No Plan B

Friday, November 30, 2007

It’s KJ’s birthday on Sunday and I am SO excited. I’m a total birthday fanatic. KJ, on the other hand, can’t stand birthdays, so I feel that it’s my duty to be excited enough for both of us. This is easily done, because the more I think about how great birthdays are (even other people’s), the more excited I am on his behalf. I’m especially excited about this one because for once I have managed to think up the perfect gift for him. I’ve been so careful not to let it slip to him what it is that I’m too scared to even write it down here in case he sees before Sunday. Let’s just say that it’s fun, childish and something that all boys would love.

I went to the shops at lunchtime today and bought it, then brought it back to work with me and wrapped it up there. Before I wrapped it, each of the sales guys came down and laughed at it before making half-arsed attempts to steal it. This is the great kind of gift that I have found – it’s silly and pointless, but all the boys want it. This is the main reason that I’ve managed to muster up so much excitement on KJ’s behalf – it’s such a great present (if I do say so myself).

Here’s how I imagine Sunday morning will work:

At about 8am Sunday morning, I will wake up and begin jumping up and down on the bed like I would if it were my own birthday. Then, while he whinges about me waking him up so early on a Sunday I’ll jump out of bed, run down to the garage and grab the present out of my car. I’ll run back upstairs, leap onto the bed only to find that KJ has gone back to sleep. A bit more bouncing will wake him up, at which point I will thrust the present into his face and demand that he opens it. He’ll stuff around for a while, rubbing his eyes and pretending to snore while I bounce around impatiently. There’s a good chance that he might even make me go and make coffees before he’ll agree to open his gift.

Eventually, he’ll open it, get really really excited about it and get out of bed to play with it all day until his friends come over for a BBQ around lunchtime. Once they arrive, they’ll all take turns at playing with it until late at night when my birthday excitement has worn off and I make them all leave so I can go to bed.

At least, this is how I would like it to go. The only small snag in this plan is that there is a very good chance that once the present is open, KJ will go back to sleep and there will be no-one to get birthday-excited about. I haven’t thought up a plan B for if this happens, so Sunday could end up being an enormous let down.

I better get the butcher's paper and textas out and start brainstorming.

Crazy Lazy Déjà vu

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I keep having these little déjà vu experiences this week, where I am in the middle of doing some intensely mundane task like punching holes in paper and I suddenly realize that I had a dream about this exact thing months and months ago – sometimes even years. It just pops into my head that I recognize this exact moment.

This has got me thinking about time. Time is a funny concept really and the more of these freaky little déjà vu things that I have, the more I’m beginning to believe that maybe everything has already happened and I’m just sort of remembering it a bit at a time. This would explain a lot of things – like why people inexplicably hate some things without any valid reason – maybe it’s from a future memory of something that put them off that item. It also explains why I’m so lazy. It’s because I’ve already done everything.

I think it might also vaguely explain psychics but I’m not 100% certain on that one because I haven’t quite worked out how they know stuff about other people rather than just themselves.

Quite disturbingly, Wikipedia tells me that apparently there is a link between déjà vu and schizophrenia and anxiety. I prefer the time theory, because it means I’m not crazy or stressed out – plus it explains my laziness a lot better than anything else I’ve ever thought up.
Is it crazy to be lazy because of déjà vu?

Hobby on Hold

Another warm, sunny day has brought with it the smell of summer and the sad realisation that one of my favourite hobbies must be put on hold for a few months.

Through Autumn, Winter and Spring I spend copious amounts of time with the windows in my car rolled up and the radio cranked to full volume. I sing loudly and proudly and very very badly to whatever dodgy music I can get my hands on. Recently it has been Cake, Ben Lee and Mika, although other regular sing-alongs involve Elvis, Aretha and Huey Lewis amongst others. Summer means rolling down all the windows to account for no air-conditioning and also more traffic jams for some reason. Singing into other people's open windows while waiting at traffic lights is not a pain that I wish to inflict on anyone, so I'm putting down the imaginary microphone for a little while.

The bonus of this time of year is that once mid-December arrives and the traffic congestion has eased I can get out the Christmas Carol CD's and embarrass myself with those instead. I can't wait!

Mr. Minister

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Tonight we went to dinner with my fiancée’s mother and her new(ish) boyfriend. The interesting thing about her boyfriend is that he is a minister for the uniting church. Ok, so maybe it’s not interesting to people who regularly attend church, but as a non-church-going kind of person I find it interesting because it’s not a job that I know a lot about and it affords me the opportunity to learn something about a career/lifestyle that I wouldn’t know otherwise.

