Monday, March 30, 2009

Taekwondo Perth Open Championships 2009

We spent much of Sunday watching the taekwondo Perth Open Championships. In the morning we saw about an hour before heading to the pool (I did 86 laps [43 real ones] in the time it took to do 80 last week) before grabbing pizzas and heading back to watch the more important bouts. Managed to get a few pictures and one video with a nice kick to the head. Unfortunately the kickee was our team member and he lost the final. In one of the bouts we watched the eventual winner did three consecutive backwards spinning kicks and clobbered his opponent in the head with the third. Mighty impressed we were.

Last round of the Mens Open final at Perth Open Championships - Patrick vs Brody.

Mens Open semi-final.

Not sure what they call this kick.

Watch out for the axe kick. This guy was devastating.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Heart and soul, and a bit of finger

Late last night my sleep was disturbed. I'd started work early so hit the sack around 10. My missus came into the room in a state of shock. She'd been cutting up chinese cabbage to make kimchi and chopped the end of her finger. Not that she was in a lot of pain but there was a bit of blood coming out. We cleaned it up a bit and put some bandaids on it to hold the skin on.

About an hour later same thing. Well, she was still in shock about it bleeding, I guess. We changed the bandaids but I commented that she had some elastoplast-type bandaids, which pull at your skin when you remove them, and that she should change them. Bandaged her up this time so there should be less issues when changing the dressing.

Funny thing was that she could laugh about it. I said that I loved her more seeing as there was only 99.85% of her to love. She would nearly be able to park in disabled spaces for the next couple of weeks. I told her that she'd invented meatlovers kimchi instead of the vegetarian variety - just add chinese cabbage, salt, chili powder and a bit of finger. You know, the sort of stupid things that flow so easily off my tongue.

She'll live. But talk about putting body and soul into your work.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Tree Hugger

I had to pick up a work colleague on the way to a vendor inspection yesterday. He was located near a busy train station. Cars were parked on every available spot alongside the road. So there wasn't a lot of space between cars or trees.

Now, I'm not sure if this guy was a greenie or a different kind of tree hugger but as he pulled out from his off-road parking spot I saw a reasonable sized branch hanging off the back door. He had had to park so close to a tree that when the backseat passenger got out and closed the door they had caught the branch in it. I must say, it was quite a sight to see a car driving down the road with a branch poking out from the door.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

I'm Turning Into A Fish

We've spent the last few Sundays at the pool. A month ago I struggled to swim 12 laps of an Olympic-sized swimming pool (50m). Today I swam 80 laps of a 25m pool - that's 2km. I managed 38 laps in the first 30 minutes and reached 72 laps for the hour. Breastroke mainly with a little freestyle and backstroke for good measure.

The gills are coming along nicely. And the tail is growing too (but I've always had a big bum).

More Online Games

Couple of good games popped up this weekend when playing games with The Boy.

Bloxorz - great mind-challenging blocks game where we could only get to level 6.

Games at - Bloxorz

Get the block to fall into the square hole.

Play this free game now!!

Roly-Poly Cannon - managed to get through all 25 levels.

Fishing Girl - we got through this one too!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cirque du Soleil

We attended Cirque du Soleil - Dralion on Friday evening. I've never been before but have seen a little bit on the telly. A few people from my office caught the show this year and they all had good things to say about it. Tickets weren't cheap but they were worth it. In a word: magical. To use a few more words: enthralling, wonderous, spectacular, blah blah blah. It was fabulous.

Now, if one of the guys at work hadn't pointed out that the theme was East meets West, Dragon meets Lion hence the name Dralion, I wouldn't have known. I couldn't tell what the story was. Nevermind. See it if you can. I'm not going to spoil it for you. It's only in Perth for another week or so (March 25th, in fact).

Cirque du Soleil by day.

Cirque du Soleil bin nacht.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Food Thoughts

Q. What's my favourite part regarding sashimi?
A. The cooking time.

Nasi Goreng - According to Bigpond Nasi Goreng was the Chinese emperor at the time of the building of the Great Wall but it sounds suspiciously like a dish name in honour of a World War II Nazi by the name of Hermann Göring. I think it might be a German dish.

I'm on a seafood diet. I see food and I eat it.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Earthquake In Melbourne - Earth Moves In Perth

I read about the earthquake in Melbourne on a friend's blog before I heard about it in the news. So, the earth moved in Melbourne yesterday. Well, it moved in Perth today.

We have decided to lay some turf in the backyard. No longer are we content with clumps of grass that die off over summer. No siree. We want expensive lawn that dies off over summer.

