Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Great Ocean Road Trip: Day One

We're off!

2008 In Review

I am currently away on the Great Ocean Road Trip. It is awesome, I am sure. However, lots of awesome things happened in 2008, despite it being pretty much universally known as the Year of Suck, and I thought I'd mention just some of them.

In January, I re-named all the childcare centres in Adelaide before starting work at one, and I told a story from my childhood mostly in pictures.

In February, I moved into my new house, and decided to do Honours in 08 and go to BlogHer in July.

In March, we had a ton of events, including the Adelaide Cup.

In April, I found out my boobs were perfect, and realised I was shit at Honours.

In May, I freaked out about BlogHer and then started planning what I wanted to do, made an Australia 101 kit, and witnessed Uni Hall winning Battle of the Bands - again!

In June, I continued planning for BlogHer, and wrote a Letter To My Body.

In July, I flew to San Francisco (via Auckland), and then met a bunch of awesome people at the conference, and then travelled, a lot, while good and bad things happened to my hair.

In August, I discovered Twilight, then arrived home, and lo, it was my birthday. I reflected on my BlogHer trip, continued being crap at uni, and also, the Olympics happened.

In September, I freaked out about my thesis, and distracted myself by sending you mail (which ... did that even get to you?).

In October, I joined the gym, went to the Living End concert, and managed to finish my thesis.

In November, I started planning for our road trip, pondered body image, celebrated the end of the school year, and watched Obama get elected.

In December, I graduated and performed selfishly selfless Christmas deeds.

Wow, this year went quick. And simultaneously it seems like this all happened a long time ago. I hope everyone has an awesome New Years, and an amazingly happy 2009.

What were your highlights of 2008? What are your big plans for 2009?

Monday, December 29, 2008

Very Full

So you may have noticed this little thing called Christmas. Yeah, that happened. I had bacon and eggs for breakfast, a little of The OC for lunch, and a lot of family, prawns, and lamingtons for dinner.

Boxing Day I did nothing, all day, repeatedly and at length. I was awesome at it. Even though I should have been getting things like beds and linen and groceries ready, because the next day...

... my boys arrived! And I got up at 5am to meet them at the airport. I am a kick-arse sister/daughter. Then the taxi driver got them lost, even though I told my dad the driver would get them lost and gave him directions to write down which he then didn't bring, and even though I gave the driver directions, which he apparently didn't feel the need to listen to. Here's a hint: the passengers should not be responsible for looking through the street directory.

Anyway, they made it here eventually and proceeded to sleep. All day. While I worked. All day. On the majorest shopping day of the year. (I love my family, I love my family. Ok, all good.) Then we had a barbeque, and talked and laughed into infinity.

Then my dad left us for his brother, skywalker and I went to the gym and woke up crazy sore tomorrow, and very soon we leave for the Great Ocean Road.

Basically: Christmas was lovely, and will be awesome again when we have ours on New Years Eve. My boys are here and we are having lots of fun. Summer is also kind of here, which rocks. Everyone else having fun? Awesome.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Thanks for reading. I hope you all have a wonderful Christmastime.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Tale of the Christmas Fairy and her Selfishly Selfless Good Deeds

And Ridiculously Long Post Titles

One day, the Christmas Fairy - a cheerful young retail worker with tinsel in her hair and Heelys on her feet - looked at the clock. While all her friends had to work until nine that night, and all the next day (Christmas Eve), her Christmas was going to start in just three minutes.

The Christmas Fairy was very happy about this, and decided to share some Christmas Cheer with her co-workers by bringing them yummy Boost Juice smoothies. On the way back with her presents, she stopped at a stand for World Vision and gave them all the rest of the cash she had in her wallet.

As she did so, the Christmas Fairy remembered The One Where Phoebe and Joey argue over truly selfless good deeds. The Christmas Fairy's friends were very happy with their drinks and that made her happy in return, and the World Vision Dude said that she would have a Very Merry Christmas. Therefore, the Christmas Fairy concluded that all good deeds are selfish, because they make you feel so good. She decided she could live with that.

So the next day,* the Christmas Fairy went in search of more good deeds, for although she is not overburdened with wealth (and in fact has a slight debt, due to her appearance - albeit with less tinsel - at BlogHer08), she is doing ok for herself, and also has finished her Christmas shopping and needs something to spend money on.

She went to the K-Mart Wishing Tree (or whatever tree is available at Marion - she is sure there will be one) and bought a present for a needy kid. (She wonders if any of Missy's readers might have ideas of what to get kids this Christmas. How much do you spend on a Wishing Tree kid?) Then she got some cash out and gave it to the Salvos person who is usually standing at the entrance, and she gave a larger-than-gold-coin donation to the gift wrapping people for wrapping her Wishing Tree present. Then she dropped off a bag of her old clothes at the op shop.

At the end of this, the Christmas Fairy was a little tired, but totally full of selfishly selfless good deeds, plus lots of Christmas Cheer that she shared with one and all at Christmas Mass and Carols that night.

*The rest of this is written predictively, because not only is the Christmas Fairy a huge fan of Christmas Cheer, but she has amazing powers of precognition.

*And also, when she got home on that first day, yet another selfishly selfless thing was waiting for her. A parcel has arrived for her, and we all know that the Christmas Fairy loves packages in the mail, but also, it wasn't even for her, but she got the package, and she'll get the happy feeling when she gives it to its future recipient. The Christmas Fairy is so confused but also very happy, because Christmas has officially started!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Beginning To Feel A Lot Like Christmas

Christmas is coming, y'all! I'm getting excited. Guess how I know it's close?

Christmas shopping: Done. Wrapped and all.

Cyclone/heat wave: Not quite. But the day I was wrapping my presents it was pouring down with rain. Loved it. And today was the first decent beach day of the year. Yay summer!

Christmas tree up: I have the same one as last year (thank you, Carla!) and I bought tinsel for our lounge room and my room.

Breakfast planned: Bacon and eggs, mmm.

Christmas Eve mass and carols: I have a date with Gma and Alyn for December 24. Folding chairs, Christmas carols, and a Santa hat on the saint statue, then we're ready for bed.

Carols in the Domain: I'm watching them right now. It's not Christmas without the Wiggles singing Go Santa Go.

What are your Christmas traditions?

Also: A week til my boys get here! Whoo!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Graduation Pictures

As of yesterday morning, I am officially graduated. Any inclination I had to repeat the process to get my Honours certificate next April was beaten out of me around about the five bajillionth name they called out, which was probably one that wasn't even in the program, like, NOW YOU'RE JUST MAKING THINGS UP. Apart from that, it was lovely. I walked, shook, doffed, and accepted (then napped, as I was in the first group of twenty. Out of, like, twenty bajillion). The dress and shoes and cap and gown all did perfectly, as did Photographer Shelle.

Slideshow here plus some of my favourite pics below, depending on whether you like sliding or scrolling down.

