Friday, September 30, 2005

1. Don't rely on FEMA to save you

Do you know what to do during a major natural disaster? Don't think Katrina can't happen here. The 100 year flood markers sit about a metre above my head and I'm on the first floor. How about an earthquake? Perth sits upon sand. Major quake + sand = very bad. What about a pandemic? 9/11? Or worse? Are you ready?

Do you at least have a first aid kit? Made a supply checklist? Stored some non-perishable extra food - just in case? Don't think you'll always have plenty of time to prepare beforehand.

You may call me a survivalist nut, but I just call it being prepared.

Here's a good place to start your preparation.

REVIEW: Serenity

No aliens, no warp drives, no mystical mumbo-jumbo or techno-babble plot devices... are you sure this is an SF flick? Hell, yeah!

Short review: Serenity is a cool, fun, good old-fashioned space adventure. It's what the next generation of Star Wars films should have been.

Longer review: It's based on a short-lived TV series called Firefly by Joss Whedon, AKA the guy who brought us Buffy The Vampire Slayer, but don't let that discourage you.

Serentiy hangs together so well as a film in its own right, it doesn't matter if you never saw the series that it is the culmination of. The characters may be obvious stock types: the gruff war-hero-gone-privateer captain, his hard-as-nails female offsider, the wacky pilot, the big tough guy, the spunky tech girl, the brooding doctor, the enigmatic child-like ultimate weapon... but their dialogue and interactions are funny, and they actually behave with *some* intelligence.

The story is set some five hundred years into our future, when humans as a race have conveniently migrated to another system with more plot-friendly planets and moons, and developed an enlightened peaceful civilisation fringed with an excitingly lawless frontier rim. Our gruff space captain spends his days figuring out how to feed his cranky crew and repair his clunker of a spaceship. What starts with a simple payroll robbery quickly escalates into a flight from the cannibalistic Reavers (who are so horrfying that civilised people refuse to believe they even exist), an ambush by a deadly government agent (terrific performance by Chiwitel Ejiofor), and the discovery of a secret that's killed millions. One heck of a ride.

Now, I'm no great fan of Whedon's work. Know next to nothing about it, except I thought Roseanne was a better than average sitcom for its time, but never got the big deal about Buffy.

But this is a fun little film. I enjoyed it enough to want to check out Firefly and find out more about the characters and their world, even though Serentiy is in essence the capstone to the series. And what a capstone. What a delightful surprise. It's not the greaatest piece of cinema around, and perhaps that's its biggest downside - that nothing really stands out. But it's like an evening out with friends - it's reassuringly familiar and it's entertaining - and you can't ask for a more enjoyable time that that.

Easily worth full price.

Today is National Geek Day!

According to Neil Gaiman in Time anyway. Terrific little interview (for that rag) with both him and Joss Whedon as their respective films Mirrormask and Serenity both opened today in the U.S.

And it's true what they both say: being a geek just isn't as edgy as it used to be.

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Dead Deer

Even as a little girl, I had trouble believing in the existence of God. Particularly around Xmas time. If it's Jesus' birthday, why isn't he here? Why do we have to go to church instead? How old is he? How do you know?

Santa Claus, on the other hand, made department store appearances and TV commercials, and clearly had a physical presence, but was equally clearly fake. So I didn't believe in him either.

Besides, there was also the sneaking suspicion that Santa was really a lecherous old bastard and therefore not someone a respectable child should accept presents from. See, while Santa is in Singapore he is never accompanied by the matronly Mrs Claus, but always by a bevy of short-skirted Santarinas. Yes, Santa does the stereotypical white guy tourist in Asia thing.

And yes, my childhood imagination was a wierd place to be.

But is it as wierd as the Danish air force paying compensation to Santa Claus for accidentally killing Rudolph? Your call.

Blame It On The Work Experience Kid #8321

A somewhat amused express courier just dropped by the office with a package. From ourselves.

Seems the work experience girl wrote our address on both the From and To labels.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Pregnant Pause

Bought my first maternity dress to day. Not that I actually need one yet - barely beginning to bulge - but when a new frock costs less than your takeaway lunch it's really really difficult to put it back on the rack.

