Tuesday, August 30, 2022

FishGuts

But you should know not to get me started on HR. 

Then there is FishGuts in Sydney, who buggers stuff up, so many things she does she gets wrong.

For a woman who is paid 200K a year, to be so inaccurate, I can see no other way that she keeps her job other than she is sucking the boss' dick. (It is hardly a put down, I'd suck his dick too)

I hear a collective inhale. Oh come on, you can't say that, it is 2022. (Oh, I think I can, because I am gay and I'm not putting her down in some sort of sexist way to make myself look better like some hetro boy might. [I'd say the same thing about a guy] I'm just speaking the truth, with a little gay embellishment)

She just gets stuff wrong. So often. How does she keep her job, I ask you? (or does she save the mistakes just for me?)

Grrrr! Annoying. She is a senior manager. I'm sure she must get everyone to do her work for her. I'm not sure how she'd survive otherwise.

I push back, though, I don't care. (she's not my boss) So much so that she even thanked me for doing something for her recently.

"Thanks, I appreciate it," she said. It sounded really weird. I don't need to be thanked for doing my job. (well, her job)

But, then I realised just lately I have pushed back against a number of things she has asked me to do.

I guess it was recognition, of sorts, for the things I do do for her. If only she could do them for herself.

The next day...

There was more stuff she got me to do, which pissed me off and I did it through gritted teeth – just because it easier in the long run than taking on a fight with a senior manager, she has a director on her side and she is not afraid of running to him crying like a little bitch. I do too, of course. In the past it has been her Director of HR against my Director of Finance duking it out over fights I have picked with her. Anyway, again, she thanked me afterwards.

"I really appreciate your help. And I am sorry for doing that to you."

Seriously? You are ruining a good bitch I have about you on my blog that I'm about to publish. What are you doing, all this nicey pie shit for, you are doing my head in.

Truthfully, I think it is because previously I have let my anger show in the tone of my emails, you know, banging off a reply. Now I wait half an hour before I respond. Set my Apple watch timer. (no, I don’t really do that. Figuratively, perhaps) Go make a coffee, or do something else. Come back to it.

'Now, let me explain why we are not doing what you asked.'


Monday, August 29, 2022

Oh HR! Exhale

The Miserable Blonde from HR goes on and on and on and on… and on in that superior than thou way that so many HR people have – when they are popped out of the great big HR mould – and now I find myself doing things, and saying things, really just to annoy her. Yeah, I know, childish. Shake of the head. I just sent her an email specifically to annoy her this morning. (Oh, it's Monday, that’s my excuse)

Yeah, I know. (nervous smile) I need a good slap, really I do. Two wrongs, and all that...

But really, she is so rude and demanding that I just can't help it. (somebody stop me) I know I shouldn't, but I just can't help myself. (It makes me giggle, albeit briefly on a Monday morning)

I don't like her. (can you guess?) I'm pretty sure she doesn't like me. (I don’t need to many guesses) So, it just lends itself to me being unhelpful.

Oh, there is nothing rude on my part. I never give her anything to complain to someone higher about, I’m not that stupid. Just stuff that is supposed to needle her. Polite, but unhelpful. Things with a barb that just gets under the first layer of her skin.

I know. What am I like? People have real hardship, and I’m just whining like a little bitch. She could be nicer, though. Drop the attitude. She’d find that I was nicer too.


Sunday, August 28, 2022

Too Full To Even Fart

We went out for lunch with my fat friend Jill and we ate Greek food; lamb and chips and souvlaki and soft shell crab wraps and flat bread and dips and olives and tomatoes and fetta cheese. 

And then we went and bought apple crumble cake and lemon & lime cheese cake, and banana and caramel cream pie. 

We ate them with tea and coffee for afternoon tea while we watched Ricky Gervaise's new Special which really just wasn't funny. It is really problematic when you use minorities as the punchline to get paid a huge amount by Netflix.

And now I feel like I am so fat and I am slightly nauseous. I can’t move and I can’t write any more. Oh moan.

I'm now lying on the couch with a pillow with the back of my hand over my forehead. Oh the pain.

This is how I used to feel as a kid when my eyes were much bigger than my stomach and I ate far too many fish & chips. I don't know why it was fish & chips but it so often was.

I haven't felt like this for year.


Saturday, August 27, 2022

Friday, August 26, 2022

Leaking Good Intensions

I’m sure all this rain is good for someone, but I have a leaking roof and I just seem to have been rendered incapable of organising to get it fixed.

A few years ago, I had another leak and I got one guy to come and fix it, and it made no difference. Then I organised for a second guy to come, and he, actually, made it worse.

Sam got up there with a hose and sprayed water around and we worked out what was wrong and we fixed it ourselves.

I’d give this one a go myself, but it is on the second floor and it’s guttering, I think, so it is really close to the edge of a long drop down, and I am scared of heights. (I’m sure I never was as a kid, it is something I have acquired as an adult. I guess, it comes from learning how precarious life really is) Which is annoying, but what can you do?

