movies: harry potter and the deathly hallows part i

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

harry potter and the deathly hallows part i - the end beginsHarry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 made me cry... in fact I cried in pretty much the same spots as I cried in the book...

And it turned into the "Ugly Cry" at the end... although the quiet ugly cry.

I'm just glad they didn't give him clothes like they do in the book, otherwise I would have been a complete and total basket-case.

Like the book though, this is a very different movie to all of the others, not so much in tone (in that regard I think it shares territory with both The Prisoner of Azkaban and The Half Blood Prince), but just from the fact that they don't go off to Hogwarts and solve a grand mystery with a lot of daring-do.

Sure, there is still daring-do, but there's a whole lot more "running for their lives" (as seen on the poster above).

I've only read the book once though, so I only really remembered one or two scenes from it... although as things started to unfold in the movie, more and more of it came back to me, even if I couldn't accurately describe the things that they kept in and the things they left out for the most part.

I guess I was also slightly surprised at how sad the movie felt as a whole (which I suppose makes sense... there really isn't a lot of light and humour in the book either from what I can remember) and how incredibly tender parts of it are.

I think that really comes down to the fact that rather than having actors who only met a couple of weeks beforehand behaving like they've known each other for years and years... we're actually watching three actors who have known each other for ten years... or what amounts to pretty much half of their lives. And it shows, especially in the scenes between Rupert Grint and Emma Watson... there is an incredibly sweetness there... and the way that he looks at her is just beautiful.

Actually it's amazing how much they've all progressed as young actors... I've just watched the first six movies, and compared to the first one, they're a million miles away.

It also looks really beautiful... the locations (they're finally out of that castle and in the real world), the cinematography, the visual effects... it all comes together nicely... although I will say that it was a slight shock to see a much more photo-realistic house elf this time around.

Oh, and the animation used to illustrate the origin story for the titular Hallows is just gorgeous!

And while it ended in a logical spot, I do kind of feel like I felt at the end of the first Lord of the Rings movie... you've stopped the story mid stream, and I want to know more!

yani's rating: 9 horcrux out of 10

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unconscious mutterings 409

Monday, November 29, 2010

While I'm happy to be the Twitter expert at work, it does kind of freak me out that people I actually know are coming to play in my sandbox...

Unconscious Mutterings...

  1. Scrabble :: Words
  2. Watching :: Eyes
  3. Habitually :: Eating
  4. Gritty :: Noir
  5. Slovenly :: Behaviour
  6. Canvas :: Painting
  7. Leggings :: Black
  8. Thursday :: Thursday's Child
  9. Attention :: ADHD
  10. Hypnotic :: Eyes
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christmas market saturday

Saturday, November 27, 2010

magnolia square marketIt feels a little bit like we've spend large chunks of today repeating ourselves. And while we're on that subject, it feels a little bit like we've spend large chunks of today repeating ourselves.

See what I did there... ahem... anyway...

Also, I held a big ass python... but that was later...

We did the same supermarket things that we always do... the only time it really changes is the few times when I do it by myself... and even then it doesn't feel THAT different.

I also squished some of the locusts that were lurking around outside the shopping centre... oh, and tried to rescue a ladybug that had found it's way into Ma's bag of rocket leaves, but it fell off my hand and I couldn't pick it back up...

See... this is about how exciting my life is.

Anyway, after we'd come back here and unpacked everything... again following the standard Saturday template, we headed off to the Magnolia Square Market at the Concert Hall in Norwood. Well, that's not completely accurate... we headed in the general direction of Norwood, only to discover that the entire 32 block radius (I'm kind of exaggerating, but not by much) around The Parade was blocked off because of the stupid Christmas Pageant. So we drove a very, very, very wide circle taking in both Kensington Road and Magill Road before discovering that we couldn't actually sneak our way in.

Fortunately the Goodwood Road Christmas Market was also on today, so we abandoned Norwood and headed over to Goodwood.

But I have to say... Goodwood Road Market... slightly disappointing. I don't know whether it was because the forecast was for rain (I know it was raining last time) so stalls stayed away in droves, or what... but it was somewhat sparse. However the two places we always end up visiting, Olives2Oil (seriously, if you can find it, get yourself some of this olive oil, it's divine!) and Pudding Lane were both there, so we didn't complain.

And we picked up a few other little bits and pieces (including a "Christmas tree" made out of the most revolting marshmallow I've ever been unlucky enough to eat), so it wasn't a total waste.

Once we'd done our thing we wandered back to the car and headed back down the road to Norwood, where they'd thankfully packed up the road blocks for the Christmas pageant.

Magnolia Square is always a very good looking market... even if the people who visit it are amongst the worst market shoppers I've ever encountered. Not a single one of them seems to be the least little bit spatially aware, and they just stand in whatever spot they feel like, taking up space when a simple step to either the left or right would allow other people to browse the merchandise. Idiots.

But because the products are mostly very good looking, they're also very expensive, and while there are some bargains, there wasn't anything that Ma and I felt compelled to part with cold hard cash for. Well, other than a toy soldier card and some gift tags.

It was still worth a look though.