But Bub's starting to show, and clothes are becoming an issue. Even the fat pants are getting tight, and I'm realising most of my wardrobe fits a size 8 chick who's fast going the way of Moby Dick.

And that's just the immediately obvious. I looked through the baby section in Myer's the other day and thought What The Feck Are All These Things? We've got by as a species without half this equipment, haven't we? What it really comes down to, it's just nappies and more nappies, right?

So I'm in an occasional panic. I have no idea what's coming, but I have absolutely no justification for worrying about anything, since medical opinion agrees Bub appears all fine and within normal parameters. On the other hand, I do worry about where we're going to put him, as well as him listening to me swear all day at the computer. All that stress and aggro can't be good for him, although he'll probably develop a choice vocabulary.

And I worry about clothes. Clothes are tangible. The bulge of Bub isn't quite as. Perhaps it's just a looming fear of the unknown, or a fear of fucking up big time.

Either way, it's too late to back out now. Clearly, I need to go shopping more.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

That worked

Apparently, Lynndie England joined the military so as not to end up either in gaol or a single mother.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Monday, September 26, 2005

Byte Me: Blogging segment

I've been putting this off until the segment went to air, but here is the Perth Blogger's Meetup video that aired on Thursday and Friday in Windows Media Format. Careful, it is 29 Meg and my server is fragile. Mirrors available at PLUG and Decaffeinated. More welcome.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Dead End

I saw this on the train. Are they inferring that TAFEWA = Dead End Career? Looks like it.

Thunderbirds Are Go!

Time to Purchace a Dictionary

I was supposed to do these yesterday but my cameraphone was giving me grief. Must be an Eagles fan...traitor!

Not A Nintendog

Not even a Nintenduck, really. But it is much cuter than the original Daffy McDuff, which was more sort of an everyday dirty gray, and had really sharp talons, and only ate big fat sandy worms.
Thanks a lot, Ted, for this disgustingly cute virtual pet.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Liquorice Ice Cream!

So it has the texture and appearence of wet cement.

But it's liquorice ice cream! And it's BLACK!

And Simmo's in Freo have Squashed Frog and Cinnamon-and-ginger. Why the hell haven't they got a website their newest fan can link to?

Remember, they're Westralian and they make black ice cream!

The Law of The Red and White

4 bloody points.

You could feel the silence even in Freo.

Worse, skribe picked the winning team from way back.

Ever since South Freo beat Claremont to win the WAFL, he's been convinced any football team that sports the red and the white will beat whatever team is blue and gold to win their respective championships. ie. he's backing St George over Parramatta in the NRL.

I say twice is a coincidence.

4 bloody points. Feh.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Dewsons: Fact and Fiction

What they tell you: Fresh as the morning.
What they don't say: What year.

What they tell you: Friendly service.
What they don't say: Friendly as in the cashier has an invisible friend and tallies up your purchases while having a whispered conversation with it.

Byte Me update

This afternoon the final episode of series 1 of Byte Me finished its repeat run on Foxtel. Series 1 I hear you say? Yeah, at this stage series 2 is looking very probable - the channel has specifically requested more. They even made us a promo. It has done quite well apparently and the feedback we've received has been very encouraging. Let's hope potential sponsors see it in the same light. With a potential viewing audience of five-and-a-half million they should. Even 1% of that is about twice as much as the best rated shows on Access 31 can attract. Unfortunately, we don't have any ratings to show them yet.

So, officially, it's still not happening, but the signs are looking good. Stay tuned.

The Mad Hatter's Video Production House

It's been bedlam at work all this week. I have three sets of projects in various stages of completion fighting for memory on my hard drive, and every time I think I can finally delete one, the projects are re-prioritised, urgent new deadlines are issued, and the projects get shuffled around and around and around.

Then it turns out I can't output any of the completed projects anyway because one of the DV machine's been in the shop for the past month, the other one works fine unless you want to use the firewire port which doesn't work, two of the 3-chip Sonys are also in the shop, and the third doesn't have a working firewire port either. Okay, so I'll just have to use one of the Panasonics instead. Whoops. They use a single RCA jack instead of the standard 3-headed ones, and there don't appear to be any.

