Monday, April 30, 2018

Mindlessly Reading The News

I stayed up late. I read the news, mindlessly, really, like I was expecting what? The TattsLotto numbers? I hadn’t read the news in how long? Oh, hours. Moments. Are we all addicted to the news? Even despite ourselves? I even hear myself say to smart people at BBQs,

"Oh, I don't watch the news, it is the only way to stay happy in this world."

The news services work is done. We are all hooked. Truth, or lies. Real, or fake? I’m guessing it doesn’t matter. Australia, or anywhere in the world? 24 hours per day. 
We are all tuned in.

Really, at the expense of reading a story, a poem, something fascinating a non-fiction writer may have written, looking at art, some beautiful photographs, or just cuddling our lovers as we go for a walk in the garden, in coats in the winter grey. It is autumn now, get outside and kick some leaves in the park.


Friday, April 27, 2018

I Am The Power Pole Advertising Nazi

Sam woke me just as the clock passed 8am and said, “Go downstairs and make me toast. I demand toast.” He gave me an impish smile. He was already dressed.

He makes me laugh. He cooks every night. "7 days a week," he would say. Thumbs up, it saves me doing it, which I think is great.

I’m comfortable, but awake. “Rightio then,” I say. “Since you asked so sweetly.” I looked at my clock and it said 8.05am. I got out of bed and pulled on my house frau outfit.

“Make me toast with the bakery bread.”

“No, that is all gone.” I ate it with butter and honey, but I wasn’t going to tell him that.

“Oh well, don’t bother then, I'll get something on my way.”

“I can make you toast with other bread, from the freezer.”

“No, I don’t want Coles bread,” said Sam. “I am not eating Coles bread.”

I shrugged. And, I crawled back in under the doona.

“I see,” said Sam. “Your services are no longer needed.”

“I am like a robot going back to my docking station,” I said.

“Nice life…”

“Off you go to work,” I said.

“You have to get up and feed Buddy.”

“I see. I do, do I?”

“Yes, it is all about Bud Bud, you should know that by now.”

“I do know that,” I said. “I know I am number 2.” I am number two, I know that. I know my place.

“Good, as long as you know that,” said Sam.

Can do no wrong angel dog.

All three of us padded downstairs.


I turned the coffee machine on and turned my laptop on. I was heading back to the kitchen.

“Feed him, feed Buddy.”

“Will you stop it,” I said. “I was just going to do that.”

Sam snapped his fingers, twice. Sam is much more on things than I am at 8am, but then, he has to be, huh?

So, Buddy got fed. And I made coffee.

Sam left as soon as he put his shoes on. I walked to the door to kiss him good bye like Donna Reed. The door was open, Sam turned back to for the good bye kiss, I looked over his shoulder and then I spotted it.

“Oh, no.”

“What?” asks Sam.

“Wait until I get my shoes.”

“What are you doing?”

“Just a minute.” I got my shoes and a pair of scissors and returned to Sam standing on the veranda. (Do we actually have a veranda? I’m not sure. We have an Edwardian porch, I am guessing, is the correct term for it)

“I’m not having it, that is what I am doing.”

“Huh?” said Sam.

I headed out the gate and to the power pole outside our house to where somebody had wrapped an advertising sheet for some café in the main street. I cut it down. And as it so happened, the neighbours rubbish bin was still in the street just underneath the offending sheet of paper, and I just dropped it in.

“I have to go, Mrs Jessup,” said Sam. He rolled his eyes. I smiled.

Kiss, kiss, and then he was gone. I waved him good bye until he was out of sight. I then gazed down the street and could see the same advertising paper wrapped around all the poles.

“Don’t you worry about that,” I muttered. “I will get all…” The pretty young things must have just finished their yoga sessions at the yoga centre and were at that very moment heading down my street towards me, so I stopped talking to myself like a mad thing. A beautiful blond girl with an expression like a cat’s arse walked passed me, with her yoga mat in a bag over her shoulder. Then another gorgeous girl too busy looking at her phone to pay me any attention. I stepped out of her way, and I don’t think she noticed me at all. Then a very handsome young man in with shiny brown hair and good legs and red shorts walked by. He had an impish smile. And a nice arse, as it turned out.

I was soon looking back at the row of power poles all wrapped in crisp, white advertising posters. I walked down to the next power pole and cut that paper down and returned to drop it in my neighbour’s bin.

Oh, I am not having that, I thought.

The power poles in our street used to be covered in posters and papers and tatt and yellowing sticky tape, some of them hanging off, some of them blowing in the wind, some of them referring to a concert, or an event, from 1998. All old and water stained and disgusting, really. Okay, so disgusting is really maggot blown meat, or physical abuse, or robbing the elderly, or a compound fracture, but you get what I mean. Visual pollution, all tacky and unnecessary.

