Am frantically busy and have been neglecting the blogosphere. Work is taking up plenty o'time. Things with The Man are good but I had forgotten how much time dating takes up. The house is a mess, I still need to buy Christmas presents and instead of attending to either of those things I am stuck going to more damn Christmas parties.
Is it just me or does the Christmas season get more frantic and oppressive each year? I am so sick of drinking cheap wine and making small talk over stale cheese. I normally like the people I attend these parties with but this year I have had enough. I don't know how I will force out a smile when all I really want to do is have a nap. I think I need to have a pre-Christmas holiday somewhere where I don't have to be nice to anyone.
Will write more soon but need to put in a monster day at work to meet all my overdue deadlines. My test of when I am too busy is when I contemplate running down to a department store at lunch to buy undies because I haven't had enough time to do a wash. I am getting scarily close to that point in time. AAARRRGGHHH!!!
Hope you are surviving the silly season.
PS - Did not realise until after I posted that I may appear to have plagarised this post title from redcap. Pure coincidence although her post is far funnier and worth reading than my whinge above.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Am frantically busy and have been neglecting the blogosphere. Work is taking up plenty o'time. Things with The Man are good but I had forgotten how much time dating takes up. The house is a mess, I still need to buy Christmas presents and instead of attending to either of those things I am stuck going to more damn Christmas parties.
Sunday, December 03, 2006
News in that Baz Luhrmann has found a title for his new epic which tells the story of an aristocrat who inherits a cattle station called Faraway Downs prior to World War II. It is apparently to be called .... wait for it... "Australia". It will star Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman.
According to Lurhmann he is "taking the perspective of the rest of the world to this film how they might view 'Australia...When you say 'Casablanca' or 'Oklahoma!' it means big. It means vast... I'm not saying this film is Australia. It's a metaphor for a state of mind, for the faraway."
Actually of course I could point out to Baz that Casablanca is really quite a small film with only a few sets and where all the action takes place over 3-4 days. The characters are well developed due to excellent dialogue and subtle acting and the film has a slightly claustrophobic feel which is why it works so well. It wasn't designed to be a big film, and had it been it would probably have seemed hokey and ridiculous.
So, at the risk of sounding un-Austrayan, can I say that I loathed Moulin Rouge and I can't imagine how bad this film could be. It seems to me that since Strictly Ballroom our Baz has disappeared up his own sphincter. Mate, we get the cultural references and the big statements, we just don't need to have them slammed down our throat in technicolour. Calling a film "Australia" is a bit like calling it "Movie" or called a book "Novel".
I also can't imagine our Nicole looking like she belongs on a pre-WWII Western Australian cattle farm. Firstly, no one who lived there could look that pale. Secondly, as far as I know, Botox is yet to make it to Broome in 2006, let alone back in the 30's. The only fun part of the film is likely to be watching her try and fail to furrow her unknotted brow at the various setbacks that will befall her and Hugh.
The story is sure to feature some mystic Aboriginal subplot which will no doubt be resolved through a warm and loving friendship that forms with a small and non-threatening Aboriginal child or elder who will heal any rifts between white and black communities. Terra nullius won't be a problem, and everyone will live happily ever after in the way they still do in the Kimberley. Maybe we might get the homestead threatened by a bushfire, or a plague of locusts, or uncooperative shearers . Crops and animals will die like there is no tomorrow. There will be some racist and stupid local bureaucrats who will utter phrases like "Stone the crows mate, he won't last long at Faraway Downs, they never do". Through all of this Hugh will probably look resolute and sexy, while Nicole will look pale, seriously underfed and remarkably untroubled. A few glycerine tears will hint at her distress but Baz won't be able to stop there and will need to add some swelling music and closeups of her very blue contact lenses as part of his love affair with his ice queen. The costumes will look fabulous but completely impractical, and the dialogue will sound like it was written by Bill Collins. If we are really unlucky our Keith (who is actually a Kiwi) will contribute to the soundtrack.
Following the film's release we will have to endure an endless publicity campaign where Hugh and Nicole will sit grimacing next to Baz while he talks over them, raves about his vision and her blue eyes, and generally acts like someone who has forgotten to take their Ritalin. In interviews Hugh will be gracious and charming, and Nicole will seem forced talking about how she really got into the psyche of the character, and how much she just loves her home country.
You heard it hear first, Ms Batville predicts that "Australia" will be a turkey.
Saturday, December 02, 2006
These are those items that I will search in the index of a book that purports to be encyclopedic in its area to see whether the book is worth buying. If the index doesn't contain the particular reference I am looking for then I conclude the book is a slap-dash effort. If my reference is there I will investigate further the text further.
As far as I can recall, here all the index checkers I use:
- Any book listing significant Hollywood actors or actresses needs to have Rosalind Russell. After all she was nominated for four Academy Awards. I recently came across a book of "greatest stars of all time" that omitted her but had Kurt Russell! Likewise it should ideally also include Natalie Wood, Eve Arden, Irene Dunn, George Raft and James Cagney.
- Eleanor Roosevelt needs to be included in any list of great historical figures or great women.
- Any book on great musicians or jazz needs to include Django Reinhardt.
- A book listing great songs or standards should list The Lady is a Tramp.
- Any cocktail book needs to include recipes for a Negroni and for an original Daiquiri (ie with lime).
- A general cookbook must contain a recipe for french onion soup.
- Any list of significant historical events should include Hearst's alleged role in blowing up The Maine in Havana Harbour in 1898 and starting the Spanish-American war. As a fairly significant event in terms of press manipulation this one needs some commentary.
- A book on great cities and travel experiences should list Melbourne.
- A book of great quotes needs to include both Dolly Parton and Nelson Mandela.
- A book of great speeches needs to includes Ted Kennedy's speech at the 1980 Democratic National Convention when he withdrew from the nomination for President. Even better if it contains Sojourner Truth's "Ain't I a Woman" speech from 1851.
