Friday, December 31, 2004

NZ2004 Posted by Hello

I took this in early september in NZ, we had a day heliskiing with Mt Hutt Heli. They were great people and we had a most enjoyable day. If this sort of thing takes your interest and you can't get down to Wanaka/Queenstown well there is some great heli to be had out the back of Hutt. I am not in this photo but the man in the middle is my brother and I am told we do look alike.


Well I assume that nearly everyone else who blogs is also writing an end of year blog. Anyway here is my bit, it is short as I have other things to do. First I wish everybody has a great year next year - I know that this is impossible, however I genuinly wish it for all. Most of us will have a year ranging from not bad to annus horribilus. The odd person here and there will have a ripper. Good luck to all.

I have tried to attach a photo of someone who looks very like me to this blog. It was taken in NZ last year and does bear an amazing resemblance, however it is not me. It is a beautiful summer evening in Melbourne this New Years Eve, normally I go to a NYE party at the Imperial hotel, but not this year it will be a quite one at home. So now I will grab a cold beer (VB of course) and wander out, sit by the pool and finish Pickwick Papers (Dickens). I regret coming so late to Dickens, I have missed out on a lot of enjoyment I could have had years ago. When it gets dark i will grab a bottle of Piper Champagne which is cooling in the fridge and sit on the balcony and wait to watch the illegal fireworks.

Best Wishes

Monday, December 20, 2004

Am I growing up?

As with most of my written word ramblings they are done late in the evening, usually with a couple of glasses of scotch under my belt. I have just finished watching another episode of 'The Office'. I saw about half of the episodes the first time so I am trying to see the rest in this series of repeats. David Brent has always made me squirm, the same for George Costanza in 'Seinfeld' I haven't thought about it much before, however tonight I experienced a relevation - much of their characters is similiar to the way I have either acted or thought in my life.

When David Brent displays his general knowledge or (supposed) mastery of some skill or art form reminds me of times when as a young man I tried to impress people by demonstrating how good I was at something or other. George with his self absorbtion about his faults and the worry that someone may find him out as the hollow man he really is inside. Well not to the degree of those two, but in several small ways I see bits of me. I see me and I am embarrassed. I am embarrassed when I think of the times I let people down, I let them down because to stand alongside them would have meant that I had to stand apart from the crowd, I would have had to stand up for what was right even though I may have recieved a punch or two.

I am embarrassed for the times I let other people be humiliated by smart arse funny men who poked fun at people who through no fault of their own suffered a misfortune. I stood there and enjoyed the moment even though deep down I felt uncomfortable.

I have spent the last 22 years working in a public service which has required courage and clear thinking in times of great stress. I have not always fulfilled my job as well as I would have liked, especially in the early years. However as the time has gone by and I have been placed in situations of great stress where decisions and courage have meant life or death for people, I have developed an inner strength. I try to stand up for what is right, this has cost me several times in my career. However to have folded and done the wrong thing just to please others would have left me a poorer person. I have strength now to stand when and where it is necessary, I can't remember who, but someone said that something along the lines of - 'Courage is a muscle and it needs constant exercise to get stronger'. Well that quote may be a little off track, but it is true.

A strong heart and a clear mind need to be worked at constantly, I have not achieved either yet however I get stronger all the time. I only hope I am strong enough to face death witha clear calm mind when it comes (in about 100 years time I hope). I feel that I am finally beginning to become a man in mind and body.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

A woman is just a woman but a good cigar is a smoke

Well with that title I have hopefully offended many of those people who love to impose their values on the rest of us. I do not know who coined the phrase above however it does roll delightfully off the tongue and is just about guaranteed to offend someone. I don't smoke, never have never will, I find the habit rather loathsome. Still, the sorts of people who make their pronouncements on how people should live their lives seem to find smoking an irrisistable attraction. What worries me is what will they set their sights on when they achieve their goal? Drinking? Eating? Fashion? Where will their meddling end? About the only activity that would be safe to engage in for the future would be sex.

I can see the day where it will become compulsory (or at least fashionable) to have sex on a crowded city street, just watch out you don't have a fag afterwards you will probably be charged with smoking in public.

A future growth area will no doubt be the enforcers of laws designed to stop people from enjoying themselves, unless in a government approved manner. The Fun Prevention Police recruiting now!

As for the 'woman' part of this quote, well I have been brave enough tonight, I may tackle that another time

Monday, December 13, 2004

Wonderful People

I had an unexpected chat with an old friend who I have not been in contact for a long time, although we have been out of contact for many years the words just flowed. Its funny how that happens, occasionaly I have come across someone I have not seen for a long time and you exchange pleasantries then, thats it! There is nothing else to say, and you part with niceties and at the same time think to yourself how awkward it was. Afterwards you reflect and think what the hell did I find interesting in them in the first place?

Well tonight was the exception, exceptions do happen. They must, otherwise there would be no rules. My old friend and I.... well it was like we had never parted. Due to our life circumstances we will probably remain distant from each other, and may never meet again, however I know that we will always find in each other a soulmate.

Sometimes life is very good.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Zee or Zed?

This morning on 'The Comfort Zone' (Radio National) one of the guests was Gay Bilson a chef with a bit of a 'name' in some circles. As with most people who appear on this show she does not realise the world she lives in is rather different than the one most australians inhabit. This however is not the reason I write. At one stage in the interview she spoke about a "whole range of things from A to Zee".

ZEE???? Where the hell did that come from?

She spoke with an Australian accent ( a bit plummy but still Australian). So where does she get ZEE from? The only place I have ever heard ZEE is on sesame street and some yankee TV shows. From the sound of it Gay is a mature woman and I would assume that her schooling like very other Australians schooling, would have had ZED at the end of the alphabet.

Am I being pedantic here? I am definately not anti american however I do wish that we could hang onto the little things that make us different. There are so many that are starting to creep in to our life and it seems that nobody notices or cares. Here are a few.

Was registration number now - licence plate
Was lemonade - now soda
Was barracking - now rooting (if I had used that my dad would have belted me)

Where did Halloween and Valentines day come from? When I was a teenager the only place I had ever heard of them was in comics such as Archie or Dennis the Menace etc.

There are so many more I probably have taken a few on board without even realising (notice I spelled that with an S the yanks use Z). What is to be done if anything.