Posts Tagged With: entertainment

All Hail the Nerd Queen!

There is a reason that “computer people” are viewed through a particular, stereotypified lens. Today, to my unceasing amusement, and ultimately my deep shame, I encountered some prime examples of the genre and made myself their queen.

As if watching the parade of pale, blinking mole-people lined up like cattle to enrol in their chosen Information Technology adventure wasn’t enough entertainment for one morning, I also managed to distinguish myself from the crowd, and not in a good way. It wasn’t because I didn’t fit the uber-geek, tech-head mold of those around me; au contraire. These are my people, man. No, it was one splendidly loud and perfectly timed snort!

Yes, that’s right, I out-awkwarded the hopelessly awkward; I out-geeked the super geeks. I stood amid a group of my self-confessed peers and shone brightly as the most embarrassingly geeky person present by snorting mid-laugh – in front of one and all. I’m not talking about some circumspect noise shared between my son and myself in mutual amusement, oh no. I am talking LOUD. There are pigs in barn yards around the globe more subtle and less cacophonous than I was in that moment.

How bad is it when a gaggle of the most transparent, most greasy-haired, most uncomfortable-looking people on the planet look at you and think “What a loser.”? Standing in line waiting to be processed and subsequently shuffled to the next line for further processing, I surveyed my competition, and with one, swift, loud snort .. I proclaimed myself the dorkiest of all! It was a moment made only more poignant by the fact that the snort emanated from a laugh which was completely at the expense of the parade des geeks. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been attempting to photograph them. Perhaps the blinding flash of my iPhone, expertly directed into my own eyeballs in a vain attempt to hide my treachery, is my penance.
Hey, what’s this flashy thing on my portable telephonic device?
Categories: Silly Stuff, Things About Me, Things That Amuse Me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Online Crap Speak – Stop Murdering My Language!

Owing to the looming opportunity to travel abroad, I have spent some time over the last few weeks attempting to learn another language. Am I any good .. not yet. Do I expect to be .. not really. Je ne parle pas très bien le français. (That did come directly from my brain .. not bad, eh?) That being said, I am making an attempt. I am beginning to recognise and understand some conversation and I am finding myself somewhat able to put together short phrases without having to consult one of the many apps I have downloaded, or the all-knowing Google Translate.

Whilst I am enjoying learning a new language, this post is not about learning French. Rather it erupts in the midst of the wanton destruction and unholy distortion of the English language. Yes, I know that people everywhere have been butchering our fine language forever, and no doubt the French would have plenty to say about my horrid pronunciation of their wonderful words, but this is different. This is laziness combined with wilful destruction. This is textual horror on a massive scale. (This might be a slight overstatement, but it’s my blog and my whine so I’ll do what I want.)

So here they are – my top four most passionately loathed deformations of the English language, brought to you by laziness, text messaging and social media.

awks – adjective describing something awkward
I loathe this “word” with an absolute passion. Aside the fact that it sounds like you’re trying to summon phlegm from the darkest reaches of your oesophagus, unless you are engaged in a heated debate about one of the many LOTR battles (and you suffer from the inability to spell correctly) there is never any reason to cough up this collection of letters. Stop it.

totes – (abbreviation) totally
If your goal is to sound like a mostly brain-dead moron who hangs out at the mall snapping gum and comparing hickies, then this is the way to go. It’s difficult enough to stomach as part of general teen discourse, but I was recently assaulted by its use in a television ad for some mobile phone or another. Really? Totes! Ugh .. stop it.

tomoz – (abbreviation) tomorrow
Nothing is happening “tomoz”, and do you know why? Because “tomoz” is not a bloody word! It’s just not, and you either sound like an illiterate fool who knows no better, or a creepy old dude trying to be “hip” with the kids. Either way, it’s not working, so stop it.

GRRL – (abbreviation) girl
This one I just do not understand. I suppose I can fathom why people abbreviate things; I have no doubt done so, particularly people’s names, but when your abbreviation has exactly the same number of letters as the original word, what is the bloody point? This one is especially for those who would argue that the ever-increasing abbreviation of our language is due to character or time restraints. It’s not, so stop it.

What’s worse than reading the butchered status updates published by almost all the teens I am connected to on Facebook is watching this virus spread to those who were directly responsible for instilling in me my love of English in the first place. When the people who chastised you for your sloppy sentence structure as a teen start posting updates about their “totes awsum plans for tomoz”, you know the end is nigh. In the face of this unabated horror, the only thing left to do is to do is take away their mobile communication devices, their Facebook, their Twitter and perhaps the Internet in its entirety .. and hand them a damned dictionary.

