Thursday, December 27, 2007

The final stretch

I have just 9 more days in my 20s, though it's really just 8 since I'll be in Australia for it and lose a day. Losing that day initially bummed me out, but my attitude has changed over the last couple of months about turning 30.

I know the majority of people who read my blog are already over 30, so if that's you, this might be a bit yawn worthy. But perhaps you can share some wisdom on what I had previously deemed as my impending doom.

I know my friends outside of LA have not been thrilled about turning 30, however I think being here makes every year older so much worse. Especially if one is pursuing acting, as I am. "You're as young as you feel" can take you far in just about any place other than here. Here, you are simply as young as you look. Even then, they want younger people to play older characters. I'm lucky that I'm still able to pass for mid - late 20s and should be able for a few more years to come, but the fact remains that my skin is getting a bit ruddy and fine lines are probably around the corner, so my aspirations of playing characters who are like I "feel" are slowly slipping away. I've already auditioned a few times for mum roles, though thankfully young mums rather than a mother of teenagers. Phew!

Another thing that is paining about this transition is my style. Over the past year or so, I've really transitioned into 60s, mod fashions with white go-go boots to match. It's a fun and perky look which I wear well, despite appearing ethnically misplaced in it, but it makes me sad to think that once I get to 38, it is likely I will look stupid in short skirts and go-go boots. So no matter how young I may feel, I may have to hang those up by that time. I'm keeping all my 50s dresses in reserve for that time so I can settle into a nice classic look while hopefully maintaining some dignity in skirts that fall below the knee. With my reluctance to hang up my boots, I must keep in mind my lack of foresight regarding the McDonald's playground. I'll forgive myself as I was about 8 or 9 at the time, but when I was reading the rules for the play area one day, it said it was for children under 12. I scoffed at the notion, terrified of the day that I would not be allowed to take the giant green slide, and insisted that I didn't care what that said, I would continue to play there AFTER I was 12. Well, as it turned out, there was no confrontation with the store manager or any such incident after January 5th, 1990. I had long stopped playing there before that date though sadly, not yet stopped eating there. I can only assume that I'll be over my currently age-appropriate style trend by the time is ceases to be so.

Ugh! Yes, Madonna, we believe that you're almost 50 and in great shape, now put your vagina away once and for all.

I've spent the far to much of the past two years dreading the day 8-9 days from now. Just obsessing about this number and all the bad things that I believed to go with it and not at all looking at where I am right now which is actually pretty good and appears to have been achieved through age and experience. I spent my late teens are early 20s doing pretty much nothing. Aside from having a great relationship wrapped up with a bow, I watched a lot of TV and had few serious interests. Nothing I could act upon anyway. I've never been disinterested, just inactive. I've always been prone to laziness, so that coupled with a lack of serious interest in things that couldn't be Googled, left me doing very little. But now, as I approach this milestone, I've got a lot of irons in the fire. I take boxing classes, I sew, I knit, I'm in a cool book club (really, it IS cool), I manage Supergrass' MySpace page, I write this blog and while my acting career isn't really going anywhere, I'm at an all time high, skill-wise. These things aren't all leading me to any great career advances, but that really doesn't matter to me. I'm busy and doing things that interest me and creating things I'm proud of which is very satisfying, whether or not it's lucrative. I spent my whole life obsessing over music and the creativity of others all the while accepting that I didn't have any of my own. Well, it's taken me almost 30 years to discover that I am creative and feel comfortable enough to express and share that with others.

So thank you blog readers for helping me find myself. God, that way gay. Is that what I have to look forward to in my old age? Using retarded cliches to express myself? Fuck.... me

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Party anxiety ***updated***

***UPDATE***In case anyone thought I was exaggerating my party fears, about three or four days after I wrote this blog, I decided to cancel my upcoming birthday party. I'm not arriving in Australia until 3 days before it, I wasn't organised and the whole idea of it was making me unhappy. I'm sure I'd have had a great time once it transpired, but I was sick of my stomach being in knots leading up to that. I'll have something small and relaxed. *sighs with relief*

Parties always seem like a good idea to me when I first think of them, but as the day draws nearer, I am always left asking myself why I came up with such a dumb idea. Much like the feeling after a big night drinking, as the party approaches, remorse hits and it begs the question "What have I done?"

The last big shin dig I arranged was for my 28th birthday. I was back home in Melbourne and it seemed like an excellent chance to gather all my friends since it was often hard for me to see everyone I know during my short visits. Everything seemed to be falling into place, I talked about it for months, advised people there would be a party on January 7th (two days after my birthday) so they would keep the date free. I was even nerdy enough to make an iPod playlist months in advance. It's not as pathetic as it sounds. I was thinking about it and had the time at that moment, and I could foresee packing my bags at 3am the night before we were to leave and remembering I hadn't made the playlist and then having to add that to my endless list of things to do before departure.

