Wednesday, August 30, 2006

As If Air Travel Isn't Fun Enough

Plans are afoot by Qantas to launch an in-flight mobile service. Apparently the business class clientele of Qantas have told them that this is a good idea.

I can just imagine the advertising spiel to go with it:

Do you find that you just don't meet enough angst-filled, noisy teenagers during your day?
Do older ladies with an accent like they come from Queens having unfeasonably long conversations drive you wild?
Do you wish that all of the mindless drivel that passengers seated next to you and want to share could be broadcast to the nearest 30 or 40 people also?
Do you hate being able to watch the in-flight movie without being constantly interrupted by the incessant noise emanating from mobile phones?
Do you really need everyone within the vicinity to know about your sex life and that of the people close to you that badly?

If the answer is yes then fly Qantas cattle class where you can have more fun than you can poke a stick at.

I'd much rather not have to put up with it. People don't even have the decency to wait until they get into the terminal before using their phones anyway. I think that there will be more air rage and broken mobiles because of this. I can also see competitions to see who can carry on the longest conversation during a flight. Gee, I'd rather give that a miss. Four hours in a plane and not having to put up with people dribbling into their mobiles is not so bad afterall. Currently, that is.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Full Weekend For The Boy

No wonder the boy fell asleep in the car a couple of times this weekend. After playing computer games before breakfast he headed to Korean school on Saturday morning. I went to the chiropractor as my neck is still giving me curry and dropped in at Golf Box on the way to collect him. I bought Jesters pies for lunch.

Straight after school Yu-Jin was taking part in an ergonomics university study on five and six year olds and their posture when drawing on a computer, on paper and on a tablet PC. We had a bit of trouble finding the place as I can't read a map properly. He had his neck shaved so that they could attach some electrodes to measure his muscle reactions. I'd show you the photo but my battery went flat.

The room in which the Curtin University ergonomic study took place.

Everything worked well until Jemma, one of the ladies conducting the study, mentioned that everything was working well which was unusual. Yu-Jin also had some funny reflective balls glued to points on his body so that with the use of lights and cameras his body movement could be followed by a computer. The comment was even made that it was good that he was such a patient boy. For his trouble Yu-Jin received a $20 Coles Myer voucher.

Then we rushed off to taekwondo and were 15 minutes late. Luckily his instructor is in New Zealand for the Oceania Championships so that didn't cause any problems. Yu-Jin still had some bases for the electrodes on the nape of his neck as the glue made it painful to remove them. He looked a bit bionic.

It's little wonder that he fell asleep on the way home. Later we went and hired some movies. Spiderman Vs Doc Ock (original TV show), Unleashed starring Jet Li, Silmido (true story about South Koreans trying to assassinate Kim Il-sung, Sidewalks of New York (tangled web of deceitful relationships) and Girl with a Pearl Earring (17th Century Dutch setting about a maid and a painte).

Sunday morning Yu-Jin was straight into the computer. The weekend is the only time that we let him use it as there are plenty of other things to do in life. We had a kick of footy whereby you score one point if you hit the fence/wall and six points if you kick the ball over it. Good way for Yu-Jin to practice counting.

Miky made kimbap for lunch. Mmmm. Then Yu-Jin and I went to the city for haircuts. I dunno, I must have had a blonde moment as I asked for a number one on the sides and a number two on the top instead of my usual flattop. Only we he started running the shaver through my hair did I realise my mistake and by then it was too late. Miky hates short hair.

Short-haired Thinker.

Short haircut. What was I thinking?

We went shopping for a toy for Yu-Jin. He wanted to spend his voucher on a light sabre and thankfully we didn't find one. Instead he purchased an 8-in-1 dinosaur Lego set. Bought some tofu and udon noodles at Loi's asian shop in the city with some saewoogang - shrimp-flavoured snacks. Canny lot these Chinese shop owners. They are obviously suffering from competition from Seoul Mart so they have employed a Korean girl to run the checkout.

Statue in the city of Perth.

On the way back to the car we stopped in the garden of the cathedral to finish our saewoogang. Bit of a warm day in Perth and it was almost like the beginning of Spring. Girls in the city were certainly wearing clothes that it indicated Spring had sprung. He fell asleep in the car on the way home again. After a short nap probably the next hour and a half was spent making a triceratops.

Once again Miky spent the whole weekend working as she had about eight dresses to do. On Saturday she started just after six am and finished after 10 pm. Last night we took a few photos.

I don't know who he thinks he is.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Some Excitement In Dullsville, At Last

Interesting start to the day. Just prior to arriving at work I spotted the smoking remains of something. My first thought was that it was a pipe that had burst under a carpark and was on fire. But no, it was something a bit weirder than that.

