Thursday, October 6, 2016

“You do care a little for me, I know... but nothing to speak of, and you don't love me. I was yours once till death if you'd cared to keep me, but I'm someone else's now... and he's mine in a way that shocks you, but why don't you stop being shocked, and attend to your own happiness.” 
― E.M. ForsterMaurice

Lately I've been...

Reading: Tana French's new novel, The Trespasser, which is the best kind of crime novel in that it's pacey without sacrificing lovely prose. I'm *loving* it. I've also just finished Louise's Penny's Still Life, which was very good, and re-reading Rainbow Rowell's excellent novel Carry On, which is a book that still feels like it's been made just for me.

Listening to: Magnetic Fields' 69 Love Songs. Also just a whole lot of podcasts that are probably too numerous (and in some cases embarassing) to list here.

Watching: Not a hell of a lot, given the lack of both TV and internet at home. But I've been enjoying a bit of Key and Peele and revisiting some old movies. Once I can access Netflix again I'm 100 per cent down with catching up on some Luke Cage action.

Spending my money: Paying down credit card debt before I become underemployed in a matter of days (yikes), buying very boring baby stuff, acquiring half of Bunnings for house reno madness. Breakfasts out and movies continue to be my indulgences but you've got to have *something* to look forward to.

Spending my time: Reading (a tonne), writing (a bit), stressing (a lot), painting (not well) and walking (frequently).

Looking forward to: Maternity leave (without the whole baby bit). A birthday dinner this weekend with buttery pasta. Birthday presents (I know, that sounds gross but I've been so good about not buying myself Fun Stuff lately that I'm just excited by the prospect of New Things). Having house renovations finished (one day).

Wishing: I was sleeping better. Waking up 5+ times a night is not cool unless you're a baby.

Feeling: Happy.

Missing: My books, most of which are packed up in my parents' house. I realise this is a First World Problem but being separated from them and unable to (re)read whatever I want to read when I want to read it is bumming me out. I've resorted to borrowing some old favourites from the library for now.

Vale Tombili

I like this story so much I feel like I maybe couldn't be friends with someone who didn't.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

“What ho!" I said.
"What ho!" said Motty.
"What ho! What ho!"
"What ho! What ho! What ho!"
After that it seemed rather difficult to go on with the conversation.” 

That *shirt*

For some reason, possibly because I'm quite stupid, I've never managed to really get into Michael Chabon's fiction. Much as I want to love it and much as I love his ideas the style of writing and the way he tells the stories has never clicked into place for me.

On the other hand this article he's written for GQ on taking his young son to Fashion Week is just... sublime.
"You are born into a family and those are your people, and they know you and they love you and if you are lucky they even, on occasion, manage to understand you. And that ought to be enough. But it is never enough. Abe had not been dressing up, styling himself, for all these years because he was trying to prove how different he was from everyone else. He did it in the hope of attracting the attention of somebody else—somewhere, someday—who was thesame. He was not flying his freak flag; he was sending up a flare, hoping for rescue, for company in the solitude of his passion."

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Stranger Things

Obviously I've been slacker than slack on the blog front for a whole bunch of reasons but I couldn't walk past this gif, via Rainbow Rowell.

Like everyone else in the world I really got into Netflix's Stranger Things series. I particularly enjoyed what they did with the douchey boyfriend stereotype, as brilliantly articulated in this article. I hate movies where The Girl has a douchey boyfriend and yet it still supposed to be the object of desire for The Boy Hero. If someone is stupid enough to go out with a grade A dickhead does that really make them someone you'd want to date?

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

"I didn't tell you to put the balm on"

As someone who has definitely sniffed a bit about the famous hot coffee case (and snorted at the Seinfeld parody) I found this bit of background, via Rainbow Rowell, eye-opening and appropriately guilt-inducing.