It was all exciting until the serious planning began. Oh good lord, how could I come up with enough people? As it turned out, I had about 40 people show up which is a great turn out, especially so close to Christmas. Aeek or so before the party is about the time that I forsee a disaster. Even if the people turn out, will the party be any good? Will there be enough food? Will there be any wall flower people requiring special attention?

As much as I don't want to be this person, I don't want someone feeling like this as my party.

I've come to realise that I take way too much upon myself when it comes to other people having a good time. If there is any event in which I am the reason for someone being there, I just get pangs in my stomach with worry. I thought this was normal until Ag furrowed her brow and seemed puzzled by my feelings. At that 28th birthday party, the first person to arrive was a guy from my work. A great guy whom I like to talk to, but I was a bit startled to have him be the first and only one there and requiring my 100% attention until someone else arrived. Once things are underway, I'm fine, that party was great, but just before it, I'd really rather curl up into a ball and die.

And now I am just over two weeks away from another party. My 30th. I sent out a 'save the date' email and got a weak response. I'm sure most people didn't think they had to say anything, but it makes me nervous. I'm renting a chocolate fountain and karaoke machine. Sweet, merciful crap, what have I done....?

It bothers me that no matter how aware I am of my social anxieties, it does little to help them go away. On the one hand, I try to tell myself I am overreacting and people aren't judging me like I imagine. But then it isn't long until I find myself on the other end of a dull party or hearing about one. Even though these happen and people don't necessarily think poorly of the host for it, I just can't even stand for anyone to be bored on my account. I fell a tremendous responsibility if someone goes to a movie I suggested! About 10 years ago, I suggested to my sister and my friend Mark that we go see A Clockwork Orange as it was so famous as I had not seen it. In juxtaposition to my immense enjoyment of the film, my stomach was in knots, convinced those two hated it and were wondering what kind of crap I made them go see. As we walked out of the theatre, my sister said "That was great!" to which Mark replied, "I wouldn't mind seeing that again." I guess they had a better time than I did since I was the only one who was anxious the whole time. As I've said before, I need to chill the fuck out.

This anxiety extends to parties I attend, too. I worry that my standing in a corner and being a wallflower is distressing to others. If I only know a couple of people at a party, that's what I tend to do. I accompanied Steph and David to a 70s themed fondue party on Saturday while visiting them up in Seattle. I was very excited about it before hand as I'd never had fondue, which is sad given that I am a cheese enthusiast. But as we approached the door, the "What am I going to do?" feeling came over me. I reminded Stephanie of my social retardation and she told me that was fine and to go ahead and cling. I'm pretty good at it so I don't totally look like I'm tailing her. I hang back a bit so if my clingee walks away, I follow a little bit later. It's best for all involved.

'The Wallflower' by Norman Rockwell

Stephanie did her best to include me and introduced me to her friends who were almost all very nice. All but one, who is just the kind of person who keeps people like me in a state of mortal terror. We'll call her Jamie. Jamie, after being introduced to me, stuck out her hand apprehensively, and seemed to be so busy looking me up and down with scrutiny that she did not state her name after I stated mine. I had to ask. When she said "Jamie", it was cold. Soon after this painful exchange, I responded with merriment to something someone else said only to catch the sight of Jamie and a long disapproving stare at me which she obviously began when I wasn't looking at her. Just when you try to tell yourself that you are overreacting about being perceived as a dolt, you meet someone like Jamie.

When that group moved away, I asked Steph what was up with her and turns out, it isn't me after all, but her. I guess she has really low self esteem and masks it that way. She has a very pretty faced (marred only with a sour expression) but I guess her weight problem makes her hateful. Her insecurity made me feel a little sorry for her, though I can only feel so sorry for someone who compensates with nastiness. This new information on Jamie was empowering, so as we left the party, I made a point of complimenting her earrings (which were rad) and her poncho. I thought either I'll make her feel good or just make her even more mad by being un-hateable. I do love killing with kindness.

Somewhere between the Jamie incident and leaving, I found myself alone by the fondue table. This was fine as I had discovered the chocolate mint fondue so I really didn't need anybody. I then noticed two people looking through a kaleidoscope. I noticed the font on the side of the tube was in the same font as the "The Love Boat" and was about to burst in and say as much as a means of striking up a conversation, but I quickly envisioned the follow up to my outburst and resisted the urge. I could see it going down as well as if I'd said "So, did you hear the city passed an amendment to the clean water bill?" or the Rain Man ice breaker, "Are you taking any prescription medication?" I'm just so use to hanging out with people who appreciate a good font and other aesthetically pleasing things, that it seemed like a perfectly normal thing to say. When you say it to a friend who cares not for fonts, they can just shrug and you don't care because you kinda knew they didn't care anyway, you just wanted to declare it and the friend should be use to you declaring such things. But with new people, not knowing you and not ready to talk about such things with a stranger who pipes in with it, it could be pretty awkward.

Randomly, here's a picture of me with Bernie Kopel who played Dr. Adam Bricker on 'The Love Boat'.

