Too Many Feels
21 December, 2014

mothra

The inevitable has happened and Gigantor’s got a girlfriend. To protect the innocent, we’ll call her Mothra. I’m not sure whether to feel pleased that he’s playing nicely with others, or horrified that he might love Mothra more than me.

Too paralyzed with horror to write more.

2013: the Year of the Flat Pack
5 January, 2013

cats in a box
“Where did you put that Allen key?”

Zombie Scrub Turkeys Attack!
3 October, 2012

Well, that was fun.  We enjoyed a relatively uneventful trip up to visit Uncle and Aunt and all the tiny horses at the miniature stud, earlier this week.  Well, you know, I still had to drive through Gympie but since we were enthralled by a game of ‘I Spy Something That’s Not A Gun Shop Or A Redneck” I was too busy to even wince.

The journey home was strange, though, at a bare minimum with surreal flashes.  There was debate at the gate, which I won with my “If it’s shut when you get there, leave it shut” argument.

Rarely do I taste victorious vindication at all, let alone almost immediately, but less than 30 metres down the track we encountered a heifer who was reluctant to share the road.

“Lucky I made you shut the gate.” I observed, smug as a cat with a mouthful of budgie.  I crawled the car up, to ease past her.

“See, Mumma – I told you there were feral cows!” said Elf Boy, who’d spent a chunk of the day chasing the neighbours’ cattle out of Aunt’s mini-horse paddocks.

“Arrgh! It’s got horns! It’s going to charge the car!!” screeched Magic Man, who has inherited his Great Uncle’s distrust of large livestock.

“Blow the horn!” cried Elf Boy.

“Don’t blow the horn!!” countered his brother.

“My paintwork!” said Mother.

Maybe it was the horns on my radiator grille (Toyota symbol on Mother’s wagon), or perhaps the steely glare I fired at her through the windscreen, but the heifer grudgingly shuffled to the side so I could pass.

All good through the level crossing and past the pub, until we got to a stretch between farms, about halfway to the highway.  It was wettish from the showers, and the usual narrow, patchy, soft shouldered goat track, but conditions were no worse than usual and I know the road pretty well.  Round a gentle bend, four scrub turkeys seemed to be having a union meeting, right on the verge.  Well, that or they’d heard about vultures and thought they’d give it a try – there was a lot of road kill scattered about.

Having learned not to underestimate the ability of the scrub turkey to annoy – and destroy – I slowed down from 80 odd clicks to just over 60 to pass the . . . what’s the collective noun for scrub turkeys: a scraping; a cabal?  I think I’ll go with “devastation”.  Three of the turkey’s high-tailed  it for the paddock, away from my vehicle, but the forth, either braver or much, much stupider than his mates ran out under my wheels.  He fluttered up in a flight attempt that was more like something you’d see from a septuagenarian gymnast trying to relive the glory days.  He achieved just enough of a twisting leap before I hit him full on, that he smacked into the windscreen dead ahead of me.  I hunched down, sure he’d shatter the glass, yanking my right foot back to resist the urge to slam on the brakes on the wet.

The score:  No skid, no screams, not even time for me to curse, no damage to Mother’s car, journey continued without further incident.  And our feathered friend?  According to Magic Man, who watched his dismount through the rear screen, he shook himself to settle his feathers back into place and wandered off, not only unharmed but seemingly unperturbed.

Maybe it was just a random event.  Perhaps this turkey’s turkey was just a very dull example of a species known more for persistence than intelligence.  Or his acquired taste for carrion caused a strain of Mad Bird Disease to express itself in suicidal behaviour.  I can’t escape the gnawing suspicion that we survived a deliberate – hell, orchestrated – plan by Greybeard and his evil minions to wipe out, not only me but all of my offspring and even the Mother who bore me.  Revenge for a certain Medieval Archery Incident of more than a year ago, a vengeance so cold they probably hired Ötzi The Glacier Mummy as a consultant co-conspirator.  Try again, big fella.

