Saturday, 30 June 2007
While you're here, you might as well take a look around some of the other posts. They're full of blog-gy goodness and vitamins! Rly, kthx!
I can has RAZR?
I can has Nokia?
Do Not Want!
Do Not Want!
Do Not Want iPhone!
(a poem entitled "iPhone! I bar<3 U" by teddlesruss dat who!)
Wednesday, 27 June 2007
In any moment of decision, the best thing you can
do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong
thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.
--- Theodore Roosevelt
Tuesday, 26 June 2007
We look like this to people overseas. This is the face of Australia that they see. And Bonsai Johnny Bush makes it happen...
"Australian police, backed up by soldiers, have begun deploying in Aboriginal areas of the Northern Territory to enforce a controversial government move to combat child abuse."
This sounds like a very oppressive move, I actually think about other countries where military might has been used to enforce "family policy" and it's making me very very nervous. What will the Shrunken Failure consider to move on next? Already "Family Services" are denying the right of adoption to people they consider "too fat" - so biological parents watch out, if you put on too much weight they'll be sending in the army to take your kids from you!
Is this really the kindof country you want to be living in? Make your votes count at the next election - keep Howard and other nanny-state promoters out, firmly and resoundingly.
This is not brought to you by any political party, just a concerned citizen watching his government become less and less like a democracy every day...
Monday, 25 June 2007
Or at twitter.com "teddlesruss" will also work.
I guess it's called "Helium" because it's kind of like hot air but then again not. Or maybe it's kind of like hot air but in squeaky chipmunks voices. Whatever, I'm enjoying it, and I think most of my readership would enjoy it too. Getting ANY kind of incentive to write has to be good!
Sunday, 24 June 2007
Tourist: You're selling a triberry muffin. Well, what's a triberry? I've never heard of that before.
Barista: It has blueberry, strawberry, and raspberry in it. They call it triberry because it has three kinds of berries in it.
Tourist: So there aren't any triberries in it?
Tourist: Then why do you call it a triberry muffin? That's false advertising.
Barista: As I explained, it's called that because it has three berries in it.
Tourist: But none of those berries are triberries?
Barista: No. There is no such thing as a triberry.
Tourist: I don't understand.
Barista: Look, do you want the muffin or not?
Tourist: I don't think so. I don't want to eat anything unless I know what it is first.
Barista: So what can I get you?
Tourist: Do you have a donut?
Tourist: Never mind. [leaves]
Thursday, 21 June 2007
Wish I had more in my Paypal I'd have bought a second set for handing out. Between these and the tee-shirt at ThinkGeek I believe lolcats has authoritay now. And as soon as I get some more money into PP again one of these suckahs is also going to be mine...
Wednesday, 20 June 2007
Monday, 18 June 2007
If it had been 2 years later I'd have said Harkness was one of the crew of the Philadelphia experiment, but according to the movie Harkness vanished in '41 and the Eldridge is supposed to have done the same in '43.
Now here's my bonus thought for the day. What if there really was a Philadelphia experiment, and the results were as all the stories claim, i.e. seamen fused partway through decks. Now imagine that somewhere there's a storage facility - where those seamen are still unable to die either... Erk, nope I hope Harkness' secret is something else...
Still, a not too flogged idea and the first ep presented well. I liked Eve Myles in her lead role as Gwen Cooper, she has a certain style and it suits the role. I'm kind of looking forward to ep 2. This has the potential to go places, I'll gie it a few more episodes at least.
Firstly, there is a road between (for example) here and Melbourne. But it's not like some monopoly is charging you 25c/kilometre to travel along it, to start with. Secondly, there IS an alternative to the road. It's called a railway line. The important thing here isn't the bitumen and the tracks, it's that I now have a choice of travelling by bus or train. And oh yeah - and look up there - there, flying high above either, there's an airline route too...
So bullshit Mr Booth, bullshit. Stick your monopolising sermons where the sun don't shine please.
Also - addressing your concerns that the wireless service would be slow and second rate: My ADSL, let me show it to you... I live in a capital city and my ADSL is worse than dial-up, and for four years Telstra has continued to let it be a service that's worse than second rate, it's been a downright disgrace.
So I live in an area teeming with Telstra presence and technicians. For four years I've tried to get what many consider a basic prerequisite for modern living, repaired and brought to a useable state. The reason nothing is being done, when it all comes down to it, is because your company, Mr Booth, has a monopoly in the suburbs - so why should they bother? What guarantee do rural folks have that unless there's some competition to kick your asses, they won't get left in the lurch similarly?
