Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Free Comic Books + Hugh Jackman!!!!!

Oh ladies and gentlemen, it doesn't get any better than this.  Free comic books AND Hugh Jackman!  I was only going to do one blog post tonight, but I saw this over on Brisbane Blog and had to share!


Hoooooooo BABY!!!

I actually saw X-Men Origins: Wolverine last night.  I won free tickets to the MySpace "Black Curtain" premiere at the Regent Cinema in the city.  I took my friend Kylie (*waves to Kylie*) and I tell you, I found X-Men Origins: Wolverine a million shades of awesome!  Not only was Hugh Jackman so hot I think I ovulated at least half a dozen times, he's uber-cool as Wolverine, it's chock full of action, special effects, stunts, awesome characters, and a fast paced story.  Plus a few laughs peppered in.  Liev Schrieber is super creepy as Sabretooth, and Will.I.Am quite steals the show in a few scenes as John Wraith.  Go and see it and don't listen to the snobs who whine that it sucked, cos it didn't.

Anyhoo, as well as the opportunity to get Free Comic Books this Saturday May 2nd, it's a really good cause in getting folks to read (especially younger males).  I'm quite sure if you do a Google search on Free Comic Book Day + your city, you'll find somewhere that is participating.  For those of you in Brisbane, do go and check out the post at Brisbane Blog for details.

Now go back and watch that promo and trailer again.  Hubba hubba!

Sometimes I...

Over on a blog I read faithfully, Sleepy Jane, she has had this fabulous "Sometimes I" post, and I thought it was such a good idea that I would have a go at it myself.

So, sometimes I...

... just want to lay on the sofa and watch every single Mythbusters episode that I own, and enjoy the destruction.

... think I would like to permanently move to the US, but then I realise how bad health care is over there, and realise I'm better off  here.

... get really sick of people calling me up at work and telling me that "the system" has screwed something up, when I can see very clearly that a human did it.

... like to read the letters to the editor in MX, the free paper you get in the afternoon.  They're so stupid and petty, they make me feel like Einstein.

... wonder why people are intimidated by other people.  Everybody poops you know.

... wish that I could afford a chauffeur and town car.

... have absolutely no idea what I want to do with the rest of my life.

... would love to just stay home and faff about on the internet for a living!

Now your turn.  Sometimes I...

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Boat that Rocked

Just got home from the movies with my friends Elizabeth and Leanne.  We went to see The Boat that Rocked at South Bank cinemas (cheaper over there, $8.50 instead of like $14 or something).

What a fun movie!  A great rocking soundtrack of 60's music, lot's of fun characters with some great laughs, and a really solid cast (Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy, Emma Thompson, Kenneth Branagh, Jack Davenport, Rhys Ifans, Nick Frost, the very pretty Tom Sturridge and many more.)

For me the movie was completely stolen by "Thick Kevin" played by Tom Brooke.  He got the best laughs out of the whole movie.

If you love 60's music, British humour and a good laugh, check this one out.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A Letter To Myself

How long is it since you were sixteen?  It's an awful long time since I was sixteen, and if you've been reading earlier posts, you'll know that my 20 year high school reunion was just a couple of weeks ago (for those of you who haven't read earlier posts, I didn't go).

I had a conversation with a friend recently about if you knew then, what you know now.  Which kind of got me thinking, what would I say to myself if I could sit down today and write a letter for 16 year old me, that 16 year old me would actually receive.  So I thought I would give it a go here.


Dear me,

I know right now you just can't imagine being 36 years old.  I know you've thought about the Year 2000 and how you'll be 27 when the new year hits and and that's totally unfathomable to you.  But it does happen, and it will sail right by you really quickly, and before you know it, 2010 is racing up towards you at a phenomenal rate.

But that will be ok.  Because unlike the years gone by, you feel more comfortable about time passing than you have when you were younger, and you'll not feel like you have all these deadlines and rules you have to stick by in your life.

