Test Pattern


Until I manage to take more photos of Sari, please enjoy this nature lover enjoying nature.  Why, I can’t really say … because it’s very green and we’re coming up to St Paddy’s?  Yes, that’ll do.  Also, Q’s iPad.


73 Responses

  1. Thanks MM.
    Just promise me the slimy little leprechaun will begone, begorrah, before St Patrick gets here, and you will deliver pix of the puppy. And maybe some kittehs because your stories of cat juggling brought back happy memories of the dynamic duo.

    Speaking of the Irish, did I tell you that the sweet little Irish girl who has been doing my hair for the last few years has left the salon? Her partner is a FIFO who was away for 6 weeks at a time and she missed him horribly, the more so because her little sister committed suicide two years ago. She was only 17.
    Terrible for all of them, and the more so for her because she was so far away from them.
    So they plan to spend another 18 months in Oz and then go home, and hopefully they will be able to afford a house of their own close to her family. She’s one of seven children & she misses her family dreadfully. She got Australian citizenship so she can come back any time, and who knows what they’ll do eventually.

    Meanwhile she gets to spend the next 18 months to 2 years of her life in Roma.
    They said she’s coming back to Vagus to celebrate St. Paddy’s in a big way with her mates, so I’ve got a little something for her to take back to Ireland & to while away the time in Roma.

    i.e. a copy of the CWA Classics recipe book, which is the size of a cinder block, but there’s a picture of the desired result with every recipe so hopefully that might inspire her as she learns to cook. In Roma.
    Because, after all, When In Roma, do as the Romans do.
    Although in our case that would probably be braised rabbit with pumpkin scones.

  2. Oh, Roma!

    Actually, not as terrible a place as one would expect. Better for mine, than Rockhampton.

    And as an Irishwoman, she won’t be averse to the pub on every corner.

  3. Heh heh.
    Indeed. And I am starting to think that way myself.
    Trying to do some work on the computer & interrupted by NTO having a rather loud conversation with her flock about why they are unable to download their lecture notes.
    Apparently someone else has exceeded their household’s limit this month by downloading games and movies.
    On three, everyone.
    1, 2,3 – Awwwwww.

  4. Hi, I’m Greybeard and I’m here to whinge! But first, it was lovely to see yez at Ahmet’s and we hope to do that or similar on our return trips.

    HOWEVER. The lovely Fifi’s mother loves, possibly more than anything in the world, large family gatherings. Even if said family has warring factions who’d happily never clap eyes on each other again. Even if some turn up only to gloat over the decrepitude, marital failures or poverty of the others. And we’re moving south. SO, she’s organised a gathering at our place on the last weekend we’re here. Among the ruins, the 30+ large bags, dozens of plastic tubs, cardboard boxes and other receptacles of our material lives. Yer got ter laugh, eh? Most are too nice to turn up (she’ll be so disappointed) and the rest can pull up a box and eat take-away off cardboard plates.

    On the other hand, although a certain mendacious marsupial exaggerated the size of the new rat-manor on Twitter, It has heaps of room for guests. Even ones who may be plotting my demise.

  5. You have come to the right place to complain about relatives.
    If you like we can loan you the Wildebeest for your happy gathering.
    Do be warned though, he hogs the corn chips and they make him fart.
    Just let us know which relative to seat him next to so we can prep him on suitable conversation topics.

    and, plot. pfftt.
    Why plot what you can contract out?
    Cough *Elfboy* cough *Nbob’s fiver*

  6. Awwww, your MIL must really love you, GB. That’s so sweet! Can I come over? Takeaway on cardboard plates is my favourite.

    Actually, I can’t come over. I’m off to visit Gran with a batch of Pancake Tuesday pancakes and a woefully small drizzle of maple syrup. Honestly, the bottle was full last time I looked. Somebody must be drinking it straight out of the bottle – and didn’t tell me it needed replacing. (Pet Hate…. Don’t rant, Catty…. Calm down….). Not to worry, Gran’s got her appetite back (YAY!), so I think she’ll be satisfied with whipped cream, butter and brown sugar. I will be.

  7. Khan GB, I can’t imagine Fifi’s mother sitting comfortably on a box for too long. Bear in mind that you could always redirect them down to the local RSL for a $10 roast lunch & once you’re sick of the sight of them, you just pick up and leave. They’ll be happy playing the pokies and eating mudcake. Promise!

    I joined our local RSL while the Bloke was in FNQ so that I’d eat something other than salad rolls & brownies in his absence.
    It’s really quite respectable down there.

    Catty, put down that maple syrup & back me up here.
    Catty? Catty?
    Did I just see you drinking it from the bottle?

  8. It was the Wildebeest.

    Hic. That maple-tinged burp was a complete coincidence.

    I’d say leave early, GB, but then the out-laws might sack your boxed and bagged wordly goods. Just smile and wave, knowing that soon you’ll be ever so far away in glorious Scabies.