So bring on ANY alternative to Telstra, and bring it on fast! The sooner Telstra gets their asses whipped the sooner we will see a bit of choice and performance!
Ah but anyhow - my weekend, let me shows it to you.
Saturday had a pleasant enough day but all in town so no really beautiful moments, other than the weather being absolutely gorgeous, and finding creaming soda at the local Indian market, (the one in Market City, in case creaming soda is your thing) and getting a good sucuklu pide into me. (== Soo Joo Clue, is Turkish salami and cheese in a Turkish bread pide.)
Sunday got better. Off for a drive in the country, on the way out picked up Wok In A Box noodles and then ate them pretty much at Australind, where we drove to via the scenic route around the lake/inlet there. As we've had some winter rains now, the scenery was lush and green and looking better than it has in years, cows and calves enjoying a feast of plenty and looking shaggy and woolly.
We snuck back across the highway to Collie, stopped to check out Wellington Dam and watch the freeclimbers scale the quarry walls for a while, and then turned and came home via Harvey. And look, it must be the number of people I know that are having babies in the next few months, many of them younger and (I thought) smarter than that and now changing their lives irrevocably, forever, that I guess got me thinking.
Harvey helped too, because every time I hear the name I think of Harvey Danger's song "Flagpole Sitter" and today the verse that I couldn't get out of my head was:
Been around the world and found
That only stupid people are breeding
The cretins cloning and feeding
And I don't even own a tv
And you know, I wonder now. In studies done on a rat population, some twenty years ago now, the scientists running it made a few discoveries that need to be connected to human life:
The experiment was simple - give the rats ideal conditions and a fixed size environment for breeding and reproducing, allow the population to continue unchecked by predators, and see where it stabilised at.
What actually happened was this:
Rat mothers had huge litters, and nurtured them and grew them up to healthy little rats, which continued for a few generations. Food and water were never allowed to become scarce, and the rats in fact had a rat utopia. The population continued to grow, and then levelled out.
And what was doing the levelling was what had the scientists wearing out pencil after pencil. Rat mums were having indiscriminate sex with rat dads, dropping litters, and going out to get pregnant again, often leaving litters to die or (if lucky) cared for by surrogate rats (sort of like the generations cared for by grandparents)
Rat lives were cheap, and rats would attack and kill others for no other reason than stimulation, it seemed. The generally orderly rat society fell apart as more and more rats seemed to realise that rat life was cheap. Nests got dirty and stayed dirtied as rats stopped caring for their young, for themselves, and then for the lives of the other rats.
And all the pieces, the thrill killings and thrill bashings, the random one night stands, the lack of caring, even seemingly unrelated things like the fall of the Roman empire - all fell into place...
Our populations have been increasing, but nowhere so much as in our cities. The human rats have been forced into closer and closer proximity, and we have abandoned babies, bashed babies, bashed people, murdered people,and thrill killings. When grasshoppers breed to the point where they are touching one another's legs more than a certain number of times in a certain period, their bodies change and they become a locust swarm. Seems like we and the rats have a different overpopulation switch wired into us...
For the Roman Empire, the founding and growth of large population centres signalled the beginning of the end, the effects of it were in my view one of the causes for the fall. For us, we have reached the age of large cities and while society groaned and wobbled a lot, it seems to have in general held for the medium cities. Larger cities are pretty much rat jungles, but medium cities and smaller seem to hold on okay. It's not "stupid people" that are breeding, just people whose entire machinery has been thrown out of whack by perceived overpopulation.
And now we have the Internet, shrinking us all into a single virtual city, and there are even more people out there feeling that pressure. So think about that before you join another friend network, add Facebook friend, or request to join someone on Myspace or follow someone on Twitter. Are you willing to be the straw that broaches critical mass and lets loose the virtual rat of overcrowding?
Thursday, 14 June 2007
Bangitup.com.au has been around for years -tell it where you are, tell it what you want done to "bang up" a bit of reno or whatever, and it finds you tradesmen in your area, and sends them a message to call you with a quote. We found it easy and very quick.
Refurber, on the other hand, gives you a resource you can use to get the job done yourself. Get the experiences people have had, use their mistakes to help you prevent your own.
My advice? Even if we'd had refurber back when we extended, we'd still have used bangitup and gotten a builder - turned out waaaayyyyy easier in the long run, and probably saved heaps on all the mistakes we'd have made. But when we reno'ed the main bathroom, now that would have been a job for leaningon other people's experience... I may post our reno there so that other people have an easier job of it. Yeah! That's what these sites are all about, after all!