Then we decided that since we were in the neighbourhood, we'd head down Unley Road and take a look at one of the stores that is supposed to sell the Ukido Ninja Warrior stuff... mostly stationery and the like. So we managed to find our way there eventually... but it turned out that although they were supposedly a "Platinum" stockist, they really didn't have as much of the Ukido stuff as they had of the Kimmidolls.

After that we decided to call it a day, so we headed back here. When we were unpacking all the bits and pieces, Ma noticed that one of the little purse things she bought was ripped, so she wanted to head back to change it... So I said I'd come with.

And for those of you paying attention, that means that during today's shopping trip we went from my house to Norwood, then to Goodwood, then to Norwood, then to Unley (which is pretty close to Goowood Road), then back to my house, then to Goodwood and back to my place.

See what I mean about repeating ourselves!

Anyway, when we got there I let Ma wander over to swap over her little purse and I gravitated over to the Animals Anonymous stand to pet the tame Tawny Frogmouth... so soft and such pretty eyes! And then I realised they were letting people hold the Centralian Carpet Python... so I had to have a go.

I've never actually held a snake before, not because it freaks me out, I've just never had the opportunity... and I have to say that I liked it a lot! It was a big snake, at least a couple of metres long, and quite heavy against the back of my neck, but it was a comforting weight. And the snake was quite content to just flatten itself against my body and take advantage of my body heat.

I ended up just standing there stroking the snake (and yes, I'm aware of how dirty that sounds) for ages. Snakes are a weird texture... the scales were very smooth but at the same time because they're individual, the whole snake felt "ribbed". And the best description I can give for what the body of the snake felt like was like a leg of lamb... it's not quite right... but I could feel the spine and the rest of the snake just felt like muscle.

I totally loved it though... it was so awesome! Now I kinda want a snake, if only so that I can wear it around my neck to yell at my neighbours and freak them out. I don't know how I would go with feeding it dead mice though...

Anyway, that was our day...

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photo friday: the boxer

Friday, November 26, 2010

the boxerI've had a slightly combative week this week... at times through my own making, but occasionally because everyone seems to have had a bowl full of stupid for breakfast.

Fortunately most of the combative element has been me getting riled up and annoyed beforehand... gets it out of my system.

But there is a very tenuous link to the choice photo for today... it's one half of a pair of statues in the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney called The Boxers.

See, tenuous.

I also need to share something that I've known for a while, but only seemed to become a reality this week. My last day of work at The Nut House could be Christmas Eve. Yes, this has been the case since the last time they extended it, but a bunch of stuff is up in the air and nobody can actually answer the "will I be coming back in 2011 or not" question.

Even if it turns out that it's "Not in January", I have a feeling I'll be back at some stage, but I'm kind of in two minds about having to leave.

Most of me just doesn't want to... I've done this a couple of times now... I spend a chunk of time with them, then I leave for a month or a couple of months or whatever, but then I come back. It is somewhat disruptive since I have to then play catch-up on whatever I've missed and am out of the loop for any decisions made during that time.

Part of me though... part of me needs a rest. That part wants to be able to get up at 6:30 instead of 5:15, and watch movies all day and go on some local photo safaris and make long complicated dinners that take a good couple of hours to prepare and have bagels with cream cheese for lunch. But I also know that without working there is only so long that I can really do that for.

And there's a tiny part of me that's currently running around in circles screaming at the top of my lungs.

Fortunately I'm probably in the best financial place I've ever been in (which to the outside observer probably doesn't look like much, but it's an achievement as far as I'm concerned), so that will keep the proverbial wolves from my door for a while.

But it's all really in the laps of the appropriate deities, and whatever happens happens.

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random felton hotness

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Sometimes I just need a little down and dirty action from my Random Hotness... someone tall and lean... in black leather, with tattoos and maybe some S&M props...

Young Mr Dan Felton, shot by Bell Soto for Asian webzine Visual Tales fits the bill nicely.

dan felton dan felton
dan feltondan felton

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optimism and prayer

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

optimism prayer

"From optimism to hope" and "Project for a park"...
or as I like to call them, Optimism and Prayer.

Oddly enough, I've looked at these shots individually a few times, but didn't realise how similar they were until I was looking through the shots today.

See, that title isn't as interesting as you thought it was going to be is it...

Now that I think about it though, I could probably do a whole sequence of shots that are remarkably similar to these... and I do keep threatening Ma that I'm going to give her a calendar entitled "Stuff against Blue" one year.

And that's about it... whatdayawant, it's 8pm and still 30°C...

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unconscious mutterings 408

Monday, November 22, 2010

Have I mentioned that I loathe Summer... or more specifically Summer weather... or really any day that's more than 28°C...

And they keep saying it's going to be a milder Summer this year, but they're only talking about until the end of January... and usually the big heat doesn't kick in until after that anyway!

Bah!

Unconscious Mutterings...

  1. Emotional :: Eater
  2. Bite :: My neck, hard... and maybe my nipples, softly
  3. Get off my :: Lawn
  4. Heroic :: Rescue
  5. Clothing :: Optional
  6. Home :: Sanctuary
  7. Spelling :: Bee
  8. Attitude :: Adjustment
  9. Argument :: Win
  10. Satan :: Lucifer
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working that christmas list mojo

Saturday, November 20, 2010

tiny christmas trolleyI'm not sure why, but I'm completely shagged out! And it hasn't been that huge of a day.

