Tuesday, May 31, 2005

You Bloody Beauty - A Headline I Like

Zamora puts Hammers in Premiership - Yep, West Ham United Football Club will be competing in the English Premier League next season. After finishing in six place, as I think they did last year, and they won their matches in the playoffs. Last year they were beaten in the final qualifying match for a place in the EPL. It was heartbreaking for a Hammers fan, for obvious reasons, such as myself.

We'll see just how good those bastards from Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal really are next season. Probably too good is the answer.

Monday, May 30, 2005

The Happenings of This Weekend

Yu-Jin and one of his schoolmates went with me to a 5th birthday party on the weekend. It was held at the kindy and was pretty much an all boys affair. They had bikes and the playground to muck around on so it was good fun for them. It also gave me a chance to see how they, the kids, interact and I managed to catch up with a few of the parents that I wanted to have a chin wag with.

Paul's 5th Birthday Cake

Get a load of the cake!! It had monster's eyes, bugs and monkeys all over it and one of the boys couldn't keep his fingers out of it - before the candles had even been lit. I couldn't tell you what it tastes like as I was never offered a piece.

Yu-Jin and I had synchronised haircuts. Well, almost. His haircut started about 5 minutes before mine. Then we went to McDonalds for lunch. Mum stayed home and did some pattern making. We had a game of army men and it is nice to play games with my son that I used to play.

On Saturday nights they have the new series of Doctor Who and Yu-Jin can't wait for Saturday night to come around. And he differentiates between the old series and the new series. Frankly, it is a little difficult not too. The new series has special effects and only takes 45 minutes for a fast-paced episode. He enjoys both series though.

From four o'clock yesterday arvo I set a radio up outside to listen to the footy and did a bit more digging up of the backyard. Miky came and helped later on and Yu-Jin just ran about getting a mouthful of dirt and getting filthy dirty. He must have had a good time and wore himself out because he went to bed before tea time, whilst adding, "I'm just having a little sleep" and I couldn't rouse him come tea time. Man, the house was quiet. I even finished reading Sunday's paper - this Sunday's paper.

The Backyard Is Nearly Done

My mum thinks that I must be almost done too.

Friday, May 27, 2005

It's A Good Thing That The Goverment Of Australia Will Continue To Fund Over 40's Women To Have Fertility Treatment

It's good because Schapelle Corby will be needing it if she wishes to start a family when she gets out of the Balinese jail at the age of 47.

I wonder if her passport, which will have expired by then, will allow her back into Australia.
Twenty Years Jail - And For What?

I have no time for drugs. I have no time for people that do drugs. I have less than no time for people that sell drugs.

I also believe that one must be proven, beyond a reasonable doubt, to be guilty of a crime.

Time for the mention of Schapelle Corby. I can't imagine that anyone travelling from Brisbane to Sydney domestically and then from Sydney to Bali internationally would be able to get 4.1 kilograms of marijuana past airport security and customs. Does anyone remember a little incident which killed nearly 3000 people and destroyed at least four office blocks and was dubbed "September 11"?

One would have thought, mistakenly it must be so, that airport security in Australia these days was fairly high on the agenda. I mentioned in a previous post that airport security in Adelaide for a domestic flight was so stringent that my father couldn't bring a very small pocketknife into the departure lounge. The security guards were quite zealous in fact.

I've never heard the name schapelle before but it has been etched into my brain. It will be associated with the meanings:

Unfairly dealt with

Granted, I don't speak Indonesian and have not attended all of the trial, but how can anyone in their right mind find beyond reasonable doubt that the drugs belonged to Schapelle?

The judge, Linton Siriat, had apparently overseen more than 500 cases with drug offences involved. He has never acquitted anyone.

Fact 1 - Drugs were found in Schapelle's boogie board bag.
Fact 2 - There are no more facts.

Did the judge take this into consideration when only sentencing her to twenty years jail? For four kilograms I think that she was given a light sentence. I am surprised that the death penalty was not issued. I don't think she did it though. And I couldn't see her getting off once I had heard of the judge's history of sentencing with this type of offence.

Many people will argue that we have given so much aid to Indonesia recently due to the Asian Tsunami but that has nothing to do with it. Schapelle was sentenced by a court of law. This is where it must remain. It does not belong in the public arena or to be used as a bargaining chip by Government departments. She does have the right to appeal to higher courts and I hope she is successful in overturning the sentence.

The Balinese people are worried that people from Australia will stop visiting the island. The Bali Bombing hasn't kept us away forever and I hope that judge Siriat's finding, and that of the two other judges, doesn't poison peoples' minds towards the Indonesian people. That would be a travesty of justice. We need to keep our minds open and not judge people on the finding of a few judges.