Thank you to everyone I've relied on for distraction and support over the past several years. I love you. And now ... no more essays!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

You Fail Graduation

It turns out that - even if you got a straight High Distinction average (*cough-lowD-cough*) and handed in your last assignment over a year ago - the tests continue.

I had to work today from 10 til 6. The office where I had to pay for my gown hire was open from 9 to 5, so I could go before work - just. (Who needs breakfast or shaved legs anyhow?) The place where I had to pick up said gown did not open til 10, but it was open til 7 tonight, so all was well. (Also I had to get my shoes on my lunch break. Who needs lunch anyway?)



Yeah, no. Not so much. Or at all.

Until me and this other girl who showed up convinced this other random woman - who worked in a different office and who has now vowed never to stay back late at work ever again lest she be roped into Grand Theft Graduation: Gown and Hood Edition again - to let us in so we could pillage caps and gowns to our hearts content.

Graduation test? Passed. Thank god.

Also, my shoes? Gold. The colour on my hood thing? Gold. I totally rock at graduation.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Back In The Game

Patty [at work]: I don't want to play basketball tonight.
Me [totally kidding]: I'll play for you!
Patty [mostly kidding]: Ok, you go.
Me [totally sarcastic]: Oh, sure.
Patty [mostly serious]: Do you want to play?
Me [still with the kidding]: Totally!
Patty [totally serious]: No, really, do you want to play?
Me [terrified with a side of excited, and also in the habit of saying yes by this point in the conversation]: Okay.

And that was how I found myself playing my first game of basketball in years, and realising that no, I am not even in the same country as the state of fitness I hope to achieve. The treadmill is getting easier, but that does not mean I am ready to run a full game.

It was Social, however, so that was good; we had some fun. AND - Guess who got the first points for our team? And it was a three, too. (Guess who also got four fouls? Old habits die hard.)

I'm going to go lie down now. For about a year.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The End?

So it would appear I have become really crap at this whole bloggy thing. I have to confess it even crossed my mind that there would be a nice symmetry in starting and finishing something (say, a blog) at the start and finish of my time at Flinders. But no, there will always be topics which make me say "I wonder what the internet would think" and "OMG I MUST COMPLAIN ABOUT THIS TO THE INTERNET."

Today is not one of those times, unless you count the fact that I just had to tell you that I might not be posting so much anymore, but I thought an update would be nice, just to prove that I remember how to type things and hit publish with little regard for content. (Check, check, and hell check.)

I have been working at my sports store job four days a week. Which is nice. We're getting busier as everyone realises that their kids are demanding scooters and those wheely shoe things and whatnot, but we're all pretty much all friends now, and three of us went shopping and movieing yesterday even. (I saw Four Christmases twice in two days, what with having uni friends and work friends, not because it was that awesome. It was funny in parts.) I also got a job at a bookshop, the orientation for which is next week. That is also nice.

Graduation is also next week, and I still haven't found my imaginary shoes, but I think I've found some acceptable ones. Our work Christmas party is on this weekend, and I found a pretty purple dress for that so we're all set for the dress-uppy events.

Turns out I am invited to family Christmas, which means that I have to go Christmas shopping (dammit) for random relatives. What do you get for the boyfriend of a cousin you see once a year? Christmas shopping for the boys did not even necessitate a trip to Marion. I am that good (and lazy).

I'm still going to the gym on the days that I don't work. My treadmill routine isn't particularly hard anymore, and I've added some random balls and weights but I'm too scared to use any of the machines or go to classes because I will for sure look like an idiot.

Planning for our Great Ocean Road Trip is pretty much done, without contributions being made from all members of the travelling party, which is great. It will be awesome.

Summer had not kicked in for real yet, and I am not thrilled about this. Although it does seem to be putting in a little effort to overcome the clouds and rain, I would appreciate the sun's appearance more often and continuously.

I still read your blog, I promise, but I think I've left three comments in the last month. I am terrible, Muriel.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Free Feed, Stop Your Whinging

First of all, quite seriously, I have a question for you: Say you happen to be attending a lunch provided by the English department for its Honours students and staff. When you and your two friends arrive, there are two of your fellow students sitting in the middle seats of a long table. Do you:

(a) sit next to them,
(b) sit at one end of the table, or
(c) sit at the other end of the table?

If you answered b or c ... um, okay, then I will stop my ranting, because that's just what the people I want to complain about did. But seriously? Is that not rude? (Honestly, I'm asking.)

Anyway, other things I experienced at yesterday's lunch:

Professors really do discuss such pretentious things as the opera, the latest reviews they've submitted, and what journal articles they've read recently.

I'm not sure which is worse: me, being mistaken for an idiot kid, or my classmate, being mistaken for a lecturer that had been hiding all year.

The hilarity of a plan largely depends on the number of glasses of (free, so really, shut up, me) wine its beholder has enjoyed. (It's ok, they all stopped soon after ... and went back to marking essays.)

Everyone has Facebook, even the oldest of lecturers. No-one claims to actually use it, however.

I discovered why a university located in the south of Adelaide and populated with, you know, uni students has a fancy brunchy restaurant - so the now-postgrad students and their lecturers can pretend to be above everyone else all together.

Some people are just much better at being sociable. It's a gift and not everyone has it.

Well, I waited til today to write this, and apparently being back at uni makes me very bitter about things. Whoda thought?

Monday, December 01, 2008

Burn Baby Burn

Since I live in (a) Australia and (b) a house with boys who (b)(i) watch cartoons and sport and not much else, I've had to download all the shows that aren't on normal TV. Mostly One Tree Hill, and some random Heroes eps that I missed due to work. All this downloading basically caused my computer to become full to the point of bursting with all those mega-giga-bajiggerbites, so I decided to buy a DVD burner, which would get all those eps off my computer and on to pretty little discs.

Except that the burning software I got was only a trial version. And that I wasn't sure the real thing would even help with the file types that I have. And that the free version of the other thing I found puts a watermark on the video. And that even when I paid to make it work it's not a matter of burning a CD; it takes for freaking ever. And that in order to print onto the CD, you have to buy special ones. And that I don't have these special discs, even though the main feature me and the guy were talking about was the label burner thing, so you think he might have sold me those particular discs.

And most of all, the fact that in order for any of this to work, it was necessary to delete all but four episodes of the ones I'd downloaded, as well as deleting a bunch of programs, and cutting down my Uni Hall Photo Collection considerably.

After all that, I now have exactly one new DVD. And the promise of plenty more when I figure out how to exceed our download without the housemates or the internet company finding out.

Friday, November 28, 2008

No Room At The Inn

In this the festive season, I have a new appreciation for the hardship the Virgin Mary experienced. "Hitting the road" apparently will land you on the side of the road with no prospect of a hot meal, a shower, or internet power.

On the plus side, even though I've made approximately ten bajillion phone calls all up and down the south east, I'm probably only out, like, a dollar. It doesn't cost much to be told repeatedly, "Hell no, not a chance."

