Friday, March 31, 2006

No Venom In The Cobras

Last night at volleyball, which coincided with the opening match of the AFL 2006 season for which I'm glad I didn't have to drive through the traffic of, we, the Purple Cobras, played Volleytron. They were the bottom team. This week we had a full complement of players including one new face.

Volleytron just concentrated on getting the ball back over the net. And that was quite successful. Our setup was terrible and we lacked cohesion. Needless to say we lost. Quite poor really.

Better kick someone's arse next week. The other teams hold no fear for us. We were second on the table.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

It's Just Like Drenching Sheep

Those of you with a sheep farming background and kids will be able to relate to this.

You would recall having sheep penned and walking around with a backpack full of drench and the drenching gun in your hand. You grab each sheep by the head and stick the gun into their mouth, the sheep lurches, you squirt the drench in, the mouth opens, the head rolls around and then it's all done and everything is ok.

I had a touch of nostalgia the other night after Yu-Jin went to sleep in front of the TV. It's very important that he brushes his teeth before bed. So I grabbed him and sat him on the chair in the bathroom. Still being asleep his body lunged forwards, backwards and side to side. I held his held to keep his mouth open and brushed. Luckily we have an electric toothbrush. His head rolled, the mouth opened and closed, he lurched almost violently at times but remained asleep.

I couldn't help but think how similar it felt to drenching a sheep. Those were the good old days. It doesn't take two minutes to drench a sheep though and there is no rinsing of the mouth to be done. That wasn't too successful as you can't get someone to spit something out when they are sleeping.

Monday, March 27, 2006

The Worrying Trend Of Hackerism Continues

Early morning was required on Saturday as Yu-Jin had his first grading at taekwondo. He did well, better than I expected, and he gained his promotion to yellow belt with two tips, 8th gup. Following the grading he did a class with little kids where he was the second highest ranked. I much prefer that he goes to his normal class which has a large number of adult black belts.

Had a bit of lunch and then went shopping for a basin for the bathroom as Miky is getting a new vanity built. We knew a shop in Osborne Park near Ikea but were a little disappointed with the range, although they had one that we particularly liked. Wandered over to Ikea to let Yu-Jin play in the ball house whilst we sat down for a drink. When it was time to go I bought him a hot dog as he loves them. We did a bit more looking around for a basin and finally arrived at Bunnings. They had the same basin as the first shop but it was $26 cheaper and not just a sample. Jackpot. We bought 10L of paint mixed to Antique USA for me to do the passageway and dining area sometime in my spare time.

Yu-Jin and I went to the pool after the shopping was done. There was a large group of Indonesian boys, who weren't small lads, playing a modified game of rugby in the pool and Yu-Jin tried his hardest to join in, even when three guys were tackling another guy. He's not afraid of the water.

Sunday morning = crazy time of morning. Had to get up at 4:20 to get ready for golf at Marangaroo. I'd told Joe that I wanted an early start so that I would have much of the day free. He booked us in for 6am and I thought that he was joking. Kim arrived at my house at five o'clock and I drove to Marangaroo. We got there at 5:30 and the gates were locked and the sign on the gate said that the course opened at 6:30. Oh, no. They did open up at about 10 to six.

Still dark at six. The sun didn't come up until we were on the third hole!

Crazy time to play golf. This is the view from the clubhouse.

Kangaroos on the first - flash required still.

My hackerism is confirmed after yesterdays game. Talk about crap. I came last on handicap by four strokes! Not that mucking about on the par-3 16th with a left-handed putt that missed cost me the match either. On the par-3 4th I had a double-hit trying to get my ball out from underneath a yacka. On the next, a par-5, I creamed my drive and thought that I could see the 150m marker so I laid-up with a 5-iron only to find myself 30m from the green - could have reached the green with a 3-iron and anything could have happened. Ended up scoring a double-bogey seven.

The greens were generally quite slow as they had been sanded, the grass was long and very dewy as we were playing so early. I did hit the best score with the putter though. Just the rest of my game was crap.

Kim birdied the 9th which was thoroughly deserved. On the par-5 11th I teed off into the trees and had to fashion a shot where I was hugging a tree to swing the club. Hit the ball under a yacka and lost two balls just trying to knock it out onto the fairway!! I have no idea where the balls went but no-one saw them come out. Struck an 11. Joe had a putt for eagle and missed the cup by a couple of inches and had a one-footer for birdie. Well done mate. Well played.

We had a group of two behind us who were obviously in a hurry to finish and after I'd spent a few minutes to find my ball on the 10th they yelled out "Congratulations," when I finished. A couple of holes later Joe and I notice the old bastard of the two kicking his ball towards the fairway. No wonder they were playing quickly.

