Sunday, June 28, 2009

Parking Fee Doubles in Perth

Thursday was a shock when I went to pay for my parking. I had to pay double my normal fee. Well, it had a bit to do with the ticket machine taking the money from my credit card and not issuing a ticket. Rather than receive an infringement notice for parking illegally I had to purchase another ticket. That explains the doubling of fee. The next ticket machine provided me with a message "Credit Left" as I purchased the second ticket so maybe, just maybe, the system is smart enough to realise that I'd paid and the money was left over.

I visited the City Of Perth Parking Website to see how I could protest the charge and notify them that there was a faulty machine. They have a service for just this sort of complaint whereby you complete an online form and it emails your complaint. Let's see how long it takes to receive an answer.

One thing I did notice though was that the price for parking would increase by 50% as of July the 1st. Now this isn't something that has been widely publicised (although there was a full page add in today's paper with a few groups not pleased by this decision being made without consultation). I stuck the new fees up on the noticeboard and it got a few people talking in the office. Nobody else knew of this and I find the increase a little difficult to justify, especially in the current economic climate. Not only will the fees increase markedly but earlybird parking will be reduced from prior to 7:30 am to 7:00 am. That will surely catch a few people out and raise more funds for the government's coffers. No word where the extra revenue raised is going to be used either.

Not happy, Jan.

Strange Sight When Leaving Work

I got a bit of a shock the other day as I left work. There were a number of women being trained in the art of attacking with knives. Ok, I'm all for people being able to defend themselves but knives are dangerous. Besides, it's illegal to carry a knife as a concealed weapon. And who is actually trained in being able to pass on the skills of attacking with a knife?

Maybe it was about the other women involved and about self-defence.

Sonia Kruger's Domination of Local Television

Todd McKenney wants a baby. He's openly gay and is pressuring his glamourus co-star, Sonia Kruger, on Dancing With The Stars to be a surrogate mother for him. That's not something you would announce to the world without some serious thought and you'd fully expect Todd to have broached the subject with her before making the announcement. If not, it might be a friendship breaker.

I read a little more into this. Sure, they've been friends for 26 years, but Sonia Kruger is a career woman. She is 43 years old and doesn't have kids. Her face and body are still holding up well enough for her to be a mainstay in the television industry (that's being realistic, not sexist). Why would she even contemplate this? I'm almost certain that it would lead to more TV shows. In fact, if she plays her cards right she wouldn't even have to disappear from our screens. Think of the possibilities.

- Dancing with the Surrogate Mother
- What Pregnant Women Should Wear
- My Surrogate Pregancy
- Masterchef for Pregnant Women
- Pregnancy Survivor

I don't think that there would be a pregnant pause in her work. If you'll pardon the pun.

A Little Bit Of Poetry

Smelly Fart - by Frugal Bastard

The pong,
Is strong,
And lingers for long.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Exhausted Exhaust

For a couple of weeks I had noticed a bit of a rattle out of the rear end of the car. It didn't seem to be anything major or getting any worse. Then the other day as I was about to go for a drive I noticed that the tailpipe was pointing upwards which was rather strange. Closer inspection revealed that the exhaust had rusted through and I don't really understand how it hadn't fallen off.

Took it down to a nearby exhaust and brake shop who could do the job the next day after giving me a chance to drop it off after work had finished. It must have been two, possibly three, years since the exhaust pipe was last replaced. The mechanic said that if you get two years out of an exhaust you've done well. Apparently unleaded petrol coupled with low kilometres leads to exhaust failure quite early as it rusts from the inside even though the outside looks almost brand new.

Exhausted Exhaust

It's an expensive habit to develop, methinks. The mechanic also said that he'd seen much worse and people asked for it to be welded back together.

Bus Driver Falls Asleep on the Bus

I had the interesting position of seeing a bus driver asleep on the bus recently. Pretty harrowing situation. Normally. Except in this case he was a CAT (Central Area Transit) driver and he was obviously on the way home having finished his shift so there was nothing to worry about.

I wonder about a driving falling asleep when the heat is turned up though. What happens if he's a bit tired on the job and the cabin is a bit warm and feels like a kip?