Now, all I seem to do is dither, finding people on line, but then not acting as I assume, unless proven otherwise, that they will be crap. Then I get anxious about the damage to the house. And it becomes a circular thing. It sounds pathetic, I know, that’s because it is.

How do you find an honest, capable, tradesman to fix your roof?


Thursday, August 25, 2022

Lovelorn

I was walking up Brunswick Street yesterday with Bruno (well, you can't spend your whole day behind your laptop collecting vintage B&W images avoiding all your responsibilities in life) when I heard panting and snuffling and maybe some scratching behind me, and I turned around to see a girl with, what I would call, a Miniature Pincer, in a pink tutu, desperately pulling on her lead towards us. 

“Pricilla is desperate to say hello to your boy,” said the girl holding the lead. “I think she’s in love.” 

At which point Bruno stepped towards Pricilla gave her a the most fleeting sniff, and charged off in the opposite direction. 

Pricilla, literally, looked at her owner, looked in the direction in which Bruno was rapidly disappearing, and looked back at her owner. 

“Nah, I think he’s done babe,” said the girl. “Just like a man.”

Both Pricilla and her owner honestly looked disappointed. Bruno couldn’t have given a shit.

I didn’t really know what to say, but it didn’t matter as Bruno tugged on the lead and spun me around, and Pricilla and her owner walked off losers in love.


Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Tuesday

Er! Tuesday.

Nothing to do. No, nothing. I can’t even find stuff to do, as I have done all the things I had been putting off. Everything is done. I have no idea what Boris does when she is here, not that I am doing her job, of course, but nobody is asking me for anything in her absence. I thought I’d be bothered by all the punters, constantly, but no, not since TheMidget.

I’m glad I am working from home, though, as I am just pissing around on my own laptop. Writing my blog. Looking at Bruce Weber images, keeping one eye on my emails.

David distracted me up for a minute.

Mid morning, David called. He woke up to itching in his groin, he panicked thinking, OMG! This is the pox! It must monkey pox. Oh God! How did I get monkey pox? He quickly sent off photos to the doctor. 

“Look, look, between the 3rd fat roll and the 4th fat roll, can you see it?" I said. "Poor bastard.”

David laughed. “I think he gets more than well compensated for all the disgusting things he has to look at.”

“Could you imagine, gay men coming in all day every day with puss dripping out of any/every orifice.”

His doctor responded. “No luv, that looks like jock itch, go to the chemist and get canestin cream.” 

“It’s as banal as Tinea in the groin,” David said.

"Thrush, luv, your cunt's got thrush."

He is now lathered in cream. “I may have put a little much on, it is a disaster down there.”

He has now cancelled everything, his work in Brisbane this week, the wedding in Melbourne this weekend, and the Spice Girls Tribute concert with his mate Andrew on Friday night.

He’s called the dog walker to walk CharChi.

He has crawled into bed to watch Friends, Sex and the City, and Elvis.

He’s going to order pizza.

“I’m exhausted,” he said. “But I guess travelling for 3 ½ months is exhausting.”

“Yes, it is,” I said.


Still, what do I care, the sun is shining and the sky is blue.

My lunch has been made for me.

And I have a bulldog snoring at my feet.



Monday, August 22, 2022

Monday

Work, Monday, what can I say?

I worked all day, really, just email after email from the Brains Trust of HR. Weirdly a lot of emails from them.

We ate BBQ pork, snow peas and rice for lunch.

I worked steadily all afternoon, just getting through the detritus from HR. I think they are secretly in love with me. All this communication.

I can't think of what else it could be? Ha ha.

It was just a Monday.

It rained.

I played Bob Dylan.


Sunday, August 21, 2022

A Day In The Life

The sun is shining, a lovely sunny, winter Sunday. We take Charlie out for lunch.

“Why?” I ask.

“Because we should,” says Sam. “We hardly take him anywhere.”

That is true, but Charlie never seems that interested. “Sure. Okay,” I say.

We park in Park Street. I park in 3 car spots before I am done. Sam snorts derisively and he and Charlie wander away. The first park is 2 hours, then I see across the road it’s a 4 hour park. Then, as I get out of the car, I see there is a shaded spot closer to the corner, when what Sam said sinks in, that it is Sunday and restrictions don’t apply.

Restrictions don’t apply…

1.30pm. We’re at [Thai Restaurant] for lunch. Pink soup? It is my favourite, fermented tofu with sea food and noodles.

“No, we don’t do that anymore.”

“Oh well, let’s go,” I say. The pink soup was the only reason I wanted to come here.

Sam chuckles nervously. “What else would you like?”

We have a green papaya salad and Thai sausage as entrees. Sam and I eat rice dishes, mine has pork belly. Charlie ate Pad Thai. Charlie is kind of fussy about what he eats. He’s keener to eat what he is used to, more so than trying new things.