- Depending on the context I will check books on films for one or more of the following: The Women, Spellbound (the 1947 version), His Girl Friday, Barefoot in the Park, The Thin Man, Little Caesar, The Maltese Falcon, The Magnificent Ambersons and The Awful Truth.
- A text on Australian history and events needs to record our (shameful) role in the 1975 invasion of East Timor.
- A book on great political leaders or Presidents better devote some time to Harry Truman.
- Gardening books need to explain how to care for gardenias when their leaves turn yellow (as mine do constantly).
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Did anyone else see that piece of tripe by Tony Abbott in yesterday's Age?
In a forward to a biography of the Queen, the honorable "I am a good Catholic who can address Catholic groups about politics but shouldn't be judged on my religious views and I had premarital sex and thought I impregnated her before I left her and she adopted the baby out because I was "psychologically unready for parenthood" before I then entered training for the priesthood" Minister for Health and Ageing reckons that:
- "The monarch has an important symbolic role too as "fountain of justice and honour"; guardian of the integrity of the armed forces and the public service". I thought that was also the role of John (who cares about ministerial responsibility) Howard and respective (who cares about the rule of law) Attorneys General - Silly me;
- The Monarch stands for "the embodiment of the unity of the Commonwealth of Nations" Personally I'm not so sure that unity is a great thing but it suits Robert Mugabe;
- She "represents that ideal of duty and service that is always beyond the reach of actual human beings but towards which all should strive";
- The Queen has lived her life "with grace and charm [and] with a constant and selfless devotion to the service of her far-flung people. Pity you can't say the same about her husband or her children; and
- While "contemporary intellectuals are republicans almost to a man and woman", the "heart has reasons that reason cannot know". This is a good thing?!?!
I think Tony needs to go back to addressing his church and getting his fellow female MPs so riled up that they act across party lines to defeat him.
Here's hoping you can have a day where you can strive towards the ideal of duty and service which will beyond your actual reach, and of grace and charm with constant and selfless devotion. Or not as you wish.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Well I realise I am running the risk of this blog being entirely about my love life and there are far more interesting things to talk about than just that. However, I feel I should note my moderately good news.
The Man and I finally talked and the following occurred:
- he said he had been monogamous since we have been together, he was depressed about having to tell the other girl as he had been seeing her casually for about a year and that had not been in contact with her since I asked him about all of this. He said he was bad at this sort of thing generally and had avoided it in the past as he had always been the dumpee rather than the dumper. He said he felt a bit as if I was pressuring him although he knew that made no sense as he thought I was more than entitled to expect him to deal with this;
- he said I might have noticed that he had been a little stand-offish with me at times (yup I had). He said that this was because he had cared for me and fancied me a lot for a very long time and then a few years ago decided he had to stop thinking about me and put me out of his life and accept that nothing would happen. Recent developments had left him a bit stunned and he was still trying to get his mind around accommodating what was happening. He said that normally this should be easy, but that it wasn't yet and he just hadn't had time to process it all;
- he said he was very stressed at work as everything he was doing each day was challenging, he wasn't sleeping much and he felt generally a bit unsettled which didn't help;
- he had overcompensated for a very bad breakup by closing himself off and restricting his emotions, and he needed to let go again and open up;
- he said he cared for me, I shouldn't doubt his feelings, he wasn't using me and I didn't have to do anything except be fabulous, confident and happy, not worry or be jealous and he would deal with his issues.
I told him I wasn't asking for any commitment in time and I didn't know what might happen in three or six months, but that right now I worried about trusting him. He told me that he wouldn't give me any reason not to trust him.
I think the poor lad is a tad scared and overwhelmed, and when it comes to the other girl he is being cowardly. Our timing has always been a bit odd, and so it is now too. I can however understand how he might be a bit confused, as I had been telling him I wasn't at all interested in a relationship even when he argued his case strenuously. It was a big deal for me to admit to myself that I was falling for him, so he is entitled to a bit of time.
Now, on a more important topic, I checked into turtle ownership. I had visions of coming home at the end of a busy day to see little Skipperdee the turtle, his or her little neck poking out in anticipation. I could see myself polishing his or her shell whilst downing my gin and tonic. Skipperdee and I would grow old together, and he or she would seem to acquire a Yoda-like wise glance, which I would place great store in. I did foresee there could be problems if I stood on Skipperdee with high heels on, but it turns out that would be the least of my issues.
Suddenly, my fantasy life with Skipperdee was looking less rosy. A quick scan of the photos of turtle people turned me off completely:
On another entirely unrelated note, our new quasi-work experience student person who has seemed very shy came up to me today at work and told me she had to tell me just how much she loved my shoes. I am predicting great things for her!
Sunday, November 26, 2006
So the day after the State election in Victoria, we can all settle down to life as normal. The ALP won again, the Libs didn't get the swing they wanted and the Nats complained generally about the lot of country Victoria. After watching the coverage last night at a friend's gathering I do however have the following questions:
What is with the Premier's tie? And what is Terry Bracks wearing? It is hard to see here but it was most unflattering and she is normally quite stylish. It had horizontal rings of white and red around the lower arms making her look quite lopsided.
Has Robyn Baillieu had botox? She is on the left and her daughters Eleanor and Martha who are aged 12 and 16 respectively are to the left of Ted. Surely that cannot be her natural forehead.
Is it possible to take a good photo of the Nationals Leader Peter Ryan? I don't think so.
As for me I saw the Man last night but no time to talk so issues are not resolved. That is OK. He was going to come over but missed me. I called him up later and spoke to him for about 10 minutes, usual chit-chat and how he is particularly stressed at work and has been working silly hours at the moment on a very big project that has gone wrong in a number of ways. I didn't want to discuss issues over the phone so I will just have to be patient. In the meantime I have Eloise and my new shoes.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Well, my last post was a bit of a whinge about the actions of a particular gent (and thanks again to those who commented).
