Thursday, December 31, 2009


- this is 550 posts. Big Woop.

- I just organised my Favourites folder.

- I am doing research. It is my One True Love.

- I stopped the horrible Smoke Jumper book. Couldn't finish it. It was abysmal. The first and very grave thing that was wrong with it was the Love Triangle. The worst fucking plot almost ever. I can't think of anyone who's done it well. Shakespeare maybe? Then there was all this guff about photojournalism and African politics; the whole thing was ghastly. Not because of those two things I just listed, but they were used as padding for a very ordinary plotline and some truly mediocre characters. Sorry Nicholas Evans, you have failed mightily with this one.

- reading Ian Gawler's biography which is a breath of fresh air after the previous few books.

- have relocated Anna Karenin and Crime and Punishment. Oh happy Janvier. Also in the same box, the Kindly Ones. I am determined to read these three by Jan 27. I know I won't make it, but it's worth trying. I will be mother-to-only-one sporadically for the first two weeks of Jan, and can read, write, research, organise house. In that order of priorities.

- tonight we aren't doing anything spesh. I really don't care. I'll have a glass of champers. I have a dvd I want to watch. I won't be watching the fireworks or anything like that on tv. The kids can if they want to. Apparently Princess is going to Avatar and then dinner at Crown. Ali wanted to book at Nobu's. Yeah, good luck with that one.

- he also asked me to iron his shirt. I laughed and said I don't even iron my husband's shirts, so why would I iron his? He didn't like it but fuck him. Princess was there as well, and I'm glad she saw her mother not be a doormat. He is starting to emotionally manipulate her a little more (making her feel guilty etc for stuff) so she needs to be resilient and clear on what exactly her obligations are to him. I have always been very careful never to badmouth him to her, but it's hard to balance this with supporting her so she doesn't feel alone with him and his iss-ews. Tough thing to do. Thank god it's only once a year.

- she wants to go to Turkey this year. I'll have to go with, otherwise she'll be married off in some village to a relative and I'll never see her again. Over-reaction? Maybe.

- isn't it hot? And what am I making for dinner? I'm slow-roasting chicken and then will use the leftover white sauce from the moussaka I made Boxing Day (it's a luscious white sauce) to make chicken mornay. So wrong on such a hot day but I don't care. Must use the white sauce.

- am also going to make trifle. Now in fact.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Today I take my little black USB stick to the Officeworks and get two copies of a Word doc printed out.

Then I will give one to my mother and one to my sister.

Then I will collapse into a state of anxiety, and await their comments.

I bet my mum can't be critical in her feedback. She is a typical mother.

In other news today I will make coleslaw (cheat's way, using packet stuff) and go to a friend's for BBQ. I will stay the minimum amount of time to be polite and then leave. Drop Princess at Ali's and collapse back into bed to read.

Now I am reading Nicholas Evans' The Smoke Jumper. What the fuck is happening to me?

Monday, December 28, 2009

So, how are you? WARNING: WhingeFest Following

This time of year is generally unsettling for me. As the clock trips over from November to December, all Hell breaks loose, if not literally then psychically.

We have birthdays (mine, daughter's, MIL's and mother's as well as one best friend. Another best friend's BD is late in Nov. None of this helps.)

We have Christmas approaching, and with it the insanity of shops, presents, children's expectations and my scrooge-like emotions underpinning it all. Not to do with money, I hasten to add. It's all about the fuss and both, I think really I'm just a lazy festivalist. I have no interest in Easter really, or Melbourne Cup. I like the Grand Final if Geelong is playing but otherwise couldn't give a flying fuck. Everyone gets high-spirited and festive and it just doesn't sit with my innate gloom and doom default. I am pretty lacklustre and grumpy at the best of times; Christmas seems to add another layer of gilt-guilt to the whole dealio.

And now here we are. I have to finish my final read-through before I give the MS to my two (volunteer) readers. The thing is, the themes are all about mothers, bad mothers ineffective mothers, possibly murderous mothers, and mother-daughter relationships. What do you do when a reader (member of family) has trouble reading what you've written for emotional reasons? When something they read rings a bell, or resonates in a way that makes them suspect you've written about them? Do you care about that?
I guess I'm just projecting, and anticipating. It hasn't happened yet.

