Sunday, February 28, 2010

Avenue Q: It Sucks to Be Me

Did you grow up watching Sesame Street?
Do you now think Bert and Ernie have some unresolved homosexual tension between the?
Did you think the Cookie Monster had an unnatural fetish for cookies and the letter C?

Are you now all grown up and wondering where your life is going and trying to cope with all the challenges it throws at you?

If so then get yourself along to Avenue Q. Yes, it's a musical and I understand that not everyone is a big fan of the musical. But this is a musical for people who might not even like musicals. Songs about racism, pornography and the internet, sex, sexuality and more with a mixture of actors, and actors with puppets. It's fabulous, fantastic and really difficult to explain why to anyone who hasn't seen it. But here's one of the less M/R rated songs. Enjoy. And then if you live in Brisbane make it your business to get yourself a ticket. You won't regret it.

Wendy's Week of TV 2.0: We return to our regularly scheduled programming next week

Wendy's Week of TV 2.0 is on hiatus this week for a couple of reasons.
1. Work has been mad which means rather than watching TV with intent and purpose I have been falling asleep in front of it.

2. I didn't watch anything particularly interesting or different compared to the last few weeks.

3. I have spent the weekend in Brisbane seeing Avenue Q...and madly shopping.

This post will address the shopping. Next post will address the musical.

Chermside. Sunday morning.

First of all, consider this: In Bundaberg we do not have official Sunday trading. Any kind of shopping is a treat on a Sunday.

Second, Chermside is massive, and clearly designed to confuse consumers into buying things they don't really need. I went there with one thing on my mental shopping list - a big bag of green vanilla tea from the T2 shop.

I came away with the following:

A big bag of green vanilla tea from the T2 shop
One pair of i love billy flowery shoes.
One pair of 5 dollar silver earrings. I suspect they may not be sterling silver.
One big colourful bracelet
One new nightie from Sussans
One long bright floral skirt

I restrained myself from entering the Apple store because there is a fair chance I would have whacked a new laptop on my credit card.

We got lost quite frequently and strangely managed to run into two other lots of people from Bundaberg in the space of half an hour.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I am distinctly uninteresting at the moment

I am distinctly uninteresting at the moment and I'm blaming it on work which is Crazy. Teaching starts next week for which I am also distinctly unprepared. This may have something to with the phone which never stops ringing and the email which never stops dinging. Working with a bridging program is slightly different to teaching in Proper University Programs. Our students don't just appear in our classes through the magic of QTAC. They ring us directly with their initial inquiry, then they come onto campus and do an assessment. This assessment is then marked and then they all come back one by one for an interview at which time I tell whether they have a place in the program or not. Then they come back for two Orientation days before they start the program proper next week. All this takes lots of paperwork, phone calls (thank goodness for amazing administration staff) and general organisation type stuff. This year on the Bundaberg campus we are starting three classes of 29 students each. We are Full to the Brim in terms of numbers.

And don't even get me started on the External version of the program which it is my job at present to coordinate as well. This involves even more inquiries (we have probably had 500 inquiries) that will translate into approximately 250 students. They ring, they email, they do an assessment which is sent out to them, then sent back to us and we mark it. We then have to a phone interview with each one of them. Then we send them multitudes of letters/paperwork some of which has to be returned. And then we sweat bullets as to whether the organisation to which the university in its wisdom has outsourced the printing of resource materials will actually get the study packages delivered to students once we enrol them. So capturing one student is something like a minimum 3 week process. Times that by 250 all happening at once and just imagine the fun it produces.

So with the days consisting of endless queries like "when will my books arrive", "when am I getting my ID card", "my password won't work", "can I get an enrolment advice for Centrelink" there's really been not much time for thinking interesting thoughts about anything.

I get home every afternoon and promptly fall asleep on the lounge for anything up to an hour.

Oh yes, it's quite the life. Bring on the teaching I say.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Wendy's Week of TV 2.0: Donna is my favourite. So there.

If it's Sunday morning it must be time for Wendy's week of TV 2.0.
If it's not Sunday then I look like a bit of an eejit and you've no doubt stopped reading this post already.
Let's get to business and see what I watched this week.