    We do look forward to visiting, and have no intention of plotting your demise. Yet.

    • Oh some of them are fine and half the un-fine ones aren’t coming so I shouldn’t whinge. Not that it ever stopped me before. I should post a photo sometime of the huge piles of $2 stripey bags we’re using. Or the book boxes – when they actually get here. Fifi has just nicked the step ladder I brought up to clear another high cupboard so I’m internutting til she’s finished.

      Happy news! The new owners came for a scout around and seem to want to live here for a while as is. They want a place with some room for the kids to play and will think about subdividing later. Yeaaah. That’s what we thought too. But I introduced Colin and stressed that he was kid-friendly and an endless supply of free garden mulch. Much of it stolen from other people’s gardens. And that he likes almonds. I’ll miss ol’ Colin.

      I must remind you Madam, that we are moving to Ringworm – not Scabies. I think that’s where Havock lives?

  9. Ringworm, of course.

    A fungus, not a parasite. Got it.

  10. Nah, Havsy lives in Mrs Marsh… (Tough Teeth!). Greybeard, aren’t those Poverty Bags wonderful? In Melbourne, you can actually get designer ones with spots and flowers – so much nicer than the boring old red/white/blue stripes. A word of warning, though. If your spouse is packing your belongings after a binge at the pub, expect your record collection, your steak knives and your vases to all be crammed into one bag. Without packing paper. *sigh*

    My favourite moving trick was to lift all my hanging clothes out of the wardrobe and lie them, still on their hangers, across my doona. Then I rolled up the doona like a sausage, folded in the ends, and slid it in a jumbo sized garbage bag. Then when I reached my new home, I’d slide out the doona sausage, unroll it, and hang my clothes straight up in the new wardrobe. It saved so much time and effort. Iron? Why yes, I do have one of those. Somewhere. I think.

  11. I like your thinking Ms Cat. Fifi is a better packer than me so she’s doing Mum’s old crockery. Though I did pack the sharp things quite carefully. Labelling is so important. I don’t want to get there and not know where me halberd or cutlass or battleaxe is. No hang on, she’s driving down with me. Apparently 100 book boxes will be here in the morning. That should be a start. And those bags are da bomb for anything unbreakableish.

  12. The guy at our local discount shop showed me the invoice for those bags one day. It read “60 People-sized bags”, I smurf you not.

  13. So they’re not Poverty Bags, they’re Body Bags! Why didn’t I think of that? It would have saved a lot of hassle down at the bus station… oh, I mean, isn’t the weather lovely this time of year?

  14. You think the splashy flowers are to make them pretty … they’re actually camouflage for the leaking fluids.

  15. I dunno. They’d have to be preeetty small people. Oh EB, could you come over here for a minute?

    Catty, the trebuchet is designed to be taken apart by peasants and moved from siege to siege on oxcarts so no worries there. Must check Google maps though, and see how far Wantirna is from Ringworm North. Or I could use Apple maps and start dropping rocks on Warrandyte?

    • And here I was thinking you’d say “with jagged rocks and burning pitch”.

  16. Well that explains why so many of those things went into the boarding house 1/2 empty when the previous owner was in situ & they left bulging with lumps.
    I thought they were just stealing shit.

  17. Stealing … or manufacturing, Q?

    Hydroponics set-ups could explain many of the strange smells, unexplained explosions and rising damp of Bog Hollow.

  18. And the scritching.

  19. Indeed. Lest we forget the scritching.

    • I rather enjoy a good scritching meself. In the walls, behind the ears – it’s all good.

  20. Scritch, scratch I was sanding a path
    Something something Saturday night …

  21. 100 book boxes have arrived. I’ve filled & labeled 3 shelves of paperbacks = 6 boxes plus 2 of CDs. Groan. Minor (i.e. insoluble) problem – when books are on shelves, they’re out of the way. When in boxes, they fill rooms, halls and GB can’t move. I don’t want to play this game any more.

  22. Human vs Book Tetris with GB!

    This could be a million-dollar winning app.

  23. Heh heh.
    I suppose I could invite you to come over to the relative lack of clutter at Casa Q to partake of TA from wrapture & show me how to install updates on my iphotos without losing the whole damned lot of them. And maybe then explain why the kindle won’t WiFi?

  24. I’m tempted to move too. The dramas in this place just keep happening.

    Drama 1: Picking up the Teenie from school. Not normally a big deal, but this time he’d sprained his foot and couldn’t walk. He had done it at lunch time, and ‘forgot’ to go to sick bay, or to send me a text, and had been hopping around all afternoon. Nobody bothered to ask him why he was hopping and yelping in pain. I took him to the doctor, who ordered an x-ray and an ultrasound. After the x-ray I had to buy him a set of crutches from the chemist, because they don’t do rentals any more. Joy. Now he’s home from school for I-don’t-know-how long, and Mr Clumsy isn’t too good with the crutches. He keeps falling over and breaking stuff. My stuff. I’m tempted to gaffer tape him to the sofa, but I just got the bloody thing cleaned.