At the 18th there was a queue, as we had other groups in front of us who had started on the 10th, and the group of two caught up to us. Shayne just walked up to them and said, "You'll be finishing late today," and I mentioned to Joe that maybe you wouldn't get a nine if you kicked your ball back onto the fairway. Cheating bastards.

Kim and Joe won the day on handicap, Shayne came third and I filled last place. The worrying trend has been confirmed. Great time to play golf though. Maybe half an hour later though.

Marangaroo Scorecard 26th March 2006.

Kangaroos grazing happily.

Had to fashion my shot here to miss the kangaroos.

What's up skip?

Friendly little buggers.

The afternoon was spent mixing three bags of soil improver and 12 bags of mushroom compost into the front garden. Fun. Fast Eddies for tea where we had lasagne, apple pies and wedges. I hit the sack at eight o'clock, quite buggered I was.

Friday, March 24, 2006

House Renovations To Start Sometime In The Next Three Months

The builder we plan to use, a man who has an uncanny resemblance to Gene Wilder so we refer to him as Willy Wonka, popped around for a last measure and quote of the sun room we plan to add to the front of our place. We've actually signed the contract to build our sun room and the roof next door for a verandah. Our neighbour doesn't have the money to build what we had planned, which was twin sun rooms, and as it's only an extra $500 to build the roof over both sections than just building our sun room, it makes sense to do the lot and add more value. I think that it would look pretty stupid for us to have a sun room with a strange roof and I'd rather pay the extra money myself if I have to.

With our new plans I called the neighbour over and she agreed to pay $1000. I told her if she ever put the window and door out the front like we are going to have that she owes me $3500 as that will be her saving. Can't get it in writing or she just won't approve the job in the first place. We need the extra space and the job has gone from $6500 each to $7500 each or $12000 just for us. Yeah. All we need is for the neighbour to sign the consent forms as we have strata property and wait some 10 weeks for the council to give us approval.

A few minutes after the builder left we had a visit from a cabinet maker who will be replacing our vanity unit in the bathroom. He came for a measure and quote and, along with being on time in this very busy market, he was quite a pleasant fellow. Miky said that his first impression was very good. That was until I pointed out he is missing half a thumb and half a forefinger. Perhaps he hasn't been a very careful tradesman. No further description was required, she's a squeamish girl, and the impression was tarnished a little.

Aren't renovations one of the most stressful things for a marriage? Stand by.
Purple Cobras Volleyball Update

Thursday nights are volleyball nights. Our team, the Purple Cobras, played at 6 o'clock last night. There were two new faces last night, Fong and Matt, but we only had a team of four. If you know anything about sport you'll realise that a full team is six. Our opponents, on the other hand, had a squad of 12! Yikes. I've played indoor soccer before where we were short and played against a good team and then thrashed them. It's all about teamwork.

We were a little disorganised in the first set and lost. I heard the captain of the other team say that as they had a lot of players, mainly school kids, they would swap them around to give everyone a go. I told our team that we were warmed up and had a feel for the ball whereas the kids would be a bit nervous. We caned them. In fact, we won the next two sets.

In the fourth set I think we became a little tired and they brought their experienced old heads back onto the court and we went down. Bugger. So we drew last night.

I remember my only game as captain of our B-grade hockey team and we had a team of nine, part of the reason I was made captain, out of a squad of 11, and we lead for all the game until the last five minutes when they equalised and we drew. I'm quite happy to be the underdog as it makes winning a little bit sweeter.

Just got to get that winning bit sorted out.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Another Day, Another Mouse

The mouse trap was set up last night with another part of a walnut. Nothing to show for it this morning. As I was making lunch before heading off to work I heard the trap go off. Yu-Jin and I had a look and the mouse was jumping around in the trap. That explains why Miky was so disgusted the other night with the sounds of the mouse struggling. He didn't struggle for too long though.

I was a little surprised that the trap didn't break his neck though. Gave him about 20 minutes before emptying his body into the bin. Miky came home from the gym in the meantime and retreated to the bedroom to eat breakfast saying that she couldn't eat. Didn't want to eat in the same room. How did she think the mouse felt? He looked like he was still trying to get the walnut and with the trap firmly pressed against his neck just how much chance did he have of eating his breakfast? Not too bloody much, let me tell you.

BTW, Miky has seen another mouse. I don't have to bait the trap as this morning's capture didn't eat anything.
This Drive-Through Nonsense Has To Stop

You can get drive-through service at fast food places. McDonalds, KFC etc have been doing it for ages. I hear in the US of A they have drive-through banks, post offices and somesuch. Hey, you can buy drive-through coffee here. I believe that Los Angeles has a drive-through church.

