Friday, March 30, 2007

How Embarrassing

Bit chilly this morning so I wore a heavy jacket, even though it was going to warm up to 30 degrees. As I approached the bus stop I noticed the bus so I made a run for it. "Just what I need in my heavy jacket," I thought. Somebody was waiting at the bus stop so I arrived in time not to hold anybody up.

Then it happened. One of those dreadful moments you hope never happen to you.

I pulled my wallet out to tag on with my SmartRider. The wallet must have been upside down and all of the bank cards, library cards, discount cards, etc, that were living in the sleeves decided to disengage the wallet. And boy, did they spread out over the floor. Right in front of a bus load of people. And the bus driver waited for me to pick them up. When I got to about the last two cards he made the decision to depart.

Guess where the only seat available was? Yes, at the front of the bus facing everybody. Thankfully I had my sunglasses and a newspaper which allowed me to ignore all the stares that must have been in my direction.

How embarrassing.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

More Ben Cousins Jokes

Q. Why do the Eagles name 22 players but only 21 take the field?
A. Ben Cousins just can't go past the white line.

Q. Have you heard about the new, low irritant Ben Cousins contact lenses?
A. They guarantee that your eyes never get bloodshot.

Q. Have you heard about the Cousins Burger Meal?
A. It comes with free coke.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Hammy’s Laws IV

1. Blowflies disappear when the flyspray is produced.
2. Smoke from around a fire will always follow you.
3. Bargains in this day and age are as rare as hens’ teeth.
4. The only real challenge is the one within yourself.
5. Philosophy is the art of thinking nonsense and making it sound convincing.
6. If at first you don’t succeed, try something easier.
7. Performance levels are only plateaus of the mind.
8. Winning isn’t everything but bettering yourself and feeling good about your work and effort are important.
9. The only time that you ever exceed the speed limit a police car will be following you.
10. If you wake up during the night and feel awake, you will become tired when it is time to get up.
11. People don’t do things with blind stupidity, there will always be a good reason for it.
12. Checkout girls work quickly when the queues are short and pitifully slowly when the queues are long.
13. Objects that you don’t require the use of will pop up everywhere and disappear when you need them.
14. Gangsters don’t live long enough to prove whether or not cracking your knuckles causes arthritis.
15. Only in TV commercials do icecream wrappers undo easily without destroying the packaging.
16. Never clean a golf ball before using it on your first hole because you will lose it.
17. Don’t tempt fate, fate wins.
18. If you only see one episode from a series and don’t enjoy it, years later when the series re-run is viewed it will be the same episode.
19. The driver usually survives when all of his passengers die in a car accident if he is drunk.
20. Songs that you hate are the ones that you hum to yourself and can’t get out of your mind.
21. If a man can’t see why a girl wears a strapless dress, she shouldn’t.
22. A good girl is good but a bad girl is better.
23. Few things are more expensive than a girl who has the evening free.
24. Anatomy is something everybody has but it looks better on a girl.
25. When a girl is old enough to go out alone, she doesn’t.

You can see that I had run out of original ideas by the end of this set of Hammy’s Laws.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Just Call Me The Timelord

Daylight savings finished in Oz this morning. Rather than run around last night changing the clocks in and around the house I did it this morning. Let's see, how many were there?

All up there were 16 clocks to change. And, I hate to admit it, but I needed the manual for Miky's mobile. Every other clock I was able to do by myself. I wonder what percentage of the population can program a video recorder without resorting to the manual?

Big head alert.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Did You Hear About Ben Cousins' New Job?

He was fired after being hired to do an ad for Coke because he couldn't do the lines right.

Or, kept saying "Coke, is it?" instead of, "Coke is it!"

Or maybe he got the job because the audition went so well as he did the lines without a problem.
Hammy's Laws III

1. If a job is worth doing, it's worth doing properly (especially when the boss is watching).
2. When pulling something apart there will always be one more screw to undo before it comes apart.
3. Keep your mouth shut and appear stupid because if you don't you will remove all doubt.
4. Once you have pulled something apart to fix and then put it back together again, it will only work if many parts are left over and never if you use every part.
5. Washing the car, the windows or clothes all cause rain.
6. All warranties expire yesterday.
7. Everything works perfectly when the repairman comes.
8. If you have the enthusiasm, people can con you into anything.
9. The driver in front of you can't drive.
10. If the driver behind you can't drive, he will overtake you.
11. Interference disappears when commercials appear.
12. People pushing shopping trolleys in front of you will wander around aimlessly.
13. To err is human but to muck things up completely requires a computer.
14. If you want something now from the shopt it will be on order or of a discontinued line.
15. Golf balls have built-in anti-homing devices.
16. The umpire never sees the first violation, only the second which is invariably yours.
17. If you think that you have the correct amount of something, add half a metre. If you do you will have two metres to spare and if you don't you will be short.
18. You never notice the security guard or store detective until you steal something and get caught.
19. A purse full of money is a girl's best friend.
20. A purse full of money is a girl's worst enemy.
21. Cleanliness may well be next to godliness but I reckon it is closer to impossible.
22. You never see the checkout girl who has her photo on an excellence certificate.
23. My car has a better economy than that of Bob Hawke's monetary policy.
24. Concrete ducks don't swim.
25. Shop assistants usually don't know anything about the particular product that you want to test.
Hammy's Laws II

