Wednesday, August 31, 2005

I'm getting a bit ferkin narked that the images are refusing to display in The Pad on a regular basis. It's not like I'm zapping monster bandwidth or using up huge amounts of space in there.

I've reserved a site at as well but I'm loathe to build it because of the stinking popups associated with it - and they get around my pop-up blockers.

A few interesting developments over the last few days.

Made contact with someone who is either a naive kid or a nark going incognito. If it's the latter, it's going to be an interesting discussion. If it's the former, I'm going to enjoy standing guard over said youngster's blog making sure the filth keep their grubby little lies out of it.

One of the peer group in my other sphere of interest - the one providing all the positive feedback - is coming to Melbourne in November. Isn't that just the bee's knees. What a buzz to be able to show this person all the best bits of my fantastic city, all the hidden treasures of the arcades, the amusing buskers and the tragic ones, Lygon St, Brunswick St, Acland St and Victoria St, the Vic Market on a Sunday - and some good old fashioned cricket.

I hope I get the chance to do that. I'll update later on the progress in that regard.

I'll have to get the Mit fixed before November. I still haven't had the heart to bung the Saab back up on eBay yet either. Every time I get in it, I keep telling myself it's a machine - a hunk of metal, rubber and plastic. It's insane to get sentimental over it. And with juice running at $5 a gallon, it's not like cars aren't fast becoming a luxury as well. As if I need 2 of them.

Just while I'm on the subject of juice, the Federal Government has a fuel excise which is about 30 cents per litre - we go by litres here, not gallons - and on top of that, there's a gst on the overall cost. That's a tax on the excise included in that cost. A tax on a tax. I love governments. I really do.

There was another amusing bit of news emanating from Melbourne's hyper selfish last week as well. Running down the eastern side of the bay is the Sandringham line train. It passes through some of the best real estate in the city. All but two stations on the line are in the central public transport zone, the last two stations are in Zone 2. These precious little swats are pushing to have the last two stations included in Zone 1.

They say it will save them having to cram the carpark two stations up the line from which they can legitimately travel on a Zone 1 ticket, saving themselves $540 a year. These are people who live in $900,000+ homes.

What they fail to realise is the buses departing from these stations all travel into Zone 2 areas which would mean anyone travelling the length of Highett Rd or Bay Rd from the Southland Megaplex Shopping nightmare to either Hampton or Sandringham stations would need to purchase a dual zone ticket. Perhaps not? I doubt it - because all buses going from those two stations to Southland nightmare connect with Highett station or Cheltenham station, both of which are well within Zone 2 - neither is in a dual zone area.

Highett station also happens to be my local station.

Of course those rich cunts don't think of anyone but themselves, that's how they got to be rich and cuntish. I'll let you in on a little secret...

Because I used to be so heavily involved in networking amongst the high power set, I used to be invited and summoned to all sorts of horrendous evenings and lunches. I can't fault the parents of the kids who were involved with my teams or clubs who initially invited me to one of these things, but when you're hobnobbing with state politicians, captains of industry and the financial heart and soul of the city, you get drenched in social bullshit. I mean literally and liberally soaked in it.

Even now the word canape makes me cringe. Fingerfood is the lunchtime equivalent. It was this interminable getting of one's face around and being introduced to people wearing striped ties that has given me an absolute aversion to striped ties. I can't stand the fucking things. Loathe them. I am happy to say the only striped tie I still possess is the very first tie ever to come into my possession and in the 20 years I've owned it, I've worn it only once - to one of these stinking wine and cheese affairs.

Never again will I knowingly attend another one of those wretched pretenses at civility and sociability. They are moshpits of usury and subtle coercion where the filthy rich decide amongst themselves how to dispose of the commodity of the labour of others to the mutual advantage of no one but themselves.

I understand these things are strategic relationship building exercises which keep the mid-level economy on its feet, but I want no part of it. Moreover I spurn it for the cheap veneer it is. All this social sniffing of pedigrees and airing of petty prejudices and pathetic ambitions couched in terms of polite conversation which all runs like oily clockwork provided nobody actually identifies it as being such - the whole charade makes me sick to the pit of my soul.

And now they're complaining about the price of their train tickets.

Pardon me while I spit sideways.

Men, don't wear striped ties. If you have to wear a tie at all, wear anything but a striped one. Women, just don't dress like Condi Rice. Despite what the feminazis tell you, you really do look good in dresses - provided you don't overdo it and look like Jehovah's Witnesses.

Feel free to gripe.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

What's the difference between having something to say and telling someone what you think?

The former is important to at least one person, the latter may just not impress anyone at all.

Some blogs just hit the spot like lemon sorbet on a hot day.

I have this feeling I've been absurdly happy these past few weeks and this week in particular because of the near perfect balance of experiences and impressions I've had the opportunity to share and in which I've been fortunate enough to participate.

I've offered help and asked for it. I've been highly amused and highly annoyed. I've been scathing and soothing. I've seen despair and elation. I've seen excellence and creativity and the pits of cronyism and paranoia.

And from an attacker, I've made a generous friend.

Is this sort of thing worth blogging? It is to me. I'm just eliciting on a bit of e-paper thoughts I'm having as I'm having them. This is my memory and I'm inviting the world to see what I see at this minute of this day like a snapshot. It doesn't matter to me if nobody else finds it interesting for its own sake, it's a memory of mine that is important enough for me to want to keep.

I estimate I've been high on life now for about 5 weeks on the trot which reminds me of something I wrote more than 10 years ago about an impression I had about the nature of true wisdom. I don't have that snippet any more but I remember the gist of it and it shouldn't be too difficult to reconstruct it. Buggered if I know yet where I'll put it up though. I'm sure the more attentive of you will find it.

Friday, August 26, 2005

When someone tells me a work of fiction is an interesting book, I know there and then I am NEVER going to read that book.

Works of fiction are not meant to be interesting, they're meant to be entertaining.

History books are interesting, novels are not. Atlas Shrugged was ultimately pointless.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Wasn't yesterday fun!

Poor Cheri doesn't know what a nest of hornets she's stirred up this time.

Did I say I was a bastard?

Monday, August 22, 2005

The fucking internet has been broken all day. Bastard thing.

I did a lot of updating at The Pad tonight, put some more goss in - not that there was a whole lot of good stuff to put in there - and I'm not pinching the good stuff from the friends either; I added the next bit to the location of my soul as well.

Part one
Part two
The goss

On top of that, I've blogged here and elsewhere, emailed half the world, poked my nose in at PnA and CD and made a pest of myself in places I had no such business doing.

And almost every time I did all - and I mean ALL - of these things, I had to close pages, re-login or do all sorts of other irritating things to get all this shit done.

Oh my goodness!

I got an email. Stunning email. Picture this:

I blog what would have been my response to the email I sent to the health authority in Muskegon County, Michigan which was that your email is important to me and I will respond at the earliest possible time - or words to that effect.