Australians should continue to travel to Bali. But they must lock their bags accordingly. I've never had any inclination to visit Bali as it is full of drunk, stoned louts from Australia. I see enough of them here and don't wish to go anywhere where they congregate and the concentration of them is increased markedly. Miky even wanted to go to Bali for our honeymoon.

Take stock people but let justice take its course.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Help Save The Planet - Kill A Wanker

I wandered into Subiaco this lunchtime to put some money in my kid's bank account. Let's face it, he gets better interest than I do. As I approached the city I saw a gentleman parked in his car with the air conditioning on apparently full blare. He was yacking away on his mobile and make large gestures with his hands as he did so.

Some 10-12 minutes later as I returned to work I saw that he was still there, deep in coversation, laid back in his seat with his hands behind his head. A very strong piece of body language indicating that he thought he was cool.

What is wrong with stopping the car and stepping outside to continue the conversation. I feel that it is ridiculous to be sitting in the car with the engine running for that length of time, with the air con on. People, it is one week from the start of winter. Granted it is 22 degrees celcius and bloody nice at that, but there is no need to waste resources in that manner. I have seen people in Japan back in '96 who would sleep in their cars at lunchtime with the engine running and the air con blasting away - but that was in the middle of summer. Petrol in Japan in those days was 105 Yen/litre (and our exchange rate was a much healthier 94 Yen to the Aussie when I visited). Does anybody know what the going rate for a litre of fuel in Japan is?

Do us a favour and remove people like this wanker from the human gene pool. People like this guy annoy me greatly.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

More In The News In Perth

A sewerage pipe burst in Victoria Park, not far from where I live, and flooded about half a dozen homes in an apartment block in Horden Street with raw sewage. The pipe was only 67 years old, not old by Perth sewerage pipe standards, and not in need of maintenance, allegedly.

One women was having her breakfast when she noticed the shit just coming inside her apartment. It moved quickly and was 10-20 centimetres deep in places and made a squelching sound when you walked on the carpet.

Apparently if residents hadn't seen the tide of poo, a poo-nami perhaps, then perhaps it would have gone unnoticed because of the generally unpleasant smell in Victoria Park. (Not true, just some controversial statement)

Let's see what's happened recently in and around Perth.

- strange tides with the effects of the Asian tsunami
- waterspout
- road flooding bringing the city to a standstill
- storm damage blacking out some 110000 people - some for more than two days, and some schools being forced to close until repairs were carried out
- sewage sprouting from the depths and destroying a road as well

It's about time we had some pestilence and a decent fire. Oh, I forgot. In January we had fires surrounding Perth making it just about unbreathable for four days or so. So, we just need a good dosage of pestilence to round it off.
A Word About Korean Air Hostesses

Miky brought up an interesting tidbit tonight. She said that Korean Air Hostesses, which was a very popular occupation when she was at uni, are a strange mob. It turns out that it is very competitive to get into that industry and so most, if not all, of the applicants are university graduates. She can't understand why people would study at uni for four years just to be a hostie.

Why do you need university qualifications? Isn't it a bit of overkill?

Think about the job of a domestic hostess.

- put your seat belts on please.
- would you like tea or coffee, or maybe juice.
- would you like a lolly.
- we're coming in to land, finish your drinks.
- thankyou for your drink container.
- you can remove your seat belts now.
- we hope you enjoyed your 15 minute flight which constituted three hours of your day to get to the airport.

Even the international hostie has it tough. They have to remember at least two dishes, chicken or beef perhaps, that you may have a choice of. Or they could just forget the name of the dishes and serve you whatever informing you that other customers had taken all of the other dish first (maybe that's just a trick of Western airlines) and then offer tea, coffee, juice or soft drinks.

Hardly rocket science and what a waste of an education system. As soon as a woman in Korea gets married she is expected to give up her job anyway. So they go to school for 12 years and never miss a day or it shows up on your record and you may never get a job, spend four years at uni, attend flight attendant school, reach their goal of becoming a glamourous hostie, and then get married a year later, settle down and have kids etc, etc. Is it really worth it?

Next time you are on a Korean airliner (Korean Air or Asiana) don't dismiss the hostie as a bimbo - she's probably better educated than you or I.
Who's Arse Is Worth Five Thousand Dollars?

I heard on the radio this evening that Cabinet, that part of the ruling body in the Federal Government that gathers to make "informed" decisions about party policy, with its 50 members, has decided to buy new seats. Not your ordinary $89.95 office chair but ones valued at $5000 a pop. No wonder they wish to get single mothers back into the workforce so quickly. They need a golden throne to sit on and somebody has to pay for it.