Sunday: Well of course it was the Doctor which concludes tonight. For indepth commentary and insightful analysis I once again direct you to Circulating Library. For my own observations I will just say that:
1.I adore John Simms playing the villainous Master
2. What is going to happen tonight??? I can barely contain my excitement and sadness.
3. Donna is my favourite of all the companions. So there.

I then watched Bones and recorded Monty Python. Dr Brennan wears interesting earrings for a lead TV character I think. Because I am a recent convert to Bones, I'm wondering who the new guy is in the lab? I need to watch a few more episodes before I can offer anything more insightful than that I'm afraid. Apart from the obvious - David Boreanz is quite easy on the eye.

Monday: I ate my dinner and watch Monty Python which also concludes tonight. It was all very interesting. How sad that they all look so old now. I was impressed with Steve Coogan's ability to recite sketches word for word. I like Monty Python but I'm not that much of a fan. How interesting to see the seeds of Basil Fawlty in almost every character John Cleese played. No-one does a frustrated, uptight, seething Brit like him.
Then while I was at choir I recorded the good ole Big Bang Theory. It wasn't the strongest of episodes but Sheldon's involuntary imitation of his Texan parents having an argument was worth an actual laugh out loud. Good work!

Tuesday: Big Love. They were all on some kind of pilgrimage holiday across the country. I missed the first five minutes so I had to catch up as it went along. Anyway long story short, the daughter had a miscarriage, the son has a crush on Margie and poor Bill got left behind at a picnic area. It doesn't sound that interesting but trust me, really it is.

Wednesday: I took a stand. Well it was more like a half a stand and did not watch Spicks and Specks. I did have it on the background while I faffed on the computer. And you know what, I didn't have the urge to turn around once. This is disappointing as I used to like Spicks and Specks a lot. To win me back they will have to stop their own faffing about between games and pick up the pace. Come on please people or I have fears for your future. You will either be cancelled or sold to Channel 10. And no-one wants to see either of those outcomes.

Then I turned off Hungry Beast. Is that program supposed to be comedy. If so there's two explanations.
1. It's not
2. I'm old and way out of it's demographic.
Or perhaps it's a little bit of both.

I did sit down at 9:30 and enjoy the IT Crowd though. While Roy and Moss tried to be Real Men (and failed miserably), Jen found herself dating a man who looked like a magician. Excellent.

Thursday: I continued my half-hearted watching of The Seven Ages of Rock. This week was British Indie music. It was all about The Smiths apparently...and then Oasis. WHAT? I may be missing something in my understanding of RAWK history but how a whole program devoted to British music from the late 70s until the mid 90s cannot mention The Cure once seems a little baffling. Are they somehow considered mainstream? I would not have thought so.

Friday: I attempted to watch some television but after a full day of Orientation of our new students I was exhaustipated and fell asleep by 7:30 in front of the television, missing Colbert and Father Ted completely. I set the recorder for Breaking Bad and was in bed by 9 with a headache.

Saturday: I caught some Winter Olympics, watching the endless repeats of the shiny toothed Mormon snowboarder winning a gold medal. Well done etc. My goodness though, is it just me or is that ice dancing excruciatingly boring? And I continued to marvel at the danger of the "sliding" sports. This week it is the Skeleton. Where it gets its name from I do not know, but it looks freaking scary.

Then at the advice of Catriona at Circulating Library and Cindy 2paw I had recorded Burn Notice on Wednesday. Fast, enjoyable, voiceover narration always a plus. I understand nothing technical but I'm sure you can actually turn a mobile phone into a listening device...somehow. I shall try to remember to record again.

Rockwiz: repeat but nevertheless entertaining. Tina Arena hey. I watched a lot of Young Talent Time as a young person. Both Tina and I have aged somewhat since those days. She is still tiny though. And the guy from the Tea Party. Not a fan, but the duet at the end was pretty good.

And I have still to watch Breaking Bad.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Boiled Egg : Domestic Goddess Take 2

For those of you concerned about my ability to successfully boil an egg, remove it from the stove, and then place it in the fridge overnight, so it's ready in all its eggy goodness to be added to my big salad, let me put your minds at rest.

