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31 August 2009

Squat Investors

I had a dream last night about applying for a place in a squat. I've been thinking a lot about possible future homes lately. In my dream the place I was looking at was somewhere I'd wandered around before, but some people had since moved in. It was a great old printing factory over three levels which the squatkids had done up real nice.

We talked about my background and stuff. They said I'd have to take the room that the dog currently lived in, but that it would be alright. I didn't interview very well, but I felt like I had a chance. However, after some time my dad abruptly walked into the dream (and the house). I thought that was a nice surprise and I asked him why he was checking the place out. I thought he was just having a nosy-beak as he often does with old buildings. Except that he said "I'm thinking about buying the place and doing it up." I said "What? These guys already live here." And dad replied "No. They just want to make children here. I want to fix it up and live here." I doubt my dad would really say that, but the general sentiment could be a bit accurate.

I was rather disheartened. Not to mention massively embarrassed in front of all my cool friends. My politics and my parents' propensity for buying new properties had finally collided. And in the most publicly humiliating fashion (which is obviously the worst way possible). For an anarchist, this is about the equivalent of one of those nude public speaking dreams. Even though it was in a dream, it was only a matter of time. The laws of probability, which apply more forcefully to real life, might suggest this is unlikely to happen outside my dream, but I certainly don't feel safe.

28 August 2009

Chocolate Lamingtons

My boyfriend's happy I'm not pregnant. He's so happy I'm not P-R-E-G. And why wouldn't he be? He's so happy I'm not pregnant that he took me out to the cafe and shouted me a chocolate lamington. Oh yes he did.

Handsome Truesome

Yep. He's my handsome truesome. My true love. He's got me around his finger. We're good mates.

Chub Grump Pup

Chub Grump Pup

Posted by Nutloaf

27 August 2009

Never ask a man for help with spelling

Never ask a man for help with spelling

Posted by Nutloaf

26 August 2009

Broken Trackpad

The trackpad on my laptop has been broken for a year (since September 2008). I took it to the computer shop and they pulled it apart, but still couldn't figure out why it had broken. It has been incredibly frustrating. Unreasonably frustrating some would think. But lugging around this huge USB mouse everywhere is no fun at all. Especially on trains. I had even considered trying to find a new laptop.

However, today I discovered a cheeky work around. I pushed the "turn on the trackpad" button at the top of the keyboard. The trackpad did, indeed, turn on. It has given me much joy ever since.

25 August 2009

Proud Scots

In Scotland, we are a people who pride ourselves on our humanity. It is viewed as a defining characteristic of Scotland and the Scottish people. The perpetration of an atrocity and outrage cannot and should not be a basis for losing sight of who we are, the values we seek to uphold, and the faith and beliefs by which we seek to live.

Mr Megrahi did not show his victims any comfort or compassion. They were not allowed to return to the bosom of their families to see out their lives, let alone their dying days. No compassion was shown by him to them. But that alone is not a reason for us to deny compassion to him and his family.

Kenny MacAskill

I can't remember the last time I heard an Important Person talk about this sort of thing. I'm not sure I actually agree they've done the right thing. I suspect the practical consequences will be nil, so I suppose it's all about the symbols. Regardless, it makes me very happy.

Certain Lunches

We really did eat our lunch today. My boyfriend and I really, truly ate our lunch. We didn't just eat our fingers. We weren't just eating paper. We really did have lunch together.

Once a Rascal

Them: My boyfriend doesn't wear a black balaclava anymore. He doesn't need to. He doesn't like them.
Me: Did he like them before?
Them: Yes... but not anymore. He doesn't need one anymore.
Me: So he used to wear one.
Them: Yep.
Me: Was he a bit of a rascal when he was younger?
Them: He was. But he isn't anymore. He doesn't wear a black balaclava. He doesn't wear black gloves. He doesn't wear men's boots. Men's boots he does not wear.
Me: What sort of shoes does he wear?
Them: Now he wears slippers. Grosby slippers. Hush Puppies by Grosby.

24 August 2009

Ideals

Often one seems to get into conversations about the ideal partner. People tend to run off quite a list of things they look for in a partner and these lists seem to get longer as people get older and more grizzled. Sadly, being very grizzled isn't on many people's lists so everything matching lists to partners gets trickier and trickier as time goes by.