Just tell me who in this country is worth that sort of money. I can understand a few fat Ministers requiring a larger seat but not one worth five big ones.
You Don't Need An M16 To Be Safe...

Even the pizzas in the Bronx are tough

Maybe you don't need a knife or a Smith & Wesson either to get around NYC but the Bronx wasn't an altogether inviting place to visit. Not far from Rambo's Pizza was Gun Hill Road. That had me pretty intrigued as to why it was named so - did it have a lot of drive-by shootings etc? - but the explanation turned out to be as harmless as something like a cannon that was stationed on top of the hill during the American Civil War. Perhaps it should be renamed Cannon Hill Road. The word gun was a bit misleading. Gave the area a bad wrap, I felt. Man, even the subway station is called Gun Hill Road Station.

Actually, I wandered around the Bronx a bit and it was a fairly ordinary residential zone if you were amongst the houses. Not offputting at all.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Yu-Jin May Be Joining The Army

Bit of a shock, this one. Last night my sister-in-law in Korea rang us. She was a bit worried as there was something in the news about a law that Korean citizens with dual nationality who wished to renounce their Korean citizenship, would have to serve their compulsory military service first. (There's a short bit in this article about Americans visiting Korea on a tourist visa and having to serve in the military)

Why is this a concern? Miky has just applied for Yu-Jin to get Korean citizenship. It is unclear at the moment because the first article mentions women who give birth in a foreign country on a short stay. Miky has been here for the long haul. Apparently this has been brought about because so many women have been visiting chiefly the US and Canada to give birth, bring the baby home to Korea to grow up and be educated, then relinquishing their Korean citizenship. Anybody born in the US has US citizenship automatically but say, for instance, a Korean woman gives birth in Australia, it doesn't necessarily mean that her child will be an Australian citizen. She would have to show that the child was entitled to it, e.g. the father is Australian.

It did make it a little more difficult to get to sleep last night. Still got another 12-13 years to worry about it though.
New Meaning To "Having a Crack"

Recent news is that one of trainer Gai Waterhouse's horses has tested positive for amphetamine cocaine. She has good horses, and maybe people were wondering what was in the water down her way, but cocaine? I know the horses are highly strung but this is bordering on the ridiculous. What sort of a diet plan are they on - the fast-paced, highly strung, over-achieving executive diet - chaff, oats, water and crack?

It does give new meaning to the phrase "having a crack" I suppose.

Lookout Indonesians

Schapelle Corby is due to hear judgement in her marijuana smuggling case this week. I can only say to the Indonesians in this part of the world to look out. It was earlier on in her trial that the Indonesian consulate-general in Perth received some bullets in the mail warning Indonesia to release her from jail.

What is going to happen if she is found guilty and sentenced to life in jail? Or worse, she could still face the firing squad as the three judges don't have to take the advice of the prosecution for sentencing if they find her guilty of the offence. I think that Indonesians in Australia may be targetted, at the very least for some abuse, but I wouldn't want to be running an Indonesian restaurant. The irony is that it is probably a Chinese owner that would end up being targetted. Half of the Japanese restaurants in Perth are owned by Chinese.

I see that Schapelle has been baptised while in jail and attends church regularly. I've always maintained that prayer is the last resort of the desperate person.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Storm Damage At Shelley Primary School

Miky thought that we should go to Yu-Jin's school to assess the damage from last weekend's storm. And there was still a great deal of damage to fix. Out the back of the pre-primary building there was a covered area at the sand pit and it had fallen into the sandpit. It is a good thing that the storm hit on the weekend because somebody could have really gotten hurt if they were anywhere near the trees.

This tree was split into three


Is this goalpost gay? It's certainly bent.

It would have been pretty difficult for any kids playing footy in the wild weather.

The base of the tree that took the goalpost out. Does it have homosexual tendencies also?

It's a bit of a worry that this fence was underneath the main roof which appears to be intact still.

This must have been a large tree and it took out a wooden fence and a sandstone wall.

I feel pretty confident in saying that not too many teachers would have been parking their cars in the carpark which is surrounded by overhanging trees on the Monday. They have had a week to clean up the yard and we still saw quite a bit of destruction. When I telephoned on Friday they still couldn't phone from the front office to the pre-primary building.
And The Weather Gets Even Wilder

Hard to believe that Perth has had so much happening lately. This puts the icing on the cake though. Believe it or not but 150m off the coast today there was a waterspout. We did have some driving rain and apparently some hail last night. There was a mention that some fish landed inland too.

