Thursday, January 31, 2008

Not Something You See Every Day, Or Night

When we came home from our trip the other night it was a bit late which necessitated having the outside light on for a while to allow me to bring the luggage inside and to carry out a bit of watering. I had a bit of a surprise to view two daddy long leg spiders wrapping a dragonfly together. I didn't think that spiders cooperated in that manner. Most unusual. Ten or fifteen minutes later I saw the dragonfly wrapped up and the two spiders had moved off to the side and were having a fight. A few minutes after this there was only one spider injecting the dragonfly in readiness for a feed.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I'm Back From A Short Holiday

Don't fret people. I've just been on a short holiday where not using the computer and blogging was the order of the day. Now, if you're very good I might do a post or two about it in the next few days.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

World's Smallest Mature Tomato - This Week's Entry

The tomato plant out the back grew this week's little beauty. Barely more than a mouthful for a mouse.

World's smallest mature tomato - this week's entry

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Heath Ledger - You Pill(ock)

What a dill Heath Ledger is/was. He was found dead this morning in, apparently, Mary-Kate Olsen's apartment, or so the earlier stories went. I believe this may have been retracted. I had my suspicions when I heard that he was surrounded by sleeping pills and not diet pills. I guess we won't be hearing about this on E!-Online, or is that E-News!, as it has nothing to do with ecstasy. I did read that he's been linked recently with Lindsay Lohan but obviously there is no substance in that report. He mustn't have had the connections in Hollywood if he ended it all with sleeping pills and not something a bit harder.

I'm starting to think that maybe he was a Kiwi and not an Aussie. One news report claims he's a Perth boy whereas another tells of his troubles with the paparazzi in his hometown of Sydney. If all of Australia is claiming him then he must be a successful Kiwi.

I blame the Catholic Church for Heath Ledger's death. If they allowed masturbation he would have had a different pastime to while away the hours and boredom instead he resorted to pills.

Do drugs, do yourself in. Idiot. Or pillock. When are these celebrities going to do us a favour and live in the real world? Their fantasy world is not conducive to long, healthy lives.

Stay away from drugs kids. And perhaps the Catholic Church.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Staggered Work Starting Times - Efficiency Provider or Fallacy?

There was some talk on the radio recently about charging Sydneysiders lower amounts to use toll roads if they started work earlier. Peak hour traffic in Sydney must be approaching two to three hours as it is. Apparently, if five percent of the working population started half an hour or an hour earlier than is the norm, the peak hour congestion would all but disappear. Wonderful thought, eh?

I read recently some study into housing affordability, which was pretty dismal in Australia, that the commute time to the suburbs in New York, which has six times the area as Sydney, was about the same. It shows that our urban planners have got it seriously wrong. Perhaps that is a throwback to the acre block that everyone wants to live on in this country.

In theory, the staggered start times would provide a boost to the economy. Less driving time, less petrol usage, more time to play with kids/family time, less stressed once you arrive at work, etc. I can see certain benefits. People do require incentives to change habits. Most of my work is situated on the other side of the country so I'm able to start earlier and leave earlier without disrupting what I do. That suits me fine. People working in shops don't have that sort of flexibility.

In practice we are fairly rigid with our working hours. The major issue with staggered starting times is that people like to talk. If I start at a certain time, Joe Bloggs comes in half an hour later and we find ourselves talking for 10 minutes, followed by Fred Nerk 20 minutes after that and we have a natter, etc. You can see that all that time gained has effectively been lost.

Take parking itself, being very much time-regulated, which would have to change from the limitations placed on 8am-6pm parking to take into consideration the early starters. It's difficult to quantify the benefits of somebody requiring that parking space at an earlier time than is deemed normal. Town planners might have a fit.

Oil companies would generally be opposed to staggered starts. They seem to oppose any initiative that will cost them income. I'd like to know what the figures are for petrol wastage due to traffic jams.