I am right now (as I post) in the midst of this complicated kitchen operation which should be completed at 17:30 hours. The salad is already made and in the fridge alongside one of my Rolf Harris instructed serves of fruit (watermelon and blueberries). All that is left is for me to take said egg, (once it's finished boiling) place it on a saucer and put it in the fridge. Easy. I'm sure even Nigella could manage that. Although please note, I am not wearing a fitting twin set cardigan thing that flatters my surprisingly curvy figure. Neither have I long wavy dark tresses. I am not, and I stress this most of all, looking sultry while a television camera, somewhat strangely is watching me boil the egg in my trendy kitchen.

I guess that's another domestic goddess fail moment for me.

A Valentine's card from days of yore

Ah Valentine's do I usually detest thee for your commercialisation and for your implied marginalisation of singletons like myself? But then this morning I recalled a time long ago when I was far younger and far less cynical. It was a time when I wouldn't have scoffed at couples who engaged in the ultimate cliche of proposing and/or getting married on Valentine's Day. (Truth be told I'm probably very envious of them but let's not dwell on that).

It was a time when I was a young whipper snapper doing a music degree in Toowoomba, with lovely thoughtful friends who sent me this.

Two things remain the same in the intervening years:
1. My faithful fandom to They Might Be Giants
2. These friends who I lost for over a decade but through the invention of the internet and facebook, now are found again.

We have all changed in many many ways since the writing, sending and receiving of this card. But in other ways, we are still the same.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Wendy's Week of TV 2.0: too much Kurt Cobain is barely enough apparently

Look at the television screen for one full week. Compared to last week was it
1. better
2. worse
3. much the same

Answer: Much the same

I continue my resistance to The Biggest Loser and do not feel like there is anything missing from my life.

Sunday: Let Freedom Sing: How Music Inspired the Civil Rights Movement ABC2
I was excited to see this was being repeated because I missed it the first time whenever that was. Unfortunately for me, I had a big headache, took two panadol just before it started and managed to miss most of it. Fortunately for me, by some miracle of forethought I had decided to record it. So I actually watched it last night when there was NO MORE TORCHWOOD and therefore Friday night was pretty slim pickings. Anyhoo, long story short, if there's a music documentary to be had I'll give it a go, and this was an interesting one. I had goosebumps by the time they got to 1968 and the deaths of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy. And Pete Seeger seems like a beautiful, wise and humble elder statesman of the folk, protest music scene. An interview with Bob Dylan would have been nice but we know that's unlikely. Watch Scorcese's No Direction Home if you want to see the man speak about himself. I highly recommend that too. Most interesting was that it took the history right up to the present day (well almost present day) with some thoughtful commentary from Chuck D. I have new respect for the man.

Then in some channel flipping I found I was missing Bones with guest appearance by Mr Stephen Fry. I have inadvertently developed an attraction to Bones despite earlier misgivings, but frequently forget when it's on.

Monday: The Big Bang Theory
You either love this show (me) or you hate it (some other people). The Jinxster and I had a retrospective mini marathon on Thursday evening complete with Thai Takeaway eaten in the lounge (almost like they do in the show). We are Fans. That is all. (Bazinga is implied....HAHAHAHA)

Tuesday: Big Love
Oh dear, in the space of one episode Ana became a wife and then asked for a divorce. And Bill's shady business dealings continue to cause problems for him. Leetle bit too much melodrama this week, but fas-ki-nating nonetheless.

Wednesday: Spicks and Specks
I gave it another go, after my Spicks and Specks reservations from last week's return. The reservations remain. They are starting to stuff around too much inbetween games and questions. There's no time for that in a half hour show peoples. Please don't make me leave you the way I had to leave Good News Week. Make it sharp, snappy, and about the music questions. Please!!!

Thursday: The Seven Ages of Rock
Well it presented itself as the Age of American Indie Rock but really the whole thing was about Kurt Cobain. Kurt, Kurt and more Kurt. It was like there was no independent music before or after Kurt in America. Many would beg to differ I imagine. Don't get me wrong. I bought Nevermind and the other album when they came out, but this was just too skewed for my liking. For instance, surely if Nirvana acknowledged they were actually following the path tread by the Pixies there should have been more Pixies? Just a thought.

