Tuesday, 9 January 2007

02-01-2005_02-28-2005

Monday, February 28, 2005

Newsgroup to read
This newsgroup tickles my funnybone sometimes...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 9:13 PM Ted
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Sunday, February 27, 2005

Constantine
[SPOILER WARNING! You have been warned!]
Hmmm, what a movie! Trish and I saw it last night, and I confess I am impressed. Better than most of the past crop of "angels v. demons, humans: 0, everyone else: 100" movies, this movie seems to rise a bit above them.
What made the movie more intersting to me was that we'd watched Catwoman on DVD earlier in the day, and seeing two movies with a major role filled by a character named Midnight, and featuring cats as a plot element was just spooky...
There are other elements which impressed me even more: A demented Archangel Gabriel, a very camp Balthazaar, and the theme that it's all a game to the two major players, it's well written and still manages to surprise.
My own research on angels and demons is pretty scant, but I have read some of the Apocrypha and other versions of the Bible than the approved KJ, and that meant that I wasn't surprised by the slant of the movie. After all:
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice,If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation;and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels,and in the presence of the Lamb:
And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
Revelation 14:9-11
Angels are NOT nice. According to passages in the Book Of Enoch (one of the books of the Apocrypha, which are books which most scholars agree should form part of the history of the Bible and Christianity but which the Church has placed outside the canon) angels are also dispassionate, without emotions, and behave rather like automatons:
And thence those men took me and bore me up on to the sixth heaven,and there I saw seven bands of angels, very bright and very glorious, and their faces shining more than the sunĂ¢€™s shining, glistening, and there is no difference in their faces, or behaviour, or manner of dress; and these make the orders, and learn the goings of the stars, and the alteration of the moon, or revolution of the sun, and the good government of the world.
Slavonian Enoch 19:1
So Gabriel's madness didn't surprise me, nor the contention that it's all a game to the major protagonists, with us at stake. Somehow, a God who lets tsunamis take hundreds of thousands in one event, a God who "doesn't do miracles" and doesn't reward either, fits right into such a scenario. A God whose angels can apparently challenge Him and win a spot of their own on the player's board (a la Lucifer) is also not surprising in this version of the religion.
(Things that I do find surprising in the religion are the concept of Hell - who actually needs a Hell when there's a chance at a lack of Heaven? - and why the world has competing religions such as Islam. How can it be so? Either there IS a God and He is here and involved and doing something - and there wouldn't be anyone who believes otherwise - or else there is a pantheon of gods, or else there are none.)
The dialog in the movie helped keep interest up, too. ("Cats are good. They're half in the other world already.") That, and the handful of shock tactics thrown in for good measure. Even I jumped. You don't wanna ask about Trish...
The demonic fondness for licking their intended victims I couldn't help but notice, Francis Lawrence seems to have a bee in the bonnet about setting up that particular scene in that particular fashion, demon to the left, victim to the right - and set it up he did, several times. Never mind, it didn't detract from the movie, but it did reinforce that demons are just as robotic in their behaviour as angels, and all that's different is the team they're on...
Other repetitious symbolism in the movie is (not surprisingly) the various forms of cross, the nature of Hell (things burn, Constantine comes back smoking hot, but people don't burn) and the representation of demons with the veins and missing skin showing unknowable nastiness beneath. Again, questionable, (after all if I was a demon why would I want to look like that when I could achieve so much more if I looked trustworthy and admirable?) but that's a matter of taste. For my part, Balthazaar didn't need to turn to worm paste in order to be the essence of demonicism.
Hey look - read the Revelations and the Slavonic Enoch before you take issue with my particular slant on religion - I think if you do, you'll go and see Constantine again, and will see a whole different movie. It's not a comic, and it's only based on the comic - if you go expecting to get a walk-in comic you'll be disappointed.
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Sunday, February 27, 2005 3:58 PMposted at 1:18 PM Ted
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Thursday, February 24, 2005

Equine Cannons?
At lunch today someone said their father had been in the Light Horse Artillery. It started a little chain of ideas associating, I mean, are we talking Equine Ballistic Missiles here, Pegasus Projectiles, or Neigh Grenades?
The former would have to be prepared for launch by feeding them a LOT of oats a few hours beforehand, so they got plenty of methane wind production going for the launch. Since playing with fire is dangerous, I guessed that they wouldn't use this method.
The middle option would either need huge barrels, smaller barrels and ponies, or small barrels and an abattoir nearby. There's just too much involved in this plan, and besides, being rained on by horse bits has nowhere the satisfying effect of a direct hit with a Clydesdale.
That leaves the grenade launch. If you've ever seen a rifle-launched grenade you get the idea. Blank powder charge, grenade fits over the end of barrel, bang!
And that's why I think the LHA were so cruel...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 1:06 AM Ted
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Saturday, February 19, 2005