I know right now in your life, you are all you have that you feel you can depend on.  Things are changing all around you, you're finding a little bit of the strength you are capable of, and you're making decisions for YOU for the first time in your life.  You're well versed in making adult decisions, you've been making them since  you can remember, but this is about the first time you're making those decisions with yourself in mind.  Even though you don't quite recognise it yet, and you're still trying to please everyone else, you're starting to get your first inkling that you do need to look after you before everyone else.  That's good, because the sooner you learn that, the easier it gets honey!

You're scared, and you feel like things never change.  They will.  Boy oh boy will they change for you very soon.  You're going to meet your first true love very soon, and you will still love him with your whole heart over 20 years later, even though you know he's not the man for you.  And I promise you, he'll never break your heart.  He'll teach you that men can be gentle and loving and giving, that they don't have to be about violence and humiliation.  Watch out for him, you'll know he's a kindred spirit the moment you meet him.


Don't worry so much about what other people think about you.  Worry about what you think about you.  That's not an easy lesson to learn, but it is the truth.  Especially don't worry what strangers or people you don't like think about you.  They matter NOTHING.  And if someone thinks bad things about you, then they're not worth caring about.  The ones who matter love you to bits, and they'll prove it in a million ways.

Oh and your family?  You're the one that's getting it right sweetie, it's ok.  You will find a happiness that their selfishness and bitterness will never, ever afford them.  You will be free.

Your body is not who you are.  It's hard being different to everyone else, I know, but it doesn't define you.  Who you are is in your heart and soul and mind.  Again, those people who don't love you for who you really are, well, they're not worth caring about either.

Believe it or not, you can learn anything you put your mind to.  A fucking brilliant TV show called Mythbusters is going to teach you that.  Yep, a TV show.  It will end up being one of the few things you bother to watch.  Because every time it's on, it awakes a new curiosity in you for something else you can learn about.  It will send you off to the library or the internet (don't worry, you'll learn what the internet is in about a decade, and you'll never look back) to learn more about a gazillion other subjects.  Through that learning you'll discover a confidence in yourself that you would never have believed possible.  Here they are, keep an eye out for them:


And guess what?  The stutter goes away.  Not totally, but enough that most people will never know you suffered from it, unless you choose to tell them.  So much, that you'll even be public speaking one day. 

But what I really want you to know is, you're awesome.  Not in a wanky conceited way, but just you, as you really are, with all your flaws, mistakes, fuck-ups, goofiness and traits that some people put you down for, are actually awesome.  You don't have to be perfect to be awesome.  You are a smart, beautiful, funny and HUGELY open hearted woman.  And the day you realise that will be the most liberating moment of your life.

I love you.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Thankful Sunday

Yet another week has rolled around, and we're at Sunday night again, with Monday morning looming ahead.  What better time to be thankful about something and focus on the positives!

Well, I'm thankful that my friend (and honorary Mum) Trish has only two more chemo sessions to go, and that she's doing so well.  At her half way mark she had CT scans and they couldn't find any cancer in her system at all, so all she has to do is see through the rest of her chemo.  In three weeks, all going well, she will be all done with it and can start to get back to her real life.

I'm also thankful that I am mostly a very healthy person, I have my bits and bobs that I deal with but none of them are life threatening or lower the quality of my life in any vast way.  I'm thankful that I've never had any really serious illness or injury, and that I can pretty much do whatever I like in life, nothing of my health hampers my life.

So here's to being thankful about the health and wellness of myself and my loved ones!

What are you thankful for?

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Black Sheep are Still Sheep

Most of you know that I am an avid Twitter user, or "tweeter" in the lingo of Twitter.  I've been on it for a year or something, I don't remember because I joined up and then kind of ignored it for a bit, then when a friend got into it, I started to use it more and was hooked.  I love how it opens up new worlds to me, brings me new and interesting things to explore and I meet lots of cool new people.  Both on Twitter and in real life, since I've been going along to the BTUB (Brisbane Twitter User Brigade) get togethers.