2.25pm. I take up my seat in The Hive at the tables in the concourse, while Sam shops, with Charlie tagging along. Oh, yes, I could go to the shops too, but all I really do is tag along mindlessly. Sam is the shopper, so I sit at the tables and write my journal. (Occasionally, not since Charlie has been around, I sneak a jam donut from the BreadTop’esque bakery on the concourse)

The tables are full today. There is a lot of chattering going on around me. Still, it is good to see people are still wearing their masks.

A homeless woman is asking for change as soon as I sit down. I hear myself sigh loudly at the magnitude of her problem.

The fat aboriginal girl whose pants are always falling off is chased out of Aldi by Aldi security muttering something undiscernible. I see her around a lot. Surely someone could take better care of her and her obvious mental health issues, I think.

Two gay guys in matching small black shorts and puffer jackets wander through, both with the same set of gymed legs, and I forget about the Aboriginal Girl instantly, then they wander back.

A woman comes to the Aldi door with her shaggy Oodle and uses Aldi’s hand sanitiser, she even has the audacity to hand the lead to the security guard so she could sanitise both hands, he seems to comply without a word of dissent.  Then she heads back outside, her fat dog waddling along behind her. She props at the doorway of the centre and the dog props in the middle of the actual doorway lead outstretched, not a care.

Sam and Charlie drop off full shopping bags and head off again with empty ones, hardly saying a word. It’s all cold efficiency when Sam gets shopping.

An African woman, in all that garb, walks through with her four kids in tow all wearing [name of soccer club] jumpers. She is instructing them about something in a very loud voice. It is a sudden intrusion, makes me look up.

A guy sits at the table across the concourse in tight, pale grey track pants, he looks all bumpy. You’ve got to love tight pale pants.

Two couples meet in the middle of the concourse, like long lost friends. They exclaim hello and hug and act like they are surprised to see one another here.

Another African mother, in all that garb, walks through with her five children, one in a pusher. So many children, I think.

An adorable Asian couple wander passed in active wear. The boys have great legs and a tight arse.

The guy in the pale track pants girlfriend/wife comes back and they leave together.

A girl wanders passed in skin tight coral coloured track pants laughing uproariously to something someone has said to her on her phone.

A fat chick and what looks like her fat son, both with masks on, walk through quickly to the bakery, both seemingly leading with their faces, as though there is an emergency sugar rush to be had.

A woman comes and collects her husband sitting at the table next to me.

I look around and it looks like all the people at all the tables are husbands sitting while their wives shop. I wonder does that make me a cliché? I decide not to put too much thought into that.

Music plays over the speakers. I notice it for the first time.

A tall handsome guy in short black shorts, a hoodie, and a backpack motors through as though he has some where to be urgently. He’s heading away from me so I watched the material up the crack in his arse move from side to side.

Another handsome guy in short black shorts with great legs and a t-shirt walks through quickly. He’s heading towards me so I watch his cock bounce around under the black material of his shorts.

A boy starts tapping nervously on the table top next to me, he stops when I turn and look at him, then he seems to almost tap dance in slow motion across the concourse, looking off in the distance as if he is waiting for someone who is never arriving. His foot work is impressive if that is what he is in fact doing. He does it so nonchalantly

2.57pm. Sam and Charlie are walking towards me.

“Let’s go,” says Sam. He grabs the bags and walks off towards the car. He doesn’t mess around. Did he snap his fingers, he may have? Ha ha. That is Sam and I, efficiency meets the dreamer and somehow it works. Charlie grabs the rest of the bags, and by the time I get to my feet, they and the bags are halfway to the exit.

Halfway To The Exit, good name for a memoir.

3.07pm. We’re home. IT isn’t very far.

“Let’s go,” says Sam.

“What?” I respond.

“It is always about these guys.”

I was already on the couch mentally, I had my shoes off and everything. “But… what?” I looked at the couch. I looked at Sam.

So, apparently, no rest for the wicked, as they say. Ha ha, I laugh at myself. Sitting around while other people shop. My head spun, as I my thoughts did a 180.

3.19pm. We walk the bulldogs to Carlton Gardens.

A group of girls pass us in [name of] Street. One of them looks at Buddy and then says to her friends, “He’s having a hard time.”

I find that infuriating. No, he’s not having a hard time of it. And the rumours spread about bulldogs

We see what may have been an Austin 7 (not sure) parked in Gertrude Street. It is adorable, whatever it is.



Buddy stops in the middle of a group of people and gets that ‘okay, pat me attitude,’ as he looks up at them. They point at me and tell him where I am.

“No, he is angling for a pat,” I say. “He knows where I am."

They laugh and all four of them pat him. I can almost see Bud smile.

The wind picks up and it is quite cold. Brrrr. I wish I’d bought a coat.

We head into the Carlton Gardens. The stupid ugly new Sheraton Towers now dominates the skyline. Grrr. The slow and continuing destruction of Melbourne. I shake my head.