Whether it's because I threw in the towel this week and chose sleep over my daily walk, I dunno... but even my brain is a little bit broken...

Anyway... usual start to the day, up earlyish, tidied the apartment somewhat, got ready and when Ma got here we went off to to the supermarket thing.

Blah, blah blah... got some meat for the BBQ tomorrow (I never know what to buy or how much, so we'll see how that all works out)... and some bread, because since the days of Sunday Dinner I have been the Bringer of The Bread...

On the way back we dropped into Officeworks so I could pick up some new ink for my printer before I tackle the 2011 calendar... now this is the first time I've had to buy ink since I bought the printer (yeah, 18 months and I'm only now and I nearly out of ink... obviously I'm getting lots of use out of it).

$124... seriously... that's just insane. Yes, I bought it all in one big pack, and yes it came with an extra black cartridge, and yes, my printer takes 6 cartridges total... but that's a big chunk of change...

Since our timetable leading up to Christmas doesn't allow for a lot of wiggleroom, we decided that heading up to Marion was a good plan, try and knock as much Christmas shopping on the head as humanly possible.

We did just that too... in between dodging far too many members of the cosplay community who were there for Gametraders 3rd Birthday... now, I appreciate the dedication, and the effort they often go to to create these costumes... especially in one particular case, with the young gentleman who was wearing a costume that displayed his whole belly... but another part of me just goes "tragic nerdy white folks dressing up like fictional Asian people... WTF?!"

But like I said, we managed to get a few things to round out Ma's Christmas shopping list (and something for Miss Oh Livia from me), even if that did mean a lot of standing around looking at children's picture books in two different stores until she made up her mind.

After we stopped off for some lunch we called it quits, but dropped into the North Adelaide Village on the way back so that we could pick up some "fancy" items for Ma to use for goody baskets. Fortunately we bought stuff for more than one basket, because $145 later...

But there were some nice gourmet items, and all of it Australian made (and a large proportion of that was South Australian)... and thankfully I wasn't paying for it.

So that's about it for today...

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photo friday: bondi love

Friday, November 19, 2010

bondi loveI love parcels. I may have mentioned that one or two hundred times before... but I do... I love getting parcels, opening parcels... love, love, love, love.

Which (awkward segue) is why this particular piece of street art from Bondi is appropriate for today... this week I've had not one, but two parcels! *squeeeeeeee*

Inappropriate teeshirts, hand signed DVDs, the Wonderbra of men's underwear... what's not to love.

Sorry... that's terribly materialistic and shallow of me... but I do love a good parcel!

Oh, and there's 35 days until Christmas...

THIRTY FIVE DAYS! That's only five weeks.

*cue Kermit style arm flailing and minor freakout*

Ma and I need to sort out all our pre Christmas dates... the stupid Christmas Party in my street has been brought forward a week (it's always the first Sunday in December, but because December starts on a Wednesday they've gone and changed it to the weekend before... grr), so I won't be able to time the trimming of the Christmas tree with that... so it looks like the tree will be December 5 and Christmas goodies will be on December 19.

So let's see... I have a BBQ to go to this Sunday (I'm half thinking of wearing my vaguely inappropriate teeshirt, but it's going to be quite warm and the teeshirt is quite black, so maybe not), the following Saturday is the Goodwood Road and Magnolia Square markets, the following week will be the tree, then a week that I'm sure will involve last minute shopping decisions, then Christmas goodies and then it's Christmas. Then another week and it's 2011.

Holy crap...

Anyway, on a completely unrelated note... I want new bookcases before the year is out... not sure that's going to happen though, as I also need to hit somebody with a large transportation device up so I can donate my existing bookcases to The Reading Room (I think I've mentioned this before). Why don't I know anybody who owns a van and who potentially owes me a favour?

I was a bit chuffed today... I'd shown one of the graphic designers at work Ma's calendar for next year and she wanted to see the previous versions so I took them in today and all three designers were suitably impressed, particularly with my photography.

Speaking of the calendar, I have finally finished it now... after redoing the date layers three times...

sydney calendar 2011Kind of like last year, but portrait orientation instead of the usual landscape. Now all I need to do is buy new printer ink tomorrow and I'm away!

It's not been a particularly productive week at work to be honest. Partly because I had two days where I was on my own and nothing really happened, so it left me not really wanting to do very much. That then resulted in one of the peripheral members of our team sending an email that they really had no reason to be sending, it should have come from me... which then made me cranky. Grrr...

Taking a long lunch with some retail therapy helped... but it's just annoying.

As is the fact we're about to head into the first stretch of hot weather for the year... I hate Summer so much...

But now I'm tired... so time for bed...

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random changing hotness

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Today's Random Hotness is a simple story of Winter turning to Summer. Or something.

At any rate, in one shot the model is indoors wearing a jacket and longjohns, in the other he's outside not wearing swimwear.

