Monday, April 30, 2007

the snake and the bird

The girl asked once, the story of her birth and was told. When her mother was pregnant she had a dream and the dream was of her unborn child - a daughter. She dreamed a snake had come to the back door, threatening and hissing and when the snake raised it's slender head he told the mother that she would give birth to a girl. The mother woke up. Not long afterwards she went into labour and that labour produced a girl - hissing and slithering into the world.

The young girl took this in. She wasn't sure that she liked being a snake. She wanted to be a butterfly or a unicorn.

The mother told the story of the girls brother. How the mother pregnant again, took a bath one day and saw a bird on the windowsill. It was tiny and blue and beautiful. The bird sang a gay tune - you will soon have a son - it whistled. The mother went to fetch a towel to grab the bird with, to send it outside but when she turned back around the bird had disappeared. She searched the house but the messenger had gone. It was a happy day when her new young son entered the world, feathers slightly ruffled and a bit blue.

The girl understood that her brother was like a bird and she was like a snake. She internalised the symbolism of the snake - and the hate. She never asked for the story again but was told it anyway. Numerous times. It hasn't been forgotten.

She felt weird. She knew that being a snake was bad, but she didn't feel like a bad person - not really. Sometimes she was bad though, and whenever she was bad she remembered how she was a snake and that truly there must be some part of her that was rotten and evil and festering away inside her. By contrast her brother was good, even when he was bad - but she loved him anyway because who wouldn't love a bird? It's only snakes that are feared and hated. Rightly so, horrible creatures.

The girl has come to understand that there are worthy and unworthy people in the world. Maybe some are made that way - whether it's by birth or otherwise.

The Diamond Sea - Sonic Youth

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Friday, April 27, 2007


Lately work has been an absolute nightmare. I feel like I can hardly keep up with the load. There is a hell of a lot on my plate at the moment and I can feel the stress building up and taking over my brain. I am on constant high alert with my nerves permanently switched to 'electric' mode. I might even have to gulp..go in on the weekend to ease the strain - but I'm still deciding on whether or not I should even open that can of worms until I really have to. You see I have a policy on weekends and going in to work. The policy basically goes something like this; hell no.

No, I will never be one of those people that will happily give up a weekend to slave away at the grind stone. I will do it when absolutely desperate - like if I feel like I'm about to lose my job. But that's it.

No, I'm not THAT driven by my career.

And no, I don't believe it's being a better worker to do so. I think it's sad and plebby and a product of a society that wants more productivity at the expense of relaxing and family time. And you know what? I don't think if there was extra money involved it'd even be worth it. I pick me time over money any day. Is that weird?

Now I realise that there are many people who not only will give up many weekends because they have to, but will do so quite often because they want to. I'm not talking about people who work weekend jobs here to make the ends meet. I mean people who earn enough money Monday to Friday and go in on the weekend to get things done without explicitly being asked to go into work on the weekend. These are the kind of people that sorry to say I just don't understand very well. I mean, you want to do what? Go in to work? Are you ill? Are you taking prescription medication? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? Even God had a day off! To be fair, they don't understand me very well either. Maybe these people are actually paid their worth so weekends are part of the global work contract. Maybe they are really driven and define themselves first in terms of their career. Or maybe just maybe they HAVE to do it. In any case - the kinds of bosses that demand weekend work can fuck right off. It's your company buster - YOU get it done.

And that brings me to the exceptions for acceptable weekend work: 1) It's your company and you're getting it done. 2) You're working towards saving the world/humanity in some way. 3) extra money that will literally pay for food on the table and electricity to cook it.

Maybe this makes me fickle or petty. I don't know. I just feel like I already live and breathe this job. At the end of each and every day I'm mentally and physically exhausted. I look forward to weekends so much. I constantly think about work so I need a break from actually physically being there. I guess because I do work on the weekend anyway, even if it's planning for a lesson. I resent giving up the physical freedom of not being in "the office" on my weekend though.

I guess that's a big issue with teaching. It's actually two jobs but you only get paid for half. There's the bit you do with the kids and then there's the zillion pounds of administration that goes along with it. I would put the administration part, dealing with parents, organising other things outside the classroom, reports, portfolios, displays etc etc. The admin part you simply cannot do at the same time as you are actually teaching - so you do it in your spare time. In teaching ironically, you need time without the kids around in order to get all those 'expectations' done.

So, I'm sitting here thinking about these things while nursing my bum knee (I have no idea what I've done to it. I seriously think I did something in my sleep of all places) and wondering how I can so strongly believe that voluntarily working on weekends is one of the stupidest, dumbest, plebbiest and pathetic thing a person can do. But, having said that I'm about 80% sure I'll be there on Sunday.


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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

the window on humanity again..

The reason why I like shows like Big Brother (shuddup) is not just because I happen to be a trashy person with no brainz (some may argue differently) but because for me, these shows bring up questions about social politics. I like the social experiment aspect of BB - rather than the shameless famewhores themselves. Where else do we get to see people in groups forming relationships without them calling in the cops for stalking? Does this make any sense?

Here are some things I have learnt from everyday life that has been confirmed by watching Big Brother, reading various forums and involving myself in discussion about housemates and about people in general. There is a lot of generalisation here but I'm talking under the bell curve not necessarily inclusive of everyone. I realise there are people that don't fit this stereotype so I'm not trying to lump everyone together. Having said that yes, I'm lumping a big proportion of people together.

1) Men in groups bigger than 2 sometimes act as bullies because they egg each other on.

2) Not all men get involved in the bullies thing - but the ones that do would probably be best described as "blokey" men (at their most innocent).

3) Girls are BITCHES mostly about other women rather than about men.

4) Men bitch mostly about women rather than about men.

5) Girls who are not bitchy are usually a bit older.

