forking saturday

fork on the road vansview of the city
It's been one of those days.

I don't quite know how else to describe it... it's been busy and boring... I've been in the right place at the right time, I've been in the right place at the wrong time... I've done a lot of talking but not necessarily a lot of processing or feeling after the events of yesterday. Plus it was also a day that very obviously heralds the arrival of Spring tomorrow.

And I've eaten a bunch of tasty stuff at Fork on the Road.

This morning Ma was getting her hair cut and coloured, so I was left to my own devices for the trip to the supermarket.

As usual, because I was on my own I got the whole thing done in a little over thirty minutes. But it was very much me clomping around the supermarket with my headphones on.

black and white bbqiced chocolate
When I took a quick wander around Target I discovered that they had three boxes of the Series 11 Lego Minifigures... which is great the day after I no longer have a job...

And I'll be honest, I really, really, really wasn't in the mood to stand there and feel up little mylar baggies. Will I skip this whole series? I really don't know... but at the moment I'm just not feeling into it.

By the time I got home I still had over an hour before Ma rocked up, so I had time to unpack all my groceries, change my bedding, watch an episode of Good Game, and read a couple of chapters of my book.

Which was, in itself, kinda weird, since usually we're up and about and doing things on a Saturday morning.

When Ma turned up I told her the whole saga from yesterday and then given that it was around 11 by that point we headed off to the bank so I could deposit the $855 worth of change I counted out earlier in the week.

i love the design of this van, although it never seems very busypeople start to gather
Then we headed off to Bonython Park to get our Fork on.

As usual, we rocked up just as everything was opening up... in fact when we got there some of the trucks hadn't actually started selling anything, but it didn't take long before it was all go.

We started out with a couple of beverages Fair Espresso... which may have been a mistake, only because we started with a big milk based beverage. That and the fact that while the iced coffee Ma had was lovely, the iced chocolate I had was a bit ordinary.

Next up we stopped off at La Chiva for a couple of their pastelitos... which are really, really nice. Simple, and to be honest kinda difficult to dip in the cute little wooden container full of tasty tomato sauce, but really nice. While I was waiting for the pastelitos to be ready Ma wandered over to Sneaky Pickle to grab a serve of their onion rings.

They're some excellent onion rings, and remind me of the ones my Nanna used to make when I was a kid... nice thick pieces of onion in a nice light batter.

la chivatasty pastelito
We found a shady spot under and tree and enjoyed our food, then decided to head down the other end and see what else looked good.

While we were standing outside of Low and Slow American BBQ and Delectaballs trying to work out what to have, suddenly Owl Girl appeared seemingly out of nowhere. Technically it wasn't nowhere, but she came up behind me.

I gave her a hug and introduced her to Ma and we had a quick chat, but I didn't tell her anything about leaving work which kinda sat heavily on my mind after she'd gone.

Ma and I decided to share a "Pulled Pork Sammich" which was quite tasty, although if we'd split it differently or if I'd been thinking properly, I probably would have piled it up with the apple slaw and the chips to add some different textures to it. It was still nice though.

After we'd polished off the sammich, I knew that I had to go and speak to Owl Girl to tell her what was going on. Clearly the Universe had meant for our paths to cross, so I was obviously supposed to talk to her.

happy smiley sammichlow and slow american bbq
So I wandered over to find her, only to discover that she had actually been at one of the trucks and was heading in the same direction that I was back to where her and her boyfriend had been sitting.

Thankfully she was a little shocked by the whole thing (as you would be), which sounds horrible, but I still wasn't feeling up for processing other people's feelings along with my own (or not processing my own as the case may be), so at least she didn't burst into tears on the spot.

But while it didn't actually feel good to tell her, it was a weight off my mind.

We didn't stick around my longer after that, we were both pretty much done with food, although as always we stopped off at Four Seeds to pick up some brownies to take away with us.

Then as we headed back to the car, we happened to see Jack Frost from Rise of the Guardians and Hiccup from How To Train Your Dragon get off the tram. Or the female versions of themselves anyway. And no, that's not as mental as it sounds, it was two young women cosplaying and heading, I'm guessing to some gathering at the Ice Arena down the street.

sneaky menutasty four seed brownies
We then headed into the city because Ma had a couple of errands she wanted to run and I needed to pick up the artwork I bought a couple of weeks ago from Espionage.

