Saturday, August 12, 2006


Tomorrow, Sunday, I should be going to a same sex protest rally at the steps of our state parliament house. But given one of my fave bloggers has called in sick and is not going, I am taking up the offer of a ticket to the footyball tomorrow. I know more about footyball than I ever imagined that I would know.

I think we are in a corporate box at the MCG, with a good view and we don't have to pay for the tickets. Carlton v Hawthorn. I sms my sister, as she is a Hawthorn supporter and I wanted to make her jealous, and she sms back, me too. No mention of catching up before, during or after the game. R railed against my uncaring sister again. Well, perhaps if I was a nice brother, I would have suggested that.

We are going with a dyke friend, her Langwarrin homophobic brother and her kewl eighteen year old nephew.

Anyway, I felt the need to bone up on the game a bit.

I went to Hawthorn's website............not many cute guys there, ok, maybe No. 35 Grant Burchill and 23, Lance Fanklin.

Carlton was better. Jake Edwards with 37, Anthony Raso with 35, Kouta with 43, Jordan Bannister, 31, Marc Murphy, 3.

I last went to the MCG shortly after I got my driving license. We were out with friends tonight and I mentioned this and one older person said that it might look a bit different, and another friend said, it will be totally different. Nothing that was there back then is there now.

So, I won't be too bored tomorrow at the footyball. I have numbers to look out for.

I am supporting the blues hawks tomorrow. Not sure what the other team is called.

Smug self satisfaction

A long long time ago
I can still remember

I embarrassed myself in company by miss pronouncing a word. Peoples laughed at me, deservedly so probably. I was humiliated.

Now, I try to keep my mouth shut until I know I am correct.

R is more of a people person than I. But he does not appreciate how much useless information is stored in my head.

I remember at a trivia night, the question was, 'what is the tourist bureau in the Soviet Union called?." Notice I am going back a few years. I answered Intourist. Later he asked me how I knew that. Well, in the eighties, I used to read The Age travel section religiously, along with all the other bits. I think I replied, dunno, just know it.

Tonight he asked me about a word his boss had mentioned to him, barista. I knew what he meant but he pronounced it like barrister. He took his lead from his boss in the pronouniation.

He very kindly suggested that what I said was not how his boss said it.

Panic, have I got it wrong? I have seen the written word often enough, but have I heard it said? I am not sure. I know a little of Italian pronounciation, but perhaps not enough. God, is my mental image of this word totally wrong?

Google, wikipedia, oxford online, ask Jeeves, no answer.

But if my life is shallow, I do know useful people. Given the time difference, I got a pretty quick response from our friend in Japan, who is Australian, but has a pretty good knowlege of Italian, as she lived there for a while, and liked Italy quite a lot.

The word is barista, not barrister. BaRISta.

I was quietly confident. I just needed some confirmation.

The net searching was interesting though. I learnt that it is a term that the coffee chain Starbucks use. I reckon that that is how the word arrived in Australia. And, it actually means bartender, although in Oz, it seems to be the coffee maker in a decent eating place.

As an aside, most of my favourite local baristas (oh god, what is the plural?) are of Asian heritage.

So now, how can R humiliate his smart ass boss with the correct pronounciation?

Friday, August 11, 2006

Cookies drags

You would think that me, being so cynical, I would not be niave. But I am.

The Great Cake Bake Off is an annual gay event that I don't think I have missed. It is a fund raiser for some gay charity thingy.

Cake baking and decorating, community groups making an effort, along with personal entries.

Year one. I will come back to that one.

Year two or three. DTs Hotel in Richmond. I was filmed and shown on Channel 31. A couple of years ago, I was at the Exchange Hotel when a friend shrieked that I was on tv.

I can't remember the other venues.

Last year was at Zinc at Federation Square. It was ok, just ok. Lot's of gay peoples children there. How does this gay people's children thing work then?

This year it is at the Star Hotel in Collingwood, a venue well known for gay Asians and those who like them. That is where David from Big Brother won his award as Mr White Lotus.