In other news, Ali has arrived with his beautiful girlfriend Fatima. Oh god she is gorgeous. I am in love with her a little I think. Princess is over there now, and they are not far from where we are which is great. They are happy where they are staying, and I am happy they are happy. There is talk of a trip to Turkey in September next year, I can't let her go on her own so I have to go with. HAVE TO. I can see myself set up in a little room somewhere in the South, with a Turkish family perhaps, with my laptop. Writing for a few weeks. Oh how nice. My contract at work would dovetail very nicely with this little idea. Princess is determined to go and I have said yes to 2010 (no to this year. She wanted to go this year because it had been 2 years, and she wants to go every 2 years. But she was starting at a new school, so I said no. I have to say yes to 2010 and I have, so that's that. He'll pay it's not a problem, but for me to go as well, Clokes won't be happy. I'll have to tell him soon...)

Oh well. Tomorrow an obligatory BBQ at a friend's. The day after an obligatory trip to Mt Macedon to see my aunt. Then an obligatory trip to Blairgowrie on NYD for lunch.


But things to look forward to. A day course in January with writers. An appointment with a shoulder surgeon. A haircut. And some time, quiet time, to write.

Reading - my recent choices I think have depressed me a little. I read the Girl With a Dragon Tattoo trilogy, at my dad's behest. The first one I liked in spite of my own snobbish self. Second was not so good, third was a chore. Fuck. And it's such a best seller? They should spend some of the money on re-proofing the damn thing. Now I'm reading My Sister's Keeper (daughter #1 just read it, I like to keep in touch with what the young kids are reading these days but... but...). It's not bad actually and I know I'll cry, but I don't like the way so many characters have a point of view. Too many I reckon for a book of that length. But it's ok.

What to read next? I still need to get to The Kindly Ones (which I've got and had for ages since it was recommended by someone who I don't know well, but trust - BookMoth? I think it was you).

Feeling so lazy and apathetic and flat. I think a bit is to do with my shoulder. It's been troubling me now for over a year, and gotten worse and it's a horrible thing being in pain. Wears you down. And this is minor. I can't imagine what people in chronic pain must do to survive. Actually, I can imagine. They get addicted to painkillers. I hate even taking a Panadol.

I had strange and disturbing dreams this morning. Menstruation mixed with sexual arousal. Some man at a school, older and devastatingly attractive; me with blood gushing out of my vagina, as if from a hose. My god. So vivid, and what the fuck does it mean?

I'm sitting at the table. There's some mince meat cooking, to be merged with leftovers for another leftover meal tonight. I'm not sure what to do now. Maybe I'll eat a mince pie. Yes, maybe I will.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I have new hair

So longtime readers will know I have a thing about my hair. It's not quite the equivalent of body dysmorphia HOWEVER it is a fact, and always has been, that I have big, unruly hair that I have been in battle with since teenhood.

Since I was 26 I have also started going grey.

For twenty years or a little less, I coloured, dyed, tipped, bleached, frosted and highlighted in salons around the world and at home. In the beginning, the grey wasn't so noticeable but over the years it's become a lot more so. The roots would show so quickly after colouring and I wasn't happy either with the amount of time, money and chemicals that I was having to deal with in order to try to fight this evidence of ageing. Women hate going grey, and they don't. Because it's possible to not ever go grey, and it's fairly easy and cheap to cover it up.

I've decided on a different approach.

A couple of years ago, maybe three, I went to the hairdresser and said that I wanted to work with it instead of against it.

I had a few treatments with her - she's a really good colourist - and then while I went to see her once after our trip (2 years ago) since then I haven't been. I've let it be. And it's gone a lovely white, silver colour. Really quite fetch.

Then this last week, I went back to her with my plan for the final stage.

I am happy to look my age but I don't want to look like a haggard old lady who doesn't give a fuck, so I thought a bit of gothic hair would be the go.

Cue Daphne Guinness, heiress to lots of beer money and owner of fabulous wardrobe and even more fabulous hair:

I am in the process of unashamedly ripping off her hair.

I am very pleased with myself.

I love it.

I love my hair.

I love being different to everyone else.

I am going to be that lady, the odd one, but instead of purple hair, it will be a reverse skunk, and children will point and stare and perhaps I will cackle.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

We are in

We've been without internet for a while but we're in now and back online.

House is good. Big.

Gigi is happy with back yard.

The suburb is so quiet with no drunks, traffic noises. Love it.

