| Tuesday, August 31, 2004
Last night Amy stopped over and we headed to Gleebooks for a reading by Lynn Truss. Truss is the author of Eats Shoots & Leaves, a manifesto for those of us driven mad by bad punctuation. She was an entertaining speaker who kept the crowd laughing with slides of real, badly-written signs. Afterwards we got our books signed and headed home. Then Snookums and I ate Subway for dinner while watching the director's commentary of Dude, Where's My Car?
And that pretty much sums up everything you need to know about me.
Monday, August 30, 2004
Sunday, August 29, 2004
Last night the Snook and I attended the massive 50th birthday celebration of his Auntie Linda. It was held about an hour south of Sydney at a cafe overlooking the coast. The invitations she sent out weeks before declared 1954 as "the year of the rebel" and instructed the guests to "come dressed as whatever a REBEL means to you." We thought long and hard about it and decided that - for us - nothing less than the Rebel Alliance from Star Wars would do. (It was also a pretty lazy option, since we knew we could probably borrow Amy and Rob's costumes from last Halloween.) Anyway, here we are as Princess Leia and Han Solo. Check out the Snook's chest hair! What a scruffy lookin' nerf herder. The rest of the immediate Snook family displayed similar creativity: Pa and Ma Snook were Robin Hood and Maid Marian, while sister Jeannie and husband Chris went as Asterix and Obelix. Unfortunately most of our fellow partygoers interpreted "rebel" to mean "skanky and gothic in the manner of Kelly Osborne", so the six of us really stood out. It was a fun night of drinking, dancing, and nibbles. How could you not enjoy a party that included a lesbian wedding proposal, an S&M version of Dorothy the Dinosaur, and the many jibes at Pa Snook's shapely legs? [more...]
Thursday, August 26, 2004
Amy's getting so big! Fortunately her hunger seems to be plateauing and she's not whining for food every minute like before. She also doesn't wolf her dinner down all at once only to puke it up five minutes later, so that's nice too. I bought her a squeakie toy last week (out of guilt at locking her in the bathroom while we got the carpet cleaned) but she hates it. It scares the crap out of her. The only toys she really, really likes are the plastic rings from the top of peanut butter jars. I blame the Other Amy for starting that...
(I take total perverse pleasure in posting pictures of our cat, knowing that it's such a stereotypical lame thing for a blogger to do. I can't help it. If I have to put up with e-mails from my sister about her cancer dog's diarrhea, you can put up with my adorable little moggie, okay?)
Wednesday, August 25, 2004
At last. Remember when I ordered the My So-Called Life DVDs, oh, two years ago? What a nightmare that turned out to be. First of all, the company turned out to be completely dodgy and it took over six months for me to finally receive the discs. Then the "exclusive" deal turned out to be not-so-exclusive and the same set turned up on Amazon for less than I paid. The company swore they'd make it up to us with a MSCL lunch box and bonus disc, but before that could happen the owner got arrested by the FBI for various other swindles. It's been well over a year and I sorta wrote the whole thing off. Lo and behold, today I got an e-mail from a wholly unconnected third party who'd managed to get his hands on both the bonus materials and the list of customers! (Thank God I still check my old Yahoo address.) All I had to do was pay another $15 for shipping to Australia. Which sucks, but hey, I'll finally get my damn lunch box. If you were involved and haven't heard anything from them yet, check the forums. The guy in charge seems to be pretty helpful, considering he's doing all this for free.