Even if you're not a Twitter user, you probably have heard about the whole business with Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk) setting a challenge to beat CNN to 1 million followers.  At first it started out as a fun thing he did, saying he was going to ding dong ditch Ted Turner if he got to a million followers before CNN, but it took off so huge (mostly because people love the idea of Ted Turner being ding dong ditched) Ashton realised the power of what he was doing, and decided to take it somewhere productive.  Not only did he put a philanthropic purpose behind it (offered to buy 10,000 mosquito nets for a charity) but also he realised the change in communication that the internet and sites like Twitter can have, because one person (ie Ashton himself) can have as much of a voice as a whole media network, CNN.


It went very huge very quickly, and then Oprah asked to interview Ashton, and she joined Twitter, and of course now it's just exploding all over the place.


This draws me to the purpose of this particular blog post.  With the whole Ashton/CNN/Oprah thing, there has been a lot of talk on Twitter over the past 48 hours about how Twitter now sucks and people are leaving because Oprah is on it, and some loser posted a blog about how yesterday was "the day that Twitter died" and so on.

I couldn't believe it, and to be honest, I still can't.  I can't get over how some people are so pretentious they would actually stop using a site/service because it has gone "mainstream".  I can't get over how people actually think that Twitter is going to hell in a handbasket just because the popular media is interested in it, and a lot more people are joining it.

Admittedly, because of the massive influx of new users, there have been some technical hitches with Twitter, mostly time lags in the posts or "tweets" showing up, and a few times it has been over capacity and stuff, but mostly it's holding up alright.

I do think that the extra activity on Twitter is only going to work in all users favour technologically speaking, because it gives the folks behind Twitter the clout (and finances) to upgrade their service.  The more that use it, the more successful the service is and the better they can offer.

It amazes me that there are people who leave a service claiming it has been "overrun with sheep", yet their behaviour is just as sheep like as anyone else's.  They're the ones who will only be involved if something isn't mainstream.  They're the ones making an exodus when something changes.

I guess these are the same people who announce that they only listen to "alternative" music.  Alternative to what?  Oh I get you, you only listen to music that isn't popular.  Music that is "cool".  Right.  And who decides that it meets the "alternative" criteria?

Look, there is no-one holding a gun to anyone's head forcing them to follow Oprah or Ashton or anyone else.  If you're not into the whole pop culture thing, if mainstream bothers you, then don't follow those people.  That's the beauty of Twitter and the internet in general.  You choose what interests you, and you spend your time using those things, reading those blogs, following those tweeters, etc.  If you want to be all edgy and alternative, then hang out with other people you consider edgy and alternative.

Don't hang shit on people who have different taste to you, because that's all it is, their taste.  Nobody should ever apologise for their taste in music, movies, television, books, internet stuff, whatever.  What you like, and what interests you is yours and nobody can tell you it's less worthy than anyone else's.  Besides, with the internet, you will ALWAYS find someone else who is interested in the same stuff as you, regardless of how obscure your taste is.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Awesome Slow Cooker Chook Recipe

I was recently asked for my recipe for roasting a chicken in the slow cooker.  This one is MEGA easy, and I can tell you, amazingly delicious.


Ok, what you do is, get some tinfoil, and scrunch it up into balls about the size of an egg.  You need about six of these for an average sized chicken.  Put them in the bottom of the slow cooker, and arrange them so that they'll support the chook and keep it from touching the bottom/sides.

Then get your chook, either stuffed or empty, and rub butter all over it's skin.  You can even put a couple of dobs of butter under the breast skin if you like.  This makes the skin crispy, because you won't get the browning effect that an oven gives.  Doesn't matter if you're making gravy, that's for sure.

Sit the chicken on the tinfoil balls in the slow cooker.  Make sure it's not touching the bottom or sides of the slow cooker.

Grab a lemon, cut it in half, squeeze the juice over the chicken.  Works just as nice with lime, orange or grapefruit too.

Then get a herbs or two you like.  I particularly like rosemary with lemon, coriander and parsley with lime, basil with orange, but it's whatever you like.  If they're fresh, chop 'em up.  If dried, no need.  Sprinkle a handful over your chook, the herbs will stick to the juice and butter.

If you want, you can drop a clove of garlic or two in the bottom under the chicken somewhere.  The steam from the juice cooks it and it flavours your chicken.

