Friday, September 19, 2008


Recently, I was prompted to think of the books and movies I turn to when I need comfort, like when I have a cold/flu or I've had a stinker of a day. Most of the books or movies are romantic stuff like "You've Got Mail" or "Sense & Sensibility" etc but one film that came to mind later was "A Knight's Tale" with Heath Ledger. I mean who could forget one of opening scenes - medieval audience of jousting getting down to "We will rock you" or the meeting with a naked Geoffrey Chaucer - great writer, terrible gambler!!!!

Then just the other day I remembered another old friend - this time, music. The teenage boy next door decided to play his oh so droll, wouldn't know talent if it hit him on the head, music, loudly enough to be heard up and down the street. Now the door from our living room to the garden is very close to his downstairs "pad" - so being really pissed off after about 30 minutes of this "noise", I opened the door turned my stereo right up and gave him a serve of "You Shit Me To Tears" by The Tenants - twice. Great, great, great song. Did I mention how much I like this song? Good dance tune too. I was able to let him know exactly what I thought of his manners as well as his taste in music while dancing and singing all the anger out. Being the thick skinned type, it did not seem to make any difference to him but I felt so much better afterwards. Hah!
Lyrics as follows:

There's a little man & he sticks in my mind
He's a pain in the arse & seems to find
Every bone in my body with an axe to grind
And all I've got to say about it

You shit me to tears
Am I making this clear
Just give me a break
For fucks sake

He's got a big car and he drives real fast
But you can't see where you're going
With your head up your arse
His voice is kinda muffled cause it's full of shit
And all I've got to say about it

You shit me to tears (etc)

My, little Dougie (insert appropriate name) how you've grown so tall
You've grown into a painfull know it all
I'd like to shove your head into a barbed wire fence
But you'd probably tell me all about it....

You shit me to tears (etc)

As you can see, this one is for those times when one either wants to hit the offending person or run screaming with rage through the streets pulling one's hair out. The first will get one arrested and the second, committed - so the above revenge fits quite well. My reputation with my other neighbours may have suffered but some things are worth it. (Smug, self satisfied smile)

Friday, September 12, 2008


I dreamt of the Morrigan last night. I had asked them for help in banishing something. In the dream I asked them again. They scolded me saying "It is done" then when I attempted to thank and praise them they scoffed at me and told me "Praise is not required, we did for you, sister." while they held my face. I woke up feeling a little shaken to be called sister by these women. This is the first dealings I've had with The Morrigan, that I'm aware of anyway. I don't really know much about them, so I'll have to do some research and see if the stories match my impression of them.

Monday, September 8, 2008

The Darling Buds of September

After a horribly cold winter, (We had 5 consecutive frosty mornings! And ice on the birdbath!That never happens here. Well obviously it does now - but it's not supposed to, being on the cusp of a subtropical zone) the weather is finally warming up. I'd take down the blanket over the curtains that was intended to keep in more warmth except that the mornings are geting lighter and until daylight saving starts at the end of October, I don't really want to be waking up at 5am or earlier. I'd noticed about a month ago that the season had changed -there was something a little different to the quality of the air. It took another week to be certain and finally the proof has arrived.

The maples all have new leaves and the sycamore(ish) tree (not really sure what it is) has baby leaves a week earlier than last year. Herbs that I allowed to self seed are pushing their delicate green leaves out of the mulch and my mind is turning toward planting the vegies I want this summer.

It's funny (not really) but over the weekend I heard about the floods in South Wales and here in New South Wales on the mid north coast we had ours on Friday. The bridge over the river that runs through the middle of town went under. There is always a scramble by those living northside, before the Council closes the bridge, to get emergency supplies (candles, batteries, food, toilet paper!!!) - as they only have a small corner store on their side - and they are never quite sure how long they will be flooded in.

Last year, a little earlier than this, we had another flood and so much rain that a landslip occurred between the house above us and our property, partially destroying the retaining walls separating the two. It has taken over a year for the Dept of Community Housing (who are responsible for the other property and for one reason or another legally responsible for the repairs) to start work of demolishing the remaining retaining walls and rebuilding. In fact, for the last fortnight there hasn't been a worker to be seen. The lower wall had been nicely cleared away and they'd dug a trench for the footings and then disappeared leaving a huge pile of clay soil and what amounted to an unsecured 6 foot trench between the upper retaining wall (yet to be demolished) and the walls of our house . Now along comes torrential rain and lots of it. Waterfalls flowing over the bank and washing the clay soil into the lower garden, another section of retaining wall collapsed and water gushed between the the horizontal slabs of the remaining now 6 ft unsecured retaining wall (about 1 and half metres from house). You can understand why I was a little nervous. My poor long suffering husband donned his dri-za-bone and using sleepers from the collapsed wall braced the remaining panels of retaining wall. phew! Having been notified of the damage to their excavations the workers have deemed it unnecessary to turn up today, Monday, to inspect the damage. Mutter, mutter, mutter.

Anyway, today is glorious. Birds everywhere! There are a pair of pardalotes attempting to nest into the nice new soft bank eroded by the rain. I've been trying to discourage them, assuming, perhaps optimistically, that work on the retaining wall will recommence soon. Just the other day not one but two male Regent Bowerbirds with their brilliant yellow and black plumage showed up in the wild tobacco trees (that I've allowed to grow in the garden) with their mates and the King Parrots have been coming in to feast on the pigeon pea flowers. Why would anybody spend time indoors when so much is happening outside? Me, obviously, because I'm writing this but not for long. Here I go. Signing out to go sit on the verandah and bask in the warm sun. Blessings to all.

Euch! Don't touch it.

Australia has traditionally had a culture where men do not shake hands with women upon introduction - which is more than a little unsettling for someone who comes from a culture where it is expected and not to do so is seen as insulting.

Now why don't these men shake hands with me? Is it because they think they show me respect by keeping their distance? Perhaps it's never occurred to them that by shaking my hand they may show me the same respect they show my male companion. Maybe they are so immature that they are unable to conceive of touching a woman in any way that does not mean a precursor to sexual intercourse or.... are we women all so scary that they "don't have the balls" to look us in the eye, shake our hands and acknowledge us as someone worthy of their (nonsexual) consideration?

What about those that do shake? Fortunately, with the growing numbers of professional women in the workforce, shaking hands between genders is becoming a more frequent occurence. Most men, I'm happy to say, are able to manage a proper firm handshake.

But what is the handshake by the fingers all about? Is it.... "oh my god, I have to touch her hand, how do I do that again?" or "Shit, my grip is so powerful, I wouldn't want to crush her delicate bones". Whatever courtesy is meant by it, it most often gives the following impression - of finding some malodorous, disgusting object and without the benefit of surgical gloves, having to dispose of it. So, holding it by one's fingertips, one frantically looks for the opportunity in which to divest oneself of said offending object. Which may be, for all I know, exactly how he feels. Now, if it's the first reason then my response is - quit being such a lilly livered twit and just shake. If it's the second then for "fucking, fucketty fuck's sake" (thanks Bo for the quote) boys, these bodies evolved to give birth, your handshake is not going to have us fainting away in agony. If however, the idea of skin to skin contact via the hands is so disgusting then for crying out loud - don't bother even trying because either way, you're going to offend me.

Not that I imagine anyone who needs to read this will acutally end up reading it. But it certainly has made me feel better writing it.