Tuesday, August 24, 2004
Update: We won! And I didn't fall down! Oh my god, am I tired. We only had one sub so I was in most of the 40 minutes of the game. They even made me do the jump ball at the start! (I didn't get a single finger on it. My vertical is, like, two inches.) I took two shots but I missed them both. My real contribution - if I do say so myself - was on defense. Since it's a coed league, guys aren't allowed to block girls' shots. If they do, the girls automatically get the two points. Since the other girls on our team were little, my job was to be Shaquille O'Neill and get in their faces. This one girl was totally like, "Ref, come on!" when I had her cornered down in the paint. Oh yeah, I was intimidating. My real highlight came at the end of the first half. The only really good player on the other team was this Asian guy who was just schooling us every time he touched the ball. He was barrelling down the court and I just thought, "Self, he's not gettin' past you this time." So I stepped up, threw out my hip, and laid his ass on the floor! Stopped him dead in his tracks. It was a massive foul of course, but he only made one of the free throws so I think it was a moral victory. Go me! (I'm going to have bruises tomorrow.) After the game I was like, "Dude, you rock. Sorry about that, uh, body check back there." And oh yeah, I wore the big white sweatband. Check out my Intimidation Face!
Monday, August 23, 2004
PLUS - I had a moment of pop culture genius at the Chinese restaurant when we were all trying to guess who the hell "Ron Perleman" - who played Hellboy - was. I was like, "You guys, seriously, wasn't he in that "Beauty and the Beast" show with Linda Hamilton? And he looked like a lion and lived in the sewers? I didn't dream that, did I?" But I was totally right. And I never even watched that show!
Sunday, August 22, 2004
My allergies officially crossed the line today from being merely irritating to completely debilitating. It was stupid, but I ran out of Zyrtec a few days ago and decided to go without it to see what would happen. (I dunno; sometimes I wonder whether pills actually do any good, you know?) As a result, within two minutes of waking up this morning my eyes and nose were streaming. My sinuses were burning and I couldn't stop sneezing. I felt awful. I couldn't even think straight; it was like my head was filled with nasty steel wool. Even after some emergency Zyrtec I still felt like ass. My head hurt and I was completely dehydrated. I was supposed to go to a Stitch-and-Bitch at my coworker's place but instead spent the whole day lying on the couch. This sucks. Frickin' dust mites... I don't get it! I've been washing the sheets in boiling water; we had the carpet steam cleaned; I've been vacuuming regularly. Nothing helps. So back on the expensive nightly Zyrtec I go. My allergy specialist has decided that I need "desensitization therapy." Basically they're going to inject me with little bits of the stuff I'm allergic to - repeatedly - until I get used to it. I'm just waiting for the allergens to arrive from France (the apparent allergy capital of the world). Then come the shots. And if that doesn't work, I'll have to have surgery on my sinuses! Man, this sucks. Anybody want to chip in and get me one of those Japanese nasal teapots?
Saturday, August 21, 2004
Friday, August 20, 2004
... Umbrellas. We had two days of rain this week and each morning I hate to fight my way to work through a sea of self-important wankers carrying golf umbrellas on the sidewalk. Look, people, it's raining. Accept that your feet are going to get a little wet and give the rest of us a break. This whole umbrella-size arms race is just ridiculous. I started envisioning a sketch (for the little comedy show that plays in my head, of course) involving a person carrying a patio table umbrella down George Street in Sydney. You know, like the guy with the big phone on Trigger Happy TV. That cheered me up a little.
... Children. I understand that the shop appeals to mostly female customers, and that many of those customers spend their days at home taking care of their kids. I understand that coming to a beautiful shop to indulge in their hobby must feel like a wonderful little vacation. I just wish they'd leave the damn kids at home. Every single day some mother comes in dragging her offspring, only to park them in the corner and ignore them while she shops. If it's a baby, it will inevitably start to scream and cry (while blocking traffic in it's inevitably Inappropriate Large Stroller). If they're ambulatory, they'll run up and down the length of the store while yelling. I'm not exaggerating. Our shop has lots of beautiful, shiny, colorful, expensive things that the young dears just love to run their sticky hands over and pull off the shelves into a heap. If anything, these experiences only serve to dampen yet further the nearly-inaudible tickings of my own biological clock.