In order to keep my mind active this week so I would not obsess about when/if he would call I adopted a number of strategies. Gels and boys I can recommend the following:
- Have a haircut. I love love love my hairdresser. I have had a 11 year relationship with him and followed him across salons. I would almost follow him to Sydney (well if I could afford it). The new do is really just a cut and a slight colour but it has put the bounce back into my step.
- Plan how to vote . I voted today in the State Election and enjoyed it. I see it as a right but also as an important privilege not to be wasted. After all, Emily Davidson did not throw herself under the King's horse at the Derby or Christabel Pankhurst endure forcefeeding just so woman today could ignore their civic role. I secretly blessed Emily and all the Suffragettes as I cast my votes today. I also took a long time as I worked out who to put last in my Upper House vote as a modern day Suffragette can never vote above the line.
- Buy a new blusher(if applicable). When I see the Man I plan to look ravishing and ravishable, as if I have plenty of options and he better realise how damn lucky he could be. (Of course buying NARS "Orgasm" might be making the link a little too obvious but really I do wear that colour and it really does suit me. He doesn't need to know the name of my blush but I will!)
- Organise a gym assessment. This has been on my to do list for months. I went today and it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be. The girl at the gym was annoying perky and fit (bet she was always the first to be picked for sports teams at school while Ms Batville was the one that the two most popular kids fought over so they would not have to pick her). However, there were no calipers, just a scale thing and while my body fat is up, the BMI is still OK and the aerobic fitness was just within range.
- Buy shoes (again as applicable). OK so this will not be a surprise to Honeybear and I'm not Craig. But two pairs were for work so that can be justified. The other [pair was just too too too adorable. And they were on sale so I saved $150 all up.
- Treat yourself to a good book. I bought the 50th Anniversary almanac of Eloise. I adored this as a kid, after all who doesn't want to be six years old and live at The Plaza with a Nanny, a dog and a turtle. I now realise where I picked up the habit of exclaiming things three times "Nanny says she would rawther I didn't talk talk talk all the time. She always says everything three times like Eloise you cawn't cawn't cawn't. Sometimes I hit her on the ankle with a tassle. She is my mostly companion....Oooooooooo I just love Nanny I absolutely do". After reading this I decided that I really want want want to own a turtle called Skipperdee who needs his ears braided so he will not get a rash and who eats raisins. I may even go on line soon and research turtle ownership.
As I am seeing him tonight I am hoping things will go well. If not I will come home quick smart and watch Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn in Charade. Or maybe almost as good I will check out Anthony Green's political analysis on the ABC- gotta love the thinking woman's nerd. Anyway, my motto tonight is that a woman always needs a Plan B...and maybe also a turtle.
Hope you have a lovely lovely lovely weekend!
Monday, November 20, 2006
So... this new man and I have been seeing one another for a little while. We have known one another socially for several years and I have previously told him I wasn't interested in anything more than friendship. His heart was broken during this time and he has been dating up a storm with all sorts of women. We would catch up as friends every so often, more so often the last few months. Over time my feelings changed and we have moved from weekly dinners to weekly dinners with kissing and now things are more intimate. I have fallen really really hard and have had to catch myself as I wander around grinning in a blissful state. No one else knows. We decided not to tell our few mutual friends as it might have got a little weird early on, and they would have made this a really big deal.
So... a few weeks ago as things got more intimate Ms Batville, starry-eyed and very happy, thought she should at least tell the man that she was very happy and that her feelings had changed. Normally I would play it cooler than that but I thought some reassurance for him was a good idea. He responded that he was glad to hear it, that he wanted to take it slowly and we should keep it quiet for now, and that he had been seeing someone else casually but that he would end that although it would be messy.
So ... last night after a lovely day together I realised that he was still in contact with a woman. He seems to take hours/a day to respond to my SMS's but I'm pretty sure he was checking out her messages and replying quickly. I don't know that he is still sleeping with her but I'd have to be stupid not to think that was a likely proposition.
So ... that was the point when I fell to earth with a thud. Rather than get too emotional I tried to be calm and firm. I asked him whether he had ended it and he said it was hard to unravel. I told him I deserved better than that and that I didn't want to be the jealous type. I said I wasn't going to compete with someone else but I wasn't going to share him so he needed to make his mind up. I told him I didn't want him to be with me because of some sort of obligation because we have been friends. He responded that it wasn't an obligation, I did deserve better and that he didn't want me to think it was competition. He said that it was going to be messy and there would be hurt but he would attend to it. I told him that I wouldn't bring it up again unless I had to but he should tell me when he had ended it and that he should attend to it soon.
- I don't know if I can trust him. I had always worried about this and now I am in a quandary.
- I think I have made it too easy for him. He knows I am very keen and there is not a whole lot of mystery about me when we have been friends for a while and are now sleeping together. Maybe I played this all wrong. I seem to be making the effort now and he gets to have his cake and eat it too.
- I don't understand men, or at least this one. Maybe he is scared because I have rejected him in the past. Maybe he is scared because he has had his heart broken and we have always been such good friends that this could end up being a big deal. Or maybe he didn't care for me as a person once we slept together.
- I think he might be weak but I don't want to have to make excuses for his behaviour.
- I deserve better than this.
- I had thought that this relationship might just be on the way to being perfect and that I might have finally found someone I could really end up truly loving. A few months ago I despaired of ever loving and being loved again and now I think I might end up back there.
So ... my plan of action.
- Let him call me and chase me a bit.
- In a week or so I will ask him if he has finished it.
- If he has I will tell him that I don't know if I can trust him and I will be wary so he better know what he wants and he better treat me well.
- If he hasn't I will tell him that I deserve better, that we seem to have different levels of respect for one another and that if he really wants to see me he then this wouldn't be an issue. Then I think I will walk away and tell him that if he changes his mind he knows how to contact me. God knows if he would and maybe I would be an idiot to consider it. At least I know that I can't go on if he doesn't have the courage or compassion to put an end to this current situation.
Just typing this out makes me feel a bit better even though I am typing through tears. Maybe I was a fool to believe in the first place and it is better to be a cynical single with a good group of friends than a naive idiot who gets duped. Maybe love is something that happens for only a lucky few.
