Tuesday, July 31, 2001

if you're looking for netbroadcaster.com, and you probably are:
a) it's not here. someone should tell AOL's search people. but I won't. it's the only traffic I get.
and b) don't go there. they stick mean ol' popup ads on your screen and then refuse to apologise for them.

have discovered the answer to the question: am I brave or not?
we pulled over to check the map on our way back up to Perth. after about five minutes debated highway numbers, we noticed that a large building about 50 metres away from us was on fire. not a bit on fire, totally burning up; flames leaping out the windows, that kind of thing.
what did I do? did I grab the camera, leap out and take photos? did I even note the numberplate of the car that was stopped in front of us?
No, I said to Andrew "go. now. let's get out of here."
it was a fairly industrial area and I guess I was afraid of exploding chemical tanks.
the ensuing conversation with the 000 operator as I tried to explain where the fire was was nothing short of farcical. the tape, when reviewed by investigators, will include lots of me saying to Andrew as we sped away: "what does that sign say?" "where are we".
on returning from our four days of idyllic blobbing about in Perth and Margaret River, I have made an important discovery: there is simply not enough time.

no, really. there is not enough time to do all those things on your to-do list, not to mention the sundry distractions and interruptions.

furthermore, life will not, eventually, be all sorted out, neatly filed, with all those jobs finished (the dog perfectly brushed, the fence replacement organised, the garden weeded, Christmas shopping done in advance, novel written, blog restyled).


so get used to it. and get nasty about that time. `cause there's not enough.
memo to the PR industry: the words "business plan" and "revolutionary" do not belong in the same sentence.

Monday, July 30, 2001

I can't say I missed blogging, given as how I was strolling around art galleries. stuffing my face with Western Australia's best food, walking on winter beaches at dawn and dusk and snapping up large amounts of yummy wine and one beautiful piece of art glass.
But it's nice to be here @ home, with five days' washing sloshing away in the laundry, the dog sulking in the hall and a class or two to start this afternoon.
I said to Andrew: "smack me". because both Shakespeare's Worlds and Autobiography (the study of) appeal to me enormously, and I'm thinking of doing both, which is more than I need to finish my degree. would post links, but every browser other than this one refuses to give me an address bar, so I can't go find it.
Have received a lovely yellow Australian Census form, and oh, exciting; a couple of hours after I got in this morning (a 1.20 am flight has left me with jet lag of the two-hour-time-difference-and-no-sleep variety) Stan rang.

Stan is Gavin's dad.

For those who came in late, Gavin is the skip man who made me cry with his horridness.

Stan was VERY pleasant and reasonable. It's his company, you see. he is going to pay me the $50 for the rubbish removal, make sure the City of Yarra get the fee Gavin didn't pay (but I paid Gavin for), and in return I am withdrawing my case at the tribunal.

one feels quietly vindicated. one jumps up and punches the air.

one needs a small nap before class.

Wednesday, July 25, 2001

this is what my friend Graham sent off to Dubya. I might spam a few people, see if I can get it going. feel free to take and send on.

Dear all,

In my disgust at the US attitude to the Kyoto agreement (they are
delighted that the rest of the World has ratified it because it will
American exports more competitive!), I've sent the email below to the
Presidents Office.

If you agree, and send him an email yourself, and pass this message on
everybody in your mail box, you never know.... it just might make a



-----Original Message-----
From: John Chadwick
To: president@whitehouse.gov
Date: 25 July 2001 08:45
Subject: The World is My Sweatshop

>Mr Bush,
>In response to your decision to sacrifice the future wellbeing of the
>for your own short term greed, my family and I have chosen to stop
>purchasing American products.
>When enough people react this way you may see the flaw in your
>Graham Chadwick

Monday, July 23, 2001

the young and beautiful in their young and beautiful bars and restaurants, wearing sharp suits and sexy dresses.
the painful self-awareness of the moment.
it won't last forever.
story idea: a nothing restaurant or bar, down a side street, smelling of stale oil and cigarettes.
the mafia or a bikie gang walk in one day, say "this will be our place".
what do you, the owner, do?
it means money, customers, big tips.
crimes being planned under your roof, over plates of your ravioli
I caught the tram around to Flinder St this afternoon, just to get out of the office; it's lovely out there, cold and blue.
there was a police motorbike and an ambulance blocking traffic; a stopped bus.
at first I couldn't see what was happening. Then, alone on the ground, a white sheet over a body.
it was the freshness of the blood running away from the body that made me turn my head away.
from my friend, who is slowly going mad as an expat wife in a mining town in Papua New Guinea:

To amuse myself...


When invited to a ladies’ luncheon, do you:

A: Throw on your thongs and grab a packet of Shortbread Fingers from
the back of the cupboard?
B: Wash down a couple of valiums with the duty free scotch and whip up
a sponge?
C: Fall to the ground laughing and say you wouldn’t be caught dead
going to a ladies’ luncheon if it was your last meal on earth?

