Friday, March 31, 2006

Rot in hell, douchebag.

Yesterday I had my wallet stolen. It wa largely my own stupid fault as I'd left my bag open. I don't usually read on the tram but I'd come all the way from the physio in Caulfield (which is an entirely different story) so I'd had my little nose buried in Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential (great book, makes my job look like child's play). I was so engrossed in the coke snorting, ecuadorian line cook poaching, demi glaceing antics of Bourdain and his cohorts that I nearly missed my stop, so I jumped up, stashed my book, checked that my wallet was there, and jumped off, leaving my bag open in my rush.

It was about 10 metres from the tram stop to the shop I was going into, and I'm guessing that in that 10 metres, my wallet went AWOL. I didn't even realise that it was gone until I went to pay at the cash register. At first I didn't bat an eyelid, thinking maybe it'd slipped into a hole in the lining (which has happened before). However when I turned the whole bag inside out and it wasn't there or in the changeroom, mild panic set in. Had I left it on the tram? Nope. I'd checked that it was there as I got off. Trying to remain calm, I set off for the cop shop on Flinders Lane. As I was walking down Swanston St, it gradually dawned on me what had actually been stolen. The realisation of each newly missing item was like a punch in the gut. Licence. Bam! Student ID. Bam! Concession card. Bam! Debit Card. Bam! CREDIT CARD. BAM!

Needless to say, by the time I arrived at the police station, I was nearly in tears, sweating, practically reeling, punch-drunk. 'You absolute fucking braindead IDIOT! How could you lose so much shit!' was the train of thought I was maintaining as my stress leveles completely maxed out. I'm not a drugs kind of person (as you all know very well), but if someone had offered me a joint I would've smoked the whole thing in one drag. I was freaking.

So my first visit to a police station wasn't exactly grand. I waited for ages before someone came to see me, then I had to wait for an officer to come and help me, so more waiting. There was a woman from Perth who'd also had her purse stolen on Swanston St. My mum turned up and I'm a little embarrassed to say I had a tiny bit of a cry because I was so fucking screwed. After a while some officer dude came to help me and I had to call and cancel all my cards and shit, which took a while. Some Indian guy with a terrible fake American accent palmed me off to some Indian guy with a terrible Australian accent, who clacked away on keyboards and ummed and ahhed before cancelling my credit card. Props to the Comm bank though who were efficient and helpful. Apparently the officer dude who helped me was good looking (my mum said that), but I don't think I would've noticed if it were the fucking queen, as I had slightly more important things on my mind.

Anyway after an hour in the station I decided to head home, where a message was waiting for me - my wallet had been found! Whoever stole it took all the cash and then went to a handbag shop up the street and hid it in one of the handbags. The staff in the shop found it, went through it, found my gym card and called my gym, who called me. So it was straight back to the city to reclaim my now cashless wallet and then I went back to the police station to tell officer dude what happened. At least he now believed that it'd been stolen and I hadn't just dropped it. Fortunately my cards were in there (although I'd already cancelled them), unfortunately the cash is long gone. $35 might not sound like much but it's 3 hour's pay.

So yes. So much stress I could've done without. To the douchebag who stole my wallet: rot in hell, my friend.


Oh yeah, the physio. I got elbowed in the shoulder at work and 'corked' a shoulder muscle. So not only did I get sent home from work because I couldn't move, I had to go and get it taped up. So now I look like footballer, I can't move my arm and the tape is really really fucking itchy.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

written wednesday march 15 2006 (during a boring Italian tute)

Shed 14 at Docklands is filled with shipping containers. But instead of telivisions and furniture, they contain art installationg as part of the Next Wave arts festival. The spaces in between are buzzing with creatively dressed and uber sophisticated bohemian types with great hair. Wandering amongst them in my uni student jeans and t-shirt, I feel at ease and yet uncomfortable. I love being around creative people, but I've never felt more uncool in my life. With relief I spot my cousin on the catwalk above, and while I wait for him to come down I have a look at some of the installations, but I end up just marvelling at how effortlessly cool everyone else seems. Where do all these people hide when they're not at art festivals? My cousin rescues me and takes me around before leaving me to my own devices. It's all very highbrow and thought provoking. Impossibly slender identical twins, in black shorts and singlets, play handball. Four girls in uniform spit bouncy balls and bang loudly against the side of their container. I self-consciously draw a t-shirt design of a man in beret, sunglasses and goatee with the slogan 'artier than thou' then I escape to the comfort of the pub quiz with G and her engineering friends, where we come second by a point (our best result ever), and being uncool is okay.

written monday march 13 2006

The morning is cool, grey and not a little wet. I'm trudging down the laneway, bright orange umbrealla in one hand to hold off the half-arsed but constant drizzle, bagel with cream cheese in the other. But I'm not in New York (sadly). We're making our way to the Chinese Museum on Little Bourke St to get ready for this year's Moomba parade.