A few things you need to know about this hot coffee case:
  1. It wasn’t an issue of the coffee being because no fucking shit coffee is hot, but McDonald’s had over heated their water to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s 121C. Not just hot, but really FUCKING hot. Your fancy Starbucks lattes are brewed to 150 degrees.
  2. The 79 year old woman had this cup of 250F (121C) coffee between her legs when it spilled so 250F (121C) coffee spilled on her genitals
  3. She got third degree burns…on her genitals. THIRD DEGREE.
  4. She had to have skin grafts to repair the damage
  5. When she sued McDonald’s, it wasn’t for millions of dollars, it was for $20,000 to cover hospital costs and court fees. 20-fucking-thousand.
  6. It was the courts that awarded her the amount of money she got. Again, she only wanted hospital bills and court costs
  7. McDonald’s changed their heating policy, but not beforemaking her sign a gag order keeping her from talking about this case
  8. So she had to live on hearing little shits like you call her stupid and money-grubbing, and other horrendous stuff because she dared ask the company in the wrong to fix what they fucked up.
9. The woman who was burned was not driving the car, she was a passenger.
10. The car was not in motion when she was burned. The car was parked so she could add cream and sugar.
The coffee case is one of the biggest examples of a carefully-crafted smear campaign by a company that is in the wrong trying to hide that.
Additionally, several people had been badly burned by McDonald’s coffee prior to that case, both employees and customers, and McDonald’s had been fined and told to lower the heat of their coffee. They refused to lower the coffee’s heat, continuing to serve a product they KNEW from EXPERIENCE was dangerous, because they could.
When she was burned, she reached out to McDonald’s for them to cover her medical expenses. They sent her a coupon booklet as a big eff yuu.
She required skin grafts not just on her genitals but on her thighs, buttocks, and I think stomach. Like, it was a lot of skin grafts! And did you know that skin grafts don’t always take? She was very severely hurt by a product that McDonald’s knew for a FACT was dangerous.
But nah, go on talking about how she was just foolish and greedy, that’s obviously the case, big corporations have all of our best interest in heart, really they do.
Her name was Stella Liebeck. She has since passed away but I think it’s important to name the victim in this story. Her name was Stella Liebeck and the coffee was so hot that it fused her labia together. It melted her genitals closed. But it’s all just a giant joke, huh?
By the way?
At that point, she had medical bills of over $11,000. She was anticipating more. She didn’t have much money.She just wanted McDonald’s to pay for the damage their coffee had done so that she could get medical treatment. Seems reasonable, right?
And there weren’t several people who were burned before Liebeck. It was a LOT worse than that.
During discovery, McDonalds produced documents showing more than 700 claims by people burned by its coffee between 1982 and 1992Some claims involved third-degree burns substantially similar to Liebeck[’]s. This history documented McDonalds’ knowledge about the extent and nature of this hazard. 
So McDonald’s knew that their coffee was burning people–in some cases, causing third-degree burns. They knew it for TEN YEARS. And they did nothing about it.
Oh, and the jury award?
The jury awarded Liebeck $200,000 in compensatory damages. This amount was reduced to $160,000 because the jury found Liebeck 20 percent at fault in the spill. The jury also awarded Liebeck $2.7 million in punitive damages, which equals about two days of McDonalds’ coffee sales. 
The trial court subsequently reduced the punitive award to $480,000 – or three times compensatory damages – even though the judge called McDonalds’ conduct reckless, callous and willful. 
So all of the jokes about how rich Liebeck got off the settlement? Nope. McDonald’s ended up not even having to pay most of it.
Nancy Tiano says her mother was “never happy about the incident” and that “the burns and court proceedings took their toll.” During her final years, Tiano says, her mother had no quality of life. The good news is that the settlement helped to ease the end of her life by paying for a live-in nurse. 
That’s where the money went. For medical care. 
Don’t forget that the REASON that they serve their coffee at DANGEROUSLY high temperatures (Injuring literally thousands of customers) is because coffee brewed and kept at those DANGEROUSLY HIGH temperatures tastes fresher longer, so less undrunk coffee has to be thrown out throughout the day, so McDonalds can MAKE MORE PROFIT on their damn coffee sales. 

