Sunday, March 30, 2008


Greystanes won the toss and batted and soon regretted it as we found ourselves 2/1 with yours truly out bowled for a second ball duck.

We struggled on Saturday and were bowled out for 103 in the 52nd over.... not good!

We went out to field and with the clouds gathering for a thunderstorm, we had the opposition at 1/4 early on before lightning stopped play.

Today, with a big job to do, our bowlers were magnificent as we bowled out Xenium Crusaders for just 62 before drinks (3:30pm).

Fantastic effort with opening bowler and skipper Terry "Siimon The Likeable" Hoban taking 5/8 off 11 overs.


Needless to say, I am not feeling 100% at the moment!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Does this mean....

that playing Chess against a Computer is now illegal?


They say its the weekend!

They say its the weekend!

Yup, Friday again the short week has me caught short and I am heading to NZ on Monday so my work load is bigger than I expected.  Today is a busy day!

But the weekend will be excellent (touch wood) as we finally get to play the Grand Final in cricket.  Stupidly we had to have a weeks break due to Easter (why didn’t we save a week somewhere during the regular season I don’t know) but we get to end the season on hopefully a good note.  The game will be played over both days of the weekend and on the Sunday night our club has their annual presentation dinner and given that well be playing (and the only side in our club to make the GF) well be still in our whites and pending victory we will be well lubricated!

The end of season dinner though is good its free, wives and girlfriends and partners can attend and also eat free and also kids too however in anticipation of victory and a rowdy night, the girls will be at Gran & Granpas.

Not sure of logistics though, well have two cars so I don’t know how well arrange to get the second car home!

The other thing is that I am heading to NZ for work on Monday afternoon as well and will be out of the country until Wednesday night, but Ill try to blog the result of the big game before then because I know youre ALL dying to know the result.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Ah, this explains it!

This explains why my Blackberry Calendar is suddenly 1hr out of sync with my Blackberry clock and my desktop calendar...

Was wondering wtf was going on!

Dettol Is Not Good

Dettol Is Not Good

The night before last, I was stripping paint from some miniatures that I wanted to repaint.  The best way to strip paint from plastic miniatures is to soak them in Dettol and then scrub them clean with a tooth brush.  After soaking them for a while in a Tupperware container, I took to each one of the 6 miniatures with a tooth brush and scrubbed each one vigorously.  I was home alone at the time and I thought nothing of bathing my hands in undiluted Dettol for about 30 mins.

Soon however, I was aware that my fingers had shrunk.  Seriously, they developed the most intense case of pruning that I had ever had before.  The pads of my fingers looked like little bumpy walnuts and I was soon aware that my fingers started to burn at the base of my nails My simpleton logic was that Dettol was good and that you use it to disinfect cuts and scrapes on kids knees, so how come I am now burning

I gave up the scrubbing and looked at my fingers which were red, pruny and burning.  Oops!

Niki came home and I told her my story and she asked Did I dilute it?.  Nope.  Did you wear gloves? Nope.  I felt like an idiot.

Now this morning when I got out of the shower, both my hands are peeling in small flakes the skin has died and despite using some girly moisturiser, theyre shedding small bits of skin everywhere.

And I thought Dettol was good for you!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Wednesday News Wrap

I like to read the papers and if things catch my eye, I will comment on them... today though there is so much bizarre stuff that I will just list them:

1. A tran-sexual woman-turned-man is pregnant. He is pregnant with his "wife". I am presuming his "wife" is a man? If you have female bits and you enjoy sex with male bits, why do you both go through the drug and medical procedures to look like the opposite? Lets just say the visual image in my head is bizarre! (link)

2. Detroits Mayor blows $8.4M of tax payers money to cover up his affair... (link). Seems as though we hold people in office at a higher moral pedestal and then complain when their "sins of the flesh" cause them to go over the top to protect their perceived moral high ground. Perhaps if we simply acknowledged that people in the public eye have private lives and foibles and not be *shocked* when they dont, then maybe those same people wouldn't blow so much cash or other resources to protect themselves. If we went "the mayor had an affair, ok.. lets move on" we wouldn't be worried about this.

