halloween monster mash

art by chris sandersYes, it's the time of ghouls and hobgoblins, zombies and witches, pumpkins and things that go "ARRGGGHHHHHHHHH!" in the night...

Australia doesn't really DO Halloween, but I always like to post something vaguely appropriate to the day, especially given that I'm a fan of the strange and macabre...

Last year it was a Halloween meme... the year before a list of Halloween safety tips... this year, it's quizzes...

So if you'll excuse me, since the weather is co-operating with a cool, overcast and occasionally rainy day, I'm going to go and dig out a bunch of scary movies from my collection and have myself a big ol' horror day...

You Could Be a Vampire... If You Had To

Like most people, the thought of being a vampire has crossed your mind. But you're not sure if you'd do it, even if you could.

Living forever doesn't sound half bad, if you could live forever with the people you love the most.

But do vampires even love? And would the vampire version of you even be you?

It's all too much to contemplate. Luckily, the chances of you ever becoming a vampire are astronomically low.

What you would like best about being a vampire: Living forever

What you would like least about being a vampire: Blood stained teeth

You Are a Werewolf

You're unpredictable, moody, and downright freaky.

You seem sweet and harmless, until you snap. Then you're a total monster.

Very few people can predict if you're going to be Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde.

But for you, all your transformations seem perfectly natural.

Your greatest power: Your ability to tap into nature

Your greatest weakness: Lack of self control

You play well with: Vampires

What Your Halloween Habits Say About You

A bit of an introvert, you like the special occasions just as much as everyone else. You just have your own unique way of celebrating Halloween.

You're weird. You're downright deviant. And you use dressing up in a costume as an excuse to act out.

Your inner child is open minded, playful, and adventurous.

You truly fear the dark side of humanity. You are a true misanthrope.

You're prone to be quite emotional and over dramatic. Deep down, you enjoy being scared out of your mind... even if you don't admit it.

You are picky and high maintenance. If you wear a Halloween costume, it's only when you really feel like it. And it has to be perfect.

Your Halloween Costume Should Be

A Flying Monkey

Current Mood:

bad bad monday

mondays suckYesterday just felt like one big, long, ongoing fuckup...

So much so that instead of blogging about it I just threw in the towel and gave up on everything and figured I would just try again today.

It wasn't really... not after about lunchtime, it just felt that way...

To start with, due partially to the whole Daylight Savings "losing an hour" fiasco... as well, I will admit, as not going to bed before midnight on both Saturday (well, maybe it was technically 11pm, since you know, Daylight Savings again) and Sunday... I shut my alarm off when it first went off and just went back to bed for a bit. So I ended up getting up about half an hour late for my walk...

Which doesn't sound like much of a drama... but it just kind of set the tone for the rest of the day.

Then while I was checking my blogroll I got a virus warning... and I actually got the same virus warning on Sunday, but the system caught it so I wasn't that worried. But because it happened twice I figured I should probably investigate. Checked out what the virus checker website had to say about it... followed the instructions to the letter... had to switch things off, start the computer in "Safe Mode" and run a system scan... now I don't know about anybody else, but when I have to run a virus scan thing like that it just takes FOR-EV-ER! An hour and a half in fact... all the while I sat here twiddling my thumbs waiting for it to find something. Which it didn't... but I followed the rest of the instructions... deleted the temp files and the internet cache... rebooted, reconnected, started rechecking my blogroll again... BAM! Same virus came up again. But again the software caught it.

The only thing I can think is that it has to be coming from somebody on my blogroll (which is looking even more likely because so far this morning... nothing... plus the fact that it's only ever happened when I've been in the midst of my blogroll)... I have my suspicions, but I'm not going to name and shame anybody until I'm sure... if you get an email addressed from me titled "check for viruses" then you know you're in trouble...

Anyway... by that point I was kind of just over everything... was over an hour "late" for lunch... and just ended up with a big ol' sad going on for the rest of the day.

I really HATE when my computer comes down with something... even if it's not (or doesn't seem) fatal or whatever... I just end up feeling somewhere between a low level of underlying panic and a slight amount of depression because I can't fix it. And I'm not a fan of either of those emotions, let alone the pair of them.

Oh, and to round out my day, Mythbusters was a repeat for no reason... okay, that's kinda down there on the list of "Possible Horrible Things", but given how I was feeling yesterday, it was the imperfect end to the imperfect day...

In contract, today has been... well... thus far anyway... kinda weird. Not bad... I dunno... just kinda strange.

Got up when my alarm went off, so that was okay... checked my letterbox on the way out as I usually do (just in case it's crammed full of junk mail or anything), and there was the stupid dumbass flyer for my street's annual Christmas Party, which I wouldn't have a problem with were it not for the fact that they hold it on the grass verge right outside my bedroom window. The flyer is possibly a little early this year, but other than that it's okay...

There just seemed to be a LOT of people around this morning... whether it was because I was a bit later yesterday... or whether Tuesday is a busier day than Monday and I've just never really noticed it before... I dunno...

As I hit the river path near the Zoo (I on clockwise rotation this week) I went past one of my old gym instructors who also, it seems, does a sideline in personal training. Seeing him in and of itself wasn't a surprise... I've had run-ins with him before... and I've seen him doing his personal training gig at least once before. It was more the fact that because I wasn't wearing my sunglasses he actually noticed that I made eye contact with him, although neither of us nodded or anything else... but just as he was about to cross out of my field of vision I saw a ghost of a smile start on his face... I don't know whether it was just an "I know you" smile... or what... it was just odd.

The other really weird thing happened at the other end of the river... as I was coming up to the weir this guy (actually he was one of two guys) with a clipboard started to approach me. I'd seen him standing there as I was approaching and was just thinking to myself "Whatever you're doing or selling or asking, just leave me alone"... I had half a mind to ignore him as he got closer, but he seemed very earnest about the whole thing, so I took out my earphone and instead of the conversation I thought I was going to have he just said "Can you just wait here for a minute, we're filming somebody coming over the bridge?"...

I'm sorry... what now? But sure enough, there as a camera just down this little side path. So I stood there, like a schmuck... and he stopped these two other people... but people were still coming from the other direction (nice forward planning there boys) and in the end, they just let us go across. As I was heading across I couldn't actually see anybody that looked like "an actor"... just some dude on a bike... who, as he rode past me, I realised was actually director, Scott Hicks. So god only knows what the hell that was all about... I'm guessing it was probably for something like Talking Heads... although if Scott Hicks does avidly cycle down by the Torrens he doesn't do it on weekdays, or the same time that I'm doing it anyway, because you would have thought at some point I would have noticed.