The thing is, they are very good at putting their posters up, with their kilometres of thick-arse sticky tape, but they never return to take them down, now do they? And we have to live with the visual pollution forever after that.

I used to think to myself, that is like physical graffiti, as I walked passed, shaking my head. That was until one day when I had a bright idea. Yes, I am very slow, I acknowledge that. I could take them down, clean it all up, and get rid of them, and so I did.

We walked Buddy every day anyway. So, one by one, bit by bit, I removed them from every power pole in our street (the poles that I walked passed) much to Sam’s chagrin. I didn’t do them all at the same time, even if my fingers itched to do so. But one by one, bit by bit, slowly, slowly catch the money, I took them all down.

I also learnt, the hard way, that with old wooden power poles you can easily sustain really big splinter injuries, sometimes down under your finger nail, which are a bitch to get out and a pain to have heal.

I have maintained a vigil ever since.

I am the power pole advertising Nazi.

And anyway, whoever looks at those pole advertising anyway? Can any of you genuinely say that you have caught a great show, or found a cool café from reading it on an advertising sheet on a power pole?

Can you?

The new lot are all the way down the street, on every power pole, I can see that from my front gate. I have to admit, I am itching to get out there and remove them all.


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Anzac Day

I wanted to go to the supermarket to get ingredients for cake icing for a banana cake I am making for a BBQ lunch today at David's place. There will be a group of about 15 friends, all of them are bringing a dish. 

I bought all the ingredients for the cake yesterday, but I forgot about the icing, stupid me. Usually, I don't ice this cake, but for a BBQ, I felt it needed its party dress on too. 

But, the supermarket isn’t open until 1pm. Really? The BBQ starts at 1pm. Grrr! What kind of 1950s throw back is that? Damn, I thought. 

If people want to celebrate Anzac Day that is their decision, and good luck to them, I hope it brings them whatever it is they hope it will bring them, but Anzac Day means nothing to me, so why am I, effectively, forced to celebrate the day too? It is just another public holiday, and supermarkets are usually open on public holidays. 

People who want to go to the movies, or shop, or whatever else they want to do, in the morning, why shouldn't they be allowed? I am really not sure?

Monday, April 23, 2018

Flu Shot

Sam has been nudging me to have a flu shot, as Sam likes to do. The fact that I have had a flu shot every year for the last 20 years, doesn’t seem to register with him when he is, um, is nagging too strong a term? I checked with the doctor last Friday about having a flu shot and the doctor was closed. He was open again 8am Monday morning. Okay, I am up early, I can get there by 8am, easy.

Of course, 60 Minutes did a piece on flu shots, covering how people die from the flu, concluding that if those people who died had had a flu shot they probably wouldn’t have died.

Hmmmm? I wonder how many people watched 60 minutes, who are now be going to the doctor first thing tomorrow? Thanks 60 minutes.

So, of course, I woke up this morning at 7.45am. The morning I needed to wake up early, I didn’t. What happened to my normal 6am rise? Grrrr!

So, I am out of bed by 7.50am. I’m dressed by 7.55am. I am out the door by 8am. I am at the doctor by 8.05am, by which time there is six people in front of me.

Damn!

So, I hadn’t had a coffee, clearly.

And Doctor Ward seemed to be in a world of his own, wandering around the surgery doing god knows what. Jesus, man, get your act together, we’re on the clock here. He’s looking much older since the last time I saw him, close to retirement age, possibly?

The first guy sits on the seat closest the Doctor Ward’s door, as you would imagine. The old chick sits on the other end of the seats closest to the doctor’s door. The three other girls sit down and put earphones in their ears. The pretty one also opens one of those two thousand page novels and starts to read. I hope that isn’t a sign of how long we are going to have to wait. The lank-haired blond girl looks angry, she could be a closet serial killer, I think. She is wearing a very tight black outfit, long pants and a jacket, possibly neoprene. Maybe it is the tightness of her outfit that is making her angry? Maybe, the 100% synthetic material is slowly suffocating her, which is making her crabby. Who can say? The third woman looks too young for a hip replacement, but she limps to her chair none the less.

No one wants to sit near each other. I sit in the seat I would classify as Siberia, around the corner of the reception desk.

The first guy goes in. I cheekily move to the seat closest to the doctor’s door, that the first guy has just vacated. I start to write my journal on my phone. I write about what I can see. The old, the pretty, the angry and the lame.

