izmeina: A cute cartoon critter with a bag and a teapot on his head (jolly swagman)
At this rate, it looks like the serpent will never catch up with the gossip in Cyberia.
Been back lurking in the Lair since Saturday but hardly ever online with access to a proper big screen and keyboard.

This should have been the week for catching up but there was the distraction of the annual heritage festival. Missed many events due to events at the Dursleys but there were still a few tasty morsels left for this week. Notre Dame University put on far too many tempting evening lectures with titles such as "Journalists and the first draft of history", "Australia, Trump and the American Alliance" and this evening's offering "Heroes and Villains, crime and history" on the subject of celebrity criminals and Dodgy Donald didn't even get a mention.

I will have to pass on the annual ritual of the university guided tour due to work tomorrow.

It was a fun week of fake news, alternative facts and grovelling deputy sheriffs. Even managed to plant a few weeds in the Lair while listen to scary stories on the radio about the blasphemy laws in Pakistan and how even the laid back Indonesians are turning into a bunch of feral fundamentalists. That Saudi Orb of Darkness is leaving its trail of destruction everywhere.

So here is hoping that this month sees a return to the usual serpent abnormality. Funny. It took several week's absence from the Lair to realize just how much I miss it.

Got so much catching up to do with dusting, mopping and generally restoring some order to the crazy chaos. Who knows, I might even manage to invite Petunia over when she is feeling a bit better.
izmeina: (circle serpent)
A quick squiggle from Nanoland. This has been the strangest Camp Nano in the last few years and bears an uncanny resemblance to the adventures of August 2012

The map was all rolled out and ready to go. The path should have been pretty easy. Usually Camp Nano is the perfect occasion to get in a bit of practice in writing and brainstorming by grabbing a pack of Devil’s playing cards as writing prompts then churning through them slowly and steadily in the hope of generating as many ideas and leads as possible for the big event in November.

But this time I decided to do things a bit differently. Instead of laying the foundations for a new project, would devote this time to adding more words to last November’s zero draft. All the serpent needed to do was to add a whole bunch of new scenes and try to steer the story into some relatively coherent shape.

The Art of the Steal was about a devil doing deals and offering numerous political fixes in exchange for souls to fill his bright shiny Celebrity trophy cabinet.

It should have been so easy since Dodgy Donald and his minions have exceeded even the worst of expectations.
Between Twitter snippets and even just following the daily news here, there is bucket loads of raw material so it should have been possible to almost go in zombie mode.

But the inner serpent is not playing nicely.

Of course there have been quite a few distractions in the last few months.

Playing with the Pensieve )
izmeina: (Default)
A certain serpent has been somewhat psycho of late. Not the axe murdering, baby munching, cat killing uncontrollable and sadistic sort of psycho but just plain neurotic and as mad as a hatter. Jittery and agitated and totally unable to snap out of such a crazy state. So it is simply pointless to go pottering on grand adventures as it is simply a waste of time and train fares. As there’s a rather large pile of mulch on the verge and and a botanical monster needing to be tamed, termite infested den of iniquity that it is, figured that it made more sense to linger about the Lair and sort this stuff out rather than go on any pottering, plotting and planning camp nano coffee crawls. Not quite coffee as that is well and truly off the menu but a pot of tea or two

Yesterday in a fit of nostalgia paid a visit to the Muse cafe located appropriately enough in the grounds of the state museum. It was exactly six months ago yesterday since discovering the place in its new incarnation. It used to be a quaint place selling crappy coffees and sandwiches at exorbitant prices. So it was hardly a surprise that it closed

The new mob are big into retro and the 1950s look but most importantly of all they have loose leaf tea in real china pots and cute cups and quirky spoons to match.