There'd be an uproar from the daylight savings followers as there would be no need for daylights savings. People would be starting work, and finishing, when it suited them. I foresee some opposition from this section of the community.

Perhaps allies would be found in those that enjoy a siesta. Start an hour early, take three hours off at lunch time for a nap, and go home an hour later than normal. And get charged less for the privilege.

Maybe this subject requires more research. Any thoughts?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Jungle Defender - Beat My Score

Playing online games with the boy this morning and he chose to play Jungle Defender. You have a hut and a family to protect in the jungle. The zombies are attacking you. The more money you obtain the better weapons and defence you can buy. I became a bit bored after 50 levels. By 75 levels I was ready to give and I thought I'd go to 100 levels. Could have gone on forever but I'd been playing for about two hours and so just let them kill me. Ralph Shrock - I could have you on toast if so inclined.

Jungle Defender - click to play

Jungle Defender - Wave 101

Jungle Defender - The action

Jungle Defender - Score

Jungle Defender - High Score List

Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Beard Is Coming Along Nicely, Thanks For Asking

The beard is coming along nicely, thanks for asking.

Seven weeks of beard growth.
Japanese Whalers Caught In The Act Of Slaughtering Defenceless Whales

There's been a bit of discussion regarding the Japanese whaling ship, or ships (I'm not sure how many are involved at the present time), whaling in the Southern Ocean. There is no need to kill whales, especially in the name of "research". Research for the palate maybe.

Well, they've been caught in the act. We have photographic evidence of the plight of the poor, defenceless whales and the ruthless hunters, the Japanese whalers. If you are offended easily or have a week stomach please look away now. The truth has to come out, no matter how horrible. See the pictures below for the true story.

Japanese whalers caught in the act

Bird's eye view of Japanese whalers

Defenceless whales being slaughtered by Japanese whalers

Another view of defenceless whales being slaughtered by Japanese whalers

Japanese whalers firing on whales

Another view of Japanese whalers firing on whales
Australian Open 2008 - Interesting Match Tonight

Tonight sees the great Australian men's hope, Lleyton Hewitt, take on Creek Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis in the third round. Hewitt has a polarising nature - either you love him or you despise him. I'm in the latter court. He's an ugly Australian.

In the previous tournament he mentioned that he "was ready to take on the world's best again", and then promptly lost to an unknown. Baghdatis reached the final of the Australian Open in 2006 and he's ranked 16th in the world at the moment.

I will firmly be in the camp enjoying watching Baghdatis kick Hewitt's arse.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

DVD Player Trial

Our DVD player had been playing up for a while. You might be 100 mins into a 120 mins movie, have to stop for some reason, and then it won't play again. The stupid thing mentioned on several occasions that the disc wasn't readable. "Um, hello? You've just been playing the DVD fine up until now. What's the problem?"

Post-Christmas sales aren't a bad time to buy. I had a few shops in mind - Strathfield, JB Hi-Fi, The Good Guys and Harvey Norman. Miky had asked me to buy a name brand and not the cheapest thing I could find so I did take a bit of money in case I had to buy a DVD/VHS combo with PVR (hard drive).

Strathfield had the Highlander DVX-5260 which offered DivX, MPEG4, MP3, Karaoke, HDCD, Kodak Picture CD, CD, Windows Media, JPEG and all region playback. It looked exactly what I wanted and was only A$47.40. I wasn't sure if it was ok as it promised a lot of features and the sales guy said if I wanted to trial it just bring a disk in.

JB Hi-Fi had a Pioneer DV-300-S for A$128 that played DivX, DVD, WMA, MP3, Photoviewer, VCD, CD and all region playback. Not bad but the value wasn't as good as Strathfield's offering.

The Good Guys had a Panasonic DVD-S33 for $115 (cash) which was region-free, and played DVD-R, CD, MP3, JPEG, DivX and Windows Media. They had a few other brands for sale also.

Didn't bother going to Harvey Norman as these places seemed to have reasonable deals. I did as the first sales guy suggested and put together a DVD player trial disk along with a DVD, VCD, CD, MP3 and DivX files on disks.