Friday, June 10, 2016

"But you wanted tea last night..."

This British video equating tea and sexual consent is... really quite good.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

"You're playing a very dangerous game of chicken with the head fucking hen, 'cause if I don't win the White House, O'Brien is gonna sink your stupid boats and you're gonna look like a hair-sprayed asshole in your 1980s mother-of-the-bride dress. And if I do win, I will have my administration come to your shitty little district and shake it to death like a Guatemalan nanny. And then I'm gonna have the IRS crawl so far up your husband's colon, he's gonna wish the only thing they find is more cancer."
"Good God."
"So can I count on your vote? Or do I need to shove a box of White House M&Ms up your stretched-out six-baby vag?"
Why aren't you watching, Veep, exactly?

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Lately I've been...

Reading: Bellweather Rhapsody, which I am absolutely loving. Also The Whites, which I know is supposed to be THE GREATEST crime novel for years but which I am seriously struggling to get into. Prolly 'cos I'm stupid.

Listening to: The Hamilton soundtrack. Yes, still, and I know that's sad. For some reason I just haven't been listening to much music lately and I'm not sure why.

Watching:  Silicon Valley (funny and charming), Veep (ditto) and... okay I wasn't going to admit this but I started watching some Netflix trash called Good Witch on the weekend while I was cooking and I... can't stop. It's not even slightly good. I can't recommend it to ANYONE. And the lead actress has had so much plastic surgery her face is simultaneously mesmerising and terrifying. And yet...

Spending my money: Almost exclusively on going out for breakfasts and dinners. In all other areas of my life I am pinching pennies and cutting back but life without a Sayers muffin or a burger from Flipside is no life at all.

Spending my time: Reading (I'm on a real jag of good books at the moment, long may it continue), getting fat (well...), running (not that fat) and trying to write a new terrible novel in the month of June (so far so good in that it is indeed terrible).

Looking forward to: A two week holiday at home with absolutely nothing planned. Also: moving house... at some point in the near future, I'm assured.

"20 minutes of action" or as some people like to call it "rape"

If you're wondering why my blood is boiling over this particular rape case when, you know, there are lots of horrible rape cases that happen all the time, the answer is basically: this.

Also, am I a gross perv for thinking that one of the guys who came to the victim's aid that night is, um, kinda hot? I'm sorry, I'll show myself out.

The FB post below comes via Rainbow Rowell and, yeah: word.

Monday, June 6, 2016

How old are you? How much do you weigh? What did you eat that day? Well what did you have for dinner? Who made dinner? Did you drink with dinner? No, not even water? When did you drink? How much did you drink? What container did you drink out of?

I am not a weeper and I'm particularly not a weeper at work but JESUS this victim's statement from the girl who was raped behind a dumpster by a 19-year-old she'd never met had me speedwalking to the bathroom. If that sounds like super grim stuff you don't want to hear I'd urge you to read the whole thing here anyway:
Your Honor, if it is all right, for the majority of this statement I would like to address the defendant directly. You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today. On January 17th, 2015, it was a quiet Saturday night at home. My dad made some dinner and I sat at the table with my younger sister who was visiting for the weekend. I was working full time and it was approaching my bed time. I planned to stay at home by myself, watch some TV and read, while she went to a party with her friends. Then, I decided it was my only night with her, I had nothing better to do, so why not, there’s a dumb party ten minutes from my house, I would go, dance like a fool, and embarrass my younger sister. On the way there, I joked that undergrad guys would have braces. My sister teased me for wearing a beige cardigan to a frat party like a librarian. I called myself “big mama”, because I knew I’d be the oldest one there. I made silly faces, let my guard down, and drank liquor too fast not factoring in that my tolerance had significantly lowered since college.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

My day in a nutshell

Legitimately believed for one terrifying moment I had grown a new, tiny bone behind my knee before I realised I'd dropped a bobby pin down my tights.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Between Love and Hate

Things I am loving 

Breakfast with the papers at Sayers. I swing between worrying this is a terrible, overly indulgent, habit and feeling like it is a necessary ritual to remain sane and happy.