We walk down the main road that cuts through the middle of the gardens to the water bowl on the other side, so the boys can have a drink. They push each other out of the way to get a drink.

The sun is shining down on Rathdowne Street, one of the few places that it is, and it is a nice moment of respite from the cold.

I pull my hoodie hood over my head for the walk back. Buddy and I toddle back in the direction of home. Bruno and Sam walk ahead.


Saturday, August 20, 2022

Sunny Winter Saturday

We put David in an Uber pointed towards the airport, late morning.

We walked the bulldogs to Brunswick Street and sat in the sun and ate Mexican food for lunch, on the tiny table on the narrow footpath with ever second passer by asking, "Can I pat your dogs?"

That was pretty much the day.


Friday, August 19, 2022

David

David has come to stay for a couple of nights, on his way home from Frankfurt to Byron Bay via his sister in Sydney and Melbourne for his Monkey Pox vaccination.

He still has his doctor in Melbourne despite having moved up north for a couple of years now. Well, let’s face it, it must be hard to find doctors who will prescribe the volume of scripts for the number of benzos that are required to sustain her on a daily basis.

We went out with the boys the first night. Fonda. Smith Street. David loves it, despite me telling him it is McDonalds, because he likes the margaritas. He has turned into a piss pot. “Well, I have to have something to wash the pills drugs down with.”

The second night we watched Friends, because that’s David’s thumb in the mouth, that’s his security blanket, that’s his happy place, until late, because David loves Friends, and he loves watching it with me. (He probably loves watching it with a multitude of people so I don’t know why I am feeling so special. Ha ha. We watched season 5)

In the morning, he was keen to get vaccinated. I laughed. “Oh, it would really amuse me if you ended up with pussy boils all over your face,” I said. “You’d have to send me a photo.”

“You take that back,” said David. “Don’t you go casting any spells on me you witch.”

“Oh, come on, apparently it is very painful, you can tell me how much it hurts.”

“Stop that.”

“Apparently, it is spreading amongst gay guys.”

“Germany is rife with it, France and the UK aren’t far behind.”

“On the heels of the pandemic.”

“Why do you think I’m here,” says David. “I stopped having sex overseas, it’s been since May…”

“Wasn’t there something about AIDS coming from monkeys?”

“Yes, some theory, in the beginning.”

“Do you think someone fucked a monkey… again?”

“I don’t think it works that way.”

“I’m sure there would be gay guys with monkey fetishes.”

“Oh, stop it,” says David.

“Not that far removed from bears.”

“I hung out with them on the cruise.”

“Monkeys?”

“Bears,” says David.

“Gay guys will fuck anything.”

“Apparently, not me on the cruise.”

“Ha ha.”

“You say it like it’s a bad thing.”

“Not just gay guys. Guys in general....”

“No judgement.”

“None meant.”

“It is how the world turns.”

“It’s how you got your too few boyfriends after all.”

“Everything was fine until the lights came on.”

“No good comes of shining light into dark places.”

“Ain’t that the truth.”

David and his boyfriends. Everything is fine until the boyfriend commits an unforgivable act, in David’s eyes, which sets him off acting like a child.

“Do you ever think I’ll meet Mr Right.” (he asks me that ever time I see him)

“No, darling.”

“Oh, don’t sugar coat it for me, will you.”

“Well, at your age, it is highly unlikely.”

“To draw breath?”

“You can’t have both.”

“Both?”

“Boyfriends and breath.”

“Where is he? I’ve been looking for him since I was 16 and I’m exhausted. My hair hurts.”

I laugh.

The coffee machine whirls non stop as David fits in his 3 double espressos to get him going in the day.

He tells me there wasn’t a day on his 13 weeks overseas that he didn’t drink alcohol. He is also spraying a Nicorette mouth spray despite not having smoked for years.

“Did you watch any more Friends, after I went to bed last night?”

“No, we went to bed too.”

“And I slept all the way through.”

“But you are famous for sleeping for 15 hours. 20 hours.”

“Not with jet lag, but the melatonin worked a treat.”

“Darling, you sleep without melatonin.”

“No, darling, not when my circadian rhythms are all out of whack.”

“Out of whack?”

“Now look, ta da, she’s back.” He has his arms out to his sides and he does a sort of shimmy. “And ready to go.”

“Go get jabbed.”

“It’s the only time I prefer a little prick.”


Thursday, August 18, 2022

Anthony Died

I hadn't spoked to Loli for quite a while, so it was nice to hear from her. I forget what we talked about to start with, as pretty soon into the conversation she asked,

"So how is it about Anthony dying?"

"I'm sorry," I said. "Anthony?"

"Your... Anthony," she said.

"What do you mean he died?"

"Jules told me when he called the other day," said Loli. “You didn’t know?”

I was in shock, I am sure. "When did he die?"

"Recently. I don't really know the details, as I said Jules mentioned it during a call the other day. Apparently, Matt told him."


