Clever, well the location of Tasmania was clever, however I don't think it's topographically accurate. Mount Isa looks more appealing that I had previously imagined.
It's not as if I have any news, or developed any new opinions on anything. I haven't thought of anything funny to say for, what is it - 18 months now since my last joke. So this wont be a comedy post of any kind. So this post will be nothing but a complete waste of time. Comments to this post, if it even deserves any, will be along the lines of: "That's 2 minutes of my life I'll never get back, thanks nob!".
Hmmm, well ok, there is an election going on here in Australia. So I should have an opinion on that... Umm, well, I was pleased when Julia Gillard took over the Labor party leadership recently from Kevin Rudd. I thought finally a leader with balls, but alas no. Different shit to be sure but the same ol' smell.
I think I'm going to vote for the Sex Party this year because their polices look the best:
- Bring about the establishment of a truly national classification scheme which includes a uniform non-violent erotica rating for explicit adult material for all jurisdictions and through all media including the Internet and computer games.
- Introduce an R and X rating for computer games
- To overturn mandatory ISP filtering of the Internet and return Internet censorship to parents and individuals.
- We oppose the mandatory retention of all Australian users’ internet browsing history and emails by ISPs for at-will inspection by law enforcement agencies, and support strong judicial oversight over the ability of law enforcement to access individuals’ internet and email data.
- To bring about the development of a national sex education curriculum as a first step in preventing the sexualisation of children.
- Development of a national internet education scheme for parents.
- To enact national anti discrimination laws which make it illegal to unfairly discriminate against people or companies on the basis of job, occupation, profession or calling.
- To bring about equal numbers of women in the Parliament through enabling the Federal Discrimination Act to have jurisdiction extending to political parties.
- To create total equal rights in all areas of the law including same sex marriage.
- Overturn racist laws that ban adults living in and visiting aboriginal communities in the NT from possessing erotic and sexual media.
- Ensure the sexual rights and freedoms of people with a disability and the elderly.
- To enact national pregnancy termination laws along the same lines as divorce law — which allow for legal, no-fault and guilt-free processes for women seeking termination.
- The listing of Viagra, Cialis and other drugs used to treat sexual dysfunction, on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.
Protection of Children
- Overturn restrictions on aid to overseas family planning organisations that reference abortion.
- Convene a Royal Commission into child sex abuse in the nation’s religious institutions.
- Develop global approaches to tackling child pornography which focus on detection and apprehension of the producers of the material.
- Ensure that the introduction of paid maternity leave is fair and equitable for small businesses.
- Abolish sex slavery and sexual servitude by introducing non morality-based immigration policies that allow bona-fide sex workers to work legally in Australia.
- Ending the tax exempt status for religions.
Yes, yes, yes, yes & yes. I like it. So yeah, I've got no news, opinions or jokes so maybe I won't post anything after all.
* Last 7 days there were 3 visitors - Huzzah!!!
He [Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), spokesman, Khurram Ali Mehran] regretted that the administrators at the Facebook and YouTube had not taken the content off despite Pakistan's protests.Fucking what "international resolutions" limit free speech? Fuck you Mehran. Do whatever you like with your theocracy but don't start thinking other people and institutions should pay any more respect to your phony balony god than it deserves.
"Their attitude was in contravention to international resolutions and their own policies advertised on the Web for the general public,"
The PTA issued a statement Thursday saying, "PTA would welcome the concerned authorities of Facebook and YouTube to contact the PTA for resolving the issue at the earliest which ensures religious harmony and respect."Religious respect; that's an amorphous term. I respect your religion in that I tolerate it. But what you mean is you expect deference to it. Well fuck you.
OK, those in the know will know how this goes - but briefly: the story so far... I write a letter to the Infringement Processing Bureau asking them to reconsider the fine because it's not very fair to put up a sign and then issue a fine while I'm away. Is it! So then they write back saying the fine was correctly issued. But they don't explain why! Bastards!!! So I try, without success, to find out. But it's all too hard requiring feats of super human effort* that I simply don't possess. So finally - defeated - I pay the fine and write a follow-up letter to the IPB. Please see attached.
I may have been a bit harsh. I won't expect any favours from them anytime in the future which is a shame, because it means my lifelong dream of pursuing a career as an asshole there may now be over. Alas (sigh).
*Results not typical; actual results may vary; also must follow the exerciser plan accompanying the product
Infringement Processing Bureau,
P.O. Box 777,
Hunter Region MC,
Re: Infringement Notice 7622300520
There! I’ve paid you thieves that fine you demanded. I’ve never tried to deceive anyone in my life – why would you think that was my intention now? Does giving me the option to have the matter dealt with at court make it ok with you? The thought of going before a court terrifies me – and nobody could tell me what the law was in my situation anyway. Besides, the effort required to take time from work to gather my evidence and take it before a magistrate seems disproportional to the $70 fine. So I’ve paid it. And I’m angry at how powerless I am to argue with you in a reasonable way about it.
Every official person I spoke to about this matter was entirely unhelpful. First the reply to my initial letter from you guys gave absolutely no explanation why you believed the fine was correctly issued. Was it because you didn’t believe me, or because it doesn’t matter that I was legally parked until the council installed new “No Parking” signs while I was away in Cairns for a week? So I called the RTA to find out specifically what the law is regarding this situation. The gentleman there said it was up to the council. So I phoned Ryde Council and the wench (she was a very rude lady who did not want to listen to me at all - and I won’t be taking back the wench call) I spoke to told me in no uncertain terms that it was out of the councils hands once the fine was issued and I had to talk to… can you guess? Yes, that’s right; she told me I had to talk to the Infringement Processing Bureau. Ha! Ha! Ha! What a joke.
The system sucks.
P.S. If you think I was being untruthful regarding my alleged location on 13 July 2004 check this web page out – note especially the top photo: http://www.abc.net.au/farnorth/stories/s1150190.htm
The setting: I'd been out for a few drinks and people were going home one by one, until EVERYBODY decided to call it a night. I, however, had no intention of calling it quits and decided to stay out ALL BY MYSELF.
This was written to those who left early to answer their question; "What happened after we left?".