I couldn't even snaffle any of the brand spanking new hi-def cams because they were *all* out on a shoot, even the one with the non-working firewire port. Yes, even among the new hi-def cams one will not speak to the computers.

"Yes, this is not funny anymore," says the Mad Hungarian. "You know you can use the S-video port to output? Nobody uses them at all."

"Because we don't have any S-video cables," I point out.

"Ah," says the Mad Hungarian sagely. "Why don't we have any S-video cables?"

I don't know, it's your production house. Why does it seem like we're always having to scrounge for equipment?

And that's just this end of the production line. At the other end, there's Access 31. Who have once again screwed up the Gallery Watch schedule. One of the inconvenienced galleries called them up *five* times before they got an apology. And then they screened a Treasure Hunt episode last week that wasn't due to be broadcast until October. It was Part One of a two-parter, and they had the cheek to call us and complain that we hadn't delivered Part Two and so they'll be forced to repeat Part One. And we can't find out why this has happened at all because the Programming Manager is never there.

But the upshot is I need to output Part Two and a Gallery Watch ep NOW. Now now now now now. And I have to man the phones downstairs at the same time. I think I managed to answer one out five calls.

I'm a masochist - a stress fetishist or something. There's no other sensible explanation for why I put up with this chaos week after week.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

50 reasons NOT to move to Perth

Keet and Deanna have posted 50 reasons to move to Perth. So I feel it is only responsible to post a retort. So here is 50 reasons NOT to move to Perth:

  1. It is the most isolated capital city in the world.
  2. Because it's so isolated it takes ages to go anywhere else.
  3. The shops shut at 5.30pm. Some earlier.
  4. It is full of whinging poms (Brits) that complain about how bad life is in Perth but still won't leave.
  5. We're getting electricity real soon now.
  6. Everything costs more because of the extra transport costs.
  7. Stinking hot summers can last nine months.
  8. Water restrictions.
  9. Hole in the ozone layer.
  10. Melanomas.
  11. It takes five minutes to walk from one end to the other of Perth's night life district.
  12. Hardcore porn is illegal.
  13. Prostitution is illegal.
  14. No nightlife + no porn + no prostitution = boredom.
  15. Ripping your own CDs/DVDs is illegal.
  16. Recording/time-shifting television shows is illegal.
  17. ergo ipods and VCR/Tivos are illegal.
  18. no Tivo.
  19. IP laws are governed by US laws (under the Free Trade Agreement).
  20. 20,000 Singaporeans - okay that's actually not bad but fellatio is illegal in Singapore. It could happen here.
  21. Perthites spend too much time talking and thinking about sex.
  22. Most Perthites are virgins.
  23. The word Perthite - it sounds like a mineral sand.
  24. Part of the Coalition of the Willing.
  25. Most Perthites believe Indonesia is secretly massing troops and about to invade.
  26. Flies.
  27. Mosquitos.
  28. Overhead powerlines - what use are they without electricity?
  29. Public transport is dismal.
  30. It is worse the further you get away from the CBD.
  31. 45 degrees Celsius summers.
  32. Only five REAL tv stations.
  33. Access 31.
  34. Last good concert venue about to shut down.
  35. Big name acts never come to Perth anyway.
  36. When they do come the cheapest tickets cost over $100 each.
  37. Cinema tickets are a bargain at $17 each - $50 for La Premiere.
  38. Delayed telecast LIVE tv.
  39. West Coast Eagles.
  40. Secret location of alien mutation fungus.
  41. Redbacks, sharks and poisonous snakes don't kill many tourists so Perth is always full of them.
  42. Whitford City Shopping Centre.
  43. Strine.
  44. Lawns are brown.
  45. Nuclear target.
  46. Perthites are an apathetic bunch.
  47. Two hours behind rest of Australia.
  48. 3 hours behind the rest of Australia during summer.
  49. Favourite sport takes five days to play.
  50. I live here


One dark-haired child, approximately 3 years of age, in a stroller in the express lane of the Woolworths city store. If not claimed by closing time Friday will be sold off to highest bidder. All profits go to shareholders.

