Thursday, February 26, 2009

I would like to address a post to an occasional reader who goes by the name of Ubiquitous.

It may come as a surprise to you to realise that I don't actually like you. It may further surprise you to know that this has nothing to do with our history or any wrong you may or may not have done me at any point (or vice versa). It is simply that your personality and mine do not match, and something fundamental about both of us prohibits me from liking you. It is at least as much myself as you who is to blame for this; I was essentially a child when we knew each other well and I have grown and changed considerably since then.

This blog exists for a couple of reasons. Firstly I created it as a diary, a memory aid, so that I could look back on what I'd been doing and feeling and thinking at any given time. Secondly, over time, this blog has become part of a network of friends and a way of keeping in touch.

I acknowledge that a blog exists in the public domain and that I have no right or power to actually stop somebody reading it. However, as you are not my friend and can have no real reason to be here, I ask that you restrain yourself from visiting as much as possible and refrain from leaving comments or any evidence of your presence at all.

Please don't think that this is my way of dealing with critisism. Critisism, particularly from you, does not worry me. I am not that insecure. I just want you to get over me, and leave me alone. I've tried to be sort of nice, but now I just want to be honest. Nobody else I dislike bothers contacting me, I see no reason for you to be different. Thank you, and goodbye.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

People really annoy me.

So many people seem to think that the world owes them something, or that they should get something just because they want it.


You get what you work for, you receive in response to giving, you are owed what you lent.

A person in Australia has both privileges (sometimes confused with rights) and responsibilities. However, to my mind, you should forfeit your privileges when you shirk your responsibilities. For instance, if you do not drive your car in a responsible manner, your licence may be taken away from you. Driving is not your right; if it were you wouldn't need to pass a test in order to do so.

This rule of thumb extends to other, more abstract, concepts. Taking responsibility for your actions on the whole ensures the continuation of privileges such as respect as well as more tangible things.

But in our increasingly-Americanised society, accepting responsibility is a thing of the past. People blame the police for giving them a speeding fine (to stick with my cars/driving theme for now), yet never stop to think that they shouldn't have been speeding in the first place. In this time of passing-the-buck, why do we continue to allow privileges to those who do nothing to deserve them?

I'm going to switch now from driving to social welfare. In Australia, you can get payments from the government for a variety of reasons: being unemployed, being disabled, being a single parent, and so on. Many of these people, no doubt, are doing the best they can and maybe even looking for work to pay their own way. But a huge marjority, from my own observation, are just sitting back and letting the taxpayer support them via government pensions. Never do these people grasp control and responsibility for their own lives; they are content to leech off the system and do nothing to deserve the assistance they get. Whilst I fully support the concept of helping those in need, I object to helping those who haven't tried to help themselves.

Here's a nice little example, which doesn't reflect any particular individual but is a very common scenario:
Bob is a herion addict who lives in government housing. Bob has no job, and is a petty criminal to fund his drug addiction He thinks stealing is ok, because he's strung out for the next hit, man. His girlfriend Sue is an alcoholic who works a couple of hours a week as a check-out chick. Their small child lives with them in the home they are both too apathetic towards to clean. They're rarely sober or coherent enough to adequately care for the child, or even for themselves. Neither of them completed highschool, and neither have ever held a job for more than two months before getting fired. They've both been living off government benefits and paying just $50 a week in rent for an extended period of time.

These people have been given money and a home - they shoot up or get drunk with the cash and they shit on the home. (Literally: I've heard many stories of faeces trodden into carpet and used needles lying around.) There are rehabilitation programs and centres available (also provided by the government), but Bob and Sue have not bothered to take advantage of them. There are government-run employment agencies geared towards helping the disadvantaged. Our government will even pay for you to study at university if you want to, and you don't need to start paying them back until you're earning over $40,000. Every imaginable service is provided for them, and yet they continue to be a drain on society rather than contributing to it.

I begin to have trouble seeing why our government, or anybody, should continue to assist Bob and Sue and others like them. They have forfeited their responsibilities to themselves and to their community; why do we continue to grant them privileges and rights?

In my own country, when I have one, a person will have to satisfy strict criteria to qualify for any form of government assistance, and that will be limited. If you won't contribute to society and act as though you're part of it, you're on your own.

Friday, February 20, 2009

I've been feeling Bean (or, as I should now try to call her, Elspeth) move with increasing frequency and strength recently. But last night was the first time Aidan's been able to feel her from the outside! She booted him in the hand, and he pretended to be very upset. Those of you who are already mothers will likely understand when I say it's kind of eerie at the same time as being totally cool - there's a tiny person swooshing around inside there, and she's making herself known quite insistently! Very exciting, though. It's like a final confirmation: she's there, she's healthy, she's growing. I've also had people who I haven't said anything to ask me "How much longer?" so I'm obviously showing in a very pregnant-looking way now! It's getting slightly daunting: there are so many things I need to know and do and buy! But I have nearly five months until she's due, that's (hopefully) plenty of time to get organised. I'm booked in for prenatal classes in April/May, and a friend of a friend has recently given birth so there's a source of advice too, as well as that infinite resource known as the interweb. Not to mention my mother.

Anyway, I'd better go and get organised for something a little more immediate: work.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I get sad sometimes.

Monday, February 16, 2009

It's a girl!
Or a boy with a labia!

20 weeks from the outside

And 20 weeks from the inside!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I was going to hold off until tomorrow to blog... but I'm excited!

I have my 20 week ultrasound tomorrow morning, and with any luck we'll be able to find out if Bean is a girl or boy! Beano or Beanette?