What am I doing here?
...I purchased another drink and went to stand amongst a crowd of people located near the cigarette machine/toilets/couches. It was the most populated location in the bar and I thought this would allow me to blend in, and also maximise my chances of striking a conversation with some pissed stranger. I was trying to look as though I was part of a large crowd, temporarily in between conversations, rather than a guy in a pub with no friends and not in any conversation at all
Location, Location, Location
Pretty soon, a spot opened at the bar and I took it, thinking that it would be more comfortable to sit than to stand. With this move the outward impression I was giving moved also. Now I was the Mysterious Outlaw Loner™ - solemn, in no need for company, yet open enough so as to, at least, not scare anybody away.
Brief encounter of (the) some kind
I was still drinking my first drink (after you left I started my drink count from zero again) when some pretty girl propped herself on the bar next to me to order a drink. I looked at her and when I looked away she looked across at me, I guess checking me out in turn. or else wondering if I was the kind of freak that would stalk her. I should really say something to her, I thought. But I didn't. She ordered her drinks, turned and left.
Very soon after another girl moved to the same spot to order drinks. This time I didn't hesitate. I said something about the service of the bar staff and we started a mini-conversation. Then she ordered "three cock sucking cowboys". What did you order? I asked incredulously, eyebrows raised. She looked me in the eye and mouthed the name of the shots she ordered. Such a clean looking girl using such naughty words made me feel... err, well lets just use the phrase "animal instinct" and leave it at that. The remaining conversation consisted of me stammering incomprehensibly, and she left before I had finished the second syllable of the third word of my first sentence.
All the worlds troubles
Not too much later some guy sat next to me in the spot where all the pretty girls seemed to order their drinks from. He said; "You look as if all the worlds troubles rest on your shoulders, and you're not too happy about it". Nah, I said, I'm probably just a little bit bored and a little bit pissed. This guys name was Gary. He would have been about 40, he was a scientist and interestingly studied cells on AIDS molecules (or was it AIDS molecules on cells). Whatever, he was quite interesting to talk to but we were interrupted when a particularly drunk girl ordered drinks from my other side, she looked at me and said "Whaddaryou doing here byoureself?"
She's a girl
How'd you know I'm by myself if I'm in a conversation with somebody, I thought. We talked shit for about 30 seconds and she said "You are sooo interesting, can I sit here?", meaning to my now vacant left. I apologised to Gary, explaining that she's a girl and therefore I have an obligation to ignore him and talk to the girl. He understood. The girl, named Jasmine, said "Hang on a second, I've got to introduce you to somebody". She returned with a guy, named Brett.
I was having a good night. Jasmine appeared to be paying significantly more attention to me than to Brett. This, plus alcoholic intoxication, was pumping life into my jaded ego. I was loving it, and made it even more joyful for myself by asking Brett for two cigarettes. One for me and one for my new (now I was beginning to realise, probably gay) friend Gary. By this time Brett hated me. There was no way Brett wanted to give me the smokes, but he didn't want to look like a dick in front of Jasmine. Ah ha! Your move asshole, I thought.
In his head Brett thought of something that was so wickedly funny and at the same time condescending toward me that it might, it just might, turn the balance of power in this social dynamic toward himself. Unfortunately for Brett, in the translation from Brain to Reality something went awry. It wasn't funny. Jasmine didn't laugh. Everybody was silent for 2 long seconds. Brett gave me a cigarette. I gave the cigarette to Gary and shared another cigarette which he had given to Jasmine. I win.
Brett's night was getting worse. Unbeknownst to me, until now, Brett has an angry girlfriend who was storming about the bar. Apparently she was angry because he had been talking to Jasmine. Jasmine was telling me she was upset at making her upset because she's not interested in Brett at all. She went on to tell me I had a nice smile which both my previously mentioned ego, and my previously mentioned animal instinct were thrilled to hear. We leaned in... and kissed. There was a bit of a crowd around my part of the bar now and I was talking to a whole host of people - two guys of which told me they thought Jasmine was "hot". "LAST DRINKS PLEASE" came the call which we ordered, then drank. Then we left the bar, "Now what?" she said.
Well I can't drive, I said as we walked. You're welcome to crash with me on my friends uncomfortable couch. "Is it private?" asked Jasmine. Well..., I thought aloud (thinking was taking longer than usual), No - it's not. The sun was up, I looked around. Where the fuck are we? I said. So drunk and distracted was I that we'd been walking down the wrong street, for ages! Fuck it. Let's get a cab to my place, I said.
Largish fuck up
On the way there Jasmine fell asleep on my lap. We arrived $29 later and we walked towards the security door when a terrible, horrible thought slowly crossed my mind - The keys (fuck) to my flat (fuck) are in the drinks holder (fuck) in my car (fuck) which is currently parked outside my mates place in Newtown (FUCK! FUCK! FUCK! FUCK!!!). Hey, Jasmine, you'll never guess what...
We finally made it (nod + wink)
So, back to Newtown. By this time I felt sober enough to drive, and anyway, seeing as I had just done the trip twice I knew there were no RBT's about. The drive was without incident. We finally made it into my flat and it is here that the details of our evening/day together are not so readily shared. What I can say is we were predominantly horizontal until either 4 or 5 o'clock. I offered to drive her home (nod + wink) which she gratefully accepted.
She's off to London in November and while quite attractive I doubt I'll be seeing her again. Oh, she's got my phone number but I don't think I'll hear from her. I don't mind though, because while those farmers my still be experiencing drought you can consider my personal drought over! Huzzah!!!
Finally the final part of this... thing. Traditionally I put a link to the first post around here in the first couple of sentences somewhere. If you're new then [do I really need to finish this sentence predictably?]...
Tue Dec 06, 2005 9:53 am Post subject: Not the final blog entry
I'm back in Sydney now - I still have the final blog entry to give you. It's ready to go, I did it on the plane, but in my absence from home the adapter to the modem blew up so I have no internet connection at the moment. But on the plus side the adapter has an additional feature it didn't have when I left. It now rattles when you shake it which is quite cool.
