Monday, October 31, 2011

Pell on the march

George Pell, my favourite of the 'thou shalt nots' that infest the established religion national stage here in Oz, is off on an overseas adventure. In England, no less.

Cue Rule Britannia as we see footage of Pell, bedecked in his most splendid of man dresses, travelling along the Tower Bridge with the Tower of London also in shot. Also a Beefeater eating a sandwich (1).

Anyway ... the adventure. Pell has decided that, as per is his right as the premier representative of 'da Pope' and Catholicism, that he can talk about climate change and the challenges of believing in it.

Yes, that's right. Pell has problems with the evidence.

Paul Barry, writing for the new media platform, The Power Index, had this to say;

"Carbon dioxide ... is not a pollutant, but part of the stuff of life," the cardinal chirped cheerfully, and CO2 levels would need to rise to "almost 13 times today's concentration" before they posed any danger to humans.

But Australia's most powerful Catholic saved his best cheep for last, warning that, "debates about anthropogenic global warming can only be conducted by the accurate recognition and interpretation of scientific evidence."

We had to sit down after reading that one.

After all, Cardinal Pell is a man who believes in miracles and all sorts of unreasonable things: that God is an all-powerful being who rules the world, that Christ was born to a virgin, that Jesus rose from the dead, and that bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ at Holy Communion. Pell also believes in Heaven and Hell.

So where does he find scientific evidence for all that stuff?

Check out the rest of the Paul Barry article on George Pell in Blighty throwing in his two cents on climate change.

Pell represents a different world to science. In many ways it's in direct opposition, what with the whole empirical evidence thing. So when he crosses into the world of science like he has here ... he sounds like a moronic fuckwit.

Sorry. I apologise. That's likely tautology.

Anyway, for those of you who, like me, are lovers of the infamous train wreck that is Lord Monckton, you will be pleased to know that Pell cites Monckton as a reliable information source no less than four times.


However I am not really worried about Pell's views infecting the rest of the Catholic population. After-all something like ninety percent of them use contraception in direct violation of one or more of the Encyclicals. I hardly think they're also going to subscribe to Mr P

If Catholicism was like TV Week this would totally make a good sitcom preview writeup.

10.30 pm. Oh George!—George travels to the United Kingdom to talk about scientific burden of proof lacking in the belief of anthropogenic climate change despite his being a Cardinal for a faith whose basis of divine proof is a 2000 year old record
of a series of alleged miracles .

I think, perhaps, he's got relevance syndrome ... in that he's not a very relevant person.

Maybe it's time to splurge out on a new man dress?!

As irony would have it, it's just cucumber and bread—the guard's a vegetarian.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Where theWife and Mikey take instruction

Recently we had the second of those life journey moments that typically involve having to find out more via a seminar at a hospital.

The first was before theBoy was born. It was a two-day birth-a-thon where we gathered with like-preggers plus partner—and yes, exciting, we had lesbians!—in a mid-sized lecture room. The two days involved dolls being pushed through pelvic bones, pleas for partners to bring swimmers if they were going to assist the soon-to-be-mum in the shower, and the showing of a pair of appalling birthing videos. Appalling for the dodgy production values. It looked like a mid-morning ’80s ABC documentary-for-school-kids you were sometimes forced to watch in primary school.

So the second life plus seminar from health people moment ... for when one of you endures a serious medical thing. An event so large you have to go to class and actually have fucking homework on it. For us our lecture was for the upcoming Fucking Catalina Wine Mixer—aka the hip operation.

The lecture kicked off with various enfeebled with impending joint replacements swarming geriatrically into the tier-seating filled auditorium (1). We went up the very back as we were clearly the most able people in the room. Well, in terms of age. We were the youngest, even out of the attending staff.

Some highlights of information learned and sights seen.

I will likely flood with tears on day three after the Op. The full reality of what has happened has set in; your meds are being dialed back; you will have to do unpleasant exercises.

The man in front of me, like me, had a balding crown. Though his was far larger—crop circle large. I half expected one of those scared-the-poo-out-of-me aliens from Signs to walk past the open door. He had a moderately short hair cut … only he’d failed to crop the wispy remnants that rose like spirits from a painting of a battlefield and were illuminated under the bright lights of the hall.

A portly middle-aged lady was proudly wearing a large jumper emblazoned with a giant AMSTERDAM. I kept whispering doobie references about her and making bong bubbling or toke-taking impressions when she arced up.

A non-footnoted aside. Have you noticed in a forum it’s always the same three fucking people that speak up? And some of them don’t realise they shouldn’t because they are lacking in emotional intelligence and thus don’t know when they’ve crossed people’s interest or annoyance thresholds.

Then there was hero man. Hero man objected to the sensible suggestion that during the whole joint replacement process chances are you would be on a anti-pain medication regime.

He started by saying he’d had two knee ops, and didn’t need meds afterward, and that anyway it’s mostly 'mind over matter.’

There was a ripple of disbelief through the crowd. After-all these people either had a joint that was about to be cut from their fucking body and gaping wounds sewn up afterward and endure a combination of discomfort and uber careful manuvering on their replacement joint and this fuckwit starts up by saying the pain … the pain that led them to do this do themselves, you know, the cutting out of their bodies vital joint parts, was ‘mind over matter.’

To their credit the coordinators said that everyone’s ‘pain journey’ was different and that the only people that would know how their pain was best managed for them or how they endured the intensity of said pain was that person. So basically they said ‘hey, whatever rocks your boat. You don’t need meds, fine. But chances are you will.’

And what will it be? Endone, baby. Hillbilly H. Apparently we can leave hospital with up to a whole packet to see us through the next few days. I’m as excited about that part as I was to experience the awesome joy that was my take-home bottle of Oxynorm from an op back in ’07.

There was the display of the kit that would be used just after the op and at home. One was a hip roller. It looked like the back half of the Hannibal Lecter transport trolley. They actually got one of the staff into it and rolled her on her side within the framework—used so they can get to your back and arse to clean you without your having to move your hip. Only they did it on a narrow counter top and she really looked like she could have been rolled all the way off it.

There was also the so-called "abductor pillow"—which is a large cushion that's wedged between your legs so you don't cross them your operation. I wanted to shout out 'I was once nearly kidnapped by a seat cushion—is it like that?' but I was too cowardly.

Oh yeah, there's also the hovercraft. Apparently when they shunt you onto an X-ray table from your bed, they do it via a pumped up mattress air cushion thing. Well that's just fancy. Which is good—I have an addiction to fancy.

Ah, yes, there was the late couple—there’s always one. In this case it was cataract man and lady wife. He was a heavy-set guy, in late middle-age but still with a healthy head of hair. He also had a large white eye-patch firmly surgically taped across his eye socket and face. With him was his presumed lady-wife. She explained he’d just had cataract surgery and they’d come straight from there to here. There were no seats left down the front … so instead they seated him on the display scooter that was by the door, his wife next to him on a pulled over chair. I couldn’t but help but look at them … largely because they were in front of the door. The very door we wanted to leave through.

It was, in the end, a two-and-a-half-hour seminar with one small ten minute break in the middle. theWife later pointed out that the intensity of the information and the duration of the ‘you’re having a joint replaced’ lecture was such that it was probably not that effective for the older set. She saw numerous people nodding off or spacing out. Fuck, even I did. But then my pen didn’t work and I’d had limited sleep the night before. All through it I kept fantasising about the sick room back at work, with its bed and inviting pillow, and promising myself that when I got to work … I’d slip away and meet it in a covert assignation.

During the break, though, we had a mini-chat with another hip-replacement person. She was a teacher, and had been down the joint replacement path before with no less than two knee ops. I asked if she set off the airport metal detector. She said no. Apparently titanium doesn't. I will have to scope that out! I was looking forward to just striding with Old Spice confidence through the blip blip gate and then holding with triumph aloft my letter from the doctor saying I was more machine than man. Well ... that I had some machinery inside me (2).

