Monthly Archives: October 2011

Words .. on Paper?

Right-o, strap yourselves in. I’ve just parked myself in front of the computer with the intention of writing a blog post so amazing, so scintillating, so brain-fryingly awesome that awards and praise will rain down on me from the bloggy gods, and I will bathe in the warm adoration of millions.

Have I ever mentioned my penchant for the dramatic?

Unfortunately the sad reality of my life does not provide the necessary inspiration for such an earth-shattering piece. It’s Sunday night and I have spent the last four hours or so sitting on my couch, wrapped in a blanket and immersed in the creepy embrace of Stephen King. There may or may not have been some “spa” music playing somewhere in my house. Don’t ask me what that is. It was a category on the list of stations offered up by Austar, and I thought it might provide a relaxing backdrop for reading. Not reading blogs. Not reading articles or twitter feeds. No, tonight I got crazy and decided to pick up an actual book, something that I have not done much of for longer than I care to admit.

I have collected Stephen King stories since I was a teen. It all started with “The Eyes of the Dragon”, a book loaned to me by my best friend way back in high school. I just checked my bookcase to make sure I had the name right, and it occurred to me that the book may well have only been on loan. Cherna, if you’re wondering where your book went, I have it right here. On second thought, since you’re living a wonderful life in France with gorgeous views and as much wine as you could ask for, it strikes me that you may not really care about the fate of a novel you loaned to me twenty-odd years ago.

The problem with reading Stephen King stories is that I always come away from the experience with the (probably erroneous) conviction that I can, and should, write. In turn, I then inflict the product of this conviction upon anyone who unwittingly stumbles my way. In this case, as you’ve no doubt put together by now, that’s you. That’s not really the point of this most definitely not award-winning post though. The point is this .. Pick up a book. We get so much information from the Internet now, and you will never hear a disparaging word about the glorious blue nowhere from me, but it simply cannot compare to the experience of sitting in your most comfortable chair with a real paper and ink book in your hands. I needed to open the blinds because the pages didn’t glow of their own accord. That was an experience in itself. I don’t even know the last time I voluntarily let a little light into my cave. I had to manually turn a page to continue the journey through the darkness Mr. King wove around me, and even that small, tactile thing was a treat.

So thank you, Mr. King, for reminding me that sometimes the simple things can be the most enjoyable.

I write | I knit I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: Things I Read, Things I Think | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Ode to Morning Tea

O, delicious carrot
Thou art infinitely better than a Tim Tam
with thy beckoning orange countenance and
thy crunch most satisfying

Oh carrot, why do you wound me
with your tiny, masticated pieces
stuck behind my tonsil
I swallow and I swallow
but you are tenacious

O, celery
with your fibrous strings you try
to choke me
You will pay
You will go the way
of the carrot

© Nouvelle Fille

I write | I knit | I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: Poetic Attempts, Things I Ate | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

100 Facts About Me ..

.. in no particular order.
I know, I know .. who cares, right? Well there’s no need to be like that. No one is forcing you to read it.