Meetup or there's Keet

This one's a little late, but last night we had an enjoyable time at the Perth Blog Meetup and yes, we finally caught up with Keet. We also met Keet's friend, Deanna.

The night was a blast, even if you include the discussion at the end of the night about whether Mark Latham was a misunderstood hero or a reprehensible coward. I championed the latter.

Good fun all around. Join us next time.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

When You Can't Give It Away

The things I recognise I don't want to. Glad I'm not a tourist.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


The evidence suggesting a connection between David Beckham and divinity was too eagerly presented when we said that he and his wife Victoria had been portrayed as Jesus and Mary in a controversial nativity display at Madame Tussauds in December 2004 (David Beckham, from football saviour to the new Messiah, page 8, September 14). In fact, models of the Beckhams were placed in the roles of Joseph and Mary.

If you live in the rural areas...

...get used to this.


Back in the early nineties The D-Generation did a skit on The Late Show about a new razor which had something like 16 blades. Only another 11 to go.

Update: I found a transcript of the skit:

The first blade distracts the hair, while the second and third blades sneak up behind it, cutting off any escape routes. The fourth and fifth blades attempt to coax the hair from its hiding place using modern modern counselling techniques while the sixth blade, posing as a passing motorist, acts as a decoy, allowing the seventh and eighth blades to swoop down and quickly overpower the hair. The ninth blade, disguised as a postman, administers a small dose of chloroform, allowing blades 10 through 13 to remove the hair and escort it away for further questioning. The 14th blade informs the hair of its rights. The 15th blade handles the paperwork and the 16th blade, well, it's just along for the ride.

Monday, September 19, 2005

More bub pics

Bub at 12 weeks and 4 days. Note the evil genius grin. That's my side of the family.

You know you are...

...becoming overly competitive when:

  • you have an urge to scream 'Losers!' when your bus overtakes another;
  • you speed walk home so that 'the bitch' that got a break in traffic and thereby a significant headstart doesn't beat you;
  • you swim an extra five minutes so you don't look bad compared to the seventy-year old grandmother that has been outpacing you for the last hour.


If I were Pru I would too.

Sunday, September 18, 2005


Well done, boys!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Storm Tide

Shouldn't the South Perth foreshore be higher than the river?

They misspelt wanker

Friday, September 16, 2005

Can't Preserve If You Don't Record It

Friends of Battye Library just launched a new website today, with a $3,000,000 grant from LotteriesWest (so the Premier gets to hand over the cheque?) which will go a long way towards the preservation of over a century's worth of decaying newspapers, microfilm, archival film and photographs.

All very worthwhile.

The Mad Hungarian, who filmed today's launch for a segment for SBS' NoiseTV, is currently beside himself having discovered that after beating 7 and 9's cameras to score the first interview with the Premier, and getting twice as much out of the Hon. Dr Gallop as anybody else did, that he somehow failed to actually record the interview at all.

That's why I'd rather work with computers than cameras any day: Control+Z.

St George and The Kangaroo

Didn't take long for the Poms to commemorate their Ashes victory with a nifty tee.

The St George iconography, outbursts of 'Jerusalem' in the streets of London... Anyone would think the sun had risen once more upon the British Empire.

Regret the Error

Regret The Error is a website dedicated to the corrections columns of newspapers around the world. A couple of recent notables:

From The New York Times:

Because of a transcription error, a front-page article on Aug. 29 about the drafting of Iraq's constitution misstated the name of an Iraqi ethnic group in a comment by the president, Jalal Talabani, on who would benefit from its final approval. He called it a "constitution for Arabs, Sunni and Shiites, for Kurds, for Chaldeans, Assyrians, Christians and Muslims" -- not "Caledonians."

and from The Salon:
The Sept. 11 column "The Bitter Lessons of Four Years" noted that Condoleezza Rice had shopped for shoes on Madison Avenue during the Katrina disaster; in fact, she shopped for shoes on Fifth Avenue. The sentence has been corrected.

