Monday, January 31, 2005

Lleyton This, Lleyton That

I'm an Aussie and fairly proud of it too. However, that doesn't mean that I see the world with only one eye. Miky and I were cheering on Marat Safin in the Men's Final at the Australian Open against Lleyton Hewitt last night. Yu-Jin doensn't understand the game of tennis enough yet and was cheering for whoever had won the point.

Lleyton may have lost the match, fair enough - he did well to reach the final, but he stole the headlines with his engagement to Bec Cartwright - after going out together since December. I see through it though. I've heard the stories about how Kim Clijsters didn't get on with the prospective parents-in-law and that was one of the reasons she didn't get married to Lleyton.

Bec Cartwright has had the wool pulled over her eyes. Before she gets a chance to know the Hewitt family, and learn to hate them like most other people, she may become one of them. Sad really. Or maybe it is an act to boost her career as I feel that she couldn't act her way out of a wet paper bag.

We shall see.
Long Time Between Drinks

Been a bit busy lately to post a blog or two. Yu-Jin and I have been visiting his Grandma and Grandpa in good ol' South Australia. Over the next week or so I will be writing about the goings on and providing some pictures.

See you then.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

The Funniest Thing

I have just learnt that search engines work in the funniest ways. You may have noticed that I have included a sitemeter on my blog. I would like to have some idea about how many people visit the site. The sitemeter can tell me where visitors arrived at the site, i.e. the page, and where they exited. It can also tell me the recent referrals, for instance, where the visitor came from. I have just noticed that one of them was from a search on a search engine. This aroused my curiosity.

Here is the search result.

It is a Yahoo! Search for "jennifer hawkins skirt falling down pics"

For those of you who couldn't be bothered to check the link:

3 #Frugal Bastard
... fence next door was falling down badly. As I was weeding ... Miss Universe, Jennifer Hawkins, vs Janet Jackson in a Battle ... She stepped on her skirt and revealed her g-string ... - 64k - Cached - More from this site

Can you believe that out of 353 possibilities for the search subject my site had the third best option? That's hysterical. And what's more, after reading the text the viewer came to the site. That person was in the UTC +11 time zone. I will need to check that out. Here's a time zone map and here is where UTC +11 is situated.

Thanks to my visitor from somewhere in the Pacific or Russia who was obviously disappointed with not finding what they came for as the part about Jennifer Hawkins was right down the bottom of the page and they didn't stick around long enough to see it.
Those Damn Fires

Gee, I wouldn't want to be an asthmatic in Perth for the next few days. Those damn fires that have been raging for the last five days have made a call for a road weather alert necessary. There is so much smoke in Perth it is amazing. I would loved to have had my camera with me as we drove through South Perth this morning to take a picture of the city but there wouldn't have been much to photograph - visibility was quite limited due to the smoke.

The fires have been going for five days now and the wind keeps changing direction and building it up again.

This morning I went for a bike ride. Not the sort of thing that I would recommend. Can say that I'd rather do without filling my lungs with smoke whilst trying to get some level of fitness.

A lot of people have been affected by the smoke in that their washing is getting covered in ashes or the smell permeates the clothes and we all know how difficult that is to get rid of.

Just hope that the smoke doesn't affect our plane tomorrow. Haven't heard that it will.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Fires Fires Everywhere

It appears that we have a few firebugs in our midst. Or should I just call the bastards arsonists? A lot of fires have been lit in Perth recently.

On the way to pick up Yu-Jin from childcare at Curtin Uni last week I noticed two helicopters grabbing water from the lake inside Curtin's boundaries. I didn't think much more about it. On the way home I noticed the smoke and we could see the helicopters circling. Once I had grabbed my camera to shoot a quick video they flew away never to return.

Only on Friday did I find out what they were doing exactly. Situtated only about one kilometre from our house there is quite a large area of bush/grassland that has been burnt out. Obviously deliberately lit.

On Saturday I went for a ride with Yu-Jin. We saw smoke and just as we got there so did the fire brigade. There was indeed another fire in the vicinity of the one earlier in the week. I didn't see any kids nearby or else I would have been pretty angry.

Later that night Yu-Jin and I were watching "Outbreak" starring Dustin Hoffman. We had the front door open for some breeze and I could smell a lot of smoke. I grabbed the phone and Yu-Jin asked me who I was calling and so I said "The fire brigade." He told me that I need to dial zero-zero-zero, which means that his head hasn't been completed filled with the USA's "911" emergency code (it is surprising how many shows you see that mention the emergency number), and I gave them a call. The fireman asked me if I could be specific but that wasn't possible - except that I had seen a fire that they had attended earlier in the day. Just in case there was a connection.