The very first visit did think that six silver sickles for a big pot was a bit decadent but chose to indulge anyway. But the whole ritual with the gorgeous china pots and a good four cups of real tea per pot made that six dollars most reasonable indeed. So been pretty much a regular since then.
That particular day had brought a stash of papers printed out the day before but waiting for a suitable occasion before a proper peek. These pages were several weeks worth of home work assignments for the Coursera “Introduction to Mathematical Thinking”

Spent a good few afternoons doing that stuff there as well as the crypto course homework. There is just something about sitting outside under the trees with a cup or two of tea rather than staring at a blinking computer screen that makes the old serpent green cells function a lot more efficiently
It was also an excellent spot for nano plotting, planning and squiggling and almost became an unofficial city HQ for a certain serpent

But it was a muggy day and the magic was just not there. It was not the bus ride but some phone dramas that had made the Izzie crazy and even cups of tea at the Muse cafe were not going to cast their usual spell. Did resort to pulling out the very same stash of maths assignments from six months ago and doing some of assignment 6 sort of served as a circuit breaker. But it is very easy to be reasonably calm when it is quiet and there are no distractions.

Crazy Izzie and the Chain Saw Massacre )
izmeina: A cute cartoon critter with a bag and a teapot on his head (The Fool)
A certain serpent has been somewhat psycho of late. Not the axe murdering, baby munching, cat killing uncontrollable and sadistic sort of psycho but just plain neurotic and as mad as a hatter. Jittery and agitated and totally unable to snap out of such a crazy state. So it is simply pointless to go pottering on grand adventures as it is simply a waste of time and train fares. As there’s a rather large pile of mulch on the verge and and a botanical monster needing to be tamed, termite infested den of iniquity that it is, figured that it made more sense to linger about the Lair and sort this stuff out rather than go on any pottering, plotting and planning camp nano coffee crawls. Not quite coffee as that is well and truly off the menu but a pot of tea or two

Yesterday in a fit of nostalgia paid a visit to the Muse cafe located appropriately enough in the grounds of the state museum. It was exactly six months ago yesterday since discovering the place in its new incarnation. It used to be a quaint place selling crappy coffees and sandwiches at exorbitant prices. So it was hardly a surprise that it closed

The new mob are big into retro and the 1950s look but most importantly of all they have loose leaf tea in real china pots and cute cups and quirky spoons to match.

The very first visit did think that six silver sickles for a big pot was a bit decadent but chose to indulge anyway. But the whole ritual with the gorgeous china pots and a good four cups of real tea per pot made that six dollars most reasonable indeed. So been pretty much a regular since then.
That particular day had brought a stash of papers printed out the day before but waiting for a suitable occasion before a proper peek. These pages were several weeks worth of home work assignments for the Coursera “Introduction to Mathematical Thinking”

Spent a good few afternoons doing that stuff there as well as the crypto course homework. There is just something about sitting outside under the trees with a cup or two of tea rather than staring at a blinking computer screen that makes the old serpent green cells function a lot more efficiently
It was also an excellent spot for nano plotting, planning and squiggling and almost became an unofficial city HQ for a certain serpent

But it was a muggy day and the magic was just not there. It was not the bus ride but some phone dramas that had made the Izzie crazy and even cups of tea at the Muse cafe were not going to cast their usual spell. Did resort to pulling out the very same stash of maths assignments from six months ago and doing some of assignment 6 sort of served as a circuit breaker. But it is very easy to be reasonably calm when it is quiet and there are no distractions.

Crazy Izzie and the Chain Saw Massacre )
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has been up and down like a yo yo all over the place. Here's hoping we can end the craziness at the stroke of midnight. Even in Oz, October is one of Izzie's favorite months. The light is still reasonably delicate by Oz standards, the days not too short or too long and not horrid and hot like so often from November onwards. But most importantly, all the pretty little critters are blooming and blossoming everywhere. At the moment the main stars are the wattles, orange blossoms and cute macadamia catkins

Slowly but surely working out what the triggers to the madness are. Bags and buses are by far the worst offenders. Or it's more correct to say that they are most likely to be triggers when Izzie slinks from boom and bloom into the doom and gloom phase.
Had just about the whole week of holidays and a special day saved for the happy Hippie greenie garden festival ruined due to this uncontrollable neurotic streak