The first guy is inside for 5 minutes, then he comes out and walks straight out of the surgery.

The old girl heads into the surgery.

Then we wait. And wait. And wait.

The chick with the bad hip, buggered knee, whatever, chews gum, with an open mouth. I’m sure her lips would be making slurping noises, if I didn’t have headphones in my ears.

The first guy comes back with, what I assume, is his flu shot and he is ushered into the other room, what turns out to be the injection room.

I think, do I have to wait here for however long and then have to go and get my flu shot? Couldn’t I get my flu shot while I am waiting, cut down on time. Win/win. There must be a better system?

And we wait. And wait. And wait.

I start sending derogatory messages to Sam about all of the other patients in the waiting room.

Sam replies, “Calm down, mate, calm down.”

I tell him old people should just die, and he tells me to head out into the shopping strip and get myself a coffee before somebody gets hurt.

Ha ha, I laugh. “I am just bored and trying to be funny.”

“You are not being funny,” replies Sam.

“I think I am really funny.”

“You think you are,” replies Sam.

“I am being charming and witty. Well, perhaps more witty than charming.”

“You are engaging I hate speech, and I am in a meeting,” says Sam.

Finally, the old woman comes out of the surgery. Doctor Ward heads into the second room to give the first man his flu shot. The old woman attempts to follow Doctor Ward like a puppy, which leads to an awkward moment in the doorway to the second room. The doctor and the old woman try a two step in the threshold, which almost turns into a waltz, until the old woman seems to understand she is not to follow him. She slumps down in a chair by the pretty girl with the head phones reading the encyclopaedia.

The first guy comes out of the second room and the old woman stands up and heads into the second room and the door closes.

And we wait. And we wait. And we wait.

The woman with the limp gets up and leaves the waiting room as quickly as the lame can exit a room.

Doctor Ward and the old woman come out of the second room giggling to each other. They stand at the reception desk, as if they have time on their side, which neither of them do. The old lady gets a plastic container and heads to the toilet. I try hard not to think about that.

Doctor Ward calls the pretty girl into room number one and closes the door.

Another woman arrives dressed in an awful outfit, white with lilac and red and lime green stripes, in a cheap chiffon material, with her arms exposed. She sits next to me.

Doctor Ward’s door opens and he heads into the second room. He comes back momentarily with, what looks like, a syringe, presumably a flu shot in his hand.

“I had one left,” he says, addressing the pretty girl inside his room. He has that dopey look on his face that straight men get on their faces when their attention is taken by a pretty girl. He shakes the syringe in his hand like it is the prize that he had won for the pretty maiden. Stupid smile. He closes the door behind him.

I see, the pretty girl gets the flu shot gotten for her, while the rest of us must go and collect our own from the chemist next door. Lovely. We’re all equal in Doctor Ward’s world.

The door opens and Doctor Ward heads to the second room followed by the pretty girl. Not long after, Doctor Ward appears back out the door like something dirty had just happened, big eyes and a mouth shaped like an O. He calls the angry chick into the first room, she stomps across the waiting room. The door closes.

A man with curly hair fronts up at reception. He is complaining because he’d arrive an hour before at the chemist to be told that the chemist shop didn’t do flu shots, with no direction to the doctor’s surgery next door.

“It would have been nice to have been told about you guys in here.”

“Well, I can’t speak for the chemist, you understand,” says the doctor’s receptionist.

“Oh yes, I appreciate that,” says grumpy curly-haired guy. “But I have wasted an hour.”

“Well, I am sorry about that,” says the doctor’s receptionist.

“It would just have been nice to be given the correct information an hour ago.”

“I appreciate that,” says the doctors receptionist.

“I could have had it done by now.”

“Yes, I can see what you are saying.”

“It is just very frustrating.”

“Yes, I am sure it is.”

“No, really…”

“If you would like to take a seat sir?” says the receptionist with a sale of the Century hand wave towards the waiting room.

Curly-haired guy turns and looks at each of us, vaguely, like he wouldn’t like to sit next to any of us.

The injection room door opens and the pretty girl appears, still adjusting her clothes as she crosses the waiting room.

Doctor Ward’s door opens and angry girl stomps out of the surgery.

Doctor ward calls my name.

I get a script for something else and then I am sent to the chemist to get my flu shot. As I am waiting in the chemist for the chemist to provide me with my filled script, the woman in the awful outfit arrives to collect her flu shot.

I sit back down in the doctor’s waiting room with my flu shot. The woman in the awful outfit is soon sitting next to me with her flu shot in her hand.