    Drama 2: On the way home from school, I stopped at the local IGA to pick up some cheese. As you do. I emerged from the shop in time to see some woman backing out of the space next to mine – or trying to. My car was in the way of her angled exit, but she just kept on backing. I yelled out to her that she was hitting my car, so she drove forward, straightened up her car, then just drove off. I’ve had to go to the police to get her details. Now she’s left her number on my answering machine, but I’m not good with confrontation so I’m having panic attacks about calling her to say “hey, bitch, you ‘forgot’ to stop and give me your insurance details after you drove into my car”.

    Drama 3: The Boss got home from work last night with a statement for his office credit card. There are a series of transactions that have been done online, which isn’t supposed to be possible as his work card is blocked from phone, online and ATM transactions. After some investigation, it turns out that the card was used the same weekend my VISA was stolen (and for the same purpose), but as the guilty party had replaced the credit card in the Boss’s wallet, we didn’t know it had been used. So the online scammers have been sucking money out of the credit card ever since. The Boss has some explaining to do at work, as well as a lot of mopping up to do – and the Commonwealth Bank aren’t too keen on refunding the stolen cash that they weren’t supposed to have allowed to be taken in the first place. There’s a good chance we are going to have to repay the hundreds of stolen dollars to the Boss’s employer. There’s also some question about the Boss’s job security. More Joy.

    The good news is, these things tend to come in threes, so hopefully that’s it for the drama for a while.

    The bad news is, it’s Lent so I’m not supposed to self-medicate with brownies. *sigh*

  25. Poor Catty. I don’t know if it helps, but as a Arch-noodle of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, I can give you a dispensation for special emergency brownies? Or there’s the guest exemption. My sister used to give up alcohol for Lent, unless they had visitors (who shouldn’t be made to suffer). Just invite someone around for coffee. It would be rude not to join them in some baked treats, no?

  26. Oh Catty, that sucks. Still, you’ve made me grateful I’m an unemployed barren chocolate scoffing heathen so your suffering is not entirely wasted.

    Fingers crossed that the credit card thing all works out OK & your hubby’s employers have idiot children of their own and will sympathise.
    Was this the kiddy culprit conundrum? because if that was my kid they’d be flipping burgers at McDonalds till they converted to veganism.

    That sucks with the car.
    I hate dealing with conflict too, which is why when a neighbour makes it clear that they’re going to provide a steady source of it, it seems like a worthwhile solution to convince them I’m so utterly loathsome that it’s best not to talk to me at all. I must say I’m impressed with how easy it was to impress the lesbian plumbers that I’m vile and deranged. Usually it requires much greater effort than shouting Get Off My Lawn.
    I must be getting better at this.

    So good luck dealing with the supermarket scraper. Odds are that she fled because she feels the same way about conflict as you. Perhaps she was intimidated by your amazonian build and concerned that she’d be clubbed over the head with a kilo of cheese. That or she just had more important things to do than to stay and chat to you. Apparently the cops hear that one a lot, these days. ‘I couldn’t stay, I was on the school run and little Timmy might have been sold into slavery and shipped off to Asia if I didn’t arrive there on time.’
    The cops I’ve spoken to say that is code for ‘I really don’t give a **** about you or your problems and if I drive off now I can claim I was never there in the first place.’

    The last time (and the only time) I had a supermarket bingle was with some old lady leaving Coals. We were opposite each other and we both looked, thought ‘clear’ and reversed out at the same time. We met pretty much arse to arse dead in the centre of the lane & agreed at the time it was just bad luck & both equally at fault. By the time it came to the insurance claim, she’d changed her story to say that I backed out at pace and rocketed into her, thus causing the damage. The bloke snorted at that one as he knows my paranoia about backing over toddlers and dogs. So while I am constantly zoning out on the highway between 80k roadwork signs & am in danger of getting busted for speeding there, if I’m reversing when there’s things behind me that go Yowl, Snap, Splat – No way.

    I pointed out to the insurance co that if it panned out the way that she’d claimed, which was that she backed out slowly, first, and thus had right of way, and I shot out without looking and belted into her, I’d have hit the side of her vehicle rather than the back bumper. I drew a diagram to demonstrate where we were both parked and how it would have panned out in terms of damage to her car if she spoke the truth.
    Since we collided out our back bumpers, the insurance people decided she was lying through her teeth and since she had a series of bingles on her records and i had none, they decided she was the problem. Stupid lying bitch.

    I feel for you.
    The thing I hate about these things is that it’s an opportunity to see what new depths humanity will sink to. And I don’t know about you guys, but I get my fill of those opportunities without leaving home.