Also I have no phone because one of the pins on the recharger kind of broke. Suffice to say me and technology are not on speaking terms at the moment. In fact, with no phone, and no internet, me and everybody is not on speaking terms.
Anyway, it's my birthday coming up and I want somebody else to arrange a time and place for beer to drink to commemorate the occasion (birthdays after the 30th are no longer celebrated). Hopefully somebody knows my work email to invite me.
Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2005 8:59 pm Post subject: Finally...
When you read this I'll be back in Sydney. Really there is hardly any point in me writing it then, right? Right?
Well screw you guys. I'm writing it anyway.
Currently I'm in the air on QF108. If I look behind me I see lights of a city that largely are known as New York and I'm heading west towards my old stomping ground Las Angeles. I use the term 'old stomping ground' figuratively, of course. And I use it in a way which is wrong and in which it was never designed, but I guess you guess my approximate meaning.
This final blog entry I feel is going to be one of those all popular backwards episodes. Today is Friday. The New York time is 8:34pm. We were due to take off at 6:55 but due to various delays never very well communicated by the mumbling captain we didn't in fact get off the ground until after eight. So far I'm not liking the service on this aircraft. Where is somebody offering me a beer, dammit!
This morning I stomped around the office looking to everybody as if I was very pissed off. The reason for this was because I wanted to give the impression that I was, in fact, very pissed off. I wanted to give this impression because I was, indeed, very pissed off. Yesterday afternoon one of the guys who I'm working with came to me with a problem. Now, that's ok. That's what I'm here for. To fix problems. I'm not quite Mr Wolf, but pretty close. Up to that time I hadn't had a great deal many problems to fix. And this problem which was brought to me yesterday was a great BIG fucking problem. Why oh why do I get this problem now, the day before I'm due to catch a flight out of there? Yeah, well I stomped around the office in the morning (God, I can be such a demanding bastard when I want to be, and yet myself I'm such a slacker - god I'm such a cnut). In the afternoon they took me out to lunch and they all wished me a safe trip and what-have-you and I turned into normal happy Barcs from then on. The person you're reading the words of now is normal happy Barcs.
Lunch: oh yeah, lunch. I ordered Kung Pow Chicken. I've ordered it a hundred times and not once has it come with peanuts. This time it did. "I can't eat this" I said to whoever would listen when it was brought out. I have an allergy to peanuts you see and while this seems to be very amusing to other people… well, I'm not other people. For some reason every time my peanut allergy becomes a conversation piece people ask me if I would die if I eat enough of them. They even say: "So, if I wanted to kill you, could I do it by secretly putting peanuts in your food?". I generally say that I don't know if it would actually kill me, but you could try - it's possible. Oh, good - they say.
For some reason I feel as if I have some kind of aura around me. It's now 10:28pm NY time and I've hardly had a beer so far today. I got to the airport around 4pm for my flight and I had 2 beers in the British Airways lounge but that's all. OK, I did have a blended scotch too but only because I wanted to try Canadian Club Ginger Ale (not bad but Schweppes is better). On the plane I had a champagne when I sat at the seat. With my meal (the chicken this time - a mistake. The steak is better.) I had a glass of wine (which was refilled 3 times). With desert I had a cognac. Maybe that aura is drunkenness.
Thursday, and I'm thinking Thursday night is my final night so I better do something special. While getting a coffee in the office that Sydney girl I know comes in to the room and says hello. After a bit of "how ya doin" I ask if she would like to come out for a drink. She looked at me as if I'd just asked her out to a Dungeons & Dragons convention. "No" she says, "I have a lame excuse which I'm using to make you not feel bad." "Oh, that's OK", I say smiling weakly.
I haven't given up total hope of ever finding a girlfriend. My new plan involves saving a girls life - but only if I want a permanent relationship. For casual sex with a young hottie my plan involves winning a lottery.
I absolutely knew the answer to the question I posed this girl before I asked it. So much did I know the answer before I asked it I don't even know why I did in fact ask it. I knew the answer because my hopes were already dashed when I went to see an American Football game with her and a couple of her friends the previous Sunday. She was about as interested in me as she was in the game being played. That is to say, not at all. I don't understand. OK, so my jokes weren't from the "A" material list but she got the best of the rest, and I'z being happy and nice and everything. Bah! I'm not talking about this. I feel this entry will be long enough without adding a needless bitter dialogue about my feelings - urrgh. No way man!
She thought, like me, that American Football is the slowest, most boring football code ever made. Seriously I gotta stop being so honest, because on Monday, when a guy asked me how the game was, and when I said "it was the longest 80 minutes the world has ever known" I had to stand there and listen for 15 minutes about the virtues of the game. Apparently the line backers get quite exhausted even though they only play about 20 minutes (none of them consecutive) per game because of the intensity of those minutes. I didn't say, but I thought they got exhausted because they were all fat fucks.
Even though it's a boring game I still thoroughly enjoyed being there. It was the New York Jets vs the New Orleans Saints. New Orleans, as you know was washed out recently by some large gust of wind. As a result the Saints have no home ground. So their record was 2 and 8 (won 2, lost . The Jets were also running shit. Their record was the same, 2 and 8. And yet the game had a huge atmosphere. Almost, yet not quite, like Bledesloe Cup match atmos. There were a lot of people going mental at the game (by mental I do actually mean mentally disturbed). The New York Jets theme chant is "J", "E", "T", "S", "JETS", "JETS", "JETS", which is 2nd only in annoyance factor to the Aussie Oi chant upon repeated random repetitions.
I wonder if the guy sitting next to me (a male hand model would you believe) on the plane can read, and is reading what I'm typing now. All the lights have been turned off and most people are dozing or watching TV. The guy next to me is watching TV and is quite restless. He has bad breath… Why do I always get the stinky guys? Can you read this GUY, huh? Can Ya! Brush y'r fucken teeth you dirty cnut! (I'll let you know if he punches me in the mouth).
Yeah, so on Sunday at the game I purchased some merchandise. I got a cap and a t-shirt. The shirt I got in large size, and in the ol' U S of A large means large. Good on 'em for truth in advertising and all that but, man. I put this shirt on and it's the size of fucking tent. Any of you larger size piggies want this t-shirt? You know who you are.