6) Girls will play up being vacuous in order to not offend men because ...well because of point 7.

7) Girls who argue or who challenge men on their point of view are shunned by said men (and the public) and rarely seen as sexual beings.

8) Some girls will allow themselves to be bullied by men into ridiculous situations in order to avoid #7 happening to them.

9) It is a crime for a girl to be over a size 12 (I'm not being facetious) - you will be automatically shunned or even hated by some people. ed: In Australia a size 12 is "medium" in the shops. I think that's US size 8 (this is BEFORE zero came out - maybe it's a US size 6 now)

10) On the flipside - you can never be too thin. In fact if you have unhealthy eating habits in order to be that way..it's not questioned too much.

11) normal weight is seen as fat by the general public.

12) women are judged on their looks FIRST by men and by women. If they pass the looks test then personality will be next.

13) men judge women on their looks just as harshly as other women do. Maybe even more so.

14) Nerdy guys will get by on being intelligent BUT only if they are funny/likable as well.

15) Men are considered "hot" by young women if they are tall, buff and relatively blokey BUT if they are funny they get a wildcard.

16) Grid girls and promotions models are pretty much idiots or act that way (in order to avoid point 7).

17) It's okay if a girl is dumb as long as she's hot.

18) For women plastic boobs are the way to go if their boobs are "too" small. Plastic boobs are preferable to accepting yourself as how you are.

19) Mormons are annoyingly hyper (okay joking. I don't really know any mormons).

20) After a while the looks thing gets old and people begin to see each other for what they really are UNLESS you are really young/immature in which case you never get over the looks thing.

Not a pretty view of humanity eh? Maybe I'm reading it wrong. I know there is a good side to humanity okay. I'm not stupid but these all seem incredibly true to me. I realise they're generalisations - but I also think they're very true.

What do you think?

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Monday, April 23, 2007

I put on my cloudiest suit

Today's Musical Monday is brought to you by the divine oracle of "keyword analysis" on the old stat counter thingy. Indeed when the key phrase is Kate Bush original This Woman's Work remakes then it's like a message from the Gods. The other "keyword" stories of neurotic naked women, will have to wait until some later date. Some of you who have seen the video clip for Kate Bush's Babooshaka might think it applies here too.

I've mentioned my cousin MT before, who featured heavily in my Michael Jackson Thriller, Musical Monday - many moons ago now. She also inadvertently introduced me to Kate Bush via a rather large full colour poster of old Kate on her wardrobe - montage of billowing raven hair, mesmerising eyes and flaming red lips. To me that has always been the quintessential vision of femininity. Strength and sensuality. When I grew up I wanted to be Kate Bush - even though at that point I didn't really know who Kate Bush was or why I was so attracted to her. I just was. Confession - when I grow up I still want to be Kate Bush.

It's interesting - girls reactions to other girls. I wonder if young boys have such a relationship with males in the public eye. Apart from Daddy, do boys idolise other men while growing up? Do they want to grow up to look like another man, say Justin Timberlake or The Rock? As teenagers going through puberty do they aspire to be them in the same way that girls aspire to be other women? We look at other women and we want to be them. It's probably why women featured in women's magazines are not exactly sexualised, more idolised. Hell, women actively buy magazines with women in them, not men. Men buy magazines with women in them, not men (unless those men are doing something construed as a hobby - such as football etc). It's also why anorexic airbrushed and unrealistic visions of women (and yes, they really are unrealistic) are dangerous to women. We actually pay attention to this stuff.

That was my introduction to her - followed closely by hearing Wuthering Heights on the "good" stereo. I distinctly remember twirling in the lounge room like a demented Jewelery box ballerina until I fell over, sick and dizzy and quite changed. Quite.

Later on I was taken with the theatrics and dance that was part of her artistry. The thing about Kate Bush, she comes across as a shy recluse but when she's dancing and singing she's full of light and energy. It's like she's a fae someone plucked out of the forest and put in the spotlight. I love that about her. I love her shrill operatic voice and the movement her music evokes. Yes, she's a little strange, quirky and I love that too.

I have many favourite Kate Bush songs. I've already featured This Woman's Work and I'll forever be in love with The Red Shoes and Running Up That Hill, Cloudbusting etc but this one is a little special. I don't know what it is exactly that does it for me - part contemplative and part rock-operatic frenzy. It's unapologetically intense. I like that but many people will...not. To each their own. It's an amazing piece though.

Rocket's Tail - Kate Bush

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

all work and no play makes random a dull boy

I seem rather incapable of keeping my mind on task for long enough to make a blog entry worth pressing publish for. I just write, delete, start, stop, think, write and then press that funny little x in the corner and walk away..or slip away.. or something that involves being "away".

Then again, perhaps it isn't really the fact that I can't concentrate long enough to do it, just that I'm concentrating far too much on being introspective instead - I should stop that. Bad habit.

Since I can't write anything vaguely cohesive or interesting you'll have to put up with these random ramblings instead. I hope that's okay with you, or maybe you're pressing the little x right now too.

* I've discovered a cheap way to buy chocolate. Buy left over easter eggs in the supermarket. Yes of course you end up looking a little unfortunate for buying ex-easter eggs, but it's cheap and yummy. Chocolate is chocolate folks - even if it comes in colourful foil decorated in bunny motifs.

* We got much needed rain yesterday. Of course it was the one day I decided it would be a good idea to venture outdoors... without an umbrella.

* I stopped in at the gallery to view last years VCE Top Art exhibition. That would be Art from year 12 students last year. I always find art from young teenagers to be inspiring. Their ideas haven't yet been squashed by the heavy hand of art consumerism, nor by trying to be 'gallery acceptable' stuff. It's accessible and unpretentious yet strangely fresh. Some of it was cliche and predictable but some was not. I spent a lot of time staring at the life sized plaster models of 'ordinary people'. Despite not having faces I had a moment where I thought they were going to reach out and grab me.