Arrgh! Watch Treasure Island 2012 in honour of TLAPD, ye scurvy rascals
19 September, 2012

Ahoy, shipmates.  The first mate, the cabin boy and I lashed ourselves to the mast last weekend and viewed Treasure Island 2012, a BBC miniseries:

youtube.com/watch?v=096g8N6roMc

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this version.  Featuring a talented cast who play well together, it’s a fresh modern production with a fabulous soundtrack.

Famous faces abound:  Donald Sutherland looks like he’s enjoying his role as the treacherous Captain Flint; Rupert Penry-Jones – fabulous in “Whitechapel”, another BBC production – is exquisitely nasty, playing the Squire so far towards the top of the upper crust that one wonders if he needed supplemental oxygen between takes;  Eddie Izzard imbues his Long John Silver with more chiaroscuro than usually seen in this character; Toby Regbo is terrific as Jim Hawkins and Shirley Henderson – Moaning Myrtle in the HP films – plays his mum, her fragile frame, pixie face and wispy voice perfect for the role of victimised widow.  Elijah Wood’s cameo as Ben Gunn is fun – with his love of cheese and the Bible, he was the kids’ favourite character.

A few characters have been invented for the series – including John Silver’s wife, played by Nina Sosanya – and some reassigned or re-imagined – the Doctor starts out as a cowardly drunk, but hits his hero straps eventually – in comparison with Robert Louis Stevenson’s original, but none of them seemed out of place or tacked on.

Beautiful art direction keeps you watching through the parts when your attention may stray a little, thinking you know what comes next.  And there’s an intriguing – if gory – keelhauling scene.  Four out of five pieces of eight.

For Her
29 August, 2012

Seriously, Bic?  I know the biro was invented by a bloke – but it’s hard to understand what the smurf the people… well, I say people but I think we can safely assume that they’re men of a certain age… at Bic were thinking.  This is the sort of crap that leads to this:

and this:

and then this:

And, ultimately, this is why women still fail to recieve equal pay for equal work.  The same sort of mindset – admittedly at several removes – is directly linked to idiocy like Representative Todd Akin and ‘legitimate rape’ .

I’ve never been so glad my kids are both boys.  As much as I revile the facts and wish things were different, they’ve got a better chance of achieving their goals than their friends who are girls.  Not because they’re smarter or stronger or morally superior, but because their dangly toilet parts put them first in the queue.

Over the last few days I’ve admired the merciless lampooning dished out to this product by comedy sites such as Regretsy and some of the Cheezburger offshoots – but the funniest material are the “product reviews”  submitted by thousands of pro-feminist well-wishers. Make sure your Depends – and let’s hope they’re floral pink, ladies! – are in place, follow the link – if your soft, girly ladybrain can coordinate clicking your mouse (it’s the little pointy thing) – and enjoy comedy gold:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/BIC-For-Amber-Medium-Ballpoint/dp/B004FTGJUW

Curses!
17 August, 2012

Sad news today for all on-line vendors of witchcraft and wizardry – eBay is set to ban the sale of magical workings from the first of September.

http://www.news.com.au/world/ebay-to-ban-sale-of-spells-hexes-potions-and-curses/story-fndir2ev-1226452379393

So get in quick if you need a mystical unicorn incantation or a little something to thwart the mother-in-law.

While they’re at it, there are a few other things eBay should look at banning: lots of happy meal toys, which may or may not be broken and, let’s face it, were without value new; Twilight merchandise; and vintage toilet paper.

No, I’m not kidding – http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Vintage-Amscan-Halloween-Ghost-BOO-Toilet-Paper-Tissue-T26-/400218259442?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5d2eddfff2#ht_2771wt_754

Spooky.

What else do you think we could do without on eBay?

Olympic Barbie
16 July, 2012


 

The pick of the decorated cake entries in the Samford Show, as reported by our roving photojournalist, Quokka.

Yes – not only has that skinny bitch got all the accessories you and I can only dream about, like a camper van with a hot-tub and Earring Ken, she’s flexible, too.

High Anxiety
27 May, 2012

Me at the cinema, only I left my tiara at home.