... Old Ladies. Look, I like being appreciated. I go out of my way to help customers and it's nice when they thank me. There's a line, though, and occasionally it gets crossed. Like today, when a 70-year-old woman kissed me and then - I swear - propositioned me. Seriously. All because I put some wool on hold for her and promised that I'd keep it til she came back for her next knitting class. She thanked me profusely while grasping my hand and I tried to leave it at that, but she had a grip of steel and I surrendered to the inevitable cheek smooch, thinking that'd be the end of it. "Oh, you are just so special! What would we do without this girl? Isn't she the greatest! I just wish I could take you home with me! Not only will you be kept, you'll be fed and watered too!" *double take* What, what, what? Creepy old lady.
Thursday, August 19, 2004
Wednesday, August 18, 2004
So I finished Song of Susannah. She didn't die, yet. Man, that one really sucked though. As I explained it to Snookums this morning, it's like in the middle of The Lord of the Rings, if Sauron suddenly realized that a man named JRR Tolkien was writing his story on another plane of existence and decided to keep the good guys from winning by arranging for a van to, you know, run Tolkien over when he was out on his morning constitutional in Oxford one day. It sucks. Mostly I'm pissed off because about halfway through the book it became glaringly apparent to me how heavily the conclusion was going to draw upon actual, real world events of the past five years. Not only is this cheesy - I actually groaned when the World Trade Center made its appearance - but it just draws attention to the fact that King had no goddamn clue how this was going to end when he started it. I mean, sure, I accept that he didn't know the exact details, but I figure that an author should have a pretty good idea when he starts out whether the good guys are going to win in the end. Now I'm just cringing. It's just such a sad, non-Romantic ending for our beloved ka-tet. (As I said to the Snook, "This book just got so meta I think my brain's going to fall out.") And good grief, the whole revelation of who Susannah's baby's father is? I could've puked. Really. He had to put Mordred in the story? Mordred??? I really, really hope King can pull out a satisfying conclusion to this series because right now book 6 out of 7 has left me incredibly frustrated. I didn't realize how attached I'd become to the characters until he left them all up to their necks in cheesy, meta, cliffhanger crap.
Tuesday, August 17, 2004
Saturday, August 14, 2004
Friday, August 13, 2004
Thursday, August 12, 2004
Snook: What fetus thing?
Me: Oh, you know, the documentary that woman made that's been in all the news. What's it called?
Snook: Not Without My Fetus?
Snook: Dude, Where's My Fetus? The Fetus Strikes Back?
Me: *uncontrollable laughter*
It just continued on from there. Five days later we're still throwing out gems like 2001: A Fetus Odyssey and Citizen Fetus. It's fun. Try it.
Note: For the record, the film was called My Foetus, which is obviously way too lame and unmemorable. And it has that weird "o" in it.
So I finally finished my own pair of Broad Street Mittens with just a few weeks of winter left to spare. As you can see, mine are knitted in navy "argyle" sock wool from Heirloom. I basically followed the pattern as written (with a few exceptions based on the error I mentioned in the previous post). And yeah, I embroidered "DUDE" and "SWEET" on the backs of the mitten flaps in a subtle red wool. Heh. Somehow I doubt many of my fellow commuters are going to get the joke.
Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Tuesday, August 10, 2004
Snookums: Yeah, but this is a sexy show. It runs at, like, quadruple speed.
Sure enough, there they are hookin' up on a Ferris Wheel in the next preview! Man, I love this show. There really is no better way to relax from a crap day than a couple glasses of red wine, reheated curry, and yet another premiere episode of The O.C. I can't wait for next episode when they all go back to school and Seth hooks up with that Jennifer Tilley-lookin' chick.
Monday, August 9, 2004
I did such a grown-up thing today: I had the carpet steam-cleaned! Our carpet has been filthy ever since we moved in and I finally decided to do something about it. Last week I noticed there was a coupon on the back of the grocery receipt to have four rooms cleaned for $80, so I called 'em up and made an appointment. The only pain was picking up, like, everything in the house that was on the floor and then moving it out of the way. Anyway, the guy came today and what an improvement! Suddenly I'm energized for all our upcoming spring tasks. Snookums has grand plans for the garden this year and even set up a proper compost box yesterday. The sun is shining and everything seems possible...
