Advice for Salesmen

Monday, March 29, 2010

Here’s some general advice that I’d just like to put out there in the vastness of the world wide web. It’s specifically targeted towards carpet salesmen, but feel free to substitute ‘carpet’ for any other product.

If you’re a big, fat, bald, sweaty man who shows up in shorts, a basketball singlet and thongs, then I’m probably gonna get the feeling that you’re not all that professional. Try investing in a shirt and pants, some shoes, a stick of deodorant and a handkerchief for that big shiny head. THEN I might consider purchasing something from you.

Prank Call?

Friday, March 26, 2010

Just now I received what I’m pretty sure was supposed to be a prank call, but despite thinking about it for quite a while, I can’t work out what the hell it was supposed to mean. I can only assume that I didn’t say what was expected of me, or that the person who called was so stupid that just saying random crap makes them laugh. It went something like this:

Me: Hello (actually this was more involved than just saying hello because I’m at work, so I spouted a bunch of professional sounding crap.)
Prankster: Hi, can I speak to Ben?
Me: Who sorry?
Prankster: Can I speak to Ben.
Me: There’s no one named Ben here sorry.
Prankster: Er...well maybe you should try a breath mint! *laughter, then hangs up*
Me: .Um....what the fuck?

I was going to censor that last bit, because despite the fact that I swear a fair bit in real life, I don’t really swear on paper (or virtual paper, as the case may be). Virtual-Me is a lot more proper than Real Life-Me. But it’s Friday, and I’m feeling a bit less virtual-polite, so I left it there.

I spent a good 10 minutes after this call trying to work out if there was anything that I could have said in response to make that prank call make sense, and I came up with a big fat zero. Suggestions anyone?

Random Childhood Memory #3

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Random memory #3 is less of a memory and more of a childhood behaviour which directly relates to what I have to say about yesterday's lunch.

Yesterday's lunch was a lunch pack from the local Chinese store - steamed rice with chicken and veg. Frankly, I'm not a big fan of Chinese food; not the kind you get in Australia anyway. As a general rule, I don't really eat it any more. When you see it in food court windows, it's always formed it's own gooey, gelatinous semi-gloss coating that is anything but appealing – so why eat it when there are other, better options like Japanese food or Indian food?

KJ doesn't feel the same way about it and constantly requests that we have Chinese for lunch. Yesterday in a rare moment of food weakness, I finally agreed. So I ate the food without really enjoying it but since lunch didn't last long, it was gone and forgotten 10 minutes later.

2 hours later however, I got a reminder in the form of stabbing stomach pains.

Food poisoning.

I've been up all night trying to squeeze in a few moments of sleep without the constant stomach pains. They're still here, and every time I have one, it's like a painful little punch in the stomach while someone yells at me “You don't eat Chinese food! This will teach you!”

These stomach pains are probably a lot worse given the fact that I haven't been able to throw up and rid my body of what's left of this nasty food. Why not, I hear you not wanting to ask?

Well, that brings us to Random Memory #3:
When I was little, we had a sandpit in our backyard. My brother and I loved this sandpit and played in it every day. My brother is 2 years older than I am, so I was playing in it before I even had any idea what a sandpit was, which is probably the main reason that I became a sand eater. That's right - I used to eat sand, and not just the odd handful. Like any kid, I put the stuff in my mouth to try it out, I just didn't stop. I ate big handfuls of the stuff, and even after my mum tried to discourage it and even took me to a doctor to make sure it wouldn't hurt me, I kept on eating.

It's weird and kind of embarrassing behaviour, but I think it did me a favour in later life. By sending what is basically granulated glass through my body every day, i'm sure I created some sort of protective scar covering to my stomach, which has meant that I haven't thrown up since I was about 12. The only exceptions I can think of are drunken throwing up (which still didn't happen as often as it should have) and when I was 18 and had glandular fever (although I was sick enough to be hospitalised, so I count that out too).

I've never caught a stomach bug, even while living with someone who had it and i've never had a bad reaction to dodgy food, even when it affected others.

So it must have been some seriously bad food to make me feel this crappy. Damn you, Chinese food! I will never eat you again!!!


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Is it inappropriate, while playing scrabble against your Mother, to play the word 'orgasm'?

Random memory from my childhood #2

Monday, March 22, 2010

I was about 10, my brother was 12, my sister 8. My parents had gone over to the neighbours place for a minute, leaving us to continue our game of backyard cricket. Almost immediately after they left, my brother hit the ball straight into the kitchen window, putting a massive crack in it.

