Wednesday, May 30

The view from Mount Olympus

Only 4 weeks until I finish work. And because I only work 2 days a week that means only 8 days of actually going in there. Pretty exciting huh?

My boss has decided that he should be 'touching base' with me regularly now. Every time he sees me he smiles, greets me and checks on my health and welfare. Something about horses and barn doors springs to mind but I won't be uncharitable. He also told me that my leaving caused him 'a bit of grief'. 'Is that right?' I thought. 'Hmm, well....let me see....suck it up' again I only thought this response, why make his life even more miserable than it obviously already is?

The colleagues with whom I share an office aren't happy with me. We have fun in our office. There are only 4 of us and we all get on, which is amazing in a family never mind in an office. We have our own photocopier. And espresso machine. It's pretty damn good in there. We also enjoy many happy hours at the expense of our workmates on level 3. Our whole department is up there, except us. About a year ago it was noticed that there was gross overcrowding in the level 3 office. Our manager secured some spare office space on the second floor. He asked for volunteers to go down there, and didn't get any. He then 'chose' the four of us because we were the lecturers who taught the 'higher levels' so we could all be together in the new office. I came back from holiday to find out I had been moved. Rude I thought. Everyone thought we had drawn the short straw in getting office 'W204' on the second floor. Then they saw it.... our big spacious room with the huge arched window and the photocopier..... and espresso machine. And they shook their fists in wrath.

Anyway, our favourite game in W204 is tormenting the level 3'ers. We mock the torture of their cramped little cubicles and instant coffee. We snigger at their frustrations and the inevitable conflict that occurs when you squeeze that many people into such a small space. They fight and squabble and I think it's only a matter of time before they start eating the weaker ones.

Occasionally one of us will venture up there and make some observations. Then we return to 'home office' and report our findings (like Diane Fossey in Gorillas in the Mist). They're fascinating and comical. How we laugh. One of my W204 colleagues commented on how enjoyable it was to sit in our 'palace' and scoff at the 'others'. I prefer to liken us to the Gods on Mount Olympus, tormenting the mortals and being entertained by their helpless strivings.

I'm going to miss that.

Monday, May 28

They stole my idea

My 5 minute website idea? Someone has stolen it. Actually after a bit of research I found quite a few people have stolen my idea...not only that, they implemented it within 24 hours of reading about it on my blog!!
I bow to their greater organisational skills.

I suppose there is the remotest chance that they actually had the idea before me? Nah, ...course not....

Smarty pantses.

Sunday, May 27

Checking the health insurance is current

Well, it's Sunday. Tom and the girls have been outside for hours. This has allowed me time to tidy up, do some washing, drink several cups of tea and email my sisters loads of times. It's been nice.

Hannah called me outside to see what Aislin is doing. I went. I wish I hadn't. Tom and the girls have built climbing steps on one of the big trees in the garden and there is Aislin, 7 feet off the ground, sitting on a branch swinging her legs. My heart stopped. I said 'Tom, is this a good idea, mightn't they fall out of the tree?'. He replied 'probably at some stage they will' and carried on. The girls love the climbing steps. Tom loves the climbing steps. I don't like the climbing steps.

But what do I know?

Friday, May 25

Wouldn't it be nice if.....

  1. Chocolate wasn't fattening
  2. Dogs cleaned up their own pooh
  3. Children cleaned up their own everything
  4. Dinner cooked itself
  5. Web design was easy

Anyway, that was just a few thoughts to get me started. All of these thoughts, I should add, came to me in the 10 minutes it took to go to the Post Office and collect the mail today. No, I don't know what's going on in my head either.

It all began because I felt like some chocolate, but Friday night is chocolate night (well one of the chocolate nights) so I thought 'it's the afternoon, I can't have chocolate now too' (who makes these rules?).

Then I saw a nice dog. I'm not allowed to have a dog (Tom said it's him or a dog...I'm still deciding). This one was lovely, so I wistfully watched it for a minute. I thought about why I'm not allowed to have a dog. It's mainly the pooh...on the lawn.

Then we got home and I looked around the house, I have two children at home today, Hannah is sick with a cold. I don't need to explain this one further do I?

Number four should be pretty self-explanatory as well. 'I hate cooking' will help you along a bit.

