A journal of questionable quality

Monday, August 29, 2005

Weekend buggery

The buggy has been parked up since January while I wrestled the demons of work, weight, mood and state of mind, went to New Zealand and visited the Mother, took to the pool in an ill planned attempt to lose weight, and even managed to get through another winter.

Sitting in the garage, disassembled, getting dusty. Bearings attempting to rust, spiders breeding in the wheel spokes.

The weekend, and we're on our own - child less. The Father gets to keep them every second weekend.

Sunday arrives, gusty winds, dark clouds, all the requirements for spending a day inside - except that the buggy has been parked up for way too long - every day another reason not to toss it in the car and find a good wind, every weekend managing to find other things to do.

Not this weekend.

Decide not to head for the bay. Better to inspect a few of the bigger parks I had earmarked worth looking at as a local buggy site.

The best park, the one that looked the biggest from the car, suddenly diminishes in size once the buggy is out and the Ngen is up in a blustery, tree effected wind.

Typical Ngen, even at only 3.5m, still too much lift to be safe in a big wind, dragging me and buggy sideways down the park, me trying to get some control, trying to avoid the goal posts placed at both ends, intense pressure on the old legs making my knees bellow with pain.

Downsized to the Buster, but it was just too small, managed a few quick passes on the big gusts, swapping back to the and getting lifted out of the seat. Not the day to have an enjoyable “cruise”, too far away from the sea to get good clean wind.

No matter what it was still time to get the buggy out, even if I was making new records with self control by leaving it parked up. Such is the life of an obsessive.

A good day. A historic day. The return of the buggy.

Swimming this morning finds all the pulled muscles from it. Aching legs, sore to touch. Arms the same. Feel like they have been pulled out of my shoulders. Even my fingers are sore. The result, I imagine, of a death grip on the handles.

Finally find something the swimming is good for - recuperation from buggy days - leave the pool a bit lighter in the muscles is good.

The buggy is back on the menu.



Thursday, August 25, 2005

the unbearable lightness of swimming

Maniacal swimming fails weight loss test
Crunch time. Today. Visit to the woman I rely on most to keep me sane. Ms Doctor.

She views my paunch. Not happy.

Scales confirm the visual thing - I am not taking off weight, I'm probably even putting it on. I try and blame the new head pills. She's not having any of it. It's back to the bike for me. And back to the bike in a hurry.

The compulsive thing, where I have to agonize over when would be a good time to swap from this daily routine to another, just as well known one, is sorted.

September 1st. One week away. I can swim to the exclusion of all else until September 1. After that the bike takes precedence. Swimming is not banned, swimming is still allowed. Just as soon as I have done my mileage on the bike.

The thing with the pool is not only is it easy to do, but you don't notice sweat pouring off you when you're already wet, and you get better eye candy in a pool than you do on a bike.

Where, on a bike, are you going to be at eye level to some cute arses (some not so cute ones too), when is the bike going to land you that close to the barely clad visage of reasonable female flesh?

The only female view on a bike is going to be some huge critter pounding the footpath, blaming her husband, her kids, anything but herself, for the considerable state she's in. They don't go to the pool.

They don't want to get semi naked at a pool and see absolute proof that the last 10 cream buns they ate actually did stick to their thighs. They don't want to see nubile young things floating about reminding them of what they may have been 'if only'. We get deeply suspicious of 'if only'.

I think I'm growing fat and lazy. I'm sure I was always lazy, but I wasn't fat.

It seems my advancing age and continued retirement from the excitement of nefarious deeds have combined, perhaps even conspired, to cause jowls, a paunch, a distinct limp, and bad hearing. Not really a collection I had hoped for, but there ya go.

Last time I got serious about riding a bike I managed a kilo per 100 kilometers after the break in period. Did 1400 kilometers for 14 kilo. Felt good. Looked reasonable.

Then went right back and put it on again..

There is obviously a lesson here, and I think it has something to do with eating. Not just your average eating - we're talking about jumbo size, shovel it in, McFlurries from the Golden Arches, the undisputed king of junk food.

We're talking about more than one. An average visit there would see us leave the drive through with major size stuff, all with caramel sauce, except the apple pies - they won't put caramel sauce on apple pies for some reason.

Maybe this time I will remember how hard it is to get rid of again. But I truly doubt it.