The information was needed, so I am glad we went (3). It does certainly seem all a bit more real now. At one point on the PowerPoint I saw a large word emblazoned on the screen—CATHETER—and I got a bit worried. After-all the lady-hole permits such things to entrée into the wee tube. Our man’s equiv … not so much. I piped up, notice the pun!, and asked about the process. She confirmed that yes, it would happen, but that it would be implanted during surgery so not to worry. I yelled ‘WOO HOO!’, Homer-style, which got a tiny ripple laugh.

So in five or so weeks it once more into the series of smaller rooms, dear friends, will I be again. Mole blind, trying to crack jokes with theatre staff and orderlies (4) and all the while trying to tamp down the fear of yet another operation.

Still, it could be worse. It could have been a life moment that needs a seminar at the hospital #4—'Me and my severe disability' or #5, 'Palliative care and you—blissing yourself out the door.'

(1) Yes the clinic was aware of the stupidity of having tiered seating for people about to get a joint operation. Alas it’s all they have access to.
(2) But that doesn't explain the condom... (that's for you, Nate).
(3) I was more glad theWife went. She’s a super-organised person and was a note taking demon. Oh, note to procedure information people. If you choose a glossy satin finish to your fancy-schmancy booklet about an operation, then I hope realise that the notes page you kindly leave opposite the inner back cover, is of the same stock-type. And it’s fucking hard to write on when you have a sketchy pen … or even a pencil, which is what we used in the end.
(4) Orderlies just seem to be the nicest guys. I've never come across an unpleasant orderly. And this is before I get dosed up. So I am going in fully compus when I meet them. Usually they're kind and they laugh at my feeble puns and weak observational humour (Cue Seinfeld voice. 'What's the deal with paper undies? I mean why do you need to access my penis that fast?').

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The on-drudge continues

Well there was no more delaying it. Back to the file pile I went, filing over 16 file parts today alone. Indeed so many I actually ran out of parts, with near 20 parts-worth to file in content remaining.

For the morbidly curious, in the public service, here's the skinny on filing.

No bulldog or paper clips, everything needs to be securely fastened, no greater than 3 cm in thickness. Documents are secured in a manila file folder via a split pin. You push the pin through the spine fold of the folder, then slot the drilled-through file contents onto the pin. When you reach the maximum thickness you then place FILE CLOSED notice (saying this part cannot have more stuff and please to be seeing the next part). Finally you top it all off with a 'DO NOT REMOVE FROM TOP OF THE FOLDER' tag (1). Then you fold the ends of the split pin over that tag. Why the tag? It's so you can use the tag to lever up the pin ends and thus not prick under your finger tips if you have to use nails should you ever need to take stuff off the file.


It was, of course, bound to happen. The paper-cut finger. Not sure how I did it but I looked down and there was a neat slice and a blood smear. Not sure where the blood that came out pre-smear went. Oh well. It was off to the First Aid Cabinet for the first time since I moved to the building several months ago. This proved somewhat embarrassing as, up until recently, I was the First Aid Officer for my floor (2) and by rights I should have done a stock-take when I got the job.

Naturally the cut happened to ole righty index—my most used finger (3). And I two-finger type so each key-strike causes a little discomfort as a result.

By all rights I should fill out a safety report. Seriously, I should. I bled from a workplace injury. Even if it was a paper cut.

Anyway, so the end is in sight. All is good. I contact a point of contact in Archives and ask them how I get all these boxes to them. I explained what we'd filed—all the related documentation from the burdensome administration process foisted on me by the ___ and ___ (with a Bicycle seat) Backy McStab.

'Oh,' says the Archive Pee Oh Cee (4). 'We don't normally archive that stuff. Anyway, it's destroyed after seven years.'

Right ... so there's a good chance I have blown about a week's worth of work on something not needed. That was supposed to live on a shelf until expired and then chucked. Though she did say 'box files' so she might not know it's a proper one with a file number (5).

Well, I suppose it was needed. It was jammed loose into file boxes. This way at least it's officially—well, nearly all done—locked into registered files, so I can't get in trouble. But the whole point of doing this was so we could fuck it off into a warehouse where it would never see the light of day again. Only ... archives don't seem to be taking that shit.

So that's what you get for letter-perfect governance. A waste of time and effort and people cock-blocking you at the very end.

Double sigh.

(1) It's a small 2.5 cm by 4 cm manila coloured cardboard square (about 200 GSM?). I ran out of them. I actually sent one of my hilarious building-wide email calls for more ... and got no replies. Well no useful replies. Thanks to including a Star Wars reference in the plea—the subject line was 'Help me (residents of building) ... you're my only hope then had the first line apologising for their having to mentally marry my head to Leila's body—T from upstairs pinged me a Star Wars cartoon joke site that was actually work friendly (as in not blocked as being a no no website). That later led him to making a D&D3.5 reference to which I responded 'I rolled a mod 16 on a DC 18 Spot check' to indicate failure in seeing something. Hilarious stuff. Nice to meet another player. I do find it delish I work next to someone that also plays—L, who is a member of an all-girl gaming group that meets regularly and many knit as they play. I love it!
(2) My Senior First Aid certificate expires in November and I won't be in a position to get retrained. My work actually pays the First Aid Officer a nominal extra amount each pay—five bucks or so—but apparently it's so you can stock the cabinet. Not sure. At any rate when the Howard government got in they banned Aspirin in the kits. Too many people were flogging it. Only if someone has a suspected heart attack—the conscious and chest pain kind, not the unconscious and in cardiac arrest—an Aspirin can thin the blood and help reduce the chance of actual death. Nice one Howard government. Another fuck you to the public service. Like when they took insurance cover away from going to and from work. Only it kind of backfired when a Costello staffer got taken out by a car coming back from a meal. Oh well. Oh, another thing. Apparently we're not allowed to give an Epipen shot ourselves. The user has to. So if they're in purple-faced no air mode you're supposed to Patrick Swayze them from behind like in the Ghost pottery scene and manuever their hand and pen into place then assist them to plunge it in. It's bureaucratic nampy, pampy uber risk-run-away-from-even-if-it-could-kill-someone that shits me about government at times.

(3) Er ... should that be 'the finger I use the most?' Most used might imply it's of a greater vintage than the others.
(4) Like what I did there? That's the sounded-out POC for Point of Contact. Stay classy, ... me.
(5) In pre-PDF and many-scanner days, we now simply PDF stuff and chuck the original once scanned, when I worked in a mail room we would take two copies of each piece of outwards correspondence. One went on the subject file. One went in a box file. Literally a box—a big document box with a spring clasp you sproinged down to hold papers in place. It was then stored on a shelf for outwards correspondence for the calendar year. I presume then once seven years had passed contents were then destroyed. It seemed to me a lot like the pointless work Marge does when she works at the power plant, sticks a memo in the vacuum tube, and it fucks off into a nearby river and the capsule is then tail-patted into a beaver dam wall. That's governance!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

If I was on twitter...

I'm not on Twitter. Nor am I on Facebook. This blog pretty much is it for social media. Apart, that is, from push mechanisms like email or texts.

But, as snobby as I am, I do semi-tweet in a slight sense in that sometimes I will craft what I think is a particularly humorous text and want to ping it to as many people as possible, factoring in their current circumstances.

Like this recent effort in describing a ride at a community event.

'The jumping castle is called "kiddie ____". It looks like a pederastic [sic] lure crafted by hill people.'

It was such a self-admired effort that powered some delicate ego tickling of fancies that yes, I did pump it out to more than one person, in slightly altered batches depending on the audience. For the fifteen odd people I pinged ... I got three replies. Which was kewl.

Sometimes you just have to put yourself out there to get a crowd.

Oh, note to self. If at a community event day and, as you are prone to do, are critiquing the grammar of a sign, in this case 'every child player wins a prize' (1), don't do it in front of the sign's owner. They will say things like 'yeah ... we hear that a lot' or 'you're not the first person to have said that' or 'get fucked you bearded balloon.'