Make of this what you will...

winter's over summer is coming
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east coast arthropodology

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

metal fly green spider spiral blooms sydney spiderWho knew I would end up with this many great shots of insects while I was in Sydney...

Mostly they're shots from the Royal Botanic Gardens, although the last shot was taken in Circular Quay on our first day.

The top shot is my favourite... I think that's actually a distorted reflection of me in the fly's thorax! And the little green spider was almost impossible to shoot because my camera didn't seem to realise that it was there and kept focussing on other things.

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movies: red (retired, extremely dangerous)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

red (retired, extremely dangerous) - still armed, still dangerous, still got itI need to preface tonight's movie choice, RED, with an admission or two...

Everybody has somebody who they would be supremely happy to hand the phonebook and ask them to start reading. For me, that's John Malkovich!

I also have soft spots for Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker and Morgan Freeman... which more or less covers most of the cast.

We're told fairly early in the movie that RED stands for "retired, extremely dangerous", and that just about covers it. But at the same time, it's not just "old people blow stuff up"... which, granted, would still have been a good movie... but it's more than that, probably due to the pedigree of the actors involved.

It's funnier than I was expecting, and very charming (I think a lot of that is Willis... there's just something about him that's charming in most of the things he does), and it doesn't just barrel along at a million miles an hour. It's a bit like the cast really... it's has no need to rush, and it knows how to get where it's going.

Actually I think that analogy sounded better in my head...

It's not the most original plot ever... in fact it's fairly formulaic spy/thriller stuff that we've seen before, but still very entertaining.

Plus it has Dame Helen Mirren with a BFG... and she handles it like a pro! So what's not to love!

yani's rating: 8 wetworkers out of 10

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unconscious mutterings 407

Monday, November 15, 2010

It's a little hard to tell someone who works near you that they need to shut the hell up when you know you've been guilty of making as much random noise as them on other occasions...

But even so... SHUT THE HELL UP!

Unconscious Mutterings...

  1. Freezing :: Cold
  2. Bikers :: Mice from Mars
  3. Infrequently :: Seldom
  4. Mickey :: Toni Basil
  5. School:: Uniform
  6. Textile :: Silk
  7. Obstinate :: Me
  8. Guard :: Rail
  9. Release :: Movie
  10. Authentic :: Self
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the christmas shopping beast awakes

Saturday, November 13, 2010

And so it begins... the great gaping maw of the Beast called Christmas has finally cracked open in earnest, belching the scent of slightly sour cranberries and peppermint across the land...

Okay, sorry, got a little carried away with that particular word picture...

But we did start our Christmas shopping officially this week. Which wasn't really the plan... well, we didn't really have a plan...

This was the first week in the last several that we've actually done the full shopping experience, and we ended up making a fairly big day out of it.

We started as usual with the Supermarket Safari... which was about as interesting/boring as usual... although the very hot fruit and veg guy who I regularly lust after is obviously taking part in Movember this year and was rocking a slightly disturbing piece of face fur. Not enough to make me kick him out of bed you understand, but it was definitely different.

When we came back here we footled around with Ma's computer (she hasn't brought it down for a while so we can hook it up to the internet and do all the Windows Update stuff... then I let her go through all of my Sydney photos... all 1600 of them. It might not have taken quite so long but I also got her to make notes about which shots she might like to have included in the 2011 calendar...

Currently that list stands at 45 shots... and I only need 12... could have been worse I suppose!

However it did eat up a big fat chunk of time... about an hour and a half all up I think.

We had floated the idea of heading down to Marion, mostly to avoid the whole Christmas Pageant mess, but by the time we were heading back out again that was pretty much all over bar the dismantling.

Part of our plan was to track down some little bits and pieces for Princess T and Miss Oh Livia, but because I'd mentioned to Ma that Haighs had their Christmas stuff out (packaging rather than any actual differences to their product lines) we decided to stop off at the Haighs factory outlet on our way to browse the shops on King William Road.

That store is freakin dangerous... for the single fact that they have "factory seconds".

"Awww... the chocolate coated coffee bean didn't sit on this Cappuccino Bar properly, we'll have to sell it at a discount"...

Let's just say that both Ma and I kinda lost our tiny minds and now both have more chocolate than any single human being needs. I really need to put some away in the cupboard or something... save it for later.

Not all of it you understand... just... some...

Anyway...

Our next stop was King William Road and we had somewhat limited success with the shops there... and then we got a trifle overexcited when we stopped to get some lunch. For future reference, a toasted sandwich AND waffles is just too damn much. And the waffles were a bit m'eh (I'm guessing frozen).

So after we'd stuffed ourselves, the next stop was the city. Specifically David Jones (the Kikki.K "store" in DJs had porcelain "Christmas Soliders"), but we ended up going all over the place.

Smiggle, Lush... anywhere that little gifts for teenage girls could be purchased... although I just realised we never took a look in Morning Glory...

We did manage to find a few good things though (and the nice girly from Lush rubbed two different kinds of shaving cream into the backs of my hands, which was odd, yet enjoyable), although we'll have to work out some kind of storage box or the like to put them in.