  27. Oh, Catty. I blame Mary McKillop. If she’d been paying attention, none of this needed to have happened.

    For Lent I think you should give up niceness, ring up bitchface and let her have it with both barrels. If it helps, get drunk enough so you’re calm but can still remember details beforehand.

    As for the kid on crutches, can’t you chain him up outside?

  28. Maybe your poor injured child needs a nice two week vacation in Queenslund with his grandmother?

  29. Silly Q. Then he’d just come back with gastrointestinal disturbance and PTSD, as well.

  30. yes but the newly acquired hypervigilance would inspire caution, and the social anxiety would mean that Catty would never have to take him anywhere, ever.
    Which, given the pain that’s involved in car travel, has got to be a plus.

  31. And she can use the left over Wildebeest nappies to cope with any GI overflow.

    Excellent thinking, Q.

  32. Either I’ve missed something or those brownies are “special”. Wildebeest nappies??

  33. All brownies are special, GB. So are Girl Guide bikkies.

    Mmm … empty calories.

    • “All brownies are special. But some brownies are more special than others”.

      That’s what George Orwell would have said if he’d been to some of the parties I’ve been to.

  34. Speaking of carbs, I found a miracle of culinary genius at the Currumbin Fair bakery today – pineapple tarts. Little ones, with real pineapple inside & passionfruit icing on top. the pastry was delicious and I’m sorely disappointed with Google for it’s failure to tell me how to create such a thing of wonder.
    So if any of you know, do share.

    Catty I had the most ridiculous dream about jellyfish last night. I will have to tell you about it tomorrow. Far too sleepy tonight as we had a long day at the Old Coast hunting for a house in a street free of bogans and lunatics.

    Still haven’t found anything we like better than the Fossickers House at Wallaby Hill so at the end of the day we wandered back up there to investigate the dog park with Riley, Ace of Spies.
    And there we ran into the fossicker’s neighbour, Jim the Scotsman, who was oot and aboot with his wee foxie and was disappointed that we weren’t about to become his new neighbours. He didn’t know the house was for lease & rolled his eyes when we told him that story. I think my repeated quizzing of ‘Are you sure it’s quiet? No karaoke, no garage bands, no skater punks, no toga parties?’ – has persuaded him that we would be lovely quiet neurotic Gen Y hating neighbours & he’d like for us to move in tomorrow.
    So we did a lap with the dog around the Fossicker’s block to stalk the ‘hood. I’d like to meet the only set of neighbours that share a boundary with the house & thus far they’ve proved elusive. We’ve tried zipping past at odd times & they are simply never home. the closest I’ve come to knowing that they exist is that I heard their spin dryer one squally day.

    Do any of you know anything of the deadly effects of Quarries?
    The Dog Park folk told me that there’s talk of putting a quarry in on the western side of the hill & the residents are opposed to it. I grew up at The Gap about 2km from two quarries and aside from the occasional burst of dynamite it didn’t seem like too big of a deal. Then again I am asthmatic & I did get cancer at the age of 29 so perhaps they aren’t all that good for a budding immune system.

    Right, I will pop in tomorrow to tell you the bizarre Jellyfish Dream. the bloke snorted & said it is the perfect analogy for my family.

    Speaking of which – Red Rum! Red Rum!
    How’s your weekend, going, Morgana?

  35. Urge to kill: peaking.

    The main thing with quarries is noise and your house shaking when they’re blasting, and noise, annoyance and fumes with the trucks going in and out. Would they be using roads near you? If not I don’t think it’s a big deal.

    As for the pineapple tarts, were they pineapple in a custardy sort of base? In which case I believe the Bardon Scout Recipe book of 1942 might be of assistance, and I can scan you the relevant page.

  36. Hmm. In that case, Vodka! Vodka! Valium!
    Perhaps you could send the rest of the household on an excursion to the big pineapple to see if they sell recipe books?

    And no, no custard.
    It was like they’d just shredded & syrrupped up the pineapple so it was a lovely, fibrous, sticky chewy mess betwixt the passionfruit icing & the tasty pastry. I was impressed at No Soggy Bottoms.
    If I eat enough of them, I might be able to figure out how the hell they do it. A few months ago, one of my GFs urged me to try the pineapple tarts at the Coolangatta bakery but those are like a neenish tart but with pineapple flavoured sugary stuff inside. Any more than one bite is sickening & ADHD pineapple rush acid high sets in immediately.

    We found the bakery by chance when we were house hunting & since we were getting cranky with each other, when I spotted the bakery I thought it might have something to stablise our blood sugar levels & sweeten the relationship. Win.

    I did end up throwing half a litre of water over his lap by the end of the day so when we got to the dog park he slunk off far from humanity to avoid further mortification. Which is how he managed to find Jim the Scotsman, who prefers the company of scrub ticks to that of his community. Even though he says they’re all very nice – he just likes to get a bit o’ space froo his hoosehooold.
    I could get used to that accent. It’s very Hamish McBeth.

