Saturday, December 23, 2006

christmas cheer

well it's that time of year, when i need to go and cook a bunch of food* and get a headache. no, really it's nice, it's exciting, the kids are going mental.

but this is for you.

go on, open it up.

and tell me what you've found in the comments.

i hope it's what you wanted. and don't give me any world peace shit. we all want that, that goes without saying. what would YOU like?

have a good one.

peace. love. happiness. good health. and not too much indigestion. these are my wishes for you.


* menu for tomorrow, 20 people (12 adults/8 kiddlings) = antipasto platters, arancini, roast pork, potatoes au gratin, kebabs with fillet of beef and italian sausages, crunchy noodle salad, green salad, trifle, pavlova with berries, semi fredo. leftovers on christmas day i believe.

Friday, December 15, 2006

friday bits and pieces

1. recently i have been torturing myself with this book, called dear charlie. it's a series of letters written by a grief-stricken father whose 13-year-old fresh-faced full of life daughter was hit and killed by a train at a crossing in england. this happened last year, december 3. i haven't finished the book yet but i cry as i read, often, and am filled with all sorts of dreads and fears and catastrophic imaginings. i'm not quite sure why i am doing this to myself. it's like an obsession.

2. yesterday i found out my little nephew will be entering prep with son of chopper. believe me when i say if there's any chance of being at a kid birthday party with the dad, i'll be there.

3. i keep seeing parents out and about with tiny little newborn type babies.


4. we have 2 hours of neighbours to watch tonight. oh, happy, happy friday.

5. i will be working in january. i have two research things on the go. there is a junket in february. i've never really been on a junket before. don't get too excited. i think it's to inverloch.

6. on monday i am going to see borat again. i will be with my mother, my sister and my brother-in-law who couldn't watch the office without putting his hands over his eyes. and found curb your enthusiasm even more difficult. i am going to be torn between concentrating on the movie for all those little bits i'm sure i missed the first time, the layers, and watching the others in my group. i am particularly worried about a masturbation scene and a defecation scene with regards to my mother. everything else will be ok i'm sure. she insists on seeing it, even though i've told her how bad it is.

7. i was most excited to see scallops with roe off in my fish store today. so tonight john and i will be dining on: a dozen oysters each, split half tassie, half south australian. don't eat sydney rock oysters - they are not clean.

then a wonderful spaghetti marinara made my moi with olive oil, garlic, parsley and scallops, rockling and prawns.

i think we'll need white wine as well.


8. on tuesday next week, my sister and i are going into the cbd. this will be a pre-wedding festival of dresses, looking at hotel room, looking at the ceremony venue, maybe going to tiffany just to look at the wedding bands, lunch, fun, sore feet, annoyance with the crowds, and perhaps a wee hot chocolate at max brunner's. or is it brenners? what do you think?

9. i'm wondering what to plan for our mega-christmas eve lunch where we have so many people coming we need to break out the trestle tables and folding chairs from event management central (john's parents). last year i did cold roast chicken, lasagne, and salads. i think for dessert we had the double-nut choc torte and perhaps the upside-down pear cake.
any suggestions?

10. my dad told me he is going to burn his diaries. i'm faced with a similar dilemma. i have diaries going back to when i was about 16 or 17. if i stacked them in a pile they would reach my upper thigh? anyway, there's over 20 volumes. i know cause i numbered them. i stopped writing them shortly after having princess, so that was 10 years ago. dribs and drabs since then. there is so much shit in them ("i'm reading the accidental tourist and went and bought gym boots at dimmy's. also tomorrow night we're going to the corner. had a twins souvlaki last night after we were out in carlton. we fit 8 people in the beetle and went back to bbqs galore in richmond for a party. the assistant manager let us in...") but there is also some pretty full-on stuff too. really personal stuff. i am pissed off at the idea of my dad burning his history, but then i'm thinking about doing the same. do i want princess to read this shit? where i say things like: "ali was a fucking idiot today, why do i put up with him treating me like shit, i deserve better." he did this, he did that, etc. so, i said to dad if there are any that aren't too personal but have stuff in them other than:

1. re-run dunlop data tapes; mainframe reels blah de blah, changeover at 0900 hours

2. book car in for service

3. go 20 H collect mail

4. book dinner at tabener's

5. pay po box fee

then i would be very much interested in having them, just because. i know there are secrets in his family, there was whisper of a rape, mention of mental illness, suggestion of stillbirth, but it's all withheld, no one will talk about it. what i need to do is try and somehow engineer a meeting with helen garner. strangely she is related, and i bet she knows shit about my family. i would need to befriend her in a non-stalky manner (possible, yes?) and then extract, pump and relieve her of certain tidbits. i was a born snoop/detective.
i don't like finishing on 11. it's just so a-symmetrical. however, i went to the school principal this morning and reported grand larceny in princess's classroom. on tuesday they had italian day (this is where my silent reader danny katz's ears prick up. my kid's italian day was on tuesday as well, he thinks.)
during the day, classes moved around into and out of rooms. by wednesday it was apparent that no less than SIX girls had been robbed of one of the most highly-valued, top-status possessions an 8-12 year old girl can own.


this morning i noted down the details as princess related them. i took my list to the principal and he indulged me by listening. i wouldn't have made a big deal about it if it was just one thing (princess's pack of 8 SCENTED gel pens) HOWEVER also taken was a pack of 12 highlighters, 3 erasers, loose textas, from tubs under desks, and from inside smiggle boxes which were closed.
the principal is getting back to me.

have a good weekend. eat fish. it's good for you.

