Thursday, December 31, 2009

Addiction's a bitch

At first it was just a recreational thing: I definitely only used it on special occasions when I was going somewhere fancy.

Later on, I started using when I was feeling flat and needed a little pick-me-up. Nothing serious: just once a week, mostly on the weekends. It made me feel great.

Within a year I was hooked and using it most mornings before work because, well, I just felt better.

Yes, dear, reader, at the fag end of 2009 I regret to inform you that I am hooked on my bloody hair dryer.

UPDATE: I must have tempted fate because I've broken the fucking hair dryer. Broken-into-three-pieces broken. Balls!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Uncomfortable realisations during a recent phone call:

1. The caller believes his wife is trying to kill his 6-year-old son.
2. He has chosen, for reasons unknown, to share this information with me.
3. He shares the (moderately unusual) name of a man who was sent to Graylands Hospital in the late 1990s for blugeoning and stabbing two men to death.
4. He knows my name and where I work.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Concerns I have about wearing my newly acquired bathing suit on my completely awesome and swanky Dubai cruise next month:

1. Seafolly cites the standard boob cup size for its bathers as a B/C.
2. You can't actually see my nipples but, um, if I move too suddenly you might.
3. Strange men may start tucking $1 bills into my arse if I do.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas: a seasonal tally.


PRO: The tree. God knows I do my best to kill any living thing passed into my possession but there is nothing like a proper Christmas tree, lit with Christmas lights and glowing in the corner of your living room.

CON: Having so many parties/dinners/drinks on that you have to miss catching up with several of your favourite people in the world because you are too drunk/sunburnt/close to lapsing into an coma to make it.

PRO: Gluttony. More cream with your pudding, sir? A little lard spooned gently onto your buttered bread? Why, don't mind if I do...

CON: The two-week hangover that extends from the first office Christmas party to the pain of waking up on the first day of the new year.

PRO: Buying presents. Receiving presents. Spending money I don't have! Debt! Consumerism! Capitalism! No, that's not irony: I just fucking love presents.

CON: Post-Christmas blues. Or what in my house we call 'discovering you have killed the Christmas tree'.

PRO: The way it legitimises alcoholism. No hour is too early for a champagne at Christmas time, no table too well-covered for another bottle of wine to be set down upon it.

The verdict: Christmas wins.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Call me a bleeding heart pussy...

...but for some reason the fact that the fucking BBC is seriously asking its readers Whether Gay People Should Be Executed strikes me as fairly fucked.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

How is it that as a 27-year-old "professional" my fridge contains the following...

- jar of crushed garlic x1
- bottle of wine x2 (white)
- bottle of beer x3 (random leftovers from an old party I think)
- butter
- tomato x1 (I'm quite proud of that, though it is wrinkly)
- tupperware container of old, long-deceased pasta sauce x1
- thyroxine pills container x1
- salad dressing bottle x5 (!)
- hollandaise sauce jar x1

I mean, that's pretty sad, right?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

No, no, no, no, no. I am sticking my head in the sand...


... and refusing to believe any evidence that the upcoming Sherlock Holmes movie may blow. I mean, can a movie that looks like it satisfies so many of my secret fantasies (Robert Downey Junior in shirtless bare knuckle boxing, Sherlock Holmes!, Robert Downey Junior in shirtless bare knuckle boxing, opium!, Robert Downey Junior in shirtless bare knuckle boxing) REALLY be shit? Computer says no.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

my island home


I've been on holiday for the past week and a half. Not a proper holiday - I mean, I'm not tapping this out at the edge of a deep blue pool, sipping mojitos with my spare hand while a pool attendant named Juan offers to re-tie my bikini bottoms. I'm on a Kate holiday, which means a lot of long lunches, sprawling on the back lawn with a book and Buffy marathons, interspersed with bouts of crippling anxiety that I'm wasting my life.

It's been fun, though, if only because it has reinforced my growing awareness that I'm not cut out for office life. It's not that I dislike taking orders (I don't) or thing I possess enough Get Up and Go to work for myself (I definitely don't): I have just come to regard the daily grind as all a bit much, actually. Why, it occurred to me the other day as I lay on the couch, wondering just how and why Buffy went so very much to shit towards the end of its run. does anyone have to work? Can't we all just, you know, Get Along?

I mentioned this theory to Boyfriend Andy who, as usual, was all too ready to prick my new-found sense of joy and excitement. Because he is kind he refrained from observing that I was talking out of my arse and that, without work, not only would there be no couch to lie on, no house to live in and no wine to consume but also no Buffy to watch while I did all of these things. No, instead, he asked me, quite nicely, if I planned to collect corn.

"Someone has to collect the corn, Kate," he said. His words were slightly opaque but he made, I felt, a fairly good point. Someone did have to collect the bloody corn. And my rubbish. And make that beautiful Alannah Hill hat, quite possibly under undesirable conditions in a foreign country somewhere.

Still, call me an old optimist but I can't help believing there lies a middle ground somewhere between Extreme and Profound Despair at The Need to Get Up Every Morning and scrabbling for corn in a field somewhere. Today, for instance, I went to The Queens for lunch. Sitting in the sun, my book propped up beside my salad and wine, it occurred to me that the place was PACKED. It was positively heaving, albeit with the kind of cretins with whom I wouldn't want to share a city, let alone a pub: boofheads with their collars up, slappers who wouldn't shut up about ohmigodhowmuchidranklastnight and some dick whose tendency to laugh uproariously in my ear may have rendered me slightly deaf.

And yet it was 1pm on a Thursday: don't these people have jobs to go to? Money to make and spend? Very possibly they are all on very long lunch breaks, have started their Christmas holidays early or work nights.

And yet. Was it not also possible that they had, instead, discovered an alternative - a way to skirt that whole 'need money to buy food/shelter etc' thing? Could they have found a way to, in short, fuck the fucking corn? I have reason to believe to and, damnit, I'm not leaving my long boozy Queens lunch until I get to the bottom of it.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Lies told by the saleswoman at Country Road today

1. I'm a very private person...
2. ... but I give great advice.
3. The thing about that is you can just wear it anywhere.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Big boobs


Pros: The obvious ones.

Cons: Slogan t-shirts tend to be a tricky area. Wearing my newly-acquired Worst of Perth Perth: the Bunbury of the North shirt to the getting-harder-every-week Paddy Maguires quiz night the other day, for instance, it occured to me that you would pretty much have to crawl into my belly button to be able to read the punchline. Plus whenever someone says "nice shirt" you immediately suspect them of leering at your tits, despite the fact you are wearing an item of clothing more or less imploring them to do just that.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

An open letter:

To the girl walking down The Terrace today wearing hotpants, a beret and a giant Nikon camera slung around her neck like she thinks she's fucking Henri Cartier-Bresson,

Honey, no.

Best Regards

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Question

Is 27 too old to be:

a)allowing your car to run out of petrol
b)calling your Dad to help you deal with situation a)?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Oh dear

The older one gets the older everything else in general feels and the harder it becomes to believe that one is learning anything or is capable of being surprised by anything anymore.

So I was heartwarmed (and, obviously, slightly flummoxed) by news from a very close 30-something friend that she had just learned how to use Eftpos cards. This week. Yes, this very smart and well-educated friend found herself in the supermarket line when she realised she'd forgotten her credit card. Recalling that she had left it at home, she called her husband and asked him to bring it down. He, sensibly, asked why she didn't just put it on her bank card. It was then (over his hysterical laughter I assume) that said friend learned one's bank card cannot be used simply at ATM machines but to pay for goods and services at a wide variety of locations.

One can only dream that such a delightful surprise lurks around the corner for all of us.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Question


If a colleague is in danger of driving me to insanity could it be termed self defence if I repeatedly stapled him or her in the head?

Monday, November 9, 2009

Theoretically


On Saturday I bought what I believe to be the single most expensive item of clothing I have ever bought: a beautiful red Alannah Hill dress that I cannot find a picture of (ie: it is neither of the AH dresses pictured above, which are also very cute)

It was more expensive than any pair of shoes I own, more expensive than the handful of very pretty silk dresses hanging in my closet and more expensive even than the so-ridiculously-expensive-I-won't-even-tell-you-how-much-but-it-was-worth-it seamed silk stockings I acquired back when I decided to turn myself into a 1950s-style floozy.

Before I made this latest and greatest of acquisitions I sat down with The Boyfriend to discuss over lunch at the Belgian Beer Cafe, as a sensible Girlfriend sometimes does when she wants to pre-emptively ease her guilt. I showed him change room photos of me in the dress, discussed the NUMEROUS places I could wear it and whined for a bit about how it had been aaaages since I bought anything (grateful he hadn't been home when the amazon.com boxes arrived). Andy, being equal parts charming and disinterested shrugged his shoulders, said I could do what I wanted with my own money and then sweetly asked if I could go and order him some hot chips from the bar.