Tuesday, 12 June 2007
Pity actually - should have downloaded my contacts off it first I guess... Nevahmind! Still on the memory of the mobile anyway, just that it was having troubles letting me key anything in or scroll through lists and desperatelyt needed replacing.
So Friday, being the eternal AntiGeek that I seem to be becoming, I went to Dick Smith's in Midland, poked around their mobile phone cabinet, and asked the hard questions:
"Does this one have an FM radio? And this one, can I just buy it and keep my current Optus plan? Does the camera work on this one?"
I finally bought a cheap red phone. Umm with beige front and back plates, yeah, why do you ask? Model number? Sorry, didn't know that until I decided I should read the manual. Nokia 5070, very basic. Look, it's red and it only cost me $127 outright cos I already have the prepaid plan, what more could I ask for?
And so I topped up the credit (Optus Turbocharge Plus, very schmick, pay $40 and get $240 worth of credits) and set up Optus Zoo. Then I phoned Optus to ask why I couldn't get my rigth model number to be accepted by the online application. (Hey - I was PROUD of that mothertrucken model number, I'd only just realised that knowing it made me a mobilephone GEEKUEBERLORD! )
And then we discussed the SIM card already included with the phone, and the fact that I could get $10 of free credit even though I wasn't using the new SIM. So I asked for that to be done, went back to my credit check, $220 no worries! (I'd already spent $30 setting up and using various web based stufflike mobile GMail, some searches, and read a few blog posts just because I could so I'd used a bit of credit... )
Today, had a few calls to make and as a sort of rough "fuel consumption" gauge, checked my credit again. Now I have to say that my parents, superstitious Europeans that they were, always told me that itchy palms meant money. Left comes in, right goes out. My left palm itched like crazy... "Your prepaid balance is $440.86 cents" my recorded voice response system told me.
Yeap - the second recharge, despite being only $10, must have triggered off some weirdness, and I now have four to seven weeks (not sure exactly yet) to spend the credit or lose it. Hmm. Made over $40 of calls today anyway, just in case it all vanishes tomorrow again. So I've gotten out what I put in, at least.
But this is good, I don't often get a lucky windfall like this. Viva Optus! Oh Yes!
Watching my last.fm player going "buffering 15%..." then playing 20 seconds' worth of music then "buffering 12%..." and so forth.
Come on Telstra it's the 21st .....ing century! And this is a capital city! For crying out loud!
But now she's decided she's not going to be dumb any more. Hmm that sounds worthwhile, maybe jail really can change a person. And then - just when she was doing so well at being clever - she calls a journalist to tell her that she's not going to do dumb things any more and aw gee, that was a really short lived attempt at a new clever Paris Hilton...
Give her marks for trying, minus for execution. Oh well...
Monday, 11 June 2007
Last few weeks the little thing that goes "click!" in the base of my spine went "click!" and stayed "click!ed..." Life hasn't been the same since.
Went to chiro who bent and prodded and tested and then sent me for xrays. Xray man took a second set cos he didn't quite believe what he found in the first set but wouldn't say much. And chiro said something along the lines of "we really got to have a talk but seeing this has been there for a while it can wait for the appointment." Not reassuring kids!
Meanwhile VMoto still has my scooter and even after I rang them today they haven't gotten back to me to tell me what the state of play is with ScrappyV so I'm either riding the buses and trains (for some reason intensely painful on my back) or the loaner scooter. (Which also hurts like hell.) The Milan at least is the right ride geometry for me, I can usually ride that to work and back and not hurt too much.
So I'm looking forward to rather a lot of answers in the next two days. And - if I play my cards right I'll be at a PRAWNHEADS lunch too! So there's a few upsides to this...
Wednesday, 6 June 2007
Now hear this.
As you probably know, I bought a second hand VMoto scooter in November, only had 5000 kilometres on it, lovely little bike. I took it back to where I'd bought it for a few niggling little minor faults and they earned a lot of kudos when they fixed this stuff without a murmur.
I waxed lyrical about the little bike-looking-thing, and was very happy with it until. Almost a month ago. On the way home. It stopped. I took it back to the place I'd bought it and they said that this was larger spare parts, would I like to go direct to the world headquarters for VMoto? This also is good for them - they fixed the two problems I had without a quibble, and instead of being the middleman in the spare parts chain, they put me in touch with the company directly.
VMoto Central took a look at the bike and two working days later finally rang me back: Two spare parts required, one of them major, an hour's labour, $300 thank you. I had to wait until payday to pick it up but I was so happy to have it back, rode off on cloud nine to work that day, until. On the way to work, I noticed that it was a little bit sluggish. Not coming anywhere near the top speed any more. Surging and dieing at medium speeds. And - by far the worst - stalling each time I twisted the throttle open too far too fast... Can't count how many times I nealry got cleaned up by a car behind me that saw my elbow go down and stepped on the gas only to find me stalled.
