Saturday, February 27, 2010

Happenstance has changed my plans

“Life was too short to be with someone who wasn’t quite right, someone who made you think more than they made you feel.”

Life is uneventful, mostly because I am sleeping through it. I feel like I'm spending my days as 1/4 activity and 3/4 sleeping to recover. It's insanity. I made it to the doctor yesterday finally and am now waiting on the test results. The front-runner is iron deficiency. Joy.

In between the perpetual napping, I'm struggling through my additional uni reading. Currently halfway through 'Literary Journalism in the Twentieth Century' - my first class is Non-Fiction on Monday. I vacillate between apprehension and arrogance, neither of which is particularly useful. The former because I fear I will be vastly outclassed in theory, experience and enthusiasm; and the latter because I've basically done this course before with very little dedication and aced it. But still, I decided at the start of the year that I would be making a studious effort in my studies for a change, and I am sticking to that resolution.

Speaking of resolutions, last night R hosted an impromptu scrabble night - I am still amazed we have all lived to tell the tale. Also, let the record show, I am not very good at scrabble at all!

I was supposed to help my dad at the Kiama Sevens tournament today. I'm not much help to anyone at the moment thought and so spent most of the day sitting around, blinking into the sun. Now I either need food or a lie-down. I hate feeling like this! Bah.

Music: You are my face - Wilco
Mood: Sleepy

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The sound of the unlocking

I am my mother's only one
It's enough

I wear my garment so it shows
Now you know

Only love is all maroon
Gluey feathers on a flume
Sky is womb and she's the moon

I am my mother on the wall, with us all
I move in water, shore to shore
Nothing's more

Only love is all maroon
Lapping lakes like leary loons
Leaving rope burns
Reddish ruse

Only love is all maroon
Gluey feathers on a flume
Sky is womb and she's the moon

Music: Flume - Bon Iver
Mood: Contemplative

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Fall for every empty word I say

With one or two I get used to the room
We go slow when we first make our moves
By five or six bring you out to the car
Number nine with my head on the bar
And it's sad, but true
Out of cash and I.O.U's

Sometimes I think that if I had been a boy, I'd have been Jesse Lacey. Sometimes I think that should concern me, but it doesn't. That probably says a lot about me on some psychological level, but I'm too tired for self-reflection at the moment.

I am a mere shell of a human being right now. Yesterday, after a hectic first day back at work, I met R in the city to accompany her to her university orientation at USYD - she's starting another undergrad degree this year, the brave thing. It was very hot yet again, and by the time we'd managed to get the forms sorted and stopped for milkshakes in brief air-conditioned respite (and discovered HIM doing a signing), I was spent. We stumbled along to our respective bus stops but I had to get my mum to pick me up when I arrived because I could not see myself making the three block walk to her work. I could barely get up the stairs to collapse in bed. I think the afternoon expedition just pushed my body too far, it hadn't recovered enough from Sunday's madness to withstand any exertion, regardless of how average.

I spent pretty much the entire afternoon today just sleeping, and still barely have the energy to type this. I had vague plans to go to the Gallows/AFI sideshow tonight but anything that involves movement, heat and dehydration seems idiotically stupid to undertake. I can barely stand the sunshine on my drives to and from work, just the tiniest exposure makes me feel violently ill. I have joked about it before, but I think I may actually have heat exhaustion.

Anyway, I'm just taking it easy. I have a bunch of errands to run tomorrow but it was significantly cooler today, so hopefully it'll be okay. Things must be done regardless, and as the saying goes, time waits for no man.

Brass buttons on your coat hold the cold
In the shape of a heart that they cut out of stone
You're using all your looks that you've thrown from the start
If you let me have my way I swear I'll tear you apart
Cause it's all you can be
You're a drunk and you're scared
It's ladies night, all the girls drink for free

Music: Me vs Maradona vs Elvis - Brand New
Mood: Exhausted

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Adventure of Emo-Fest 2010

As the day draws to an end on another Soundwave festival, I can only come to the conclusion that poor emo kids were not meant to suffer this way. And once an emo kid, always an emo kid, somewhere deep inside, where your aversion to sun and predisposition to skinny jeans stands as proof.