3. But the point above still generates press for others... i.e. Clinton / Lewinsky (link). Ho-hum... so 90's that story!

4. We're breaking world records like they're going out of style in the pool... its the simple Australian Championships, yet we seem to be breaking a world record, some of them longstanding, every time there's a race. A record was even broken in a heat. Does anyone remember the World Swimming Championships in Perth when the Chinese broke all those records? Remember we cried foul about performance enhancing drugs? Where are those same stories now??? Yeah, yeah, sure, sure... its all Aussie Gold and its all dinky-di. mmmm (link)

5. Online website for young girls between 7 and 17 called "Miss Bimbo" promotes boob jobs and obsessive dieting to "stay thin and sexy". This is promoted by the web designer as a bit of "harmless fun". Did I mention the web designer is a 23 year old guy? ya... good stuff that! (link)

I think thats about it... great world we live in isnt it!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Back to work...

Four day weekend... followed by a 4 day week. I think there is a sense of karma to that. It should be the norm!!

Unfortunately though, my work is a bit tiresome at the moment... I am going to New Zealand next week but this week is a slog of boring stuff... also, the whole half-sale / half-keep thing here at work is still going on and my long term future is STILL up in the air.

I will just keep on going and wait until the "job fairy" gets here. ;-)

Monday, March 24, 2008


Man, I am knackered and I think its because I have eaten waaay too much chocolate.

But to recap on the weekend that was...

Friday: I played Blood Bowl up the Central Coast. It was a one day "sevens" tournament... I went 1-1-3 and finished 11th from 14 competitors. Good day out though. The girls went to the Rikki Lee concert at Panthers and had an excellent time. Got autographs and a photo afterwards... but I got the call at midnight to say that they had a flat tyre so I spent the first hour of Saturday changing a tyre.

Saturday: Sleep in.., then Mum & Dad for lunch, followed by the girls cheerleading for the Penrith Panthers in the NRL. Got myself a free ticket in as a result to the Penrith vs Canberra game... pretty low game though in front of a small crowd, but the girls had a ball.

Sunday: Chocolate consumption started at 9am. Lazy day in which we went for a picnic down at Penrith Lakes. Made some bread rolls, took some drinks and the kids bikes. Basically sat in the shade for 2 or so hours. Then it was to Niki's brothers at Springwood for dinner and an Easter Egg hunt for all the kids.

Monday: Took the kids ice skating for something to do. I stoopidly wore shorts and t-shirt. I froze for 3hrs. Drank so much hot chocolate the machine broke! The girls had fun and Kate was "ice dancing"

Brooke & I after drinking too much Hot Chocolate

Thursday, March 20, 2008


It's on again! The footy season has started and Kate & Brooke are dancing as part of the Kitty Kats troupe like they did last year this Saturday and next Sunday. I will be at the game on Saturday, but the Sunday game will clash with my cricket Grand Final...

But not only are they doing this, Kate has been invited (and we have accepted and hence have to pay) to goto Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to dance at some Tourism Australia promotion. The itinerary is sketchy, but they'll be dancing in KL somewhere and then also at the Desa Water Park. Niki will be going with her and we decided to pay for Brooke to go along as well for the trip given the hassle of trying to either me having a week off work and/or finding babysitting for her during a school week.

They're leaving end of May and into June and I will be bacheloring it during that time, but the trip will be very exciting for them. We are booked into Fiji in late June as well, so my girls will be doing two international trips in 4 weeks! Jetsetters!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Dangers of Wall Street

Yes, its tough on Wall St... Securities traders are ever on the look out for the stray stilletto as they go about their duties.

Surely this is a workers compensation matter!


PS - clearly she wasn't completely nude... she was wearing heels!

Hillsong... Church or Cult

I have been aware of the increasing press relating to the Hillsong Church and it’s associates namely the Mercy Ministries and would you believe Gloria Jeans Coffee Shops!

(link, link, link)

Seems to me that the Hillsong Church is attracting a lot of press these days and its interesting to see that these stories were about long ago back in 2005.