None of it was particularly taxing, although we did witness the Marriage Equality Rally rainbow-flag it's way halfway up the Mall. While I have no problem with the concept of holding a rally, I will say that it would probably help if a) your chanting as you walked along was actually able to be heard and understood and b) you weren't holding your protest sign upside down and using it to fan yourself (granted, that was only one girl).

We didn't stick around at Espionage very long... Josh had a couple of other people with him in the gallery, so we really just picked up the artwork and headed on our way.

So that was pretty much it, we headed back here and called it a day.

And even after describing it, I still can't really define exactly the kind of day it really was.

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photo friday: closing the door again

caged classical allusions - battista sforzacaged classical allusions - federico da montefeltro
On Wednesday I said this...
Yes, partly that would be easier if my job situation sorted itself out, but I know that's not going to happen for a little while (although if the Universe is listening... I want a permanent job already!)...
And if anything was ever proof that the Universe has a particularly dark and twisted sense of humour, it's the fact that less than 48 hours after I wrote that I'm now unemployed.

Yep, my contract wasn't being extended and I decided that I'd take the offer of four weeks pay and just leave at the end of this afternoon.

Except nobody knows aside from the big boss.

Well... H-San and the Ninja know that my contract is ending, but that's it. I didn't want to deal with everyone's feelings and sympathy and general disbelief, so I kept it completely quiet. I spent the day sorting out my emails and moving files from my desktop to the network that really should have been moved forever ago and this morning I used the excuse of "tidying my desk" to go through all the papers on my desk and fling a bunch of stuff in the recycling.

The only thing I didn't do was pack up all my toys and general desk tchotchkes. I'm going to go in as soon as the building opens on Monday morning, pack up my desk, send a bunch of emails that I didn't want to sent today and leave before anyone gets in.

I'm intending to sit down at some point over the weekend and write a message to my team, to go some way to explain why I left the way I did.

What was kind of strange was the fact that everybody left before I did to go to one of those boring meetings/information sessions where someone talks for an hour to tell you what you could have read in an email in ten minutes. So when I walked out my whole team was gone.

I'll admit that was probably easier than the alternative... but it was a little like the rest of today... the rest of this week really... anticlimactic.

To be honest I think I'm still a little bit numb and it may not officially hit me until I walk out of the office on Monday morning.

This really is a (figurative) door that I've walked through, or been pushed through depending on your choice of analogy, a number of times. And each time that I've felt it close behind me, it's never been a door that stayed shut for all that long. Maybe I need to take this as a sign to really sit down and work out if it's a door that I both want or need to walk through again.

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random animal hotness

Something a little wild for this week's Random Hotness. And no pun intended, but it takes some serious balls to pose in your underwear with a tiger.

This brave model is Kirill Dowidoff, and along with his animal friends, was photographed by Joan Crisol for 2013 Fierce range from ES collection.

kirill dowidoff by joan crisol for es collectionkirill dowidoff by joan crisol for es collection

kirill dowidoff by joan crisol for es collectionkirill dowidoff by joan crisol for es collection

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putting it out to the universe

coming up from behindbiting your  tongue
Sometimes you just need to put out into the Universe the things that you're planning or wanting or excited about or hopeful for...

This is one of those posts, if only so I can look back on it later and see what did and didn't come to fruition.

First up is my tattoo design... at this point it's only one third of the design I originally had in mind, but that may be enough, at least for now. And if not, I have a couple of other ideas floating around, as well as the second part of this design.

Secondly is my birthday next year. I turn 40, which is a thing, obviously. Ma and I have talked about the idea of spending my birthday in Sydney. Which definitely sounds like a good plan, although when we actually head to Sydney will depend on what the Adelaide Fringe line-up looks like next year. And I was poking around the internet earlier today and realised that The Lion King musical is playing in Sydney up until the end of March last year, so that would be something to do.

And there's also a young gentleman who I've spent some time with previously who I'd very much enjoy spending some time with either here or in Sydney given that it's a round number birthday (depending on his location at the time).