Now I know I've complained about Soundwave in the past, but today...well, today really gave it all some perspective and it was by far the most gruelling of the lot of them. That is not to say that we didn't have a nice time (by surviving), but just that it was a rather epic fail all round and have finally put the nail in the coffin of my festival attendance. Never, ever again. Not like this. No way.

First allow me to set the scene. Eastern Creek Raceway hosts the event, a race circuit in the West, about 40kms from where I live. Only about a quarter of this is actually used for the festival, sadly not the quarter that includes the 4,000 seat covered grand stand, but that is neither here nor there. There is no shade in this chosen quarter, only lots of loose grass and dirt. Today, it was reportedly 35 degrees celsius, though I suspect it was hotter in direct sunlight. Thousands attend this festival, most of them black clad, asymmetrical haired kids whose pale skin has probably not seen such vicious sunlight since the last festival they attended.

My adventure started at 10 as I arrived an hour early to our agreed meet time due to overestimating how long it'd take me to get there. The line for the parking lot was already terrifying so instead I followed the lead of many who were already there and parked outside the venue perimeter on the grass. I had a book and was so quite content to sit in my car and read as I awaited Lizzie's arrival (I had both our tickets), or when it got too hot in the car, to lean against it and read. However, as soon as Lizzie came into the vicinity it became clear that this might prove more problematic than one would have expected because as it turned out, in 20 minutes she had moved only about 10m. I consulted my street directory and figured it would be more productive to just walk to her and then wait with her, as opposed to sitting around outside hoping she one day arrives. So, armed with this plan, I set off. Ooooh, what an amusing little trek it was. Traffic was absolutely gridlocked, and by that I mean Doctor Who 'Gridlock' girdlocked. The further along the road I got, the more people would yell at me that I was going the wrong way. Three quarters into my journey, I became everyone's favourite traffic reporter, with people asking me how far it still was, what the conditions were like, and what my recommendations were. Three kilometers later, I found Lizzie about 500 meters from where she was when I had first started walking. I felt like I knew every person on the road by then, it was kind of funny. Now let no one say I hadn't done my exercise for the day.

Anyway, it was so agonisingly hot by this stage, I spent most of our drive with my door open to get some sort of breeze through the car - consequently it's the side of me that was hanging out of the car that's sporting my only slightly red patch (on my hand, no less.) It was much better though, sitting and chatting and lamenting our inevitable fate of dying of heatstroke, than sitting alone in our various positions so I think I made a good call walking out there. I also made a brilliant call wearing my cowboy boots, definitely the perfect footwear for all my shenanigans - like tracking through knee-length grass, and mud. However, the epic traffic jam of doom meant that it took us almost two hours to cover the same distance I walked in little under an hour. The parking was an epic mess and in all the drama just to get into the place, we missed Sunny Day Real Estate and Taking Back Sunday. Though we did get free ice-cream, which helped balance some homicidal urges.

It was now 1.30. The heat of the day was at its peak, and already several places were out of water. This, in my opinion, is unacceptable. If you are organising an event, you should be prepared to have enough water for an army. That is the one thing you are guaranteed to need, especially since this is summer in Sydney. I wish we had night or winter festivals, life would be much simpler. The water thing was an escalating problem throughout the day, there simply was not enough to cope with demand. Whenever Lizzie and I braved the lines to try and get something to drink, which we managed a whopping two times, I'd buy two things (water and coke/lemon juice) just to be prepared. It was so hellishly hot, and dusty, and dirty, and uncomfortable, and gross. The heat presented a rather unique problem because as you tried to apply sunscreen, it would simply sweat off before your skin had a chance to absorb it, and then coat with dirt, leaving these gross little patches. It really was just....ugh.

