Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Recyling newspapers and the end of the Wishbone for me

I recycle newspapers. Its a well known fact. I collect my own, that of people who leave them on the train, and that of whatever workplace I am occupying. It was turning into a bit of a newspaper fetish. Then voila.

I discovered the recyling section at the back of the Post Office. When the bin is nearly full. Its a like a lucky dip for a lady with a newspaper fetish. But alas, I went tonight and the bin was empty:-(

Mental note: Visit the recycling station before Council rubbish collection day - not after recently after rubbish collection day.

There is a reason I collect newspapers, apart from the fact that has become one of my addictions, (although I'm getting the "bad" ones under control, actually). It is to put as a layer on my garden.

The magic formula is: weed, layer of horse manure, thick layer of newspaper (hence lots of newspapers are required) and layer of peastraw. Result: hopefully a lot less weeding over the winter period.

Wishbone ham egg and cheese sandwiches have risen 50c to $6.00 for two pieces of bread with egg, cheese and ham. For some reason I could bring myself to pay $5.50. But I cannot bring myself to pay $6.00. Thats outrageous. I will be making my lunch, at least, more often.

Meeting Dr M again

Today I met “M” at the Lambton Quay pharmacy. I was actually looking for hair dye, but I looked up and there was “M”. I have not seen “M” since she left to live in Australia circa 2000 or 2001. To put it in Hebe context - the row of Hebe Graces that are now 6ft or so that reside at the back of my section were only in conception - as in cuttings.

So, I sort of did one of those double takes and gave a smile as if we might have met before, or maybe just practcing the happy smile so I get the happy vibe - as hard as it is somtimes. *M* did too, and then she said “Hebequeen”. Well, Ok, she did not say “Hebequeen”. She said “*” and I said “M”. Now the thing is I met “M” at what was one of the biggest nights ever (for me) one Melbourne cup night – which I think I have referred to previously, at my former former employer. I think the year was 1998 and I think she was a friend of Mr BB who is of course friends with everyone. It was random how we met. We met at the "Opera" bar when it was the "Opera" bar.

We never really had that much in common, except that night we both got quite drunk and ended up at the Irish pub in Courtnay Place with the Greek man who used to work in Facilities until about 3 or 4 in the morning – who I think she went home with. We then kept in touch intermitantly by email – she was sort of like a penpal before the advent of Facebook/Blogs etc. Although it turned out are both Gemini, with one or two days that seperate our birthdays and the one thread of commonality was that she had once dated someone with the same surname as me, who in the cicrle of life (gosh, thats so Lion King eh?!) would have been working for the same Govt dept I am now working for, but no longer is.

Since that time she lived in Australia, met a man there, had a baby, and finished her PhD in a specialised area of resource management. “M’s is one of those people in the world that I would describe as beautiful and charasmatic. Charming, engaging, intelligent and funny. She would walk into a crowded room and you would notice her. She wouldn't be "me, me, me". She's one of thsoe people that doesn't need to be becasue she has prescence. She’s hard to be negative with which is why I always enjoyed her company because instantly she just made me be positive. Weird but true. She asked me if I was still living in the Wairarapa - and of course she pronounced it how it should be, with the r's rolled correctly in the right place. Easy to answer yes, becasue I am. Then she asked me that harder question. The one about if I was writing. Because when we met I was writing a lot. I said “I’ve got a blog”. It counts but it doesn’t in terms of “writing”. Her silence acknowledged that.

She said I looked different. I said, “I’m older, I’ve grown my hair a bit, I think”. She said, “Aren’t we both, no, I think the colour is different”. I realise now as I write this its probably because I wear my glasses a lot more than I used to.

I gave her one of my current business cards – because if you’ve been following the plot I’ve been accumulating quite a few lately, and hello, I wouldn’t actually hand out a redundant card would I? Oh yeah, and I’m hoping to get a new card printed by the end of the year, but just don’t know yet what will be on it. She read out the one liner at the bottom of it: “Were helping New Zealand work better”. We laughed together. It sounded so funny reading that line out in a pharmacy. We laughed, and we didn't even get to the bit of the story that I don't actually like my job.

We both said we should do lunch. I hope we do. It would be random (again) to reignite our contact and really there would be no need to. But that's why I think it would be nice.

Monday, April 28, 2008


Well I was going to post about Wainuiomata eh? Well, I kindof said it yesterday. There's now officially a house occupying land where there once was this amazing garden. It was going to happen and it happened. The people have done an ok job actually of the subdivding thing - and from a quick look from the Alleyway - they seem to have made some imrpovements to the house I lived in also. In some respects its better to have another home on that land than see it parked up with cars on the land. At least it means there's new life there. The story is much bigger but for now thats enough about the Wainui house.

