goodbye old man: winter

For some reason australia says that the seasons start and end with the month but the 21st that follows seems more real to me, ie. Sept 21 is the end of winter. Either way today may as well be the beginning of the warmth since here we are down on the corner before nine in the morning and it’s got that feel — windless, cloudless, dry and ready to bake.

<a href=”” title=”August 31 2013 by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”500″ height=”500″ alt=”August 31 2013″></a>

So if that was winter then no wonder I had trouble adapting to korean winters. I think we turned the heater on a total of 4 times, two of which were when mum was here. I’d often see people walking around the shopping centre footpath in t-shirts and shorts and wonder if it was just because they were senseless idiots or because they’d come from 30&deg; hot cars or houses and that they were running heaters hard all winter.

why are people so fanatical about their smartphone choice? and other pressing questions

In the comment sections of tech websites I have noticed the alarming regularity of people getting rude, fanatical and bananas about their chosen variety of smartphone. Why does this happen? My theory includes: 1. All smartphones are essentially the same. Standard functions like phone calls, text messages, take a photo or check the weather — they all do that. 2. They are a luxury ie. fairly useless. One could argue that toilet papers are all fairly similar but (in modern society at least) it is considered an essential and so we don’t feel the urge to populate comment threads with our ravings on toilet paper, which leads me to my third and final point. 3. We do in fact feel like suckers for buying these things and desperately need other people to agree with us about being correct in owning “X” phone.

<a href=”” title=”overpriced by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”279″ height=”320″ alt=”overpriced”></a>

I have to say app prices have really jumped the shark too. They used to be 99cents if not free. Then a few came in at two bucks. And now I keep seeing the price $5.49 pop up. It’s not the minimum price, there are still free and cheap ones but developers seem to think they can get away with a five dollar price tag for what can often better utter shit. Then there’s the odd one that asks forty dollars or similar, for a computer program you’re going to look at on a tiny phone screen.

Yesterday I was looking at an app called, “Zombies, run!” which is a fitness program that encourages you to go jogging and if you don’t keep your pace up you’ll get infected by zombies. Apparently there are little story bits and encouragements that you listen to on earphones that give you the hurry up. I like stories. I’m trying to get a bit fitter and if I ended up wasting $2 on this thing then it’s not the end of the world is it? But the last time I tried to do sustained running – about 6 years ago – my knee started to get really sore. And if there _was_ a zombie apocalypse why couldn’t I ride my bike to escape them? I didn’t get the app.

suburban nerdburn

I haven’t been to the footy since I was 15 but with J-e’s yen to try all things Australian and to spend some time with mum, we went to the Geelong vs Sydney game last Saturday at Kardinia Park. Sitting behind the goals is not my favourite spot because half the time when the play comes toward you, you’re excited to be able to actually see what’s happening but also wanting it to go away because it could mean the other team getting a goal.

<a href=”” title=”HipstaPrint by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”500″ height=”500″ alt=”HipstaPrint”></a>

(Correct me if I’m wrong but) it’s strange to think that Kardinia is one of only three (MCG and Docklands too) stadiums currently being used by AFL in Victoria. It’s a shame that more teams don’t still have their home ground.

I was a little surprised at how orderly and polite the crowd was in general. And you know, I didn’t see one meat pie there. Not one! Maybe they don’t even sell them any more. I saw people walking around with buckets of chips, sometimes with some kind of “fish” fillets on top, hot dogs but no meat pies.

On Sunday we went to Bunning’s to get a few gardening supplies. It’s pretty amazing how many different kinds of garden hoses there are. Every colour except red/pink. I didn’t get a hose. I got a few plastic pots for vegetable growing projects. Also a cheap footy to kick in the local park. Interestingly none of these plastic things were made in China. Two pots from Italy, one made here, (plus a buck made in NZ) and the footy was made in India.

I should be working on my study but it’s damn hard to concentrate.

Rebel without a trumpet

I was listening to this <a href=””>radio mix</a> on ninjatune=solidsteel (get in quick because it’ll only be there for a few more days) marking 25 years since Public Enemy released the album, “It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back”. It’s pretty good. There’s some interviews in there with (I think?) Terminator X — I didn’t know he could speak…

Anyway, I was washing the dishes at the time and it got me thinking down memory lane. Vague as the memory is I did actually _buy_ that album back in 1988. We, the family, had travelled up to Geelong from our country station one saturday and I was looking around in Brashes (remember Brashes?). Rather uncharacteristic of me, I slammed down my hard-earned pocket money for the cassette of ITANOMTHUB without ever having heard it, or knowing who Public Enemy were or even what kind of music it was.

<a href=”” title=”PublicEnemyItTakesaNationofMillionstoHoldUsBack by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”301″ height=”300″ alt=”PublicEnemyItTakesaNationofMillionstoHoldUsBack”></a>

I just liked that cover and the name ‘Public Enemy’ sounded really cool. And I liked the little silhouette in the crosshairs logo, which on the back was connected to the phrase ‘public enemy no. 1’ I think.

Anyway, upon getting it home and listening to it I found that I didn’t like it at all! There was too many repetitive loop samples and I didn’t know what the hell was going on. I actually took it back to the shop the next week. The usual practice with tapes like this is that there is no returns because, you know, you could just dub it to a blank tape — and that’s like _stealing_ music, but I guess I must have had such a genuine disappointed confused look on my 14y.o. face that I did get an exchange for something else (fucked if I can remember what now).

These days I do appreciate PE’s place in history but not enough to listen to whole albums of their stuff on a regular basis. And a quick look at the track listings of It Takes A Nation, and its successor, ‘Fear Of A Black Planet’, the latter really does have a lot of classic hits on it.

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”//” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe><br/><em>I really like this mash up of Rebel Without A Pause with a bit of Herb Alpert</em>

But I think my favourite PE track is one that Flava Flav takes the front for, Can’t do nuttin’ for ya man. I like his sing-song delivery. I’m going to try and learn how to play this one on the Telecaster.

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