Actually I can't really talk right now. I'm looking larger sideways now than ever after all the crap load of fried mozzarella sticks I've had since being here. I joked to all the office people that I'd better be getting a gym membership upon my return. They nodded in agreement and none of them seemingly understood that it was a joke. Nobody understands me.
Hmm, I've been typing solidly now for a couple of hours and I appear to have covered everything I wanted to cover already. Oh, wait - here's a thing that happened in the lounge waiting for the plane. I sat next to a fountain. Yeah, they got a fountain with water and rocks and stuff. So, I sat next to a fountain and drank beer and scotch and Canadian Club ginger and water. Now, if you're going to be consuming liquids it may be advisable to NOT sit next to a fountain if you want to relax. I sat down after going to the toilet for about the 4th time, took a sip of whatever it was I was drinking at the time and felt a sudden incredible urge to get up for number 1 number 5.
The reason this last entry took so long to post is because my modem adapter blew up while I was away and I had no internet connection until now. Writing these entries certainly kept me entertained while I was in the hotel room. Well, OK, so that's it. Thanks for reading peeps. Boo ya.
Expect something completely different next week. Cheers!
First of all, sorry about the current colour scheme. I'll change it over the coming [insert time unit of your choice here and add an 's' at the end]. Although if you're reading this at a date in the distant future then you may be going "yeah it's terrible" even though I've fixed it.
Hmph, whatever... part 1 here
Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 3:44 am Post subject: Steamy Nose Breath
Wednesday was Thanksgiving eve. Now as you may know I work for a gas company, and the company I work for supplies the helium to the floats for the Macy's Day Parade. So every year they load the folks from the office on to buses and take them out to see the balloon filling. This happens the day before the parade and it's really very popular amongst the punters. Mainly punters with kids. I got run over by 4 strollers and a pram!
It was pretty cold. I had steamy nose breath. I was able to burrow a camera from the office for the weekend and took a few photos. I'll put one on the blog if Piers can help me out.
On Tuesday the guy who's the project manager asked me if I'm doing anything on Thanksgiving day. I said that apart from a little work, no. He said work in the morning but come out for Thanksgiving with us. So I said Thanks. Later he came back and said, by the way - if you want to have Thanksgiving dinner you've got to kill the turkey with a shotgun first. I said, well - so long as I don't have to wring its neck with my bare hands. He smiled and gave me the thumbs up. Hmm, I think he was joking.
Look, sorry but I gotta go. I've written a bit more but it's unfinished and I'm off to Thanksgiving dinner now. I've got to give some info on what happened when I asked the Sydney girl out for a drink on Wednesday after the parade. Also I telephoned my Mum and she sent an amusing email to me. I'm sure she won't mind quoting a little from it:
I worry about you being warm enough and getting your laundry done - hope you're using the hotel for that - BOC will pay, it's part of the travelling thing when you're away for as long as you are.
Ahh, Mum's gotta love 'em. Yes Mum, My underwear is clean.
Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 3:13 pm Post subject: Thanksgiving
Later he came back and said, by the way - if you want to have Thanksgiving dinner you've got to kill the turkey with a shotgun first. I said, well - so long as I don't have to wring it's neck with my bare hands. He smiled and gave me the thumbs up. Hmm, I think he was joking.
A couple of people said yeah that'd be right, or I wouldn't put it past him - that crazy Cuban's got a big gun collection, you know. Well, whatever, he picked me up from the hotel at about 1 and it turns out that he's in the Army reserves. He was in Afghanistan in 2002. He likes hunting but hasn't hunted for 8 or 10 years because his wife wouldn't appreciate him gutting a deer in the back yard very much.
Well we got to his place and the turkey was cooked, so no shooting necessary. He's a kidder. Present was him, his wife, his youngest daughter his cousin and her husband and their daughter and one grandparent - I didn't catch who's. I brought a relatively expensive bottle of wine to drink with dinner and they appreciated it. Had I known that one of the conversations over dinner was about a great wine called Two Buck Chuck and how all other wine makers in the world are rip off merchants I could have saved myself a little money but there you go. Thanksgiving dinner consisted of turkey, stuffing, gravy, some kind of yam dish, crumbed cauliflower, boiled broccoli, green garden salad and deep fried mozzarella sticks.
Everyone was real nice and they talked the usual family type stuff like about people they knew 20 years ago and I'd smile and nod politely and then they'd look at me and they'd say something like you're being very quiet to help me feel more comfortable around them, or they'd say are you sure you don't want more turkey? No thank you, I'd say, and then I'd pat my tummy in the traditional if I eat any more I'm likely to throw up gesture and smile politely.
I gave the ol' Australian spiel about Australia; how kangaroos don't live in most peoples back yards, the Crocodile Hunter's name is Steve Irwin and I haven't been to his zoo, most people survive shark attacks, nobody in Australia drinks Fosters, and how dingo's only run off with peoples babies once every 20 years - so we're a little overdue for another one. All in all it was pretty fun. Maybe not fun so much - it's not the right word but it was really nice of the guy to invite me to dinner with his family and I really appreciated their hospitality.
So yeah. Anyway, I was going to tell you about yesterday (Wednesday). I got back to the hotel nearly around 9. In fact, it was exactly nearly around 9 and I'm thinking the whole trip back to the hotel that I really ought to phone this Sydney girl and see if she'd like to go out for a drink. I had the phone out and baulked at pressing the dial button when her name came up. (Baulked means I totally shat myself. Totally shat myself is a metaphor. Metaphor is a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a similarity. i.e. There was nothing implied in the segue between underpant cleanliness and the telephone call but thanks for asking). I distracted myself by dislodging some errant ear debris, and contemplated the exact shade of white the ceiling must be*, while some brave part of me pressed the call button and before I knew it the phone was ringing.
So she answers and a bit of chit chat macy's day parade cold crowded lots of strollers yeah I got hit by a couple too fun though glad i went lots of traffic just got back about ten minutes ago hey if you're not doing anything i thought maybe you'd like to go for a drink tonight or something actually i've got a real early train to catch and i'd like to get a bit of an early one but hey thanks for asking no problem i just thought on the off chance you know yeah i'll see you on sunday though i'll call you in the arvo ok cool chit chat chit chat and so on...