* Big Brother offers his divine version of human interaction on a grand scale for the devouring tonight (housemate Cruz: Cruz believes men are superior to women because Jesus was a man.. hahahahah). I, for one am excited. I don't care if it's insipid television. I don't care if it represents all that is wrong with the world. I am fully willing to take anyone down in a fist fight of glory who refuses to watch BB because it's too trashy yet will sit in front of Grey's Anatomy or Desperate Housewives every week. Talk about insipid TV for brainless drones! Worse still those that don't watch either but have a blog they write in instead. Let's not pretend we're so above pop culture eh? Yes, I'm being pre-defensive.

* John Howard decides the best way to combat the drought problem is to pray for rain.

"I said in Queensland a couple of days ago without any sense of irony or any sense of being other than totally serious that we should all pray for rain."

Indeed, perhaps he has been reading The Secret. I'm going to pray for the libs to lose the next election - in fact, I have a feeling I might not even vote for them.

* The other day I did a class with the upper levels about team work and belonging - by way of Aboriginal art. Our activity involved small group work where everyone had to work to create a symbol that represented their tribe and therefore themselves. Everyone in the group HAD to agree on the symbol and all components of the symbol - if not it couldn't be used. When the groups were about half way through drawing their symbols I rearranged some people so that the groups were new and asked them to scrap the old symbol and come up with something that was inclusive of the new group.

The class brought up a lot of issues of leadership, including, belonging, communication friendships etc. Most kids handled it really well. One didn't. He was shouting and crying about being taken away from his friends and how it was unfair for me to make them scrap an idea they had worked so hard on. He wouldn't talk to his new group, he wouldn't interact. He ran off and had a tantrum in the corner of the room.

Anyway, the whole thing got me thinking about the way that I interact in groups. I had done a similar activity with adults a while ago and noticed that in group situations I tend to ask questions and will contribute but only if I feel like I'll be heard. If I'm threatened or ignored I'll get my back up and take myself out of the situation entirely. Once I'm out, I'm out. I realise this is a symptom of self defense from years and years of never being heard and always being ignored. One learns to self preserve by withdrawing emotion and taking a step back.

The problem is - how do you stop doing that when it's seemingly a reflex?

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

oh quit yer yapping.

Things that are pissing me off right this minute (in no particular order).

* GW can express as much sorrow as he wants at the Virginia Tech murders but that's nothing on the horror inflicted on his behalf in Iraq. Yeah, yeah, okay I know - it's inflammatory to say that. I don't care. The man is a douche.

* The lean back in his chair know-it-all complete and utter wanker of huge proportions in my class tonight. Why do people feel the need to make smartarse comments and unfunny "jokes"? Why can they just come to class and ohhh don't know..LEARN? No, it's not appropriate to talk when someone else is (especially the teacher), no it's not appropriate to flirt with the married lady (especially when it's obvious she don't wanna), no it's not appropriate to boast (nothing to boast about buddy). Even his friend looked kind of uncomfortable.

* When people say something like "man, it was just a joke geez". If less people are laughing than who are offended then actually nope, it wasn't a joke.

* Having 100% certainty that a certain file is on your computer but when you search, it's not there.

* When to get to the point that someone makes a little comment that means absolutely nothing to anyone but you and suddenly you just feel frustrated and are trying everything not to cry your head off in front of everyone.

* self, for not being as organised as I could have been with the movie project. With school holidays and about a million other things to do I never checked the dates of commencement. It's Monday, I need to get a group and permission organised by..well today really. I'm so unbelievably worn out and just not feeling very happy lately - it's just the last thing I want to do. I just want to crawl up into bed and watch episodes of Bewitched (bday present from bro) and not think...about anything.

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

random weekend thoughts

You like the contrast between sound and vision of driving through whitebread suburban streets while listening to foreign music.

The only thing that keeps you from being compeltely sick of being you is not knowing who you really are yet.

Life has become so cloudy, you're wondering if you even exist.

You like evesdropping on conversations between people on the street. You heard someone say "it doesn't count if you're not naked" today and your imagination went into overdrive.

You overhead someone else say "I laughed but I didn't mean it" and without knowing what they were talking about you understood, completely.

This is the last taste of summer - spa room warmth under a cloudy sky.

You get a lot more action in your dreams than anywhere else.

Blog, wherefore art thou?

You're living life through the shower screen door. Every so often you bring a hand up to wipe away the mist and peek out before disappearing under the spray again.

Your life from within a cinema theatre is perfect. Absolutely perfect.

You're more observant than people think.

You hurt more than you will ever allow people to think.

Sometimes the day exists purely as a long drawn out corridor from dream to dream.

Sometimes people are like goatsbeard. You think you've got them when you pick it, but you blow and ... Best not to pick flowers at all, you think.

Looking from the inside out: there is beauty in all things.

Gravel underneath shoes piercing the silence of the afternoon.

Breathing sleeplessness into the pillows, every position has it's limitations.

At this point you would do almost anything to avoid going back to work on Monday.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

short true story

My friend was talking about her husband and his friends and their weekend away.

Boys are so easily amused. she said.

"What do you mean?" I asked.

You know, one weekend we went away just the couples and the boys were gone for hours and hours in the garage. We heard them laughing so loudly that we went to see what was going on and well, there they were. D was standing near the garage door and the rest of them had ping pong balls in their hands.

They had invented a game: Sting-pong.

"Haha, wtf is sting-pong?"

It's where one boy stands at one end of the garage and the rest of them use ping pong balls to throw as hard as they can aiming for that one person. "IT" is not allowed to run, or hide. They have to just take it. They can use one hand to protect their eyes and one hand to protect their balls. D had welts all over his body.