The city at 8 am on a public holiday is all but deserted. Melbourne Central is eerily quiet, devoid of the usual throng of suits, uni students and truants. Even the Museum is quieter than it was during Chinese New Year. The absence of people is a little unnerving. At 10 am there still aren't enough men to carry the dragon, jeopardising our participation in the parade.

Which is how six of us girls come to be standing on the corner of Russel and Little Bourke Streets in our costumes an hour before the parade, asking people off the street if they'd like to participate. Most people walk past, completely ignoring us, others stop long just long enough to say no. Even the offer of a free lunch can't seem to tempt anyone. However, after as many refusals as propositions, my sister accosts a French backpacker. Jackpot! He seems a little overwhelmed by six excitable girls in costume, but lets himself get whisked away for a crash-course in dragon carrying.

After catching this 'fish', as the excited parade organisers put it, my friend and I cross the street to join another three costumed participants, and to our surprise, we snare another volunteer within a couple of minutes. B lives up the street and is on his way to the supermarket, but is happy to make a slight detour.

By some miracle, the two people we get off the street transform into the five we actually need, and by 10:55 am I'm standing out the front of the Museum, my garishly coloured phoenix's wings flapping softly in the breeze. The Museum is across a cobbled laneway from a block of serviced apartments, and the guests look surprised as they step out into the dull morning to be confronted with a riot of violently coloured silk banners and papier-mache animals. The cacophony of drums, cymbals and gongs waking up the dragon brings a bunch of girls out onto their balcony, where they excitedly snap pictures and wave.

Walking along Little Bourke Street to Swanston Street, where the parade is happening, gives the impression that no one is attending, as the streets are almost empty. I'm just beginning to think that it'll be very embarrassing, all of us parading to no one, when we hit Swanston Street. Which is packed. People cram in five or six deep against bright yellow plastic barriers as far as the eye can see. Shit.

Because we're joining the parade after the actual commencement point, we get to see some of the floats go past. The Play School float is a definite highlight. One of the presenters waves back at me but I don't recognise her - I'm before her time. We're the last float out after Spotswood Primary's mass drumming. One of their teachers is cute.

Walking down Swanston Street as part of a parade instead of a protest is a strange experience. Instead of jeans and a 'support your student union' t-shirt, I'm wearing a red chinese blouse and black satin trousers. The phoenix is a little heavier and more cumbersome than the red flag that a Socialist Alternative member invariable thrusts into my hands during a protest, and requires a red webbing and leather sling for support. Everywhere I look, hundreds of little silver cameras snap photos. It's strange to think that all these people I've never met might be emailing photos of me to their friends. I wave to whoever waves at me and experience what it's like to give that moment of joy to little kids watching the parade.

I feel a little bad when we turn onto Flinders Street before Federation Square, which is still packed with expectant faces, but the dragon is bloody heavy and it's a long walk back. When we turn onto Russell Street and face a fairly steep uphill walk, I can almost hear the poor dragon carriers groaning in dismay. My own arms and legs are beginning to feel the effects of an hour's parading combined with washing dishes all weekend. I'm thankful to relinquish the phoenix and my petroleum-based uniform and head downstairs in time to see the boys finally put the dragon back to sleep. B is all smiles and says he had a great time.

Excuse me while my brain liquefies and dribbles out my nostrils.

Oh God.