The Highlander played my Red Dwarf DivX files and it turned out to be the only player to do so. When it came to the trial DVD with nine files it could only read that there were seven but couldn't play any of them. I didn't bother looking any further.

Journeyed down to the Good Guys and trialled the Panasonic. It had issues too. The sales guy was very helpful, and should be commended for his efforts, as I wanted to use the remote controls as well to skip files. They had eight or nine players that they sold and it came down to a battle between a Samsung (we have a Samsung currently) and a Conia. They both failed on the Red Dwarf DivX (no biggie) but the Samsung crashed at this point, and the computer video of Ice Age demo they only played the audio. MP3, WMA (audio) and JPEGs were fine. The Samsung couldn't play the VCD (video CD) whereas the Conia could.

Conia it was then. It had the greatest amount of playback features that were operational. And this unit only set me back A$49 for cash. I had been prepared to pay up to A$200 if necessary but this was the best machine even though it was the second cheapest anywhere. Must have spent 40-45 mins in the shop but the guy got his sale. And I was a relieved customer.

Took it home and didn't use it for a week. Funny that. The remote allows you to fast forward and rewind like a VHS player and also zoom in on the screen which is a pretty nifty feature. So far so good. It will take a bit of getting used to the remote but that's a small price to pay for being able to watch a DVD uninterrupted now.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Feeding The Birds

I'm a bit of a naturalist but I'm not keen on a few birds. Pigeons and seagulls I save a certain amount of hatred for. These are noisy, dirty and quite rude creatures. Not unlike we humans, I might add, but a healthy dislike I do have for.

The other night I started feeding the seagulls. Perhaps it was the better side of my nature. Perhaps I was caught up in the moment. Perhaps it was the inherent benefactor within. Perhaps that's all bullshit.

We had gone out to buy sushi and eat it at the riverside. It was a lovely evening and that seemed like a decent plan. Miky had been working all day and the boy and I had been to the pool for an hour and a half. The river isn't too far away so we ventured there together.

The sushi was ok with the California roll much better than the Chicken katsu roll, however. There were some minute leftovers so I fed the nearest seagull. Ok, so it was a piece of ginger. And he didn't like it. But one of his mates ate it. "Hey, I have some wasabi (which I detest) left over as well." I thought. So, a bit of ginger covered in wasabi was fed to the gulls. One of them ate it. And he was fed a second piece as well.

I am nothing if not vengeful. Call me horrid. I can live with that.
Perth's Newest Monument - Italian Abruzzese Association Statue

For several months during our lunch time stroll we have overseen the construction of what has become Perth's newest monument. It is a statue depicting an Italian family arriving as migrants in Australia. The Italian Abruzzese Association spent five years planning, building and fundraising for this monument and the finished product is quite appealing.

Italian Abruzzese Association Statue, Lake Vasto, Perth
Front view of Italian Abruzzese Association Statue, Lake Vasto, Perth

When we first noticed the construction work one of our group asked what was going on and we were informed about the plan. Apparently there was one town in Italy of 25000 inhabitants and 8000 of the townspeople migrated to Australia. I don't think they all came to Perth as that would account for all the residents of Mt Lawley and Wanneroo.
Ice Addiction - A Family Tragedy

Ice is truly addictive. It destroys families and ruins the health of the individual. Ben Cousins became addicted to ice. He's had to attend very expensive rehabilitation facilities in the United States to help him overcome his addiction.

I feel for him and his family and can relate to what he is going through. My son has an ice addiction also. There's no stopping him. He's into the freezer, grabbing the ice cube tray, down on bended knee trying to loosen the ice and pops it in his mouth. Minutes later he's back again. Six or seven pieces of ice at one sitting is nothing unusual. There's no stopping him. Perhaps the only way to help him is to buy more ice cube trays. Summer is the worst. Winter usually sees a lesser dependence on ice to the point where it's usage is refused.

