Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Teresa is a dangerous woman.

No, seriously!

Well, as you can see, I haven't gone bush - yet. I'm still giving it serious consideration though. The first invoice I submitted for payment came back with 30% less than what I was expecting. I had their payment arrangements explained to me and I listened through clenched teeth and said nothing. I saved them several hundred dollars more today, though I have a sneaking suspicion gratitude will be non-existent on their list of things to say to me tomorrow.

No matter. I got a call from another professional this afternoon who is keen to make my acquaintance. It's 45 minutes closer to home for me too.

I checked in with the office yesterday too. For some stupid reason, they've got me down as inactive. If they didn't submit their claim on my behalf for the $5,000 they should have got, I'm going to have to go in there and have serious words with Lance to find out why the hell not. I don't have to do these little things for them - it's not my money after all, it's theirs. I do it because I can and because it's the right thing to do. I'll fire off a fax tomorrow and see if I can't scrape another few hundred out of it though. :) It's only money after all.

(Don't try to make sense of all that. I don't operate the same way everyone else does. It's complex and I couldn't be bothered explaining it.)

I've got the playlist going and trigger songs are messing with my head. Consequently, I feel like a manic-depressive just now. I experienced a very strong urge to go to Geelong and catch Matt's gig. I'd been meaning to go for weeks but I don't operate the same way everyone else does and besides being complex, it buggers my social life as well. Matt's enormous, not physically, he just means a huge amount to me, even though we didn't get in contact with each other for about 2 or 3 years. I tend to store my friends. They come and they go, but they never quite fade away entirely. Sooner or later, I can pick up the threads of where we left off and carry on like no time had passed at all.

Australia won the test series against the West Indies 3 nil today.

Total match attendance over the 5 days was 69,342.

On Boxing Day, the test between Australia and whoever (South Africa I believe) will begin. The total attendance for the 5 days of the Adelaide test will be surpassed by the 2nd day in Melbourne. It would have been walloped on the first day had the venue been The G, but because The G is being prepared for the Commonwealth Games here next March, they're not playing cricket there. The game will be moved to the Telstra Dome which doesn't even hold 70,000 people. I'm not happy about that, just quietly.

Something else about which I'm not especially happy is the fact it's only 10:20pm and I'm more than ready to head for bed, such is my lack of energy and enthusiasm right now. I miss my all night sessions. I'm not sure I like behaving 'responsibly', going to bed early and getting up early.


I need to write. I need so desperately to write. I've got it all here, I'm not feeling blockage, I'm just overwhelmingly bloody tired.

Why aren't you people all doing something more productive than reading my blurtage? Hmm?

Go on, away with you.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Much has happened since I last set the fingers to the Ratblog.

I'm not sure how much of it is good and how much of it just sucks and the end result as I sit here this Saturday afternoon is that I'm sore and tired.

I've been helping out some people who are shortstaffed - to the tune of 10 hours per day since last Sunday. Sure it's money, but Christ, it's not a labour of love. It amazes me how people can be so focused on their own little worlds they forget others have different perspectives each of which can be just as valuable. I already made one change, after just a week, and that change has borne fruit. My thoughts on that particular matter are why spend a fortune on something that's going to go to waste when you can spend a few pennies and make a 700% return in 2 days? I also made a few other changes which surprised the owners by the magnitude of the success, then I get blamed for not taking care of something that isn't even my responsibility - ie; purchasing. If they know something has to be replaced every two days regardless, replace the fucking thing. Waiting for the interloper to tell you it has to be replaced is absurd. They've been there 17 months, it should just be automatic - every two days, replace what needs to be replaced. Don't wait to be told it needs replacing. I told them this and it went down like a lead balloon. I told them if they want me to take that responsibility in future, I'm happy to do it, but don't blame me for not doing what they should know needs to be done every two days anyway. I'm not having that. I've only been there a week.

I can't see myself sticking out the 6 weeks for which they said they wanted me.


The old girl reckons she's going to lose her job over a slip of the tongue at work which just happened to be a breach of confidentiality and it looks like the old bro and I will have to support her until she gets the old age pension. What a joy that will be. I'm not going to work 50 hours a week just so she can have ballroom dancing lessons for $400 a month. Fuck that.

I'm good at disappearing. (Just ask my creditors.)

I know that sounds incredibly callous. She is, after all, my mother. On the other hand, she's been going on round the world cruises on the QEII every year for the last 4 years and spending tens of thousands of dollars on ballroom dancing, so much so that when she croaks, she'll be nearly a hundred thousand dollars in debt which the old bro and will inherit when the bank moves in to repossess everything she owned.