Technology blues

retailing cyberspace
A week of , and now, my new favorite . Why do I do this? Is it the challenge?

It's most certainly not the dosh to be made from listing stuff. eBay was set up to finance either my new or my new, by selling almost a decades worth of Penthouse Black Label magazines that I have lying about the place, lying about for a considerable number of years. Still, pussy don't go off does it? And, it still looks the same. They haven't made any modifications that I can think of.

Figured they have to be worth something, and they don't look like they're getting any use sitting in a box. Might as well move them along.

The things you learn when you get into the machinations of online selling.

eBay set up and ready to run, PayPal set up and ready to run, all set to do some selling as soon as I get around to photographing the product so that our victims customers can see what they will be using for fantasy material when they own them.

Then along came Froogle. When in doubt about a product or service always compare it with whatever equivalent exists at Google. They usually have something of interest in their 'labs' section.

And thus we get into Froogle, the retail listing service of Google. As a basic test we set up one single product, the T-shirt, as you do. Available ex-stock for only $US 35.99, incredibly cheap considering that almost an hours work went into the design.

An hour or so messing about with various setups and the “success” flag went up. We're in business, sort of. Proof of concept has happened, now all we have to do is have a close look at how it all travels over time.

Might take a while to get the bike or the kite, but I will get there eventually.

Colonoscopy/Endoscopy drama resolved
So, retail out of the way, the oppressive cloud of the dreaded “procedure” is lifting slowly but surely.

It appears my abusive emails and returning mail with comments scrawled over them have had some effect. I was stunned to receivee a phone call from the specialist's practice, from the surgeons wife believe it or not, to explain that she personally had sorted the situation out and would I now be able to be a nice enough to actually get the thing done on the day, at the time, originally mentioned.

I was so stunned to be talking to the actual boss, rather than getting pushed about by some Nazi switch bitch, that I think I would have agreed to anything.

So, we're on again. Camera up the arse time. Great. Always something you can bring up at a dinner when conversation appears to be lagging.

Perhaps I can sell the inevitable video of the entire thing on eBay? Froogle anyone? A one off, live video action of an colonoscopy, yours for only -- a small amount to be decided at a later date. Watch for it on Froogle.



Friday, August 19, 2005

friday again

survived the ekka
Survived the Exhibition. Even managed to get through the ensuing public holiday without too much drama.

Yvonne's eldest son went with a group of friends - stayed well in to the evening. I probably did the same thing when I was his age, but I'm so old I don't remember.

Show bags — cheap and nasty sample bags sold for very high prices, seemed to be the popular way to lose money.

Short week meant that the pool was not available when I needed it — probably a good thing, cruise for a change, let the muscles unwind, break the obsession.

No swimming made for more work at the desk. Should have stuck with the pool.

A week wrestling with the mechanics of eBay after deciding to become a seller finally nets me a template I can use, somewhat more muted than the offering at eBay, and gives me a few practice runs at listing things in the correct places.

Progressed to embedding movies in Acrobat - something I would never have thought of if I hadn't run into a downloadable magazine site that featured that very thing. Naturally I have to have the same thing too.

Stand by for a PDF magazine some time soon.



bitches that exist

Colonoscopy / Endoscopy blues
If it's not bad enough that I have to get these degrading, uncomfortable, bloody things done on a regular basis after blowing up a good few years ago as a result of too much partying, and as a result of Mum having, to date, three bowel cancer operations, I have to get in a drama with the Nazi outfit that operates these centers.

Anyone who has ever had the procedure done will know fully how much of a delight the “prep” is. An evening spent in pain, on a toilet, no food, no drugs, no nothing. Cumulating in a seriously washed out brain and body that doesn't get any food or fluid until late the next day.

I manage to stagger through these thing now, having had a few done, with the minimum of drama and bitching.

UNLESS I GET PISSED OFF.

And, pissed off I am. Pissed off enough to wave the whole thing away. I have just had the pleasure of being processed by the bitch of all bitches, a fat, overbearing, loud, ugly, creature who seems to form part of the staff at the place.

The deal is - I get the prep on the last time I see the gastroenteroligist before the procedure. The deal is no one pisses me off. It's bad enough prepping without having a drama getting the bloody stuff.