Anthony was the first boyfriend I had when I first came out onto the gay scene. He was the first boyfriend I got to hold hands with out in public, well, gay public, at a club, on the scene. We were young and handsome and cute together and we got to lead each other by hand out drinking at pubs. It was a first for me. I assume it was a first for him. He was the first guy I liked when I came out. I still remember sneaking looks at him and we sat and drank our beers and observed the people around us. It was exciting, exciting new times.

I was in my first house, having moved out of home, and he was the reason I came out to my housemates. He was lovely.

But, as a boyfriend, he proved to be elusive and hard to pin down. And eventually he never seemed to be available when I wanted him to be around and I came to accept the idea that I had to give up on the idea of he and I, eventually. There was some pain in that letting go. The idea of what could have been had to go.

And we lost contact. 

I met Mark after that, and life moved on

When I went out with Mark, Mark reintroduced Anthony and I, after a chance meeting.

And Anthony became one of my circle of friends. He was a part of our partying days, dance parties, drugs, all of us having far too much fun.

Anthony always got me. I never had to explain anything to him, he just understood. We’d laugh so much together. We had the same dark sense of humour. He and Tom (both dead now) were my two great friends. Everybody loved Anthony for his smart, cool, witty ways. He rolled great joints, he and Fergus (also dead) And no one made bigger lines of speed than Anthony.

“Isn’t that a bit much?”

“No, get it into you,” Anthony would say.

And then when we’d all survived our partying days, Anthony began to display mental health issues and he disappeared and we lost contact again.

Fast forward some years, and one day I got a hand written note delivered in my letterbox. I was very pleased to hear from him.

Then he came to visit, a bloated wreck of his former self. (I was shocked)

When he withdrew from all of us, he decided to change his life and he went back to uni. Unfortunately, he took out a 150 thousand loan against his mortgage free house (sadly in the fog of mental health decline) and, apparently, pretty soon after that he began to display signs of serious mental health issues. To cut this bit short, he dropped out of uni, defaulted on his loan and lost his house. He spent a considerable time in mental health facility.

When he came out, or was released, he had no choice but to go and live with his mother.

He was disappointed with his life, he’d lost everything, and he started drinking.

He started to suffer from pancreatitis and spent several periods in the Maroondah hospital because of it, during which time I visited him. I don’t think ever really accepting that his drinking was to blame.

One day, after I had questioned him about how much he drank, he replied, “I never have anything before lunch, um?” He smiled something reminiscent of that cheeky smile to which I was first attracted. “Well, certainly never before morning tea.”

“Every day?”

He laughed. “Most days.”

“Every day.”

He smiled nervously.


I thought we had some special connection, despite it all? Always. He and I. Lovers. Then friends. Always on the same page. Always knowing what the other was about. But, apparently not, we didn’t.


I called Jules. “I thought I was the last person to know,” Jules said. “I thought you’d have all know long before I heard.”

“No, I didn’t know.”

“I’m surprised,” said Jules. “I never thought you wouldn’t know."

“No.”

“You’ll have to call Matt, he was the one who told me.”


I called Matt. Apparently, he’d seen someone mention Anthony’s death on Facebook, even if he couldn’t really remember who.

“It was cancer,” said Matt. 

I assumed, pancreatic cancer.

"He'd turned into such a nasty drunk at the end that I stopped communicating with him," I said.

"Yeah, you're not the only one to say that," said Matt.

"I mean really awful stuff. Just abusive."

"He'd given up drinking at the end." Matt told me that Anthony had been calling people up trying to make amends for his past behaviour, I think that is what hurt. “He was trying to make amends for his bad behaviour.”

I heard myself mumble, "He never called me."

I wasn't worth a fucking phone call?

Clearly, I was wrong about our relationship.


I've thought about it, and unless a letter was delivered to me by one of his sisters stating he couldn't face me, then this can't be fixed. There is a part of me, not a main part, not a significant part, but a part deep down which is hurt and can't be placated.


David will give me all sorts of reasons, (he is arriving immanently) but it can't be fixed now, no, it's brutal, sure. Death is brutal. There is no going back for explanations. I wasn't one of the people Anthony cared enough about to give a call to at the end, that is just the cold hard truth I am left with.


Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Monday, August 15, 2022

Guys in White Y Fronts

I see they are talking about tearing down the docks in Victoria Harbour. Stupid really. They can't leave things alone. Of course, it is property developers donating to politicians that are continually destroying our city. Sad really.

Jesus, the fun we had down there. Nothing like it now. Those big, loud, packed, sweaty, everyone in together, never any trouble, thumping dance parties. The music, the energy, the camaraderie. The lights, the glitter, heat.

I remember standing on those docks looking out over the water with the city’s lights reflected, off our faces. Hugging, chatting, the declarations of love. Ah, good times.