Restaurant Foodie Post - Mediterranean Kitchen
One word - perfect...
Mediterranean Kitchen is located at 11111 West Swan Rd Henley Brook, and serves - how did you guess? - Mediterranean cuisine. I might just add, *SUPERB* Mediterranean cuisine.
We booked although midday bookings are not required, and got a seat on the wide upstairs veranda overlooking West Swan road, and settled in to read the menu. Along the way, we seem to have collected a bottle of still mineral water and one of sparkling, a bowl of olives grown out back and pickled by the olive grower whose shop just happens to be downstairs, and some fresh hot pizza dough bread with olive oil for dipping.
Flavours? I can honestly say that the chilli on the bread was even a bit much for me, so Trish coped extremely well. The olives from Merrich Farm were firm, tasty, beautifully marinated with light chilli olive oil, lemon rind, and some small rings of what I assume were wild onion, superb.
Picked the wine before the meal, as m'lady prefers white sweet wines so a Chenin was in order. Ordered: Paella for me, and chicken with potato in cream and parsley for Trish.
I was going to take a picture of the dinner but the camera would not have been able to do it justice. I could taste every grain of rice, and the camera would not have had the resolution to render that. Flavours provided by roast capsicum, mussels, prawns, strips of chicken, and squid which was cooked to perfection. I have not enjoyed a meal so much in months.
Trish's chicken was surrounded with crumbs and mustard, lending a piquancy which she seemed to enjoy tremendously - every morsel vanished from our plates, and we were both disappointed when the main courses were over.
As midday passed into the afternoon, the temperature outside rose steadily so pick a table inside if you are prone to heat, we very nealry regretted our decision but in the end sheer inertia won, and we remained at our table and picked afters. We could have adjourned to comfortable lounge seats as well, but even that seemed a huge distance to walk in our delicate overstuffed condition...
Trish picked a cheesecake dessert topped with fruit, and I, the cheese platter. Again, brilliant. The cheesecake tartlet was served with fruit syrup and again Trish gave every indication of enjoying it. The cheese platter - now there was a beautiful selection. A Stilton, a Brie, and a tangy crumbly sharp cheddar with Turkish dried apricots, dried apple slices, grapes, and the best quince jelly I have ever tasted, went together in some interesting combinations.
Two hours passed before we knew it, but I can tell you that we definitely knew we'd had a meal. On the way home we dropped into Duckberg Brewery and Beer Garden and had a coffee, and promised ourselves that next time we'd leave room for bratwurst and beer...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 5:09 PM Ted
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Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Rockness
You are a suicidal/self-mutilating rock! Sucks tobe you... ::Which rock personality disorder (from the Zoloft commercial) should you have? (Results contain pictures!)brought to you by Quizilla
My Bloginality is INTJ!!!
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Wednesday, February 16, 2005 9:15 PMposted at 7:17 PM Ted
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Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Hunting Of The Soap
A few weeks ago I bought some olive oil soap. Everyone here loved it, for the nice feel of it, the pleasant perfume, and the fact that it moisturises rather than dries.
It was supposed to be my soap but I know, it kept turning up in different places than I'd left it... I thought since it was such a hit, I'd buy a few more bars of it this weekend - and do you think I can remember where we got it? Tried all the soap / body shops in Freo Markets, tried Kakulas Sister, checked both markets at Subi - argh!
On the positive side, I did get some grey sea salt at Kakulas Sister, which has a pleasant taste and which I'll put to good use in the kitchen, and we did have a great lunch in Freo, a good coffee, and some nice snacks.
But if you've seen a translucent green olive oil soap wrapped in clear cellophane style wrap with the brand name Duru, please leave me a comment.
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Tuesday, February 15, 2005 12:25 AMposted at 4:46 PM Ted Comment made, yay!
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Saturday, February 12, 2005

