Category Archives: Blogging

For Carmen and my foot

Carmen has spoken. What has happened to the blog? I’ve never met Carmen. I’m sure she exists, although I suppose it is vaguely possible she is my father’s imaginary friend. Either way she wants to know, what happened to the blog? Hmm… I think I do too. I could write a post about what’s been happening in my life since April 25, or I could give you a stream of thoughts from just this morning.

The day started with pondering the connections between children’s songs. I know. You all wake up wondering how Old Macdonald links to the Wheels on the Bus song. This for me is a sure sign that work has infected my brain temporarily. It’s not an infection that you need the serious antibiotics to be rid of. More like when you have a cold and your voice gets gravely and people notice. It’s there, it’s different and you just have to wait for it to go away.

My boss has asked me for an inspiring presentation for Wednesday. I know that inspiration is not going to come from Old Macdonald – possibly one of the most annoying children’s songs of all time. If I were free to choose any topic I like I’m sure that I could unearth some inspiration somewhere. Sadly, I am not. I need to make a quality framework sound inspiring. Galumph and humph to that. The strange thing is that at times I have been inspired. Um… scratch that. Not inspired… fired up, emotional and passionate. If I can find that, perhaps I can meet his challenge.

Meanwhile my foot is starting to groan with pins and needles. On top of my foot (besides my leg) is my cat. (times 2). They have actually lost weight. Saffron is now a cool 5.5kg and Licorice an even 6 but with both pancaked on top of my crossed leg, my poor left foot is…. VIBRATING AND SINGING… oh that would the iPad with Andrew wanting to FaceTime.

I has unearthed the iPad from under fat cats, blankets and legs.

‘What are you doing?’

‘Writing a blog post?’

‘Oh. That would the first of the year?’ [Cheeky grin]

‘Nope, the first since April 25th if you must know.’

‘And what are you doing?’

‘Reading about the legacy of pragmatism in the element of design’

‘Of course.’

Suddenly Quality Frameworks have an instantaneous appeal. They are far more lush and enticing than a 25 page orgy of academia on the construct of ideas in art. He did tell me the title of the article; I can’t remember it exactly but if I were to call it the ‘permutation and liberation of design from post modernism’ it would make just as much sense as the real title.

He read me a paragraph. It reminds me of sentences created from word salad fridge magnets, except not nearly as much fun. Certainly a long way from the TED talk I watched this morning which is promoted as ‘lyrical origami’. Only after watching the video could I truly appreciate the accuracy of the description of ‘lyrical origami’. A truly delightful, witty and mellifluous talk. Here it is for you to enjoy for yourself: http://www.ted.com/talks/rives_on_4_a_m

Budgie Smugglers

budgie‘You might have to explain to your international readers what budgie smugglers are’ says Dad upon me entering the house.

Oh. Oops. Didn’t even think of that.

Then again, I know that my international friends seem exceptionally well read and would probably know what they are anyway. I on the other hand am still occasionally stumped. I had to write to Isobel (of Isobel and Cat fame) recently to ask whether ‘cream crackered’ was a term familiar to her, or whether it was well known. Cockney rhyming slang it turns out. Last week, I learnt about ‘Pinkertons’ on the back of watching Ripper Street. (There are times when wikipedia is really indispensable).

So, back to the budgie smugglers. In case anyone isn’t familiar, it’s a slang term of men’s speedos / swimming costumes and seems to be used often in reference to our now current Prime Minister given his fondness of sport. It takes a man with a good body (think well built surf life guide), to be able to get away with wearing budgie smugglers without looking pathetic. It’s something about the way they droop with water… the swimming costume that is. I refuse to even contemplate Tony’s actual anatomy. Ew. Sick. Now.

So dad reckons I need a glossary of terms for my blog. Really, there’s only a few you need to know to follow the plot. Here they are:

edward_lear_and_his_cat_foss_1885
The Scroobious Pip.

That’s me.

Sometimes people ask me what exactly a Scroobious Pip is, I just reply – ah, that is the question! The story was a childhood favourite, written by one of the two great masters of nonsense – Edward Lear, an epileptic depressive who had a great love of his cat Foss.

IMG_2061Andrew. 

My unconventional partner / boyfriend (depending on your preferred terminology). (Andrew associates partner with gay cowboy movies, I associate boyfriend with sounding 14 and temporary). Unconventional? Well, we don’t exactly fit the traditional model. We live separately. I work full time. He doesn’t. He’s domestically competent. I’m domestically challenged (except for light bulbs, I do those). I think the only thing traditional about us is he takes out his own garbage. My mum always taught me that men should do tyres and garbage.