My umbrella, which I had packed on a whim, was our saving grace. We set up camp at a fence facing the main stages but out of the crush, and covered ourselves the best we could. There we stayed, for better or worse, having lovely little chats and having quite the amusing time people watching. The overabundance of pink/red/burnt skin made ours ache in sympathy - especially those in interesting patterns such as fishnet - while we amused ourselves by observing the comings and goings of the ice delivery truck (which you are not allowed to take, so by the by) and the overwhelming numbe rof police - in cars, in vans, on bikes, on motorcycles, on horse back, on foot, in helicopters, bus-loads, lions and tigers and bears oh my! My favourite thing of the day by far was the people who, in an attempt to make their own shade, begged cardboard boxes from the concession stands and made holes in the top, so effectively walking around all day with boxes on their heads. It gave a whole new meaning to the "put a bag over your head" thing. I found it highly amusing.

During all of this, I managed to see Placebo and AFI (well we also saw Eagles of Death Metal, Alexisonfire and Paramore but only because we couldn't be bothered moving and I was waiting for the aforementioned two to get on - the main stage, in typical Soundwave!fail, was running an hour and a half behind schedule.) They were both fantastic and I was very pleased to finally get to see them live. Davey Havok was in fine form, posturing away. He really has an amazing voice. Though it is kind of funny to see him actually look like a guy for a change.

Of course, our main draw card MCR had pulled out a few weeks ago due to Gerard's vocal problems, so we had Jimmy Eat World in their place. They didn't seem to compare well to the rest of the bands that had played, with the sound being a bit dodgy and Jim Adkins not really being up to the vocal standards of say Davey and Brian Molko. He makes up for it with conviction, but by this point I was feeling less than well (I had dragged poor Lizzie all over in search of a coke to combat my building nausea) and we were both just tired and dirty. So after discussion, we decided to cut our losses and left early. I was so ecstatic to come home to mum's lasagna and a warm shower. Oh to be clean, to be clean! I don't think I've ever been that dirty in my life to be honest. There was one moment where I looked at my hands and was just completely disgusted by myself...I hate being dirty *scrunches nose*

Conclusion: I had a good time socialising and listening to some great music, but the organisation yet again let the whole thing down. They simply are not equipped to deal with what they have, and especially on days like today which are just so hot and uncomfortable.

Gigs are a bit of a gamble, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. But people like us, we're just not cut out for standing around in the heat and the dirt all day, and we set ourselves up with terrible odds. I don't think I'll do it again. And I really mean it this time. I'd rather pay extra and go to a series of sideshows, than subject myself to this sort of self-inflicted torture.

I'll edit this later to include some random pics I took on Donna, but now I really need to sleep off this epic headache of doom. Back to work tomorrow *sigh*

Edit as promised:

The wonder of the festival food line.

Umbrella...the greatest hero of them all!

Footwear of win.

Blessed night could not arrive soon enough. Cue collective sigh of relief.

Music: Come fly with me - Frank Sinatra
Mood: Exhausted

Friday, February 19, 2010

I have just wasted eighty minutes of my life

I am yet to experience a Soundwave Festival that does not include drama of one form or another. At least come Sunday it'll be over for another six months or so, at which point, after much swearing to never go again, they will announce a line-up that I find hard to resist. They are evil, so very evil.

Speaking of evil, I am going along well in my extremely-late-to-the-party Buffy watching. Halfway through season 2, and yes, I am loving it stupid amounts. Should have paid more attention in the 90s. The amount of love I have for Spike is nothing short of disturbing.

In other news, my mum is now sick too, though I am valiantly ignoring the queasy migraine icky-ness with a vague attempt at being organised - though hampered, I admit, by my seeming inability to remember anything I actually want to do a mere few seconds after thinking of it. Sigh. Still I've narrowed down a couple of things, like the French course I will be enrolling in just as soon as I have hoarded my next couple of pay cheques and paid for the geek quest Supanova expedition. I've also resolved to begin the exercise regime again tomorrow - it always falls by the wayside on holiday. I'm thinking of joining a kick-boxing class too...I really enjoy boxing training though I have no real passion for the actual boxing. So we'll see how we go. Uuuuum what else...oh I have to go the doctor at some point to get some blood tests cause I suspect my iron is low. I'm tired virtually all the time and bruise if you just so much as look as me. Not much fun.

