izmeina: A cute cartoon critter with a bag and a teapot on his head (jolly swagman)
It has been a very strange start to the year so far. Not least due to a certain serpent’s sad addiction to stalking on Twitter but because a whole bunch of goal posts have been moved in such a very short time.

Radio National have not only nuked most of their music programs but have played around with the schedule so much that it is extremely disorientating. Some programs have had the same slot for centuries and now they are either gone or moved to another time or day.
Looks like the goblins have been out slashing stuff with the razor blades
One listener commented that it’s now
Mornings with Murdoch
PM With Pauline
Dinner with Donald
And Bedtime with Bolt.

Not quite that bad but still a bit disturbing. Andrew Bolt has managed to snaffle several op ed pieces per week in the local rag and he is just a petty vindictive whining tyrant like most of the mob at the Murdoch rag. Janet Albrechtson is another card carrying carper. Which reminds me that the sinister “Dial M For Murdoch” is sitting on the table in the spare bedroom begging to be read as is Andrew Jack’s “Inside Putin’s Russia”. So many books and so little time.
P J O’Rourke seems to be the only right wing commentator who is genuinely humorous and not tainted by the petty resentments of his fellows.
But very unhappy to find that First Dog on the Moon has been sent to the kennel and the jolly Jonathan Greene’s Sunday morning slot has been given to Tom Switzer. Switzer is quite mild and moderate compared to most of the other right of centre Dogs of War but he has a swagger in his voice which is annoying.
I did not realise just how central the radio schedule was to the structure of the serpent day until they moved the goal posts. It’s actually one of the reasons for avoiding mall shopping centres like the plague because they are radio reception Dead Zones.

The bus time tables have also been tweeked and that will also take some getting used to but the big one of the moment is the annual Culture Vulture ritual that is the Fringe Festival where for a full four weeks the whole city is turned into a fabulous freak show.
Almost every day of the week except Sunday (due to lousy bus service) I would slink into the city. Lunch time on days off and around 5pm on working days. I would make a bee line for the box office and the list of Rush Tix on offer for the day and plan the serpent’s invasion of Poland.
The Rush Tix are usually between 30% to 50% off the full price so they presented a good opportunity to try something new and adventurous. So in previous years of the Fringe Festival I would go through the big fat program guide and pick 5 “must see” shows that seemed the most likely to sell out. I’d get those tickets in advance and then just resort to the Rushtix for everything else. So it was a cheap way to be adventurous and try out new things without breaking the bank. There is always the odd bad egg but most shows I picked ranged from good to brilliant.

So Friday 20th was the opening day of the festival and I turned up all excited with the prospect of a cheap and cheerful show or two but needing to be mindful of an early bed time due to another entertaining spectacle scheduled to start at 1am.
But this time was different. Not only was the Cheap list nowhere to be seen at the box office but there was a sign saying that they are now only available between 11am and 3pm each day. I guess they don’t want cheapskates like me lining up for tickets during rush hour which is between 5-7pm.
In fact the list is no longer shown at the box office even between 11-3. They are trying to get people to go online to buy tickets which would be OK if they didn’t have the $2 credit card surcharge.

So it looks like the war chest so strategically saved up for a big fat Fringe Binge is going to remain pretty much untouched this year. So far I’ve got 3 full price shows lined up. One is a play about a drone operator in the US Army which got rave reviews when it debuted last year. There’s a spooky men’s choir and a crazy American theatre troupe big into Fakespeare but they occasionally do the odd Alfred Hitchcock or Sherlock Holmes show. Two of those performers have been there in previous years. Got cheap tix and was so impressed with their shows that I keep coming back for more at recommended retail price.The rest will be random cheap tix. There are quite a few shows channelling the Donald and Pauline Hansen also gets her 15 minutes of fame in The Ginger Wave.

At this rate there doesn’t look like much chance of getting anywhere near the usual 16 to 20 shows. The Golden Age is over but it’s still fun just lurking around all the gorgeous venues soaking up the festive fun.

PS Made this post an almost Trump Free zone. Figured that it makes sense to keep the Snark over at Twitter but there are some gems out there to be saved for another day.
Especially after spending a good 3 hours glued to the inauguration.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie never ever imagined that it would be necessary to turn on the heater during October. This is Oz after all and we are supposed to be sizzling and certainly not snuggling up, toasting our toes and listening to the howling wind and the rain lashing the window panes.

Just the perfect weather in fact for listening to the radio and catching up on podcasts.

First there was the history of a rather infamous book (I tried to read it many moons ago but it was just too whiny)
I nearly died laughing on hearing a BBC program about it which claimed that "Mein Kampf" is a best seller in India where it is seen as a sort of self help book. How one man began as a down and out doing time in jail to become the leader of a powerful nation in such a short time. The fact that he made things so difficult for the British Empire just adds to the allure. (The enemy of my enemy is my friend and all that)

Or to put it in more modern business jargon
"They see it as a kind of success story where one man can have a vision, work out a plan on how to implement it and then successfully complete it"
source

Then there's the more recent cult courtesy of Old Mr Hubbard. The good old days seem well and truly over with Anonymous and an assortment of whistle blowers spilling the beans on the monstrous cash cow. Unfortunately this program starts at the witching hour of midnight and I've usually fallen asleep half way through it. Of course there's always the podcasts but a serpent needs 9 lives to catch up with all the tasty morsels.

Then there was a fascinating exploration of the subtle difference between scary and creepy

I love the list of dodgy jobs. It will make perfect nanowrimo prompt. This year's sad and sordid story will need to feature at least four of the following occupations with bonus points for all of them.


Clown
Taxidermist
Sex Shop Owner
Funeral Director
Taxi Driver
Priest
Janitor
Garbage Collector
Security Guard
Writer
Actor
izmeina: creepy spooky old house infested with crawling critters (creepy)
Izzie never ever imagined that it would be necessary to turn on the heater during October. This is Oz after all and we are supposed to be sizzling and certainly not snuggling up, toasting our toes and listening to the howling wind and the rain lashing the window panes.