1. Traffic lights only change to green once you have come to a stop.
2. The Double Bass will never become a Treble.
3. If the bathroom door is locked, chances are that a woman is inside doing her hair or makeup.
4. What goes up will have a greater certainty of coming down if your head is directly beneath it.
5. Cakes that fit perfectly into a cake tin will be destroyed when the first slice is cut.
6. Tin whistles may well be made from tin but fog horns will never be made from fog.
7. Automatic doors will always close just as you start to walk through them.
8. Pensioners will never really gain from the Federal Budget.
9. New or clean carpets will always have mud wiped upon them or something will spill on them.
10. If you support Greenpeace you will blow your nose in silence.
11. Peter Garrett proves that skinheads have less brains than hair.
12. The comfortability of your car will be inversely proportional to the distance you need to travel.
13. If you drop something it will land in the worst possible way.
14. Once bread has been put in the toaster it will be forgotten.
15. Once a divot has been taken in golf, you will never find the same amount of divot to replace it with.
16. Diets which were started 'yesterday' will be forgotten by tomorrow.
17. Friendships are priceless but making enemies can be very costly.
18. Snow melts when you iron it.
19. Wooden frypans are useless.
20. If you have the concentration span of a New Zealander, you are in trouble.
21. Bob Hawke is a wheatbag short of a silo.
22. The amount of buttons on a remote control will be inversely proportional to how well you understand its functions.
23. "Never, have so many, owed so much, to so few," - Quotation about taxpayers.
24. Words printed on thinner paper make for lighter reading.
25. Some people get fat just looking at food.
26. The cost of a meal at a restaurant will be inversely proportional to how much you enjoyed it.
27. Man may well be the most intelligent creature but he can also be the most stupid.
The Catastrophe We Face With Global Warming

People of this world are heading for a catastrophe due to global warming. Remember good ol' Charles Darwin with this theory of evolution and survival of the fittest? Why do whales survive so well in the cold? Their blubber keeps them warm. Human beings are getting fatter. There is more than anecdotal evidence to support this. It appears that human beings are preparing themselves for an ice age. It's almost obvious, isn't it?

If the world is heating up due to global warming then the fittest, i.e. the slimmest, will survive. Overweight people don't handle the heat well. Yes people, unless an ice age is coming you'd better start losing weight otherwise global warming will decimate the human population.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Hammy's Laws I

I wrote these back around the late 80s to early 90s. I didn't date them, unfortunately. They were initially typed up on a Commodore64 and printed on a dot matrix printer. Showing my age a bit, I know. They were the thoughts and observations of a pessimistic yet optimistic young bloke - Hammy, now better known as Frugal Bastard.

1. Christmas has a bad habit of coming, and going, quickly.
2. Birthdays are worse than Christmas.
3. The pressure of water to come out of a drinking fountain is inversely proportional to the pressure you exert on the button and directly proportional to how close your face is to the stream.
4. Things are more likely to go wrong when you are certain that they won't and doubly so if you have a bet on them.
5. Elvis Presley will live longer while he is dead than when he was alive.
6. Battery drills will always go flat with one hole left to drill.
7. A jail sentence will be indirectly proportional to the heinousness of your crime.
8. Trees and stobie poles do commit suicide.
9. Michael Jackson will end up with more plastic surgery than Jane Fonda.
10. People are quite prepared to do a good days work, for a weeks pay.
11. The likelihood of Collingwood winning another grand final is an inverse relationship with how well their supporters think they will do this year.
12. For as long as Alex Van Gastel is allowed to drive there will be accidents.
13. For as long as Bob Hawke is allowed to govern Australia, never will a country be doing so well and yet doing so badly.
14. Beauty is only skin deep, ugly goes right to the bone (and sometimes further).
15. The English will always be known as "Bloody Poms".
16. It WILL be close IF it hits.
17. "No-one" will always play a brilliant game of Aussie Rules.
18. You are most likely to start making less mistakes when your errors are at a maximum.
19. It is better to be confused than not know what you are doing.
20. A watched pot never boils but unwatched toast will be burnt to a cinder.
21. If it moves, shoot it (although a stationary target is easier to hit).
22. Too many people talk faster than they think.
23. The boss always knows of an easier method.
24. Christ will come again but God knows when (joke).
25. I may not be right but I'm never wrong.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Ben Cousins - You Idiot - Revisited