Another thing that isn't much fun is the absolutely appalling performance the Crusaders put in this evening. I have never seen them play that poorly, in fact I hadn't realised the Crusaders were capable of conceding so many turnovers. Um...Richie, come baaaaaack. Abject woe. They have always been slow starters in seasons, and they are fielding half their usual team, but still, that was just depressing. They might just get mad now and destroy everything in their path from now on...we can hope, at least.

Music: Fox Sports
Mood: Annoyed

Thursday, February 18, 2010

There are 372 unread items in my Google Reader

My quote of the day:
"...there's a lot of debate between fans as to the similarities and differences of [Joss Whedon and Russell T Davies], but as far as I'm concerned, THEY KILL WHAT I LOVE, and that's as far as the debate goes for me."

Haha QFT. I'm going to send my cousin the first season of new Who, she's twelve and she lives an empty life without it, I tells you. I'm also sending her books, let it not be said that I do not attempt to salvage what I can.

Meanwhile, I'm watching the news while writing this and they've had an emergency at Sydney airport, with an A380 having to turn back and land. This is, what must be, the fourth A380 that's had to do this just here at Sydney airport alone. Two words: Airbus Fail.

I feel absolutely horrible today, and have spent most of it in bed. I've only periodically emerged to sort out this Soundwave ticket nonsense - the one I sold got lost in the mail and am now trying to get a re-issue for the guy so he can still go. It will hopefully be sorted by this evening *crosses fingers*

Music: Winter Olympics...not the sweeping
Mood: Sick

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The return to the interweb

I am back and in one piece, just in time to salvage the few shreds of sanity I lay claim to. Through dangers untold and hardships unnumbered, we landed late on Sunday afternoon and since then I've been kept fairly busy, what with my dad insisting on monopolizing as much attention as he possibly can. Yesterday was dedicated to a drive down to Robertson and today we headed to the Hunter Valley for wine tasting shenanigans. I am now cured from any hidden desires I may have had for long periods of continuous sitting.

Regardless, it is safe to say I am fairly ecstatic to be home. As much as I love my family and want to see them, that country is not conducive to my will to live. By the time we reached the airport there, I was wound so tight I was snapping at everyone that so much as looked at me funny. Also, is that a way to run an airport? What is with this new nonsense of searching your hand luggage just before you board the plane, isn't that what I go through a security screening for? Because if it isn't, then please pray tell, what do I go through a security screening for? Stop wasting my time!

Jo'burg is in absolute desolate chaos, supposedly in preparation for the World Cup though I sincerely doubt they'll be done in time. They are working on every single major road, Empire road might as well be a dirt street in middle-of-nowhere-Africa, and 99% of the time traffic lights aren't working. Not that anyone pays attention to traffic lights when they are working, taxis favour driving on the wrong side of the road these days. The place is unrecognisable. Now I'd pretty much written off the country as a hell hole years ago, so I'm fairly ambivalent to what new level it's descended to, but I think it's really hard on my mum - having grown up there and all, and she's always had a very strong connection to the place. I also think it was incredibly hard for her to see how her parents have deteriorated in the two years since we've seen them, age being an inevitable bitch and all, so this really was not a fun trip. I tried to be there for her as much as I could but it was really hard for me, my patience frays quickly and I do not have the constitution to deal not only with the vast amount of people who go through my grandparent's home in one day (in general you find yourself making coffee for twelve people at a time) but also the overwhelming claustrophobia that comes with being cooped up and surrounded by people 24/7. There's no popping up to the shops by yourself, and sad to say, I've become accustomed to a certain standard of living that I simply cannot expect there and it's too depressing to even contemplate. How people live there, I do not know. Especially people who have lived overseas before, it completely baffles me.