Unless of course you thought to make your bookings a year in advance. For a freaking unpowered camp site. Seriously, tourists, the Great Ocean Road is not all that great. I think you should all take your tents and your caravans and hit some other road, Jack.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Man, I Must Be Getting Old

I think you can safely say you're an adult when you start complaining about there being too many people at the shops. All of whom feel the need to take up the whole aisle and most likely do it from right in front of something you want to look at, and make sudden stops in the middle of the walkway when all you want to do is walk down it, and who apparently bought all the good things just seconds before you got there.

Following that last point, I really think someone needs to make a shop called Things You Can Buy For Your Dad For His Birthday (That Won't Cost Too Much To Post). I really feel this would be a service to society, possibly deserving of some sort of medallion.

And they wonder why all their presents came from shops ending in .com.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Um ... Oops?

So apparently the answer to the planning question was no, and the question wasn't actually about a holiday, it was about posts for NaBloPoMo. Which has been renamed to NaBloPo17DaysInNo, because, well, I didn't plan and therefore forgot to post yesterday. My bad.

I totally have no excuse either (although my internet was a little spotty, it was ok for enough of the night to let me check up on what to expect on this week's Heroes, because I have no patience like that) as I simply got distracted with Season One of The OC and the prospect of working in the middle of the week and thinking about how much my stomach would hurt tomorrow (which is today, and I can confirm the answer is: like a total mofo, thanks a lot, Pushy McTrainerson).

So ... sorry about that. On the plus side, your feed reader will be minus one pointless post every day for the rest of November (not that I'm not going to post for the rest of the month, but hopefully they will all have a point), because I really didn't have anything to say yesterday, I don't think.

Ooh, except this: I went shopping last week for a dress for graduation, and found one. Now I need shoes. Last week I walked past a shoe shop and saw some I thought I might like, but I had to get home, so I didn't try them on or anything. I thought about them all week and decided I loved them, and today after work I went to have a look at them. And dudes, the shoes in my imagination were totally awesome and totally do not look like a the real thing, so much so that I had to ask if they were perhaps moved due to their awesomeness, even though the rest of the display looked exactly the same, and ... no? Ok, then. Imaginary shoes for grad it is!

Monday, November 17, 2008

To Plan Or Not To Plan

You may recall that vsquared, skywalker, and I (my dad, my brother, and myself, respectively) are heading off on a road trip just after Christmas.

Dad would like it to be some driving off into the sunset, going where the road takes us, beholden to no man, kind of thing. Which I like the sound of, not least because I really have no idea how I did the same trip in three days last year. (I got a speeding ticket. I don't know if that's at all relevent.) Which is all well and good, except that ... the road is taking us to Melbourne. And also it's one of the most touristed stretches of road in Australia. But hey, I'm down with throwing cares to the wind and whatever else.

Until I got asked what had happened to all the planning I was supposed to be doing. Um, like that planning we were expressly forbidden to do? Yeah, that.

The trip, she is planned.

(I am totally not ripping on my dad, here. We are both completely on the same page, which is the one titled Plan Now, Rock Out Later, but also, I have to say, Giving Shit is in the Daughter job description, as is Plan The Perfect Road Trip While The Boys Bum Around At Home, so you know I can't help it. Any of it.)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Body Image Goals

I had my first session with Pushy McTrainerson the other day. It was basically an assessment of my fitness level - how many push-ups can you do (25), can you reach your toes (no), how many sit-ups can you do in a minute (28), what's your exercisey heart rate (high enough to make him ask if I'd just drank coffee), height (175cms) and weight (61kgs), and a bunch of questions about goals.

I told him my long term goal was to get fit enough to run a whole game of basketball, and my immediate goal was to exercise enough so I could wear a bikini at the beach this summer.

When I mentioned this second one he asked "What's stopping you?" And I told him nothing is stopping me. I would go to the beach and wear a bikini and have an awesome time looking exactly like I do. Would I have a better time after I've been going to the gym for a few weeks, slathered on some fake tan, and gotten a bikini wax? I don't know.

He asked me if I thought I was doing it more for other people or myself. I told him I didn't know. Society imposes these values on everyone, but I wouldn't do it if I didn't want to, or if it didn't give me at least a small amount of pleasure. I know that I sleep better and probably eat better when I'm getting regular exercise. I rarely feel truly bad about the way I look, but I suppose since the gym is meant to keep me getting to where I don't feel good, it's making me feel better about myself. (Except for where I hate how I am one of those people who go to gyms and talk about their workouts and their personal trainers!)

I thought that was an interesting question, but I'm still not sure what use he would put the answer to. Is someone with major body image issues going to be turned away? Encouraged? Helped? Are we ever truly doing things entirely for ourselves, or entirely because of other people's expectations? And if I am happy to wear a bikini right now, what am I doing at the gym, and how do I know when I can stop?

And why am I posing all these questions on a weekend, when we should, by definition, be relaxing and not thinking?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Yay For November Birthdays

I love people who have birthdays in November. It's like, "Hmm, what should I write about today? Oh, yeah, it's LMC's birthday! Whoo!" And you totally have a topic, just like that.

(I still really like last year's LMC bday post and this one about us getting presents, so if you need something to read, I suggest you check those out.)

The first LMC birthday party I can remember was the one she had at Hungry Jacks one year. We would have been in primary school, maybe seven or eight years old? I remember she got the same card from like three different people. I remember she had an ice-cream cake. And I remember laying under the slide with one of her friends from school cos I didn't know the rest.

The next one I remember was the first time I went to Hog's Breath. We were maybe 12? I remember being totally underdressed compared to what her friends were wearing, but I think that was because I stayed over her house unplanned the night before or something. I remember getting ready with LMC and her friends (who by now were kinda my friends as well). This was the day I learned the trick of brushing your hair off a bed to put it in a ponytail.

I think the last time we were together on her birthday was her 18th. Me and a couple of my mates took her into town (which is kind of a joke, since we'd all been out before we were 18, but this was kind of tradition) and bought her her first legal drink. We got cocktails at Ducks about three seconds before they closed that part of the bar, and I'm so sorry LMC, because they were shithouse. A Fruit Tingle is not supposed to taste like that. But I think we made up for that with all those drinks at Shags that time.

(I'm kind of thinking maybe I should've saved those last two for the next two years' worth of November 15th NaBloPoMo posts. But I just did a search and I haven't told you the story of LMC's and my finest moment, so I got you covered.)


Friday, November 14, 2008

The Internet Age Needs To Take A Chill Pill

Does anyone know why Blogger's new embedded comment form refuses to work for some people? Computers are being threatened with rocks if this issue isn't resolved.

I'm not really a fan of Facebook's new chat feature. More specifically, I don't like people jumping right in and chatting to me when really I was just there to see if there were any new comments on my photos, or something. On the other hand, I really like it for jumping on, asking someone a quick question, and going back to whatever I needed the answer for. On the other other hand, it's like, I sign in to Facebook when I wouldn't sign on to a messaging program cos I don't want to chat, and then people pop up all HA! "hi!" and then you have to chat. On whatever the next hand is, I totally do that to people too, especially cos I have a bunch of people on Facebook that I don't IM with. So yeah. Facebook chat: I feel like protocol is still being established. (That was way more words than ever needed to be written about Facebook chat.)