Friday: I came home from work and watched The Gourmet Farmer that had been recorded the evening before. Sadly I fell asleep for an hour on the lounge, but through the magic of digital recording I was able to watch the last fifteen minutes later in the evening. I cannot believe I spent Two Whole Weeks on holiday in Cygnet and was not aware of the Gourmet Farmer's existence. Apparently according to our friends down there, he just lives not far from them. Perhaps that could have been mentioned last November? Oh well, another trip to Tasmania must be planned.

Saturday: I ate lunch while watching Breaking Bad. Walt has finally revealed his cancer to the family. And Jesse tried to reconcile with his parents. As you might imagine neither scenario went particularly well. Still, there was less blood and guts than previous episodes which was a pleasant surprise while I ate my mushrooms on toast.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

My quest to engage in democracy continues...

And so today my quest to engage in our democratic processes as a voting citizen of this fine nation continued. (Hmmm...perhaps too much Stephen Colbert lately).

It began with me making a polite phone call to the Deputy Prime Minister's office. I very nicely explained who I was and why I was calling. First, the woman who answered the phone directed me straight to the department. I did however manage to ask if there was an email address I could use to put my concerns to the DPM and she gave it to me. She did however tell me that I shouldn't expect a response any earlier than 4-6 weeks because Julia Gillard's portfolio is (and I quote) "very large". I said, yes I know, thank you very much for your help and promptly rang the 1300 number she provided for DEEWR.

The phone was answered very promptly by a slightly jaded sounding woman, who in spite of this listened carefully to me explain who I was, and what information I was looking for. She had to ask me twice what university I was from. I know we're at or near the bottom of the rankings but really, we're not all inarticulate dolts incapable of ringing a government department. (just clarifying for anyone who is wondering...either that or I'm slightly paranoid). She offered to put me through to an "education policy specialist". How helpful I thought. Sadly, no-one was answering the phone. "Is there an email address I can use to put my query in writing?" Sadly, and VERY surprisingly, the answer to this was a big No. The best offer was that she write my concerns in an email of her own, so when I rang back later in the day I would be put straight through. I thanked her very much for her assistance.

Then I sat through a three hour teleconference.

Then I ate my lunch.

Then I came back to my office and rang the 1300 number again. This time a nice young man answered the phone. I explained my story AGAIN. He attempted to put me through to an "education policy specialist". There were three of them and on the third time I got lucky. Or unlucky. Mr Education Policy Specialist is clearly more used to people who are bristling for an argument. I did not want to have an argument. I wanted INFORMATION. Apparently, this was beyond his brief, which was also the nature of our conversation which he concluded as quickly as he could by directing me to the policy information sheet on the website (which I had downloaded and read yesterday) and told me he knew as much as I did. I don't believe that for a minute and visions of The Hollowmen were now dancing through my head.

So waiting in the generic Deputy Prime Minister's inbox is a formal, and carefully composed email. It explains who I am AGAIN, my concerns,AGAIN, and what I would like to know AGAIN. For instance I would like to know what sort of interim measures or contingency plans does the government have in place if the legislation fails to pass the Senate AGAIN. I would also like to know how soon the bill is scheduled to go back to the house. I would also like to know if it doesn't pass until later in the year will students be able to be paid for the full academic year. I would really like to know a lot of things. I would also like to know why it should take 4-6 weeks to get a response to some simple questions about higher education and government support for struggling students.

I have strong doubts that I will get answers to many of these questions, but what a jolly day in attempting to do so.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Reasons why I am not a Domestic Goddess: The New Lunch Regime

Well first of all I know you will all be fascinated to hear that twitter political engagement seems to be a load of you know what.

However, to avoid another Rant from Wendy post here's something a little domestic yet I'm sure you'll agree no less fascinating.

This year upon going back to work I decided that lunchtime would require a New Lunch Regime (NLR). This NLR involves me (Wendy) making my lunch for the following day the evening before. That way when I get up in the morning, eat my breakfast and spend too long mucking about on facebook, twitter, and indeed this blog, I still have a healthy lunch to grab out the fridge. The NLR was to be far superior to the Old Lunch Regime which was characterised by all of the above activity except for the part about making lunch the night before. It usually involved me cracking two pieces of frozen bread out of the freezer, stuffing them in a plastic bag and hoping like hell noone had thrown out the jar of peanut paste I was keeping in the fridge at work.