Anyway, I sent an email about 5 minutes ago and the autoresponder of the recipient came back with this:

At this time, I am unable to read and respond to your e-mail.It is important to me
and I will respond as soon as practical. GGA


You have no idea how funny this is to me. It was an email I sent to some guy who appeared on a tv show tonight, a bloke who'd had a life changing experience and went from being CEO of the decade not all that long ago to dumping the business world in favour of taking up the cloth! He's become a reverend. This guy goes on tv to say his eyes have been opened and he exchanged high finance for a life of charitable goodness - and he ends up joining a fucking ministry?? I told him in my email that I found this more than just moderately amusing. In fact anathema was the word I used.

As you know, I have a keen sense of the absurd and this guy's website struck me as just that. Anathematically absurd. Then to have his auto-responder come back with what it did was just far too funny for me not to come here and tell anyone who cares to read this.

Life may be short, but it's so fucking transcendentally big there is nothing for it but to find it insanely funny. Look around you. Then come back here and tell me what you saw.

Go on. Do it now.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

I had an urge to update something, just not this.

So I updated somewhere else instead.



lmfao :D
I need seriously to disappear down a burrow somewhere and get on with some serious writing.

So much to do, so little time.

Trouble is, the thought of abandoning my current motivation is actually fairly frightening. I can feel myself slipping into my enthusiastic early coaching days and that's not a prospect I find particularly appealing. It makes me predictable and boring and that's why I should really extricate myself from this current situation.

The problem is twofold.

Firstly, I don't want to go. Those kids are outstanding - just like the kids I used to coach.

Secondly, they are a huge motivation for me to write. If I drag myself out of this predicament and get on with the stuff I want to do, those motivation levels will plummet. See, the kids provide feedback on a regular basis. Projects don't.

I'm stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea, it would seem.

Don't get me wrong, I am enjoying it all, I'm just not getting anything done. And I've been in an absurdly good mood for most of the past month which is not altogether conducive to the project I have in mind to complete.

Two weeks ago, I fired off a missile at some completely innocent party and they finally responded to it yesterday. When I sent the original, I was mightily hot under the collar. I responded to their answer - and apologised for my original outburst. I am only able to reconcile myself to that because I used subtle sarcasm in the email as my reason for the unexpected spray. It was a good email by my standards, which are fairly high. It should make the recipient feel at once contrite and confronted without having given them a reason to feel confronted. (After all, I was apologising and explaining myself.)

If anyone were to send me such an email, I would probably reply telling them something like "Your email is important to me and I shall give it full consideration in order to provide the level of response appropriate to its merit. Thank you." Then never respond again thus fulfilling my promise.

That's the sort of thing a bastard of my calibre would do automatically. Having been in an exceptionally good mood for as long as I have been, that level of sarcasm has been hard to summon.

Ah well, can't have it both ways I suppose.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Isn't it amusing how people continue to tell you things...

... after you've left the room.

Confession: It's impossible for me to be perpetually bad tempered when there is just so much I find inherently amusing.

Here's a quote I got from a book review - wasn't hard to find either.

Avital Ronell is one of the most provocative, street-savvy, and theoretically sophisticated thinkers of this age.

Theoretically sophisticated?

Don't you know?

And here's a little hint. Street-savvy and sophisticated do not go hand in hand. Not the real street-savvy anyway. Trust me, I've been there. I know. Street savvy is knowing when to move, when to laugh, when to shut your face and where the free meals are being served. Being really street-savvy is knowing where it's safe to sleep and when it's safe to sleep there so you don't get your stuff pinched. Twats who live in ivory towers who struggle to fund the upkeep of four luxury European cars, the ducted vacuum cleaning, 400 downlights and polished cherrywood floors, who have major family brawls when the pool filter shits itself or the King Charles spaniel comes down with a sore throat - these people are not street-savvy. They're twats.

People who write the sort of book reviews I've quoted above wouldn't know street-savvy unless they've just found out they've had their credit cards skimmed and even then it would just be some vague notion.

Then there's the intermediate version of street-savvy: the people who know who is doing the moving and shaking in medium sized white collar industries, such as accounting firms, I.T. outfits and the inevitable boutique stockbroking houses.

To them, street-savvy means knowing which clients to chase, how and when - and how to impress - right down to the number of pin-stripes on the Givoni double breasted, the right places in which to be seen and which stinking bottle of glorified vinegar is in fashion.

Bunch of pretentious gits.

I'm entitled to say that too because I've also been there.

In my own way I respect all these little cogs that keep the machinery of society turning. What I resent is bilious tosspots like Diane Davis spewing their own peculiar brand of meaningless swill in some sort of vainglorious attempt at giving the impression of some nouveau intellectualism on their part. It's pseudo arty-farty crud. Here's another sample:

"Stupidity offers a kind of post-critical or nonrepresentational analysis, going after a seemingly recognizable and knowable signifier (stupidity) but tracking it so closely that it quickly becomes unrecognizable, exceeding its object-status, overflowing itself as a concept."

Gimme a fuckin' break Diane.
From the newsdesk...

Picked up a cheap bottle of Penfolds 2001 Bin 128 Shiraz or Bin 407 Cab Sauv lately? Chances are it was part of a $1.4 million internal heist at Southcorp, the wine company now owned by Fosters.

Despite a sticky letter U which it would not have entered my head to include, I was afforded a quiet chortle by this little item appearing in today's edition of Melbourne's lefty blatt, The Age.

Those who have known me longest will doubtless remember the inordinate amount of fun we had with Grapes in those early heady days of Padsterism. The launching into the midst of the unsuspecting by half a dozen people all at once and all bearing some sort of reference to grapes in our nicks, mine being Grape_Ape was a nightly pleasure bearing much mirth for us and who cares what for everyone else.

Regular readers of The Swamp may also remember my disdain for premium wine.

In this country, Penfolds Grange sells for thousands of dollars per bottle and the two breeds of black vinegar mentioned above are not without their own rather eccentric price tags.

I merely mention this because the headline which attracted mein attention was:

Raids recover $200,000 in stolen wine.

Apart from the obvious ambiguity which served to heighten my amusement, I couldn't help but think of the $200,000 whine which preceded the raids. Are people insane or what?

Let's just get a bit of perspective about this. These are bottles of grape juice which have been allowed to go rotten in the bottle before being tested on the most contemptible of all snobs then sold off at outrageously stupid prices to the most contemptible of all fools.

Whom but the biggest of all dickheads would pay $5,000 for a bottle of purple vinegar the only value of which is contained in the bottle's potential. Pop that cork and it's worthless. The thing is not even a bottle of wine, it's just an idea with no potential to become anything more than that.

It occurred to me upon reading this article there is only one commodity one should never clean: an unopened bottle of wine.

To highlight the stupidity of wine snobs, more value is placed upon the dust on the outside of the bottle than is placed on the liquid contained within. The dust adds the appearance of a properly stored sample, allowed to improve with the passage of time thus adding to its perceived value. A bottle thus stored and allowed to gather dust for 20 years can multiply its original value by a factor of ten.

Utter bullshit.

And it's bullshit because of the reason quoted above: pop that cork and it's worthless, dust or no dust.

As I read further into the article, a pattern of stupidity emerged. I quote:

Detective Grumley said that while a series of raids yesterday pointed to four people involved in the distribution of the stolen wine, police are baffled at how such a large volume of wine was removed from the Bay Street warehouse in Cheltenham in the first place.