Definition of Andrew? mischievous, Naughty. A 4 year old trapped in a 40-something year old body. An extremely talented artist (if only we could convince him of this) combined with a largely gentle soul. I say largely. He isn’t known for being a placid calm driver – especially if you take a disabled parking spot and you have no disabled parking permit.

Pickle sleeping as only Pickle can.

Pickle sleeping as only Pickle can.

Pickle.

The oldest of Andrew’s two cats and the most like him in personality – bloody naughty!

Andrew always said that if he couldn’t have a dog he didn’t want anything. Then after a while he decided a cat would be ok. As long as it was a girl cat. And black, or tabby.

So he adopted a ginger boy who certainly lives up to the tag Ginger Ninja. Andrew wanted a dog… well he’s doing his best to mould Pickle into a dog. Surprisingly, Pickle is mostly complying.

Recently, an ambulance officer referred to Pickle as a ‘caramel cat’. This has earnt him the title of ‘o Caramelle’ (said with a ridiculously corny French accent!)

Andrew and Gesso

Andrew and Gesso

Gesso.

Named after the white primer used in painting, Gesso has developed his own fondness for paint. While every other cat has stood in the paint just once, Gesso has done it at least three times… if not more.

Gesso is medium haired and deaf.

He makes you work for his affection but strangely we just seem to love him even more for it. When he actually lets me cuddle him for a little while, I feel that I’ve won a great battle / been included among a privileged few.

Gesso is frequently also called ‘the white cat’ (with the emphasis on THE), or squirrel.

And that’s half the fur family…

Licorice and Saffron

I don’t think it’s quite right for me to write about the two separately, for they really don’t separate you see.

Suitcase? What suitcase.

Suitcase? What suitcase.

That’s Saffron (8) on the top and Licorice (11) on the bottom. Two undeniably fat couch potatoes of cats with an everlasting number of hugs and smooches to give.

Licorice hates the vacuum cleaner. Licorice hasn’t figured out that each morning when I go to the fridge to get the food, she doesn’t need to follow me as I am just coming back with it. (Saff waits patiently in the bathroom). On the whole, Licorice is the gentle giant; except when at the mothership and it’s time to go back in the cat cage.

Saffron on the other hand, is reasonably ok with the vacuum cleaner but scared of all things new. Strangers / Visitors – check under the bed and you’ll find her.

PS: Mothership = home of my mum and dad a.k.a Cat Hotel.

So there you go dad. A glossary. Complete with pictures. Have I forgotten anything?

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I couldn’t resist including one more picture of Pickle. Cheeky Pickle.

I pledge allegiance

I was reading a post from Geekergosum – who incidentally seems to think starting a blog post with ‘I’m’ is lazy – about the daily post. I think I may have posted on the subject of the daily post only once before, but I thought, what the hell. The girls have firmly planted themselves in my lap and I’ll let them enjoy cuddletime for a bit longer since they have managed to do it today without impeding access to laptop! So off to the daily post I go, only to find that the prompt of the day is “Are you patriotic? What does country mean to you?”

Firstly, I think it’s a little unAustralian to be overtly patriotic but secondly, we are in the final stages of an election campaign so it’s bloody hard to feel good about much country-wise.

Take this for example – our two major parties are trying to out-tough each other on the subject of people arriving by boat and then claiming asylum. All the figures show that the number of refugees Australia takes in from boat people is small comparative to other countries. More people arrive by plane and overstay on their visa than arrive by boat. Yet I don’t hear anyone crying ‘stop the planes!’ while ‘stop the boats’ has become a tiresome mantra of both parties. Has anyone in politics considered recently that how they got to Australia? I’m pretty sure that Tony Abbott – our probable next PM – came here by boat as a 10 pound pom. My ancestors ALL arrived by boat – at least one of these was at her majesty’s pleasure (a convict who arrived in 1814) and the rest were ‘free settlers’ arrived throughout the 1800s. Of course, the traditional owners of this land we now call Australia didn’t invite any of these boat people but no one is talking about that right now.

Meanwhile, one of our smaller political parties which sits on the left of the political spectrum, is campaigning for a more humane approach to people seeking asylum in Australia. In doing so, they seem to have lost all sense of logic, as they are reportedly directing preferences to the Palmer Australia Party. For my overseas readers to give you some context, this party – the Greens – has as a key belief policies which benefit the environment. Palmer Australia Party is founded, and led, by Clive Palmer, a man who has made his money from coal. Palmer was a member of our conservative party for decades. According to Wikipedia – the gospel truth – Palmer supported the campaign to have Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen elected as Prime Minister of Australia. Sir Joh was a long serving premier of Queensland who, was finally forced to resign amid corruption allegations. Gee, wouldn’t he have made a fantastic PM?