So what is the Hillsong Church? Look, I am not religious but I respect that if people want to follow religion well good luck to them. What worries me though about Hillsong is that they demand so much money from its members, set up / fund businesses to front for them (i.e. Gloria Jeans) and have such way out views as described in the Mercy Ministries stories in the press.

Is it Australia’s version of Scientology? Scientology, whilst classed as a religion is actually a cult founded by L Ron Hubbard as a tax dodge in the 50’s / 60’s. Is Brian Houston and co doing the exact same and just something tugs at my conscious that all is not what it seems….

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Anyone for Pi?

I missed the fact that it was "Pi Day" back on 14 March, but this article is interesting in its own right.

Makes you wonder about how stuff seems to swing around the famous infinite constant...

Paid For Travel?

This mornings paper has an article on how people should be paid to travel to work due to the poor state of our public transport. (story)

Well, I travel about 3hrs a day.  90mins each way.  Therefore, I for one am probably well qualified to speak on the matter.

And my view is that this is a ridiculous idea!  I choose to live where I do.  Whilst I bitch and moan on occasion, overall for the price I pay the Blue Mountains run is not too bad.  I get a seat, I get air con, I get a train that is comparatively silent and I can relax.  I can work if I need to, I can read, I can listen to music or I can sleep.  Overall, its not that bad and yes whilst I would enjoy an extra hour at home either end of the day, the reality is anywhere in Sydney is a fair commute.  At least my commute is comfortable.

People need to realise that we live in a big city and if you want the bigger salaries to pay for the bigger mortgages, then that’s the way it is otherwise, head to a remote country town.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

We're Going To The Grand Final!

The mighty Greystanes B8 Cricket Team are through to the Grand Final after a tough semi final win.

Greystanes won the toss and batted and yours truly buggered up big time to be the first one out for just 5. However the team recovered (whilst I stewed on the side line) and we batted all day for 160 with the last wicket falling on the last ball of the day.

We were content with that given we're not a great batting side and with a very good bowling line up, we were confident.

Today, on Day 2, we got their skipper and best bat out cheaply caught at mid-off and then we kept the pressure on with some tight bowling. The catches though werent sticking (and I dropped one at first slip to compound my personally shitty game) but we never lost our heads and kept positive.

The run rate required for Guildford was climbing and soon enough they had to force some shots and the wickets started to flow.

Soon, we had them on the run and eventually bowled them out for just 92!

Considering this was the best batting team in the comp, we were very happy with that!

Due to Easter, we need to wait a fortnight for the Grand Final which will once again be at Roberta St Park Greystanes.

Friday, March 14, 2008

So very tired...

So very tired...

For a variety of reasons both work and social, I have not been to bed before 1am since Tuesday last night I was on the midnight train home and walked in the door at 1:30am after trying to help a work friend connect to the internet and set up all the wireless network properly.

I have now run aground.

On top of that, I put my little station car in for its Pink Slip and service this morning and they have already rung me to advise that the brakes are shot and it will be approx $720 for that.  Joy Joy!

I will be leaving the office early today and will probably hit the hay straight away tonight.  Big cricket semi final tomorrow :-)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Up Beat

Up Beat

Am feeling upbeat today don’t know why, but I am.

I was running late again for work well not late, you see the culture here at this company is late start late finish.  I get in at 9:15 and I am by no means last man here but it is a bad habit, so I still consider it late, but I digress.

I had a nice snooze on the train, couldn’t get into my book because I was a bit tired and simply shut my eyes and relaxed.  The train was crowded, but I was comfortable I have coffeed this morning, had a nice muffin for breakfast and am now waiting for my 10am meeting to arrive.  I have a fair bit to say this morning and I feel in control of work despite the state of flux the company is in.

This mood will probably run foul by days end, but at present it’s a blue sky day

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Half Way Unemployed

I have been alluding to things happening with work of late and the fact that my company is being split in two.

Well yesterday, I was told that the firm acquiring half of my company has no need for my services in the future.

This sits well with me because a) I didnt think I would accept the offer as they are not Sydney based and b) I am more enthused about staying on with the retained half.

The issue is the retained portion of the company is unable to commit to anything due to the conditions of sale and therefore I (and everyone) is in limbo.

I am not alone however, most people were knocked back so its not like I have been singled out and those who have secured offers, many of them had been previously stating that they wouldnt take them... we'll now see what a firm offer does mean to those people. A bird in hand as they say...

I am also happy that that part of the equation has been resolved... the "do I take an offer if I am made one" debate has been going thru my mind and now I dont need to ask that anymore. I now have one prospect of employment with my company via the retained entity and if not, then I am on the hunt for a new role elsewhere.

I am looking though... and have had a couple of discussions, but nothing concrete and to be honest I wont heavily pursue options until I am certain I am on the way out.

That certainty will probably be on March 20 when I have a meeting with my CEO to discuss my function. He is a straight shooter, so I hope if he does shoot me he doesnt knee cap me first!



I drove in today as I am playing Blood Bowl in town tonight and thought
it would be easier...

How farking wrong am I... today is the last day I am going to use the M7/M2... technically speaking I can get to my office without a set of traffic lights until I hit Walker St in Nth Sydney. A traffic light free run from the Mountains to Nth Sydney.

Well... it took me 40 mins to get 4kms along the M2 this morning and
after paying $14 in tolls for the privilege, I wont be going that way again. I will go down the M4 and Parramatta Rd and across the Harbour Bridge next time.


PS - you know the traffic is bad when the guy in the ute behind you is reading porn... he deadest had a Hustler or something similar sitting up on his steering wheel while we went along at less than walking pace... lol!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Odd Behaviour

People can be odd... very odd.

I have had two weird experiences in the past 24hrs. One very scary but sad, the other one a ludicrous example of the "me me me" generation.

Firstly the scary one. Was on the train yesterday coming in to work. The train was full and people were standing up in the aisle. One of the standing people was a man seemed to be vigorously talking to himself and was a bit agitated enough that I paused my iPod so I could hear what he had to say. From that point on, the next 40 minutes were surreal. This guy was a legitimate example of schizophrenia. He was having a full conversation that you could follow except it was coming from one person. His main voice was a loud voice (loud enough to get everyone on the train worried) but had a child like quality. He was loud but was clearly the submissive person in this conversation.

The other voice was a low whisper. For most of the journey I couldn't make out what was said, but as seats freed up the guy sat behind me and I could hear that half of the conversation. He was saying the most evil and hateful things to his "other half" and was giving veiled threats and sometimes direct abuse. The submissive voice referred to the evil whisper voice as "Steven".

Loud Voice: "I'm sorry Steven! I didn't mean it! I will buy you another cup of coffee. I'll even put sugar in it this time..."

Whisper Voice: "I don't care about the stinking coffee. You always make a mess. You're hopeless and I am going to fix you..."

Loud Voice: "I'm sorry! I was at my girlfriends. I didn't mean it!!"

And this went on and on and on. Very scary, but also very sad that a man (and he was reasonably dressed and didn't appear 'homeless') could be left without help like that... I hope he gets some soon!

The second incident of odd people was the opposite and an example of arrogant narcissism. I am standing at the coffee bar at my local café on Walker St North Sydney this morning waiting for my order. The bar faces the street and I am reading the paper. Suddenly a blaring horn as a cabbie slams on his brakes. A girl in a blue sporty car does a U Turn in front of me, across double yellow lines and slides into a car park right in front of the coffee shop. She's talking on a mobile as she does this sudden manoeuvre and parks on an angle with the cars rear sticking out in traffic. She makes no move to correct it, gets out of the car. She's blonde and attractive and has a tight t-shirt on that doesn't hide the fact that she's had a boob job.

She wanders into the coffee shop and bypasses the queue of people and walks up to the barista on the side of the counter, ignoring everyone else, and asks for a latte. She then walks to the counter and starts reading a newspaper over the shoulder of a guy and then says "do you mind?" and takes the paper from him. He's gobsmacked undoubtedly by the boobs and obliges. My order is up and I head out where her car is causing people to veer on the wrong side of the road to avoid her car.