Yes, that does clear things up somewhat.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

More wetness

As part of my exercise programme I've been swimming at the pool twice a week. Today I had a slight change from my usual time and so I got the wonderful privilege of being around when the school kiddies took their lessons. For the most part the lil'uns are fine. There just seems to be an awful lot of them but their enthusiasm is contagious. The big'uns (15 and up), on the other hand, are a pain. They ignore the rules and generally make a nuisance of themselves. And the girls all wear two swimming costumes - one over the other. What's up with that?


Is anybody else freaked out by the extended version of KFC's Wicked Wing commercial? The one with goth chick. Up until recently they've been running the short version and I think I understand why.

Let me set the scene. Family, consists of parents and son - about 8yo, sit down at the table to have some KFC Wicked Wings. Upstairs we see a door with lots of keep out stickers. Door opens and goth chick exits. She looks about 15. In slowmo she descends. Family watches. As chick sits mother passes father a chip. He takes the chip while watching his daughter. The father's expression looks like one of pure unadulterated lust - not for the chip, but for his daughter.

Perhaps I'm just making assumptions and she's not his daughter. Perhaps she' live-in baby-sitter? A foreign exchange student? Their fetishist sex slave? I bet we get a lot of Google hits on that last one. Or perhaps they're just a good, old-fashioned bible family. You know, like Lot and his daughters.

The ad is just weird.

Working Flags

There was a time when clicking the 'next blog' button on a blogspot blog was essentially a waste of time. Most times you ended up at a link farm. Since Blogger introduced the ability to flag (and unflag) offensive blogs the link farms have all but disappeared. A quick look today and not a single farm. So kudos to Blogger, but I do have to wonder how long before the spammers find a way around it.

Countdown To Xmas

It's official: xmas season is about to open. David Jones is laying down fresh bait in its city store, while Woolie's is once again trusting to old lures.

The hunt is about to begin. You have been warned.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Interesting factoid

If you Google for 'failure' the current top result is this page.

Wet Batteries

According to this map - obtained from the Sony Ericsson web site - there is a mobile phone battery shop in the middle of the Swan near Herisson Island. Must be for the kangaroos and wallabies that live there and I hear the rabbits are the reason why Telstra scored a $4 billion profit last financial year. Always yakking them rabbits.


Even better is the driving instructions map:

Kudos to TP for finding that.

The Domino's Pizza Couch

So, there you are armed with the latest ultimate Domino's steak pizza. What's missing from your life? The ultimate Domino's Pizza Couch apparently. It comes with:

* two Domino's Heat Wave hot bags,
* a mini refrigerator,
* a drinks cooler,
* remote control caddy and bottle opener,
* an Xbox with three controllers,
* an MP3 player,
* a radio,
* a cellphone and a NASCAR headset,
* a DVD player and two flat screen televisions.

Amazingly, I've finally seen something built by Jamie Hyneman of Mythbusters fame that is completely not cool.

Stare them down

There's going to be a lot of speculation about what to do to fix the problems in The Australian Cricket Team. Of all the ones I've heard since the end of the Fourth Test I have to say that Dennis Lillee's suggestion is likely to produce the best results.

I like Ponting, he's a great batsman and a capable captain, but he's lost his nerve. He's simply too conservative. Not mongrel enough. He blinked during the staring match. As Lillee says, Warne was pseudo-Captain during the Fifth Test. He certainly did most of the press that I saw.

Even if we'd won the Fifth Test I think Warne should have replaced Ponting as Australian Captain. It would have been harder but with the loss there is an ideal opportunity.

Mysteries To Wake Up To

This morning, my pre-caffeinated brain was informed by Channel 7 that they would soon be screening Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, which comes to us "from the creator of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory".

No doubt this piece of news would - if they weren't dead - surprise both Ian Fleming, who wrote Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and Roald Dahl, who didn't. Okay, he helped adapt Fleming's book for the big screen, but couldn't by any stretch of the imagination be said to have created Chitty. He wasn't even involved in the screenplay adaptation of Willy Wonka, and hated the 1971 film.

Chitty through and through is classic Fleming, from the gadgets and spy games to the bizarre villains and women with names like Truly Scrumptious.

Truly Scrumptious. Does that even sound like Dahl to you? The Childcatcher, oh, that's got Dahl's fingerprints all over him all right. But Truly Scrumptious... No, sorry. That should be the giveaway.