The thing with this guy is, when I first met him, he seemed really nice. Friendly and generous and maybe a little too attentive to everything you say. You expect that from someone whose job is somewhat equivalent to that of a councillor. We’ve now spent a bit more time with him and I find that every time we come away from a meeting with him I like him a little less. I feel uncomfortable around him and I think it’s because as someone who listens a lot, he’s not great when you put him in a position where he has to speak about himself. He keeps looking at me like he’s waiting for me to spill my guts about something. I feel uncomfortable around him because he is constantly looking at me as though we’re having a very serious conversation, even when we’re not.

It’s a strange and difficult sort of thing to explain, because rather than being a specific sort of behaviour or quirk about him that makes me feel uncomfortable, it’s just a sort of feeling that I get when I come away from seeing him.

Something that left me feeling a bit odd was that I asked him tonight about his job and what that involved other than the obvious things. Naturally he asked me what the obvious things were and I explained that I meant that everyone knows what a ministers job involves on a Sunday and when there are weddings, funerals etc., but he is paid by the church to do a full time job and I wasn’t sure what else was involved. He told me that it involved a lot of preparation for his sermons, a lot of meeting with people in a councillor type of role, and various other church related duties. Then at the end of explaining all of this he said something strange that went along the lines of ‘So have I justified myself to you?’

What the hell does that mean? Does the fact that he’s a minister mean that I’m not allowed to ask him about his job? If he was a butcher, an accountant or the international liaison for a famous sock importing company, I would ask him the same question. Would he feel like I was asking him to justify his job if he was an accountant? No one else that I have ever asked about their job has ever responded like that to talking about what they do for a living and it is making me a little crazy. It’s making me angry and crazy because I shouldn’t come away from an innocent family dinner feeling like I’ve been judged by him for being curious about his work.

It was all round a very odd and unsettling dinner with Mr. Minister’s weirdness and also with my fiancée’s mum’s behaviour. I’m not going to get into what happened with her because I hate ranting like this and if I start I know that I will go on for hours. Suffice to say that the whole night left me wishing that we’d just gone to McDonalds for a $5 burger meal, a quick conversation and an early night in.

Hot Stuff

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I can't be 100% certain, but I think my eyeballs are sweating.

They must be, because every other part of my body seems to be. The weather here is freakishly hot considering it's not even summer yet. Yesterday was 37°C (that's 98.6°F for those of you who insist on using weird measurements just like my 1970's oven) and today was 35°. This is allegedly spring weather, but there is nothing springy going on around here because everyone is too hot to be bouncy.

The most irritating thing about the heat is the fact that both yesterday and today I was stuck in a traffic jam on the way home from work. It took me over an hour to get home both days (a 30 min. trip) and my car doesn't have air conditioning. In fact, it has a heater that insists on working even when it isn't turned on. This is very practical in winter, but in summer it means that my legs feel as though they are on fire for the majority of each trip. I was hoping to save this joyous phenomena for the summer months but alas, global warming has other plans.

If weather like this (and worse) is what is in store for summer, then I think I might have to consider migrating somewhere colder for the summer - like into my refrigerator.

Interesting Facts about Ingrid and Boris*

Saturday, November 17, 2007

In all of my banging on about the fabulous dress that I wanted to wear to the wedding last weekend, I never mentioned the other interesting facts about the couple who tied the knot. By the ‘other’ interesting facts, I really mean any of the interesting facts, because obviously, their wedding ran a distant third to the fact that I got a new dress and I got to catch up (and dance) with friends that I haven’t seen in over a year.

So here they are, Interesting facts about Ingrid and Boris*

1. Ingrid and Boris met online many many years ago. I have never been told the real story about where online they met, so I choose to believe that they met on a forum for people with rare and uninteresting pets.

2. Ingrid is an Aussie and Boris is an American. Not just any kind of American, but the kind that has an intense accent, as though he has just stepped out of the TV and into the reception venue. He pronounces her name in a way that is incredibly humorous; the humor of which I cannot convey fully in this blog as I have changed her name to Ingrid.

3. Ingrid is meek, quiet and says little. Mostly she just giggles. At everything. All the time. During their wedding vows, the celebrant said that Ingrid liked Boris because Boris made her laugh. This made me giggle.

4. Ingrid’s mother is a pushy, overbearing woman who will not let Ingrid do anything for herself. She was very upset when she found that Ingrid had agreed to marry Boris without her knowing anything about the proposal and without Ingrid asking for her approval. She vented this anger by organizing the entire wedding on Ingrid’s behalf

5. Ingrid looked gorgeous on her wedding day.

6. I thought I would have at least 6 points, but it turns out that Ingrid and Boris aren’t as interesting as I first thought. Feel free to make up your own for this one.