Just the perfect weather in fact for listening to the radio and catching up on podcasts.

First there was the history of a rather infamous book (I tried to read it many moons ago but it was just too whiny)
I nearly died laughing on hearing a BBC program about it which claimed that "Mein Kampf" is a best seller in India where it is seen as a sort of self help book. How one man began as a down and out doing time in jail to become the leader of a powerful nation in such a short time. The fact that he made things so difficult for the British Empire just adds to the allure. (The enemy of my enemy is my friend and all that)

Or to put it in more modern business jargon
"They see it as a kind of success story where one man can have a vision, work out a plan on how to implement it and then successfully complete it"
source

Then there's the more recent cult courtesy of Old Mr Hubbard. The good old days seem well and truly over with Anonymous and an assortment of whistle blowers spilling the beans on the monstrous cash cow. Unfortunately this program starts at the witching hour of midnight and I've usually fallen asleep half way through it. Of course there's always the podcasts but a serpent needs 9 lives to catch up with all the tasty morsels.

Then there was a fascinating exploration of the subtle difference between scary and creepy

I love the list of dodgy jobs. It will make perfect nanowrimo prompt. This year's sad and sordid story will need to feature at least four of the following occupations with bonus points for all of them.


Clown
Taxidermist
Sex Shop Owner
Funeral Director
Taxi Driver
Priest
Janitor
Garbage Collector
Security Guard
Writer
Actor

Brainsssss

Apr. 20th, 2016 10:01 pm
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie didn't get invited to the birthday party of the century so instead it was an opportunity to catch up on some tasty Radio National morsels


Brainsssss!

It turns out that the writer of the very freaky tale "The Girl with all the Gifts" had already been out there gathering lots of creepy cordyceps fungi and producing all sorts of amazing mutations worthy of Monsanto.

But all is not lost. There's still kitty litter to play with.

But lest you think that humans are safe from these kinds of brain hijacking, there is emerging evidence to suggest that some humans can have their brains hijacked by a little monocellular organism known as Toxoplasma gondii. This is a little single-celled organism that often exists in cat poop. So this is actually the parasite that doctors warn pregnant women about. So this is why when you are pregnant you are not supposed to change the litter box.

Things have been going sluggish over in Camp Nanoland until yesterday. Using a Steampunk tarot deck as inspiration was just not getting off the ground. It was then that silly Izzie finally remembered a wickedly wonderful selection of very twisted writing prompts which have worked like magic.

I guess it's time to add Consciousness Deficit Hypoactivity Disorder and kitty litter to the list.

Brainsssss

Apr. 20th, 2016 10:01 pm
izmeina: spooky shadowy squid (shadow)
Izzie didn't get invited to the birthday party of the century so instead it was an opportunity to catch up on some tasty Radio National morsels


Brainsssss!

It turns out that the writer of the very freaky tale "The Girl with all the Gifts" had already been out there gathering lots of creepy cordyceps fungi and producing all sorts of amazing mutations worthy of Monsanto.

But all is not lost. There's still kitty litter to play with.

But lest you think that humans are safe from these kinds of brain hijacking, there is emerging evidence to suggest that some humans can have their brains hijacked by a little monocellular organism known as Toxoplasma gondii. This is a little single-celled organism that often exists in cat poop. So this is actually the parasite that doctors warn pregnant women about. So this is why when you are pregnant you are not supposed to change the litter box.

Things have been going sluggish over in Camp Nanoland until yesterday. Using a Steampunk tarot deck as inspiration was just not getting off the ground. It was then that silly Izzie finally remembered a wickedly wonderful selection of very twisted writing prompts which have worked like magic.

I guess it's time to add Consciousness Deficit Hypoactivity Disorder and kitty litter to the list.
izmeina: (Default)
It is said that the depressed are obsessed with the past while the more anxious sorts fear the future. So maybe it is a good sign that a certain serpent has been so busy with mundane matters of the present that she has not even observed a whole bunch of significant anniversaries.
An ancient serpent reminisces )
izmeina: Strange Spiral Clock (Time Turner)
It is said that the depressed are obsessed with the past while the more anxious sorts fear the future. So maybe it is a good sign that a certain serpent has been so busy with mundane matters of the present that she has not even observed a whole bunch of significant anniversaries.
An ancient serpent reminisces )
izmeina: (Default)
Good Friday is always an interesting day to go slinking about in the city as the place is pretty much a ghost town. There’s the usual hordes of tourists looking like stunned mullets when they discover that the only places open are the churches and McDonalds.
The smart ones abandon any plans of shopping and go for picnics or barbecues in the parks and by the river.

The serpent routine also takes account of the strangeness. In fact that is what makes the day so special. The usual routine is to go to the old Wesley church in the city for the annual Stations of the Cross art exhibition before slinking over to the east side of the city to lurk around the old streets and the historical graveyard on a hill. There’s also a park on the way with bunya trees. This time of year the nuts are on the ground ready for the picking. They can best be described as pine nuts on steroids. They are the size of avocado stones but that’s just the seeds. The actual pine cones are likely the size of a durian fruit and could be very painful if one fell on top of you.

strange gods )

Many years ago Stephen King’s “Dead Zone” was one of these Good Friday spooky books and the one that started the tradition. It was really creepy remembering the grass and the graveyard and all the surrounding areas from the days when it was a wasteland all blanketed in snow. There was snow storms and blizzards in the story and it was all so vivid that I seen them in the real world too. And like seeing Bugs Bunny at Disney World, snow in April or even in June is completely impossible in this bit of Oz.