There's no comeback to that (2).

The sign in question belonged to the laughing clowns. Casso's herBoy was attempting to play the game but getting steadily more fearful. Largely, I suspect, because of the many laughing clowns.

The clowns' master decided he could help alleviate herBoy's readily apparent dislike of creepy animatronic open-mouthed clowns by performing a crude attempt at aversion therapy.

He pulled one of the clown's heads off, leaving its spinal-cord-like-pole thrust upward, to twist back and forth courtesy of the clockwork entrails.

'See?' he said, 'nothing to be scared of.'

Child ... un-aversion therapy'ed ... and almost certainly now more fearful of clowns; laughing or otherwise.

(1) As in if someone plays a child ... do they get a prize?
(2) The last wasn't actually said but the owner was somewhat miffed and I could imagine he was thinking it.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

If out of context...

theBoy and I were shouting-in-fun at each other. He called me a poo. I said he was a poo rider. Then I shouted 'You ride the poo wave! You ride the poo wave!'

In the silence that followed I realised what I said.

Luckily he's yet to form a sexual identity beyond girls having slightly longer hair (on average) and tending to cluster with each other. So I'm sure he wasn't offended.

By the way I do dislike the whole 'have you done a poo?' conversation starter I have to have with my child if I smell unpleasantness. He usually responds with an indignant 'NO!'

Fair enough. Of course I'll probably be being asked those very same questions by my GERIATRIC3000, limited-edition sexually-enabled upgrade edition carer-bot in some thirty odd years time... (1)

(1) I can imagine they'd have an array of bonus-purchasable celebrity-impressions created by audio-sampler wizards you could select to have as the voice. So you'd have a Marilyn voice asking breathlessly 'have ... you ... done ... a poo ... Mr [PATIENT'S SURNAME]?', or a Cher one asking 'well, have you done a poo? Have you? Well, snap out of it!'. However, if you're a cheapskate, you'd still get some celeb action ... and just pretend the default is Stephen Hawking...

Poor old Desky

Our Desktop PC s on the way out.

It has a bunged-up versions of Windows XP that is no longer Security Update supported. I found this out when I decided to suck it up and try and validate the copy we had, a copy installed by our awesome friend Stu who is the go to dude for computer whizzery. Not for me calling up Jim's Computer Repairs. I'm afraid the idea of a beardy in a terry toweling hat thumbing around my box's innards fills me with a sense of disquiet.

So on the former government furniture (1) laminated height-adjustable grey table is the Desky, in on-but-not-used-mode, the Desky monitor, and its keyboard and mouse ... all but the former shunted back up against the wall of the couch that borders the back of the desk. In the middle is Mr Lappy. At the front is the keyboard plugged into Mr Lappy and the plugged in mouse.

It's all a hideous jumble of poorly-stacked black-in-hue computer crap. The sort of set-up you'd expect of a Mirror Universe Uni-bomber, who conducts multiple online forum posts in between heavy sessions of disturbing self-loathing masturbation.

Over the next few days I will be backing up, if I can, from Desky, whose stuttering and juttering has grown worse of late—where the mouse cursor freezes for a few seconds, or type fails to register through the keyboard because you're typing too fast for it. It feels like when a hospice tells you 'it's near time' and that it's likely your loved one is passing on within the week.

I'm assuming pretty much it's beyond restoration. So I guess then the process of replacement begins.

Do, do, do ... do ... do, do do.

(1) Canberra being a paper-push town has a lot of ex-government, colloquially referred to as 'ex-guvie', has a lot of government surplus furnishings stores. Much of our first furniture was purchased from such places or from auctions where buildings were being leveled and everything must go. Though now this desk I sit at is the last I think of such furnishings in the main house. Our old Oak-veneer bookshelves banished to the shed of shame, stuffed with items-of-memory-but-not-yet-discarded (1a).
(1a) As part of the sheer-fucking-filing-hell I am inflicted with over the next two weeks I discovered that amidst the filing boxes of the burdensome administrative process (foisted on me by Backy McStab) were two boxes of my uni notes. I noted that the boxes represented three years worth; 2004—2006. The boxes of 2004 were filled with photocopies of entire books I'd taken, having spent a couple of Saturdays at work copying book after book, loaned to me by the excellent Craggles (1b). By 2006 it was printouts of PDFs. Yes, within just two years, the how information is gathered by university students had been fundamentally altered. Our society is literally shifting in how it interacts with and processes information in great leaps and bounds in just years as opposed to centuries for the impact of leaps like the printing press. I think you can see why in the adulation and admiration that poured out, Diana-style, upon the death of Steve Jobs (1c).
(1b) And the only man I know who can wear a goatee yet appear warm and friendly as opposed to sinister and menacing.
(1c) I noticed one of the semi-stick mags, you know where you can see almost all of a girl except her standard penile entry points (I call them for men too scared to buy Penthouse), had a list of the fifty most dodgy or disturbing or edgy jokes. I don't know, something like that. Within one of the Font Size Point 72 header characters, the letter O, was a graphic of Steve Jobs with the caption of 'iDied laughing'. Stay classy, San Diego.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Adios Moo'Mar

I know it's a mellow harshener to give a (thrusts/arms/upward) 'Woot, woot' upon the demise of someone but when it's Muammar Gaddafi you're almost excused for it.

But just how fucking awesome is it that he's gone? That his kleptocratic ilk have been kicked to the curbside of history. Good riddance to despicable filth. And fuck me you have to hand it to the Cool Hand of O, my new bromance name for Obama, on this one. He committed minimal but highly lethal assets into a warspace, not really putting any US lives at risk (apart from those limited assets in country), got the English and French to lead on the 'WAR—It's FANTASTIC' front on the international stage to justify it, and, most importantly, even though it would not have happened for first-world interference the fact Gaddafi's fall was an indigenous-led-and-executed effort and thus free of imperialist entanglements. And the US got what it wanted, a tremendous pain-in-the-arse fucked off to the bin.

But the sheer bravery of ordinary men and women rising up against a feared security apparatus, risking all, to strike them all down ... fuck ... it's just the most incredible thing. It brings tears to the eyes that people can be that brave and that strong. It gives you hope at times when it's lacking.

Right on, comrades (raises power-left fist).

Oh and for years Gaddaffi constructed giant pipelines snaking beneath the desert, ostensibly for liquid or gas, which got people in a bit of a tizzy (1).

So I find it ironic he was caught hiding in a drain.

(1)Their size also suggested some sort of possible nefarious dual-use—hello underground and thus concealed transport system.

Sweaty filing fail

I've spent much of the day filing. Drilling, removing bulldog clips and paperclips, squaring chunks of paper, slotting, putting on closed-off-file notes, slotting them in boxes.

In all ... I did just nine files.


There's like 40 to go.

I spent most of the time on my feet. And, given it's a little warmer, I was sweating a little within the confines of my MC Hammer-style super low crotch trackie pants.

Yep, trackie pants. I wear them to work because I dislike belts and the like. I feel too cinched in.

Eventually I had to go to the toilet for some number twos.

I pulled down trou and sat on the seat. It was then I nearly slipped off.

Yes, the sweat I'd been peculating over the many hours of standing and filing had covered my arse and upper legs in a fine layer of muscle crying. Which meant I was unfortunately somewhat lubricated when I tried to sit on the seat.

I slip and slid around the seat for a few moments before I managed to steady myself and not fly off. I did my dirty, sinful business ... then I mopped the sweat from the seat.

Because that's how I roll. No one should be forced to follow that.

I also managed to peel away the top of the underside of my left thumb flesh beneath the nail away from the nail. It stings a bit ... especially when the sweat creeps in.

Filing blows chunks.

Speaking of blowing chunks we recently had a condolence card go around. It was for an ex-colleague whose husband had died.

My message was simple.

'D, that blow chunksMikey'

This comment apparently confused some people. They didn't know what it meant. But D, a delightfully earthy type with a ribald sense of humour, would.