And now I'm just waiting, as they say, for the other shoe to drop... to see if this virus issue is actually solved, if it shows up again, if it's actually caused by one of my daily blog visits... or if something else is going to drop out of the sky instead...

Current Mood:

unconscious mutterings 247

Stoopid Daylight Savings... throwing out my whole routine... *mutter mutter* Unconscious Mutterings *mutter mutter*...

  1. Inaugural :: Ball

  2. Pledge :: of Allegience (jeeze, I'm off to a highly American start aren't I!)

  3. String :: Theory

  4. Trot :: Horse

  5. Fitness :: First

  6. Cinder :: Block

  7. Edge :: ing

  8. 31 :: Flavours

  9. Blue :: Claw

  10. Leather :: Harness

Current Mood:

ill timed sauna adventures

the son goes downYou know those days when you couldn't organise a metaphor about something easy while standing in a metaphor factory... that would be today...

My timing was just shithouse today... or my horoscope was misaligned... or my karma was out of whack... or SOMETHING!

Actually, I know what it was... it's Daylight Savings... yup *nods head*... has to be... anything that goes wrong for the next few days or so... Daylight Saving's fault...

Anyway, I took myself off to the sauna this afternoon... it's the last Sunday of the month, so that means it was Bears in the Mist day... but I have to say... Bears in the Mist... deader than dead... in fact approaching undeadness... so dead it's coming back the other way.

Sorry, I think I scrambled my brains with all the heat, cool, wander, heat, cool, wander I did this afternoon...

It all started well... it ended pretty well (mostly because I figured that the encounter at the end was as good a time to call it a day as any... although there were other influences)... but everything in the middle was just dead or shitty... the beginning and end were somewhat unexpected encounters though I have to say... had you lined all the possible options up and asked me to choose who was the most likely, I would never have chosen those particular two guys. Not that it was bad in either case... just unexpected.

But the parts inbetween those two events that weren't dead were a whole world of "Old Homo Week"... everywhere I turned there seemed to be somebody I knew, or have known in the biblical sense...

Firstly there was the guy I've mentioned before with the tribal tattoo on one arm and the elephant tattoo on the other... who, although I didn't realise it at the time, put on a little show with somebody else I've been Biblical with in the steam room (just the two of them doing the do and me watching... possibly I could have joined in, but they seemed to be more interested in each other than any outside interference or assistance)... who I picked up at one of the few Bear Den Nights I went to. And when I saw them outside of the steam room they were both talking to a guy that I'm SURE I used to know (but we're talking yeeeeears ago, not long after I'd moved out of home)... although I now know him more from his online profiles than in person. Then there was Hot Sweaty Monkey Sex Guy from about a million billion years ago (okay, sometime within the last, say, eight years)... so called for fairly obvious reasons, but also because I kinda threw him around like a rag doll and I don't think we said more than two words to each other the whole time he was here... I couldn't throw him around like that now though, since he's, well, spread out a bit... but then who hasn't... didn't look that bad on him actually.

There were also a couple of other guys who looked familiar although I couldn't place them... possibly I just know them from their Gaydar profiles... I dunno (hello, welcome to Adelaide, home of Two Degrees of Kevin Bacon). But speaking of Gaydar profiles, there was a guy there I've seen online in various places who was actually part of the whole "crappy timing" thing, but I'll get to that in a second.

The final nail in the "Hey, I know you" coffin came towards the end of my visit, and to be honest, was the other part of the reason I figured it was time to go. I was sitting in the spa and caught a glimpse of one of the guys as he went past... and he looked familiar, then he came back and sat down nearby. Turned out to be Fox... I'd recognise his profile (that would be his face in profile, not his internet profile) anywhere... even dimly lit, at a distance and without my glasses. He hadn't recognised me, but that was understandable, since I was lacking glasses and my hair was wet... and I did consider just making a run for it without saying hello, but I figured that would be the chickenshit way out, so I said hi, we had a brief little chat and then I made a run for it. Only to see somebody else I'd had a thing with in the locker room when I got in there. But he's working at the sauna on and off now, so that one wasn't that surprising.

There may have been others... but nobody springs to mind right this second.

Then I had to deal with the fact that Ma was having a panic attack and had called me five times during the afternoon... well, eight actually... five when I actually looked at the phone, then she called twice more, which I killed because I was still inside, then she called a final time once I got outside into the "smoking" area (and, because the Universe is evil, Hot Sweaty Monkey Sex Guy was also out there talking to somebody on his mobile at the time too... except waaaay down the other end). She'd managed to work herself up to a full on tizzy because she'd called me an hour and a half before and I hadn't called her back... according to her she was about to get in the car to drive down to my place to make sure I wasn't dead... freakin drama queen woman. And all because she'd seen something in the video store and wanted to ask me if we wanted it. I'm just glad I decided to check my phone at some point during the afternoon (mostly to check the time, which, because she was all overexcited, I actually forgot to do and had to go back afterwards and have another look), because I didn't trust that they'd remembered to put the clocks at the sauna forward an hour. And of course I couldn't tell her WHY I hadn't answered the phone, so I ended up making a vague reference to being "out". I don't know why TODAY she had to have a freakout... but then that would be that timing thing again, wouldn't it.

Like I said earlier, today was all about my timing being shot to hell...

If I'm being honest it was all just one long exercise in frustration, because I never quite seemed to be in the right place at the right time. To be honest it may have been the case that even if I had been in the right place at the right time it wouldn't have done me any good... but you always assume that it's going to go your way in those situations don't you.

The premium example of that was the guy I mentioned earlier... although I don't know if my interpretation of the events and situation is actually the correct one, since I'm just filling in the blanks and drawing my own conclusions... and we know how well that usually works... The guy in question, although it sounds mean to say, isn't a good look... he just isn't... but at some point he managed to "collect" the youngest, prettiest, thinnest and smoothest (we're talking shaved from the neck down basically) guy. I don't know if they turned up together (and were actually "together" as well), or if he'd just befriended this guy or what the hell the deal was, but it was one of those "I wish that was me" moments... originally I was going to say "that should have been me", but I know that whatever the nature of the relationship between Young & Pretty and Big & Ugly actually is, I'm still just plain jealous... well, unless it turns out that B&U isn't getting into Y&P's pants and it's just an exercise in sexual frustration... those I can do all on my own.