Even when I evaluate my paranoia and discomfort in these situations as I am doing right now, my feelings don't seem unfounded or paranoid to me. If people have a bad time, sure, they can deal with it, but I just don't even want that to happen on my watch. When going to other parties, well, a few drinks always eases some tension, but it would nice if I could just eat it and NOT CARE. Ugh.

I hope I haven't painted myself in such a way that anyone reading this wont come to my parties and wont invite me to parties. I'm actually great fun, I promise! I don't need a drop of liquor to get up for karaoke! I just get a little uncomfortable sometimes... It's an internal struggle. Nothing to worry about!

Friday, December 07, 2007

You can't buy class

The Louis Vuitton bag. A mark of desperation.

***I know this is a long one, but considering this subject has had me fuming for years, I actually consider it to be short - S ***

(From Class: Informal. elegance, grace, or dignity, as in dress and behavior: He may be a slob, but his brother has real class.

Class: Informal. of high quality, integrity, status, or style: class players on a mediocre team.

For a long time now, I have been a vocal opponent of human branding. I'm not referring to the kind they do to cows with iron and fire (though that's bad too). No, I'm talking about the kind people do to themselves. What is an unpleasant experience for a cow is done willingly by humans in some sort of attempt to align themselves with a sense of belonging, class or status. Only the burn is on the wallet, rather than the rump.

This isn't something I have a completely detached view of either. When I was in my early teens in the 90s, surfer brands were all the rage. Already suffering from severely low self-esteem, a Stussy t-shirt seemed like it would answer all my social problems and buy me some coolness. I forked out $37 of my birthday money (that was 1992. $37 is still too much for a shirt today, let alone for a 14 year old 15 years ago!) for a Stussy t-shirt and proudly wore it to the end of year school picnic. I felt cool when I put it on, but while at the picnic, I was still the same. I think someone may have taunted me for my shirt looking too "new". The verdict was in. I was still unpopular. Just unpopular in a cool shirt. After getting more surf brand shirts with my Christmas money, getting the much needed $65 Stussy pants and suffering humiliation after being caught for wearing a bootleg Stussy hoodie, I moved away from all that. When my Stussy pants (with a barely visible brand bearing label) eventually wore out, I switched to cheapo Westco pants. They were $20 and exactly the same with the "Westco" label in place of the Stussy. My friend had convinced me that there was a quality difference but they wore out in about the same amount of time. Once I got into bands, it was all band t-shirts which I don't really classify the same as being into a brand. What is a brand other than just being a brand? What is with fat slobs wearing Nike "Just Do It" shirts when clearly they "just do" absolutely nothing?

It sickens me to recall the amount of empty happiness this logo gave me as a youngster.

Sporting brands are one thing. I know a lot of people wear things like that and just don't care. It's just clothes. Just something someone gave them to hide their nakedness. Those companies make sportswear so the shirts do make some sense (though I still wouldn't be caught dead in one) and they are things you could wear while participating in sports, though really, a plain t-shirt would suffice. It's the designer brands that I just don't understand. Someone wearing a Tommy Hilfiger t-shirt might feel like they are aligning themselves with some style, but what they are actually saying is "I hadn't the style or money to buy an original Tommy Hilfiger designed dress/suit, so I bought this crappy t-shirt!" The designers producing those t-shirts are just preying on the desperation for the common man's desire to be classy or hip. It's like wearing a fluorescent orange t-shirt with an ugly font which reads "I'm hip, I swear!" and believing that has taken care of that. With the huge popularity of the Tommy tees about 9 years ago, the reasoning might have simply been "This is cool," but WHY? What makes that cool? It's a t-shirt which no style to it whatsoever. No-one can explain that to me.

Teach them about self worth and fitting in from a young age.

But it isn't all just about slapping DKNY or Versace t-shirts on poor people. Even people with money are obviously too insecure to step out and wear something without making sure everyone knows it is of great value and that they had the money to buy it. The Louis Vuitton bag stands out as a terrible testament to the desperate times we live in. If anyone cares about fashion, they would want to make a statement. You can't make a statement carrying something that everyone has, be it real or a knock-off. I especially love the knock-off element, because no-one can tell the difference at a glance, thus cheapening the look and making fools of anyone who spent more than $10 on one. I must say, whenever I see someone proudly clutching something with a Louis Vuitton print, the word "loser" springs to mind. It's just so desperate. It's just about screaming "I have no innovation or trust in my taste, so I will hide behind this thing. Then everyone will SEE that I have class."

I know people convince themselves that they like it, but I believe they are fooling themselves. They like the prestige, the class and all these other things that don't actually come with the bag. I've heard of people with ordinary desk jobs saving up all their money for a bag. My friend told me about her co-worker who saved up $800 for months to purchase a small LV wallet, only to soon see knock-offs turning up at the market for $20. She subsequently felt very stupid. $800 spent by someone who couldn't afford it, for a small piece of leather, thread and a zip with a fairly uninspired print, if you ask me. Don't even get me started on the ugly beige trim! If that girl was a trash bag to begin with, the addition of that purse did not stop her from being a trash bag. Again, you can't buy class. Class comes from within and can be exuded even if you buy your clothes at Target.

