Sunday, September 30, 2007


It's sad when you know your point of total alcohol saturation. Where if you don't get yourself to bed you'll end up in a passed out state somewhere, or do some totally regrettable things and have no memory at all of them.

I know that point - and I get myself to bed with a big-ass glass of water next to me for the inevitable glue stick feeling in the morning.

Last night I reached that point, got myself safely to bed and got nicely snuggled into the position I - by the way things usually go - would be stuck in for the next six hours. But then it went wrong. I was attacked by a friendly party. It could have been a good situation, certainly not unwelcome... However in the movement that followed after this attack, I fell drunkenly out of bed.

It was that point that the illusion of safety of being in my own bedroom evaporated.
I impaled my head on a bedside drawer that was not shut properly. My room bit back at me. I have a small nugget behind my ear and very little dignity left.

Now I don't know if it's the hangover or the knock to the skull that is causing the pain today.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

A week of food and beer

A week from now, it will be my birthday. I will be celebrating twenty-seven years of mediocrity, of non-achievement and laziness. I will most probably spend some time on the official day thinking "Well, Vic. What the fuck have you done with your life, really?.". To which I will answer myself with "You know how to have a good time, you need nothing else. The rest is just faffery anyway. Shut up and have another drink.".

What I try to do on a birthday is at least one thing that I love. Just one is the minimum. Hopefully I can get around to a few. Take last year - it was the first birthday I had ever celebrated alone, no relationship, no family surrounding me. But I was determined not to let it get me down. The thing I did for myself? Conned my workmates at the wholesalers into playing frisbee on the road outside after work. I spent all day looking forward to it and fuck it was brilliant. I had a bucketload of fun.

This year I'll be doing a few things I love. Travelling - I'll be in Sydney. Hopefully I will get some time on the beach with my freinds and my sister doing something else I love - playing frisbee. Of course there will be plenty of drinking and hopefully somehere along the way we will shoot some pool and catch some live music that we can groove to. Yes, I'm looking forward to it.

But why stop at just one day? This week is now Vic's Week of Indulgence. I've set myself a challenge to appreciate a different beer every night of the week (ciders are accepted, also) and to actually attempt a different recipe each day out of the stack of cookbooks I've gathered and rarely use. Boring? Deal with it.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Vic's quest for enlightenment?

I don't read or watch the news. Partly it's a time thing. But also things that get reported piss me off. So I avoid it.

I saw some news on television last night and thought - hang on, I'm completely unaware of what's going on around me and maybe I'd better rectify that situation. Not necessarily so that I'm a more world-concious being. I'm not. I'm caught up in my life and the people that I know. I'm more easily upset by reading a blog post that says someone who I have never met (but feel I know because I read them daily) is in pain. I'm more easily upset by something like that than I am about hearing that some country that I can barely remember the name of from early high-school geography is about to blow up the citizens of some other country. There's too many in the people in the world, anyway.

As for terrorism - don't start me. Actually do start me. The only way anybody can stop terrorism is to eradicate the word from the dictionary. And then it'll be defined by some other word that means virtually the same thing. There will always be terror, and there will always be those who use it to their advantage. Fuck, wouldn't you? If you felt you were boxed into a corner?

I'm not a heartless bitch when it comes to these things. The thing that chips into my little stone wall of empathy is actual people. Take September 11. I watched the coverage. Mainly I was unemotional. Shit - basically something big has happened that will cause a chain reaction of other big things. What do I get to do about that? Sit there and watch the coverage. Fucking yay. But the people. Seeing people jumping from a building to certain death in order to avoid being burned alive? That struck me deep, because I could identify with that absolute terror in a way. I cried then, and then only. For those individuals.

And then there's the "celebrity" news. Fuck off with that, too. I don't care if a star of some movie I might have seen is pregnant. Or has spilt up with their husband. That shit happens all the time. Why are they so special? Who wants to hear about some celebrity twat's battle with alcoholism? Unless you're as rich as they are you won't be able to come through it in the way that they have, because you simply don't have access to that kind of treatment. A private treatment centre that you can admit yourself to? Fuck off and line up.

Similarly there's news on sport. The Aussie Rules football finals are coming up. I call it aerial ping pong. I have no interest in a game where the players seems to chase each other round the field in a pack like a small swarm of bees. I couldn't care less about the lead-up to the big game and who is playing and who is sidelined. The game will happen. Somebody will win, somebody will lose. Fucking yay.