The other thing that I'm wanting, planning and very definitely hopeful for is a new apartment to rent.

Yes, partly that would be easier if my job situation sorted itself out, but I know that's not going to happen for a little while (although if the Universe is listening... I want a permanent job already!), but it doesn't stop me looking online for places I could move to. Part of me would like to move before Summer, but I don't really think that's either practical or likely.

I don't really think I'm asking for a lot, although I'm possibly asking for a lot in the places I want to move to for the money I'm really looking to pay.

But in the vein of asking the Universe for things... I want a one bedroom apartment, preferably with it's own dedicated car park spot. And I need it to have some form of air conditioning... I don't care what kind, so long as it's the "make things colder" type. It needs to have enough room for me to fit in all my stuff... bookcases mostly... if I have to ditch my couch and swap it out for another armchair, I'm more than happy to do that. It's be nice to be able to knock a bunch of nails into the walls to put up all my artwork... but that's not a deal breaker, I'll improvise if I have to. I'd prefer a gas stove, but if everything else is right I'll cope with electricity.

It doesn't have to be brand new... I mean I've love that, especially in the kitchen and bathroom, but provided things are well put together and don't look broken down and crappy, I'll be a happy camper. I don't even have a problem with being in an upstairs apartment... but I think, given my current experiences with upstairs neighbours, I'd prefer not to live under someone if I can really help it. I'd also kind of prefer a smaller block of units.

And I really want it to be close to the city... or better yet, in the city. Or North Adelaide... or any of the suburbs that ring the city... hopefully something that I could walk home to from the city.

Oh, and I'd really, really like it if the real estate websites actually bothered to include a floor plan for every listing. Sure the place probably isn't huge, but given that very often the photos leave a lot to be desired, I'd much prefer to see a plan.

Sadly I think the likelihood of finding everything I want within my price range is a little bit slim... so, to be honest, the location thing will probably be the first thing to go. I already know that the further out from the city I go, the cheaper the places get... although the quality doesn't always improve.

Thankfully I'm currently not in a position where I actively have to move... so I'll just keep looking and hopefully the right place will come along sooner or later.

The other thing that I really need to get happening is swapping over from my old bookcases to the new ones, and reorganising all my stuff... although I do wonder if part of me is resisting that idea just because I would hate to go through all the drama of putting everything into place and then find a new apartment like a week later. But I'm kind of tired of living surrounded by boxes... and I know the longer I do that the more I'll get used to it, which is never good.

So that's pretty much what I'm day-dreaming about just at the moment.

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mini shopping saturday

just a very small supermarket
There really isn't all that much to say about today's shopping excursion...

We just did what we needed to do and called it a day really.

It all started out in the usual fashion, although I did get distracted by my book first thing this morning so I wasn't quite ready by the time Ma turned up.

But we did the usual supermarketry... and had a quick poke around Target, not really for any particular reason though. When we got back I realised that I'd hardly bought anything from a grocery perspective.

We really didn't know what else to do with our day... we didn't have any plans, but I keep forgetting to look for a photo frame in the store opposite the supermarket, so we headed back there to take a look at what they had.

It turned out that they didn't have all that much in the right size and what they did have seemed overly expensive, so we took another wander around Target on the offchance they had something... and BAM, $9 frame in the right size. I always love it when a half-assed non-plan comes together.

After that we just went for a wander around at Arndale... which was pretty much just a way to fill in some time...

So, yeah... that's really that...

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photo friday: street chaos

croft alley linesroyal street purple

union street faceswell that's clearly what i'm doing wrong then...
I've been tired all day. I was tired when I got up, I was tired when I got to work and I'm tired now. But then I've had a bit of an emotionally draining week, so I'm really not all that surprised.

There isn't really all that much to report about the week... or at least not a lot of stuff that I want to preserve for posterity.

I'm generally feeling much better lurgy-wise than I was last Friday... All that's really left is a little bit of a cough and a little bit of sinus congestion. But hopefully that's not going to last much longer.

Last night was Haircut Day... Haircut Night... whatever, so I got to chill out and just relax at Tink's place while she cut and coloured my hair in the usual fashion and we talked about Melbourne and my work situation and her work situation and Disney movies and lots of nothing much at all really.

