February 2012

A few weeks ago we went to Matt’s for dinner again. I can’t show you Matt’s face, not because he’s a dentist, but because I want to keep his identity a secret. If everyone finds out how amazing he is, then everyone will want in, and soon I’ll be shunted to the side, like last year’s friend.

This here is where the night took a turn for the blurst:

Look at all that liquor! I can’t even explain the kitchen skills of Matt and Jamie, I honestly have never been fed and watered so well. I’m going to have to learn to tap dance or get some new crazy cat stories in order to earn my keep. Maybe I’ll have to show them my imitation of my old downstairs neighbour, which basically just involves getting drunk and commenting on other people’s breasts. Which was pretty much me this particular night anyway. I’ve been told dollar bills ended up being stuffed into various people’s cleavages. My lawyer has advised me not to comment.

Please allow me a second of mushiness: I have some really awesome friends, they are The Good People and they have brought much radness and food into my life. Speaking of The Good People and mush, let’s talk about Valentine’s Day!

I had a great Valentine’s Day, and romanced people left, right and centre (I’m very flexible*). Jeff and I had lunch at Charlie & Co., where he proposed to a man who was being opera sanged at. Sanged is totally a word, shut your mouth. I wasn’t sure what was going on. Loud noises and the close proximity of burgers do odd things to my brain and when I came to, Jeff was on one knee in front of a man and a woman in a ballgown was belting opera into a microphone next to them and I was all ‘GET SOME BURGER IN ME!’.

That night, my yellow rose and I escorted Mush to Pizza Hut all-you-can-eat, and it turns out, all-we-can-eat is a lot of eating. We stayed for so long that we got kicked out, either because they were closing or because of our angry feminist rants about angry feminists. Gotta work off those calories somehow, am I right ladies?

More on Mush: she and the distinguished Seabas had me over for dinner in their mansion the other night. They cooked for me. Seriously, why are people doing this? I am not worthy. It was delicious, we had steak and a salad that was mostly beetroot and haloumi and home-made chips:

Afterwards, Mush made is banana splits. I am the world’s luckiest girl.

I’ve also been spending plenty of time with this little twerp:

The little punk knows the whole ‘A, B, C’ song now and has some little sentences going and is full of cuddles and laughs. He’s so cute that no-one even minded when he sat his nappied-butt on their picnic food on the weekend.

This is my other little twerp, the one who causes me equal amounts of angst and laughs:

In other news, I:

Got a fringe,

Ate some giant sushi,

Watched the storms roll in, and

Had some movie nights.

Being that Sydney in February is generally humid beyond belief and I curl up in a miserable, sweaty ball, I am giving this slightly cooler and more social February a 10-out-of-10 for effort.

* No I’m not.

#febphotoaday: batch three

Day 11: #makesyouhappy

My friend Matt is an amazing cook and a huge wine buff. If he invites you to dinner, you cancel any plans you may have and you don’t eat for the day, in anticipation. Not only is he amazing in the kitchen, he’s also ridiculously generous, and because I am terrible in the kitchen, the only way I felt I could repay Matt for his hospitality was to bring along the bottle of Crystal Head Vodka I bought in Seattle. This ended in Black Russian shots and other amazing cocktails, as prepared by Matt’s devious sidekick, Jamie. And with me on Jeff’s bathroom floor for a not-insignificant amount of time early Sunday morning. It was fantastic.

Day 12: #insideyourcloset

I don’t have a closet so much as a clothes stand, and this is a fairly good indication of what’s hanging on it. I like black, okay? Black garnished with a slight nautical theme.

Day 13: #blue

I took this Polaroid in Copacabana (the NSW one) the day Steph and Joel got married. I used it, and a few others, in some wedding photos I took of them. It’s a thing I really like to do, use Polaroids in other photos. It’s a project I’d like to pursue.

Day 14: #heart

Ah Valentine’s Day.

These are two necklaces I bought from the nanopod Etsy shop about four years ago. The one on the right is Heart of Hearts, the one on the left, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts.

Day 15: #phone

Left: my iPone, I let it rule my life, it never leaves my side. Right: work hotline, haunts my dreams.

#febphotoaday: batch two

Day 6: #dinner

As an recovering insomniac, I need really strict bedtimes, and by the time I get home from work I feel like it’s practically time to go to bed, but I have to cook dinner and clean up and wash my clothes and talk to my cat and read some of my book and do an interpretive dance by the time I know it, it’s 1am and I’m weighing up the pros and cons of taking a sleeping pill. I’m trialling eating a snack for dinner to cut down on the things I have to do before I go to bed, hence toast for dinner.

I ain’t going to lie, it was pretty tasty.

Day 7: #button

Here we have the button on my grey Elk Kiel tote, the buttons of my Nintendo DSi and the button nose of my cat. One of them keeps my stuff safe, one of them lets me have a Komodo dragon, and one sneezes in my face in the middle of the night. I like to smoosh all three of them.