I just went to Channel 7's Website and there is no mention of the waterspout - which is interesting considering I saw it on that particular news station.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

What Crap Has Been Running Through My Head Recently?

Miky cooked something the other night that was sticking to the current Stars Wars theme. I would call it "Stars Wars Cooking" because there was a Dark Side and a non-Dark Side. Reminds me of the Year 10 camp to Lake Charligrark where I "cooked" a chicken to death on one side and had smoke pouring out of the building and proceeded to turn it over and try to cook the other side so that at least something was salvagable. One of the teachers turned off my cooker though and didn't let me finish the job. My cooking must have improved as I'm not known as "Charcoal Chickie" anymore.

World's Longest Boardgame

It just has to be the Finnish version of Scrabble whereby each player has 27 tiles to play with.

Storm Damage Washup

I rang Western Power after reading their Customer Charter the other day following the storm where we lost power for 39 hours. I didn't see a mention of the $80 on offer if you lost power for 10 or 12 hours. The lady answering the phone said that it was storm damage and as such beyond Western Power's control. Everybody calling was encouraged to ring their insurance company unless some electrical equipment had been damaged. As it turns out we lost very little in the way of food even though the fridge was off for so long. The milk was still ok two mornings later.

I would really liked to have taken her up on "it's storm damage and so it was beyond our control" comment as the reason the power was lost in our street was a 30-odd metre high tree overhanging powerlines and dropping branches through the lines. If it was beyond Western Power's control then the tree should have been trimmed so as it wouldn't have posed a hazard to the lines, or alternatively have buried the powerlines underground. It certainly wasn't an unforeseeable problem, in my mind.

Storm damage and so it was beyond Western Power's control my arse

Storm damage my arse part II

Early Visit To The Funeral Parlour

Friday morning Miky didn't have to get up at 5:30 as she started work a little later. I got up at 5:15 and went for a walk to the post office. Imagine my surprise as I walked past the funeral parlour at 5:40 am and there were people inside. There was a car in the driveway that also appeared to be dead as some walk with torches was taking place. The getup that the attendees of the funeral were dressed in was strange. They had a white robe with short sleeves and a black shirt underneath with long sleeves. On their heads they wore a white hat that appeared to be a foreign legion hat which was split down the back. I was really wondering what they were doing there so early. Perhaps they were going to the funeral of a baker. I wonder if he would rise with a bit of heat added.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Does Kylie Minogue Have Breast Cancer?

The inner cynic is telling me that Kylie Minogue may not have breast cancer. I think that it may be a front. The Breast Cancer Foundation may be bankrolling this.

Think about it. How much money does it take for the word to get out about getting mammograms and how difficult is the marketing anyway? Hard work I would imagine. Give Kylie some sponsorship and they get all the publicity they require. Women in Australia have been on the phone asking about having mammograms. A subject that was once taboo has become mainstream overnight.

I have another conspiracy theory. Kylie's boyfriend Olivier Martinez is in Australia with her. Once the news broke about the breast cancer Dannii Minogue hopped on a plane to come back home. I think that Kylie is getting the family together and has planned a surprise wedding.

How well is Kylie's lingerie selling? Have sales fallen? Perhaps on another front she will be getting a breast augmentation, to cover up for the cancer surgery and telling us that she needed the damage repaired, so that her lingerie becomes more appealing when we see her wearing it and sales therefore increase.

Call me a cynic.

The views of the author are probably just bullshit and an indication of the crap that runs around in his head.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Cool Licence Plate

A BMW I saw this morning had the number plate "B M UU". Clever boy. Perhaps he paid somebody to come up with that.
Power Is Back On

When we were heading out to tea last night I saw some workman fixing power lines at the end of the street. These lines were situated under a huge gum tree and it is truly very little wonder that a large branch fell on them. Bit of a disgrace really. I will be checking Western Power's Customer Charter to see what compensation I am entitled to.

Before going to bed last night I turned on the bedroom light switch. As soon as the power was returned I would know about it. It was returned exactly 39 hours after we lost it. Worthy of some reasonable compensation I would have thought.
The Saga Without Power Continues

Something very ironic occurred yesterday - I received my electricity bill. This was whilst I wasn't receiving any electricity however and so I had to laugh.

Last night I had a Medium Voltage Drives seminar to attend which finished late and I didn't get home until seven o'clock. I was a bit worried about what sort of a blithering mess my wife would be if there was still no power. Well, she had tried to cook tea, unsuccessfully, and had stayed home in the dark. Anyone with half a brain would have gone out to eat and not bothered. Needless to say she was crying and the fact that she couldn't get a jar open didn't help.