Categories: Things I Think, Things That Annoy Me, Top Lists | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

ALT CTRL DEL – Now Get Lost!

I work in the adult education sector and part of my job is low-level I.T. support. By low-level I mean that compared to the guy who comes in to tinker with the network stuff I’m an amateur, but compared to most of the people I work with on a daily basis I’m a fricken computer genius. At one time or another most of my co-workers have referred to me as “The Computer Guru”, “The Computer Genius” or “The I.T. Expert”, and since I am nowhere close to deserving of such a grandiose title, I think that just about proves my point.

Most of what I do is fairly routine; this printer won’t print, that program keeps crashing, I can’t get my email and so on .. but sometimes the I.T. Gods put aside the drudgery of every day office rubbish and give me something to really giggle about. The following is a brief overview of the top three computer problems that I, with my super computer-dork powers, have successfully tackled for my co-workers.

  1. Why wont my computer turn on?
    This one is probably my all time favourite, non-deliberate (on my part) computer issue.  Terry (not her real name) is a delightful person, but not what you’d call particularly computer savvy. I was summoned from my desk one afternoon to figure out why her computer wouldn’t turn on after it had been relocated from another office. I’ll admit, I wasn’t really paying attention when she first explained the problem to me, but as I watched her repeatedly mashing the on/off switch on the monitor, things swam into focus.
    “See?” she said, “It won’t turn on.”.
    Next to the monitor there was a keyboard, and a mouse .. err ..
    “Terry, where’s the computer?”
    She looked at me as though she thought me truly daft, then pointed at the monitor.
    “No, the computer. You know, the box bit.” I think I actually saw the penny drop. Not only had she had forgotten to bring the computer over from the other office, she was completely unaware that the absence of this fairly integral component would cause the entire system to fail to go “vroom”.
  2. Why wont my CD work?
    One morning I was sent over to the lab to assist a student who was having trouble accessing files off a CD. The student was stumped .. the trainer was stumped. “We’ve tried everything; it just will not read the disk.”. Sure enough, I could hear the disk spinning, and I could see the computer working at trying to read it, but it was making an awfully strange sound and it most definitely was not reading the disk. Thinking perhaps scratches or assorted grot might be the culprit, I ejected the disk, and the problem immediately made itself clear. How do you tell a student that they have the disk in upside-down without sounding like a condescending jerk? More to the point, how do you tell a trainer (who should know this most basic of things) that they should know this most basic of things .. without looking like a condescending jerk? Hmm, maybe that’s why people think I’m a jerk.
  3. Why is my screen upside down and none of my icons work?
    Because I’m a bitch and I hid your icons and made your desktop into upside down wallpaper .. how do you like me now? Ok, this one wasn’t sent to me by the I.T. Gods; it was manufactured by me to annoy a co-worker and, more importantly, to amuse myself. It worked B-E-A-Utifully, and he still has not forgiven me for making him look like a twit. I would apologise, but I’m not really sorry. It was funny, and if I had done it to anyone but him, I’m sure he would agree with me.

Post Script for any prospective students and/or general computer users who may, at some future point in time, require my assistance in the lab:

If I have to tell you one more time to plug the network cable back in if you want to be able to “open Google”, I’ll be watching your face turn blue as I choke the life out of you with it!

When you’ve jiggled, juggled and checked every setting, there is only one thing left to do. Unless you count throwing the entire mess out of the closest window as a viable option – ALT + CTRL + DEL – now get lost!

Categories: Things I Think, Things That Amuse Me, Things That Annoy Me, Things That Make You Go Hmmm | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The Girl Who Cried “SHARK!”

I’ve always been a bit of a smart ass; often times it has been to my own detriment.

Once upon a time, before gravity wreaked havoc with my bits and bobs and wearing a bikini in public was still a possibility, I loved the beach. As a child I would often go with my family to the same beach each summer; a surf beach called Woolamai, in a lovely little place known as Phillip Island. From Woolamai, one can almost see another popular tourist attraction, Seal Rocks. As the name would suggest, this is basically a small, rocky island which houses a rather large seal colony. So here’s a question for all you Animal Planet buffs – what likes to eat seals, is big and ugly and lives in the warm waters off our Australian shores?

I have many fond memories of summers spent at Woolamai. One year we stayed in a caravan park close to the beach, and in the reception area there was a photograph pinned on the wall.  It was a photograph of the ugliest, deadest Great White Shark that my youthful eyes had ever seen. After much “Ewwww”ing and Grossss”ing, a mischievous plan began to take shape.