A recent window breakage by my brother had resulted in him being sent to his room without being allowed to watch Transformers (clearly we had a very rough childhood), and since no one wanted that hideous punishment to be doled out again, within seconds he had convinced us to tell our parents that a bird flew into the window and broke it.

We did and they believed us. That day was the magical, wondrous day when we realised that we outnumbered our parents, and if we stuck together we could get away with just about anything.

When I remembered this last week, I confessed it to my Mum because I wanted to know if she genuinely believed us or not. Usually when a bird would fly into the window, it would be too stunned to fly away for a while, and I had to wonder whether or not she believed us given our total lack of physical evidence.
Sadly, she didn’t even remember the incident although she was very amused to find out that we banded together to lie about it.

So I will never know whether our invincibility was imagined or not. I think I’ll choose to go on believing that it was. It’s like many of the things you believe in as a child – they're pretty unlikely to be true, but the world is a happier place when you choose to believe anyway.

Q & A time

Sunday, March 21, 2010

To answer a few email questions I got about my last post:
Yes, I genuinely would use this as a profile. No point meeting someone without a sense of humour. I read it over and asked myself if KJ would have responded to a profile like that, and when I decided he would, I figured I was on the right track.

Yes, 42 seems like a pretty random number. Actually, it should probably have been 43 since I'm turning 28 in a couple of weeks. I have a theory on age differences - they don't matter at all until you start to approach the kind of age difference where the person could just as easily have been your father/mother. I figure this change for being about 18 years, so 15 years difference is where I would draw the line. Also most of my friends are at the higher end of the 15 year bracket. Either I'm more mature than most people my own age, or my friends are more immature than people their age. The jury is still out on that one.

No, 45 is too far and even if it wasn't, I'm not interested. Thanks for your kind, if slightly pervy offer.

You know what I think is cool about internet dating? You get all the awkward stuff out of the way before you even meet. There's no awkward third date where you realise that he wants kids and you don't or that she has 15 cats and you're allergic. It would save a lot of time.
I have two friends who have broken up a couple of times over the past 3 or 4 years because they found out they wanted different things. Basically, he doesn't want to get married or have kids and she does (in fact he tried to get a vasectomy when he was 23 without telling her, but that's a whole other story). But because they were already so deep into their relationship when they found this out, they haven't been able to bring themselves to split up for good. Now they live together. Can you imagine what will happen in a few years when she's ready to start having kids? If only they'd met on a dating website, they wouldn't have this problem. And I wouldn't have the problem of consoling them both on their annual break up only to have them get back together again the next day.

Internet Dating

Saturday, March 20, 2010

After my old lady experience this week, I was looking forward to Saturday night where my best friend and I were planning to undo all of my very old-lady-like behaviours with copious amounts of cocktails. Ok, in all truthfulness, because I don't drink that often any more she would probably have had copious amounts of cocktails and I would probably have two or three and then spend the rest of the evening drunkenly telling the couch how much I've appreciated it's faithful service over the years then getting upset when it didn't respond.

However it would have ended up, Saturday night was going to be my young person night. Crap, that sounds like something an old lady would call it. Well, you get the drift. I was going to be silly and care free and kill some brain cells with brightly coloured liquids in margarita glasses.

Sadly, at 11am on Saturday morning, my best friend called to say she had to cancel. It was for this reason that tonight I find myself debating whether or not a solo trip to the local pub is worth it.

The thing is, when you go to a pub on your own on a Saturday night, two things are guaranteed to happen. 1 – you'll get drunk and talk to anyone who will listen, and 2 – you will get hit on. You are pretty much guaranteed to be chatted up by some guy, because really, why would you be at a pub alone on a Saturday night if you weren't looking to meet people?
Since I'm not looking to pick up and KJ is away all weekend, I decided against the pub and instead am spending the night at home painting the house.

Score check:
Young Torrygirl: 0
Old Lady Torrygirl: 2

The whole situation got me to thinking about what I would be doing right now if I were single. I would probably go to the pub; although to be honest, being such a nerd I think that if I was looking to meet someone, I would be more inclined to give online dating a go.