So, Mushrooms. yesterday when I was in the Hutt I went to the Italian Bella or whatever it is called in Petone. All I know is that it may be run by Italians, but heck it is occupied by Wellington people. Took an effort to pick the Hutt people. Anyway, so I order this Italian dish of pasta, mushrooms and Italian sausage. It cost $17.00. It was ok, but defientely not amazing. the mushrooms were about one or two dried, the sausgae some crumble effect of a good old pork sausgage not falsh pastrami or chorizo or anything.

So, today (becasue I am not at work....) I made took this Italian dish and I made it my own. Here is how you make authentic mushroom pasta. First you source your field mushrooms from the mushroom honesty table outside one of the hosues in the main st. The mushrooms may come in a pak n save bag but they are 100% authentic field mushrooms clearly picked this mornning. Cost $5.00 Second, source 100% pork sausges from the young buthcher guy in Greytown. Cost $4.00. When you get home source half a packet of Italian penne from cupboard. Cost: free. Have some left over cream: free. Parma cheese in fridge: free. OK. the cheese and cream did incur some expense at one stage but not on the actual day.

Stir fry mushrooms until they reach a deep dark jet black consistency - the whole exercise is worth it just to see this amazing mushroom black colour. Boil water and cook pasta and bake sausages. Throw pasta into mushroom mixture. Add cream. toss over cheese. Slice sausage and serve on side - because hello I am a carnivore - but actualy the sauagses weren't really needed.

volia - three meals for the price of one.
I've lost my Jamie Oliver book - but who needs it when you can make magic with the freshest of ingredients and who needs that Italian place in Petone?

The mushrooms are spectacular - becasue of course you can only get them at this time of year, becasue its an autumnal thing becasue they are genuine field mushrooms what with grass and everything on them.

Respect to the honest box. I'm glad they can still exist in my community. I now buy mushrooms, pinecones, and horse manure via the hoensty box. This is saying something because the honesty boxes are generally placed on main roads, so "naughty" and dishoinest people could abuse them - as happens in some place. But they appear not to in my community and I think thats great - I really do!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Homperm has talent

Last night I attended a talent party hosted by Homeperm and her talented friend. It was the best party I have attended this year. (well, the last party I attended was technically on New Years draw together the dots and it is the only party I have attended this year. But that aside, I am confident that even if I had attended nore parties it still would have been the best.

It was to give it crude analysis a remix version of a traditional talent party, updated with a little of "so you think you can dance", a little of "american idol", a little of "stars in yoru eyes" "The Terrace Classical concerts of St Andrews" mixed in with an updated section from the old Country Womens Instititutes shows. The art was making that mix work - and it did. There were classical sounds, there wer floyd sounds and there were beasutiful "beats".

The best thing is that everyone had talent and everyone got to appreciate each others talent.

One of the quirky things I liked about the night was that the contractor who disappeared from my not my last workplace but the workplace before that turned out to be a magician! That explains a lot.

Today was spent in the Hutt. Then I decided soon as a had the car and transport I would go over to Wainuiomata to see my old family home. I can't explain why I did, I just felt the need to -its a strange way of grounding myself, reminding myself where I have come from, but also reminding myself I no longer belong there - there are of course parallels in there for my work life. The new owners have buildt a new kitset/garage type house where the garden was. It was weird. But I knew it would happen - so did my Dad. He used t say something like "when I'm dead I bet some buggar will come and get rid of the garden, wipe it out" and put another house there - but I wont be alive to see it" Well I am, and I have seen it, and I'll post more about it tomorrow.

On the way home I stopped at the Indian diary in Epuni and bought some crysthamums and carantions - not that Dad ever really grew those - but in just in memory of the flowers that once were in that place where the new house sits. I alos stopped at the garden centre - but will post more about that tomorrow.

Anway, finally for todays posting, pre Homperm's party I was reminded that Strongerlight and Morgue are getting married next January - my talent for this occassion is flowers - so I have some serious work to do. Its a good and enjoyable goal to strive for - and reminds me of the importance of creating my own garden to the standard I used to achive with my Dad. The flowers we grew together in that place where there is now a house were used for weddings, funderals and other occassions....

Friday, April 18, 2008

Just plain fricken weird

I've been building up to this post all week. At the commencement of the working week (for me), that is, Monday, the "normal" team meeting was held. Highlights and lowlights were discussed as usual. Although as usual, personally, I found it hard to distingusih between the two. Then just as the meeting was about to draw to a close, the Acting Manager asked all the ladies to stay behind.

She then approached the rather delicate subject that there was an issue with how some ladies were using the toilets. Effectively that "shit" had been discovered on the toilet floors, and "someone" it appeared had toilitree issues that were resulting in a potential health hazard that in the worst case sceanario could possibly lead to a hepatitis A. omg I so wish I had been quick enough to say the most common casue of hepatitis A outbreaks in toilets is between men who have sex with men, and the prospect of this happening in the 7th floor toilets of my building, was in my opinion while not impossible, quite remote during "working hours". I regret I was not quick enough with this retort at the time, beccasue I was simply so overwhelemed at the inetenisty of discussion on the state of the use and state of the toliets.