Fireman hard at work.

Fireman about to be eaten by a garbage truck.

Now, this occurred near a couple of fast food chains. And the smell was a little worse than usual. Having a closer look it appears that the load in the garbage truck caught alight and the driver decided to dump the load. Probably a very wise move. And it was probably very lucky for the owner of the car that normally parks with its back wheels on top of the fire hydrant. The owner may not have been too impressed with his window being smashed so that the firefighters could move the car or having a bullbar shoved through the back.

Keep a close eye on the fire boys. Don't let it get away from you.

A smouldering mess.

I couldn't believe that some woman was desperate enough for a drive through meal that she drove through all of the smoke. Otherwise it was quite a slow morning for the fast food chains in the vicinity.

At least the drive through was still open.

This woman needed to have her coffee, apparently.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Some People Just Don't Deserve To Be Taking Up Space

I was driving home from taekwondo last night with Miky and Yu-Jin. The road was wet, it was dark and we were almost there. I had just turned into our street and was coming up to a speed bump therefore there was little need to accelerate. Prior to reaching the speed bump I noticed a male youth on a bike, on my side of the road, coming towards me, with no lights or a helmet. As I was only doing about 15km/h I thought bugger him, if he wants to play chicken he can go right ahead. At that speed I shouldn't do too much damage and can always blame him as he is at fault.

At the last moment he veered away. Miky was horrified as this was the moment that she spotted him and all she could think of was "Splat!!". Yeah, well. It didn't come to that. But he was just another idiot taking up space when he didn't deserve to. I would love to have cleaned him up but it wouldn't have been worth the hassle. Plus, I would have been first on the scene and had to do most of the cleaning up of the aftermath myself. Definitely not worth the trouble.
My Volleyball Career Is Over

At least in the short term. The neck injury that I suffered, or at least worsened considerably in our last win, is still giving me a great deal of discomfort and I have had to opt for an early retirement. Miky isn't unhappy about it but I love my volleyball and am somewhat traumatised. I haven't played golf since I was injured so you can see that I am taking it seriously.

I hate to be the one letting the team down also. Take it from me, if the neck was good I'd be out there on that court trying to thump the opposition. Miky even encouraged me to play golf instead. Hmm, that's just plain cruel. You can't say that to a person in my state.

I wish the Purple Cobras well and hope to return in a month or two. Cross your fingers.
Strange Flavour For An Icy Pole

Yu-Jin wanted to have an icy pole tonight after I offered to buy ice cream. Now, I remember the Calippo icy pole coming out when I was in primary school. When you think about how many ice creams and icy poles there are on the market these days, much like magazines, it is surprising that it has withstood the test of time. I liked them when I was a kid. His first choice was a Bubble 'O Bill but we weren't going to have him chewing on bubble gum just before bed. That was released when I was in primary school too, I believe. It must have been because I hardly ever bought lunch at the canteen once I started high school.

Melon and Mandarin flavour Calippo.

Talk about a strange flavour for an icy pole - melon and mandarin. Isn't Mandarin a language and not a fruit. Google tells me that I'm probably incorrect although there are some four and a half million entries for mandarine, which is how I thought the fruit was spelt.
Parking - Problems Everywhere

I had a bit of a whinge lately about the parking in Subiaco at our work. Road parking is for a maximum of two hours when it used to be all day. It appears that parking anywhere in Subiaco is a problem. Unless you are a council worker. What an oxymoron that is.

The Tap Doctor can't park properly in Subiaco.

What part of "Strictly No Parking" don't you understand?

On closer inspection it appears that this parking is just for spectacles. No cars accepted.

Obviously a hard day at the office for this council worker. He had to park his arse.

Don't park in a Clearway, idiot!!

On my way home a woman stopped in a Clearway in front of me so that she could post some letters. It didn't matter how much I abused her for blocking me she wasn't going to move. The silly cow even pointed out the parking sign to me!! If she was able to read it she would have understand that it was currently a Clearway.

Interestingly, I parked my car in the city tonight and the parking inspector, pictured above, whistled to me and called out that it was a Clearway zone and that I had to move my vehicle. Well, I was only checking the sign for parking anyway and would have been moving it in the next thirty seconds. There's no way that I want to receive a parking ticket.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Funny Number Plate

The owner of this car has a great sense of humour. His number plate is DENEFEW. Don't get it? Reminded me instantly of this joke:


A pregnant woman from Virginia was involved in a car accident and, while in the hospital, she fell into a coma. When she awoke days later, the woman noticed that she was no longer carrying a child, and asked, "Doc, what happened to my baby!"