1 If I don’t want to, you will not make me.
2 This face does not mean that I am pissed off; I’m just shy.
3 I am afraid of dogs.
4 I envy cats.
5 When I love a song I can listen to it endlessly without tiring.
6 When I am done with something, I am done.
7 I am terrified of the day my son moves out of home.
8 I feel lost without my connection to the internet.
9 I loathe housework and thus I am a terrible housekeeper. Owing in no small part to this fact, I feel uncomfortable when people “just drop by”.
10 I never visit people without prior arrangement.
11 I always wanted my own piano. Now that I have one, I wish I could play it.
12 I think myself into inaction more often than I act.
13 I believe that I am a very good driver.
14 More often than not, lyrics are better able to express my emotions than I am.
15 As a child, I often fantasized about running away. (I still do)
16 When people use the word “myriad” incorrectly, I want to wring their necks.
17 I admire many things about my mother even though we often have not gotten along.
18 I do not believe in a God, but I hope that there is more than this.
19 My closest friends live in other countries.
20 I don’t get enough sleep.
21 I can dance but I usually choose not to unless I think that no one is watching.
22 I have an unlimited capacity to entertain myself.
23 I have sixth lumbar vertebrae
24 I can touch the tip of my nose with my tongue.
25 I can recite The Rocky Horror Picture Show, CATS and Grease line by line.
26 Every time The World According To Garp is on the TV, I must watch it. Each time I forget how long the film is.
27 When they invent the Matrix, I will be first in line.
28 I am a Star Wars nerd and I don’t care who knows it.
29 I wore a dental plate when I was in primary school and really enjoyed pushing it out of my mouth and telling kids it was a pink spider.
30 I once lied about standing on one leg in a school photo to cover the fact that I just made a really stupid face when the photo was taken.
31 I secretly love it when people I know get fatter than me.
32 Choking on shaving cream is really unpleasant. I tried it once. Don’t do it.
33 My horse was the bearer of all my childhood secrets.
34 I once put a house fly that was buzzing around from the effects of fly spray in my jewellery box. It recovered and I set it free.
35 I remember with fondness the tickle of my horse’s whiskers on my knee when she rested her head in my lap.
36 I cherish the memory of the birth of my niece.
37 I am saddened by the distance between me and my sister.
38 I was always mortified when I had to bat in cricket or softball. Even though I knew I could hit the ball, I would go out deliberately to avoid being in the spotlight.
39 I wanted to join the school choir so badly, but I was too shy. I can sing and I was angry that people who couldn’t sing were braver than me and got to be part of it when I didn’t.
40 I have always wanted to play the cello.
41 I once sang “Bring Me Some Water” on stage to a crowd of drunken party-goers. They loved it, and it was one of the best feelings I have ever experienced.
42 I love the funny and decent young man my brother became.
43 The night before I went for my driving test, I dropped my parents’ car into a ditch in the pouring rain.
44 I cannot sleep with the wardrobe door open. Not even a crack.
45 There is always music playing loudly in my car, and I enjoy the annoyed looks of the lollipop lady every morning as I drive by with the window down.
46 My son is a far better guitarist than I am, and I’m glad about that. I’m still a better singer.
47 I wish that I had been able to be more involved in the lives of my niece and nephew. I miss them.
48 Reading and music have always been my escape. I wish that I made more time for reading.
49 Even though I protest, like that my Dad still spoils me.
50 I once asked my aunty if there were dinosaurs when she was born. I told her that she was prehistoric, but I never told her that I love her. I do.
51 When I was a kid, I accidentally broke a small, blue bowl. I devised a devious plan to get out of trouble by heaping my savings onto the counter with the remains of the bowl, then sitting in my room and counting my remaining pennies, looking pathetic, until my mum found me. She gave me my money back and told me not to be silly – it was an accident. Sorry, Mum.
52 It wasn’t until the funeral of a relative that I really got to know who she was and what she was about. We teased her as kids, and I’ve felt ashamed ever since that day that I never bothered to get to know or understand her. Sorry, Marie.
53 I am both proud of the young man my son has become, and sad to have lost my little boy .. And writing that almost made me cry.
54 I have never actively made a friend in my life.
55 The first concert I ever went to was a Robert Palmer concert. I was 13.
56 Turning thirty scared me.
57 I think that I don’t like to socialize, but when I do, I usually enjoy it.
58 I want.
59 I have yet to recognise my potential, let alone realise it.
60 Participating in a march against sexual abuse fundamentally changed my self-perception.
61 I have no phobias, but crowds and clowns bother me. A lot.
62 At 37, I truly understand what my parents meant when they told me in high school that those would be the best years of my life.
63 I am a grammar Nazi, but my grammatical weakness is the correct use of apostrophes in plural situations. I just don’t get it!
64 I believe real men cry.
65 People seem to want to confide in me. I don’t know why, but it has always been the case.
66 The best teacher I ever had was Mr. Adamson for year seven English. He was passionate and generous and I wish I could have told him what a difference he made.
67 I am compelled to watch true crime stories and fascinated by the inner workings of serial killers.
68 90% of the time I would prefer to keep my mouth shut and suffer than to inflict suffering upon another.
69 My feet are almost always cold, except when they are extremely hot. There is no middle ground.
70 I am obsessive-compulsive about locking my car.
71 I love that my son is passionate about art and music.
72 I have always gotten along better with men than with women.
73 I would rather listen to an amazing song than an amazing voice.
74 Most of the time I can lie as easily as I can breathe, but I try not to.
75 I get offended when people say that I am practical rather than creative. Why can’t I be both?
76 I am the world’s worst navigator. Seriously, I can get lost in a shopping centre.
77 A day when I do not have to get out of my pajamas is a good day.
78 I have a vast collection of socks.
79 I love everything made from tomatoes except tomato soup. It’s horrible stuff.
80 I enjoy making people laugh but my amusement at the little things is often unappreciated.
81 I am still searching for my perfect creative outlet.
82 I am often home. I just don’t answer the door.
83 I am 5’7”. I used to be 5’8”, but I shrunk.
84 The best trip I ever took was an impromptu road trip to ApolloBay. We had no idea where we were going and we just drove until we wanted to stop. Then we found a cabin park on the beach and sat up late singing John Denver songs. That was the day John Denver died.
85 I have photographed two ghosts, both at the same place but at different times.
86 My name means “White Wave”. My son’s name means “born from the ocean, son of the sea”. It wasn’t deliberate, but it’s pretty cool.
87 I do not believe in hitting children. It sells them short, and rather than learning to make good decisions and choices, they learn to obey and behave only out of fear. You can raise a good and decent human being without resorting to violence.
88 I’m astonished that I have reached 88.
89 I always put the soy milk in my coffee before the water. Thanks, Trish.
90 I cannot eat a pie without a knife and fork .. and copious amounts of tomato sauce.
91 I would sell my granny for tickets to see Radiohead. If I had a granny, that is.
92 I am full of potential but will likely never amount to anything.
93 I am funny. Truly. You just have no sense of humour.
94 I live inside my head and you are all merely players on my stage.
95 I like tofu.
96 I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.
97 I’m 37 years old.
98 I like being thought of as “the smart one”. This is a completely relative label, but I embrace it anyway.
99 “One day, I am gonna grow wings .. “
100 I can’t believe that you’re still reading. Well done, you.

