Friday, March 26, 2010

sunny

So..

What's been happening?

How you been?

I'm good, yeah - real good. Surprisingly so you might say. Full of joie de vivre and other French aphorisms.

New Zealand was delightful: beautifully sunny, warm days; crisp evenings; cool nights. Perfect weather for this Anglo boy - my genes are tailored to appreciate warm and cold.

Karate camp was small but perfectly formed. Well, actually it was a bit of a mess really but in some ways that's been better than boring - discussion and planning has been stimulated. Some reasonably important goals have been set. More on that later when I've talked to my Sensei - he being the final arbiter of all things Yoshukai.

Catching up with friends and family in Chch was great. I saw Greg again for the first time in a while which was great. Hung with my bro and had good conversations with him - started to feel like I'm connecting with the nieces too which was lovely.

Of course I spent much time with my main girl who's been having a tough time of late but is still so much fun to be around even when she's flat. She also said, after much discussion of our individual turbulent social- and love-lives, probably one of the nicest things anyone's said to me "I feel so lucky to have you as a constant in my life". There really is no replacement for good friends. I have some of the best.

I've been in such a ridiculously positive mood the last week or so. I can't even really pinpoint the reasons, and I'm a bit afraid to analyse too much in case it goes away.

Jen's visit has been lovely - she's away having adventures in Western Australia and Queensland currently but back next week (not sure I can think of anything to do with her in Sydney that rivals what she's been up to out there!).

Karate is going really well, I'm actually enjoying the gym for once, signed up for a 4km run (a RUN!*) in about 6 weeks (again - A RUN!!), and work is.. well, still irritating.. but I've started looking around at alternatives so that's positive. I get my new** new couch delivered tomorrow - oh frabjous day!

The worst thing to have happened lately was visiting the ex and saying goodbye to the animals. She relocates to Canberra tomorrow and I'll likely never see Griffin again, maybe will see Rufus on occasion. That was pretty gutting. I knew when I left her that it was the right decision but I never really understood how hard it was going to be to leave the animals.

But still, even that's not dragging me down right now. Life is good and positive and shiny, plans are being made and coming to fruition, world domination is within my grasp and.. umm, ignore that.. I've said too much.. *nonchalant whistle*

If I could only get the washing up done my life would be perfect. But some things are really not meant to be..



* I don't run. Not even for the bus. I am one of nature's natural sitters.
** Not sure I blogged about that, it was rather traumatic at the time - my awesome wonderful comfy EXPENSIVE couch got delivered but wouldn't fit through the door. There were tears. And tantrums. So had to get a smaller one. C'est la vie.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

test pattern

Apologies internetfriends - the last 10 days or so have been pretty hectic what with Jen's arrival in Aus, my flying to New Zealand, karate training camp in Hanmer, much socialising in Christchurch, etc. I'm currently in NZ but flying back to Sydney tomorrow to relax from my 'holiday'.

Normal(esque) service will return shortly.

To pass the time - here's someone not using Chatroulette for the purposes it was intended (i.e. showing strangers your genitals), it's rather special:

Monday, March 15, 2010

meeting & greeting

So Jen arrived in Sydney yesterday for the start of her holiday and we met for the first time - after she'd spent 14 hours on a plane and hadn't slept for far too long. So she was hallucinating freely. I'd been out for an engagement party the night before (involving a place with a life-sized horse lamp, which of course was the focus of many drunken wannabe equestrians..) and was also seriously sleep deprived. Despite which we managed to hold relatively coherent conversations.

Got to say that, while I knew what she looked like from Facebook photos, I'd not really considered what she'd sound like. After 6 or 7 years of communicating entirely by the written word it was a shock to find she's got a Canadian accent! Yeah, I know - duh. But really, until you know a person you tend to read their words in your own voice. Or James Earl Jones's voice. Maybe that's just me?

Anyway, other than the freakish accent, she's lovely. And brought me gifts of t-shirts (she knows what I like), trinkets (shiny things!), maple syrup (I'm seeing waffles in my near future) and maple cookies. The main ingredient of that last item I swear is crack - those things are hellishly addictive! I was sitting reading an article about obesity (irony much?) online and couldn't stop myself from scarfing down a bunch of the fuckers..

Yeah, thanks so much Jen - get me hooked on a product only available twelve and a half thousand kms away.

God, I think I'm jonesing already..