But in the world of imagination all things are possible and that is the most scary idea of all.
izmeina: creepy spooky old house infested with crawling critters (spooky)
Good Friday is always an interesting day to go slinking about in the city as the place is pretty much a ghost town. There’s the usual hordes of tourists looking like stunned mullets when they discover that the only places open are the churches and McDonalds.
The smart ones abandon any plans of shopping and go for picnics or barbecues in the parks and by the river.

The serpent routine also takes account of the strangeness. In fact that is what makes the day so special. The usual routine is to go to the old Wesley church in the city for the annual Stations of the Cross art exhibition before slinking over to the east side of the city to lurk around the old streets and the historical graveyard on a hill. There’s also a park on the way with bunya trees. This time of year the nuts are on the ground ready for the picking. They can best be described as pine nuts on steroids. They are the size of avocado stones but that’s just the seeds. The actual pine cones are likely the size of a durian fruit and could be very painful if one fell on top of you.

strange gods )

Many years ago Stephen King’s “Dead Zone” was one of these Good Friday spooky books and the one that started the tradition. It was really creepy remembering the grass and the graveyard and all the surrounding areas from the days when it was a wasteland all blanketed in snow. There was snow storms and blizzards in the story and it was all so vivid that I seen them in the real world too. And like seeing Bugs Bunny at Disney World, snow in April or even in June is completely impossible in this bit of Oz.

But in the world of imagination all things are possible and that is the most scary idea of all.
izmeina: (Default)
Yesterday was a most magical and pretty productive day. The weather forecast predicted a rather cold morning which would mean a crisp and crunchy day with sunshine. This seemed most unlikely indeed after yesterday’s drizzly misery. But it turned out to be true.

Was supposed to have got some sort of tree seedling on hand to plant on this most auspicious day. Something grand and gorgeous like a Moreton bay fig tree (if only) or sensible like a pecan or guava. Decided to stick to nuts when it comes to pecans and macadamias. Much much cheaper
In the end had to make do with a baby curry tree (Murraya koenigii) One of four bought at a gardeners meeting last Monday. At two silver sickles each can afford to get a couple of back ups.
Also planted some silverbeet and spinach seeds in jiffy pots filled with piggie poo. Everything is so lush and green at the moment and the poor old sage died from drowning due to all the rain
The original intention to catch the bus at 11.45 got rather side tracked by the desire to linger around the Lair and soak up the sunshine while peeking at all the plants. It was the Izzie’s favorite weather. A bit cold and sunshine with the most delicate light. No fear of getting nuked like at the height of summer.

Felt very creative and inspired but determined to resist the temptations of acquiring any new books when there are so many other projects to attend to.

The bus arrived in Fremantle a good 15 minutes later than usual thanks to a pathetic bunch of snails invading every second bus stop and all armed with $50 notes or 5 cent coins. Well not quite all but it certainly seemed that way. Amazing how many sluggish fuddy duddies sit for ages at bus stops but do not bother getting out the money for their fares until actually boarding the bus.
Gave the usual Juicy Beetroot a miss and headed off to the west end to a certain cheap and cheerful training restaurant where you can have a mains and a glass of red for around $10-12. After that was a visit to the very cute railway carriage cafe on the Esplanade. Unlike the other esplanade in downtown Dursleyville this one still has lots of gorgeous old trees. No chainsaw massacres here.

Such an inspirational place, it was the perfect location to devote to more plotting and planning for Camp Nanowrimo in August as well as getting started on lots of lists for the bright shiny new Pensieve. Saved reading the newspapers for later as this site is too special for wasting with such mundane matters

It also had the advantage of being only a short walk to the beach and the sunset. Was thinking on Wednesday that a sunset picnic for the shortest day was going to be most unlikely as it would be all drizzly and miserable. There were other cafes to visit if that had turned out to be the case.
There were a handful of souls at the beach and all of them looked like tourists. It was way too cold for the locals to be lurking aside from the fact that most of the place has been turned into a construction site.

Even the radio programs for the evening turned out to be all strange and spooky. There was a wickedly wonderful play by Angela Carter called Vampirella. Must definitely look in to the rest of her stuff since this was so delightfully snarky and funny. Izzie just adores wicked twists on old fashioned fairy tales and this one took the piss out of a whole bunch of them.
“What sharp teeth you have. Countess” asks an ever so innocent Englishman abroad

There have been a few deaths in Radioland in the last week or so. Last Friday it was Alan Saunders and this week Gita Sereny. In her honour “Late Night Live” replayed some of her old stories from back in 1998. One was about Albert Speer - the Nazi architect of doom and the other about Mary Bell - a girl who had killed two little kids way back in 1968 when she herself was only 11. It turns out that the News of the Screws was involved in the witch hunt playing both sides as usual. They had been up to the usual moral indignation, chequebook journalism and phone tapping as led to their recent demise and not a moment too soon.

This was just one of the creepiest stories ever and even without the replay had remembered it more than a decade later.

So it was a most spooky and memorable day and here’s hoping some useful story seeds got planted
izmeina: (haunted house)
Yesterday was a most magical and pretty productive day. The weather forecast predicted a rather cold morning which would mean a crisp and crunchy day with sunshine. This seemed most unlikely indeed after yesterday’s drizzly misery. But it turned out to be true.

Was supposed to have got some sort of tree seedling on hand to plant on this most auspicious day. Something grand and gorgeous like a Moreton bay fig tree (if only) or sensible like a pecan or guava. Decided to stick to nuts when it comes to pecans and macadamias. Much much cheaper
In the end had to make do with a baby curry tree (Murraya koenigii) One of four bought at a gardeners meeting last Monday. At two silver sickles each can afford to get a couple of back ups.
Also planted some silverbeet and spinach seeds in jiffy pots filled with piggie poo. Everything is so lush and green at the moment and the poor old sage died from drowning due to all the rain
The original intention to catch the bus at 11.45 got rather side tracked by the desire to linger around the Lair and soak up the sunshine while peeking at all the plants. It was the Izzie’s favorite weather. A bit cold and sunshine with the most delicate light. No fear of getting nuked like at the height of summer.