When will this nonsense end? People are becoming all too accustomed to the convenience that their cars offer and the way they are pampered by all manner of businesses. Yesterday I spotted a drive-through telephone booth in Vic Park. It's already been used as you will no doubt tell from the pictures below that show that it has been driven-through alright.

Driven-Through Public Telephone Booth Pic 1.

Driven-Through Public Telephone Booth Pic 2.

Driven-Through Public Telephone Booth Pic 3.

I took the photos this morning on the way to work and a couple of council "workers" said to me, "Good photo, mate?" He laughed once I explain that it was a drive-through telephone that had been driven-through. I wonder if this was one of the 5500 public telephones that Telstra wishes to remove as it isn't profitable? Not profitable any more.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Busy Weekend - Time Now For A Break

Saturday was an early start. Had to have my car down at the mechanics' workshop by 8 o'clock to get the neutral switch changed. Funny how something that took eight years to fail in the first place has failed again within 17 months. Miky came down about 25 minutes later to give me a lift and as I went to find out how long they would be I was informed that the job was done and it was, "One of the easiest jobs the mechanic had ever had." I'm so glad for him. My wallet isn't so happy however.

We did the grocery shopping. Miky had a sleep as she wasn't feeling too well. Yu-Jin and I played Memory, with cards, and a couple of games of Trouble. I set up his waterslide in the backyard and prepared some vegies and chicken for a BBQ.

Fun in the sun.

Following lunch was taekwondo. Yu-Jin appeared a bit lethargic and disinterested. Not that there were many students in the class. Once I arrived home Miky decided that it was high time I cleaned up the newly rendered wall and paint it. Had to agree. Dirty job cleaning off the cement render and I certainly needed my dust mask, goggles and earmuffs. Dust went everywhere. Yu-Jin and I went to Bunnings to get some paint, and some advice, but were informed that the paint we already had would be fine. So by about 7:45 the job was done. Still requires another coat however.

Sunday is golf day and the place was Whaleback Golf Course. Played with Shayne and we were joined by (Mr) Kim, a 12 handicapper. Obviously he is Korean. I was talking about whether he was on holiday or not and although he said yes he told me that he had been here for four months. A few more questions and I discovered that he has a four year work visa, is a welder, works in Kwinana and he knows the husband of Miky's friend - our kids go to school together. The penny dropped and he said, "I've heard about you." It's a small world.

The golf wasn't flash and all three of us were disappointed with our games. Shayne played alright on the front nine and was looking at a decent score but a 10 and two nines on the back nine didn't go to plan. I had a nine on the par-4 12th after hitting my tee shot somewhere close to the Roe Highway, the next tee shot was skied and headed to the right but we couldn't find it and so I had to play my third ball, fifth shot, from the tee. Shayne was too busy counting my shots and had a seven himself. Needless to say I was a bit angry with myself.

Two holes later I hit my drive 230m into the wind. Lovely. Next hole was a 200m drive. Nice. Next hole was in excess of 200m. Great. Following hole was driven onto the next fairway. Back to normal. Kim had six 1-putts on the back nine for only 13 putts coming in!

Glad I got a bit of backspin on this ball on the 7th. It would have been well and truly plugged.

Whaleback Golf Course Scorecard for the 19th of March 2006.

Had a phone call from a good friend, Ben, who used to be my neighbour back home. He said that we haven't seen each other for 13 years but I did see him 11 years ago when I came back from overseas and I popped in to see him in Adelaide once. But that was probably 5-6 years ago. He wants to come over for Easter. Good idea. Miky doesn't like visitors too much but as he runs a Jim's Mowing franchise she reckons that he can be put to work. I'll warn him but it will be great to catch up.

Miky was fed up with having been at home all day so we went out for tea. Really she wanted to borrow some Korean videos from the city and we decided on fish and chips in Victoria Park. I wish I knew the name of the shop as they gave us two pieces of fish and an extra potato cake without charge. Headed down to the Swan River foreshore in South Perth/Victoria Park to eat them and Yu-Jin played at two of the playgrounds there. We also played some chasey which, in hindsight, was quite good for me.

Yu-Jin's reading is coming along nicely. When he gets a new word he spells it out and much of the time comes up with the correct word. That's music to a parent's ears. Especially considering he gets very frustrated if unable to do something straight away.

Back to work for a rest.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Just Call Me Dorfus Dippinchunks

We all need a little stress-reliever today! This only takes a minute. Sometimes when you have a stressful day or week, you need some silliness to break up the day. And, if we are honest, we have a lot more stressful days than not. Here is your dose of humour...