The doctor replied, "Ma'am, you've had twins! You're the proud mother of a handsome baby boy and a beautiful baby girl. Also, you should know that while you were in a coma, your brother named the children for you."

"Oh, no!" shrieked the woman. "Not my brother! He's not really all together, if you know what I mean!"

The doctor replied, "Well, ma'am, your brother named your daughter Denise."

"Oh, that's no so bad," smiled the woman. Then, hesitantly, she asked, "What's the boy's name?"

The doctor grinned and said, "Denephew."
Household Menace

There is a new menace in our household. We've had mice, in fact we got another one on the weekend, we've had snails, but now I fear that we are facing our greatest threat to feeling safe in our own home. It's pins. Yes, pins. They are all over the place. On the dining room floor, in the bathroom, in the laundry and I even found one outside the house behind the car. They are a menace and it's got to stop.

Domestic And International Discrimination

Went to the post office to send a birthday card to a friend in Japan. I had lots of loose stamps in my wallet and wanted to use them up but I can never remember the cost of international postage as I utilise it so infrequently. The charge was $1.25 for which I had stamps enough to cover. But the girl at the post office informed me that I would have to pay an extra 10% on the twenty five cents worth of stamps that I planned to use. This had me rather confused. When did this happen? It turns out that the one dollar stamp was an international stamp for which there was no GST payable but the other stamps that I had were domestic and if I used them for international postage I would have to add an extra 10% to cover the GST. Talk about ridiculous. So, I had the choice of buying 25 cents of international stamps or 27.5 cents (rounded up to 30 cents) of domestic stamps. I've never heard of this and thought that over the years have used domestc stamps for international postage without anything ever being said. GST gone crazy, if you ask me.

Closing Down Sale - Too Late

The lamp on Miky's sewing machine has gone. Filament is broken. As we were heading past a sewing shop on Saturday we left it until then to buy one. Bit of a shock to find the sewing shop was having a closing down sale but that there was nothing in the shop apart from a painter's ladder. Left that run a little too late.

Taekwondo Guests

There are a couple of new students at the Saturday taekwondo class. I found out this weekend that they come from Fukuoka. That came as a bit of a shock - why are Japanese studying a Korean martial art? They are both black belts and have come here to study. You can see that they can't understand English and look a little lost until the exercises start and they can see what they are supposed to do. Their father is a retired professor from the Fukuoka University of Technology. Number Two son, as he called him, is completing his engineering degree at university here, brave move for someone who doesn't understand the language, and can do a standing kick where his foot goes behind his head - extraordinary. Number Three son seems to have very little comprehension of English but his backwards flying kicks are amazing. Hidesaki san was more than a little surprised to discover that I have been to Fukuoka twice.

Superman Returns - The Movie

Yesterday we went to the cinema to watch Superman Returns. The cinema was almost full and we prefer it when there are only a handful of people. Yu-Jin couldn't even sit with us, which was ok as he couldn't talk to us then. The guys behind us kept talking and left the cinema once or twice to get something to eat, something that was very loud in the way of chips, etc. One of their girlfriends answered her mobile during the movie, and boy, did she get told by another patron. Rightly so. The guy next to me couldn't sit still, especially during the exciting moments of the movie, and jiggled his legs up and down. Miky thought that the guy behind her was kicking her seat but it was actually the guy next to me bouncing around and making the row of seats wobble. Makes you want to stay at home with a DVD.

The action in the movie was great and a huge improvement on the dated special effects of the original movies. Two and a half hours was too long though and Yu-Jin had a bit of trouble sitting still but his opinion of the movie was that it was "Excellent". Lois was the star of the movie, I thought, not Superman. A few twists that were unexpected and appreciated. I don't enjoy a movie that I feel that I could have written. Only scores two and a half stars out of five though.

One of the jerks who sat behind us left his wallet on the seat. I could have picked it up but thought better of it. The projectionist ran after us as we left the cinema and asked me if I was Watson. No, but I'm sure that Mr Watson feels like a bit of a dick after leaving his wallet behind. I'm afraid that he didn't deserve my help as a good samaritan but I'm sure that the cinema looked after him.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Please Use The Main Entrance

Bugger dear. It looks like we forgot to put up the "Entry Via The Main Gate Only" sign.  Posted by Picasa
How Anonymous Is Alcoholics Anonymous?

Mel Gibson has been sentenced to three years probation including having to attend five sessions of AA for four and a half months and three sessions for the following seven and a half months. Can you imagine Mel Gibson being able to keep his anonymity at an AA meeting? Would the fellow attendees be able to contain themselves from blabbing to all and sundry, "Hey, I go to AA with Mel Gibson. Look, I even got his autograph."?