Michael Jackson is Dead

I was a little surprised to see the news this morning that Michael Jackson was dead. The story was broken by gossip site TMZ but was unconfirmed by other sources. So I didn’t take it too seriously. I mean, how many celebrities past their use-by date create some headline to make themselves newsworthy? But it has been confirmed.

I guess the autopsy would make interesting reading. That is, if only they could cut the body open.

There was a report that he had skin cancer. I’m afraid that that wouldn’t have killed him as it wasn’t his skin so he would have been unaffected.

There’s no truth to the rumour that Michael Jackson has faked his own death so that he can move to Thailand where he can actually afford the little boys. None whatsoever.

What a climax to his life though. A warped talent that he was. Now hear this – I’m almost certain that one of his albums will be No. 1 somewhere within three weeks. His album sales will be huge in the coming month and the record companies won’t be able to churn them out quickly enough. That’s probably just what he needed to pay off his debts – die.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Shortest Day of the Year

Yesterday was the shortest day of the year. In the southern hemisphere, at least. It's also known as the winter solstice. How did we spend this day? Well, fruit and veg shopping had to be done, followed by a nice warm breakfast with crumpets, then off to the pool for heaps of laps (31 seconds for breaststroke, 28 seconds for backstroke, 25 seconds for butterfly and 16 seconds for freestyle [my best by 2 seconds]), then home for lunch. Followed this by computer games with The Boy before going to the park for football and chasey before heading off for a bike ride. After tea we started watching "Flags of our Fathers". Pretty full-on day really.

Funny, but it still felt as though it had 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.0996 seconds like any other true sidereal day.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Ben Cousins Makes Flipping The Bird Becomes Popular Again

Ben Cousins, disgraced former West Coast Eagles captain and now Richmond player, came back to Perth a couple of weeks ago for a match against the Fremantle Dockers. Ninety minutes before the game he spotted a TV camera and "flipped the bird" in its direction. Otherwise known as giving it the one-finger salute. The AFL was a bit unhappy about the action and fined Cousins $5000 as did his club. Ten grand for a gesture. I wonder what you could get away with in civilian life for a maximum $10k fine?

Anyway, it appears that the "bird" is becoming more popular. The other day I was wandering around the city and noticed a bus and a taxi trying to occupy the same position on the road. The taxi driver had overtaken on a double-white line, a no overtaking position, and had cut the bus driver off somewhat. They were both inching their vehicles forward to make life difficult for one another. Then you could hear the bus driver yelling. Finally he took his belt off, opened the door and stormed up to the front passenger door of the taxi, flipped the bird as he started mouthing off and opened the front door. He then gave some abuse and went back to his bus, leaving the taxi door open. Well, the taxi driver took his belt off, had a few words to say to the bus driver as he circled his car to close the door and got back in. Then the bus driver wound his window down, stuck his head out of the window and continued to give some abuse.

Amusing stuff. Has Ben Cousins made flipping the bird popular again? Can't see the bus driver getting fined $10k for his actions.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Is Australian Rugby Trying To Turn Players Gay?

It's a worry to hear that there is a rule within the NRL that players can't take a woman back to their hotel room. Brisbane Bronco's Joel Clinton took a woman back to his hotel room prior to a match last month and was fined, wait for it, $50,000. The headline reads, "Woman in room costs Brisbane Bronco $50K" which sounds more like she was a high-class hooker but that's not what the story was about. It was against the Bronco's players' code of conduct, and the NRL is quite concerned about sexual shenanigans ruining the face of the league, therefore he was slapped with the huge fine.

It's almost enough to turn a man gay, don't you think? At least there's no rule about bringing a bloke back to your room. How ridiculous.

Americans Have Strange Names

I think that Americans have it in the bag when providing strange names for their children. Names like "Stone", "River", "Rain", "Summer", "Moonbeam", "Apple", "Dweezil" and "Moon Unit" spring to mind.

How about Kevin? For a woman, that is. I read a news report some time ago referring to Kevin Kleine being a woman. Where will this all end?

Kevin Kleine - a woman's name?

You Are Wrong Gordon Ramsay

I guess you've all heard the furore over Gordon Ramsay calling Tracy Grimshaw a pig. He also refered to her as a lesbian. Grimshaw has apparently gone to great lengths to show that she isn't a lesbian.