Really the most interesting thing I have to report about the entire trip are the films I watched en route. The entertainment system was playing up in the way over so I only managed to get in three full films, Where the wild things are, An Education and The Hurt Locker. Now, WTWTA was everything I expected it to be, absolutely gorgeous and with a slow burning emotion that is absolutely captivating. A beautiful, beautiful film....that I took far too long to see. An Education stars everyone's favourite Who-lite actress, Carey Mulligan aka Sally Sparrow, and I have come to the conclusion that she is utterly brilliant. The film deals with a 16 year old school girl Jenny being swept up by charismatic older man David and how her life and ideals change as she becomes immersed in his seemingly sophisticated lifestyle. I loved this film. Jenny's thirst for knowledge and culture, and her wish to be more than what her life seems to be, is easily relatable. The entire thing just has such charm and grace that I found it easy to fall for it. Also, Dominic Cooper in a suit does not hurt. The Hurt Locker is not a film I would normally watch, but it was the only one working at the time and I was too happy to argue with the in-flight system. However, it is absolutely amazing, perhaps unsurprisingly considering it's up for a best picture Oscar. The intensity of this film...I don't even have the words for it. It follows a bomb disposal unit in Baghdad as Sergeant William James joins the unit with just a month left in their tour after their long-standing leader is killed. The unit of three is rounded out by Sergeant Sanbourne and Specialist Owen, each fighting their own issues and merely fueled by their desire to stay alive long enough to get home. The arrival of James throws their little dynamic for a complete loop as he has a completely different approach. This film has a stunning realism and the characters are so amazingly well-rounded. The thing that really clinched this for me though was the ending, I don't know why but when that all came together, it really hammered home the whole thing for me.

Now, I only managed two and a half films on the way back thanks to promptly passing out - we had a late, stressful night the evening before and it tired me out. First there was 9, the animated feature starring the voice of Elijah Wood as the title character (I must pause to say that I love that Crispin Glover even plays the nutter when in animated form - he's the voice of 6). The burlap rag-doll like creation 9 wakes up one day in a post-apocalyptic world where humans have been destroyed in their battle with machines. He stumbles upon others of his kind by chance and together they struggle to survive against the machines that seem hell-bent on their destruction, while 9 struggles with the seemingly never-ending questions of their existence. It's fairly disjointed but they're so adorable, I don't really care. It's funny, I'm much more wiling to let things slide in animation than I ever am in live-action. The other full film I watched was also an animation, Cloudy with a chance of meatballs. My main observation here is that the film is genius and has not received nearly enough credit for it. It is so much fun, with some genuinely great moments, and at one point I was trying very hard not to laugh out loud and disturb the other passengers in their throes of uncomfortable sleep. Your regular outsider, Flint Lockwood thinks he's a genius inventor destined for great things though most of his inventions end in disaster leaving his long suffering father at a loss. One of these experiments does leave him with his pet monkey Steve. A pet monkey! What more could one want? When Flint accidentally sends his latest experiment - a machine that turns water into food - into the atmosphere, the Mayor of Swallow Falls sees it as the perfect opportunity to bolster the island's flagging economy. Motivated by helping his town and finally earning their respect, as well as impressing visiting weather girl Sam Sparks, Flint is only too eager to help his town. However demand starts pushing the machine to its limit, and with the Mayor pressuring Flint to ignore it, disaster is inevitable. I really enjoyed this film, it's a gorgeous little thing and Flint is so adorkable, it's hard not to like him. I only got half way through Bright Star, a film about poet John Keats and Fanny Brawne. I'll have to watch the whole thing properly at some point if I want to give any proper commentary, but what little I saw didn't look bad.

Anyway, I do so blather on. I've got Buffy Season 2 to watch - Spike has shown up, life is good.