I live less than 5 minutes' walk from that warehouse. It is surrounded by Bay ROAD (not Street) on the north, a cemetery to the south, 10 or 20 yards of empty space to the east and, most importantly, a vast expanse of nothing on the west, which is where the driveway happens to be. All it would take to steal anything from that warehouse is knowledge of the pin codes which open the doors. Duh. Nobody would ever suspect anything amiss because trucks come and go in that place at all hours of the day and night. All you would need to convince the forkies at the depot is a convincing looking work order which can be faked by pinching a blank despatch docket either from the base printing stock or the waste paper bins.

But this wasn't Mr Plod's only stupid statement to the Left Wingers' Daily...

"The one who has been charged has been co-operative and he's pointed us in a pretty strong direction. He was the main bloke receiving it from another man we want to interview,'' Detective Grumley said.

You mean another man who has just royally fucked RIGHT off. Someone who can orchestrate the theft of 60 pallets of wine and then distribute them all around the country and possibly overseas is better connected than you are, Detective Grumley. And you have alerted him to the fact a member of that group has just spilled his guts and tipped you off. The head honcho knows more than the patsy you knocked over, Detective Grumley. He knows what you know which means you're playing catch up and he knows where not to go. Unless he's either barking mad or irretrievably stupid, you're not going to catch the main man this year.

"At this stage, the bottles have certainly travelled interstate and may even be overseas, so we're following up on all of those leads,'' he said. "But we get the impression it's common knowledge in the industry now."

No shit!

But the upshot of that is which shopkeeper is going to buy that wine now when doing so could mean a grand police enquiry if anyone reports the tainted label sitting on a liquor store shelf to Grumley's Plonk Recovery Squad?

Face it; the value of the haul is no longer 1.2 - 1.4 million dollars. That may be the loss to Southcorp, but baby, that wine ain't worth diddly now. Which dollar conscious shopkeeper is going to risk buying it? Those are tainted goods, rotten on the inside as well as the outside.

Now the last line on the page cracked me up. It was just superb. The location is a highly respected wine producing district in Western Australia:

Subscribe to The Age for your chance to win a Margaret River escape.

lolol... just purchase 60 pallets of Penfold's Cab Sav to go into the draw.
Circumstantial edifice...

I have an appointment with one of my former employers tomorrow.

My dad, having still not been in contact for 5 weeks now makes it fairly plain it's not on the cards that he and I will embark together on the South East Corner poultry empire - not that I even told him yet that I was interested in such a thing - it's just he said he'd up some time during the week, and that was 5 weeks ago and we haven't had so much as a phone call or an email since.

Only the dark prince went down there for the recent nuptials of the extended family members. Good luck to him.

Anyway, having turned up unexpectedly on George's doorstep the other night when he wasn't home, I rang him and he said he'd turn up unexpectedly on my doorstop tomorrow morning after some nonsense he needs to fix in Dandenong.

I bet he neither turns up nor rings. I know what he's like. Even when he was my boss, I was the one to push him to get stuff done, not the other way round.

Thinking of that, it gets me a teeny weeny bit irritated how my most recent engagement went. Promised the earth and relegated to shit-shoveller. But I got my own back by way of the infamous email to the CEO of the company. Still proud of that.

I really must plant myself somewhere and put my head in gear to write like a demon in order to get that 2nd book ready by Christmas. I must also watch Matt play at the earliest opportunity. There be words hanging from the rafters in that rendezvous, making themselves visible like apples in an orchard. See, he sings and I write. Things can happen when you have meetings of that sort. Four years ago, had we not been so deprived of time, I know something would have come of it.

Twas a tad unfortunate two of my compositions vanished from the face of the earth once they were in Matt's possession, but if I can write a four verse ballad in one half hour train ride, replete with distractions, because I was thinking about that "mackerel sky" from a couple of years ago, well, my impressions from even one gig should produce a mountain of new material. That's what I'm hoping anyway.

It also wouldn't be the first time we've worked on a song together; it's just that last time, circumstances prevented the development of anything beyond the concept of the lyrics.

One for ChickyBee - You have the units, Duckface had the circumstances.

I dare say Matt is not as subject to circumstances as he once was.

The word of the day, apparently, is Rawr.

We here in the Antipodes have our own version:

Thanks to Taz for the picture. (And for that one of the bunny with a pancake on its head)

(Time to compose this entry: 27mins.)

Thursday, August 18, 2005

I'm getting more and more uncomfortable with this sponsorship caper, I must admit.

Out of the $39 per month I'm paying, I feel increasingly suspicious that less than 10% of it is getting to where it is most needed and the rest is going to pay the overheads demanded by western fatcats more concerned about their plasma televisions, their BMWs and their illicit dalliances than the well being of unprivileged children. Under privileged is erroneous. Those kids have nothing.

It also bothers me that I can neither confirm nor deny this suspicion.

Why has it cropped up all of a sudden now?

I paid a visit to some friends last night and Mary reminded me of the monumental scam the Christian Children's Fund in particular is - how out of every $40 worth of sponsorship donated, what manages to filter all the way down the pipeline amounted to $1.88. Now, if I can neither confirm nor deny what percentage of my donation to Oxfam makes it all the way through, I'm inclined to suspect a rather high level of security is being employed which, of course, is more money going to computer nerds with BMWs instead of children with empty stomachs.

Is this just a bit of paranoia I can put down to my deeply ingrained cynicism or what?

I'll confess I signed up in a moment of weakness. It was a magnificent day as I remember it and I had just made my way out of Flinders Street Station here in Melbourne when I was approached by an English backpacker doing donkey work to fund a year's worth of traipsing around Australia. You guessed it, another needy young person full of hope, enthusiasm, joie de vivre and an expectancy that their time backpacking in my country would prove to be the most outstanding experience they were likely to enjoy for the whole of their lifetime.

Who was I to dampen their spirit?

So I signed up and $39 per month has been deducted from my bank account ever since.

What became of the young English backpacker? What of the child I am supposed to have been sponsoring all this time?

Apart from that, it was nice to see Mary and Kathy last night. I went to pay a visit to George - my old boss from the bakery - but he'd gone across town to be with his girlfriend because her mother is ill apparently. We'll catch up on Friday now, all things being equal.

I'ma gonna hafta sell the beloved Saab. *sniff*

Yep, two cars is one too many and the Saab has it over the Mitsubishi in one vital respect: it goes - quite well as a matter of fact.

I've addressed this before, whether here or elsewhere, that once the Magna gets its new clutch, it will have its own advantages over the Saab in two very important respects - anonymity and air conditioning. Neither of which changes the fact it's going to sadden me to part with the Saab, haunted though it is by the ghost of the fucking toaster.

Oh well. Such are the mixed emotions of Wednesday night as was.

Monday, August 15, 2005

I am experiencing a vague sensation of emptiness.

I sponsor some kid somewhere in the world through Oxfam.

When I filled out the forms, I specifically requested to sponsor a boy from Cambodia. There were about a dozen Cambodian refugees working in a factory in which I had an office job and they are among the most beautiful and gentle people I've ever met. I picked a boy because a sponsored boy will eventually rescue a girl from poverty whereas sponsoring a girl could mean she loses so much when she eventually marries. (See, I thought this through before signing on.)

