20100521

Draw Muhammad Day

...was yesterday. So officially I missed it. I was vaguely aware of it but what prompted me to take part was Pakistan's reaction to it. They have shut down YouTube and Facebook for the entire country.
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.

"Their attitude was in contravention to international resolutions and their own policies advertised on the Web for the general public,"
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.
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.

20100515

Parking fine

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).

Best Regards,

Barclay.

*Results not typical; actual results may vary; also must follow the exerciser plan accompanying the product





Director,
Infringement Processing Bureau,
P.O. Box 777,
Hunter Region MC,
NSW 2310.

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.

Worst regards,





Barclay Smith.



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

20100512

After you left...

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.

Animal instinct

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.

Egomaniac

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.

Brett's brain

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.

Angry girlfriend

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.

Now what

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.

Those farmers

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!!!

20100501

Barcs in New York, Part 9

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?

Yeah?

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!