I feel kind of ripped off that I never had the opportunity to use internet dating. It's only really become a regular way to meet people over the last 5-10 years or so. Before that it was a bit taboo. I know couples who met online back when it was considered an unusual way to meet people, and they still won't tell most people how they met. The embarrassment is too deeply ingrained.
But nowadays it's completely normal and not even mildly embarrassing. I feel ripped off that my dating days were done before I had the opportunity to embrace my nerdiness and meet people in a way that I'm comfortable with. I think back to all those nights in bars and clubs trying to start up conversations with strange men and I realise that life would have been so much easier with the ability to just meet people online.

Thinking about all this made me wonder what I would put in my online dating profile if I were to need one. What do people put in them now? How much information is too much information?

With a whole lot of spare time on my hands tonight, I decided to browse around, see what the norm is, and have a go at writing my own. Everything I found seemed to have 3 sections. The first was a spiel about yourself and what you're doing on a dating website. The second was a basic profile, and the third was a section listing your interests and what you're looking for.
I omitted writing a big intro spiel about myself, because it would only seem false and stupid, since I have no real intention of internet dating, but I came up with my basic profile, and a list of interests.

So here it is, the online dating profile that will never be...


My details My ideal partner
Gender Female Male
Age 27 years old 27 yrs - 42 yrs old.
Location Melbourne Earth
Body type Slim-ish. Preferably not morbidly obese or skinnier than I am.
Smoking Non-Smoker with a slight passive smoking addiction -
Relationship status Single Single
Has kids No No
Want kids Maybe Maybe
Personality Socially retarded. Expect me to say stupid things, but know that there is no malice behind them Must have one.
Eye colour Brown. Feel free to call it Hazel or Coffee if it makes me sound more alluring. -
Hair colour Dark Brown It doesn't matter, but while filling this in I realised that I have never dated a blonde. It wasn't on purpose. Blondes are perfectly acceptable.
Zodiac Sign Aries -
Drinking habits Mostly socially, but also on Fridays for no real reason. If you have more drinks every night than there are days in the week, then we just weren't meant to be.
Have pets No Preferably not, unless they're the kind that require no feeding, cleaning or attention
Education level A bit of this, a bit of that. Must be able to spell properly. No text speak. Don't say LOL unless you're actually laughing out loud. And if you say RFLMAO, you better have the carpet burns to prove it.
Career industry Design No jobless bums

A PC user who detests Mac smuggity.
Someone who will make me laugh and who values family.
Someone who puts the toilet seat down after using it without having to be asked – it's the little things that count, you know.


I'll listen to pretty much anything except grunge and thrash metal. I like something I can sing along to in the car/shower.
Anything and everything except politics.
Movies & TV
I'm a TV series addict. I love Lost, Alias, Northern Exposure, MASH, The Office, Brothers & Sisters (don't judge me, Sally fields was allegedly hot once so you probably love it too) and a heap more.
I'll watch pretty much any movie although I'm not a huge fan of horror. I can't start watching a movie and not see it through to the end – the only film I've never finished watching was 'Old Dogs' and to be honest, I'm not sure why I started watching it in the first place. Big Mistake.
No thanks. I don't run unless something is chasing me.
Other interests
I am an internet nerd, a blogger and I really like to dance, although I find that having a few beers first tends to improve my skill.

Now add to that a suitably saucy username and my profile is complete! I could just sit back and wait for the emails to pour in.

What the....?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I heard this song on the radio when I was out yesterday and at first I thought it was a joke - but it's not. How sad.

I couldn't find a link to the official video, but I picked this one because it shows the lyrics on it, so you can see how truly deep they are.

EDIT: I found the official video here. Crazier than the song. I recommend you don't watch it, as it's 10 minutes of your life that you'll never get back. But if you do watch it, could someone please explain to me what the hell it's all about!?

Mysterious Injury

I have somehow mysteriously given myself a back injury. It's not mysterious in the "I know exactly how it happened, but it's not for public knowledge" kind of way, it's mysterious in the "I sit down all day and when I got up to get something from the printer, my back was mysteriously agonisingly painful" kind of way.

So here I am at home today with nothing to do but trying to avoid moving as much as possible.

Back injuries really only have one purpose, in my opinion. It's to make you feel old. Because when your back is killing you and you can't really move, you feel like an 80 year old woman who has to spend all day in bed.

I need to come up with some un-old-lady things to do today to keep myself amused. The trouble is, these things need to involve as little movement as possible, so it's very possible that anything I do could feasibly be done by little old ladies as well.