Web Design. Hmmm. I can't decided whether to actually blog about this because it makes me so damn mad. I might need a large whisky to go with that chocolate (sorry, bad combination). Note to Tom if you're reading this, get back to work and stop fretting about your Jameson. The short version is my web design people did a crap job. I hate my website. I am not paying anyone else to fix it because I already spent too much damn money on the one I have. I am teaching myself Microsoft Front Page and HTML so that I can fix it myself and never again have to rely on another incompetent human being to do this for me (I want to be the only incompetent human being dealing with my website). But it's excrutiatingly slow and I'm easily bored if I don't see results and achieve stuff immediately. I'm childish like that.

So the thought popped into my head 'here's an idea.....make web design EASY!!!!'. And I mean to mere mortals that don't want to study computer science or web design for years. So, one day, I'm going to make a fortune by inventing a way of getting a website up and running easily - in like, 5 minutes. Sorry web designers everywhere if that gets in the way of your dreams of world domination and making billions at the expense of we website dunderheads. Enjoy it while you can, your days are numbered (probably in the millions).

Monday, May 21

The countdown begins..

...a little prematurely perhaps, but I have only 4 assignments left to complete this semester then I will be halfway through my final year.

This makes me happy. Because for a long time it felt as though it would never end.

But it will. In November.

Of course next semester will bring a great big pile of fresh new assignments but that's ok. Come on November, my favourite month for so many reasons and now this one.

Saturday, May 19

Shop 'til you throttle

Can I just say how much I hate shopping with children? Not grocery shopping, although that’s a hell on earth I’d rather avoid, but general shopping. This is the second weekend in a row we've subjected ourselves to this and if we have to do it again I'm going to have to up my dose of Prozac*.

Today we went to buy a book I wanted, and while it may seem that I'm thinking 'it's all about me' I am, in fact, the wage earner so yes, on this occasion it was all about me. However our offspring were with us and ended up with new books too. That in itself isn’t a problem, in fact it's a good thing, but the length of time it took them to choose a book was crazy-making.

Then we went to get them new winter PJs. Why do they need to choose their own? My mother used to buy it, bring it home and make us wear it. No argument. But no, modern children, apparently, are allowed to be involved. It took hours (well, 20 minutes but in Target on a Saturday afternoon it felt like hours). There was much discussion about the benefits of Dorothy the Dinosaur against Dora the Explorer or perhaps Winnie the Pooh...or no, My Little Pony!!! Don't even get me started on my views regarding advertising these characters on my sleeping children. A curse on you Disney, Dreamworks and the rest...

And if either of my sisters feel this is a good time to mention my own 'Dr Who, Dalek' PJs in the comments I'm warning you. Shut up.

Anyway, then Tom and I needed to pick up a couple of items for ourselves and although we knew what we wanted and went straight there and began to search for the precise item, we were nagged at!!! 'Hurry UP Mummy'....'Daaaaaddddy, you're taking too long' and similar annoying whinings. Once again, who are the wage earners in this family?

If it seems I'm making a big deal about being a wage earner, I'm just getting it all out of my system before the 28 June when I can no longer use that excuse.


* At this stage of my life I am not actually on Prozac, this comment was added for comic effect. I mean no disrespect anyone on Prozac or similar. In the past I, myself, have been very glad to partake of 'Mummy's little helpers' by the bucketload.

Friday, May 18

The challenge

One woman

8 Hours

One 3,000 word assignment.

......Stay tuned.......

UPDATE: She did it. Bloody genius.

Tuesday, May 15

Excuses for not blogging...

Hmmm, well May is starting to shape up like previous 'blogging-drought' months. I will sort that out quick smart. It's not that I don't have much to say, I mean it's been a BIG WEEK, there was the whole job-quitting thing, laptop and mobile phone shopping (both were being replaced), Mother's Day....need I go on? I thought not. I have lots of stories and fascinating anecdotes to share, there just hasn't been much time.

One thing I feel absolutely compelled to mention is what a major pain in the arse it is to get a new computer. This is the second time in 8 months that I've updated my laptop and I hate it. Well, actually I love the shiny new machine. But I hate reloading software, transferring files and finding my way around Windows Vista. I'm sure Mr Gates is desperately trying to justify his billions by keeping us right up to the minute with new geeky stuff but please, no more, I'm confused enough. I've only just got used to XP! Anyway, I use my computer a lot, so there's a lot of stuff on it. It takes along time to transfer it all. I don't like that job.