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Wayne Swan has said that Kim Beazley will "absolutely" be the leader of the ALP at the next election. As any footy coach knows, this is the kiss of death.
I'm unsure what I think about this. I was embarrassed by Beazley's Karl Rove/Rove McManus gaffe but this seems to be an odd thing to be the straw that broke the camel's back. I quite like what I have seen of Kevin Rudd, but he does seem a little colourless (maybe that is just his complexion).
What I really want is a strong opposition and some excitement back in Australian politics. There seems to be so many people I meet who want someone to really challenge Howard, and even some Liberal voters think that a stronger opposition would mean a better government. I'm not sure Beazley will ever be able to do this. He just can't seem to get "lift off" on any issue.
On the other hand, another change for the ALP might lead to that awful honeymoon period from journos where Rudd can do no wrong, followed by a big let down and a period of disillusionment.
It looks like being an interesting few weeks.
So, what makes a U2 concert so great. How about this:
- Appropriate local references. Unlike Kayne West with his hackneyed "Melbourne (pronounced "bourrrrnnne") is the best crowd ever", Bono got it just right. A verse about Melbourne and its suburbs in Beautiful Day and his imploring for the crowd from the "fashionable city" to dance got the right response. We even got a didgeridoo.
- Respect for the audience. We were thanked for waiting for them after their March shows were postponed. The lucky audience members who made it on stage were treated with respect and good humour. Bono's political segments assume a level of intelligence and understanding from the audience and don't seem to be to be sermonising or posturing.
- Respect for music. Their habit of inserting snippets of other songs Rock the Casbah, Highway to Hell and Sgt Peppers and the thank you to Joe Strummer marks U2 out as fellow music fans, just like their audience.
- Great songs played well in a great set list. The pace was good. It never slowed down too much, but at the same time the pace varied allowing us to relax at times.
- Some content. Bono's pleas for Africa, the prayer for our troops to return home safely and a prayer for the Bali bombing victims are political without being too divisive. Personally I wouldn't mind if he went further, but he knows not to alienate his audience and I guess the size of the audience is the thing that gives him the clout to meet with politicians. He comes across as eloquent and heartfelt and I think it adds enormously to the concert rather than being distracting.
- Amazing audio-visuals. The first encore featured two songs from Achtung Baby and we had Zooroopa style visuals. I was so entranced with the messages during The Fly ("Reclaim your space it belongs to you", "The answer is love") that I had tears in my eyes.
- Great fans. U2 fans in the General Admission area I was in were cheery and fun. When a pregnant woman near us got too hot, everyone cleared the way to make sure she got out and got some air. Complete strangers chatted together before the show and then sang together and smiled at each other across heads.
- Thank yous to their team. Bono thanked Edge and his wife Morleigh (whose young daughter's leukemia was apparently the reason for the postponement) and the tour promoters Michael Coppell.
- Grins. Even Larry Mullen Jnr was grinning. They were happy and enjoying themselves and it showed.
All in all a great night and one of the best concerts I've seen. An extra 500 tickets for tonight go on sale this morning ...hmmm, am tempted.
And yes, The Edge looked particularly fine. He was very bouncy and active, and his playing was great. I may have been the only person amongst 65,000 odd who finds him so sexy (ignoring the presence of his wife). Luckily I have another fine man to keep me distracted at the moment so I can get over my rock star crush.
Photos by matthias muehlbradt - see u2-vertigo-tour.com.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
I love to see live music and I made a decision a few years ago that I was going to make a concerted effort to see more concerts rather than regret not getting organised. It is sad though as too often I am disappointed by half-hearted performances or artists who just stand there sing and then leave. I love a bit of banter and when bands show some energy. I've seen U2 a few times and have never been disappointed. Even on their "off" nights they still play with passion.
Few others that I have seen have been so enjoyable. The Cat Empire play a great show and I was blown away by Franz Ferdinard earlier this year. I always enjoy Paul Kelly as he is such a intelligent and funny bloke as well as a great musician. The worst show I ever saw was one of the many Split Enz reunions where there was absolutely no chemistry between the band and no interaction with the audience. I was checking my watch waiting for it to end.
I'm hoping for a good one tonight. A bunch of us are getting there (moderately) early to get a decent position. Unlike our earlier days when we could endure queuing and standing, this time we are going to conserve our energy. There will be nibbles for us while we lounge around on the ground and wait. The Saturday papers will be read, and there will generally be a air of relaxed nonchalance. I am tasked with bringing the Haighs Chocolates. I think we are officially getting old!
For those going, enjoy the concert!
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Phew! Have been (and still am) frantically busy. I've been travelling in and out of Batville and generally doing too much so have neglected this poor little blog. Am now back in the blogosphere and looking forward to catching up on all those lovely posts out there. Will generally get back in the swing of things soon.
Hope life is treating you well, and that those in my vicinty have recovered from the hail and snow that afflicted our little city yesterday. Can you believe we are two weeks out from summer?
Only two sleeps till I see U2!
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Well, this little story in the Age is comforting. The story focuses on the request by the "Universal Tube & Rollform Equipment Corporation" for YouTube to either stop using that domain name, or to assist in setting up a new one to replace utube.com. Seems the poor pipe manufacturers are being inundated with emails they don't want. Fair enough, just another news report you might say.
The disturbing bit is the part relating to the Sexual Crimes Squad. One Detective Senior Sergeant who apparently had the "right intention" emailed You Tube to ask them to remove footage taken from a DVD that relates to a rape investigation. Except that the Detective Senior Sergeant emailed the wrong address.
OK, I can understand how amateur pornographers and people who tape things for Funniest Video Shows could make that mistake and get utube.com mixed up with youtube.colm, but the Sexual Crimes Squad?
Can you imagine the conversation:
Cop 1:"Hey, mate can you email that tube site and ask them to take it off"
Cop 2:"Yeah sure. Hey how do you spell it?"
