Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year

Hope 2011 brings joy and satisfaction. And for those who already know that it'll bring some tough times, I wish you all love and blessings.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Invisible Things

So I now have a copy of Invisible Things by Jenny Davidson, and I am very much looking forward to catching up on Sophie's adventures in the northern lands.

However, the time of year and visitorage being what it is, I think that drinking, chatting and socialising are predicted, rather than reading.

I am sure all that socialising will make me a bigger amygdala, but I am itching to get into the book nonetheless.

Monday, December 27, 2010

In which I decide to stop living up to expectations

Especially the imaginary ones.

I am also trying to stop demanding that other people live up to my expectations, except those ones where it actually really matters to me. For example, I'm unlikely to compromise on my expectation that people not behave like selfish shitheads if their expectation is that they would like some company from me. I can manage that by just - going - away - because I can manage my own expectation of myself. I hope that this will make life a bit easier for those around me, as well as for me.

We had a really nice Christmas, that was entirely stress-free, however, because of point one up there about managing my own expectations of myself. Which is no doubt a Good Thing. It's nice to anticipate a resentment free new year.*

I am marrying this idea of self-expectations with Blue Milk's nice idea about how we easily get stuck in traditional grooves, how we can easily take the road in front of us that has been taken by so many people before, without having to think about it. And I think about it, I do, but the marketing is so strong, it's hard to change the expectations and hard not to look for the rewards. People display much more liking for you if you conform just at least a little bit, and it's tempting and habit-forming because we all like to be liked and approved of.

So taking a feminist approach to Christmas this year (in which I decided not to be responsible for organising everything and making all the choices) worked very well for the immediate family (who are generally with the program) but did attract some fairly disapproving commentary from people at work who wanted to know why I wasn't putting on the whole disaster, and they wondered who would do all the work and they didn't really understand when I said the aim was to enjoy Christmas as a family, without all that stressful stuff that made me angry and then spoiled the day for everyone else as well. And we still had plenty of treats and nice things and everyone got to do some of the work and no one felt resentful at all. And because I wasn't feeling responsible for everyone else's happiness, we all just did things that made us happy and that was fine.

But here I am, still feeling like I have to explain myself, because some people clearly thought I was doing the Wrong Thing, and I hate not living up to expectations and I hate it when people disapprove of me. Back to the start again.

In other breaking news, I can tell you that Eton Mess is a most delicous and easy dessert to make with leftover individual pavlova shells. If you also happen to have leftover cream and leftover delicous berries. It does look kind of disgusting, though.

*Astute readers might imagine that the new year may not be entirely resentment free. Perhaps it will be more resentment lite.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Oh Boxing Day, Oh Boxing Day

Christmas Day was very nice, because it was like your usual Boxing Day, but without the cricket. We ate tasty cold food, sat around in the backyard, played with our new toys and stayed home all day.

Athough it did feel Quite Strange not festively visiting and handing out pressies to all and sometimes sundry. And the whole no-cooking thing meant there was lots of time to fill in (with no cricket on the telly). So it was lucky that people had books to read and sticky mitts to play with in the backyard and a new explorer sock-based form of french cricket (that also involved bonus points for hitting the husband on the head with the sock).

So it wasn't completely cricket free, I suppose, if you accept that cricket can be played with two plastic scoops, a rolled up sock and a boundary represented by a supine husband.

Boxing Day looks like being exactly like Boxing Day, including the cricket. First wicket down already good heavens.

Hope you have a lovely Boxing Day wherever you may be, even if you don't believe in the holiness of the Boxing Day Test.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Oh Christmas Eve, Oh Christmas Eve

So we have a fridge full of no-cooking-required tasty treats, the husband vacuumed the floor, I had a tasty lunch with my co-workers before being sent home for shut down (aka the Christmas/New Year break) and I have had a big chat my my Mum.

Parcels have been posted.

There are many interesting-looking parcels under our Christmas tree, and our three foot high Father Christmas mannikin has been joined by a golden, plastic bust of Ho Chi Minh. We have wise, bearded fellows covered in our living room.

The fairy lights are fairly untidy.

I am looking forward to watching a Very Specky Christmas.

Good will to all etc. Hope you have a lot of fun with the puddings and the presents and the carols if that is your kind of things, and I hope you have fun with whatever else you enjoy should those not be your kind of things. Drive safely. Eat safely. Converse with your loved ones safely.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Right, whichever one of you invented contracts is in big trouble if it turns out there is an eternal afterlife.

Big, big trouble.

Likewise whoever wrote 'heretofore' in my template. Although you are probably still alive and will be in trouble whatever the metaphysical nature of the post-death universe.

I will not speak further of the person in the subaru four wheel drive. You know what you did.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


All parcels are exciting, but my grandpa wraps them in brown paper with string, and they are the most exciting-looking parcels of all.

He does stoop to using sticky tape these days, be he doesn't have to, you know.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Yesterday's pleasant things

Young people with wicker baskets and tartan blankets off to picnic in the rose gardens.

Butterflies in the pelargoniums.

The new national gallery entrance (again).

Sunshine and a cool breeze.

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Going to Sydney tomorrow. Expecting to return with all body parts, thank you very much, if that's all right, Universe-Man.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A bad act is a bad, act, even if done by a person who has done good things as well

Still Life with Cat quotes Ken Gelder on Julian Assange.


Slugs in the saucepan cupboard last week. Slugs on the kitchen ceiling this week. Unsurprised by slugs in the letterbox.

Feeling sluggish, but not because of the slugs. Slugs make me move faster, not slower.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


School concert postponed due to rain. Could irrigate a cotton field with the resulting tears. If it wasn't already flooded, obviously.