Don't you think it's weird that everyone totally knows what you're doing every second? Like, someone could publish a blog post and then someone else could comment, and you'd be like, "OMG, that person was totally just reading my blog!" And then you could reply to their comment, and they'll know that you're on your computer. Or if you didn't reply, they'd be like, "Why the hell not, when you're on Facebook chat right this second and your Twitter feed says you're lazing around watching TV?" I guess my point is that it now seems weird when instantaneous communication doesn't elicit an immediate reply. The internet age needs to take a chill pill.

Words that Blogger's spellcheck doesn't understand: Blogger's, Facebook, IM, OMG, internet.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's like you don't know me at all

The gym I joined makes you pay for two personal trainer sessions when you sign up, and somehow convinces you that they're free, so you're very excited about it.

Anyway, after a little mix-up involving me not giving the brain-washing gym people my actual phone number, a personal trainer called me this afternoon to book my first session.

Him: So, are you available tomorrow?
Me: Uh, yeah, tomorrow's ok.
Him: What time is good for you?
Me: Probably lunch time is best.
Him: So, sometime in the morning?
Me: I guess I could do the morning. What time were you thinking?
Him: How's nine for you?
Me: Ridiculously early.
Him ...?
Me: Nine's fine.
Him: Actually, 8:45 is better, don't you think?
Me: ...?!

And then I hung up because you just know his next suggestion was going to be even earlier.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Get A Haircut ...

I don't know if I should be telling you this, because if I don't get it, it will be very embarrassing, and that would be bad. On the other hand, it probably wouldn't be, because if we just all don't expect much then we won't be disappointed or embarrassed. And on the plus side, we will have a really cute outfit out of it. One which would be totally wasted if I actually did get it. The job, I mean, not the outfit. I am definitely getting the outfit. Oh, did I not mention a job? Yeah, that's probably a good thing. Because there may not be one. For me, at least. I'm fairly certain there actually is one. There is definitely an interview. For me, even. I am fairly certain of that. That's where the outfit comes in, so you know I would remember that correctly. Rambling skills? I has them, for sure.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

BlogHer08 Conference: Looking Ahead to 09

I wrote this post a little while after I got back from the conference and promptly forgot about it. Things in italics are me writing from now, as some things needed to be changed from what I wrote way back then. Here we go.

As a bunch of people have already posted, BlogHer has announced the location of the 2009 conference. I posted - a lot - about the people and places from my San Francisco trip, but didn't really mention the conference as a whole. Here is my take on the conference - what worked and what would be good for 2009.

I know I am way behind everyone else; they've moved on, I clearly haven't.

Or, I was on holiday and wanted to wait until I could think about this before writing it. Take your pick. (Or I wanted to save up for an important occasion like NaBloPoMo where it would do some good.)

In essence: The conference? Amazing.

(You didn't think I was going to leave it at that.)

Tiff and I were very brave, made easier by the fact that pretty much everyone was nice and willing to talk to everyone else. Next year, I think I would rather introduce myself as "Missy, from Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch," but I don't regret playing the Australia card so much this year.

Yeah, I said next year. We might as well address this straight up. I want to go back next year. Yes, BlogHer, you suckered me in. After summer camp, we were all, "We totally have to keep coming back," but hardly any of us did. It was just not practical. Now, it's possible that BlogHer09 will not be practical either. But I think I would get more out of returning to BlogHer than I would have returning to camp, so I am more motivated to make it work.

I might as well un-address this straight up: I am like 90% sure I will not be going to BlogHer09. A trip around the world every year is kind of insane. I would rather do it properly every second or third year than go for the weekend and have to come home due to lack of spending/travelling money. When the conference is in Australia, then we'll talk.

I actually learned things at the sessions. (Basically I went to BlogHer to squeal at people, so this is kind of a shocker.) Some I went to more because I was interested than because they were relevant to me (if that makes sense), but I enjoyed them anyway. Due to scheduling conflicts, I missed out on some sessions I would have liked to attend. I did feel there was sometimes a divide between new and more experienced bloggers as far as discussion topics from the audience within sessions, which is a hard thing to control. (Also: Shut up about Twitter.) (Ahahaha. Awesome.) When I'm settled back, I plan to listen to as many of the recordings as I can.

The best session was Maggie Mason's one on Pursuing Your Passion. All three speakers were great, all very funny, and Maggie was the best moderator I saw. It was like a big conversation between friends; there was audience participation, but not so much that having speakers seemed pointless.

The food was not brilliant. Serving the same thing three days in a row gives the impression that it is the exact same box that was left over from three days ago. Not cool. The dessert rocked though, as did the Ghiradelli chocolate. And those cookies that time. Good work for having water bottles available all the time, I definitely needed it.

The ballroom was definitely the most intimidating room, as I mentioned. The reason being is that once any number of people are sitting at a table, they are "a group" - even if they were all random individuals who just happened to sit down at the same table. Having everyone in "groups" makes it hard to sit down. My suggestion is to assume everyone is just random individuals and sit down wherever the hell you like.

The speed dating did not work very well. From what I heard of last year, it worked much better the way they did it then (two circles facing each other, moving over one person every howevermany minutes). The first problem was that when we got up to move, the people behind us skipped our table in favour of the one ahead of us, leaving us with nowhere to go. The second problem was that, with the exception of the two new people, everyone had already heard everyone's introduction, yet they had to keep repeating it. The third thing - not necessarily a problem - was that it broke down fairly quickly, and everyone was moving randomly. Or not. And if not, you really got out what you were putting in.

Popular bloggers are not famous people. Except at BlogHer, where I hope everyone felt like royalty at some point or another.

Sponsors. I have no problem with BlogHer being sponsored to all hell. It's expensive enough as it is, go crazy, guys. There were a lot of products geared towards mums, but guess what? There were a lot of parents there. Shocker there's a correlation. I am very glad the Recycling Room was there; there was no way I was carrying everything I got all around the country and back home.

The Community Keynote was awesome. Must have it next year.

Also keep: the massage/relaxy room. Even if there's no massages, having a chill-out place was very welcome. I found out later about the AlphaMom Re:Boot Room, which sounds like it was awesome, and just what many people could have done with.

I am sure I missed something, but I think this'll do. Thank you a bajillion times to everyone who worked so hard to make it happen, and everyone who attended, you all are freaking awesome.

On the topic of the 09 location: I am surprised they are revisiting a city where the conference has already been held, but as it's a city I haven't visited, I would still be happy with it. If I was going. So maybe I should be annoyed it's not somewhere I've already been. Anyway. I'm glad they got the (very loud and repeated) message about having the hotel and conference in one building, and it looks like 09 will be an awesome conference. Whoo!

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Perfect Dress

Once again, I have an occasion coming up that absolutely requires the Perfect Dress.