Oh, that year Andy and I, who looked alike, went dressed as school boys. We told the punters we were brothers who do it to each other. Then we’d pash each other. I tell you, that got the punters going, seriously, the school boy, brother thing, they were hot for us. I have never had so many disgusting propositions. Andy and I didn’t feel safe. Oh, we laughed.

Ah the dancing. The highs. The fun. The abandon. The throwing off of inhibitions for everyone there.

I miss handling guys in white Y fronts, or tiny shorts, or so very little. All those dancing boys together, friends in groups, and suddenly there’d be a new face in your orbit. Smiling, loving life, connecting.

Some random guy squirming in your arms, suddenly, with wanton eyes. The stickiness of his bare skin. The curves of him filling out that soft white cotton, tightly hugging him. Smiles. Captured, happily so. Promises made just by him not trying to escape your grip.

And you knew your night, morning was going to be fun, both of you becoming recreational vehicles.

I miss those days.

Feel the curve of his hot arse, knowing...

The long walk back to the car park as the sun was coming up. All those contorted faces in the half day light.

Ah, the memories came flooding back as Lord Mayor Sally Capp justified the destruction of the docks. So short sighted, I thought. So, what will we end up with, some structure with no history, not patina, no connection to what was there. Bland, 2000’s architecture, just like all the other 2000’s architecture that won’t age well and won’t be memorable.


Thursday, August 11, 2022

Under The Pump Indeed

I knew this arrangement with Boris being OS would have its issues. You know, doing the two things we had discussed, that is what I have agreed to. 

“I won’t be able to return home to Shitslavia,” bat of the eye lids, “if you don’t agree.” 

Don’t bat your eyelids at me, save it for the straight boys. That doesn’t work on me. If you really want to win me over, get your brother to do a slow reveal, or something. ha ha. (That doesn’t really make any sense, but I am sure you get what I mean)

But, apparently it did. Grrr. I did agree to do a couple more things than we first agreed, minor things, but more things none the less.

But, I have not agreed to do Boris’ job for her while she is away. I certainly do not want to work that hard.

It was agreed with CFO that Boris would take her laptop with her, to cover what I wasn’t willing to do. (Nyr! She should have organised this properly in the first place)

Oh yes, I know what you are all saying. Be a team player, Christian. Make yourself available. Be helpful. And to you I say, When was the last time you people worked in the corporate world? Huh?


TheMidget (Financial Accounting Manager, I had to look that up) keeps emailing me to ask Boris things, so I email Boris and then she answers me and I answer TheMidget.

The thing is I am only emailing Boris on her work email. TheMidget knows that. Oh yes, it is a minor issue, certainly first world problems. But I don’t want to do Boris’ job, I made that very clear from the start. To all of them. I’d say something but TheMidget has become quite uppity, as my mum may have said, of late. So, I continue this ridiculous email trail in silence.


I worked today, Thursday. I said I shouldn't as I really had nothing to do, but they seem to want me to. “Got to keep on top of things,” they said. Sam told me I should. "Fuck it." (I have been a bad influence on him) “Milk them for everything.” So, I did.

But I really did have nothing to do. I had everything done. (What does Boris do for her 150K, I ask myself?)

I have a photographer Bruce Weber who I like, so I spent the day saving his photos. I’m very keen on his shit.


Boris and TheMidget went backwards and forwards via me, all day, but finally worked out they could email direct. Genius’.

TheMidget wanted something, which Boris was sure our boss, CFO, said not to worry about. 

But TheMidget was persistent.

TheMidget eventually emailed, "If Christian is under the pump, then I guess we can let it go this month."

Under the pump? Under the pump? I thought. Two nude models kissing on a banana lounge in Florida. Save.


Tuesday, August 09, 2022

My Mum

I think of my mother every time I throw away a butter wrapper, she used to save them to line her cake tins. Banana Bread, Apple Cake, Pear and Apple sponge.

She only had butter for cooking, we got margarine for our food, bread, whatever, as she was one to embrace margarine for health reasons.

A woman who never bought cling film in her life. "I cook everything fresh, why do I need it?"

She would always have a roll of grease proof paper though, something in which to wrap cake for our lunches, which she made for us every day.

She cooked us all breakfast every morning and made lunches for us, which would be in 4 brown paper bags for each of us, 3 kids and dad.

She worked full time, all of her girlfriends worked full time. They all had 3, or 4, kids. (Not 2, not 1)

She was friends with the same group of women for 60 years with whom she went to teacher's college. 60 years these women were in each other's lives.

I asked her once, "All of your friends, Aunty May, Aunty Pam, Aunty Brenda, Aunty Doffa, Aunty Eleanor, Aunty Joan, Aunty Isobel they all had 3, or 4 kids."

"Yes, except for Aunty Brenda who had Jennifer and Neil. And Aunty May didn't have any kids, but she dedicated her life to the kindergarten holiday home."

"And you all worked full time?"

"Oh, yes, for the most part."

"Well, kids and day care and returning to work?"

"I took 5 years off and had 3 children."

"So, I was 1 year old when you went back to work?"