And I like to think even in such a shitty time as experiencing the death of a partner ... that made her smile.

So I stand by my chunk blowing and recording thereof.

Mikey ... signing off.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


If theBoy had a nemesis in storyverse it would probably have to be Synybattybatbat (1), the top hat and monocle clad penguin (2) that lives in an igloo next door to Humpty and Stumpty’s tree. They’re not at the Holmes (slash) Moriarity or Maggie (slash) Baby Gerald (3) level, but there’s definitely a healthy rivalry. Healthy in that, like warfare, their rivalry spurs innovation. For example Synybatbat is no longer the only owner of motorised vehicular furnishings, storyverse now blessed with theBoy’s motorised teapot rocket car, created as a direct Apple (vee) IBM-style competitor to the penguin’s now-rendered-quaint-Model-T-esq motorised bunkbed (4).

The other day, during free-form story time, somehow Synybatbat had annoyed theBoy, likely after inferring theBoy ‘was a MONSTER!’ in some capacity.

theBoy wanted payback … even though Synybatbat was at home in his igloo simply pottering around and doing harm to no one.

That wasn’t going to stop theBoy.

‘I call up Synybatbat on the phone and I get a stick and I poke the stick into the phone and it pokes Synybatbat and he bumps to the ground!’

I laughed until my throat ached and the tears dried into my salty beard.

Pure. Storyverse. West.

(1) Also known by the informal contraction Synybatbat
(2) Although the top hat AND monocle combo might have to go. It's probably too close to the DC comic character in concept. What about a horse-hair wig?
(3) Quoth Quimby—'Baby Gerald, we can't help but wonder what mischief you'll get into next'
(4) I imagine the bed is driven from one end on the bottom level, double-decker bus style, only with the steering column and wheel centred in the middle of the bed. Only I guess the penguin would have to have either a hole cut into upper level for his top hat, or some sort of sidecar style mounting for the hat when the vehicle is in operation. I do Iike the idea of the hole for its inherent comedic value.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Teapot gets accessories

The Teapot is a recent addition to our storyverse, my now locked in name for the place where theBoy and I set our free-form stories. It’s a motorised Teapot—with wheels—but also has rocket assist. Or, as theBoy says, ‘it’s half rocket, half car, and half Teapot!’

Tonight the Teapot got accessories.

Longtime readers will know that in storyverse, Humpty and Stumpty, the two main protagonists, live in a tree down by the river. They reside within the tree's trunk about midway up, in a single chamber with small purpose alcoves (such as bed nooks). Below them, at just above ground level, live their mum and dad. Beneath the mum and dad, in a cellar basement, lives Granny Bugbear—a mean cantankerous old biddy that puts me in mind of the old granny character in Giles cartoons (1).

Granny Bugbear has a giant sunken bath in the cellar. It’s like a half-indoor pool that you get in tower hotels. Only it’s occasionally infested with French pirate mice, who sail their proportional galleons against any interlopers seeking a swim. Except, probably, Granny Bugbear … who likely, if she gets close enough, treats a victim ship like a floating Whitman’s sampler.

Tonight the boys were chasing their marmoset called Henry when Henry went down a hole under one of the tree roots. They went after it only to break through the earth and fall into Granny Bugbear’s vast bath holdings below, splashing into warm, lightly frosted with steam, water.

The pirates soon appeared.

‘Allez, ze ‘Obbits,’ they cried. Quickly they started firing their cannons at the lads.

It was then theBoy injected himself into the story.

‘And I rise up with my shotgun and … BEW!’ he cried, blowing one of the vessels out of the water.

The pirates quickly trained their canons on theBoy and they had a shoot out. This was accentuated by a prop, a wet flannel, that theBoy and I threw at each other during bath-time, until it flopped out of my reach and into the depths of the recessed shower bottom.

A job well done, theBoy left Humpty and Stumpty's, having now learned in a story to have his character leave a scene on a high note.

‘And I jump into my Teapot with my gun and I roar away!’ he shouted, following his declaration of intent with rocket noises to indicate he’d kicked in the nitrous assist.

‘Hey, Chooky,’ I said, ‘you need to store your shotgun. How about purpose peg-based shelving behind you? It’s called a gun rack!’

‘Yes,’ said Chooky, ‘I do that.’

So that’s how it happened. How the Teapot got a gun rack ... yes ... a gun rack.

Later, after theBoy had smashed his half rocket half car half Teapot into Grue from Despicable Me’s house, thus trapping his Teapot in the wreckage, theBoy pressed a button.

‘A balloon comes out and I blow it up!’ he yelled, following it with blowing noises and facial action.

Yes, he’d deployed a balloon—I imagine it’s cigar shaped like a Zeppelin—then, when he floated high enough, he kicked in the rocket and zoomed away… (2).

Mmmmm, that's good Humpty and Stumpty.

UPDATE: It's the next night. More were added. An explosive-fired retractable grapple hook, like Megamind's (see 2) ... and a miniature Teapot rocket car that can deploy when the main vehicle conks out (I imagine it drops out its arse). Like he did tonight. Later the deployed tiny Teapot ended up in a river, floating (wheels retracted) towards a waterfall, in pursuit of a swimming away from it Humpty. Not to worry. Just as Humpty went over the edge theBoy deployed the grapple, snagging him by the feet then, just before the Teapot went over as well the balloon was up and the rocket kicked off and into the sunset they went ... with Humpty dangling, head downwards, below...

(1) I’d see anthologies of the comics pop up in garage sales in my home town, and I now own a wedge of them. I loved them, and all comics, as a kid, even though I barely had any proper ones. Later I started hardcore collecting … but gave it up when I had no money. So I have about four boxes in my dad’s roof of a fairly decent run of Marvel titles, and 2000AD. One day I shall bring them back down here and loan them out to my nerdy friends. I doubt they’re worth fuck all. Especially given some of them got wet once and I had to dry them on the bricks around the Kent fireplace (1a).
(1a) One day I will blog about our holidays when we were kids. Or write about them. Because … well … it’s good practice. This is all good practice. Like the time all my books got wet in the tent during a downpour and we'd had to dry them. This included my Little Black Book Traveller books, which had quite thick shiny paper. So the pages warped into a rolling crinkle. Yes, that's right. It looked like I was so excited about making Traveller characters, and I did that a lot!, that I literally jizzed myself... just like when your pathetic collection of stick mags copped some collateral damage and was never quite the same after they had dried. There in lies the danger of the many-mag montage of all your favourite ladies (or lads if so inclined).
(2) Later he ran into Megamind, who was in his giant blue helicopter with the hook, and theBoy bragged he’d flogged Humpty and Stumpy’s cheese. He then mockingly held up a bag of said cheese to show Megamind. Megamind promptly fired off a cable-hook, snagged the bag, and retracted it back into his vehicle then fucked off. Ha!, take that.

It was a bad three-way

I am not blessed with an attractive visage. I'm not. Perhaps maybe pre-puberty I was considered a cute little bundle of energy. But now ... a vague ugly bundle of sometime energy that's usually misdirected.

Crippling body image aside the reason why I bring it up is to exclude this post from any sexual intent. Because it was and is never going to happen.

Anyway, last night, there was a three-way. It was between Microsoft Outlook, my Windows Update screen, and the Microsoft 600 Wired Keyboard. And I was left watching; a passive useless observer.

Frightened silly by the amount of work I have to do, and knowing I would likely be doing much of it from home, I had a bit of a dismember-a-corpse-goods-purchase run from Officeworks (1). I bought a wide-screen monitor so I could see what I was doing when working at home (lots of spreadsheet type work), two packs off bulldog clips (because I couldn't wait for in-work-stationary purchasing to provide them in time), and a replacement keyboard.

It was the keyboard wot done it.

Keyboards are supposed to be plug and play. They don't even come with drivers for fuck's sake. But naturally when I plugged it in up came the windows prompt asking where the drivers were at. It searched my machine for an eternity, didn't find them, then it wouldn't work. With a heavy sigh I plugged in the old keyboard—which used to be the spare one for the laptop (it has a number pad, unlike the laptop keyboard) ... which the computer then couldn't find drivers for.