Obviously I just happened to pick a day when the switch bitch from hell was eating her way through the day. After filling in all the forms, waiting vast times, filling in more forms, Ms Fuck Around decides that she is too busy to get me my prep. This after a 100 klm round trip to pick the bloody thing up. Top stuff you stupid slut, top stuff, thank you for fucking up my day, I can only presume you got some perverse pleasure out of it - waited all day for it did you?.

Next arrangement, call in to the actual facility and get the stuff from there. Wrong. Appointment only. I must turn up. Yvonne can't go and grab it like she normally does. Fat slut manages to cause all this.

Facility summons me by letter — turn up at the appointed time for our resident nurse to look you over, fill in exactly the same forms that I already processed, supply the referral from personal doctor which lard arse kept over at her 'power base'.

Facility duly dealt to. By email, explaining carefully what I think of their staff, explaining why I don't feel the need to do the paperwork again, explaining that they are, for a supposedly professional operation, really rather lacking.

The real problem is they have the best gastroenteroligists around, and I should know, I've run into a few of them in my time, including the guy who decided I was hopelessly gay... but that's another story.



Friday, August 12, 2005

end of week downer

What happens is the week starts off with a bang — well, more like a splash.

Monday — swimming takes precedence, leaving the afternoon to continue whatever project is current, and usually running late. Same with Tuesday, Wednesday, and, this week, Thursday.

Friday is designated as the day I do bugger all - clean up the accumulated viri, adware, dead files, old applications, off the machine/s, sometimes reply to emails, promise Yvonne that I will not get caught on something at the “last minute” (I always do though), and generally lay about.

It's not working as good as it should.

This Friday the place is so bloody cold I keep thinking I have accidentally landed back in New Zealand.

It's dull, shitty and wet outside - grounds for depression.

The accumulated fatigue of swimming 10 klms this week is making my legs feel, not so much tired, more - disinterested with a slight ache.

My nose and eyes are running - by this time of the day earlier in the week I have already blown my sinuses out underwater in the salt/chlorine solution at the pool, there to combine with the collection of effluvium from all the other dirty bastards, and having no such facility available today makes it just another pain in the arse.

All up a fairly average end of week day especially now that the news includes:

Duck shooting banned
The last bastion of my firearm equipped youth is about to disappear.

It was a tradition in our house for Dad to go get a duck or two for us as soon as the season opened.

Out came the trusty , to be oiled up and put to some serious use.

It was in constant use anyway, against the opossum population explosion and it helped a lot in the constant war against rabbits. Farmers are like that - they are prone to be pissed off at things that eat their crops.

Now we don't even get a choice - no more duck / quail season. The State Minister for ducks - maybe Environmental Minister actually, an obvious bull dyke, Desley Boyle, announced the decision.

This on top of the closure of my range which may potentially cost me my handgun license, makes for a very bland day indeed.

It's leaning a lot more in favor of shooting as my preferred sport, the only uncomfortable part about that being the idea of having to spend time with other people.

At least at the range, or out looking for ducks, I didn't have to put up with forced company. And, company didn't have to put up with me.

Meanwhile - rabbits everywhere are thanking their god they didn't manage to run in to this guy.

Seems to me they would have been better off if I still had a shotgun.



Spring goes on hold

Ekka weather arrives
Ekka weather - every year, at the same time, Brisbane is consumed by the presence of the . For people who don't know what the Ekka is - as I didn't when I first came here from a country where people usually use the entire name of something so that you get minimum confusion - Ekka is short for exhibition.

The Ekka is always held during the coldest part of the year so that the city, filled with visitors, can benefit from the spread of the very worst of winter ailments.

If you have not had a cold all year you will get one during the two weeks the Ekka is on.

If the weather is good prior to the event it will always give way to foul stuff as soon as the Ekka begins.

It was turning out to be a mild winter, even by my standards. I was beginning to think that the dreaded Ekka curse might fail this year.

It snowed yesterday and last night down in the snowfields. Today we woke to dull skies, patchy rain, and the coldest day I have felt in a long while.

The Ekka, therefore, must have begun.

For the next two weeks we will be inundated by showers, gale force Westerly winds, and a lot more people driving aimlessly about the city.

I only went to the Ekka once. We went by train - traffic avoidance is paramount during the Ekka - all went to plan until our departure. The train arrived at the Ekka station and a bloke jumped or fell under the thing. Messy.

I have never bothered with the Ekka again - it took them about two hours to clean up the person bits so that we could get on the train. Two hours longer than I wanted to be at the bloody place.

