Saturday, April 24, 2010

Little Jo Staying Over

Once a fortnight Sister, Bone Doctor and Little Jo stay over. This last time was when my day off work followed. I arose before seven, hoping for a peaceful half hour in front of the computer. R was already at work. Sister got up a few minutes later. Within five minutes, she took off for a forty minute walk. No sooner had she returned, than she went downstairs for a half hour swim. While she is ten years younger than me and not a slim lass, she is fitter than I have ever been.

In the meantime, Bone Doctor and Little Jo arose. Little Jo refused the cereal I had caringly prepared for her, only wanting Vegemite on toast for breakfast. Neither myself or Bone Doctor felt up to insisting on cereal. Sister returned and Bone Doctor took off on her bicycle to Tooronga or wherever it is she goes to learn something.

More Vegemite on toast and with Mother's admonishments about arriving too early in her mind, Sister delayed her departure to Mother's. We took Little Jo out to the new playground at Fawkner Park. The one R and I used to take her to has been demolished. The new one is much further away but it is rather good. We had great fun, clambering around and playing. I managed to pull a chest muscle though. It is coming good now, but reversing the car is a bitch.

Little Jo and I set off on our own before Sister caught us up with a pusher she had found on a nature strip. The pusher was on a nature strip for a good reason. It was nearly uncontrollable. Each time we crossed a side street in Toorak Road, Little Jo reached for my hand to cross the road. Otherwise, she just plodded along, chattering away, half to me and half to herself. We would have walked about a kilometre. R is very much Little Jo's favourite gay uncle, for good reasons, but I was happy that she was content and trusted me.

We returned via our local cafe across the road for coffee and a shared muffin.

Little Jo pretty well explored every piece of the extensive play equipment.

We were playing trains with the dining chairs. She used to grin for the camera. Now she poses.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Minne Ha Ha Falls

Three words or one? e or i or ie? No one seems to know. To make it worse, there is one in NSW too. Such a whimsical name, don't you think?

I'll go with Minne Ha Ha Falls. Cazzie suggested it might be interesting to look at. While I think I have been there, I was struggling to find it on a map until I worked out that the falls were at a place called Hiawatha!

What is with these American Indian names? Surely when these places were named, average Australiaman/woman would not know about Indians. And why use Indian names?

Minne Ha Ha is not exactly Niagara Falls, but let us just say it a sweet little waterfall full of crystal clear water from Victoria's Strzelecki Rangers. Well, crystal clear if it is not polluted by a certain species of eucalypt favoured for plantation timber. I understand the same species is grown in the Strzeleckis.

Photo by tristinkee at Panoramio. Map below.

View Larger Map

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Uhhh? What? Storm?

Apparently Melbourne has or perhaps had, a successful rugby team known as Storm. The team is now discredited. Evidently they won a final competition a year or so ago. While there is huge media coverage over their downfall tonight, I can't recall media coverage when they won. Seems Melbourne's Storm is now disgraced. I don't predict a sleepless night for most Victorians.

We just don't care.


The Dr Who spin off series Torchwood is an anagram of Dr Who. I puzzled about this briefly a couple of times, before I unabbreviated Doctor Who. The veil lifted and the light became brighter.

Overheard on the Moonee Ponds railway station platform by one old lady to another. 'We have our new Mickey ticket system starting soon'. How right she was.

I keep seeing smoking, skinny rough looking and talking men in their thirties with smoking, fat, rough looking and talking woman in their twenties and they have a baby in a pram. Should I alter the areas I frequent, avoid public transport or just fear for the child?

PM Krudd works his staff too hard. What? They don't have decent working conditions? They can't knock off at their finish time? They have to work more than an eight hour day? They work more than a 40 hour week? Disgraceful, unless they being paid a heap of money, our money. I think they are. Here is a novel approach for PM Krudd from his supposed heartland. Employ enough people and give your staff normal working conditions.

What is that weird black graphic thing that appears on the second page of The Age each day? Something to do with connecting to The Age via you mobile? Nice if The Age told us. Do you get the same in the SMH?