Felt very creative and inspired but determined to resist the temptations of acquiring any new books when there are so many other projects to attend to.

The bus arrived in Fremantle a good 15 minutes later than usual thanks to a pathetic bunch of snails invading every second bus stop and all armed with $50 notes or 5 cent coins. Well not quite all but it certainly seemed that way. Amazing how many sluggish fuddy duddies sit for ages at bus stops but do not bother getting out the money for their fares until actually boarding the bus.
Gave the usual Juicy Beetroot a miss and headed off to the west end to a certain cheap and cheerful training restaurant where you can have a mains and a glass of red for around $10-12. After that was a visit to the very cute railway carriage cafe on the Esplanade. Unlike the other esplanade in downtown Dursleyville this one still has lots of gorgeous old trees. No chainsaw massacres here.

Such an inspirational place, it was the perfect location to devote to more plotting and planning for Camp Nanowrimo in August as well as getting started on lots of lists for the bright shiny new Pensieve. Saved reading the newspapers for later as this site is too special for wasting with such mundane matters

It also had the advantage of being only a short walk to the beach and the sunset. Was thinking on Wednesday that a sunset picnic for the shortest day was going to be most unlikely as it would be all drizzly and miserable. There were other cafes to visit if that had turned out to be the case.
There were a handful of souls at the beach and all of them looked like tourists. It was way too cold for the locals to be lurking aside from the fact that most of the place has been turned into a construction site.

Even the radio programs for the evening turned out to be all strange and spooky. There was a wickedly wonderful play by Angela Carter called Vampirella. Must definitely look in to the rest of her stuff since this was so delightfully snarky and funny. Izzie just adores wicked twists on old fashioned fairy tales and this one took the piss out of a whole bunch of them.
“What sharp teeth you have. Countess” asks an ever so innocent Englishman abroad

There have been a few deaths in Radioland in the last week or so. Last Friday it was Alan Saunders and this week Gita Sereny. In her honour “Late Night Live” replayed some of her old stories from back in 1998. One was about Albert Speer - the Nazi architect of doom and the other about Mary Bell - a girl who had killed two little kids way back in 1968 when she herself was only 11. It turns out that the News of the Screws was involved in the witch hunt playing both sides as usual. They had been up to the usual moral indignation, chequebook journalism and phone tapping as led to their recent demise and not a moment too soon.

This was just one of the creepiest stories ever and even without the replay had remembered it more than a decade later.

So it was a most spooky and memorable day and here’s hoping some useful story seeds got planted
izmeina: (Default)
Strange days in Serpent Land. It has been a long long day. First the six hour stint at the mad house starting at 7am and resisting the temptation to spend this rainiest of days curled up in the serpent sack, slinked off to downtown Dursleyville followed by the favorite haunt of Freo.
A mad mob called Living Smarties have meetings on the first Wednesday of the Month. Missed the last one and did not want to do the same this time.
The original plan was to go straight to the pretty old port town. But a visit to the happy hippy haunt at Juicy Beetroot Cafe last Friday led to the discovery of a leaflet announcing the goodbye tour of one Bob Browne. This event just happened to be taking place at the local council meeting hall. This is one seriously convenient location. Silly Izzie should have gone online that very evening to book tickets but was a complete nervous wreck that day. Procrastinating python that the Izzie is, left this important matter until Monday. By then the event was officially sold out. But it turned out there were double bookings. Found this out on Tuesday evening when an email said that we could ring and book by credit card. But aside from having no juice in the mobile phone, first venturing online around 8pm was way past office hours. The only thing to do was to visit the Greens HQ the very next day in search of tickets.

The official position is still that the event is all sold out. Gave them the Izzie owlery location and mobile phone number just in case and will most likely take the chance of just turning up in case of last minute cancellations
But it was sort of ironic that this deviation from the original plan meant that a visit to the Juicy Beetroot cafe was no longer possible

Did attend the Living Smarties event about the experiences of a couple in their grand adventure of not just one month but living a whole year plastic free.
It was educational and interesting and the serpent is certainly tempted to try such a crazy thing. But could also quite happily have slinked off earlier to the Lair for lots of online lurking and celebration of this supremely beastly day

But the other big event of the day that the serpent did not witness due to goblin slavery and cloud cover was a certain astronomical incident
Radio National has been obsessing over the transit of Venus for the last week or so.
Saturday and Sunday were full of juicy stories about this event. The serpent ears were most definitely glued
On Sunday as part of the annual Fremantle Heritage festival did the graveyard tour. This started at 2pm but the serpent arrived early. While pottering around the cemetery was listening to a radio broadcast about the history of the up and coming auspicious astronomical event
Got to thinking that the Izzie favorite activities include star gazing and visiting graveyards. What a wonderful way to put our puny human existence into perspective
While slinking amongst the graves got to hear a most interesting quote

"Jeremiah Horrocks: [Reading] I watched carefully on the 24th from sunrise to nine o'clock and from a little before ten until noon and at one in the afternoon, being called away in the intervals by business of the highest importance which for these ornamental pursuits I could not with propriety neglect"

Got to thinking that his main claim to fame some 400 years after departing this mortal coil were these very observations. No one know knows or cares about his 'business of the highest importance' and the so called 'ornamental pursuits' are now Jeremiah Horrocks's link to 'immortality'

20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing.