The first thing that comes to mind is drinking. It's helpful in making me feel younger, and it has the added side effect of reducing my back pain.The problem here is that drinking and pain killers don't generally mix. Which makes me wonder if little old ladies generally don't drink much because they don't want to, or because their medication forbids it. When I put it that way, the most un old lady thing I could do would be to drink anyway, because it's the less sensible (and therefore less old lady) choice.

Then I thought maybe getting online might help. Old ladies aren't really big on using the internet, right? But then I remembered KJ's Grandpa, who is 88 years old and a massive computer nerd. And I realised that when I really am 80 years old, I will still know how to surf the web, therefore making it a pretty stock standard old lady thing to do.

I briefly thought about prank calls, because they don't require any real movement, but I realised that the novelty of prank calls wore off for me about 20 years ago, and to be honest, they weren't even that fun then.

So I guess the only thing left to do is to either get really drunk, or to give in to my old lady-ness. Obviously I'm pretty much there already,right? All I need are some knitting needles and an overbearing, demanding demeanour and I'll be set!

Smoking causes clarity

Monday, March 15, 2010

Sometimes, without warning, I have a desperate craving for a cigarette. Right now, I would kill to go outside, sit down and light up a cigarette. It would be a blissful few minutes in which I would forget my stresses and just enjoy the gloriousness of that smooth smoke.
The thing that stops me is the realisation that it probably wouldn’t go like that. It would be 5 minutes of me choking on smoke because it’s been so long since I had a cigarette, and then days of feeling grotty and wishing I hadn’t done it.

Still, it’s nice to imagine that I could just pop out now and enjoy a quick cigarette as much as I used to. It used to help me with decision making. I think the distraction of it all made me calm and I could think clearly. Right now I have some big work-related decisions to make and I keep thinking that maybe a cigarette might help me decide what it is I want to do.

On one hand, I have the option of staying in the job I’m in. It’s cruisey, it pays reasonably well, and I don’t have people harassing me all the time. It is, however, pretty boring, and my boss is kind of losing his marbles and can’t make a decision on any subject whatsoever that he will stick to.
On the other hand, I have the opportunity to start a job that is infinitely more interesting, has potential to move my career forward instead of being stalled like it currently is, but also means that I would have to work a lot harder for not a lot of extra cash. And it’s only part time, which means I either work (and therefore earn) less, or I work two jobs. That might not work out either, as it means getting my current boss to agree to a massive reduction in my working hours, which is a big risk. If I accept the new job, I might potentially lose 2 days of work a week, but I wouldn’t know that until after I’ve committed to the new job.

So I have a cigarette-demanding dilemma. My brain keeps telling me that the way to solve this problem is to fill it full of nicotine so it can calm down and see things clearly. My lungs, on the other hand, are screaming ‘No, No, No! Don’t do it! Have a drink instead!’ to which my liver is demanding that if I resort to heavy drinking, it might just start a Union and go on strike until it gets what it wants - or rather, what it doesn’t want.

So instead I’m just sitting here, thinking about how great a cigarette would be, and not really accomplishing much else.

Conversations with a Vegetarian Friend

Friday, March 12, 2010

Me: So you guys just come round after work at whatever time and we'll chuck some stuff on the bbq.
Vegetarian: Great! Do you want me to bring something?
Me: Sure, why don’t you bring a salad or something?
Vegetarian: Actually salads aren’t really my forte...
Me: ......

Me: I made vegetarian lasagne, you should come round for dinner!
Vegetarian: Cool, what stuff is in it?
Me: It has tomatoes and zucchini...
Vegetarian: Oh I don’t really like zucchini.
Me: ...and mushrooms and capsicum and ...
Vegetarian: Oh, mushrooms, yuck.
Me: ...eggplant and silverbeet.
Vegetarian: Yeah I don’t like either of those
Me: Are there any vegetables you do eat?
Vegetarian: I’m not really a big fan of vegetables actually.
Me: .....


Thursday, March 11, 2010

While I was browsing the web yesterday in a moment of boredom, I came across this cool little site, which takes a blog feed or a slab of text and turns it into cool word art using the most commonly used words on that site.

After playing with it for a while, I thought that it might be cool to plug in a bunch of addresses of blogs that I read regularly to see if they had any major words in common. I thought it might give me a bit of an insight into the kind of stuff I like to read.

Mostly they ended up being pretty different, because from what I gather it only used the most recent posts to collect words.
The most common words that showed up on the blogs that I read were, in no particular order:

  • People
  • Just
  • Think
  • Drink
  • Driving

Hmmmm. Should I be concerned? Probably. Or maybe Wordle is just trying to provide me with an important community safety message.

