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Friday, 18 April 2014

&%$#!!!!


 
So, I'm picking up Rosie, a kelpie with a dash cattle dog in her, next Tuesday from the homeless shelter after I come back from a trip to the middle of nowhere. Yesterday I bought food and stuff so I had everything when she wanders in. Last night I put together what initially appeared to be a simple dog bed. Simple-my-arse. First of all the instructions were completely wrong for me. I think they were written for someone else...like a man. I did almost consider calling a very good male friend and requesting him to 'fix it please'. But I didn't. I girded my loins and with Allen key in hand I put the dog bed together upside down. $#^%!!!! I looked at it, upside down and thought, "That's fine. I can live with that." Then I looked again and thought "%^&*!!! Damn it, I have to pull it apart." Once apart I assessed all the pieces very, very carefully and even retrieved the instructions from the bin and after careful consideration I put it together upside down - again. %^&*!!!! What!!! I stopped and had a coffee and assessed the problem deciding it was a either a left or right brain puzzle and I hate puzzles and I absolutely knew that the instructions were wrong - stupid instructions -  and none of this could possibly be my fault . And yes, I did consider super gluing that sucker together or tying it up. After another cup of coffee and a lot slapping around the face, I struggled for another 40 minutes to get the thing together. After a lot of swearing and maybe the generous application of hammer to metal, the dog bed was done.  See? Easy. No problem.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Wow, a plot...


I was reading this book, part of a series, by a well known paperback writer and I was about four pages into it when I found out a character died.  Just like that. He's dead. I flicked back a couple of pages to make sure I hadn't missed anything and that pages weren't stuck together. I checked the series number of the book to make sure I hadn't skipped a book in between - but no, the character was dead. I avidly read on trying to work out what had happened, how the heroine was coping and wondering what she would do next now that this person had left her life. I liked that the heroine was pretty stoic, albeit heartbroken, about it and that she was getting on with her life wondering what she was supposed to do as I was wondering what she was going to do. 

To me, this is a good writer and a good book. Make me think. Make me wonder. Too few people write those books and when you find them, that's golden for a reader. It beats the hell out of shag the heroine for 99 pages with a plot on one page to suggest credibility.

Monday, 31 March 2014

Geoff the Stoic...


 

I was driving past one of the local schools. I was thinking how the school day seems to end a hell of a lot earlier than it used to when I was a kid. Or maybe in reality it doesn't. I always wanted the school day to finish approximately 30 minutes after I arrived and not at 3:30pm when it was scheduled to end. I didn't care much for high school. I still maintain that I would have been better going straight from primary school to working and travelling overseas. But there were these pesky rules and regulations that necessitated me turning up each day and attempting to pretend I cared. 

Anyway - my point is and I do have one - as I drove past the school I was thinking about one of the high schools I went to for around 18 months - I'm an ex army brat. The school always gave one kid the responsibility of ringing the end of day school bell. At Seymour High School, it was a kid call Geoff. He was in a lot of classes with me - most importantly the detestable math class that was at the end of the day. Geoff took his job very, very seriously. I took his job very, very seriously because the minute he stood up at 3:28pm every afternoon, in that dreaded math class, I knew that soon there would be a reprieve and I'd be able to get the hell out of working out the whole algebra, trigonometry and whatever whos-a-ma-jiggery problem I was pretending to be working on. 

Now, the thing with Geoff was he never ever rang the bell early. He was always on time...damn him. This is probably why he got the job. The school wasn't silly. He wasn't an army brat who would, undoubtedly, in a free spirited way who gives a crap way break the rules and ring the bell early and then try and look all innocent-like. No matter how many pleading looks we sent him, Geoff, stoic soul that he was, did his duty to the exact second and never wavered.   

So, what's the point of all this? Geoffs keep us on track. Wanna get off the track? Ask an Amarinda.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Weird dude on book covers...


I was reminded by author Anny Cook about this weird dude that can be seen on multiple ebook covers. Which weird dude you ask out of the headless men picture above? And why headless men? I'm assuming to buy the pic with a head would cost the cover artist/publisher more money.  I don't know about you but I would like a hero with a head. I'd pay the extra for the head. I don't feel, as a reader, that's asking too much. I can see all three men have abs and a crotch but bring me his head - cranium that is, not dick. 

Anyway the weird dude we were discussing is the one at the back with his torn 1980's style jeans and his button undone, seemingly ready to either pee or drop is pants to dazzle some breathless heroine with his love muscle. And Anny was right. I've seen him on a lot of covers so this begs the age old question - do women buy ebooks because of the covers? Do they want a man in ripped jeans and his hands on his hips as he balances on the balls of his feet to make him look, I dunno, taller? More well endowed? Is this really what women? If so, then what is the story behind the cover going to be about? Deep, spiritual messages? Man's inhumanity to man? Metaphysical forces in our daily lives and how they shape our destiny? Or just a random sex with a weird dude and his two buddies, legs astride and seemingly ready for action?
 