Note to self - remember to firmly remove tongue from cheek.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Funny Place Names In The World

The boy and I were looking up Heidelberg in the atlas as I just received a card from a friend there. Whilst we were doing that a couple of funny place names caught our eye and so we found ourselves searching for more for about an hour. Some of the best we discovered:

Todtmoos - does this mean "dead cows"?
F├╝ssen - very particular people live here.
Worms - I am lost for words. Perhaps the dogs all walk around dragging their bums on the ground.
Bad Kissingen - the inhabitants here are not particularly good at touching one's lips.
Dingolfing - people play golf very loudly here. I read it first as Dingofling - throwing dingoes.
Landshut - you can't visit the land as it's not open.
Boxberg - something made of cardboard that polar bears don't float on.

United Kingdom and Ireland

Worms Head - what you see an awful lot of when something interesting to worms takes place above ground.
The Mumbles - lots of old, deaf people live hereabouts. Not to be confused with the township of people who complain constantly - The Grumbles.
Limerick - everybody speaks in funny phrases of five lines in length with lines one, two and five rhyming as well as lines three and four rhyming.
Biggar - a fishing town with stories to match.
Kilmartin - the townspeople have a grudge against anyone with the name Martin. General population has the surname McCoy.
Wigtown - my mate Barrie lives there.
The Mullet - horrible short sides with a long back haircuts are popular with the populace.
Dunmore - people always blame themselves when somebody dies and question whether or not they could have assisted better.
Dumfries - chefs in this town aren't particularly good at cooking chips and blame the finished product.
Kilcock - the rooster is for it in this town.
Hag's Head - attractive women are difficult to come by in this town.

United States of America
Leggett - what to do when you've been spotted by the police when committing an offence in this town.
Jackpot - Jack is the name of the local drug dealer.
Winslow - winners aren't necessarily the first to finish here.
Bend (near Crooked River) - in the interests of maintaining the family-style of this blog I won't make any crude comment on this. Just thought the name was funny.
Searchlight - all utes must be fitted with them. Sister city in Australia called "Spotties".
Hopland - fair number of amputees stationed here.

Fatunda (Democratic Republic of Congo) - a place, usually a barrel, where one can hide ones extra weight. Not necessarily round as that is Rotunda which is found in Birmingham.
Waka (Sudan) - strange people who enjoy a practical joke.
Waat (Sudan) - the populace is rather hard of hearing.
Likimi (Democratic Republic of Congo) - whatever turns you on.
Leek (Netherlands) - what one does if one has had too many beers or what the dyke does if you remove your finger.
Dr. James L. Chestnut - World Renowned Wellness Expert

On Thursday night of last my chiropractic clinic sponsored a speaker by the name of Dr. James L. Chestnut. One of the local partners studied in Canada with him so they knew each other well. He gave a presentation called "Genetics, Lifestyle and Health: Why We Are Sick and How We Can Get Well and Stay Well". Topics discussed included stress, aging, longevity, vitality, happiness, self-esteem, wellness, increased energy and improved quality of life. His talk completely debunked genetics as the field of science that could lead to identifying causes of diseases. Put simply, we don't eat the food that our bodies are designed to eat and we don't exercise enough.

One of his first realisations was that humans are animals. Biologically we're no different. Our bodies behave in the same manner to poor diet and exercise regimes. The level of toxicity of our environment is also matter for concern. The human diet has changed dramatically over the last century and not all of it for good.

Everything that he said made sense. Billions of dollars have been spent cracking the code of the human genome, some 25000 genes in the human body. Apparently only two genes have changed in the last 40000 years so we can't blame our genes for making us prone to cancer, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, etc. There are adaptations that you can pass on to family members but your genes aren't changed - was a response to a question from the audience regarding Parkinsons disease but I didn't quite understand the explanation as it went a little in-depth. Everything we do can affect our gene expression and that of future generations but not change our genes.