To be honest I actually did some thinking about other random stuff while I was wandering about the sauna aimlessly... the first of which was that I don't often say how something made me FEEL when I blog... I say what happened but I don't know that I always say what I was feeling about it. Or maybe I do and I don't realise it... but the thought process that I had kind of told me that I didn't. I'm not promising I'll completely change my style of blogging, but I want to try and include more of the feeling and thought process if and when I remember.

The other thought process probably took place because I was sitting somewhere I've had the exact same thought process on previous occasions. I was sitting in the spa just watching the bubbles swirling though my hand and just wanted to be writing again. Not writing like this... but, you know... writing writing. On at least two previous occasions sitting in the spa at a sauna (I remember one instance at 431 and one at the other sauna we used to have) has triggered off story ideas... not that you would know it from the finished products... but they did. Although, to be honest, sitting here right now I kind of know why I don't write much beyond this blog anymore... well, other than the fact I ran out of ideas a while back... but I just don't get peace and quiet... well I do... but just not enough of it. But if I follow that thought to it's logical conclusion I'll start off on a whole other rant that everybody has heard before, so we won't go there.

At some point later on I might have to dig out at least the one finished story and have a look at it. Who knows.

So yeah... all in all I'm not quite sure HOW I feel about the events of this afternoon... I think maybe we might thumb through our Word of the Day calendar until we find the word "conflicted"... or maybe "confused"... words beginning with "con" anyway...

Current Mood:

personality cluster

Your Personality Cluster is Introverted Intuition

You are:
  • Multilayered and complex

  • Inspired and driven to achieve your goals

  • A visionary with a complete life plan

  • Intuitive enough to understand difficult problems, ideas, and people

Current Mood:

stormy shopping

stormy weatherOy vey! What weather we're having today!

As I look out the window right now the sky is blanketed with these pale browny-orange greyish clouds... the wind is a-blowin (periodically) and it's all a bit yucky looking. Cool, but yucky looking. And, surprisingly, quite warm... it was supposed to be 31°C today... I'm not sure if it ever got there, but I wouldn't be surprised. But I don't mind it being that hot when it's all windy and stormy like this... it's just my kind of weather.

Now if only the dumbass children in my building would shut up so I could enjoy the weather (and the fact I have my lounge room windows WIIIIIIIDE open) in some peace and quiet.

C'mon Mother Nature, damn you... pour with rain already and drown the little idiots.

Also, this will come under the general heading of "Way Too Much Information" but my feet stink like a son of a bitch today for some reason. I can't work it out... I've been wearing my open red sandals all day, so it's not the whole "confined in shoes" thing... and the shoes themselves only stink a little bit... but my feet smell like... well, think of something that smells nasty, and that's how my feet smell. Which is weird, because they usually don't... honest! It wouldn't be so bad, but I keep getting a whiff... I can only guess it's something to do with the weather... although I don't remember ever having this problem before on days like this.

Moving on though, since the last thing anybody wants to do is hear about my stinkyass feet...

Let's talk about shopping instead...

Today wasn't a bad day for shopping... We didn't necessarily BUY a lot... but we went to a lot of places.

First there was the regular food shopping thing... blah blah corn... blah blah things off the "reduced rack"... blah blah inappropriate chocolate items... blah blah Iced Coffee... blah blah ham... blah blah Halloween M&M's in a Glow in the Dark bag... blah blah sliced ham...

Then after we'd come back here and I'd unpacked everything we wandered a couple of streets over to the North Adelaide Institute where they were having a second hand book sale. I think possibly they were stock from a variety of different second hand stores (although from what I ended up with, a lot of them seem to have come from the Port Adelaide Market Book Stall, but I did see other stamps inside books)... and quite possibly it was stuff that they just couldn't sell or didn't have room for or whatever... particularly since not only had some of the books seen better days, but there was a HIGH (and I mean HIIIIIIIIGH) proportion of crappy romance novels.

When we first got there it reminded me of the library sales we used to go to when I was in my teens... rows and rows and rows and rows of trestle tables, all filled with books lying on their sides and people by the truckload making their way up and down the rows.

Initially I didn't think I was going to find anything even halfway decent... I think I did a total circuit (if a completely disorganised one with no system or order to it) of all the tables and nothing jumped out at me... partly because of all the damn romance novels getting in the way, but also because there were about a trillion people all packed into this somewhat small hall, going up and down and up and down... and on occasion it was very much a test of my patience and to see if I could resist finding a hardback book or a weighty paperback to start bludgeoning people with. Luckily I was able to resist... and the longer we were there, the more the crowd thinned out.

It turned out we were there for an hour and a half all up... but it must have been at least half an hour before I picked up a book (and actually kept it in my hand after I worked out what it was). Interestingly enough though, I don't know if I actually ended up keeping said book, or if it got put back down again at some stage... possibly it was The Joy Luck Club (since I did end up bringing that home), but I know that the novelisation of Mars Attacks wasn't far behind.

Because everything was $1, I did pick up a bunch of stuff that was just really, really, really random and bad and wrong... and once I've read some of them, I might have to do a few Book Crossing "dumps"...

My favourite out of the "Bad & Wrong" pile has to be The Hephaestus Plague... part of the blurb on the back reads... "They came from within dark caverns in the bowels of the earth... a new species of insect - a beetle which needed to destroy in order to survive... the first creature other than man with the ability to create fire." It sounded SO bad, I just had to get it...

In the "Reasonable" pile, other than Joy Luck and Mars Attacks are the first two Bourne books (Identity and Supremacy), the novelisation of Short Circuit (a favoured movie of my youth), Beaches 2 (who knew there was such a thing as a sequel to Beaches!) and three books of the homosexualist persuasion... Maurice by E.M. Forster, Time of Our Darkness (which I used to own, but never actually read) and a silly little cartoon type book called Why Gay Guys Are a Girl's Best Friend. Interestingly enough I saw at least two or three people pick it up (all women), but they always put it back down again... so I felt like I had to save it. I'm sure it's silly and full of stereotypes, but it could be good for a giggle.

