Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Oh. My. God. I can't believe what I just read. Somebody please tell me this news article isn't true. Dude sets up tent near dead tree. Branch falls, causes him severe injuries, his family sue Parks Victoria and win! $6 million. Wow. There is truly no longer such a thing as personal responsibility. If that happened to a friend or relative of mine, I can honestly say I would regard it as a tragic accident. Nobody's fault, except maybe the guy who set up camp too close to a dead tree. It wouldn't even cross my mind to sue somebody! Is it just me who finds that ludicrous? Yes, it's an awful thing to have happened. Yes, I feel sorry for the guy and for his family. But it was an accident!!! Gah!!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Friday in Canberra dawned cold, wet, and miserable just like the days before. Work was endured, and the ride home was freezing. The car was loaded up, my brother collected, and to the sunshine we headed!

We have just arrived home from a rather glorious weekend in Merimbula. It was the first time in quite a while that all six of us have managed to be in the same place at the same time: My parents, Aidan and I, my brother Brad, and his girlfriend Kim.

The occasion: My father's 60th birthday celebration!

This is the view from our upper balcony, at the rather glorious unit my parents rented. The house was superb: large, well designed, beautifully furnished... the kind of place you could never actually live in, for fear of making it messy. And the view out over the lake... well, see for yourself!

We had brunch on Saturday morning at a cafe by the lake. Several children were frolicking and generally being loud, and we just kept waiting for one of them to fall in... seems like this child's mother had the same thought! (Yes, I blacked out her face, she doesn't actually look like that!)

This is one of the two or three magpies that my parents kept feeding on the balcony. They would actually take food from the hand - the magpies, not my parents. Cheeky little buggers!

Later on Saturday we went to an arcade called "Top Fun", for no known reason, and played mini golf! I tried to convince dad that it was his idea by saying, "Dad, there's mini golf. How do I make you think you thought of it?", to which he replied, "What a good idea I've just had!" And it was, indeed, top fun. Dad won, mum lost, the rest of us were somewhere in between... I believe all us girls were last: I was fifth, Kim was fourth. The boys beat us all hands down!

This, of course, is dad. I still think he looks about 45 or 50, I have trouble realising he's 60 now! He says that next year he'll be turning 59.

So now we're home, and wishing we could have stayed. The drive back was somewhat symbolic of our attitude towards our home: the closer we got, the worse the weather became. It started raining as soon as we hit the west side of Brown Mountain, and continued, and continued, and continued. It's still drizzling here at home, about four hours later. I just hope it clears up by the morning, so I don't get wet as I ride to work!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Religion really is the big taboo. We're not allowed to insult other people's faiths, or show disrespect towards them for their beliefs. Why not? This makes no allowance for those of us who do not believe in a god - I am continually insulted by people trying to make me believe in one.
We were accosted the other day by a lovely Italian man who, I think, was in Canberra for World Youth Day-associated activities. I held my tongue and smiled at him for the sake of my friends, but if I'd been alone I would have told him I was a Satanist and walked away. What right does he have to show disrespect to my own choices by trying to convince me that his option is somehow better?
I would never stop somebody in the street and try to tell them that my belief system will enrich their life. How rude! I simply do not understand why it is acceptable for convential religions to do that, but not for the rest of us. Can you imagine how insulted and shocked a Catholic would be if I stopped him in the street and said, "Satanism is the best way to live"?
It's a double-standard which must be abolished; religion should be subject to the same openness and debate that everything else is. There's no particular reason to protect it from question or doubt; only convention and a fear of upsetting people. Well, I'm already upset, and I question these old conventions!
When something has been done a certain way for hundreds of years, they call it tradition. I call it time to contemporise!

Monday, July 14, 2008

I don't get to say this very often, so I'm going to relish it: I had a really good weekend! Andrew and Chantell came to visit, and we played boardgames and went up the Telstra Tower and generally hung out and had a good time. We also caught up with Pete, who is a good friend of Chantell's from way back who now also lives in Canberra. So thanks for coming up, guys, I know it's a long trip (particularly for Andrew), but I hope it was worth it!

Friday, July 11, 2008

My last couple of posts have been a little negative, a little unhappy. But things are on the up and up. Especially as, this afternoon, Andrew and Chantell are coming to visit for the weekend!! Yay! I miss those guys. It should be a fun weekend!

Also Canberra's weather has improved slightly. I mean, it's still freezing cold (it's nearly midday and the temperature hasn't risen above 6 degrees) but at least the sun is shining so it looks nice! Sitting in the office with both heaters going, I can almost convince myself it's summer. Almost. As long as I don't think about the dire warnings from locals that it'll get a heck of a lot colder before it gets warmer!

On that note, it's lunch time. I already had a hot dog, but it was so nice I'm going to get another.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

You might want to look at the pretty pictures below before continuing to read this Gripe Post.