I got to work, got home that afternoon in peak traffic, and the following morning I took the bike back, along with a very detailed explanation of what was wrong. Stuff they SHOULD have noticed after they replaced those parts. Oh, didn't I mention that I got it back with an extra 30km on the clock? As it was dead as a paperweight when I dropped it off to them, those extra klicks had to have been put on afterwards. You'd think they'd have noticed this, but obviously they rode it using the throttle as an on/off switch...
It's now a week and a half later and I haven't heard a word from them. Yes they loaned me a scooter this time to get me mobile, but it's bigger heavier and slower than the Milan is, and very tiring to ride when you have to do almost 60km a day commuting.
I'm giving them four weeks from when I first dropped the bike in with them, then I'll phone and ask for my scooter back. Once. If they ask me to pay for their stuff-ups, if there's one excuse, or if the thing is still as dangerous when I get it back, I'll be up them with legal backing and a TV crew so fast it will seem like magic to them...
Also, I'll be selling an almost completely rebuilt VMoto Milan jx50 and buying a Honda, or a Yammy, or just about anything but a VMoto if any of the above happens. And I will make it my life's work to collect mine and others' horror stories and post them to blogs and automotive sites and news sites and just anywhere I can, see how long before public opinion pulls back their sales figures to under half...
Can you see how a company can make an enemy of a fan? If you have a business don't let this be you!
Monday, 4 June 2007
Don't know if I'm the big block Hemi type but I'd love to drive one anyway, having had a Model T cutdown with a 457 Chev mill in it I do kinda like the look of a street rod.
Sunday, 3 June 2007
Long weekend! Love the sound of that, don't we all? Being Sunday, we went for a Sunday drive. Here's how the pros do it:
Dredged through the fridge. Hmm a few BBQ sausages, some hamburger patties, hummus, liver pate, tomatoes. Lebanese bread, condiments, halwa, biscuits. More than enough for a BBQ picnic. take plenty of water, a teapot, teabags coffee and sugar, too.
Once we loaded up the car and got away a bit we decided on a destination. Somewhere South, and within a quarter of a tank round trip range. "Dewllingup!"
As we got closer we made the decision whether to go to the first or second Dam/BBQ site. First one, we decided, because we'd already been to the farther one.
It's out on Scarp Rd, and last time we'd travelled Scarp Rd we had almost had our eye teeth shaken out it was so rough. But a few hundred metres in there was a newish looking dirt road, and we decided to see where that went instead. After all, the day was ours, we had everything to stop and make a meal wherever we were.
After a few kilometres it started to look like the track went nowhere in particular. Despite being newly cut and graded, it doubled back and forth and really, we'd both lost interest in the scenery when it seemed we'd seen each scene from at least three different angles.
One more T-junction, one more chance to turn around without sinking the car in soft shoulder. "On," we decided, "just ONE more junction." The reason I'm stretching this out is to emphasize the string of coincidences that led to this point.
Because not 250 metres farther, we came across a broken down car. The chap in the car had been stuck there for two days with his dog and his camping gear. So luckily he was prepared for the stay, but imagine the string of favours he must have had to ask from Chance, for us to make that very chain of decisions.
Anyhow - long story short, the chap's name was Ray and his pooch was named Billie (and way to fond of playing slimeball with strangers) and we gave them both a lift to Dwellingup Hotel where Ray was going to find a new starter motor and head back to fix the beast.
On getting to know Ray on the drive to town, I sort of got the impression that he was moto-itinerant, which is a highfalutin' way of saying I think he might have been living out of his car for quite a while. All I know is that if I'd had my caravan already I think I would have given it to him to live in. Not sure why, but I felt he was basically a good person and had gotten a bad break. And was trying not to let us know.
I can understand a man having pride but I can't forgive myself for my thickness - I should have worked that out at the time not now sitting at home and almost 60 kilometres away from being able to help. All I can say in my defense is that my back is distractingly sore and painful, and I have been starting a flu. Had I been more switched on I might have been able to help the guy find work or at least a place to stay.
In any case, at least he's in a friendly town and that counts for something. Trish and I headed to the farthest BBQ araea again and had a leisurely late lunch and then an even more leisurely drive home, and if it wasn't for having suddenly worked it out I would be in the land of grampa naps right now.
If anyone's in Dwellingup tonight reading this look for a feral looking and smelling guy with a medium sized black and white doggie, and make sure they're okay, okay?
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