Friday, March 12, 2010

fortitude

Took the day off yesterday because I was 'sick'. It's a great Aussie tradition on a sunny day. Although I didn't go to the beach, which is also traditional (at least in Sydney - less so in Alice Springs). I did spend some time walking through Newtown seeing the sights and observing the freaks & weirdos. And the so-called 'normal' people who, in many cases and some ways, are far weirder than the tattooed, pierced and dyed brigade.

People-watching is my favourite sport.

Anyway: I've been feeling a bit flat lately and I think I managed to come through it yesterday afternoon/evening. Not entirely sure that there has been any great epiphany or insight but I feel much... not necessarily better - but braver. More resolute. I know the things I have to do to bring about some positive change - in my professional life at least. I've known for a while, to tell the truth, I just now have, I think, the balls to do it.

Sorry to be cryptic: I'll let you know when I finalise my thought processes - I'm not jinxing it.

Now it's just a matter of finding the time! I'm not rushing it - I've got a pretty busy life at the moment, which I'm loving. Once that tapers off, as these things eventually do (i.e. when the money runs out), I'll get onto it. But hedonism is the soup du jour and I'm carpe-ing that diem right now (to mangle clich├ęs from a couple of languages..).

Although, to tell the truth, tonight I'm going to go shopping for some kitchen equipment (Jen is threatening to cook for me at some stage and she arrives on Sunday) and then probably getting an early night. Especially since I get my couch delivered tomorrow. Wheee! Here's hoping it'll fit in the lift...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

fascination

What is it that makes you intrigued with someone?

I don't just mean people that you're attracted to, although those are some of the best ones: those that tick all the boxes including the ones between the ears and between the legs. A potent combination! But that's not entirely what I'm after - yes hopefully that person will come along, and I have hope that she will, but until then I'm searching for intellectual stimulus.

There are plenty of people that I enjoy being around: those that make me laugh, are fun to be with, or simply pleasant company. These are my friends, some are very good friends - some are lovers. All important people to me - their generous friendships have carried me through recent tough emotional times. But they don't often engage me on a cerebral level or, at least, I sometimes feel like I'm an intellectual pez dispenser whose role it is to proffer ideas, concepts and arguments. Is it selfish of me to want to be energised in return?

I really don't think I'm as smart as some friends think I am: I just think I have more of a love for playing around with ideas and discussing concepts than most people. Talk of the latest TV programs or celebrities or rubbish local news bores me silly - or baffles me since I often have no idea who the people involved are. Water-cooler conversations around me generally involve a bit of explanation and back-story before I get the gist of what they're on about.

I like to be passionate about something. Anything even. I'm a very opinionated prick and can hold forth on most subjects given a sufficiently sturdy soap-box on which to stand. Not that I claim absolute knowledge about everything, but I can usually string together a reasonable argument on most topics I care about (depending my level of inebriation). But, crazy as it sounds, I'm sick of hearing my own voice - I want to be inspired by someone else. Or at least irritated and perplexed. Either way: someone saying something to grab my attention.

I need people that make me want to hear more of what they say, make me want to know more about them, lead me to think and contemplate issues/events/whatever in different ways. Lead me to discuss and argue with them - in a respectful if robust way. I love talking with someone with whom I can have a frank disagreement and actually figure out where the differences are rather than, upon finding dissent, retreating to the mealy-mouthed "oh, yes - of course you're entitled to your opinion". A statement that implies "and you're a fucking idiot for having that opinion" but doesn't have the balls to say it.

I guess I'm looking for people to bounce ideas off, people who will tell me without sugar-coating when I'm wrong. I'm very good at being wrong - I've had a lot of practice. I guess ultimately I'm looking for motivation and exhilaration. Possibly even someone I can emulate - a role-model even. I've never had one of those - it might be a nice thing.

So.. does anyone know of a good cult I can join? Has to be one that is based on questioning and arguing about everything tho - and run by open-minded, astute and opinionated sods. Funky robes and Kool-aid are a plus but not essential.

Apologies for the rambling nature of this - I've been drinking wine and arguing all evening. It's been lovely.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

more AFP

Still buzzing about this gig:

Monday, March 08, 2010

adventures

It's been a busy few days: escaped up to the Blue Mountains for a weekend of abseiling, soaking in the spa, eating fine foods and drinking copiously (which appears to be a bit of a theme these days). Was so worn out from the excesses of Friday night and the adventures of Saturday that I slept for 10 hours straight that night. Which didn't actually seem to make me feel more rested. I think my body is so used to getting by with minimal sleep that it goes into a bit of shock when it gets more than 6 hours. Either that or it's saying "gimme more of that, motherfucker".