Music: I don't know what to do with myself - The White Stripes
Mood: Tired

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ain't no sunshine when she's gone

In the last two days I have done:
- 2 pages of Science homework
- 4 lots of Year 6 maths homework
- 1 lot of Business Studies calculations
- English and Afrikaans spelling exercises

Right now I'm helping my cousin study for her weekly test which this week happens to be Afrikaans, we're doing abbreviations, vowels and consonants, hyphens and umlauts. I can't remember ever having studied this stuff, but I know I must have. Year 6 seems like a stupidly long time ago.

Went shopping today, bought a bunch of random stuff we're supposed to take home with us. Not entirely sure where we're going to put it all, but I am sure we will figure something out. I have an even longer list of things to send back here once we actually get home.

Started American Gods last night, gives me something to do.

Music: Chattering in the background
Mood: Thirsty

Monday, February 8, 2010

Please excuse my emo ramblings

I hate this country. I'm sorry, but it has to be said. Every moment I spend here is greatly detrimental to my will to live. How I am going to survive another five days is beyond me. Five days, only five days until I am back on a plane on my way back home. Where I belong. It's almost nine here now, so let's see that 's approximately 124 hours until departure. Maybe I should start crossing it off...

I honestly thought this time would be better. We're only visiting my mum's family and it's usually my dad's that drive me completely insane, but it appears that it doesn't matter where I go, I feel suffocated beyond belief. And it's just so awkward and depressing, I don't even know. More kids come through my grandmother's house than could be believed, yesterday I spent virtually the entire day being shadowed by my cousin's three year old. There was a brief break where we went to get some groceries and I am sorry, but I am too young to spend the day with a kid on my hip. Kids are hard work. Her seven year old brother came along the afternoon, but he seems to favour my mother. We had a lunch with majority of the family swinging by and while I love my family, I so desperately just want to come home. My youngest cousin is a royal pain in the ass (she's 12), my grandfather has become belligerent in his old age, I spend most of the time making awkward small talk with everyone else, and arguing with my only male cousin about music and him being an arrogant jerk. Although he only showed up for an hour or so last night, it's the only time I felt even vaguely enthused about anything, because yes, he is an arrogant jerk, but he's a well-travelled arrogant jerk who actually knows exactly where I am coming from and can even vaguely offer me a sense of normality in the twilight zone that is this place. Then there's my cousin and her fiance, both are my age, but I just don't know what to say to them. We used to be incredibly close when we were younger, we virtually grew up together, but I just don't know how to connect to anything here. I just want to go home! *weeps*

It's the fact that I'm stuck in this house, completely at the whims of my family who want to do nothing except sit around and reminisce. Even when we do venture outside, everyone runs on "Africa Time" and it's all I can do not to bash my head against the nearest hard surface. Like yesterday when mum and I were trying to buy a data card for her modem and we were just blankly stared at and were told that it would take four hours to activate, we should rather come tomorrow *headdesk* It took us two hours to get back from the airport because of roadworks on virtually every major road in preparation for the soccer world cup. It's the clausterphobia of not being able to go anywhere by myself, or even when we do get out, there's nothing to do. I don't know how they live here, how they are content to live here. I just want to run away and never look back.

I can't believe I've only been here one full day, it feels so much longer.

I don't mean to be such a negative whinger, but it's just really hard for me to stay positive here. The flight over was beautiful however, the guy next to me slept most of the time and there were so many films I wanted to watch. Unfortunately the system was experiencing some technical difficulties and would sometimes just freeze up while you're waiting for a movie to start. I managed to get in a bit of a nap as well, so can't really complain there. even if they did try to feed me a king prawn salad as a dinner starter - I tried it, in typical 2010 style and um, yeah, no.

Ah crap, they're looking for me. I am writing this hiding in the bedroom. At least my grandparents have halfway decent internet, no more dial-up which is a definite improvement from last time. Still, no wireless, so I have to make an appearance in the living room to publish. Best bite the bullet then and get on with it I suppose...