They thought it was the best thing ever.

"okay, that is the dumbest thing I've ever heard but it does sound pretty funny. Maybe it's a teen humour thing".

M [husband] is 37 years old!

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007


* My favourite pajama pants have a long rip right on the arse. It's not a good look, even for myself. I turn around and look at myself in the mirror, over my shoulder. The material is soft and thin and I like it like that. Of course because it's so soft and thin it rips when I walk. I should really make getting new ones a priority this week.

* I've become quite pathetically addicted to shows like Judge Judy, Trading Spouses, Ready Steady Cook and even...Dr Phil these holidays. If I could find a way to quit my job and still earn money while watching daytime television I would. Daytime television is like crack. You know it's bad but you can't stop indulging.

* I'm trying to figure out why I dislike my birthday so much and I think I've pretty much figured it out. I somehow don't ever think I deserve the nice things that people say and do for me on my birthday. It also happens to be a bitch that I haven't taken over the world yet or even taken over my own life? I seriously thought I'd be married to Tom Selleck and have 3 kids and a pet poodle by now. I shall have to settle for buying myself Magnum PI on DVD instead. Well, as E said "at least it isn't you know...30". I should really make this last year of my twenties something spesh!

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Monday, April 09, 2007

The Puzzling Case of the Bad Panettone

Where are the others? The girl says, referring to the empty spaces.

Ha. They not coming
is the short answer. The lengthy story doesn't need to be told, the girl already knows the whys and wheres. It's the same old, same old.

They sit and eat, and the conversation is lively. Traditional recipes are shared in an offhand manner. The girl knows that these kinds of recipes are not written down in any book nor can they ever be. You learn them by watching and doing never by reading or measuring. She knows she needs to make the time to watch and do, but who has the time for that these days?

The courses are all handmade from scratch or bought from places where they are handmade. Biscuits and sweets from the neighbour, homegrown roasted veggies, consume that has never seen the inside of a carton on the shelves of Safeway. Dessert fresh from the oven.

Old stories are told at one end of the table and new ones are told on the other.

The fruitcake comes out. Delicately sliced, moist pieces sitting gracefully next to the coffee pot and talk turns inevitably to the missing party.

"Did you eat the Panettone (Pah-neh-toh-neh) they gave at Christmas?"

uh oh, the Panettone story.

You wouldn't think that Panettone, a non-threatening airy, light, dry, traditional christmas fruitcake that is full of yum and a favourite of the girl would cause the problems that is has..

Eat it? As soon as I see it I throw it away!

How dare they! It's disgusting!

I cut mine and inside it was like a dough!

It was rotten! What are we, not good enough for fresh Panettone?

They keep it for two years and give it away at Christmas.

The accusations are shouted clearly into the small lit room and soon everyone is shouting and howling with laughter as the matron tells her story.

One year, they give me Panettone and I put it on the shelf. I buy the good Panettone for my friend but when we go to visit I realise that I have taken the bad Panettone by mistake. You can't go inside the house with nothing so I have to give the bad Panettone. You know what? My friend, she call me the next day and she says to me "You need to be careful where you buy your Panettone because this was not good". I never felt so ashamed so I call up Y and I tell her "you need to be careful where you buy the Panettone because you made a mistake with this one!"

Every year it is the same story with the Panettone. Bad food is a grave insult. Rotten one is a death wish.

But what to do about the case of the bad Panettone?

The girl has an idea.

At Christmas, no one makes any dessert. When they come with the Panettone you serve it that night and give them the first piece. You say "This is the Panettone that Y bought! Everyone enjoy" and then you see if they ever bring a bad Panettone again.

The family screams with laughter.

Revenge is the best medicine.

Felicita - Al Bano and Romina Power

Yes, yes this is quite possibly the un-cool song ever to grace my MM buuuut, it fits.

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Sunday, April 08, 2007


Wagamama - QV

bro - I have a walkout policy.
me - what's the policy?
bro - 10 minutes with no service and I walk out.
me - yeah, well guess who doesn't have a walk out policy? That's right..
bro - ...I am willing to take the bus.
me - good luck
bro - I'll go 15 minutes.
me - yeah yeah yeah
*silence as I make my chopsticks dance and bro gives me the stare*
*no service*
bro - Wagamama just killed a maaaan, put a gun against his head pulled my trigger now he's dead.
me - haha
me - Wagamama mia, here we go again my my how can I resist you?
bro - haha
*no service*
me - $1000 to eat all your meals with chopsticks for one year. Would you do it?
bro - oooo...kind offer but one whole year? I'm going to have to go with a no.
me - It's a fair offer, you can eat whatever you want! You could eat Asian for a year and you get $1000 dollars. There are people in the world who eat with chopsticks everyday and they don't get $1000 and here I am offering it to you and what do you do? You throw it back in my face, that's what!
bro - $1000? No deal.
me - okay $2500! All you have to do is eat everything with chopsticks.
bro - no! no deal!
me - okay, okay you twist my arm $5000!
bro - hm...tempting but I don't knoooww.
me - It's a simple task really, doesn't even put you out very much and you get PAID to do it. That's $100 a week or thereabouts that you get for eating with chopsticks. $100 bucks a week is a lot of money!
bro - ...maybe.
*no service*
*me closing one eye and pretending I can squish bro's head in my chopsticks*
me got yer head!
bro - it's like Beetlejuice with the shrunken head.
me Funniest movie ever! Remember how I was so obsessed with it. I watched that like 3 times a day for the whole school holidays
bro - oh yeah, you were a Beetlejuice freak! But I'm surprised we watched that movie and got it! We were pretty young..
me yeah, quirky film
me "I've seen The exorcist about 167 times and it keeps getting funnier EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. I SEE IT! Not to mention the fact that you're talking to a dead guy here. So what do you think? You think I'm qualified?"
bro - hahahaha, classic!
*no service*
me Man what's with the service?
bro - walk out policy.
me There is no fucking way I'm going anywhere else at this point.
bro - I'm going to give her [waitress] the eye.
me you go ahead and do that.
*silence as bro perfects the eye*
me so..$5000, chopsticks for a year.
bro - okay deal! But I can eat normal hand held food with my hands, right?
me um no! That wasn't part of the deal. You eat everything with chopsticks!
bro - what about sandwiches and hamburgers? I don't eat them with a fork and knife. I use my hands. Why can't I use my hands?
me No. The rules state that you must eat everything with chopsticks including all hand held food. You can however choose not to eat any hand held food.
bro - no..I should be allowed to eat sandwiches with my hands! How the hell am I supposed to eat a sandwich with chopsticks?
me You could use two pairs of chopsticks! One in each hand and pick up the sandwich like that!
bro - haha, no.
me Okay, I'll tell you what I'll do for ya - you CAN use knives etc to CUT your food into bite sized pieces and THEN use your chopsticks to eat those bite sized pieces.
bro - This is stupid! I should be allowed to have sandwiches. One meal of hand held food a day.
me A DAY? You have got to be kidding. No deal. The deal is off!
bro - one hand held meal a day!
me no, you FREAK! You're getting $5000 AND a pair of chopsticks! What more do you want?
me okay okay! You can have one hand held meal a week. That's it. That's my final offer.
bro - one hand held meal a day. You're not compromising here, you need to meet me half way.
me Two hand held meals a week!
bro - 5 hand held meals a week!!
me 5 hand held meals a week and the price goes down to $3500!
me no deal!
*no service*
me You suck. So..what are you going to get?
bro - They really shouldn't keep us waiting, we could have a restaurant review blog!