We went to Chef Han's Cafe for tea. Now, pepper squid, when ordered, normally comes with pepper. It also normally comes with the rest of your order. It also normally comes cooked. None of this happened to us last night. I was not pleased about it and I still had to pay for it. Let me make this clear, Chef Han's Cafe at Carousel Shopping Centre does not prepare delicious food, unlike their counterparts in Northbridge who provide excellent food.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

And The Lights Went Out In Perth

The power went off at 6:20 yesterday morning. That meant we had to get ready for work and school in the dark. Miky wasn't too pleased about it because she wasn't going to be able to do her makeup or hair.

I found out later that the school had been closed. Several trees had fallen on fences and perhaps some of the buildings. Power was out and the kids were sent home. I had dropped Yu-Jin off at before school care and had no idea about the situation. Fonz from the child care centre rang in the afternoon and asked if I would still like Yu-Jin to be picked up even though the school was closed. Um, yes. I didn't even know that it was closed. Surely the school has my phone number and they hadn't called to tell me.

Yu-Jin spent the day in the library with two of his teachers. As all of the other kids went home he was outnumbered by his teachers. Talk about private tuition. He loved the day at school!

Miky rang me to see if we should go out for tea. It was her first day at her new job and she was going to be tired and not wanting to cook anything. By the time we got home it was close to 7pm. There was still no power!! And Miky had left a candle burning all day in the house. The lack of power meant an early night for all of us.

I popped next door to have a chat to the neighbour and mentioned that I had at least had a shave before the power went off. My neighbour had had a cup of coffee so she hadn't been too badly affected. Her son said, "I did nothing, absolutely nothing before the power went off. I have a life full of regrets." He got an elbow in the ribs from his mum. I thought that it was quite poetic.

Normally you hear about the 10000 homes without power on the news and think, for a moment, about the poor bastards without power. Well, we are those poor bastards. I put my undies on inside-out in the dark. Oh well, at least I get two days usage out of them.

No power again this morning. I set the alarm on my watch for 5:30 so that I could get Miky up for work. Didn't get a good night's sleep as I was worried about getting up in time. She is a hard person to get out of bed at the best of times, never mind at that hour. My battery on my electric shaver packed up and so I'm not cleanshaven for work today. Too lazy to get the razor out. Breakfast by the candles again.

Western Power should be paying me $80 for the inconvenience of not having a power supply for so many hours. I think that all the food in the fridge will be bad by tonight and there will be an insurance claim for that. Why did I set my excess so high?

Last night Yu-Jin wanted to watch a video. We had explained already that there was no power. Then he wanted to listen to the radio. Do these people never learn? Miky then complained that she wouldn't be able to use her electric blanket.

It is a bit of fun. Really. It's a good thing that I can get around my house in the dark though.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Fancy That - A Caring Lawyer

Four years ago a lady by the name of Vivian Alvarez Solon was deported from Australia to the Philippines. A few problems have been brought to light since then. Here's a report.

Vivian was an Australian citizen and had lived here for twenty years. She was involved in a car accident and with some mental health issues at the time was unable to tell authorities who she was. She was sent to a detention centre and then deported.

Vivian had two young children living in Australia with her. They haven't seen, or heard, from their mother for four years.

I heard on the radio this morning that people who are wrongly detained in detention centres are given compensation of about $1500 per day. Mrs Solon will be entitled to so much more, one would imagine. Doesn't it strike you as a bit funny that a law firm decided to fly representatives to the Philippines because they were concerned for the woman's wellbeing? Concerned for her wellbeing or concerned for a share of the estimated $2m compensation that could be coming her way? Call me a cynic but I'm not sure that there are too many caring and compassionate lawyers out there. Especially when it comes to compensation.
It's All Happening In Perth

Not a dull moment. As Bill Lawrie would say, "It's all happening." We had some wild weather overnight. Plenty of rain, wind up to 142 km/h in the metropolitan area (Rottnest Is) and lots of lightning and the accompanying thunder.

The power went off this morning around 6:20. I had Yu-Jin up already as Miky starts a new job today and he needs to go to before-school care. She was a bit disappointed that putting her makeup on and doing her hair was going to be a problem. It was interesting choosing what clothes to wear - should I wear the black, or the black, or the black shirt. Miky grabbed a couple of candles and then found some leaks in the roof in the sewing room. Fun and games.

Yesterday we went to a friend's house and decided to go for a walk. There was the usual pack of idiots riding their motocross bikes on the footpath and going like blazes. We also met a man with a Collie / German Shephard cross. Talk about a beautiful dog with his red coat and wolfish looks. Very gentle too. Yu-Jin had no fear but his friend Jesse was frightened. The dog did jump up at him as he ran away at one stage and that really scared him.