I need to write like a demon and get something published mainstream if I'm to get out of this jam any time soon. Fuck working 50 hours a week for someone else's benefit.

Ozy's post in PA almost brought a tear to my eye. He's going to need a mountain of strength over the next few weeks to see himself through the inevitable - unless some miracle happens along the way, which, because of circumstances, I doubt will be forthcoming. It would be nice if it did though. He's one of the more worthwhile people at PA, even if others don't see that. I feel for him, I really do.

Working these long hours for the whole week just past seems to have taken its toll on one of my young friends too. We used to talk on messenger every day and now I haven't been on for a week. He blogged his dismay that he has no idea where I'm lurking and it cut me like a knife. It's not like I can just get on the phone and talk, he's on the other side of the planet. All I know is this 6 week committment I've made is not just making me tired, it's getting in the way of people.

Just to explain that a little better, there are people who have become accustomed to my being available and suddenly I'm not so available any more. It bothers them and it therefore bothers me. I don't necessarily care about the money, which is 3.1 times what I usually earn, what I care about is those people who get upset when I'm not there for them.

I'm on the very edge of packing up a few belongings and going off interstate somewhere and starting from the bottom and working my way back up the ladder of success. Anonymity has its own rewards. The only people with whom I feel a personal need to maintain contact all live in North America and I can do that just as easily from an internet cafe as I can from here. I don't want all this bullshit money headache from all these different quarters. It's not my problem, nor do I want it to become so.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Finding out new things is always fun. It's even more fun when what you find out will help you solve all sorts of other things going on in your life from one day to the next.

Take Zen Buddhism for example.

No, please take it - the hell away from me.

This peaceful little philosophy come religion to which half of the world's Asiatic populations adhere and which an increasingly diverse chunk of westerners are beginning to embrace is the latest form of moral bankruptcy making its presence felt on the best sellers lists at the expense of genuinely valuable works of fictional art and the odd interesting biography.

The central ethos of Buddhism is paradox. Paradoxes are interesting little intellectual talking points, but as bases for a philosophy or a religion, frankly, they suck. The most basic of paradoxes - which in my mind anyway - completely debunks the God myth, is the God vs Big Rock paradox. It goes like this:

If God is omnipotent, can he build a rock so big even he can't move it? Either way, God loses.

Buddhism is more fundamentally paradoxical than this. Buddhism, for anyone who has seen the Dalai Lama in the Mercedes commercial, tells us that all life is sacred, even the lives of insects. Love your friendly neighbourhood mosquito.

Pardon me, but fuck off.

Mr Locke's latest works have hit that primeval chord with me tonight, inspiring memories I Swamped years ago which irritated me then and irritate me no less today. (Click the Rageboy links over there on the right for more information.) I can't wrap my head around the concept that other bits of living matter on this planet should somehow mean as much or more than the humanity admonished by these charlatans to think exactly that in order to achieve a state of peaceful blissful enlightment.

If I want to achieve a state of peaceful, blissful enlightment, I'll read a volume of the encyclopedia when I'm having a shit.

As far as I'm concerned, humanity itself is the standard by which all values should be judged. Is it good for us? Yes? Then it's a good thing. Is it bad for us? Yes? Then it's a bad thing. Does it make one jot of difference to us one way or the other? No? Good, let's see if it's edible.

Obviously I'm not a fan of all this hokum. More fool you if you've been taken in by it.

I don't mind the idea of yoga insofar as sitting quietly and clearing one's head being a good thing, but any pseudo-scientific philosophical clap-trap that goes with it is what I reject out of hand. A basic concept like "empty your mind" is one thing, behaving like a cherry blossom is just fucked up.

There is a flipside to the Buddhist recipe for internal happiness, and that is to put yourself at the service of others and sacrifice any excess to the fat statue of The Man Who Laughs. (Victor Hugo, now there's an author.)

I don't hold with that bit of bullshit either. What's the point of working for the benefit of others when you should be teaching them to work for their own benefit by producing more than they consume? Don't create a race of co-dependents, create a race of self sufficient efficacious individuals who build bulwarks against the fickle hand of nature. Happiness is a by-product of personal security. Pride is a by-product of achievement.

This pseudo-self esteem built upon a rock of self denial and valuing the lives of insects above that of humans is the second biggest load of shite ever set to print. That sort of happiness is entirely dependent upon circumstances over which you have absolutely no control whatsoever. It's built on the faith that should you come a gutser, someone else will assuredly pick you up and put you back on your sandal shod feet, dust off your saffron robe and give you a hearty meal of boiled rice and lentil soup.