service - 6/20 (they got better)
meal 12/20
conversation - ridiculous.

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

Welcome back, your dreams were your ticket out.

It finally happened, thank god, my dreams have come back. Perhaps it's been the loud music infecting my brain of late that finally unclogged the drain. Of course, it was a school anxiety dream. I have a lot of these. I'm back teaching in the classroom with the lovely preps but I'm wondering who on earth has taken over the art room. In a fit of pure idiocy I decide that the class will be okay for a few minutes on their own while I run across to the other side of the school to check it out. In the art room they've put the world's most incompetent know it all. You know the kind of person I'm talking about - talks a good game but that's about it. She's not even doing art, she's just doing craft projects with an educational slant. I am standing around watching her teach when suddenly I see Prin walking towards the art room. Damn, I'm not supposed to be here, I should be teaching my class.

cue mission impossible music

I'm jumping over fences, peeking around corners, army crawling my way back to the classroom all while trying to pretend I'm not actually in a hurry. I beat Prin back by about a second.

Then I wake up.
With a huge headache.

Meh, not much but at least it's something


I've been thinking a lot about how I must be crazy or insane. Hear me out. I've always thought I was a normal everyday kind of girl. I think thoughts that real girls think. I do things that real girls do. I'm a girl after all. But in the past year or so I've felt like I'm so very different to other women. I don't think I've ever felt this way in such a marked form as when I've started reading blogs on blogger.

Suddenly so many women are amature porn stars who drink cum for breakfast and think that high heels and g-strings are waaay more comfortable than normal cotton undies. High heels are sooo comfortable and men are always and ONLY really really nice to women and women are always really bitchy to men (except me, of course except me I'm never bitchy to men ...just the rest of the women in the world are bitchy to men ALWAYS).

Do people make shit up for the benefit of an audience or is this for real?

In my everyday experiences with women it's a lot more normal - in that I know E for instance wears heels everyday and loves to do so and yet also feels like she must do that in order to be taken seriously in what she does - she's honest about this and I can appreciate that. She also does it because she knows that men like to watch women who wear heels too and that it changes the way she walks and she knows that men like that. She's honest about it. She also knows that she has foot problems that have developed in the past couple of years (25 year olds take note, it happens in your late 20s) and that she knows are a direct result of wearing heels everyday. She's not going to stop wearing heels but she's not walking around saying they are the best and most comfortable shoes either.

I compare that with statements on internet blogs about heels which go something like this: I love wearing heels. They make me feel sexy. I wear them for me.

I don't think I've ever actually read that on a blog ENTRY but I have read it on a shit load of comment boxes, usually answering a question posed by a male blogger. I find the whole thing both interesting and preplexing.

Is this true - women say one thing for the benefit of men and say another when in the company of only females?

Nowadays there's the old fall back that I hear women using a lot "I do this for me". I realise that we MUST say this in order for us to have any credibility at all. What are we going to say instead? I do it for men? I do it for my mother? I do it for my boss? What can we say? Exactly - now you know what I mean. Sure, there fore "I do it for me" works in that context.

Do you know what I do for me? I have a bath and stuff my face full of chocolate or something absolutely disgustingly fatty or sweet. I watch shitty movies until I cry or laugh. I am thinking of entering the self-love olympics (I shall bring home gold!). I daggy dance to disco while wearing my ipod when no one is around. I read a book. I go to the movies..sometimes alone. I wear my pjs all day and no bra or undies or make up, or shoes! The stuff I do for me I do because no one else is going to see it. I have done a few dodgy things TO myself, that's for sure but when I did those well let's just say there weren't any men around then (or possibility of if you know what I mean. lol) - but now that I look at those things I wonder if I truly did them for me or because of curiosity - perhaps more the later, who knows? It doesn't have to be that way but it often is. Hey, this is why I'm writing this right now - I'm beginning to think I'm so far removed from womanhood that it's not funny and I need some perspective. Am I so very different from you?

