Archive for the ‘things I don’t like’ Category

It was swell.

January 2, 2008

Just when the temperature finally heats up, all Sydney beaches are most miserably closed! It’s just not right! It’s just not summer! High winds in Queensland have severely affected Sydney beaches. The news reports that all beaches from Queensland to Sydney are closed! 

 This is completely bad news for my beach faring family! So far this season we have cancelled a couple of trips down to the beach due to the rough surf and hazardous conditions. We have sensibly resisted the powerful urge to swim in the unrelenting heat, till now.  Today we finally succumbed.   

My brother took the boys to see the first day of the second test at the SCG while I met up with a friend. It was a hot day. So hot that you couldn’t sit in your car for a minute without the aircon on. So hot that your clothes stuck to your skin, the air felt thick around you and sapped your mind of rational thought. Perhaps that’s why the promise of cool water was too much to resist. By 4:30 we had all found our way to Bronte.   (Photos of Bronte here).   

 The beach was mush. Most of it was white water. Churning white water frothing on the surface hiding the terrible undertow. The beach was closed. I had walked down earlier in the day and had checked out the state of the surf. The beach was certainly too dangerous to swim in. Despite the hot day, no one was in the water. Actually, when I say “no one was in the water”, I mean no one was in the surf. Some people were paddling in the areas that were protected by the rocks. However the tow there was still quite strong and most people only went in up to their knees. The dangerous surf sign was up and the flags were down.*sigh*However, the Ocean Pool was open! 

Waves periodically crashed over the walls turning the usually calm lap pool into a wave pool but it was safe. I walked down the steps and dipped my toes into the water expecting it to be refreshing but warm. It might as well have been ice. The water was sooooo cooooold but so enticing.   

 As I said, by 4:30 we were all at the Ocean Pool and while it took us some time to jump in, once we were in it was divine! Oh how I love the sea! We swam across the pool and climbed up onto the wall closest to the surf. Holding onto the ropes we braced ourselves for the crashing waves that splashed a spangled shower of salt and bubbles over our heads and into the pool. While the waves were of a frightening size they were not as strong as I expected them to be once they reached us having lost a lot of their power on the rocks (they would push you into the water if you were not holding on but were not strong enough to pull you free of your grip on the rope). Thus we spent the afternoon splashing but mostly being splashed by the beautiful ocean. [Ooh! and I just found out Rebecca’s theme for the month is weather! I guess now I can safely confess to having a few weather widgets on my dashboard! ] 

Note the irony?

August 19, 2007


noun [mass noun] any nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink or that plants absorb in order to maintain life and growth


noun [mass noun] a substance that when introduced into or absorbed by a living organism causes death or injury, especially one that kills by rapid action even in a small quantity.

Despite my current situation, the irony is not lost on me.

“[she] sat with clenched thoughts on a very hard chair”…

August 4, 2007

…were the last words I read in The Book Thief before stirring from my frozen place in the winter sun and walking inside.

The words were like a mirror reflecting exactly how the book was making me feel. I put the book down. I’m not sure that I can read it right now. I’m drawn to the book mainly because of the title. The idea of a young girl being a book thief appeals to the bibliophile in me. However, the narrator is repulsive. Soul stealing is not my cup of tea. When I read, I don’t want to feel like I am sitting on a cold chair with clenched thoughts, no matter how well crafted some of Zusac’s sentences may be. Not today. Sometimes it seems the world is full of death and I need a book to escape it.

Last week my brother rang me and told me that my ex-husband’s brother in law had died. Of AIDS. AIDS?! When I found out I sat with “clenched thoughts” wondering why I felt nothing. My heart was hard. Maybe because he was related to my ex. Maybe because I hated that it meant he had cheated on his wife. Maybe because it fitted with the selfish and indulgent lifestyle he lived. Maybe because I am bitter and unforgiving. Maybe because I secretly thought he deserved it. For whatever reason, I felt nothing except horror at my cold unfeeling heart.

Until a student walked into my class joking about people dying of AIDS. Then, I felt. Then, I almost lost it. My cold heart fumed with a red hot anger at the callous manner in which this student who was completely oblivious to the horrors of AIDS was joking in such a light hearted manner. He was obviously completely unaware of the devastation that a wife would feel at discovering that her husband has AIDS… that in all likelihood she now has AIDS. He had no idea of the emaciation a once robust – some would say overly robust – man would undergo, the destruction a family would experience, the shame, the pain, the isolation. I was so mad. But my anger was misdirected. The student shouldn’t have to know about such terrors. I’m glad he doesn’t.