And I also decided that Princess T needed the Hot Boys and Cute Dogs RSPCA Charity Calendar from Peter Alexander. Because, you know... hot boys... and cute dogs! Now I just need to work out what to get Miss Oh.

By the time we were finished it was pretty much 4:30... so a very big day out for the beginning of the Christmas Shopping Season and our first real Saturday excursion in a while!

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photo friday: flying fox silhouette

Friday, November 12, 2010

flying fox silhouetteBefore we went to Sydney, I mentioned one of the things I was looking forward to:

And I definitely have to explore the Botanical Gardens this time... last time we just used it as a shortcut on our way to the Opera House and didn't really look around... plus I want to see the Flying Foxes again!
And explore we did... and we also saw a bucketload of screeching, wonderful Flying Foxes. But when I said that I didn't really image that I would end up with a perfect shot like that one! Having said that I have a bunch of shots that are either blurry or contain empty sky.

It's been a bit of a topsy turvy day today... When I got up at 6am it was still about 27°C and the temperature has been dropping ever since. I also had work pretty much to myself this afternoon when everyone else went off to a "training and development" afternoon that was just a social event. Now I don't mind that it was just a social event, but don't lie to me tell me that it's T&D when it clearly isn't going to be.

While I'm on the subject of "things that annoy me", I don't ask people to like everything I like. So don't insist that I have to like everything you like. I don't care how great you think that particular movie may be, or who wrote it or who directed it or whatever. If I tell you that I'm not interested in it, please accept that. And yes, I'm allowed to have opinions on things I haven't seen in their entirety based on what I have seen or read about them.

It's called a "judgement call", so please shut the fuck up now.

No, not you... you're fine...

Like I said, I had the office to myself so I attempted to start writing a set of guidelines I've been threatening to write up for a while. Wasn't a complete success, because I found the total lack of distractions actually kind of distracting. I also had to stop myself from writing the more complicated version of the document that we may need down the track.

I finally got a chance to see a couple of the episodes of Grand Designs Australia... the second episode of which was set in Surrey Hills in Sydney. And I found myself feeling... well, I guess the best description would be "homesick", particularly when they showed long shots of the city skyline. And I had a similar feeling viewing some photos fellow (former?) blogger Tom posted of the Sculptures By The Sea taken early in the morning. I'm as jealous as hell not only about the quality of the light in the photos, but also the fact he managed to snap shots that were pretty much deserted.

Part of me wishes that I was more of a risk taker, the kind of person who could just go "right, packing my bags and travelling to a new city, let's see what happens". The only thing I really have holding me here is Ma... everything else is pretty damn ephemeral. But it's not like I'd be able to move right into somewhere in or around the city...

Sorry... I suddenly got a lot more introspective and contemplative than I usually get on a Friday evening.

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random geegee hotness

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Today's Random Hotness model is Gregg Grosheim... although I'm not completely sure whether it's supposed to have the extra G in there or not... featuring in these photos by Miama based photographer Frank Rubio.

It should come as no surprise to anyone to learn that Greg is a surfer...

gregg grosheim or is that greg grosheim

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my digital footprint

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

walking on glass - sculpture by the sea, tamarama beachI've been doing a bit of thinking about my digital footprint lately.

I don't precisely know what started the thought process. Probably some random musing about death (I'm a cheery little poppet really, aren't I?) and the fact that I won't have any direct descendants to be the executor of my digital estate as it were.

Then I stared thinking about the size of my digital footprint... just how many websites have I signed up for, added content to, have some kind of cyber-bootmark on. And it's much more of a Sasquatchian foot than I first though.

I started to make a list. I added the obvious stuff first.

This blog, my Twitter account, the more recent edition of my Tumblr account... my ISP email and Gmail and Hotmail and Yahoo accounts (yes, I have one of each... I'm very compartmentalised about what information goes where)... then my "dating site profiles" (would you believe there were nine different ones?)... and the sites I use regularly, Google Reader, etc.

Then there were the other sites... the ones I don't use regularly but still have a password and login for. IMBD, Event Cinemas, Amazon... there's even a Wordpress login somewhere from commenting on WP blogs.

Having started using an iPhone last December added to the footprint... there's my iTunes account and all the apps that require some kind of login...

By the time I finished the original list there were about 40 websites on it. And over the following couple of weeks I kept remembering other ones... mostly ones that I signed up for forever ago and either no longer use or have only used a handful of times and then never returned to.

It all added up to a far bigger digital footprint than I realised.

So I started making it smaller.

The first thing to go was removing all of my photos from Photosig (which was slightly painful, since I wanted to keep a copy of the comments so I ended up downloading all 90 pages one at a time... it was also the end of an era, since it was Photosig that got me involved with the Adelaide Camera Club)... then a couple of movie related sites which were just timewasters.

One thing that really surprised me as I went along was how difficult it was to remove my profile from some of these sites. Either the "delete your account/profile" option is buried at the bottom of a difficult to find page somewhere in very small writing, or, even worse, there is no button and either they tell you that you have to email the company or you just end up guessing that's what you should do.