It was good though. And now my hair is the requisite amount of short and blonde, which is always good.

But that's really more or less it, other than my chiro appointment after work this afternoon. So... yeah...

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random wentworth hotness

This week's Random Hotness is former Prison Break (which I'll freely admit that I never watched) star Wentworth Miller.

Miller came out as a gay man today, but the more interesting part of the story is the fact that he chose to do so in a letter declining an invitation to a Russian film festival due to the treatment of gays and lesbians by the Russian government

These photos of Wentworth are from a 2007 edition of German GQ...

wentworth millerwentworth miller

wentworth millerwentworth miller

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movies: now you see me

now you see me - now you don't
Now You See Me is a high energy adventure pretty much from beginning to end.

It grabbed me within the first five minutes and didn't really let me go for the next 110 minutes.

At it's heart, Now You See Me is a heist movie... it's Oceans 11 mixed with a little bit of The Prestige. And like a good magic act it's all misdirection, sleight of hand, making you believe one thing while showing you another... so, as usual I'll try to avoid spoilers as much as possible, but there will be a few mild ones (because if there weren't this would be a really hard movie to talk about and this would be one of my shortest ever reviews).

Let's start with the cast. It really is a stellar cast. Even before you get to the four magicians, this movie stars The Hulk, Lucius Fox and Alfred... or as they're also known, Mark Ruffalo, Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine. Add to that list the beautiful and talented Mélanie Laurent.

And then you have The Four Horsemen... Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher and the very delicious Dave Franco. Technically I'm not a huge fan of any of them, however I think they all pretty much hit it out of the park here. They're wonderfully charismatic and seem to have great chemistry together.

The moments when they all shine the most are when they're on stage during the first two magic shows. And they make it very easy to be on the side of their characters.

Ruffalo also does an excellent job making you not be on his side as he chases after the Horsemen.

The story is wonderfully fast-paced and like a good magic trick, everything that happens is serving the story, even when you think it's not. As a mild spoiler, that was one thing that I had trouble turning off in my head a little... given the fact that this movie continually reinforces the idea that everything you're seeing is definitely part of "the plan" even when it appears to be going wrong, I was never completely taken in by the misdirections. And maybe you're not supposed to be... I still had no idea how things were being done, so maybe it's intentional that you're supposed to know that what you're seeing isn't what's really going on and yet still be unable to work out what actually happened.

That's where the majority of the Oceans 11 influence comes in, with the knowledge of how that story came together at the end I couldn't help drawing parallels as I watched this.

There's also some MacGuffin about "real magic" and a couple of the magic tricks that were clearly accomplished with CGI that I thought was somewhat unnecessary and just managed to clutter up an otherwise excellent story and pull me out of the moment.

But for the most part, Now You See Me is an excellent movie with a great cast that will keep you guessing right up until the very end.

yani's rating: 9 padlocks out of 10

urban myth theatre company's macbeth

urban myth theatre company - macbeth
I took my annual trip (at least for the last four years) to see a production of Macbeth tonight.

This version of the Scottish play featured the Senior Ensemble of the Urban Myth Theatre Company, many of whom, according to the program, were working on Shakespeare for the very first time.

It's also possibly the first version of Macbeth that I've seen where the titular character was actually the third most charismatic male actor.

But in a lot of ways, once I managed to get my head around the idea, it actually served the character and the play better than I thought it would.

Edwin Kemp-Attrill's Macbeth is craven, small and at times a little bit awkward.

Some versions of Macbeth that I've seen, the main character has a long way to fall from the moment we meet him until the final battle scene, but Kemp-Attrill's version embodies a different kind of Macbeth.

By comparison both Nic Cutts who performs double duty as both King Duncan and the heroic Macduff and Josh Mensch in his role as Banquo both light up the stage with personality and charisma.

During Mensch's first appearance I couldn't help making the comparison between him and Kemp-Attrill and wondering whether he wouldn't have made a better Macbeth... but as soon as Cutts appeared, I felt like he was actually the Macbeth I was waiting for.

But, having said that, by the end of the play I would not have traded in either Mensch or Cutts performances.