"Yes."

"Who looked after me?"

"Aunty Ida. Then I took you to work. Then you went to kinder just up the road, and you'd walk home and entertain yourself. Your sister would be home from school. You entertained each other."

"So, you didn't need time for yourself, to work out who you were, or to find yourself?"

"No, darling, we'd already found ourselves. We loved our jobs and our kids and our husbands."  

"In that order?"

"No, not in that order."

"We just thought our kids were marvellous. We thought our lives were great."

"Do you think it is different now?"

"I don't know, darling. I can only talk for my time."

"No children on drugs?"

"I've nearly finished mixing the cake. Put that butter wrapper in the loaf tin. Quick sticks."

"Like this?"

"Yes, like that. And put the second one the other way."

"Like that?"

"Yes, honey, just like that."

"Done."

"We all just loved every one of you," mum said. "And all our kids turned out okay."

"All of them?"

"Yes," she said. "Hand me the tin, the cake is ready to go in."


I stood with the butter wrapper in my hand and gazed out into the garden. My mum, she was always busy, she was always doing something. Not a gene I inherited. I laughed to myself. I tossed the butter wrapper in the bin.


Saturday, August 06, 2022

Friday, August 05, 2022

Five Days A Week

I've been sucked into working 5 days this week, fucking Boris. Oh yes, you go overseas and have a nice time, Botswana, no, that’s not right? It begins with B and I can never think of it. Yeah good onya.

I mean, I wouldn't have anything to complain about if I'd said, yes, I will fill in for you, but I didn't. I actually said no straight up. “No thank you.”

And yet, here I am.

"Christian will do it, he knows how to do my job," I can just hear them. What is the implication, I'm too spineless to stand up for myself?

And yet, here I am? 😬

It is like the week that never ends, working 5 days. I understand why the population is so pissed off if this is what they go through all week. I'm exhausted. 

(companies are making record profits and they can’t pass any of that onto the workers in higher wages of shorter hours, it’s a crime)

And now I have resorted to eating Cheezels in the kitchen because I have done all my work and I am bored, which is really stupid, because if I was home having my day off I wouldn't be bored and I wouldn't be bored eating. I mean, it is all the same with working from home, except for the perception of what I should be doing, am doing.

What does Boris do all day? I've done all the stuff she left for me to do, above and beyond what I agreed to. And here I am with nothing to do at lunch time?

Oh well 😬

Bud and Bruno cuddle up with me, and a bag of Cheezles, on the couch in front of the teev watching my car renovation YouTube channels before we stop for lunch.

I go get Japanese for Sam, Charlie and me.

Sam heads back upstairs for his day of meetings, Charlie heads to his room.

Then it is back to YouTube for me, Buddy and Bruno. And a nice warm blanket pulled over the 3 of us. Well, no, pulled over me, but I do love the picture of me and the bulldogs wrapped up in a blanket together.

Happy Friday.

I intermittently check my emails during the afternoon, I think I got two, and non urgent at that.


Thursday, August 04, 2022

Dry As A Nun's

"I'm as dry as a nun's," he said. That goofy smile plastered across his handsome face.

Well, I thought, I had an Aunty Pat, the nun, distant relative, really through marriage, or Patty as they used to call her, who had a 35 year relationship with Father Brown. It lasted longer than most marriages, but because they were catholic, they couldn't talk about it, well, not directly. Apparently, everyone in Father Brown's parishes were aware, and Patty's order, well they must have known. I remember, at one stage, she had spent so long away from her order that they threatened to kick her out. She worked with the poor, which was the reason she was away from her order for so long, helping the poor. Admittedly, I don’t know anything about her order, but I assume this was the reason she was threatened with expulsion. Remember, Catholics aren’t supposed to save the poor, they are supposed to save Catholics. 

I liked her, she was no nonsense, and good fun. And she drove fast in her Renault 16. She used to turn up on holidays with us all. She’d be out in the deep water in her blue one piece and daisy bathing cap with all us kids, which is way more than any of our mother’s would do. Although, she never bought Father Brown with her. Maybe, she did once, early on?

Anyway, I said, "Now there's one nun whose cunt presumably wasn't dry."

“Oh Christian.”

“Oh Christian.”

“Oh Christian.”

Oh Christian? Really? I thought. So, what do they think that expression means?

Is it because we sanitise it by dropping the ‘cunt’ out of it?

I chuckled to myself picturing a cunt snapping around on the ground after being ‘dropped out’ like an angry sea urchin, or something. Except it wouldn’t have hair on it now a days, and then I couldn’t think of another analogy.


Wednesday, August 03, 2022

You Talkin' To Me?

I’m taking Buddy for a walk in the afternoon. It’s like 4.15 in the afternoon. (use of like? 😬) It is sunny and fresh. It has been a lovely day, what we have seen of it. The sky is blue, there is a breeze.

