Friday, August 22, 2008

I'm a little confused. They are trialling this "user pays" plastic bag system in areas of Victoria. OK.

So who paid for them before? Were they "donated" to us, the consumer? Were Woolies and Coles et al providing them to us as a charitable act? Filed under "donations" in their accounts?

Another of the many examples of how we are getting fucked over financially under the heading of "saving the planet". That list is going to get very long I fear before some common sense is restored (I am an optimist if nothing else).

I agree that plastic bags are really bad for the oceans and waterways in particular. I have nothing against the "enviro" bags (of which I literally have a thousand) it's just that I use the plastic shopping bags I collect for rubbish purposes. If I didn't get these from the supermarket for "FREE" I would just have to buy a bag full of them anyway. So nett benefit for the planet = ZERO. Surely a biodegradable plastic bag with a limited life span (which I'm sure I saw being used a few years ago) would be a better option. Sort of like on Mission Impossible... this plastic bag will self destruction in 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 months...
Enough of this Colin the Whale bullshit. Seriously, do we need to have it as the number fucking news story all week? Sure it's sad blah blah (not really) but this stuff happens all the time out in the wild. But I guess if it's not on TV it's not real. Let's not even mention the thousands, millions of children who die of starvation and curable illnesses all over the world each year because apparently there isn't enough money and/or interest to fund their salvation. Strangely no-one seemed to blink an eye at the thought of spending up to $60 million to get the armed forces involved in taking this friggin' baby whale out to a [potential] passing pod of other whales so that it could [potentially, chances low] be adopted by another whale. Now the morons are yelling we haven't done enough. Sheesh!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I was so pissed off about the morons with the baby last night that I actually forgot to write about the main event. Sheesh. Those people do my head in.

Any old how, David Sedaris was hilarious. Hearing him read one of his own stories is especially wonderful because he gives it just the right "voice", i.e. (to quote him) a "beyond faggy" voice. David Sedaris really is "beyond faggy". He is one of the gay-est gay men I have ever come across. His demeanor, his turn of phrase, everything about him screams "GAY" and it's such a wonderful thing. For someone who doesn't, sadly, have any current gay male friends I am the biggest fag hag. I would literally kill to have a close gay male friend - and if he happend to be David Sedaris I would be the happiest woman alive. Imagine the sheer bliss of having David Sedaris AND Augusten Burroughs as your gay friends. Oh, the witty banter and the scathing character assassinations.

His "Nicaragua" story killed me. The ability to so beautifully, so hilariously, put into words his observations on people and life, is sheer genius.
Excuse me while I yell for a moment...


Last night I am sitting in the beautiful Concert Hall of the even more beautiful Sydney Opera House to hear one of my favourite authors, David Sedaris, talk about his book When You're Engulfed in Flames. My anticipation levels are high. Judith Lucy (whom I also adore) comes out to do the introduction (oh joy!).

But what is that strange noise I hear? Is it a cough? Is it someone with a strange voice, a la Travis from Big Brother, making odd noises? Anxiously I turn around and lo and behold DIRECTLY BEHIND ME is a stupid couple and the stupid fucking woman is cradling a baby who is making gurgling, semi-crying baby fucking noises. My eyes bulge and my pulse quickens, I have a hard-to-fight urge to take this couple out onto the pebblecrete forecourt and repeatedly smash their moronic heads against the ground until the realise the error of their selfish ways.

But instead I look away in disgust and, what do I see downstairs, but another stupid couple pushing their giant costs-a-month's-wages fucking Bugaboo monstrosity into the lower hall. Is the world mad? YES! Are people too stupid to live? YES! Is the entire population of the entire universe hell bent on stopping me enjoying any and every event I go to? YES! and double YES!

I can not remember the last time I went to any event which involved paying money to sit in a hall and listen to someone speak, sing, play music or even watch a goddamned movie without someone else thinking it acceptable to bring their babies, talk on the mobile, talk to their neighbour and/or constantly go in and out of the hall.