The end result was I must have rebooted that fucker about a dozen times, with drivers for the keyboard sourced via the laptop for the new keyboard not working, and assorted other bull crap. Then because Outlook didn't shut down properly it spent twenty minutes telling me about how the folders weren't closed properly and that it was taking time to load (I needed it for a URL I could click from an email sent from the laptop to a site that promised to scan your PC and find devices like laptops on it).

So the three-way. The three-way happened when the keyboard (Microsoft) was dead, the personal folders on Outlook were still loading, and there was a fucking update tooling in the background as slow as an old person in a queue at a checkout. And me as the passive observer watching it all not work properly.


With failing electronica my Mad Goat spawner I kind of lost my rag and stomped around the room yelling and waving and cursing probability for inflicting upon my form a series of bull shit episodes that I felt was somewhat undeserved. Thus I full on lapsed into magical thinking where I decide random meaningless shit and a cluster of failed electronics was deliberately aimed at me, Drago-style, to break me.

Then ... when I got up this morning ... one of the updates hadn't worked properly and both internet browsers on the desk top no longer work. I had to leave a large Wordpad message for theWife on the way out of the door explaining the fail.

This all stemmed from the simple act of plugging in a keyboard and expecting it would work right away.

So really, it's my fault, for expecting something to simply work right away without a screaming bunch of fucking bull shit to land on me.

Computers. I love them ... but last night fuck me if I didn't want to punch out my monitor in a full blown rage spit. Which, as discussed previously, is like someone venting at a ventriloquist's dummy.

Oh, to top it off, I have something in my eye and I keep having to flush it.

Hooray! (many balloons, hats in air etc.)

(1) You know in a movie how someone has to dismember a corpse. So they, and their posse if they have one, tool out to a local hardware shop and purchase various items of corpse cutting and disposal—saws, strong bags, rope etc.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Inner voice!

Title inspiration from Adam Sandler.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has an actual inner voice. I mean, I can only go by my experience of having an inner voice and therefore assuming that other people have them to. So I have one. And, thanks to years of practice, it's somewhat critical and / or depressed. If, for example, my reverie is disturbed. Which is basically any time where I am not the one actively pursing the reason for social interaction my inner voice usually sighs with exasperation and says unkind things like 'oh what the fuck is it now?'. Then, if it's not being an arsehole about other people who simply wanted to interact with me, my inner voice is ragging on me.

Like today, when I took the bins out. I was wearing my harry-high more-dirty-clothes-than-clean pyjamas—the ones you wear only when the good ones have been worn and soiled—slippers, bed socks, and my banded polo-neck shirt that can no longer be worn to work (1). My inner voice actually said—and I suspect he was doing a line from Black Adder Two—'You're a sad, laughable parody of a man'. Aided in part by an unflattering stretched shadow from a mid-to-late-afternoon sun. Which everyone knows adds like ten fucking pounds.

Later, though, he went for a celebrity impression. Which is kind of one of the tools all comics have when just starting out and where they're not sure where their strengths are or what their voice is yet.

By way of background my day started with severe pain after an exceptionally white-facening of a pain spike upon waking this morning (2). This was combined with my still-flared-from-over-use boneitus of my bad hip combined with a sore right foot. It meant I actually limped with both feet, making me shuffle back and forth, with a big pain grimace etched on my face.

It was at one such point he yelled at me.

'Look at you ... waddling like a fuckin' Penguin!'

And what was the celebrity impression he did?

Al Pacino.

That's not even fucking original.

What a fuckwad.

(1) Not because it's an uncouth garment. It's just gotten too ratty to be worn anywhere but flopping around the house and/or just-nipping-out-to-the-shops-for-milk-and-probably-something-naughty expeditions.
(2) It was so bad I had the shakes as I drove into work. I had to stay as long as possible to get the needed stuff done done and some work to take home. Then ... to bliss out on super meds as I try and ride the pain wave and work at the same time. Yes, that's how I roll. I'm like a Public Service Road Warrior who puts his aging body on the line again and again but for little thanks.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sometimes a story goes bad

theBoy and I do free form story telling where we each take turns (sort of) to change a living, struggling, wriggling story and try and bring it to a logical (and awesome) conclusion.

Today theBoy decided that he was tired of Synibattybatbat, the top hat and monocle clad penguin that lives in an Igloo next door to Humpty and Stumpty, of having the only motorised furnishing within our story realm. To wit, Synibattybatbat's motorised bunk-bed.

So theBoy brought in his own machine.

'I race
Synibattybatbat with my motorised tea pot!'

Yes, a motorised tea pot. theBoy decided he entered from the side and a lift then took him up into the tea pot's lid compartment. I image the lid being transparent, his three sixty degree clear-view
alien space-perspex cockpit bubble.

So they were off! At first
Synibattybatbat took the lead because he'd swerved into theBoy's tea pot, causing theBoy to spin off the side wall, NASCAR-style, then spin around-and-around on the track until coming to an unsteady halt. theBoy sped up then yelled 'BEW', indicating that he'd remotely disabled Synibattybatbat's engine to make it slow (1) and that was the sound effect of the sabotage coming into effect. Synibattybatbat's bunk-bed came to a spluttering halt just before the finish line, only to have theBoy's tea pot zoom smugly past.


It was then that on a whim I decided to roll up my pants legs of my pyjama bottoms and tuck the bottom of my shirt through the neck so as to reveal my overly-ample abdomen, Daisy Duke-style. (2)

I danced, screaming 'Look at me! I'm a grid girl!' only to then realise that I'd done so in full view of the window that looks out directly into our cul-de-sac.

There were no neighbours visible when the full awareness of my having committed that unsettling ASBO-esq display occurred. However, who am I to know what they can and can't see from the privacy of their homes? (3)

Anyway, Watson, the game's still afoot. After reassembling my clothing to normal modest mode the story continued.
Synibattybatbat started marching over, yelling about sabotage.

'theBoy remotely disabled my engine!' yelled
Synibattybatbat. 'Therefore he cheated. He's a monster!'

What was theBoy's response?

'I take out my gun and I shoot
Synibattybatbat dead!'

Then, eyes furrowed and lower lip sookily-extended, he added 'humph.'

It was like that scene in the The Last Boy Scout where the football player, super high on drugs, takes out a semi-automatic and, as he runs for the end zone, shoots down defenders trying to tackle him.

Cough ... CoughCough.

(1) Usually achieved by him declaring 'I take the fast out and put in the slow!' He does that to Dash, from The Incredibles, quite a lot.
(2) I think I've talked before of that weird period in my life when I religiously purchased overseas-shipped copies of The National Enquirer. Anyway, for about two years in the mid-nineties, I did. And thanks to that I have retained vast chunks of now-dated celebrity-themed minutia. For example a story about how Sorrell Booke, who played Boss Hog, was having a house built and he used to hang around the building site, chatting with and entertaining the workers. Only he died suddenly while his house was still under construction. I think the workers were his pall bearers and they put tools in the grave along with the fistful of dirt as Booke was interred. Still, as we always say when such is embedded. It's good material.
Perhaps watching from the semi-darkness, the only light being the glow of their cigarette, which flares now and then as they take a slow inhale...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Guaranteed tear leakers and Mikey talks more about his fabulous body

Little Drummer Boy on The West Wing.

And I Don't Like Mondays.

I cry every single time, like a giant nancy-man resplendent in
quick-release clothing. Needed so I can access absorbent cloth quickly in order to mop up my tear-streaked-and-swollen face.

Speaking of secretion of bodily fluids...

After I ride The Purgatory Cart (1) sometimes the sweat is so bad I actually do have to strip off my shirt and use it to mop off all my muscle crying (2). I end up half naked, like a gone-to-seed Victorian-era cycling-fists bare-chested boxer, leg-pronated like a ballerina doing a discrete fart, the air cool on my now merely damp upper body.