Bud’s a slow walker now, bless him, so as it is slow going, I have learnt to write my journal, or poetry, or this blog on my phone as I walk along.

Sam and Bruno are up ahead, as Bruno, of course, walks at normal speed. Of course, he stops to sniff everything from fence posts to arseholes so it all works out in the end. Buddy, of course, stops to sniff everything too, but we usually catch up from time to time.


Suddenly, there is some guy who is having a dispute with the milk bar as we walk past, walking next to me. And he seems pretty insistent on telling me all about it. 

“They won’t let me off 6 bucks until tomorrow, how disgusting is that.”

The first thing I think is that he looks like Michael Jackson out of the Simpsons. Actually, the first thing I think is, where the fuck did you come from? (I was looking down at my phone) Then the Michael Jackson thing. It made me smile a smile I felt I had to stifle.

“How do you like that, won’t let me off 6 bucks until tomorrow?”

I don’t like it. I don’t think anything about it. What? I glanced around just in case he was talking to someone else. I was hoping he was talking to someone else.

“That was after I gave them all that change.”

I feel my eyebrows screw up in confusion.

“The other day,” he says.

Not sure that is the same thing, I think.

“We’ll that is the last time I do them a favour.”

I’m pretty sure you mean you exchanged change for notes.

“I can’t believe that. It’s bloody disgusting. Don’t you think that is disgusting?”

I am pretty sure that I don’t care, mate.

“Would you do them any favours after that?”

I’m not sure you did them any favours in the first place.

“I should tell them the other thing when he hit on my girlfriend when there were kids around.”

This has taken an unexpected turn, I think, but even with that bit of added titillation, I still don’t care, mate.

“Yeah, I’m sure they’d like that, wouldn’t they?”

I’m not sure what we are even talking about now?

“I’m never doing them a favour ever again.”

Ah, back to the non favour.

Buddy, fortunately, stops to sniff something, thank you Bud.

“Sometimes you think you know someone,” he says over his shoulder.

I’m wondering if he now puts me in that category?

“Fuck them!” As he walks off, he gives out what you might call a primal scream.

Buddy looks up from the bushes he is sniffing, looks at me, looks at the guy walking away, looks back at me, then goes back to sniffing.

I never said a word.


Tuesday, August 02, 2022

 


It is a scandal and a shame on all of us that there are homeless people in a wealthy country like Australia.

If we're a country where people are able to pay 10s of millions for a single house, we are a country that is able to provide housing for everyone.


Monday, August 01, 2022

Daily Deliveries

The doorbell sounds. Sam comes into the kitchen with a box in his hand. “Look at this. Ordered yesterday, delivered today. Lovely Amazon service. Who cares about the state of the world.”

Nothing like retail therapy to make you feel better about the end of the world.

“It is the flea liquid for the cat.” 

Our sweet cat has no patience with any sort of human tom foolery about his person. Flea liquid is doable, if you surprise him. But don’t even try to give him a worm tablet, he ends up being a very angry octopus with claws on every one of his 8 tentacles. We have to take him to the vet for that. They have a sort of wand thing and they do it in seconds. I don’t know how, despite having watched them on many occasions. All I remember is the surprised look on Milo’s face.

We head upstairs to our bedroom with great trepidation. He is asleep on our bed. He is always asleep on our bed. I hold Milo down and Sam squirts the liquid onto him in a surprise attack. We get all the flea liquid onto him, before he manages to morph into the Tasmanian Devil. He hates the flea liquid, not really sure why?

Milo is air born as he exits the bedroom.

Charlie finally comes out of the shower. Sam and I are still laughing about Milo. Charlie doesn’t smile at us being silly.

I head back downstairs. Milo’s cat door is still swinging.


Not long after the doorbell sounded again. I go to the door and there is a delivery guy looking back from the gate. “Parcel for you.”

“Thanks,” I say. It won’t be for me, but I see where you are coming from. (Me at the door, you at the gate, you swarthy with a nice smile, me, well me, gazing at each other, could be the start of a beautiful love story)

Sam comes down the stairs. “Who’s it for, who’s it for,” he says. “Is it for Charlie?”

I was tempted to say it was for Charlie, because Sam sounds just too enthusiastic, but I don’t. “It is for you.”

“Oh, another parcel for me, what else did I buy?”

“If you can’t remember doesn’t that say…”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” says Sam as he takes it from my hands. “What did I buy?”

He rips the packaging open and says, “Oh, my onion glasses, lovely.”

He holds up a pair of bright yellow glasses with thick black padding around the eye frames in the air.

“Onion glasses?”

“They double as safety glasses.” He pulls them out of the plastic bag they are in and pulls the clip that is holding the arms together and slips them onto his face.

He tilts his head one way, and then another, and I am not sure if he is doing it on purpose but suddenly, he looks a little special.

It makes me smile.

(A bit NQR, as one of my old house mates used to say)

He goes wandering off to the kitchen. If he’d started feeling his way along the walls, I wouldn’t have been surprised.