It was funny. One of the worst days of all was Thursday 17th. Started out perfectly fine sitting out in the garden in the sun sniffing the orange blossoms. It was the bus to Fremantle that marked the transition from calm to downright loopy and crazy. Not just the bat out of hell driving and constant slamming of the brakes but the silly Izzie swipe card making cranky noises at the end of the trip. Getting a constant loud red beep saying try again 3 or 4 times in a row when there's a bunch of other critters also waiting to swipe their cards and get off too was enough to evoke instant paranoia, panic stations and claustrophobia.
At this stage, the pesky red lightseses have almost become an omen and a self fulfilling prophecy of doom
There was just the constant drip drip of seemingly insignificant things and minor irritations crowned by unexpected rain while sitting near the plane trees in the garden of the old lunatic asylum just about to squiggle in the green spiral notebook and drool for the first time over a dark gloomy gorgeous new deck of tarot cards.
Lucky they copped no more than a drop or two but since the exact same thing happened in the same garden two weeks previously, the Izzie was getting seriously spooked out

After another bus ride from hell with the critters in the bottle shop trying to overcharge and short change this serpent, slinked back to the lair sulking too miserable to even drown the sorrows and just curled up in the serpent basket for the night at the ridiculous hour of 8pm
No point in slinking in Cyberia. Such a sad mental state would just encourage a convention of every egg timer and spinning beachball in the known universe.

But there was still the minor matter of Friday morning. Was rostered on at the weekly public speaking group to do a five minute speech on the topic of "Tug of War"
Was absolutely and totally brain dead and totally uninspired. But the serpent also has a policy of always turning up and doing a speech if the name is on the list. Of course, with such a run of luck, it would be quite likely to either miss the bus or get run over by it on the way but if this did not happen, would need to be prepared
So determined that this would not be the day to play the Chicken card (turning up and requesting not to do the speech due to lack of inspiration, preparation or whatever) it was a case of summoning the absent muse for inspiration
And that is exactly what Izzie did. With the topic being "Tug of War" why not talk about the war in the serpent skull between the gloomy doomy miserable inner Vernon Dursley who likes to ruin everything and the wise, fun loving crazy inner serpent that is Izzie.
Dursley is the one who makes you miss the bus by two seconds and then when you finally do get one, it's red lights and traffic jams all the way

It was quite funny. Not only did the audience love it but the critic did too. Loved the bit where he said that he got all green lights on the way to the meeting that morning so his inner Izzie must have been out and about. (especially as we hadn't even mentioned that characteristic of the inner serpent - he just inferred the opposite from those dreadful Dursleyish red lights)
In some strange way, the more specific you are about your own quirks and craziness, the more universal you are to others. They are probably thinking that they are the only one who also has to juggle such crazy critters inside their heads and it is a relief to know they are not alone
And not a single one of them realized that apart from the general structure of the main idea, the whole speech was improvised on the spot
Even got awarded the Stirrers' Spoon for the most stirring speech of the day

But that wasn't enough to scare old Vernon away entirely. He lingered about the whole week and did not leave until the following Thursday.
Then things went the opposite way. All green lights and good luck and last Friday even got presented with the certificate for completing the intermediate speaking program - the one where ditzy disorganized Izzie managed to lose the signing sheet for a good 3 years or so. But got there in the end.
Here's hoping Izzie will still be the boss tomorrow and Friday. Will be going to the Royal Show on Friday and it's not the sort of place where a puritanical claustrophobic grumpy miserable Dursley is welcome.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has been up and down like a yo yo all over the place. Here's hoping we can end the craziness at the stroke of midnight. Even in Oz, October is one of Izzie's favorite months. The light is still reasonably delicate by Oz standards, the days not too short or too long and not horrid and hot like so often from November onwards. But most importantly, all the pretty little critters are blooming and blossoming everywhere. At the moment the main stars are the wattles, orange blossoms and cute macadamia catkins

