohm madi padi - ohm madi padi - ohm madi padi - I just hope karma gets the biatch!

    Tuesday, September 11, 2007

    I've Said it Before but What Are They For?

    Today, we’ve been listening to a slightly different commercial radio channel at work. Needless to say, I am not the fat controller of the radio waves so it usually blares ‘pop music’ played on high repeat rotation and smattered with too many advertisements. The one that really gets up my nose is:

    Sexy sounding female with irritating little titter between questions:

    Want longer lasting Sex? Is premature ejaculation a problem? Did you know that pemature ejaculation left untreated can lead to impotence?

    Now with nasal delivery technology, you can take the first step and you could improve your SEX LIFE and never experience PREMATURE EJACULATION ever again. For an appointment at our clinics or to speak to an AMI Doctor...Call me, call me now 7 Days 1300 432 781

    I’m incredibly anti-censorship in the media, or perhaps I should say anti-propaganda because I have limits, especially if it involves the sickening and perverted but when the midday movie has full frontal male nudity (it aint pretty fellas) and daytime commercial radio which advertises remedies for premature ejaculation and floppy dick syndrome, I really have to draw the line. Are there really that many men out there in the 25-50 year old demographic who can't get it on? (I've been out of circulation for a while).Yet when it comes to being truly informative about something that should not be taboo - The Crimson Wave, The Curse, The Monthly's, The Rags, Communists in the Summer House, Ground Under Repair or Rebooting the Ovarian Operating System. . .we are precious and evasive. On Australian TV we cannot tell you what female sanitary products are for other than the absorption of blue liquid, enabling us to surf really well, look great in a bikini, go horse riding and cylcing or in the case of tampons, you can wear a white skirt around the office and they form interesting playthings for your boyfriend and kitten to have a little fun with . . .

    Libra - The funniest movie is here. Find it

    I don't want to hear about premature ejaculation at 11:00 in the morning, or how to get a stiffy that will keep me satisfied but I'd sure as hell like to know what these little white bullets are for besides kitty play and putting into youre mate's shot glass as a practical joke!

    Monday, September 10, 2007

    Il Diablo Attends Wrong Meeting and Misses the Boat

    I had a slightly heated discussion yesterday about people in high places, official Government positions and the need to 'respect' those positions The friend with whom I was arguing would never insult someone in a position such as the US Presidency. This response came after me berating Il Diablo for being an idiot and a puppet with someone's hand so far up his back passage he could brush his teeth without lifting a finger. (I'm trying to lift my game after the past two rather profane posts) I agree with respect for the 'office' but sometimes you have to wonder about the 'office holder'. For me, respect is earned . . . it cannot be 'commanded'. And to prove my point, a snippet of how much Il Diablo got it wrong in just one speech on Friday.

    • First of all, we are Australian not Austrian. We have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan - The Austrians don't. And there are no Kangaroos in Austria
    • Secondly OPEC is a meeting of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries . APEC is a meeting of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation - he should have referred to his auto cue
    • The USS Canberra? You've got to be kidding. The HMAS Canberra is actually Her Majesty's Australian Ship, hasn't the Commander In Chief got enough ships of his own?
    • "The two most dangerous terrorist groups around here are Jama'a Islamia". Actually, that's the name of a single terrorist organisation with its roots in Egypt and now prolific in Indonesia. They were responsible for the Bali Bombings among other atrocities. I imagine it's very similar to those other two terrorist organisations- Al and Qaeda.
    I'm sorry folks, I know we're a little-known, unimportant, island in the arse end of the world but one slip of the tongue is forgivable, maybe even two or three but to make four significant errors in one short welcome speech . . .

    Then again, we have our own problems:

    For God's sake, Australians if you haven't registered to vote, get on with it (especially if you've turned 18), the election will be SOON . And Americans, please register to vote, it's your democratic responsibility as well as a right.

    OK that's enough politics from this apolitical blogger.

    Saturday, September 08, 2007

    Language Warning (I mean it)

    Ok I'm an old bag, hag, nag, uncool, out of date but . . . I just can't deal with the 'c' word! I know many of the Irish say it's 'every-day', 'not that bad', a humerous term of abuse, sometimes a compliment and I have a couple of blogger friends who delight in showering me with 'c' s, saying it to me over the phone, emailing it to me with grave regularity because they know I don't like it and it gets a rise out of me but . . . I hate it. It's an awful word. I can deal with it in context such as The Cantebury Tales but when I hear it on TV/Movies or down the Skypeline I reel. I think mainly because it's reflective of female genetalia and men use it largely to insult other men or to totally deride women.