I can't but help then feel like that if I had a past life—and isn't it just grand how important past lives (3) were?—I was a puffy bald eunuch that conducted most of his business in the public baths (4), my albino orca-like body wreathed in steam and conspiratorial whispers (5).

(1) Sung to the tune of Hitler, has only got one ball (1a). ♫♪ Casso, she lent it to me. Casso, she's twixt four and three. Casso, she is smarto!, she knows what a noun is, plus adverb and verb ♫♪.
(1a) What an age we live in. That I can plug that into Wikipedia with the reasonable expectation that there will be a page on it. What an age. I feel like the long-haired oddly-lipped Ken-doll that played the protagonist in The Lawnmower Man.
(2) A new Mikeyism for sweat! Sweet...

(3) My favourite group house—from a total of about five and six before I left such life and theWife and went more-than-two-becomes-two—was one that was a hundred metres from a three-shop-building. There was a bakery, a mixed business (i.e. general store (slash) greasy spoon), and a laundromat. Years ago the building had a giant Hotstuff the little devil emblazoned on the beige brick of the outer wall—I think it had something to do with flogging pies. The devil faced southbound highway traffic, the highway cutting through the middle of my town (3a). Our house didn't have a washing machine so we used the laundromat, shuffling in thongs along hot tarred road back and forth between sessions. The mixed business had a small but reasonably up-to-date movies for rent. VHS, kids (... and your music). So now and then we'd club together to get one, and anyone in the house would pile into the large lounge room to watch it on the tiny colour TV. From the mixed business we borrowed ... The Lawnmower Man. We also borrowed The Langoliers. Now this is the mid-nineties. So CGI was not yet perfected. And, being a Stephen King movie, it was ever-so-slightly on the edge of being B level in terms of production values and acting. That being said ... we thought it was AWESOME! (and it was!). Today I was chasing theBoy around, despite the lancing pain of my hip, because I'd taken two of the white clothes baskets and joined them together like a walnut shell. Then, gripping through the plastic mesh opened and closed the baskets like a mouth on its side. It was a Langolier! Munch, munch, munch. If theBoy likes a new game and you've elected to have a rest from it he will come over, still wanting to go a few more rounds. 'Let's do that!' he says, eyes shining. 'The munching game. Come on.' Then he will reach out and grab you by the hand and lead you back into the arena. Look at that puddum! How can you say no to that?
(3a) The bypass took about ten years to build. They built the bridges first ... but then paused the project for around five years. So the bridges stood like some sort of paleolithic stone monuments, eventually soiled by layer-upon-layer of caked graffiti. There were about five of them in the sequence. You could climb on to a few of them, so people would sometimes sit up there, drink and talk shit.
I love that Rimmer's past life was as Alexander the Great ...'s chief eunuch.
(4) I rarely watch free-to-air TV. But the other day I was watching the ABC and they had this kewl show about six builders attempting to build a Roman villa, complete with baths, using Roman construction techniques where legally allowed to do so (modern health and safety rightly put paid to practices from then that are not safe now. For example, wheelbarrows have to be used over the Roman carts as the latter didn't have safety certification). Anyway, it's called Rome Wasn't Built in a Day and it was/is awesome! (4a).
(4a) One of the best The Onion headlines, where it's just a joke header, was 'Diorama of Rome build in a day.' Damn you The Onion!
(5) That is an awesome name for a p0rn movie big on sapphic action (5a). Attention p0rnagraphers, you may use it.
(5a) That name almost certainly is already in use with Rocky-esq sequels in the franchise and almost certainly several other movies where between sapphic and action is the word Anal. Like a very disturbing piggy-in-the-middle.

Friday, October 14, 2011

What's yours?

We've all done it, us (A)D&D players (1). Had a stupidly-powered character. Whether by dint of efficient design (2) or simple grift (3) our dude was maxed out at near, at, or completely over in level, with a stat in the 21-plus range and who had about a hundred magic items and a fucking castle.

I didn't have one such character. I had at least eight.

I created a party at a starting level of two using the last of the supplements from first edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. Then took them through most of the classic module series (Slavelords, Against the Giants etc.), solo-style. There was Sichoras, a Magic-user (an overclocked homebrew based on the Tsurani Great Ones from Magician) (slash) Ninja. There was Sir Roderick, a half-elven Cavalier. Kirk Rhilato, a human Magic-user. And, later, Belrind, an ogre Fighter that was a randomly generated encounter from a randomly generated dungeon (4) that somehow joined the party (captured and converted?), and became a super awesome character. I remember I even sketched a rough "group photo style" portrait in pen on foolscap of them all together, standing in preserved triumph and likely repressed homo-erotic tendencies. Ah, another one. Chivas—a halfling fighter/thief-acrobat (5).

I think they ended up around the 20th to 24th level and I decided they influenced chunks of the Greyhawk map—Kirk the Guildmaster of the City of Greyhawk Magi guild, for example. I still have their hand-scribed character sheets (6) somewhere in a box in my cupboard of pen and paper goodness.

So ... for any '80s to '90s gamer kids ... what were your stupid-power characters you cherished and loved? Tell us all!

UPDATE (1): Area GM concerned that at least two people have claimed he was cheese enabler. Wait, three. Shit.

UPDATE (2): The other night Craggles remarked that I always seemed to play deeply flawed characters in games. Let's see ... deeply flawed manic little bundles of energy desperately craving acceptance in spite of themselves. Hmmm...

(1) I can't help it. I still prefer the prefix of Advanced. (1a)
(1a) Best line from Community (ep. 14) by Pearce (Chevy Chase), after he played a game; 'I won Dungeons and Dragons—and it was advanced!'
(2) Pete, take a bow. I hand to you the crown of player most skilled at squeezing every legal advantage out of the rules to blend the perfect combination of cheesy smack (2a). If anyone ever needed someone to arse-fuck a pen and paper gaming system and break it, Sneakers-style, so it could be better-built then call Pete 555-bigbrain. He is a systems-analyst without par. Curse him! (shakes fist).
(2a) So much so he actually does hold back ... and confesses he could have gone for an even cheesier version than he is currently playing. Like when a sensei is training an apprentice and going gentle.
(3) Just adding on great whacks of experience points without any justification for its earning. Like when you were playing Monopoly and, just for a lark, decided to uber cheat, sneaking $100 or $500 dollar bills from the bank when others weren't looking and then sliding the bills beneath the board, a slight edge of the money just peeking out, so you could fingernail scrape it into your money pile when needed. However, I rarely did that. My older brother was always the car. I was always the dog. I loved owning the railroads. I once had a tantrum in a game, I was about ten, when I didn't notice someone had landed on Park Lane (with a hotel) and thus when then their go ended and I missed out on the rent. I went total Mad Goat. Mind you, they did mock me with taunting. So in fairness they pulled the rip-cord on it (3a).
(3a) Man-fail confession. I could never start a rip-cord starter motor on a mower. Even in year 12 ... I had to get my mother to do it...
(4) That's by hand, using dice, kids ... and your music.
(5) The slash is represented here as a / instead of the preferred (slash) because it's game-specific. That's how it was scribed.

(6) I loved hand-writing up character sheets. Lovingly ruled up with all the game-mechanics carefully printed out in pen. I used red for the borders, blue for the text. I would photo-copy sheets at a nearby place, using five cent pieces stolen from my mother's Chivas Regal bottle of five cent pieces she kept on her vanity. The coins made a delightful metallic sliding whoosh of tinkling metal-on-glass as they slid, like tumbling children down a water slide, into the cup of my palm.

It's the use of "that" which makes it golden

Like other still-blogging-bloggers I am dreadfully narcissistic about my blog. I still, for example, check the stats every couple of days—even though the blog only gets around 90 to 200 hits a day, and almost all of those are as a result of a Google search sweep. As far as I know there's but a handful of people that actually still read it.