I went for a walk at a quarter past eleven and could see some smoke but it was a long way off to the south west.

Yesterday there was a lot of smoke from another fire south of us.

Where do these idiots come from and how do they get their jollies from lighting a fire that could destroy people's property. I used to enjoy burning materials in the incinerator at home but not going out and lighting dry grass or trees or anything. String these people up I reckon. Hanging is too good for them though.

It could so easily be on our doorstep and there is no need for it. Has anyone come up with a good idea for rehabilitating arsonists? Or is roasting them on their own fire the best we can come up with?

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Early Adopter

What does this term mean? It is supposed to describe somebody who purchases new technology, when only in its infancy, for the highest possible price.

I feel that it is closely related to the term nerd. Nerds have a liking for new technology. It doesn't make them part of the "in crowd" but it does deliver some level of self-importance.

My real feeling is that it is some politically correct term to make yuppies feel better about themselves. Nothing more, nothing less. The yuppies are behind this, as the term yuppie tends to be degrading and they crave the limelight.

I did see one a couple of days ago - a mid-30s woman, driving a new Mini, porn star sunglasses, whitened teeth and some large PDA which she was trying to use whilst driving. Perhaps these yuppies will kill themselves off by having accidents trying to use their "early adopted" technologies while driving.

Considerate Spiders

We have lots of spiders around our house. I guess that it has much to do with the fact we live across the road from a water sanctuary that is a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Or maybe it is because I couldn't be bothered trying to get rid of them.

I like spiders. As long as they are considerate. There are currently six daddy long legs spiders in the living/dining room area and they hang out at the corners of the room near the cornice. These spiders, placid as they are, catch mozzies and moths quite well. I like to leave them alone. Miky doesn't like it when I feed them. Hey, they look after me. Why can't I do them a good turn?

The spiders outside of the house are, by-the-by, considerate by nature also. My favourite, who disappeared a couple of weeks ago, was situated just above my car in the carport. She, I'm assuming, had a lovely web that was left there all of the time. Most of the other spiders take their webs down in the morning and put them up again at night. I could see her asleep during the day. Her most considerate point was to construct the web just above my head level. I hate walking into spiderwebs. And I have an uncanny ability to do so. I miss by favourite spider.

There is a large and unconsiderate spider situated at our front gate. If we go for a walk at night time I walk into it's web. I find that quite annoying. We went for a walk last night and lo-and-behold I walked into the web. Later, when crossing a bridge, I walked through another web. It is a gift.

Hanky Heads

Does anybody know the name of the religion of the so-called "Hanky Heads"? That is the only name that I know them by. They aren't Amish and I didn't find anything on Google.

My concern is that there may be a breakaway Hanky Head religion. They are found in the Wild West in America or riding Harley Davidsons and the hankies have fallen from their heads and cover their noses and mouths. In the Wild West this religion was heavily involved in robbery and a Smith & Wesson was the tool of the trade. The Harley Davidson riders, closely related to the yuppies, don't seem to want their identities revealed also.

A most concerning religion.

Was She Making A Pass At Me?

Miky is starting to get on my case about my weight. I am still well within the healthy range for my height but about nine kilograms heavier than when we married. I was just a lot more toned at that stage and have done little sport since. Before going to bed the other night it wasn't "Goodnight, I love you." More like "Go for a 30 minute walk in the morning."

I awoke early, dreaming about work has a habit of making me want to get up, and got out of bed and made sure that the alarm was turned off. Miky opened an eye and muttered, "Are you going for a walk?"
"Nah, gonna go for a ride instead."

Pumped up the bike tyres and set off to the post office. The post box hadn't been checked for a few days and if there was anything large to collect I knew that the ladies who sort the mail would be there. I arrived just before 6 am following a brisk ride in the brisk early morning atmosphere. As it turned out there was a parcel to pick up. I rang the bell and Mary, a near-pensionable age Post Office worker, greeted me. She didn't recognise me, more about that later, and thought that riding the bike was a good idea. I mentioned that the wife had been on my case about going for a walk to lose weight but I decided to do something a little more constructive by picking up the mail at the same time.