It was suggested that everyone could contibute to the solution by paying attention to personal hygeiene, washing their hands, and executing care in their toilet excursions. It was also suugested that if anyone did have issues about their toilet behaviour that perhasp they could discretely and confidentially appraoch the Group Manager to "discuss".

Now full credit, actually, to the way the Acting Manager approached the subject and dealt with it swiftly and smoothly and "upfront". But end of week, a few "discreet" notices later, I still find it rather odd.

But more to the point, I think it says something about the work culture or my current employer.

But I don't know, I have thought about it all week. I just find it weird. The behaviour that has led the discussion and the disucssion and attention to it as a result.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Three words

Three words have crept into the venacular of the modern day discourse. These three words are "its all good". Like, people use these three words at the end of a sentence, a discussion. All sorts of people use these three words. Well, I don't like the way these three words are used. Its too like "have a nice day". Why do you have to say "Its all good" if in fact it is all good. Its a NZ equivalent of "have a nice day". Its a meaningless qaulifier. I suppose its an updated version of the old "she'll be right" now that I think about.

I far prefer the way the judge on Dancing With The Stars used the word Thats what I'd rather everyone finished their paragraphs, their sentences with. Cos you know, it could be ly good - or it could be ly bad.

Anyway, if you have a conversation with me, please do not use the words "its all good"!

Friday, April 11, 2008


I have just completed a telephone survey. I know a little about these things so agree to participate in them as a matter of personal curiosity and professional development. This survey was about "general state of things in New Zealand". It lasted about 10 minutes. But thats becasue I am probably your dream question answerer. Reasonably educated and attuned to the types of questions being asked.

I would have thought the lady I was speaking to was from Bombay - but she was probably from Bombay via Auckland. I did ask her the name of the company. Two letters represening individiauls. Think: A&C - but it wasnt A&C so I answered the questions.

The questions ranged basically from whether I would voteein for a Labour Govt (I would) - how happy I was with the Labour govt (relatively happy) to whether I liked cricket or rugby league (clearly being from Wainuiomata, rugby league ) . Take the girl out of Wainui but not Wainui out of the girl. to whether I knew about various current affairs and John Key.

But then there was the question: How happy are you with your life on a scale of 1-10. I answered 5. the interviewer said "Oh, you sound so positive, I thought you would answer much higher". Well, hello. Most people sound quite happy when they have had a few drinks!

Various questions intervened and then the questionnaire ended with the lady saying somethinglike "I really hope your things improe with your ranking on how happy you are@v

I hope so too. I really do.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Pedestrian observations

Pedestrian observations
We can walk on different sides of "The Terrace“
We can pretend we don’t see each other
When we can
But you know, I would know that look,
that movement, that head tilted down concentrated look that says without saying
I can’t see you – but you can
You see
Anywhere, Anytime
I would know that look without even looking
I’ve executed it myself
So many times before over a lifetime
Just, you know, the point of difference
Not with you

It was just a random but automated glance to the other side
an automatic eye movement
my eye flickers
like a failed exposure
without knowing
it would locate you
standing there in the entrance way
to where I once belonged

You can shuffle your feet
like suddenly they are the most important
things in the world
to choreograph
but its just a metaphor
for the distance
than now exists

This time last year
there would have been a wave
a smile at least
a positive result
that communication was still alive
even if there wasn't time to talk
to cross-over and converse

You once asked me what I feared most
Now I know
Distance and silence
when they replace the friendship
that once existed.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Phone Parable

here is the text of an email I have just sent:

Tonight I had it verified that my cellphone has been stolen and some bastard named "Mike" has changed the number at um 840pm.Anyway, I suspect "he" has probably deleted everything inlcuding the names and phone numbers in the address book and onsold - but just to let you know if you get any random calls or txts they are not from me (although yes, clearly they could have been but they are not) - and clearly another number will show. Several lessons to be learnt here (for me);Dont download several photos of your garden onto you phone;Dont download several photos of the balloon fest onto your phone;Don't download several photos of your beautiful cat onto your phone;Dont download $$$$ of songs onto your phone and programme them into categories etc;Dont download $$$$ for phone calls onto your phone;Dont leave your phone on the boot of your car becasue you have this little morning routine of "bag, phone, paper, locked car check" - although clearly I missed one of these steps out this morning of your car and in the interests of getting the paper, and ther train and getting to Wellington forgot I had the phpne but left it one the boot all day and expect it to be there when you return;If you do get a user pays phone with telecom put a security check on it so some bastard name Mike cant phone up and change the number;Better still get a job where your employer pays for the phone and these thinges are of less importance;Does one really need a phone - maybe the universe is scarifcing my phone to teach me something about communication ......yeah right.........Anyway, I dont' know if I will get a new cellphone. I may go into communication hibernation and instead just buy a new alarm clock - stereo etc I do know I may lodge my first ever insurance claim. Guess its only a phone - but whoever has it knows my name and could look me up and know where I live........they could also look you up....... grrr and GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR