Monday, July 30, 2007

First Weekend of Freedom

Am currently unemployed for a week before I start my new job... sorry for the lack of posts, but things have been all over the place lately... when I get back into a routine of commuting and working, I am sure I will get back into meatier postings.

This weekend though I did head down for the Eucalyptus Bowl which turned out to be the largest Blood Bowl tournament ever held in Australia.  46 coaches took part and it was massive.  Blue Mountain's local Paul "Creature" Morris won the tournament overall with his Dark Elves and the tournament was a great success.

I played my Dwarves yet again for a final go and took my Death Roller out for a spin.  Unfortunately I found my team because of the cost to field the Death Roller was so much was a pretty poor roster and I ended up finishing 32nd with 2 wins and 4 losses.  And my two wins were firstly from down 0-2 to arse a comeback of gigantic proportions and I won my last game vs Goblins and even that was a close game.

Overall, Euc Bowl again impressed me and the turn out was fantastic.  Credit to Richard & James for putting on the show and running it very well.  Prizes were fantastic as well and I was able to pick up some mini's as well second hand too.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Last Days of Panic

Well, my working life at my current company expires tomorrow... its been a weird month and a half with lots of good time farewells and well wishes mixed with huge deadlines and I have probably worked harder this past month than I have for a good while.

My new employer is already in contact with me as well getting me up to speed with the new working environment and I am going to be going on a trip to Singapore and London after only being at the new place for 6 weeks... nothing forces you to learn about your new company quicker than them sending you around the world to represent them after you've only been there 6 weeks!  I will really need to hit the ground running.

However a new employer means a clean slate and I am thinking I might do a few things differently when I get there.  I am moving to North Sydney, so I will have to change my eating habits because there will be new places to go to, so I may as well try to eat for the better than rather than the coffee / toasted sandwiches plus pub fare of 2 times a week.

I also may use my increased cash flow to take the time to join a local gym in the area and go at lunch time.  I am sure a Fitness First or something may be around the area...

On top of this, I want to get to the office earlier and conversely leave earlier as well.  Whilst I am under no delusions, I am sure I can tweak my habits and body clock to perhaps be an early (earlier) riser and get on top of things in the AM rather than peaking in the afternoon and feeling like working until 7pm every night.

I also know that this blog has suffered in the past month or so as my life has turned into a major blur and I have really not done alot of commentary on some of the recent events.  Not that there is not alot to talk about!  I am bemused how Glenn Wheatley gets 15mths jail for tax fraud whereas a judge gets just 6mths for harbouring thousands of paedophilia images on his work PC.  Not quite right that!

Also, Johnny Howard falling over and forgetting names and answering questions in Parliament in a delusional fashion.... surely thats just a mark of stress and not Alzheimers right??  Yeah... its OK to elect elderly people to the highest office... yep, it sure is...

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

SPAM Issue

Am having an issue with the Lime Kettles email account... I am getting 3-4 Nigerian Bank Scam Spams per hour.  They're flooding in...

I use the Lime Kettles account as my default site registration account and I think someone has got my email addy off one of those sites in the past 24hrs as I am getting bombarded from Nigeria!

I keep clicking "Spam" on the Yahoo Mail but it doesnt seem to register that the next ones coming through are spam as well.  Does anyone know how to fix spam in Yahoo Mail?

New Worker Training!

Tried to upload a big post yesterday on Kate's birthday weekend, but for some reason all the photos were coming out sideways... oh well!

Today however, I have brought Kate into the office.  Given I am wrapping up here at work and whilst I am busy, its a bit more casual, I thought it would be a good learning experience for Kate to come in and spend the day with me in the office.  We caught the train together this morning and sat in the rear car as I always do and the train guard gave her a big hello.

The trip was quiet and she played with my PSP as we sped along in the early morning.  Then she did the change trains thing and walked from Kings Cross to the office like I always do.

The office was prepared for her coming and everyone said hello and she has her seat next to me.  As per routine, I took her down to the coffee shop where she got a muffin and a hot chocolate and now she is pretty chuffed to be here!  The embarrassing thing is that I am playing my last game of Mixed Netball today at lunch and she'll be there to witness her old man make a fool of himself.


Sunday, July 22, 2007

Kitty Kats

Kate & Brooke made their debut for the Kitty Kats at last nights Penrith vs St George game. The video is really shonky particularly as I realised the camera crew were focusing in on Kate and she was on tele.

For the record, the girls are on the right hand side when they split in two. Kate is in the front of the line and Brooke is right behind her.

And some sideline antics:

Friday, July 20, 2007

Big Weekend

A big weekend this weekend... it's Kate's 8th birthday on Monday, but all the celebrations are this weekend.  Firstly, it will be Netball as is now the Saturday morning tradition and then both Kate and Brooke will be members of the Kitty Kat's - the little girls cheerleading squad for the Penrith Panthers NRL team.  The good thing is that we'll be going to the game to cheer them on and to also cheer on my team the Dragons!  What a great coincidence!  Niki's brother and his family will be going to the game as well I think (they're Saints fans too) so the girls

Then I did go into a religious vitriol a few days (weeks?) back about kids parties and religion.  Turns out Kates bowling party is the Sunday and we'll be at the local 10 Pin Alley knocking down pins with Kate and about a dozen of her friends.  The kids get food and party bags and also there will be lollies and jugs of soft drink in the lanes itself as well... could get messy with all that sugar and bowling balls!

Then it will be pizza's at Niki's sisters place for dinner just for that extra hit of junk food!  Its going to be a long weekend and not a good one from a healthy balanced diet perspective... but football pies balances with lollies which balances with pizza... perfect!

There'll be a big picture posting for the weekend next week!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Inferno as passenger jet hits office building |

Breaking news of a plane hitting a building in Sao Paulo Brazil... The photos look horrendous and the blaze is an inferno.

Funny though my experience of planes hitting buildings is something along the lines of this where the lawn doesnt get scuffed.

Inferno as passenger jet hits office building

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Knackered at Netball, Buggered at Politics

I am soooo buggered.  I played Mixed Netball at lunch today and worked out that other than a bit of a hit at indoor cricket, its the first bloody exercise I have done in months!!  I am not proud of that, but thats the truth!  For the netball afficianado's amongst us, I played Goal Attack and missed all 3 of my shots and we lost 12-3.  Talk about exhausted!!  I also got introduced to the work showers for the first time in my 5 years here and it happens to be in my last fortnight at the company!  LOL.

Turning to things more blog worthy, a few things have been popping into my front of mind lately in which I should tell you all my opinion on... Firstly, this Indian doctor caught in Brisbane on suspicion of terrorism has left me a little confused.  I personally think the guy is not innocent... I am sure he has been doing something dodgy in aiding and abetting his colleagues / countrymen / relatives (?) in the UK bombings, but have we sort of thrown out the judicial process by detaining him for too long without charge and then cancelling his Visa via Ministerial decree?  Is that right?  Are our laws full of loopholes to ensure that if the government *wants* a conviction, they will get it.  Has the process undertaken lost the opportunity for him for a fair trial?  I dont know, but whilst I think this guy is fishy I dont think this is the right way to go about it for the same reason I and others complained that the USA held David Hicks for so long...

Secondly, I meant to post this yesterday, but here is a quote from John Howard on 14 May 2003.  In the cold light of 20-20 hindsight, this is a damning quote:

JOHN HOWARD: I again take the opportunity of reaffirming the correctness of the government's assessment in predeploying our forces, and I record the bitter opposition of the Australian Labor Party when that decision was taken. Not only was the military operation completed quickly and successfully but it is also worth recording that all of the doomsday predictions, particularly the many that came from those who sit opposite, were not realised.