I don't care if this is 7's idea of a promotional tie-in. Credit where credit is due: Chitty is the creation of Ian "James Bond" Fleming, which ought to be a selling point in itself. Obviously, 7 haven't got the rights to James and the Giant Peach or Matilda, to name a couple of films adapted from books Dahl actually wrote, or they wouldn't be desperately promoting Chitty on such a flimsy basis.

And this is the sort of ethical outrage that wakes me up in the mornings.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

You are in my power

I saw a guy today carrying around a binder with the title 'Chi Hypnosis How-to'. Now, this probably says more about me than him but the first thing I thought when I saw it was that it was a last desperate attempt to get laid. Just thought I'd mention it.

Sedition Vs Racism Vs Idiocy in Singapore

Two Singaporeans (a blogger and someone on a forum) have just been charged with sedition in Singapore over racist comments they made online.

It's apparently been ten years since *anyone* was charged with sedition in BradyBunchLand, so this is extremely serious. But near as I can tell, they're being charged over racially-derived derogatory comments. Is racist name-calling on quite the same level as inciting race hate and threatening the overthrow of the government?

Admittedly, this is in a region where racial tensions and prejudices are high, and Singapore's success as a nation has depended on maintaining a firm grip on public order. The Singaporean government practically falls over itself to ensure that no one ethnic or religious group is advantaged or disadvantaged in any area, whether it's public housing, schooling, the location of their businesses, military service... and because the same rules apply to everyone, most Singaporeans are content to go along with it.

Privately, they may hold other views. My Malaysian-born mother, for example, long advocated me never to marry into a certain ethnic group because of the way the men allegedly treated their wives. So prejudices are there. Most people just aren't stupid enough to voice them in public.

Should this be viewed as a form of government repression or as self-censorship? Is the public good more important than the individual's rights? Or Is the occasinal idiot's making a total dick of themselves something that will inevitably lead to widespread chaos and breakdown of law and order?

Here, in Australia, I have no doubts whatsoever. But I find myself thinking differently about the same issues when they pertain to Singapore. It shouldn't be a different matter, but it is. No Australian court would have dreamt of charging a couple of name-callers with anything so extreme as sedition, not even in these terror-heightened days, and for that I am grateful to live here.

But if I were still living in Singapore, I think I would be leaning the other way. Sedition *is* a bit steep, but racism, in whatever form or degree, must not be tolerated.

The fallout from the actions of these two idiots, however, is that all Singaporean bloggers have suddenly become very self-conscious of what they have been writing, and that is not a good thing for a country that is just learing to find its own voice. Good grief, Skribe and I call one another by worse names everyday as a matter of course. If we were emailing one another in Singapore, we'd be charged with a smiliar offence, no doubt.

Monday, September 12, 2005

InACCESSible 31

Access 31 is doing a great job alienating local program producers; they're now demanding that all local producers *must* sign a contract of exclusivity with Access 31 for something like 3 years. That means you can't put your show to air anywhere else except 31, even though 31 doesn't want your locally produced programs in the first place. Remember, this is a community broadcaster.

So Access 31 is forcing producers to go to other broadcasters such as Foxtel's Aurora channel, and then punishing the producers when they do. Makes perfect sense, doesn't it.

But what are the local producers doing about it? Well, some of them have told Access to get fucked, and some of them are signing the new hastily rewritten contracts *and* broadcasting elsewhere anyway - after all, what's Access 31 going to do about it? Sue? They don't pay local producers in the first place.

It's bizarre when you consider that Aurora, interstate 31s, and even overseas community broadcasters are begging for programs (send us 12 DVDs, we'll pay postage!) but our own community station won't put you on unless you pay them to.

Someone should rename Access 31 to Inaccessible 31.

UPDATE: 19/09/2005
Here's an article in the Sunday Times on the subject.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

In Other Breaking News. . .

Hmm, looks like even Murdoch's had enough of the current US administration.

Things I saw today

A bronze hat, coat and glasses;...

DSC00392 iguana having a waterfight with a snake;...

...and a shipwrecked galleon all at Russell Square.


Five generations of greed.