I wanted to see if anyone anywhere in the world had set up any websites or to find any news items containing any evidence of misappropriation of funds or wastage, but 12 pages into a google search revealed nothing, so I feel better about that.

What I dislike is the fact I have no idea where the kid is I sponsor or whether any of my stipulations have been met.

I don't feel like corresponding with the kid, I just want to know where he or she is and how they get on.

From what I gather, my money is probably being used in Africa as part of consolidated funds to build communities. That's all well and good, but that's not where I wanted my money to go. I picked Cambodia because they're not at war. They're not under threat from an evil regime - as far as I'm aware, but most of all, I won't spend years sponsoring a kid only to have a corrupt regime come in and destroy everything my money is being used to build. See Zimbabwe for details.

I want to know how my kid gets on but since I started my sponsorship, I haven't heard dick from anyone.

I might consider stopping my sponsorship with Oxfam and switch to World Vision but if I do that, I'm going to let some kid down in some part of the world. Who knows how long he or she has been waiting for a sponsor, they get one and everything goes along swimmingly well for a stabilisingly long period of time, then suddenly the support is withdrawn - Why?

Two aspects of the World Vision site that piss me off are they don't have Cambodia as an option and if you check this out...

Order by??? ORDER BY???

Who's the sick son of a bitch who thought that up?

These are children, not hamburgers. You don't order a child for crying out loud, you sponsor one or two or however many you can afford. They're not commodities to be ordered, bought and paid for. The more I think of this crass description, the more it pisses me off.

Although I'm left with misgivings about my personal wishes for sponsorship probably not being respected, I think I'll console myself with the belief that someone somewhere is grateful for my sponsorship dollars, even if I'll never know where or whom. At least I won't have to correspond.


Sunday, August 14, 2005

Had a lot to say tonight but I dislike grandstanding.

I started writing it all more than an hour ago and deleted it 30 seconds ago.

Shit happens.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Little gems in email...

I actually bought your book last January, while I was in San Diego taking care of my parents. I read some of it to my dad and he laughed so hard he had to take his heart pills. It was great, you almost killed my dad. :-) So it's time to leave and I take your book to read on the airplane. I sad down at the busy airport to wait. The book was on my lap, unopened and I was just kind of staring off into space. Airports never seem to have enough air and I get kind of sleepy. The person sitting next to me got up and left, dragging her very small child with her. She seemed cranky. Kids do that to you though. A minute later, the person on the other side, gave me and your book a dirty look and got up and left. I then realized that some people might not be as pleased with my choice of reading material as I was. Go figure. I doubt it would have helped if I'd told them I sort of know the author. Anyway, I got on the airplane and sat down, with the book on my lap again. I admit, this time it was pre-meditated. I was hoping I could get a little extra room on the flight. A woman sat down next to me and started talking. I hate talking on airplanes. I need 2 1/2 feet of space between me and another person's breath for comfortable conversation and then I need them to not be a boring moron. Rarely do the two go together. So I angled the book more towards her, hoping the title might have the same affect on her. As soon as she noticed it, she shut up and started looking around. She seemed a little nervous. There were some empty seats on the plane and as soon as the attendant said people could move if they wanted to, she jumped up, hit her head and went to sit somewhere else. The book didn't work on the second part of the flight, when a guy sat next to me, but that was okay, because he was good-looking. The 2 1/2 feet of personal space is only necessary if I'm sitting next to a really ugly person or a women. I'm not dead yet. The next time I flew, even though I had read the book, I took it anyway. It worked again. I'll never need to pay for a first-class ticket to get more room, as long as I have your book Rat. I'm trying to find another book that has fucker and murder in the title to see if it still works. Maybe it was your picture. :-) This is a true story.

And to think I used to curse this woman out no end. heh, it' more fun being bad.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Day traders are all fucking bastards.

I turn my back on a stock that's been going down for 90 minutes thinking it was all media hoopla that saw it jump 16% since opening and back off by 5 points in 90 minutes - I lose interest in it for one hour and the cunt's bounced back up to an intra day high.

Fucking bitch.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I've been rather productive today.

I put more goss in the goss page at The Pad and there's some right amusing stuff in there and it's great finding more of it all the time.

I blogged a fair bit earlier for I had things on my mind and freely dumped them here.

I've answered about 40 emails today and all of them were good ones to answer.

I updated the other journal (of which you here know nought) which is getting a fair bit of interest up after only 3 weeks.

I also made time to do some other bit of writing for which I shall eventually be paid. (Got it in 8 minutes before deadline - phew!)

While I was poking around the bits and pieces, I also paid the regulatory lip service to those who expect me to do so.

So, all in all, not a bad day. Trouble is, now I want to have something to eat and the dog is going to do his level best to put me off because he's a fucking greedy fat red oink.

I'll probably be up for another 3 hours yet so I wonder what wonderful organisations of 1s and 0s will parade across my screen in orderly fashion tonight.
When history bites you on the arse...

I had a look at who's been poking around The Pad this morning and the following referral link appeared:

Curious about how someone got to The Pad from there, I did my own search and it came back with one of the earlier blog entries I did shortly after finding out about the filth's blog - the catalyst for my returning to regular bloggery.

Whoever clicked on that would have been given one of my typical rants on the subject so if they're on my side, I hope they went away moderately impressed. If they're on the other side, I hope they realise there's yet another vigilante out there from whom they can expect no quarter. Stigmatise the fuckers to the max, I don't give a shit about them and I sincerely hope they all die today.

It's a catch 22 situation though. I also know from experience that someone who needs help won't approach anyone who appears to be on some sort of crusade or warpath. People in that frame of mind are frightening.

What I am pleased to report is due to activities elsewhere in the e-bog, my name is being passed around as someone who gives really good advice and people I don't know are asking for my help.

I'll admit I like doing what I can, which is very limited anyway, but at the same time I'm acutely aware of the potential for backlash. It's for that reason I keep reiterating - almost insisting - that nothing I say to anyone should be kept private, secret or in any other way regarded as off limits to others. I won't spread what's said to me, but I'll take responsibility for everything I say in return.

All this forthrightness - I hate to say it, is for my protection against false accusation. People will turn to friends who'll give them an honest answer before they'll turn to an agency that won't. That's my position anyway. And I've been through the system before - it stinks. It's a last resort and all the good intentions in the world won't make up for that one missing element - honesty.

I also never tell anyone to keep what I say private for the very practical reason, if something I say doesn't quite make sense or makes you feel uncomfortable, then for goodness' sake run it by someone else! I don't know everything and I'm bound to get it wrong some of the time, but I'll own up to that when it comes back.

The point is, as I put myself out there, I'm being honest with people and I can see that's what comes across and if putting a Band-Aid on a cut knee (as it were) is all that's needed, then so be it. I've been saying to the doomsayers for nearly 20 years, "If you don't like what I'm doing, then bloody well do it yourself." I've had that very rare privilege of being on the receiving end of some perfect advice. Just a tiny bit of conversation and an email and it has made an impression that stays with me today.