At one stage he related to a story regarding a family in the US who had their dog taken away because they fed it (a very unhealthy diet of) chips and cola. Dr Chestnut was disappointed that the children weren't removed as well.

The body has three levels of health. Homeostasis is perfect health, then comes healing, growth and repair (pretty self-explanatory) followed by fight or flight. Your aim would be homeostasis as that doesn't place any additional stress on the body and allows it to perform to its optimum.

Dr Chestnut discussed Stress and Chronic Illness, Genetics vs Lifestyle/Environment, The Aging Process, Toxicity and Deficiency and Lifestyle Choices and Chronic Health. He mentioned that the human body can turn anything into carbohydrates therefore carb diets were not wise to be followed. Sugar itself is a major cause of cancer as our bodies aren't designed to handle it.

Five Pillars of Chronic Illness
- Stress hormones
- Insulin resistance
- Chronic Inflammation
- Decreased sex hormone-binding globulin
- Decreased immunity

Drugs and surgery may be helpful but they never fix the problem. It was mentioned that there is a law in the United States whereby a company can never undertake any action that may cause it to lose money. Therefore, it is illegal for any company representative to inform you that their product doesn't do anything for you, or is harmful to you, and that you should try something else as it will deprive the company of profits. The pharmaceutical companies have no interest in healing people as they make money by keeping people dependent on using drugs. One study was conducted with people suffering depression. The people on anti-depressants did not respond as well as people that went walking to combat the condition. Those people that walked and took anti-depressants finished somewhere in the middle, not in the best condition.

"If it's got a label on it it's not ready."

The final stage of the lecture was where he asked everyone who wished to, to get out a pen and paper. I had been taking notes the whole time and was shocked when more than half of the people present did so at this point. These people were here to learn!

Dr Chestnut's Rules of Getting Started

- Start by adding sufficiency NOT removing toxicity.
- Fresh fibre first. At each meal eat raw fruit or vegetables. You can still eat some "suicidal" food but just supplement it with healthy food at the same time.
- Incorporate activity into you work, family and social lives. Meet friends for walks or activities not coffee shop visits (places of suicide).
- Always shop full. Less chance of buying junk food and you can't eat it if you don't have it.
- Always judge your choices based on how you feel AFTER the choice, not before or during.

It was a truly inspiring lecture. The next morning I went to have my cereal for breakfast and there was no milk even though my missus had called me from the shop and asked how much milk she should buy. So, I had peanut paste (suicide food) on toast. I felt guilty and just a little betrayed. My attitude towards healthy food has shifted a great deal.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

No Drinking Problem At Collingwood?

I laughed when I read that Eddie Maguire, President of the Collingwood Football Club and boss of Channel 9, otherwise known as Eddie Everywhere, says that there is no unhealthy drinking culture at Collingwood. I don't know what is healthy about a 19 year old player being charged with drink driving. And it's not the first incident. This has probably cost the club $1 million in sponsorship from the Transport Accident Commission - TAC.

You're a joke Eddie and so is your team. Pull your head out of the sand, or your arse, wherever you've put it. I wonder how the sponsorship from Emirates is holding up? I wouldn't have thought that they'd have a bright view of the drinking problems considering the view of alcohol consumption in that region of the world.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Please Consider The Environment Before You Print This Message Blah Blah

I hate receiving emails that prompt me to
"Please consider the environment before you print this message".

As if signatures aren't long enough - I know mine fills up close to half a page. Bloody greenies in disguise. Tree-huggers. I hate them. Their annoying guilt-laden and guilt-inducing messages irk me. Go and get a job!

Your long-winded signatures push the email, which probably have to be printed for record-keeping purposes anyway, to three or four pages in length. Totally unnecessarily, I might add. Quite detrimental to the environment in fact.