The only bit Andy didn't get, as he explained to me while dunking chips into aoli (god they do it well at the BBC), is why I was so excited about my impending acquisition. To Andy, clothes are just clothes: some of them look better than others but they are still just clothes. To me, as I explained while stuffing my gob with chips, every new outfit - particularly a radically new outfit unlike anything you already own - is a new chance to reinvent yourself.

This is not a new realisation of mine.

Many years ago a (now ex) boyfriend convinced me to buy an adorable 1920s-style bucket hat. The hat was beautiful but not, strictly speaking, very practical. I was not, I told the boyfriend apologetically, really A Hat Person. Wisely he responded with the observation that if I bought the hat I would become a hat person. In essence, if I bought it (the hat), it (the hat-implied lifestyle) would come.

He was right and he was wrong but the thought has stuck with me ever since.

This dress, for instance, gives me a little glimmer of hope that I could yet become one of the Alannah Hill girls depicted in the ads: hair bouffed, lipsticked smile genuine, spending my days faffing about on a garden swing or looking like I'm about to have tea with the Mad Hatter. Instead of, say, spending 10 hours in front of a computer five to six days a week, typing until my eyes glaze and my wrists start to throb.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Get Back on the Horse


The phrase 'get back on the horse' has always had a certain piquancy for me. Except piquancy isn't the right world at all. What I mean to say is that it Pisses Me Off.

It's been said to me (and others) a few times over the years, usually in times of personal distress, and every time I want to say that’s shit. Instead I smile, nod and waste for the next platitude to be rolled out so I can ignore that one too.

The thing about this particular phrase is that it doesn’t even make sense. Supposedly it comes from the adage ‘you have to get back on the horse that threw you’. Brilliant idea. You’ve been hurt once doing a particular activity so instead of abandoning said activity you’re supposed to give it another crack and hope, in the face of reason, things will turn out differently this time. What next? ‘Put your hand back in the fire?'

When I was 10-years-old or so I had my first bad fall from a horse. And if only I had ignored popular opinion about these sort of things and stayed on the ground it would have done me a lot of good.

The whole thing was stupid and pretty much my own fault: at my weekly riding lesson I'd insisted on going around the paddock just one more time. Almost immediately I lost control of the pony (a beautifully-natured palomino called Bindi, who would later be sold by my teacher to the riding school at Claremont Showgrounds, where, in a move that intensely depressed at the time, she was given a new name).

Of course it's easy to romanticise lost loves and, with hindsight, I can see that Bindi had her problems - she suffered from delusions of grandeur, for a start. She must have. Because when I lost control and she could no longer feel the pressure of my hands on the reins she decided she quite fancied trying to jump the four foot high electric fence that edged one side of the paddock. I'm sure it seemed like a good idea at the time. It wasn’t. Bindi brought down the fence, which burnt into both her lovely little legs and my exposed pre-adolescently-soft arms. I was so entangled in the wire of the fence that when my teacher picked me up from the ground she got an electric charge off my hands. I stood up to learn that the seat of my jodhpurs had been torn off.

Once she had established I was more or less okay my teacher sent her son to the stables to bring back another horse, Crackington, for me to ride back (Bindi having retired to a distant corner of the paddock, from where she and I regarded each other with mutual suspicion.) Crackington was the pride of my teacher’s stable – a beautiful chocolate brown block of a horse too tall, lovely and valuable for any of us who attended the weekly lessons to ride before now. My teacher's son led Crackington back and I was helped onto his enormous 17-hands-high back.

I slipped the reins along Crackington’s neck and over his head so my teacher could take them, happy to cede control now that I could feel my left arm beginning to throb, resting my hands on his withers, which shifted under me as he followed my teacher forward.

Later I would conclude that one of the strands of the electric fence must have touched the frog of Crackington’s hoof - that soft little triangle of flesh that groomers know to avoid, the closest a horse will ever get to a fingertip. Otherwise it’s tough to imagine what would make 17-hands of dark brown muscle lose his shit as thoroughly as Crackington did then, ridding me of all my romantic notions about him as he reared and I slid out of the saddle.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

I walked the long walk back from the bottom paddock to the stableyard, my ten-year-old arse hanging out the hole in my jodhpurs, the burns on my arm stinging like a bitch, blood on my right hand and cheek from I-didn’t-know-where.

Hee

This made me laugh.

Flying sigh


I know that I give a lot of grief to people who can't behave themselves on planes. But there is a reason for this. The way that we behave in airplanes is indicative of the way we behave in real life. Actually being in a plane is a lot like life: it's a bit boring, sometimes entertaining and definitely best spent a little bit tipsy. Having recently returned from an interstate trip that brought me into close proximity with a wide variety of douchebag fellow passengers, I propose said douche's can be divided into one of four categories.

The Chatterbox

Hey are you leaving home or coming home? Me too. I've been in Cairns for a fortnight, great weather but I'm exhausted. Why is your meal so early? Oh why are you vegetarian? Are you going to try to sleep? Me too but I never can. What do you think about- No. Just not. Just shut the fuck up. This thing I'm doing with my hands and my eyes? It's called reading, not listening.

The Aisle Sleeper

Self explanatory for anyone who has ever faced the choice of straddling the bulging belly of an aisle-sleeping fatty fat fat fat who has left his tray table down and festooned with his SHIT, just in order to get out of a window seat, or shaking a complete stranger awake.

The Selfish Cunt

The most wide-ranging of the categories. This may be as simple as the dick who is rude to the flight attendants or the dick brain who treats the empty seat between the two of you as his own personal kingdom. Take your feet off the seats, dude, or I will stab you with this plastic fork.

Me

The perfect passenger. Obviously.

Friday, October 30, 2009

So many questions

Allowing the lines between work and play to blur is always a risk. I know this, honestly I do. So why then did I not only get utterly trashed with work contacts last night but (oh Christ) ask one of those contacts what he would like to do with the giant fake boobs of a mutual acquantaince. And why did he TELL me?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Recent revelations

* Brisbane is not as boring as I thought it would be, though it is still quite boring
* I should not EVER leave voicemail messages for work contacts while drunk
* I should certainly not ever wake up the hotel manager at 1am to drunkenly plead for the broadband password... which he had already given me eight hours earlier
* I do not work well with a hangover
* I am a bit over it

Monday, October 26, 2009


I am off to Brisbane for a few days for work and will be unlikely to blog. In my absence, I give you Mr Larkin and Ms Taylor.

Annus Mirabilis
(Philip Larkin)

Sexual intercourse began
In nineteen sixty-three
(which was rather late for me) -
Between the end of the Chatterley ban
And the Beatles' first LP.

Up to then there'd only been
A sort of bargaining,
A wrangle for the ring,
A shame that started at sixteen
And spread to everything.

Then all at once the quarrel sank:
Everyone felt the same,
And every life became
A brilliant breaking of the bank,
A quite unlosable game.

So life was never better than
In nineteen sixty-three
(Though just too late for me) -
Between the end of the Chatterley ban
And the Beatles' first LP.

Is it just me or is genuinely odd...

That the women driving the car into which I reversed this morning did not appear to care?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fuck me...

... somebody get this guy a book deal. Greatest celebrity interview ever.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Say it now: awwwww


There are some shitty days when you can cheer yourself up with wine, with friends or the prospect or a weekend nearly arrived. Then there are really, really, really totally fucked days that require an overload of cute dog just to get by. Enjoy.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Overheard in Perth (I am 100 per cent serious)

"I accidently oiled up my bum."

Apologies...

...for being a slack-arse blogger once again. I would like to say I've been putting the final touches on the novel, or jet-skiing with sharks or something but the truth is more prosaic: I've been doing... stuff. Boring stuff, fun stuff, work-related stuff and non-work-related stuff. Oh and I was in the Pilbara. Yeah. That happened.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Today...

... I am so fucking over it.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Question:


What is it about boys in suits that is so goddamn irresistible?I see men in suits at work every day and it does very little for me. But a beautiful skinny rake like this with a pouty baby face and an expression that makes him looks like he's about to say "Sweetheart, ├┐ou've got great fucking tits?" De-lightful.

(Pic courtesy of The Sartorialist)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

27-years-old: the review so far

My year of being 27-years-old has inexplicably begun with a wealth of presents at my door. I wake up to find a truly uncharacteristic but beautiful Adidas tracksuit being laid beside me. On my door handle there swings a paper bag containing a necklace as smooth and lovely as a coastal shelf. A knock on the door heralds the arrival of a soy mocha, chocolate croissant and flowers. I have eaten more cake than you could poke a steak knife at and am practically sitting knee-deep in lovely presents by 12pm. Does this herald the dawning of a new year full of macademia-nut-festooned toffee cakes, snow domes, pony brooches and croissants for all? Too early to say but I'm onboard.