I’m off to another wedding this weekend. I’m looking forward to this one, especially as we’re going to have our makeup done. I had my makeup done for my brothers wedding last year – it was great! I would kill to be able to do my makeup as well as these people do it. The great thing about this place is that although it costs $60 to have done, the $60 is redeemable on products, so you actually get something you can keep out of it.

I think the wedding is going to be a cross between a traditional Greek wedding and a modern wedding, which should be interesting.

Greek weddings are great because they’re such lively, fun, family oriented events. The ceremony is fairly dull (being in another language and all) but once you go to a few, you start to know what each section is about and it’s not so bad. The receptions involve lots of dancing, drinking and then more dancing. That’s the part I’m looking forward to. I love to dance and am lucky enough to have a partner who will dance with me pretty much whenever I ask. Just talking about it is making me get excited! I can’t wait!

*Names have been changed to protect the identities of people with much more boring names

Kettle Etiquette

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Let’s talk kettle etiquette. I am a firm believer that you should fill up the kettle when you want to use it, not when you finish using it. It makes zero sense to put fresh water into a kettle, only to have it sit there for god knows how long before it gets used.

Also, opening a kettle and pouring cold water into it after it has just boiled is asking for a third degree burn of some variety.

A lot of people at my work whinge that all they ever do is fill the kettle up. Well what’s the difference between filling it up before you boil it or after you boil it? It’s a big kettle, you’re only using one cupful, so you only have to fill it up once either before or after! Stop complaining!

I never ever ever fill up the kettle after using it, so to all those people out there who complain that it’s bad kettle etiquette to leave it empty, I say Bah Humbug! Fill it up yourself.

Two Things I Noticed Today

Monday, November 12, 2007

Two things I noticed today:
  1. I am becoming way too desensitised to violence on TV.

  2. I am very quickly turning into a boring housewife.
I was watching law and order re-runs on TV1 tonight (I watch a disgustingly large amount of TV) and a very dodgy looking man was pouring ball bearings, nails and screws into a glass dish - obviously on the pretext that he was making some kind of shrapnel bomb. I watched him do this and took it in without thinking twice. I knew what he was up to before any explanation had been made - a sign of watching too many cop/detective shows.
The saddest part is that while watching him pour these ball bearings into the glass dish, I looked at it and thought to myself 'that is a really good sized Pyrex baking dish. I could make a really great lasagne in that dish.

Wrong or what?!

Cheating on Old Reliable

Saturday, November 10, 2007

My very worst and saddest habit is shopping with friends for clothes when I have no money. For fun I will pick up the most expensive item in the store and try it on while they try their more reasonably priced garments.
I find that there's nothing more dull than waiting for friends to try on clothes because they dress with the speed of a lethargic turtle. That's right, not just a regular turtle but a sleepy, dopey one that gets confused half way through the process and has to start all over again so they remember what it is they're doing.

This game of dress-up always spells heartbreak for me, because as it turns out, i would have fantastic taste in clothes if i was a millionaire and could afford to spend $1200 on a slip dress.

Yesterday's effort was on a shopping trip to purchase a dress for a friend's wedding. I had already bought the trusty reliable old favourite - the sensibly priced little black dress - a few weeks earlier, so we were shopping for my best friend. After loitering around various stores looking like a bit of a change-room stalker, I decided that it was time for the old 'try on a dress that's worth more than my car' routine. We had entered a department store that has a large designer clothes section, so while my friend tried on affordable clothes, I picked out a very cute dusky-pink dress from the 'can we check your credit card limit before we let you in' section and headed for the change-rooms.

Sadly, as fate would have it, my taste had remained impeccable and the dress was absolutely stunning. It was without a doubt the most comfortable, cute and sexy dress I've ever had the opportunity to wear. Even more sadly, being comfortable, cute and sexy comes with a price tag of just a little over $800. I danced around the change rooms umming and aaahhing over whether or not I would buy it (a well rehearsed show for the benefit of the store staff) and found that I didn't really want to take it off. I began to wonder if maybe I could just leave wearing the dress without anyone noticing. I began to think of ways that I could afford to buy the dress, like getting a second job or a second credit card or selling some body parts. Who really needs their liver, right?
It was at about this stage that my best friend emerged from her change room, saw me dancing around contemplating how to sell my soul for a designer dress and dragged me back into the change room to take it off before its evil spell took hold completely.

She dragged me out of the store and we continued on with our shopping. I spent the rest of the trip picking out and trying on accessories that I would never buy for a dress that I will never own.

Today I will feel a little like I'm cheating on my good old reliable black dress, because although I will be wearing it, I will secretly be thinking about wearing another.