In the end, I went from not being able to find a damn thing to bringing home eighteen books... me bad...

After that we headed down to Marion because Ma wanted to start thinking about the whole idea of Christmas presents... I know... it's still October (although only barely)... but the stores do have their Christmas decorations out already, and the Christmas Pageant is only two weeks away... and then it's only about eight weeks until Christmas... damn... eight weeks... where the bloody hell did 2007 go? Seriously... wasn't it just March like five minutes ago?

Sorry... I got distracted then... what was I saying? Oh, yes... Marion. Marion is usually good for these kinds of excursions because it has one of every possible type of department store you could want, all under one roof... plus all the other little chi-chi-la-la shops.

And I have NO idea why, but for the first little while after we got there I was so Mr Grumpy Pants. I still can't work out what that was all about, although I did feel a tiny bit light headed when we got out of the car... so maybe it had something to do with that. I try not to take it out on Ma when I get like that, sometimes with varying degrees of success... or else I make sure I specifically tell her that I'm having a Cranky... not at her, but just in general.

I'm a moody little fucker really...

Fortunately it didn't really last that long.

I did manage to find a new pair of sweat pants at the Red Circle Boutique... EXACTLY the same style as the ones I have that are fast becoming unwearable... I did think that they were at least a size smaller... but turns out they're the same size too. I think the original ones were two sizes smaller from a pair I'd had before them. Who the hell knows anymore. I was halfway tempted to buy two pairs, just to stop the whole "I can't find anything in the style I like" problem from re-emerging... but it didn't turn out to be THAT much of a trauma to find a pair, plus they lasted a reasonable length of time.

Other than that we didn't really buy very much of anything... a few cheap candles at Dusk... something to add to the handbag I bought one of my cousin's girls... I want to get something similar for the older girl too... but I haven't seen anything that's RIGHT yet... I don't actually know what the hell I'm looking for, but I know that I'll know it when I see it.

And that was pretty much my day really...

Current Mood:

photo friday: purple iris

purple irisJust a little something I shot at the Botanic Gardens last weekend... although I have to say, I don't actually remember taking this shot. I did, obviously, but I'm drawing a blank as to the details.

I just like the purple and yellow against the green though.

Current Mood:

life blogger

You Are a Life Blogger!

Your blog is the story of your life - a living diary.

If it happens, you blog it. And make it as entertaining as possible.

Current Mood:

street scribble

little blue tudeno cock parkingGenerally I'm not a fan of random graffiti "tagging"... although it should come as no surprise to anybody that I prefer me some street art... but I snapped these two on my Sidestreets and Alleyways wander (I really need to do some more of that while the weather is nice but not too hot).

I love the little blue dude (or "little blue 'tude" as I keep calling him)... another version of him also showed up on a street sign... which in turn showed up on the montage I did (middle row, far left)...

And I just thought the other sign was funny... I'm not sure if somebody just wanted to write a "dirty" word on something and the sign was the closest thing to hand... or if somebody really was concerned that there should be "no cock parking" in that area.

Current Mood:

random bouska hotness

Another bumper post for today's Random Hotness... and this time I'm featuring the work of photographer, Adam Bouska.

Actually I've featured Bouska's work before, and also the model at the top left, Christian Yanik in a previous Hotness... but at the time I didn't realise who either the photographer or model were.

I went through Adam's site a while ago and so much of his stuff is just gorgeous that I was a little spoiled for choice and originally I was going to turn this into four different posts (one for each of the models), but I realised I had four different models, and the two shots of each of them weren't always that different... so why not just do another "four poster"...

christian yanik by adam bouskacasey c by adam bouska
josh westover by adam bouskakyle v by adam bouska

Current Mood: mmmmmm hotness

sydney here i come

yani on tour! march 2008! sydney!Okay, so not, you know... SOON or anything... in fact not for another one hundred and thirty eight days, in March next year.

But on the upside, I'll be spending at least part of my 34th birthday in Sydney.

It all came about because Ma went over to Melbourne... I mean the idea of Sydney was already there, and I had floated the concept of using my tax refund to partially fund a trip, but I think after Ma went to Melbourne she got the travel bug again. Then she spotted an article in the paper about Virgin Blue and CrapStar both having a sale on discount fares to various places...

As a brief aside, that whole "cheap fare" thing is a big fat joke... yes, you're only paying $89 per person for a ticket... but then they slug you with petrol changes and wear and tear on the trolley dolly's shoes and, I don't know... cream bun insurance... and before you know it, your supposedly $178 fare actually costs you $356 or thereabouts. Rudeness.

Anyway... where was I... oh yeah... so I'd had a look at the fares, had a look at hotels... and in theory it seemed doable. So we discussed it briefly last night after the movie and decided why the hell not.

So we're all booked... leaving on March 11, staying four days, three nights, coming back on my birthday on March 14.

Now all I need to do is track down a decent cheap hotel closer to the time... something either actually IN the city, or very, very close to the city, since I'll be travelling with Ma, who, although sprightly, is still a 60 year old woman (which is just scary when you say it out loud like that).

And that, gentle readers, is where you all come in... both those of you living in Sydney and those of you who've visited Sydney... I need ideas about places to go (when does that scupture thing happen down along the beach?), things to see (where would I find good street art in Sydney?) , things we totally HAVE to see, things or places we really should avoid, places to eat, places to shop (what's a really good gay bookstore?), any festivals or special events that might be on while we're there... and if anybody has ideas on hotels, feel free to mention them.

I'm kind of leaning towards the Devere Hotel right at the moment... you can get the rooms really cheaply on one of those "cheap hotel room last minute" websites, it's a three and a half star place (which I ASSUME isn't bad) and it doesn't seem THAT far out of the way, being in Potts Point, and they do single rooms with their own bathrooms... it doesn't need to be fancy, since if our excursion to Melbourne a few years back is any indication, we only really came back to the hotel to either drop things off, or else relax a little/sleep.

There are also one or two fellow Bloggers I will definitely be catching up with for an evening bevvie and a chat (with a possible side order of huggage or else slappage, I haven't decided yet)... you know who you are!

It also means that for the first time since I started blogging every day, I'll end up with a four day hole in my blog... although I'll probably take a journal with me, scribble all my thoughts down and retropost when I get back.