Our prime minister, Kevin Rudd, said that Ramsay was a "new form of lowlife." It's funny that Australia's deputy prime minister, Julia Gillard, commented that Ramsay should, "get back in the kitchen." Don't you find that to be an ironically sexist remark?

Well, Gordon Ramsay, you're wrong. Tracy Grimshaw isn't a pig. She's more like a bulldog chewing a wasp or a botox experiment gone wrong.

Many people are calling Ramsay "sexist" for his comments. I think maybe he gets a bit carried away and thinks they are saying "sexy" or "sexyist". Don't call me a sexist though. I get enough of that from my wife. But she would say that. She's a woman.

He he.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Book - H. Norman Schwarzkopf - It Doesn't Take A Hero

Just finished a great book about an intensely interesting man. Talk about leading a fulfilling life and having great experiences. I had no idea that it would be so interesting to read.

General H. Norman Schwarzkopf - It Doesn't Take A Hero

Monday, June 08, 2009

Swine Flu - It's Not True

If you'll pardon the pun, I think that this swine flu is a load of hogswash. I mean, who ever heard of a pig sneezing or with the sniffles?

I wonder how business is at the Hog's Breath Cafe? It can't not be affected. Poor buggers must be suffering from the GFC (no, not the Geelong Football Club) and then swine flu takes hold.

If you want a week off work or school it just seems that you have to go to Melbourne to catch a dose of swine flu.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Melbourne - Ahead of the Rest of the Southern Hemisphere

Melbourne has a bit of a reputation for being ahead of the pack but I feel that Bruce MacEvaney went too far with his premature exclamation on Sunday. I was sitting back watching the footy, Essendon versus Geelong (we copped a hiding), when Bruce announced that it was the first day of winter in Melbourne. Well, bugger me if the rest of Australia doesn't herald the coming of winter on the 1st of June but I can't see why Melbourne should welcome it on the 31st of May.

You're still a wanker Bruce. And why didn't any of the other commentators put him right? Is he that much of a god within the industry? It's not so much about calling the match as he sees it but making the great one liners and bold statements. And it's quite obvious that he's never played the game as he has little idea, even after all these years of calling the game.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Swine Flu - It's Not That Contagious

Last I heard there has only been one confirmed case of swine flu in Western Australia. Sometimes it's not so bad to be isolated. But the guy who contracted the virus shared a plane with the Fremantle Football Club and they were very concerned that the players might have caught the virus. This would lead to an upheaval in the AFL fixtures for the year if they were unable to field a team for a week or two whilst players were quarantined.

They needn't have worried. If you've seen the Dockers form of late they can't as much catch a football so what hope have they got of catching a virus?

Hard Bargain To Change A Watch Battery

My watch battery died a couple of weeks ago. I hadn't had enough time to take it and have the battery replaced until last Saturday afternoon just before 4:30. Most shops closed at five but this one just happened to have a 4:30 finish scheduled.

I asked the lady in the shop how much to replace the battery. She said it would be $34.95 and I, somewhat shocked, said that it cost $25 only two years ago. "It was $28.95 in January," she responded. Then she kept going on about the need for a pressure test, the watch is water resistant to 100m, but I wasn't interested in paying $75 (plus inflation from eight years ago) for that, which didn't put her in a good mood. I've had no issues with water so the seal must be in good nick. Not having a great deal of choice I accepted her offer.

She set to work and seemed to be struggling. I offered to go shopping for a few minutes and return but she wanted me to wait. Obviously wanting to make a fast getaway. When it came time to set the watch she was bamboozled. "Do you know how to set this watch?" she asked.
"I'll only charge you $28.95 then."

Six dollars for less than six minutes work? So, I got my bargain but had to do some of the work myself. And the watch is slightly more difficult than a video recorder to set so I did myself a favour. Gee, what's it going to cost in two to three years time when the battery needs to be replaced again?

Deep Water - Air France Flight 447 Crash

I guess the biggest story at the moment is the Air France Flight 447 crash because 228 people have gone missing, presumed dead, and nobody really knows what happened to them. Just reading the news online this morning and I noticed a report from Australia's ABC News. The location of some wreckage is known but it appears that the flight data recorders are in 3000 to 7000 kilometres deep water. I think that that's a little deeper than the Mariana Trench which is considered to be the deepest point of the Earth's surface below sea level.

Can't wait to see this one on Air Crash Investigation.