Sunday, 30 June 2013


I’ve been thinking a lot about greed and the rampant sense of entitlement people have when someone passes away. There are those who immediately approach you with their hand out for what they believe is their share. They hound, badger and demand what they believe is their due even though they never did a damn thing for the person in life other than to ask them for money. Then there are those who stand beside you, in sad remembrance, who offer their hand to help, not expecting anything and are stunned when they’re given a gift. They often think it’s a mistake but it never is because good people give without thinking of benefit and are rewarded in kind.

It all comes down to karma doesn’t it? What you think you’re due karma will hand you, often in spades.

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Serious chook issues…

So, there are some serious chook issues happening at my place. It’s all to do with winter. There is not as much daylight and the chooks are going a bit stir crazy due to how winter is affecting Dulcie.

Dulcie is a chook. She’s also going through a massive manic depressive stage where she is refusing to leave the chook house, that is unless no one is watching her then she will wander out, eat food and scuttle back inside and sit on the lower floor of the chook house and not move. This presents a problem for the other two chooks – Laverne (accomplished escape artist) and Ursula (beauty challenged) in that they have a 89% preference to lay eggs were Dulcie is sitting. 11% of the time they lay them who bloody knows where. So, they wander into the chook house and stare at Dulcie. She stares at them. When nothing happens with the stare-off, they go and attempt to sit on her in an attempt to move her. She doesn’t care for this and mayhem ensues and feathers can be found on the lower level. After a scuffle between three chooks, two who really, really, really want to lay eggs to the point that have their legs crossed, Dulcie stands up and allows them to share the space. Once they’re done, she then sits on the eggs for the rest of the day brooding about man’s inhumanity to chooks.

When I get home, the other two chooks are standing out the front of the chook house waiting for me with a look of ‘she’s at it again’ and I go in and chat to Dulcie. She eyes me like I’m mad and clucks something I believe is ‘piss off.’ I then, pick her up or more often roll her onto her side and take the eggs explaining to her 'this deep, moody shit has to stop' where she then closes her eyes and ignores me. The other two, watching on then follow me around to the patio as if to say ‘we’re the good ones. we’re not like her.’  

It’s all too much some days…

Thursday, 27 June 2013


So, I get this email with an excel attachment at work indicating anything in yellow had to be checked and it was MANDATORY – yes in caps letting me know that they were being serious and I had to be as well - and no checking would be bad. Why? I don’t know. I didn't read the rest of the email. I opened the attachment and scanned down the list. Yep, there I was. I was one of the naughty ones highlighted in yellow. My crime? Not having Mrs, Ms or Miss beside my name and that ‘must be rectified immediately.’ Why? I don’t see what my marital status has to do with my job so I closed the attachment and sent it back to the Corporate Nazi who sent it and said ‘checked it.’ That’s not a lie. I did check it. I just chose to exercise my right to be a perverse bugger and not play along with their little games. Now, if they had asked by 'martial' status then I would have said deadly.  

Besides, when was the last time a female had to register their marital status? 1950?  

Simple fact...

AUSTRALIA has a new Prime Minister. His name is Kevin Rudd.

Three years and three days on from the day he was knifed by the faceless men, the former PM has been returned to the Lodge following a secret ballot called by Ms Gillard.

Following her defeat, Ms Gillard confirmed she would not contest the safe seat of Lalor at the 2013 election and has nominated the NDIS, carbon tax and Gonski reforms as key achievements of her minority government.
She said she was "proud" to be the nation's first female prime minister and despite the attacks she says she suffered, she thinks over time it will get easier for women to hold the top job.
"It will be easier for the next woman, and the woman after that and the woman after that. And I am proud of that," she said.

Simple fact - ruthless, ambitious people are not defined by gender. A knife can be held in the hand of anyone. Gillard did nothing to help women in politics. That she thinks she did and made this a gender debate indicates to me she had lost touch with the Aussie people and women in particular. 

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Genital consideration…

So there was a meeting today with us (Cairns) and them (Sydney) about not making up customer names  in the testing database – i.e Mr Dick Head, Mr Hugh Dick, Mr I M Awanker etc. It was stressed to us in very sanctimonious terms that we needed to keep our minds "above our genitals." Baaad, baaad Cairns. And nah, I’m not one of those in trouble due to genitals. I’m too busy at my desk looking for other jobs, writing and playing Taipei to consider my genitals at work. 

Monday, 24 June 2013


"You know, maybe part of the problem is we need to go back into the schools at a very early age, maybe at the grade school level, and have a class for the young girls and have a class for the young boys and say, you know, this is what’s important. This is what a father does that is maybe a little different, maybe a little bit better than the talents that a mom has in a certain area. And the same thing for the young girls, that, you know, this is what a mom does, and this is what is important from the standpoint of that union which we call marriage.”