Mary said, "If you lost any more weight we wouldn't see you."

Was that a thinly disguised pass? He he. When your friends comment about the size of your guts then you know something needs to be done. One doesn't generally pay attention to what the missus says.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Good Day For Freebies

I went out to lunch earlier than usual today, i.e. at a time that normal people take their lunchbreak, and managed to score a free drink.

I said, "What's the deal? We take one and tell everyone how good it tastes?"
"Yes," said the girl supervising this, and then she proceeded to tell me about the carbonated reconstituted apple and guava juice with no added sugars/preservatives or anything artificial.

It tasted like the soft drink you used to buy from Coca-Cola - the pineapple crush, or whatever it was called. Smelt like pineapple, tasted like pineapple - but wasn't pineapple. They don't make soft drinks like they used to.

Bought A Memory Stick For My Digital Camera - Online

Took the plunge and bought something from Yankee Land online today. It was a 512MB Duo Pro memory stick from They'll give me $5 off my purchase if I give them a plug on my Website. Shameless, I know. But we are talking US dollars and not Australian pesos.

I'm not too silly to realise that the more links to their Website the higher up the rankings on the search engines they will climb and the more likely you are to find their Website and buy something from them. But, five bucks is five bucks. I'm frugal but five dollars in my pocket is $6.50 in my pocket. Know what I mean?

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Readership Demographic

An interesting thing happened recently. A Canadian lady read my blog and left a comment on my site. I responded to the comment and was able to learn a great deal about one of my readers. As a fellow Blogger she has a wealth of information available to read. I learnt that she has her own spiritual needs blog that she composes and that she's a teacher in Ontario. In fact, there appear to be many differences our personalities. The demographic of this reader is quite different to that of myself, from the information at hand. Intriguing, no?

I guess reading blogs is a bit like reality TV - or more like reality diaries, with possible interaction. It is great to be able to peer into someone's life and learn about them. I notice that Freaky Chick has some major relationship issues that she is overcoming and it feels good to be able to offer some support. The more I learn about the diverse readership, well there must be at least five of you, the more concerned I become about offending anyone.

Now I don't see this as a good thing. If I try to write my blog so as not to upset anybody then I may get to the stage where I am unable to write anything. I guess it is wise not to try to please everyone. And anyway, Frugal Bastard would not be about me anymore. There is a certain level I can't go below but I wouldn't want to change the way I do things for fear of other people's opinions. Within reason, of course.

So sit back and watch the crap roll on.

You Can Teach A Old Dog New Tricks

I've been using Ready Rooms recently to monitor hotel prices in Adelaide. It should be possible to pick up a good deal with only two weeks notice. Check it out for yourself.

I noticed one of the guys at work using a different Website to compare hotel prices and vacancies. I suggested Ready Rooms to him and we compared prices. His site was better than mine. Check it -

I learnt that there is a cheaper way. And a Frugal Bastard is always willing to learn how to spend less.

Frugal Bastard Wisdom

He who harbours no grudge has a great sense of understanding and human spirit - or he just has a poor memory.
Slight Problem At Daycare Today

Yu-Jin is taking part in the holiday program at his daycare centre as he won't be attending after our trip to South Australia. Today they went ten pin bowling. Am I such a bad father to be a little disappointed that my son came third last? His friend Edwin, a Korean boy, won the day, even beating three carers!

Later in the day I received a phone call from Maria, while at work. The only Maria that I know is from daycare, not any of our clients. My heart sank a bit as I thought, "Oh, no. What has happened to Yu-Jin this time?"

Maria explained that the boys had been playing a bit roughly and there had been an accident. Edwin had been hurt, somewhat badly, it wasn't Yu-Jin's fault but he felt really badly about hurting his friend. Edwin's father had been called and he was upset. Yu-Jin became quite upset and needed to be calmed down. I was just be let know that Yu-Jin wasn't to blame and that he had been talked through the incident, just in case he talked about it later as Maria wasn't going to be there when we picked him up.

It was interesting to hear Yu-Jin's side of the story a bit later.
"What happened to Edwin today?" said mum.
"We were fighting a bit too rough and Edwin got hurt. He hit my head and there was blood." - Edwin received a split lip.
"And what did Edwin's father say?"
"Ship pal" said Yu-Jin.

This took Miky by surprise as it means "F*#k!" in Korean. Yes, I don't think that Edwin's father was overly pleased about the incident.
Liquid Nails Doesn't Fix Everything

I mentioned before that during the construction of the sewing room out the back that Liquid Nails was able to stick anything together.