We had a wonderful walk, until it started to rain. It decided to get a bit heavier and we got a bit wet despite having an umbrella with us. After the walk we had a cup of tea and some peanuts and a good chin wag.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Friday the 13th - Perth Style

I had a good day at work on Black Friday. Even managed to scoop a couple of orders and tied up a lot of loose ends. I did hear, just before leaving work, that the Freeway was a nightmare.

I'm used to the Freeway being a nightmare. Well, it's not too bad usually. My usual trip home after work takes forty minutes. Friday the 13th was a little bit different, as it turned out.

After 30 minutes I had almost reached the Freeway entrance which is shown in the picture below where the red line starts. This should normally take 15 minutes

How to get home from work.

Then I heard on the radio that the Freeway had been blocked by a burst water pipe. And here was me thinking that the little bit of heavy rain that we had had had caused some traffic disruption (did you like the usage of the word "had" in that sentence?). They were warning that travelling through the city wasn't a good idea, the Freeway heading south before reaching the city was a carpark and the Graham Farmer Freeway that runs East/West to the North of the city had one lane blocked because a car had broken down.

Driving through the city adds a good 10-15 minutes normally if I have to do it. I decided to turn around and drive right down to Fremantle and then come all the way back home. My normal 18km drive would be somewhere in the vicinity of 45-50 kms tonight but at least I would be home only about an hour late. After turning around I noticed a phone booth, and not having a mobile, gave Miky a call and said that I would be quite late. She didn't believe me when I said that the Freeway was closed as she had driven down it earlier. I was thinking that I would be home at 7:30 and I left work at 5:00. Once I hit the main road to get onto the highway to go to Fremantle it seemed that everyone else had that idea. Let me tell you, it is very disheartening to see pedestrians flying by you when you are stuck in three lanes of traffic.

At least there was a good game of footy on the radio. Geelong hammered Carlton by 70 points and I call that a good game. You normally complain that when you are driving you can't see the surroundings but that certainly wasn't the case on Friday night. You couldn't help but notice the surroundings - not much else was going on.

Once I hit Stirling Highway I realised the enormity of my task as the traffic was phenomenal. I have never seen so many people studying their UBDs whilst driving. Not generally a good practice to be using the street directory when at the wheel but we weren't exactly going anywhere in a hurry so that danger was somewhat limited. The timing of this huge traffic problem was excellent considering the high prices we are paying for fuel at the moment.

I'm sure that the incidence of carbon monoxide poisoning increased markedly on Friday night. And also tendonitis in the knee.

Back to Stirling Highway. I found a long way through the back streets as a short cut and although it was only a couple of kilometres I am absolutely positive that it save me 1-2 hours and only took five minutes to drive. The rest of Stirling Highway was a crawl and it was a luxury to be able to reach second gear occasionally. It reminded me of the time that I drove in Korea during the Thanksgiving time, Chuseok, and it took me 13 hours to drive 400 kilometres as everyone is returning to the place of their ancestors. Bit like driving into LA at night time, only much slower.

Once I reached Fremantle it took about 20 minutes to drive the 20 kilometres home - an absolute breeze. It took me four hours to get home!! Let me just add that the game of soccer I attended on Wednesday night started two and a half hours after work finished, took two hours to play, and I arrived home only one hour later than because of the pipe bursting next to the Freeway. And, it was much more fun to be standing in the rain and watching my team lose than the time spent driving home from work on Friday!!

Goodbye Dullsville. Things have certainly been happening in Perth since I wrote the posting.

And what of the Water Corporation? After all, it was their burst pipe that caused the damage and traffic chaos in the first place. Are they going to write a new Service Agreement?
"We promise to kill the traffic flow in Perth."
"Mud maps will become exactly that."
"Perth water will flow more freely than Perth traffic."

Sunday Times article

Early ABC report

Later ABC report

Friday, May 13, 2005

Don't Come To Perth - It's Dangerous

Here's something to make you laugh. Or cry if you are in the tourism industry. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade issued a travel warning that Perth is not safe to visit at this time of year. And apparently 8000 people were sent the message.

Read the news report.

So lock up your children and cross Perth off your destination list. Save yourselves. My goodness - the silly things that people do.

By all means come to Perth. Don't listen to what our stupid government is telling the world.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Dullsville Is So Yesterday

The soccer started again last night. It was the FIFA World Club Championship qualifiers and Perth Glory, the National Soccer League (now defunct) Champions, were taking on a new team, Sydney FC (part owned by Anthony Lapaglia who attended the match) - who were probably Marconi in disguise. Sydney kicked all three goals in the match but only won 2-1.