Avocado. All hail the mighty green beast: I can’t get enough mashed on toast or stuffed into a toastie lately.

The novels of Toni Jordan. Since stumbling onto “Fall Girl” because I thought the cover looked cool (…) I’ve been devouring her back catalogue and loving it. ‘Tis bloody hard to find any writer who does funny and romantic well, let alone an Aussie.

The hot chips from Flipside Burger. Simply none better and I speak as someone who has sampled EXTENSIVELY. If you like aoli, which tragically I can’t eat right now, you have the perfect accompaniment.

The Hamilton soundtrack (yes, still).

Running. Still. Just. Despite having to cut back on my pace and distances a bit lately I still find that the best days of my life begin with a run. There is simply no better feeling than finishing a long run and thinking "fuck I'm going to enjoy this giant plate of pancakes now". Is that... wrong?

Things I am hating

People posting endless (posed) wedding photos on social media. My GOD it’s just one fucking day, enough already please.

Perpetual tardiness. Get a watch, look at your phone or at least pretend to give a shit about other people’s time – I don’t care which.

Headaches. Specifically: my headaches. Why do  you torment me so?

Cold mornings. I love a cold night when I’m snuggled under the doona but when the alarm goes off at 5.30am and it’s freezing my body just does not want to get out of bed.

My inability to find a) my DVD copy of Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, or b) a version of this online, not even for ready money. If you're uncertain why I love this so much the photo above might help you work it out.

Pinching pennies. True, I'm not exactly doing it tough in that I still spend money going out for breakfasts, dinners and to the movies because these are the things that, for me, make life worth living. But maaaaaaaaan it would be nice to buy a new pair of beautiful heels or a wet weather running jacket or a million books some time soon.
From McSweeney's, which you should really check out all the time.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

“It is easy to be heavy: hard to be light.”

(G.K Chesterton)

Monday, May 16, 2016

Token Smokin'... Hottie?: The difficult case of Lin-Manuel Miranda

My feelings about Lin-Manuel Miranda are complex. By which I mean I can’t entirely decide if I want to do terrible things to him or just be his best friend and hang out, maybe write some songs together*.

Physically he ticks some boxes, particularly with his delightful smile. That’s a non-negotiable for me: I’m pretty sure I have never fancied someone who didn’t have a great smile. He also has dark hair, great skin and generally seems chill-as-hell and charming, all of which I care for greatly. At the same time his head does… sort of resemble a potato and when he wears his hair out it... doesn't really work for me.  At all. Also, I’m not trying to be cruel here, but he does have a borderline Dawsonesque fivehead and the less said about his facial hair the better. 

If I wasn’t so weak at the knees for Hamilton and I passed him in the street would I fancy him? I’m really not sure.

For me it comes down to this hypothetical scenario: LMM and I are hanging out in a bar. We’re having a great time as he tells me stories about writing an incredibly successful Broadway musical and I show him pictures of my cat. It’s a real meeting of minds. At the end of the night we agree to catch up to see a movie soon and…

Here’s the thing. If I don’t fancy him and this is just an I-admire-you-greatly sort of a thing then I’m happy to go home to my own bed. If I do fancy him I’ll be deeply unhappy if he doesn’t manage to stick his tongue down my throat before we part ways. This is science, people, this is a scientific process right here.

Verdict? I'm disappointed to be heading home solo, which I'm pretty sure means I do in fact fancy him. So that’s nice to know. Aren't you glad we took this journey together?