I wanted to kick the corpse repeatedly for making me wait but they wouldn't let me. I felt I was carrying the frustration of all the platform dwellers. They wanted to kick him too, I could see that. You could feel it all around you. I thought it would be good closure. But I was the only one who asked. No one stood up for me.

Bastards.

Expect a cold or flu anytime now.



Tuesday, August 09, 2005

on the home straight to spring

winter in manila
If I was to have my way, like I 'm used to, like I expect, like I don't get now, I would winter in RP.

We used to. “We” comprised a group of misfits all with one aim in life — to return to the on a regular basis, there to take up with old friends and residents - George, Gary, and Claude amongst others, who, from the moment of our arrival would make available debauchery and decadence of the likes we would never see here.

The stated aim - to bask in the glow of far too much alcohol and drugs, far too much good music, and far too many beautiful women.

The incidental and peripheral damage, including, but not confined to, falling madly deeply, uncontrollably in love with one or more local ladies, to the point of forgetting your name, address, marital status, and social obligations.

This is the way to spend winter.

Drinking the local bathtub gin until the voices in your head really do make sense is another trauma most suffer, caused usually by the sight of battalions of some of the most beautiful girls in the world strutting their considerably tasty stuff on dance floors everywhere.

This is the way to spend winter.

Waking, not easily, to find the lump in the bed next to you is actually a lady you don't completely remember bringing home, but have absolutely no regrets about having done so now that the hard light of morning shows her to be even more beautiful than she was the evening before.

Something makes them wake up looking good. Or, is it something that makes white women wake up looking bad?

You swear off white women forever - handy given the fact that white women will treat you like a pariah when you return, a result mostly of jealousy mixed with a tinge of fear.

White ladies don't like the idea that they are unable, in any way, to compete with the little brown ladies.

This is the way to spend winter.

It was the way to spend winter.

Then the big change takes place. You skip a trip. You skip another. You take up with white girls again.

You get mired by the logistics of explaining that you are just off to the for a month with some good friends, there to drink to excess every night, to take home at least one different woman everynight, to love, to laugh, to enjoy.. they don't seem to find it an acceptable behavior, partly because, as you know, any relationship with a white Australian is based on her ensuring that you don't ever get to have a good time again.

It's still the way to spend winter, and every other season.

It just becomes more obvious on these cold nights, cold mornings, puerile children flopping their lugubrious selves into a chair to begin the day's internet conversation with someone who usually lives next door, feeling hard done by because their wasn't charged overnight, makes you think back, makes you want to wake up somewhere warm, with someone warm..

It is still the way to spend winter.



Friday, August 05, 2005

London doesn't get bombed..

Mobile manoeuvring
Finally got over the great mobile revolution. After agonizing over what the best course was I managed to blend in the XHTML mobile with the stuff at the very first menu.

Testing that things like that work on a non 3G mobile can be a particularly adventurous time, but we seem to have a catch all on the main address which then fires people off in the correct direction.

The only loose cannon was running into content.

Got hooked on the QR barcode concept - as evidenced by the appearance of one in the sidebar of this very blog. The ultimate way to spread the word. I think.

I've managed to get them all over the place, including as the portrait in the “friends” off shoot of Metropolis Tokyo / Japan Today magazine, described thus:
Japan Today FriendFinder lets you find friendship, interest and activity partners who are living in, or who have an interest in Japan.
Seems to pretty well describe me, but the experiment is to see if the QR barcode will pass inspection as a portrait, and if it will generate any interest, something my real portrait will never manage.

All of this because of an update on mobile stuff? Now we're going to have QR codes all over the stationery, the , the new Post Secret cards that we are about to stash all over the place for people to find.

Swimming - obsessing
The stated aim of swimming all winter is coming close to a reality - August being the last official month of winter over here.

Can't say I will ever manage to lose any weight swimming, need to be back on the bike for that, but I seem to have a fine time at the pool.

I've decided the attraction to water must be some primal thing - splashing about in the womb or something. Or, maybe it's just simple enjoyment.

I'm sure if I try hard enough I should be able to analyze the shit out of it until it turns into some weird theory.

This week's total is 7.25 klm, down on last week because of me cutting back after my shoulder started acting up.

Still enough to keep the heart beating, and keep me counting the days before winter is over.