Something doesn't seem right here. Doesn't sound like too bad a sentence to me though. But I'm not Jewish.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Making Big Bubbles at Curtin University Open Day 2006

Making Big Bubbles at Curtin University Open Day 2006

Huge Bubbles

Kids making huge bubbles at Curtin Open Day 2006.
Call For Our Porkie Pollies To Lose Weight

There was a report on the radio a couple of days ago calling for our fat politicians to lose weight. Not only because it is bad for their health to be obese but for the fact that they are in the public eye and should be setting a good example. I'm not expecting them to join Jenny Craig in a hurry. I'm sure they'll have their excuses such as, "I work long hours" and "the job is so stressful" and "there's no time to prepare food properly".

I don't think it is just about the food. One thing that can be done to skinny-up our pollies would be to stop offering taxpayer-funded concessions on meals. I believe that the meals of politicians are subsidised whilst they are in Canberra. When I worked on a mining site and the food was free I ate an unbelievable amount. I remember going away for four days once and putting on two kilograms which, subsequently, fell off in the next week or two when my eating habits returned to normal.

Another partial solution would be to make the politicians pay for their own petrol. There certainly wouldn't be that much driving around done. Seriously, how much meaningful work can you do while you are being driven around anyway? I can't stand seeing people on their mobile phones conducting business while they're driving. You can cram too much into your day. The cost of petrol would shock the fat cats if it was paid out of their own pockets.

I would suggest taking away the chauffer-driven cars of our politicians also and making them ride bicycles, but, you know what happened a few years ago. One of our pollies, I can't quite remember his name (shows how important he was - Mclay, was it?), had a government-provided bicycle which he fell off and hurt his arm. He claimed compensation and received in the vicinity of $50-60k. These bikes are obviously too much of a health risk to our pollies and are not the answer to helping them lose weight.

Let's just make the politicians pay their own way and see if they have the consumption ability to become obese.

It was interesting to hear Wilson Tuckey call Kim Beazley a "fat so-and-so" the other day. I would have been much more descriptive and colourful in comments. And it would have involved a couple less letters.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Planning Approval Has Been Issued

Word from a few days ago is that planning approval for our sunroom has been granted. Now we have to get building approval. If you are naïve like me you probably expected them to be one and the same. Not so dear friends. Building approval should only take 1-2 weeks and then they will be building within 3-4 weeks. Anyone's guess really.

Incindentally, my builder resembles Gene Wilder so I refer to him as Willy Wonka. He's been very hard to get hold of lately. You know, I've been on holidays and so have my installers, my daughter went to hospital yesterday, etc. Not that he has mentioned anyone other than his wife and sons previously. We'll see how it goes.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Curtin University Open Day 2006

On Sunday Curtin University had its Open Day. They said that last year some 10000 people attended. I had a look at the fixture list and decided that it would be nice to go. Besides, it was the 20th anniversary of it becoming a university and the 40th anniversary of its initial opening as the WAIT Institute. There were lots of activities that I thought Yu-Jin would enjoy.

In the Physio section in building 400 they had a skeleton to construct and Yu-Jin had a fairly reasonable idea where all the bits went. There were also some balance tests which we were all quite good at but Yu-Jin was outstanding at. I thought that he was a bit unco myself but standing on a ball with his eyes closed posed no problems. In fact, they had to kick him off because he was too good.

Reconstructing half a skeleton.

There was an old style vitalagraph which measured your lung capacity and mine was up around 5.8 litres so I'm pretty chuffed about that. Just goes to show that I'm a big blowhard. We did an oxygen level and pulse rate test. I had the best oxygen level but the highest pulse rate. Whoops.

In the Psychology building they were offering hearing tests and Yu-Jin, who loves taking tests, was dead serious about the test. The student who conducted the test said that although she was still learning and the test results couldn't be guaranteed, the results indicated that his hearing was within the normal range and very good in the low and high frequency areas. That just proves he has no trouble hearing but that listening is the problem. Typical kid.

He's a picture of concentration, isn't he?

We had some lunch and then took Miky home. She had to work and there was a total of six or seven dresses for her to do over the weekend. Yu-Jin and I went back to the uni and visited the John Curtin Prime Ministerial Library where Lynne gave us a tour. I was unaware that our WWII wartime leader had only attended school until he was 14. That's a remarkable achievement actually. Bit boring for Yu-Jin so we went elsewhere.

Scitech put on a few shows for kids with their travelling sideshow. The first one we saw used liquid nitrogen and the second one was with slime.

Scitech Balloon Animal Vid

Scitech Paul The Poodle Vid

Later we saw a couple of demonstrations of kendo. The first one used the sticks, called a shinai, and the second utilised swords.