Tea for Two (Thousand)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Tonight I'm watching elderly British ladies pretending not to be ecstatic that their mother's mother's grandfather's brother's kitschy tea pot is worth 2000 pounds. I love the guilty look that they give when the valuer says 'unfortunately it seems to have been scoured with steel wool at some point which has faded the pattern and halved the value' and you know that they were the ones who did it an hour earlier in an attempt to clean it up before bringing it on to the Antiques Roadshow.

I've always wondered, what does one do with a 2000 pound teapot? Once they tell you that your ugly old china is worth a mint, do you immediately sell it? Or do you put it back into the cupboard where it has always lived because it was too ugly to have out in public and forget about it? More importantly, if you did try to sell it, would there actually be anyone out there who would want to purchase it? Surely there has to be some kind of limit to the market for crusty old tea pots with satanic looking clowns painted on the side.

Collecting things seems to be a hobby of choice. I'm thinking i might take up collecting something, just as soon as I can think of something worth collecting. Thoughts so far include stubby holders (very useful), spoons (will be the envy of my nursing home when I'm 90) or toenails (seem suitably disgusting). I've excluded newspapers (fire hazard) and empty bottles/cans (stupid and pointless). Any suggestions?

Thriller Movie Moment

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

This morning I had a brief thriller movie kind of moment. I was standing at the kitchen bench making coffee, staring vacantly into nothingness. I can't seem to function properly without my coffee in the morning, so I was not entirely awake yet, which may account for some of the following story.
There I was making my coffee, minding my own business when I glanced up out of the window, and made eye contact with someone.

After jumping quietly 10 feet into the air and out of my skin, my morning brain kicked into sluggish action and began registering what it was seeing. It was the neighbours cat. End thriller movie moment. I side-stepped back into my skin, pulled it close around me and looked back out the window at it. It was sitting calmly in the middle of the courtyard peering at me through the window and it wasn't blinking. Eerie.*

Not to be outdone by a podgy, staring calico cat, I thought to myself 'I can beat a cat in a staring contest' and I began to stare back. I had never tried to out-stare a cat before, so was completely unaware that doing this to a cat is a little like trying to out-stare a small child. A cat, like a child, just looks straight at you without embarrassment. It stares right into you in a way that is downright creepy. I could have sworn that it was trying to read my thoughts - and maybe it could. It had a calm, all-knowing gaze and it didn't break eye contact for a second.

The cat continued to stare straight back at me until my coffee was ready and i was forced to look away. When I looked back, he was padding quietly away. All of sudden, he stopped, looked back over his shoulder (do cats have shoulders?) and I swear to you that he made a sudden karate chop move with his front paw. The cat was trying to psych me out! If he could of spoken at that moment I know he would have said 'hyyyy-ahh!'.

He stared for a moment longer and then disappeared from sight. Next time it will be me who tries to psych him out. If only I can work out how to psych out a cat....

* note: eeriness of said moment may be attributed to not knowing whether or not cats blink

Spacebar for Space

Sunday, November 04, 2007

When my sister was little and learning to read, she used to say the word 'spacebar' instead of pausing between words.


Barking Mad

Friday, November 02, 2007

The dog next door is barking and I cannot concentrate on what I'm writing. It has been barking since I got home at 6 tonight and it has barely stopped. It's a wonder that it hasn't passed out. It was barking yesterday when I got home from work, and the day before that and the day before that. It is constant and it has begun to eat at my patience because it has been doing this every day, all day for the past 2 months. Generally things like this don't bother me but this dog barked from the time I woke up on Saturday (8am) until the time I went to bed (12am) non-stop. Without exaggeration, the dog could not have been quiet for more than 10 minutes during the day.

If i yelled non-stop all day, every day for 2 months, I don't think I would have a voice left. Do dogs lose their voice? Is it possible for this dog to bark itself quiet? Maybe tomorrow the barking will sound a little hoarse, then the next day it will be faint, and the day after it will just sound a little like a frog is croaking nearby. Maybe I will look out the window and the dog will be lying down with a mug full of warm honey milk and a packet of soothers looking sad and sorry for itself.
Maybe it will go to the doctor/vet and the doctor/vet will tell him that if he keeps barking, he might lose his voice permanently. Maybe he will buy a laptop and decide that emailing and blogging is a much better substitute for barking himself stupid and he will quietly browse the internet all day long. Maybe he will realise that his barking is a result of his mother not loving him enough, or feeding him for long enough, or maybe he will realise it's because he is lonely and he will be happy because he has the internet on his laptop and he can join a doggy dating site so he never has to be alone again.

Maybe he will just be quiet so I can think some sane thoughts.

I have begun looking around the house every time it barks to see if I can find something sharp and at this stage I'm still not sure if the sharp object is for the dog or for my own ear drums. I'm pretty sure that a few more days of this and I will know the answer for sure.