Six minutes and eleven seconds after she answered "hello" the end button was pressed. Make of that what you will. I've got no idea and no opinion and I'll continue as I continue to do. Whatever that is. Whatever that means.
Whelp, I've got no idea what I'll be doing tomorrow. It's the biggest shopping day of the year here so maybe I'll help Dad out. Here's another part of Mum's email.
Dad was wondering If you venture into another drug store if you could get him a couple of cans of "RightGuard Sport Scented Anti-perspirant Deodorant" but only if you have nothing better to buy or do - he likes it and you can't get it here but he stresses that you shouldn't bother if it's a hassle.
While I'm at it, does anybody else want anything from the drug store? That RightGuard Sport Scented Anti-perspirant Deodorant sounds pretty good.
*Butter Cream 2523
Usual programming will return shortly - in the meantime... This.
Sent: Wednesday, 31 December 2003 3:40
Subject: [pigscricket] The reason I'm sending an email at 3:40am
Start here or continue below in the normal left to right, top to bottom fashion.
Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:59 pm Post subject: A brief summary of events
So much to say, so little time. So I bring you A brief summary of events, so far.
Last week - what can I say - work was work. And there was quite a lot of it. So free time was work too. On Friday suggestions were made that perhaps with time being a limited resource I should forfeit the Thursday thanksgiving holiday. Thanksgiving! Bah, thanks for nothing slavedrivers!
Some good and perhaps interesting news is that I'll be seeing the New York Somethings next Sunday play American Football vs. the Somewhere Somethings. You know how I got tickets? You will after the sentence after this one. The Sydney girl who's over here invited me. That's right. She got 4 free tickets and she asked me and a couple of others. I may just actually like this girl a little and I am Mr Cucumber around her - as in cool - as - a, not the way you're thinking MattW. We talk and chat a little most days and so far is good but I'm not expecting anything to develop honestly. But it's another story line if nothing else.
I told you the beginning of the Saturday adventure already. I saw a bunch of stuff including the Village. The Village is an area of New York where everything and everybody is more cool and trendy than you. Nearby, people live in tiny ugly apartments labelled as "luxury" apartments. These are expensive cockroach infested hovels. In New York "luxury" apparently means any place where black people don't live. Note the social commentary. I like it. Bush sux, etcetera.
I also went to see the World Trade Centre. There was nothing much there.
The bus tour ticket I bought entitled me to a night tour as well, but it was so freaking cold that I thought better of it.
On Sunday I went into town locally here for lunch at The Office. The Office is the most populated bar (and bistro) in Summit as far as I can tell. That may have something to do with the 80 varieties of beer they claim to have. Most meals I've found seem to contain fried mozzarella sticks. Oh well, when in Rome…
Sunday is sports day. They have 8 TV's set up around the room and on each TV they have a different American football game. That means that half the time there is action on at least one of the TV's. It's quite an amazing set up.
Today is Monday and it's raining again. The weather forecast for Wednesday is for arctic frost! Jesus! WTF is arctic frost! I'm not liking the sound of that much but it does mean that we could get snow. That'd be cool.
Anyway, congrats on a first innings win fellas. I enjoy reading all about it. Till later…
Posted: Wed Nov 23, 2005 12:26 pm Post subject:
I got a rash...
In fact, you know what?
I decided not to make this a daily blog.
On Saturday I went to a wedding. The previous Saturday was the groom's bucks night. The even more previous Saturday I witnessed a most special cricketing victory and celebration thereof. Each of these events lead to an overconsumption of a commonly used cleaning agent and antiseptic known as alcohol in the form (predominantly) of beer. The next day, on each of these occasions, has not been pleasant. The cure is bacon.
Here's a handy little flow chart I found that has helped me through these post alcoholic mornings.
Misuse of the word literally is a pet peeve of mine - though to be honest, I used to notice it a lot more than I do now. Actually now that I think about it, hmm... [goes off thinking]
Now that I think about it I don't think it bothers me at all.
Well WHATEVER! It used to bother me so read the damned comic!
Another pet peeve of mine is not having any followers, or any comments of any kind. I'm so lonely here that I think I might grow some virtual tumbleweeds. Or adopt half a dozen cats. I kind of wish I'd been a little anti-christian in my posts so that that semi-mad 75% batshit-crazy atheist hater would post some of his ravings on my blog.
Part 6 of (I'm guessing) 10. You've done well to make it this far, noble traveller, but you'll never make it to the end - mwahahahahaha!!! Part 1 here.
Posted: Sun Nov 20, 2005 1:52 pm Post subject: Text is required in this field or you cannot post
Ok, it's Saturday night now and although I've not updated for a little while you really haven't missed much. They've gone now, back to the UK, but I had company last week at the hotel. 2 guys who are working on the same project I'm working on. You know, stinky and his friend. Actually the smelly guy really benefited from living in a hotel for a while. No doubt taking advantage of the free hot water they provide here every morning.
The other guy was pretty good value. He's been on a few of these business trips and he had no qualms ordering numerous beers and $35 dinner options (for the surf and turf which includes a steak and 2 lobster tails). I see the light. I always thought beer when consumed without food wasn't part of the deal, but now I see that it is.
I'm about to watch American football. I had a $20 bet on LSU -16.5 vs. Mississippi so I have some interest. It starts in about 10 minutes. Also I'm getting room service tonight. A shrimp and lobster pizza.
Today I was up and ready just in time to miss breakfast by 5 minutes. So, hungry, I headed to the train station to take me to New York. I kind of knew what it was I wanted to do today…
[Mmm… the pizza was good. LSU just forced a safety 2 thirds through the 1st quarter. That's 2 - 0 LSU. 2 thirds through the 1st quarter: 2/3 * ¼ = (2 * 1)/(3 * 4) = 2/12 = 1 sixth through the game. 6 * 2pts = 12pts. 12pts < 16.5pts which means LSU better get a move on if they want to make me happy tonight]
Before I get on to what I did today let me tell you about how to get run over crossing the street in USA. It's quite easy if you follow these steps. Simply refuse to accept that you now are in a country where cars dive on the other side of the road. Look right - confirm no cars are there then take a couple of steps into the road and look left and then flinch, make an involuntary guttural noise ("Urrgh!" is acceptable). Meanwhile, put your hands out towards the incoming vehicle to protect yourself and close one eye as you turn your head sideways. If you remain vertical acknowledge any abuse from the driver in a polite manner and smile stupidly at him as he drives past glaring daggers and mouthing vulgarities at you.