Verdict: Two thumbs up.

A pointer

As readers of impeccable taste (obviously) you should all probably be reading Nick Lezard's rather funny Down & Out column for New Statesman every week. But you should read this week's especially closely because I make a brief appearance. Gosh, aren't my cheeks red.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Conversation with a reader or How I Learned I Am Regarded in Some Circles as an Anti-Semite

READER: I really enjoyed your story in the weekend’s paper (on Roman Polanski’s extradition).
ME (chuffed, my head already expanding): Oh thanks. It’s always nice to-
READER: It seems to me that this kind of thing is just a case of Hollywood being full of jews.
ME: I… what?
READER: And I thought it was nice to see someone who wasn’t afraid to write a negative story about one of them.
ME: One of…?
READER: The jews.
ME:
READER: Have you read a book by Paul Findley called “They Dared to Speak Out”?
ME: I haven’t.
READER: I could get you a copy if you wanted.
ME: No, no that’s okay… I mean, I’m sure I can find it at the library.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Partay down

I really enjoy a good house party. There is something about going to someone's house that feels more important than meeting down at the pub or heading out to dinner, as much as I do enjoy both of those things.

Similarly I enjoy throwing a house party. I don't do it very often, though, because, at the same time, I HATE throwing a party. Because everything seems fine until, say, the few days before the party. It is only then that, with the inevitability of love ending, bananas rotting and looks fading, I suddenly realise several things in quick succession:

1. I have forgotten to invite many, MANY people.
2. Not everybody enjoys listening to Belle and Sebastian for an entire night, particularly not when they're just trying to a)drunk b)get off with someone, yet I have no alternate music choices.
3. The only food I have in the house of cheese.
4. I might have eaten the cheese.

Special request

This is, for the benefit of a friend, a cut-and-paste job of an old Charlie Brooker column that I've talked about before. I know I wank on about Mr Brooker a fair bit but this is one of his best:

Supposing... it's time to smother romance in its sleep
Charlie Brooker, from The Guardian 2006


Hands up anyone who's had a great experience with romance. Now put your hands back down and stop lying. Romance never works. Romance never does what it says on the tin. Romance, ultimately, is bullshit.

If I sound jaded, it's because I am. I'm so sick and tired of love and its pitfalls I can scarcely lift my fingers to type. If love were a product, the queue at the faulty goods desk would stretch right round the universe and back. It doesn't work properly. The seams come apart and it's full of powdered glass.

Each fresh romance has two potential outcomes: 1. One of you falls heavily, and quickly, until this helpless, unattractive neediness sends the other running for the hills; or 2. by some miracle, your desperate neediness levels balance out, and you stay together for several years - until the love between you withers and dies, at which point one or both of you will stagger away, howling like a wolf with a hook in its gut, wounded beyond reason.

When you're smitten, romance is a thrilling high-wire act over a looming lake of woe. Your head's full of music; the first few steps are a joyful scamper. Then the skies darken, the breeze picks up, the tightrope shudders and you fight to retain your balance. In your heart of hearts, you know you're heading for a tumble, but you're out and exposed and there's no turning back - and who knows, maybe you'll make it?

Imbecile. Of course you won't. Instead, the rope snaps and suddenly you're plunged back into the monochrome work-a-day reality of flowers in the dustbin and dogs being sick on the pavement.

At this point, wandering in a post-romantic shock, things get even worse. Being numb and distant somehow renders you magically attractive to others. It's sod's law in action, and before you know it you're abusing the privilege. Hungering for another go on the tightrope, you hurl yourself at the nearest admirer, but since the love canary's recently flown your cage, you're selfish, robotic, and doomed to wipe your arse all over their soul. Congratulations: you've become an emotional vandal. And you'll do it again and again until you meet another special someone - only this time the tightrope's higher up and more precarious, and you're so scared of falling that your feet shake the moment you step aboard.

On and on and on it goes, and there's no end to it. This madness must be stopped. We can medicate depression into oblivion; why not romance? A preventative tablet, perhaps, or an adhesive patch that suppresses the relevant endorphins, which you can slap on your skin at the first sign of attraction, killing romance dead, stopping you in your tracks before you make a fool of yourself or a hapless Aunt Sally of another. And sizzled on the back of every packet, embossed on every patch, just to keep things melancholic and swoonsome, you'd find the last line from Graham Greene's The End of the Affair - the battered protagonist's final plea, which sums up the absolute aching awfulness of romance so eloquently it makes your heart nod along with tears in its eyes: "O God, You've done enough, You've robbed me of enough, I'm too tired and old to learn to love, leave me alone for ever."

Anyway. Next week: some jokes.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It's Shit, Actually


Remember when you saw Love Actually and you thought that curvy brunette was a bit of hot totty? What a sweetie she is, you thought, and she looks pretty sumptuous in all those sweaters and pencil skirts they've squeezed her into too.

Well prepare for every last drop of that good will you ammassed for her to evaporate. Because you see the actor in question, Martine McCutcheon, has written a book. And it is... not good.

Okay, so I'm getting ahead of myself but the publishers, for reasons unknown, have decided to put the first chapter online. And it is not just not good, it is bad. Car crash bad. Driven into a brick wall at 200kmph bad. If you think I am exaggerating, I give you exhibit A:
"London was such a fast place, full of different nationalities, different religions. On a bad day it could feel suffocating, but generally it felt to Mandy like the most exhilarating city in the world, with the speed of New York but the history of a Paris or a Rome. If you went for it, truly went for it, you could get the life you wanted here, and that was Mandy’s aim – to have it all. And why not? She’d read a greeting on a card once in Paperchase on the King’s Road that had truly stuck with her: Reach for the moon, and even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.
She loved it and used it as a mental pick-me-up whenever she felt low."

Deep. You can read Marina Hyde's take on it for The Guardian here. Or go straight to the source and read the first chapter for yourself. If you can.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The 5 women you meet at every wedding

1. The really, REALLY drunk one who staggers up to you, lightly snogs your cheek and tries to talk about how sad it is that the two of us don't hang out anymore, regardless of whether you've met her before tonight or not.

2. The one who thinks her boyfriend is dancing with too many other girls and ends up crying in the bathroom at 11pm.

3. The one who has tickets on herself because she looks good in lycra, drinks too much, eats nothing and winds up faux-lesbian dancing on the the dance floor under the shocked gaze of aged relatives.

4. The one who is also getting married in a few months time and won't stop telling you All About It, even when you try to pretend you've passed out in your soup.

5. The one who arrives with a shocking case of hayfever and spends the entire ceremony snuffling her way through a packet of Kleenex while her right eye slowly turns red and balloons to twice its usual size, ultimately losing her sense of taste altogether and overcompensating by self medicating from the bar. Oh no, wait, that was just me at a wedding on Sunday night. That's a once off.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Calm down, the flashlight's legal...


I'm sorry Guardian: I'm a big fan of the paper. But this necklace, which appears unde the headline "The easy way to make jewellery" on the paper's Life & Style pages is the ugliest motherfucking thing I have ever seen. Who would ever want to see it, or wear it, let alone learn how to MAKE it??

Coming up next in the Guardian's exciting installement of Things I Never Ever Ever Wanted to Know: "How to get buggered by a flashlight"...

Recent examples of how I failed to stick to my one-week crash diet in order to slink into a very snug dress this weekend:

1. Adding that second load of (awesomely fresh and crazily tasty) butter onto my bread at lunch today.
2. Eating bread at lunch today.
3. Eating pasta along with that bread.
4. Secretly adding a little butter to the pasta.
5. Ordering wine.
6. Ordering more wine.
7. Conceding there really was very little point in leaving such a small amount in the wine bottle.
8. hjfh&$(234935jf&$*$*$*zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Sunday, September 20, 2009

My Sunday apology goes out to...

The cheese souffle I ate on Friday night. I'm so sorry, my little ramekin of joy: truly I did defile you in about 5 minutes but I think you have to take some of the blame for being so goddamn delicious. Saucy bitch.

Grand slam


Mothers, eh? Will they EVER shut up?

Oops, sorry Mum. And sorry too to my sister, who has recently been saddled - sorry blessed - with child. But to everyone else: just shut it.

I'm over it. I'm over hearing about how hard it is being pregnant, how painful it felt to have that 9 pound bundle of blood and flesh ripping your pink bits to shreds and, above all, I'm over hearing about the difficulties involved in raising a child.