I'm certainly not against all designer clothes (unless the designers use fur, in which case they can fuck right off. THAT'S another blog!) On the contrary, as much as I oppose the Tommy t-shirt, I would wear the right Tommy dress in a heartbeat. I saw a gorgeous one in a window in London last year. I'd never mention that it was a Tommy as whether or not it was him would have ZERO to do with why I would wear it. If something exemplifies my style, I will wear it. I can't afford anything like that, and that's totally fine because anyone can still be classy for peanuts. I'm working the 60s mod look these days and I'd sooner wear a dress befitting my style which I found for $12 at Buffalo Exchange than some gaudy designer dress just because it has a name attached. I'm not always classy, but when I want to, I don't need to spend a lot of money to pull it off.

Do you think that t-shirt reflects Tommy Hilfiger as a designer? (I'll take the dress on the left, thanks)

I thought the man above was barbecuing, but in fact he is dyeing yarn. The site from which that picture came from states that he is doing that, " his precious Tommy Hilfiger t-shirt." Why would this shirt be precious to this man? I wonder if he actually owns a pair of the Tommy Jeans which he is promoting. Even if he is, why on earth would anyone wear a T-SHIRT that advertises JEANS? I feel like I'm in a world gone mad! Companies spend large amounts of money to advertise on billboards. And yet, we find ourselves in a time where people are spending their own money to BE billboards.

And going against the very essence of class, wouldn't it seems tacky to go to a party and announce to everyone how much your outfit cost?

Tomethy: "Bertha, you look smashing!"
Bertha: "Why thank-you Tomethy! I should look smashing! This outfit only cost me $2,500!"

That's precisely what someone is doing by brandishing something known to be expensive. I must admit, I am a bit of a blabbermouth when it comes to revealing prices, but for the completely opposite reason,

Many people: "Simone! That dress is so cool!"
Me: "Thanks! It was only $16!!!"

If someone compliments something I'm wearing, I love to boast about it's cheapness. A little tacky perhaps, but who doesn't enjoy hearing about a good bargain? The revealed price of an outfit does not lessen the appeal it had before said information was revealed. I wont dispute that often, cheaper clothes are constructed poorly by comparison to their designer counterparts, but this is not always the case, and with more flamboyant and dressier items, it's hard to find many opportunities to wear something enough to wear it out. True, higher end items are cut and sewn better, but these things aren't observable to everyone you meet and the jump in price is more for the name than the better construction. A friend of mine spent a ridiculous amount of money of a Versace cardigan, which had "Versace" printed in gold all along the trim. She specifically bought it because it SHOWED the Versace name. She told me as much. But after one wash, all the gold wore off and she was left with an unspectacular black cardigan.

Fashion is such a wonderful art form, one which starts with the vision of the designer and can then be worked and interpreted by the wearer. Not everyone is up to that task, which is fine, so long as these people don't think they can jump in on some of that by carrying a bag, wearing a hat or donning a t-shirt bearing a logo. Simply put, you either got it, or you don't. Try as one may, you just can't buy into that.

Taking great pride in attaching oneself to a brand shows a great void in self worth. There is no amount of money on earth that can fill that void. It has to be repaired from within oneself.

Monday, December 03, 2007

The devolution of funny

I can't believe this never ocurred to me until this weekend, but it finally did after hanging out with a friend of a friend who, while being someone who likes to do fun things, has a pretty weak sense of humour. She's no-one I would dare call funny. She seems to find it easier to state things are funny rather than actually laugh at them. But she likes to have fun, so shouldn't that make her fun-ny?

See, if your nose runs, it is "runny", when the sun does it's thing, it is "sunny", and if a bun was at its peak, you might say it was "bunny". So why not "funny" for the fun? How odd it would be to come off an activity suggested by your humourless friend and say, "I'm so glad you suggested that hot air balloon ride! You're SO funny!". I wonder if the word funny arose from people making people laugh and creating a fun time and eventually became used exclusively for the hilarious. Dullards who know how to have fun are now devoid of an appropriate adjective!

Funny, but not fun.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Doin' beans

What did YOU do last Friday night?

"Dear Jelly Belly Candy Company (Bertie Bott's Division),

We immensely enjoyed your 10 flavors of beans, however the fun ended far too soon. Once the bean party was over, we sat around devising new bean flavors.

We would like to take this opportunity to submit to you our list of what we hope to be future bean flavours.

Body odor
Homeless Person
Just Farts
Bad breath
Spoiled meat
Off cheese
Infected wound pus
Liposuction fat
Burnt hair
Burnt fingernails
Stale bread
Off milk
Ash tray
Natural Gas
Vicks' Vaporub
Decomposing body
Tree bark
Dirty undies
Toilet Duck
Cheap tequila
Sea water
Poo/Dog poo
Urine/Asparagus pee
Dick cheese
Cough medicine
Dog food
Refried beans
Canker sore
Fingernail dirt
Dissolving tablet
Airplane food

We understand that some these may not be feasible, but we expect the majority of the list will be of great use to you. Aside from our many suggestions, we would also like to request the return of the popular sardine flavor!