Thirty odd years ago, as an army brat, we moved schools. No surprise with that. Army brats move. What did surprise me is I moved from a high school in one region that was progressive to a high school that was so behind the times that I was stunned at the gender stereotypes that were inflicted upon me because I was a teenage girl. I went from choosing subjects where I could learn to weld, drill and do manual, handy person type jobs to being told that my only options as a girl were home economics (cooking and sewing) and mothercraft (how to care for a baby). I felt trapped in a world I was being forced into against my will. I was being told it was expected that I would be a homemaker and a baby machine. They were my only options. My mother wasn’t thrilled about it either. She didn’t believe in anyone pigeon holing her kids. So, at 13, I railed against it. I went out of my way, as teenagers do, to be deliberately crap at these two subjects for two long years. If I had not had a mother who inspired me to be anything I wanted to be despite gender, I would have been less than I am now. Not all kids have that freedom or support.

I am totally against gender stereotypes. No one should be told to follow a certain path due to genetics. Not all women cook, clean and have babies. Not all men do technical, manual labor. People – despite gender – are diverse individuals with their own beliefs and goals. I worry about politicians, like this one above, who advocate what a woman and a man should be like so teach kids that in school. I wonder about people who do not see the underlining threat of stereotyping genders.

I still get gender stereotypes pushed onto me. Just recently, I stood at my father’s funeral, beside my brother, who I had not seen in 13 years. His main concern appeared to be that I was neither married or had a partner in tow. In fact, I believe he would have been relieved if I announced I was a lesbian so I could be slotted into society somewhere. I’m not gay but I get people like him need to pigeon hole others… “She’s not married. She’s not gay. What is wrong with her? Why is she single? How can she stand alone?”

My answer? I can and I do. I am who I am. You are who you are. Bugger off if you don’t like it. Your approval is not required.  

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Same diff...

Yep, that'd be diff between the benefits of chocolate and running. Gee, hmmm...which one to choose to do...really, eating chocolate saves your life.

  • Running for Health Benefits
    Studies have shown the health benefits of running to be tremendous, reducing your chances of everything from the common cold to cancer. Running is among the best aerobic exercises for physical conditioning of your heart and lungs. It helps ensure the efficient flow of blood and oxygen throughout the body, things that are proven to help to decrease the risk of a heart attack.
Running -- like other types of exercise -- is a great stress-reliever and may even relieve mild depression. Many runners enjoy reaching the "runner's high" -- that euphoric, clear, and calm state they feel after a long run.
Research shows that healthy adults who exercise regularly are generally happier than those who don't. As a runner, you'll likely feel more energetic and creative.
Running helps you improve your fitness and stamina. As a weight-bearing exercise, running also increases bone density, which can fend off osteoporosis.

Ten benefits of chocolate…
High in Antioxidants

Cocoa contains flavanols, a type of flavanoid that is only found in cocoa and chocolate. Flavanoids are naturally-occurring compounds that occur in plant foods that act as antioxidants and help counteract free radicals in the body.
Blood Pressure Benefits
Dark chocolate has been shown in studies to lower blood pressure in people with elevated blood pressure.
Lower LDL Cholesterol
Eating dark chocolate on a regular basis has been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol by as much as 10 percent.
Natural Anti-Depressant
Chocolate contains serotonin, a natural anti-depressant. Chocolate also stimulates endorphin production, which creates feelings of happiness and pleasure. In fact, one study found that melting chocolate in the mouth produced feelings of pleasure longer than passionate kissing. This may explain why many people naturally reach for chocolate when they're depressed.
Cancer Fighter
Several studies have found chocolate to be one of the best cancer-fighting foods along with foods like red wine, blueberries, garlic, and tea. Two ways that chocolate works as a cancer fighter is by inhibiting cell division and reducing inflammation, though research is ongoing and will probably find additional ways in which chocolate fights cancer.
Prevents Tooth Decay
Research has found that the theobromine in chocolate prevents tooth decay by eliminating streptococcus mutans, a bacteria found in the oral cavity that contributes to tooth decay.
Longer Life and Less Disease
One Dutch study followed 200 men over 20 years and found that those who consumed large amounts of chocolate, both milk chocolate and dark, lived longer and had lower overall disease rates than men who ate little or no chocolate.
High in Magnesium Cacao is higher in magnesium than any other plant. Magnesium is an important mineral that helps in the regulation of the digestive, neurological, and cardiovascular systems
Artery Cleanup
Studies have shown that the antioxidants in cacao work like brooms in sweeping plaque out of the arteries.
Brain Health
Many studies have shown that dark chocolate is good for the brain. Researchers at Johns Hopkins University found that it can protect the brain after a stroke by shielding the nerve cells from further damage. Dark chocolate has also been found to improve memory. Researchers at California's Salk Institute found that a chemical in chocolate called epicatechin improved the memory of mice.
longer life with less disease than your non-chocolate-eating peers.