Everything is a bit more normal with the real life friends. We talk frankly about when we are treated nice or treated badly by men. We talk frankly about our experiences on the town, our experiences of being a woman. We never say it's all bad, nor is it all good. Being a woman means that we experience things that men probably do not. A few times I've had conversations with men and realise that they have never given a thought to what it's like for a woman in certain kinds of situations. I understand that from men. Maybe it's a case of they don't live it. They don't know.

I don't know if it's just women that blog that only have these weirdly skewed experiences about being a woman (like living the life of what sounds like Bettie Page's) or whether everyone tells lies in order to keep up with the Jones' but sometimes I'm reading a comment on a blog (and it's more the comments not the actual entries that do it) and thinking that is absolutely nothing like me and then because everyone comes in and agrees with that person "yeah, I LOVE wearing sexy underwear everyday" and really think hang on! WHAT? EVERYDAY? WHAAAAAT? In any case sometimes I read about how women act and then all these other women agree with that or someone is applauded for finally "being honest" and I wonder how my experiences and thoughts can be so different from those women around me. How can I not be being honest when evidently I am being honest?

I am not a fembot. I am a real woman. I am not trying to be sexy 24/7 and most of the women who blog that I read aren't trying to be sexy 24/7 either - they're just real. But sometimes I read comments on other blogs - comments written by women - and it sounds like they're ALWAYS being sexy or ALWAYS trying to seduce and be coquettish or ALWAYS feminine. I do want to make clear that I'm not really thinking so much about female bloggers I read and comment on - this is more about a lot of female bloggers whom I don't necessarily read but who comment on male blogs that I do read. How can all this hyperreal femininity be manifest on blogs and not in reality? Men realise this is not reality for a woman to actively be sexy all the time, right? That's not reality. You may find us sexy but that doesn't mean we are ALWAYS trying to be sexy. Right? Maybe I'm wrong. God I'm so confused I don't even know what's right anymore.

I just love those posts where women admit to being daggy (tragically uncool) or they just do embarrassing stuff. It's normal. Doesn't everyone MEN TOO just get up, put their stuff on, go to work, have a day and then do other stuff? Why is it women then, that always say "ohhh I'm feeling so sexy today because I was wearing my g-string". I admit, some days I feel sexier than others but who cares? Why aren't men blogging about how they feel sexy when they shave, or when they grow a mo or when they wear Ralph Lauren? When do men feel sexy and why aren't THEY on every blog comment around talking about how sexy they are? Why is it always women who are doing that? Is being sexy just a woman thing?

Anyway, this blog entry started off as something completely different to what it's ended up as. Never let it be said I'm well thought out and organised. The point that I was thinking of before I wrote this was me wanting to ask you girls a few questions. Boys, you might know the answers to and I'd love your opinion on matters of gender in blog land actually..but girls - please indulge me. Feel free to email me* or post anon if you don't want your name published. I'm certainly not about to judge or reveal long lost secrets. This is for me I want to know just how different I am from you because it's come to my attention that hey maybe I'm that numeral sitting somewhere outside the venn diagram. I want to know why it is that when I make a statement which I find to be general and true for most women and not even necessarily specific I get the 'oh *pat head* that's not quite true now is it?' In otherwords you didn't hear it, you didn't see it, it didn't happen. Are they trying to convince me (themselves?) or am I trying to convince them?


Girls have you ever in your life been groped or other by a man who you didn't necessarily invite to grope or other you? I am NOT talking about sexual harassment (I'm not talking about that because that has specific connotations - I'm talking about everyday stuff. Whether this everyday stuff is sexual harassment is another post entirely and I don't want to go into politics exactly). So, I mean, an UNINVITED or UNKOWN someone
- maybe someone pressed themselves up against you to SQUEEZE PAST but wait there was a hell of a lot of room for them to go another way.
- maybe someone actually groped you - they might have been drunk at a nightclub. No biggie?
- commented on your breasts uninvited.
- yelled at you from a car window or construction site.
- pinched your arse
- made a proposition to you just straight out - no kissing first, no drinks first, no dinner..just the proposition that seemingly came out of the blue.
- been told that you have nice tits by a father of a boyfriend or someone like that (someone who you should trust to be respectful) at a family dinner (this didn't happen to me but it happened to a girl I know).

Have you ever felt scared walking alone to your car at night? Do you try to drive with friends or try to park reasonably close to the venue if you're alone especially if it's a dodgy part of town? Do you walk faster when you're alone?

Has anything like that ever happened to you or worse (you don't have to detail)?

I want to make it clear that this entry is not about saying 'ohhh being a woman is bad'. It's about saying girls, is ONE of these even just ONE part of your experience in life and of being a girl? You might not even think twice about it happening - it's just there. Some of this stuff may have happened and you just think - yeah, whatever - like I care? Not a big deal, just everyday stuff. I mean it just rolls off your back right? Or maybe it doesn't - everyone is different in this regard. For me, it doesn't roll off my back but for my good friend E for instance it's not a big deal. That's not what this is all about. I just want to know - Am I the only woman in the world to have experienced these kinds of things? Am I so different from you?*

* email addie in profile if you prefer.

* okay I also realise that when women say anything remotely negative like "I was groped by a guy in a nightclub and I didn't want it to happen" people tend to come out of the woodwork and say 'ohh you're exaggerating' or implying that you're the only girl in the world to have that kind of experience. This is why I wrote this post. I wanted to know whether I was really the only girl who had dodgy experiences.

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Monday, April 02, 2007

My Window on the World

I was raised on old Hollywood movies and delicious re-runs of Mr Ed, I Dream of Jeannie, The Brady Bunch, Happy Days and I Love Lucy. As a consequence I'm rather mad about big band music and television theme tunes. TV shows used to have theme songs - that is themes that were independent of the Billboard top 100. Those were the days folks! If I hear one more fucking song by The fucking Fray as featured on Grey's Anatomy I. WILL. GO. POSTAL! Snow Patrol? If they stabbed Patrick Dempsey's pathetic "sad boohoo face" 1 million times with a butter knife while playing them in the background I might like Snow Patrol better, (that would be a good association) but at the moment? No..sorry. No.