At first was a bit miffed to discover that the serpent would be at work at the time of this auspicious event but then as more explanations were forthcoming got to thinking that if the transit involves Venus crossing the path of the sun it would be a most stupid thing indeed to attempt to peek. It would be sort of like a baby solar eclipse or like watching a pimple moving across the surface of an egg.
Did potter outside and take a few token peeks at the vague blob of light that was the sun hidden amongst all the clouds
Well at least unlike some 400 years ago we have the internet and lots of pretty pictures for those of us who did not get to see the action in real time
One astronomer said that around the time of the last transit in 2004 his son who was of the 'Harry Potter generation' raved about the Marauder's Map where you could see your own location and that of other people and 'isn't that just amazing?" He added that some 8 years later thanks to GPS and smart phones this fantasy is now reality and who knows what cool gadgets will be around in time for the next transit of Venus.
Izzie must pay a visit to some astrology websites to see what sort of spin they have. Since this event is only viewable by telescope and only in the last few hundred years it should not have been given much significance in the past

But somewhere off the coast of Australia, a bunch of folks in a poky little boat built in the image of James Cook's Endeavour will have been star gazing too
The original voyage changed everything. If not for Captain Cook's secret mission from His Majesty's Government to be pursued after the transit of Venus observations, the froggies or the Dutch might have settled in Oz before the Brits. Izzie or her ancestors would have never darkened the shores of this strange southern land and she would have been one of many homogenous flobberworms living a miserable existence in the wild west of Ireland
It seems that the most important matters in life are randomly determined. If playing dice is good enough for God then it is also good enough for Izzie
izmeina: (oro)
Strange days in Serpent Land. It has been a long long day. First the six hour stint at the mad house starting at 7am and resisting the temptation to spend this rainiest of days curled up in the serpent sack, slinked off to downtown Dursleyville followed by the favorite haunt of Freo.
A mad mob called Living Smarties have meetings on the first Wednesday of the Month. Missed the last one and did not want to do the same this time.
The original plan was to go straight to the pretty old port town. But a visit to the happy hippy haunt at Juicy Beetroot Cafe last Friday led to the discovery of a leaflet announcing the goodbye tour of one Bob Browne. This event just happened to be taking place at the local council meeting hall. This is one seriously convenient location. Silly Izzie should have gone online that very evening to book tickets but was a complete nervous wreck that day. Procrastinating python that the Izzie is, left this important matter until Monday. By then the event was officially sold out. But it turned out there were double bookings. Found this out on Tuesday evening when an email said that we could ring and book by credit card. But aside from having no juice in the mobile phone, first venturing online around 8pm was way past office hours. The only thing to do was to visit the Greens HQ the very next day in search of tickets.

The official position is still that the event is all sold out. Gave them the Izzie owlery location and mobile phone number just in case and will most likely take the chance of just turning up in case of last minute cancellations
But it was sort of ironic that this deviation from the original plan meant that a visit to the Juicy Beetroot cafe was no longer possible

Did attend the Living Smarties event about the experiences of a couple in their grand adventure of not just one month but living a whole year plastic free.
It was educational and interesting and the serpent is certainly tempted to try such a crazy thing. But could also quite happily have slinked off earlier to the Lair for lots of online lurking and celebration of this supremely beastly day

But the other big event of the day that the serpent did not witness due to goblin slavery and cloud cover was a certain astronomical incident
Radio National has been obsessing over the transit of Venus for the last week or so.
Saturday and Sunday were full of juicy stories about this event. The serpent ears were most definitely glued
On Sunday as part of the annual Fremantle Heritage festival did the graveyard tour. This started at 2pm but the serpent arrived early. While pottering around the cemetery was listening to a radio broadcast about the history of the up and coming auspicious astronomical event
Got to thinking that the Izzie favorite activities include star gazing and visiting graveyards. What a wonderful way to put our puny human existence into perspective
While slinking amongst the graves got to hear a most interesting quote

"Jeremiah Horrocks: [Reading] I watched carefully on the 24th from sunrise to nine o'clock and from a little before ten until noon and at one in the afternoon, being called away in the intervals by business of the highest importance which for these ornamental pursuits I could not with propriety neglect"

Got to thinking that his main claim to fame some 400 years after departing this mortal coil were these very observations. No one know knows or cares about his 'business of the highest importance' and the so called 'ornamental pursuits' are now Jeremiah Horrocks's link to 'immortality'

20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing.

At first was a bit miffed to discover that the serpent would be at work at the time of this auspicious event but then as more explanations were forthcoming got to thinking that if the transit involves Venus crossing the path of the sun it would be a most stupid thing indeed to attempt to peek. It would be sort of like a baby solar eclipse or like watching a pimple moving across the surface of an egg.
Did potter outside and take a few token peeks at the vague blob of light that was the sun hidden amongst all the clouds
Well at least unlike some 400 years ago we have the internet and lots of pretty pictures for those of us who did not get to see the action in real time
One astronomer said that around the time of the last transit in 2004 his son who was of the 'Harry Potter generation' raved about the Marauder's Map where you could see your own location and that of other people and 'isn't that just amazing?" He added that some 8 years later thanks to GPS and smart phones this fantasy is now reality and who knows what cool gadgets will be around in time for the next transit of Venus.
Izzie must pay a visit to some astrology websites to see what sort of spin they have. Since this event is only viewable by telescope and only in the last few hundred years it should not have been given much significance in the past

But somewhere off the coast of Australia, a bunch of folks in a poky little boat built in the image of James Cook's Endeavour will have been star gazing too
The original voyage changed everything. If not for Captain Cook's secret mission from His Majesty's Government to be pursued after the transit of Venus observations, the froggies or the Dutch might have settled in Oz before the Brits. Izzie or her ancestors would have never darkened the shores of this strange southern land and she would have been one of many homogenous flobberworms living a miserable existence in the wild west of Ireland
It seems that the most important matters in life are randomly determined. If playing dice is good enough for God then it is also good enough for Izzie
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie is pottering around procrastinating and doing bugger all really. Yesterday's grand plans for some serious gardening turned into a snooze fest and today was not much different. Did manage to plant the five or six baby banksias bought about a week ago.
Also noticed that the half dead macadamia nut tree now has lots of new leaves on the bare branches and the little catkins seem to be getting quite fat. Here's hoping they'll turn into little nuts. Maybe the potash and fertilizer made a bit of a difference