Amazing that people get through life like this... despite her external beauty, a real cow and high maintenance if you ask me... sounds horrible, but I hope she gets some bad illness to make her get a bit of perspective.

I said 4-5million...

Scott Adams posted an interesting question today on his blog...

I answered 4-5 million, but his logic is sound. Freaky thought.

What do you reckon?


Monday, March 10, 2008

Cricket Minor Premiers

Aside from Brooke's birthday, we finished the cricket regular season on Saturday in a tense game that saw us take the points and the Minor Premiership.

Chasing 76 runs, we took about 70 overs to reach the target as the large field was extremely slow and any balls hit along the ground struggled to beat the infield. We scored a mere 19 runs in the first half of Day 2! But some lusty hitting in the lower order saw us pass the score with 8 wickets down.

To give an insight to the slow outfield, our skipper Terry hit 10 runs from 113 balls faced!

Now we're onto the finals, which are all sudden death games against 4th placed Guildford Leagues.

If you're keen, we're at Roberta St Park Greystanes with play starting at 1:30pm on Saturday and Sunday.


Sunday, March 09, 2008

Brookie's Birthday Weekend!

Well! I'm exhausted!!

Brooke's birthday went off without a hitch... started on Friday night with Pizza with Julie & Con and their kids of which Hannah stayed the night with us... the Saturday morning was visit from Niki's friend Rachael and her kids with more presents for Brooke.

I then took Brooke down to my parents where she went on with her Gran for a shopping expedition to Parramatta and she came back with a stack of clothes.... then we all went out for dinner at the local Chinese place and ate waay too much.

Sunday, was up early, Brooke got her new bike she wanted and we were off to her "Build-a-Bear" party at Penrith. That was really good and well run, and for $35 a head, it was good value but I recommend no more than 6 kids all up. Brooke invited her sister Kate and 4 girls from school for the party and after an hour or so at Build-a-Bear, it was back to our place for a teddy bears picnic.

At 2pm we were taking the kids home and by 4pm, Niki's family had arrived and we had a big dinner as well... now, its late, the kids are zonked and I'll be heading to the office tomorrow for a rest!! LOL.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Happy Birthday Brookie

Sunday is my little bubba’s 7th birthday.  I am amazed that 7 years have passed since her arduous birth (well arduous for Niki… 50hrs of labour thanks to medico stuff ups!) and she is now a bright and bubbly 1st grader.

The weekend is going to be fully taken up with birthday stuff… tonight, our friends Julie & Con are coming over for Pizza and Ice Cream Cake (Brooke is in charge of the menu!) and their daughter Hannah will be staying the night for a sleep over.  Then Saturday, I’m taking her down to her Gran & GranPa’s where she’ll be heading out for clothes shopping and a girly day of shopping with Gran.  Saturday night Mum & Dad will bring her back and we’ll be having Chinese and then on Sunday, her actually birthday, we’ll be taking her down to Build-A-Bear at Penrith for a little party with some of her friends.  Then we’ll be back to our place for a Teddy Bears Picnic which will be followed by Nikis family coming around for dinner on Sunday night.  Apparently the menu is Chicken and Macaroni & Cheese mmm!

So in short, that’s my weekend!  I will still be going to cricket Saturday arvo, but other than that I wont have time to scratch myself should be good though.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Happy School Morning

My work diary was free-ish this morning and Niki's Dad had to be at the hospital this morning at 7:30am for an Angiogram (sp?) as he's not doing too well with his heart at the moment.

Niki was taking him and had been in a lather about how to get the girls to school and I was only too happy to take the morning off work and take them to school.

Niki was gone before 7 and I got up (after only having gone to bed at 2am!) 20 minutes after her to find the girls in the lounge room watching cartoons. Their hair was done immaculately by Niki but they were in the pj's and when I came out Brooke was standing on the lounge! lol.

So, I played Mr Mum this morning and enjoyed it. Breakfast of toast and juice... a chat about school. Brooke was getting a birthday award today at the school assembly and then I had to shower and get ready for work.