Put the lid on the slow cooker, turn it on auto, then go to work.  When you come home that night, there is an awesome roast chicken for dinner!!

How easy is that hey?  I have heard that you can use potatoes instead of the foil balls, and they cook nice (I think you need to prick them if you leave the skin on) to go with the chook.  But I haven't tried it yet.  I think I will next weekend!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

My Few Minutes of Fame

I'm quite chuffed that I've been blogged up over on Spy Journal 3.0 as a featured Geek Girl Blogger.

On the weekend, Tim put the call out on Twitter asking if anyone new any geek girls that could be featured on his blog, and I asked if I was geeky enough for what they were looking for.  A few emails later, a bit of a survey for me to fill out, and today I'm up there in front of everyone!  *blush*

If you'd like to have a look, go to:

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Totally Gratuitous Mythbusters Video

Just cos I love 'em!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Thankful Sunday... A Day Late

Oops!  I forgot to do my Thankful Sunday post yesterday!  And it was Easter and all!

Oh well, better late than never.  So this week, I am thankful for:

A blissful four day weekend, cool and rainy, that I could just relax and enjoy.  It was just a nice mix of mooching at home and social activity.  It's rained all weekend (my favourite kind of weather) and I've enjoyed watching movies and reading when I'm not socialising.

I'm also thankful that the lovely Adriana called me up last week and invited me to the football on Saturday night.  I got to see the Brisbane Lions soundly thrash the Sydney Swans for the first time in about 5 years.  Always a great thing, to whale on Sydney.  I enjoyed the evening with Adriana and her lovely nephew.

And to end this thankful post, I'm thankful for you my readers!  Every time I log in and spot a comment from someone, it reminds me why I write this blog.  Don't be shy if you read, just say hello so I know you're there.

Friday, April 10, 2009

An Easter Question

Question:  Do athiests ever make disparaging, disrespectful remarks about Judaism/Buddhism/Islam/Hinduism etc?  Or do they just reserve it for Christianity?

Because I tell ya, I'm over the bullshit floating around today from the athiest set, making comments like "Happy nail your God to a stick day" and things like that.

All I have to say is "Shut the fuck up and enjoy the PAID public holiday that you're more than happy to take, despite it not being about your personal beliefs.  And keep your disrespectful comments to yourself."

Thank you, that is all.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Shaping Young Minds

As my last post mentioned, I have my 20 year school reunion on this weekend that I have decided that I am not going to.  But I have been thinking about my school days, and the friends I had back then, and the things that happened during those 13 odd years of schooling.

I read this post over on Three Ring Circus about a teacher behaving like an arse to a young girl, and I got to thinking more about mine.  I remember so many of them so well.

The one I feel was the most influential in my life was Miss Stubbs.  She was the teacher-librarian in my Primary school until I was about 10 or 11.  She was wonderful, and gave me so much encouragement to read.  She would save me books that had just come into the library, because she knew I'd read pretty much everything.  I ran into her a few years ago at a Michael Palin event and she rememebered me.  In fact remembered me as "a cute little thing in her pjamas with her nose in a book."

I had a really crappy teacher in Year 4 named Mrs Bourke, who terrified all of the kids, and tried to convert us all into Catholicism.  I remember her telling the class in front of a girl who had just had her baby brother drown in a swimming pool that "God takes children away because of the sin in the world."  She was completely nuts.

Then there was Mr Browne.  He was awesome.  Young and funny and cool.  I had him for Year 6 and he had a paddle called "The Dog" that he never really hit anyone with, but we were all scared of it.  I got it on the hand once for talking.  A high five hurts more.  I only ever got in trouble for talking.

In High School there weren't as many cool ones, but there were some nutbars.  Miss Shand, who wore low cut tops that her huge boobs fell out of and made all the Year 8 boys ears go red.  Mr Lloyd (who we called Lloydie the Loonie) who was REALLY old and I am quite sure he was going senile.  A guy who we called Johnny Rambo (but I've forgotten his name!) who would sleep with the Year 12 girls.  A strange little French teacher that had a nervous breakdown in class.  Mr Angell who stank of BO and thought it was funny to fart on students during exams.