Last night however, it seems I overreached. I know, I thought, as well as my beautiful salad, and catfood-like tin of tuna I shall Boil an Egg and add it to my salad-tuna combo in the morning. That way I shall be increasing my protein intake and also jazzing up my salad. Well I managed to boil the egg. I did not however manage to then put boiled egg in the fridge overnight. Instead when I got up this morning and staggered through the kitchen I found aforementioned egg still sitting in the saucepan.

Aforementioned boiled egg is now in the bin.

See that was an interesting story now wasn't it.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Twitter political power? Is it for real?

I am testing out the power of twitter regarding political engagement. I know that the Prime Minister very nicely allowed himself to be questioned by young people on QandA last night. I didn't watch it because I was out engaging with my own community here in Bundaberg in a cultural activity.

However, at work today I discovered a problem. It goes like this (and bear with me if you already know this). Commonwealth Scholarships for undergraduate students have always been administered by the various tertiary institutions around the country. For example if a student is applying to CQUniversity for their undergraduate degree they would have also made their Commonwealth Scholarship application to CQUniversity. At the end of last year we were notified by our Student Support Centre that this would no longer be the case and that all such applications would be administered through Centrelink. I work in a preparatory program where access to scholarships is often absolutely vital for our students to be able to continue on to university. Often they are mature age students, first in their family to attend university, supporting children and loved ones. We all know university is expensive so sometimes the Commonwealth scholarships made all the difference between them being able to buy books etc and not, as well as many other things. Our university is not in a metropolitan area. It is smack bang in the middle of a so-called "low socio-economic area". I know it is neglectful of me, seeing that I work in the sector, but I haven't read the Bradley review. I've been busy, teaching the very students that I understand the review of the tertiary education sector is trying to encourage to enter higher education. Let's throw around words like "social inclusion" and dare I say it, "working families". I spend my days teaching and encouraging students that university can be for them even though they may never have considered such an option before. So today, I discover that the Commonwealth Scholarships are at present seemingly being administered by no-one because the Senate failed to pass the Government's bill late last year. The University no longer controls the scholarships, and Centrelink professes to know nothing about it at all. Apparently we are now in limbo land of waiting until April when the bill goes back to Parliament. That's all very well and good, but what about the students who want to apply to for government support the beginning of the academic year. It would seem to me to be the ideal time to have such scholarships available. But then what I would I know. I'm just a youngish woman with a PhD coordinating a preparatory program in a regional centre, trying to do the best she can for her students.

So what's twitter got to do with all this? Well today I bit the proverbial bullet and started following our PM. I have tweeted numerous times asking questions about the issue I have outlined here. I'd like to think that if politicians are serious about the vitality of their engagement with social media that I might get a response...sometime...soon. I don't mind if it's telling me I'm an idealistic nitwit. A response will prove to me that at least the Prime Minister might be seriously engaged with twitter rather than simply using it to comment on the cricket.

N.B. If I have got this all wrong I quite happy to be told so. I have had perhaps half an hour this afternoon to spend looking into this. For the rest of the day I was busy interviewing students for our 2010 preparatory program, providing them with the opportunity to move on and change their lives through higher education. But you, know, whatever.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hello choir

Hello choir,

My sincerest apologies for not welcoming you to 2010 last week. It slipped my mind in the craziness that characterised not just Monday, but every other day of the week. Today was also hectic, busy and slightly frantic at work. I made some stupid mistakes with numbers which are not my forte, but all was resolved by the end of the day. Phew.

To return to the matter at hand. Choir. Every Monday night at 7:30 I turn up with my piano music and bash away at the notes as our choir learns new music. Sometimes it's wonderful, especially when we get past the note-bashing stage and I can actually play the proper accompaniments. Sometimes it's mind numbingly boring (see aforementioned note-bashing stage). Whatever it is, it's good for getting me out the house one night a week guaranteed, no matter how weary my eyes are, and no matter how desperately I just want to sit on the lounge in my jim jams and stare vacantly at the television. It's also good because it keeps my sight reading skills happening, and makes me play the piano at least once a week.