I was wrong. The outside door knob came off a couple of weeks ago. I put it back on so that Miky would open the door and have it fly off in her hand. I knew that Yu-Jin would blame her for breaking it. Nice setup that.

The screw holding it on only had about 10mm of purchase so I put some Liquid Nails between the two surfaces and clamped it in position for a few hours. It didn't last long. In the end I purchased a new handle that requires two screws to keep it in place. Now, that is not going to fall off in a hurry.

I did think about putting the Liquid Nails to the test again, this time with my broken sunnies that Yu-Jin created a few weeks back. I clamped thit together and left it overnight. Sure, it was stuck together but the joint was very flexible. Ended up cleaning out the Liquid Nails and supergluing it together. That has done the trick.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Love The New Hotmail Login Screen

As soon as you login at Hotmail's new login screen up pops a message "We're sorry, the page that you have requested is not available, or may no longer exist." And then it lets you login, without any hassle.

Dumb point.

New Acronym For The English Language

MAWWEC - Middle-Aged Wanker With Expensive Car

I get sick of men of middle-age in their expensive cars, smoking, on their mobiles, swerving across lanes without indicating, speeding by at least 20 km/h etc, etc.

The car of choice is generally a BMW, Monaro, or Commodore (the flash metallic paint ones). Maybe Subaru drivers deserve a mention here. Oh, and Volvo drivers too. Definitely.

Just as yuppy (young upwardly mobile professionals or young urban professional) has entered the vernacular, so should mawwec. Give it a go.

Worse Than A Paper Cut

Yesterday, at work, I suffered something worse, and possibly more painful, than a paper cut. A manilla folder cut. Right down the side of my little pinky. Bugger. I wonder if Workers' Compensation is applicable?

Tsunami Aid Not Required

We don't need to see Michael Jackson saying that he wants to look after orphans from the Asian tsunami. The kids have lost enough. Let them maintain their innocence.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Restaurant Review - Siena's

Situated on Oxford Street in Leederville,and Mt Lawley (according to the Website - we have eaten there too) Siena's was a delightful surprise. Another surprise is that they have a second Website. One aspect that I don't recall experiencing before is the Children's Room. It is a very family friendly environment and most of the clientele on Sunday night were families.

It was nice to have pizza on the menu because Yu-Jin gives us no trouble. At least he doesn't ask for chips. Miky and Yu-Jin enjoyed a pizza marinara and I had veal parmigiana - the pasta was almost perfect. Interestingly, if you order water they only sell 1.5L Mt Franklin bottles - and cheaper than you could buy in the supermarket. I fully expected them to rip you off. It is a little unusual that they charge for water. For desert I ordered a profiterole with chocolate mousse inside - lovely.

I totally recommend Siena's in Leederville. They have plenty of wait staff and a chilly wind down your back if you sit in the wrong spot. The food is delicious and quite well priced.

It's even better when you have a voucher for one free meal up to $16.50.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Money Well-Spent - And Good Fun Too

I wouldn't say it was good clean fun but, I decided to buy some Drano (TM) today and unclog the bathroom drain underneath the basin. Thought I might as well buy the large container good for about 10 uses.

Followed the instructions and then did the same in the kitchen. It didn't work in the bathroom, although there was a lot of popping and fizzing, and the instructions said "(Mug) Do again if it didn't work the first time", or words to that affect, so I did it again. Still didn't have the desired effect. Worked fine in the kitchen though.

Made the trip to Bunnings and bought a $1.89 plunger. Crap went everywhere as I got to work with the plunger and it did it's job really well. Water flows out of that baby very nicely now.

Took me a little while to clean up the bathroom however. Funny thing was, Miky had just finished cleaning the basin before I got to work.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Tsunami Bits And Pieces

Brickbats must go to the Thai Govt and there insensitive ineptitude regarding the Indian Ocean tsunamis. Apparently they had plenty of warning as a military island of theirs was swamped and they could have warned people in the tourist areas. I have read that they chose not to scare away the tourists because if the wave didn't come they would have lost credibility. Excuse me? By not warning about the wave they have lost all credibility in my books. This deplorable inaction is greater than the failing of persons in the accountable positions not having the second plane to hit the World Trade Center shot down.