But there were also wonderful teachers.  Miss Burton, an art teacher who was a "swampie" (predecessor of goths) like some of us, and encouraged us all to find something creative that we could master.  Mr Eyles, a patient older man who I had for Maths, which I have always struggled with.  I remember him sitting with me to work through things that the rest of the class got, but I struggled with.  I also remember his sadness when he talked about his wife being ill.  Mr Large, a funny British guy that I had for English a few years, who really got me loving the classics.  Miss Beattie, who was my typing teacher for several years, and sent me postcards from her holiday travels around the world.

But my favourite of all of them was Mr Bendell.  My science teacher for all but 1 year of High School, he was brilliant.  Intelligent, witty, respectful, passionate, dignified, cheeky... he really was wonderful.  He called the girls "Marm" and the boys "Squire".  He would tell obscure science-fiction/geek jokes that only me and one boy ever got.  I remember him teaching us never to be afraid of saying "I don't know." when asked a question.  I also remember playing practical jokes on him and him retaliating in spectacular science teacher fashion.  One in particular I remember was him setting off rotten egg gas and then closing us all up in the classroom after we'd done something particularly cheeky to him.  He taught me that science was fun and fascinating, and to always be curious about "why and how".

I also remember him asking me to "Try" when we were doing dissection, because I had a particularly weak stomach.  I would try SOOOOO hard for him, to be able to stay and watch, but more often than not he would turn to me and quietly say "You are green Marm, pop outside in the fresh air for a bit."  And I also remember him teaching us "The Raspberry Song" at Year 8 camp (it was about farts, he played guitar and taught us songs about farts, what a legend.)

I often wonder where he is these days.  I don't really know how old he would be, I would have guessed he was in his 30's when I was in school, so he'd at least be in his 50's now.  I am quite sure he inspired many, many young people over the years, and it would be nice to think that he is either still doing just that, or perhaps retired to play his guitar and read science fiction at his leisure.

Did you have any really amazing teachers when you were a kid that changed your life?  Did you have any really awful ones?  Leave me a comment and tell me about them!

Monday, April 06, 2009

High School Daze...

My 20 year high school reunion is on over Easter.  I'm not going.  Not because I'm ashamed or embarrassed, or because I feel uncomfortable, but simply because I'm not interested in any of the people who ARE going.

It's funny, but the very people who would never have spoken to me in high school are all clamouring to be my friend on Facebook or get in touch with me these days.  The very same girls that would never have sat anywhere near me in class, now send me emails and Facebook messages saying "Oh it's so awesome to see you, you've been up to so much since we left school!"

This is because the absolute pinnacle of their lives was high school.  They were at their most popular, beautiful, confident and interesting during those high school years.  Once they left school, it was all downhill from there.  Most of them were married young, had kids young, many divorced young... and that's about all they've done with their lives.  They were so wrapped up in being beautiful and popular and following what they thought was how you lived life, that they forgot to LIVE.

The thought of spending several hours in the company of these people is so boring that I just can't be bothered going.  Nor can I be bothered contacting them back or friending them on Facebook.  I feel no anger or bitterness towards any of them, really just disinterest and in some cases, pity.

There are a few people I would like to see that will be at the reunion, but I'd rather catch up with them some other way later on.  Without the distraction of people who I have no interest in trying to get some attention.

Would you go to your high school reunion?  If yes, what attracts you to it?  If no, why not?

I actually don't have any photographs of me as a teenager (until I was about 18 or 19), but here's one of me just before I started high school (holding primary school graduation certificates):

I wish I still had legs like that!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Thankful Sunday

Sunday is here again, it seems every week just gets faster and faster as it sails by.

I am feeling considerably better than I have for the past few weeks, the black dog is shrinking down from the hulking great sheepdog it was before to a rather annoying terrier at the moment.  I just need to get it to like a teacup Yorkie or something cute and manageable.

Which brings me to Thankful Sunday, the post where I talk about what I am thankful for over the past week.