*By which I mean he writes songs while I sit quietly.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Although I have some way less wholesome stuff in mind, too

If Tom Hiddleston were your boyfriend, when he talked in his sleep he would say things like, “The clockwork! The clockwork!” and “I’m not just a creature of your imagination!” He would never recall any of these statements when he woke up.
They've got it nailed over at The (soon to be closed) Toast.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Call me

Most of the time I'm 99 per cent sure I couldn't be with someone who was religious because I'm a committed atheist and to take organised religion seriously just seems so dumb (not discounting the genuinely terrific community work some churches do). But then I hear the thing Brandon Flowers does to his voice when he sings the line "looking for the answer" while wearing his crazy-awesome feather jacket and having that FACE and I think what's a little Mormonism between friends, eh?

Unreal news

For fans of season one of Unreal (AND WHY WOULDN'T YOU BE?) this is very exciting.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

How long has it been since you saw Tootsie?

If you have to think about it, it may have been too long.

"Chunts up with that?"

The podcast Hello From the Magic Tavern is... maybe not for everyone. If you're a cold, heartless monster who hates to laugh, for example, it may not be for you. If not... well get onboard. It's delightful.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

First world problems

Is it racist and/or offensive to tell someone he looks like Lin-Manuel Miranda? Because there's a waiter at Vans who looks a shiteload like him and I mean that in a good way - I think LMM is fiiiiiiiiiine - but it feels vaguely racist in the vein of that Seinfeld episode where George thinks his black boss looks like Sugar Ray Leonard.

I opted for silence. Always the safe choice.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Things I miss out about not living in my neighbourhood right now:

1. Breakfasts at Sayers. Okay, yes, I have still gone to Sayers several times since moving out two weeks ago but when I lived on the same freakin' street as this lovely cafe I was there... a lot. I miss my chocolate muffins and reading the paper before work for no reason other than I needed a little pick-me-up.

2. My running park. I run several times a week and most of those runs, with the exception of a weekend long run, used to be taken at a local park. Not only was this park the perfect distance for a 7km run it was always busy, even very early in the morning, so I felt safe. Now I run along the beach, which is nice and all but somehow feels about 100 per cent more creepy. Plus it's always windy as shit, what's up with that?

3. Being close to my life; the cafes and shops, friends, my library and gym. My whole life is set up around my old 'hood and frankly driving 20 minutes at 5.30am to get to a body pump class on the other side of town really isn't happening. Not today, anyway.

4. Proximity to work. This isn't even just about the daily commute, although that is a bear, but the convenience of being able to pop home in my lunchbreak when I forget my lunch, meds or laptop, which... seems to happen a fair bit actually.

5. The twinge of hope I get coming home and thinking maybe, just maybe, Mr Whiskerley will have found his way home today.

Disclaimer: Lest I sound ungrateful I should mention that my lovely brother-in-law and his wife are doing Andy and I a HUGE solid in allowing us to stay in their home while we're between houses. Seriously, I am endlessly grateful and not being able to stuff my gob with chocolate muffins five times a day is a very small price to pay.

“you’ll be han solo, i’ll be boba fett. I’ll cross the sky for you”

Via Rainbow Rowell this is just terrific

Eat me

People sometimes ask me why I'm veggo - after 15 years it's really only people I've just met - and I usually mutter something about "animal welfare" and insist that it doesn't bother me at all if they want to order a steak sandwich (which it seriously doesn't). 

The truth is that animal welfare is a huge part of it but there's also another element to my decision that I find hard to articulate. It's the reason I wouldn't eat a chicken even if it's spent most of its life running around a field, happy as Larry. The way I usually describe this element of my reasoning, assuming the person who asked hasn't moved on already, is that I don't want to cause pain/fear/death to animals if I don't have to and in 2016 pretty much nobody has to eat meat. But today I came across a sort-of lovely line in an old Jack Monroe column that said it much better for me.