Doctor Ward’s door opens and he walks to the reception desk. He looks right passed me to the woman in the awful outfit. The dirty old man’s eyes light up gazing upon a woman in need. That same dopey look spreads across his face. “You’ve got your shot,” he says. “Come with me.” He starts heading towards the second room.

Bugger that, I think. “Um, I have my flu shot too,” I say.

Doctor Ward turns in my direction. Of course, the dopey I-spy-woman expression disappears from his face. He looks at me. Oh yes, him, I can read his mind. “Oh, ah.” He looks back at the woman in the awful outfit. “I think this gentlemen may have been first,” he says like a regret.

There is no may-have-been about it, I think. I’m on my feet and heading to room number 2 with old man Ward. I’ve nearly got a skip in my step as I cross the waiting room, nearly released from purgatory. Come on old man, let’s get this show over and done with. I want to take him by the hand but, of course, I don’t.

I am back out in the sunshine by 9.30am. My flu shot has taken an hour and half. But now it is over and done with. I could, of course, made an appointment with my normal doctor and got a flu shot with him. I wouldn’t have to wait for him, well, not for very long, although… wobbling my flat hand from side to side in the air. I would, of course, have had to drive to his surgery, or I could have ridden my bike, I guess, instead of walking. I would have had to pay him $75 for the appointment, half of which I would have got back on Medicare.


The Liberal Party’s core aim is to abolish Medicare.

The Labor Party is dedicated to free medical for all citizens.

It is the Liberal Party’s fault that I have to pay $75 at my normal doctor.

You must remember this distinct difference when you vote next.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

I made banana cake, it was a good one

Burning Skewers

When I cook a cake and use a skewer to test if it is cooked, I break the skewer in half, when I am done and I throw it in the rubbish. There is no secret message, or hidden ritual, in the snapped skewer, just a desire to make it smaller so it doesn’t pierce the rubbish bag on rubbish days, tearing the liner, enabling piles of refuse to tumble out onto the front path, or the footpath, as I transfer the rubbish from kitchen rubbish bin to the outside rubbish bin.

Some days I even snap them into four pieces, they must be the days that I feel more uneasy with the world – or feel reckless, or would that be powerful?

Not such a big deal, you would think.

However, I keep getting into trouble for this, from Sam. The electric starter on our oven no longer works and Sam uses burning skewers to light the oven now. Bad me.

“How many times do we have to go through this with you?” asks Sam.

“Do you want a number?”

Plain look from Sam in return. He has no sense of humour when he is telling me off. Not sure if that is a Sam thing, or a boyfriend thing in general?

“You are serious?”

“Yes, of course…”

“Listen to yourself?”

“The environment is a serious business,” says Sam. “You bang on about it all the time.”

“Someone has to?”

“But apparently it doesn’t apply to you?”

“What are you saying?”

“You are a hypocrite.”

“I’m hurt,” I say. I fain a debilitating wound. “It is a skewer.”

“From small things,” says Sam.

I laugh. “I thought you were doing a banking ad.” I do the square hand gesture in front of myself.

He doesn’t laugh. “I think you will find it is a superannuation ad.”

“Okay,” I say.

“Okay,” says Sam. He gives me one of ‘those’ looks where he slightly tunes his head so he is looking at me, predominantly, with one eye. Eye lid slightly closed for effect.

“In the yellow porcelain box on the mantle above the stove, where the matches and the fire sticks are kept?”

“Now you are getting it,” says Sam.

“Noted.”

“Do you think you will remember?’ asks Sam.

“It is just a skewer.”

“So simple to remember,” says Sam.

“So simple,” I say.

“And yet, in the bin every time…”

“I’ll remember.”

Saturday, April 21, 2018

We went walking in the country over the weekend. Here's Buddy walking back to the car
I'm glad my favourite cottage in the country is still standing. I haven't been to check for ages.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Autumn Leaves

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Just The Religious Nuts Rattling Their Disenfranchised Cage, Yet Again

So, the Victorian Liberal Party is debating torture for young gay people, in the guise of conversion therapy (I am barely able to give it that name, as it is too respectful a term) and that fool Greg Hunt likens it freedom of speech. Really?

Greg Hunt, it is child abuse. Would you give the same lieu way to child abusers?

Of course, it is just sour grapes from the religious right having lost the battle over gay marriage. It is the religious rights bitterness leaking from everyone of their holly orifices because more and more of society is rejecting their out dated religious beliefs.


The Victorian Liberal Party has been taken over by conservative Christians, so who knows what they are planning for the future.  Just another reason not to vote Liberal in Victoria, or Australia, for that matter.


Monday, April 16, 2018

Recycling

Our recycling only works if somebody is willing to buy our recycling material, said the council representative.