Soon, it was me in my suit and tie, the girls in their uniforms trundling along to school. There were no fights about who was sitting in the front - Kate graciously let Brooke have the front seat - and we went to school.

The girls' school though is in two campuses and we went to the Primary first to drop off Kate. No drop and go for me, we parked got out and Kate was talking a million miles an hour about the various classrooms and which teacher resided in each room. Went down to her room and she showed me where she hung her bag and took me inside and showed me her desk and some of her artwork on the walls. Met her teacher as well.

Then we were suddenly inundated with other girls all of them hugging Kate and Brooke (this is the new custom apparently, everyone gives everyone else a sisterly hug) and then she was off with a quick kiss from me and Brooke & I went back to the car.

Drove the half-k to the Infants dept and again the same scene was repeated. Teacher in the class room, artwork on the wall, maths books on a desk proudly showing Brooke's name. Then there were more kids and hugs and Brooke was happy for me to go...

I ended up getting the 9:20 train from Glenbrook and it was a nice change of pace for a work day. Got into the office at 11ish... very civilised :)

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Founding Father of Gaming Passes Away

I was going to write another inane post on my trip to Melbourne, anti-terrorism measures and the virtues of Qantas, but instead I have just been knocked for six to learn that the founder of gaming Gary Gygax has passed away.

For us gamers, Gary was the legend who invented Dungeons & Dragons and was a huge influence on many genre's of gaming from table top military gaming through to the RPG scene.

He passed away at his home at Lake Geneva Wisconsin.

RIP Dungeon Master

Post script: Some tributes here and here

And a further one here which is very similar to my story...

Monday, March 03, 2008

Off To Melbourne

Just a short note to say that I am flying down to Melbourne this afternoon for a work trip and wont be back until Wednesday… so no post tomorrow!

My antennae is screwy...

OK, this can get confusing…. Follow carefully.


A few months ago whilst we were out an electrical storm went over our house and I suspect that our TV antennae / foxtel dish was struck by lightning.  Our Foxtel box was dead and the TV in the main lounge room couldn’t get free to air TV (call this Set A) and the TV in the bedroom (call it Set B) stopped working and could only get static and an electrical pulse.  Niki’s parents gave us an old TV they had for the bedroom (Set C) and we got the Foxtel people out to replace the box.


Since then, we got a new TV (Set D) – which we put in the bedroom and moved Set C to the front of the house at Christmas so the girls could use their new PlayStation.  However Set C refused to work in the front room, but the old bedroom tele (Set B) did even though it wouldn’t work in the bedroom.  We also never had Set A fixed to pick up free to air TV and get free to air TV in the main lounge room via the Foxtel dish, but because Channel 7 doesn’t broadcast through Foxtel (idiots!) we don’t get Channel 7 in the main room.


However in the front room, where Set B is now hooked up to the PlayStation we can get all the free to air channels…. Set D in the bedroom however, gets the reception badly with Channel 7 being the only one that is watchable.


Why am I saying this now?  Well yesterday I did a tip run and cleared out some junk which included Set C and the VCR that hasn’t worked since the storm either.  Then last night, while I was watching the cricket Niki was watching TV in the front room.  When the cricket finished, I offered her the big TV in the main room, but she couldn’t move because the show she was watching was on Channel 7… so I said I am going to bed.  She then came in to the bedroom to watch Channel 7 there…


I haven’t got all this fixed because I personally am not a huge watcher of TV.  I watch LOST and am watching Underbelly but I have downloaded most of LOST via download and I missed last weeks Underbelly and downloaded that too… I find watching free to air TV a chore and even last night with the cricket the fact that I saw the same farking AAMI add with those two ugly twin boys selling green slip insurance every 4.5 minutes started to wane on my sanity…. Also, I am not really sure how TV’s / Foxtel / Antennae work… how come I can get some channels on one set and none or only a couple on others… I am a bit worried that to get someone out to look at it would cost a bomb and as I said, I don’t really care…


If Channel 7 would broadcast thru Fox like the other stations do, then I wouldn’t have to worry about anything!