A. Follow the instructions to find your new name.
B. Once you have your new name, put it in the subject box and forward it to friends and family and co-workers.
Don't forget to forward it back to the person who sent it to you, so they know you participated.
And don't go all adult - a senior public sector manager is now known far and wide as Dorky Gizzardsniffer.
The following is excerpted from a children's book, "Captain Underpants And the Perilous Plot Professor Poopypants" by Dave Pilkey, in which the evil Professor forces everyone to assume new names...

1. Use the third letter of your first name to determine your new first name:
a = snickle
b = doombah
c = goober
d = cheesey
e = crusty
f = greasy
g = dumbo
h = farcus
i = dorky
j = doofus
k = funky
l = boobie
m = sleezy
n = sloopy
o = fluffy
p = stinky
q = slimy
r = dorfus
s = snooty
t = tootsie
u = dipsy
v = sneezy
w = liver
x = skippy
y = dinky
z = zippy 2.

Use the second letter of your last name to determine the first half of your new last name:
a = dippin
b = feather
c = batty
d = burger
e = chicken
f = barffy
g = lizard
h = waffle
i = farkle
j = monkey
k = flippin
l = fricken
m = bubble
n = rhino
o = potty
p = hamster
q = buckle
r = gizzard
s = lickin
t = snickle
u = chuckle
v = pickle
w = hubble
x = dingle
y = gorilla
z = girdle 3.

Use the third letter of your last name to determine the second half of your new last name:
a = butt
b = boob
c = face
d = nose
e = hump
f = breath
g = pants
h = shorts
i = lips
j = honker
k = head
l = tush
m = chunks
n = dunkin
o = brains
p = biscuits
q = toes
r = doodle
s = fanny
t = sniffer
u = sprinkles
v = frack
w = squirt
x = humperdinck
y = hiney
z = juice

Thus, for example, George W. Bush's new name is Fluffy Chucklefanny. Now when you SEND THIS ON...use your new name as the subject...and remember that children laugh an average of 146 times a day; Adults laugh an average of 4 times a day. Put more laughter in your day!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Typical, Just Bloody Typical

Driving to work this morning and going down Hay St, which is a 40 zone, I spotted a cop with a handheld radar. No need to adjust my speed as I'm doing only 40. Then a Subaru overtakes me in the lefthand lane probably doing 50-55 km/h. "You beauty," I thought, "this bugger is gonna get caught."

So, what happens? The cop puts down his radar of course. Must have been making his arm tired or there must have been a regulation for how long he can hold it for before having to lower it so as not to do himself an injury. So the Subaru driver got away with it. There were four cops there, incidentally.

Typical, just bloody typical.
I'm Feeling Quite Stiff This Morning

... Because I played volleyball last night for the first time in eight or nine years. Get your mind out of the gutter. It was pretty good fun and our team, Purple Cobras, won. Only three of the regular team members were there, two new faces including myself, and one guy filling in. But we gelled ok and the other team weren't so good. Remembering everyone's name was a bit extra to concentrate on.

I've played some very competitive volleyball in my time. Being a high jumper the spike was a very good shot for me. Was a good shot. Last night I found quite a bit of difficulty in getting off the ground sufficiently to hit a good spike. We won the first two sets fairly easily and mucked around too much in the third set and lost concentration, must have been down about 15-2 before waking up, but lost the third. We were leading in the fourth before time ran out.

Very enjoyable to get back into it. Although my back is not exactly enjoying this morning. Must have moved some muscles in a manner that hadn't been done for some time. Nothing serious though.

P.S. When I got home I pretended to be injured again. Limped into the living room and Miky started going off at me about damaging myself once more. Before she really got stuck in I quit the gag. Just the reaction I was looking for.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Welcome Visitor Number 10000

Frugal Bastard has hit the 10000-mark, since adding the Site Meter counter anyway. Visitor number 10000 hails from the city of Tenextepec in Mexico. Funny that it's a Mexican and not one of those from Victoria. They came looking for "yackas". And they've been the only Mexican in the last hundred visitors. !Ola!

Another One Bites The Dust

We got rid of a mouse on the weekend. But, another one was still on the loose. He was spotted running into the sewing room as we were having tea last night. And as Miky needed to get something from the sewing room I had to escort her and hold her hand. Yes, she's a sook when it comes to mice.

This mouse was a sneaky little bugger. I laid the trap with a walnut - gone. I tried a sultana - gone too. Yesterday morning I wanted to set it before leaving for work but Miky wouldn't let me as it might catch the mouse (duh) and she would have to see it. So it had to wait until last night.

Just before putting Yu-Jin to bed it was set again with a walnut. It must have been 10-15 minutes later, with the light still on, that there was a loud "snap" and Miky came running into the bedroom all frightened. Well, as the mouse was most likely dead I would finish reading the stories to Yu-Jin before dealing with it.

Take that you little bugger.