Fuck that. I'll have Whopper Double Beef with cheese, large fries and a Coke. I'll sit in an air conditioned plastic box to eat it then I'll walk out in my child-labor constructed Nikes and I'll do it all, safe in the knowledge that I'd rather live like an environmental vandal and be comfortable and smug than subject myself to the whims of the next tosspot who sets him or herself up as an authority on what's good for the human spirit.

My message to the Buddhists is quite simple, yet profound and conclusive: Fuck off and die.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Since everyone else is doing it...

I watched the most ridiculous movie last night on the idiot box - Supernova. It had Tia Carrera in it which was good, and that tosser from a few years ago all the teenage girls couldn't live without - but now can't remember his name. All I remember about the guy is his face because it reminds me of Richard Gere gone wrong and sucking a lemon.

Oh, Luke Perry. The man whose only claim to fame is being eminently forgetable. In fact pre-eminently forgetable.

Tonight, it's that old Dudley Moore, Julie Andrews and Bo Derek clunker, 10. Besides Bo Derek's tits in that beach scene the only thing remotely memorable about that film is Ravel's Bolero. And Bo Derek's tits. They were nice tits. Shame about the face.

Nice tits though.

One of the kids I've known since about 1988 played cricket against the visiting West Indies cricket team today and yesterday. Brad Hodge smacked 177 runs in 178 deliveries and (just quietly) buried them. He's been named in the Australian team to play the West Indies in Tasmania next week. He's been 12th man 6 times, maybe this time he'll actually get a cap. Go Brad. I'd go and watch the game, but I don't relish the thought of going overseas to do so. If they pick him for the Boxing Day test in Melbourne, I'll be there with bells on.

I did the Nazi thing in PhilosophyAbsurdity yesterday and Liz has been ominously absent and/or quiet since. I booted Labyrinth for being obnoxious enough to make threats to take stuff off the boards and into real life. What a knob. Even if he had no intention of doing anything of the sort, even the threat is too over the top. When I switch the machine off, everyone in it goes away until I switch it back on. Only those with my phone number are the truly privileged ones.

Those fuckers in the other room have the television at an unnaturally high volume. It's encroaching uncomfortably onto my auditorial senses and interfering with my listenage of my playlist. I love my playlist. It's better than yours precisely because it's mine.

If you had my attitude, I wouldn't say that sort of thing. Not because you wouldn't like it, but because your playlist would be identical to mine. You know it's true. Some people would say it's arrogant of me to even think such thoughts, but it's not arrogance at all. Arrogance would be to say that if you had my attitude, you'd still be inferior because you probably wouldn't have the vocabulary to match. See?

Just be glad to have my example to follow. It really is the best anyone can do anyway and that still puts you at least one step ahead of those who haven't encountered me yet.

Finally, I'd like to say a big thank you to Teresa and Veronica for keeping the Ratblog Gripage files alive and kicking on a regular basis but I know there's no need for that either. Just being here, reading my words and making gripes is ample enough reward of its own.

Fuck I'm good!


Friday, November 11, 2005

I got my own back yesterday and it felt marvellous. The good triumphs over the ignorant again - as it should be.

There have been one or two other devlopments as well but nothing significant in any true sense of that word.

My head cold has migrated down my spine and into all my limbs. Today is Friday and in the last 48 hours, the total of everything I've eaten is one Tim Tam - a chocolate biscuit for you non-Aussies - two Vegemite sandwiches, a fruit mince tart, about a dozen cups of coffee and maybe 20 cigarettes.

I weigh 63 kilograms. 3 kilos less than the most I've ever weighed. I wonder what I weighed last week.

My blood pressure is being kept artificially high by the shit I'm shoving up my nose to stop it dripping like a tap - which is a good thing. Having been averse to eating for the last two days, if I didn't assail my beak with pseudoephedrine inhalants, I'd pass out every time I stood up. (The joys of unbelievably low blood pressure. Don't knock it, it saved my life once. Ok knock it, you know I don't care.)

As long as they keep adrenalin infusions away from me if I land in hospital again I don't care what happens. I hate that shit. It's like having an elephant sit on your chest and they give you morphine straight after so you can actually breathe. WTF! Morphine's more addictive than smack!

I just keep telling myself it's a cold, a couple of Codrals and I'll be right as rain. No drama, no infusions, no worries, mate. She'll be right.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

I'm disgruntled again or still, however you all prefer it...

Despite the fact some wonderful things have been said to me or about in PA over the last week, it has still been trumped by that vengeful and vindictive person who should have well and truly kept her fingers off the keyboard. There are people I value fairly highly from whom I am being kept from corresponding because one person doesn't like it. I'm thoroughly narked by it.