What I found out is when someone can tell you why you're thinking a certain way, you can then begin to figure out how to deal with it. Agencies get their info from books and tutors who are relying on studies which are inherently flawed and always will be. The woman who told me what's what realised what I've always known and that is there's no substitute for one's own experience especially when dealing with others. And that comes back to honesty. It shows. Moreover it shows in abundance when it's missing and that is why I discount agencies as adequate resources in and of themselves. The trouble is, there just aren't enough "friends" to whom people in need can turn.

Leading back to that paradoxical aspect of lending a helping hand being a form of therapy for those doing the lending, maybe it is and maybe it isn't. I does depend on the circumstances in which the helping hand is offered and the motives behind it. At what point does it become usage of the person looking for help? My answer to that is it becomes unhealthy when the focus of the relationship between provider and recipient keeps returning to the reasons for which the recipient put their hand up in the first place. I dislike even focussing on anything to do with the initial problem and that includes solutions. I would rather look to day to day practicalities and deal with issues as they arise. It takes the focus off the problem preventing it taking on unmanageable proportions and forming the basis for interaction. You don't get that with an agency, you get that from friends, especially those who are prepared to share the journey once you've got over the hurdle which brought you together in the first place.

I realised I'm not actually needed after a while.

Far from being disappointing, it's the outcome for which I strive. I draw away fast when it gets to the needing stage. I dislike feeling needed. In fact I almost fear it. I enjoy being wanted. Agencies are needed, they are not wanted. I spurn dishonesty and insincerity in dealings with people, which is how I came to despise that dippy trollop from Vegas - for those who know Dopey - and why I dislike agencies.

When I see "yours sincerely" at the bottom of a letter I've received from someone trying to sell me something, I bin it immediately because the one thing the author is not is "sincere". The message I've been leaving at the bottom of my missives in the circles in which I've been moving is "Please keep us up to date." I've been leaving that because I genuinely want to know how the person fares after reading my replies to their questions. So far, the responses have been overwhelmingly positive. I also wouldn't dare doing what I've been doing alone. There are others around whom I trust and support and from I have been honoured to receive trust and support. No way could I do it alone, no matter how positive the feedback is.

Now, from where did all this come?

Someone searched for "stigma of pedophiles" on msn's search engine and this blog came back on the returns. I've made a hobby of getting sites shut down (and more). I'm in the thick of things, but the fact remains, I dislike the association between me and filth. So much so I've spelled out my reaction to justify what I do - because of that loose association made by a search engine return. I'll own up to being a bit pissed off that I even felt a need to justify myself (probably because of the anonymity provided by the web - who the hell is this ChatRat person anyway?) when there are so-called do-gooders trying to tell the world that reformed filth don't need to justify themselves, they've paid their debt to society, and the stigma attached to them is doing more damage than anything else - driving them underground away from the help that could prevent them reoffending.

Blah blah frickety blah - heard it all before.

Now take the victims into account and ask them what they'd like done to the filth. I bet you London to a brick you get a different reaction. String the fuckers up and be done with it. The cost of keeping them alive isn't worth the returns they provide and a noose is reusable.

My stuff speaks for itself. The trouble is, not enough people see it and fewer take the time to see it for what it is. Don't keep my stuff secret, I don't like being kept in the dark where nobody can see what I'm doing.

click - and a whole new collection for the search engines. *sigh*

(Time to compose this entry: 105 mins)

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Looking through blogland again for the last hour and a half or so, one might be forgiven for thinking nothing changes in the lives of the lovelorn.

One might be forgiven, but then again, one might not - and I can hold a grudge for a very long time.

Yeah, I think that says enough about what I'm thinking at the moment.

Oh me oh my.

I opened an email this evening to the chorus of Alphaville's "Forever Young". Guess from whom it was.

I spent quite a bit of time at a particular friend's place in February of 2000. Dave was a mutual friend of Chris's and mine and, sensitive to what I was going through, there wasn't much conversation. I don't know if it were planned or not but at some stage, Dave put a cd into his mountainous stereo and the first song to wash over the room was a song by The Hollies: He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother.

The floodgates were opened and I wept freely.

Now here's part of the email to which I referred above:

My God it's been years. How ya been? I've been ok, there has been a lifetime of events in the past year, both exciting and tragic. on the 27th of July 2005, my brother Tim was killed in a trailbike accident, the family has been pretty upset for the past week and a half, the hardest thing was singing "He Ain't Heavy" at his funeral and then carrying his coffin to the hearse, and I know that song holds a deep meaning to you as well. Now it also holds great meaning to me.

I told you Matt was special. I told you all the kids I've known over the last 16 years or so are special. I'm so looking forward to bridging 4 years worth of absence. We have so much to talk about but as you can probably see, picking up the threads from where they were left should be as easy as falling off a barstool.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

This is a retrospective I have retrospected from a few years ago. The entries have been dated but not changed except to neaten them up a bit. I'm putting it here now because it made me laugh.

Since the World Trade Center disaster, I've been absolutely bereft of anything to write. I haven't posted a newsletter, or made (or even visited) the MSN communities I belong to.

It's coming up to what would have been my beloved little brother's 21st birthday and I'm getting really depressed about it. (That puts this entry at some time just after September 2001 but before October 11th)

Words are powerful little buggers. They can be delivered visually or aurally, but they have amazing power. They can make you angry, they can bore you to death, they can make you laugh or cry, they can make you think and they can inflame passions of every variety.

Finding the right words is a marvellous skill. What impresses me most about words is that so much can be said with one or two carefully chosen words.

"Oh really?" I hear you ask.
"Listen to yourself." I like to reply.

Today is November 22, 2001. It has been a month since I wrote that bit up there and I'm still depressed about Christopher. I loved him so much and although it has been a year and 10 months since he died, I still miss him.

I discovered that in, someone has made a reference to me and the old "Chatratspad" on Austnet. (The place where it all got going...) That's where I clicked on a link and ripped a counter from Site Fights to put on my page 1.

Now I can tell how many people are ignoring my website. (Almost the entire population of planet earth!) So why do I continue to come here and do things on the site? Because it's an almost permanent record, my contribution to e-history, that proves I was here and to some extent what I was like. (I appear, indeed, to have mellowed a tad.)

This is getting a little bit maudlin, so I'll crawl back under my stone until next time.
In the meantime, get a hold of my other bit of e-blattery, The Swamp.

The Swamp - my newsletter

Lots of love for November 22, The Rat.

Well, now it's January 6th, 2002. What's changed?
Osama bin Bastard's address has changed, that's for sure.

I've seen quite a few pictures intended to be funny with him in them, but, and I make no apologies here, I don't find them funny. Which is odd, because I find most things funny. I guess it's because I have so much revulsion for him.

Last week I had an email conversation with my newest best friend, Chris Locke - Rageboy.
Today I discovered his "Favorite People" list on's Listmania bit, and I'm on it!! Tell me that didn't make me go all soft and sentimental!!

Am I happy yet?

Well, it's coming up to the 2nd anniversary of my little brother's death - January 31st.
How the hell should I feel? I'm doing my bestest, really I am!