Mensch does a brilliant job as Banquo... and once the character becomes the gory-locked spirit Mensch ramps his performance up to about eleven. He also manages to completely transform himself for the small role as Lady Macbeth's doctor, not just through costume, but his performance feels completely different.

Cutts is hard to take your eyes off of every time he steps on stage. There were two scenes that really stood out to me... the first being when Lady Macbeth (Alex Petkova) welcomes Duncan to the castle... Cutts scoops up Petkova like she's his long lost little sister, and it makes everything that comes after feel that much more like a betrayal.

The second moment is MacDuff's speech once he learns that Macbeth has slaughter his entire household. I've seen that scene performed about a dozen times, but this is the first time I've witnessed such a raw, emotional performance like the one Cutts gave. It's not over the top, it's clearly a man who is totally in shock and trying to process the fact that his whole world has just fallen apart. And it's the second time that I've teared up during a performance of Macbeth.

It also means that when the final confrontation between Macbeth and Macduff happens I was more emotionally invested than I have been in some performances.

Petkova was an interesting Lady Macbeth... her finest performance moment is during the "out damn spot" sleepwalking scene, especially when she walks towards the audience intoning "to bed" over and over. But there are other moments where she feels less convincing.

To be honest, a lot of the moments with Petkova and Kemp-Attrill conveying the passion between the two characters didn't completely ring true for me, although I'm not completely sure why. When Cutts embraced her it was believable, but when it was Lord and Lady Macbeth it just felt a little hollow.

Petkova also takes on the role of one of the witches along with Emma Kew and Lucca Boyce who managed to make the hair stand up on the back of my neck in their opening scene. It's something about when the witches speak in unison that always has the ability to do that to me.

Director Nick Garsden edited the play down to under two hours and took out a number of scenes or edited others sometimes a little severely. While I recognise the scenes that were lifted out completely, there was only one edit that really stood out to me, and that's during Macbeth's second confrontations with the witches and he describes seeing a vision of Banquo and his children... there was a slightly clumsy edit that removes all references to the children except for the final line. If you weren't familiar with the play you may not notice it, but it stood out to me.

Set and costume designer Kerry Reid chose an interesting look and feel for the play... it's one part industrial, one part Australian military and one part post-apocalypse. The set was completely comprised of corrugated iron columns with the occasional quote from the play graffiti'ed on the walls.

The costumes were mostly a lot of big greatcoats, waistcoats, black pants and a lot of hats in black, grey and dark blue... although there are brief moments of colour such as Macbeth's red waistcoat and Lady Macduff's blue gown.

While it wasn't the most polished of productions I've ever seen (even though this was the last night of a ten night run), there were a few moments that made it worth the trip to go and see.

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a milhouse kind of shopping saturday

lines... both architectural and tan
Is there an opposite for "Everything's coming up Milhouse"?

Actually, I'm guessing that would just be regular Milhouse... but irrespective, that's how I feel just at the moment, decidedly Milhouse.

Today was fairly short, sharp and to the point (or pointless, depending on your point of view).

We went through all the usual routine this morning... although after last weekend's extra large supermarket haul, I don't think we really bought that much of anything, even between us.

I had a bit of a vent about the whole job situation to Ma while we were shopping, although I'm not sure if it made me feel any better or whether it just bummed me out more.

When we got back to my place we had a much more interesting conversation about So You Think You Can Dance and then we headed off to the framing place to pick up Ma's print that they'd messed up.

We managed to do that, stop off at the North Adelaide Village so Ma could pick up her coat from my drycleaner, make it back to my place and head down the road to go and check out the rental property I was interested in, all within an hour.

The rental property wasn't exactly what I expected it to be though... in the photos it looked really nice, but in person it was a little crusty around the edges... plus the stove was electric and I'm very used to gas now... plus the kitchen and bathroom looked a lot more tired than the photos had made it seem.

Essentially it was okay, but for the amount they were asking, it seemed a little steep. But it's only the first place I've actually gone and looked at... it just would have been handy, being down the street from where I'm living now.

After that we came back to my place and pottered around for a bit before we decided to head into the city for some general bits and pieces.