The best part is the people watching with the singers who arrive from all over town in search of some song. They laugh, they chat, they worry, they whine, they smile. They spend a few hours of time together once a week that they would probably never do so otherwise. It's nice. It produces a sense of community and shared experience. In fact despite the dull moments, it is actually a privilege.

Thanks choir
(your accompanist)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Wendy's Week of TV 2.0: Devastation all round

I think I have decided against The Biggest Loser this year. Seen one BL seen them all really I think. Plus I have also decided that one swimming star turned cringe-inducing tv host (I'm looking at you Johanna Griggs was Sweet now Griggs again) is enough for me. Sorry Hayley. I was right there with you when you were our Golden Girl of the Pool. Please stay off my television screen otherwise. Channel Ten could you not find anyone better? What about Paul McDermott? Or Mikey Robbins...someone who has actually had a weight loss problem might make it more interesting. Anything to put an end to the neverending saga that is Good News Week.

Monday: The Big Bang Theory
This was a corker of an episode. I managed to remember to record it because rather inconveniently choir has resumed on Monday evenings. But the payoff is when I get home I get to spend about 20 minutes with Sheldon and co. Tonight's episode had a Star Trek theme with Wil Wheaton as the guest star at the comic book shop's fantasy game card tournament thingy ( I don't really understand these things). Sheldon spoke some Klingon, while Wil emotionally manipulated him thus beating him in the tournament. It was all very enjoyable.

Tuesday: Big Love
You know I keep forgetting that I have been caught up in the Mormon polygamist melodrama that is Big Love. And each week I forget it's on until quite late on Tuesday. Thank you SBS. This is a program I have returned to after some time. I watched it when it first aired but I wasn't that enamoured. Recently however, I have found myself increasingly drawn into it. Perhaps the storylines have become more complex. Something's going on anyway, because I was on the edge of my seat when the Prophet, Roman Grant (Harry Dean Stanton) was put on trial, and the blind loyalty of one of his wives and his daughter Nicky (Chloe Sevigny) managed to make the whole thing collapse. Fabulous and intriguing.

Wednesday: Spicks and Specks
Yes I did return to Spicks and Specks. Yes I do like Hamish Blake a lot as a panel guest. But you know, compared to its musical quiz show counterpart Rockwiz there was a certain lack of spark here. Come on guys, please don't leave me stranded on a Wednesday evening with nothing I really want to watch. I know you can do it Adam Hills. Please try harder so you don't end up on "list of celebrities to which I am indifferent, or have an irrational dislike" (Shane Warne, Wil Anderson, James Cameron, Angelina Jolie, Eddie McGuire, the guy who hosts Deal or no Deal, Johanna Griggs, Jenny Woodward (although this is combined with a fascination for her increasingly Amanda Vanstone inspired colourful tops)).

Thursday: Seven Ages of Rock
This week was the age of something this average documentary called "Stadium Rock". Queen, Kiss, The Police, U2, Live Aid. Observations: Freddie Mercury sure could belt out a tune. If I had to choose between political Irish rockers Bob Geldof beats Bono every time. Kiss are scarier now sans makeup than they were when I was five. The drummer from the Police might well have been the most interesting person interviewed.

Friday: Torchwood
Aaaggghhh. Devastation all round. Come back Captain Jack...please. Plus what happens to Lois now?
Breaking Bad: As dark and depressing as ever. Walter finally managed to kill off his hostage in the basement. And maybe, just maybe he's going to tell his wife he has cancer. A small glimmer of hope in a tragic tale.

Saturday: Rockwiz seemed to be a repeat. That's okay. Still fast, witty and very musical.

All week: The Colbert Report.
I can't wait for Stephen Colbert to get to the Winter Olympics with the US Speed Skating team as Assistant Sports Psychologist. CAN'T WAIT I SAY.

And a quick question: Should I be watching The 7pm Project? My hunch is no...but am happy to be persuaded otherwise.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The world sends me a wake up call

Yesterday it seemed like the world sent me a wake up call. As I mentioned in the post below there's been a bit of whining about work this week. It was all trivial, self-indulgent whining. Poor me, I'm so busy, this job is boring, I hate answering the phone, I'm sick of marking these testings and doing phone interviews. Blah Blah Blah Wendy.

According to yesterday however I should have been saying to myself the following.