So in answer to the daily post’s question – am I patriotic – today, the answer is definitely no. I have decided that Australia’s politicians have all gone barking mad!

 

Weird Search Terms

A while ago I wrote a blog post: The Secret to increasing blog traffic. I’d had a spike in my visitors and had just blogged about dating disability style, so attributed the rise to people searching for disability (it couldn’t have possibly been the word dating).

Gesso sleeping upsidedown

A random photo of Gesso which has nothing to do with banshees or belly button lint

At the time, a few of you wrote and told me of your bizarre search terms hitting your blogs. Flossie found there are a lot of people out there searching for ‘stationery’. Oldcat pitched in with visitors to her blog searching for ‘Dragon Man and Rat Woman Love Connection’.

Well, this weeks sees some new peculiarities coming up in my search term stats. There’s little I can say other than print them. They have me mystified.

  • Belly button line preservation society
  • a little dodgy purple giraffe, and
  • cloak banshee ninja madness covered in fur.
It seems cloaked banshees ninjas must be popular – I got that one twice this week! What’s the strangest search term ever to hit your blog?

Oh my whiskers!

Tonight, the blogging community is adrift. Many souls are pacing floors around the world waiting for the Daily Post to upload the weekly photo challenge theme. Someone’s tardiness seems to have caused quite a stir. I bet there’s someone running around the daily post office this very minute in a panic ‘white rabbit style’.

[I’ll be] executed, as sure as ferrets are ferrets.

To avoid any untimely deaths, I propose the theme should be ‘late’.

This would allow everyone to spend the week trying to find rabbits in waistcoats with pocket watches. I looked briefly for one; failed; and decided I’d upload a cat photo instead.

Saffron waits for the weekly photo challenge theme to be anounced

Kreativ Blogger Award

I have just received this award from Eldy, who was one of my word submitters for the 42 word story challenge. Thank you Eldy!

Apparently on receipt of this award it is customary to:

1)Select six blogs to receive this award  

2) Share ten things that your readers don’t know about you.

Here’s a few blogs I’ve been enjoying recently:

For a wonderful weave of words: Megans Manifesto.

For portraiture full of warmth: Richard Radstone.

For sarcasm extreme: Robotic Rhetoric.

For a prolific photographer with an eye for the ‘everyday’: Jesse Jaca. I particularly love the weekly photo challenge ‘between‘ entry.

On the dressmaking front: I get a kick out of you and Twinkle Sparkle Shine.

As for 10 things that my readers don’t know about me… this is going to be a challenge!

  1. I have very small ears
  2. I have hair on my toes which makes me look like I have wookie feet
  3. Once upon a time, I played the piano but I have a poor sense of rhythm so stopped.
  4. I am an Australian ‘mutt’ of English, Scottish, Irish, Danish and Chilean ancestry (all of which were at least 4 generations ago).
  5. My partner has a pine cone collection.
  6. I’d love to drive the Great Ocean Road
  7. I’m such a lousy housekeeper that it takes 4 people and the length of 2 star wars films to clean my one bedroom unit.
  8. I’m not afraid of spiders
  9. I know the deafblind alphabet
  10. Apparently I talk in my sleep. Sometimes.

Why I love my partner

Why I love my partner in 3 points:

He can paint urban landscapes.

He can paint portraits.

He is exceptionally cool.

And he would never ever say I had a blog addiction. 🙂

A masterclass in boobs

I recently discovered a blog called Megan’s Manifesto. It should be called Megan’s Laugh Yourself Silly And Be In Awe Of Her Talent Blog.

She can take subjects I’d be too scared to touch and create an engaging, meaty read. One of my favourite posts is simply called “On Boobs“.

The first paragraph reads:

Do you wanna know why I’d make an awful hippie? Firstly, I strongly believe Janis Joplin’s crap on a tie-dyed stick. Secondly, bell-bottoms make my already huge hips gargantuan. Thirdly, I’m pretty much epileptic near disco balls. And finally, I can’t make it through the day without an industrial strength, under-wired bra holding The Twins firmly in place. The free-wheelin’ beatniks might disagree, but as far as I’m concerned, dancing in the streets is off-limits until everything in and around the chest area’s been properly secured. You never know when an overly rhythmic boob might knock you out cold.

Are you hooked? Go on and read the rest of the post and prepare to be entertained.