I'll post pics here and on Facebook either way, or even if we don't actually find out - apparently sometimes they're shy, but given that this is Aidan's child I'm quite sure it will have exhibitionist tendencies. I feel like it's going to be a girl, god knows why, but Aidan thinks it'll be a boy.

Really, there's no way at all of knowing... and we'll both be thrilled either way. Anyway, I'll stop blathering. I'll tell you how it goes tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

On a brighter note than my last post, I have decided to shave my head in the interests of raising money! Yes, the Leukaemia Foundation's "World's Greatest Shave" is happening again this year, and I'm doing it for the first time. I've had a couple of pleas (from members of the older generation) to colour my hair rather than shave it off, but lets face it, I ALWAYS colour my hair. There's no point gaining sponsorship for something I do all the time anyway! Whilst I feel a bit funny doing a second post in a row asking for money... I'm going to anyway. If you feel the desire to sponsor me, you can click here if you like! And in mid-March I'll shave my head and post the pics here and you can all laugh at me! Surely that's worth $10 or so? :)

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Every summer it becomes apparent just how extreme Australia's weather conditions can be; and this summer has been worse than any in at least twenty years. We have just returned from Victoria, where they have had record-breaking temperatures for the last couple of weeks; and all you have to do is glance at a TV or turn on a radio to realise that most of the state is in flames. Approximately 70 people have died in this year's fires, and entire towns have been burnt out. Marysville and Kinglake, to all intents and purposes, no longer exist. Thousands of homes and properties have been lost throughout the state, and many of those fires are still not under control. I grew up in the Australian bush, and I know the destruction that can be caused by fire despite taking all possible precautions. Sometimes, like this summer, there's simply nothing that can be done. I urge any and all of my readers who are able to donate to the Australian Red Cross' "Victorian Bushfire Appeal".

I must, however, note the positive side of this disaster: It is absolutely wonderful to see how our people respond in times of crisis. I suppose we're used to it; if it isn't fire, it's flood or drought (or all at once in different areas). In this case, probably most of the people fighting the fires are volunteers; and charities who are already overstretched due to the current financial crisis are still coming good and providing emergency assistance to those affected by the fires. ABC radio has become the emergency broadcasting service, giving news of fire locations and severity and also broadcasting "community meetings" in areas too badly affected to organise one in the flesh. We are never a finer representation of what humans should be like, than when the shit hits the fan. So, a massive cheer and a thank you to everybody who has done something or given something beyond the bare minimum.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts. Think happy thoughts.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

People make me so mad, in so many ways, that I am now dedicating a blog post to detailing just a few of those ways.

On Sunday, at the Big Day Out in Perth, a girl saw police conducting drug searches ahead of her. Rather than be caught with ecstasy, she immediately swallowed all three tabs she had on her. She later died. Firstly, this was FUCKING STUPID of her. It's an illegal and unsafe substance, probably made in somebody's backyard and cut with god knows what. Secondly, it is FUCKING STUPID of the public to now start blaming the police for her death. They were doing their job, upholding the law, ensuring that such dangerous and illegal substances didn't get into the BDO.

Over on Cazzie's blog, I note she is upset at the unsafe and illegal driving and parking practices of parents around her children's school. I must now add that I get pissed off at the same things here in Canberra. Now that I ride my scooter everywhere (as opposed to the public transport I used to rely on in Melbourne), I see FUCKING STUPID driving everywhere I look. Who tailgates a scooter? Do they have any idea the damage I would suffer if they couldn't stop in time and rear-ended me? And why, dear god, why do you toot your horn as soon as the lights go green if somebody hasn't moved? For all you know they may have seen something you didn't - you're a car further back, maybe you missed that truck who's brakes failed. Maybe their car has stalled or broken down; tooting isn't going to help that. And why do you park in no-parking spots, when there is free/cheap parking so close to where you are anyway? Seriously, I could dedicate an entire blog post, with photos, to bad driving and parking in Canberra. But I think I've said enough for now.

A live trail of mandatory ISP-level internet filtering is to start very soon in Australia. I've blogged about this before, but given my general pissed-off-edness today, I'm blogging about it again. See? George Orwell was a prophet: They really are watching us all the time, controlling what we see and how we think! Do I really need to detail once again how ineffective and pointless (not to mention expensive) this experiment is going to be?

People are blaming banks and governments, anybody but themselves, for the debt they find themselves in during this worldwide financial crisis. Surely if you hadn't decided to borrow beyond your means, you wouldn't have this problem? Budget, consider your income and job security, consider the terms of potential loans, work out a worst-case scenario (like the one we're seeing now), before agreeing to borrow hundreds of thousands of dollars for your dreamhome. A home loan is usually paid off over about 25 years, and you can't predict what will happen in that time, so assume the worst. Oh, and while you're paying off your mortgage, don't go and buy a big plasma-screen TV and a Wii and install a pool, ok?

A woman is getting angry at an airline for charging her for two seats because she's overweight. Weight and balance are quite important on an aircraft, so I'm not in the least surprised. Not to mention the comfort of other passengers; is there anything worse than being seated next to somebody who overflows? LOSE SOME WEIGHT, and avoid the problem in future. She's 160kg, that's 352 pounds.

A woman has tried to get out of a speeding fine by claiming that her new shoes were heavy. Do I even need to put words to my disbelief? Speed limits are there for the safety of everybody. Pay attention to them, adhere to them (or even drive slower, if you think that's safer), but if you get caught and fined, just pay the damn fine.

The coach of the basketball team who had a 100-0 victory has refused to apologise for the win, and has been fired. Say WHAT?! His team were obviously far superior to their opponents, whyyyyy is that his fault or something he should apologise for?

Ok, I think that's just enough ranting for the moment. But stay tuned for another episode of, What Pisses Stace Off! Coming soon, to a blog near you!