Sunday night was an experience of a far different character: Amanda Fucking Palmer at the Sydney Opera House. Which was fucking amazing. Currently don't really have the words for it - will post more of a review when I have my brain back.

If you don't know of her but have any interest in a musician who could be the bastard offspring of Tori Amos and Nick Cave raised on a diet of cabaret, Nina Hagen and red wine then you must check her out. Either in her solo capacity or as part of The Dresden Dolls. And go see her perform live. You won't regret it.

Friday, March 05, 2010

filler

Pointless website of the day:

DUN DUN DUN DUN etc...

It's friday and I'm bored at work but I get to escape this city for a few days as of this afternoon. Yay! Even though it looks like it'll probably rain for the weekend. Boo. Which will be fine coz then I'll just lie around reading books and watching dvds. Yay! And drinking booze. Yay! In conclusion: Yay!

I have nothing witty to add.

Here's some more silliness for you:

Ahh, cephalopods - you octopi my mind (sorry - I couldn't resist..).

twart

Two and a quarter hours till the gigatweet - are you excited?

I have a (rarely used) twitter account in case anyone was interested.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

wednesday links

Because sharing is caring. Except for those things you did that time. No-one needs to know that. Please stop telling that story...
A fascinating look at depression and it's role in our lives, creativity and evolution.
(hat tip to Sas for the link)

Why working at work is so difficult. Also a great site for pithy, pertinent, contentious commentary.

This is genius. And hilarious. And the comments go on for pages. Eerily familiar...

Amanda Fucking Palmer on yeast-based toast spreads.

And finally, I don't really read Goats as much as I should but I love this one. I hope one day to be as frustrating in the face of certain annihilation:

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

just say no to 'meh'

I feel a bit frayed at the edges. Fuzzy. Unfocussed. I can't seem to concentrate for long or stay interested in anything much. Work isn't exciting me (not that it was ever a great love), I'm not reading much, TV or the internet seem to shorten my attention span.

I only truly concentrate when I'm at the movies or when I'm at karate. It's a worry that those are the only times since both only happen with external help: the former is concentration due to having distractions removed, the latter is enforced by my self-preservation instinct at not wanting to get kicked in the head.

Perhaps I'm lacking passion. In fact I know I am. I'm just unsure what it is that I can be passionate about. I'm not even sure what interests me any more.

Karate I've been doing for more than 20 years, it's no longer an 'interest' as such - more part of who I am. Reading, movies - these things are too passive to be activities. Gardening I lost with the garden. Collecting books used to obsess me but I've barely bought more than half a dozen this year. Activism, environmentalism, atheism, left-wing bleeding-heart pinkoism - none of these draw me like they used to (although I still love to talk about them when I can - the argumentative sod in me hasn't totally fled).

I need to actually make a start on those projects that I'd set myself earlier in the year. They might not excite me now but at least might lead to something else new. It's amusingly ironic that I spent many years joking with my ex that she needed a hobby and now I've found I'm the one who needs one.

Or more than one.

Monday, March 01, 2010

blue monday

Bit flat today. Despite a great weekend which included boozing with workmates, coffee & conversation with friends, dinner with my squeeze (really have to think of a better term..), a clever and side-splitting show from Tim Minchin, pleasant slothing about watching dvds, and a reasonable amount of essential housework. All in all a fun time so really I have no excuse for being listless.

Especially since Canada won gold in the ice hockey this morning (whooo!).

Although I did get up at 3am this morning: I was intending to go and join in the Spencer Tunick installation down at the Opera House but chickened out at the last minute. Well, not due to fear of standing naked with several thousand other people, more due to the fact that it's actually cold* in Sydney for the first time in months and my bed was much more inviting and warm. Laziness won out - as it so often does.

Come to think of it my ennui probably stems from the fact I didn't have karate on Saturday. My adrenal glands haven't had their customary workout and I've not hit anyone for days. That tends to make me a little antsy. I'll miss training next weekend too but since I'll be up in the Blue Mountains throwing myself up and down cliffs I imagine the adrenaline will be well & truly flowing.

In the meantime I must continue plugging away at my meaningless job and merely daydream about punching people in the face...



* Okay, it's still about 20 degrees C - but that's cold for Sydney. Yes, I've become soft.