Kendo Demonstration with Shinai Vid

Kendo Demonstration With Swords Vid

Following the kendo was the Chung Wah Association Lion Dance Group which included two lions and a very loud musical backing. Deafening would be closer to the truth.

The Chung Wah Association Lion Dance Group lion.

Chung Wah Association Lion Dance Vid

One of the other displays that we visited, to get a free ice cream, was about bacteria. They showed boiled eggs, eggs at room temperature, frozen eggs, eggs in dry ice at -50 degrees C and then they froze some silverbeet at -80 deg C which just shattered in the fingers. A demonstration about bacteria and the need to wash your hands with soap and not just water, viewed with an ultraviolet light, was very informative and perfect for someone of Yu-Jin's age. About this time we bumped into, or rather he bumped into us, my friend Ben who was looking for the rest of his family.

I wanted to visit a display about coin tossing and mathematics and some students were blowing things up nearby. Pity we missed it as that was certainly the type of thing to attract a young boy's attention. Nearby was some big bubble making equipment that we stumbled upon with another kid just mucking around.

Yu-Jin making a large bubble.

Yu-Jin Making a Large Bubble Vid

All in all a great day out for the boy. If you wanted to learn some serious business about attending university that was available also but we didn't go there for that.

Lost Children 599 - I don't remember this building when I went to uni.
Must Be Something In The Air Regarding Personalised Number Plates Today

Quite a few personalised licence plates caught my eye today.

1LOUDVT - Obviously on a VT Commodore.
ACDC ROCK - Blue Ford Falcon.
XTINA - My guess is that this means Christina. X=kiss, KissTina being a child's way of saying Chris. Maybe. Got any better ideas?


GGRRRR - Jaguar XK8


LOWDEO - Holden Rodeo, perhaps?


PIG GTS - Must think that he has a beast of a vehicle.


BATHTUB - Referring to the shape and colour of the car, maybe?

P.S. I saw probably my favourite licence plate on the way home tonight - MOOVOVA.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Telstra Payphones On The Endangered Species List

It seems that Telstra has 4000 payphones on its hitlist. I'm not at all surprised when they reveal that due to damage some of them actually cost $27 per phone call made. Is this particular payphone scheduled for demolition? Maybe it's not in danger - the only danger is the guy who put the DANGER tape upside down. Doh!

Endangered payphone?

The guy who put the DANGER tape up the wrong way is certainly a danger to himself.

Yu-Jin didn't want to get up and get dressed for school yesterday. So he decided to hide. And just where did we find him?

Where is Yu-Jin?

Peek-a-boo, I see you.
Freaky Chick Save Me

Dr Who was on tonight and it featured the Cybermen. Unfortunately we had some visitors and I didn't tape the show. Yu-Jin is very upset with me, to say the least. I'd built it up a bit as the Cybermen are some of my favourite baddies. Anybody local got a copy of tonight's show? C'mon Freaky Chick, I know you are a fan. Help me out, mate, buddy, pal.
Call Me The Friday Night Specialist

A few weeks ago Collingwood played Hawthorn in a Friday night AFL match and won by 45 points. In the AFL and Essendon Footy Tipping that I am a member of I tipped Collingwood to win by 45 points.

Last night Essendon, placed 16th on the ladder, played Collingwood, ranked 5th and looking for a top four berth. My tip was for the Bombers to win by 13 points. Can't imagine that too many people would have picked them. Guess who won by 13 points? I tipped them in both of my footy tipping competitions and also at work.

Yeah baby!! Just call me Mr Friday Night Specialist.
Northbridge - From Chinatown To Yankeetown

After visiting the Japanese art on display at Central TAFE last night we walked around Northbridge and had some icecreams. Northbridge would normally be known as Chinatown but last night it was Yankeetown. There must be an American warship docked in Freo as Northbridge was crawling with 18-25 year old Americans with short haircuts and daggy civvies. Their terrible dress sense was on display for all to see. I even had to ask them to move out of the way so that we could get past on the footpath.

I guess that the local hookers did a roaring trade last night as it wasn't unusual to see 8-10 guys chatting up a couple of girls. The local sluts would have done well for themselves last night also. Northbridge was a pretty busy place. It'll all die down in a few days I expect. Wonder what Fremantle was like. Bit of a culture shock to be surrounded with American accents with no television on.
Something I Have Always Wanted To Do

Last night I fulfilled a lifelong dream - to kick the car of an ignorant motorist. Please don't try this at home kiddies.