Tomorrow evening will be slinking off to Fremantle to visit the Living Smarties and friends monthly meeting about the art of using up excess tomatoes - making tomato sauce most likely. Here's hoping there's no yeast in it. The ginger beer that we had plans to slurp with lots of ice cubes blew up last night. The bottle stopper did not fly off. The bottle simply gave up the ghost and split its sides spilling the precious contents all over a stash of of real and rather purple garlic and all over the kitchen floor.
Looks like next time will be plastic bottles sitting in the laundry sink.
Like counting chickens before they hatch, the Izzie's tomatoes are not much more than a packet of Diggers seeds planted last Saturday. There's still several more packets in the stash - mortgage lifter, Amish paste and the 30th anniversary collection.
Will also be needing to plant some basil seeds too. Seriously addicted to the stuff in all its incarnations. Diggers also have stone pine tree seedlings but the quarantine nazis will not let them over the border in spite of letting all sorts of dodgy toxic waste masquerading as food coming in from the so called People's republic of China.
There are some stone pines in one of the city's central gardens. Twisted an ankle in the shade of one of them last year. But never been able to find any cones from the critters.

Other than catching up with online gossip, spent yesterday's computer time deciding that it might be a good idea doing the Scrivener tutorial. Been using the thing for a couple of years or so but never really play around with it much. Turns out that most of the bells and whistles are just that. Nice little extras but not necessary for a simple squiggling serpent such as Izzie.
Having one document that can be broken into smaller sections but still having a word count for the total and autosave were the only features that Izzie really cares for. Cork boards, index cards and pretty pictures we prefer in their old fashioned incarnations.
And the present incarnation involves 88 index cards with three possible scenes on each - one linked to the chapter theme and the other two to the card before and the one after. Here's hoping this list of 260 or so scenes will be sufficient to generate 50,000 words without too much effort. A streamlined and logical progression from one scene to the next would be an added extra. Still stuck on finding the golden thread to link everything together
Maybe what we need is a packet of Bippolo seeds
On the topic of the good doctor, how can one resist the temptation of a book described as a sex manual written by Dr Seuss?

Tomorrow will start on generating those 260 something scenes. Must keep Dr Seuss and friends in mind while plotting and planning.
izmeina: Strange Spiral Clock (Time Turner)
Izzie is pottering around procrastinating and doing bugger all really. Yesterday's grand plans for some serious gardening turned into a snooze fest and today was not much different. Did manage to plant the five or six baby banksias bought about a week ago.
Also noticed that the half dead macadamia nut tree now has lots of new leaves on the bare branches and the little catkins seem to be getting quite fat. Here's hoping they'll turn into little nuts. Maybe the potash and fertilizer made a bit of a difference

Tomorrow evening will be slinking off to Fremantle to visit the Living Smarties and friends monthly meeting about the art of using up excess tomatoes - making tomato sauce most likely. Here's hoping there's no yeast in it. The ginger beer that we had plans to slurp with lots of ice cubes blew up last night. The bottle stopper did not fly off. The bottle simply gave up the ghost and split its sides spilling the precious contents all over a stash of of real and rather purple garlic and all over the kitchen floor.
Looks like next time will be plastic bottles sitting in the laundry sink.
Like counting chickens before they hatch, the Izzie's tomatoes are not much more than a packet of Diggers seeds planted last Saturday. There's still several more packets in the stash - mortgage lifter, Amish paste and the 30th anniversary collection.
Will also be needing to plant some basil seeds too. Seriously addicted to the stuff in all its incarnations. Diggers also have stone pine tree seedlings but the quarantine nazis will not let them over the border in spite of letting all sorts of dodgy toxic waste masquerading as food coming in from the so called People's republic of China.
There are some stone pines in one of the city's central gardens. Twisted an ankle in the shade of one of them last year. But never been able to find any cones from the critters.

Other than catching up with online gossip, spent yesterday's computer time deciding that it might be a good idea doing the Scrivener tutorial. Been using the thing for a couple of years or so but never really play around with it much. Turns out that most of the bells and whistles are just that. Nice little extras but not necessary for a simple squiggling serpent such as Izzie.
Having one document that can be broken into smaller sections but still having a word count for the total and autosave were the only features that Izzie really cares for. Cork boards, index cards and pretty pictures we prefer in their old fashioned incarnations.
And the present incarnation involves 88 index cards with three possible scenes on each - one linked to the chapter theme and the other two to the card before and the one after. Here's hoping this list of 260 or so scenes will be sufficient to generate 50,000 words without too much effort. A streamlined and logical progression from one scene to the next would be an added extra. Still stuck on finding the golden thread to link everything together
Maybe what we need is a packet of Bippolo seeds
On the topic of the good doctor, how can one resist the temptation of a book described as a sex manual written by Dr Seuss?