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Gee? You want my opinion?

I met the new Business manager yesterday. He’s interesting to watch as he plays everyone in the office. With the men it’s football, cars, the women he met last night in Cairns even though he’s married but ‘hey fellas, a man’s not dead.’ Insert vulgar laugh, leer and back slap. With me? Well he tried charm. I looked deliberately vague. He tried, ‘You’re the backbone of the office, Amarinda.’ I raised one eyebrow and said ‘well, yes’ like that was obvious. He then tried asking my opinion of all the troubles and issues we had. Big, huge, deadly, extreme, caution, handle with care mistake. I gave it. His pale faced response, “Yeah. Right. Okay.” Translation? Fuck, why did I ask? Exactly…don’t ask and I won’t tell.  

Thursday, 20 June 2013


Interesting thing, I’ve been reading my way through the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series. While I’m enjoying it, the thing the gets me is the amount of typos in these paperbacks. You know, people always pick at the typos in ebooks citing that the writing and editing is rushed and therefore substandard because anyone can bung together and sell an ebook. Yeah, that can be true. But I was surprised that so called reputable, print book publishers are putting haphazard printed books out with a hell of a lot of typos.

So, to the traditionalists who will only read hard copy, are you getting a higher quality product than an ebook? I think not. 

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

...drink, smoke pot, lie a lot and have copious sex at 2:30am...

I was watching this pukeably sweet show this morning at 2:30 am when it was freezing cold and I couldn't sleep due to the cold and other reasons. It was Seventh Heaven – a schlock Yankee TV show about a bunch of god-botherers hell bent – okay – maybe heaven bent - on the fact that no one was supposed to have sex until they were married or all these terrible and dire things would happen like getting detention at school, sleeping in a tent in the backyard and arguing with parents over having sex before everyone forgiving everyone for having a penis and a vagina. The parents in question were this sappy, sickly sweet pair who made me want to drink, smoke pot, lie a lot and have copious sex at 2:30 am just to spite them. Basically, with this pair, it was a case of keep your legs together, think pure thoughts, eat cookies and be ridiculously annoying with sappy smiles and holier than thou bullshit sermons on goodliness. Plu-ease…

Did I mention there was nothing else on TV and I couldn’t sleep? Yes? Ok…good…anyway, I was thinking to myself who watches this bullshit, other than insomniacs? Who came up with the no sex until married bit and decided to force feed it in a TV show to insomniacs, and others, who have undoubtedly had sex before marriage and more than likely enjoyed it? Also, what message does it give to women? Without a man you can’t enjoy yourself? Be pure until married? What if you can’t remain pure? What if you’re an inherently impure insomniac? And the men in the show? Oh lordy…who’d want to have sex with them and their moralizing bullshit?

This sappy show went for 10 years on US TV and then it was forced on the rest of us drinking, whoring, pot smoking insomniacs. How did it go for 10 years?  I say take it off early morning TV and leave us impure  insomniacs alone. 

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Life...just is...

My father passed away from brain cancer on Tuesday. While I'm deeply saddened by that, I am glad he is now free from pain and the sheer and utter bastardry of cancer.
What I have learnt from this is -

- that people you have never met before or barely know rally to help without being asked. They just show up and do what they can because they want to. They expect nothing and are deeply honoured when you say thanks or pass on a keepsake that you know they would like and cherish.

- I have been inundated by people, especially from the Military, wanting to attend my father's funeral and present regimental colours and honours from all the units he served in and that their respect for the man  is true and infinite. Their kind words and stories mean as much to me as they do to them.

- I always knew I was one tough, strong woman but I know now that I am more resilient and decisive than I ever imagined and that knowledge and power is what makes me endure the hard times.

- I know that even in the worse of times the cosmos will make you suddenly laugh by sending you some absurd situation at the most random and inappropriate time to remind you that life goes on so remember to laugh and get on with it.

- What I always knew about greed and the character of my last sibling was true - neither are attractive and that no one can expect anything - gifts or money - to be granted to them on someones passing and an overblown rampant sense of entitlement means nothing. You are who you are and the dying have a way of having the final word on your character and instead of getting angry at the loss of what wealth or possessions you thought you may have gained, you should learn by what their last testament says. As for trying to bully me? Fuck off. I honour my father's wishes and words.

- Lastly, as always, I know death is a part of life and we deal with it and move. Cry, stamp your feet at the injustice and even yell at a deity or the cosmos but move on.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Wannabe Bridezilla...

