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the RIP special

Maybe a month ago now that cat of mum’s went walkabout and didn’t come back. Every cat has its foil; food, sex, drugs, roughhousing, hunting et cetera and this one’s was definitely food. We guess it probably ate somethin’ it shouldn’t have and died in a field. Either that or it got abducted by aliens. Or maybe it was an alien and was homesick.
Y’know there’s this theory based on how a lot of stuff – like cultivatable grains and veges etc. came about too quickly when measured up against what the evolution-science-mafia mob say. “Oh, selective planting huh? Yeah right.” – that’s what the ‘intelligent design’ people say. They’re not creationists, more along the lines of the earth was seeded by a more ancient race.

I don’t know if they’re right but when I look at a lot of mammals they seem so odd and different and I fancy they each came from different planets, like a horse planet, seal and dog planets, cow planet and definitely an elephant planet.
One day a long time ago, 1970s and ancient Egypt, cats in their flying saucer came into orbit and scanned the planet. They looked at the humans and knew that if they wanted to, they could come live here because they knew the humans were partial to soft, furry mostly floppy things. So they did. “We Go Where We Please” – that’s their motto.

Also, the little dog that I claimed was a stock photo of a little dog in this post wasn’t. It was actually a friend’s little dog. About two months ago it got mauled by a larger dog. He loved that little dog, he’d pick it up and nurse it like the Duchess and the baby pig.

My mum was dropping sis off at the train station and there were these scungy kittens running around the joint. My sis said chase it get it or something like that but they didn’t. Mum tried not to sqwash any when leaving the station — and she didn’t — but when she pulled up at the servo she looked around and there was the same kitten. Just like Sideshow Bob, as she rightly pointed out, it’d somehow attached itself to the bottom of the beat-up beat-down ‘85 volvo stationvagen. Ma took this to be a sign and took the kitten home. It’s ugly as all fuck, apparently.

Best christmas song that nobody ever plays: another lonely christmas by Prince.

I would do one of those best albums of the year thingies except that I don’t remember if I’ve actually listened to any albums that were made this year. When it comes to figuring that stuff out it’s like I’m permanently on drugs. I just found out I had Neil Young’s Harvest Moon on LP – I don’t know how long it’s been there.
It probably wasn’t made this year, but it did make quite an impression on me — Richard Cheese’s Lounge Against the Machine album. I mention this because I surprise myself that I like it, I mean, I’d sooner stab myself iin the ear drums than listen to Limp Bizkit, Blink 182 or Offspring — but the reinterpretation of their songs in a caberet style impresses me in a way that I could really make sound good if I could only remember all that academic jive lingo I learnt in communication studies.

It’s just very catchy and singable. If I had to get up and do a kareoke number, I’d sing the dick cheese version of Guerilla Radio.

YS @ 9:45 pm, December 28, 2004

‘do not calle up That which you cannot put downe’

I’ve been reading a story by H P Lovecraft, titled The Case of Charles Dexter Ward. I’m told that Lovecraft was a bit of a fascist in outlook. Occasionally that kind of thing stops me from bothering, but Lovey’s time seems so far back (1890-1937) that I don’t care. I’d read other bits of his stuff but found it slow going — something about long sentences with little punctuation being the order of the day.
But this one has been relatively entertaining and kinda makes me wish Australia had that extra couple hundred years of whitey history that the US does. It’s set on Rhode Island, and a fair whack of his writing draws up that north-eastern corner and Boston in particular.

What I like about his writing in general is the way these unspeakable horrors are described. The combination of the formal/older vocab and that clever mix of what’s told vs. what’s not told that pushes the imagination into overdrive in the way that most stuff today doesn’t.
This particular story has an interesting way of holding the reader’s perspective back a bit — like peering over a backyard fence.
Charles Ward, approx. 20 y.o., is steadily getting into heavier and heavier shit like chanting, digging up old graves and summoning up these demonic abominations — all in the attic of his parents’ house. They’re hearing strange incantations, yelling, unplaceable and frighteningly hollow voices, moaning and sobbing from behind the door and they’re asking, “Is everything alright in there?”
All this weird stuff starts happening around the town; people go missing, metal coffin-like boxes are hauled up to the attic in the middle of the night etc etc. — there’s this one nice sentence after all that, “Mr and Mrs Ward conferred at some length after dinner, and the former resolved to have a firm and serious talk with Charles that very night”.
There was one scene where young Ward got a ahold of the family newspaper first, spilled ink over one section of a page so that the article underneath couldn’t be read. The article being about suspicious activity at the graveyard.
Marsha from The Brady Bunch also pulled this trick once.

I won’t tell you how it ends because I haven’t finished it yet.
Background info on Lovecraft and Cthulhu.