Qantas said no Euro flight until Friday at the earliest. This struck me as an odd thing to state when the situation was fluid. Volcanoes explode and subside. Wind blows in different directions. Qantas is flying now on the Wednesday before Friday, looking for slots into Heathrow.

I had a 'flu shot two days ago. Yesterday I was aching all over and coughing and spluttering. Fine today. I suppose it is worth it to avoid or minimise 'flu.

Locust plague in northern Victoria. You haven't seen a locust plague like the one in the mid seventies. I had to cut up sheets of flywire to put over the radiator and once one sheet was clogged and the water temperature started to rise, I put a fresh sheet in. A plastic scraper and water kind of cleared the windscreen.

The Pigs

I meant to add in the Williamstown post about pigs. The pigs who litter. Daniel recently mentioned somewhere where people had just left rubbish everywhere. I see this happen on the lawns outside the State Library often. The grass outside St Pauls suffers badly, and the small area of grass at the City Square. These are all locations where there are plenty of bins.

But credit where it is due. The good burghers of Williamstown do not litter their beach side park, and nor do their visitors either. Not a wrapper, not a butt, nothing. While I have seen older people litter, it seems to be mostly young people who do the damage. Might I also suggest it is socio-economic too?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Most Attractive Railway Station

Let's just stick to suburban train stations. There are many in country Victoria that would win an attractive station award hands down over any city equivalent. Leaving out our grand Flinders Street Station, what is your nomination for the most attractive Melbourne train station?

I think my favourite would be Brighton Beach Station. I believe it was an original terminus before the train line was extended to Sandringham. What an odd thing to do, extend a train line. Sensibly we don't bother doing that anymore. The bottom photo explains the dead end siding, the original location for the train to terminate.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Style, or not

The saying goes that youth is wasted on the young. Oh dear, a blogmate inspired this post and I have forgotten who, or is that whom. God forbid that I had my present head on youthful shoulders. I am thinking megalomaniac. There are very good reasons why youth is wasted on the young. They would just kill themselves if they were wise enough to know what was to come.

Youth are to be physically admired and sometimes to be admired intellectually. Among the dross of the average, there are some very clever and articulate young people out there, with the total environmental betterment of the human race in mind. Chainsaw Teen Niece is one such person. She doesn't see the bigger picture. She just wants to help the earth and its critters survive, in her own way. I just loves 'em for their passion.

I am totally off where I meant to go with this post. Ok, youth are to be physically admired. When I am sitting somewhere people watching, my score is about one in ten, that is one in ten of youngish people I think that I really like the look of and would like to get to know better. Mostly they are male, but there is the odd female.

I am off topic again. I am avoiding something. Why? Could it be that I may offend?

Another saying is that, While the youth have a duty to expose their bodies, older people have a duty to cover theirs up. Women are perhaps the worst offenders but men aren't far behind.

Our ageing faces and hands we must and should expose but we can cover some of the ageing skin, flabby arms, wrinkled and sun damaged cleavage, stick insect/bulging with cellulite legs, calloused feet with yellow fossilised toe nails .

Have I spoilt what you planned to wear tomorrow? Don't worry, I have three pair of Speedos of different colours and I'm thinking perhaps it is time to switch to shorts for swimming.

And if you think, screw that arrogant queen. I'll wear what I want, then good on you. I admire your confidence.

Monday, April 19, 2010


Oh dear, this photo is a fail. I thought it might amuse an OLD blogmate. Can you still read the headline? There is a reason why he calls me Shirl, but it's too convoluted to explain. Regardless, just don't call me Shirley, or Shirl for that matter..

Over the Bridge, Not So Far Away

Car wash day, so off over the big bad bridge to the west, and then to lunch at Williamstown where it was the Sunday Market at the beach side park.

The market was not a shadow of its former self, with many less stalls. I suppose there are so many markets now, it is stiff competition, but what a lovely site for a market. We bought some food at a stall and sat on the grass under the shade of a large tree and watched the world go by while being entertained by a rather good singer with a guitar. As I said to R, and he agreed, all we need is a couple of banana lounges and we could doze the afternoon away.