I understand the concept behind it. If it's not easy for people to delete their accounts then a) they can't do it accidentally and b) there's not the problem of people having "deletion remorse" and wishing to have their profile back once they've deleted it. But I think that some of the companies intentionally make it difficult in the hope that people will just give up and abandon their profile so that the website can still claim to have so many thousands of members. It probably also stops people who have hacked into other users accounts from being able to easily delete them.

I think I've mentioned before that I prefer to keep my digital life separate from my real life as well as keeping the unique aspects of my digital life independent of each other, mostly through the use of different digital identities. A large portion of my digital footprint does fall under the "yani/ism" banner, but my "dating" profiles fall under a different banner and none of it really relates back to the real me (there is some crossover between yani/ism and Real Me, but not a lot... and obviously I use photos of Real Me on the "dating" sites), at least as far as the use of names is concerned. For the most part I don't need to worry about people cyber stalking Real Me and finding things they shouldn't be able to see.

Real Me is pretty much non existent on the internet to be honest. I actually googled my real name recently, complete with quote marks, just to check out the results and was pleased to see that although there were about 6,130 results only one on the front page actually related to me (which was work related and which would go away if and when I leave The Nut House) and I think that there were maybe four entries all together that were about me (not including one that MAY be me, but if it is then it's one of those websites that I signed up for and promptly forgot about). And it's not like I have a name that's really all that common.

I like that... I like not being someone who can be googled.

So, like I was saying, I reduced my digital footprint... dropped a bunch of the "dating" sites, looked up details for other sites that I could cancel my account on. But I'm still looking at my list of websites, trying to decide what really can be removed as well as trying to remember what else I've left off the list.


In addition to this video from ABC TV show Hungry Beast which discusses Everlasting Digital Life (and I also think it planted a very early seed about this issue), I've also found a number of links relating to digital footprints and digital estates:
And after all that, do I actually know what I'm going to do with my digital footprint after I'm gone? No more than I know what I'm going to do with the rest of my possessions... I just know I need to make it smaller, and I need to come up with a plan.

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westfield sydney

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

westfield columns westfield levels
The first of what may be a regular feature on the blog... "Travels in Sydneytown"...

This is the new Westfield Sydney... so much glass, so much chrome/stainless steel, so many textures and lines and ways to get easily geographically misplaced.

Even the backs of the bathroom stall doors are black and shiny. And there's a little waiting area outside the bathroom with, I think, wingback chairs and lots of framed mirrors on the walls.

No wonder they're having very high end labels take over most of the third floor...

And when visited at 9am when very few stores are open and there's very little foot traffic, it's a bit of a surreal experience!

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unconscious mutterings 406

Monday, November 08, 2010

The first day back after leave is always hard, fortunately I spent most of my day catching up on stuff and there were no major dramas... and everyone had to comment on my hair (oh please, it's so 10 days ago!), although when I checked myself out in the bathroom mirror later in the day it was looking pretty slamming... and my entire scalp is peeling, so I have dandruff the size of postage stamps at present...

Unconscious Mutterings...

  1. Everything :: Desire
  2. China :: Made In
  3. Essence :: Fragrance
  4. Immediate :: Gratification
  5. Obstruct :: Progress
  6. Force :: The
  7. Constellation :: Orion
  8. Intuitive :: Action
  9. Complain :: A lot
  10. Train :: Carriage
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sydneytrip2010

Sunday, November 07, 2010

sandstone sydney glass sydney
Sydney the Historic and Sydney the Modern... if ever a town had two equally defined but opposite faces, it would be Sydney! And I think these two photos sum it up nicely.

Turns out that I took 1628 photos... and 10 videos... not to mention the photos I took with my iPhone...

It was a very photo-heavy trip... my previous record was 858... and I think I shot both the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge from every conceivable angle (except from the other side... have to keep something for next time)!

The only downside with that many photos is the length of time it takes to go through them all and edit them and make up montages... in fact it ate up all of Saturday afternoon...

But here they are... my thoughts on SydneyTrip2010...
Oh and a giant Mea Culpa to fellow bloggers Tom and James... I had every intention of trying to catch up with them, but by the end of each day I was just shattered... I'll catch you next time, I promise!

I also Twittered a lot more on this trip than the last Melbourne one... and anybody who follows my Twitter feed would notice that I was using the #SydneyTrip2010 hashtag so that I could take a look back at my thoughts over the five days.

There were a lot of times when I just didn't have time to tweet anything, and it's not exactly Oscar Wilde but the timeline is interesting (and it stops it all being lost in the ether)...