If you see an attractive man in the superstore (the glamorous name for
our one shop), should you:

A: Lower your eyes demurely and walk on by?
B: Introduce yourself and casually drop the phrase ‘single status’ into
the conversation at every opportunity?
C: Rip off your dirty old T-shirt and shout, ‘Come and get it big boy!’

If you feel yourself on the verge of a nervous breakdown, should you:

A: Go to Mary’s (the American's) place for waffles?
B: Go to Cloudlands (the pub) and buy booze?
C: Go to Cloudlands and buy booze, then go to Mary’s place for waffles?
D: Spray painting the front of the Whitehouse with the words, ‘Roger
(the MD) go home.’

When you finally feel ready to leave (censored) after a rewarding and
exciting time, would you consider it important to:

A: Grab the children?
B: Grab the duty free and leave the kids?
C: Burn down the town?

actual msg sent out some time back by a chief of staff at my paper who shall remain nameless:

Hi.......I know this is becoming quite monotonous but we REALLY DO NEED
EARLY COPY tonight. The paper is huge and most of the subs are drunk.

I think he was joking. then again, chiefs of staff rarely joke.
someone should tell Blogger I like their little ad at the top of my page. it makes me feel important. and I ain't paying no US$9.95 to get rid of it.
My newspaper failed to use this. So y'all can have it for free. It's a bit out of date.

This is a fan letter.
Last week, while the death of the singer Perry Como hogged newspaper headlines,
the passing-on of an equally great performer of the mind, Douglas Adams,
languished on the obituary pages and in briefs columns.
In cyberspace, Como's death made hardly a ripple, while over at
www.douglasadams.com, probably the world's first real cyber-wake was in full
swing. Messages of tribute poured in at the rate of more than one a minute,
sometimes one a second, for days on end.
If you're unaware of who Douglas Adams was (probably because you've just
popped onto Earth from a parallel universe identical to ours in all respects bar the
existence of humour), he was the author of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
He's the reason AltaVista's language translation service is called Babelfish, and the
reason the words "forty-two" said at the right time can drive the average geek into
gales of laughter.
The book, published in 1982, was based on a hit radio series, and spawned a
television series and several sequels.
Like any good sci-fi writer, Adams combined wild prediction with a veneer of
plausibility - in his world, things made sense, even if they didn't follow traditional
He imagined an improbability drive that sounded uncannily like a quantum
computer, an e-book that would put your Palm Pilot to shame (the Guideitself) and
artificial intelligences that sulked. His Earth was an irrelevant planet that was
demolished in the first chapter of his first book anyway; a sense of perspective was
one of his strong points.
But it was the wayhe wrote that made the difference and won him his legion of
fans. The email shorthand "LOL" (laugh out loud) could have been invented for
Adams' writing.
It's hard to choose just one from the tens of quotes that live in my mind after
reading the Guide five or six times and several readings of the rest of the four books
in the trilogy, (Adams wasn't very good at maths).
But this one comes close to summing up his style of an earnest setup and a
deflating punchline: "It is an important and popular fact that things are not always
what they seem. For instance, on the planet Earth, man had always assumed that
he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much -- the
wheel, New York, wars and so on -- whilst all the dolphins had ever done was muck
about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the dolphins had always
believed that they were far more intelligent than man -- for precisely the same
Adams, who by all reports was a hard man to get to finish a book ("I love deadlines.
I love the whooshing sound they make as they fly by."), did manage to publish several
other fiction works, and a moving book about threatened species, Last Chance to See.
In recent years he was involved in designing computer games based on his books.
His Meaning of Liff and Deeper Meaning of Liff found useful roles for all those good
words that hang about on town signposts doing not much, as well as giving names
to phenomena we all knew but couldn't label. (The British town of Kettering lent its
name to the pattern left on bare legs after sitting on a wicker chair, for instance.)
Adams was 49 when he suffered a heart attack on May 11, leaving behind a wife
and young daughter.
The tributes on his site range from devastated to would-be humourous, recycling
his jokes about stars "spending a year dead for tax reasons", towel jokes and the
ubiquitous "so long and thanks for all the fish".
But there's another, more appropriate, line, from Last Chance to See
Adams was
writing about why we should care about "rhinos, parakeets, kakopos and dolphins,
but it could serve as his own epitaph: "the world would be a poorer, darker, lonelier
place without them."
yankspeak 101:
taxi = cab
first floor = second floor
sauce = ketchup
holiday = vacation
autumn = fall (and fall may mean spring if you come from the southern hemisphere and they're talking "fall quarter" as in actual dates)
university = college
bitumen = blacktop
24 by 7 = all the time
dollar= two dollars AU
things that have been bothering me:
the photo of a G8 protestor dead on the ground, surrounded by paramilitary police
the photo The Age ran last weekend of a tram fare evader pinned to the ground by "inspectors" from the tram company.
some articles The Age also ran last week saying that privacy was seriously compromised by new databases, talking about new Australian privacy laws (sorry for the lack of links, maybe later), and saying that privacy was a sacred right in the West.
the phone calls I keep getting at dinnertime trying to sell me stuff "Hello, could I speak to Mrs Sinclair please?". No, you can't, 'cos I'm not "Mrs Sinclair".
A book I haven't read yet: Naomi Klein's No Logo