Good Deed For The Day

Yesterday on my walk I happened upon a business' retic system that wasn't working properly. This is quite normal and has been that way for some time. I so happened to have a pen and paper on hand so I wrote a note and stuck it in the door about their retic being buggered and wasting lots of water and therefore needing to be fixed.

On my walk this morning I noticed the retic working beautifully at said business. They've fixed the lot and no more water is being wasted. It was a lovely sight.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Interpreting Car Yard Speak

LET'S TALK A DEAL - Could someone please take this off my hands.

TEST DRIVE NOW - This car has been sitting here for so long that the oil has become a hardened mess at the bottom of the sump and the cobwebs need to be blown off the cylinders.

EASY FINANCE - It's easy to get hold of your money for this overpriced vehicle.

VALUE - Yeah, it's all ours though.

DEMO - This vehicle has been repeatedly taken around the block and thrashed. Buy it at your own risk.

LIMITED RELEASE - Not good enough to sell a great deal of so they stopped producing it earlier than expected.

SALE - It's been sitting here too long.

MANY EXTRAS - Quite a few useless features thrown in that you'll never use.

CHEAP - Can't wait to get rid of this bomb.

LUXURY - This car actually feels and handles quite nicely. You are going to be paying for it, however.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Lisp - Apologies to Shannon Noll

I love Shannon Noll's song 'Lift'. Here are the lyrics. I've rewritten most of it in parody form. My apologies Shannon. Pity there isn't a Google Video to link so that you can all sing along.


I hear you're talking
Sounds like you're slurring
With lisps the hard thing
Is the understanding

It takes forever
To hear your wording
It's time to work on
Your lisps apalling, yeah

This is your speech impediment
Close your mouth and give it rest

Cause I know it's hard to be heard
Coz you gotta lisp
You gotta lisp
We have to listen longer
But I know you're stronger
Longer than this
You gotta lisp
You gotta lisp

When you can feel you're
Getting no respect
And nobody listens
It won't stop hap'ning
You gotta struggle
You took a hit
Time to speak up now
Move on from this

You were never meant to be M.C.
Close your mouth and give it rest

Cause I know it's hard to be heard
Coz you gotta lisp
You gotta lisp
We have to listen longer
But I know you're stronger
Longer than this
You gotta lisp
You gotta

Lisps provide an awful lot of hurt
Don't give up
No one can understand ya
You'd better speak slow
Let them know
You'd best take your best shot
Don't miss
C'mon don't lisp

You were never meant to be M.C.
Close your mouth and give it rest

Cause I know it's hard to be heard
Coz you gotta lisp
You gotta lisp
We have to listen longer
But I know you're stronger
Longer than this
You gotta lisp
You gotta lisp
High Drama In The FB Household

And it was all over a mouse. I had been thinking that we had another mouse in the house but on Saturday whilst Yu-Jin and I were watching a movie he ran past the living room door and looked at me as he did so. Now, there's an expression that a "cat can look at a king" but what about a "mouse can look at an FB"? Set the mouse trap with a walnut as bait.

Earlier on in the day there had been a by-election in Victoria Park and a polling station was set up at the gym. Miky was approached by a representative from the One Nation party and asked if she would like to vote for One Nation. For those of you that don't know, One Station stands for an Australia full of Australians. Foreigners are ok but they must assimilate. They used to sound like a White Australia policy. Funny thing is that Miky can't vote and that One Nation would be at the bottom of the ballot anyway.

When I took Yu-Jin to taekwondo later on the guy from One Nation approached me too. I voted, went to buy a paper, and upon my return he asked me again. Didn't make any difference - Labor won the seat anyway. The voting clerk asked me if I had voted anywhere else today to which I replied, "No, that would be far too much trouble." He agreed and said that everybody said "No".

Fast forward to Sunday morning. Dead mouse in the mouse trap. I left for golf early so I left him there for Miky to see. She hates mice, dead or alive.

Bit of a pain to get to the golf course. The Freeway south entrance was closed to the public and so I had to drive through Murdoch to get down to the Freeway further down. Didn't see any sign for the golf course and stopped to have a look at the map only to find that I had driven five kilometres too far! Managed to find the place ok and got there early enough to get a bit of practice in. As soon as Shayne and Joe arrived we had to head to the tee.

Joe warned us that there were about 200 bunkers on the course. Who should end up in one on the 1st hole? Joe. And he took a couple of shots to get out. I've got it on video. Shayne parred the first and it looked like the week off had done his golf some good. Interestingly there was a bridge between houses, we were on the Glen Iris Golf Course Estate, to go from the 1st to the 2nd. The 2nd hole is roped off along the fairway to keep the golfers away from the houses. There were a couple of householders out using the whippersnipper on the back yard. Why? A rabbit could eat the amount of grass that was available.