In other news, I haven't had any 30 hours days lately which means I'm going to bed before dawn and getting up before lunchtime. I'd say I'm pleased with that but it means certain aspects of my creativity are being stifled. It's just a hunch, but I seem to be able to write more to my own satisfaction when I'm writing at times sensible people are asleep.

Speaking of sleep, I had a dream the other night which ended with a black silhouette of a ghost coming through the window above where I was hiding after having just killed its erstwhile host - and I woke up in time to stifle a yell. How very odd. I don't have dreams like that. I mean EVER. Mind you, it's the second dream in recent months where I've actually offed someone. I'm sure they were very bad people. I'm always on the side of the angels in my dreams so whomever I rub out when I'm dreaming must be really bad. But how do you kill a ghost? Oh yeah... you wake up.

Silly me.

I didn't find out if that kid managed to stay awake for the full 64 hours he was trying for. I have a feeling he didn't - which is a good thing as far as I'm concerned.

I must email Hank. You should email Hank if you know his addy. Anyone who can use the word cloaca in ordinary parlance is worth emailing. Anyone brave enough or careless enough to use it in reference to me is definitely worth emailing.

Melbourne's weather is up to its usual tricks again. Hot one day, cold the next, cold nights followed by hot days... It means at night time your coffee goes cold too quickly and during the day, your Pepsi goes warm within 34 seconds of pouring.

The upside of it is, during the day, you get to wallow in magnificent sunshine, and at night, when it's much cooler, you get to party all night in shorts and t-shirts and still get some sleep when it's late enough to do so. This is just another reason I love this place. Adore it.

A friend of mine asked me if I wanted to go into the hippy weed industry with him.

Ahhh... getting into that sort of thing isn't that hard. You buy seeds and equipment, you tend the plants, harvest the product and sell it.

Nothing hard about that at all.

The hard part is what do you do with all the equipment and the whole shebang when you've had enough of the idea? It's not just a matter of hoping the neighbours don't smell the product, it's a matter of getting out of the whole scene when it proves more hassle than it's worth.

I told him to buy a computer and learn how to day trade on the internet instead.

I'm full of good ideas like that, but nobody ever asks me what I think any more so I hang around places where doing so is more likely to prove intellectually stimulating. Yep, you guessed it - the other side of the net. I got to "peer review" a 12th grader's earth sciences essay last week. Apparently, it scored 100% - just as it damn well should have if I had anything to do with it.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Sometimes I want the whole world to go and lock its collective self in a lavatory and not to come out again until it has rid itself of all its shit.

If I see one more fucking idiot complaining about their right to freedom of speech on the internet being violated, I'm going to hit something unhealthily hard. It's the internet. How can anyone claim their right to freedom of speech is being violated? How fucking stupid can anyone get?

These dickheads might feel as though they have every right in the world to say whatever they want to say to whomever they want to say it, but are oblivious to the fact others have a right to expect certain standards because of the area in which they're participating.

If I'm posting messages to a football forum, I want to read messages pertinent to football. Not some fucking whack job preaching the fucking gospel at me and decrying football as a devil's creation.

Then there are other arseholes who piss me off because they can't resist spouting their prejudicial crap as well.

Observe a conversation between two people who know each other quite well and understand the intention behind each other's comments. Enter the outsider, destined to be spurned for all eternity for being nothing but a snotty little antisocial twerp who drops an ignorant comment based on nothing but prejudice and first impressions - not paying any mind to what history may have passed between the participants and suddenly the joy is removed from the exchange for everyone. And the ignominious little wretch goes away giggling at an apparent victory.

Add to those sort of sad individuals the likes of dopey and ironbox and I sometimes wonder why I bother logging onto the internet at all sometimes.

If it weren't for the friends I've made who outnumber the fucktards by an order of magnitude, I'd cancel my subscription to my ISP and never log on again. Sometimes I feel like creating a list of people I consider to be irretrievably emotionally, psychologically and socially retarded just to see what sort of an accumulation of dross I have encountered and on the other side of the ledger, those who've made it all worthwhile. If I can name more duds than legends, it might indeed be time to kiss the net goodbye. I don't need it and in the face of these shitheads, I don't even enjoy it.

Then again, maybe I can put a stop to the interaction and just do my own thing and not provide anyone with any sort of means of responding to what I've done. It does sound infinitely more efficient and less troublesome.

Come to think of it, it's like having the headphones on and someone beginning to talk to me. I mean, it's not like I want to listen to music or anything, I just have the headphones on to prevent my head from exploding. For fuck's sake, get a fucking clue.