Statement from the West Coast Eagles only last week - "We don't have a culture problem". Judging by the fact that a few days later they suspend indefinitely their former captain, Ben Cousins, following a drug test and failure to attend training that was rather a large statement to be taken with a dose of salt.

He may have gotten away with running from a booze bus, being a prat, dealing with gangsters, fighting with a teammate resultant in a broken arm (for him), etc, etc, but this time he's overstepped the line. Apparently it has a great deal to do with substance abuse, specifically methamphetamines, "ice", and he recently split with his long-term girlfriend.

Could have been a champion footballer but never really was a champion player. Good riddance to bad rubbish. I bet that changes the footy tipping for the rapidly approaching 2007 season.
Frugal Bastard's Tips For Saving Money

I haven't done this for a while so perhaps it's time to compile a short list of money-saving ideas. For the frugal-minded among us.

1. Buy things on special. It makes me happy when I think about the fact I'm brushing my teeth with a 4-pack of electric toothbrush heads that I bought for $23.99 when they normally retail for $34.99.
2. Buy in bulk. Release your inner Chinese. Six packets of breakfast cereal or 18 packets of toilet packet won't go off. Hoard. See point 1.
3. Forget JIT (Just In Time) - you pay more for customisation and the fact that the company doesn't have stock to offload quickly.
4. Defrost your fridge when you go on holidays. Turn all the power off in your abode. Clocks are easily reset when you return.
5. Turn off electrical appliances rather than leaving them in standby mode which can still consume 40% of online power.
6. Read how other frugal people do it. E.g. Frugal For Life.
7. Mow the neighbour's lawn. Then borrow the lawnmower to do your own. Don't cut the neighbour's grass - this will lead to expensive divorce proceedings.
8. Keep your house clean. This will enable you to walk around in the dark without endangering yourself or your belongings. It also lets your lamps last longer through less use and you also consume less energy.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Wedding Vows Renewal Ceremony

A couple of months ago we received an invitation to attend a wedding vows renewal ceremony. It was for a friend and former work colleague, Gary, and his wife Angela. They were celebrating their 23rd anniversary and wanted to do something a bit different.

Gary likes to have his Fridays off work. It just so happened that this anniversary fell on a Friday and the ceremony was being held at Palm Beach in Rockingham at three o'clock. So that I didn't have to work Saturday and Sunday to make up for lost pay I started work at six o'clock and even took my car to work and paid for parking to squeeze an extra half an hour into the day rather than spending that time for the bus.

Miky picked Yu-Jin up from school early and was already home when I arrived. Now, I mentioned that we knew two months ago about this ceremony. Miky designed and made her own dress. There was a question along the lines of, "What is the latest time we can leave?" I said 2:15. Well, the dress was only finished about 20-25 minutes before we left and we made it with only five minutes to spare.

Miky's dress.

There was about 25 people in attendance and the bride wore white. The ceremony was quite quick with the vows only taking two minutes. I videoed it on Miky's camera and the resulting video would take up half the space on a CD.

Smiling couple.

Is that a phone in Gary's pocket or is he really glad to be here? (Bloody photo editing software re-angle)

Wedding party.

Phew, it's over.

Happy couple and portaloo.

Wedding party revisited.

Infamous portaloo that made it into all of the wedding photos.

Better pic of bride and groom.

Immediately afterwards we all headed to Gary and Angela's house for a party. Yu-Jin brought his bathers and all the other kids in attendance had the same idea. He spent two hours in the pool and then ran around with a water pistol before we made him sit down and eat some tea.


Gosh the food was nice. Angela made a korma and another curry along with chili con carne. I had both the curries and three days later the roof of my mouth is still burnt. The baked potatoes and coleslaw were delicious. It was a little unfortunate that we didn't know any of Gary's friends but we still had a great time and found people to talk to.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Boy's Been In The Wars Again

Yesterday wasn't one of Yu-Jin's better days. Before he started taekwondo I asked him what he had to do. His first response was defend, kick, punch but I didn't get the "try hard to be good enough for grading" answer. He trained quite well but became a bit lost with taeguk four and taeguk five patterns.