Graduation is in December and, despite the fact that I'll be wearing the full robe and hat deal and could therefore be in my pajamas for all you'd know, I'm currently shopping for the elusive Perfect Dress.

Usually I know kind of what I want, and if they don't have it, I'm in and out. I'm an awesome shopper like that. But this time I have no idea. We did look at Marion the other day so, okay, I have a few small ideas: not strapless, not straight across at the top (ie, I'm a whore who wants to show off what little cleavage I can achieve), and summery, whatever that means. I was leaning towards white or yellow, but I'm not sure I should actually ever be wearing either of those colours.

I know I've been very querying thus far in NaBloPoMo, but I really need your help here. Any idea what the hell one wears to a summer graduation ceremony? Pretty pictures will be rewarded. Somehow.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Weekend Finale

This weekend was amazing.

I finished my last essay on Thursday, went to the Tons that night, slept over at the Hall, went to the Musical, slept in (missing the Pageant, but you can't have everything), went to dinner at Hog's Breath, ate the yummiest chocolate fondue, made fun of all the drunk people at the Grand, skipped both cleaning my room and the gym (and if that combination doesn't make for an awesome weekend, I'm not sure what does), and today, got to see Carla and eat the Qantas club out of house and pretzels.

I really remembered why it's easy to love living at the Hall - karaoke and signing (t-shirts and people) at the Tons, lazing around the Hall after a night out, and after the Musical about five people got their heads shaved in front of a huge crowd in the Common Room. Seriously good times.

I also remembered why I love Darwin and Carla. Thanks for visiting, babe!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Celebration Continues

Last night was the Hall Musical. I really didn't know what to expect, but I have to tell you, there are some hella talented people at Flinders. It was a murder mystery, with people from the Hall being killed one by one. It was written and performed and musicked and whatever elsed by Hallies, which makes it all the more impressive.

And it was hilarious. They were all playing different people from the Hall, and it was amazing how they managed to capture the mannerisms and sayings and things like that from each of their characters. Love. I also loved the Glossary, specifically some of the things they felt it necessary to include, such as "Ranga," "Tekkin 3," and "Facebook."

This morning was the Christmas Pageant, but I decided that a warm bed was better than an 8am start in dubious weather. Next year!

Tonight was dinner at Hoggies with the work crew. Very tasty, although not the best experience I've had there. Our drinks were sitting out so long that the cream melted, and no, it wasn't even hot inside. I do love me some curly fries, however. And after that we went to Bracegirdle's, which is a chocolate place at the Bay. One word: yummmmmmmm.

Celebration Day Three: Success!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Celebratory Weekend!

As I may have mentioned (once on my blog and, like, fifty bajillion times last night to anyone who was remotely in my vicinity), I handed in my last essay.

Last night was also the last Hall pub night of the year, as they start the dreaded SwotVac tonight. Noise curfew sucks! So I saw the night as my own personal Finished Uni Celebration, and it was awesome.

Tonight is the Hall musical, tomorrow is the Christmas Pageant, tomorrow night is dinner at Hog's Breath with the work crew, and Sunday Carla is coming to visit me. Cel-e-brate good times, come on! I am a wee bit excited about all these goings-on. Oh! And then Sunday night I will have time to watch the Heroes that I missed last night because I was out doing this:

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Last Essay!

Today I handed in my last essay.

I haven't mentioned the topic before now, because I didn't want to influence my subject at all, but I managed to babble out almost 6000 words on the monetisation of the blogosphere. (I'll probably add all the links I used later on.)

Of course, handing it in couldn't go smoothly - every time I sent my 4 page reference list to the printer it came up as 32 pages and $5 worth. Uh, no thanks. So that was weird. In the end the library tech people printed it off with their card just to see what would happen. It printed out the four pages no worries. No idea how much they got charged for it though!

Then the library stapler was out of staples, so I had to ask that library person for some. She was all, "You can just use the electric one," which frankly scares me. But I did it. And it was out of staples. Yeah, the library people really hated me today.

In the end, though, I HANDED IN MY LAST ESSAY!

Which means I'm done, which means I am heading out! Pics from the Tons to come, maybe tomorrow, or maybe not, because I have a very full few days ahead of me, and I am hella excited!

Ok, so my mates are taking their sweet time getting ready to go out, so here are the links I used in my essay. Thanks all! Heather B Paul Boutin Bri Amalah Federated Media: Dooce Reyhan Harmanci Heather Holly Whoorl Kacey Carrie Kirby The Bloggess MommyTime Rose Rose Sara Technorati: State of the Blogosphere 2008

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Guest Post: Thank You

Carla asked my opinion of guest posts in NaBloPoMo. To which I say: cheaters! But hey, she was coerced volunteered, and this is totally her area of expertise. I hope you enjoy this view of the US election from an Aussie.

When Missy asked me to do a guest post so she can slack off during NaBloPoMo about the US Presidential elections, I was excited. Air my views to an audience who hasn’t met me and doesn’t automatically turn off when I start talking about politics? [Hey! I resemble that remark!] What psephologist and political nutter would pass up that opportunity? (Psephologist is your word of the day. Look it up and remember you too can say big words if you listen to your local ABC radio station – that’s NPR for the folks in the US.)

However, I soon ran into some problems. I’ve started about five posts, and discarded them all. There is so much I want to talk about regarding this election, an important election not just for America, but for the world. Americans might not realise this, but you haven’t just voted in someone who will govern your country for the next four years, but someone who makes decisions that has far-reaching consequences, beyond the US shores.

Do I talk about the voting process? How it is a second-world voting system for a first world country? (Electric voting booths? Guys, seriously? Is that not an open invitation for fraud and abuse?) The fact that journalists were even discussing the possibility of the Presidency being decided in the courts á Bush-Gore 2000 demonstrates that the biggest “democracy” in the world is far from perfect.

Do I talk about the Republican Vice-Presidential candidate? A candidate so inexperienced, so radically right-winged that her personal religious beliefs would be imposed on a country whose Constitution declares it secular and not ruled by any one religion? Who has no idea what the job of the Vice-Presidency entails, who was so eager to abuse her position of power in a small state, let alone in the White House?

Or do I talk about the media, the “Washington elite” (to quote a certain intellectual Alaskan Governor) who were so terrified about being accused of sexism they allowed Palin to go unchecked for so long. Whatever she or any other aspiring politician may believe, the people of the country you want to serve in office has every single right to know everything about your credentials, your working history and your views, that is their right when making a decision that will affect every aspect of their lives. Even if she were the most left-wing woman in existence, had she treated the American people with as much contempt as she did in this election I would have actively campaigned against her.

Instead, I want to focus on the positives. A very calm, intellectual man, who just happens to be black, has been voted in as the 44th President of the United States of America. A smart man, a civil rights lawyer, coming from a very different background, has been elected. One who stands by his beliefs, but is willing to compromise for the good of the nation. Only 60 years ago, racial segregation was still present in the US, and now an African-American is President. A true icon for positive change, away from the bad policies of the current administration, a President that has gone down in history for having the worst approval ratings ever recorded.