    We've already exhausted the other four letter word. And I must admit, I have no problem using it. It's strong, short, descriptive, asexual and to the point. If someone calls you a lazy fucker . . it's almost lyrical . . fuckwit is comical . . . I don't give a fuck . . . is definite and leaves no ambiguity. So why is it necessary to move to the next level. Why call your mate a 'c' when he refuses to buy you a beer or won't give his girlf a lift home. Why is he suddenly a female body part if he's behaving lamely or showing off inordinately. Lately I've heard more and more girls say it and it makes my ears bleed. I don't know why . . . maybe my age . . . maybe the implied sexism . . . maybe because it's the last taboo and some should be reserved for posterity. Once the world flings the 'c' word around the way we do other terms of 'endearment' what's left?

    For now, I really feel that the 'f' word is more than enough. Now if you're easily offended, don't play this those of you who aren't have probably heard it before and for those of you who at this moment (I can almost hear the squeals of delight in showering me with a load of the things) this is not an open invitation "C*nt" Season doesn't start for a few weeks:

    Friends with Benefits

    I haven had it for a while. Not regularly anyway it tends to be casual, a special occasion thing. But when I do I like ambient music, a warm room, soft hands, low lights. I used to be comfortable doing it fully naked but as my body image declines, I prefer doing it whilst semi-covered beneath the blanket and clean white sheets. I'm over the days of doing it on a bed, chair, couch or even on the kitchen bench. I like it to linger . . . half an hour just isn't enough, less than 90 minutes full attention or I'm just not satisfied.

    I love the spiralling motion of it, the sensuality, the quietness, the fragrance, the woosiness - it's better when he doesn't talk and if he must, his voice must be low, dulcit, gentle, swooning - I love the touch from toe to forehead, both hands smoothing and silking their way along my aching form . . .then, when its all over, my muscles ache not from pain but pleasure, warm and worked but not sore. There's no deep and meaningful conversation, just a moment of sleepy privacy to get dressed and leave. No requests to move in, no pressure to get up first and put my face on . . . no talk of relationships, no commitment or harassment and that means no hurt or disappointment for either of us . . . In fact it was so good, I might go back tomorrow . . yep, it's a deal, a good arrangement . . . nothing like an aromatherapy massage to refresh the body and soothe the soul!

    Friday, September 07, 2007

    Thank God for the Hairy Man

    How it should be done:

    How we do it:

    And finally . . .my favourite:

    Now it's your turn here are the Maori words:
    Ka mate! Ka mate! Ka ora! Ka ora!
    Ka mate! Ka mate! Ka ora! Ka ora!
    Tenei tangata puhuru huru
    Nana nei I tiki mai
    Whakawhiti te ra
    A upa … ne! ka upa … ne!
    A upane kaupane whiti te ra

    and in English

    It’s death! It’s death! It’s life! It’s life!
    It’s death! It’s death! It’s life! It’s life!
    This is the hairy man
    Who brought up the sun
    And caused it to shine again on me
    One upward step!
    Another upward step!
    Up to the top! .. the Sun shines!!!

    mmm . . . loses a bit of power in the translation! Love it!

    Thursday, September 06, 2007

    Gone but . . .

    DrummerBoy and the Fringelet are house sitting for two weeks whilst her sister enjoys a holiday in New Zealand. He's been gone four days but there are little signs that he's been lurking around and I don't need a Stat Counter to prove it.

    The first, a call on Monday morning because one of the staffies he's babysitting piddles every time he walks in a room. He's not used to cleaning up after anything let alone an excited dog.

    DB: Mum there's something wrong with Tia, everytime she comes in, she pees on the floor
    Me: Did you shout at her or anything?
    DB: Shit yeah! I told her to get off the bed at 3.00 in the morning!
    Me: Well that'll do it. You're now the Alpha Male and she's frightened of you
    DB: So why does she want to hang around and get all excited when I come in
    Me: It's just the effect you have on women
    DB: How do I get pee stains out of the carpet?
    Me: Blot it up, spray with Preen Large Area carpet cleaner, gently scrub, dry and vacuum
    DB: What does blot mean and what's a vacuum?

    *revenge is sweet*

    The second, I come home on Tuesday and there are the tell-tale signs that he's been home. Opened mail and an empty pizza box on the bench, cordial jug left out of the fridge, the empty toilet roll on the toilet roll stand rather than in the bin, the open bedroom door and a dishevelled pile of once neatly folded washing - he must have run out of boxer shorts and of course the door wide open and the dog on the bed with muddy paws.

    The third (this is only day four mind you) and the power board behind the computer and one of the power transformers is missing so the net is down and the speakers are unplugged. Little shite . . took me ages to work out what the problem was. I was just about to install a new switch when I realised he's nicked it.