This week has been (and you'll excuse my french) abso-fucking-lutely mental. Here it is in short form (because just thinking about it in any longer form tires me right now):

Sunday night: worked till 10:45. Pretty busy because of Labour Day monday. Slept at around midnight.
Monday: woke up at 6:30am. Moomba parade am, then uni, then Commonwealth Games opening ceremony rehearsal in the evening. Get home 11:30 pm, sleep around midnight.
Tuesday: wake up 7:30 am. Uni until 3:15 pm, then killing time until Next Wave arts festival at 6. To the pub quiz at 8, meet parents in city at 10:30, get home around 11. sleep 11:30pm.
Wednesday: get up 7:30. Uni until 4:15, then Commonwealth games opening ceremony at the Yarra. Get home around midnight and straight to bed.
Today: up at 7:30. head to MSAC for the swimming heats, then into the city to kill time until hockey at Parkville at 4pm. Got home about 20 minutes ago.

Anyway, enough of that. I don't want to think about it right now. Instead, I'll put in transcripts of what I've written in my notebook in the past week, with the intention of putting it into the blog straight away, but obviously without the time.


Saturday, March 11, 2006

How asian are you?

(stolen from G)

1. You regret the fact that you did not learn Mandarin or other Asian language properly in Saturday language school.
well...trueish I suppose it'd be handy for travel, but my parents speak Hokkien anyway. and I never did saturday language class.

2. You say you're Australian, totally forgetting your roots.
True. Well technically I am an Aussie, in as much as I was born here and have spent most of my life here.

3. During childhood you didn't have many Asian friends, played bullrush or handball and ate 'sunny boys' for lunch.
True. My only Asian friends are family friends.

4. A form of choosing was done by 'dip dip'.

5. You know you have to shop at an Asian grocery store but you have no idea what you are buying nor can you read any of the food labels.
False - I usually know what I want :)

6. You cheer for Australia during the Olympics, know local Australian bands, and know what a VB is.
Of course!

7. You can speak fluent English without an accent.
Well, if without an accent means Australian, then yes.

8. Know what a Commodore and Falcon are.

9. You know you are superior to all other Asians, despite the fact that they beat you in Maths in the VCE, can speak an Asian language fluently and know what they are buying in Asian grocery stores.
lol...pass on that one!

Score: 7/9


1. You were/are a good student with very high GPAs.
Well, I didn't do so well last year, but I did well at school...

2. You majored in something practical like engineering, medicine or finance.
False! I'm all arts. although I'll be majoring in Psych. maybe.

3. You have more than one-college degree.
Not yet.

4. If you play a musical instrument, it must be piano.
yes, along with bass and violin

5. You have a vinyl table cloth on your kitchen table.

6. Your stove is covered with aluminum foil.

7. Your kitchen has a sticky film of grease over it.
False, thankoyu very much. I clean the kitchen well.

8. You beat eggs with chopsticks.
False...I don't think I even hold them properly.

9. You always leave outdoor shoes at the door.

10. You use the dishwasher as a dish rack.
False. Believe it or not, we do actually have a dish rack.

11. You keep a Thermos of hot water available at all times.

12. You boil water before drinking.
False, although we do have a filter that we use.

13. You fight over who pays the dinner bill.
True, usually.

14. You wash rice 2-3 times before cooking it.

15. You don't dry-clean clothes, even if they need to be dry-cleaned.

16. You always cook yourself, even if you hate it.
True, but I don't hate it

17. You do either soccer, swimming, badminton, volleyball, basketball, or ping pong.
I used to do swimming and badminton, yes

18. You buy Christmas cards after Christmas, when they are 50% off.
False, I buy them from the Reject shop so they're cheap anyway :D

19. You hate to waste food:
a) Even if you're totally full, if someone says they're going to throw away the leftovers on the table, you'll finish them.
b) You have containers in your fridge with three bites of rice or one leftover chicken wing.
False - if it ever gets that little someone'll usually eat it anyway

20. You don't own any real Tupperware-only a cupboard full of used but carefully rinsed margarine tubs, takeout containers, and jam jars.
False - my mum loves her tupperware.

21. When toilet paper is on sale, you buy 100 rolls and store them.

22. You have a collection of miniature shampoo/conditioner bottles and little soap bars that you take every time you stay in a hotel.
True, lol. Very handy for when we go away or when someone stays over and forgets their toothbrush.

23. You carry a stash of your own food whenever you travel (and travel means any car ride longer than 15 minutes).
False - sometimes I take a bottle of water.