Barack Obama, as the 44th President of the United States of America, I salute you and wish you the best for the next four years. Congratulations.

To the American people, thank you. Thank you for making a wise decision, for choosing sanity and intellect over mavericks and intellectual ignorance. For making a smart decision on behalf of the world.


On This Day

On this day, history was made. On this day, the United States of America elected their new president. On this day, two young Australian girls texted each other about the election of Barack Obama.

Much as I want to smack America for considering itself the centre of the universe, I have to admit that on occasions like this one, it really is. This decision will affect the future of America and the rest of the world. Yesterday, I watched the Melbourne Cup - the race that stops a nation - and today I watched Obama's victory speech ... another event which stopped a nation. This was the first time I have heard him speak, and I have to tell you, I got a shiver. Several times.

I think it is very cool of America to elect Obama as president.
I am glad the political posts can stop.
I find it impressive that so many of you cared so deeply about the future to write all those posts.
I find it odd that you guys don't have to vote, and that some of you had to wait so long to do so.
I am glad that you did.

Here's to an awesome future for the whole entire world.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

This is totally a post about music! Yes, it is!

I wouldn't post about the gym again, would I? Surely not.

Anyway, my new gym routine includes running on the treadmill for 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 minutes, with slack-arse walking in between. Instead of me just watching the clock, and having to do all that complicated maths, I decided to make a music mix, so instead of the other way - which provided way too many opportunities for cheating and negotiating - I have to keep running/walking til the end of the song, then switch it up.

Awesome idea, right?

Except ... do you how hard it is to find music that (1) is totally upbeat enough and keeps me interested in the song for its entire length, (2) conforms to the beat caused by however the hell fast the treadmill makes me run/walk, and (3) is exactly 1 minute (2mins, 3mins...) long?

Hard. Way hard.

But totally effective! I want to make another CD, so I don't get bored with just having one. People who are used to doing things like this / people who listen to music: what are some good running songs? (Bonus points if they finish on the minute or half minute.)

Monday, November 03, 2008

Falling Apart

My world seems to be falling apart. Like, literally. This is not me being all dramatic because I can't find my favourite pair of boxer shorts or whatever. (Although seriously? Holly? Tiff? Las Vegas? Did I leave them with you?)

I had to take the Scarlet Lady in for a service today. It only took a few hours, and I told them to check the spark plugs, which I'm pretty sure is what caused her little tantrum the other day. If I pick her up tomorrow and they say that wasn't it, I'm going to send them back in to look for some other problem.

My wireless internet adaptor cracked the shits and refused to be recognised by my computer. I spent a very unproductive 23 minutes on the phone with tech support, who told me I could call them back, press 4 instead of 2 and they'd arrange for me to send the adaptor to them. I said thanks, hung up, and spent five minutes at Tandy getting a replacement and free upgrade.

Our shower head has been wobbly for some time, but nothing that affected the basic operation of the system. Until yesterday, when it decided to break completely off. Now, you get to have a shower with bonus childhood memories of playing under the hose. You also get to wait around the house all day for a plumber who didn't show but bloody well better be here bright and early tomorrow morning, or at the very least by the time you get back from the gym.

Ok, I guess it was me being a little dramatic, since all the things that have broken are fixed, or on their way to being fixed. I'm just glad it wasn't anything essential, like, I don't know, MY SCOOTER, or MY INTERNET, or MY SHOWER. OH WAIT.

Oops. The plumber just showed. I can offically quit my fricking whinging.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Halloween and Homecoming: Help

I came home yesterday to 101 new posts in my feedreader, and probably 98 of them were about Halloween. I'm kind of jealous!

From my time at the Hall, I've decided I love costume parties, of which there are an awful lot when you live there. On the other hand, spend a shitload of money on chocolates and lollies for other people? I'm not really a fan. So I'm kind of glad we don't really do Halloween here (and also I think putting the apostrophe in it is really obnoxious) because there's no obligation, but you will always be able to find a dress-up party happening on the night if you want one.

This year I learned what candy corn is (thanks everyone who posted photos). All this time I had a vague idea that it was that like honey popcorn stuff that I hate. Turns out it's ... what is it exactly? I know what it looks like, and I assume it tastes a lot like sugar, but I still don't know what it is precisely.

So there's that. AND: I was watching Heroes Season One, where they're all, "Save the cheerleader, save the world," all the time, and Claire's about to get killed at Homecoming. And I realised I don't know what the hell Homecoming is, either. Something to do with football ... and cheerleaders ... and a dance ... and kings and queens? I could Google it, I suppose, but I like your answers better than Google's.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

NaBloPoMo08: Day One

NaBloPoMo is this thing where everyone saves up all their posts from late October and publishes one a day, every day, for the whole of November. I did it last year, and I'm going to do it again this year. Which ... since my days consist of gym, food, essay, sleep: could be problematic. And also: boring.

Which is where you come in.

Just like last year, I'd love some questions from you lot. Any question, can be about me, or Australia, or anything in the world really. Except for why the chicken crossed the road. I do not have the definitive answer to that one. But anything else, ask away. Then I'll turn it into a post, and voila, another NaBloPoMo day down.

Let's do it!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Exercise = Holiday

When I started going to the gym, I was all, but how am I going to top my reward from last time (which was going to BlogHer in San Francisco)? Even buying new gym clothes pales in comparison to a trip to the other side of the world.


I have found something totally exciting that I have to look forward to.


I actually did this trip with two international students last year, but that was in a car, and this will be a bit slower, and we'll be able to see more things along the way, and it'll be much better weather. Plus, vsquared has never driven it, and skywalker hasn't even been out of SA/NT. So it's going to be awesome!

Look up Great Ocean Road on Google Images. Very very pretty drive. I can't wait!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Or I Could Talk About My Essay

I had to walk to the gym today.

(Not entirely true, in that I didn't have to go to the gym. But I am supposed to. And if you can't summon up some enthusiasm for the gym at the start of the week, well, it sets a bad precedent for the other four days that depend on that first one to start them off all happy and energetic.)

Anyway, I feel this is counter-productive. Walking to the gym.

If I WANTED to do exercise outside of the gym, out in the sunshine and fresh air, then I would do that. But no. I prefer to do my exercising inside, with all those sweaty people crammed into one poorly ventilated space, surrounded by machines specifically designed to torture every muscle in my body.

Exercising to get to the gym to do more exercise is wasting all those dollars I pay for pure exercise time at the gym which should not be marred by any exercise elsewhere. It's just wrong!

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Sign From God

Today did not go as I intended. For one, I had to skip the gym, which I was actually looking forward to, since I had a less than stellar day there yesterday, even though I finally got on the constantly-occupied rowers, so I wanted to make up for it, but word on the street is god did not want me to go to the gym today.

As I was forced to admit last summer, the Scarlet Lady does not enjoy the heat as much as I do. And with summer becoming increasingly assertive, I'd already decided that she wouldn't be ridden to work (40mins away) if it was over say 35°C (95°F). Short trips like to uni and Marion, no worries, anytime.