His sparring was quite good. The last spar was against Bin Tan. She's a yellow belt who spars very hard. They are well matched and were into each other. Then Bin Tan did a back kick and, being a girl, who invariably are much better at doing high kicks, managed to kick him in the face. And what was one of the first things that his instructor said? "You should have blocked."

Later in the afternoon we went to his friend Jesse's house. When we started our bike ride it was still 36 degrees. Not bad for the middle of March. Pity Jesse wasn't home. At the start of the ride home is a very steep section. I reminded Yu-Jin what had happened last time he rode down there - he crashed into the grass when he couldn't stop. And what happened this time, you ask? I parked my bike in front of the grass section where he ended up last time and kept telling him to use his brakes. Did he listen? Maybe, but he didn't use his brakes. Luckily he came off his bike before his head and helmet clattered into my bike. Amazingly there was no skin lost. After a minute or two of crying we headed home. And not before time. There was a bit of lighting in the distance from an approaching storm - but we didn't get any rain last night.

Monday, March 12, 2007

It's Safer To Work On Weekends

This last weekend was about the first one I haven't worked since the start of the year. When I look back on that that's impressive. But it doesn't come without its pitfalls.

First of all, I had to drop Miky's car off at the garage to get four new tyres and to change the brakes on the front. Then it was off to Junior Music School for Yu-Jin. I haven't been before so that was worth a look. Then off to IKEA to spend copious amounts of money that I wouldn't be earning that day. Never fails. I love shopping at IKEA apart from the money we spend. Before heading home we did the fruit and vegie shopping.

Pick up the car just before two o'clock and pay the sky-high bill, but it was what I was expecting. Straight off to taekwondo class. Later that night Yu-Jin and I played computer games for three hours together.

Sunday morning - we boys went for a nice bike ride and to pick up the paper. Seeing as I was home Miky got me to remove two screen doors that aren't required anymore and a screen over the kitchen window. It certainly lets a bit more light into the place and tidies it up somewhat. Greens collection starts today so I dragged some cuttings out the front. Off to Bunnings to get some slabs of concrete for the front and a couple of boards to make a folding table for Miky to do her fashion gear on. Upon returning the trailer I discovered that they had shut the gate so it took a while to get inside and drop the trailer off. After that the boy and I went to the park and visited a little boy's house to see if he wanted to play, only to find out that it was his grandparent's place and he wasn't there at the time. So we played in the park before heading home for tea.

I need to return to work for a rest.

Friday, March 09, 2007

What Is Make-Up Sex?

What is make-up sex? Is it sex that you are having, when you weren't going to get any, to try to catch up with sex that you missed out on before? You can never catch up if you miss out.

Is it "Of course I'm not a virgin coz I've had sex" sex? You know that game that everyone played in high school.

Is it something that involves lipstick or eyeliner that shouldn't be mentioned in polite company? If caught out you wouldn't be in need of blusher.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The New Transperth SmartRider

We used to have a MultiRider for public transport in Perth. You could have between 10 and 40 trips on the ticket and then you would throw it away. The cards were problematic when they became a bit old and the reading technology whereby you insert the card into a reader makes for problems every now and again. I received the odd free bus ride when the reader was out of operation.

The MultiRider has suffered a quick death. New SmartRiders have been brought in. They are contactless and don't require replacing. To get the maximum discount you set up your SmartRider card to automatically debit your bank account for a value between $20 and $250.

I'm not completely sold on the idea. If you tag on but forget to tag off you could be faced with paying something like $9 for a four zone ride - I only ride two zones for $2.40. So, I am ever worried about forgetting to tag off which is something I didn't have concerns with when using the MultiRider. Probably what I don't enjoy the most is seeing my credit level drop. The system tells you how much credit you have at the start of the journey and how much the trip has cost and remaining credit. You just see you money start to dwindle.

Having said that, you don't have to buy another ticket ever again if you set up direct debit. In a few years time everyone will have forgotten about the old MultiRider.
I Hate Public Holidays

I quite dislike public holidays nowadays. In my new job as a contractor if I don't work I don't get paid. Hence my dislike for public holidays. Sure, I can go to work if I want to but I don't want to. Public holidays generally give us the time to get together with friends for a BBQ. We had planned to get together with some friends on Monday, Labour Day public holiday in Western Australia, but not the rest of the country, but as the temperature soared towards 40 degrees it was a mutual decision that four o'clock would not be a good time to have a BBQ. It reached 40.4 degrees on Monday and we decided to cook at home and go out for a picnic. A wise move as it turned out. That's another reason to dislike public holidays - they always seem to be so hot. Unbearably hot.