I'm all for involving children in social events but there has to be some measure of common fucking sense. Small babies and toddlers are not controllable; they cry, scream and make annoying noises for no discernable reason. What's worse is that their moronic parents do not think it necessary to remove their noise-making children and therefore allow a hall full of paying customers to enjoy the performance. Shit NO, these people are happy to disturb hundreds and thousands of people for their own selfish, idiotic needs.

Honestly, I'm THIS far away from starting a vigilante squad and/or forming a political party with NO CHILDREN IN THEATRES as my main platform. Send all political donations to...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Some recent pics (mainly for dear Jules in London)

Gorgeous boy!

The Terminator

Our day at Taronga Zoo yesterday
I think part of the reason I missed the kids so much was the book I was reading, A Wolf at the Table by Augusten Burroughs. I have read all his other books and while his writing style is obviously the same nothing prepared me for how hard this story of his early years, before the Running with Scissors period, would hit me.

Really it was just a story of a boy wanting his father's love and acceptance and getting nothing back, worse than nothing. Psychological games, fear, rejection, confusion... these were the themes of Augusten's early life, living with a psychopathic father and a crazy mother.

With each chapter my need to hug my children grew and by the last page it took all my self control not to ring Jason and ask him to pick me up just so I could cuddle my babies and tell them "I love you".

When I see Augusten speak about this book in a week and a half's time I will also have to fight an overwhelming urge to put my arms around him and say "very much I love you", though the person from whom he longed to hear those words is now dead and can never repent for the horror which was Augusten's childhood.
On Friday I returned home from three nights away at Solar Springs Health Retreat. It's a place for middle class women to "get away", eat some healthy food, get a massage and a facial and basically recharge the batteries. Having recently returned from Fiji I was probably not really in need of any battery recharging at this point but my friend M asked me along and who am I to say "no" to a few days of child-free R&R.

I had a lovely time: a bit of yoga, a facial, a meditation bushwalk (I never realised how difficult it would be for me to be quiet for an hour, almost blew a gasket to be honest), reading a book in front of the open fire, lots of chatting. What more could a girl ask for?

I was surprised at how much I missed my family though. I couldn't stop thinking about the kids. Of course they were driving me nuts within 10 minutes of being home, but I did yearn for them while I was away. Weird!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I'm totally buggered but triumphant!

Today I completed the City to Surf half-marathon - walking, of course - in 3 hours, 25 minutes. (Only slightly outdone by the winner - at 41 minutes, 19 seconds.) There were very old people and little children passing me by.

But I don't care. I did it! I've never walked so far in my life and my legs ache in ways I couldn't have imagined.

It was worth it because I have hopefully, along with my wonderful ACC walking buddies, raised some serious money for Australians Caring for Children.

Here's yours truly at the finish line a few hours ago (just in case you don't believe me).

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Marianna's favourite word right now is POO. She just can't get enough of it. The funniest thing is how she includes it in her favourite songs by using POO instead of another word, e.g. Twinkle twinkle little POO (which has to be shouted for special effect).

So last night as I was saying "good night" to her I asked her what book daddy had read to her (Jason is currently reading to her every night while I read The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, chapter by chapter, to Will). She was all snuggled into her pillow with her quilt pulled up near her chin. She whispered something I couldn't hear.

"What was that?" I asked.

"POO!" she said.

"Dad read you a book about POO?"

"About POO... and WILLIES... and BUM BUMS!" she said, trying not to giggle and with a very evil glint in her eyes.

"Oh, that sounds nice," I said, backing out of the room trying so hard not to laugh out loud.

Just in case you thought we weren't doing a very good job in the parenting department.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Because this always gives me a giggle.

The Man Song
We went to see the new Batman film last Friday night. Not much to say really. Yes, Heath Ledger was amazing and really much much better than the movie as a whole. The movie itself was OK, nothing more, nothing less. I do love a super hero movie but I find the new Batman franchise with Christian Bale takes itself way too seriously. [If you want serious Christian Bale see American Psycho, now that's a cool movie.]