I write | I knit | I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: Things About Me | Tags: , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Siths Don’t Cry


Do you know what that is? That, my friend, is the sound of my pure, unadulterated horror. It is also a quote from the (some might say needlessly) tweaked Blu-Ray version of Return of the Jedi. In a strange and pointless echo of the newly minted Darth Vader’s exclamation in Revenge of the Sith (which also made me cringe), our favourite dark lord of the Sith has himself a little sook, and that is just not cricket! Vader does not lament. Vader does not cry out. Why? Because Vader is a badass. Vader is the embodiment of darkness and evil. Vader is not a whiney man-child pouting over Padme and complaining that he didn’t get a cookie. He will forcechoke your insubordinate ass on a whim and replace you without a second thought.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, please find a link out of here and click it. We can never be friends anyway. It just wouldn’t have worked out. Star Wars arrived on Blu-ray a couple of weeks ago and as the long-time Star Wars nerds that we are, we dutifully purchased our copy. It didn’t surprise me at all to learn that this new release instantly became the top selling DVD of all time, making more money on Blu-ray in a single week than most theatrically released movies have all year.

As much as I love the story, someone needs to tell George that enough is enough already. Step away from the console and quit tinkering, man. You’re ruining a good thing. I suppose I can deal with the additional critters at Mos Eisley. I know the point was to make it seem like a bustling hub of activity, but I think the money wasted on that pointless exercise could have been better spent on employing a bevy of nerds to keep Mr. Lucas in check and running true to what we grew up loving about this story.

I am an old school Star Wars fan. No matter what George Lucas claims in regards to the original concept and the six films, Star Wars, Empire and Jedi are the quintessential story for me. The prequels, whilst providing some padding and back story on existing characters and events, appear to be just one giant exercise in “Look at me and my cool computer stuff”, and I pretty much dismiss them as “the other” films. Without even taking the additional films into consideration, the list of needless alterations to Star Wars is long and would take forever to document and comment on.

Han shot first.
’nuff said

At least they left the infamous Stormtrooper head bump in, but that does beg the question .. Why leave in what was so obviously a blooper, yet mess around with the colour and glow intensity of lightsabers, the unblinking stare of the Ewoks and Vader’s wordless retribution? Don’t get me wrong. Removing the clumsy Stormtrooper would have had me screaming “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” at the screen myself, but it still doesn’t make any sense to me. Perhaps Mr. Lucas is saving some edits for future perversions, which we will dutifully add to our collection of original, VHS versions, digitally remastered versions and now re-remastered Blu-ray versions.

Who’s the more foolish? The fool, or the fool who follows him?”

Who indeed.

I write | I knit I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: Things I've Seen, Things That Annoy Me | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The “Quirks v’s OCD” conundrum

On my morning blog browse I happened upon this post from thepilgrimsfancy. (If you feel like a giggle, he’s having a half price sale, today only. Ok so I completely made that up, but go check him out anyway.) Feeling inspired by his list of peculiarities, I decided to join thepilgrimsfancy and create a list of my own.

Touch Wood
Most people understand and perhaps partake in that superstitious tradition whereby we say the words “knock on wood” or “touch wood” in order to ward off calamity. I take it to the next level. If I even think about the possibility of something bad happening, I have to find a wooden object to fondle. I am not satisfied with simply making the statement. I must quite literally touch wood in order to put my mind to rest on the matter. I do this no matter where I am or who I am with.

Bring Balance to The Force
Scratch right foot .. must scratch left foot.
Smooth right eyebrow .. must smooth left eyebrow.
’nuff said.

Fort Knox
I will return to my computer, car or chosen iDevice many, many times and still not be convinced that I have indeed engaged the locking mechanism. This can become so so incapacitating at times that I have resorted to taking photos of the locked object with my phone, just so I don’t go crazy all day wondering if it is secured. Oddly enough, I often go out without locking the house, which doesn’t seem to cause me any distress what so ever. Maybe I shouldn’t have told you that.