Poor ol' Duckface. Last week, my old boss and I were going to see Rat Race, and George sent Duckface an SMS message or two. Actually, they were both forwards from my phone. Poor Matt! (Yes, that's the same Matt whose cd cover I put in here the other day.)

I keep telling everyone that I'm a bastard, but no-one actually believes me!

Go see Rat Race! It's done by the immortal Zucker brothers - you know, Flying High, Top Secret, Ruthless People - very funny guys. Rat Race is no exception. It's a bad fillum, go see it.

That's it for me from today. I couldn't be bothered doing any more journal for now.
But as long as you're here, use the email jiggy boo, it really does work and I really do respond to it.

Lot's of love and big girly kisses on your bottoms for 6/1/2002,
The Rat.

January 17th... It's Friday. YAY!
What am I still doing at home? I should have been at work about an hour ago.

Well, I was chatting merrily away in Philosophy & Absurdity, starting at the bottom of the chatter's pile again, and I remembered there was something I really wanted to do.

I really wanted to upload some of my music files to this site...

Well I started and it was taking for ever - you know how it is - and I clicked a button somewhere to see if even one of the files had finished uploading, and guess what! I killed the upload thing.
All that air-time wasted. I feel like Michael Jordan when some prick has gone and pinched the hoop.

Oh well, shite happens.
Now I spose I better get to work.

Lot's of love etc...
The Rat.

Tuesday, February 26th 2002. I'm sitting in an internet cafe in the city. Why am I doing this? The reason is simple - if absolutely stupid. My computer at home lives in my older brother's bedroom. I also have my very own modem and my very own ISP account. But because the machine is in his room, he won't let me in there to use the puter. HE uses my puter, his modem and his ISP account, but only when I'm either not home, or he is pretending to be in bed. Why don't I put the puter in another room? I hear you ask. Because there is simply nowhere else to put it and the 2nd phone line socket is in his room. The room used to be mine, but I moved out of the house for four days and he moved in. You can just tell how much we care about each other... Pathetic is the word I use most often to describe him. Just the other day, I bought a bottle of milk. I opened it, used what I wanted and put the bottle back in the fridge. Then James bought a bottle of milk, opened it, used some and put that bottle back in the fridge. Just so he wouldn't be using my milk - like I care if he does, shit, it's only milk. So, when he's home and I want to get on the world wide timetrap, I have to go out and pay per hour at an internet cafe. Just to give you even more of an idea how pathetic he is, when the room was actually mine, I didn't care how much he went in there to use the puter or look at titty pics on the e-bog. (I think he doesn't know any other titty pic site besides Yahoo groups...) Now the shoe's on the other foot, and I can't even use my own goddam puter. If you think this is fucked and to what degree it is fucked, use the form mail jiggy boo on page 1 or page 4 and I'll put all the responses up on a very special page. Who can be the most vitriolic in their appreciation of how pathetic an individual my older brother James is? Lots of love for Tuesday, The Rat.

Well today was Monday March 18, 2002. I worked my arse off today after bugger all sleep last night.

It's almost midnight, so what am I doing up at this hour, my eyes stinging from lack of sleep? You may remember from my last journal entry that my puter was in a Danger Zone. Well because of rear-guard action by the Prince of Puerility and Patheticness, I went in there and took the damn thing out and set it up in the kitchen. Now I type loudly while he tries to watch tv and I LOVE IT!!!

I can chat to my heart's content now - and I do - and people are actually starting to visit this site which makes my juices wobble convulsively through my tubes and parts...

Which reminds me, I must change my irc ident so it puts this site up, then you can all talk about it with your e-friends... won't that be fun!

I'm going to bed now, it's 7 past midnight on Tuesday morning... *YAWN*

Saturday, March 30, 2002. I'm still stiff and sore from work - does it ever end? Am I ever going to do the work I should be doing and start getting paid what I'm worth? Maybe.

The Dark Prince of Puerility and Patheticness strikes again.

The puter, now removed from his room and in the kitchen has been superceded by a whiz bang laptop which plays dvd's in his room or on the telly.

To prevent unauthorised access, said laptop gets its wires unplugged from the telly and packed away in the Dark Prince's room at the conclusion of each use.

Like I care? I have what I want in the kitchen. It also didn't cost me nearly a year's salary and I do more with it than store pathetic reminders and titty pics from yahoo.

Oh, and my job isn't about to disappear or be downgraded like his is.

But I really do need a bigger machine, mine crashes if I forget to clear the crap out of my hard drive. No matter... I can double everything with just a few hundred dollars - not a few thousand for something which I won't ever get full value out of!

I must confess, I do enjoy being superior to the Prince.

Today is Saturday, April 27th.
I've just read Terry Mertens's e-zine called "All You Need to Know".
I'd give you the link, but the archve is not readable unless you're a subscriber.
(The link is now over there on the right and you should click on it.)

However, if you email Terry at and beg for inclusion to the list, I'm sure he'll let you subscribe and then you can have a good laugh like I just did.

I hate having to watch what I say in case there are people reading who somehow feel that they are in some weird position to expect that I behave a certain way and say certain things.

Well fuck it. I'm pissed off. First on the grizzle list is my moderately bizaare boss. The undisputed world champion of double handling, and maker of decisions that border on the spectacular for their degree of shortsightedness and managerial ineptitude.

I won't bore you with details, but I just gotta get this offa ma chest..

Get and stay the hell out of the warehouse and do something administrative in your flamin office for a change. You can't even get the paperwork right, what with double orders, orders that aren't due until May and June mixed in with the orders which should have been out last month.

But now, as I fall slowly to sleep at this keyboard, I am overwhelmed yet again with the loss of my beautiful little brother, Christopher. It has been more than 2 years since he died, but the wounds in my heart are as fresh today as they were on January 31st, 2000.

Saturday May 9, 2002. It's 3.00pm and, as usual, I'm falling asleep at the keyboard.

The reason for it this time, is that I only got about 45 minutes sleep last night. There is only one word for why this is happening: Legacy.

I'm here doing this at all because I think I yet again offended someone I'm not in a hurry to offend, but the trouble is, that just by being myself, people just sometimes get offended.

They don't see the fact that I'm just me being me and saying and doing all the things I feel like doing when I feel like doing them without waiting for or even expecting permission from the people around me to say and do what I like.

Every now and then, it feels like I have to tip-toe through the bloody tulips and mind my p's and q's or whatever else.

The hatemail I got after my edition of The Swamp - titled "Revenge is a dish..." set me off like a Palestinian tourist at a Jerusalem bus stop. (Ooooh that's bad!)

Sometimes I don't mind getting abusive emails. Actually, straight up abuse I can cop quite sweetly. It's the "You offended me." type emails or messages that get me depressed faster than a footprint in dog poo.

So, a rule of thumb: If I offended you in some way, click on the X in the top right hand corner and quietly fuck off. I don't want to know.

If you feel like hurling abuse at me, use the email jiggy boo on page 4.

That's what it's there for, but be prepared to see your contributions in "My emails" with a smart arse remark from me, coz that's what I do, boys and girls. (Or hasn't anyone figured that out yet?)

Anyway, it's time to get on with something a bit more serious, so see ya next time. (or not.)

Well, it's next time.. Monday, May 20th 2002.