The oilwells were not set on fire; there were not millions of refugees; the dams on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers were not breached to bring on catastrophic flooding; and there was no long, drawn out, bloody, Stalingrad style street-to-street fighting in Baghdad. For all of this we must be immensely grateful, but it is a reminder of the hysteria and the doomsday predictions that often accompany operations of this kind. And, just as many of the predictions about a Western Front style holocaust that were made in 1991 when the land war commenced were proved wrong, so the predictions on this occasion have been proved wrong.

The decisive victory of the American led coalition reflects enormous credit on the strength and the determination of the leadership of President Bush. Again I remind the House of the way in which his role was vilified and traduced by many of those who sit opposite and of the way in which speaker after speaker from the Australian Labor Party impugned his integrity, assaulted his judgment and called into question his ability to lead the United States in this very difficult conflict. History has proved them wrong.

The performance of the President has illustrated how infantile their protests were, and the leadership that he has given on this occasion, I believe, will bring about a permanent change in attitudes in the Middle East.

Credit to for the post.

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Life of Riley

Blogging is a relatively new media and sometimes you wonder how it all comes together and why people do it. Is internet publishing via a blog forever? Will Lime Kettles be around for all of eternity as some sort of time capsule?

Interesting thought... and how should we use the internet to record history? Well the site below is an example of how the internet is not just for computer games and porn, but rather a way to keep history. The Life of Riley is a blog about 107 year old Olive who tells her stories to the blogger who then types them up along with old photos.

A great idea! See, internet publishing can be purposeful and historic!

Weekend Wrap - Warning Boring Post Ahead.

After a massive Thursday night, Friday night was spent being very ginger and I was quiet at home preparing for the first of my new D&D gaming groups session for Saturday night.

Before that though, on Saturday morning we took Kate to netball - her first game in 5-6 weeks due to weather, byes and school holidays, and the Blaxland Redbacks "Sparkles" were very rusty and had their first loss of the season 0-1.  Kate played very good though and she is really enjoying the netball.  I will need to look into taking the girls to a Sydney Swifts game or something...  Kate won "Player of the Week" and got to take home the teams trophy for the week and she was very excited.  Then late in the game, the teams manager asked if Kate would mind backing up and playing a second game in the Under 9's as that team was short players.  We said yes, and Kate literally was jumping out of her skin when she found out.  That team lost as well, but she was very happy to have played with some older girls (and they score more goals in the U/9's the final score was about 12-7) and she had a run at Goal Shooter as well for a while, but didnt get any goals herself.  A great experience for her.

Saturday night was D&D night and Tommy, Pete, Grant and Nate came around to kick off the "Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil ".  I will probably get around to posting a first session narration in the forum, but a good night was had by all.  The game ended around midnight and we'll be playing every 4-6 weeks.  I, as DM, was a fair bit rusty with the rules!!

Sunday was more relaxing... the spent the morning after a sleep in helping the girls paint their cardboard cubby houses.  Niki picked up for just $10 at Go-Lo some cardboard houses that the kids can sit in.  They're like a giant colouring in book style cubby house and the girls were painting in the bricks, flowers and vines and using texta's to colour in the buttflies and lady beetles on the side.  After spending an hour and half doing that, I watched Saints get trounced by the Warriors and then had a bit of an afternoon nap.

BBQ'ed for dinner, including some Holoumi cheese... the girls played a muck around game of D&D after dinner for an hour (my books and stuff were still on the table) and then it was a quiet night of tele and websurfing where I played around with Firefox extensions... GOD! How exciting!!!

Friday, July 13, 2007

How to Win at Office Politics

Will be moving into a new company soon and of course you get a clean slate to meet new people and make good first impressions...

Then I saw this and given I work in a pod farm, thought this should be a good read.

How to Win at Office Politics on BNET


Death.  Come take me now!

I am sitting in the office today after my work farewell night out last night and after getting home a titch before 4am, I am very under the weather.  I feel sick, I have the shakes and a pounding headache.  I am not alone however... the office is rather subdued today.