Into 49
Well, that's my birthday gone for another year, this year (year of the green wooden chook) is my fourth return of my chinese sign, and it was good.
I uploaded a few pictures to my Flickr page, and discovered the downside of the free account - only 100 photos, so it deleted about ten earlier ones. Argh... On the upside I have some good shots of the lion dancers, and I managed to give my red envelope to one of them so that apparently will ensure success for the ensuing year. I might upgrade to a pro account myself, or see if I can con somenone into doing ot for my birthday... hehehe...
I may have mentioned the Prawnheads, well Friday night was the night we decided on for our annual strip the kitty dinner, and as luck would have it, it was Chinese New Year, a great night at the Saigon Restaurant in Northbridge, and my birthday.
Some dobber (not mentioning any names, my dear other half!) blabbed that it was my birthday and someone else (Be VERY afraid!) got everyone to their feet to sing happy birthday to me, which both delighted and embarassed me.
For my birthday this year I received exactly nothing, the 48th is always such a "nothing" event, the next biggie is the 50th. But next eweek is other half's 50th and we are going to the Mediterranean Kitchen for lunch on the weekend. That will be my birthday present, that I was able to spend two meals with people care a lot about, some of them are friends I've now had longer than almost all my other friends.
So Gong Xi Fa Choi to you all, hope you got more red envelopes than I did, I got -26 because I provided everyone at dinner with one for the lion dancers, and because I hate the idea of giving empty hong bao so I put a few coins in each one first, and hopefully it will bring us all a lucky year.
I noticed last year I gave the lion a 5c piece and all the last year I've been finding 5c pieces. I wasn't quite game to put a $500 bill in the envelope though... Maybe next year if this year is good for me!
Categories - ::/:: posted at 1:53 AM Ted
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Friday, February 11, 2005

Great new Flickr application
Flickrgraph
Categories - ::/:: posted at 3:58 PM Ted
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Venture?
I've been talking to a friend of mine, and we have developed a killer application for the Web. Well, he has. The application is literally worth millions - I estimated that turnover in the first year could be quarter of a million...
I helped organise other developers to assist him when he starts this happening, a business development manager, and even a place where he can start on this, provided he can afford the rent.
I've done what I can to start him, but there's one thing I can't do, and that is fund him. Also, I have no idea how to approach venture capitalists nor even where to find them - and that's where I appeal to you my readers - anyone who can point me in the right direction, please email me teddlesrussAThotmailDOTcom with ideas.
I am serious - this is just too good to let it go undeveloped. My friend can't do anything until he has money to pay rent for somewhere to work, some income to cover his costs, and enough capital to buy the hardware he needs. It's also a chance for me to be a part of this, a silent partner. Argh this is my Chinese Year after all, I need to get lucky!
Venture capital investment goldplated intellectual property gilt edged opportunity
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Friday, February 11, 2005 12:00 PMposted at 11:46 AM Ted
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Ceiling fixers here
This morning the ceiling fixers are finally here - luckily the plasterboard they need is also already here, because I gather that organisation isn't their strong point, they were supposed to have been here two days ago, about half a day before the sheets were delivered...
And I get an uneasy feeling when I watch them, that any second they'll pick up a guitar and a banjo and start palying that music... They certainly do act like it. "Hyuk, hyuk, nyuk" seems to be the majority of the different expressions of laughter they can manage between them, not that that happens too often.
Comes to it, they don't talk much, and every sentence fragment they express seems to be a question or at least ends up trailing off into incoherent mumbles.
Went out to see how work was going and was surprised to see how much ceiling sheeting was already up. Commented to one of them "hey that's pretty fast! great job!" and got this "unh!" sound back. I gather that was meant to express something like "yes, we do a good job, and we work extremely fast. Thank you for your positive comments!" but it somehow fell a little bit short of the mark.
But they *are* powering through the ceilings of our place and next door though so I won't complain.
Categories - ::/:: posted at 9:56 AM Ted
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Thursday, February 10, 2005