Back in the day (the day being the 80s) one could rely on television to help you solve life's little problems. Sure, dad might have been absent and mum was busy stuffing prozac into Christmas day Turkey but at least you could turn to television to answer your everyday questions about life and love. Old TV was like the I-Ching.

Q: What should I cook for dinner tonight?
A: Well dammit, turn on Who's the Boss? and let's see what Tony Danza is serving up tonight!

Easy peasy.

What do people have to turn to now in their lonely hours of need? The Biggest Loser informs you how to be the whiniest bitch ever and Big Brother only ever speaks to people who enjoy dancing around in their bikini while looking at themselves in the mirror.

I feel sorry for the youth of the new millenium. Where are the television role models of today? And indeed, musically speaking where are the great theme tunes?

What has television taught me? Well take a seat girls and boys because I shall impart my knowledge onto you.

Who's the Boss?
Premise: Down on his luck Italian father with tom boy daughter move into the house of a high powered advertising executive her sissy son and sassy grandma - so that he can become the man servant.
Lessons Learned: * When it comes to family you do whatever you can to make ends meet.
* Men who cook and clean are fucking sexy.
* When I grow up I wanna be Mona.

Growing Pains
Premise: The everyday life of an "average" middle class family living in the 'burbs, consisting of cool but deadbeat older brother. Nerdy middle sister and annoying, smart arsed youngest brother. Two parents who actually love each other and a best friend who is the dopiest dude in the world.
Lessons Learned: * Never try to fool mum and dad by having a party when they go out of town because they are going to find out!
* Having a psychiatrist for a dad can sometimes suck.
* Kirk Cameron is HOT!

Diff'rent Strokes
Premise: Two young Afro brothers are adopted by well meaning older rich white guy and turn his whole life and family upside down with their difference in culture and attitude to life.
Lessons Learned: * "Now the world don't move to the beat of just one drum. What might be right for you may not be right for some".
* Goldfish make way cool pets because you can talk to them and they really do listen!
* I wanna be adopted by a rich, white old guy!
* Acid rain will turn blonde hair green (anyone else remember that episode?!?!).

Prisoner: Cell Block H
Premise: Australian drama set inside a maximum security women's prison. Lesbians, hags, innocents, mums and freaks all living together and getting by - locked in by wardens who are sometimes worse than the crims and facing their own demons.
Lessons Learned: * Prisoners are people too.
* When women kill men it's for a really fucking good reason.
* Never lag on anyone, ever!
* If you're going to use the kitchen supplies to make prison moonshine make sure the screws don't find out because you've passed out drunk.

The Golden Girls
Premise: 4 senior citizens share a house and their lives in sunny Florida. Rose is a dimwitted do gooder, Blanche is the slut, Dorothy is the world's most cynical woman and her mother Sophia is sharp as a tack.
Lessons Learned: * Women either outlive men or are passed up for a younger model - but best girlfriends are forever!

Mork and Mindy
Premise: Lovable alien in human form is stuck on planet Earth and rooming with a cute but highly strung young woman.
Lessons Learned: * There are so few viable men willing to settle down on planet Earth that Aliens are starting to look really, really good! (hahaha).

Happy Days
Premise: Funny goings on of a family living in the 50s - especially centering around the adventures of the son Ritchie, his precocious younger sister Joni, his high school friends (Potsie and Ralph) and local ladies man: Fonz. Their hangout - the local diner - is usually at the center of working out all the important life questions like How DOES Fonz get all the ladies anyway?
Lessons Learned: * Men need time away from the family unit, preferably engaging in cult like behaviour with the other husbands in the local community.
* Men who know exactly what they want, when they want will always get exactly what they want, when they want.
* Motorbikes are way cool.
* Study hard at school and you'll go places.
* Friends sometimes get you in trouble.
* Look out for your younger siblings!
* People named Chachi are try hards.
* Change your name to Pinky Tuscadero and you might get a date with The Fonz.
* Change your name to Ralph Malph and you will be a laughing stock.

I Dream of Jeannie
Premise: Moralistic but handsome astronaut finds a bottle on the beach with a Jeannie inside. The Jeannie falls in love with him but he won't have a bar of it. He doesn't need a slave, and yet she needs a master. What to do? What to do? Best friend Roger however would LOVE a slave.
Lessons Learned: * Women pretty much get anything they want if they have flippy, flippy hair, pout a lot and show their boobs and belly.
* Sometimes men have no idea when they're onto a really good thing.

Mr Ed
Premise: Married guy owns a horse that talks. No one else knows the horse talks and the married guy is going slowly insane as Mr Ed his amusing but demanding horse gets him into loads of trouble in every episode!
Lessons Learned: * If you look hard enough you might find a horse that can talk! (shuddup, I actually DID do this! Hey, I was 7!).

Family Ties
Premise: Sitcom centered around a quirky and fun middle class family living in the burbs. Characters include - Two very loving liberal minded parents, their neurotic genius republican son, a ditzy but pretty daughter, an annoying younger sister and a youngest little son who idolises his republican older brother.
Lessons Learned: * With loving family on your side you can face absolutely anything.
* Republicans are fucked up in the head but still might just be the cutest damn people you ever did see.

Starsky And Hutch
Premise: Two extremely single, plain clothed, good hearted policemen drive a "red tomato" as they save "Bay City" from the scum of society. They have a soft spot for saving young children and strippers and pros.
Lessons Learned: * Young police guys may be the hottest thing to hit the streets since white roller skates with a red stripe down the side but they will never stick around for very long.