Music: Waterloo - ABBA
Mood: Emo

Friday, February 5, 2010

Travel blues

I have never been so unorganised pre-trip in, I'm fairly sure, my entire life. Usually I am always packed a day in advanced or I have a number of lists of things that must be double checked. In fact making those lists is often half the fun. This time I am a gibbering wreck. I'm 99.9% sure I have forgotten something. I've given up on the luggage and am now trying to organise my hand-luggage, which to me is far more important. If I forget something in the main luggage, I can just use it as an excuse to shop, stuck in the air for 14 hours however, I need my things organised.

Now, for no particular reason as I doubt anyone truly cares, here is Jen's guide to her hand luggage:

1) iPod. If you are a traveller like me who generally detests human contact and wishes to be left completely alone, you will know the most important addition to your hand luggage is a fully charged and updated iPod. I usually compile a flight playlist to last the duration of the flight including every genre I could possibly have an inkling for and then proceed to significantly lower my long-term hearing quality over the 14 hour period. The iPod is also invaluable when waiting - for a ticket, to board, to clear customs etc. I managed to buy a decent pair of TDK headphones today, so I should be able to avoid that weird stage where your ears hurt cause you had the earphones in that long.

2) Notebook. If, again like me, you decide to leave your laptop at home and cannot write/edit to your hearts content, it is important to have back-up. (And let's face it, in-flight entertainment systems are not the most reliable things in the world.) So, I usually print out a bunch of things I may want to work on/edit and of course lug a notebook and succession of pens around. I do this most days anyway, but its vital in this instance.

3) Books. Self-explanatory. Narrowing down what I want to take with me on a trip is always the hardest choice I make. I have been meaning to read American Gods for over a year now so I've decided that now is the opportune moment. I am also taking a Sherlock Holmes short story collection as they are sometimes easier to digest.

4) Gum. I don't go anywhere without gum, but I definitely never ever fly without it. I still have horrific memories from when I was 8 and suffered an entire weekend with an earache post flight. I'm never risking that again. So obnoxious gum chewing it is and painless adjustment to air pressure is guaranteed.

5) Moisturizer. My skin dries out like you would not believe so I have to keep it hydrated. I try to apply it every hour or so, it makes a ginormous difference.

6) Sunglasses. I know what you're thinking, people who wear sunglasses indoors are idiots, but consider the previous point. This applies to my eyes as well. If I wasn't so adverse to the stuff, I'd get eyedrops - I always look like some bloodshot junkie when I emerge into the airports
glaring artificial light. My eyes are fairly sensitive at the best of times, but after a flight it's the worst. So yes indoors, yes it's obnoxious, no I'm not famous, but you don't understand. It hurts.

7) Spare t-shirt. I always have a spare shirt on hand to change into once in the air, mostly because we are required to fly smart casual. Usually I have button up 3/4 tops and that, which are not the most comfortable. I'm flying in my suit this time, and I am sure I will experience the same feeling of weirdness when standing in line behind people who appear to be flying in their PJs.

Ummmm yeah I've stopped caring, so let's leave it there. I'm just procrastinating and trying to make this blog longer than it ever needed to be. Pretty much all that needs to be said is that I will be in Jo'burg for the next week, I will have my phone if anyone needs me, and I'll try to check my email regularly but know better than to make any promises.

Have a lovely mid-February, I will be back with rambling blogs that lead nowhere on the 14th.