Thanks for taking the time to consider our suggestions.

Kind regards,

Agatha, age 29

Simone, age 29

Donna, age 30"

Dumbledore, hoping for a caramel, downs an earwax bean instead.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


My mind has been a bit scattered lately, so I'm going to slip into one of those random type blogs. It's not usually my style, but it's a nice reminder to me to chill the fuck out.

Today started off really badly, though I came out with the best excuse for being late to work ever. "There was a spider in my car," I said when I called in to say I was on my way. Can you imagine my horror when I opened my car door this morning to find, not just a spider hanging out somewhere, but rather sitting smack in the middle of a freshly manufactured web that spanned the entire breadth of my door? I went in a complete panic. It was like coming home and finding a stranger in your house in a tent in the middle of your living room. Very alarming! It was too much to deal with on my own, so I went back inside, woke up Gregg and asked him deal with it. After making him do a thorough check that it hadn't left behind any friends or family, I was on my way and made my prize winning late call. I wish I had taken a picture of it, but I was far too distraught at the time. Who the fuck did that spider think he was?

A few months ago, someone asked me to come up with a word for when you are drinking something from a cup with ice and you tilt the cup back, trying to get the last bit of liquid to pour down into your mouth and then ice collapses onto your face. To a point, the ice stays mounted together at the base of the cup, but at some point, you go too far and the ice cascades, causing discomfort, numbness and embarrassment with ones own self. I came up with "aqualanche". I believe the person who commissioned the word threw in one half of it (though I forget if it was 'aqua' or 'avalanche'), but I came up with the final result of "aqualanche". I emailed it to him and then he never wrote back! Awed by genius, perhaps? Anyway, another one for fans of my words to add to "tosswad" and "oneion".

Example of an aqualanche*

Official dictionary definition:

aqualanche (noun) - The collapsing of ice into ones face as one tilts a cup too far in an effort to retrieve the last drops of a beverage nestled beneath a large quantity of ice.

Moving on, I really hate fart jokes. I don't think they are funny and I usually cringe when someone starts to tell me some kind of personal story involving gas. Thanks, but no thanks. But my classiness has been challenged since I was sent the video below. I feel justified in my enjoyment though, as this clip clearly transcends simple low brow humour by showing clever editing and impeccable comic timing. Perhaps I am just trying to make excuses for my fall from grace, but whatever the case, this video fucking rules.

As a wannabe stickler for good grammar and "punctuation", I stumbled upon this "blog" yesterday and I think it will make your "life" a whole lot better as it has "mine".

"Click" me

...and heavens to Pete, I haven't even begun to look at the other punctuation disasters that link from that blog, such as Apostrophe Abuse! I need a place to submit the photo below which seriously lacks an apostrophe. Well, there are many problems.

*an aqualanche can be avoided with the use of a straw.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

A new concept to embrace: The cake

Contrary to whatever this blog title may have evoked, this has nothing to with the end result of flour, eggs, sugar and an oven. No this is about the psychological phenomenon devised by Agatha and myself which we call "cakes". The name doesn't make any direct sense, but when we first started collecting these indiscretions of the mind we would gleefully say "I had one of those things. This is the icing on the cake." Then, "This is the cherry on the cake!" and, "This is the nuts on the cherry on the cake..." and so we ended up just calling them cakes.

So what is a cake, if not something baked? It's a strange, split second occurrence where your mind thinks something completely ridiculous, but for a nano second, it seems compeltely logical.

Sadly, we've documented only a fraction of the ones we've had, but I think I've got a good amount for you to get the idea.

One time Agatha was driving along and stopped at a red light. It was one of those lights comprised of a multitude of small lights. In this particular case, several in the middle of the light were burnt out and Ag thought (for a moment) "Those must have worn out from everyone focusing on the middle."

And here's one from me, just so she doesn't cop all the accusations as to the number of chromosomes she possesses.

I was at work and the email on this computer doesn't work, so I had to use a different computer to send the emails. I wrote two emails the previous week that I needed to resend from the other computer, so I was about to highlight and copy from the one computer, and thought the copy would transfer across the room which I could 'paste' with the other mouse!

I bet most of you are thinking "Man, that is fucking stupid," and be quite sure you would never think anything like that. Well, if you've been reading my blog, I think you've already figured out that I am not stupid, and you'll allow my intellect to vouch for Ag. She's not stupid either. Much in the way people manage to drop things, cut themselves and bump into walls without the aid of alcohol, the cake is a mere momentary lapse of the mind like those others, but still an application of some other logic, though inappropriate for the situation at hand. Again, I will remind you, they are not lingering thoughts, but split second thoughts which are immediately recognised, and due to our awareness of them, appropriately laughed at. I'm sure that now you are familiar with the format, you will soon be aware of them too.