Today? It was 32°. We rode to uni. And she pitched a massive shitfit. That big steep hill up to campus was just too much for her. I had to leave her there while I went up and handed my assignment in, then crossed my fingers she could make it all the way home.

Turns out? She couldn't.* I definitely give her points for getting across the South Road intersection, which is about nine lanes across, but I would have appreciated it even more if she could have made it all the way home. Luckily, I found a place to leave her til it was cooler, even if she protested slightly at the temperature not being below thirty even at 6:30 at night.

I could not make this up. She happened to finally throw in the towel outside the carpark to a chuch bearing that sign. I couldn't not leave her there.

*She is home now, and grounded at least for the weekend, since I have to work, and tomorrow is supposed to be 37 degrees (98.6°F). If only she and I had more in common!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Learning New Skills

I know, I'm shocked. Who knew that uni would actually demand that we learn things? I personally thought my one skill - writing a passable essay at midnight the night before - was the only one they demanded, and the entire course was simply intended to assist with refining this skill.

Last night I finished the weirdest assignment I've had to do in all my time at Flinders - by which I mean it wasn't an essay: the one where we got to practice our cutting and pasting.

How bizarro is that? If that doesn't look like gibberish ... well, want to redo my assignment for me?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

THAT Girl At The Gym

I like to think I was that girl today at the gym.

The one who takes about five minutes to untangle her headphone cord. And no, she cannot do it while the treadmill is actually moving.

The one with bright white, brand new, shiny top-of-the range running shoes. You know she won't last a week.

The one who is bargaining with herself on the treadmill. Like, if you run for two more minutes, I'll let you walk for three. If you run for one minute then walk for five, I'll let you go to the library.

The one who is on her cool-down, but decides to go for another three minutes because 'Love Shack' comes on the radio.

The one whose song preferences you can tell by when she cranks up Miley Cyrus and turns it over from a slow song, which, seriously dudes, what were you thinking putting that on in the first place? We're supposed to energetic, here!

The one who manages to get her headphone cords almost irretrievably tangled on the ten steps it took to get from the treadmill to the bike.

The one who rolls her eyes at her bike's computer when it repeatedly screams "HIGH HEART RATE," like, isn't that the whole point? (Now give me a cupcake.)

The one who does a completely exaggerated look of what a darn shame when she discovers two rowers are occupied and the other one is out of order, because honestly, she really and truly wanted to extend her workout.

You know, that girl ... if everyone else at the gym had a blog and was as involved with my workout (hee! "my workout") as I was and rushed home to blog about it even before they had a shower and I'm sure their roommates will thank them for that when they sit down on the couch tonight.

Oh yeah, and the one who said it wasn't going to be a gym blog, but what can she say, because she didn't die two days in a row!

Monday, October 20, 2008

How To Make The Gym Seem Like Fun

Emphasis on the word seem.

Make it all about the outfits!

I could totally endorse athletic wear. Crop top by Nike. Singlet by Cotton On. Shorts by Lonsdale. Socks by Nike. Shoes by Asics. Wristband by Adidas. Ok, so I'm not very loyal, but that will all change when someone starts paying me to go to the gym.

Speaking of, the last time I decided to exercise, I got a trip to San Francisco at the end of it. I fail to see how I am going to find motivation to equal or beat that this time around. Compared to a holiday, new clothes don't really cut it.

This is in no way going to become an exercise blog. For one thing, that would mean I would have to exercise, and for another, that shit is boring. But I thought that today, my first day at the gym, should be commemorated in some way. My goal is to do something at the gym every weekday, and notice I very carefully didn't specify how much something.

So far: I didn't collapse on the treadmill and kill myself. I consider that a total gym success.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Welcome To The Dark Side

I did it. I joined the gym.

I just went in to get prices and whatever - because I fully intend parading around the beach in a bikini all summer, and there are some things that the public should not be subjected to, so the gym was going to have to happen - but god forbid they could actually just hand over a price list and let me escape unscathed.

A consultant was brought out, I got a tour of the place, we had a long chat about my dreams, hopes, and aspirations, and then finally, he was like, hand over your wallet. And even then, when I was like, "Ok, I'll just take this info and get back to you," he was like, "What?" with this really confused look. Why don't you want to sell us your soul right now, this instant, immediately if not sooner?

Anyway, after he went back to his manager to see what kind of deal we could do, since I am, after all, a struggling uni student, he came back with a discount, plus a deal that he just worked out, which was pretty sneaky for two reasons: first of all, excellent sales tactics there, doing even better than the manager said he could (as if all of this wasn't authorised way before it was presented to me) and secondly, he got me signed up for much longer than I was going to, and if I forget to go in and change it, he's got me! All in all, they really do push hard to get you to sign up, but he was very friendly and knowledgeable, so it didn't even seem too bad. Which makes it even sneakier!

But I did get this very trendy backpack and drink bottle, all for the low low price of giving them a bunch of fake phone numbers of my closest friends people I want to torture with incessant phone calls.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

House and Holmes

As may have been evident from yesterday's post, I have finished my thesis. It ended up at 58 pages (FIFTY-EIGHT PAGES), including cover sheet, acknowledgements, contents page, etc. The actual numbered pages only go up to 48, mostly due to the fact that the Intro is counted in roman numerals, which I am spewing about. As if I couldn't find two more pages of bullshit to babble about. I'm pretty sure I could have just moved a couple of paragraphs onto the next page and we would have been set. Although, I'm fairly certain 13,037 is enough words for any one person to be expected to read. And SEVEN DOLLARS was certainly enough for me to have to pay to print the stupid thing. On the plus side, I did learn how to make different types of page numbers within a single document.

I spent most of yesterday making sure things were double-spaced, no wait one and a half spaced here, and justified, no wait centered on this page, and OH MY GOD that full stop should have been a comma, and I really think that should have a capital, but if so I have to change all the other lower-case letters that I've already passed, and THE MARKERS BETTER NOTICE THESE MINUSCULE DETAILS.

Speaking of which, I kind of have an issue with the marking of this. Firstly, what the hell was I thinking writing about a pop-culture tv drama? Why did NO-ONE, at any point, tell me to compare Holmes to, like, War and Peace or The Odyssey or something that seems vaguely literary and intelligent. Ahem.

Secondly, how can they even mark it, when I had to make up the question and they really don't know what I was trying to say, or if I should have included something else, because clearly, this is the question, and this is exactly what I was trying to say, and it's written in a way which perfectly answers the question. So HDs all round!

Plus, if the Abstract was optional, then do we get bonus marks for having one? Or if it's really crap, do they take marks off? Cos that would suggest it would be better to not even have one. So many questions!

And thirdly, I feel like we should be able to include little notes to the markers, to the tune of "I included the episodes here and in this particular order because my supervisor told me to, even though she ended that email with the words 'I reckon' which I agree is not a very compelling argument, but it's all I had to go by. Take it up with her, you can leave that HD here while you do so. Cheers."