Music: If you wanna...I might - Hellogoodbye
Mood: Anxious

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

One more day to give my love and repay debts

I have so much to do, so much, and yet I sleep until 10am. Fail, brain. Honestly, getting up early is not one of my strong points. Even when I set my alarm - like I did this morning - my brain knows there's no real reason I have to be up and so it is just a futile show of good intentions, and I sleep through it. I have to go to Eastgardens to pick up my suit jacket along with a whole lot of other things for the 'going away' and I have a whole bunch of chores left at home - doing the vacuuming, giving Oreo a bath, cleaning the study - all of which I should have done this morning, since I have no other time *headdesk* Tonight I am having dinner with R and M after we all finish our respective days of slaving for the man, tomorrow I am seeing 'The Road' with Stono (have I mentioned I love twitter?), and tomorrow night is mostly dedicated to appeasing my father's ego who is getting more and more grumpy at the prospect of spending a week at home alone. Yeah, he's weird like that. Oh and somewhere in there, I still have to pack *sigh*

Anywho, I got to hang out with L yesterday which was lovely. We saw Avatar, and I realise that I am possibly the only person on the planet, but I was completely underwhelmed by it. When you hype something up like that I'm expecting something amazing and awe-inspiring, not Pocahontas in Space. There is absolutely nothing original in that film. It's visually arresting and beautifully done, yes, but the entire thing is so utterly predictable and heavy-handed that I found myself simply not caring. To be fair, I never had any interest in seeing this film. The previews didn't inspire me and I was blasé over the whole thing from the start, but being the phenomenon that it is, I obviously had to see it. Films like that just have no appeal to me.

There were a few laughs and, like I said, it is visually quite arresting, but none of that is enough to distract me from the fact that I was bored to tears halfway through. It is a predictable, sanctimonious piece of storytelling that borrows so heavily from colonial dialogue, it might as well feature in a Modernity and Post-Colonialism lecture. And that would be fine, if it wasn't for the fact that everyone keeps going on about it. Now my movie tastes are quite dubious at times, I concede, but with this amount of hype I expect a decent story, not something I've heard a billion times before, and painting the cast blue does not change that fact. It baffles me why a film like, oh I don't know, let's say In Burges, one that's rather quite brilliant and that virtually no one saw, is considered somehow lesser than this space-take on Dances with Wolves. Look, it's very pretty and I can see that it would be very entertaining if you're into that sort of thing, but I just don't think it deserves the hype it's gotten. It deserves every single on of its technical Oscar noms sure, but I just don't think it's 'Best Picture' material *shrugs*

On a similar note, I'm completely apprehensive about this 3D craze. Now that Avatar has done so phenomenally well, we're probably going to get everything in 3D. Again, this is completely personal and I know a lot of people love 3D, but to me it seems to make barely any difference to my viewing experience whatsoever. And it gives me a headache. I know its supposed to make it more immersive, but if anything it detracts from my viewing experience cause I am constantly aware I'm wearing stupid glasses. I have to say I found it quite amusing in Final Destination, cause hell, there is stuff flying at you every two minutes, but in a world where it's pretty much just giving you depth, well I don't care that much. I have always had my imagination for that. I didn't have 3D for Lord of the Rings, and I've never been more immersed in a fictional world. I know this is completely selfish and petty, but personally for me they don't add anything to a film and if they keep using them, I'm going to have to kerb my movie watching. I love going to the movies! I just don't want my head to explode. Also, Lizzie made a good point last night that the 3D sort of chooses your focus for you, whatever the director decides is the important part of a scene is what you can look at it, if you try to see past that it goes all blurry. Sometimes I like to get distracted by the weird guy/tree/animal in the background, with 3D I fear I won't have that luxury.

Oh yes, finally, I hear they're planning an Avatar sequel. Why? It's done. We did it. The ending is completely unambiguous, it's d.o.n.e. Clearly, money talks.

Right, well I better get a move-on, places to be, things to do, money I don't have to spend...

Music: Play crack the sky - Brand New
Mood: Lethargic

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sheldon Cooper, I think I love you

Our whole universe was in a hot dense state,
Then nearly fourteen billion years ago expansion started. Wait...
The Earth began to cool.
The autotrophs began to drool.
Neanderthals developed tools.
We built a wall. We built the pyramids.
Math, science, history, unraveling the mystery,
That all started with a big bang!

That is all. Carry on.

Music: The Big Bang Theory
Mood: Amused