And because I'm the biggest dork this side of the Kingdom of Dorkness (I am Lord of the Dork, all lesser dorks bow before me)... I found a little "countdown clock" to count down my days and hours and minutes until I head off... so that's going to take pride of place in the left menu until March... although I have to be honest... I'm not sure how accurate the countdown is when it comes to the hours and minutes... it seems to be out somehow...

Just between you and me and the garden gate... I'm freakin out about this whole thing just a teeny tiny little bit. I'm not completely sure why though. Whether it's finding an appropriate hotel, whether it's just going somewhere that's UTTERLY unknown to me, or what, I don't know... but I'm this big mix of excitement ("I'm going to Sydney, I'm going to Sydney... WOOHOO!") and nerves ("I got flutterbies in my tummy"). And I have 138 days to think about this... oh great... I have 138 days to obsess... who's stupid idea was this?

So look out Sydney... yani's a'comin' (and Ma too)...

Current Moods:

movies: ratatouille

ratatouille - he's dying to become a chefI'll be honest... I wasn't expecting a whole lot from Ratatouille...

Pixar's last couple of excursions weren't THAT great (Incredible and Cars, I'm looking at you)... but this one actually exceeded my expectations (possibly because, as I said, I wasn't expecting much... I dunno).

Before I go any further though, I have to take my hat off to Lifted, the "short" that appeared before the main movie... I really like this idea of the short... they can show off an idea that doesn't have (or need) the fleshing out of a full length movie, and I assume people who wouldn't ordinarily get a look in as a director can cut their teeth on one of these mini movies. They obviously learned their lesson about just having these things essentially "silent" from previous instances though... you just get it without the need for words. And Lifted is just plain funny.

Getting back to our feature presentation though.

Pixar always surprises and delights me each time with the leaps and bounds that their effects and textures and just general technology takes with each feature. And Ratatouille is no exception... their ability to render fur and hair... wet, dry, messy, sleek... is amazing, I mean it's been pretty damn good in the past, but this time around it was just fantastic... but I have to say, the single most impressive "effect" or texture... I'm not quite sure what it would come under... was a piece of bread. Yeah, I know how that sounds, but this was AMAZING. You know when you tear a piece of bread and it has that light, almost transparent texture at the edges... where it's all "bubbles" with thin amounts of bread between them... they GOT it... 100% perfect. It looked like you could have reached out, grabbed it and taken a bite. Actually all the food was pretty impressive, but that one piece of bread was just the standout for me. Sad, but true.

There were also a lot of really impressive shots of Paris. From the very first shot we see of the city, through to a beautiful night time skyline from the human character, Linguini's, apartment... even down to just the small details of the courtyard at the back of the restaurant, it all looked beautiful.

But movies like this can look stunning without having a leg to stand on story-wise, however Ratatouille managed quite a decent plot. And unlike Cars, it wasn't a plot you really predicted right from the word go and were just waiting for it to happen. I'm not saying there were any major twists or turns, but it wasn't predictable either... well, except for the fact that you knew at some point that the rat had to be exposed...

And it was genuinely funny at times too... laugh out loud funny rather than just wry smile funny... and I got a tiny touch emotional towards the end (oh shut up... these movies make with the emotional manipulation). Like with a lot of movies of this nature, they sometimes put too many of the really good or funny bits into the trailers, so you end up knowing what's coming next at certain points. That's not necessarily the fault of Pixar/Disney though, since that happens with a whole bunch of movies, especially comedies.

None of the voice talent really stood out as "Oh look, Celebrity Voice Actor"... well, with the exception of Peter O'Toole as the restaurant critic, Anton Ego (even though Ma and I couldn't actually work out who the hell he was at first, which was highly frustrating)... in fact, it wasn't until I looked on IMDB that I realised that the female lead, Colette, was voiced by Janeane Garofalo. Possibly because she had the whole French accent thing going on, but still.

So all in all it was not only visually stunning, but actually a pretty good story too.

yani's rating: 3 chef's toques out of 5


wading bird 2007billabong 2007Dipping into the archives a little here... a couple of shots from my Grand Adventure... these being the St Peter's Billabong.

Current Mood:

po faced pm

Obviously I was tempting fate yesterday when I referenced this post as one of the strange things I've seen on my walk...

Because our Prime Minister, Little Johnny Howard, is in town again and I went past him and his entourage on both sides of the river. Since I had no idea he was in town I couldn't initially work out what the big group of people coming towards me was all about... and then I saw a guy with a camera... but I thought he was photographing the swans, since he was right in the middle of them... then I realised he was shooting the walkers... and then suddenly there was LJH leading the pack.

He did look incredibly po-faced though... but checking online for photos of him walking (which are somewhat harder to find than you would think) just before, I came across the reason he was probably a little cranky on the AdelaideNow website...

"Mr Howard is in Adelaide today and was walking along the banks of the River Torrens when a passing rower jeered him.

'Bloody arsehole', the middle-aged man yelled at Mr Howard.

Mr Howard was otherwise greeted by many well-wishers, including a rowing crew of five high school girls. "
I had my headphones in, so I didn't hear anything... but it could have happened just before I saw them... that would explain the photographers running to get a shot of the PM looking all cranky (especially given that it's the second time in two days he's been heckled... hehehe).

And at least if you're a rower (and presumably in the middle of the river at the time) then the PM's bodyguards aren't going to wrestle you to the ground or cart you off in a paddy wagon (although there were at least two police wagons that I spotted near the river... or else the same one in two different spots).

Also, being able to find a "rowing crow of five high school girls" on the River Torrens in the morning is a bit like shooting fish in the proverbial barrel... the river was just lousy with boy and girl crews again this morning.

As a brief aside, the website has the story exactly as I pasted it in... the word "arsehole" in full... but the Herald Sun website (which is also a "News Network" paper) has it with the word censored to "a**ehole"... not sure what that's about... maybe Herald Sun readers are more easily shocked.

I just want to know who the hell all the people with Little Johnny were... there must have been at least 20 of them all walking with him/behind him. A fair few were journalists or photographers or cameramen, but mostly they were easy to spot (the photographers and cameramen anyway)... as was the lone boom mike operator. Poor dear... carrying all that equipment, especially the big long pole, and trying to keep up with the PM (who, for an old fogey, can really move).

What a difference an election makes though... last time there wasn't a camera in sight (at least not on the second day of his visit when I actually saw him).