Not only do I use more paper, unless using doubled-sided printing (which in itself can be a luxury), but more ozone is produced by the printer/photocopier (at least when photocopying), more electricity is used, more toner is launched into the atmosphere causing long-term respiratory problems and an unsafe workplace, a larger queue of people waiting for their printouts appears making the workforce inefficient causing delays to projects that have national significance and thereby affecting the country's economy in an adverse way. Don't forget that although trees don't grow on trees, they grow next to trees, they are a renewable resource. It's not as if Amazonian rainforest is being used for my A4 page, is it? And think about the poor forestry workers that you will be depriving of employment. What does that do for their plight? It only worsens it.

Think twice before telling me to consider the environment. But please, if you consider printing this post then seek medical attention. There is obviously something wrong with you. Much worse than if you just considered reading this post and throwing it away with all the other fiddle-faddle you come across.
Golden Globes Ceremony Cancellation - The Reason The Stars Won't Attend

You may have heard that this year's Golden Globe awards have been cancelled due to a strike by Hollywood scriptwriters. This is the first time is the award's history that it has occurred. The scriptwriters, and there are probably enough just from the Jay Leno or David Letterman shows to cause a kerfuffle themselves, were planning to picket the award ceremony. That wouldn't be a good look in the eyes of the world's public, now would it? The strike is over how writers should be paid for work distributed over the Internet. I don't have a problem with them being paid royalties for their work.

They were interviewing celebrities who were towing the line that, "I will respect the picket line, therefore I'm not going to be in attendance." Celebrities not daring to cross a picket line to go to work? Well, it's not exactly work, is it now? It's an after hours function that you don't get paid to attend.

But I think the real reason the actors won't attend is that they couldn't write an acceptance speech between them. Not even to save themselves. It's all about saving face, not wishing to appear unprepared in front of hundreds of millions of adoring fans. Or wanting to employ a "scab" to put together an acceptance speech for them.
Indian Cricketers And The "Monkey" Call

In a sensational conclusion to the 2nd Test match in Sydney between Australia and India recently Harbhajan Singh from India was called before the match referee, Mike Proctor, and was found guilty of racially abusing Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds by calling him a "monkey". Just on its own that doesn't sound like much to get excited about but in Australia's last tour of India the whole crowd at a couple of matches chanted "monkey, monkey" to Symonds. As he has a West Indian ancestry it is deemed to be a racist comment.

Harbhajan was banned for three matches but is appealing the ban. I heard that the Indian players had planned to visit the Bradman Museum in Bowral but in course of their protest they have missed this opportunity. Perhaps they should visit Taronga Zoo in Sydney prior to their departure from the Harbour City to see what a monkey really is.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Attack Of The (Not Quite) Killer Wasps

The boy wanted to play some cricket yesterday evening. Once I'd finished cooking tea, a rarity I know, we went outside to play. After some 20-25 minutes he hit the ball back to me along the ground. Instead of bending down to pick it up I decided to stop it with my foot. The ball struck my foot and then launched itself over the fence dividing our property with that of our neighbour.

Yu-Jin looked at me as if what to do. This is a usual occurrence and I signalled that he would be going over the fence. I put him on top so that he could jump down. He did so and located the ball before throwing it back. I was waiting for him to climb the fence so that I could pull him over and he'd just started when he became frightened and climbed back down. Then he started screaming. When the flying insects began to appear I thought that they might have been bees but they were wasps.

Nothing for it but to jump the fence myself, grab him and run towards the other fence and get the hell out of there. After putting him over the fence I noticed a wasp hanging off my arm which I brushed away. We went straight inside and applied cold packs - the boy was stung on the right upper arm and above the left eye. I was stung on the left upper arm and right forearm.

My main concern for the boy, who said that "We should go to the hospital", was that he has a nut allergy and suffers a severe reaction to them. Only a couple of hours previously he had tried some turkish delight we had received for Christmas after I'd given him the go ahead even though the box contained a warning that it "May contain trace of Peanuts and other nuts". As soon as he took a nibble he knew that it had nuts in it. As Yu-Jin had never even been stung by a bee before I had no idea how he would react to a wasp sting.