Day 8: #sun

This would have been easier, were it ever sunny in Sydney anymore. Instead, this is the glass shade on the light in my room, which I hope I never have to wrangle because my ceiling is about 12-foot high. Below is vitamin D. Everything is synthetic.

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Day 9: #frontdoor

I ran this one through a couple of filters in a few different iPhone aps. This is my front hallway, where I spend a remarkable amount of time for a space so small. The last time I hung out there was earlier in the week, when I was home alone and surrounded by the cats, who I forced to listen to my whinge about not wanting to go to work. They didn’t care, all they wanted were their biscuits, which smell highly of cheese and it’s all I can do to stop myself snacking on them, so really, I understood their indifference to my plight.

Day 10: #selfportrait

This is how I feel on a Friday if I get up at 5:30am, go to the gym and then get to work at 7:30am. Fractured. And on edge. And two Redbulls in by 11am.

I’m having a lot of fun with this project, especially for someone who was really dismissive of Instagram until recently. I love how creative people are getting and I love seeing people’s pictures popping up throughout the day.

30 Things Before 30: Update #1

We are past the three month mark of this project and I have been distracted from writing about it because I’ve been busy doing other things, like discovering that in certain instances that I actually like Brussels sprouts, also Brussels sprouts are called Brussels sprouts, not brussel sprouts. That one had me mouth breathing and drooling at the same time.

Let’s have a look at the first five things I had planned for my last year of being 29:

1 – Learn how to touch type: I’d actually forgotten about this one until today when I found myself agog because my iPhone was causing my web browser (the ever dependable Internet Explorer, *blank face*) do strange things and I thought to myself, ‘Gee I wish I had a better grasp of technology so I could understand what’s going on right now’ and then I realised my phone was pushing keys on my keyboard and suddenly I had a really good grasp of what was going on: I am incredibly technologically incompetent. All of this is just padding to say that I have not learnt to touch type yet.
Progress report: currently a fail, with room for improvement.

2 – Complete a 365 photography project: I lasted about a week and gave up; however in that week I took some photos I liked, so I might post them here at some point. Instead, I’m doing the #febphotoaday project, and only using my iPhone and Instagram, which has been really fun. I am such a sucker for the X-pro II and Sutro filters. Once an underexposer, always an undexposer. Here are some recent Instagram photos that weren’t for any particular project, I just liked them:

1. Porch gin/2. Waiting for a porch gin partner-in-crime/3. The infamous “I collect records because pussy hates me” sticker, from the good folk at Chunklet/4. Waiting to go to the gym/5. The entrance to GOODGOD, where my brother-in-law, Joel, held his recent 30th, an event called Pimpish Behaviour/6. Me on my way to Pimpish Behaviour, acting all pimpish/7. Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right aka Stanley Cat and Wuz/8. Prada.
Progress report: Total fail, but I can live with that.

3 – Drink coffee and eat pie at an American roadside diner: Bam! I passed this one with flying colours. On our second day in LA we went to The Original Pantry Cafe on South Figueroa, and I had my first diner coffee and it was both gross and amazing. I loved Original Pantry, it was the perfect first quintessential American experience to have:

The pie had to wait until Seattle, or North Bend more specifically, where we went to Twede’s Cafe, which David Lynch used in Twin Peaks.

We ate cherry pie and it was fabulous. I took an extra slice and ate it in a creme brulee scented bath later that night in Seattle, after we’d had to suddenly switch hotels.
Progress report: A+ effort!

4 – Celebrate Halloween in the US! Yeah! Another win! Sadly, it was a bit of a disappointment. We were in Salt Lake City, which I actually quite liked, were it not almost completely devoid of people. The extend of my Halloween experience was almost OD’ing on the Halloween edition Candy Corn and driving around the city trying to find even a single trick-or-treater, which I failed miserably at.
Progress report: a win, on a technicality.

5 – Shoot a gun: Done! In Vegas we shot machine guns and handguns, which I wrote about in length in this post here.

I’m not going to lie, I had mixed feelings about it and didn’t love it as much as I expected to, though I think that might have had more to do with the men supervising us than it did the physical act of shooting. I would shoot a handgun again in a heartbeat though.
Progress report: A-

So here we have a total running score of 3/30 with eight months to go!

Dead Cat Walking

Haha! So. I haven’t written much about The Wuz lately, mostly because even thinking about her causes my blood pressure to rise to extremely high levels and I start feeling short of breath. I’ve been pondering her a lot regardless, like would she make a better fur hat or fur collar this winter, because I’m going to turn her into one or the other of she doesn’t stop ruining my entire life.

People often ask what kind of cat The Wuz is, sometimes they ask if she is actually a cat at all, mostly because her face looks like the back end of a fur-covered bus:

She’s an Exotic Shorthair, and it wasn’t until this week that I remembered one of the defining features of the Exotic Shorthair (besides the flat face and the need for company): they are late in maturing.