Cop 1:"I dunno"
Cop 2:"Does u-t-u-b-e.com sound about right?"
Cop 1:"Yeah, she'll be right mate"
Give me Marita Hargitay any day.
Monday, November 06, 2006
- When I was a little thing I used to walk on tip toes so much that my worried mother took me to the doctor to have me checked out.
- My favourite colour is purple.
- I love children, but I'm not sure I can or will ever have the chance to have any of my own so make do by being a good friend to other people's kids.
- I like my calfs and my ankles. I do a good ankle.
- I can get ready to go out really quickly - if necessary I can shower, iron my clothes, style my hair and apply liquid eyeliner (degree of difficulty 8.9) in under 15 minutes.
- I like art deco furniture, but I don't like the musty smell of antiques, so I don't really own any.
- I can be very cynical, and my Mum worries that I am becoming "hard".
- I aspire to be truthful in my life, with my friends, colleagues and family, and most importantly with myself. I have failed at this in the past but I think I am much better at it now.
- If I go more than two days without listening to music that I like, I find myself getting really cranky.
- I am addicted to Vegemite.
So if you are reading this, fess up and tell us something about yourself.
Friday, November 03, 2006
In honour of Why do I do it? I thought I should return her post on procrastination.
I was just thinking about this as I worked out what to wear. Hours to date - 1. Outfits tried on - 5. Do I wear a skirt? Pants? Does that white top make the pesky few extra kilos a bit more obvious? Can I wear new shoes or will they hurt to much?
So what does Ms Batville do? Rather than make a decision she gets online and posts about it. That won't get the eyelashes curled as I'm sure someone used to say.
Tell me your top 5 procrastination techniques. I bet I can beat them all!
(And may your horse win the Derby tomorrow)
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
I am at that delightful time in a lass's life where she and a man spend their time kissing. In some ways it is an old relationship but the kissing thing is new and I must say the man in question is very skilled at the art. (OK promise not to nauseate you any further).
This is all quite refreshing for a cynic like me who had almost given up on the relationship thing and who had certainly forgot how nice hours of kissing can be. I had thought I couldn't see him in that way but then one day a while ago he made an offhand remark about something that seemed of no consequence and it jolted me in a way I did not expect. So things seem great and I mostly can't stop grinning.
But still, the insecurities surface. No reply to a text or "what did he mean by that?" and I suddenly become worrisome. Why can't I just relax and enjoy it? Maybe despite myself I am one of those slightly obsessive neurotic types that I pity.
One good thing - he has no idea. I have my pride for the moment at least.
And another good thing - we are catching up this weekend for more kissing....
Sunday, October 29, 2006
The Age is reporting that real estate agents are still underquoting.
This is almost as astonishing as the reports in The Age earlier the week that pregnant women suffer discrimination at work and that "Babies still put a bump in women's career paths."
What next? Stories that tell us "Aboriginal people are discriminated against", "Shane Warne is not monogamous" or "Many Australians are actually racist."
Saturday, October 28, 2006
I can verily report that Mr Tulk cafe at the State Library of Victoria does a very good breakfast. It also has nice big tables so you can spread out and read the paper or a novel at ease. The staff are lovely and the ambiance is great. It also has a very high proportion of seemingly intelligent and lovely men who sound like Gregory Peck.
In winter they all seemed to be wearing jeans and black turtlenecks and Ms Batville has always been partial to a black turtleneck. I feared that if I went back in summer they would have white legs sticking out of shorts festooned with big ugly Jesus sandals (and obviously footwear is a big thing for me at the moment). I am glad to report that my fears were unfounded and there was nary a sad sandal in site.
So girls (or boys) , if you want to check out the talent, head down to Mr Tulk, order the nice toast thing and see what I mean.
If you don't meet a nice man to have your coffee with, you can always go and sit in the La Trobe reading room, look up at the dome, open up a book and all will seem well with the world.
Friday, October 27, 2006
Monday, October 23, 2006
Today as I was driving along in city I was indulging in that well-known female habit of checking out other women and assessing their clothing/look/hair etc. I was feeling charitable, and was delighted to spot a beautiful black velvet suit jacket with slim white piping, matched with a very nicely tailored grey frock. The wearer would have been late 20s, well groomed hair and walking along jauntily looking quite sweet indeed "How nice" I thought to myself, before I gazed down in horror to the footwear.
Light blue havaianas.
I have whinged before about the whole thongs with a suit thing, but now I have had enough! I may be old-fashioned but I belong to the suit=work, thongs=beach school of dressing. Enough crimes against fashion I say. From now on I will accost such types and shriek loudly at them until they march into Nine West and get themselves a nice pair of proper shoes.
Saturday, October 21, 2006
Ha! After my smug post about my Sunday walk around the Tan I can verily report that I have hurt my leg and can't walk properly. Yes indeedy. And after walking at a pace where I was overtaken by small children on the Anderson Street hill.
The physio has told me to stay out of heels (blasphemous talk), to do stretching exercises, to ice my lower leg and to keep coming back for visits. In the meantime it actually hurts like hell.
Am seriously tempted to revert my formerly slothlike gluttonous state. Sure the clothes were a tad tight tight and walking up stairs left me puffed, but at least I wasn't in pain.
A weekend of reading, using copious quantities of ice (for leg and for gin) and grumbling to myself awaits.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
...or of further upsetting my lovely and sensible fellow bloggers (see last post) has anyone see the article by Neil Mitchell in today's Herald Sun ?
Apparently the racist attack on a Jewish man and his children in Caulfield last week by a bunch of footy players was "not all bad news" because Neil has surmised:
- Anybody could have been the target of this - "Jew, Muslim, Aboriginal, Asian, Greek, Italian". Apparently women can also be the target of yobbos.