So, I volunteered yesterday to help out a Biker dude club – Coral Coast Riders - who were volunteering their bikes and riders to take medics, media and technical officials (those who looked for cheats) out on the Ironman course which stretched from Cairns to Port Douglas and back again. Those volunteer bikers worked really hard and were knackered – literally – I saw them all walk back into the volunteer tent after a very long day on the bike. My job was to sign people and helmets in and out and know where people were. And then there was Tracey – who was supposed to assist me. Supposed to. Assist. Interesting words. The thing with Tracey was she was there to find a man and marry him.

I knew from the first minute I met her, several days before, she was on a groom hunt. She wasn’t interested in the organizing of the event. She was interested in the list of riders and who was and wasn’t married. I knew when she walked into the tent and would not give up the mobile phone we had for communication with the riders that she was going to catch and tag one of them but not let go. How to describe Tracey? Desperate, needy and a pain in the arse. After all the riders had ridden off she decided, despite being a volunteer (we were wearing a bright yellow t-shirt with VOLUNTEER written on it – a dead giveaway) that she needed to go and buy shoes. She was gone for hours. When she came back she rang some of the biker guy numbers because she could. With no response there, because they were out on the road doing their job, she wandered off again…and again…oh yeah and again – until the guys started turning up. Then she came back and made a beeline for them. There ain’t nothing more desperate than a wannabe bride.

In the end, with no takers, Tracey left and I continued on with the Volunteers in the tent. I have to say that they were amazing, kind, giving people, with interesting lives and we had long chats in between sign ins and outs. These are the people that keep events running so others can enjoy them knowing they are safe, looked after and everything is running to plan. I was surprised at the number of people who stopped into the Volunteer tent to thank us, who handed me flowers and who came to us just because they were lost and knew someone in yellow would know.

As for the Bikers? Very skilled, dedicated and passionate about what they were doing and just great men and women to talk to.  

As for Tracey? I don’t hate her. I feel sorry for her. No man is going to cure all her problems or make her happy.   

As for Cairns? You done real good. 

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Iron Woman...

Did my own Iron Woman this morning ~

  • 5km run
  • Random 30 minute, no particular style at all swim in the lagoon
  • Bike leg replaced by two cups of coffee and a banana

The Ironman is on in Cairns tomorrow. It brings beaucoup tourist money into the city and that’s always a beautiful thing.

Friday, 7 June 2013

'Have opinion...will travel...

So, I used the phrase ‘Hollywood bullshit’ in a phone hook up yesterday with some anal executive types when asked to give my opinion on their latest grand scheme for something.

I’ve always felt dead silence is fun in a meeting.

Don’t ask because I will tell.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Got it...

So, I had this moment yesterday when someone told me something that suddenly, after years and years made sense to me. A friend of my father’s said to me that he and my mother always felt my brother was unpleasant to me growing up because he was jealous of me by the fact I just got on and did things without trying to be a star or impress people. In essence, I remained my own person. Weird thing was, I just assumed he disliked me intensely and went out of his way to try and crush my self-esteem.  Being told my parents thoughts on the subject and playing back my youth, in my mind, like an old movie, I finally understood. He was jealous. Got it. Funny, how after all these years, it makes sense...and I still just get on with it.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Cosmic slap...

So, I was talking to a friend who said to me that I may not believe it but they had to lose weight. You know, in the past I would scoff when they said this and say ‘Where? Off your eyelids?’ But I now realize how wrong I was to say that. Weight is an issue to everyone and people who have always battled weight, such as myself, forget that people we perceive to be a good weight and look great to us may be feeling less than great. So, I apologized. I was wrong. I throw all my support behind my friend and once more learn a lesson from life. Not everything is as I perceive it. Cosmic slap to me.  

Monday, 3 June 2013

What goes around...

My brother, who I have not seen in 13 years called me today. It wasn't pleasant. My thoughts on this are....

1. You can't pick your relatives.

2. Forget nothing from your childhood.

3. Rise above those who try to bring you down.

4. Don't even consider giving up a kidney for someone who would punch you in the other one.

6. Karma is a bitch.


Sunday, 2 June 2013

One day...

I was watching something on TV and this advert came on and this kid, maybe 10 years old, was saying he wasn’t sure what he wanted to be when he grows up. At 10, I didn’t know either…nor at 20 or 30 and certainly not 40…maybe it’ll come to me at 50. Perhaps. I’m always open to possibilities… 

Saturday, 1 June 2013

People tell me...

So, I’ve decided to change my fitness stuff around and just concentrate on running. No boot camp. Just plain old guts for effort, determined running. I’ve decided that’s the best for me to shift weight and build muscle tone. Running is hard. I hate it. People tell me I’ll get sick of doing it. Other people tell me they’d give up after a couple of days running.  More people tell me they lack the determination to get up early in the morning to do it. While there are those who tell me they couldn’t do it alone. 

If I listened to people I would never have done a quarter of the things I’ve done in my life.

People who tell you stuff are out there everywhere. Watch out for them.