Tuesday, December 28, 2010

My dream for Christmas 2011

I worked nights over Christmas. Not surprisingly, I didn’t enjoy it. Therefore I have decided that when I am elected Supreme Emperor of the planet (please note that "am elected" is a euphemism for "achieve a devastating military coup"), that emergency services personnel will no longer have to work over Christmas. And it will bring people together in the true spirit of Christmas.

Here’s how it will work:

Nobody knows their neighbours anymore. It’s a sad fact of modern life but, next Christmas, we can change all of that. Nothing breaks the ice like: “Pardon me, my house in on fire.” Bring hoses, buckets, and marshmallows, and remember to have fun. It’s Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Wikipedia Writing Game

I am taking the month off from writing, and by month I mean from now until after my holidays in January. And by writing, I mean the serious part of it, like the editing and re-editing, and re-re-editing until I want to run screaming into the streets calling for blood and revolution. I can’t go cold turkey, but my end-of-year brain doesn’t want to do any of the hard stuff, like thinking, so I’ve decided to make it fun. Therefore, I present to you (ta-da!) the Wikipedia Writing Game.

Go to Wikipedia. Oh, I know that real researchers don’t use it, but we’ve all got it saved to our favourites, right? Go to the main page, and click on “Random article”. Save that article. Now do it again. And again. Do it once more it you feel like it. Keep doing it if you want. There are no rules in the Wikipedia Writing Game.

Friday, December 17, 2010


I was at Brisbane airport the other day, coming through security, when I was stopped for one of the trace explosives tests. I’ve been stopped for a few of these. I don’t think I’m being targeted because I look like a terrorist. I think I’m being targeted because I don’t look like a terrorist, and they can use me as an example to show they don’t racially profile people.

The security officer motioned me over to the side, and said, “Have you done one of these before?”

“A few times,” I told him.

“Ah,” he said with a cheeky wink, “so we haven’t caught you yet?”

“Not yet,” I agreed with a smile as he swiped the little thingy over my hand luggage and shoes. “Hang on, we’re not allowed to make jokes about terrorism in airports, are we?”

“If we weren’t allowed to have a joke, what sort of world would that be?” he asked me.

Um, it would be this world, my little flower, this world. But he was a nice man, so I didn’t want to be the one to break it to him. 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Random Chicken

I stopped in at the corner store today on my way to work, to buy a drink. Coming outside again, I noticed a large brown chicken walking behind my car. This is the sort of traffic hazard I am unused to in the city, although I did once brake for a wallaby in the upmarket suburb of Castle Hill. I put that down to heavy flooding at the time. I figured little Skippy had just caught a ride down the hill on a mudslide.

But a chicken! I was struck by the awesomeness of chickens. I was reminded that I want to own chickens. Just two of them. Maybe a brown one and a white one. Can you pick what colour chickens will be when they grow up? I mean, they all start off yellow, right? Like yolk. I don’t know what I’ll name my chickens, but since I will only have two it would be silly not to name them.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Things I Wish Would Move Out Of My House: Part 1: The Huntsman Spider

Now that the possums are gone, I can turn to other things. I feel like David must have. It was all like Goliath-Goliath-Goliath before the showdown, but now he’s out of the picture I’m noticing just how much those smaller Philistines annoy me. So now that the possums have been evicted, I’ve come up with a list of other animals I wish would move out of my house.

The first is the Huntsman spider:

The Ode Less Travelled - Unlocking the Poet Within, by Stephen Fry

This review will not be impartial, because I love Stephen Fry. I want to marry his brain. If he published his grocery list, I would buy it. I suspect I would enjoy it as well.



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