Intermittant signals from just above the event horizon

Man, buying a house/moving is so exhausting. I’m so stressed out that I barely have energy to crawl home at night and fall into bed. And then I’m not sleeping well either, which only makes matters worse. I find myself being short tempered and snappish at work too, which isn’t good for my co-workers or clients alike. I’ll be so damn glad when it’s all over.

I have managed to grab a few minutes for myself here and there though. I made a stir fry for dinner on Saturday night – first time I’ve cooked (as opposed to thrown stuff from the freezer into the oven/microwave) in months. It was pretty good too, even if I did risk salmonella poisoning or something by defrosting the beef in the microwave for too long (strips of meat that are cooked at one end and raw at the other are probably bacteria themeparks). I’ve been constructing some scenery for my Lord of the Rings miniatures as well – having secured a supply of foamboard in the form of supermarket meat trays (you can’t get the stuff elsewhere for love nor money – not that I’ve tried love mind you). I started small with some stone fences, then decided I might as well go for broke and build a ruined N

The Perverse Nature of Reality

Amazing isn’t it? The day I tell people to watch John Safran’s Music Jamboree is the day SBS plays the last episode.

Or at least I presume it was the last episode – it finished with a sort of retrospective of the series rather than the usual “get a musical group in to perform their hit song on some obsure ethnic instrument” segment, which seems like the kind of thing you’d put in a final episode to me.

Oh well, I guess we’ll just have to wait for repeats of John Safran vs God instead (you’ve got to love the epsiode where he goes door knocking in Salt Lake City trying to convert people to aetheism with a copy of On the Origin of Species πŸ™‚

PS: Happy birthday Stephanie! I always remember your birthday about a week before Australia Day, then forget it until the day before Australia Day, by which point it’s probably passed. Good going me hey? πŸ™‚

Observations on Carniv

  1. Clea DuVall looks like Alisen Down crossed with Maura Tierny but with freckles
  2. Clancy Brown looks like William L. Petersen crossed with Brendan Fraser
  3. Come the next season if Sophie and Jonesy are dead, I’m going to be really annoyed.

PS: The smoke finally seems to have cleared. Well, pretty much anyway. The city no longer stinks of burning which can only be a good thing.

PPS: SBS are replaying John Safran’s Music Jamboree on Monday nights. Watch it people!

The Smoke Rolls On…

And so into our third day running of choking smokey haze. It’s worse today than it was on Wednesday, even though the fire is supposed to be under control. I’ve decided that ‘under control’ is a fire service euphemism for ‘not likely to burn anything important’. If I never smell smoke again in my entire life I shall die a happy man.

Apparently it’s the worst fire the state has seen in 45 years, and has burnt out over 25,000 hectares. Under my proposed sentencing scheme (outlined yesterday) this would mean the arsonist would spend at least 12,500 years in jail. I maintain that this is a perfectly reasonable and appropriate penalty.

I’ve just had a quick look around for webcams to show just how bad conditions are, but every one I can find seems to be stalled at about 5:00am. I suspect that this is a conspiracy by the Tourist Bureau to prevent foreigners from cancelling bookings when they see nothing but a wall of hazy brown.

I’ve got a dentist’s appointment today. How about that then?

If it’s Brown, Breath it Down

For the second day running the city is choking under an all pervading cloud of smoke from a massive fire in the hills. Visibility is down to about a two kilometres (and hazy), people with heart and lung conditions are being advised to stay indoors, and everywhere you go reeks of burning. The fire is ‘under control’ now, so hopefully it won’t be as bad today as it was yesterday when we couldn’t even see the city from our office window*The city consisting of skyscrapers about 1.5km away – when you can’t see something like that you know conditions are bad and sunlight was reduced to baleful dull orange. I’ve never suffered from asthma in my life , but yesterday I had trouble getting enough air – just walking from the bus-stop to the office left me feeling dizzy and out of breath.

The government’s put up a $100,000 reward for information leading to the capture of the arsonist responsible for starting the blaze – not nearly enough if you ask me.

I’m not sure what kind of penalties the guy (and let’s face it, it’s almost certainly a guy) will get if he’s caught, but I’ve been thinking about it and reckon they should institute a standard scale of penalties for arsonists based on the damage done. One year’s imprisonment for every $1000 worth of damage, with bushland being valued at a standard rate of $500 per hectare. So if a deliberately lit fire burns out 50 hectares of bush, destroys two cattle sheds worth $8000 each and damages someone’s house to a value of $50,000, they’ll be looking at 91 years in jail without parole – which seems fair enough to me.

In this climate fire is not something to play around with.

A new year, a new yawn

This is just a quick update to explain that I am actually still alive. It’s just that the process of buying a flat (I mentioned I have to find somewhere new to live a while ago didn’t I?) is really taking it out of me. I’m spending most of my time dealing with real estate agents and banks and stuff, and the rest curled up in the corner with a blanket over my head hyperventilating. Well OK, it’s not quite that bad, but it’s still really stressing me out, and things like weblog entries (and emailing people I’m ashamed to say) have been falling through the cracks πŸ™

But I’ve found a place now and convinced the owner to sell it to me for $103,000, which is pretty good for a two bedroom apartment. I’ll probably be moving towards the end of the month – great, more stress to look forwards to.

In the meantime what else has been up? Well the tsunamis of course. I’m not going to say anything about those because it’s all just too horrible to think about. Well I won’t say anything about those except that after having their friends, family, houses and entire towns washed away the last thing the survivors need is bloody Ray Martin sticking a microphone in their faces. Channel 9 seem to be treating the entire disaster as a ratings bonanza, they’re continually crowing about all their journalists in the disaster zones and putting on specials like ‘Tsunami – One Week Later’. Bastards.

Um, let’s see, Christmas was good, even if I only got one thing off my list ;-). I’ve been working on a major update of the Zurvár section of my website – I sent a preview version to Helen but haven’t heard anything, so it’s probably way over the top :D. Carnivàle is every bit as good as I thought it would be when I first saw the posters for it in the London Underground, although the ABC is playing two episodes at a time strung together, which makes the narrative seem a bit disjointed at times. Joan of Arcadia seems harmless enough in a slightly sacharine way. I wouldn’t rush home to see it, but if there’s nothing else on (and at the moment there isn’t) it’s resonable enough for an hour. The viewing experience can be greatly enhanced by mentally replacing Joan’s dad with Fat Tony*You know, from The Simpsons? If that seems like a strange thing to suggest I should point out that the actor who plays Joan’s dad is the guy who voices Fat Tony, all clear now?. And they’ve finally put Gilmore Girls back on which (embarrasing as it is) is making my life a lot more bearable. Hmmm, maybe I should forget that $103,000 apartment and move to Stars Hollow instead πŸ˜‰

So, we’ll see what happens next then hey?

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