However, be that as it may, here's the latest daily stats for the key words used in searches that found my blog.

I do so love "that" last one.

Idiot move ... and Casso gets pwned in footnote 4a

I've had 12 file boxes of filing to file since late 2009.

For those of you not in government you will not understand the governance we have to meet with shit like this. Even in the private sector they would have likely binned it. But they're official records of an utterly useless and costly burdensome admin process I was forced to endure by Backy McStab some years back and they have to be kept for a certain number of years.

Our new building is less secure than the old one. So we have to clean desk pretty much everything. My boxes filled with official records were being grumped at about by my managers. I indicated it was a big chore—hence why it had not yet been done—but they kept on about it. My boss even offered to help with it but she's so under the pump, and works part time, that it's not a realistic offer. The others in my team are similarly busy.

So today I started the process. I got super organised. I even searched our internal website for the rules on how thick a file could be and crafted a file thickness guide out of cardboard—filling in the max depth with my fluoro-yellow highlighter and naturally smearing ink all over my desk. It ended up looking like a Predator had cut a slash there.

I liberated the paper drill from upstairs (1) and set it up on the long useful desk by the window. Then, armed with the largest bull dog clips I could find, I started the preparation process.

Not only that but I started with the hard stuff first—preparing the samples. We had numerous samples provided as part of the said burdensome administration process. Samples which were assessed in the selection reports and therefore, even though no one will ever, ever actually look at these records, ever ... they have to be filed. So I was drilling through cardboard, brochures, thick magazines, giant reports, and hundreds of varying-in-slickness A4 glossy sheets. Bundling them up, I then had to pinch each to-be-filed-pile together, then try to squeeze the bull dog clip to hold it all in place. It was frustrating and annoying.

I kept going until I ran out of clips. I even had to put out a building-wide email call for more.

Thus I spent most of the working day in filing preparation. Having fueled my gizzards with my usually-had-on-Saturday-mornings-breakfast of an open-topped bacon and egg pie plus creme brule chaser I worked through lunch and into the afternoon. I only paused to print sticky labels and to download NPR podcasts to listen to while I worked.

By three thirty (2) my boneitus had flared. It was only then I realised I'd been on my feet most of the day and putting my full weight upon my left hip.

And remember. I weigh a lot. I am basically an apple with gorgeous calf muscles.

I had intended, when finished, to then move on to grabbing a bunch of work to take home but the pain of my hip—and I'd foolishly forgotten to re-supply my Honest Abdul's Partially Used Pill Emporium collection of pharmacopeia (3) in my desk drawer—was too great. I packed up and left, my leg dragging behind me like McClane at the end of Die Hard.

I had to ingest super meds the moment I got home and the launch myself onto The Purgatory Cart (4) to get it over and done with lest my willpower sag and I not want to do it.

So all up, that was a dodgy move on my part. I should have taken long breaks and I should have done it piecemeal. Not in a big most-of-the-day-standing stretch.

Still ... lesson learned. And if experience is any indicator my hip is going to hurt like a mother-fuck for the next three days and will thus serve as a lesson learned reminder.

Good one, Memo (5)

(1) Ah, the paper drill, long a bane of my white collar world. In the early years of my career the only available paper drill was near dead and the hollow drill bit would become jammed with half-charred punch-out circles (1a). We would try and poke the jammed circles out using a stretched-out paper clip but the compaction was too tight and you'd end up using the clip's tip to scrape out wedges of circles that would spill in small clumps, fused together by charring heat. Fuck I hated that drill. The one in my current office is a good one. The bit doesn't get jammed. Instead it's a cylinder and the punch-out circles fly out the top and into a domed clear-plastic blister (1b) atop the unit.
(1a) When us brothers still played together we decided that punch-out circles from hole punches would be currency in our game universe. So we had these mass hole punch money making sessions. We soon worked out that our game universe had been hit by hyper inflation as per something from the like-afflicted Weimer Republic.
(1b) It looks like
the fully enclosed dice blister (slash) popper you get in some board games. For us it was in the game Trouble. I loved playing that game. TheWife, currently monitoring theBoy in the bath due to my flared boneitus, has confirmed she also had the game and enjoyed playing it.
(2) Remember as a kid and how the school day ended at that time of day? How awesome was that?! Why can't we do that in real life?
(3) Honest Abdul's INSERT GOOD-TYPE HERE is my Red Apple Cigarettes from nerd games. If there's a shopping expedition involved in a pen and paper gaming adventure I am running then chances are Honest Abdul's is an option. For example in my Eberron campaign it's Honest Abudul's Partially-Charged Wand Emporium (3a) He's usually and excitable merchant desperate to make a deal and always shouting and pleading for custom in my best over-the-top-Hollywood caricature of an ethnic-in-origin-bazaar-stall-proprietor; 'Please, my friend, you must buy! I will throw in a camel.'
In that campaign Honest Abdul is Half-Mercane. This is how nerdy I am ... I created my own game mechanics for his racial abilities.
(4) Owned by Casso ... yadda, yadda, yadda. (4a)
(4a) Casso and I have similar tastes in things. However we differ in one key area. She does not like Seinfeld. How can you not like Seinfeld? Actually, while I think of it, we differ in another key area. We do not share the genetic impulse to make big eyes at firemen or to enjoy them in a two-dimensional monthly format. Boo! Boo!
(5) Huh, I always thought it was 'Mimo'. Well, there you go. How embarrassment.

A Butch Arms Up Moment

I was in Coles looking for a BBQ Lighter.

It was then my Butch Arms Up moment kicked in.

The first option was okay. It was cheap but not as sleek as the one next to it, an all red effort from the good people at Redheads. That was nine dollars plus some, however. Nearly twice as expensive.

And then ... then I saw it. A Scripto Wind Resistant model with a flexible metal nozzle—the hose like you get with moveable shower heads ... that hang like resting metal snakes sleeping against shadowed tiles.

If this was a movie my hand would then have reached into shot to snatch it off the peg.

I used it when I got home. It's deliberately difficult to ignite (1), requiring thumb and index finger action, which is good considering I gave theBoy a taste of how awesome fire can be (2). But the flame works well ... and I can totally death-from-above what I am trying to burn thanks to the flex.

All up ... a useful purchase. Or, since we're all trying to be more Jobsie ('Hail him'), i.e. be like the recently deceased famously clad in a black turtleneck computer doyen Steve Jobs, who apparently either loved stuff or hated stuff but was never 'meh', it is an insanely useful purchase.

Especially for when the Zombies come. Hello aerosol can my old friend...

(1) It's irritating ... but balanced against my child's ingenuity in potentially getting a hold of it and using it the irritation is worth it for peace of mind. Seriously. The only things that will stop him from opening something is physicality such as his child-weak grip. Kids are fiercely clever.

(2) Parental fail

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hilarious dissing

The other day theBoy and I were telling stories to each other when theWife interrupted to ask him something. He got up off his chair, walked over to the door ... then gently closed it in her face. Then he sat back down and rolled his eyes at the now closed door.

I did a stupid thing. I laughed.

That's some bad babysitting.


... like when you get home and you find your SigOther has done all your washing for you. Not only that ... but clothes folded and socks matched'n'rolled.

Me lucky.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


The other day I was cruising along the path at one of Canberra’s many suburban shopping centres. In Canberra most suburbs have a suite of shops at its centre. A small supermarket; a greasy spoon café; a hair dresser; possibly a newsagent and other assorted specialty shops.

TLR, resplendent in his you-can-ride-my-tail-anytime Maverick mirror shades, and I had set forth to the nearby shops to sup a lunch from one of the foody shops there. I had a crème brule from the bakery. He had a tube of honey mustard Pringles and a cig.

We were walking back along the thoroughfare outside the shops when we passed a sadly very typical sight in suburb shopping precinct; the little old lady selling crap.

I’m not sure how exactly the little old ladies end up at these places and selling things people broadly don’t need. There’s only so many frilly-lacy edged cushioned tissue box covers one needs in their house. Or knitted baby wear made from scratchy wool and using OH&S inappropriate buttons.

