Thursday, November 30, 2006

Apparently we aspire to be our best because of Elizabeth II

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

The opposite sex can be strange at times, but not as strange as turtle owners

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.

So what can a girl do. I really really do care for him so I am going to take him on face value, treat him well, expect the same from him, respect that he has been honest with me about his feelings and just take things as they come. The best part might be simply that I can just love him and that makes me feel good. I'm not talking that simpering, spoil him rotten and cook for him sort of stuff. I am after all a feminist who deserves a good deal from her man and sets her standards high. But I do care for him so I think I will just enjoy showing him that. I suggested a weekend away where we could sleep in, kiss and um er..., read the weekend papers, talk, not talk, laze around and just relax and be together to get used to all of this. He certainly agreed to that.

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.

According to the good folks at, "Too many people buy turtles for the novelty effect, and end up neglecting them." I would need a turtle tank of at least 40 gallons with both a land and a water area, and with the ability to change the temperature between day and night. Skipperdee would need spring water rather than tap water, and would also need a basking lamp (don't we all need one of those!). I would be advised not to "take the turtle out of its tank to show it off or play with it. These sudden changes in temperature can affect the immune system of reptiles, since they are cold-blooded animals and take longer to adjust to the changes. " Not quite sure how that fits with the requirement to "stay attentive to your turtle's behavior, and take care of it as you would take care of any other pet." I guess hours of turtle gazing and no shell polishing would be required.

Suddenly, my fantasy life with Skipperdee was looking less rosy. A quick scan of the photos of turtle people turned me off completely:

So, Skipperdee and I are not to be.

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

Important questions the day after

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

Things to do to keep your mind off your love life

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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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!)
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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

And she falls crashing from her cloud

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.

My thoughts:

  1. I don't know if I can trust him. I had always worried about this and now I am in a quandary.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. I think he might be weak but I don't want to have to make excuses for his behaviour.
  5. I deserve better than this.
  6. 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.

  1. Let him call me and chase me a bit.
  2. In a week or so I will ask him if he has finished it.
  3. 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.
  4. 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

It can only be a matter of days

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.

The makings of a great concert

Saw U2 last night and it was fantastic. They were great and seemed to enjoy themselves, the crowd were into it, the sound was good and even poor old maligned Telstra Dome more than lived up to the task.

So, what makes a U2 concert so great. How about this:

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Getting a bit of rattle and hum

At the end of a frantic week, full of travel, endless meetings and bad coffee it is wonderful to sleep in. It is even better to wake up and realise that you are off to see U2 with a group of close friends tonight.

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

Hello Hello

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

Having faith in our crime fighters

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 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 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 sound about right?"

Cop 1:"Yeah, she'll be right mate"

Give me Marita Hargitay any day.

Monday, November 06, 2006

10 things you won't know about me

OK so here goes - Inspired by hat seeks home, I'm not Craig and snoskred, here is ten things that you won't know about me:

  1. 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.
  2. My favourite colour is purple.
  3. 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.
  4. I like my calfs and my ankles. I do a good ankle.
  5. 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.
  6. I like art deco furniture, but I don't like the musty smell of antiques, so I don't really own any.
  7. I can be very cynical, and my Mum worries that I am becoming "hard".
  8. 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.
  9. If I go more than two days without listening to music that I like, I find myself getting really cranky.
  10. I am addicted to Vegemite.

So if you are reading this, fess up and tell us something about yourself.

Worst ever songs to have stuck in your head

At the moment I have two: Joelene by Dolly Parton and It's the Hard Knock Life from the Annie soundtrack.

Am stuck in inner audio hell.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Procrastination part 1

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

When it is all new

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....