Admittedly, as a childless spinster, I have absolutely no leg to stand on. AND YET. The thing is, mothers, you can talk about how tough it is, how exhausting, mentally and physically training etc until you're blue in the face and in need of a lie-down. But at a certain point in the argument I think we all have to sit down and acknowledge one simple fact: that billions, no trillions, no maybe even trillions of trillions of people do it. All the time. Smart women do it, stupid women do it, poor women do it, rich women do it. Even poor old bloody Jade Goody did it, and while I hesitate to speak ill of the dead, my instinct is to suggest that there's nothing Jade Goody did that couldn't be achieved by, say, a well trained monkey.

The trigger for this very unkind rant is the media coverage surrounding tennis star, Kim Clijsters, who last week capped off a stellar professional comeback by storming to victory in the US Open. Clijsters has also - if you haven't heard - managed to achieve said victory while being a Mum at the same time. Yawn. That yawn is not directed at Clijsters' blistering performance but at the increasingly hysterical coverage surrounding her achievement. The gist of which appears to be shock that a 26-year-old mother could achieve anything more difficult than putting oneleg in front of the other. Yes, we get it: she got knocked up and succeeded in not preventing the thing, 9 months later, from slipping out. It's a worthy achievement but can we get back to talking about tennis?

This hysteria culminated in a piece in the UK paper The Times (apologies, I've mislaid the link) which somewhere along the line delivered this pearler: "Winning a tennis match is a doddle compared with childbirth."

As the brilliant David Mitchell put it in his column over at The Guardian: "I'd say it very much depends on whom you're playing... while bringing up a baby and winning a Grand Slam may feel equally impossible, intellectually I know which I'm most likely to succeed at. I mean, I've got friends with kids and some of them used to try to light fags off an electric hob."

The list of hugely successful male tennis stars who have kids is massive (among them Pete Sampras and Borris Becker) but I've never seen a headline reading "SUPER DAD" above a photo of Sampras' grinning, victorious head. I know it's a bit different, given the effect of childbirth on a woman's body, but still... really? I'm prepared to be truly dazzled by anyone who can reach the peak of his or her professional career, even in a sport I find as meh as tennis, but am I prepared to heap praise on someone for achieving exactly what a heifer in a field can do? Not yet.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Token Smokin' Hottie: Joseph Gordon-Levitt


There's something a little bit filthy about fancying Joseph Gordon-Levitt that stems from having watched him grow up on 3rd Rock From the Sun.

It's been 8 years since he played that role as a long-haired smart-mouthed teenager but I still think of him as a little kid, despite the fact he's popped up in a handful of alternately cute and rather good indie movies since, such as the underrated school noir movie Brick and 2004's Mysterious Skin. (And yes for the purpose of this argument I am overlooking the fact he plays the Cobra Commander in the film GI Joe: The Rise of the Cobra. Oh dear). He's also got some pretty impressive genes, based on the fact that he does not appear to have aged a single day in the past five years. Seriously, where is this dude sleeping - in a freaking cryogenics chamber?

All of which probably goes to explain why it feels a bit wrong to find myself a) oggling him in his latest movie, the cute-but-flawed 500 Days of Summer, and b)tapping him as my latest token smokin' hottie. Nevertheless, I could not resist because here's the shocking thing about Joseph Gordon-Levitt: he's a bloody year older than me.

What an outrage.

Far from being a cute little scrap of jail bait, JGL is practically An Older Man. Forget thinking about him as your best friends cute little brother who you secretly fancy like mad even though you pretend to agree with your friend that he's really annoying. No, JGL is more like your older brother's best friend, who you have fancied for years and for whose benefit you pretend to be acquainted with a vast variety of bands and books you have never heard of, let along heard/read.

I feel I've diverged from my point ever so slightly but I think you get where I'm coming from: he's talented, he's cute and he's definitely legal.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sorry


I've been snowed under and have been a very slack blogger lately. Normal service shall be resumed shortly.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Heh

I’ve posted about this website before but it’s so charming I can’t resist. The challenge is to summarise a novel in 25 words or less. There is some utter shit but also some gold. Some of my favourites:

1. Don't let a borderline alcoholic psycho run a hotel built on an Indian graveyard. It's just asking for trouble. (The Shining, Stephen King)

2. Little guys go to a lot of trouble to get rid of stolen jewellery. (The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkein)

3. Don’t fear the reaper (The Outsider, Albert Camus)

4. Man goes OTT concocting story as to why he was late home from the pub (Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift)

5. Giant walking deadly poisonous plants are a disaster, don’t you know! (Day of the Triffids, John Wyndham)

6. Bloke having mid life crisis discovers politics and shagging; but then learns to settle down and become a normal, respectable, member of society (1984, George Orwell)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

To the cunning bitch working at a certain clothing store in Subiaco,

I know what you're doing, don't think I don't. Don't you believe for one second I don't understand what you're playing at with your big friendly eyes and your "I think you need a smaller size" malarky. You think I need a smaller size? Balls you do: you think that just because you flatter me into squeezing my plump, juicy buttocks into a smaller-than-usual skirt size, I'll go ahead and buy that skirt despite the fact that a)I don't need it, b)I can't afford it.

I just want you to know that the fact I went ahead and bought said skirt had nothing whatsoever to do with your shameless and utterly transparent sales(wo)manship and everything to do with how excellent my arse looked it in. You lose!

Faithfully,
Kate.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

One for the journos

"THERE’s one thing political journalists become experts on, it’s lying."

You can read the rest here.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Question time

1. Having complained all week that I have taken on too much why am I such a suckhole I had to put my hand up for another work assignment, thus dooming myself to failure and a healthy bout of hiding under my desk?

2. Why has my car started making a weird rattle that means I have to alternately poke the ashtray and/or tap the gearstick while driving in order to escape the audible illusion that my shitty 1988 hatchback is filled with wasps?

3. How the fuck do I put my sim card into my new iphone?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Reasons I should not get a super short delicious French bob


1. My face is as round as a beach ball.
2. My hair is neither sleek nor straight but prone do doing a curious impression of an angry cat when roused.

Um, that's all I got.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Today's revelation:

I THINK I can get an iphone and continue paying exactly what I'm currently paying to run my amazing Nokia 3210. Today is a good day.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Overheard in my house

ME: Your new haircut looks awesome, I love it.
ANDY: Yeah my little gay boy did a great job, didn't he?
ME: Your...?
ANDY: He's a little guy and he's young and he''s gay!
ME: (Uncontrollable laugher)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Going up and going down


You know those little 'what's hot, what's not' lists that glossy magazines and weekend liftouts alike are so fond of running? You know how, every time you read it, at least one item and possibly all 5, 10, 15 items on there are guaranteed to make you blow up, start spouting obscenities at said magazine and demand to know what sort of authority its author has anyway? Yeah this is one of those lists, strictly limited to my own world, of course. I'm sorry.

GOING UP

Perth's skinny indie boy population. Clearly I just don't get out much because heading to Capitol for The Doves last week? I have never seen so much hot indie boy meat on display. A roomfull of skinny boys who look like they've been raised in a dark room? Colour me delighted.

Wine. Remember that period in my life where I thought about cutting down on this most delicious of vices? Yeah, that's out.

True Blood. Oh what's that you say? I never shut up about this bloody TV series? That's because it's awesome. This is the series that takes vampires + porn + cheese and stirs until it tastes motherflipping delicious. Oh yeah and each new male character is hotter than the last. Can we talk about Godric? Can we please??

GOING DOWN

Jumpsuits. Just say no, no, no, no. Did I once own a black ra-ra skirt? I cannot deny it. Was I fond, for a time, of wearing a certain denim skirt/black leggings combination out in public? Yes, yes I was. But none of this justifies the (re)emergence of jumpsuits as a fashion trend. Unless we're going to go full[on Star Trek and co-ordinate the entire flipping WORLD'S outfits (under which circumstances jumpsuits would be permissible), I just don't want to know about it.

Food from the work cafeteria. Say it after me: Don't. Eat. The. Creamy. Pasta. Ever.

The 7pm Project. Not bad enough to be good. Not good enough to NOT be circling the drain right now.

Misery-chasing: For all the times I have used the phrase “insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results”, I am incapable of recalling who said it first, or following their advice.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Hello... operator?

Believe it or not I do try not to wank on too much about my day-to-day personal life on here. Not really because I am shy about discussing such things in a semi-public forum but because my personal life is generally pretty dull. Last night, for instance, I lay on the couch and watched Weekend at Bernies. Don't get me wrong, it's a great movie, but an interesting anecdote that does not make.

But the phone call I have just had is too good/disturbing/weird not to pass on.