Slowly but surely working out what the triggers to the madness are. Bags and buses are by far the worst offenders. Or it's more correct to say that they are most likely to be triggers when Izzie slinks from boom and bloom into the doom and gloom phase.
Had just about the whole week of holidays and a special day saved for the happy Hippie greenie garden festival ruined due to this uncontrollable neurotic streak

It was funny. One of the worst days of all was Thursday 17th. Started out perfectly fine sitting out in the garden in the sun sniffing the orange blossoms. It was the bus to Fremantle that marked the transition from calm to downright loopy and crazy. Not just the bat out of hell driving and constant slamming of the brakes but the silly Izzie swipe card making cranky noises at the end of the trip. Getting a constant loud red beep saying try again 3 or 4 times in a row when there's a bunch of other critters also waiting to swipe their cards and get off too was enough to evoke instant paranoia, panic stations and claustrophobia.
At this stage, the pesky red lightseses have almost become an omen and a self fulfilling prophecy of doom
There was just the constant drip drip of seemingly insignificant things and minor irritations crowned by unexpected rain while sitting near the plane trees in the garden of the old lunatic asylum just about to squiggle in the green spiral notebook and drool for the first time over a dark gloomy gorgeous new deck of tarot cards.
Lucky they copped no more than a drop or two but since the exact same thing happened in the same garden two weeks previously, the Izzie was getting seriously spooked out

After another bus ride from hell with the critters in the bottle shop trying to overcharge and short change this serpent, slinked back to the lair sulking too miserable to even drown the sorrows and just curled up in the serpent basket for the night at the ridiculous hour of 8pm
No point in slinking in Cyberia. Such a sad mental state would just encourage a convention of every egg timer and spinning beachball in the known universe.

But there was still the minor matter of Friday morning. Was rostered on at the weekly public speaking group to do a five minute speech on the topic of "Tug of War"
Was absolutely and totally brain dead and totally uninspired. But the serpent also has a policy of always turning up and doing a speech if the name is on the list. Of course, with such a run of luck, it would be quite likely to either miss the bus or get run over by it on the way but if this did not happen, would need to be prepared
So determined that this would not be the day to play the Chicken card (turning up and requesting not to do the speech due to lack of inspiration, preparation or whatever) it was a case of summoning the absent muse for inspiration
And that is exactly what Izzie did. With the topic being "Tug of War" why not talk about the war in the serpent skull between the gloomy doomy miserable inner Vernon Dursley who likes to ruin everything and the wise, fun loving crazy inner serpent that is Izzie.
Dursley is the one who makes you miss the bus by two seconds and then when you finally do get one, it's red lights and traffic jams all the way

It was quite funny. Not only did the audience love it but the critic did too. Loved the bit where he said that he got all green lights on the way to the meeting that morning so his inner Izzie must have been out and about. (especially as we hadn't even mentioned that characteristic of the inner serpent - he just inferred the opposite from those dreadful Dursleyish red lights)
In some strange way, the more specific you are about your own quirks and craziness, the more universal you are to others. They are probably thinking that they are the only one who also has to juggle such crazy critters inside their heads and it is a relief to know they are not alone
And not a single one of them realized that apart from the general structure of the main idea, the whole speech was improvised on the spot
Even got awarded the Stirrers' Spoon for the most stirring speech of the day

But that wasn't enough to scare old Vernon away entirely. He lingered about the whole week and did not leave until the following Thursday.
Then things went the opposite way. All green lights and good luck and last Friday even got presented with the certificate for completing the intermediate speaking program - the one where ditzy disorganized Izzie managed to lose the signing sheet for a good 3 years or so. But got there in the end.
Here's hoping Izzie will still be the boss tomorrow and Friday. Will be going to the Royal Show on Friday and it's not the sort of place where a puritanical claustrophobic grumpy miserable Dursley is welcome.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie slinks into LJ Land after packing her bagses for her Grand Garden Tour tomorrow. Still deciding which reading material to bring *Picks up a tasty thousand page tome sneaked to us by one Steven Smith -the Honorable Member for Dursleyville* Naaaa. Nice toilet paper - but not so sure about a good read. Decides after all to pick an old favorite and tosses the Potter into the green rucksack.