Okay, so Stage 1 of my packing is done... #sydneytrip2010

My nervous anticipation has kinda just turned into nerves... I kinda wanna throw up a little bit... #SydneyTrip2010

Aaaaand we're on the plane! #SydneyTrip2010

Aaaaand we're in Sydney! And I didn't even get airsick! #SydneyTrip2010

Turns out the hotel is a little better than I expected. And if I stand in just the right spot I can see the Bridge! #just #SydneyTrip2010

My hotel room #SydneyTrip2010 http://instagr.am/p/Hn5t/

Kinokuniya is awesome and QVB rocks! #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/32v8np

So many wireless networks... So many unsecured connections... #SydneyTrip2010

I think that was a ferry honking it's horn... Scared the living daylights out of me! #honk #SydneyTrip2010

Wow... That's some awesome sounding Sydney rain! #SydneyTrip2010

My body is making it's displeasure know about me not drinking enough water today! #SydneyTrip2010

Urgh... Soft hotel beds suck! Horrible night's sleep! #SydneyTrip2010

Having breakfast at Bar Fredo thanks to @Kathblue's recommendation... The waitress is adorable! #SydneyTrip2010

Awesome breakfast! #barfredo #SydneyTrip2010

Enjoying the wildlife at the Chinese Gardens! #darlingharbour #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/333mcz http://twitpic.com/333md6

We left the hotel around 8:30 and just walked in the door again at 4:15... It's been a Grand Day Out! #SydneyTrip2010

Hopefully it will now rain all over the fuckers singing at the Melbourne Crap function downstairs #softcockrock #SydneyTrip2010

Sunset dinner at harbourside, followed by photographing the Bridge and chocolate at Guylian. Life is good! #SydneyTrip2010

Off to Bondi today! We would have been off about now but I forgot to charge my camera last night! #facepalm #SydneyTrip2010

Sitting in the sun by the water eating French pastries from The Rocks... Le sigh! Kinda worth not charging my camera. #SydneyTrip2010

This is my #WorkWed #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/33cfkb

There was sea. There were sculptures. And lots of people! #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/33f92f

Bondi, your mostly naked, tanned and tattooed men I approve of wholeheartedly! #SydneyTrip2010

I have sunburn, possible heatstroke and sand in my shoes! #greatday #SydneyTrip2010

Why did my hotel room have to next to the one with the occasionally squalling child... I get enough of that at home! #SydneyTrip2010

I just realised that sitting on the couch with my curtains open I can see hotel rooms in the Marriott with open curtains! #SydneyTrip2010

Bondi Beach #SydneyTrip2010 http://instagr.am/p/JF6M/

Damn... I'm sunburned like a muthafukka! The one day with real sunshine and we decided to go to Bondi... #wearahatkids #SydneyTrip2010

I filled a 4GB memory card with photos... #newpersonalbest #SydneyTrip2010

Sometimes it's just nice to sit and watch the rain #SydneyTrip2010 http://instagr.am/p/JVzy/

I just discovered the squashed patty of butter from the plane ride on Monday in the bottom of my bag... #greasy #SydneyTrip2010

Moving 1,397 items (3.70 GB) from Canon to Beast... Holy frijoles! #SydneyTrip2010

Remains of a very tasty & satisfying dinner at Wagamama. Totally recommend their side dishes! #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/33sd3y

Okay, so I'm packed... Everything but my new shoes (the box won't fit)... Why do I bring so much crap with me? #SydneyTrip2010

Views from my hotel room... #SydneyTrip2010 http://twitpic.com/33wdjm http://twitpic.com/33wdj3

And true to form Sydney, it's raining on our last morning in you... #SydneyTrip2010

Playing Angry Birds on an iPad in the Temple of Shiny! #applestoresydney #SydneyTrip2010 #mmmmshiny http://twitpic.com/33xf7p

Waiting for the car to the airport is always the suckiest part! #late #SydneyTrip2010

Hello Very Large Qantas plane! I am in you! #SydneyTrip2010

And we're home... Well not home home, standing at the baggage carousel waiting for luggage! #Adelaide #SydneyTrip2010

Hello little house! Hello little bed! And that's the end of that story! #SydneyTrip2010

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sydneytrip2010: day five

Friday, November 05, 2010

montage: sydneytrip2010 the overviewAnd here's the Pictorial Montage of SydneyTrip2010... not the definitive experience, but a reasonably summation at five images a day...

I sure as hell am not going to miss that stupid hotel bed... I know I've commented on it every day, but it really was bad... not so much the bed, but the pillows and the whole sleeping experience really. I don't think I've had a decent night's sleep the whole time we've been here. So very looking forward to climbing into my own bed tonight!

In the end I packed last night... or rather, the early hours of this morning, since by the time I was finished everything else it was after midnight, and I figured it would be easier to just get the packing over and done with rather than leaving it for this morning. Turns out that the only thing that wouldn't go in the suitcase were my new Converse shoes, so they just had to be carried onto the plane.

On the up side, once I wake up I don't really want to lay around in bed, so I do end up getting up.

And in the perfect send off, it was raining again this morning. Four days of rain, one day of sunshine and I manage to get sunburned... *mutter*

Anyway, after I got up and had my shower, packed up the last of my stuff, got dressed and sat down briefly to finally eat the cereal they gave us on the plane on Monday while catching up on my reading thanks to Google Reader.

Eventually Ma messaged me to find out where I was at, so I took a final look around the room to make sure I hadn't forgotten anything and then, as seems to be the reoccurring theme during our holidays, hauled everything down to Ma's room.

Neither of us particularly had much of a plan about what we wanted to do with our final morning. We'd pretty much done everything we came to Sydney with the intention of doing, and this holiday was much less "structured" than the one to Melbourne earlier in the year, so we were pretty much at a loose end.