Quoting an old Indian cookbook Monroe wrote: 
Ayurveda, the ancient Hindu wisdom for health, is described by Panjabi as the single greatest influence on Indian cuisine. “Flesh has the force of violence in it, and the negative emotions of fear and hatred … it has no place in the sattvic diet.”
Bammo, that's so very much it for me. I can no longer imagine sitting down to a nice piece of chicken or steak or bacon - however much I do from time-to-time think fondly of the taste and the sheer bloody ease of eating meat - without thinking about the pain and fear that had brought the meat to my plate.

Of course I'm vegetarian, not vegan, which makes me a hypocrite but if I can't be self-righteous and hypocritical on my own tiny blog then where can I be?

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

The least professional thing I said to a work contact today:

"Uh I'm just going to pick up a Nutella doughnut while I'm here."

I regret nothing.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Bad life choices I made today:

Eating approximately one-quarter of a jar of sun-dried tomatoes for absolutely no reason. And I don't meant I ate them as an accompaniment to crackers or cheese or anything that would make sense. I ate them with a fork, right out of the jar like a savage and it was not beautiful.

Dear Andy Samberg,

I fell for you in Celeste and Jesse Forever because that is my idea of a perfect romantic movie and I love the fact you're with Joanna Newsom but when you are like this my love for you finds a way to grow deeper.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

"We want you to be cool, and silent, like a real cocktail waiter."

I read my first Helen Garner book this month, This House of Grief. How embarrassing to have spent so many years thinking of myself as A Big Reader and never having read a word of Garner. I am, truly, a boob.

Now, as is often the way with these things, Garner seems to be everywhere because she has a new book of essays out. Financial constraints mean I won't be rushing out to buy it (I'm sorry, Helen) but I will be putting down my name at the library. In the not-too-distant future I hope and trust to have it in my hot little hands.

Meanwhile, I (and you) can enjoy Garner's so good essay on ageing over at The Monthly for nothing. Seriously, if this doesn't make you want to read more of her work she's probably not for you. Also you may be a lunk:
The insults of age had been piling up for so long that I was almost numb to them. The husband (when I still had one): “You’re not going out in that sleeveless top?” The grandchild: “Nanna, why are your teeth grey?” The pretty young publisher tottering along in her stilettos: “Are you right on these stairs, Helen?” The flight attendant at the boarding gate: “And when you do reach your seat, madam, remember to stow that little backpack riiiight under the seat in front of you!” The grinning red-faced bloke who mutters to the young man taking the seat beside me: “Bad luck, mate.” The armed child behind the police station counter unable to conceal her boredom as I describe the man in a balaclava, brandishing a baton, who leapt roaring out of the dark near the station underpass and chased me and my friend all the way home: “And what were you scared of? Did you think he might hit you with his umbrella?”

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Things I would give up for the return of my absent kitty

1. Black heroin.

2. Hot baths.

3. Ben & Jerry's Phish Food.

4. The films of Woody Allen.

Preach, brother!

Related: Is it weird that my crush was always on Mark Hamill, who spends half the first Star Wars movie cruising around in lame white pajamas, and not Harrison Ford who, I think we can all agree, shits charisma and was once a very good-looking dude?

Monday, March 28, 2016

Thursday, March 24, 2016

"Smells like new money, dresses like fake royalty"

"Should we honour our treaty, King Louis' head?" 
"Uh do whatever you want, I'm super dead."
I realise I'm pretty late to the party when it comes to recognising that Hamilton is a thing and I am not the kind of person who has ever listened to a cast album of a musical without having seen the musical but... this is the exception because man it is a lot of fun.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

"I am the best goddamn dancer in the American Ballet"

Not ashamed to admit (okay a little ashamed) that my first thought on seeing an episode of Flesh and Bone was "hey it's that guy from Centre Stage". In a related note, how many virgins has Sascha Radetsky been sacrificing on a daily basis because, you know, time has been kind.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Reason #35 why Rahul Kohli and I are destined to be together:

He no dummy.