the more people get treated as commodities for the global machine, the more some of them - only some - resist with whatever means possible.
it's like the environmentalists - the really hardcore ones that sit up trees for years
for every overwhelming force there's a kind of immune-system reaction in which counter-forces arise. Humans make the planet sick, humans make society sick, and the planet and society fight back with a modified version of humans.

Wednesday, July 18, 2001

I think I'll rename this blog Angry Girl.

I'm at it again: the neighbour's horrible development got a permit last week. now we have to spend lots of time and money organising an appeal. and we will, a) because I can't stand the idea of that lovely tree being replaced by a two-storey block of flats and b) because the value of our house will probably drop $50,000 when there's a horrible building there. so a few hundred on application fees/professional town planners seems like a good investment.

oh, and the council did make them modify it. it's 10 cm away from the boundary now, and the first (second for Yanks) floor is now 150 cm in instead of 100. big effing deal.

Tuesday, July 17, 2001

some sensible advice on writing
then again, in my own paper's internal newsletter, from our publisher and editor-in-chief: "online is not a new form of media. It is a merely a new delivery mechanism."
(holds metaphorical head in metaphorical hands and sobs loudly)
then again, in my own paper's internal newsletter, from our publisher and editor-in-chief: "online is not a new form of media. It is a merely a new delivery mechanism."
(holds metaphorical head in metaphorical hands and sobs loudly)
oh, please! Blogger has dignified this New York Times article (you'll need to register: lie) with a pointer.
it finishes "No longer a worrisome curiosity, the Internet is simply another of the means by which people find out what in the world is going on."
"Dave Kansas, formerly editor in chief of TheStreet.com, is now traveling in Europe."
Dave may be a very clever, switched-on person. But this article is written for the we-don't-understand-the-Web people to make them feel like they do; like it's just like RL only on a computer. it's so NOT.
maybe Dave needed more quick $US for more cervazas.
I need to think about this more; it is "just another means" but Dave makes it sound like the medium ain't the message.
I love this: "thank you for giving us the opportunity to leave you in peace".
they always HAD that opportunity!
the spam in question was from VeriSign, btw, which I had thought was a reputable company that wanted people to trust it.
hello, VeriSign: spam does not make people like you. it even less makes people trust you.

address deleted: ** jennysinclair@hotmail.com

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to leave you in peace. You have
been removed from all of the PostMasterDirect.com lists and should
no further mail from our service. There is the off chance an additional
email has been queued for you already, however the chance is slim.

If you have subscribed under a different email address, there is still
the chance you'll receive mail under that address. If so, just forward
any mail you receive to deleteall@postmasterdirect.com to unsubscribe
that address.

If you feel you have been removed in error, simply visit
http://www.postmasterdirect.com/sub to resubscribe!

Thank you for being with us!

PostMaster Direct http://www.postmasterdirect.com/

Monday, July 16, 2001

and when for no particular reason I fed this into zapper
"the quality of mercy is not strained.
it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
upon the place beneath.
it is twice blessed
it blesseth him that gives
and him that takes
tis mightiest in the mightiest.
its becomes the crowned monarch
better than his crown"
it gave me: a group against the death penalty
what's the world coming to? A mad person shoots a security guard at a perfectly nice abortion clinic, and when people stop to help distressed motorists in the Northern Territory, they get shot at, tied up and generally terrified.
somehow there's a common thread here ...

Sunday, July 15, 2001

hey, I got 91 for my cybersocieties subject at uni! of course I was being marked too high; I'm a 75-80 student these days, what with work and all. maybe I'll put up a link to my essay about how we all need a ratava-avatar link to combat identity theft and commercial prostitution and Big Brotherness of our very selves. when I get the essay online, yeah, I might do dat.
and this guy has an animated cube that solves itself before your very eyes! a kind of cubeblog, I think. He claims a record of 1:11. that's minutes:seconds, not hours:minutes or even days:hours. I have never got beyond two layers.
oh, and his site is weird. the page is black and all the action's in the popup window. check it out.
serious Rubik's Cube geekiness
I have given in and watched Big Brother Australia, only a week before it finished. Sara-Marie, the big-bottomed bumdancing bunny-ear-wearing shrieking blonde, was such a phenomenon I had to see what happened. She got evicted, and went from the house where she's lived for seven weeks straight into a TV studio full of screaming teenage girls all dressed up as her. so of course she screamed too.
The host didn't handle it too well. she wanted order and attention, but got screaming. it was quite a TV moment, even for a non-TV person. or am I?
it had to happen. poetry. sorry.