ME: (Answering my mobile) Hello Kate speaking.
MAN: (Mumble mumble mumble)
ME: Sorry, could you speak up I can’t hear you.
MAN: (Mumble mumble) Is Katherine there?
ME: Uh yeah speaking.
MAN: I was just wondering if you’re still single.
ME: (Sure I've misheard) Um… what?
MAN: (Very politely) I was just wondering if you’re still single.
ME: (Kinda laughing) Who is this?
MAN: I’d rather not say unless I know what your answer is.
ME: Oookay. Well no, no I am not.
MAN: So you’ve found someone then?
ME: (Now properly laughing) I have. Who IS this?
MAN: Well I’d rather not say now.

Well played, random anonymous man who somehow has my mobile number.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Mental note: good luck with that


“The secret of happiness is to admire without desiring.”
(Carl Sandburg)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Still token, still smokin', still a hottie in my book: Pete Doherty


I don’t want to like Pete Doherty. It’s not my fault.

I didn’t mind liking him five(ish?) ago. Back then, people had only just heard about a lovable new band called The Libertines and this singer/songwriter Pete Doherty who looked a bit like a friendly rag-doll. Back then Doherty’s cherubic face looked soft, sweet and deliciously edible; his obsession with Oscar Wilde and the works of Siegfriend Sassoon charming; his commitment to shameless displays of ho-yay with band-mate Carl Barat frankly delightful. Back then he hadn’t dated Kate Moss.

Obviously things changed. The Libertines got big, Doherty got bigger (though, actually, physically much smaller once the smack train well and truly left the station). Then he was tossed out of the band. Then they said they wanted him back if he gave up the drugs. Then he came back. Then he left again. Somewhere in there he burgled Carl’s flat. Finally he was out and formed his own band, which played songs and released albums with varying degrees of success. His wanking on about Wilde and Sassoon and bloody De Quincey started to seem, well, kinda wanky. Somewhere in there he shagged, and was subsequently dumped by, Kate Moss.

I’m not sure when it was exactly that I fell for Doherty all over again. It’s been sneaking up on me. Maybe it’s just that he’s been working with another indie favourite of mine, Graham “wouldn’t you love to see my Elvis Costello glasses on your bedroom floor” Coxon and that the result – Babyshambles’ Grace/Wastelands album – was actually good. Maybe it’s the fact that I never really stopped fancying him, even when he got kinda gross and covered in weird creepy sores that seemed like they might be thinking about giving you an STD if you looked at them sideways. Lindsay, no doubt, would suggest it’s because I’m a sucker for birds with broken wings.

Either way, just to let you know, Pete: I’d still go there.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Highlights and lowlights of wearing my delightful and newly acquired faux fur stole out on Friday night:


Highlight: I felt about 900 per cent more glamorous than usual.

Lowlight: I felt compelled to talk about its FAKE fur qualities very loudly, in case a PETA spokesperson popped out of the woodwork.

Highlight: It did, surprisingly, keep me really warm.

Lowlight: It kept me so warm I was forced to take it off from time to time to regulate my body temperature or risk collapsing on the floor on the Manor.

Highlight: When I eventually stumbled into a cab in the early hours the stole made me feel like more of a Dorothy Parker than a Tara Reid.

Lowlight: I don’t think the cabbie was fooled.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Token Smokin' Hottie: Alexander Skarsgard


It has been said of me, from time to time, that I certainly have a type. One of the first things I ever put on this blog, as part of my profile, was that I was into skinny boys. This is true. I could go on about how this started, and waffle on about the lovely sight of a jutting hip bone but a)I believe I have covered both of those matters on here quite extensively, and b)I want to talk to you about Alexander Skarsgard, who does not fit my type at all.

Alexander, or, as I like to call him “Oh, Alexander”. I don’t know what it is about him. Or, rather, I do know exactly what it is about him: he plays a fictional character on TV on whom I have a raging crush. What a sucker I am.

For those of you who aren’t fans of the truly brilliant soft-core porn vampire romp that is the wonderful series True Blood I will try not to get too carried away with hyperbole. Let it simply be said that it is the most delightful, improbably camp, over-the-top and generally enjoyable a piece of TV I’ve seen since Gossip Girl. And for my money it is a lot better than Gossip Girl.

Alexander gets a tick straight off the bat for playing what is generally an extremely cool character on True Blood: he gets the best lines, he steals a scene by raising an eyebrow, he’s a VIKING for crying out loud. A. Viking. And did I mention his scenes are about 80 per cent ho-yay? That much said, Alexander could be the star of a seven-hour documentary on taxation reform and I would stay glued to my screen.

It’s something about his bone structure… or his eyes… or… frick, I don’t know, maybe his height: somehow he takes up a lot of room in that really comforting way some people do. Almost certainly it’s got something to do with the way he is in motion because, although the photo above isn’t dreadful, it really doesn’t do him justice. I could politely shake the hand of the man above and offer him a kiss on the cheek. Face to face with the Alexander I see on screen I would be elbow-deep in Skarsgard before he could get out the first syllable of his “hello”.

Mmm, "elbow deep in Skarsgard". I should really keep these thoughts private.

Truly, it has stole-n my heart. (You see what I did there?)


There is something faintly embarrassing about taking joy in buying clothes. I feel guilty splashing out on a cute cardigan I don’t need or a beautiful pair of shoes I can only just walk in, perhaps at least partly because I am a real impulse shopper: I am not the person who buys classics and owns a capsule wardrobe. There are things in my closet I have worn only once or twice, having either grown tired of it immediately or, in one case, having realised that a dress that only just covers my arse is not, actually, what the public at large wants to see. The whole thing, the ritual of shopping, the trying on of new purchases in front of a mirror, seems frightfully superficial. Mostly because it is.

But there is something about the ability of clothes to transform that charms me, endlessly. I hated clothes shopping until I was about 16. I just wasn’t interested in the slightest, and would contentedly wear my favourite pair of geometric leggings (hey, it was the, um, nineties. Oh shit) until they literally fell apart while on my body. I was too slow on the uptake to realise, then, that when you are a very geeky looking teenager (glasses, braces AND orthotics? Yeah fuck you too, God) the right clothes have the ability to conceal a multitude of sins.

Clearly my attitude has changed entirely, hence my joy at one of my latest acquisitions, that most practical of all garments: a faux fur stole. I have been looking for just such a stole for ages but it took the incomparable Lindsay to track down this one for me. I love, love, love it. It feels like a dozen baby kittens were butchered and skinned for my pleasure. I half expect to have red paint flung at me as I step out the door. (It is not, I hasten to add, real. I may own a leather couch but even I draw the line somewhere.)

The only problem now is where to wear it. I am not exactly Marlene Dietrich or Veronica Lake. My weekend activities are not, generally speaking, stole worthy.

Then again, the thing I love best about my stole is its sheer useless luxuriousness. I mean, yes, it is warm, but so is a jumper. Yes it nuzzles my neck in an adorable fashion but so would a scarf. The stole is brilliant not despite its uselessness but because of it. Which means that there is absolutely nothing wrong with dolling myself up in the stole to curl up on the couch for a True Blood marathon of a Saturday night. Um, theoretically, of course.

Monday, July 20, 2009

What a sight this would be to wake up to...


... because it's James Franco I wouldn't even complain about the moustache.

UPDATE: Is this Franco's head photoshopped onto someone else's body? I don't know, I hope not. Do I care? Ummmm only a very little bit.

Friday, July 17, 2009


“Alcohol is like love. The first kiss is magic, the second is intimate, the third is routine. After that you take the girl's clothes off.” (raymond Chandler)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A beautiful friendship

I don't really go in for Old Blue Eyes' music in a big way but I always agreed with what Frank Sinatra had to say about alcohol:

"I feel sorry for people who don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day."

Which is why it hurt so much to give up drinking this week.

Now, to clarify, and before you all have a collective heart attack, I mean I have given up drinking For This Week, as opposed to choosing this week to give it up altogether.

The idea seemed like a good one last weekend when I was hungover as all buggery, praying for death on the couch. It seemed stupid as hell seven hours later as I made small talk over a glass of diet coke at an engagement party and wondered what the frick one talked about at these things when one was drunk.

The reaction from friends, when I tell them about this one-week plan, has been polarised. The non-drinkers, the light drinkers and the binge drinkers look perplexed. "Just for the week?" is pretty much the normal response.

The heavy drinkers or the routine drinkers, like myself, look alternately impressed or sympathetic.

"Are you really bored?" one of them asked me. I didn't tell her the truth.

Now, six days in I'm surprised how easy it's been. I thought I would want to gnaw my own face off but, truthfully, I haven't missed that first glass of the night all that much. I have missed a warm red on the couch when it's raining outside, and I greatly resented sipping water at a friend's birthday dinner, but it's been much less painless than I would have expected.

"So maybe you could give it up for a month and do Dry July?" someone suggested to me, "given it's so painless."