[5mins to go in 2nd quarter and it's now 16 - 0 LSU. Half a point to go - looking good]
…Once in New York I went into a drug store to see what the hell it is that drug stores sell. It turns out that they don't actually sell any drugs, but they do sell most other things. I purchased toothpaste, cinnamon gum, gloves and a beanie.
It was bloody cold today - hence the gloves and beanie. Top temperature was mid 40's which is like 7 Celsius, but it felt more like 6. I got on one of the day-tripper tourist buses which have an open roof and saw a bunch of stuff…
Details to come - I'm so tired after today [yawn]. I just woke up from a nap and I can't concentrate so I'm going to bed. I'm hoping for a score summary of the Pigs match when I next log on.
LSU is winning 40 - 0 or something with 5 to go. Yay for me. Later y'all.
Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:48 pm Post subject: Yawn!
I'm so very tired. I'm not sleeping properly so no entry today. It's thanksgiving here in a week and a half so I get a 4 day weekend that you non believers don't get. How good is that? I've been invited to a thanksgiving dinner but I might just take a train to Washington or Boston or even Atlantic City. Don't know yet.
I'm not drinking so much beer as what it might seem. I guess it's just that things worth writing about happen when I'm drunk. [Note to self: drink more beer].
If anyone has any suggestions as to what I should do this weekend let me know. Gimmie a tourist site and I'll go there and tell you all about it and blame you if it's crap.
Posted: Sat Nov 19, 2005 11:55 am Post subject: Re: Yawn!
Barcs wrote:I don't know any good places to go, and the internet was surprisingly unhelpful. So, here are 2 things that would amuse me if you did them Barcs.
If anyone has any suggestions as to what I should do this weekend let me know. Gimmie a tourist site and I'll go there and tell you all about it and blame you if it's crap.
I'm out of ideas. That didn't take long, did it.
- Stand outside the American Today show studios with a sign that says something like "Go Pigs" or "Down with America". Get on TV.
- Take a photo of or with a New York pimp, preferably one wearing a purple fur coat and hat with feather in it. Have him chase you around in a comical manner a-la Homer in that Simpsons episode where Barney steals his car and it ends up in New York.
I really like these suggestions but both early mornings and pimps scare me so I dunno if any of these things will be accomplished. You never know though...
except in this case of course.
Before I left somebody suggested that I stand naked in the Bronx wearing a sign saying "I hate niggers" a la Die Hard 3. That might have been you Matty. Yes?
I'm about to go and get some dinner and while I do you'll all be playing cric. Pls provide update and match summary! It's dark and below zero outside unless you operate in fareignheight. It's bizarro to think about it too much. (Actually if you think about it too much it makes perfect sense. It's much better to think about it just a little bit and once you don't understand it stop thinking about it and enjoy the unreality of it for a little while).
A week end blog to come after dinner.
Posted: Sat Nov 19, 2005 2:37 pm Post subject: Re: Yawn!
Barcs wrote: A week end blog to come after dinner.
Part 6 (a far superior part) is here.
When these blog entries were originally posted in 2005 I got some encouraging feedback - so that's context for you...
Posted: Wed Nov 16, 2005 2:42 pm Post subject: More Monday, less Tuesday.
Firstly can I just say thanks to all for the feedback I've received! It's been really positive and it makes the top of my head feel all warm, kind of like I'm wearing a hat even though I'm not. Peculiar I admit, maybe I'm having a stroke.
Mel b (if that is your real name), I did check out the Chrysler building. I checked it out from the Empire State Building. It's very nice.
I haven't been smoking a great deal since I've been over here. I've still got the same pack of 20's I had when I left Australia. It's a non-smoking room and my addiction to laziness is stronger than my addiction to nicotine. Nevertheless I thought I'd enjoy one last night and I went downstairs to have one. Afterwards I had a cigarette*. There in the lobby I saw a guy I knew from the UK when I was over there a few months ago. Standing next to him was a guy who I didn't know.
Introductions included me calling the guy by his shortened name improperly. I'll explain this later although I feel as though I fear I've dug myself a story telling hole. Expecially considering this story doesn't have any suitable conclusion. I don't want to name names because this guy has a BO problem and I may want to discourse vehemently about his acute mephitic propinquity at some later date (thank you thesaurus). I don't want to name names but I do want to talk about them. Ok, so I greeted this guy using improper name shortening. You know how you shorten people's names when addressing them for ease and general mateyness; Edward to Ed, Gregorious to Greg, Robert to Rob, and Matty to Matt... And you know how some people call themselves by their long name? Well this guy does but I called him by his shortened equivalent. He didn't appreciate it… And - that the - end of - that - story ---,,,
Dammit - I knew I shouldn't have started writing about that. Umm…
Did I mention he stinks?
The guy standing next to stinky was a co-worker to be and after a little while we all went into town for a few drinks. To drink you sit at a table and wait to be waited on, in November it's cold, toilets drain backwards, crooks chase cops, cats have puppies, hot snow falls up: it's opposite world! After 4 or 5 Buds (courtesy of the project) we left, hotel bound. It was good.
Wow, it's getting busy at work now. Food is plentiful. You should see my tummy. Too many deep fried mozzarella sticks I think.
*worst joke ever.
I'm pretty sure these adventures go downhill from here, but if you insist on persevering then click here.
Posted: Tue Nov 15, 2005 3:10 pm Post subject: 4 days of stuffFRIDAY
I'm a frustrated sonfabitch right now. Secondly my internet connection is not working. Everything looks fine but for whatever reason I cannot connect. GRRR! Fucking frustrating. Firstly I met an attractive Scottish girl at the hotel I'm staying. She works for the same company as me. What luck. She's been here 2 weeks and wouldn't you fucken know it she's hooked up with someone already. God damn it! That is so fucking frustrating because I know, I just know that if things had've worked out different then things might've worked out different. This kind of shit always happens to me and which ever one of you assholes is laying bad karma on me just stop it. Jokes over. Not funny now, I've had enough.