But, first things first, we needed to go out and find some breakfast! We did consider going to the Museum cafe, but it all looked too lala (the whole big, sit down breakfast kind of idea), so in the end we wandered around to The Rocks instead, and went to La Renaissance Patisserie again... but because it was raining it was a little harder to find somewhere to sit and eat, but we found somewhere sheltered on Playfair Street.

Once we'd eaten our ham and cheese croissants (although unlike any other ham and cheese croissant I've ever had, these were filled with ham and cheese b├ęchamel sauce) we wandered around The Rocks for a bit, and ended up following Harrington Street down into the city until we found our way to George Street again.

We were kind of looking for somewhere to grab a drink (and unlike Melbourne where there's a 7 Eleven on every corner, in Sydney you have to keep your eye out for the convenience stores), but we wandered past one of the little kiosks that sell a bit of everything known to man and one of them had little cubes of watermelon in a plastic box... best idea ever! And just as effective for quenching our thirst as a drink.

Since we didn't really have a major plan, we ended up doing a big circle, stopping off at The Temple of Shiny (the Apple Store) so I could a) say I'd been in there and b) play with the gadgets. Next we detoured through Westfield Sydney again and then back down Pitt Street to the hotel just before 10am so we could check out.

Check out was a pretty simple affair... the rooms were already paid for, we didn't have any additional charges, so essentially all we had to do was give them back the keys and ask them to store our bags for us.

Since the Museum shop had looked interesting when we took at look at the cafe earlier, we went back to have a poke around... I wouldn't mind putting the museum itself on the list of eventual places to see in Sydney, it could be worth a look.

Our next stop was the Opera House Shop... we'd actually looked in there earlier in the week, and I didn't think their merchandise was as good as it was the last time we were here, but Ma wanted some stuff to take home for people.

By that point we were both wholeheartedly sick of walking around, so we stopped off at the Guylian Cafe in Circular Quay. They do a great chocolate and banana shake, but we also had a little ginger cookie tartlet, and while it was nice, I really should have gone for something savoury. I think I'd kind of OD'ed on sweet stuff by that stage.

Once we were finished, we went and sat by the harbourside for a while and then ended up doing a bit of aimless wandering...

We also didn't have that much time before the car was due to pick us up, so we couldn't really have done very much or gone very far.

Like I said earlier, we'd done everything we really set out to do for this trip, and we were both pretty tired and very footsore. I think it's definitely going to be a plan in future that we try and get a flight back in the morning so that when it's check-out time we actually check-out and leave the hotel rather than having extra time to kill.

Eventually we went back to grab our bags and wait for the car to pick us up. This is the third time we've hired a car for the return journey to the airport... and of those three times, the driver has been late twice. Thankfully I'm somewhat obsessive about making sure we have more than enough time to get to the airport, because otherwise we could have been in trouble.

I do like this company though... after I rang and told them we were waiting, they actually dispatched a second driver from the office who rocked up within six minutes.

In the end we got to the airport with about 20 minutes to spare before boarding.

Now I've flown on airplanes more than a dozen times... and I've probably worn the same belt for more than half of those flights (or at least most of the recent ones), and I've never had a problem. However this time the metal detector decided that my belt was a problem (it wasn't when we went through in Adelaide) so I had to go back and take it off... *grrrr*

I knew we were going to be flying on a larger plane when I did the check-in yesterday... the seat number was about double the seat number for the plane we took over here... but I think this was my first experience flying on a 767 (or at least on a Qantas 767, if there's a difference).

I like it! Definitely a lot less squishy, and even if it did turn out that we were essentially in the ass end of the plane, we were pretty much at the front of the queue for getting on, so it seemed a lot quicker.

I think the two corridors help...

As with the flight over I wasn't nauseous at all during the flight... I enjoyed both a little raspberry cake and an itty bitty airline can of Solo with no problems... but when we really started to descend I did feel a bit queasy... and the whole taxiing process didn't help either.

Anyway, we finally made it off the plane, and managed to get out bags reasonably quickly, so when we went out to grab a taxi we managed to walk straight to the head of the line and get straight in.

It did feel a little weird being back though... we'd been away a good chunk of time and although everything looked familiar, it was still a little strange.

Once again we got a taxi driver who didn't chat... and this one didn't even have the radio on which was a nice way to ease into being home.

The one thing I was very glad to see when I walked into my little apartment was my little bed. Oh I've missed my little bed!

Then I bundled Ma into her car and sent her on her merry way... and I won't see her again until Monday at the earliest... it's nice to spend the time with her, but it's also nice to send her home at the end of it all.

Of course the apartment looks somewhat like a bomb has gone off after I unpacked... not even the clothing, all that went straight off to be washed... just everything else... all the bits of paper and all the stuff I bought.

Speaking of which...

sydney shopping stuffI'm pretty sure I came home with a bunch more stuff than Ma... actually I know I did... I don't think she bought that much of anything really...

Whereas I came back with two 2011 calendars, some cards and a bookmark from the Museum shop, chocolate from Haighs and Lindt as well as some Lindt macarons, nipple clamps, some new shoes, a rainbow flag and some other bits and pieces.

All in all, with the possible exception of the sunburn, an incredibly successful and enjoyable holiday!

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