Au Contraire. Because half of the reason I wanted to give up booze for a week was to prove that I could, both to myself and others, who worry occasionally about such things. Though I didn't say so at the time, I was scared I might find it too hard, might even be tempted to crack and scoff half a bottle in front of the Tour de France.

Seeing how easy it's been has, contrarily, made it that much easier to continue to imbibe. If it's so relatively painless to give up, how can it be so wrong to NOT give it up? The logic, dear friends, is flawless.

The drought ends tomorrow and I am, I must concede, looking forward to a reunion with my old friend.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I'm not really the marrying kind but STILL

This one comes to this page via a friend and it's a good one.

The Australian senate is looking at whether or not to overturn the ban on same sex marriage, and is looking for submissions from the community. You just know the God botherers are going to be up in arms (fuck knows what else they have to do with their time) so that's where you're needed: to counteract their bile and stop this country's laws from being determined by the kind of cretins who believe that certain people belong in hell because of who they fancy.

Luckily there is this incredibly quick online form to make your own submission HERE, so if you believe in equal rights please do.

This is really important and it takes all of 30 seconds.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Pros and cons of getting hooked on Project Runway:


PROS: It is quality, guilty pleasure viewing in which genuinely skilled people make alternately brilliant and fucked up things.
CONS: All the cute boys are very, very gay.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Hear thee, hear thee, I am a douche.


In the spirit of going in for really easy targets today, this piece over at BeliefNet is worth a read. Either a mind-boggling Wtf?! or a brilliant piece of satire, its hypothesis is one guaranteed to offend pretty much everyone: homosexuality shouldn't be legitimised because then all men will turn gay. Why? Because boys are better at sex than girls.

Don't believe me? It's backed up by history, fool! Read on:
"The social history behind this piece is clear: once they've experienced sex with other men, Catullus tells us, men are unsatisfied with what their new wives provide them."

Outrageous! Somehow he manages to infuriate me not only as a reasonably-non-douchy-person but as a woman. The only thing that saves this article from turning me into a white hot ball of rage is the slightly hilarious assumption behind it. The writer clearly thinks he could be having the time of his life if only he were allowed to fuck his best friend Frank, instead of just punching him on the shoulder every so often and occassionally put a wig on him while he sleeps. In his mind, once the barriers come down the whole world is going to turn into a sweaty, heaving mass where construction workers, businessmen and baptist ministers alike are more or less just heaving themselves at each other. But no! He must fight the impulse for the sake of the womenfolk.

The whole thing also has a delightfully prudish flavour, despite the subject matter:
"At the risk of getting too explicit, I leave it the reader's basic grasp of anatomy to figure out why in ancient Rome a man who found pleasure in a woman, could also find pleasure in a man, while the record shows that a heterosexual woman rarely found sexual satisfaction in the company of another woman."

Wait, I'm confused. Could you please act that bit out for me? I have a carrot here - why don't I let Frank hold the doughnut...

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Everybody wants something.


Sure, sure examples of "hilarious" sign typos, usually taking the piss out of our Asian neighbours, are a dime a dozen. And, yes they are kind of the comedy equivalent of laughing at pratfalls. But at the same time they are capable of rare moment of great hilarity.

This one, for instance, cracks me up. I'm sure there's a sensible explantion, like a simple mistranslation. But in my mind, it involves a guy poring over the translation in a factory. It's a Friday night, all the other workers have finished and are heading down to their local for a drink. The saucy girl from the front desk, on whom our late-working-worker has a crush, is going to be there, and he doesn't want to be late. He looks at his watch, then at the sign, then at his impatient colleagues. Shrugging on his jacket with one hand, he scrawls a barely legible "something" with the other, chucks it on the pile and heads for the door.

The next day when the translation lobs up on the desk of the guys who are carving it onto the sign they look at the translation and then at each other.

"What do you reckon?"

"I don't speak English."

"I forgot."

"Well does it make sense?"

"Ummm, it's not UNtrue."

"Let's get lunch."

“I sat with the telephone receiver in my hand and I looked at hate like an ugly and foolish man whom one does not want to know. I dialled her number. I must have caught her before she had time to leave the telephone and said: ‘Sarah,tomorrow’s all right, I’d forgotten something. Same place. Same time.' And sitting there, my fingers on the quiet instrument, with something to look forward to, I thought to myself: I remember. This is what hope feels like.” (Graham Greene, The End of the Affair)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Things I learned about Australia…


...From looking at this dress, which is the outfit Miss Universe Australia Rachael Finch will be wearing at the international competition. (Incidentally, the dress, which is slightly hilariously called “Sunset Over the Opera House”, is apparently intended to be representative of Australia. Cough cough)

1. When a pigeon shits on an Australian’s head, we don’t shriek, run home and wash our hair. We kill the pigeon and glue it to our fucking head.
2. We not only enjoy fake boobs, we particularly like them when they perch atop a griddle-like torso. That’s what we in Oz call “natural beauty”.
3. We are deeply, DEEPLY colourblind

Monday, June 29, 2009

Things I have learned in the past few weeks, while trying to do some proper work on The Crappy Novel That Dare Not Speak Its Name:

1. I have no self-discipline. Leave me alone in the house with a laptop and within 20 minutes I’ll probably be watching re-runs of The Thick of It.
2. I am incapable of NOT simply ripping off the style of book I am reading when it comes to writing my own. For this reason, biographies or books I don’t mind ripping off are the only sort I can stomach right now. Should TCNTDNSIN bear a passing resemblance to the life and times of Patricia Highsmith, who am I to judge…
3. I have spent more time mentally imagining myself mosying around the house in the bathrobe as a full time writer, following my incredible success (fuck off, I only tell you these things because I have no shame) than actually writing to make said success possible. By, shall we say a fair margin.

Friday, June 26, 2009

I suppose we all have our little cross to bear

What a terrible thing it is to be white, straight and middle-class sometimes.

No, really. I mean the guilt alone is killing me. I'm so (comparatively) privileged and out-of-touch with anything approaching a common man or woman that I pretty much assume I'm liable to offend everyone in my immediate vicinity at any given moment. I used the word "eskimo" the other day and spent the next five minutes wondering if the person behind the counter, to whom I had spoken, was now convinced I was racist scum and/or planned to spit in my coffee anyway, just to be on the safe side. It's like a comedy of manners but without the comedy bit.

Anyway, a friend of mine used the word "queer" the other day to refer to a friend who - no shit - was gay. I looked at my feet. "Is that, er allowed?"

"What do you mean?"

"'Queer'. Do you not have to be part of the gay community to be able to reclaim the word?"

"What are you talking about?"

"It's like the n-word-"

"It's not like the n-word."

"It is! Black people are allowed to use the n-word and that's it. We're not black so we can't get onboard: that's the law."

"You're crazy."

Am I crazy? I might be crazy.

Either way the whole thing reminds me of a test we did in first year psych at uni (which I think I've blogged about before) where we had to look at photos of people and guess what ethnicity they were. Being me, I agonised over it, the idea being that I'd prove how right-on I was by identifying Woman Number 3 down to her country of origin instead of offering a vague "Middle Eastern-Indiany maybe?"

To boil it down, the study found that racist people took longer to guess ethnicity than non-racist people because they were so obsessed with race. Shit.

I think there's probably a lesson in there for me somewhere. Perhaps that lesson is that I'm actually, albeit subconscioulsy, a racist, classist homophobe who has deluded herself into thinking she has little-l liberal values. Which actually, now I come to think about it, would explain why I don't really like black people. Or jews. Oh and gays? Don't even get me motherflipping STARTED.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Overhead in my office. Tuesday, 2.54pm

Random journo: (on the phone):"...well he called me a cuntface..."

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Or something like that


A friend of mine has just fallen in love. How sweet, you might think. How lovely.

Well, yes, but also how fucking insufferable.

There’s a strong parallel to be drawn, I think, between people in the first flush of love and people who have just broken up with someone. Both of them corner you for long conversations entitled This Is Why It Was The Right Thing To Dump Them/You Do Think I Did The Right Thing, Right? and This Is It This Time/I’m Just So Happy, respectively. Neither of them can think, or talk, of anything else and both of them bring out exactly the same reaction in me, though I hate to admit it: they bring me doooown.

Because to a person in a long-term, albeit very nice, relationship the only thing worse than counselling someone through a break-up is listening to them rattle on about the new objective of their affection. The first makes you think Oh God That Could Be Me – the second is much more depressing because you get to think Oh Great That Will Probably Never Be Me Again.

The pain is particularly great in this case because I first met this friend several weeks after he had been booted out of the family home. Which is to say he was miserable, bitter and willing to tell me, quite often, that it didn’t matter how much I thought I loved someone – stay with anyone for long enough and within 20 years you’ll be fighting like two rats in a sack.