Rang the hospital who transferred me to Health Direct, who can be called in Western Australia on 1800 022 222. Most of the questions were aimed at identifying if it was a snakebite or not and when I said that they were European wasps I was informed that they are very rare in Western Australia and that there is no known nest in Perth. Perhaps it was just a common wasp then as they have similar markings. If there were no nausea, stomach cramps, passing out, grey lips, swollen tongue or lips or severe pain within an hour then the cold packs were the best treatment but I just had to keep an eye on the little fella.

It's funny, in a way, as the weekend before I had discovered a wasp nest in the roof of our house and asked my father if he had ever been stung by a wasp as the boy wanted to know. No, was the answer. Well now we can tell dad what it is like to be stung twice each. It's discomforting and painful but not life threatening.

After talking to the nurse at Health Direct I noticed that one of my toes was hurting. Looking down at my socks I saw some blood. After taking off the sock I could see that my second toe had had the toenail bent backwards about halfway along so it's a tad painful and swollen this morning.

Ah, well. Just another experience to put down to life.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Golden Compass - Movie Review

It's the movie season and we went to see The Golden Compass yesterday. The clips advertising it made it look quite enchanting and action-packed. Wikipedia has a great article with a plot spoiler. It is based on the novel Northern Lights by Philip Pullman.

Visually spectacular it hasn't done well at the U.S. box office but they may have something to do with Nicole Kidman playing a major character. Her acting is so hollow. I watched it despite her involvement. The movie started slowly but when the action started it was fantastic.

Pity the ending appeared mid-movie with an obvious agenda of doing a sequel. I read that it is the first part of a trilogy. The ending just made it appear like a half-finished work which was quite disappointing. Great story up until then. Another thing to put a dampener on the movie was a retarded person sitting quite nearby moaning and groaning a lot. I was more than a little pleased that the group he was with left the cinema after about 30-40 minutes. Times like that make you think investing in a home theatre is a good idea.
Bikini Massage Follow-Up

In today's Sunday Times newspaper they ran a report almost exactly the same as my blog post regarding the bikini massage ad. There is another article on Perth Now's Website regarding the situation in Northbridge. Major difference between my post and the newspaper article is that they informed the police of their findings.

Funny, eh?
Know Your Target Market - Wine International

One of the first elements of knowledge learnt during Marketing 100 was that you should know your market. Items like the age, gender, spending habits, income, etc. The other day I received some mail addressed to "Dear Lover of Fine Wines". At this point I thought that it might have been incorrectly addressed but they did have my name and address correct on the envelope. I liked the fact that they went on to ask me to fill in a survey, if I was over 18 years of age.

Hang on. They've already identified me a lover of fine wines. Gee, could I be a lover of fine wines but under the legal drinking age? Not the cleverest bit of marketing, methinks.

Wine International Mail.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Bikini Girls Massage Full Body

Catchy title, eh? Should send a bit of traffic my way. Arose early this morning and decided to walk to the post office to check the mail. Must be a New Year's Resolution thing, I dunno. Whilst walking through the adjacent car park a few leaflets on the ground which grabbed my attention. I picked one up and had a read. Obviously the headline is supposed to catch your eye and you don't bother reading too much more into it. I took the time to read the whole leaflet and was appalled by the grammar, or lack thereof.

And they are looking for 16 year old girls to work in this industry? This ad is wrong on so many levels. Fact, they're offering immediate starts for 16-30 yrs females. Firstly, there is age discrimination involved here and secondly, there is an element of gender bias. Exactly what "products" would you need to ensure that the "girls" were catered with? Does the fact that "girls" is in quotation marks mean that trannies could get involved?

Love the "This brochures (sic) is the property of Joe Blow Distributors (Victoria - Australia).

For three hundred dollars a day I might think of joining this business. The bikini could be a problem but maybe I could do a topless bikini massage, i.e. in briefs. Or perhaps based on the 16-30 yrs females required for immediate start they have enough blokes employed and not enough female customers. Damn. Just my luck. All of it bad.