And then there's the science news. Japanese researchers have produced a see-through frog? Now that pisses me off. That's playing god. Breeding something purely for research is messing with the natural order of things. What for? Why do it? Basically it comes down to stopping death. That also is messing with the natural order of things, and like I said before - there's too many people in the world anyway. I make that argument, but really I should stick my head back up my own arse, because I'm on painkillers developed through scientific research and in doing that I'm messing with the natural order of my body.

Basically, I want to be more informed so that I've got something to talk to people on a general level about. A conversation starter. So that I can appear a little more broad than music happenings and who is fucking who in the coffee club circle in my local town.

Wish me luck, it probably won't last long.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Half-Nekkid Thursday

Injury time

Dear whoever cares, as well as all those who don't. I can't be bothered discriminating today.

I'm whingeing at the world. My shoulder is fucked. I played guitar yesterday despite the injury and you know what - I woke up this morning and the fucker had got worse. So I can't play, I can't work. I don't feel like doing a fucking thing but at the same time I'm bored witless.

There you go. In order to drink this weekend I think I'll have to end up like the guy in the pic, because I can't lift my arm up without it hurting. To smoke and drink with one hand is the kind of multitasking that is completely foreign to me, so propping it up there is the only chance I have.


Thanks for reading my drivel,

p.s. The divot I am wearing into the lounge in the shape of my arse is going fine, thanks for asking.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Quote of the Day

Cruiseydyke: If I take away nothing else from living in this house, it will be the groove. Vic taught me the groove.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I was on the lounge, relaxing after a crap day of shoulder pain and more than a little mental confusion. I was writing a letter by hand, something I don't often do, but value as a piece of my own creativity to be given away as something tactile, and therefore pretty important as an expression of myself. I don't throw away things that I create, whether they are unfinished, no longer relevant, or an expression of my own idiocy at the time of creation. I've got boxes full of stuff I've written. Snippets of melodies, chord charts. Bad poetry I wrote in high school. I never throw these things away.

With this letter set beside me I took a break. I picked up the laptop and checked blogland for a little relief from this letter, this creation, this gift that I wanted to pass on. I read a few blogs, mostly stuff about sheet music and street art. But then I check a favourite and I see this:

"Lesbians are a breed unto themseves, they don't want dick but fuck themselves with phallic looking objects."

Now, this is in the context of a piece that is saying that blogging is personal, and is about expressing your own opinions. There's a whole agenda that I should have read into, even in the context of the paragraph that that little gem was nestled in. But no, I read through and immediately settled on the word I use to categorise myself. I looked at that word and didn't like what it came with.

Anger is my first reaction. I challenge anybody to tell me that they do not get angry when they feel they are attacked - even unwittingly, unintentionally - and I will shake thier hand and give them a fucking certificate. I can't do it. I damn near threw my computer across the room. I picked up that letter and screwed it up, tightly. I threw it out. Anger is destruction. Even after the initial flash, anger will radiate from me in waves of burning ice. Ask anyone who has spent a long time around me, you can almost see it emanating from me. Ask my poor two housemates who witnessed me go through all this while they, also, were trying to relax in our shared space.

So what pisses me off here? Really?

The statement that Lesbians are a breed unto themselves or the generalisation that follows?

Lesbians are a breed unto themselves - I get the point that this author has. It takes a particular set of preferences and or practises to define as lesbian. It also takes a particular set of preferences and or practises to define as a guitarist, or a teacher. Those preferences are what set us apart from everybody else. And we are the ones, as people, who adopt those distinctions.

Look at my profile in the sidebar. I've used a bunch of categorisations to display who I am to the world. I’ve used words to set myself apart from others, in a way. I still do this when I profess that all I really want in this little world I wrap myself in is to be accepted as Vic. But there it is. We all need descriptors in order to express who we are.

Our labels can be used against us. That's when it hurts. When that word that you identify with comes out in a seemingly derogatory manner, comes across as an attack rather than a positive identification, it is going to hurt. When I’m out drinking at my local pub and dressing the way I feel comfortable, being who I am, can anybody blame me for being upset at the redneck bloke who yells out across the room at me: What, are you trying to be a man, fucking dyke? The thing is that in being upset I am a hypocrite. My description of him here is “the redneck bloke” and that has the same attacking, derogatory slant behind it. I put myself in his shoes, as my perception of this guy, quite possibly adopting the label “redneck bloke” as part of his set of descriptors about his own identity – and I adapt that same statement that caused such destructive anger in me.