We never go to gay places nowdays. Life has changed. But I think we might attend this one agian. It is quite an entertaining event.

Ah, back to year one, The Duke Hotel in St Kilda. A drag was walking around offering biscuits from a plate. The very niave Andrew thought that sweet biscuits did not go with beer. We declined. The person with said biscuits was a bit insistant, 'go on, have one'. If I had known what the secret ingredient was in the biscuits, I would have hoed in, or at least taken one in a polite manner.

How dumb am I.

Later Update: Too busy to go to Bake Off this year.

New Mobile?

The time approaches when I will be out of contract with my mobile phone company. In the past I eagerly awaited this anniversary and I was very well prepared for it by checking out new phones as my contract expiry date approached.

This time, I can see no good reason to buy a new phone. One that I could buy, has a much better camera than my present one, but I don't really use my present one's camera feature. It is not even close to what a proper camera can do. Rather spend the money on a better camera.

Otherwise, there is nothing the new ones offer that I need, want or interests me. And what ever happened to smaller is better? Phones are getting bigger.

All my phones have been Ericsson, the last, Sony Ericsson.

My first was a 218. I sold it to a friend for $100. He lost it in a taxi. A year later, you could barely sell a second hand mobile. I still feel guilty. Shouldn't. I am still poor and he is now rich. Wow, I had forgetten this, but it had a sticky out aerial. I had it a free upgrade because it would not call 000 as an emergency number. The enticement was a short stubby aerial. Was that worth the train trip from Balaclava to the Flinders Street and then the train to Laburnam, or some nonsense suburb.

Then came a phone that I cannot remember and nothing that I can find on the net triggers any memory.

Next was a T28. It had a fold down mouth piece that most people broke off quite quickly. Strangely, they still worked ok with the broken off and discarded mouth piece. I gave it to another friend when his failed and I had bought the next one. The mouth piece was intact when I gave it to him, but naturally, he soon snapped it off.

My last one was a T65. It was pretty good, although in black and white, if you know what I mean. At least it had the tetris game on it. Once I bought my present one, I carried my old one for a while just to play tetris. Although I have tried, I have never managed to know how to download tetris to my current phone.

My present one is a K500i and it is a product of ongoing improvement and simplification and standardardization. It works really well for me to call R, and him not answer but will be in the carpark to move his car because he has to go to work first, and if he does answer, we can talk for three minutes without charge. But I like my phone for sms. I am a written word person.

Update: I have had a flashback. The phone I could not remember was traded in at Crazy Johns in St Kilda Road, St Kilda, and I had a fleeting mental image of it.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Look after your kiddies

What on earth is happening? Parents putting their children in day care is something I have a problem with, but now they are putting them in nightcare so that the parents can have a good night's sleep.

Ok, you may not be able to afford a large two story house in Upper Doveton North Lakes or Malvern Dales, but you really have to think about your kiddies and how they will turn out.

A parent, preferably a mother, should see or escort their kiddies off to school, make sure they have their lunch and a hanky, or perhaps tissues these days, a banana in case they get hungry along the way, ah well, something similar in these days of expensive bananas, be home when the children get home and cook them an evening meal. Bed by 8.30. Sleep is good for children. They get cranky if they don't get enough sleep and they need proper sleep to develop properly.

Your eight year old out on his/her own going to school on a tram or bus, crossing roads? Well don't complain to me when the worst happens. I have seen too much of that. Bit sad for the kiddie though.

While it is one thing to have grandma look after the kids a couple of days a week, why are people having children, only to palm them off onto professional child care. Was having kids just something you thought you had to do?

While I will staunchly defend women in the workforce, I don't believe that having children and both parents working fulltime is good. The two are not compatible.

Mortgages have always been a problem for young people with kiddies. They were much less of a problem when only the husband worked. The standard is now that both couples have to work to be able to buy a decent property. Duh, chicken and egg. Fulltime working mothers have pushed the price of property skyhigh.