As often was the case, we shared our holiday with my aunt, uncle and their children. One of those children was my slightly older cousin Tanya. She happened to be with me when I was ewwing and grossing at the spectacle of the big, ugly, dead shark, who for the sake of this story – and because it amuses me – shall henceforth be known as Jaws. She was deathly afraid of sharks, and quite rightly so. Jaws was caught just off Seal Rocks, the very same rocky island that is almost, but not quite visible from the shore at Woolamai. By the time we got to the beach my fledgling plan was fully formed.

If you’re brave enough to swim out to it, there is a sandbar at Woolamai where you can stand merely ankle-deep in the ocean. From the shore this looks remarkably like you’re walking on water.  As small children this was obviously far too tempting to resist, and we would often swim out through water that was well over our heads to have our photo taken pretending to be The Messiah. Yes, the surf was rough, and yes, we knew big, hungry sharks lived out there, but we were Aussie kids; bronzed, invincible and oblivious to danger. With the image of Jaws still firmly planted in my mind, I decided that it would be most amusing to scare the crap out of my cousin. I waited until she was looking at me, then I looked back over my shoulder and screamed in my shrill, ten year old girly voice – “SHARKKKKK!!!”

The reaction was instantaneous and acute.  Tanya screamed and took off like a rocket! I treaded water and giggled uncontrollably, bobbing like a cork in the surf and trying not to ingest the entire ocean. I thought, at the time, that it was the funniest thing I’d ever seen, and I was feeling quite pleased with myself. Then came the music …

Duh Dun … Duh Dun ..
(That’s weird. Where is it coming from?)

Duh Dun .. Duh Dun .. Duh Dun ..
(Ok, so now it’s not quite so funny.)


By this time Tanya had reached the shore; I was alone in water over my head and feeling distinctly like I was on the dinner menu. I don’t know if I set any kind of speed record, but I feel sure that I would have been a serious contender for the Australian Olympic Swim Team that day. I swam my ten-year old heart out, convinced that Jaws was right behind me, and that at any second I would go the way of the bikini-clad lovely in the opening scenes of the movie from whence that ominous music came. I reached the shore and collapsed.

To this day I have not ventured into water deeper than my knees again, and I am even kind of wary in a swimming pool. Serves me right for being a smart ass.

Categories: Stuff That Happened, Things I Remember, Things That Amuse Me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

The Story Lab – Help a new blogger out

DazJames has just joined wordpress and is trying his hand at a communal story. If you get a minute, pop over and add a line to get his fledgling project going.


The Story Lab.


Categories: Silly Stuff | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

I guess ghosts don’t have ears..

Picture the moment: It’s dark, cold and you are in an unfamiliar place, probably an abandoned theatre or an asylum for the criminally insane. Those places are always filled with malevolent spirits just dying (badum-ching!) for their fifteen minutes of fame. You’re fully geared up with night vision cameras, EVP recorders and who knows .. probably a containment unit right off the set of Ghostbusters. Somewhere just off camera, (it’s always just off camera) something remarkably, unexplainably paranormal happens. A cry goes up and everyone takes off running. Cue jarring, clangy noise and dramatic screen wipe.

On the off chance that you still have no idea where you are, you’re on-site with TAPS – The Atlantic Paranormal Society.

I have loved ghosties and ghoulies since a time before memory, and TAPS, with all their awkward scripting and unfathomable gadgetry, make me giddy with pure delight. The following is one of my all-time favourite scenes.

Ghost Hunter A whispers to Ghost Hunter B, “Keep watching it, I’m going to try to get closer.” GHB keeps the camera trained in the location of the “shadow” (which is completely invisible to the viewer mind you) whilst GHA narrates for the audience in hushed tones. Suddenly there is a flurry of activity and, blast and bugger it all; that slippery spirit has made a run for it. With a face more serious than a funeral director, our narrator informs us that Casper must have seen him sneaking up and been “spooked”. I am not kidding. That is what he said.

From my precarious perch on the edge of my chair, I haven’t seen a bloody thing. That is, of course, unless you consider the jiggling posteriors of out of shape investigators paranormal, but it hardly matters. Is it unlikely that this supposed entity had no idea there were cameramen, technicians and God knows who else kicking around inside its abode all day? Sure, but don’t spoil my fun, man. Perhaps it went out for afternoon tea whilst TAPS set up all their equipment. The ways of the paranormal are mysterious, after all. How are we to know where ghosts choose to luncheon? Perhaps they are just remarkably accommodating beasties.

The truth is out there. I choose to believe.
That is all.

Categories: Things That Amuse Me | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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