    Still, it’s funny how things work out. If the bloke hadn’t been pissing me off, I wouldn’t have chosen retribution with fluids & he wouldn’t have run into Jim.
    It was lovely to spend the day at the coast yesterday & even better to meet the crew at the dog park & to hear how fondly they speak of their community. And it’s so quiet around the fossicker’s house. The wind was blowing a bit of highway noise towards us yesterday but I think with some well-thought out planting you could drown that out with some fluttering leaves. And it’s no worse than what we already hear from the SE freeway, and that is the least of our issues with noise, here-aboots.

    Even Jim said that he has NFI what the Fossickers are up to & that taking it on and off the market & playing silly buggers made no sense whatsoever. He hasn’t seen the owners for months & he said last time he spoke to them they were desperate to unload the property as they wanted to buy elsewhere & move on with their lives.

    So thank you, Riley, Ace of Spies.
    How do people who don’t have dogs manage to stalk a potential new home, I wonder?

    As for the quarry, I will have to do a bit of homework on that. Elanora & currumbin may end up being a more tranquil option.

    • “How do people who don’t have dogs manage to stalk a potential new home, I wonder?” Mata Phoebe. One little smile and they’ll tell you everything. As a standard ‘old guy, overweight, beard and glasses’ from Central Casting, I’m pretty much invisible. Add a smiling baby and suddenly people smile and even stop and talk. Amazing.

  37. Ooh goody a man of Scients is here.
    Khan GB, what are your thoughts on the potential for death by asthma & silicosis if you live 2k north from a super quarry? Dust is not one of the allergens that triggers my isshews, smoke, yes, but even so it’s a worry.
    I figure there are worse health isshews where I am because of being under the flight path of all these damned helicopters & the research that the noise from constant air traffic is associated with an increased mortality rate from heart disease and, if memory serves, stroke.
    I’ve done my homework and discovered that prior to the EIS the LNP government changed the zoning to allow the super quarry west of Burleigh to be given the Kiss of Life. Mother******s. Never mind my asthma and my need for Shoosh, it’s a frigging wildlife corridor down there in Tallebudgera. They should all be lined up against the wall and shot.

  38. Ah, Greybeard. Count yourself lucky you won’t ever have to experience pregnancy. Complete strangers come up to you in supermarkets and put their hand on your bump. Everybody in every queue you stand in wants to know everything about your baby – or worse, they tell you all about how to raise a child. And men in suits shove in front of you to get through doorways faster (this one gets worse when you have had the baby and are trying to push a pram past a heavy door). Then, there’s the critical stares and the tut-tutting when your toddler throws a tanty in public, or spills their drink on the floor. Followed by the disapproving comments made by kinder teachers about the ‘unhealthy’ contents of your child’s snack box, because ‘no good mother would dream of hiding a Freddo Frog under the organic carrot sticks as a treat’. Then there’s parent/teacher interviews. *shudder* And then? They’re teenagers. ’nuff said.

    Oh, that’s right. You’re a grandparent. You can hand the GrandEvil back to her mummy. Lucky bugger.

    Hey, Quokka, jellyfish are an unusual thing to dream about. Spill!

    You spill too, Madam. What have your parents done to set your phasers to Kill?

    Re: the pineapple tarts. I’ve only made pineapple cheesecake tarts, which are butt-easy, so I’m guessing these ones are made from shredded pineapple stewed in sugar syrup, with a little lemon juice. If I had time, or pineapple, I’d give it a try. It sounds yummy.

  39. Thanks Catty, yeah, I thought that might be so. I assume it’s all about getting the pineapple to the right consistency so that they don’t deliver up soggy bottoms in the tarts. I may have to sample more of this bakery’s products, in the interests of serving science & creating my own recipe.

    The jellyfish dream was weird.
    I woke up and told the bloke and he snorted and said ‘Well, the meaning is pretty obvious, but Catty will love this one.’

    My maternal grandparents had an access order on me all through my childhood so that one day per week I was obliged to visit with them between the hours of 10-5, usually on a Sunday which was a FKR of a thing as I had better things to do on a Sunday, namely Pony Club, of which they disapproved.
    (Insert Scowly Face here)
    Not that I had my own pony but I used to *work* up at the local riding school one day per week & Dad would toss some cash at the owner for babysitting so once lessons were done she’d let me roam free on her personal riding horse -the one that bucked everyone else off but for reasons unknown became especially fond of me.

    If my cousins were around, the visits were fun. As I grew older they were around less and less and my great aunt, who liked to test me on my Latin roots & my times tables, and to criticise my hair, my clothes and my lack of femininity, was around more. So visits were all about the three Ds – Dullness, Duty & Depression, and finding ways to STFU so as not to step on the toes of people born prior to 1895. Big fun.