Things I hate
This is becoming a regular feature, I should turn it into a topic... Because there's a lot of things to hate, really there are.
I still think that any woman who buys a skirt with high thigh splits - and then spends all her day holding the splits shut and glaring daggers at everyone - are total fuckwits. Spend the little bit extra, get them to sew the seam all the way, you'll be much happier.
But for today, fuckwit doctors are what I hate. They have their equivalent of the thigh split, the Doctor's Hearing, and they spend as much time squinching that shut as the woman in the last paragraph. Then they have to squinch shut their intelligence just as much, otherwise they'd notice how much they're not listening... I think the specialist doctors among them have a word for that, cognitive dissonance, but prefer to use it on patients rather than colleagues so you'll never hear that used, okay?
Saw my GP, I have myalgia in leg back and stomach muscles, acid levels reaching for the end of the pH scale, nausea, diarrhoea, fever, and shortness of breath. And I'm not kidding, that's precisely what I have. I also have tiredness and lethargy, feel crappy about myself, and wonder if this is how multiple infections drag ya to the ground in your dark night...
Aha says my GP you are depressed. See? I concur that I've also been irritable and swearing a lot more than I normally do, and to doc, that clinches it. What antidepressant have you been on? Ummm - one that ended me in hospital, and one named Cipramil that did flatten my moods but also flattened every damn brainwave, I would sit in front of the keyboard for ages to try and set up an invoice, up to half a day.
Ooh well we don't want that one then, and so he prescribes me Lexapro. I go very Cipramil on these, takes me all Thursday to do two or three pieces of paperwork, and I just have no way I can get my thughts organised enough for realtime phonecalls... Since this is what medical people call a development (Hmmm that's quite a development you have there) I go to see the doctor on Monday, after spending Friday cowering in confusion and a great deal of apathy.
Can't see my GP, see another one. Would you say you feel less belligerent after the Lexapro, or more? Do you find yourself asking what you're achieving day to day? Hmm okay they seem to be helping. What was that about being unable to work? So they slow you down too much mentally eh? He then writes me out a prescriotion - for more Lexapro. Go figure.
He gave me a week to get over the other troubles, but no medication for it. Consequently, my butt must be red raw in spots, and my throat appears to have an acid burn. Never mind. Main thing is, I followed his instructions. No more of those dried dates I've been snacking on for years, I'm probably suddenly allergic to them. No more fruit in fact, or anything else like that cos the fibre, you see...
After a week I'm over the fever part, but the gut is still in a state of siege and revolt. Other doctor almost - almost - but not quite - said clostridium difficile but then caught himself and said overgrowth. Now I may just be a patient and thus can be regarded as dumber than dirt - but there's something I know about overgrowth. You take samples and identify what bacterium has overrun the digestive tract, then you find the agent to kill it, and then put the right flora back.
Finally got to see my GP. He confesses up, that Lexapro is the L-particle of Cipramil (So why give me something that does exactly what a previous drug that did nothing good did?) and makes commiserating noises about my DT. No cure though, no anti-nausea drug or anti diarrhoea drug. He does prescribe me another antidepressant though, this one comes with a warning "You may feel a bit hyped up and irritable for a few days..."
Remembering the last chemical, I decide not to use the prescription on the way out of the medical centre.
Oh yeah and the dates and the fruit and the fibre and yoghurt - yes they are definitely back in your diet, how can you suddenly become allergic to all these foods at once which made me ask why I had to interpret a doctor's recommendations and rearrange them to what I *thought* he must have meant? Surely it's better for doctors not to fuck up and give diametrically opposed treatments for the same symptoms?
He did order a load (five vials' worth) of blood tests to be made, which I would really like to know the results of, and which of them will fix my digestive problems, which one will provide the soothing to my frazzled asshole, and which one will stop me feeling like throwing up after every small meal or snack I eat...
Meanwhile I'm going to buy some Dramamine or something. Maybe I'll finance that with the money I can get from illegally selling a psychoactive drug prescription on the street, to some hyperactive grandmother with ADHD and EBV...
Have you guess what things I hate this week children? Vey good! Now off with you, I need to rest my vowels and bowels...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 1:09 AM Ted
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Friday, February 04, 2005

Fact Of The Millenium
Apparently, the ancient Romans were in the habit of forming ground meat into patties much like the kofta of today, but they shaped them round and flat, and served them between two pieces of bread.
Ancient Romans invented the hamburger!
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Friday, February 04, 2005 3:06 PMposted at 3:05 PM Ted
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Thursday, February 03, 2005