Also, real talk, the other 34 reasons mostly relate to his amazing hair. Oh, would that I could tell you the things I would do to that hair.

Monday, March 14, 2016

"You insist on dropping hints to your guests about Bunny’s “frightfully interesting time during the war.” Bunny is glowering."

As a saddo Christie fan who has read and re-read most of her novels and seen more adaptations of those novels than I'm prepared to admit, I sort of love this Toast particle on signs Agatha Christie might be thinking about bumping you off.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

He was Russell Crowe's Stooge

You might think you don't care about Russell Crowe or about journalist Jack Marx. Until last night I pretty much felt the same way. Then the charming Annabel Crabb/Leigh Sales podcast, Chat 10 Looks 3, alerted me to the existence of THIS 8-year-old article and I read it and now I want you to read it too. Seriously: bizarre, very amusingly-written ("like a little boy asked his age by the king, I told him") and just... I don't even know how to describe the circumstances of events it describes so read it now, thank me later.
"It was March 2005 when the Oscar-winning movie star called me. He had read an article I had written - something about how the celebrity magazines make up lies - and had tracked down my number. He wanted to meet over lunch. He asked me if I could be trusted. The last thing he wanted to see in the papers, he said, was some story about my lunch with Russell Crowe. I told him not to worry. I wouldn't want to read that story either."

Monday, March 7, 2016

"You’re great. But if you were just a liiiiitttle bit more like everyone else, you’d be better."

I think number one of this list of worst lessons learned from 90s teen movies - that if you like someone enough, you’re totally deserving of and entitled to their affections - is my favourite because: WORD. But, real talk, they're all pretty good.

Summer Skin: this week's book recommendation.

Someone, somewhere is looking after me because lately I have been reading a string of great books, all by authors I've never read before. Surely I'm due for a stinker but please let my run continue a bit longer - it's bloody terrific.

The latest of these is Kirsty Eagar's Summer Skin, which I picked up for a whole $1 in a work book sale. I thought Summer Skin would be a bit of fun, and it is, but it's also the feminist love story I really didn't know I was looking for. Somehow Eager has written a romp that's hot, funny and just lots and lots of fun. I'm not getting carried away - this is not a book I'll be re-reading for years to come - but should you happen to find yourself in need of a little somethin' somethin' with which to curl up, you could do a lot worse.


A disclaimer: obviously there's nothing more boring than someone else's dreams blah blah blah.

But seriously what does it say about me that I had a terrifying nightmare last night that was not about dinosaurs or serial killers but about getting too drunk at a work party and mildly disgracing myself? Nothing... good, I feel.

Monday, February 29, 2016

This is just a really nice column over at the New York Times:
“Light Years,” James Salter writes: “For whatever we do, even whatever we do not do prevents us from doing its opposite. Acts demolish their alternatives, that is the paradox.” 

Sunday, February 28, 2016

"Can you fucking believe this guy?"

What's that you say? For some reason you haven't checked out these Women Rejecting Marriage Proposals in Western Art? Friend, you are missing out. Get into it over here at The Toast.

well you’re too late, Richard
I’m a lesbian now

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Places I got chocolate icing while making this vegan chocolate cake

1. My face.

2. My hands.

3. The white sugar flowers that were supposed to adorn it.

4. The floor.

5. The bench top.

6. The oven.

7. The oven door.


9. The cookbook.

10. The keyboard of this laptop.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Overheard in the Office

“Sure he’s got a mental illness now. If you’re on coke for 15 years you’re going to give yourself a mental illness.”

Monday, February 15, 2016

These are a few of my least favourite things

Mondays (Garfield and I are so alike that way).

Rudeness (Really? I mean really?).

Insomnia (Zzzzz).



Blood tests.

More blood tests.

So many blood tests.

Horrible, insensitive awful people (Seriously what is wrong with you?)