My volleyball captain, Michiyo, invited our family to a TAFE artists opening session at Central TAFE. It was about Japanese artwork and most of the artists were Japanese. I parked the car nearby and walked a couple of blocks. We had to stop for the traffic lights and when they changed we started crossing the road. Pedestrians have right-of-way from turning drivers when crossing the road. I was quite annoyed to be cut off by a mobile phone-toting woman driver in a red car and even more so when a guy and his mate in a yellow car barged in front of us. He had his window down and I yelled "Hey!" at him and shrugged my shoulders and waved my arms. His response was, "I've got a green light" and on he continued.

That's when I kicked his tatty old car. Probably not the most wise thing to do. He stopped his car on the street and thought of myself getting my head kicked in started to materialise. Maybe he wasn't too pleased and he stopped there for a few seconds. We just continued walking and perhaps that was a wise move. A few bystanders appeared interested in proceedings. Not to be recommended but boy it felt good to have done it to an arrogant prick who deserved it.

The gallery was packed. Miky grabbed a glass of wine and we wandered about for 5-10 mins, I spotted Michiyo but she was too busy to be able to chat, and then we left. Some interesting gear on display. I might add a few details about the gallery later as I don't have access to the artwork at the moment.
Prudhoe Bay - An Appalling State of Affairs

Alaska haemorrhaging oil money - when I read this article I was only the second viewer. I was incredulous to discover that 89% of Alaska's state revenue comes from oil royalties and that the pipeline shutdown by BP from Prudhoe Bay would cost the state US$6.4m/day and the state would run out of money within two months. In this day and age what sort of a government is foolish enough to have basically only one source of income? The people don't pay personal income tax or state taxes. How could this incident come about in this day and age? Alaskans must be ultra-conservative by nature or somebody would surely have recognised this as being potentially damaging on a huge scale in the future. What is there was an attack on the pipeline?

Something else that must be somewhat a precedent is the call for a state hiring freeze by the Governer. Perhaps this just involves state employees however. I can't imagine that it would be statewide.

Australia was known to be "riding on the sheep's back" up until about 50 years ago. Wool was our primary industry and most of our export revenue was gained from it. Riding on the sheep's back is another way of saying "putting all of your eggs in one basket" or relying too much on one thing. No business, or state, should be reliant on one product. Government of Alaska, take a long, hard look at yourself.

Latest news is that the oilfield's production won't be stopped completely. Maybe that has saved a couple of bums in Parliament.

Friday, August 11, 2006

The Changing Swan River

I think it was Tuesday of this week when we experienced a bit of wild and wooly weather that the Swan River was very choppy and almost had what you could classify as surf. There were waves crashing into the shoreline and the spray was going onto the Kwinana Freeway - not something you see every day. Pity the poor cyclists on the cycle path who would have been soaked by the time they arrived at their destination.

Next day was a complete contrast. The river looked like glass and you don't see that every day either. If I hadn't been driving I would love to have taken some pics and videos but that's what you get for living in a country where the average person drives by themselves.

All we need now is an appearance by the Loch Ness Monster to complete the picture.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

What's Your Blogging Personality?

Somebody is making the assumption that I have a personality. Stole this from Lori.

Your Blogging Type is Artistic and Passionate

You see your blog as the ultimate personal expression - and work hard to make it great.
One moment you may be working on a new dramatic design for your blog...
And the next, you're passionately writing about your pet causes.
Your blog is very important - and you're careful about who you share it with.
Full Moon Pics From Early 10th August 2006

Seeing as I rose early this morning and the full moon was still apparent I thought that I might take a few more photos. It's only about 4.1 degrees C outside at the moment but a couple of pics were ok. I've cropped them all so they're quite small.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

My Wife Turns Into A Werewolf About This Time Each Month

The full moon does some strange things to people. Miky says that she turns into a monster or a werewolf but I think that it is just to scare Yu-Jin a bit. I think.

There was a strange halo around the moon so I took some snaps of it. Some of the pics came out almost like daylight once I'd found the night shot setting.

The full moon almost looks like a supernova.

Auto shot of the full moon on August 9th 2006.

Halo effect around the full moon on August 9th 2006.

I thought that the halo effect was quite interesting.

More of the halo effect of the full moon on August 9th 2006.

Night vision shot of the full moon.

Special Lunch At Work Today - Mr Bean Rears His Ugly Head

We did lunch at work today. Wandered off to a nearby place where we had our Christmas in July lunch. I had prawn risotto with camembert. Pity that there didn't appear to be the slightest whiff of camembert. Disappointing.

My workmate, Andrew, ordered a cacciatore pizza. Can't think what he asked to be taken out of the toppings but he asked for extra sausage. It reminded me of the time I ordered pizza with double anchovies. At the time on television if there was a pizza they always asked for double anchovies. I just had to try it and was served an inedible pizza. I've never made that mistake again. And the same went for Andrew. He made such a fuss about how bad it was that Adrian, Lyn, Demosa, Rob, Derek and I tried the sausage to see what he was on about. It tasted like old rubber boots, or at least how they would taste like, and was terrible.