Anyway, all because of that, and because I'm stuck here in a hotel room and it's cold outside and I've nothing to do, I'm feeling pretty miserable right now. I wish all my journal entries could be joyous odes to the earth with elements of humour but something is stopping me. Oh yeah, that's right, it's my retched life. Sorry about that. While it may have been funny in one sense it was filled with pathetic self loathing and despair in the other and I just don't want to travel that road.
There was nothing much to do at work today. The real action starts on Monday. Joy.
I haven't really explained very well where I am and what the hotel is like so I'll do that now. I'm in New Jersey which is about 45 minutes (so I'm told) outside New York. The hotel I'm at is called the Grand Summit and it's a pretty old style hotel. You know, old furnishings and stuff. It's pretty nice really. The room itself is decorated with, would you believe, lawyer type books. I hold in my hand right now West's Federal Supplement Volume 761. It's 1700 pages long. None of them interesting. Kind of like a Stephen King novel - I didn't read the whole thing but I'm pretty sure at the end of the book God comes down from heaven and kills all the bad people.
If I can find the time to stop feeling sorry for myself tomorrow I'm going to drag myself out of bed and into New York. I say drag myself out of bed because I've had about 3 and half hours sleep in the past 48 hours and even though it's 1:30 am now I don't see myself sleeping for another couple of hours at least. When in New York maybe I'll do a bus tour, or go to the Village and see what's what.
I woke in the morning with a start. An alarm went off at 6am and I continued to drift in and out of sleep after that. At 9am I heard activity outside my room. It was the cleaning ladies. I was still very tired and wanted none of that so I put the "do not disturb" sign out on the door handle. And I slept.
And I slept.
I woke and was surprised to find that it was already 1:30 in the afternoon. I flicked channels for a while and watched Jumanji. Still feeling pretty wretched to be honest after yesterday I felt as though I needed some self time. The internet problem continues and I fear that none of these entries will be available until I get back to Australia. It's a real shame because I really enjoy writing and posting them.
Anyway, I didn't go into New York today. As I said, I felt as though I needed some time to myself which is easy to do twelve thousand miles from anyone you know. I got out of bed at half past five and had a shower and all the things most people do eight hours earlier. Basically I spent my working day in bed. I unpacked my entire luggage into drawers and ironed a couple of shirts for next week and that made me feel a little more human.
At around 7 I decided to go to the restaurant downstairs. Did you know that an iceberg salad is nothing more than a lettuce cut in half? I didn't. Extraordinary, I can't believe it even costs money to eat. It didn't even have any dressing. I also had a steak and it was fairly huge. I felt a little awkward asking for the "queen" sized steak (the other option was the "king" size) but I'm glad I did. I asked for medium rare and it was cooked perfectly, but the service was pretty ordinary especially considering they had seemingly hundreds of staff looking after 6 tables.
I was the only person dining alone. Really I was hoping to see somebody else in my general age range alone so I could say g'day. There wasn't but the food was good and I drank Becks. An accent problem had a waiter confirming with me that I wanted a bottle of "beaks". I'm sure if I said yes he wouldn't have battered an eyelid and gone off looking for one.
All in all a disappointing Saturday but at least I now feel normal, I look forward to another day tomorrow of feeling normal too.
I was determined to go into New York today. I woke and went downstairs for breakfast. It was very crowded with people who were here for wedding receptions and who knows what else, all checking out and piling their plates high with the complementary scrambled eggs, sausages and bacon they put on every morning.
Around about midday I was in Summit - the town I'm in - at the train station. I arrived at Penn Station (Pennsylvania) on 32nd West and 7th (the location of Madison Square Garden) and began a wandering.
New York is just so big. It's huge. Seemingly endless. The masses of people massed. I walked up and down, also across. Saw a street called Broadway and thought I heard of that so I walked down it. I don't know, but I don't think this was the Broadway I heard of. The blend of people started looking very err, black. Suddenly I was aware that I don't know where I was and I didn't know where I was going and I was (I mean I'z) particularly conspicuous. Ai'ight. If I wanted to buy 3 gold watches for $10 I was in the right place. I didn't. U-turn.
Eventually my wandering took me to a place called The Empire State Building. Ahh, tourist site. I'm going. I went. 45 minutes later I was in a queue, significantly nearer the lifts than I was 44 minutes ago. I took what they call "the audio tour". They give you a miniature boom box and you put it to your ear and listen to recordings of some guy telling you what you're looking at from various vantage points. When I got back down it was starting to get dark so I headed back.
US urinals are much more V shaped than Australian urinals. You can't just lob it out and point it in any direction and be confident of getting it at least close. Here you've got to be aware. You've got to aim. There have been daily improvements.
Today I met a girl at work who I know from Sydney. She gave me a lift back to the hotel. Nothing further. The answer to most questions probably now is yes.
Continue on to part 4.
This is part 2, dear reader, and I'm wondering if I should be treating you like a bit of a moron. Well, the average IQ is supposed to be 100, right? I met somebody with an IQ of 100 once - and he was an idiot. So given that the average person is a idiot then I think to be fair that I should point out the blatantly obvious and suggest that if you haven't read part 1 then you should do so first. You might hate it or not understand some of the words and decide not to read part 2 after all, thereby saving you the time of reading this post which you can use to watch reruns of Friends or something. Never let it be said that I'm not fair or generous. You're welcome!
Posted: Sat Nov 12, 2005 9:02 am Post subject: THURSDAY
I wake. I look around and recognise nothing. Something's not right. Something's out of place. Something just doesn't feel right. Hmmm... It's still fairly dark and I turn on the light and suddenly I recognize nothing. That's better. Culture shock = over. (Very subtle).
