I came home from the Melbourne Royal Show last Wednesday, completely exhausted and replete with loot. (For any non-Australians not familiar with the Royal Shows – think rides and booths where you can win toys and scary, scary carnies (OK you don’t win the carnies, they are just there with the toys) and, in an Australian twist, Showbags. Which are overpriced bags of merchandise, usually chocolate and lollies, with some sort of toy.) Well, it is expected to buy a showbag or two at the show, I reasoned; so I set out on my mission. This is where it went a bit wrong. There were children everywhere, laden like beasts of burden with three, four? – nay, one dozen showbags. Each. Children weighed down with bags and bags of sugar. And toys. And sugar. Frankly, I was agog. (I was aghast. Is Marius in love at last? Ahem.) And they weren’t the $1 Bertie Beetle showbags, either. (Note to Self for next year: Bertie Beetles are awful, and even with three of them for $1, overpriced. Avoid the Beetles.)
So what did I bring home from the show?
– 2 Bertie Beetle showbags (one for a friend) – money completely wasted
– 1 x KitKat showbag – not bad. Still eating it.
– 1 x Cat On A Stick (by which I mean a soft toy hanging from a bamboo pole). Cat is currently lying on the table, ready to be given to a Good Dog when I find one. A shortage of Good Dogs around here at present.
– 1 x Hippo on a Stick (as above). Hippo is currently lying on the rug beside the computer, looking at me reproachfully. Well, he would be, if he had any eyes. For his eyes are gone; also, all of his stuffing. He lies supine amongst his polyester innards, staring blindly at the ceiling. Sorry, Hippo.
Scorned Girl at Work [and I’m being charitable with the Girl bit]: Rant rant rant. All men are bastards. Piss, moan. Good for nothings. Whine, sob. [I may be paraphrasing here.]
Sympathetic [or Maybe Just Bored] Girl at Work: Oh, no. How is the breakup going?
Scorned Girl : Badly, all because of that him, the piece of shit. He’s a Sagittarius, that’s the reason. I hate Sagittarians. As soon as I found out, I knew we were doomed.
Sympathetic Girl: Oh, I hate Cancers. I don’t get along with Cancers at all.
Jac: [snickering to herself, obviously] A Cancer can totally ruin your day. (Added hidden meaning for those playing at home: Mr. T is a Cancerian.)
Sympathetic Girl: [oblivious, or otherwise ignoring me] What star sign are you then?
Scorned Girl: I’m a Virgo, so the whole thing with the Sagittarian was doomed from the start. I mean, we were never going to be compatible. We fought all the time. What star sign are you?
Sympathetic Girl: I’m a Pisces.
Scorned Girl: Yes, I thought you were. I can always tell. Pisceans are so intuitive – do you find you pick up on things that others don’t?
Sympathetic Girl: Oh, for SURE. All the time.
Scorned Girl: Mmm, you’re definitely a Pisces. Jac, what star sign are you?
Scorned Girl: What’s your star sign?
Jac: What do you think it is?
Scorned Girl: No really, what is it?
Jac: But you just said you can always tell. You’ve known me for about a year now. What star sign do you think I am?
Sympathetic Girl: [displaying mighty intuition skills] Well, when’s your birthday then?
Scorned Girl: Um. Are you Taurus? Capricorn?
Scorned Girl: Aquarius? Scorpio? You’re not a SAGITTARIUS, are you?
Jac: Well, you just said you loathed and despised all Sagittarians.
Scorned Girl: Are you? Sagittarius? Are you really!
Jac: [tiring] No, I’m an Aries. My birthday is in April.
Scorned Girl: Ah. Yes, that would be right. You’re totally an Aries. Yeah, typical.
Sympathetic Girl: Oh, totally.
Jac: But you just rattled off half a dozen other star signs! You said you could ALWAYS tell and you didn’t even GUESS Aries!
Scorned Girl: Wow, you Fire signs are always so volatile.
– I have been to the gym two days this week. Two days – – in a row. And not merely to
scope out guys pick up class information – oh no. I am proud to inform you that I am a treadmill-running fool. Well maybe not so much with the running; more with the walking, then lurching ungracefully into the jogging. Although I keep getting my hand tangled up in my headphone wires and jerking my head briskly to one side. Combine this with the lurching and I am the embodiment of Zombie on a String.