I'm bored again. (That's not why I'm doing this, it's just that I couldn't be bothered getting into all the chatrooms I usually go into because, chances are, if I'm bored, everyone else will be too boring for me to justify the time it takes to get in there.)

More news on the job front: We're all taking two weeks off from July 1. What's the bet I don't get holiday pay. So, what the fuck am I supposed to live on for 3 weeks???

My wonderful brother lurks like a bastard in the next room. I'm sorta thinking I'll surf around for something tittilating, but not while he's there. The reasons are too numerous to bother with, and besides, I'm bored.

The Swamp turned 1 year old on Saturday! To commemorate, I posted a collection of e-mails I got from subscribers. A battle of the sexes type thingy, but I felt these were good enough to re-post. Rare indeed.

Most battle of the sexes type thingies just piss me off. I find them akin to racism and that's a no-no if you're standing next to me. I mean really. Not much makes my blood boil, but racism and stupidity will do it in .3 of a nanosecond.

Short fuse, huh.

I make no apologies for it, though. How much hatred and violence and suffering is the result of racism whether that be racial, ethnic or religious intolerance. Why can't people just agree to disagree. Their point of view is just as valid and interesting as your point of view - or mine for that matter.

I love having philosophical discussions on the merits of customs and religions. Concerning religious discussion, it is a real exercise for me not to lose my cool and get nasty, but if I can't make people question their own beliefs with reason and compassion, I'm never going to do it abusing them.

Why do I want to make them question their beliefs?

Because I believe in the authority of one. Not the authority of an organisation - a concept. When people are subordinate to a belief, they no longer have autonomy. Autonomy is important to me.
Anyway, enough of this clap-trap. I'm going to bed.

So, you be the judge. Have I mellowed or do I just pick my moments with a little more discretion?

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Give us some opposition!

Not HALF an opposition, a real opposition. The poms had us on the ropes yesterday, but we got one for by the close of play. Incredible leg spinning delivery from Shane Warne bowling Strauss around his legs out of the rough and I said to one of my cohabitators of Casa Highett that we would rip through them and have them all out by 160 in the second dig.

Well as at the time of writing this, we have the poms 6/95 in their second dig with all the recognised batsmen out. 160 is looking like a longshot!

Even if we do roll them for 160 in the second dig, it leaves us chasing 260 for a win with 2 days and probably more to get them. We murdered them in our 2nd dig at Lords and the result was 200+ run win to Australia because the poms just rolled over in their 2nd dig.

Naturally I want Australia to win, but a test is 5 days dammit. The Aussies are so bloody good we are in the habit of wrapping these things up inside 4 days. It's great for us, but it's not terribly good for cricket. Think of all the lost gate takings when a test is only 3 or 4 days long.

Ok, so at the end of third day, we've landed ourselves back in poo by going out too often and too cheaply. We've made ourselves look like a bunch of farmers' daughters this time.
(Time to compose this entry: 5 mins)
6 hours later, I went to bed.

If this keeps up I'm going to have to ditch the total bastard image.

Doc Ell told me something a couple of weeks ago which stopped me in my tracks and I've been giving it a bit of thought. Why do I do the things I do? Frankly, because I enjoy it. Why I enjoy it is what seems to be at issue here. He's a bright cookie, the Doc, but it's the time he's willing to spend with others for which I really respect him.

I do it because knowing I can make someone else feel a little bit better also makes me feel good. To me it's just natural human behaviour, community spirit without the draining effects of altruism. I get on the net to interact. If that interaction means more to some than the usual banal chit-chat, then so be it. I feel I've achieved something, even though the only benefit I get out of it, my recompense as it were, is just to see the person with whom I've interacted has come away from it with something more than just a few wasted minutes. It's the mutual growth and the learning that drives me. People underestimate the intrinsic value of learning. Our instinct to learn is only equalled by our instinct to survive. We crave it. It's better than sex and I'm not saying that to be funny, I'm saying it because it's true. It's also better than food. Even infants will put off eating if they're fully engaged in some intellectual pursuit.

Do I learn from what I do? What I do certainly makes me think. If I'm offering something to someone, it has to be right and it has to be reasonable. It has to be real and putting all that into words is not easy. The wrong word can ruin the entire sentiment of the message and that makes me think very very carefully about what I'm saying. I do it because I enjoy it. If someone else gets something out of it, that's a bonus. I want those bonuses so that's why I do what I do with great care.

Someone left a message to say I was wise. That also struck me. I hadn't considered myself wise since my teen years and that's nearly half my lifetime ago. Now I just consider myself as having learned from experience. If that defines wise then so be it. I suppose someone who doesn't learn from experience is a fool, but consider this:

Some people don't take kindly to what I do. Even though I put my whole heart and soul into it, I stand to be attacked and people don't generally hold back on the internet. If they don't agree with what you're doing or suspect your motives, they give you merry hell. Sometimes that hurts. Sometimes it hurts a lot. How wise is it to repeatedly set myself up for that? And I do. When I do what I do, it's really me people are seeing. What I do, I do with love and I've no doubt that comes through. (It sure as shit shows when I'm tearing strips off some lying scrote or ignorant toerag.)

Of course some people don't come to the internet for that and having it arrive by the bucketload can be the last thing they want. I know it's not something I particularly enjoy getting lumped with. I neither need it nor want it. Sometimes I manage to get the approach right - humour is often the best way - and I think I'm astute enough to get it right most of the time. I sure get to hear about it if I'm not but that's ok.

Since I resumed this blog on pretty much a daily basis, I have been blessed to meet nearly 30 people I would be proud to call friends. Which is not to say those I considered friends before are no longer, of course they are. They're just moving in different circles from the ones in which I am presently moving.

Doc Ell also gave me another pertinent bit of advice which today I finally got around to taking. It took me longer than I imagined it would to come up with a solution, but I think the result is ok. I'll run it by the Doc at some stage this weekend or maybe early next week.

I haven't been as contented as I am at present in a long time. That is due in large part to Doc Ell and Liz whom I don't think quite realises how much I treasure her friendship and Doc Ell whose comings and goings restored the balance after I became so unbalanced upon seeing that infamous blog which shall still remain nameless here. (Feelings of vengefulness are a fine thing if taken in moderation.)

Anyway, that's my bit of bloggery for now. It's early afternoon here in Melbourne, this city I love so much. It's the middle of winter and again, the sky is mostly blue with fluffy white clouds skipping briskly by in the fresh south westerly breeze. The sun is streaming through the windows, my headphones are on, my coffee cup is about to be replenished, the dog will sleep for another 45 minutes and all is unbelievably well in my world right now.

Friday, August 05, 2005

I just thought I'd stop by here just to let anyone else who might be passing that at present I am bored off my tits.

It's times like this I should pick up the scattered remnants of consciousness and work on those projects I want to work on over this coming weekend but right now I just couldn't be fucked.

One of the youngsters posed me a rip-snorter of a question and giving him an answer worthy of the question shifted my head into overdrive and now I'm done answering that, I'm back in 2nd gear and not much is working at full steam.

Ah well, the cricket's on and Australia's under the pump. Time to go get distracted by something of national importance.

(Time to compose this entry: 4 mins)

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Another one of those heartwarming moments...