Tomorrow will start on generating those 260 something scenes. Must keep Dr Seuss and friends in mind while plotting and planning.
izmeina: (Default)
Today the serpent awoke to the grating whining "I'm the toughest princess ever" tones of our very own Queen of Swords - Julia Gillard
She was pretending not to celebrate one year as prime minister of Oz.
Last year she was still snarky and quick witted and took great relish in gloating at certain prime ministerial wannabees on the other side of the House - The Mad Monk and Bitchy Bishop in particular

She then inflicted the public with her "Moving Forward" speech where a certain phrase must have been used about 20 times. Unfortunately this turned out to be the Empress Julia we got more and more of as the year went on. The former quick and cool Julia got replaced by a wind up doll or some sort of infernal boring droning zombie
This morning she excelled herself with boring wooden soulless delivery. It was excruciating to listen to the smug stupidity. It was obviously scripted by the focus groups and she did not deviate once from the program Tough Times ahead no matter how often the interview tried to distract her with reminders of the Night of the long knives
Reading it is bad enough. Listening is unbearable

Will save the serpent verdict of the govt performance for a later date. But being interested in all things green, insulation, solar panels and assorted global conspiracy theories - had a particular interest in many of the unintended but easily forseeable consequences of many of their environmental policies. They'd change rules as quickly as they made them and with minimum notice and with no regard whatsoever for people who need to be able to plot and plan in industries very affected by their decision making. Not everyone out there considers long term to be a period of around 3 months

Guess it was more than six months ago when Julia and co tried to do deals with East Timor as a quick political fix for the Asylum seekers issue. Just announced this policy out of thin air and never even bothered asking the opinions of the East Timorese government before going public with these bright ideas of sending asylum seekers landing in Australia off to detention centres in East Timor
This seemed like a mixture of plain incompetence and bullying as well as using a sledge hammer to crack a walnut. The 'invasion of illegal aliens' - also known as boat people is an Australian variant of "Law and Order" issues that are always favorites among rabble rousers and populists.
Due to the difficulty of getting here (although getting to the shores of Christmas Island also counts as landing in Oz in spite of the island being nearly an outer suburb of Jakarta) the numbers of asylum seekers arriving in Australia is tiny compared to places like Sudan, Pakistan, South Africa, Malaysia and countless other countries who can much less afford to look after them. But that perspective does not sell papers or win votes

The East Timorese along with the New Zealanders have far more dignity and decency than their Australian neighbours. They refused to be bought or bullied. They, like their Kiwi counterparts realize that there are some values higher than the almighty dollar. The differing positions on live animal exports has proved that beyond all possible doubt

The ABC also had another juicy title for a certain anniversary
"Do we still need to talk about Kevin?" which reminds Izzie that she needs to get the original from the library again and pick up from last time.

But talking of Julia and Kevin and assorted politicians brings to mind a most wonderful and amusing interview with one Jon Ronson who sounds like a British version of Woody Allen. His latest book is called "The Psychopath Test" and he did the test on himself as well as going on the road in search of Mr Chainsaw himself - the infamous Al Dunlop.
Had fits of hysterical laughter when he describes Dunlop as trying to turn the traits of Hannibal Lector into "Who Moved My Cheese"
Could see what he was trying to say but that mouldy miserable lump of cheese is one of the most disgusting and pathetic things ever put in print. It makes "The Secret" and "The Celestine Prophecy" look like highbrow literature.
Was relieved that Barbara Ehrenreich spilled the beans on the secret of the stratospheric rise of this very stinking specimen of cheese to international fame.
It had been on the top of certain book sales lists for ages which led Izzie to wonder just how many morons there must be out there in America.
It turned out it was not a bunch of dumb Americans who had adopted this nonsense as the gospel thereby putting it on the best seller list but a bunch of corporations who bought it by the container load so they could slip in free copies with all the pink slips they were handing out around the same time.

One of the stories in the psychopath interview was about a man who acted crazy to get a reduced prison sentence but 8 years after he would have been released from mainstream prison for his crime he is still in some prison mental hospital with no hope of release at all. He claims that once you have convinced people that you are insane, you can act as normal as you like after that and you will never be able to convince them that you are sane.

But the juicy goodness does not end there. There was also a story about a place with a dubious past that has now become a tourist attraction
Fremantle Prison

That reminds the serpent - must really get around to doing the twilight tour one Friday
izmeina: a spooky blue Cthulhu brandishing wicked weapons (pen and paintbrush) (Cthulhu)
Today the serpent awoke to the grating whining "I'm the toughest princess ever" tones of our very own Queen of Swords - Julia Gillard
She was pretending not to celebrate one year as prime minister of Oz.
Last year she was still snarky and quick witted and took great relish in gloating at certain prime ministerial wannabees on the other side of the House - The Mad Monk and Bitchy Bishop in particular

She then inflicted the public with her "Moving Forward" speech where a certain phrase must have been used about 20 times. Unfortunately this turned out to be the Empress Julia we got more and more of as the year went on. The former quick and cool Julia got replaced by a wind up doll or some sort of infernal boring droning zombie
This morning she excelled herself with boring wooden soulless delivery. It was excruciating to listen to the smug stupidity. It was obviously scripted by the focus groups and she did not deviate once from the program Tough Times ahead no matter how often the interview tried to distract her with reminders of the Night of the long knives
Reading it is bad enough. Listening is unbearable

Will save the serpent verdict of the govt performance for a later date. But being interested in all things green, insulation, solar panels and assorted global conspiracy theories - had a particular interest in many of the unintended but easily forseeable consequences of many of their environmental policies. They'd change rules as quickly as they made them and with minimum notice and with no regard whatsoever for people who need to be able to plot and plan in industries very affected by their decision making. Not everyone out there considers long term to be a period of around 3 months

Guess it was more than six months ago when Julia and co tried to do deals with East Timor as a quick political fix for the Asylum seekers issue. Just announced this policy out of thin air and never even bothered asking the opinions of the East Timorese government before going public with these bright ideas of sending asylum seekers landing in Australia off to detention centres in East Timor
This seemed like a mixture of plain incompetence and bullying as well as using a sledge hammer to crack a walnut. The 'invasion of illegal aliens' - also known as boat people is an Australian variant of "Law and Order" issues that are always favorites among rabble rousers and populists.
Due to the difficulty of getting here (although getting to the shores of Christmas Island also counts as landing in Oz in spite of the island being nearly an outer suburb of Jakarta) the numbers of asylum seekers arriving in Australia is tiny compared to places like Sudan, Pakistan, South Africa, Malaysia and countless other countries who can much less afford to look after them. But that perspective does not sell papers or win votes

The East Timorese along with the New Zealanders have far more dignity and decency than their Australian neighbours. They refused to be bought or bullied. They, like their Kiwi counterparts realize that there are some values higher than the almighty dollar. The differing positions on live animal exports has proved that beyond all possible doubt

The ABC also had another juicy title for a certain anniversary
"Do we still need to talk about Kevin?" which reminds Izzie that she needs to get the original from the library again and pick up from last time.