Lights off, Lights on...
John Nikolich (0419 961 766) of Creative Express Electrical is here. They just disconnected the area around the renovations, and have chased conduits and wiring into the brickwork and are more than halfway through with the job of putting in five outlets and two sets of lights. It's quite noisy, and I haven't really gotten any rest today.
That, and it's the hottest day for a while and the cooling was turned off as well, which has left the indoor temperature at almost 30 degrees C in here. At least there won't need to be another power interruption now until the walls and ceilings are finished.
Andrew the builder has done a sterling job so far of organising the tradespeople, and I'm just hoping our coffers are going to be deep enough - we're getting a quality job at some impressive economy rates here. John is a good electrician - I know the trade and I am impressed with their work, everything fixed in place and neat as a pin, wiring in straight runs. Wish the rest of the house wiring and plumbing would be so well executed...
Anyhow - I am back to try and get some more bedrest as I still feel pretty woozy.
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Thursday, February 03, 2005 4:57 PMposted at 3:43 PM Ted
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Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Building In Progress - Caution.
Andrew King Building Services (find Andrew on bangitup.com the Australian Building Network) is doing an excellent job on our extension/reno. Just walked around with Andrew and located power outlets and lights, and I am stoked because it means we will have a fourth bedroom soon.
I've just uploaded some photos onto Flickr of the work at this stage, thanks to a sneaky old trick with batteries.
See, the camera batteries were flat yesterday, and as my car's not really running well and neither am I, I supposed I'd have to miss taking these photos. But an old trick saved the day.
Batteries work better if they're a little bit warm. I laid the batteries in the sun, and got off about another 12 shots on the old faithful DC3200 camera. I only remembered this trick because I used it as a kid to get walkie-talkies to work for a few extra minutes, and whattya know, it still works!
Mind you, five minutes taking pictures and I'm almost bedridden again, but I got my pictures so I'm happy enough. I can sleep the rest of the afternoon.
Categories - ::/:: posted at 2:13 PM Ted
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Things I hate, Part 10,232,954...
I hate being home sick. I hate the bastard that started the recent fires and caused my system to go all sorts of haywire. I also hate the appetite digital cameras have for batteries.
I'm home sick because of several things catching up with me all at once. I think the smoke was just a catalyst, but it doesn't matter now - here I am feeling nauseous and short of breath and all aches and pains, out there is some bastard who had themselves a lovely time lighting fires and killing thousands of native animals and plants.
We're having some extension done to this place. The builder we found is excellent, very conscientious and neat, and I would have no hesitation in recommending Andrew King Building Services to anyone who wants extensions done. So far I have had nothing but admiration for them.
We're in a duplex block, sharing a carport common wall. Our neighbour wanted to extend her place as well, so Andrew is doing both places together. We get a fourth bedroom and ensuite, she gets a HUGE loungeroom. Today, the wall between old and new got knocked down at next door's, which was a noisy procedure, so I had no chance of sleeping.
SO I grabbed the camera to document, and bingo - batteries flat. As I am feeling too crook to go down the street, that's it for a few days, and I'll miss most of the stages. Also, as my heap of a car is now only running on two cylinders, even if I was feeling better I couldn't have gone anyway.
Did I mention I hate my car too?
Categories - ::/:: posted at 9:54 AM Ted
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Tuesday, February 01, 2005

The New Epidemics
Keep ypur eyes and ears peeled folks. Partly because I ain't a well bikkie myself, and partly because I tend to notice these things, here's a few medical observations:
We are in the grip of an epidemic. It's got the potential to become the Plague of the 21st. It's not one single disease, rather it's a whole raft of conditions which are thriving in the lovely new conditions we've been providing for them.
Firstly, look for "respiratory ailment" in that list. Aside from smoking related respiratory ailments, there is a rise in asthma and other such complaints, among both the old and the young. Wasn't such a big deal 100 years ago, but nowadays it's a routine ailment that doctors treat.
Watch also for imbalance bugs like (Hi Kitta!) Clostridium Difficile, which is a gut bacteria overgrowth that we give the right conditions to survive, by wiping out good intestinal flora with antibiotics. I've been having huge digestive problems since I got a shot of antibiotic treatment almost two months ago, and today, the doctor *almost* said it but just forgot the Latin name for it...
Type 2 diabetes is rampant. Go on, check figures, I don't think I have to because I see the number of people around me who are suddenly diabetics, and when I was a kid NONE of my parents friends ever had this problem.
Another thing. Ask your friendly GP how many more liver problems they are treating. Chemicals in what we eat, in the water, and sometimes even in the air after the pest control people have come and gone, are causing a lot of problems. Not outright failures or illnesses, but odd imbalances which are down to liver function but not spefcific.
And sun related skin cancers, there's another rising star of the new leisure life...
No I haven't done a formal study of this, but I do talk with my doctor and others, speak with nurses, and keep a lookout for such trends. I want to know, and I also want to know what causes it, so I tend to look around and take notes.
For example, a few years ago I started feeling tired and irritable and quite nauseous. I bought a decent waterfilter with an AP117 cartridge, and within two weeks of drinking and cooking with the clean water, felt better again. I now pour two glasses of water side by side if I want to impress my friends. One is brownish and smells like a swimming pool, the other is clear and almost tasteless.
So start looking around you, and don't totally rely on statistics, instead, look around at people you know. In my group of neighbours there are three people with emphysema, a heart condition, three with type 2 diabetes, two with stomach hyperacidity and reflux, and probably a few more things I haven't picked up on yet. That's among 10 people in their late 40's. In my youth, the ten people in their forties would have been mechanics, farmahnds, clerks, and bakers - and maybe one would have been taking Mylanta for indigestion regularly..
Mind you, back then, three of that ten would have been down with colds and flus, one had malaria, another gout, and so on. We bring along the bugs that suit our lifestyle at any time, and it's worth keeping an eye on trends.
Categories - ::/:: posted at 12:03 AM Ted
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