Andrew was so embarrassed that he started behaving like Mr Bean who, when he went to the restaurant and was served raw mince, not knowing what the item on the menu really consisted of, ended up hiding it under the napkins, inside the teapot, etc. Much like Andrew who left a piece of pizza so that he could hide the uneaten sausage under it and thankfully Rob didn't finish his salad as that left plenty of space to hide the sausage. Sounds like a game that not for the lunchtime table at work.

This was a disgusting tasting cacciatore pizza.

Hiding Andrew's lunch leftover under Rob's leftover salad.
The Census - Write Your Answers Down And Be Counted

Census night was last night. Every five years we have to complete it. By law you have to complete it. Not sure what the punishment for not filling in the form would be but I assume that they don't include any sort of capital punishment. It wouldn't be a wise move to kill someone who wouldn't be involved in the population count. Although, it would mean not having to collect so many forms.

It is now possible to do the census online. I guess this is to discourage the Australian love of inserting funny comments. I know I used to do this in exams on ocassion but only if I had had enough time to be satisfied with all of my answers. No point in wasting valuable exam time for the amusement of the exam marker unless I could be sure that there were no more marks to gain.

Seeing as there were only three people in our household on census night it only took about 40 minutes to complete and that was made slightly easier by one member being under 15 and the majority of questions were not aimed at that age bracket so these questions were not to be answered. I think that the census discriminates against Catholics and polygamists as there is only room for the details of up to six persons. Any more and you need to fill in another form.

Q20. Does the person ever need someone to help with, or be with them for, self care activities?
- Yu-Jin is lazy when it comes to getting his clothes ready and feeding himself. It was almost appropriate to answer yes on his behalf.

Q51. In the last twelve months did the person spend anytime doing voluntary work through an organisation or group?
- All of my work is involuntary. I work because I have to pay the bills and live.

Q55. How many bedrooms are there in this dwelling?
- The choices are to fill in the number of rooms or none. None? How does that classify as a dwelling? What about the residents of Australind who had a tornado go through the other day - they may have a dwelling without rooms?

Q5. What is the person's relationship to Person 1/Person 2?
- Could get tricky in Tasmania to answer this question correctly.

Q19. What is the person's religion?
- Apparently 30000 people replied "Jedi" in the last census.

Q32. For each female, how many babies has she ever given birth to?
- Obviously we are still waiting for the first man to give birth. Damn, when is that breakthrough likely? Interestingly, the females must be over 15 to answer this question. A little bit of bias here, methinks, to not acknowledge the problem of teenage mothers.

Q42. Which best describes the Industry or business of the employer at the location where the person works?
- No options for:
a) at risk from cheap/imported goods
b) at risk from overseas cheap labour
- No questions regarding work for under 15s. Slave labour must be non-existent or young, homeless people with a lack of schooling who must enter the workforce are being ignored.

Q43. What are the main goods produced or main services provided by the employer's business?
- answers could get a bit saucy in the sex industry.

Q44. Last week, how many hours did the person work in all jobs?
- Attended work or actually did something? Trade unionists may find this difficult to answer truthfully.

Disappointing that the real questions weren't asked.
- Do you like the cricket?
- Which footy team do you follow?
- How much money do you piss up against the wall each week?

And it will be another five years before the nation sees this much stay-at-home enjoyment again. Shame, isn't it?

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Welcome Back Yobbo And Hello To Oddly Enough

In the past few days I have noticed the re-emergence of A Yobbo's View. Welcome back Wardy. Your vitriol, and hate for PETA, along with spot-on social commentary is most graciously accepted. Enough sucking up - can I have a link on your blog?

Another funny blog has appeared. It's from Reuters and is entitled Oddly Enough. Good for a laugh with news stories.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Locked Inside My Own House

It was an interesting start to the day yesterday. Miky went to unlock the door and couldn't get her key in the lock. Thinking that her key was a little worn she tried mine. When I tried it I discovered that it didn't get all the way in properly. We were locked inside our own home. Sure, we could have used one of the other doors but we don't usually. Luckily I had a screwdriver to enable removal of the lock and a way of unlocking it. This required a walk down to Bunnings to buy a new deadbolt. And the installation to go with it.

Reduction In Buyer's Remorse

After the purchase of my mobile phone I was feeling a level of buyer's remorse. You know, that awful feeling that your purchase could have been that much better. Creating an SMS was terribly hard work. Choose one character and then select it. The character appears on the screen with a space. After selecting all the characters to make a word I then had to delete all of the spaces between characters - horribly time consuming and annoying.