I read in the news today that police are using information from criminals' GPS units to place them at crime scenes at certain times. Wonderful! Very helpful for the crime-fighters. But people are concerned about privacy: Will the police now start using information stored in GPS units to nab people for minor crimes like speeding?! Oh noes!!!

This really bugs me. People get all upset about things like being nabbed for speeding "unfairly", or too many speed and red-light cameras... FOR GOD'S SAKE, DON'T BREAK THE LAW AND YOU'LL HAVE NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT!!! Speeding laws and red lights exist for everybody's safety. There is no such thing as "too many speed cameras" or "too high fines" or "oh no I'm going to be found out via GPS info instead of being seen directly!" Breaking a law is breaking a law, and you're risking your own life and everybody else's by doing so. I'm all in favour of free-thinking, questioning authority, and acting on your own best judgement. But surely your own best judgement should always be not to endanger anybody else? Not to mention, knowing of the existance of cameras, avoiding a fine? Fines and imprisonment exist as a deterrent and a punishment for law-breakers. It shouldn't matter how you get caught. Just don't speed. Am I the only person who sees this?
Here are some pretty pictures, which I didn't take, for you to enjoy.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

To my dear Mr Anonymous who seems to have something against me,

I don't know who you are, or what you think I've done to you, but lets get a couple of things cleared up.

Firstly, the deleted comments on the post below.
Comment 1 - your first post, deleted by me in the interests of maintaining harmony and discouraging random anonymous weirdos.
Comment 2 - I deleted my own comment replying to you, before deciding to delete yours.
Comment 3 - Lletna deleted and re-posted because she missed a few words, as per her existing comment.

Secondly, the matter of my "fans". No, I don't have fans. I don't want fans. Fans would be, by definition, fanatic, and that would piss me off even more than you do. I know who my friends are, and I go for quality over quantity. You don't have any quality, as clearly demonstrated by your cowardly anonymity.

I don't mind people disagreeing with me or disliking me. You have that right. But doing so anonymously on my blog is the virtual equivalent of cutting letters out of newspapers to make notes and shoving them under my door. Do the right thing and send me a nice letter through the post with your name and address like a normal person.

Yours sincerely,


Monday, July 07, 2008

What a complete non-surprise. I still haven't been paid for the week before last. This is exactly what I want out of a job, and I love getting up early in the cold of this god-forsaken city to go to work for somebody who can't remember or can't afford to pay me. Would it be really petty to call my boss and say I'm not coming in until I've been paid for the last two weeks? I need a new job. I do like my current job, and I like my boss as a person. But I simply don't trust her as a manager! Does anybody have any jobs going?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Each morning before work, I have this little routine that I go through. I come here, FunnyOldWorld, and check for any new comments and follow links to other blogs to comment on. Then, most mornings, I also check my Facebook profile to see if anybody loves me. I have come to think of this routine as Funnybooking. It's a little bit German: taking two words and cramming them together to make one word describing the combination of the original two things! But I realise it's also human nature. Language is dynamic, we create new words all the time. People under the age of 15 may find it hard to believe that "internet" is quite a new word. Most people probably don't know that "ether" was a word which, a few hundred years ago, described the invisible medium through which light, heat, and electromagnetic waves were believed to travel. Of course, that theory was debunked, but today we have ethernet cables through which information is believed to travel!

My dad is a whizz at making up words. One I will never forget is "skillydappling". This described our labrador in the act of running through a puddle flicking up droplets with her paws and nose.

Then we have our good friend Donn, or HomoEscapeons, who has made an artform out of adapting words to his unique purposes and thought processes. ZimBOBway is a recent example from his blog.

Whilst these two examples are unlikely ever to make it into any official dictionary, they are wonderfully demonstrative of the inventiveness and adaptability of the human brain.

Some examples that did make it into a dictionary (of sorts) are those by Douglas Adams and John Lloyd. As they state in their introduction to The Meaning Of Liff: "
In Life, there are many hundreds of common experiences, feelings, situations and even objects which we all know and recognize, but for which no words exist. On the other hand, the world is littererd with thousands of spare words which spend their time doing nothing but loafing about on signposts pointing at places. Our job, as wee see it, is to get these words down off the signposts and into the mouths of babes and sucklings and so on, where they can start earning their keep in everyday conversation and make a more positive contribution to society."

We have mother's day, father's day, Christmas, Easter, World Youth Day, and countless other celebrations of mundane things and people. I hereby create Word Day. Today, Wednesday 2nd July, is a day for the creation of new words and the celebration of old ones. I want comments: What are your favourite words? Have you made up any new ones? These can be in any language (even Tolkein's Elvish if you like!), from any time or place, especially the ones within your head. Bring it on!