Dear Wendy
Count yourself lucky you're not an 18 year old mother of a two year old son who has arrived at the university either (1) perhaps high as a kite on something illegal (2) perhaps with some kind of added mental illness (3) possibly off your prescription medication (4) or even worse maybe some combination of 1,2, and 3.

Also count yourself lucky that the threatening, aggressive and mildly violent behaviour resulting from the above condition (which was clearly out of your control but nonetheless potentially dangerous to others) didn't result in you being hauled off by the police and banned from the university campus.

Count yourself lucky again that you weren't the tired mother of said 18 year old who got a call from me to tell her that her daughter was being taken to the police station for what sounded like it wasn't the first time and wouldn't be the last.

As I said, a wake up call.
When we get right down to tin tacks I live a fortunate life. A very fortunate life.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

It's not all whining and potential repetitive strain injury

It's Wednesday.
It's still raining
Please can I just stay home and read a book?
Pretty please.....

Oh well okay, I'll drag myself to work. I have been less than enthused about work at the moment. This is the time of the year when we take endless inquiries every day, take applications, interview prospective students (on the phone and in person). It's not all date stamping and playing Rockwiz on twitter. Although the latter is the highlight of my day at 11:30. Everything stops. Sometimes I even ignore the phone. Naughty really, but what else is voicemail for. At the moment though my voicemail light is on constantly so you can't tell if there is a message or not, particularly if you leave the room. So, I just have to check it whether I think there might be a message or not.

Seriously though, it's not all whining and potential repetitive strain injury from having the phone glued to my ear. For instance there was also time yesterday amidst the sound and fury to print out my fabulous mouse drawing, laminate it and blue tack it to my wall.

I'm waiting for someone to ask me what dear child drew it for me.
And then in the spirit of mouseness, dear Jinxy brought me a little mouse present that looks like this:

It's got one of those strings that you pull and it runs across the floor. Absolutely necessary to have on one's desk at a place of work. I instruct you to all get one.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Clear evidence as to why I am not a poet or artist

My dearest Mother spent her rainy day at home going through some treasures from our childhood. She kindly scanned and emailed these fine examples of my primary school years...clear evidence as to why I am neither a poet or an artist. I have spent the last ten minutes laughing myself stupid at their awfulness. Please feel free to do the same.

The second two (drawing and poem) go together. Note the very specific detail as to the noise the bird in the tree is making. A premonition of my current twitter addiction perhaps. And I do enjoy the awkward second stanza of the poem. Even then it seems bird noises taunted me while I was trying to sleep.

And isn't the picture of the daily life of mice just darling. Look at their special giant sized swiss cheese. I also remember being very particular about drawing in the rays of the sun. Apparently mice play in the grass, and go to sleep in their very own mouse house, hole in the wall. Just like in cartoons.

She couldn't tell me how old I was when I drew this. Let's hope it was about three. Or perhaps that's insulting to artistic three year olds.

Hey Monday..What's Happening?

Hey Monday
What's happening? I'd just like to congratulate you on your pleasant start to the day. It's not stinking hot and humid like ALL OF LAST WEEK. Instead, you bring me lots of rain, lovely rain. You are reviving my poor plants in the garden and making my lawn green again. For that I thank you.

Now if you could just do some other things for me that would be much appreciated.
1. No crazy people ringing me on the phone today. I understand it was a full moon last week which may have explained the frequency of crazy/annoying/weird phone calls. Let's have no more of it.
2. A nice day at work. I don't mind being busy but if we could have less of the finicky, pernickety problems with prospective students etc that create pointless busy paper work and extra phone calls that would be nice.
3. My hair to look okay. I'm about to get in the shower and I know wet, humid kind of days (even when they're cool) aren't good with my hair, but truly I'm not up for a cowlick fringe today.
4. Fun Lunch Hour.
5. If I could get to go home a bit early (say 4-4.30) that would be excellent.
6. Finally, choir begins tonight. Please let the music be interesting without the dragging of time and any moments of boredom. I need a positive start to the year here.

Thanks for your consideration Monday. I know it's probably a lot to ask and you're most likely off creating havoc for others, but if you could try and break your stereotypical Mondayish behaviour just this once I would be really grateful.

Kind Regards