“There was a sad fellow over on a bar stool talking to the bartender, who was polishing a glass and listening with that plastic smile people wear when they are trying not to scream.” 

“He wasn't a complete human being at all. He was a tiny bit of one, unnaturally developed; something in a bottle, an organ kept alive in a laboratory. I thought he was a sort of primitive savage, but he was something absolutely modern and up-to-date that only this ghastly age could produce. A tiny bit of a man pretending to be whole.” 

“Life is much more successfully looked at from a single window.” 

“It didn't matter in the end how old they had been, or that they were girls, but only that we had loved them, and that they hadn't heard us calling, still do not hear us, up here in the tree house, with our thinning hair and soft bellies, calling them out of those rooms where they went to be alone for all time, alone in suicide, which is deeper than death, and where we will never find the pieces to put them back together.” 

“I wrote at the start that this was a record of hate, and walking there beside Henry towards the evening glass of beer, I found the one prayer that seemed to serve the winter mood: 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 forever.” 

“You do care a little for me, I know... but nothing to speak of, and you don't love me. I was yours once till death if you'd cared to keep me, but I'm someone else's now... and he's mine in a way that shocks you, but why don't you stop being shocked, and attend to your own happiness.” 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Things I thought but did not say to the dude at the park this morning:

Mate. I mean maaaate, what are you doing?

I'm sure that's your kid playing on the playground right there and a good time he's having too. Also I think it sucks that society's knee jerk reaction is too often to regard dudes hanging around playgrounds as would-be paedos.

That much said. If you're going to hang out inside the fenced-off playground waiting for your kid and you don't want people to give you Side Eyes you should maybe consider doing the following:

1. Put on your shirt.

2. Stop doing planks.

3. If you must do shirtless planks on the grounds maybe at least turn around so you're facing the fucking playground.

Thankyou and good day.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Things I want to say to my work colleagues

"If you've noticed me driving in or out of work lately and you're concerned I'm maybe living out of my car and am not okay please don't worry about me: I've got some home opens going on right now and this is my attempt to get all the random clutter out of the apartment and... into my car. Honest. I swear."

Don't get me started on the day I realised my calorie count for Cadbury Creme Eggs was out by 30. Dark times.

This article over at The Atlantic on calories was an interesting read that nonetheless left me agreeing with this random reader's comment more than anything else:

It reminded me of the old saying that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the rest. Counting calories is the worst way to lose weight, except for all the rest.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

"He was irrelevant: a waste of tailoring and education."

I don't often link to Nick Lezard's frequently-excellent "Down and Out" column for the New Statesman, although I do read it, because pimping out the work of someone I consider a friend seems a bit gross somehow. Still, this week's installment is worth a link if only so you too can enjoy hearing someone described as "a meat-based conduit between the screen on his desk and the customer".

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Completely insane things I said on the weekend

"I think I just need to calm down... I'm going to Ikea."

Monday, January 25, 2016

Something to remind myself that I'm a moron whenever I think I just don't really like Dylan

Real talk: he has never looked better to me.

some days I remember that in the wonder woman film, chris pine is gonna look like a beautiful butch hipster lesbian cosplaying amelia earhart and everything is okay
Via hellotailor 

Friday, January 22, 2016


Not proud to say it's now basically my life mission to recreate this Cadbury Creme Egg toastie.

It never works. Trust me.

This anonymous column over at The Guardian, Asymmetric Love, is kind of fascinating. It should probably be printed out to keep for emergencies if you're the kind of person who thinks you deserve closure, which is really just a way of saying you're still super into someone and you wish they were still super into you.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Lost Garmin: The Stages of Grief

1. Hmm I must have put it somewhere else. I'll have a look for it later.

2. Strange, it's not here either... or here. But it must be...

3. ... somewhere, right? RIGHT? I MEAN IT HAS TO BE SOMEWHERE.

4. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up. It'll turn up.