I dunno...I believe women deserve a head.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Boy oh boy, you're going to get us in trouble when your parents get home...



So, I went to drop off some eggs at a friend's place in between trying to mow the lawn and the showers that kept stopping me. I knew they wouldn't be home so I went around the back and dropped off the eggs and said hello to their dog Teddy. He loves everyone. The minute Teddy sees you, he loves you no matter who you are or what you look like, he will present you with a ball or a toy duck for you to play with him. 

So, I see him. He sees me and is excited. I'm not sure how he did it but in his rush to grab this mangy duck toy he turns himself in such a way that he smacks his face on some brickwork. Bloody hell! You had to go do that I my watch! Chooks never do that. Undeterred Teddy presents me with the duck. He has knocked a chunk of skin out near his eye. I said to Teddy, who, understands me completely, "Boy oh boy, you're going to get us in trouble when your parents get home." I had inadvertently broken their loveable yet clumsy dog.  Teddy, despite a bloody looking non bleeding gash in his skin just keeps nudging the duck at me with a look of "Forget about them. I'm totally in love you with, now play ball with me."  

What is the point to this story you ask? Maybe it's that dogs are simple creatures who accept things and move on. Maybe it's about the fact that a dog takes every chance at happiness that he can get. Maybe if he'd been a human, he'd be whining at the chunk of missing skin, annoying the crap out of everyone. Maybe we should be more like dogs though possibly less clumsy when excited. I dunno. Maybe dogs are better than humans in their acceptance of others. 

Yes, I did go back and check on him after the first visit. Yes, this meant I had to play another round of throw the duck, then the ball with Teddy. Yes, I rang and left a message with his homeward bound parents about what happened and that I did not deliberately break their clumsy dog.  
 
Yeah, maybe a dogs life is pretty good. No worries, a thick skull and a couple of toy ducks and life is as good as you make it.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

When I grow up...


So, I've been working this temp gig to earn some money because for some reason the Lotto doesn't seem to paying me out millions of dollars. Kinda weird really because that's why I play it but there you go. 

I was working with this woman yesterday - actually, working is probably the incorrect term as we spent most of the day talking. After talking to her I've decided I want to grow up to be her. Why? Because when she retired she and her partner hit the road and travelled Australia working odd jobs and seeing the country and basically just enjoying the adventure. Currently she lives on a boat in the Whitsundays and they travel up and down the east coast of Australia just going where they want and living as they please. No, they're not rich. They worked hard all their lives and saved to get to the point where they are now. Talking to her was like talking to myself in 15 years time. 

I believe every so often life gives you glimpses of the future to remind you that yes, you may be going through crapacious times but there is a reason to it all so hold on and do what you have to in order for better days to come. I believe...

Monday, 17 March 2014

What is it with bullies?


 
I had a face off with a bully yesterday. She thought I was a victim. Why? I'm not sure. Maybe because I'm an average woman with average looks and her need to try and pick on someone was transferred to me.  I spent my childhood with a bully who tried to stomp on my self esteem and destroy me. Bullies are like that. By their very nature they are weak people who try to demolish the strength of others to make them feel better about themselves. Get a frigging self help book or see a psychiatrist I say. Unfortunately for the bully I faced on the job, I detest bullies and I will never put up with the rot they go on with. I stood my ground and I dealt with her letting her know I was the absolutely wrong person to toy with. I also reported her actions because while I can look after myself another may not be able to and she needed to be officially stopped. Tattling? No. Someone has to say something to stop something. She got stopped. 

Today, a woman at the gym was telling me about the stress of a bully who was making her life a nightmare. After I left her I was wondering to myself are bullies more recognizable now? By that I mean did people in the past just suck it up and forge  ahead, saying nothing as they got on as best they could against the bully. I don't recall an outcry against bullies in school thirty or forty years ago. Did that allow the bullies to grow up and create more bullies to the point that they can be found everywhere and that has caused people to stop and think about the evil of bullies and how they should be stopped? Is it that we understand our rights more? Do we remember as kids that one person that pushed us too far and stiffened our resolved to never be pushed that far again? 

I dunno. All I do know is if a bully tries to hurt you and doesn't succeed, there will be a dozen more people that bully will try and attack. Stand your ground and be the one who stops them. Yeah, it's hard work but you never want that happening to someone else.