I just searched my email and found way more than I thought I had, but here are some choice cuts from the cake shop.

When one of us is cooking dinner in the kitchen while the baseball is on, we have it on in the radio in the kitchen. Usually the other one is watching the game on the TV, but as the TV is about 8-10 seconds behind the radio, if something happens, whoever is in the kitchen may shout "YES!" or "FUCK!" and it gives it away to whoever is watching TV. Onto the cake. I was AT THE GAME by myself one day while Gregg was on tour. We (the Dodgers) had people on base and then Gregg called and I thought "Oh! He must know something happens!"

I was just watching the news and saw a story about these dolphins from an aquarium that are in the gulf somewhere after hurricane Katrina. Trainers are now watching them and feeding them. They talked about two that were most injured, and showed the trainers surrounding one and you could only see it's fin, not it's face. I then wondered if the were protecting the dolphin's identity.

Gregg was on the plane listening to his iPod and thinking how it would make the time go by. He figured with about 4 - 5 minutes per song, the flight would go along pretty quickly. Then he stopped and spent a bit of time perusing through the song list and suddenly thought he better quickly go back to listening or the flight would take longer.

As I was just entering the car port through a side gate, a fly whizzedpast my head and I thought "Oh no! I let a fly in!" This would make sense if the car port wasn't very open on the side and I was only opening a small gate, not a door.

I was driving home and I wont explain how I got onto it, but I was thinking about how former Presidents have Secret Service protection for life. Then I thought how they have to keep hiring more and more Secret Service people to protect Presidents as the years go on, but of course, I forgot that former Presidents regulary die.

I was packing up my computer to take to San Francisco with me. I put it in the notebook bag I bought at Dimmey's a few months before. I knew it fit, but this was the first time I was using it and I slipped it into a pocket I hadn't tried before to hold it in place. It *just* fit and I was glad. I was just thinking about it and worried for a moment. What if the computer outgrows the bag?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Toilet Technology

I've been an avid toilet user for the greater part of my life. While many things around me have made great technological advancements over my lifetime, I think the toilet and plumbing have taken a step back.

I'm quite sure when I was growing up, after a toilet was flushed all the water that rushed about would manage to contain itself within the confines of the bowl. I'd say for around 10 years or so this has changed as the water now seems to find it's way onto the seat very often, which induces confusion, fear and requires a wipe down before use. Obviously, I place paper on a public seat, but I'm not about to sit on wet paper, and so a wipe down is still necessary. Luckily, the toilet in my own home is well behaved, though it may just be a result of the archaic plumbing in our building.

I've asked myself if perhaps as a child I was unconcerned with a wet seat, willing to plonk myself anywhere without a care in the world. But alas, this is not the case. My mother ingrained her neurosis in me well. Too well in fact as I came to fear toilets so much that my avoidance of them occasionally led to some pant and bed wetting. I recently posed this idea to my mother, that my neurosis was derived from her, and unlike most unfortunate incidents which parents conveniently forget, she seemed willing to admit this one.

So by looking at my long held fear of toilet germs, I believe there is no way I accepted wet seats as a child, and so it would then stand to reason that the frequent splashing onto the seat is a new occurrence. It may also be argued that as an adult, my scope of toilets has greatly increased, thus exposing me to a variety of bowl and plumbing combinations. But I must return to the toilet at my parents house. I have known it it's whole life and was lucky enough to be the first one to use it (my sister still complains about this to this day) and I can assure you, it splashes excessively now which it did not use to do at all.

I'm dismayed that this frequent unpleasantness has, to date, not only not skirted discussion (to my knowledge,) but also has not been addressed by the plumbing industry. There is nothing worse than going into a poorly lit stall, identifying the presence of liquid and asking oneself "Water or pee?"

Won't someone please think of the children? They deserve to know a time when all seats were completely dry, just as we had the luxury of doing many moons ago.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

A mispronunciation I'll never live down

It's rare to remember exactly when you learned a word, but in the case of 'ethnicity', I know it was in 1995 during Year 12 Australia Studies. I hated that class. I only took it because I needed to take one more subject and I thought it would be easy. Perhaps it might have been if I ever paid attention. I can think of only three instances in which I was aware of what was going on. One time was when we watched an ancient documentary which included archival platypus footage (which led to my great appreciation of the platypus), and another was when we watched a ridiculous video entitled "Barbecuearea" showing a role reversal where white people were happily going about their business grilling sausages in a place called "Barbecuearea" when Aborigines arrive and kick them out. I couldn't stop laughing at the frequent use of the word "Barbecuearea". It sounded like "Barbekeweria". A ripping good time!

Aborigines (upon landing and seeing the white people): What do you call this place?
White people: Barbecue Area?
Aborigines: Barbecuearea!