I was watching Men in Black III by accident the other day – my friend misread the program times. Cringing in my seat, unable to watch the umpteenth scene staged on the very edge of an extremely high structure, I came to the conclusion that film censorship needs to be expanded.

I can tolerate any amount of sex and violence – as long as neither involve children or furry animals –  but I’d appreciate a warning about vertiginous scenes inducing terror of heights. “V” and “H” are already taken, so a film could be awarded a number of Hitchcocks out of five depending on how much time the actors spend teetering on the brink.

What else would you like to see quantified, to better shape your cinematic experiences?

Sex Bomb
3 January, 2012

Image

My aunt is rearing an Antechinus – AKA marsupial mouse.  He’s a little over two weeks old and sweeter than a candy-coated kitten.  Since we’re not sure if he’s male or female, his name is Piper.  Actually, for his own sake we’re hoping he’s a girl. 

Image

Apologies for the poor quality antiquated camera phone photos, but I think I’d need a very professional set-up with rapid shutter speed to do him justice.  He skitters around like Speedy Gonzales after sampling a new shipment of Columbian Marching Powder.

Image

After a feed. His tummy is so hairless and transparent you can see it’s full of formula.

Antechinuses (Antechini ?) are best known for their mating marathons, as a result of which males only live for 11 1/2 months.  In September, they stage a frenetic fortnight-long orgy, mating with as many females as possible.  Because of the stress, aggression and endurance involved, all males die.  Consequently, all Antechinus females are single mums, rearing 7-10 offspring in a sort of open pouch, dragging their bubs along the ground for 5-8 weeks.

I think human society could learn a lot from the Antechinus.  Footballers, for example, enjoying Mad Monday, would be much easier to take if you knew they’d all cark it by the end of the week.  And who wouldn’t enjoy the Gold Coast Indy, if you knew only the ladies would make it past the finishing line?

 

 

 

A Pox On Virgin
28 October, 2011

Well, what a fabulous couple of days.

My modem blew up on Wednesday afternoon. Apparently an incoming call… my “landline” is sort of VOIP… was all too much and the phone rang a couple of times and then the modem went an ominous shade of black.

Virgin – my ISP – couldn’t have been less help if they’d come around and sabotaged the thing themselves. Apparently they’re trying to get out of the wireless broadband business by a process of attrition. The help desk bloke had two solutions:

(1) Plug it into a different power point – thanks mate, I tried that before I called

(2) Get a new ISP.

*Sigh*

I was pretty sure it was the power pack, not the modem… I happen to have three Virgin modems, let’s not go into why right now… and none of them would power up. Still, I thought, if Virgin can’t be bothered helping me, I might as well change service providers. Perhaps I might find one who, oh, I dunno, might actually provide me with some service?

I have to leave town to buy socks, so signing on with someone else meant a trip down the motorway. Thursday morning and the Optus bloke couldn’t get anywhere with his computer. It seems that Terriblestra rules the phone lines in my part of town, and the only way I could get service from Optus was wirelessly. All well and good, but his computer was telling him to give me a modem and he had no modem to give me.

Short trip to Major Computer Retailer where the more dynamic bloke at their computer desk was quite confident Optus would post me out a modem… but he couldn’t find the plan listed. In their brochure or on line. It took so long I had to leave to get to a lunch date back home.

Returned to Optus Bloke #2 this morning where it turns out the only way to get a phone and broadband bundle from Optus is via some complicated scheme whereby my mobile becomes my landline and my computer connects to a new mobile phone and gets data that way.

Me to Optus Bloke:  “No, thanks. It’s entirely too Machiavellian. What you’re suggesting seems to me like plugging in a double-adaptor, attaching it to an extension cord and then wiring in a power board, just to plug in a kettle.”

Optus Bloke:  “I don’t really understand what you’re saying. But I can tell you, if you go with Terriblstra, they’ll want your first-born child as a down payment.”

However, I can’t knock Optus Bloke #2. He tried his best, and when asked if he could refer me to a shop where I might buy a new power pack for the existing Virgin modem, he was right on the money. $12.95 later I am back in business… until the modem itself fails, I suppose.