The bridge between the 1st and 2nd.

Nice idea to protect houses alongside the 2nd fairway.

The 2nd green at Glen Iris.

String of bunkers on the 510m par-5 3rd, which I avoided, but which looked quite unhealthy to your scorecard.

Heaps of planes buzzed overhead.

We were right next to Jandakot airport.

Joe about to tee off at the 5th.

I'm plugged on the 5th after a very high pitch to the green.

Glen Iris is a tough course. I started with five bogeys in a row and was quite happy with that. Went a bit downhill from there. I didn't visit any water but saw a few bunkers. We played off the championship tees. Shayne played pretty well on the front nine and Joe and I were struggling to get ahead. On the 9th I hit my second shot, apparently, out of bounds. Hit my fourth shot out of bounds. Hit my sixth shot down the middle of the fairway. Shyane was already counting the shots but we found my first ball right up against the fence. I didn't make the most of my good fortune and shot a triple bogey.

A real golfer's hole - the 8th at Glen Iris.

How many tunnels do you see on the golf course?

There were five holes that had a protective fence at the tee to stop your balls going towards the houses and Shayne managed to collect three of them. I had one tee shot where I only just outdrove the ladies tee. Once you get into the bunkers it takes a fine shot to get out of them as many are quite deep with steep slopes.

One of the hole markers.

Here lies Hammy's golfing abilities - R.I.P.

Well done Joe for winning the day. He was certainly the straightest off the tee and that helped. Shayne played pretty steady golf too. Couple of funny moments - Joe hitting out of the bunker on the 14th and put the ball into the tunnel area and on the 18th, with it all to play for, hit it out of the bunker and into an unplayble position in a plant. Didn't matter though as he still beat me by four strokes on handicap.

The bunkers on the 18th at Glen Iris provided plenty of protection for the green.

Scorecard from Glen Iris Golf Course March 12th 2006.

Quick lunch of healthy dim sims made by Miky and Yu-Jin and I drove down to the main taekwondo hall to watch a grading. The place was locked up and nobody was around. What a waste of time and fuel. I'll have to find out on Tuesday what happened.

Arrived home to find that newspaper had been placed on top of the dead mouse. When I brought it into the study to scare Miky she got really upset. I then looked for a screwdriver to empty the trap and Yu-Jin came in with the camera. The camera is the same colour as the mouse and just a bit bigger. Miky went berko. Did her nut. Gee, it's only a mouse, and it is dead afterall.

Later on she had calmed down. Yu-Jin was really keen to read his "Learn the Time" book and was very enthusiastic as he found that he knew at least half of the words. At school he has been given ten lists of words to learn and they come in very handy when reading. We got all the way to about page 8.

Following the reading we went out and bought some icecreams and had a wander around Curtin Uni. It felt quite odd walking around my old uni. For tea we had grilled salmon and non-oiled fried sweet potato and pumpkin with a tomato and cucumber salad. Delicious. Yu-Jin finished his in record time with very little trouble. Reason being, he wanted to read his clock book again.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Bit Of New Reading - Blog Roll

I've added a few links to my blog roll. They are sites that I have been reading for a while. You may, or may not, enjoy them. Yes, bit of a slow news day.

Funny Commercials - This guy, or girl, puts together a random set of funny commercials. Good for a laugh.

Lavinia Live - Young journo lass from Pretoria. She also visits Joe's Random Thoughts From NYC and I notice that Insane Tom visits. It's a small world people.

Michelle's World Trip 2005/2006 - Irish lass travelling the world at the mo'. She visits some wicked places.

OzLady Jokes - Ever-growing compilation of good jokes.

Stupid Criminal File - Has to be one of my favourite reads. You know all of those news stories about really dumb criminals? Well, this is a great site that compiles lots of these stories. Heard about the guy who walks up to a police officer, in uniform, in a marked car, and offers him cocaine? That's the sort of story to be found here.

The Corridor of Uncertainty (a Cricket Blog) - Will, the author, writes for CricInfo (Wisden) and his blog is all about cricket. He has a great number of regular contributors and it's a great read. Be warned - you may find that he writes up to seven different stories in one sitting though.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Bombing In India - An Answer From A Young 'Un

On the news last night we saw some graphic footage of the devastation caused by bombs in India. Yu-Jin wanted to know what happened and then what was going to be done about it. Would they drop a bomb on the people that committed the crime? He's obviously referencing the A-Bomb Museum in Nagasaki and thinks that people should be punished for their wrongdoings. A little bit finalistic though. Bit difficult to explain that many innocent people would die as a result.
How Much Does Legal Advice Cost And What Is It Worth?