The final thing I remember is only to do with my humiliation. The teacher asked me to read and I was mortified. I've always been good at reading aloud, but I was taken aback because I had no idea what we were supposed to be learning about. Kristen and I spent the entire time writing letters back and forth. So on this day I proceeded to read and I was doing just fine until I hit "ethnicity" which I'd never seen, couldn't figure out and didn't know what it meant in context since I paid no attention. But I had to plug away and out spilled "ethnic city". The teacher interjected "Ethnicity." I think I tried to repeat after her, but still fucked it up. Kristen started to laugh. As soon as we were sent back to work, Kristen exploded with glee at the concept of an "ethnic city" which was just full of ethnic people, kept aside from everyone else. She kept asking me more about it like I was the expert. She was just dying and while I could see the funny side, I was well over it before she was. In fact, I believe she still isn't over it. I think the final icing on the cake was when I was, I think, again being called on by the teacher when Kristen raised her hand in my direction, revealing this in her palm:


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I'm addicted to Brit 'cause I know that she's TOXIC.

In case you missed it...
Britney Spears - Gimme More live VMA 2007

If you missed the MTV Video Music Awards, you've surely at least heard all the fallout from Britney's performance. My friend Marika and I watched it, and boy, it was a million times better than I imagined. Better for my purposes anyway which was to see her crash and burn! I feared she would do a mediocre performance, but enough that the critics would say "Britney's back!". But alas, she was so fucking appalling that to say otherwise may be considered a felony.

You've heard it all already, bad lip syncing, too fat, and lacklustre and awkward dance moves. But what kills me about these assessments is no complaint that there was lip syncing in place in the first place, but rather that she did it poorly. As I've complained many times before, the standards of quality are so reduced that the lip syncing itself is apparently not the problem here. What troubled times we live in! As for her fatness, clearly she's not really fat, but people with her current physique tend not to go out in public in their underwear (even if it's covered in sequins), so if she's going to let the world see her for the garbage woman she is, then yeah, I think it's okay to ridicule her about her weight.

Marika and I went out right after her "performance", but made sure we got back in time to catch the repeat. I thought about it and gleefully texted with Gregg and Steph about it. I was sure the re-run would be disappointing after all I'd built it up to be for two hours, but instead it was better than I remembered. Marika shared my glee, but then felt compelled to apologise for wallowing in this public display of misery. I told her not to be sorry. This trash bag has been hugely successful for nine years and undeservedly so. She's been foisted upon us, had the audacity to call herself an artist, and we've had to put up with her trampling more talented and more deserving people. The only reason her life is a mess is because she's a shallow, spoiled bitch. She'd sooner party than care for her children, so fuck her and the record-company-manufactured horse she rode in on. I think it's perfectly fine to bask in this. For all I've suffered of her all these years, she's finally doing something I can enjoy! Oh, except Toxic. I do like that song, but obviously, it has nothing to do with her. It's that Bollywood soundtrack hook that makes it.

Yes, hide your face Britney. You should be fucking ashamed of yourself. A nerd with two left feet who got himself shit-faced drunk to drown his sorrows after being anally raped by a pair donkeys could have done that song better than you.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Escaping to the tropical paradise in my armpit

Tikis, tropical drinks, tropical islands, hula dancers, that's my bag. My earliest recollection of being enamoured with such things might have been the line "Tropical drink melting in your hand" from Kokomo by the Beach Boys. Who could argue against such deliciousness? I love all that stuff as you may well gather from knowing me. My mother nearly put me off the whole thing with her insistence of listening to this insipid "Hawaiian" album, which was a bunch of island classics set to miserable synthesized instrumentation. A complete and utter travesty to the the genre, but I guess my mother is not so wised up to the real instruments verses synth and so she she merrily basked in her pseudo island glory while my sister and I screamed in the back seat, praying for a fatal car accident to make it stop. Luckily as I broke free from that, I found I actually do love exotic music when done right. Martin Denny is King! Our family trip to Hawaii when I was 13 absolutely sealed the deal. From then on, I knew I wanted to retire in a tropical paradise.


Recently, I realised I needed a new deodorant as my spray can one was starting to make my nose tickle. Is this a consequence of getting on? I've never been particularly sensitive to smells or foods, so why now? It's a little alarming, but I went in search of a roll-on to avoid this latest irritation.

As I perused the deodorant section of Target, I was confronted with the usual floral and rain scents. "Whatever," I thought. As long as it doesn't leave white marks on my clothes.

And then, it caught my eye. It seems the deodorant world has taken great strides since I last took the time for a good long peruse. I came across Suave, Tropical Paradise scent. I am often skeptical of these smells as they are never what they claim to be, especially from what I understood to be a low grade brand like Suave. But alas, I was pleasantly surprised. This little stick holds all my olfactory organs require to send me off to paradise. I must admit, the fact that it was only .94 cents was a little alarming (on sale from $1.49) but what can I say? I smell like my tropical dreams all day long.

A little piece of this... this...