- While it was "reasonable" for the victim to object to being called a "f--- Jew " while hearing the cheer "go Nazis" we should ask if it was reasonable for him to approach the bus the players were travelling in. Neil thinks that this escalated the "clash from ugly to violent". The "good news" is that the decision to approach the bus turned out to be OK because it another person intervened. This person we are told was "not a Jew" but was "sufficiently outraged to pursue the bus". A few others helped as well and that, according to Neil, was a "statement of deceny because these people identified as unacceptable the actions of a few idiots". (Obviously without their actions, readers of the Herald Sun would have been unable to make this judgement for themselves).
- The President of the Ocean Grove Football Club has been "decent and sensible" because he was appalled at what happened and hoped that those involved would meet the victim and apologise to him, and that they would visit the Holocaust Museum.
- Other "average Australians" have also expressed their "outrage and committement to decency"
In conclusion, Neil tells us that the victim has been exposed to a "snapshot of Australia:we have a few yobbos, a smattering of racism, a good deal of decency, a mix of cultures, dashes of prejudice, an underlying base of fairness, an edge of danger with our blokey culture, and too much fondness for too much alcohol."
Well, I feel better.
Anyone else want to stalk the Ocean Grove Football Club next year. We can turn up to their matches, laugh at their physical appearance and crack jokes about the deaths on the Melbourne-Geelong Road and the Pyramid Bank collapse. Let's make sure we do it in full view of their children as well, for good measure.
I need a gin.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
It is five years since the Siev X sank with the loss of 353 asylum seekers. On Friday the Age published this photo of Hazam Al Rowaimi who lost his mother, wife and children when the boat sank off Australian waters . At the time Australia's then Immigration Minister, then Defence Minister and the Prime Minister John Howard announced that a number of children on the vessel had been thrown overboard. This was later found to be untrue, but not before it was an issue at an election which John Howard was returned to power.
Apparently a Commonwealth Government Agency have stopped plans for a memorial in Canberra on the basis that it can't be erected until 10 years after the event.
It has been six weeks since Steve Irwin died. Apparently our Prime Minister John Howard has said he would be holding discussions soon about a permanent memorial as "I certainly know that the people want it and we've had some very good suggestions and I hope we can come up with a sensible proposal."
What a day of accomplishment for Ms Batville. This time last week I was getting out of bed (for the second time - having retired back to bed after my initial effort of eating breakfast and reading the papers).
This morning I have already devoured the papers, walked around the Tan and done the supermarket shopping. Ms Batville is not a natural exerciser so this constituted my fifth ever walk around the Tan, and the second in three weeks. I was a slow time of 40 minutes all the way around, but I made it up the Anderson Street Hill in better form than last time. Sure small children passed me, but hey, it is a start.
The strange thing is that everytime I have walked the Tan it starts raining just as I near the end. And not just a drizzle, rather a full on genuine "we need rain like this" rain. The sort of rain you get when you decide to wash the curtains or rugs and leave them on the line to dry out.
From now on I will attempt to walk the Tan twice a week, to the point where I can actually run the damn thing. This will hopefully help me lose those pesky extra few kilos, and will be my one woman effort to help Victoria's farmers by ending the drought.
PS - If you were on the Tan this morn and saw someone walking along grinning inanely to themselves, that was me. Most unexpectedly Murray Head's "One night in Bangkok" popped up on my iPod, and I was amused to think how the hell it snuck on there.
Thursday, October 12, 2006
Bad things about very hot and windy days in Batville and the rest of Victoria in October:
- Body Odour on the tram;
- Body Odour in lifts;
- Girls wearing thongs with their suits in the city;
- Toenails in thongs with dodgy half-applied half-worn toenail polish;
- People saying "Its hot isn't it"
- Bushfires (already!);
- Further drought for farmers;
- Wind blowing sand from tram tracks into your eyes
- Increased likelihood of Stage 2 water restrictions;
- Coming home to a hot house;
- Finding out you haven't quite lost those pesky few kilos that you can cover up in your winter and autumn clothes.
Good things about very hot and windy days in Batville and the rest of Victoria in October:
- Having a cold beer when you get home from work.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
I have a very small garden which over the last few years I have to come to love. I potter about and lose all track of time. I also have a pair of green and pink check gumboots which I adore so will welcome any excuse to wear them. At the end of a hard afternoon in the garden I can sit in my gumboots, downing a restorative cocktail and I don't have a care in the world.
The most frustrating thing about gardening is that it usually looks ragged and half-eaten due to a never-ending plague of snails. I've tried leaving out beer which is supposed to encourage them to some sort of drunken suicide but have never found this to work. I also realised once that this technique has too many parallels with young men and their first cars so it makes me uneasy (I know - possibly an odd reaction). So instead I bait them and ever so often I go on a rampage, hunt them out and crush them to death. I can pretend they are some of the arrogant idiots I occasionally have to work with. Even more satisfying is to apply salt to them and watch them foam up and die but this takes planning (after all who walks around with salt on them). I was reading a gardening book recently that suggested this was a cruel practice and a more humane way to dispose of snails was to put them in a plastic bag and then into the freezer so they could "fall asleep gently". WHAT? They are snails not endangered cute baby seals. As my dear old Grandad would say "What a load of rot!"
I am obviously not a very humane gardener. I will however continue on my search for appropriate and effective snail eradication techniques.
Sunday, October 08, 2006
Now don't get me wrong - I like Sydney a lot and don't buy into the whole city-bashing rivalry thing. I don't choose to live there being more of a Batville girl myself, but I appreciate the city.
Interesting though the top news stories currently at The Age v The Sydney Morning Herald . The Age's most viewed story is Snaps show Mars rover on brink of discovery with nice photo of a crater photographed by NASA. The SMH's most popular story is entitled Bras keep abreast and tells a story about how Berlei have conducted a survey and discovering that Australian women's breasts are getting larger.
Saturday, October 07, 2006
Since praising the wonderful Margaret Whitlam a few weeks back I have contemplated buying the new biography of her.