Now I'm just hanging out for Hellboy 2. I like my super hero movies twisted and with a large dose of black humour.
Will has been asking a lot about death lately. I think the deaths of our cat and our dog (both rehoused since we moved into the apartment) recently has brought it on. But he also mentions the death of his Poppy (Jason's dad) and Baba Ada (my great-grandmother).

Last night he asked about going to heaven. I had to be honest with him and say I don't believe in heaven, not in the biblical or religious sense. In fact I believe I don't know what happens when you die. I hope that you go somewhere (we say the moon) where all the people you love who have died are and just hang out but that is just a comforting daydream. I have no way of knowing what really happens and I have no theological comfort blanket in which to wrap myself. That's fine for me as an adult but I struggle with explaining my thoughts and feelings to Will. I know he just wants to hear something simple and something comforting to help ease his sadness and fear.

I know he has fear about death and about getting old and getting sick - the two main causes of death according to my explanations (and reality, I suppose). When he brings up this conversation I am overwhelmed with a soaring excitement that my son is maturing and is able to have and grapple with these complex thoughts. I am also overwhelmed with sadness that one day we will have to leave each other in this world and that is a fact no-one can deny. There is also a huge feeling of inadequacy at being a parent and having this responsibility of bringing up a child when I feel I know so little about the world and about life.

I want to provide him with a sense of comfort and security and yet even as I say the words "mummy will always be with you" I know how untrue those words are. I can't guarantee that, not even for the rest of today, let alone into the unforseen future. I tell him that we are not old or sick and that we'll be together for a long, long time but in my heart I know I am lying for there is only one thing I am certain of, our ultimate fate is not in our hands. These thoughts make me sad for the parents who have lost children and the children who have lost parents.

I always try to be philosophical about death, it is life's only guarantee. I try not to be afraid. But sitting with my gorgeous son in his cosy bedroom at night sometimes I allow myself to catch a glimpse of the demons hiding around the corner, and I am afraid.

Monday, August 04, 2008

I'm going to need a quiet September because on Friday 29 August I'm finally going in to have a hysterectomy. This has been in the planning stages for some time because of yet another ovarian cyst (or two) and a gazillion fibroids.

I'm pretty excited to be getting it done and out of the way. As I see it my downstairs girly bits have done absolutely nothing to help me become a mother so their technical purpose has never been utilised. All they have done is cause me almost thirty years of monthly pain and discomfort. I am happy to be getting rid of it all if for no other reason than it will stop my dear husband from saying "Obviously you have your period" when we are disagreeing about something.

The only things that are worrying me right now are the recovery period and the prospect of early menapause. I am not very good at being a patient; I am the one who does stuff, I get things done. It is very difficult for me to accept help and take the back seat. I am very grateful that my mum is going to come and stay with us as long as needed but I am also terrified of how I am going to deal with it. I am fervently hoping that the 6 week recovery period talked about in the informative brochure my gyno gave me is worst case scenario. As far as the menapause side of it, well I guess it's just fear of the unknown. I mean it's just bringing forward the inevitable so it's something I would have to deal with sooner or later. It's just the suddeness of it which will be strange: go to sleep with a body full of estrogen doing its stuff and wake up a dried up old crone. Just joking. I hope. Bring on the HRT.
It's a sad time to be a Sydney Swans' supporter right now.

I suppose these are the times which test our loyalty.

Anyway, I'm going to need a quiet September, so it's probably for the best.
A quick update on the previous post. Both children were interviewed by police and social services. Apparently the situation has been caught just in time as it appears the boy had been "grooming" her for some time and had been planning full sexual intercourse. It's a horrible story.

The mother said she had been leaving the girl with this boy in the mornings, as a before school carer, for a year or so. Not taking away from the horrificness of the situation but I can not imagine leaving either of my children with a babysitter so young. Personally I do not think 12 or 13 is old enough to be babysitting. I don't believe a child of that age is mature enough to deal with a crisis situation should it arise. Who could imagine that a young boy of that age could dream up such an awful fate for the young girl in his care?