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Glory holes

Homer: We can outsmart those dolphins. Don't forget -- we invented computers, leg warmers, bendy straws, peel-and-eat shrimp, the glory hole, AND the pudding cup.

The fact that Homer Simpson ever said the above quote has both baffled and delighted Gregg and I for a number of years. I had forgotten everything surrounding the quote and from which episode it had come from, just that he was praising the invention of the glory hole. Now that I fished out that quote, I see it is from the Halloween episode where the dolphins take over, an episode which had few redeeming qualities. But since that quote lives on, it certainly makes it worth something.

But WHY is Homer at all enamoured with the glory hole? Is he just happy to know that such a thing exists? I know there are alternate meanings for glory hole, but I think for that gag to work, he has to mean a blow job/fuck hole.

The idea of using such a thing simply baffles me. I mean, I'm afraid to close my eyes and open my mouth when Gregg is going to surprise me with some food. This is someone I love and trust, trust not to put wet bread or anything pickled onto my tongue, yet I still flinch at the approach of the mystery food item. The last time he did it, it was my all time favourite candy! So if I have this much fear from a loved one over food, I can't imagine sinking a precious organ into a hole for god knows who to do god knows what with.

A stylised glory hole, and one that seems to have been cut in an emergency.

So I say kudos to the man who, for the time being, has the balls to offer his penis up to the unknown.

To learn more about glory holes, click here.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Unfortunate cookies: An exposé

I still enjoy getting fortune cookies at the end of a meal, but the joy of an interesting fortune died long ago. I still enjoy the taste of a fortune cookie, so there's still that treat, but it's coupled with the waning hope that the cookie will contain a window into my future. These days, not only are the fortunes disappointing, but the cookies themselves can occasionally make you regret the entire dining experience.

A good fortune is something like this:
It doesn't say a heck of a lot, but it meets its intended function by providing some hope for the future.
So why, when the item is called a FORTUNE cookie, have I been getting so many like:

What kind of rubbish is that? That's not a fortune, that's a phrase. One that surely we've all been badgered by our parents with at some stage when giving up on a musical instrument or sport as a child. One does not require this kind of nagging after enjoying a good meal.

As I had grown increasingly disappointed with the lack of an actual fortune over the last few years, I decided to embark on some research for this blog which involved downing an entire box of cookies. I did it over a couple of weeks, and despite the disappointing fortunes, I am happy to report that the box was only $1 at Big Lots and that each cookie contains only 15 calories. I must say, that's a convenient treat!

My research subject: "Luv Yu" fortune cookies: baked with love and few calories. YES!

So here are some good fortunes:

A kick in the pants I always need. I've had this one for ages and it's stuck on the wall at my desk.

Just when I thought things were sucking, this little note provides hope.

What a wonderful and confusing feeling this one provided, mostly because it is a lyric from "Land of Sunshine" by Faith No More, originally snatched from a personality test.

This also resides on my wall. One of the happiest fortunes I've ever received and one that continues to come true. Incredible!

Same old, but it's still a fortune.

Okay, those are all fortunes which fall into the definition of fortune. Here are more of the lame ones I've been getting which has soured me on the whole fortune delivery by cookie experience.
This isn't a fortune, but advice. There's a big difference! I don't like being told what to do by dessert.
Oh yeah? You obviously haven't seen my intellect!

Huh, *giggle*, why yes, thank-you...but that's still not a fortune. I knew that already. NEXT!

More advice, though I do like this one and follow through on it often. This one, while not a fortune, resides on my wall.

See, here's the problem. If you tell me things about the future, they can't be strongly challenged. They are the future and haven't happened yet, so who knows? If you tell people things about themselves, delivered with the randomness of which way the waiter placed the cookie plate, you, dear cookie manufacturer who is reading this, are opening yourself up for great scrutiny. While I might have an iron constitution, the great physical powers part is complete crap as I don't think there is a girl alive who can't beat me in an arm wrestle.


When? At the moment I cracked this cookie, or always? And how the fuck did you know?
What a completely miserable time this was. You open a cookie with grand ideas about receiving fabulous, long lost Asian wisdom and are instead assaulted with rigid, capitalist ideas. What a fucking drag. What is this telling me? I should hurry up and pay my bill and hot foot it out of the restaurant to allow the next patron my table. Fuck you. Next time I get this one, I'm ordering another dessert and hanging out for another hour.
This one is kinda dirty because I found it on the floor of the car in the middle of my research. No doubt I brought it into the car, because I'm the only one in the household stupid enough to save fortunes. I must have figured I was one of those rare souls who likes to laugh and have a good time and couldn't get over the foresight of the cookie to find me, so I kept it.

What the hell? This is way too specific and has little chance of succeeding and it did not! I love two sports, Aussie Rules football and baseball, but I care not at all for horses and have gambled less than $50 in my life...I guess if DID say "...but not in excess." Hmmmm.

Fortune cookies are supposed to provide some advice and hope for the future nestled neatly and reassuringly in a tasty baked treat, not immediately disillusion us before the digestive process has even begun.