The British Education system receives my bouquet. On a privately-shot video an English boy exclaims, "Look, tsunami!" where the obvious choice of wording would be "tidal wave" and it gets my thumbs up. Did this kid go to a private school or a public one?

Leonardo DiCaprio must be laughing now. For the filming of "The Beach" he was criticised for having bulldozers ruin the natural landscape. Well, now they are using bulldozers to fix the landscape and the movie's contribution pales into insignificance when compared with that of Mother Nature.

We were planning to go to Hawaii for a holiday. Only thing is, it's the most tsunami-prone country in the world, being in the middle of the Pacific Ocean surrounded by the Ring of Fire and all of the fault lines associated with it. No need to worry though. They have an early warning system in use, something that we will no doubt see soon in the Indian Ocean.

Yes, this Frugal Bastard did donate some hard-earned to the Australian Red Cross Tsunami Relief. And, what's more I might add, it was more than the minimum $2 required to be tax-deductible.
Tsunami Bits And Pieces

The Thai Govt, from what I've read, deserves brick bats for not sounding any warning of the impending tsunamis. Apparently they knew that they were coming, as a military island had already been swamped, but they didn't want to scare the tourists away. Due to the incredible lack of foresight I believe they have indeed scared away a lot of tourists. The inaction is more deplorable than the second plane to hit the World Trade Center not being shot down. And perhaps more people died as a result.

The English Education system must be in good shape. On a privately shot video an English boy exclaimed, "Look, tsunami!" The obvious choice of wording was "tidal wave" for the uneducated and this boy struck the nail on the head. Well done to the Brits, for once.

Leonardo di Caprio
Australia's Foreign Minister To Visit Tsunami Affected Area

The news yesterday was that Alexander Downer was to visit the area affected by the tsunami. "Hooray!" I hear everyone say.

But, in my opinion, it is eight days too late. "Boo!" If he was there eight days ago it wouldn't have been such a tragedy.

The Boy Has Some Energy

Yu-Jin and I went for a bike ride yesterday. Me on my bike and he on his bike with trainer wheels. We rode a distance of six kilometres, including hills, and he did ok. Let's not forget that this kid is only four and a half years old. I never did anything like that at his age. If you are from Bordertown you may realise that that is the distance from my parents' house out to the Meatworks and back. Puts it in some sort of perspective, eh?

Mind you, I did ride back from the Meatworks with no hands one day. It will take Yu-Jin a long time to top that.

Holiday Is Over

It's back to work today. Funny, after the big break I'm not so keen to return to work. I know what awaits this year. It will be equivalent to some time in Hell as my business manager finishes work with our company tomorrow and there will only be two of us to do the work of nearly four.

Interesting times ahead and I'm sure that there won't be a dull moment.

Monday, January 03, 2005

Funny Classifieds

I was looking at the classified ads today and noticed a couple of funny ones.

Limestone Bloke - natural, paving, cladding, access....

I'm pretty sure that they meant "Limestone Block".

Microfish Reader - good condition....

I think they mean "microfiche". Who wants to read small fish anyway?

Good Point, Bad Point

Miky started a new game with Yu-Jin yesterday as we walked and he rode back from Bunnings. I guess you could call it, "good point, bad point". The game went like this:
- If Yu-Jin eats all of his tea is that a good point or a bad point?
- If mummy snores when sleeping is that a good point or a bad point?
- When Yu-Jin does some drawing by himself is that a good point or a bad point?
Yu-Jin then answers. If you posed the question, "When Yu-Jin does a fart is that a good point or a bad point?" you can expect the wrong answer. He has a reasonably well-developed sense of humour.

Later that night we went out for tea. On the way home I approached an intersection with a stop sign. I made it known the someone had hit the stop sign, it was bent backwards, and was on the wrong side of the road (the left) which made it quite confusing as to how anyone managed to hit it.

A small voice piped up from the back seat, "Dumb point!"

This kid cracks me up.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Here's Some News

Researchers have discovered that cockroaches live for seven days after having their heads removed. And, as an absurd byproduct, they learn more quickly. Something about applying electric shocks and the roaches without the heads learn not to go back to the area where the shocks are applied much better than those with heads.

Non-researchers, such as myself, have discovered if you squash the bastards flat they bother you no more. And, they don't need to waste time filling their brains, which are no longer attached to their body, with nonsense or learning.

Who pays these researchers anyway?

Quote For The New Year

Bad luck follows those who practice stupidity.