YS @ 10:49 pm, December 27, 2004

merry christmas

When the world starts to implode I develop this habit of rearranging the furniture – spending all day moving components a little this way, a little that, looking from angles at the result. It’s not very entertaining.

Sadly, I had to say Sayonara to the Monday Morning Mentals Music group this just gone. In the brief months I got back to it, after a four year absence, they were a whole bunch of inspirations to me. None moreso than

DareDevil Nevil

He doesn’t talk, bringing a new twist to an old adage, like Better to keep quiet and leave them wondering if you’re from this plane of existence than to start talkin’ and remove all doubt.
Interestingly, just to head-fuck me, and make my claims less convincing to you, he actually looks quite with it in that shot, and even seems to be disapproving of my foto-taking through a ‘what a wank’ hand motion. Like Neil Diamond.
He’s the most unpredictable man in showbusiness. One moment, for half an hour he’ll just be sitting there, gazing gleefully at the ceiling like he’s telepathying with demons and angels, and then (well once at least) he jumps up and dives between to people to get to the mixing desk and starts readjusting the vols. There’s two people (seen behind) who’re employed just to keep an eye on him.
A couple of times he’s started doing stuff, and through physical proximity ie. I’ve been the closest, they’ve expected me to do what they do and talk loud and disapproving say Sit Down! etc. but I just watch and think ‘How cool!’.

YS @ 9:38 pm, December 23, 2004

for less than a dollar a day

Dear Pulika,
Sorry I haven’t written sooner but it’s just been a fucking madhouse aroound here of late. As if chistmas wasn’t enough, then my older twin sisters decide to have their weddings on the 9th of Jan! I get to be a bridesmaid but there’s stacks of stuff I have to do for it like get fitted for a dress and mum says that we have to do 2 complete test runs of eating the whole banquet just in case the first one is a fluke. :barfs: I’m so full.
Mum said I could invite a friend because all the reception speaches n junkk will be fully boring so I said to my friend Imogen could come and she’s like she totally freaked coz she’s got a crush on my brother Grant who is a year older than me. I said to Immy like, he likes you but he’s just not that into you.
My brother is a totall pain but sometimes he is ok, like, he did something to the onboard navigation computer dealy in the Toyota Prado so that the talking woman in it so that she says Would you like mme to talk dirty to you? and it said it to mum and she totally freaksvilled and says back to it How is that going to help me get from Chadstone Southland back to Armadale?

Anyhoo the agency said I should tell you a bit about me so here goes.
the most disturbing things that i can think of are scalps, they are disgusting, flakey, porous, smelly, just writing this is making me gag. i also get really sickened when i see drawings of hair follicles. i hate seeing ants clustered together, vomitworthy, and so are things like fish eggs and cell walls, ground beef, things like graph paper makes me sick a lot. the fish eggs on finding nemo were horrifying. my friend was the first to talk to me about this disgust with clustery beasts and sometimes when we’re on the internet, we battle each other by looking up pictures of sick things like chicken pox and fish scales and mushrooms to see who gives up first. she is horrified of birds and the way that their feathers fold over each other and their wrinkly eyes both gross her out, she’s also scared of bald spots, and when it comes to clusters she hates poppy seed clusters the most. she is also throughly disgusted and horrified with the thought of things embedding themselves and she has had horrible dreams about poppy seeds embedding themselves into her arm and then someone scraping the seeds out with a potato peeler. we also get really grossed out by words that sound sick. words like, moist, fineagle, ointment, blithe, just gross sounding words. other things that make us want to puke are stout things, like the sugar pot on the movie the sword and the stone, and the 6 oz soda cans. anything that people try to make miniature so that its “cute” is just really wrong. i get really grossed out when i have to feel fabric that is worn and it has little balls on it, especially sheets, i almost die if i have to sleep in a bed with pilly sheets, it is sick. also people sipping makes my skin crawl along with strings of sticky things, we’re talking pizza cheese that won’t stop stretching, people that pull their gum out of their mouths and spit, spit is the worst, spit that won’t detach, bleck. i have a big problem with eating things, especially turkey, if i think about where they came from before i eat it, with turkey, i think of a dead road kill turkey on the side of the road with its feathers puffed and there’s lice on it and you can see its raised pores and… barfs i’m also scared that toilets won’t function correctly… but i think that’s enough confessing for now

In geog class they told us the average temp for addis ababa now is 38 degs. Surfs up dude! Maybe ur a bit little for surfing but boogie boards is kewl too. If its 200km from yor village to the coast then that, like, 2 hrs drive or something as long as theres no traffic jams. LOLLZzz! Addis abiba sounds like adidas. I hope that means you don’t have Adidas becuz Fila rox.