The temperature wasn't too bad and the kids had a good time running around. I had my first taste of grass jelly. Yes, you read correctly. And I ate it with chopsticks. It was nice to get out of the house. We went to a playground so that the kids could run around, which they certainly did, and the adults could sit together and talk. I must say that it was nice to get together with friends for a couple of hours.

Next public holiday is Easter and the likelihood of that being hot is remote but not impossible.
Forty Two - The Answer To Life, The Universe And Everything

Forty two. It's the answer to life, the universe and everything. According to the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, at least. I've read all five books in the increasingly inaccurately named trilogy that is The Guide.

Mankind wanted to know the answer to the ultimate question - "What is the answer to life, the universe and everything?" Deep Thought, a large computer, thought about it for 7.5 million years and the answer was "42". Deep Thought pointed out that the question was, in fact, wrong.

Forty two is also how hot it was yesterday in Perth. And we are now in Autumn. And it is the forecast temperature for today. Bloody cyclone conditions up in the north of the state are making the weather pattern not change a lot down south and causing the extreme temperatures.
The Tooth Fairy Is Overworked

On Sunday we finally pulled out another of Yu-Jin's teeth. It had been very wobbly for three to four weeks and it was time to go. He looked quite different with a large gap in his teeth.

Another one bites the dust.

Lo and behold on Monday one of his other teeth was really wobbly and was almost half removed by wobbling it. Time for it to go as well. Although not pleased with having his teeth taken out Yu-Jin is happy that he looks so different and that his mouth feels so strange. His greatest hope is that no-one at school will recognise him.

And another one's gone.

Now he has bags of money as the tooth fairy has been quite good to him. At least in my opinion she has been. I've got no intentions of telling him about the reality as he still enjoys being a kid.

Sunday, March 04, 2007


This sign has been posted for quite some time. I know that a decent lawnmower can be purchased for about $300-500. Not that I would entertain the thought of buying one, I have a reputation to maintain and will just borrow the neighbour's mower when need be, but if a "reel" mower costs $1595 how much does and "unrool" mower go for? Just how real is this mower?

Reeler mower sign.
Clean Up Australia Day 2007

I guess the first Sunday of March they have Clean Up Australia Day every year, in Australia funnily enough. This is about the only time of the year that I bother to clean up what other people have left behind. Unless it's money then I'll pick up after them any time.

Last year the boy and I went to South Perth. This year it was to Mason's Landing. It was situated about 20 mins bike ride from our house and we arrived nearly an hour after it started. Bit of a late night I'm afraid. Nice day for it, around 30 degrees and down by the river. We grabbed a bag and set off. I expected most of the area to be clean seeing as we were a bit late. They said that some morning tea would be put on at 10:30. Last year we received a cup of tea and a fruit box.

There was quite a bit of rubbish lying around. In the car park I found two condoms but none anywhere else. Few beers bottles, lots of bottle tops and fast food wrappers everywhere. McDonalds seems to be about four times more popular than any other fast food joint, at least judging by the rubbish that gets thrown away. We collected at least halve a dozen chocolate bar wrappers and plenty of Coca-Cola labels and bottles. Pepsi only made the grade once. We found another shopping bag during our travels and it came in handy.

Probably the strangest thing was a big screwdriver that Yu-Jin found half buried. Headed back to base just before eleven hoping to get a refreshing drink. Well, they had water, juice, muffins, sandwiches, watermelon, pineapple, honeydew, rockmelon and strawberries. Talk about getting looked after. There were also some calico shopping bags with a toy, frisbee, $10 shopping voucher, zoo entry ticket for a child and a 2007 calendar. I was only going to take one but they offered us two as there were two of us that took part. What an unexpected bonus.

A great way to spend a few hours with the boy, enjoy a nice snack, get some exercise and help keep our great country clean.

The boy and our two bags of rubbish.

The rubbish collected by 20 volunteers.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Strong Punishment For Gambling Footballers? Don't Bet On It.

We have a little game in our country called Australian Rules Football - AFL. Some six million people fill the stands each year watching this national sport. That's a fairly signicant percentage of the population, which just ticked over to 20.7 million. There is a rule for players that they must not bet on the sport.

Been a bit of a furore recently with an announcement that four players have been found to have bet on matches. No indication that the players have been involved in match fixing or betting against their own teams. We are talking bets of between $10 and $16000. I laughed when I read that one player had bet $10 and been caught up in this affair. It's still against the rules however. The punishments could have been far worse but the AFL knows that more players have been involved, just not found.

I wonder if there will be an appeal and, if so, would the tribunal offer the player "double or nothing" as a punishment? Don't bet on it.