Just heard on the news that a 19 year old learner driver from Australind, in WA, was caught doing 156 km/h down the main street (limit is 50 or 60 km/h)in Harvey with a blood alcohol level of 0.127. He's been to court and the judge suspended the hearing to allow the driver to get legal advice.

Well, that should take all of 15 minutes. And how much will it cost to hear "You're screwed" or "You're going to jail, boy"? What a pillock.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Taiko Drums for TaikOz in Forrest Place, Perth

Just a few vids with the group from TaikOz playing Japanese Taiko drums.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Domino's Pizza Share Price

I've noticed everytime that I've bought pizza from Domino's Pizza that the share price has dropped the next day. Does my buying power have that much of an impact in the short term?

The best shares to have are those that have products that you purchase. If I don't like the product it is unlikely that I will buy the share.

I noticed last night that they have done away with the traditional keyboard for entering your order and replaced them with washable/foldable types. They look like a bunch of keys spread out over a plastic cover. Must be so that they can clean them. All of the moisture in the atmosphere of the baking room must destroy electrical components. Nice big LCD monitors too. So glad to see the back of 14" CRTs.
Sensible Way To Spend The Holiday

Labour Day, apparently, used to be May Day, and was celebrated on May the 1st. I heard yesterday that this was all a bit too communist and so was changed to the first Monday in March. Well, the weather was much more likely to be better in March too.

How did I spend yesterday? After brekkie we went to the park and I mucked around with Yu-Jin in about 36 degrees. Then we went to Bunnings to check out the basins. Miky wants to get some work done in the bathroom. Oh, no! Look out! We ended up buying lots of compost and related products with Miky spending the next few hours in the garden. Yu-Jin and I did some cleaning. He did his room (amazing, I know) and I tidied up the shed (incredible, it's true - shutup).

Lunch didn't happen 'til nearly 2:30 but it was worth waiting for. A lovely chicken dish. By 4 o'clock Miky had gotten into me enough to do some rendering. Why is it called a holiday? I'd bought a bag of cement render back in January and it's been sitting outside for most of this time so was a bit hard in places. Emptied it into a wheelbarrow, I only have the one, and proceeded to knock out the hard bits. Mixed it all up and took it inside.

Plan was to render the wall in the dining area. I found that the gaps between the bricks needed to be filled first and that was a bit difficult with my big trowel. Miky found a tiny trowel but it was still too fiddly and only a one person job. Out came the gloves and we put it on by hand. I'm so glad that she wanted to help. By about 7 o'clock we finished, by which time we were quite warm as the air conditioning had to be off whilst we did it, and pizza was the only thing on the menu.

Had to remember to suck the guts in for this photo.

I reckon it should scrub up alright. Now all I have to do is convince the missus of its rustic charm so that I can get out of painting it.

Rendered wall looks alright, eh?

Tried Domino's new Puff Pizza and it was nice. I would even have it again. Much better than the triple cheese base.
Even If You Don't Like Beer You Can Still Enjoy This Ad

I'm not into beer myself but I love this ad.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Hooray For The Long Weekend

It's the Labour Day long weekend in Western Australia. And it's a warm one. Yesterday it reached 37.9 degrees C - just over the old hundred mark.

Saturday was the usual warm day where we did the grocery shopping and I took Yu-Jin to taekwondo. There is going to be a grading held soon and his teacher thinks that he should go as he has improved greatly. I'll probably take him along to watch at this stage.

Sunday golf was set for nice and early as Joe and Shayne had their club competition to play. I joined with Alan, Mike and John, three retirees who play twice a week, for a 6:48 tee time at Whaleback Golf Course. Took 2.5 litres of water with me, much of it frozen, as I knew that it would be warm. Didn't need a toilet stop however.

They all teed off first and then it was my turn. I hit a cracking drive and the look on John's face said it all - "Oh no. We are going to be upstaged by this young punk." He needn't have worried. I only hit about four shots like that the whole round.

And what a strange round of golf it was. I lost a ball off the tee on the third and ended up with a triple bogey and followed that up with a triple bogey on the next without losing the ball. Yikes. On the par-3 6th someone from the next tee yelled "fore" as I was taking my backswing and my brain told me to duck but carried on with the shot. And it was terrible, leaving me about 30-40m to the flag. My chip shot actually hit the flag and I dropped a 3-4m putt for par. I one-putted the last four holes of the front nine for only 14 putts but a quite ordinary 47.

I love the par-4 285m 12th. With a tail breeze you can almost drive the green. Not that we had a tail breeze though. My second shot landed a little short and somehow managed to kick into the bunker. My bunker shot went over the green and way down the large slope at the back. Bugger. My chip shot back went into the bunker again on the same spot, which had been neatly raked, meaning another bunker shot. Did alright this time but still shot a triple bogey.