Basically all we came away with was some cough syrup for me... so perhaps not the most effective shopping trip, but hopefully the syrup will help get rid of the last of my lurgy.

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photo friday: angry street art

one eyed charliewaste time

blue dragonneon mask
I'm not completely sure how a day can be completely slow and boring and at the same time, a little bit stressful... although I don't know how much of that was just me wanting for the day to be over.

It also wasn't helped by the fact that the results of the job applications/interviews were announced today.

The interviews were on Tuesday and I was pretty damn confident when I finished. And I didn't prepare in the slightest... well, other than thinking about the greatest strength/weakness question, which is always horrible. But it was good because we got to see the interview questions ten minutes before the interview and make notes, so when I got in there I just said everything I needed to say.

But then this afternoon they started off by obliquiely telling us they were going to tell us before we left for the day today... nothing like knowing information is incoming to ramp up the heart-rate.

Although, if I'm being honest, I wasn't stressing very much... a little maybe, but I think it was more about everybody else being nervous and making me a little twitchy than any specific twitchiness on my part.

And I'd already run through both the positive and negative options in my head (worked out what I was going to buy if it was a yes and how exactly I was going to storm out if it was a no), so I didn't really care what the answer was, I just wanted to know the answer.

However there was a third option available to the interview panel given that there were less positions than there were supposed to be (don't even ask, it's a totally fucked situation that once again reinforces the fact that our area isn't valued throughout the whole organisation)... and that was to recommend us for an additional position if one becomes available.

It's the worst of the three options, it's essentially limbo. And it was the option that I'd thought the least about.

It's also where I ended up.

And I'm kind of angrier (angry or hurt... I'm not completely sure which, but it's coming out as angry, so let's go with that) about it than I thought I would be. If I'm being completely honest, I actually assumed I was going to get one of the available positions. I have the seniority, I'm covering a lot of the core work for the Nut House team rather than being part of the wider team where the people who got the positions are (so part of me wants to just walk away and leave them to fend for themselves... although that's mostly the part of me that's hurt/angry).

But the thing that annoyed me more than not getting it was the air of secrecy around who did and who didn't have it and "don't discuss it this afternoon" and blah, blah, blah, blah. None of us are wilting violets, all we really want is the whole story so that we can process it and move on.

That's all I ever want. I don't care what the fuck the story is, be it good, bad or indifferent, just give it all to me and then let me process at my own speed.

So once I walked out of the building I contacted two of the other interviewees/members of Nut House to tell them I didn't get it.

Anyway, I'm not really in any different a position than I was before this whole process started... so whatever.

Moving on...

I'm still at the tail end of my cold/general lurgy... I spent a number of days, including the day of the interview, with a very, very deep voice. Actually that happens pretty much every time I get sick like this and it's the one thing that I'd like to retain when I'm well, because it's all deep and interesting and I kinda like it. Alas it never works out that way.

Without being too specific or gross, I could do without all the phlegm... it's not a nice word, it's not a nice feeling and it's really pretty much the last of the major part of my lurgy.

At present I'm just over it... I just want to feel like a fully functional person again.

I also managed to find a rental property that is literally down the street (although it's also on the other side of another street, but it's still the same street) from me that has an open inspection on Saturday morning, so I'll have to make sure that we can slot that into whatever else we end up doing tomorrow.

It's perhaps not the best laid out apartment ever, but it's larger, has both a front and a back courtyard and looks really light and open and airy. It is more expensive than I was perhaps thinking, but everything is going to seem expensive next to what I'm currently paying and for that location, I'd pay a little more.

Last night I headed off to Espionage to pick up my piece from Cameron's show and to have a look at the new exhibition. I did end up picking out a piece from the new show, what can I say, it's a tiger... and I like tigers. But I think it's definitely have to go to the framing shop to get redone, I hate the matt colour and the white frame doesn't really suit it.

Speaking of Cameron and tigers, the artwork for my Cameron tattoo is now underway... I just need to wait for the first set of sketches. Very exciting.

Oh, and I love my onesie so very, very, very much. It's pretty much like wearing a hoodie and track pants, but nothing rides up or lets cold air in or digs in... I like it a lot.

So I'm a big mixed bag of feelings at present really...

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