I did notice that the guy I mentioned last time... with the glasses... was there again... but at the back of the pack this time. And I'd still love to know what it is he does...

Current Mood:

montage monday: petals in the park

petals in the park 2007You know what slows me down 99 times out of 100 when it comes to blogging... working out what the first sentence should be... breaking the crisp white desert which is the blank page... it needs to have something that will make the people keep reading, but you can't keep recycling the same thing over and over and over again because then it gets boring... so sometimes you just have to write your way through it.

Today's Monday Montage is, unsurprisingly given Saturday's excursion, all about the Botanic again... and had a little bit of colour match planning going on as I was putting it together... not sure if that was a good thing or not though...

I swear that my landlord is up to something (again, or possibly, still) ... Not only has he bought/requisitioned a bunch of new wheelie bins for the apartment block (the existing ten or so we have currently have been fine for the ten years I've lived in this building, but since he changed the type of tenant living here to "asshole", suddenly those bins aren't enough and they're regularly filled to capacity by the weekend... which isn't so good given that our rubbish pick up is Tuesday... although I do think that DOUBLE the number of bins is just a wee bit excessive... we would have been fine with maybe three or four more)... meaning that I'll have a lovely view of big dark green wheelie bins from my living room window... but he got the "gardeners" in over the weekend...

I figured when I saw them in the courtyard on Saturday that the three struggling trees were possibly not long for this world, since he had a history of getting them hacked down right when they start to get useful for shading the apartments (the ones we have at the moment are what's growing out of the remains of the chopped down versions), but it turns out that they were just there for a random "make more pretty" exercise. And the garden does, as a matter of fact... they clipped and dug and raked and trimmed and basically made sure everything was back inside the colouring-in lines of the garden beds. But I'm positive he's up to something sneaky or underhanded or whatever... it's been FOREVER since anybody has touched the garden (not since Skateboard Guy left I think... and he was only doing a half assed job at it). So why suddenly has he felt the need to do something about it? I'd say I was paranoid, but I know what he's like...

Given that this weekend probably marked our first taste of real summer weather since, well, last summer... I think I can sum up my mood quite simply... ME NO LIKEE! And it wasn't even as bad as it will get once we get to summer. There are two upsides however... firstly it meant that the honey I put on my Weetbix was actually a liquid instead of almost a solid this morning... and now that it's over, today's weather is much more to my liking, thus far anyway... that warmish but totally overcast and raining intermittently type of thing... I LOVE that!

Oh, and it's possible that the rowers are back... well, the girls and the old people have been around all year, but the boys could be back (probably not the SAME boys... but boy rowers anyway)... they weren't out and about when I was walking this morning, but the river was so packed out with big rowing boat things (what the hell are those things called?) on, I think, Wednesday last week that it got a little ridiculous at times (three or four boat things waiting while other boat things turned around at the end of the run... although why they all needed to turn in the same square foot is anybody's guess... it's not THAT narrow a river).

Still on the subject of my walk, I saw possibly one of the stranger things I've ever seen while walking (and that's saying something!)... two Asian girls (well, I think they were both girls... one was kind of round and somewhat gender non-specific and I wasn't paying that much attention) and the rounder of the two was carrying a tortoise... a big ass tortoise too... as far as those things go (I know because my Year 7 teacher had two of them and we looked after the pair for the year... but they were only little tiny ones). I did wonder what the hell they were doing... whether they were stealing it (at the time there were some racial stereotype thoughts about the possibility of them turning it into soup)... but thinking about it afterwards I wondered if the tortoise had managed to get itself stranded up in the carpark near the weir and they were returning it to the river (and since that particular bit of path is seperated from the river by a proverbial load of reeds, they would have had to carry it further down the path). I think I saw two little figures heading down towards the water as I headed down the other bank, but the trees were mostly in the way, so I can't be sure.

And my walking trackpants are on their last legs... they've finally succumbed to the illness that most of my pants end up suffering from... Rubbingthighitis... the number of pairs of pants I've lost to that disease are too numerous to mention... and although the pants look just fine overall, they're developing the telltale holes that signal an attack of this fatal condition. And of course all the sweatpants they currently have at the Red Circle Boutique are just plain UG-A-LEE! I really, really should have bought at least two pairs of this style back when they had them... *sigh*

Bloody buggery Ma... when we were out on Saturday she mentioned something about calendars, not for the first time, and made a reference to me making her one like last year... I think the first time she brought the subject up a while ago my response was just "No way"... given all the random drama of actually getting Stu to print the thing (although her response to that was that we could just go and see the nice folks at Officeworks and get them to print it). Plus I had enough trouble finding appropriate images last time... and any other ideas that Ma was considering were things that you could already buy as a calendar... like lighthouses. But then she said (and I'm surprised that it took her that long to come up with it as an idea) that I could do her a calendar using my photos.

I didn't give her any kind of definitive answer, but yesterday I found myself going through all my digital photos and picking out things that could possibly be used in the same calendar format as I already have (if I do this thing I'm SO not reinventing the wheel to do it)... then recut and resized my choices to be the correct size for the calendar... trouble is there are about sixty images... I actually have enough images to make one of "blue sky with stuff", one of "flowers", one with nothing but "water", nearly one of "architecture" (well, I could do a whole one but I'd have to reuse some of the "sky" images) and then I'm one image shy of one make up of everything that's left (which would be less interesting, so we won't be doing that)... alternatively I could do one with images appropriate to the month of the year that they're for...

Last night I ended up retrofitting a new copy of the Photoshop file from last year so that all the months start on the right day and have the correct number of days in them. And rather ominously I have a browser window open at The Quotations Page to possibly dig out some new/different quotes to add to each month. Looks like maybe I might just be making Ma another calendar this year... dammit, dammit, dammit.

And interestingly enough I have no idea what I'm doing about my calendars this year... the ones FOR me I mean, rather than the ones BY me... it looks like Joe Phillips has stopped doing the full sized square calendars... which is very annoying, because I love his stuff most of all, and if he WAS doing the square ones, then I'd just get one of those and be happy... so I'm undecided between his "skinny" calendar... one by Cameron Frost... and a 2008 version of the Bel Ami/Howard Roffman one I bought last year... Joe has also done a zodiac calendar, but that says something about it being a "permanent birthday calendar"... so maybe we won't go with that. But since they're all the "skinny" kind rather than the "square" kind, I'll probably end up needing another one to hang in the kitchen (since I like a square one in there). I'm also wondering if three years running (counting this year) is too much when it comes to buying J another one of the Joe calendars for Christmas... it also depends on whether he's actually going to be back here at Christmas like he thinks he is... either that or I'd have to be organised and actually get Amazon to ship it straight to him.