I happened upon a story about the book in a copy of the Australian Women's Weekly which is not my normal reading pleasure. Anyway you can trust the Weekly for a nice, non-controversial story. Imagine my surprise when I happened upon the following paragraph:
Certainly, a less secure person than Margaret would have stepped back from revealing some of the more intimate truths of a 64-year marriage - whether, for instance, she was able to have an orgasm on her honeymoon; whether Gough was, in fact, a good lover; and whether she ever fancied another man. On all three counts the answer is a resounding, "Yes".Well, my giddy Aunt. This is not the sort of thing you expect in the Weekly! And Margaret! Gough! Their honeymoon! Crikey!
Now we know there might be more in that famous Nicholson Cartoon was after an earthquake during the Whitlam's trip to China in 75.
But wait there is more in the Weekly:
Not only was Gough a good lover, he actually read her poems by
Keats, Shelley and Byron when they were in bed together. "I suppose you'd call
it foreplay and I just thought it was lovely".
Gough you ole romantic devil you. Surely even die-hard Lib women would read that in envy. Bet Malcolm never did that for Tammy, and I'm damn sure John Howard doesn't...sorry can't finish this sentence. Will go and wash my mouth out.
I am a fan of old Hollywood films and love a good old-fashioned dish-the-dirt Hollywood biography, particularly if it is written by or about an actor or actress who is largely forgotten about today.
Sure it is a strange and unfashionable habit that is possibly more suited to a gay man or a sad old bloke with a bad toupee (hello Bill Collins) but what can I say - I love the old goss. Even since I read Evelyn Keye's autobiography to escape the horror of a caravan park holiday when I was twelve I had enjoyed this guilty pleasure. Poor old Evelyn called her book Scarlett O'Hara's younger sister for all those in the bookstore who asked the question "Who?"
I had reason to leave Batville this week and travel to the Sticks. One compensation of country travel is the discoveries you can make in second hand bookstores. Imagine my excitement at the following purchases which added up to a grand total of $14.
I have no idea why Stewart Grainger has called his autobiography "Sparks fly upwards" but I am sure I can report on this soon. Strangely if you had asked me last week what I knew about him I would have said bugger all really but I would have guessed that he was married to Jean Simmons (the actress, not the lead singer of KISS). Scanning the book I was able to confirm this. Why did I know this? How did this piece of truly useless information stick in my brain when I can't remember to buy coffee when I run out? Very odd.
As for the other book I have always liked Sheilah Graham even since I saw the movie they made about her and F Scott Fitzgerald Beloved Infidel. Gregory Peck played Fitzgerald very unconvincgly but Deborah Kerr was wonderful in her kind English way as Sheliah.
A weekend of reading bliss awaits.
Highlight of the pre-game entertainment was not Irene Cara although she tried hard, but rather Sean Kelly (Models) snarling his way through "I hear motion". I had a HUGE crush on that man in 1986 and it haunts me still. Why Wendy Matthews left him is beyond me. He still has that rock star charisma, unlike his fellow band-mate poor old James Freud who is looking a tad corpulent these days.
Saturday, September 30, 2006
So it is Grand Final day in Melbourne and there is that fever in the air (which is as yet imperceptible to me as I haven't left the house). My day will start soon with a post-hangover breakfast somewhere where I don't have to be nice to anyone, followeed by a short period of "walking in the fresh air" recovery and then catching up with a friend who is borrowing stuff from me for a big GF BBQ. I'll drop into said BBQ for a short time and then onto the 'G. According to the AFL, the day will go something like this:
- 10am TAC Cup Grand Final (Ms Batvillle care factor of -1)
- 12.50am Red Berets parachute into MCG, delivering match-day footballs (Whatever)
- 1pm Teams warm-up (Will be entering the ground about now)
- 1.25pm Irene Cara performs What a Feeling (How embarrassing for her - bet she never thought her career would take her to this place)
- 1.29pm Australian Idol finalists perform Waltzing Matilda (Love the song esp when performed at big public gatherings but not sure about Idol - personally would prefer Hugh Jackman, in tight pans, shirtless etc etc - you get the idea)
- (Surely the RAAF Roulettes have to appear about now - I didn't pay $80 for a ticket to actually watch two non-Victorian clubs play if the Roulettes don't appear)
- 1.36pm Motorcade of AFL greats, retirees and 2006 award winners as the Young Divas perform You’re the Inspiration (Song sounds awful but love this bit - clap on the old gents of yesterday and laugh as some recently retired bogans get a huge clap while they silently thank their club for paying out their sexual haharassment claims so they can start their landscaping business unencumbered)
- 1.42pm Club songs performed by Melbourne Gospel Choir (Thank god we don't have to listen to that Port Power song this year - would slit my wrists)
- 1.46pm Australian rock legends perform medley of hits (OMG - John Paul Young - YAH, YAH, YAH. Ms Batville will sing heartily along to Up there Cazaly to prove she is a real Victorian!)
- 2.16pm Umpires enter the arena (Goldspink is umpiring - WTF?)
- 2.27pm Australian rock legends perform Advance Australia Fair (Love this bit)
- 2.28pm Coin toss
- 2.30pm 2006 Toyota AFL Grand Final (Hope it is a good one - if not will nick off early and go back to the BBQ)
Hope your team wins and that you have a good one.
Thursday, September 28, 2006
Yah - my mojo seems to be returning. Not to the point where I actually accomplished much today but at least I seem to be able to contemplate achieving something tomorrow. The little black rain cloud has moved on. We're not quite in full sun yet, more like overcast with moments of sunniness.
So, in that vein a list of things that made Ms Batville happy today:
- A postcard from a friend in Boston of a very elegant photo of Jackie circa 1962 - apparently he saw it and thought it resembled me - Wow.
- Larry Mullen Jnr's treatment of autograph scalpers courtesy of Scatter - God I love U2.
- Pulling up next to a wanker in a sportscar at lights a mere 200 metres after he tried to run me off the road doing some ridiculous speed. Even better - when the light changed, my little rust box took off and he ... stalled. Hah!
- Buying some Green Tea perfume at Elizabeth Arden and getting quite a good GWP (Gift with Purchase)
- Margaret Whitlam's comments about Janette Howard. Good old Margaret - bless her. My respect for Gough grows ever time I think about his choice of wife.