    They had a swimming pool out the back and the other night I dreamed I’d returned there to give gifts to all the little kids in my family. Not my mother’s family, who were long gone, but my father’s family, who mother’s family went to lengths to assure I didn’t know or see. So much so that I only discovered & met my cousins in WA (from the wrong side of the tracks) a few years ago.
    And as we know, I love them & unlike mother’s family, I fit right in and nobody scowls at me like there’s some ugly little goblin changeling sitting in their midst.

    Anyway, it was hot and I wanted a drink and a swim.
    So I left my little cousins playing happily with their gifts & chatting to the rest of my visiting (paternal) cousins & went down to the pool.

    Mother’s family wasn’t there any more & the house was owned by strangers, a bit like a community hall.

    I noticed that the pool was full of local geriatrics doing water-waddling exercises with those floatation belts that support your hips. The pool was bigger, like a therapy pool you’d see at the local complex.
    And from there it gets weird.
    The old folk were trying hard to avoid a bunch of 2 foot long transparent jellyfish that were sitting motionless &, being opaque and quite see-through, almost invisible at the bottom of the pool. Mostly the stingers were congregated in the centre so the waddlers were doing laps of the perimeter of the pool & that seemed to push the nasty things further to the centre, away from their therapy.

    I asked the supervisor why she tolerated their presence and why they didn’t throw them out, and she shrugged and said:
    ‘It doesn’t make any difference. They just keep coming back, nobody knows why. We think they grow from spores in the water or maybe there’s just something bad in the air around here – nothing can stop them.
    We tried chucking them out on the lawn but the spots where they touched the grass, everything died and nothing would grow again. It was like spraying the ground with acid & salt all in one go.
    And it doesn’t work.
    Every time we chuck them out, the population just increases because the little ones grow up so much faster.
    If you leave the big ones there, though, the little ones won’t grow. When they bump up against the big ones they’ll sting them till they die. And it’s not that bad, really, it’s a nice pool and the seniors know that the jellyfish won’t move so you’re safe unless you brush up against them.’

    Feel free to analyse it but FWIW I think it says all you need to know about parenting, personality & what to expect from the gene pool in my mother’s family.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me I have to go yell at some kids to Get Off My Lawn.

  40. Parents still here. Expecting the Jellyfish Dream any minute. Kindly pray for me and/or offer tributes to the Deity/Deities of your choice.


  41. Heh heh.
    Funny, I just checked the surf cam and was thinking of you.
    The ocean looks neither calm, nor blue.
    You need to get to work early today & work late, right?

  42. Last night I sacrificed a bottle of wine to avert the god Pan. He’s been hanging around here a lot lately but that helped for a while. Worth a try?

  43. Far too tempting to use the empty bottle as a weapon, I would think.

  44. I’ve sacrificed many a bottle of wine to them over the last little while and it’s just water off a duck’s back.

    However, maybe I could spike it with something … anybody milked any poison dart frogs lately?

  45. No, but I’m sure for a fee, NTO could pack you a full picnic lunch with whatever the hell it was that tipped my dog towards liver failure. There’s not a brush turkey in sight since that happened so they’ve obviously found some pressing reason to flee the ‘hood.

    Heh heh. I think the Roman Senators below stairs are starting to grate on her nerves. Senatorial debate is loud and runs late into the night, and occasionally they burst into tunes for their upcoming production of Caligula! The Musical.
    Well, that or they are big fans of Miley Cyrus, it’s hard to tell.

    She’s had to remind them several times now that she prefers that they close the doors and windows while the air conditioning is running. Which has me wondering if they leave the fridge door open all day long, too.

    Et Tu, Jayden?

  46. Hehehe.

    Oh, do let me know when it’s going to be on stage, we’ll try to come down. Caligula is EB’s favourite Roman Emperor.

    • I would have guessed that. If he names one of the chooks Incitatus, we’re all in trouble.

      • Strange you should mention that, GB. He just named one of the cats Senator, but I thought it was just one of his child-like games.

  47. Well that could be useful.
    I assume it’s the evil twin he’s just sworn into power?

  48. Yes. Jet is more of the Bacchanalian sort of cat. He’s more into lounging than oratory and bloody power struggles.

  49. Hey, guys, I have no idea what any of you are on about. (Must have been asleep that semester). But I do know about your dream, Quokka.

    First up: our patterns of behaviour are moulded on what was displayed in the family unit during our childhood – I.e, we either embrace or rebel against the example set in our childhood homes. In this case, your subconscious has selected your grandmother’s house because of the weekly ritual visit. Also, because dreaming of a grandparent is a sign of family tradition. As dreaming of relatives is a sign of family values, and your father’s family were at your maternal grandmother’s house, your subconscious is indicating that you prefer their values to your mother’s family values. As if any of us needs a dream to tell us that! For shame, Quokka’s subconscious. Now you’re just being lazy.