And lastly but not necessarily leastly (is leastly even a word?), the decision on whether or not to use my tax refund to take Ma and I to Sydney early next is being taken out and thrashed around again in the next few days... when I know more, you'll know more.

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unconscious mutterings 246

I had a really good intro line for today's Unconscious Mutterings... I thought it up while I was on my walk... but by the time I got home again I couldn't remember what it was... so instead, here's the mutterings...

  1. Las Vegas :: Viva

  2. Linus :: Peanuts

  3. Struck :: Down

  4. Movie :: Review

  5. Anxious :: Nervous Nelly

  6. Bandit :: BMX

  7. Picks :: and Mixs

  8. Lasso :: Rope

  9. Dinner :: Bell

  10. Bargain :: Hunt
One movie reference, one teevee reference, one comic reference and one song reference... can you tell I'm all about the pop culture or what!

Current Mood:


Your Psyche is Red

You are bright, bold, energetic, and intense.

Your upbeat, zany energy inspires those who are down.

Spontaneous and playful, you also have a courageous and fearless side.

When you are too red: you are angry, overprotective, and truly scary.

When you don't have enough red: you are depleted and lifeless.

You Are Apple Red

You're never one to take life too seriously, and because of it, you're a ton of fun.

And although you have a great sense of humor, you are never superficial.

Deep and caring, you do like to get to the core of people - to understand them well.

However, any probing you do is light hearted and fun, sometimes causing people to misjudge you.

Current Mood:

i confess meme

This one was lifted from Mike... somehow I have a feeling I've done this before, but it could just be a case of similar questions popping up in lots and lots of different memes and me being a big ol' meme whore...

  1. Taken a picture completely naked? Yes indeed.

  2. Made out with a friend on your MySpace/Facebook page? Don't do FaceSpace or Mybook, so no.

  3. Danced in front of your mirror naked? Dance, mirror, naked... these are three words that should never be put in a sentance together... so, no.

  4. Told a lie? Oh hell yes.

  5. Had feelings for someone who didn't have them back? Almost contantly!

  6. Been arrested? Yes.

  7. Made out with someone of the same sex? Is this one of those trick questions? Yes, yes I have! I've also made out with somebody of the OPPOSITE sex, which is actually the more shocking and interesting.

  8. Seen someone die? No.

  9. Slept in until 5pm? Possibly in my youth, but I can't think of a specific example... so maybe not.

  10. Had sex at work? Er, no.

  11. Fallen asleep at work/school? Now this I've done... not fully all the way asleep... but that thing where you're pretending to be doing something and your head gets heavy and you get the sleeping nods... that I've done.

  12. Held a snake? Not that I can remember.

  13. Ran a red light? Who hasn't?

  14. Been suspended from school? No... I was a good little nerd.

  15. Totaled your car in an accident? No.

  16. Pole danced? Don't have the upper body strength for that.

  17. Smoked? Maybe a half dozen times.

  18. Been fired from a job? Yep. Totally my fault too.

  19. Sang karaoke? No.

  20. Done something you told yourself you wouldn't? On a semi-irregular ongoing basis.

  21. Laughed until a drink came out your nose? You know, I don't think I have.

  22. Caught a snowflake on your tongue? I've never seen snow live and in person, so no.

  23. Kissed in the rain? If I did, it wasn't overly memorable. So probably no. I've kissed in the shower thought.

  24. Sang in the shower? Sure!

  25. Given your private parts a nickname? He has been referred to as "Elvis" on a couple of occasions (as in "Elvis has left the building")

  26. Ever gone out without underwear? Yep.

  27. Sat on a roof top? I may have done at some point... but I can't say for certain.

  28. Played chicken? Nope.

  29. Been pushed into a pool with all your clothes on? No.

  30. Broken a bone? Popped one? I broke my left forearm... and I popped the joint in my right shoulder on three seperate occasions before I had a shoulder reconstruction (see, you thought I was going to be filthy with that whole "popped a bone" thing didn't you)

  31. Mooned/flashed someone?No.

  32. Shaved your head? Yep, back in the late nineties.

  33. Slept naked? On occasion.

  34. Played a prank on someone?Nothing grand with lots of planning and a big humourous conclusion, no.

  35. Had a gym membership? Yep.

  36. Felt like killing someone? Oh god yes.

  37. Made your girlfriend/boyfriend cry? Nup.

  38. Cried over someone you were in love with? Can't say that I have, no.

  39. Had sex more than 10 times in one day? Not ten times.

  40. Had Mexican jumping beans for pets? No.

  41. Been in a band? No real musical talent here...

  42. Subscribed to Maxim? I've never subscribed to any magazine, and even if I had it wouldn't be a T&A mag like that.

  43. Taken more than 10 shots of alcohol?Overall, yes... at the one time, no.

  44. Shot a gun? Nope.

  45. Had sex today? It only counts as sex if there's somebody else there, right?

  46. Played strip poker? Big no.

  47. Tripped on mushrooms? That would have to be one big mushroom to cause a tripping hazard! Seriously though... no.

  48. Donated blood? Yep, before I started having sex with the mens and the Red Cross didn't want my blood any more... fooey on them!

  49. Videotaped yourself having sex? No.

  50. Eaten alligator meat? Frog legs? No, and no. I have had kangaroo thought... and possibly emu.

  51. Ever jump out of an airplane? Thankfully no.

  52. Have you been to more than 10 countries?I haven't been to more than 1 countries...

  53. Ever wanted to have sex with a platonic friend? Oh hell yes... but you get over it eventually.

Current Mood:

petals in the park

petals in the park - now with faeries!Another weekend, another excursion involving too much sunshine...

Petals in the Park at the Botanic Gardens...

But this time I'm not sunburned ("sun kissed" maybe and with Vitamin D up to my pretty blue eyeballs... but not burned)... yaaay me! Well, me with some help from about two inches of sunscreen covering every possible inch of my exposed flesh as well as my cowboy hat (which managed to start falling apart already, even though I've only worn it about half a dozen times and only got it last Christmas)...