Great Gynae Day Out

Have you ever wanted to know what Gynaecologists do during a convention? Then head over to PCEC and find out.

Friday, September 09, 2005

No Ordinary Rabbit


Hee! Nothing to fear but holy hand grenades and wizards named Tim.

What Monty Python Character are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Good news

The sandwich has been found.

Warning: link may be hazardous to your health.

One voice becomes many

I've always felt that the best hip-hop is heavily infuenced by - if not all about - pain. It's hard to beat the pain of being abandoned and vilified by your government and fellow citizens. It's hard to beat 10,000 corpses rotting in the Lousiana heat. It's hard to beat being forced to fend for yourself amid alligator and gang infested ruins for a week while bureaucrats argue and politicians take photo ops. Great source material. Great song.

Kudos to Ponderance for the heads-up.

A womb with a view

This is the alien parasite that has attached itself to my beloved ToxicPurity's insides. It's been there 11 weeks now and measures 4cm already. If anybody has any idea how such a thing might have happened please leave a comment. Use diagrams where necessary.


Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Never Mind Names, What About The Date?

Got bled today in the name of bub - first trimester screening for HIV, rubella, and, according to my doctor's handwriting, squiggle, wiggle, and wavy line.

The pathologist looked over the details on my form, dialled her secret decoder disk, and announced that my due date would be the 4th April. My doctor reckoned 27th March, while Skribe and I figured early March by looking up a calender. So I'm apparently two weeks more pregnant than first guessed, but the baby's arriving later?

Huh. Bub's barely a tadpole and already a procrastinator.

Your lips are too big, your eyes too wide

According to this story, cabbies in Nanjing will be banned from having shaved heads, long hair or moustaches. Those who are rude or deemed messy will also be banned.

"Strange haircuts are also banned under the rules, and female cabbies who wear too much makeup will face criticism," said one government official. Women in China get it so easy. Men get banned but women just get criticised. How fair is that?

The new rules are aimed at improving Nanjing's image during the National Games, and presumably as a testing ground for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Just imagine if we were to establish the same rules in Perth. We'd lose half the fleet. Ban being obesely overweight and there would be no cabbies whatsoever.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


I think the really sad thing about the fuck up in New Orleans is that if Bush were allowed to run again he'd win.

Monday, September 05, 2005

ToxicPurity Plays 5 Questions With...

... Curtin University's Western Independent (also known as: What happened to Grok? Or was there a real newspaper at Curtin and I never noticed?)

Anyway, at last Wednesday's Awards Night, Enid asked if I would answer some questions for her paper. These were the questions she sent me, and these were my responses:

How/ why did you start blogging?
We've been online since the early-mid 90s, and so we've been blogging in one form or another since then. As to why, well, everyone has something to say, something to tell. We're no different. This is simply one outlet for communication. Also, both of us have always been lousy at keeping diaries. Online journals, however, are more like open letters. You are writing for an audience, even if you never meet them face-to-face. And your audience talks back. That's the difference - and great attraction - between merely keeping a diary, and blogging.

How would you describe to a non-blogger the content of your blog?
We blog about the film and television industry where we work, and about the quirks of Perth, stupid human tricks... anything that catches our fancy really.

What are your thoughts on blogs as a form of self-expression and online community?
Blogs are no different from any other form of self-expression. It's as easy to lie and create a fictitious persona in a blog as it is in prose or film. One could argue that the very act of blogging in effect creates a fiction about oneself, just as the act of keeping a diary creates a fiction about oneself, or the act of conversing with another person creates a fiction about oneself. It's about how we want to represent ourselves.

That said, blogging is a fascinating activity because it is both private and public. To express one's thoughts, opinions, rants... demands a willingness to expose one's inner self to an anonymous audience. You are at once vulnerable, and an exhibitionist - an intriguing position to be in.

And you're not alone. That's what the online community is: groups of virtually anonymous people partaking in conversations that they could not or would not have in other circumstances.

Has blogging brought you any celebrity status?
Uh, yeah. I rant for the cash prize and glory. Absolutely. Get your ToxicPurity T-shrts here.