No, I won't have it. Mothers (or sometimes fathers) should be home, BRINGING up their children. Single parents who have to work perhaps excepted, up to a point.

Love them, cuddle them, kiss them, but most of all, be with them.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Sex just a short train ride away

Hi straight guys. This might be a place for you to get your rocks off and not be recoginized.

A new male only sauna has opened in Geelong. It is just a high speed train ride away.

I will email my sister who lives in Geelong and find out the location. If she doesn't know, her girlfriend will.

Rampant same sex stuff happening in Geelong.


Net amazement

The net still just amazes me at times. After having a few very negative rants etc, it is time to post something positive. In times past, I would have hyper-linked posts of people and websites. But it easier for you to find them that it is for me to link them.

Mugly is an 'elite member' of Walking Melbourne. He is a significant contributor and a wonderful photographer. I am only an 'honorary member', which is a honour bestowed upon me, but I am not quite sure why. Ok, I have contributed in a minor way.

But how the worlds collide.

A couple of weeks ago there was a protest at Southgate because they put up signs banning photography. I feel a bit strongly about this, so I checked newpapers online for after the event info. The Age had some pictures. One of them was one that this Mugly also published on his website. It was about the same time that I discovered Mugly has a blog where he posts his pictures. He is not alone in taking wonderful pictures of our fine city, but he is good. Just today when looking for some old pics on my pc, I came across some wonderful photos I had saved that William Fedor took of our city. He is, I think, publicity officer for the tram museum near Kilmore, along with being employed in the same industry as myself.

Mugly posted his pics to his website and I did make a comment on his blog that The Age had used one of his pics. It was with his approval. There was also a pic of him among the Southgate protesters.

Then tonight, I saw him, hunched down in a tram safety zone taking a picture looking down St Kilda Road, somewhere near the Arts Centre.

Of course, someone might make such a comment about me on their blog if they see me out and about as I saw Mugly, that is if I showed a clear face pic on my blog. But at the moment, I will protect you from your nightmares.

Well, it was fairly positive. I will do better soon.


I have a vague idea that it used to be every four years, now it is five. Anyone confirm? US is only every ten years. Data is not reliable for very long.

We filled ours out on the 7th, as we knew we would be busy on the eve of the 8th. I ended up doing the electronic one. Not hard.

I think R ticked that we were de facto. I left it up to him.

Bloody religion everytime. My answer had changed. Because I was christened as a presbyterian, I used to think that it was the correct answer. Now, I just say none. So I suppose I won't get a presbyterian church built near me soon.

Why doesn't the form ask things that I want them, the government to know?

What is your credit card balance and how hard do you struggle to control it?
How many times each week do you eat out?
How many coffees do you buy out each week?
Where is your favourite venue to meet up with friends?
Do you consider your ABC meets your needs and should it be better funded?
How many times do you shag each week? Month? Year?
Which politician offends you the most. (Please keep the list short)
Is privatisation good for you and/or the country?

The list could be very long indeed.


Sometimes I just get so fed up at stuff like this. Here is the caption from a photo of the criminal in The Age. He used to ride a motor bike around in circles or something.

Embarrassed: Mick Doohan leaves Darwin Magistrates Court yesterday after pleading guilty to an assault charge. No conviction was recorded.

So, you can go around assaulting, head butting that is, people who are just doing their job, and after being before the courts and admitting your crime, no conviction is recorded against your name. Is head butting becoming the newest sport?

Internet speed

Federal Communications Minister Coonan informs us this morning that she has not heard complaints from Australian's about slow broadband speed. Well Minister, I never complained about my dial up speed ever so many years ago. I am actually quite happy with my present speed from cable internet.

This is because Minister, (This bit is important Helen, are you listening?) I don't know what I am missing. Home users in Singapore are about to get a speed of 100mb per second, as Japan and South Korea have already. What do we have in Australia? 1.5 mb per second.

Perhaps like the building of all important infrastructure in past, the government builds the infrastructure, and then charges for it's use, in this case the telcos who wish to use it and then resell it to we plebs.