I put off going to the doctor all afternoon and found something better than I had hoped on the big old worldwide time trap. One of the kids I used to know a few years ago has kicked on. This is the sort of thing that just makes my rough hard exterior just melt - sorta like a leper in a wind tunnel without the mess.

Above is the cover of the cd he's planning to release in November this year.

Matt, to me, was another one of that rare breed who seems to want to give more than he takes which is what should make his music worth getting. I confess I haven't heard it, but now that I know where he's playing, I've got it in mind to go and have a listen. There will be something there if he's got a regular gig, publicans aren't stupid. It might not be my style but then even the worst crew can put together the occasional gem and I'm not a music critic.

I'll get the cd regardless when it comes out. I have a suitcase full of total shit kids have given me over the years, but because it's theirs and they've put effort into it, that's what turns it from trash into treasure - NOW you know. I got Sally Boyden's cd when she recovered from anorexia, I met her when I was doing a career expo thing at a civic centre about 6 or 7 years ago (I'd had a crush on her since I was 10 years old). Another girl I met a couple of years ago put out a disk with her boyfriend. I got one of those too, not knowing what to expect and I was pleasantly surprised. So, to me, Matt's disk will be special, not because of what's on it, but because it's his. I may not have seen him or heard from him for 4 years now, but it doesn't mean I'm any less proud of what he's done - and from what I know, it's all his own effort.

Matt's not the first of the kids I've known who has kicked on but he is the latest. I never get tired of finding out what they're all up to, where they are and all the rest of it. What I especially never tire of is catching up with them - even after all these years.

Something else I found just a few minutes ago...

"I am following Mr. Chatrat's advice and keeping this journal informed"

See, it's beginning to work. Now, I want all you lurkers to run away and follow my advice as well and if you've paid close attention, you should realise what my advice to this person was. What makes this little inclusion particularly noteworthy is all I did was leave a comment on his web journal.

Now here's something right out of the Twilight Zone - guess what this person's name is.

Come on, ONE fucking guess.
I had a doctor's appointment on Monday.

I didn't go. I still haven't gone. What's the point?

He's going to scowl at me because I've gone off all the lovely pills and potions he spent 8 whole minutes prescribing and the test I took last week is either going to confirm my suspicions or his. If it confirms mine - that I'm better at healing myself than others are at healing me, my test will have come back as negative on every count. If the test confirms the doctor's suspicions, I'm fucked anyway and he would have called me by now.

I figure I'm right again - as I usually am at least 95% of the time. I'll probably go and see him tomorrow. I'll get a referral for another test in 3 weeks and leave it at that. I hate all this fussing and poking about, it gives me the heebies.

More later.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Last night, I sat up longer than is good for an ostensibly sane person redesigning the dustjacket of that bloody book. Out with the old, in with the new and that means I've also done more work on the inside of it as well. I had no idea there were so many typographical errors in it. I'm truly ashamed of that. It's just carelessness, but retyping the whole thing - all 44,000+ words of it - is a mind numbing chore.

At this point, as far as the book is concerned, all I really want to do is get on with the 2nd edition.

Anyway, here's the new cover as it looks in the hands of those with a credit card and a "can spend" (about $15) attitude:

This is the new front cover which to my way of thinking is a tad more sophisticated than the old cover by virtue of that most paradoxical of sophisticated qualities: Simplicity.

This is the bit of the new back cover that amuses me just enough to share with you. Before I put that great big red word in that Photoshopped barcode, it reminded me of labia majora. (I'm just not sure whose.)

My advice is just to register your interest at this stage. You can get the book that looks like the revised edition, but you may as well wait another week or two until it genuinely qualifies for that description and get it then. If you register your interest by Griping, I'll get an idea of how quickly I should finish this project before getting down to the next offering.

So now that you've seen another bit of the stuff I've been doing, it should give you a fair idea of all those things about which I'd been uncharacteristically enthusiastic a few weeks ago which have remained entirely neglected because I can only concentrate on 4 things at once. (I am, after all, a male.)

If I were a woman, I would neo-feministically tell any mere male who happened to be perusing this blog that I had been neglecting the other projects because whilst concentrating on the 4 things on my mind over the last 3 weeks, I've also been cooking, cleaning, vacuuming, laundering and breastfeeding the twins whilst keeping up with The Young and the Restless and telling anyone who'd care to listen what I think of Sandra Bullock's latest hair style.

The male retort, naturally, is you couldn't do shit all if I weren't making sure the finances enabled to you do these 7 things in half-arsed, ad hoc fashion and if you applied yourself to just the one task and did it properly, I might not have to work at all. Bitch. Now get off your fat arse and get me a beer.

(Is it obvious I'm single?)

(Time to compose this entry: 46 mins)

Monday, August 01, 2005

I think I'm physically turning into a fetus shaped adult.

Oh, you're thinking, here we go...

Nothing of the sort. Don't be so bloody cynical. It's all my dog's fault.
You know about the greedy red cocker spaniel pig, the would-be hairy balloon dog that passes for the resident pet de la Casa Highett, it's a bastard of disproportionate magnitude. He's not a big dog, just knee high, but he stares and stares and stares and the only way to get relief is to curl up one's legs so your face is hidden from his view. Only then will he lose interest and plop himself down on the floor.

Right in the middle of the loungeroom.

Get up and he gets up. Head for the kitchen, he follows. What happens when you get to the kitchen? He sits and fucking stares and stares and stares. God help you if you ever get anything to eat. Then he sits and stares and shivers and whimpers. It's like he hasn't been fed for days. The fat little fuck eats more often than do I.

I can't stand it. I've had enough. The slightest movement produces a stare of epic dimensions. An hour to us is like 35 seconds to him when it comes to staring. Forget to dissuade him with the knees up caper and he thinks it's an invitation to put head on lap and stare at point blank range.

We live in an open plan house here. There aren't any doors in the living area. To get away from the little furry bastard means sitting in the toilet or standing in the laundry or the bathroom. He thinks it's unreasonable that the human inhabitants of this house should possibly consider eating without giving him his share at least. That would mean he would eat up to 12 times a day. He'd be bigger than the house.

I so desperately want to push his face through the wall and kick his fucking arse til he DIES, I am that fed to the back teeth of this interminable staring habit he has. I won't, of course. I find cruelty to animals distasteful. He's also old, nearly deaf and fairly clumsy so I doubt we could even give him away to a good home. It's also not like he has a bad life either. He always has clean fresh water in the same place all the time, he gets fed twice a day and bits and pieces 3 times more. He gets walked every day and has outings with doggy friends twice a week on top of that. It's not a bad existence. It's a conscious struggle we have to keep him at his optimum weight about which we tend to worry because he's deceptively fluffy and pretends to be constantly starving. But he's just fine.

It'll be so good when he finally dies though. The peace and quiet, the uninterupted meal times, not having to worry about stepping on him in the dark... If he weren't so damn good looking, I'd be so tempted to take matters further to ensure his rapid deletion from the register. He is, however, one damn fine looking dog so we're keeping him still.

I do have other reasons for disliking housepets but that's another story for another time.

(Time to compose this entry: 17 mins.)