9am and I'm up and ready for anything except the unexpected. I get a taxi to work and the fare is $18. The whole ride over I'm wondering about tipping. What do I do? How much? I give a $20 note and say nothing, using my developing poker skills I look for any hesitation. If I see any then I'll jump out of the car and leave him the $2 tip. I see no hesitation as they guy gives me my change. I now have (more) doubts over my poker playing ability.
Work. I do the old meet and greet all morning. I'm not going to jabber on about work because it would take hours to set the scene and it would only be very boring anyway. Instead I'll rate my working day out of 10 in various categories. Category suggestions welcomed - I'm struggling.
- Work load: 5
- Brain strain: 5
- Physical challenge: 1
- Humour: 1
- Other: 9
Back at the hotel I decided to go for a walk, and find some beer less than $4 a bottle and some food less than $20 (not that I'm paying my own food but I didn't really feel like a whole big meal or anything).
As I walked I started wondering about how many people in America carry guns. I started getting perhaps a little overly paranoid. I saw a sign saying "downtown". I decided to follow the sign because when you're alone and life is making you lonely you can always go "downtown", or so I've heard. I was humming an annoying tune that somehow got stuck in my head when somebody shouted from behind me "Hey you!" There must be a lot of you's around, I thought. You, doesn't necessarily equal me. "Hey you!" the voice said again. That you equals me. I gulped. I turned around and I opened my mouth to say: Here take my wallet don't kill me! But I was interrupted when the guy said "Hey, You know where the cinema is?" I smiled, a change in strategy was required "...ahhh, no mate". "Oh, ok, no problem"
I found a bottle shop and I bought 2 super sized cans of beer. They were the 2nd biggest size available. The larger size is about the size of a human head (Bucky's human head no less). The shop keeper put my purchases into a brown paper bag. Can I tell you about brown paper bags? Americans make a quality brown paper bag. I don't want to put down the Australian brown paper bag industry but really - you haven't seen a brown paper bag until you've seen an American brown paper bag. Quality. Budweiser is a better beer than Coors.
I figured out that my hotel room has wireless internet capability so thought I could write a blog about my adventures. I did.
And here's part 3.
Fri Nov 11, 2005 2:45
Ahoy hoy. Today is Thursday - unless you live in Australia in which case today is Friday. Friday arvo no less and the thought of cool refreshing well deserved amber beverage(s) after a long weeks work is more or less* crossing the mind of the average Aussie punter at this time.
Yesterday morning (Wednesday) I woke filled with fear. Oh shit I've missed the plane! I thought. I quickly checked the time and it was 6:25am. Oh, phew! 6 hours and 10 minutes to take-off. What should I do? While I was thinking about this I closed my eyes and slept.
Dreams. I dreamed I was sitting next to George Gregan and the little man was curled up snugly in a comfy rug when an attractive lady came up to me and asked if I'd like to hold Mr. Gregans fish. Flattered, I was about to say yes but suddenly George started making an alarming sound, and I said "what's that alarming sound George?". The attractive lady said: "That's your alarm". "Hmm, I see" I replied, and after thinking about this for some time I woke up.
The flight was at 12:35pm and I didn't want to be late. In fact I wanted to be early so I could take advantage of the Qantas lounge. Yes, the Qantas Lounge. So I got to the airport by half past nine and by 10am I was drinking beer.
RULES OF BEER CONSUPTION (i):
I know there are rules about morning beers, and I don't know if this is one of them. If it isn't then I submit it for inclusion.
When travelling between time zones it is ok to order a beer in the morning if the time zone of destination is now afternoon or evening.
(Perhaps a list of morning beer reasons should be published somewhere on this site. Paddy?)
To get to New York you need to go via LA. It's a 13 or 14 hour flight. I was one of the first on board and I hoped and I hoped as I sat there at my seat that the person sitting next to me would be a super model. In fact, she didn't even need to be super. Any kind of model would be fine except hand models and male models. I crossed my fingers and held my breath for a very long time hoping it would be so. I was still waiting when suddenly this guy looked at me and said - hey, how ya doin'? Good question, I thought. Eyes bulging, about to explode, I exhaled quickly and panted the reply: Hi-i'm-good.
I arrived in LA at about 6 in the morning. Six and a half hours before I got on board. I had to go through customs. Good fucking god! You have not seen a queueue until you've arrived in America. Finally after getting through I went to the Qantas Lounge (yes, the Qantas Lounge) and ordered a Budweiser.
RULES OF BEER CONSUMPTION (ii)
When travelling between time zones it is ok to order a beer in the morning if the time zone of departure is now afternoon or evening.
Unfortunately it was raining when I landed at LAX (what does the X stand for?) so I didn't get to see much. Between LA and New York the impression of America that I got was that it is a very cloudy country. Nice clouds though.
Finally I arrived at JFK - notice the way I'm just throwing around the lingo as if everybody should know exactly what I'm talking about? Cool, hey? There was a driver there to pick me up. I asked him if it was far. He said no, about 12-15 miles. I asked if there would be much traffic at 5:30pm. He said no, probably not. Two and a half hours later I arrived at the hotel. It was dark, rainy and stormy and I saw nothing of the city that was New York on the journey. The only thing I noticed about USA while driving was that Americans haven't really caught on to the phrase "sporty hatch". American cars a shitty hunks of worthless metal without exception (except for a dodge viper and a Pontiac).
I watched TV (13 channels) for a while and then finally slept. Nothing amusing or interesting happened.
Thus concludes the longest Wednesday I ever had. I'll update Thursday tomorrow. Anyway, Pigs - good luck tomorrow (Saturday). I'll be working, probably. While writing this I drank 48 fluid ounces of beer (24 Coors, 24 Budweiser - each in can form). Like you, I don't know how much that is - but they're pretty bloody big cans, for cans.
Some context. The dream featuring Gregan is actually a reference to a Qantas television commercial that was on at the time. In the commercial George is sleeping as the stewardess is serving meals, so one of his team-mates (I can't remember who) says (with a poorly acted cheeky grin) that (note: this will be the last set of brackets in this sentence) he can hold Georges meal for him.
There are references to some people. They are Pigs. The Pigs are a cricket team. This was originally posted on their website but it's gone now but I liked it so here it is.
Read part 2