But talking of Julia and Kevin and assorted politicians brings to mind a most wonderful and amusing interview with one Jon Ronson who sounds like a British version of Woody Allen. His latest book is called "The Psychopath Test" and he did the test on himself as well as going on the road in search of Mr Chainsaw himself - the infamous Al Dunlop.
Had fits of hysterical laughter when he describes Dunlop as trying to turn the traits of Hannibal Lector into "Who Moved My Cheese"
Could see what he was trying to say but that mouldy miserable lump of cheese is one of the most disgusting and pathetic things ever put in print. It makes "The Secret" and "The Celestine Prophecy" look like highbrow literature.
Was relieved that Barbara Ehrenreich spilled the beans on the secret of the stratospheric rise of this very stinking specimen of cheese to international fame.
It had been on the top of certain book sales lists for ages which led Izzie to wonder just how many morons there must be out there in America.
It turned out it was not a bunch of dumb Americans who had adopted this nonsense as the gospel thereby putting it on the best seller list but a bunch of corporations who bought it by the container load so they could slip in free copies with all the pink slips they were handing out around the same time.

One of the stories in the psychopath interview was about a man who acted crazy to get a reduced prison sentence but 8 years after he would have been released from mainstream prison for his crime he is still in some prison mental hospital with no hope of release at all. He claims that once you have convinced people that you are insane, you can act as normal as you like after that and you will never be able to convince them that you are sane.

But the juicy goodness does not end there. There was also a story about a place with a dubious past that has now become a tourist attraction
Fremantle Prison

That reminds the serpent - must really get around to doing the twilight tour one Friday
izmeina: (Default)
Not been squiggling much lately online. Too busy either snoozing, coffee drinking or pottering around looking at fireworks

Most of the time usually in the company of Auntie ABC courtesy of the trusty little tinny tranny

Some seriously tasty morsels that you never get to hear about from those mucky Murdoch rags

Firstly - yet more 'family' gossip. A new twist on Christianity that the Cat could even relate to.
Strange how the serpent was so so reminded of the wickedly wonderful and not at all widely known
"The Power Tactics of Jesus Christ"

The New Chosen


And then a story about what happens to the grass when elephants fight. Hitler has managed to grab the crown of archetypal most evil megalomaniacal dictator of all time while his one time friend and ally Josef Stalin well and truly got left out in the cold.
The pair of them accomplished together far more misery and mayhem than either could have managed alone but Stalin seems to have had an infinitely better public relations and spin doctor department - helped no doubt by certain dubious alliances with the West in the latter part of the war

This stuff had been out there for anyone who cared to look - a certain serpent in her flobberworm years was obsessed with the evil activities of the pair of them.
Stalin's antics in the Ukraine made the Irish famine of 1848 look like mere small potatoes.
Wonders what will eventually come out of the Chinese archives. That too will be a veritable hornets' nest

Bloodlands

Oh and a job that even Stalin's spin doctors would find rather 'challenging'

When most of the Google hits for your hospital mention "Dr Death" - one Dr Jayant Patel (who used to work there and had his arse covered big time by the hospital goblins and bureaucrats)
how do you restore confidence and the reputation of the place?

Some crazy South African has taken on the job of doing the seemingly impossible

Turns out the guy's name is Morne Terblanche - not Terre Blanche as the serpent originally expected. So no relation to Eugene Terre Blanche which is just about the most perfect name for a Blond blue eyed Aryan ever
izmeina: (Crazy)
Not been squiggling much lately online. Too busy either snoozing, coffee drinking or pottering around looking at fireworks

Most of the time usually in the company of Auntie ABC courtesy of the trusty little tinny tranny

Some seriously tasty morsels that you never get to hear about from those mucky Murdoch rags

Firstly - yet more 'family' gossip. A new twist on Christianity that the Cat could even relate to.
Strange how the serpent was so so reminded of the wickedly wonderful and not at all widely known
"The Power Tactics of Jesus Christ"

The New Chosen


And then a story about what happens to the grass when elephants fight. Hitler has managed to grab the crown of archetypal most evil megalomaniacal dictator of all time while his one time friend and ally Josef Stalin well and truly got left out in the cold.
The pair of them accomplished together far more misery and mayhem than either could have managed alone but Stalin seems to have had an infinitely better public relations and spin doctor department - helped no doubt by certain dubious alliances with the West in the latter part of the war

This stuff had been out there for anyone who cared to look - a certain serpent in her flobberworm years was obsessed with the evil activities of the pair of them.
Stalin's antics in the Ukraine made the Irish famine of 1848 look like mere small potatoes.
Wonders what will eventually come out of the Chinese archives. That too will be a veritable hornets' nest

Bloodlands

Oh and a job that even Stalin's spin doctors would find rather 'challenging'

When most of the Google hits for your hospital mention "Dr Death" - one Dr Jayant Patel (who used to work there and had his arse covered big time by the hospital goblins and bureaucrats)
how do you restore confidence and the reputation of the place?

Some crazy South African has taken on the job of doing the seemingly impossible

Turns out the guy's name is Morne Terblanche - not Terre Blanche as the serpent originally expected. So no relation to Eugene Terre Blanche which is just about the most perfect name for a Blond blue eyed Aryan ever
izmeina: (Default)
It's gloomier and doomier than usual in Radio National Land
Be prepared for some shocking and painful experiences

And now we return to our usual online absence

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izmeina: (Default)
izmeina

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