Another crisp and crunchy day it's been again. Just slinked over from Petunia's place. Izzie - the Diva of Dementors has now found another supply of infinite amusement - the one and only Reichstag Radio. Hours of unadulterated entertainment. Simply could not drag our ears away.

But after 3 hours or so listening to the countless virtues of "Arbeit macht Fair", Izzie switches off and reads the papers until 2pm. Oh silly serpent. Most peeved indeed to hear on the news - we know not the day nor the hour but between 1 and 2pm turns out to be exactly the time when the Attorney General introduces the long awaited "NotOrdnung" (Abolition of Liberty Bill 2005) Izzie missed it. Shame shame. Well - can always snatch it on Google.

So so funny. Enroute from Petunia's place, popped into work to check the latest rosters. (It's back to house elf slavery for Izzie on Wednesday) Our favorite registered nurse Deirdre was on. Funny - the other elves says she was talking about the Izzie only yesterday. Well well. You will never guess just exactly what dearest Deirdre has been watching on Foxtel. She too is a fan. Spent hours yesterday and this morning watching the antics of the idiots in Canberra. But she unlike Izzie gets to see their pretty faces in full colour. We had a great time discussing the antics of our favorite soapie stars.
Ashamed to admit it but the Iz was most mightily impressed with the weaselish slinkings of our favorite Rodent and his astonishing ability to never give a straight answer to a simple question.

Astonishing really how many folks in Oz lately have become parliament junkies. Interesting too - that most of them - Deidre just like Izzie are foreign born. We guess - the Aussies have had it too good for too long and have no real idea just what a precious and valuable thing free speech and freedom of association is until they lose it. But by then it will be too late.

Apart from keeping our ears amused, Iz spent the rest of the morning helping the pa with the pavers out the side of the house. He's been most peculiar lately. Came back to Oz after his grand European tour knowing nothing at all about the proposed industrial relations legislation and was amazed at just how draconian it was. So the Iz was most astounded indeed when today he's ranting about the need to be reasonable and see both sides of the story. These new laws are the best things since sliced bread since all these young things are a lazy bunch of bastards who could not be bothered getting out of bed and whose days of dole bludging will now be well and truly over!
(You know you are getting old when you start whining about lazy good for nothing young things - we weren't like that in my day)
No decent employer would ever sack a worker who is doing their job claims Vernon. But, Izzie says - if some Chinese house elf comes along and will do your job for 3 silver sickles and you are getting 12, then you haven't got a hope in hell. He puffs up his chest and proclaims "Rubbish. I have always been so good at my job that they could not compete with me" All this sudden sympathy with the point of view of the poor put upon and most oppressed employer is a bit rich coming from the critter who called Izzie a gutless wonder and spineless wimp for not using up her 360 accumulated hours of sick leave because she is so old fashioned that she only takes sickies when actually unwell and even then, still feels guilty for taking them.

The Izzie is not quite sure if the critter is off his rocker, gone a bit manic or indulging in a spot of Izzie baiting. (Like he will often rant and rave about Jewish conspiracies and all those American bastards because he knows it pisses off the Izzie no end. Sometimes we let it go and other times we argue back or say that we refuse to continue the conversation until he switches out of Rant mode.
Izzie always makes the distinction between individual people and their collective government and gets extremely annoyed with folks who indulge in generalisations and who insist on holding each single American, Israeli, Australian or any other nationality personally responsible for the behaviour of their government. It's not ethnicity that makes folks bad but possession of power and the almost unendurable temptations that it brings. Izzie would sure sure hate to live in a land where Vernon was the big cheese. He'd be a right little Hitler.
Needless to say - there is no game two cannot play at. The Izzie has dusted off her brown hat and from now on - in his presence will be broadcasting "The Voice of Reason" and "The other side to the story" and be the Chimp's and the Rodent's number one fan.

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