The night started at Frisco's at Woolloomooloo for dinner, then after way too much wine it was to the W for cocktails and I started on the bourbon...  Then it was on to the Rocks at around midnight in which alot of places were closing except Jackson's On George which was open and I guess we left there around 2:30am... shared a cab which went via Concord then Merrylands then home to the mountains.

What a long night...

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Stan Zemanek

Stan Zemanek died today and I have to say that I have mixed feelings about that.  It is never good when anyone dies, but I have to admit I have had the "bastard deserved it" thoughts which are not nice...

I used to listen to Stan right up until he left radio last December principally because his show was hugely offensive and his views in my mind were so bizarre and right winged to the extreme that it was almost comedy to listen to him.  And his callers - the so called "numb nuts" were also so bizarre that the show had a flavour about it that you couldnt turn off.

The article about Stan Zemanek though does say his on air shock-jock personality was in opposite to how the real man was and I honestly hope that that's true.  Otherwise, the most sexist, racist bigot ever to get a voice on main stream media has passed and if that is the case, then its a time to celebrate.

Maybe I am being too cold and callous myself... maybe he said the things he said for entertainment purposes and I guess I was entertained by it... so in that case that may make me out to be the biggest numb nut of them all...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Gaming - Is it about Luck or Fun?

Indulge me if you will in a bit of a gaming post...

One of my fellow blood bowlers (a Games Workshop game) lost it big time this week with his string of (bad) luck and quit our league mid-season and has advertised on numerous Blood Bowl / Gaming websites that he is selling his largish collection of miniatures and bits and pieces.

In response to this, Tommy "ozjesting" Dean has perhaps drafted one of the best posts / rants about people who whinge about luck and yet play games involving dice.  Dice are, completely random and be it a game on a table with real dice or a computer version of a game with a programmed Random Number Generator (RNG), then you will - and you WILL - have good luck and you will have bad luck.  The point of Oz's post however is that no matter how much strategy you put in, no matter how "good" a player you think you are, a bad dice roll at a crucial time will cruel your best laid plans.

Read this manifesto here.

I do post this posting today because the player who has retired from Blood Bowl is a regular reader of this blog, and I do hope he sees this and realises that he should simply enjoy the game and play it for the camaraderie and not get caught up with the winning / losing aspect.  I know that there are issues in real life mate, but if you can't get some time out with a what boils down to it is a silly game and simply enjoy it for what it is, then you do need to rethink why you do play games of any sort.

I know todays post isnt about World Politics or even my own navel gazing at my own hectic life, but I thought Tommy's post was too good to keep hidden in the fumbbl SWL forum.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The wait drags on...

I am so trying to be productive at work... I have 3 weeks to go and a fair number of projects to wrap up, but sheesh its hard to stay focused.

One, you have so many social calls to make... people you want to tell the news to direct rather than have them hear it on the grapevine and then those who ring you when they have heard it on the grapevine... all this "so! where are you going?" chat takes up about 1-2hrs of my day.

Then there are the logistics to work out... superannuation, car lease, mobile phone etc all drag on.  I feel as though I am going to miss something out and it will cost me big time.

And then there is just the simple difficulty of staying keen and fresh.  People ringing you up for work issues and asking you to get involved in new stuff... to maintain that enthusiasm is difficult as well.

On top of all that though is the official and unofficial functions you end up having... drinks, dinners and lunches... I will need that week off just to detox I think!

Still... it could be worse!

Monday, July 09, 2007

55 Essential Articles Every Serious Blogger Should Read

I haven't read this, but am posting it for my own reference and future reading... Ironic hey... posting a blog post about an article on how to do better blog posts... mmm, very freudian.

55 Essential Articles Every Serious Blogger Should Read | Entrepreneurial Blog of Matt Huggins

Wish I had more pants...