Redneck blokes are a breed unto themselves, they’re obnoxious cunts who couldn’t give a fuck and think that yelling at some gay bitch at the pub is entertainment.

It’s all about opinion, isn’t it? Bloggers shout their opinions at the world, ideally with no regards to their audience. Whether you’re shouting that you think what is happening in the current political climate is bullshit, or whether you’re shouting that you think a set of financial guidelines for future security are the be-all and end-all of your life or whether you’ve decided to share your favourite recipe just for the hell of it – it doesn’t really matter. You’re shouting at the world. Sometimes the world shouts back, and it can get nasty, in the same way that a brawl at the local pub can get nasty.

I think the answer to the question I posed earlier - What pisses me off here? - is simple. In being pissed off about a biased expression of opinion I’ve become a hypocrite, the very thing I despise in people. And nothing irks me more than proving my own point by saying that. Hypocrite – that’s a label, too.

Monday, September 24, 2007

The Monday Melee

It's time already for the Monday Melee. Pigs on the Wing: A Week of Pink Floyd is now officially over and I'm going to go back to being my eclectic, non-themed self for a while.

1. The Misanthropic: Name something you absolutely hate.
Being scared that I will have to face an angry boss after calling in sick twice in a row with a busted shoulder. I shouldn't be scared, because that boss should not be angry. I busted it at work, after all, and it needs time to heal.

2. The Meretricious: Expose something or someone that’s phony, fraudulent or bogus.
The massage I had on Saturday morning to ease my shoulder pain. It unleashed more, leaving me in delirious agony for most of Saturday night.

3. The Malcontent: Name something you’re unhappy with.
Living in a share house. I love my housemates to pieces, and mostly I value that social life of being around people. But... I want peace, quiet, alone time. A space where I could have sex and not have to deal with the fact that everyone is going to know about it. A space where the only person responsible for the mess is me. A space where I can sleep with the door open even if I'm sleeping naked. A space where I can get up at three in the morning and play guitar if I like because I don't have to be considerate to anybody.

4. The Meritorious: Give someone credit and name it if you can.
Kel, the fabulous singer I've worked with for years in the context of a band. We sat on the back porch during Cruiseydyke's birthday bash yesterday and played and bunch of tunes, just me on an acoustic and her belting it out vocally. We communicate really well and lately we've been mucking about playing different takes on the standard songs just for fun. It never comes out the same way twice but more often than not we end up with a great version. Try Alanis Morissette's You Oughta Know as a tango. It's great.

5. The Mirror: See something good about yourself and name it.
I make a kick-arse pasta salad. No two that I make are ever the same. It's usually an on-the-fly surprise chef job - those are actually the best. Yesterday's barbecue concoction featured leftover bacon and garlic, with the last of the capsicum and hard boiled eggs. Simple stuff. And it kicked arse.

6. The Make-Believe: Name something you wish for.
The end of this week to roll on, so that I can have two weeks of holidays from teaching. It's been a long term and I'll be glad for the break.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Thought I'd something more to say

And so Pigs on the Wing: A Week of Pink Floyd comes to a close. Here's a pretty appropriate sketch from Syd Barrett to commemorate the occasion.

Happy Birthday Cruiseydyke!

The sun is the same in a relative way but you're older,
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

Every Day, every hour, every second, we're getting older. Getting closer to the day we become worm food. But we have one day that we celebrate an entire year's worth of ageing. Some people dread it. They don't want to get older, they want time to slow or stop entirely. Some peope couldn't give a shit - it's just another day, after all. Some people look forward to it as a damn good excuse to party.

Cruiseydyke has been planning this thing for weeks, it seems. There's somewhere in the region of fourty people supposedly landing on our doorstep for a BBQ this afternoon. But that's party number two. Party number one started at the pub last night and continued into the extremely wee hours of this morning.

A prehistoric form of Cruiseydyke appeared in the hallway this morning, half-slithering, half-crawling her way to the toilet. She squints up at me, obviously suffering a prehistoric fear of the light that may burn her eyes in this delicate period of evolution. Then, with a startling clarity of speech given the situation and location, Cruiseydyke announced to me that

Dude, it's not funny. I don't think I have the capacity to be vertical right now.

I mean, I know I've got legs but,... shit.

So, Happy Birthday to Cruiseydyke, the OCD freak who cannot stand anything being on the floor, who if she touches one pocket on her jeans, she has to touch them all to complete the pattern.