This week, I am firstly thankful that the High Court has ruled that the $900 stimulus payments will be paid to Australian tax payers, after the government's plan was legally challenged by publicity hungry academic Bryan Pape (who needs to get a life and stop wasting everyone's time and money).  As I am one of the tax payers who hands over almost a quarter of my earnings annually, I'm thrilled that I'm finally going to get some reward for being a contributing member of society.  I'm planning to get myself my iPhone, pick up my Wii off layby, and the rest I might put towards a tattoo.  Or something fun anyway.  Unlike a lot of people I haven't got myself into unmanageable debt, so I can relax and use mine to stimulate the economy like we're supposed to.


I am also thankful that my Cyster-friend Tes organised a Brissie Cysters get together yesterday.  (Cysters are women with PolyCystic Ovary Syndrome for those who don't know.)  I made a decision at the end of last year not to organise any more of the get togethers as quite often people were not showing up or cancelling at the last moment, and it was getting to be too big a chore.  But I really missed getting together with my cysters, so it was lovely that Tes organised a get together.  We went for brunch at the Pancake Manor on Charlotte Street.


All in all it's been a fairly good week, here's hoping the coming one is even better.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

It's Raining, It's Pouring...

... I wish I was snoring....

How much rain is Brisbane having right now?  For those of you not here in Brissie, it has been downright torrential all day, with a hard wind to go with it.  I mean BUCKETING down.

I woke up this morning and thought it was kind of weird because it was still dark.  I opened my curtains (I have those good rubber backed curtains that keep out lots of light) and was amazed at how intense it was outside.  It felt apocalyptic.  I'm sure I sat at the bus stop waiting for four horsemen to ride by.

However, despite the rain being somewhat intense, I love it.  I love that the temps are dropping, I love the cozy, close feel of the world when it is really raining hard, I love the soft light of a rainy day, and most of all I love that sound.  It's just the most delicious sound in the world.

The only bummer is that of course, it's raining on a week day, when I have to go to work.  I just want to stay at home, curl up in bed with a book and a mug of hot chocolate, read and doze and daydream all soggy day long.

Instead I have to schlepp into work, sit at my desk with the hems of my pants all wet, listening to all that delicious wind and rain outside being wasted on a work day.

But one thing that has amused me all day are all the abandoned, broken umbrellas all over the city.  Every rubbish bin has one, and a lot of them have blown all over the place.  I saw a lot of people carrying broken ones too.  This is because people buy cheap ones because they forgot to bring one, and inevitably they fall to bits on the first wind.  Then they blow all over the city like this poor lost lonely guy:

This photo was in the Brisbane Times this evening.  I like it, poor, lost, lonely, broken umbrella.

I've just discovered another lovely thing about wet weather... tonight the frogs are singing!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Getting Ink

As you can see by my new layout, I am a bit of a tattoo fan. I decided to go with this layout because it was a bit more "me" than the pink spotty one (that was cute though).

I only have three tattoos, one of which is old and dead, and none of them are very big. Mostly because I haven't been able to afford any really big work. But I have decided that I really want to start seriously collecting tattoos.

The ultimate for me? Getting a tattoo done by this guy, Chris Garver. I absolutely love his work, it often leaves me speechless. He seems to be able to put movement and flow into his work, it never looks like a flat picture. As far as I am concerned, Garver is the best in the business.

It helps that he's a hottie too.

I'm saving him a spot, because one day I want this guy to tattoo me. I'm going to give him a surface, and say "Knock yourself out bro" and let him tattoo whatever he would like there.

Until then, I'm planning a few new pieces. I want a pinup of a librarian. Underneath it I want it to say "Reading is sexy." I've also decided to get a rainbow lorikeet. I like them, they're noisy and chatty and make that laughing sound, and are colourful and loud. Kind of like me. I'd also like a baby sea-dragon too. The word "Serendipity" somewhere. A tiny number 42.

Can you tell I've decided to really go the whole shebang with tattoos?

Do you have any tatts? If yes, what have you got and why did you get it? Do you have any planned?