I’m glad I got u as a sponsor kid b/c in the photot the agency gave me you look nice. Braids went out here last year, but I guess you guys will catch up soon. Immy got a boy blecch! from gwatamalla and he has a thing on his face that looks gross..
The OC is gonnna start soo I gotta run! :)
laters
Genny

YS @ 10:50 am, December 17, 2004

Well, it’ll sound a lot better coming out of Paul Anka.

Well it’s just been a fucking madhouse around here of late so team sunny breaks unfortunately can’t be offering the usual level of carefully planned caustic wit n’ bleak humour.
Been packing stuff and trying to flog off some. Does anyone wanna buy my desktop computer – it’s got everything, 1000megahertz never driven above 766. I sold some of the more pulpy books that hadn’t come out of boxes since the last move and have come to the conclusion that 2nd hand bookshop proprietors are nothing more than glorified (glory! glory!) pawnshop scuzzballs.

My buddy Obs is going to take over my paper route. You’d never think that a guy who’d lived under a vow of silence for 4 years would be interested in that job, but it just goes to show, it’s no ordinary paper run. He came along the other morning which was heaps of fun. After the fourth week of doing it I could’ve done it sleepwalking ie. plenty of time to think, and I’ often thought about what kind of tips I’d pass on to an apprentice re the art and technique of slotting.

I’ve been in this ‘enjoy the stuff I’ll miss’ over-compensation thing and have been listening to old LPs.
Team Sunny Breaks’ man on the ground in S.Korea emailed the other day and said that he won’t be able to meet me at the airport “because it’s too much of a hassle”. I started to kirk out way ahead of time about the thought of getting on the wrong fucking bus or something. The old noggin’s been whirring and at night it don’t stop. Always trains — whenever life speeds up I get train dreams. And this weird helicopter one: a police helicopter lands in my parents’ yard — then it’s actually a police woman in uniform with a cap on that had rotors and controls sticking out of it. She was having a hard time getting relaunched because of wind shear and a tight window above due to power lines so the whole family gives her a boost into the air.

And then I wake up and the record player in my brain cues up ‘puppy love’ by Paul Anka. Crikey! I haven’t listend to these things in three or more years, why now? It’s just throwing me more out of kilter. Although I do like You Are My Destiny.

YS @ 12:33 pm, December 16, 2004

fear of buttons

The dance gang had its break-up the other night. Someone I know as intelligent and youthful beyond their years happened to pick up a shoe in the half-light of the beer-garden. She looked closer then quickly put it down, saying that it had buttons all over it. (it did – it was like a home-made, gold spraypainted trophy thing) And she tells me that she’s got a fear of buttons. I thought for a minute and realisied that all of the stuff she wears has no buttons — that’s hippy clothes for you. Hers must’ve been a fairly mild case. She’d met one other person who had it. I had a hard time keeping a straight face about it.
Fear of Buttons anecdotes.
The whole Unusual Phobias site is Gold, baby, so don’t be disappointed if you see me mining stuff for it for stories on here. I particularly like how the site’s maintainer adds notes to the categories like, “this one is hilarious, MUST-READ!” and then at the end of each page there’s a picture of the thing causing grief.

I think perhaps if my head were less well I’d develop fear of clowns; not as much fun as buttons but eh. There’s a clown living a couple of doors down on the other side of the road and every now and then I’ll see them driving out of the nearby car-park and I get a little mesmerised. I can’t look away and the juxtapostion of a clown in full regalia inside a beige Ford Laser (or some shit like that) seems offensive.
Same with that Nokia tv commercial, I don’t know if it aired in other countries, but the tag is something like ‘fun everywhere’ (ie. having a phone you can play games on) illustrated by a guy waiting at a bus stop and a dozen or more clowns charge at him, he gets on the bus and then the clowns cruise up alongside the bus window — they’re standing on a semi-trailer flatbed. All I could think about that was what a potential nightmare.
Also, there’s woman that I know who says she does clowning as a job for kids’ parties and while I’ve never seen her dressed as a clown, I visualise it everytime I see her … and I think, ‘yeah, you look like a clown’.

YS @ 3:44 pm, December 13, 2004

yesterday

I guess I’m normal in some ways and getting up at 4am not very often is one of them. But I did yesterday again and again railed up to Melb and went to the RRR Breakfasters end of year OB.
I walk in a bump right into Jon Safran. What do I say? Hey Safran, luv ya work, or, so what was the dealio with that exorcism thing? No. No, I say – is this the queue for coffee? (they had free coffee and boy did I need some).
Whenever I come across semi-celebs or personalities I get this weird minndset kick in that tries to impress them by out-unimpressedness. Same thing happened with stand-up comedian Greg Fleet once – a situation of a gathering and I’m talking and I want to include him in the convo so I hand motion at him like I didn’t know what his name was.