Quite by accident I discovered the other day that if you choose your digit and then press to choose another digit without hitting the select button it builds the word on the screen for you. Talk about make life easier and provide a much better feeling about the phone. Much of the buyer's remorse that I experienced has evaporated but I'm still annoyed that the user manual, which I read, doesn't explain this method to input characters for an SMS.

Korean School

As if the boy doesn't have enough of school we've decided to send him to Korean school on Saturday mornings. He was a little reluctant to attend for the first time but enjoyed it so much that he can't wait to go back. Miky says that there are a lot of mixed kids there, that's understandable, and the teachers are generally volunteering their services. Some of the kids are Korean and they have come to Australia so that their parents can work. I guess that they have limited opportunity to practice Korean reading and writing as everything is done in English in this country.

Golfer's Remorse

No golf this weekend. Still got a stiff neck.

The Things You See When You Haven't Got A Gun

We went out for tea on Saturday night to Chi Restaurant in Vic Park. Made sure that we booked a table as Saturday nights are crazy for eating out in this town. No booking - no table. Being a Chinese restaurant I was a little surprised when a Chinaman started talking to me and he called me by name. When I realised that he was one of my customers from work there was a feeling of relief that swept over me. I certainly hadn't expected to see anybody I knew so it was a strange feeling.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

It Feels Like I've Swallowed Viagra And It's Stuck In My Neck

I've got a stiff neck that extends about a third of the way down the lefthand side of my back. My neck was out of shape before heading to volleyball on Thursday night but I was almost crippled by the time I woke up on Friday morning. And I was unable to contact my chiropractor before starting work which meant the earliest I could get to see him was 11AM. This morning it is still very sore.

I hate driving with a sore neck as I find it worrysome to drive without doing proper shoulder checks. I'm not a driver that trusts his mirrors and prefer to trust my eyes instead. I don't understand how most drivers in Perth drive without doing shoulder checks - it is a scary experience.

Killer Cobras

I guess the return of the Killer Cobras, well we did win at volleyball, may be worth the stiff neck. Just as the game was about to start we only had three players with one due to show so we had to get two fill-ins. The fill-ins had already played two games for the night. The other side had a full complement but they didn't get close to us. As they weren't strong at returning I served almost as hard as I could. At one stage I had two serves that nobody had laid a finger on so the umpire organised their playing positions. Of course I tried too hard after that and served it into the net.

When I'm on song with my serve it is hard to stop. Three times though, on my serve, it was set to Michiyo, our captain of limited stature, to spike and she hit it into the net. Nothing upsets me as much as serving very well and having somebody on our team lose the point. The umpire even told me to take it easy on the opposition as we were leading two sets to nil. Easy on the opposition? I don't remember any team taking it easy against the Purple Cobras when we were in a losing position. I don't believe in giving a sucker a break. The win felt great.

Yu-Jin's Merit Award

Yu-Jin was awarded a merit award at school on Thursday. He informed us that most of the kids had already received one and so I thought that it was a bit of rubbish to motivate the kids and make them feel better about themselves. One of his classmates was awarded his merit award for science and Yu-Jin's was for actively participating in discussions in class, i.e. he's a chatterbox, and for his reading. Thinking about that he does deserve the reading recognition as he tries really hard to read books that are beyond his reading age. The books that he brings home from school for homework are far too easy. So I feel that the award wasn't necessarily bullshit. Not happy that they wrote his name as "Ju-Jin" though and words will be said to his teacher.

Patented Wafter

Have you ever walked past a fast food restaurant and noticed just how far the delicious smell of hot foods wafts? I wonder if a patent has been taken out on the machinery that makes it possible. That's what I suspect anyway. Food can't normally smell that good that far away by itself.

Pity On The Pedestrian

I had the perfect opportunity to remove a worthless pedestrian from the face of the earth yesterday. Luckily for him I was on the lookout for just such a person - you know the type that emerge from parked cars and wander across the road without even bothering to look. The type that deserve to be run over. I know that I could have done society a favour but I thought better of it. If I had been travelling like many drivers do he would certainly have been cleaned up.

We've Been Tagged

Bit of a surprise when we arrived at work on Thursday - the rear of our building had been graffitied. I believe that it rained on Wednesday night but a lot of buildings in our street were tagged. We were probably worst hit because our area was undercover and out of sight in a back lane so they had plenty of time to do their dirty work. Doesn't look too bad though. I quite like the artistic abilities of some of these graffiti artists, as long as it isn't my property. I'm sure that the boss doesn't have the same view though. What do you think?

We've been tagged at work.

We've been tagged at work 2.