– The dogs are running the fenceline (not unusual) and provoking the golden retriever next door (also not unusual). What IS unusual: they are not barking back. Nor are they leaping around in excitement, nor racing flat along the fenceline with their ears back like greyhounds after the lure. They are just running the fenceline, scoping out the garden, and ignoring the reaction of the other dogs. There may be hope for them yet. Although they are still stomping on the plants.
– Melbourne has turned on some strange weather lately, with which the populace has not coped well. Picture a six-lane road, at 5.30pm in rush hour, which is slick with rain and pointing due west, therefore glowing fiercely with sun glare. You have Wellington Road. Add some misty rain: you have a sun shower, where the air itself is shot with light and at any minute Jesus could descent in a burst of glory to begin the Rapture. Now add Melbourne drivers. You have … three separate nose-to-tails in a 1500m stretch of road. This is unusual, even for Melbourne. By the third one, cars weren’t even slowing down to take a look. “Hmmm, a Civic with the front completely caved in. Next.”
Good: Friday night and we’re going out for dinner in St. Kilda with friends we haven’t seen for a while.
Better: Getting the “picky eater” to agree to try the Portuguese / Goan restaurant.
Good: Wandering in and requesting a table for four.
Better: Watching the owner disdainfully flick a “Reserved” plaque from a great table and usher us towards it.
Good: Choosing a curry which turned out to be FANTASTIC.
Better: Everyone’s curry is fantastic! Who knew the Goans had such great taste? Score!
Good: Cakes and coffee at one of the little cake shops along Ackland Street. Florentines make me happy.
Better: Free beer at a radio station giveaway. Free. Beer. Need I say more? All our Friday nights should round off with free beer. Hell, EVERYONE’S Friday nights should involve free beer.
1. If you are fiddling with your new laptop and setting the system cache; and you accidentally add an extra zero; your laptop will fill up entirely with cache, leaving you no room to download
p0rnography Firefox extensions.
2. If you want to see The Village, even though you fear it is going to be crap, do not click on a link clearly marked VILLAGE – SPOILERS and inadvertently see the twist of the ending on the first line of the post. Although if you manage to do this, you may then soothe yourself with the sure knowledge that paying money to see a twist of that craptitude would have been even more unfortunate.
3. When you are looking over emailed files with Marketing-type people and you say, “wait, I’ll just embiggen the window,” they will not think of The Simpsons. They will think you are mad.
4. Dogs don’t like snowpeas.
5. If Mr. T is quiet throughout the DVD of Amelie, he is not entranced by the quirky details or the French atmosphere. He is asleep.
Let x = 1. (Wait, I’ve channeled into the panicky exam dreams of my youth. Am I wearing underwear? Thank God.)
If x = 1, then x = a – y where a = inputs and y = outputs.
– 1 x dinner of beef stroganoff. (I feel compelled to mention the sour cream was a week out of date. Hopefully dinner will remain an input rather than an output.)
– liquids = well, I haven’t actually drunk anything tonight. All our cans of Coke are frozen into the layer of beer at the bottom of the beer fridge. Let’s call this even.
– 1 x “Without A Trace” episode, involving child’s inhumanity to child. If you’re a boy who is mean to girls, apparently the girls will tie you up in a stable and kick dirt on you. I can’t promise this will happen to you, though.
– 1 x interminable work day, including three “Low on Virtual Memory” messages and a forced network shutdown.
– 4 x vague intentions to visit the gym and inflict swimming-type exercise upon my body.
– 1 x tuneless humming noise as I type. Seems to resemble Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer”.
– 1 x large tropical fish soft toy costing $4, meant as a treat for the Black Dog, who loves soft toys. Unfortunately when my back was turned, the Brown Dog brazenly stole it off the kitchen table and raced it outside, where it may or may not still be in possession of either of it’s eyes.
– 1 x Father’s Day card, costing me $3.50 and 14 precious minutes of my life trying to choose from the barren selection available. All Father’s Day cards involve either golf or cars, neither of which my Dad feels strongly about. In the end I got him one of those nauseating cartoon cards, intended to be given by a very young child. He’s used to my ways, he’ll like it.
– on average, inputs = outputs
– equations cancels to a null result
– begin formula again tomorrow.
Modest Mouse, Float On. Over and over. And over.
All the movies I’ve missed over the past few years: Memento, Life is Beautiful, Amelie.
Chocolate cake made with melted dark chocolate. Damn you, Delicious.
The magnolia tree flowering outside my bedroom window.
If Mr. T keeps feeding the Brown Dog coffee beans, will the Brown Dog eventually become so manic that he propels himself over the seven-foot fence and into the stratosphere?