It was good fun and all and I clapped etc but I bet after I walked out at 9am I bet people were saying to eachother Who was that guy? I was blown away by how unimpressed he looked.
That band Your Wedding Night played, and they played that song they do; L – A – C- H -L – A – N — and before they ask so are there any lachlan’s here? and guess who’s sittin’ right down the front and sticks their hand up and yells Yeah! Man, hedonism – it’s the new modesty.

Hung out with Jimbo for a bit. He went to the Brian Wilson concert the night before at the Regent Theatre. Said it was good. Apparently Brian’s still a bit crazy because he kept looking at his watch all night as a sort of compulsive thing.

YS @ 11:49 am, December 11, 2004

I wish it was five minutes before yesterday

Basically, it’s a downgrade – me going to the laptop. Half as much RAM, 6gig hard disk instead of 40 and probably hardest of all, back to 800×600 screen resolution from 1156by864 or whatever it was. All a bit cramped and I apologise to others who’ve been looking at SBreaks in 800by600 because it’s that bit too wide. I’ll fix that.

I didn’t realise how sensible the old desktop was physically set up. I’ve been getting crampy soreness in my neck, hands and wrists because of all the bad posture. I used to use laptops and sat like this all the time — hunched on the couch over the coffee table or cross-leged on the bed. It was a bad idea to get the small ‘laptop’ sized mouse; it’s uncomfortable to use and why the hell did I get one with blinken lights in? I have to throw a shirt over it at night so it don’t disturb sleep.

There’s been several to many-a-time when I’ve mentally bemoaned the deficiencies of Linux as an OS, mainly to do with plugins / multimedia support, and hardware compatibility. But over the last four years of using it I’ve found a lot of programs I can’t hardly stand to be without. The file structure’s logical, it’s got user prefs up the ying-yang and it’s very money-cheap.

There are good things about Apple’s OS X, like the way iTunes has the radio bit built in, and the way it starts up iPhoto as soon as I plug the camera in — also I’ve been able to watch the .mov multimedia add-ons that come with a couple of music CDs I have; Amon Tobin’s Out from out where, and Skalpel’s eponymous release.
But it cost 60 bucks to get the disks, which is 50 more than Linux with heaps less functionality and only a little more smoothness (given that it’s a bulky OS on an older computer — slow slow slow!).

I can’t say I’m much of a Safari fan. Of all the applications where familiarity counts for everything, it’s web browsers. Safari won’t open Gmail, doesn’t give those tool-tip indicators of where I’d be off to when hovering over a link. Most times I don’t want to visit a link, I just want to see where it goes.

The partial solution is Fink, which will run Linux apps on OS X. I want GIMP among others, although it’s having to download a shitload of stuff to get it run, and I’m already pressed for space.
I intend to get an up-to-date apple laptop when I get some moola together.

YS @ 11:44 am,

employee of the month

I’m totally turned around on the whole Flight Centre thing. Hung out there twice this week and will probably go back again saturday. Troy (the american) is my man. I walk in there and all these eager faces look to me and say, “can I help you?” and I hold a hand up and say Nah nah, I only want to speak to Troy. But he’s on a call, they say. I’ll wait, I say.
In the middle of my powow with Troy, some guy rings up from Vietnam because Vietnam airlines is trying to screw him for too much money. Troy rang em and sorted it. Then we talked trash about how Vietnam airlines are always trying to do that to people when they just want to get home. Yeah, down at Flight Centre we’re always baggin’ vietnam air except that we call it VA because we don’t have time to say it longer, or if there’s no customers around then it’s “Vi Ai” (Veee Ayyyee) which is fun being stupid.

YS @ 1:45 pm, December 8, 2004

How To: survive if you have no one to kiss on New Year’s Eve

1. Kiss a pet.
Dogs are generally agreeable and have relatively clean mouths. Cats are usually well groomed but are more passive and tend to get rather than give. Keep your mouth closed.

2. Kiss yourself.
Find a mirror, pucker up, lean close and kiss. Keep the lips slightly parted.

3. Kiss a celebrity.
Watch a favourite movie or show on television and kiss the screen when an appealing star has a close-up. Wipe the screen to remove dust and static electricity, and wipe the screen after to remove any evidence.

4. Hug a pillow.
Full-body pillows are more satisfying.

5. Call a friend on the phone.
After you wish your frind a Happy New Year, give the telephone mouthpiece loud, smacking kisses. (This works less well with cellular phones.)

—Lifted from The Worst-Case Scenario 2004 Survival Calendar

YS @ 11:05 am,

that little black train is a’comin’


streamlined S Class Spirit of Progress, circa 1947

Public Records Office Victoria —> online database of public transport photo collections, or check them out in person at the exhibition in North Melbourne.

Museum of Victoria Victorian Railways section. How’s about this shot of a steam-train fording through South Yarra.

YS @ 6:10 pm, December 5, 2004
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