I heard news of my old boat:
“sold” said the 6’2” sailor
in the silver minidress
and I thought of polished timbers
red wine and pasta
waking at night to creaking, slapping, groaning.
Dolphins off the starboard bow.
And I thought of other sailors.
I remembered a boat, half-finished,
a labour of love or stubbornness
in an immigrant’s back yard.
Dry dock. 200 metres from St Kilda pier
and how we never sailed her.
But Wise of Time
who took me to Tasmania
on a Bass Strait made of glass
is sold.
Who knows where?

And I tried not to think of that sailor
who took me there.
The boy in the Barbarella minidress
leaned over me in my tie and painted mustache
breathed beer
and said “you’re cute. But you’re too short for me”
and cackled like a crone.

So I went home.
To my husband.
To my dog.
To my warm bed.
Five kilometres from the coast.
Wise of Time.
I never did understand that name.

Friday, July 13, 2001

am I sane?























-- Click Here To Take The Test! --

Wednesday, July 11, 2001

this will be handy next time the DNS won't point to Blogger:
if I ever get like this, shoot me.

oh, I know she's a good person and probably a good mother and all that, but. but. but.
what I don't get about this is: if the wine was about US$45,000, and the total bill was $62,000, where did the other $23,000 go? that's one hell of a tip

hooray! we're going to Perth! Agenda: see Monets, drink ourselves silly on West Australian wines and watch the sun set from our country hotel balcony.
pity that on our frequent flyer points, Ansett will only give us a 12.05 AM flight home... never mind. in order to burn more points, we're going business class; plus my lounge membership expires the day after we get back, so we'll be quite swish really.

Monday, July 09, 2001

ripped off: Sony have released the new AIBO.
And what did they send me? a printed press release and a CD-ROM. Where's my free robot dog, guys?

Friday, July 06, 2001

having just re-read my site description, I noticed that apart from references to Vegemite content, it promises "how to save the world".
for a start, how about saving the spotted quoll?
new environmental plans basically give it up for dead. there are still some left, dammit! how can we say "oh, there goes the largest mainland native mammal species. never mind" as if it DIDN'T MATTER??

I just don't get it sometimes.
better now.

one of the festering sores of Australian politics and Australia's identity is the lack of what therapists call "closure" on the way this land was taken from the indigenous people.
the current focus of this is the refusal of John Howard (our Prime Minister) to say "sorry" for what was done.
today's paper has an extract from overland magazine, outlining the massacres of the 19th century. it points out that the massacres were not official policy - they were a tactic of individuals, companies (farmers) and government officials.
which got me thinking that maybe an official apology is not the right thing. we need a dispersed sorry movement to match the dispersed outrages of the past. and in many cases, the not-so-distant past at that. it always annoys me when John Howard says present non-Aboriginal Australians are not responsible for what was done in the past, when as recently as the early 70s Aboriginal children were being removed from their mothers. is there no-one over 30 in this country?

Monday, July 02, 2001

at 10.30, I felt fine. at 11, I arrived at work feeling a bit chilled and bruised. by 12.15 I was walking back to my car with my teeth chattering.
the 24-hour-clinic doctor (my dear Ralphine wasn't in the office) said I have an upper respiratory tract infection. I am to take penicillin, stay warm and rest. so I'm only doing three interviews tomorrow.
I don't think it's legionella, although there's been a bit of that around lately, even at my work. Isn't it amazing that someone would dedicate a whole Web site, voluntarily and clearly in his own time, to a nasty respiratory disease?

So I am reading about Monet's garden in an overheated bedroom and watching the tree loppers cut back the beautiful trees outside our house and drop them on my car in order to protect cables owned by Optus and Telstra, which is ludicrous, because no one in this street uses their pay-TV rubbish, and Optus even denied to us that they had broadband internet available in our street, when we can clearly see their cables.

now we have ADSL from Pacific Internet, which is nice and fast and doesn't rely on separate ugly cables - although it does rely on Telstra's login servers or some such, which are useless part of the time.

I think I need some comfort food...eggs on toast, chicken noodle soup and jellybeans. I know I'm really sick when my body rejects caffeine.

Sunday, July 01, 2001

another thing there should be a word for: Web sites you find yourself at but have no idea how you got there. I'll call them Qualls.
this is one; a New Yorker writer who thinks. not that the others don't, oh God, I'll get myself in trouble, I think I'll just shut up.