Governments still don’t get it, do they? Recycling is not an opportunity to make money, recycling is an opportunity to save the human race.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Natural Selection and 40 kph Speed Limits

So, why do we have 40 kph speed limits?

Well Little Johnny, that’s because there are so many dumb people in the world who don’t know not to walk out into the traffic.

Really?

Yes. And for some reason, those in power decided that instead of letting the stupid people get run down, they have decided to go against millions of years of evolution, deeming that all of society should be slowed down and inconvenienced because of the stupid people.

So, are you saying that all of Melbourne has to drive at 40 kph because of stupid people?

That’s what I’m saying, Little Johnny.

Thanks a lot, stupid people, said Little Johnny.

But more than that, by going against millions of years of natural selection, opting for 40 kph speed limits is, actually, putting the future of the human race in doubt.

Because allowing the stupid people to live and therefore breed, said Little Johnny, we are weakening the human gene pool?

Exactly, Little Johnny. It is in all our future interest to maintain 60 kph speed limits and let the stupid people be run down and killed in the street.

Thanks a lot stupid people in charge, said Little Johnny.


Friday, April 13, 2018

Gorgeous Sky

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

It Is Only Free Speech If You Agree, Is That What We Are Saying?

Israel Folau’s tweet that gays will go to hell “unless they repent of their sins and turn to God” is causing a storm with critics accusing the Australian rugby player of being insensitive and homophobic.

That storm of criticism is said to be stifling Israel Folau’s free speech.

Really? His right to voice his opinion was not taken away from him, people simply responded to it.

Free speech is a two way conversation. Israel Folau said what he thought and the community has responded, it is nothing more than that.

His sponsors have the right to respond as well, if they believe his conduct is not in accordance with the sponsors values.

Responding to his statement is free speech working the way it is supposed to, it is not being stifled.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Unseasonably Warm

It is such a warm morning, I can sit outside at 6am with a t-shirt on.   I like it, it is fresh, skin to the air, washing over you.

It is nice. It has been unseasonably warm these last few days. Coffee and computer out early in the garden.

I guess we'll be saying that a lot in the years to come, as the temperature rises. And since collectively the governments of the world are doing little about it, I guess we'll be getting used to it.

Monday, April 09, 2018

30 Newspolls

Malcom Turnbul loses 30 Newspoll surveys in a row, equalling Tony Abbott.

Congratulations guys, you are both rubbish.

Sunday, April 08, 2018

Banana Cake

See What A Good Boyfriend Am I

I made banana cake, so Sam has something to eat for breakfast all week. See what a good boyfriend am I.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Hunter Gatherers

If men were traditionally the hunter gatherers, shouldn't that translate into them doing the supermarket shopping today?

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Up Early With Milo

Up early, very early, my nose was blocked, I couldn't get back to sleep. I hate that.

Milo comes in and rubs his head against my hands as I type. With him standing on my thigh and rubbing against my hand every time I try to move my fingers makes it impossible to type. 

I wondered if his food bowl was empty? Then I heard him crunching on it, milliseconds after he seemed to be rubbing against my left arm. 

Silent as a... well, perhaps not mouse, he glides around the house hardly ever making any sound. Quiet as the wind. Velvet paws.

Then he is back next to me on the couch, pushing himself up against my left thigh. He's got to get his 20 hours sleep in, let's face it.

Sunday, April 01, 2018

Up Early Again

I woke up early, it was dark outside. It was even worse when I got down stairs, day light savings had finished, so it was, actually, an hour earlier, even if I looked at my watch upstairs initially, which would have changed automatically, it was still bought home by the incorrect time on the kitchen clock.

Oh, the dark is about to descend. It is the dark about the winter that I hate, the cold I don't mind. Images of peak hour traffic rumbling along all in the glare of headlights, comes to mind. Throw in some rain some night, with the rain drops caught in the multitude of head light beams.

It is cold in the mornings, now. You can feel that summer has slipped away. There's a chill that wasn't there just a week ago.

I made coffee and had a piss. I tried very hard not to dribble in my track suit pants. Oh, nothing worse on these cold mornings, down your leg what's more. The guys know what I am talking about. I laughed to myself. I didn't, though, so yay for me.

Up early again. Grimace. I must have fallen asleep on the couch again.

Winter is upon us. I can feel in that a t-shirt isn't enough these early mornings. I need socks too, to keep my feet warm. Sad face. That wasn't the case just a few weeks ago. I hate cold feet. No more complaining about the odd day, I'll deliberately go for walks in it, just to enjoy the last of the warmth.

Milo appears and cuddles up.