In this case the little old lady was selling plants; potted plants.

I have no interest in gardening. Don’t get me wrong, I love a nice looking garden. And even though it’s environmentally dodgy to have such in Oz I love one with a nice spread of lawn and English looking plants. The standard Australian default of scabby grass and bark (slash) stick (slash) branch shedding trees is not for me. But the actual act of gardening; the digging, the planting, the mulching, the weeding … not so much. I chalk that disinterest up to a life of not being able to bend properly or suffering discomfort when I did. Let’s face it … gardening involves bending.

But theWife … theWife is into it. And this little old lady was selling plants in pots. I could be a campus hero if I came home with a pot. So I lingered and decided to look even as TLR, AKA Maverick, strode off, leaving me behind.

The little old lady was of Central or Eastern European in origin—‘you to please to be buying plants’—but after some minor confusion I agreed to by a pot with mint in it, reasonably certain that plant type was not yet present in the lovingly attended raised vegetable patch between our administratively invisible shed (1) and Chooky’s hiding tree. The price was three dollars. I had about nine dollars left in my wallet.

Then, seemingly without her having moved, the little old lady was next to me with another plant. ‘You get this one too; is celery and parsley.’ I was confused. ‘Er, I just want this one.’

‘Yes!’ shouted the little old lady, handing me the second pot.

As I was juggling plant pots against my sadly ample man bossers and trying to say ‘No, I just want the one’, whilst trying to get money out of my wallet to pay for it, her head teleported to be peering deeply into my wallet. ‘Give me that money for other plant,’ she said after I started handing off assorted coin to pay for the first plant. ‘You have more … for this too!’

She handed me a third fucking pot plant.

Dazed by this geriatric-fueled infliction of unwanted botanical matter she ended up ferreting around my wallet innards with her liver spotted paw and removed all of my coins for the now three plants. One plant was mint, one was celery and parsley, the other … I don’t know. I didn’t quite catch what she was saying.

Now burdened by a plastic bag filled with three plants in pots I rejoined TLR who was laughing at me, and with good reason, for being shystered by a little old lady.

I returned to work. My colleagues—all gardening aware types—saw my plants, heard what had happened, and the price I paid for them. They laughed richly at my confused purchase and likened me to a hapless non-magic modern Jack from Jack in the Beanstalk.

As it turned out it theWife didn’t in fact have a mint plant, and the celery parsley effort was one she didn’t have either. Not sure what she did with the third one though. However she claimed she liked them and that they were deployed within our garden.

I guess the moral of the story is … don’t engage with lurking little old ladies selling stuff from the sidewalk with silent menace (2) in suburban shopping centres … or they will literally take money from your wallet.

(1) It's a technically unapproved structure. Alas we knew that when we bought the place.
(2) Though statistically this is a sample size of one so I cannot possibly pass judgment on all such sellers. However I will avoid them in the future. Mainly because they don’t have anything I actually need.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Wikfin—Uwe Boll

I was on an idle wiki-jaunt when I came across the wiki for the German director Uwe Boll. Boll's specialty is making movies based on video games. Movies such as In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale. Both subject matter and alleged quality of product have led to detractors labelling him one of the world's worst directors.

Only he's no Ed Wood. He's German ... and angry. So much so that he has actually challenged and fought critics that have lambasted his movies.

I was reading choice snippets out to theWife and we were giggling merrily about the antics contained with it. Well worth a visit.

Saturday, October 08, 2011

It's the end! and Mikey gives a panegyric shout out to Steve Vizard in footnote 1a

'It's the end!' is as per shouted by theBoy when he indicates cuddle time should cease and desist.

He says it so cheerily too.

Because this blog is essentially my journal, except for all the really hardcore stuff I wouldn't share with anyone (1), in addition to the blog being a Lolly Scramble of my thoughts, words and deeds (2), I will give you the background why. And by you I mean future me (3).

It's because when I was getting his goodnight cuddle and kiss and I'd be super-cuddling his firm little body, waggling it to and fro, and during it I'd be saying in a blissed out happy voice 'I hope this never ends!'. This giving him an easy set up to scream 'the end.'

Mind you, we just literally went through the process. Only this time he just deliberately went past the set up and kept cuddling me, lying astride me in a just-rescued-from-near-drowning-by-free-willy pose. In the end I had to say 'The end!'.

What a chooky!

(1) I read a profile of Derryn Hinch, who I believe is currently recovering from a liver transplant whilst under home detention for naming names for his shame bucket (1a), where he talks about the little silver box we all keep in our head that has our deep shameful secrets ... only he opened his box and shared all of his. He's a remarkably brave man.
(1a) Steve Vizard. If you ever indulge in some self-googling, and don't be ashamed to admit it, we all do it, then know this. You were a loved comedic performer. Whatever else you did after that know that I thought everything you did was gold. From your Derryn Hunch impressions, to your Indian carpet seller, to your gay fight attendant, and your John Laws, and your late licensed Letterman-esq talk show which I would watch in my group house on a tiny black and white tv in my tiny bedroom when I should have been studying. I only say loved because you're Mr Business now and not Mr Comedy but fuck, man, you were a fucking comedy legend. You were up there with Lethal Weapon 2—the most of-quoted movie of my school year's peers. I give you my kudos.
(2) Nice.
(3) Hello future me. Tell me, did you finish those projects? Well, did you? Steve Jobs just died. Remember how you watched his 2005 Stanford Commencement address and how he talked about death. And how all his life he had a mantra of looking in the mirror each morning and acting verbally asking himself 'if this was the last day of your life, is this what you would have been doing'? I hope you remembered that and you're reading this with a happy smile and not some sort of grubby stubble-frosted homeless face on a public terminal in the space library (3a) and cursing past me for my inaction.
(3a) I tend to add futuristic or space-sounding prefixes to now-places to make it them seem more "futurey" since, after-all, the will be in the future. Like they did in The Jetsons, or in The Simpsons Lost in Space piss-take where Lisa as the Robot comes out, hooks flailing wildly, and complains that Bart welched on his 'astro chores'.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Area man takes advantage of Jobs death to discard old TVs

Canberra, Australia; An unknown area man dumped five CRT TVs in front of the Apple store in Canberra today following the death of visionary Steve Jobs.

Apple stores across the world started receiving gifts of flowers and memorabilia associated with the giant of Silicon Valley in a paroxysm of collective grief not seen since Princess Diana was killed following her erroneous decision to enter a vehicle driven by a Frenchman.

'Some of the stuff included classic icon products from Apple's past,' said Tek, an apple store staffer, his mock black turtleneck neck sodden from the tears that had streamed down his face all day. 'People hanged old iPods with 'thanks' and other messages scrawled across the dead LCD screens and someone even brought in their old iMac they'd turned into a still-life aquarium complete with hanging fake fish.'

It was only when they started to haul in the offerings for the dearly departed Jobs to assist him in his passage in the afterlife that they discovered the old TVs.

'They'd crudely cut out the apple logo and pasted it on the side of the old tellies,' said an enraged Tek, Tek having legally changed his name to the single three-letter-word as part of his efforts in 'Thinking Different. 'Then dumped them amongst a sea of actual Apple goodness!'

As per Apple's no-damage e-waste policy, enacted after Jobs was apparently gently teased about Apple's lack of e-waste management via a sign pulled behind a plane above Jobs' famous 2005 Standford Commencement address, the televisions will none-the-less be suitably disposed of. But not until Tek and his similarly black turtleneck clad 'customer satisfaction agents' take to the offending faked-up-Apple products behind the dumpster with baseball bats in a move reminiscent of the infamous printer/fax destruction sequence from the classic movie Office Space.

'I'm going to give one some tasty 1984 licks and throw my baseball bat right into its screen,' added Tek before holding up, then slowly waving side-to-side, a glowing iPhone out the front of their store as part of the staff's two week vigil.