    Your gift-giving to the children demonstrates a wish that you had been brought up by those relatives, as opposed to being brought up by your own family (after they ate you). Also, children in dreams represent aspects of ourselves. To give a gift in a dream is to give of yourself. And in this case, as the young relatives were aspects of you, TO yourself. Now your subconscious is acknowledging your ‘gifts’ (talents), as receiving a gift in a dream is a sign you accept your strengths (gifts). About bloody time, subconscious. You’re just working out how amazing Q is now? Slackarse.

    Having the house owned by strangers is a sign that you no longer recognise yourself as part of your maternal family.

    Pools have a number of meanings. Still bodies of water, like pools, represent our inner thoughts and feelings, and are a sign you need to reflect on your state of tranquility. If the water is clear, then you are at peace with yourself. If it’s dirty, then you may have clouded emotions or a fear of neglecting your responsibilities. Swimming pools can also be a symbol of pleasure and personal happiness, so heading out for a swim indicates you like being happy.

    Dreaming of old people shows a desire to reconnect to your past. Not to relive it, but to come to terms with it. You have now reached a point in your life where you can learn from the past while remaining emotionally disconnected from it. But old people in dreams can can also be a sign that you find unhappiness overly oppressive, so you may be concerned that just when you think you’ve got your shit together, one of your maternal rellies will throw it at a fan.

    Jellyfish are interesting. They indicate hidden dangers that are hard to avoid. They are most often a symbol for a person in our lives who doesn’t seem openly confrontational, but is dangerous once your back is turned. Hmmm… now I wonder who that could be referring to? *coughmaternalrelativescough* Dragging the fish out of the water is a sign of embarrassment caused by opponents. It’s interesting that the little suckers multiply faster the more you scoop them out – if you leave them alone they’re manageable, but, as with your family’s bullshit, the more attention you give them, the more they grow.

    The fact that the geriatrics have their heads above the water is a sign that you are successfully managing to deal with external stress. The fact that the pool was full of oldies keeping healthy means that you feel you have things in common with the people around you, and that you have a positive attitude towards them and towards yourself.

    Now, you may ask, why would I bother telling you all this when it’s all perfectly obvious to you, the Bloke, and pretty much anybody who knows you at all?

    I’m guessing that at some point recently, you have wondered whether you should notify your maternal relatives of your upcoming move, or whether you should just go without leaving a forwarding address.

    While you would dearly like to let sleeping jellyfish lie, your sense of loyalty and your strong family values are telling you that you should risk brushing up against them to advise of the move. While you are nervous that this will bring their attention (and their guano) to you, your subconscious is telling you in no uncertain terms that you can easily handle it.

    Personally, I think you should throw out the change-of-address stationery, and instead write your new address on the side of a few bluebottles before posting them to your sisters.

  50. Smurf. I forgot to tell you.
    The bloke dragged me into a house at Currumbin on Saturday that didn’t interest me because it had three levels of carpet & white tiles. Lovely view over the ocean, though, & 8k south of the Super Quarry the gubbermint has just approved west of Burleigh.

    So I wandered about surveying the rest of the horror that accompanies a house of white tiles and carpet & when I got outside, I stopped to admire a bird cage, wondering why the budgies inside it were so very, very still.
    Turns out they had fake budgies in their cage.
    I didn’t have my glasses on so I don’t know if they were plastic or taxidermist in origin but that could explain the odour rising from the basement.

    I assume there’s a flock of them below stairs, and, being that it’s the gold coast, perhaps a discarded businessman’s wife or two.

  51. Catty that is awesome. You should do readings down the local crystal shop & charge by the hour.
    Mwah! Thank you!

    I think it’s the new mouth-guard. My hippy dentist warned me that because it stops you grinding your teeth, you get into REM patterns easier, you sleep a deeper and more satisfying sleep, and you have weird-ass dreams as your subconscious finally catches up on lost opportunities to get you to listen.

    I’ve been grinding my teeth since they slapped the access order on me so my subconscious probably has quite a backlog to work through.

  52. Give it brownies. Subconsciouses love brownies.

  53. Mmm … brownies. I must be a subconscious.

    Q, forget the white carpets (white carpets, at the beach? what were they thinking??). You totally need a property with a fully equipped taxidermy studio in the basement. Just think of the hours of fun and profit!

  54. Haven’t had a decent night’s sleep since we started the whole moving business. Wake up in a panic, can’t sleep. Dreams? Pffft! Just heard from the agent that our buyers are having finance problems and might be asking for an extension. Good in some ways but aaaarrgh! Do. Not. Require. Uncertainty.

    As for white carpets, I think at least half the houses we looked at had them and many had white tiles as well. Maybe sellers think it makes the place look better, rather than “oh damn, we’ll have to get rid of that before long.” The new place has hideous curtains and some very pale carpets but meh, they can be changed. When we can afford it.

    Also Aunty Q, you could make a really low offer for that place, and if they reject it, you can tell them to get stuffed?