At one point I had a very long list sitting somewhere at the back of my mind. But in recent times (last 10 years or so) the list has been whittled down to one thing. When people ask me what it's important to me in a partner I always just say "kindness". At times, I've wondered if being superficially attracted is helpful too but I don't really know.

However, the problem with smug little short lists like mine is that they might be smug and utter bullshit. When people who are kind (and attractive) come along I suddenly start to wonder about a whole lot of other things. All those things that people throw into more comprehensive lists.

The outcome is not very good at all. You end up being smug. And single. And just as confused as everyone else anyway.

Basket Monster Captured

Basket Monster Captured

Posted by Nutloaf

After a long chase the monster was finally caught and minutes of terrorising the kitchen came to an end.

20 August 2009

Jesus, Anti-Labor Rights Campaigner

Yesterday, our morning bible reading was The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard. It's a nice little piece about gratitude and the virtues of property ownership and worker exploitation. It's not often I get upset with stuff Jesus says, and I'd never thought about this passage but when I read it yesterday I got cross.

The idea is that workers who negotiate a wage should be grateful, even if the value of their work is far more than the wage. In the case of this parable workers are clearly being employed for a fraction of the value of their work to the landowner. But if they are desparate for work and only have the social power to negotiate a small wage, according to Jesus, they have no reason to complain. If there are others who don't need the money and can hold out for a better wage, then good for them. The landowner is apparently entitled to spend his money however he chooses.

I have largely felt that the New Testament does not serve power, and that is why I find it so confusing and compelling. This parable clearly serves power, using the familiar rhetoric of demanding gratitude for whatever scraps the powerful decides to throw your way. It is even surprisingly transparent. Jesus is clearly saying that a rich man has the right to distribute money however he chooses. On one level it is reasonable to argue that people can negotiate a contract for any wage, but price-discrimination as Jesus is suggesting would probably be illegal in Australia at the moment. Although it probably approximates an AWA.

The outcome of this mentality is fairly clear and until unions came along was basically how wage negotiations worked. The powerless worked for a subsistence wage and the powerful worked for the value of their contribution (however difficult that is to figure out). Those who needed the money to feed their children were certain not the get it and those who didn't need the money were showered with it. It's a perverse situation, but was totally pervasive for hundreds/thousands of years. This parable is almost a perfect case study for how the powerful will always do whatever they think they can get away with and why we need (and probably will always need) unions.

11 August 2009

I Don’t Like Him

Yesterday I was running a bath for one of my friends. Another one of my friends was in the kitchen having a conversation with someone else, but they didn't realise I could hear it.

Them: I don't like Ryan. He's alright for some but I don't like him much.
Me: [running out of the bathroom] WHAT?! Why don't you like me? I thought we were friends.
[awkward silence]
Me: Do you really mean that? You shouldn't say that sort of thing if you don't mean it.
[another awkward silence]
[we stare sadly at each other]

After a minute I go back to the bathroom and then leave to go to the club. I return about four hours later. I walk past my friend on their way to bed.

Them: Sorry for what I said. I didn't really mean it.
Me: Thanks. Goodnight.
Them: Goodnight.

And as usually happens when pretty much anyone says pretty much anything in my house, I got a bit teary.

Fun Lovers

Them: We're going to go to Melbourne and have a lot of fun.... well no. Not have fun. We're going to go there and enjoy ourselves.
Me: OK. [thinks] Would you describe yourself as a fun-lover?
Them: [thinks] No.... an enjoyable-lover.

Hennessy Hammock

I bought this hammock this morning. Cheaper, lighter and more comfortable than a tent. Pretty good.

Hennessy Hammocks

Update: The hammock arrived and it truly is glorious. Almost inconceivably comfortable. I have started trying to think up excuses to go out into the forest at night.

10 August 2009

Vegan Passport

My Vegan Passport arrived today. It has a little blurb explaining what vegans do and don't eat. And it has the same blurb in about 100 different languages. Totally bloody ace. How much easier my life could have been.

5 August 2009

Happy cat


Happy cat, originally uploaded by Nutloaf.

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