For some reason, some words just need to be said a certain way. I have no idea why. The main culprits are: “Brown Sugar” a la Mick Jagger – complete with hands on hips and chin thrust forwards. This was particularly disturbing during my baking phase. Also, “South Africa” a la that creepy dude with “diplomatic immunity” from Lethal Weapon 2. This one’s more about the accent. I simply cannot say the words without using it, and it does get weird for the people around me – particularly at work.

Epicurean Etiquette
Eating at a Pie. For the non-Australians, I’m talking about meat pies here, not the dessert-y kind. Requisite Utensils – knife and fork. Requisite Condiments – tomato sauce (a.k.a. ketchup)

1) Using your knife, remove “lid” from pie and place meaty side up on the plate.
2) Cover the lid and fill the pastry case with a (really) generous helping of tomato sauce. Mix well.
3) Using your knife and fork, eat in the following order – lid, meat and sauce filling and finally, pastry case.

I cannot not deviate from this method.

Curbing Clutter
Symmetry and perfect alignment is not enough here; it is far more complex that. One must take into account the delicate interplay between the objects. Height, colour and various other factors are carefully considered in order to find the perfect placement for each item. I don’t know which way is the “right” way for things to face in any given situation. I just accept that when I achieve it, I will know. Once the correct position of all things is established .. don’t touch my stuff!

iPod Sorting
When I want to listen to Kid A, I want every song, in order, the way Radiohead intended it to be. Music is what gets me through my day, and I simply cannot deal with a disorganised device. All songs shall be sorted first by band name, then track title, divided by a space, a hyphen and another space, like so: BandName – TrackName.[ext] There shall be no exceptions. All album, year of release and track number information shall be consistent and under no circumstances should genre be included. People always, always screw that up.

Sadly, there are a lot more peculiarities I could share, but I think I already look nutty enough. Thanks again to thepilgrimsfancy for inspiring me to delve into my weirdness. I hope this went some way toward alleviating your disappointment at my earlier, premature publishing. ;)

I write | I knit I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: Things That Make You Go Hmmm | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Wipeout is for Wussies

I have seen the mad traffic junctions in Hanoi, Vietnam and I have witnessed the crazy intersections in India, but neither thing can compare to the lunatic asylum that is the gaggle of mothers who hit the roads at 8:30 am every day of the school week.  Red-faced, pajama-clad woman with tangled, matted hair and a backseat full of petulant children battle each other to be first to the gates. They are viscous and merciless, ignoring road rules and *lollipop ladies alike in their plight to deliver their offspring to school by the designated time. This is bad enough, but it’s only the beginning of the fun. Between the kids on bikes and skateboards weaving in and out of traffic, the cars parked on either side of what is a very narrow road and stupid, stupid drivers who should never be trusted behind the wheel of any vehicle, the trip to school each morning presents more obstacles to the driver than an episode of WIPEOUT, and that’s on a good day. Add a spot of rain to the mix and the chaos goes all the way up to eleven. (That one’s just for the Spinal Tap fans. I know you’re out there.)

This morning I had the questionable pleasure of watching a clumsy youngster tumble over the handlebars of his bike and land directly on the road in front of me. Lucky for him, my brakes are pretty decent. Even luckier for him (considering the time of the morning and my absolute lack of caffeine) my reflexes were pretty decent too. In case you’re of a sensitive and tender disposition, let me assure you that the kid wasn’t injured. That being said though, I’m pretty sure the collection of giggling girls surrounding him did very little for his bruised ego.

Tomorrow is my son’s last official day of high school. It will herald my final run through the gauntlet of mad mothers in the morning. It brings to conclusion thirteen years of deranged dads in the afternoon. Oh, the driving I have seen during those years, and the foul language I have hurled in earnest. I have cursed the pulling out without looking and bemoaned the stopping dead without warning. I have enraged the dour lollipop people with my too loud music, and irritated the old people pottering in the garden next door to the school with my general irreverence. I’m sure they won’t miss me at all, but I will miss them. There’s a real sense of achievement to be had in the successful navigation of the daily school run, and I am just a little bit sad that after tomorrow, it will be no more.

In truth, I’m probably more sad that this part of our lives will be over. No more school runs means no more school .. and that means no more little boy. He’s a young man now, and even though I could not be prouder of the young man he is , I can’t help but miss the little boy he was, and I can’t help but question my changing role in his life. Before I get too serious and sad though, I can take comfort in the knowledge that he has inherited my irreverence (and probably my loathing for the lollipop guild), and he promises me that no matter how grown up he gets, he’ll always be my little boy.

I’m gunna hold you to that, kid.

* I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I do not like those people. They are like sinister clowns with the power to control traffic and I don’t trust them.

I write | I knit I draw | I make jewellery | I photograph

Categories: And So It Ends, Things I've Seen, Things That Annoy Me | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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