24. You spit bones and other food scraps on the table.

25. Your dad thinks he can fix everything himself.
True :)

26. When you go to a dance party, there is always a group of guys surrounding the dance floor trying to look cool.
I don't go to dance parties...

27. Your house/aparment is always cold in winter, and hot in summer.

28. Your Mom drives her Mercedes to Foodtown, or Shoppers Food Warehouse regardless how far it is, even if the dairy is next door.
False. she drives her Honda to the supermarket 5 minutes away.

29. You always look phone numbers up in the phone book, since calling Directory Assistance costs 50 cents.
False - I use the net

30. You use a colored face cloth every morning.

31. You starve yourself before going to all-you-can-eat places.
False - I don't do all-you-can-eat.

32. Almost all your money is in a savings account

33. You never discuss your love life with your parents.
False :)

gee...I'm not very asian :)


Ohhhhh wham bam thankyou ma'am!

I found the video of Scissor Sisters and Franz Ferdinand performing Suffragette City at the V festival last year (hence the lyrics in the title). Oh my god. Completely slayed by the hotness. Alex is so camp :D And Paul's wearing his gold lame jacket. Had to fit in with the Scissor Sisters flamboyance I suppose. Ana Matronic's dress was very cool. And of course Jake, shirtless, in tight white pants and a feather boa. Oh my.

At work tonight I learned how to de-bone a duck. It was a little fiddly, but at the same time perversely satisfying, learning how to cleanly peel away the ribcage and spine from the body. The meat was still slightly warm, glistening fat collecting in pools in the cavities. I only successfully deboned two half ducks but hopefully I'll become more proficient.

We didn't serve that many tonight, but for some reason they all came at once. I didn't know whether it was busy or I was just slow. I asked my boss whether it was busy. He's a jokey guy but he plays it so straight I can never tell whether he's serious or not. He just shrugged as if to say 'meh, not really' and I panicked, thinking my dishwashing skills have gone to shit and I'm going to lose my job. I had to ask him whether he was serious or not. I think I need to learn how to eiher read people better or become less gullible.

Anyway, it's sleep for me as I'm working a double tomorrow. Oh the joy, oh the excitement.


Friday, March 10, 2006

Yay! new Franz song

I've just 'acquired' an mp3 of the new Franz song Lynsey Wells from the interweb (ripped from a streaming thing I think). Usually I'm a little wary of new stuff, but I'm listening to it for the first time *right now* and I already love it. This is the one they recorded in the Hothouse studios in St Kilda while they were here for the BDO. Talk about a fast release! I feel a connection already :) How to describe it? It's definitely Franzy, danceable poppy rock with keyboards and strings and acoustic guitars and multilayered vocals and a great melody. Ah fuck it, just listen to it. You lucky UK people will get it with The Fallen as it's a double A-side (Lynsey is obviously the other A-side), the rest of us plebs will hunt it out on the net. Now I'm going to have to scrounge around on the off chance that Jeremy Fraser's up somewhere, although that's less likely as it's a B-side. I wonder if all the new tracks will have full names on them :) although Brown Onions doesn't. Apparently it's an instrumental with Andy (Knowles, their live keyboardist and drum tech) on drums, Paul on bass and Bob on guitar with Nick and Alex. Or something.

I saw Kinky Boots tonight with a couple of friends. It's your typical feelgood enjoyable british comedy, well if you can call a Northampton shoe factory making shoes for drag queens typical. It was very enjoyable with a lot of laughs and Joel Edgerton did a good job. Very undemanding movie for the end of the uni week. Something my mum would enjoy too - go on, take your mum to the movies.


Thursday, March 09, 2006

How exactly do publishers justify the amount of money they charge for textbooks? I'm a student, not a millionaire. Students are the last people who you should overcharge. Today I spent $120 on one textbook and one reader. The textbook alone was $110. That's half a week's pay gone right there. 10 hours of washing dishes. I'm really not looking forward to seeing how much the Italian will be if and when it finally arrives next week. Last year it was $150.

So I was reading my textbook (which is on developmental psychology) in the library this afternoon. It was either that or sleep through a behavioural neuroscience lecture. The first five pages of chapter one are basically an essay on why you should study child psychology. Mate, I just blew half my paycheck on your bloody book. Fuck the essay, the price is incentive enough for me to read it cover to cover and absorb as much knowledge as is humanely fucking possible.