What a crappy day!  Got absolutely drenched this morning and my suit pants have been drenched and I now feel like I am wearing cotton track pants... all the creases have gone out of them and they look shithouse.

The weather hasnt been kind and this morning on the train the lady in front of me wore a hot cappuccino when one lady dropped it in her lap whilst taking her seat.  It was accidental but shit, how bad would that be... coffee all over her!

Then when i get to work and thaw / dry out some I head down to the coffee shop and again, the lady behind the counter tips a large long black all over the counter and I only just managed to avoid being splashed with hot coffee... seems to be some sort of mad monday coffee chucking day today.

Just one of those days where you wish you can go back to bed and start again...

The weekend however was excellent although that may be because of the alcohol consumed all weekend.  Friday lunch - beer.  Friday after work:  Bourbon, Saturday Lunch - Beer; Saturday Night - Wine; Sunday Lunch - more wine.

Basically spent 72 hrs with a drink in my hand.

Friday, July 06, 2007

A Tribute to the Boyz

My best mate Noyz has had the snip!  After fathering two kiddies, he went under the knife yesterday to have "the Boyz" seen to... apparently all are doing well but he won't be doing the high jump for some time...

Why am I posting this?  Just to embarrass him really...  ;-)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Its Certainly Not Oil of Ulan!

Federal Defence Minister Brendan Nelson has said in a matter of fact way that the war in Iraq is actually about Oil (Read it here).  Also we're there to defend "the prestige" of the USA and the UK.

For fuck sake!  Lets call a spade a spade... we invaded Iraq on false pretences and are now in a bitter fight (and when I say "we" I dont equate our piss poor contribution to the 2-3 thousand dead American marines) to ensure that "energy security" is maintained.

Meanwhile, petrol prices since 2000 have gone up nearly 100%.

Wake up Australia!  Lets pull the plug on this mess already.

Hanzi Smatter 一知半解

We Westerners always like to make fun of "Chinglish" and how the Chinese and Japanese people make odd words during translations...

Now here's a site for the reverse! Bad use of Chinese or Japanese characters for Western audiences. Unfortunately, most of these are in the form of tattoos! So, be careful of what your tattoo really does say!

Hanzi Smatter 一知半解

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?

Seen the movie The Matrix? Reckon it could be real? Do you think that maybe we are simply energy sources for a post-humanity world and to while away the time, human history is played to our subconscious on a continuous loop?

Does that explain the view of Near Death Experience and the "going to the light" or also the plausibility of reincarnation - i.e. we were rebooted and rejoined the simulation at a later date and time?

Do you think its a load of rot?

Well, at least some boffins at Oxford are debating it...

Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?: " "

Early Bird

Arrived at the office at 6:15am this morning...

Odd, that a man who is on his "4 week notice" would be in so early, but there was a good reason for it.  I took Mum & Dad to the airport this morning as they embark on a round the world business class ticket and are spending the next 6 weeks in Europe and then New York.

So, I awoke at 4am.  Showered and dressed and was in the car at 4:30 and got to mum & dads and then threw their luggage in and went to the airport did the quick drop off and then with minimal traffic I was in the building here at work a bit after 6.

So boring being in this early - and hence my posting :-)

I still feel very relieved about the change of job and I must say I am more relaxed than I have been probably in years.  I am sure that will change when I start at the new place! lol.

Anyways, must be off... I have to surf the internet...

Monday, July 02, 2007

Beware the Changing of the Guard

When there was a Spanish election, al-Qaeda bombed trains in Madrid which forced the powers in Spain to bring the issue of Iraq to a head and forced the withdrawal of the Spanish forces.  Now in the UK with a change of Prime Minister and an election soon to be called there has been a suite of bombs and threats in the UK to again raise the issue to the people about the British involvement in Iraq.

With the Americans so gun-ho about Iraq, it seems to me that al-Qaeda try to target lesser members of the Coalition of the Willing to force political pressure locally for withdrawals.

Does that mean that with the upcoming Federal Election, should we be worried?