Twin Peaks
Premise: Laura Palmer is found "Dead, wrapped in plastic" down by the river in a small northern town and the search is on to find the killer. Lots of weird characters who make no sense.

The Brady Bunch
Premise: Here's the story of a lovely lady, Who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother. The youngest one in curls. Here's the story, of a man named Brady. Who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together. Yet they were all alone. Till the one day when the lady met this fellow and they knew it was much more than a hunch. That this group would somehow form a family. That's the way we all became the Brady Bunch.
Lesson Learned: * In the future get a housekeeper!
* If you are the middle child you have heaps of baggage.
* Marcia, Marcia fucking Marcia. Why does it always have to be about HER?
* Two kids is plenty. Three is pushing it.

I Love Lucy
Premise: Wacky, funny lady Lucy marries handsome, mature Cuban musician Ricky. They are incompatible but love each other anyway. Lucy always manages to get herself into lots of hilarious trouble every episode and Ricky never seems very impressed. Their neighbours always seem to be around.
Lessons Learned: * Smart, funny, wacky, quirky vivacious women will never be contained by the stuffy expectations of men who don't understand them.
* If you make friends with your neighbours they will NEVER LEAVE so perhaps don't be best friends with your neighbours!
* Cuban accents are kind of sexy - especially when shouting is involved.

Premise: Normal everyday guy, Darren (Derwood) marries a real live witch (Samantha)! He tries in vain to stop her using her magic but try as she might she really cannot ever deny her legacy for long - especially since her witchy family keeps popping in. Besides her magic saves Derwood's skin more than a few times so what's the harm? Meanwhile the snoopy neighbourhood busybody realises something fishy is up at the witchy household and tries to "catch" them out at every opportunity!
Lessons Learned: * People are special as they are and you shouldn't try to change them too much because if you do you lose the very essence of what attracted you to them in the first place.
* Hiding who you really are is taxing as it is difficult to maintain false exteriors.

Premise: Widowed father raises his teenage surfie tom boy daughter.
Lesson Learned: * Dads are cool and have interesting things to say so maybe you should listen to them.
* Sometimes kids can teach adults a thing or two.

Murphy Brown
Premise: Hugely successful and high achieving journalist lives her job and loves Motown music- but is constantly faced with the dilemma of acting professionally and keeping her emotions in check at the same time. Meanwhile she comes to terms with the fact that her biological clock is ticking and she is still single.
Lesson Learned: * Motown is FABULOUS and will get you through anything in life!
* Tradesmen and men who can fix things are awesome.
* Everyone needs a buddy to talk things over with.
* Friends can be sort of like family.
* The biological clock is like a time bomb!

See! So many life lessons to be learned from TV of a bygone era. I had so many favourite TV shows as a child - this doesn't even scratch the surface. What were your favourite TV shows and why? What were your favourite TV show Theme tunes?

Most of the TV show tunes are here except Twin Peaks (too long) and Murphy Brown (the theme kept changing from episode to episode). Warning: This takes a while to load from song to song!

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Sunday, April 01, 2007

Left on the Shelf

The Sunday magazine had an interesting perspective on men and relationships today. Basically it said: times are a changing and men are being left without partners. Men are being left on the shelf now, not women.

The impression I got was that there are a lot of men out there who want marriage, babies and the like but no one to have these things with because women have their own thing going on. I know a couple of guys out there who really do want these things. But on the cusp of 29 years of age I'm getting the impression that for guys it's just more like: ...yep I want all that stuff in the future just not yet. The story from 29 year old woman is that marriage would be the ideal position to be in right now. So maybe there is a difference of opinion on the when rather than the what of relationships. We both want that stuff just at different times.

Maybe after a certain age women think - 'I'm going to have to do this on my own now aren't I?' So they get to it. They organise themselves with a future that might not, probably not, involve a guy (and yet might involve a cat instead!!). I know I'm at that stage now. Men meanwhile get to their late their late 30s early 40s - partying the whole way and then think oh fuck, where are all those girls that wanted to settle down? Oh shit, they've settled down or they're doing their own thing!! Women have that same thought at about 29. Why should we wait until 39 for guys to get their act together? Aren't our prime motherhood years wavering and then crashing down into oblivion by then?

The article went on to mention that men are left on the shelf because women have careers now, not relationships. I don't know any woman that would prefer a career over an awesome love of their life relationship. I do however know many women who want to wait until a certain stage in their career before they have children. But as for marriage - any time any where buddy. Just you bring the ring! The problem is that difference in the logistics of when to do all this stuff.

Then again, maybe not. There may be another reason:

I have read a lot on male blogs - or rather a certain types of male blog - that men are scared of getting into a marriage situation because they don't want to lose half of what they have to their wives in divorce court and this is a apparently a very real reason cited for some men's 'commitmentphobic behaviour. I don't know that many (or any) men who get into a marriage with everything financially secure first anyway. In fact house, career etc tends to happen AFTER the hitching doesn't it? (thereby making it something they have both earned). But still.. Interesting theory.

Do men hold off getting married because they are scared of losing half of what they have in divorce?

The article also mentioned another reason for men being left on the shelf as doing with women being more independent now than they ever have been. Women don't actually need men so men are left helpless and not knowing how to offer something to women who have it all. Related to the divorce thing, and the difference in when we want to have babies and get married. I do know that women are very conscious of being labelled as gold diggers, so much so that they would rather have some sort of personal financial security before getting hitched. Meanwhile couple that with men might not want to get married and bogged down with a family before they are thirty women have just decided to get live their lives instead of waiting around.

What do you think?

Are men being left on the shelf? And what's your theory on why? Or are newspaper articles just trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill and that women are left on the shelf at late 20s early 30s and men are being left too, just later in life.

Have our priorities changed in the family way?

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