Sunday, August 8, 2004
Saturday, August 7, 2004
Remember how my sister ran the Honolulu Marathon last year? It turns out that Katie Krawcyzk, a good friend of my cousin Jenny (who you'll recognize as a frequent commenter here), is running it this year to raise money for AIDS services. She's got another reason though: she's doing it to get her Dad to quit smoking. I really liked this bit from her training page:
I have chosen to run a marathon to show him that overcoming most of life's hardest battles (such as quitting smoking) is an issue of determination and mind over matter - you can achieve anything, no matter how much you may resist, or how much you struggle to get through it. Even if you never wanted to do such a feat for yourself in the first place, you do it for those you love because they want you to, and they need you to; you do it to make yourself healthy so you can make the most of the one life you're given. Through this marathon, we raise money for those living with AIDS in order to prolong their lives as much as possible until we find a cure. For me, I am not only hoping to help save their lives, but I'm also hoping to save one more.That's awesome. Please consider donating a few bucks if you have any to spare. (And Dad, are you listening? Say the word and I'll start training.)
Friday, August 6, 2004
I just spent, like, twenty minutes reading this excellent MetaFilter thread about women and their fears (both rational and irrational) about being in the public space. I don't think a lot of guys understand what it's like to be objectified to the point where it's easier to assume every stranger is an attacker and behave accordingly. I mean, look, I'm no Paris Hilton or anything, yet I've been groped and catcalled and frottaged enough to be seriously wary of any guy I don't know. It sucks but it's the truth.
Thursday, August 5, 2004
Wednesday, August 4, 2004
My computer is dying. I thought she'd slipped off in her sleep last night but here she is this morning, still wheezing away. I want her to go quietly. She's had a good run and it's time to visit the big AppleCentre in the sky. Now I just need to figure out if I'm going to shell out for another Mac or let the Snook set me up with a Linux box for half the price. Decisions, decisions...
Monday, August 2, 2004
Ahhhhhh. Now that was a nice break. In gratitude for all the long hours he's been pulling, the Snook's boss arranged for us to have a swanky night out (on the company). So we filled the automatic cat feeder and headed off Sunday afternoon for the Observatory Hotel down in the Rocks. Check-in was at 3:00 and we wanted to take advantage of every minute. Our room was huge and we had a lot of fun checking out all the features (including a dual-spout shower!). Then we headed out for a beer at the Lord Nelson and a perusal of the Sunday paper. Later we went back to the hotel for a wash - check out us in our fluffy robes! - before setting off for Wildfire. We tried it last year but weren't really impressed with the service. The experience this year wasn't a lot better. We tried the "churrasco", which is basically an "all-you-can-eat" kind of thing where they bring lots of grilled chunks of meat to your table on skewers. Snookums thought that the squid was way too raw, while I couldn't detect any hint of fancy Brazilian spice at all. But whatever. We weren't paying for it, so we didn't care too much. The wine was excellent, at least. We headed back to the hotel for a much deserved sleep. Unfortunately we didn't really get it. The bed, which seemed nice at first, was way too soft and I was tossing and turning all night. The Snook found the air incredibly dry and kept waking up and gasping for the water glass. I wouldn't say we were incredibly well-rested when the breakfast tray came this morning. The food was good though, and we took turns having long soaks in the extra-long bathtub. By the time we checked out at 11:00, we felt refreshed and happy. Dr. Amy Jones survived her first night alone and seemed really happy to see us. That is, until I let my newfound energy go to my head and - in a fit of spring cleaning fervor - dragged out the vacuum cleaner... But she'll recover. I've got a couple more pictures from the hotel if you're interested. [more...]
Sunday, August 1, 2004
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