    On the upside. ClareBear and I can eat seafood and watch chick flicks (although I don't think TMNT qualifies in that area). There's beer in the fridge, untouched. There's food in the fridge . . . now that's a rarety. The rest of the house is uncannily tidy. Nobody uses my toothbrush (although he did steal the toothpaste) and the house smells girly. There are no wet towels on the floor in his bedroom, instead they're all folded and fluffy in the bathroom. My Google, Facebook and Hotmail remain signed in to my account and there are no black fingerprints on my white kitchen cupboards.

    I'm tempted to send some money to the sister and ask her to stay in New Zealand for a bit longer. And I thought he had a face that only a mother could love!

    Wednesday, September 05, 2007


    I got into my muckies, drove out to Glenorie, fed the boys then sat on a freezing porch chair for two hours (mainly because the clock on my mobile still has daylight savings time so I was an hour early) waiting for the vet to drench and take some of Lozzies blood. It was worth the wait and I'm glad I put on a bit of lippy and a snufter of Calvin Klein. The man is a god. A literal "Oh my God". About 35, 6'2" built but wiry flashing big blue eyes, short cropped brown hair and a smile to make you melt. His now softened Glasgow accent trips wittily off the tongue and I'm a ball of moosh. Then out comes the pink disinfectant bath, the rubber wellies and gloves and a full body disposable virus suit complete with hoodie. I don't care, he even looked hot swabbing down. Not the normal precaution just a disinfect to try to stem the transmission of horse flu but it meant he stayed longer, talked more about IlDiablo and fireworks . . .he even asked for my number and has promised to call tomorrow . . . (sadly with the blood results) He came, I saw and he did what he had to do and then left . . but not before generously offering to disinfect my wheels for me . . now that's romantic don't you think?

    Ahhh DDD . . . Douggie Didn't Disappoint!

    Tuesday, September 04, 2007

    Poo the Flu

    This horse flu thing isn't a joke any more. It doesn't kill horses unless they get a severe infection but it's very, very contagious so needs to be contained and until recently, we've been a flu free country so nobody vaccinates against it. The saga all began, when a Hong Kong stallion was released from quarantine too early and spread it through a major riding facility in Sydney's city centre. He then was transported up country and affected a few Warmblood mares but by then it was too late. Everyone with whom he had come in contact managed to spread the disease. It spread to Randwick Racecourse and the Spring Carnival was halted affecting not just the bookies, strappers, stable hands - many of whom are casual workers and are now laid off but also the affiliated industries . . . trucking, feed suppliers, caterers, ticket sales, fashion designers, milliners. It stuck to suppliers, vets, horsey handlers and spread to Hawkesbury Racecourse and a number of spring Gymkhanas - big this time of year.

    Well even that didn't bother me too much but now I'm becoming a spoilt NIMBY. It's affecting my local Equine vet who has only 2 clean vets (they don't treat flu cases). The rest are 'dirty vets' and I'll bet my lovely Douggie or the spunky Chris Clark are dirty vets. Douggie has a body like Adonis and a Scottish accent to match. He's enough to make me swoon. He chats on and on whilst sticking his fingers in places that no man should ever have to go (on the horse . . lift your game!) Chris is the surfer type - easy on the eye and a smile that admonishes the sins of the world. You watch, I'll get that pretty little blonde from Noosa who's very charming but not at all droolworthy unless you're a young bloke - does nothing for me whatsoever.

    Then there's the feed guys who delivered yesterday but said due to quarantine, they're not allowed on the premises so we had to lug bales of hay and sacks of HiGain Senior and Chaff up to the shed. Bastards. I'd have lent them a bottle of Dettol to deliver.

    Then to add insult to injury . . .I hear that Il Diablo is bringing his dogs to the APEC meeting . . What the? Does he need a foot warmer now that the wifey poo has decided it's just too dangerous in Sydney with all those crocs in the sewers, sharks in the harbour and funnel webs between the sheets? Normal people have to wait 3 months before their pets are allowed out of quarantine.

    Just goes to show, if youre an asshole you can get away with anything . . .

    George Bush dumps John Howard as lapdog.

    Monday, September 03, 2007

    It Get's Earlier Every Year

    Did you know that Christmas is coming? . . . Yep, it's the day after Father’s Day in Australia and, just like Hot Cross Buns predictably go on sale on Boxing day - already the Christmas displays are going up in the shopping centres. Not quite the full caroling malarky just yet but the halls are being decked with banners and display cabinets are in place. I guarantee that by the end of the week there’ll be bells a jinglin’ and tinsel a tingelin’ all through Castle Towers shopping centre and it’s only the 3rd of September . . . and I thought it was Il Diablo coming to town . . apparently, it’s Santa Clause - just hope he doesn't get shot down as I put my Christmas Tree up!