My Wordle was pretty heavy on costume party related language, although I removed most of that to make it a bit prettier. You will note that it’s pretty light on the drink and driving talk though.

A lesson to be learnt

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Toddler mistakes gun for Wii controller

I'm not sure what the more important lesson to be learnt here is - that letting kids play with toy guns really is a bad idea, or don't leave your loaded gun on the coffee table while your three year old is wandering around.

Old-School Embarrassment

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

On Saturday night (my only night out all weekend) I had that embarrassing experience of showing up to what was supposed to be a costume party and finding that what I was wearing was way over the top.

And I was worried that I would be under-dressed for it!

We were supposed to dress up in vintage cocktail attire – specifically 1920’s or 1950’s; so I went all-out 50’s style with the big swing skirt and the curled hair and red lipstick only to find that everyone else showed up in dresses that could only vaguely be attributed to being styled in a rough approximation of a 1950’s-ish look.

This is why costume parties should be banned.

My brother-in- law, on hearing that we were going to a costume party said to me 'I would rather be stabbed than go to a costume party'.
At the time I thought he was being a little extreme. After going to this party, however, I’m inclined to agree with him.

The only saving grace of this particular costume party is that it was thrown by a girl who is an absolute genius at making punch. She has a skill that somehow allows her to make a bowl of punch from 3 bottles of hard liquor and a very small quantity of juice that tastes entirely non-alcoholic. Needless to say, things tend to get messy fast and this is helpful in trying to ignore the fact that you’re dressed like you’re headed to a 1950’s dance hall.

The other very odd thing about this party was that of the 25 people there, only four of them were male. Odd. It was like a girls night out on steroids.

So I’m vowing ‘never again’ to the costume party idea. It’s corny and expensive and you only end up looking like a fool and needing to get really drunk to compensate.

Hail, flash floods and their effects on cognitive powers

This weekend just gone was the three day Labour Day weekend. Ordinarily I would spend it catching up with friends but instead, thanks to freak weather storms that brought tennis ball sized hail and flash flooding I spent a good portion of the weekend holding a bucket up to my front window to stop the rain from flooding the lounge room.

We were lucky to avoid this kind of hail at our house, but the bottom of our street had a river running through it. We live in a sort of valley, and our house is on a pretty steep slope so luckily it didn’t affect us, but not so much our neighbours who had a small river running past their front doors.

When the rain eased off a bit, we were finally able to go to bed, although I didn’t really sleep much, because the rain was so heavy on the roof that the sound kept waking me up.

And my total lack of sleep is pretty well summed up by this wonderful moment of heightened intelligence:
I woke up to the radio alarm blaring. The news was on and the announcer said something to the effect of “and this weekend brought us the eighty second academy awards” and I thought to myself “Wow, how did they fit the whole thing into eighty seconds?”

Clearly I need to go back to bed.

Random memory from my childhood

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

I was about 4 years old and was playing outside. I picked up a tiny little rock, looked at it, and decided to put it up my nose. No idea why – my only memory of my thoughts at the time are that it seemed like a perfectly reasonable thing to do.

Unsurprisingly, it gave me a bloody nose.

That, however, is where the memory ends. I do not remember the rock coming out....

Is it possible that it’s still up there?


Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Here it is, my final choice out of 30 possible parmas:

The 'Spudarama Parma'. Chicken topped with mashed potato, gravy & cheese. Ok, so it’s not very adventurous, but it just sounded so damn good, I couldn’t resist.

We had planned to head out to Alexandra at sunrise on Sunday, but the weather had other plans. There were thunderstorms and rain forecast for the early morning, so instead we headed off at about 9. It actually ended up being quite sunny in the afternoon and we still got some good photos. We spent the whole day out there, stopping at a lot of places along the way.

To get to Alexandra we had to drive through some of the areas that were hit hardest by the black Saturday bush fires, and it’s odd to see the way the trees are starting to regrow. They’re sprouting leaves all the way up their trunks, which gives everything a weird, fuzzy kind of look. Then in other places, everything is still as blackened and dead as it was a year ago. It’s good to see so many people rebuilding in amongst it all though.

I’ll definitely be going back to Alexandra, and soon. The parma was absolutely awesome, and now that I’ve gone the safe route, I’m going to head back and have something a bit more out-there.

Is it sad that the most out-there thing that I’ve done lately is eat a strange food? Yes, I think it is. I need to get out more.