What do you see for the future of blogs?
People were blogging before the word "blogging" was coined, and they will continue to blog long after the word "blog" is obsoleted. Even in those nations where blogging is restricted (China and the UAE, eg) people defy their governments to blog. Why? Because when people have something to say, they will find a means to say it. The methods will change as technology - and access to new technology - changes, but the impulse to communicate, to express oneself, to bitch and rant and moan and babble about everything and nothing remains unchanged. Call it a basic instinct: the need to talk to another human being.

Sweet Murder

Just think, if the Germans had won WW2 it might have been called the Violent Crumble.

Basil and Parsley

We finally planted off our seedlings.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Digital Frames

So, you've put your digital photo collection up on FlickR, but it's not quite the same as having a framed photo of your loved ones on your bedside, is it? Bit difficult to carry a pic of Sweetie/Bub/Fluffy in your wallet when it's just a bunch of bits, right?

Maybe you need digital frames for your digital snaps. Depending on the model, you could have one that includes built-in speakers and automatic light sensors, use it as a keychain, or wear it as a pendant.

Picture frames with remote controls. Like we need another remote controlled device? And yet... it's so pretty...

Simpson Obsession

So I guess this answers the question of what Jessica Simpson would wear if she won an Oscar. But what would she wear if she met Groucho Marx or if she was a cop on the beat or a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader? Find out at Darkbean's flickr page.

Kudos to Mahmood for the heads up.

Operation Canute

After the stunning successes of the War on Poverty and War on Terrorism, the Bush Administration today announced that they were declaring a War on Weather in the wake of Hurricane Katrina's devastation of New Orleans. Codenamed Canute the operation will see a ban on the manufacture and sale of baked beans and a bounty placed on Amazonian butterflies.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Great Music

I found a great musician the other day. His name is John Schmidt. His stuff is mainly classical piano, but he also sings. His song I Do is to die for. You can listen to his music via streaming at Soundclick or buy mp3s and albums on his homepage.

WA Spring Poetry Festival 2005

The Gallery Watch shoot at City of Melville's Art Awards was cancelled at the last minute - boo! - leaving me all dressed and with nothng to do on a Friday night. It *was* going to be my first proper go at presenting and interviewing on camera, but there'll undoubtedly be other opportunities to make a fool of myself later on.

Almost went along to watch the shoot covering the WA Poetry Festival launch do at the Town Centre, but came to my senses and went shopping for things to surprise Skribe with instead. Hey, I like a good poem as much as the next person, but a social function full of poets is no sane person's notion of a good time.

The following week marks National Poetry Week proper, and it looks like there're some fun activities organised for within the city and elsewhere. Pity it's the same week I have to undergo a barrage of tests for bub's sake. Barely a tadpole and already messing with my life. O joy.

Good call

I received a call this morning from one of the committee members of CTV Perth congratulating me on Byte Me, the first episode went to air last night on Foxtel, which was awfully nice of him. He loved it and was impressed when I told him that that was the weakest of the episodes.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

How Do You Say . . ?

We don't communicate enough as a people. In this spirit of mutual learning and the desire to improve relations between different cultures and language groups, I present The Swearsaurus, or, How To Swear, Cuss, and Curse in 165 Languages!

Shoot Me Already

Busy formatting the latest ep of Gallery Watch after bashing my head all morning against one of Adobe's non-repeating inconsistent bloody bugs. It's out now, so I don't care anymore.

The photographer from Western Suburbs Weekly showed up right on schedule and discovered he knew about as much as we did - not much at all - about the story WSW want to run on us and the training course we recently taught in association with the Office of Multicultural Interests.

Spent a fascinating half hour or so watching him set up a shot where Jonno got to "direct" an interrogation scene for a fictitious ep of BBN. Then had to pretend to edit GW as Jonno "supervised".

According to the quirky boundary definitions set up by the community newspapers, of all the people involved in the training course, only Jonno and I qualified as living in Western Suburbs and were therefore the only ones appropriate for being interviewed. Hold on, I've never seen an issue of the WSW. Doesn't that mean I don't live in a Western Suburb? And weren't we supposed to be interviewed? Oh, you mean by the photographer? Oh, okay. That's news to him, too, apparently.

Community-based organisations... gotta love them.