I braved the mozzies this morning to lay the rooster booster (fertiliser) early as I had booked a compacter from Carlisle Handy Hire at 8am. Not a good idea to start your preparation only an hour and ten minutes earlier. I spread the fertiliser then mixed it in. Followed this with lots of soil conditioner and watered that in nicely. Then The Boy and I went to the shop to collect the compacter. Gee, it was a heavy best. A sign on the compacter said to use ear muffs but I swear it was louder with them on than without them. The machine was so easy to use I let junior have a go. No better way to get him interested in helping his old man than letting him use some heavy machinery.

We wacked the soil three times to get it fairly compact, ready for laying turf which is due to arrive on Wednesday. Then the real fun begins. Being a Sunday, which is now our swimming day, and the handy hire was right near one of the pools that we use, we dropped off the compacter and headed to the pool. After a shower we jumped in the pool. The Boy swam a total of 33 laps (16 1/2 Olympic swimming pool laps) and I managed 52 - a mixture of mainly breastroke, some freestyle, couple of backstroke and one butterfly. Surprised myself a bit there with 1300m. Then we mucked around for the next half hour.

Back home for some lunch and thought it would be a good idea to take the boat out for a cruise on the river. It goes at least 50m on the remote which was very impressive. After a while, when Yu-Jin was chasing a duck, it became snagged. We went to the bank on the other side of the river, where it was so humid and the mozzies attacked with amazing ferocity (felt like being in a rainforest), we couldn't reach it. I had to go home and put some old shoes and overalls on as I had to enter the water to rescue the boat. When I came back there was a bit of an audience. They watched me splash about in the water as it was quite a bit deeper than I expected. At least they gave me a round of applause once I had completed the rescue. Talk about soaked though.

After a nice warm shower and tea The Boy and I had a couple of games of chess. He's just joined the chess club at school and needs the practice. I won the first game easily and then he destroyed me in the second game with his queen. I was down to three pieces against about eight. He even got a pawn to the other side and collected a queen but, unfortunately for him, I had positioned my king to take it. I then cut loose with my queen and we got down to him with a king and me with a king and queen. Unbelievably the game ended in a stalemate.

Not bad for my one day off!

Facebook Photo Album - Preparing For Laying Turf.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009


I find that the easiest choices to make are:

1. Those where you have no option,
2. Those where you have no time.

A combination of both aforementioned items makes the choice quite simple.

Monday, March 02, 2009

My New Favourite Dictator - Park Chung Hee

Just finished reading another book. I'll give you a little bit of time to pick yourself up from the floor. Yes, another book. It's titled "Korean Phoenix - A Nation from the Ashes". It chronicles the rise of Korea and the rise of Park Chung Hee. Mostly.

Korean Phoenix by Michael Keon

Talk about a confusing book. It wasn't in chronological order although most of the time it was. Sometimes you could go for two chapters and it appeared that the storyline was lost. At times it spoke about Park, at other times it was about Korea. Sometimes the two subjects were intermingled.

And then there is the British prime ministerial-waffle. Honestly, it was like listening to Tony Blair. Try this sentence which was actually a paragraph.

"Within the part of the peninsula south of the 38th Parallel, which came to constitute itself the Republic of Korea, the years between 1945 and the early summer of 1961 can answer only to one description: "the mixture as before"-muddier than ever, unremittingly exacerbating, and almost wholly sterile of recovery and growth."

Try reading that whilst walking home from the bus. I did and had to reread a couple of times. It's difficult to enjoy a book when it's written in just such a manner.

The book does detail some of Park Chung Hee's greatest achievements - reconciliation with Japan (made the economy boom), building of the Seoul-Pusan Expressway (only Park made the decision to build it and he stood by it - the expressway was built rapidly and for probably the lowest cost and with the trade that it built up it was a huge success), creation of large worker-friendly industrial complexes, instilling a high regard for education within Korea, creating growth for farmers to build their wealth (providing steel and cement to townships and allowing them to manage their own affairs by empowering themselves) and for opening dialogue with the North.

My favourite quotation in the book - '... material or financial support must not be extended "to those who are not willing to help themselves. Equal distribution of government funds among the diligent and idle alike would be be simply unfair."'

Revisiting the provision of steel and cement to townships Park took notice of how well the township put the materials to use. If they built a wall, roads or a dam to better their economic situtation and for the betterment of their town then they received another government gift the following year. If not, they did not receive any such gift. And the private sector invested about five times as much as the government provided. It worked extremely well.

Park Chung Hee actually took office as a general in the army but then stood for two presidential elections, which he won, prior to having a referendum to rewrite the constitution so that he could run for a third term, which he also won. He was a man of his word and honour who did not act in a corrupt manner. I think that many successful businessmen could take a leaf out of his book. He made Korea what it is today - an economic, first-world powerhouse. He did everything for his country and not for himself.

There is very little in the book to detract from Park Chung Hee. Perhaps this is because the author, an Australian, was living there at the time and had been for a number of years. If Park was a brutal dictator, as others have stated, it isn't mentioned in this book.

Not a bad book for $2 but structurally wanting. And from a reporter no less.