Christmas is upon us, so I hope everyone has a reasonable time (sometimes that's as good as you can hope for at this time of year.)

Take care.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Just because we're moving doesn't mean I can't blog

Just found this little gem in a bedside drawer:

Yo I'm a mother
I aint no fucker
I got 3 kids
I'm in the Biz
of keeping them in shoes
Shoe Biz
Poo Biz

The toilet gets grimy
The hubby gets slimey
And I'm feeling crimey

Wassup at the market?
Where'm I gonna park it?
Car park's full
RAV's got no pull
Up Punt Road Hill
So what
In the ghetto
You care 'bout all this?
It's all guns and drugs and hos and sheeyit

Well my reality
Don't think it's mundaneity
I'm going for totality
Don't think it's all a girls' lunch
All talk of play
and waxed vee jays
and chardonnay

It's dirty it's tough
And I've had enough
So I might just leave the hood

My hood is St Kilda
Where nobody kills ya
Not these days, anyway
It's all types of gentrification
And Fitzroy St fancy mastication
But still a little side-street masturbation
Condoms in gutters
Blow jobs, beers for nutters
What's the matter?

And then this, from a small boy:

To Melba,

I love you. I couldn't of survived without you. Your the reason I'm still alive. Your the best!

From Small Boy.

People who know the history of this blended family will appreciate how much this means. I need to keep this close to me, and to my heart, so I can continue to do my best for this child, and his sister. I'd forgotten he wrote me this so I'm glad I keep every skerrick of note, picture and meaningful word.

Happy Wednesday everyone, and love each other well.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

"So Mr Kotter, we got the house" [read in Arnold Horshack voice.]

We haven't bought oh no, not at all. We have withdrawn from the ratrace of people scrambling over the tops of each other to buy a piece of real estate in probably what is the most over-inflated environment evah.

We applied to rent a place and we got accepted. The real estate agent was all "Oh you are very lucky, this was a very popular house" and I was all like "Really? I have never been knocked back on a house application. NEVER!"

It's true.

And we had the dog on the application too, so no more of those witchy terrors of a few years ago. So there won't be any angst posts about Gigi being discovered.

We move next Saturday. I am out every night this week, so as well as packing it is going to really be Hell Week.

Wish me luck. I need it.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Things that are depressing me or have upset me in the last week

1. Reading an article last weekend about Jane Campion and remembering a friend of mine in Sydney years ago who suggested to me, having met Jane, that I send her (my friend) my writings, and she could give them to Jane.

I had nothing ready to give. Then.

2. Knocking a glass off the bench yesterday morning as I put bottles in the recycling tub. I'd washed my hair and had a towel-turban which knocked the glass. It smashed on the kitchen floor so I had to clean up properly before tender bare feet started appearing at 7am.

3. Not knowing whether my position will be continuing at work.

4. Missing out at auction to rich fucking people who seem to have bottomless pockets. $725K won't buy a house? FUCK OFF.

5. Hearing that entry to another writing thing next year is "quite competitive." I bet I won't get in.

6. Having a fight with my bro. Hate that.

7. Offending one of my best friends with my thoughtless, rude mouth. Hate that too.

8. The sink in the bathroom getting blocked. Grrrr.

9. The amount of Gigi hair on the rugs.

10. The rain yesterday, bit better today, but the rain. Oh, the rain. Actually the rain didn't bother me, I'm just scratching around for a number 10.

11. Socialising with a couple at daughter's school's end of year partay last Sunday afternoon; hearing that they own 15 properties in Melbourne.


That should have been number 10, not the rain.

A couple of things that have brightened my week:

1. Exchange with aboriginal folk outside IGA around the corner on Sunday. They were lavishing the G with attention, and one told me "I love animals. I wish I was an animal. They are better than people." OK, this made me teary actually, as I walked home. But it was a nice connection.

2. The St Kilda Triangle has been stopped. I am happy about this. I don't care about the $5 mill payout. I'm a rate-payer. I also joined the UnChain StKilda, anti-THAT development movement, so the victory feels nice.

3. Chat on phone with good friend last night. She made me feel better.

4. Watching Get Smart and Lost in Space episodes with the kids. Makes my heart feel better.

5. There's a chance we will be moving soon. Fucked off the house-buying idea, and jumped on the let's-rent idea. Application is in on a place, we shall see.

6. Painting my finger-nails red. Oh yay for small pleasures.