  55. Oh dear. Moving house is a terrible stress. Are you eating enough soothing carbs, like lashings of oats, GB?

    Or hash brownies, either or.

  56. I second and third what my esteemed coven members have said about carbs. Now, kindly deliver seconds and thirds, and I will be satisfied.
    My day has turned into endless mindless circles but I have ingredients to make the CWA Classics recipe for pineapple slice. It looks like the pineapple mix has a similar consistency to the Currumbin bakery’s pies so it is time to experiment. After I’ve fortified myself with carbs and caffeine, that is.

    Does anyone else hear whooshing sounds as of carrion wings, or is that Irma circling the block on her broom stick? And does anyone else want to mainline chocolate and claw out their enemy’s livers & run them through the wood chipper?
    Perhaps I need B6 & folate.
    I need chocolate, and pineapple slice.

    Khan GB, as one who does not look at humanity with a trusting eye, I’d hope for the best with this one.
    I think it is often the case that buyers need an extension on the contract and since they’ve come by to look at the place very recently I’d take that as a sign that they’re keen to move in.

    It’s not like the bank would withdraw finance on the grounds that they’ve offered you more than it’s worth, and that’s the standard escape clause inside a contract.

    If they’ve found something else that they like more, you’d be forgotten like yesterday’s fish wrappings.

    I suppose the bigger risk is that one of them might be employed by Allan Joyce, or SPC.

    I’d say the more likely scenario is that they’ve decided to play the card of ‘perhaps if you took 10G off the price’ as they’ve realised that’s what it will cost to do Renovation Part A.

    I would be inclined to respond that they have 4 days to sort it out or you’ll be using their deposit for your own renovations and they’ll be short a house deposit and Raspberry Lane will be back on the market.

  57. Ooh, I like the sound of the pocketed deposit. That would soon sort them out, GB.

  58. Remember the house we wanted to buy at Elanora in January?
    One clown outbid all the others and the contract is still not finalised. Owners have long since moved out & the agent told me that the final sale price was at least 6G below what they must have bid to secure it.

    • Whut? How does that work? They get to pay $6k less than they bid?

  59. Are they just being dickheads, or is it financial delusions of grandeur, do you think?

  60. OK, solicitor has called. We’ve been asked to delay settlement for 7 days (or a week as we non-solicitors call it). I’m pretty happy with that as it gives us more time to do things here (wireless Q?) and less time to impose on D#2 before the new place is available. Just have to delay Friday’s pick up but want to see something in writing first and there isn’t long! Solicitor advised us ti accept, as long as they pay interest on the amount of settlement. Seems a little harsh but OK.

    Aaand D#2 would like us down there asap. Geeze, I think they like us. What did we do wrong? Anyway, we’ll have more time to box our own stuff and less to pay the packers.

  61. Interest? Always say yes to interest!

    Good news, GB.

    As for why she wants you down quickly, one can only assume she has a cumulative poison with a short shelf life she’s itching to administer.

  62. Or the Son In Law wants GB’s pre-emptive cartons of wine out of his fridge. Or they need a babysitter. Or Mayhem’s Mum is starting to stink up their cellar. You DID send Mayhem’s Mum ahead, didn’t you, GB?

    The ‘hideous curtain’ thing is a given in any house purchase. I’ve always suspected there’s a warehouse in central Victoria that sells them. Near SPC, perhaps? (Oh, and don’t worry about SPC, Q. Woolworths is going to buy all their tinned fruit and tomatoes, so it’s business as usual. Crunchy baked beans, anyone?)

    Anyway, GB, make sure you tell us when you’re here, so I can make you some ‘Welcome to Melbourne’ caramels.

    I plan on making a practice batch of caramels tomorrow. And apple cake. For some reason I’m craving apple cake (although pineapple slice is starting to sound appealing too). I’m also wondering what would happen if I stuck a Jack-in-the-box handle in my ear. Would it play lPop Goes The Weasel’ as I turned it? And would the top of my head pop open, flinging my brain out on a spring? Yep, definitely carrion wings.

    Meanwhile, GB, I’d say bugger the interest, and instead demand that they deliver fresh brownies to your door on every day of the extension.

    So, Madam, how did the visit go? Aside from your keening (which was audible 3000kms away), we haven’t heard any of the gruesome details. Spill, girl! Did your mum leave Domestos all over the toilet seat again?

  63. Mmm, caramels. You’re too kind Catty.

    But, um, Domestos on the toilet seat?? Couldn’t that have unfortunate consequences for those parts of us which rarely see the light of day?

  64. What it did was bleach the hell out of my favourite shirt, GB, but let’s put that behind us.

    Well, it wasn’t so bad … yet it was an unwelcome foretaste of Easter. Why must these glorious days off work be spoiled with family togetherness? Still, it’s cast a lovely rosy glow over this upcoming weekend doing jack, so all in all a mild success.

    I’m only saying that cos they went home last night and I’m still peaking, obs.

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