All that aside, it appears that I have done good just finishing it on time. In my class last week, to which five people showed up, one had done his thesis last semester, two had postponed theirs til next year, and another appeared to be in the middle of a nervous breakdown and was considering doing the same. Seriously, she nearly burst into tears when she found out the due date of our assignment was earlier than she thought. (She did get us an extension, so it wasn't in vain.) So now I am (a) freaking out because I'm pretty sure these are all very smart people and if they weren't able to complete it, what the hell makes me think mine is done well enough to hand in and (b) happy that I once again can experience the feeling that I was so used to having for most of high school - the one where I am smarter than everyone else and was not be up til midnight working on an assignment.

SO, THEREFORE, IN CONCLUSION ... here is me handing in my FIFTY-EIGHT PAGE THESIS and heading off to the beach. Mwah!

See how thick it is? And see me hiding in the shelves so no-one would see what a big dork I was being? Yeah, didn't work. Who knew people actually read those books?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


I just typed my Acknowledgements page, and I thought you all might like to see it.

Unfortunately, since the guide says we should endeavour to be "brief and restrained" (emphasis all theirs, probably to combat situations just such as this), I might have to take out that last bit. But at least it will be preserved here forever.

I really do appreciate it.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Scary Things Update

I'm fairly certain I just finished writing my thesis. I didn't manage a 2000 word conclusion, but 1515 is close enough. I had a little trouble due to the whole I was supposed to have a point? Shit thing, but it's all good. I could write an abstract, and there is a whole lot of editing of my references to do, but basically, all the words are written. Yay me. Of course, I am not going to do all those little things today like I could, because I do not know how to not finish something ahead of time and would freak out if I had nothing to do the day before.


Here was my solution to the swooping magpie problem:

Bite me, magpies.

It was at the suggestion of my darling dad that I donned my scooter riding gear to hang out the washing, but judging from his laughter when I told him I'd actually done it, it was only so I could embarrass myself in front of the internet. But you guys totally believe that magpies are terrifying attack-trained killers, right? Thank you, dad and magpies, for my new-found fear of birds.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Killer Magpie Invasion

I just got SWOOPED by a MAGPIE.

Now, when I was little my dad used to tell us stories about when he was a boy and he had to ride to school swinging his school bag over his head to scare off the magpies. Darwin magpies don't do that, but it never occurred to me that Adelaide magpies would do it TO ME. Dad lived in the freaking country. Town magpies swoop, but city magpies are all civilised when I want to hang out the washing, right? Turns out: HELL NO.

And also, dad? You can't have your mobile off AND be out of the office when I need to call you. I couldn't really leave a message with Random Lady Who Answered The Phone about giant killer magpies who are out to get me, you know? And now how is my washing going to get dry? It's not-cold AND it's sunny today! But there's a magpie! HELP!

Friday, October 03, 2008

Happy Again

If someone was making a movie of my life (and come on, Road Trip II: BlogHer08 is just begging to be made), September would be the montage section, with cuts to me typing steadily, taking notes with books spread out all around me, and sitting in front of the tv eating. A lot.

I would get dressed in my thesis-writing outfit - trackies and many many layers of long-sleeved tops - have breakfast, type, eat lunch, type, etcetera but supersized. There was a lot of "Oh god, I'm so fat." Basically, winter was crushing my spirit.

But then came the awesome hotness of the start of spring. I decided I could no longer wear trackies to work, so I bought a pair of SHORTS and wore them at work that day. And oh my god, the difference that made. Hi legs! Wow, you look so good! Hey there calves, I'd totally forgotten you existed!

(This story doesn't really have a conclusion or a point, so I'm just going to put some stars here and pretend there an awesome finish which was also a wicked good segue into the next part.)


As I may have mentioned, my usual essay-writing method is to type and type and hit word count and type some more and oh look, we're at the word limit, type a conclusion, hit print. That's some quality work ethic there, dude.

And as I am totally sure I have not mentioned, not once, never ever, I am type-type-typing away at my thesis. Yesterday I did a bit of consolidation and editing (which seriously, re-reading my own writing? hate. never do it) and got an accurate word-count for the first time. (It's supposed to be 12-15000 words, but I always thought it was 10000, which is quite enough thank you, so that's what I was aiming for.) With a 2000 word conclusion still to go (which, hi, seriously? how do you write a 2000 word conclusion? usually my entire arguement is barely that long), I'm at 9800 words.

Which means I am totally on track, and if I stop messing around here, I could essentially have the whole thing written by tonight. OK FREAK OUT. Back to playing on the internet!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Cos We Don't Need No-One To Tell Us What To Do!

PS: This post took abouuuuut four hours to get done, due to the internets' refusal to upload photos to either here or Facebook. For which FB has been stabbed.

When I asked you all what to wear to the Living End concert, no replies were forthcoming,* which meant that Shelle and Alyce and I were on our own.

Everyone else at the concert: What do you wear to a Living End concert?
Us: What do you wear to HQ (where the concert was held)?

There is a bit of a difference. (And yes, that was like the worst photo I had, but it was the only full-length one of all three of us.)

Anyway, so there we were, being totally hot, and looking like ditzy college students, right down to the drinks our drivers were kind enough to let us stop and buy on the way.

We were pretty impatient through the opening bands, every single member of which made me want to attack them with hairdressing scissors. But we spent the time trying to get the attention of Hat Guy and Photo Guy, without much success.

But then THE LIVING END CAME ON! And we rocked out.

And so did the band. (Spewing I didn't get a photo of the dude playing his big cello thing WHILE STANDING ON IT. AWESOME!)

We decided to take a bathroom break for some fresh air, and what are bathrooms for if not posing in front of their mirrors?

The whole time we were sitting there, we kept saying things like "I can't wait to get McDonalds" and (since the band was taking a break) "We picked a great time to come here." This got us weird looks from some people who thought they were giving them to us after they'd walked past, but HAHA WALL OF MIRRORS WE CAN TOTALLY SEE YOU. We met Shoe Girl, who'd lost both of her shoes in the middle of the mosh pit. (We had actually started the concert there ourselves, with some idiot guys who were not being at all subtle about the pills they were popping, but decided we really didn't want to be crushed, so we moved to the left a bit. Still in the second/third row, which is awesome, right?) And we met Every Single Other Person Who Came In, who was allowed to bring their drinks in, while Alyce had had her water confiscated. Then Shelle got all impatient texting us, and we were like, whatever, we'll go back out when the break's over. And then the security guy was all, everybody out of the bathroom. And we were like, but we like it here!

And then we went out, and all the funny looks we'd gotten kinda made sense, as the whole place was empty except for Shelle. Yes indeed girls, why wouldn't you be allowed to stay in the bathroom during a break?

Annnyway. In short: I love tickets!

*It occurs to me that this may be because you are unfamiliar with the Living End? Is this true? I'd be interested to know. If that's the case, here is their song from which I stole the title of this post (and which COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY rocked the house last night).

More of their songs here and here. And their latest one here.
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