Of course, the weather did choose today to be over 30°C (33.5 to be exact... although it only got up there at around 2:30 or so, well after we'd left the Gardens) so the sunscreen and hat were definitely on the required list... and there's going to be more of the somewhat unseasonally hot weather to follow tomorrow.

To be honest it was all a bit lame... the Petals thing I mean... there were like half a dozen "art and craft" stalls, if that... probably only one actual food stall (a couple of booze stalls... probably not the best plan given the sunshine), and a couple of random artists. Although it was all for charity, and only really cost a "gold coin donation" and even that wasn't required...

There were, however, faeries...

Seriously... there's two of them in the photo up on the right, with the white shirts and the barely visible wings. Boy faeries too...

According to the website, "performing artists will bring a charming element to the garden by playing fantastical characters who engage in organic theatre within the Enchanted Garden throughout the day"... which basically meant that four guys and a girl in semi matching outfits, face paint and fairy wings were wandering about smiling and people and smacking small children with fake roses... okay, maybe not that last bit so much.

They were of the pretty though... three of the four boys anyway... even if the one on the right side in the photo does seem to be wearing a female faerie's costume... I saw it up close, and trust me... it was a dress... so I don't know quite what that was about... maybe they were expecting more girls and had to improvise. They were still cute though.

Also cute, but in a different way, was one of the little arty-crafty bits... there was a girl who did, among other things, these little teeny tiny dragons made out of that modelling clay stuff that dries completely hard (or you have to bake or something)... Flymo, Plymo, Fleemo, Nemo... Fimo, that's it... Fimo Polymer Clay. And it's no secret that I have a thing for teeny tiny dragons... and these were just SO damn cute. But there was one... a little "fire dragon" in this kind of bronzey colour that I just fell in love with... so he's now currently residing in the abyss known as "Away For Christmas". She also makes seahorse brooches, so I might have to get her to make one specifically for Ma for Christmas... something in pink, purple and grey maybe...

purple blossom 2007But of course, there is only so much time you can spend looking at roses and faerie boys (however cute they might be) and little clay dragons all the while listening to questionable entertainment on the stage (while we were there it was "Snap's Kakadu Club", which is "a children’s show featuring an award winning ventriloquist" which pretty much made me want to either carve out my own ears, or else find a handy sharp stick to inflict lashings of pain upon said ventriloquist... I'm sure the kids loved it but she was just trying far too hard)... so we wandered away into the rest of the Gardens in search of things to photograph... and some shade.

As Ma commented at some point, "what is it with us and the Botanic Gardens... either it's pouring rain, or else it's boiling hot". And she has a point... although I did point out that it must be her, since I've managed a turn around the Gardens without rain or excessive heat...

Anyway, there was much wandering about and the taking of the photos until we had kind of been everywhere we wanted to be and seen everything we wanted to see... so after a quick reprise of the rose garden and a little additional ogle of at least one of the faerie boys (although I don't remember which one... possibly the one in the "dress" since he did have some nice, if sparse, chest hair action happening inside the neck of his faerie outfit), we went in search of some luncheon.

bamboo 2007We ended up going to Norwood again... it's not really that far away from my place (and about halfway between my place and the Botanic Gardens... ish), and there's slightly more to choose from than around my place (or, maybe not... but I'm more familiar with the stuff closer to home, and hence, more easily bored by it)... so off we went.

There wasn't really that much of a decision making process when we got there... okay, there was a bunch of sitting around on a bench for a while having no idea what we really wanted to eat, but knowing that we didn't want anything hot... but we just kind of gravitated to a place we nearly went last time, a little place in one of the "arcades" called Uncle Arthur's (and for those Australian readers who remember a certain comedy show from the late eighties, not THAT Uncle Arthur)... and I got a Chicken Caesar Salad... which wasn't bad... not the BEST Caesar I've ever had, but not bad... little heavy on the cos (romaine) lettuce... but then I'm so over "standard" lettuce.

But after the salad, a glass of freshly squeezed apple and celery juice (really, really nice... a sweet top note from the apple, but with a slightly "salty" base note from the celery... very tasty) and a piece of apple pie, I was pretty much done foodwise. I still am a little bit... mostly because I can't make a decision about what the hell it is I want, or what will satiate me or appeal... who knows... I'll make something up later... maybe a sandwich.

As we were on our way back in the general direction of the car I ran into a woman I used to work with (actually that's probably something of an ungenerous classification... we were more than just workmates I guess... more like that kind of workfriend crossover thing... where you work with them, but they're also something of a friend and somebody you see outside of work)... and however unkind it might seem (and however much it might seem like the pot calling the kettle pigmentally enhanced), my first thought on seeing her was "Damn, but you got fat!"... not like circus freak fat... but her face was a hell of a lot rounder than I remember it being. Course, the same could probably be said for me too.

She always was a little like a slightly overcaffinated something-or-other... and trying to catch up on probably about seven years (maybe slightly less) worth of history didn't help... or at least the Readers Digest version of said seven years.

That was pretty much the end of the day actually... we went back to the car, came back here, Ma went home and I watched the end of Art:21 (Art in the 21st Century) which is this groovy documentary series on what I suppose you could call "modern artists" (mostly Americans). I watched a previous series a few years back (although the series they're currently showing is from back in 2005 anyway), but with Ma and I doing all this excursioning on Saturdays I've never gotten around to seeing the most recent ones. Shame really, because I quite enjoyed the previous season... and the episode I caught today. Maybe I need to start setting the VCR or something...

Anyway, once that was over I came in here... and now here we are...

Current Mood:

everything is purple

Your Brain is Purple

Of all the brain types, yours is the most idealistic.

You tend to think wild, amazing thoughts. Your dreams and fantasies are intense.

Your thoughts are creative, inventive, and without boundaries.

You tend to spend a lot of time thinking of fictional people and places - or a very different life for yourself.

Current Mood:

photo friday: tribal

tribal mark 2007Another shot from The Book of Sidestreets and Alleyways...

This was just painted on the back of a sign for a carpark... I have no idea what the symbol means... it does look a little like a person though, with the round head and the two shorter arms and two longer legs.

Actually it reminds me a little bit of an old time diving suit...

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