- Knowing that tomorrow is end of the month at work, and despite my lethargy, my group will still have met our targets.
- Having AFL Grand Final tickets. OK so I don't follow either team (but I am an AFL member so am justified in having a ticket) but I do love a good GF and I simply love love love the bit where the RAAF Roulettes swoop down over the 'G and scare the bejusus out of everyone. I also adore the way that the singing of our national anthem degenerates in the last four seconds amongst a very bloky chorus of "Go Swans/Go Weagles/Go Wirra/ Go Goodey etc".
- Seeing that a few new people checked out my poor little neglected blog and stayed for more than 10 seconds - WOOHOO. So to them I say - come back - and - have a great weekend. May your team win the footy.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Also known as how to waste half an hour on line
All dressed up but nowhere to go. My personal little rain cloud seems to be following me around.
(One good thing - all this time on line means I can't be bothered to cook. A Ms Batville weight loss tip - don't try this one at home kiddies.)
I had a meeting today for a work with a man who I met once before, about a month ago for an hour. About half an hour into this second meeting with him I realised that he only had one arm. He was dressed in a suit which just sort of hung on one side.
How did I not notice this before? Very disconcerting to think I am that vague.
Listening to News Radio (as one does when travelling home from another fruitless day in the office) I swear I heard a John Howard malapropism. Our PM declared that he couldn't take action over something because the Government would not go "open splatter". Personally I would welcome a bit of open splatter in Australian politics right now - would amp up the interest level.
Monday, September 25, 2006
I have my doubts that anyone will read this but if you are - be prepared for whiny whinge (that is Australian for a complaining diatribe).
Another long day at work and nothing much achieved. It is not as though I don't have work to do. Some of it is even interesting - I just can't get motivated.
I am great at the meetings and the gabbing. For some reason I just can't bring myself to start putting it down on paper as I am required to do. Some years ago I put this down to a fear that my writing was not that great, but I know now that my writing is fine (comparatively), my reasoning is fine and the end product (when I get around to it) is damn good.
But instead of starting the work I have to do, I found myself having coffees, checking out the net, wandering around and applying for a new credit card online. The really stupid thing about all of this is that for the first time since I started work I am facing the prospect that if I can't do a better job and up my game I may have to get another job. I am so damn specialised I have no idea what else I could do or what else to do.
So, chances are I will have another sleepless night, leaving to a dreary day where I am too tired to concentrate properly so yet another deadline will slip by and I will be in even more strife. I really need to snap out of this and get motivated. The question for me is how?
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
More importantly, which one would you pick to take out Amanda Vanstone?
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
I spent half an hour exploring Ban Ban Homewares in Victoria Street, Abbotsford this week. It is an Asian cookware store, with shelf upon shelf of cheap items. There is a whole section devoted horrible plastic things, you know, the kind that will discolour within a few weeks of use. The store attendants seemed to spend the whole time I was in there screeching violently at one another. Of course I don't speak their language so it is presumptious (and maybe gasp...culturally insensitive) of me to presume they were screeching. Nonetheless their tone was so intense that I hesitated to ask them questions such as "You see this lovely looking metal thing here, what does it actually do?"
I spent my time there in a bit of a daze, imagining myself as some sort of Kylie Kwong cook, with a whole kitchen full of interesting utensils, dazzling my friends with dinner parties. The reality is however that I have a tiny kitchen which is already crammed full, very modest cooking ability and I hardly ever host dinner parties. I also have an aversion to cooking any animal which resembles the creature it once was. As a result I'm great with mince and chicken breasts, but not much else. So after my flight of fancy, accompanied by background screeching, I left with a tiny purchase of six chinese soup soons - perfect for those not very frequent occasions when five friends join me for takeaway Asian soup! A bargain at 90c each, but not when you consider that it could be years and years before they get used (if ever).
Saturday, September 16, 2006
I normally abhore the habit encouraged in the coffee shops of large chain bookstores of reading books or magazines that you have no intention of buying . The coffee is usually terrible, the food is overpriced and I hate to think that someone might later purchase a book with my crumbs in it.
I did however, overcome my moral objection yesterday when in Borders I spotted Clive Owen on the front of a US GQ. Ten minutes later I was enconsed in the mag, sipping a not great hot chocolate and eating a piece of so-so cheesecake. I might add it was a very very pleasant experience!
Yikes, do I give up on my principles that easily, just to gawk at photos of an extremely handsome British actor? Apparently, yes.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
I live in an inner Melbourne suburb. I am female. I work in the CBD. I am originally of pale Anglo-Celtic stock. Ergo I wear a lot of black.
There are three supermarkets in and around my suburb. Two of them stock "Dynamo Dark Clothes Wash" which is perfect for keeping the dark side suitably muted. The one nearest to me does not. Why? They are all the same chain. Arguably the one nearest to me is also the most edgy or is at least closest to both the student housing and the clothes shops . However, if I want to preserve my blackness I must traipse to one of the other supermarkets.
Why this local anti-black bias? It is an outrage
Question - If Melbourne was nearly called Batville (and Batmania) is it correct to call Melbournians "batvillians" or "batvilliagers"?
Monday, September 11, 2006
Why is it that a person suddenly feels the need to start a blog and (hopefully) share their thoughts with the world? Is it that they are lonely? In need of attention? Maybe in the middle of a busy world, in what seems to be a perfect job, surrounded by self-important folk, I need a space to be truly honest.
Seems to me that the older we get, and the more successful we are, the only time we are truly honest is when we are with kids. I don't have any of my own, but I am lucky enough to have two small friends with whom I can really be myself. The rest of the time I have to 'put on a face' - the "professional" face, the "boss" face, the "good daughter" face or the "god I hope I am hiding how bad this date is going" face.
So let me know - how honest can you really be in a blog? Do you self-edit? Does a fear of being identified limit what you say? Guidance for the newbie welcome....