What a miserable night for soccer. Since Perth Glory started in '96 it has only rained about three times in total. Last night it poured with rain. I took my umbrella but didn't have a jacket as I had come to the game from work and only had my work clothes on. Pants and business shirt. Must have stood out as a bit strange. At one stage I was huddled under my umbrella with five Englishmen, in much closer proximity with them than I would be with my wife, and then a security guard said that we weren't allowed to have an umbrella in the grandstand. I would have to move to a grassed area. Grandstand? I was in the standing area on concrete. There was no bloody stand. One of the Englishmen was going to have it out with the security guard but I think he may have been stoned and it was all talk. Just as the half time break finished the rain cleared up for the rest of the night and I was able to resume my position. I did manage to get absolutely satched (saturated - for those of you that don't speak Strine).

My position was standing next to the big guy from the West Coast Eagles Cheer Squad. You may have seen him on TV - he stands right behind the goals and waves pom-poms. Looks quite retarded but doesn't come across that way in real life. I asked him if I was to shake some pom-poms around would I be able to get a build like him. No, was the short answer. I asked him what his secret was and he refused to tell me. I had mentioned earlier in the night that the Eagles suck and that drew a bit of a reaction. Late in the match he yelled out "You should play for Bombers!" I hadn't told him that I am a Bombers supporter and decided to keep my mouth shut.

Gee, I didn't get home until after 10pm. That is pretty late for me. Just before I finished work I had a customer ring me and he needed a product in a hurry at a mine site some 400kms away. As I wouldn't be able to get a courier I decided to run it out to the airport myself. It was a nice little time filler between work and the start of the game. I hadn't planned to go home after work. Nice to get to use the lungs once again at the soccer. There's nothing like being able to yell a bit of abuse and get some agro out.

Now that the Glory has lost there won't be any more soccer until the new Hyundai A League starts in August. Bugger. It was a bit strange that there were no dancers girl to ogle, no Steve Armstrong singing to ridicule, and most importantly, we didn't sing the national anthem before the game. Perhaps all of this will return once the A League is underway.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Welcome To Dullsville

I haven't posted for a few days. Nothing much is going on. I can see why Perth is known as Dullsville. It can be a bit quiet at times.

A couple of days ago, or was it yesterday, the mercury hit 32 degrees Celcius. That's a little unusual for May - we are just over a month and a half away from Winter.

Federal Budget

I like the tactics of the Federal Treasurer. There is income support available for those that don't work. Now the Federal Government wants to have mothers return to work once their child is six years old, i.e. school age, or have their family allowance benefits reduced. Thing is, if you work your benefits are reduced because you have a higher income.

Very clever. Reduce benefits. Increase tax stream. We need more clever politicians like Peter Costello.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Busy Weekend

We were busy this weekend with Yu-Jin's birthday party, a sleepover and Mothers' Day. At the birthday party they did a puppet show that was directed at 3-7 year olds, and I don't know if it was because they were boys who don't like putting their imagination caps on or not, but they saw straight through the puppetry. I thought that it wasn't really suitable for five year olds. There were a few technical issues as well but the kids did find it entertaining.

Yu-Jin's friend Jesse stayed the night. Boys will be boys. They were up until 10pm and out of bed around 5:30 am. Yu-Jin got a foam rocket kit for his birthday and I had set it up but told him to use it outside. Guess what the boys were playing with at 6am in the living room?!

Jesse left his slippers behind and as we had decided to go to Sizzlers for a Mothers' Day lunch at the shop was nearby, we dropped them off. Sizzlers had a queue stretching as far as you could see so we gave that a miss.

Drove into Vic Park and looked for a Korean or Japanese Restaurant - they were all closed. Popped into Chi Restaurant instead. The food was pretty good and the pepper squid rivals Chef Han's Cafe in Northbridge for taste. Miky said that the Chinese character meant "Eat" or "Food" which I thought was a great name for a restaurant. The waitress told me that it meant "Restaurant".

After a walk to settle the lunch down Miky was after some cake and coffee. We stopped in at a Gloria Jeans coffee franchise and had strawberry cheese cake. This had to be one of the blandest cakes I have ever tasted - including those I have cooked. Can't say anything nice about it though. Couldn't pay by credit card either and the guy told me that an EFTPOS machine was available across the road. There may well have been an Electronic Funds Transfer Point Of Sale across the road but that would be in another shop. Perhaps he meant ATM.