They sure are, if by maturing you mean not pooping in the dining room or destroying things with huge sentimental value.

Here is what happened: The Wuz is an indoors cat and when I moved, the bathroom in the new place proved harder to ventilate than the old place and so there was a litter situation that wasn’t very nice and was causing my housemate some angst. We switched to an enclosed litter tray, which scared The Wuz. Here is a list of some of the other things that scare The Wuz:

* People walking around with their pants around their ankles (fair enough too, this scares me as well);
* Vacuum cleaners;
* Mops;
* Cat biscuits falling from the sky;
* Small children, and
* My housemate breaking chocolate up by throwing it at the wall.

So rather than poop in a scary, scary box, she started pooping in the dining room and I started getting messages from my housemate about it.

Can you even imagine? My poor housemate is sensitive to smell, so the litter was bad enough, but poop in the dining room? Sweet baby cheeses.

Then it got worse.

How much worse?

A whole lot worse.

My cat (and I am referring to her through gritted teeth) ate one of my housemate’s pot plants.

And it wasn’t just any pot plant. It was a pot plant growing in a mixture of dirt and her grandmother’s ashes.

Can you even imagine? I nearly turned The Wuz into a hat on the spot. I was so mortified/horrified/frozenly apologetic. Then this morning she knocked another pot plant over. I am seriously, I can’t even, there are no words, I am just … all I can say to her is what Dad used to say to me all those years ago:

Wuz, I’m not angry, I’m very, very disappointed.

#febphotoaday: batch one

Day 1: #yourviewtoday

I spend a lot of time at my train station, heading to and from work, or from work to home to Jeff’s, to home, to work so on a day-to-day basis it’s my most consistent view of anything other than the desk I am chained to at work and I just felt this was a more interesting picture than one of all my celebrity crushes sticky-taped to my monitor, next to motivational quotes from The Hitch and Hunter S Thompson.

Sydney’s weather has been depressing the last few weeks, which also makes for a good photo, and I liked the various shades in this picture, from gun metal grey to piercing white.

Day 2: #words

This is a shot of the last essay Christopher Hitchens wrote for Vanity Fair before he passed away.

I was at Sydney Airport when I heard he died. Jeff and I had just missed a plane to Melbourne and had a four hour wait until the next flight, and when I read the news, we went to the airport bar and drank cocktails and went to the Vanity Fair website and read some of his best essays and people’s tributes to him. It turned a really sad moment into something poignant and nice.

I deeply admired The Hitch, and meant to write something after his death, but nothing I could say would do him justice. I haven’t been able to read much of what he wrote during his illness, and one day I’ll read this piece, but for now I’m just happy to know it’s out there, existing.

Day 3: #hands

I’m an 80-year-old man, surprise! No, not really, but this is a fairly good indication of what’s needed to get me going every morning. The horse pill up the top is Omega, the smaller amber one is vitamin D, because like most of the population, I am deficient (see: desk job) and my scary Russian doctor is determined to change that. The tiny white pill is for my Old Man Disease aka high blood pressure and I will take one of those every day for the rest of my life and then for good measure, there are two Panadols for a delightful headache I woke up with that I suspect might have developed from my vigorous backcombing of my stupidly long hair. “Beauty” equals pain, folks.

Day 4: #astranger

Yes it’s creepy to take a photo of a stranger on a train. Is it possible to resist taking a photo of a stranger on a train when he’s wearing a patterned lime-green suit with pointy white shoes and what looked like mismatched retro football socks? No it isn’t. I suspect this George Miller lookalike is used to it though, we share a train line and I think I’ve actually taken a creepy photo of him before, wearing pony-skin boots. Some people didn’t like the idea of taking a photo of a stranger, but some people probably also didn’t spend 20 minutes negotiating with their mother yesterday for the donation of several teeth for jewellery purposes. Taking a photo of a stranger was not the strangest thing I did this week.

Day 5: #10am

I was asleep at 10am, so this is a visual representation of what that looked like, for all of you (fellow) creeps out there who have wondered. Being asleep at 10am is an insane new concept for me. First, I have frequent bad bouts of insomnia and secondly, I used to rarely relax on weekends because I am on-call so frequently. Not anymore, the life changes have started to kick in and now I’m all about only leaving bed on Sundays for brunch and phone calls.

Here ends the first batch, thanks to everyone who told me where they’re posting theirs, it’s been fun seeing what people do with the theme!

#FEBPHOTOADAY

Oh lordy did I fail at the 365 (or 366 as it is this year) project. I think I lasted about seven days.

I’ve decided to do this one instead and use only my iPhone camera. Maybe by March I’ll have worked up the motivation to start carrying my DSLR everywhere.

I’ll post the results once a week or so, and please, if you’re doing it to, send me a link to where you’re posting them, because I am a sucker for other people’s photos!