We looked in a few shops and then settled for a beer outside the hotel. Just lovely. We went back to the car which had oddly disappeared, and we realised we walked up the wrong street. We walked to where we thought it should be and R stopped and said, it was opposite a park. Oh look, there is a park. Oh look, there is the car, right in front of us.

As we crossed the road opposite this building with a restaurant in it, I said to R, I bet that was an ANZ Bank. Sure enough, a plaque told us it was an E.S. & A. bank, which became ANZ. How did I know? Because I have seen one exactly the same somewhere, but for the life of me, I cannot remember where. Any help?

Sunday, April 18, 2010


You can read the whole post here but below is snip from Evol Kween's latest post.

The thing about starting a new job, or even just meeting new people is the whole 'coming out' thing. It sounds ridiculous, but us homos spend our whole lives 'coming out'.

Because I have worked the same job for a very long time, it is not such a problem for me although I do tire of being asked by new workmates about my children, my wife, why I don't have one etc. I don't usually tell them I am gay. They work it out soon enough themselves. I do find the repetition of the whole business a pain though. I don't blame them. They are natural questions. Notwithstanding, Evol makes a valid point.

I had already written the subject line for this post before I read Evol's piece. What I was going to write about is de-gaying your abode and I read a suggestion in a newspaper that older gay men who need some sort of in house home care or even just home help with cleaning, feel the need to de-gay their house. I look around from where I am sitting and apart from a lack of feminine frippery, there isn't much to indicate two gay men live here.

But have a look at the books on the shelves, the cds, the dvds (at the moment the dvds would indicate that we have a child). These are all things a cleaner would see. Come one of our birthdays, there is bound to be at least one birthday card with a handsome male on it, in stages of dress or undress, on display. We haven't, but many gay men would have homoerotic art on their walls.

Perhaps we could be under the care of religious organisation. Gay people have de-gayed their home so that they can continue to get care by sternly religious volunteers. I learnt from ABC Radio National that there is an old gay couple in Sydney, one with dementia and in a church run nursing home. His partner visits him, but has to take care to not show affection if front of anyone. You can't say well, get him into a non religious home. You often can't pick and choose in these matters. Besides, maybe he is of that religion and wants to be in a church run home. He can choose to deny his religion or his sexuality, but can't have both.

Maybe I have just been lucky, but I haven't any life affecting instances of homophobia against me. That may well change in the future.

Below are the lyrics of a very amusing song called Straightening Up the House, by artists Romanovsky and Phillips. It is much better to hear it than just read the lyrics, but the world is a selfish place and no one has uploaded it to Youtube.

Straightening Up The House lyrics
(Sometimes getting the house ready for Mom & Dad's visit requires
more than a dust rag and some Pledge...)
Today I took the nudes down off the wall
Ten minutes after I received her telephone call
She'll be here Friday morning so there's not much time to clean
Better hide the Advocate and Mandate magazine
We'll redecorate the guest room so it looks like it's been used
Separate our wardrobes or she'll really be confused
Then get ready for a lonely week of sleeping on the couch
We're straightening up the house
Tomorrow I will put away your gay pride shirts
And our Halloween assortment of jewelry, pumps and skirts
Then pack up all the books by Quentin Crisp and Rita Mae
And the "His & His" towels that you bought me yesterday
And you'd better hide the albums by that lesbian group
She has no ear for music, but she has been known to snoop
And remember not to kiss me, just forget that you're my spouse
Straightening up the house
The snapshots of the two of us in Spain will have to go
Don't tell me this is totally insane, because I know
And I cannot wear the wristwatch with our names engraved in gold
The one that says "I love you, John, with all my heart and soul"
This is our first Christmas here in our new home
In a hostile world, it's our only safety zone
I never should have promised I'd continue with this lie
But Dad was so certain if she found out she would die
But if it's killing anyone I think it's killing me
'Cause it tears me up inside to hide my true identity
And asking you to help me makes me feel like such a louse
I'm thirty-two years old, why am I acting like a mouse?
I'm a man and he's my lover
If she freaks out she'll recover
C'mon and help me to just CLEAN the house!