The Minister is becoming defensive when the obvious is held in front of her eyes. Perhaps some of the money wasted by Optus duplicating the existing cable service could have been a contribution (qualified by saying that actually started under a labor government, I think).

The list of wrongs by this government is very long, but surely none is incompetent or has been so destructive to the future of Australia as Communications and Media policy We are now debating about what should have started five years ago.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Blog Hurt

You know my age vaguely. I have been blogging for nearly two years now. Upon the second anniversary, I plan to drink an extremely large glass of whisky, and then write a post that will ensure I have no readers in the future. Well, maybe. Indulge me while I steal a bit of that forthcoming post.

I have been on the net since 1994. I know about the net and the disappointments it offers up. I am as guilty as anyone.

But what about a blogger who you actually, sort of, kinda know?

I am feeling really hurt by someone I don't really know. Silly isn't it.

Of course the fault lies with thou. In case you suffer a little paranoia, it is a male, so that narrows the field. Narrowing it further, he is young. Perhaps his communication skills have not fully developed.

Stupid ageing person that I am, imagining that there was some sort of connection. Of course he has to paint a good picture to those who know him. He would not want to be seen out with an ageing queen.

(Written end of July 06, polished, edited, deleted, rewritten, edited.)

Do I care? Nup. I just write this nonsense post and delete the matter from the brain. Don't kiddie teens do this? Shrug shoulders and say, 'whatever'. So I say, 'whatever'.

Ideal Sleeping (written a long time ago)

You are with your partner. You go to bed together. You either have done already or don't care to indulge in the messy stuff that two people do when they like each other in a special kind of way.

You want to sleep. So does your partner.

The ideal: You sleep together soundly together lying as spoons lie in the draw.

The obvious: You have bred a creature for the future. I suppose you can still spoon, with a kiddie in between. I think it is good for kiddies to be in bed with their parents when they are young. Bashing them off to cot sounds a bit unatural. I think the whole child rearing, well baby rearing thing needs to look back to the past.

What happens when two people sleep together: He or she snores/farts/groans/tosses/wriggles.

Realism: Get another room and sleep separately, or at least a separate bed.

It is great to cuddle up to the one you love, but you gotta be practical about it. Better to love and live with someone who has slept well. Much as I love R, I think I would hate him if we had to sleep together all the time and I am sure the same goes for him. The times we do usually means I get into his bed and invariably I wake alone as he has gone and gotten into mine.

My wind down before sleep is to read or listen to the radio or stare out the window at the winking buoys and the lights. If it is darkish when I am to wake, I don't close the blinds. His wind down is to close the venetian blinds, lower the roman blind and watch a bit of tv. I like my door shut, he likes his open.

It is ok when you are young but it really does surprise me when I hear of older people still sleeping together.


My browser home page is the Bureau of Meterology Raid Radar. Exciting life hey. I have never seen anything like this. Given it is a fine sunny day, it should look clear as it does in one of these grabs, but the other grab was only minutes apart. Perhaps the computer said 'no'.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Up in the sky

I decided a while ago that I would not post any more balloon pics to my blog, but then I did not expect a house to float by. Click for a better view.

Sunday, August 06, 2006


It was a particularly busy day for we highrisers on Saturday. As well as shopping in the city, reclaiming money from the supermarket, eating a greasy souvlaki and seeing a movie, we managed to fit in a viewing at Chapel off Chapel.

It was an exhibition of the collection of The Museum of Particularly Bad Art, and they were mostly bad art. Scarily for me, I actually liked a few of them and would not mind having them. So now you know my artistic standards. Limbs out of propotion to bodies, mini sized sheep in comparison to the human, a wonky eye, multimedia gone very wrong.

I did not think much of the winner of the, not the Archibald art prize, but the Itchyball prize.

It was nice to see and entry by an old workmate, Kieron Ogden, now of the Chapel Street Bazaar. Well done Oggie, it was quite bad.

Gold coin donation, funds to a charity.