Spicks and Specks was good as usual tonight, but no Substitute! They had Ali McGregor and Alex Lloyd at their disposal. I was surprised.

Anyway I'm off. Really should get some sleep.


Monday, March 06, 2006

Fuck you, James Blunt, for 'You're Beatiful,' which I now get.

I saw the most heartbreakingly beautiful boy coming home on the train today. He was an indie boy if I had to stick a label on him. Floppy ever so slightly long brown hair, beautiful brown eyes, khaki trousers and a white button down shirt, rolled up and undone at the collar. I bet he was listening to Belle and Sebastian on his iPod. I couldn't stop staring at him on the train. I was sitting a few rows away facing him, and admittedly I spent most of the ride staring at him. He was don't see guys like that every day. In fact, in my case, I don't see guys like that. Ever. Stop after stop went by and he didn't get off. The stop before me, he made a move and my heart stopped. But he didn't get off.

He didn't get off at my stop either. I'll probably never see him again. But you get that.

Mum was playing James Blunt in the car. I now get that fucking song.


Sunday, March 05, 2006

Hmm. I had to actually read my blog this morning as I was so tired last night I couldn't even remember what I wrote. Then I was worried that I would've written something really embarrassing, because I actually did fall asleep while writing that entry, and I had to wake up to finish it off. Lucky there was nothing incriminating there.

Well I'm feeling much better this morning. My feet tingle a little and my left arm's still sore but Sunday nights at work are usually quite dead, so much so that usually they only put one person on the other side doing dishes and food. I think the boss wants me in so S can teach me food things tonight.

Anyway I have to go down to claen the kitchen, then I have to burn some CDs for S. I'm really getting her into some good music :) As well as Franz Ferdinand she's getting into Kaiser Chiefs, End of Fashion and The Whitlams. I might burn her some Decemberists and Beatles too. :)


New Technology

(hey, a song title that actually relates to the post!)

So I'm sitting in bed on my laptop, and my brother is sitting at the computer in his room, and we're talking on msn. This is fucking ridiculous :)

Work was full on tonight. Last night we did 37, it was completely dead and we were out of there by 10:30. Today lunch was pretty quiet and we just cruised through the afternoon. Tonight we did 89.

I died. My arms have completely been crippled. My feet are still throbbing. And I'm working tomorrow night. Hurrah.

anyway I'm about to fall asleep while typing, although that could lead to some pretty interesting sentences.


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

So, first days back and that

I've had my first week of uni. Funnily enough, it doesn't feel like I ever went on holiday in the first place. It's been pretty good as far as first weeks go, nice weather although today was a little warm. I joined the Groove dance club, doing hip hop and locking and stuff. It's so much fun! I took a lesson yesterday after being told about it, then went along to the hip hop intermediate today. To my utter surprise I actually kept up for the most part. The only thing I'm having trouble with is turning (surprise surprise!) and getting that whole hip hop 'attitude'. I'm too used to dancing tap and ballet and being all disciplined and graceful.

I haven't really had that many hours thisweek, no tutes except for Italian. I managed a very succinct and halted recount of my holidays in Italian yesterday (Which basically consisted of 'I worked a lot in the kitchen of an Italian restaurant and I went to a rock concert' - niente di speziale in other words...). There's scholarships up for grabs this year and I badly want one so I'd better work hard on my vocab!

A couple of days ago I was on the train as usual, coming into Flinders St. Usually I'm looking in the direction of the MCG and the Herald Sun building, but for some reason this morning I looked in the opposite direction, and what do I see but the Sydney Myer Music Bowl. I was a little ashamed that I'd never seen it before - admittedly I usually take the train from Richmond to Melbourne Central these days but last year I went to Flinders St quite a bit. I need to be more observant. Getting home last night was fun too, it took us over an hour. The tram and trains were completely packed-H and I were hanging onto each other and 'triangulating' a frame with our limbs because we were stuck int he middle of the carriage and we're too short to reach the ceiling. It was actually quite amusing.

So I'm just here in the uni computer lab, wasting time because I have no idea how to get to the South Melbourne Lifesaving Club to meet my mum and sister. They don't finish until 7.30. Bummer. And I really want to get home to hang up my new Franz Ferdinand poster. I never realised how good uni poster sales are until today :)