Like a non-paedo version of Humbert Humbert my friend’s message was not so much Never Grow Up but Never Fall in Love. It is a line I find myself increasingly keen to bring up now that his heart has started to flutter and cynicism has turned to sunshine and rainbows.

What do you SAY to someone who has fallen in love? “That’s awfully nice”? “I’m very happy for you”? “Let’s all hope it doesn’t end in tears this time around, eh”? What about a plea not to mention a new love until it has soured, maybe just a little?

The sad truth is that I think I prefer ever-so-slightly-unhappy people to very-happy-all-the-time people. Which says, I’m sure, a lot more about me than it does about any of my friends and is, frankly, fairly descpicable. Then again, love means never having to say you’re sorry, right? Right?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Words fail me


A certain friend and colleague of mine found herself in Broome a few weeks ago (along with half of the population of Perth, if my circle of friends is anything to go by). Gallivanting on the beach, clad in a bikini and accompanied by her boyfriend’s niece, said friend spied what everyone else in Broome would soon be busily spying too: Orlando Bloom.

What to do next, given that my friend had both eyes and class? (Well, sort of.) What I mean is that although she certainly had an eye for Orlando she also had some misgivings about draping herself across his chiselled torso (this isn’t my hyperbole: she told me, honest) for a photo.

The solution presented itself in the form of the 4-year-old boyfriend’s niece. Dragging the poor child across they gazed up into Orlando’s startlingly well structured, almost elf-like, face (now this definitely isn’t my hyperbole: he was in the movie and EVERYTHING). Would you, she asked the almost ethereal-in-his-good-looks-especially-with-those-cheekbones-and-the-eye-crinkles (ok, now I’ve just lost it) Orlando, very politely, mind having a photo with my, er, daughter?

Apparently the Fjf###@%fkjldfljdkffbhgm-ing Orlando was a peach and happily chatted to the lucky little toddler bitch while my friend snapped the photo.

A nice story. Which becomes even nicer if you open this week’s OK magazine and turn to page four or so, where a certain “fan" and her "baby” have been snapped posing with Mr B. Oh hilare, I believe my sides have split.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Token Smokin' Hottie: Sam Worthington


I’m really not into muscles. They don’t do it for me on any level. Give me a boy who disappears when he turns sideways and I’ll go a bit weak at the knees. Show me a hip bone protruding above a pair of too-big pants and I’ll begin to pant. This is pretty sick stuff, obviously, and it will come as no surprise to me regular readers (Mum, Dad) but I have always have had a thing for skinny boys.

By contrast, show me a body builder and I throw up a little bit in my mouth. Deliver unto me a finely chiselled specimen with C-cup pecs and I’ll assume he beats his wife and fucks yours.

And yet every so often someone slips past my guard who defies everything I like in a boy. Most of the time I don’t even realise that it’s happening until it’s too late. An idly fancy turns to fancying and before you know it I’m googling someone who looks like he could throw me around like a rag doll, daydreaming about bunched thigh muscles and abs you could cut your fingers on. There’s no rational explanation for this: I call it The Sam Worthington Effect.

NOTE: Yes I did just see finally see Terminator 4 and yes I do find the entire ridiculous plot more believable than *SPOILER* the fact we are being asked to believe that, apparently in 2018, a LONE DOCTOR is capable of doing a motherfucking HEART TRANSPLANT on her husband in the middle of a FUCKING DESERT under a bit of shadecloth. Fuck you, writers, and your figurative dump on our collective chests.

Friday, June 12, 2009

A new low?

Meanwhile a supposed friend, has just sent me a photo of myself, wearing sunglasses (at night) in a pub, drinking wine with a straw. Oh dear.

Emery board

I’m sorry I’ve been a slack blogger this week, I think it’s because I’m bored.

Silly, really, because you would think all this boredom might motivate me to do something but, oh no, it’s quite the opposite.

I liken it to the way a friend of mine talks about the shithole that is, or was, his bedroom. Booted out of the family home, said friend was so depressed he couldn’t be arsed picking up after himself and rather let the bedroom in his new, crappier, home turn to shit. I asked him (yonks ago) why he didn’t get a cat or pretty things up. He said he didn’t want to let himself think the new digs could be permanent. But, of course, the grottier his bedroom got, the worse he felt and the less he did, making the room even grottier.

For me, it’s the same with boredom. When I’m bored and a bit down, nothing, absolutely nothing, interests me. I’m like a petulant child screaming that she wants something, but with no idea what (Sweet? Toy? Nap?) it is that she wants. Just that she wants it immediately.

For my friend it has simply been a matter of bagging a new job and shagging his way around London. For me, neither option is a)viable and b)that appealing.

I tell you this now, readers, because I am a little concerned. I have booked in a haircut for tomorrow afternoon. I need a haircut - my fringe has grown so long I now resemble a slightly dim sheepdog – but I can’t escape a slightly nagging suspicion that having a haircut in my present mood is a mistake. I’m restless, I’m a bit meh, I want something to change. All of which translates, I fear, into a buzz-cut. Or a bob. Or going blonde.

Old friends may recall an ill-advised decision of mine, in my teenage years, to tell my hairdresser to just do whatever she wanted. What she wanted, apparently, was an ear-grazing bob accompanied by a short, blunt fringe that made me look almost exactly like a surprised hedgehog. I went home, locked myself in the bathroom and cut off my hair with a pair of scissors until it was about an inch long all over. Don’t feel sorry for me, feel sorry for Mum: she paid for the haircut.

And now… and now… I can feel the dreaded phrase sliding, once more, towards the tip of the tongue. In the noble tradition of bored teenagers, dumped girlfriends and gormless dullards alike, my lips are preparing to sound out the dreaded phrase: “Go ahead - whatever you want.”

Monday, June 8, 2009

"What the effing crap? That angel guy just felt me up!"

This is random but somehow incredibly amusing. Thanks to Joey for the tip-off:

The little Jerboa that could


There is no way to disguise this as anything other than a 'cute animal pictures post', which is lame, I know. But look at the expression on that little Jerboa's face: just look at the concentration etched all over his or her tiny little face. You can almost hear the little guy/lady whispering "I think I can, I think I can..." Go you magnificent rodent bastard, go!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Form an orderly queue, girls


I try to steer clear of commenting on anything serious on here. Mostly because I don’t know anything about anything and also because I assume my small readership would prefer to stare gormlessly at semi-naked shots of Milo Ventimiglia than here my talk about… you know, anything.

But this story really got up my nose today, and it’s not entirely because my blood sugar is dangerously low and I have this weird unexplained gash on my knee…
HOME & Away actor Lincoln Lewis's mum said she wouldn't want the girl featuring in a sex tape with her son as a daugher-in-law. Jacqui Lewis was interviewed by Nova 969 Sydney and asked about whether she felt disappointed as a mother after the sex tape came to light last night, Perth Now reports:
"I am glad he is not with that girl anymore," Ms Lewis told the Nova drive show team of Ryan, Monty and Wippa.

"I don't want that as a daughter-in -law.

"She must have said she was willing to do it.

"As a female I wouldn't be doing any of that. We keep things. Have a look at Monica Lewinski, she kept the dress."

It’s not that I don’t think sex tapes are both pretty tacky and completely icky but really – is it the 1950s? By which I mean, is some poor boob of a girl really expected to be the one to keep her legs together while her lovable son is just Being A Boy. Ugh, give me a break, Mrs Lewis. Your real concern should be the fact that your son apparently thinks it is appropiate to make a sex tape and then SHOW THE FOOTAGE TO HIS CAST MATES. Or the sad but undeniable fact that his face resembles a sad condom wearing a dyed Raggedy Andy wig. The sight of his wet pink tongue, flopping like a soft cock across his lips makes me want to cry. Or retch. Or both.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Things that probably feel worse than returning to work after a two week holiday:

a) Stacking it so badly while running across the road that your knee resembles an open pot pie.
b) Discovering that your partner of 20 years is actually a long-lost brother.
c) Death. Or, rather, the bit right before you actually die.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Two-volume novel


The sun's gone dim, and
The moon's turned black;
For I loved him, and
He didn't love back.

(Dorothy Parker)

Let me be honest with you...


Look, I could try to come up with a reason for posting this photo. I could make Milo Ventimiglia my latest token smokin' hottie, maybe I could talk about how I'm rewatching the first series of Heroes and remembering how outrageously good it is. But we're all grown-ups now and we know what's going on here: Milo is twelve kinds of hot and I want to have all kinds of babies with him. Until that dream becomes a reality, however, I think some ogling is on the cards.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Thoughts I had while cleaning up my friend's hideous bloody leg wound today*:

1. Ew.
2. This is brilliant: I'm like a World War One nurse over here with my swabs and water and bandages. I mop brows! I plump pillows!
3. Wait, is that blood?