Onto the magical new hole - the par-3 13th. They have set a new green over some very murky water. A bunker is guarding the green and it is a real golfer's hole. John and Mike putt their shots on the green whereas Alan went a little wide. Not like the group in front of us who put a couple of balls in the water. My tee shot landed only 3-4m from the flag and I dobbed the birdie putt. Yahoo!

What a lovely golfer's hole - the 13th at Whaleback.

On the next hole I was attempting a shot into the green when some guy on the adjacent tee yelled "fore", again during my swing, and I completely stuffed the shot. Not happy Jan. Then chipped on and sank a 5m putt with one of the guys from the pro shop watching. Noisy bastard. Sank another sizable putt on the 15th. On the 17th my chip shot hit the pin from about 20m out and saved me a bit of trouble.

My putting was extraordinary with only 28 putts - eight one-putts and ten two-putts. I only left one putt short, which sat on the lip, and didn't miss any putts by more than two feet past and they all went within four inches of the hole. Must say, it is much easier to putt earlier in the day before it gets hot and the greens dry out. Much better than my 45 putts last week. Home before 11:30 but it was already 36 degrees.

After lunch we went to the city to watch The Chronicles of Narnia - The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Yu-Jin's already seen it but Miky and I were itching to watch it too. What better way to spend a hot Sunday afternoon? Well, it would have been better without all of the kids in the cinema and sitting next to one kid who is dying to tell you what happens in the movie and won't shutup about it! Read the book when I was a kid. Good movie. But not as good as I had hoped. The actors, all kids, didn't quite have it.

Following the movie was the Lotterywest Festival Finale in Forrest Place, Perth City. We only arrived for the final performance - TaikOz (taiko drums) and Richard Walley on didgeridoo. What a fabulous performance from the Japanese musicians and the didgeridoo was ok too. Miky did say that the Koreans play drums much more impressively but what else do you expect?

I have a couple of short videos if anyone is interested. Perhaps I'll post them on Google Video.

Friday, March 03, 2006

A Couple Of Days Of Training

I had a couple of days of training on Wednesday and Thursday. The company that we are a distributor for, Rockwell Automation, is going to be introducing a heap of new services and we needed to know about them. And there was quite a bit of material to go through.

During one of the breaks I managed to get my car's exhaust replaced as a muffler and exhaust shop was just down the street. It was at No. 49, just after No. 45 and we were further down at No. 47. I know, it doesn't make sense to me either. Spotted an interesting car at No. 45.

The catering during the course was from Miss Maud and was pretty damn good. On Wednesday night we ventured to the Mussel Bar in Fremantle.

I had pepper squid as an entree and hot and cold crayfish as a main. When I was ordering it, as it was listed as "market price", the waitress said that it was $75!! Zounds. That was ok with the guy paying though.

Was it worth $75? Yes, as I wasn't the one paying. Man it was nice. And the mushrooms were perhaps the tastiest I've ever had. Delightful. The chocolate plate for two to follow for dessert was perhaps a bit much. I managed to put it away anyway.

Decoration found on the jetty in Fremantle.

Lots of fishing boats parked around here.

In the morning I rose at 5:30 to do some study as we had a role play to carry out and an exam on the 43 new services we had been taught the day before. Don't fall off your seats people but I didn't have breakfast. I was thinking about that later on as I brushed my teeth thinking "this is a waste of time".

We were scheduled to finish at 3:30, expected to finish at 2:30 but were done at about 10 past two. That meant journeying back to work. I had noticed a Super Cheap Auto around the corner and meant to buy some coolant for my car. I'm glad I did as I soon discovered that my credit card was missing. Uh oh. Thought about it and must have left it at the exhaust shop. Yes indeedy. If I hadn't purchased the coolant it would have been a long way to drive to collect it. What a dimwit.

Last Weekend's Pineapple Argument

You may remember last weekend that I had an argument over the price of a pineapple. Well, we haven't eaten it and it appears to have gone bad. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Learning To Read Can Be Fun

Yu-Jin is beginning to read. Every day he brings home two books from school that need to be read as homework. They are usually "Rhymes With ..." and another book based on a single letter in the alphabet along the lines of "This is a ...". Being picture books the last word is usually fairly easy to work out.

Yesterday's book was a bit more fun. It was about textures - rough, smooth, wrinkly, soft, etc. The last word to learn was "bumpy". As he was unable to read it immediately I got him to sound out the letters and then for the first syllable only - bum. Once he learnt that the word bum was included in bumpy it suddenly made reading fun. Only problem was that the preceeding word was "prickly" and I don't think I need to teach him the first syllable of that word.

Who writes these "children's books" anyway? They should be a bit more carefully planned to take into account those learning syllables.