Just saying.

My new mobile phone is quite beautiful, but it's more complicated than the computer. Technology, I love it with geek-like passion but it's a blessing and a curse.

Saturday, May 12

Sports day redux

Well the final sports day competitions finally happened yesterday. Unfortunately (ahem) I was unable to attend due to prior commitments (hey, it's true!!). However we did have this conversation in the car on the way home.

Me: So, how did the races go?

Hannah: Good. I came 4th in my race.

Me: 4th? Wow!! That's fantastic Hannah!! Well done!! How exciting!!!! many of you were racing

Hannah: Four.

Me: Snort.

Friday, May 11

Momentous occasion

Yesterday Tony Blair and I quit our day jobs.

Mine was quite a performance, I went into the boss's office and it went like this (and if you're a Dead Kennedys fan sing with me).... 'take this job and shove it I ain't workin' here no more' and as I sang I this....


Ok, that's not true, we had a chat and I handed him the letter but that is not nearly as fun as the first description.

To say I'm excited is an understatement.

Woooooo Hoooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!

I don't know if Tony is as happy and excited as me, but I can assure you that my resignation was a lot less maudlin than his effort and I certainly wasn't being apologetic about 'sincerely doing what I thought was right'. Hell no. Disppointing Tony.

Celebrate with me people!!

Friday, May 4 of my favourite things. Not.

Today was Hannah's school sports day. As we have had so much rain the school oval is water-logged and the whole thing had to be re-assessed, after which it was decided the younger children could have their games in the school hall. The big kids had to do theirs in the cold on the tennis courts. Cruel, but fair I felt, because my child is one of the younger ones.

It all started at 11.30am. We endured enjoyed a welcome from the principal and a mercifully short prayer from the Religious Instruction teacher (called….wait for it….Mr Priest ha ha ha ha ha ha ha). How I laughed. Probably a little too loudly. However, he got his own back by refusing to sit down until everyone, Catholic or not, had crossed themselves. I somehow managed to do this without spontaneously bursting into flames or being struck by sudden and unexpected indoor lightening. Clearly the man was an Inqusitor in a past life, but I digress. After all that the house teams got to shout their 'team war cries'. These had been written by the (12 year old) house captains - they were not just clever, they were hilarious...oh, and LOUD. Then the big kids were sent away to do their sports in the Siberian conditions at the tennis courts, we never saw them again, they may still be there. I snuggled into my chair in the relative warmth of Sienna Hall with Aislin cuddled up beside me to watch the shambles that is junior primary sports.

We saw Hop Scotch, Quoits and Elastic (which should SO be an Olympic sport - my God, the suspense). Then we had sausage sizzle lunch - well the girls did - a greasy sausage smothered in tomato ketchup and wrapped in soggy white bread did not tempt me away from my vegan ways.

After lunch the rain really came down so the kids, whose parents had attended, were allowed to go home early. I thought this was a particluarly clever ploy to get more parents attending these things. Those kids that were left behind were pretty put out I can tell you. I'll bet their parents will pay for that this weekend and not dare miss another school event. I'm all for this. If I have to go so do they.

I did take some photos of the chaos but the light was poor and my camera is playing up in the most irritating manner (Mother's Day soon - hint hint) so they didn't turn out well at all. I won't sully my artistic reputation further by exhibiting them, you already know I can't take a photo to save myself - but that's a whole other blog post. You'll just have to take my word for it that my daughter excelled at everything. She was particluarly good at standing about staring dreamily at the other teams and totally missing her cue in the relays. If there is an award being presented for impersonating a gold fish she's a shoo-in*. Must go now and think up an excuse not to go to 'Sports Day Phase 2' on Monday. This is where they complete the unfinished competitions and prizes are given. It breaks my heart to miss it, but....well there you go. Tum tee tum.

*Did you know this is a horse racing term? I didn't. Tells you about it here.

Tuesday, May 1

May Day

Hope you're all dancing round the Maypole and frolicking in the fields (that's frolicking people - sheesh) in true Beltane fashion......

......or just having a good day is fine too....

Credit for the photo here