Friday, December 08, 2006

dear ali

it's that time of year again, isn't it dear ex-husband? remember last year? i do, with great fondness as i rushed around, right about this time, or even a bit later i think it was, even closer to christmas, making bookings for princess to go and stay with you in america.

remember those wonderful days, when you would text and call me at all hours, impatient and derisory, saying things like "if only you were professional and good".

well, listen, bucko. i aint a travel agent. and i aint your wife anymore, so you can fuck off with your professional and good.

so it's around this time you come into my life with your texts and your phone calls and your demands. and i can't tell you to fuck off because the person we both love most in the whole wide wonderful world hovers between us, like human fairy-floss, both of us wanting to hold it and adore the pinkness.

so, you two have made a plan to go to brisbane. great. no really, i mean it. GREAT. why wouldn't i be happy for my daughter to go to all those worlds up there, movie, wet n' wild and sea. and why wouldn't i want to help out with flight bookings and accommodation. after all, i want her to travel and stay safely and pleasantly. i do want to smooth things, keep things cool. why would i want to tell you to fuck off, make your own reservations?

but please, just stop telling me that I'M making things difficult, when you don't see me on my little hamster-wheel, spinning spinning to try and work things out for you. i work really hard over here, i'm busy as anything, yet i prioritise your demands to keep things smooth. so you go to your fucking james bond movies, you go and get drunk over there in london. i don't mind. but please be polite to me. thank me for my efforts. don't cut me down. when i call you to ask if your drivers' licence is current, and what the address is on it, don't tell me i'm causing problems, and why haven't i managed to finish all this in the 2 days you've given me to do it.

you've given me to do it?

i must have missed the fact that i'm a slave to your schedule, how could i have possibly not realised?

so don't make with the nice with me one minute and then turn on me like that. try and be civil all the time, and don't make it seem like you're doing me a favour just because you control your temper, you don't get angry at me because i might not understand straight away what you are saying in your thick fucking accent over the phone.

so enjoy your trip to brisbane. i hope you don't stay in melbourne long. i hope we can get through this without an argument. or without me getting that familiar sick feeling of hotness and nausea when you are around and you are not happy.


your former wife

Sunday, December 03, 2006

big catch up post

this will have to be in list form. but before you turn away in disgust, thinking i'm being lazy, bear with me. often these can be the real doozies, the beautiful posts, the stream-of-consciousness check-this-out kind of spiel. it's just i'm under the hammer, the december hammer, where my life spins out of control. it all begins with:

yesterday: my birthday. i got lots of creams and lotions, a splurge at the chanel cosmetics counter, chrissy amphlett's autobio, the bio on kerry packer and a book about a female gp about all things health-related. you know i'm old, i've told you before. i also got flowers, funky glass tumblers and a loverly candle. we ate oysters, prawns and fillet steak, followed by a cake from patterson's. say no more.

then today princess had her ballet concert and i ran into peter rowsthorn. when i say "ran into" what i mean more precisely is that i saw him videoing one of the acts, and went and stood next to him with my video camera, and politely waited until he finished. then i said hi. we knew each other oh years ago, and so we chatted briefly and i managed to make him laugh. what was it about? well, amway actually, and it was a cheap shot against a formerly-mutual friend. bad i know, i am not above betraying old friends to make a comedian laugh. especially one who is in kath and kim. you'll see me on thank god you're here yet.*

last week also i heard about my thesis. for those who don't know, at the end of may i submitted my master thesis. i'd done it full time for 12 months + a 3 month extension. then about 3 months after that i received word that one examiner had loved it, and the other had hated it.


as in, had nothing good to say about it and refused to give it a mark.

now, this is not good. i kept my cool, i told my supervisor that i was standing by my work and taking out a contract on the examiner. she told me not to be rash, and that they would find another person to review it. so it went to a very eminent canadian academic, who has reviewed it and passed it.


clink goes the champagne.

i've also picked up some more research work for melbuni lecturer re "creativity" - sheesh what a narrow topic, do you think we could broaden that out a bit? - which will see me busy over the rest of december and all of january. it involves a literature review and powerpoint presentation, to the level of teachers, ie "make it intelligible and not overly wanky" i'm guessing.

but, to the burning point of interest for all readers.

the hair.

john and i went down to port fairy last weekend, had monday off, it was delightful, it was de-lovely. and i washed my hair on the sunday. and...


it's still ok. it's a good cut, and i am happy with it.

the stylist was BRI (pronounced br-eye, not brie cheese as i said it when i went in there) down at simrod hair in carlisle street, balaclava.

so, much thanks to ccm who recommended her. i'm thinking i might try her for colour next.

and after that, move onto the next suggestion.

i will work my way through the list.

other news:

beazley must go. that is all.

other other news:

the gigi turned 2 last sunday.

* this brings my tally of making professional funny people i admire laugh to a total of 3 for the year. there was danny katz earlier in the year - my quip was about jamie oliver and his double-nut choc torte - and ms fits, something inane about farting on someone. and we'd met about 2 minutes before. maybe it was a nervous laugh. (you look surprised. well, with me it's a class act all the way, baby.)