Had a bit of a sleep when we got home. I must be getting old. Then I spent an hour and a half digging up the back yard. Still can't find that body. Listened to the footy and the Freo Dockers trounced Collingwood by 112 points. What a fantastic result. Not only for the fact that I hate Collingwood that much but the fact that the Dockers' biggest winning margin before was 97 points against, who other, but Essendon. Miky has only been to one game of AFL with me. And guess which game it was? Yes, Essendon getting thumped by 97 points by the Dorkers. I am glad that that record has been laid to rest.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Yu-Jin's 5th Birthday At Scitech

I've never been to Scitech before. I had heard that it was great for kids and I suspected that it would be the same for adults. We had a great hostess, 10 boys running around enjoying themselves, good food, and lots of fun, scientific displays to touch and experience.

Due to a parental request not to publish photos of kids without permission I have taken down photos of all the other kids that I had posted. Please email me if you would like personal photos.

Yu-Jin busy doing fun "scientific" things at his 5th birthday party at Scitech.

Birthday boy and Dad.

There was a dress-up section for the kids to play in as well.

I didn't doctor the photo - yes, I've put on a little bit of weight.

Yu-Jin's favourite present - some ooze that makes great farting sounds.

Scitech was a great place to have a party. Sadly, I guess we can't have one there again. Mind you, I feel that we will visit Scitech again sometime. There was so much there for the kids to see, touch and do. I can thoroughly recommend the place to take your kids, and yourself to.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Time For Truth In Advertising Car Names

Are you a bit like me and sick of the grandiose names that are bestowed upon cars these days?

Grandeur - it's only a Hyundai
Conquest - a Toyota Corolla
Sportivo - as if
Neon - where is the bright colour?
Adventurer - bit full of themselves me suspects
Territory - WTF?

Let's see some real names for a change.

Rust Bucket
Buzz Box
Bucket of Bolts
Shit Box
Oil Burner
2nd Mortgage
Shaggin' Wagon - ok, this is a real car, the Holden Sandman
It's Time To Say You're Sorry

Prime Minister Koizumi of Japan has said sorry to China for Japan's wartime aggression. I didn't know that my blog was read in such circles - for those of you that have just joined us.

Perhaps it is time for me to say sorry.

Alex van Gastel - I am sorry that I called you a dork. I am also sorry that you are indeed a dork, as can be evidenced by the fact that you trashed six cars, during your school years, by various methods, not limited to hitting a kangaroo, blowing up the engine and crashing, of this there is no doubt.

I'm sorry that I didn't get far with Megan, the girl I had a crush on for several years. I'm not exactly sorry after seeing how she has ended up though.

I'm sorry I didn't take up the invitation of a Norwegian girl I met on a bus in Norway, funnily enough, to come to her place to "watch cable". I am glad that I didn't as we became penfriends for a while.

I'm sorry that I didn't get the contact details for a Slovak girl I met on a train from Bratislava to Vienna where we communicated for the whole trip by using Slovak/English and German/English dictionaries. I'm still sorry - what a stunner.

I'm sorry that I gave one pound sterling to a "homeless" guy at a subway station in London only to find out that this was his "job" during the week and he actually had a place in Croydon to stay on the weekends.

I'm sorry my Yankee mate Wayne lost his photo of my breaking the high jump record at Bordertown High School.

I'm sorry that I had my wedding day on AFL Grand Final day and one of my best mates had to smuggle a radio into the reception so that he could listen to the score.

I have a lot to be sorry for.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Korean Blonde Strikes Again

Dumb Point!

I got to work yesterday and Miky rang. She was rather upset as she couldn't find her car keys. I had seen her house keys but not the car keys. She was unable to take Yu-Jin to school. Lucky he isn't in year 12 doing his final exams.

About an hour later she rang, almost in tears, to explain that she had looked everywhere and couldn't find them. She thought that they must be in the boot of her car as she remembered getting some bread out and shutting the boot. I said that when I arrived home, as I wasn't leaving work, I would try to open the boot.

I got home rather quickly last night, the traffic wasn't too bad, expecting a very frazzled wife to greet me. She had used a pair of scissors to get into the boot but there were no keys there (I didn't tell anybody where I live, did I?). She had found her keys. The story goes something like this - she was about to leave home, car keys in hand, when the Korean Embassy rang. She put her keys down and looked for Yu-Jin's birth certificate, which she placed over the keys. After going to the toilet she couldn't locate her keys. The worrying thing was when she talked to me she had no recollection of doing anything with the keys from the night before. She had had them in her hand a few minutes beforehand.

Definitely a Korean Blonde moment.