* (Sorry Jerm)

Definition of WTF Shopper's Remorse

Realising you have acquired a pair of WHITE TRACKSUIT PANTS. Um, I swear, it was just really cold in the shops...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Do you expect me, to let you go?


I have been doing a shameless amount of random net perusing this week, procrastinating as ever. This bad habit hasn't got any more writing done but it has thrown up a few beautiful websites I could never have dreamed of. I'd like to introduce you all to World Net Daily and particularly to occasional columnist Jill Stanek.

Apparently Jill is quite well known in certain circles, though I'd never heard of her, so perhaps it's best if I let her words speak for herself and quote from a lovely piece she wrote this year, thoughtfully titled "Italian Abortion Mafia". Let's read on.
"One of the best scenes in the Godfather movie trilogy was in Godfather II, when Kay Corleone (Diane Keaton) told her husband Michael (Al Pacino) she was taking their two children and leaving him. The dialogue:

Michael: Kay, what do you want from me? Do you expect me to let you go? Do you expect me to let you take my children from me? Don't you know me? Don't you know that's an impossibility, that that could never happen, that I'd use all my power to keep something like that from ever happening? Don't you know that? Kay, now in time you'll feel differently. You'll be glad I stopped you now. I know that. I know you blame me for losing the baby. Yes. I know what that meant to you. I'll make it up to you, Kay. I swear I'll make it up to you. I'll … I'm gonna change. I'll change. I've learned that I have the strength to change. And you'll forget about this miscarriage, and we'll have another child, and we'll go on, you and I, we'll go on."
God that is a great scene isn't it? Film critic Antonia Quirke has a lovely take on that line in her wonderful book, Madame Depardieu and the Beautiful Strangers when she describes Pacino's voice as an oboe ("do you expect me, to let you go?"). I really do love that scene. Gosh Jill and I have so much in common. I can tell we're going to be BFF's. More, please...
"Kay: Oh … oh, Michael, Michael, you are blind. It wasn't a miscarriage. It was an abortion, an abortion, Michael! Just like our marriage is an abortion, something that's unholy and evil. I didn't want your son, Michael! I wouldn't bring another one of your sons into this world! It was an abortion, Michael. It was a son, a son, and I had it killed, because this must all end. I know now that it's over. I knew it then. There would be no way, Michael, no way you could ever forgive me, not with this Sicilian thing that's been going on for 2,000 years. …

SLAP.

Michael: You won't take my family!

Kay: I will!

Michael: You won't take my family!

And she doesn't.

That spontaneous slap was the reaction of a real man who a woman had just told she aborted his baby. Compare that to the modern day cowardly male response, "It's your choice. Whatever you decide, I'll support you."

Jill? Jill? I, um, I mean I'm sure you're getting around to making a very good point I'm just not sure exactly how you...
"It was this fierce devotion to family that strangely endeared us to the Corleone men despite their otherwise heinous behavior. In fact, Mafiosos aside, the Italian culture has always evoked thoughts of large, loving families."

Oh. I see: domestic violence is aces. Of course. It all makes sense now.

Friday, May 22, 2009

"Friends do not let friends do crack"

No sooner do I post about ex-boyfriends than one of them sends me this - just about the best argument in favor of staying friends with your exes that I can think of.

New ways I have found to procrastinate after taking 2 weeks off to "get some proper writing done":

1. Spending an hour meandering through Ikea, browsing bath mats.
2. Buying a 'writing table' from Ikea.
3. Looking for screwdriver in order to assemble the table, then getting distracted and cleaning out the kitchen cupboard instead.
4. Assembling table, then trying to find a use for the leftover screws.
5. Eating a plate of cheese because there is nothing else to eat in the fridge.
6. Rewatching Wonder Boys and wondering if there is ANY CHANCE Robert Downey Junior and Tobey Maguuire ever had sex in real life.
7. Googling "Robert Downey Junior" + "ho-yay".
8. Having a cold shower.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Hmmm

SPOTTED: In the 'classics' section of JB Hi Fi's Osborne Park store, nestling alongside How To Marry a Millionaire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: Pierce Brosnan is 007 in... The World is Not Enough. Riiiiight.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Ex factor

An ex-boyfriend got in touch recently. Always nice that. Ex boyfriends, eh: they crop up just when you least expect them to.

Actually, in this case it WAS nice: he is a very sweet guy, an incredibly good-natured person and someone I have been keen to track down for awhile now. Ever since, in fact, it occurred to me that I had treated him appallingly. It would be nice, I have thought many times over the years, to be able to apologise properly for being so young and so dumb. Not an easy thing to launch into, those apologies, and in this case I haven’t got around to it yet.

But the whole thing has got me thinking about how ridiculously easy it is to stuff people about, particularly when you’re young. I never intended to be cruel to this guy or callous with his affections or any of the stuff I did. At the time I didn’t even realise how mean I was. When he told me, a few months after the break-up, how hurt he was that I’d ignored (read: forgotten) his birthday, I thought ‘what’s he complaining about?’ Only years later, by which time I’d had my own heart trampled on a bit, did I consider how gut-wrenching that sort of thing might have been.

Because it’s the little things that count. Most of us have been (I assume) rejected in one way or another, whether it’s being dumped or just coming to the realisation that someone you fancy like mad doesn’t even know your name. Reasonable, rational people can accept, eventually, that somebody doesn’t want to be with them anymore or doesn’t want to go out with them in the first place but it’s the little things – letting your birthday go by unremarked, having no idea what you’re up, never returning calls or texts or emails, even when they’re BARELY stalkerish in nature, cough, cough – that can be absolutely soul-crushing in their perfect illustration of the reality that this person, about whom you think constantly, doesn’t give a toss about you.

Of course things could always be worse. I mean, your partner could be off having creepy group sex surrounded by wanking men. For example.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Indigestion


It is a sad truth that business lunches are only enjoyed by those who do not have to have them very often. As a luxury, a long, wet treat in a Friday celebratory sort of way or an occasional blow-out with people you like, they can be lovely. For someone who is asked to attend several in a week and, occasionally, two in one day, they are about as much fun as making conversation in an elevator with two strangers, one of whom has just farted.

First there is the joviality over the wine. Shall we have some? Only if you want ho ho ho twist my rubber arm he he he. Red or white? One bottle or two? The possibilities are endless. The back-and-forth nauseating. Then because you, unlike everyone else at the table, have to go back to work to file a story, you get to spend the next two hours nursing a glass of increasingly warm white, while the person next to you works up to asking if his niece could possibly do work experience at the paper next month.

If you’re very lucky your lunch is at a restaurant and the food may be quite good. If you’re very unlucky you are eating at a hotel and the food will be sufficiently awful that you spend the entire meal rearranging bits of rubbery polenta beneath your napkin to give the appearance of having just enjoyed a good nosh.

Either way it doesn’t matter too much because you will have about ten free seconds to stuff your face in between answering questions and/or feigning interest in whatever wretched business venture it is that has dragged you out to the Duxton at 1pm on a Tuesday. Waiters who have been clambering to take your plate away since before they set it down pounce the moment you release your grip on the silverware, leaving you the choice of grasping at the plate like a greedy pig or listening to your stomach rumbling throughout the rest of the meal.

Worst of all is the conversation, which usually teeters somewhere between patronising (“you HAVE heard of the Gorgon project?”) and opaque (“…better regulation of CFDs which is, of course, really a matter for the OICDJFKWKFJ@#FJ”), almost invariably with a generous slathering of Boring As Fuck (“…”).

Getting out of there requires a certain amount of luck. By which I mean: good luck getting out of there before everyone at the table has finished two coffees and a small plate of file chewy caramels inexplicably deposited beside you. Even when you do manage to get up out of your chair you’re faced with the inevitable exchange of business cards, during which you a)consider amending all the ‘sixes’ on your card to eights just to avoid ever talking to any of these people ever again, and b) realise you have been calling “Matthew” “Michael” for the past two hours.

Back on the street you either return to face a parking ticket on the company car or spend ten minutes wobbling in heels to attract the attention of a taxi driver. Pray you didn’t choose the latter because, if so, enjoy the fifteen minute ride, during which he tells you exactly what he thinks of your publication, then asks for your opinion on his share portfolio while you feign deafness and wonder idly if he plans to rape and murder you in an alley.

In the office you return with a page of scribbled notes, half covered by a mustard stain, only to be told that the boss isn’t interested in the story anyway and wants you to do something else immediately, by which he means have it filed ten minutes ago.

It’s enough to make you sick to your stomach.