Bikini Girls Massage Full Body pg 1.
Bikini Girls Massage Full Body pg 2.

I'd be fairly certain that they've just grabbed an image from the Web to advertise. How could you have a massage done by someone filled with so much silicone and collagen that they couldn't move properly?

Friday, January 04, 2008

Mischa Barton's New Role

When I heard the news about Mischa Barton's arrest the other day I immediately thought that she was longing for her role in The O.C. and wanted to relive it in a new show called the OD - in reference to her being charged with drug possession.

Quite shocked to find out that she's only 21 as she appears to have been around forever. Never watched an episode of The O.C. myself. What possesses these young people to ruin themselves with drink and drugs?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Bunbury Trip 2007

Following Christmas, the start of the Boxing Day Test and the post-Christmas sales, it was an ideal opportunity to drive a couple of hours south of Perth to Bunbury for some R&R. In fact, we had no plans to do anything there for the four nights that we stayed. Our choice of accommodation was the Lighthouse Beach Resort situated in the northern part of town and overlooking much of Bunbury. We made use of the indoor pool, spa and sauna. Much of the day was spent window shopping.

Map of Bunbury from the Bunbury Visitor Centre.

Bunbury Lighthouse

Lighthouse Beach Resort Hotel and Bunbury Lighthouse.

Setting sun over water in Bunbury (Geographe Bay)

Marlston Hill Lookout

Next day we visited Jetty Baths, a beach situated at the harbour. There was a lovely playground for children and shelters for families to stay on the beach and out of the sun. Why couldn't they have something like this in Perth? The water was quite murky even before you reached a depth that you couldn't touch whilst keeping your head dry. In the water were some fish, a couple of crabs and some really strange creatures that looked like clumps of sand. We climbed the Marlston Hill Lookout on Apex Drive later and the view is quite spectacular, although windy. Bunbury certainly would be well placed for a wind farm.

Beach at Jetty Baths in Bunbury.

Overlooking Outer Harbour from Marlston Hill Lookout

On our last day prior to leaving, New Year's Eve, we undertook some touristy things. We visited the old timber jetty, Koombana Beach to view dolphins (failed to sight any), the mangroves nearby, had lunch in an old Tuart forest at Maidens Reserve followed by an hour or so at the beach set within 150 million years old volcanic rock between Rocky Point and Lighthouse Beach. Miky sat down in a gap between the rocks as it had nice, calm water. Nice, calm water that was until a wave suddenly filled it up and buffeted against the rocks. She came out looking like she'd visited a cafe at San Francisco Zoo.

Crane at entrance to Bunbury Timber Jetty.

Bunbury Timber Jetty.

One man died last year on the jetty. I'm not sure whether it was closed to the public at the time.

Mangrove boardwalk on Koombana Drive.


Old Tuart forest at Maidens Reserve

300-400 years old Tuart trees.

Volcanic rocks at Rocky Point to the west of Bunbury in Geographe Bay

Waves pounding volcanic rocks

These 150 million years old rocks are situated on Lighthouse Beach.

Another Wave pounding volcanic rocks

Small inlet between volcanic rocks at Rocky Point

Is this a trilobite?

Trilobites are supposed to be extinct.

Crabs on Lighthouse Beach.

We had such a relaxing time in Bunbury and spent many hours in and around the pool. Some beaches were a little too rough to enjoy but it wasn't too hot with the temperature hovering around 28-32 degrees Celsius. I thoroughly recommend Bunbury for a few days away.

Redneck waterskiing - Bunbury style.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year 2008

I've been offline for a few days having some R&R in Bunbury to see in the New Year in the build up to returning to work. It's been nice to kick back and do nothing much but shopping, visit the beach and use the pool, spa and sauna at the hotel we stayed at.

Well, it's still the New Year so I would like to wish one and all a safe, prosperous and happy New Year.