Now I’m angry at this man – my ex-husband’s brother in law. I’m angry, sad, and guilty. How is it that as someone dies, as an ex-sister in-law grieves and perhaps dies, I feel relief and think”Thank God it was not me!”? ‘Cause it could have been. My ex – with all his philandering – could have given me a death sentence. He could have. “Thank God it wasn’t me!” These things are not supposed to come so close. And so I sit with clenched thoughts on a very hard chair.

I wish I were a fir beetle

April 21, 2007

Why? you may ask…Well, because they have little piles marking their entry into logs and the like and their little marking piles are cute. See:

But I have big piles of marking marking my entry to Term Two and these are not very cute.

Oh, to be a fir beetle!

I want quality spam!

April 21, 2007

Why do all these spam people think I would like a replica rolex watch? Why do they think that if they send me 57 messages a day that will convince me? Why doesn’t anyone ever send any quality spam? Like spam that tells you where to get a nice cheap pair of Peter Alexander Pjs, or good books at bargain prices, or cheap opera or theatre tickets. That would be the kind of spam I’d like to receive.

I wonder if anyone sends Bible spam…

Why can’t people use spam for good instead of evil?

Telstra offers more than you bargain for…

April 19, 2007

…but I don’t think I like it.

SO yesterday I answered a “No Caller ID” call on my mobile phone and was greeted by a salesman for Telstra. This is not unusual, various phone companies are always calling trying to entice me to upgrade my phone, choose a better plan or change service providers. I don’t usually mind these calls because, let’s face it, I want to get the cheapest phone deal I can. So, as Mr Telstra Representative talked me through the deals I listened, compared plans and bargained.

The first offer I received was to swap service providers, commit to a $49.00/ month plan and receive unlimited calls to any number between 8pm and 7am daily as well as obtaining a pink phone – why doesn’t anyone tell those mobile phone dealers that pink phones are not necessarily a draw card! Just cause I’m a girl and speak sweetly does not mean I want a pink phone! Ever! No matter how good a deal you offer! Needless to say, more negotiating was required.

After 11 minutes I had negotiated a new phone, two months free service, unlimited 15c sms’, 50x 20c-for-the-first-10-minutes calls to any number/month, all on a $49.00 plan with a two year contract. Now, I thought this not a particularly good deal since the call rate and flagfall was still more than that which I am currently paying and the phone was inferior to that which I already had. So then this lovely sales rep offered me 6 months free service as well as what we had already negotiated so that I could keep my phone or put that money towards purchasing a new phone as my current one would not work on their network.

He sounded a little desperate to make a sale, reminded me of the 10 day cooling off period and said perhaps he should just send a phone out. Anyway, I still wasn’t convinced that Telstra could actually better the deal I already had and was about to wind up the conversation when Telstra rep guy changes tack and says:

“How old are you?”

[silence] Then I think, Oh, he probably just has to ask for legal reasons so that he can sell me a phone.

“You are over 18 aren’t you?”

“Yes, I’m over 18”

“Are you 21?”

“I’m older than 21”

“No! Really, you sound so young!”

Now I’m used to the buttering up factor that is sometimes encountered when people are trying to sell me things so I let it slide.

“Well, I am older than 21.”

“You must be 25…?”

Okay, think I, this is so going beyond buttery…”No.”

“So, where do you live?”

[uncomfortable silence]

“I mean, so we can post this phone out to you. Are you in Sydney?”

Somehow I still think he’s trying to sell me a phone and stupid, stupidly answer,”Oh, yes, [I state the suburb]”

“Oh wow! I live right near you. I live in [states neighbouring suburb]. I probably know you! What’s your name?”

At this point I’m wary but still thinking this could be a new sales tactic and am wondering how this is going to convince me to buy a phone because I am sure that I don’t know this guy but Mr Telstra Man is becoming creepy and I’m thinking I need to get out of this conversation quickly…

“[states name – stupidly! and says] I’m sure you don’t know me and I really have to go. Sorry, I don’t think you can offer me a better deal than what I already have.”

“Okay then. Well, ah…I might just keep your number anyway and ah…”

Might just… no way! When did this become part of the deal? The pink phone was a way better offer! I mutter something about being uninterested until Telstra reduce their call costs and hang up.

Who does that? Apparently Mr Telstra does.