Happy Birthday to the self-confessed kissing slut. She'll kiss almost anybody when she's drunk, including me.

Happy Birthday to Cruiseydyke, rider of shopping trolleys. To the girl who has declared on several occasions that she will no longer indulge in a mid-week binge. Or that she's never drinking again. Or that shopping trolleys are bad for you.

Happy Birthday to a girl whose favourite hung over position is half-asleep on a goon bag on the landing.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

How did it start?

I have had a love affair with Pink Floyd since the glory days of early high school. I remember clearly being introduced to the music, I just cannot remember why at all.

I was fifteen. It was part of an English class. Our teacher started showing a few of us the movie of The Wall as a time filler at the end of class. I stayed back into lunch time to continue watching it. I was in. The animations, the music, the ideas – I was captivated. I had no idea of how it all fit together but it did not matter. It took me another year to get to watching the film stoned, and it was only then that it all clicked for me.

I think that we were shown this film in class primarily because it was music that this teacher loved as well – and it seems easier to justify showing a film to a class than to play a CD.

She was an awesome teacher. One of those teachers that you remember all your life. She took over from another teacher mid-term. Our claim as a class was that we were the ones that had pushed this last teacher out of the system. We were little shits and knew it, loved it. We took pride in our supposed reputation as teacher breakers. It’s funny to look at those days from the other side of the divide now, where there’s staff room bitching and general taking the piss out of the main perpetrators of classroom idiocy.

Anyway, this woman walks in aware that our class is a handful and she immediately earns my respect. Why? She didn’t pose. She didn’t walk in and put a wall of superiority between her and all of us. She didn’t let us know who was boss with force. She walked in, sat up on a desk with her feet on a chair, totally at home and relaxed. And then she told us about herself.

She introduced herself using her first name as well as her last. The school system required us to use the last name and the appropriate title for an adult, often without the knowledge of that person’s first name. Think about it – this person knows your full name, but you only get to know half of theirs? It effectively builds a wall between the student and teacher. This woman busted through and gave us the info. She told us where she’d worked before, that she’d been travelling and where. She gave us information that let us know she was real, not just this authorative figure who dictated how we should behave and what we should be doing with our spare time. Then she set our first homework. She said she wanted to get to know us as well, and gave us an own choice project. It still fit the curriculum, but we could pick anything we wanted to write about. Own choice? In the system we were in? This woman was gold.

I try to use elements of this in the way I teach. Especially at the boys boarding school. They get introduced to me first lesson as Miss B by the admin assistant – but as soon as the door shuts I tell them the deal.

“Righto. Call me Vic or VB. Unless you’re in front of the principal.” I get called VB by the other staff all the time, and for one I don’t think the students should know this and not be allowed to do it themselves. First name basis just works better for me in a one-on-one teaching situation. I think it allows a more relaxed and comfortable environment. Another reason? I hate, being called Miss. Always have. There’s one person that calls me Miss Vic, and that’s for a funny reason involving a lot of drinking, which I will write about another day. Miss, to me as a word implies a young girly gender identity that I just do not fit.

This works, mostly. I used to struggle with teaching a lot. I had a few kids who would just not do the work. I tried to power-dress. I was for mal about it. I had a pedestal. It just did not work. Interestingly, immediately that the monster relationship break-up occurred, I relaxed teaching and became more friendly. I’ve had some real successes since then.

On that note, I had a big night out last weekend and there was an ex-student out at the same venue. In a two traffic-light town that now sports a newsworthy FOUR ESCALATORS!! it is not unusual to come across a lot of people you know in a drinking session. But this student comes up to me and says thankyou.

”Thankyou so much for teaching me. I play all the time. I love it.”

Fourty plus students currently, and I’m approaching the typical end of term three burn-out that occurs. Just for a while though, the one statement has made it all easier.

Friday, September 21, 2007

The guitar solo from "Money"

I always thought it would work well with a choir of kazoos. But this will do instead.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Half-Nekkid Thursday: Pink Floyd Week edition


So there's a cult thing that's been floating around for years now about Dark Side of the Moon and the film classic The Wizard of Oz. If you play your album (on repeat) of Dark Side from the point where the lion roars on Wizard of Oz a bucketload of coincidences occur. Now, the Dark Side of The Rainbow theory is that the album was actually constructed around the movie. The band deny it, and I think it's a load of bullshit... but an interesting one. It's like reading your stars. Once you actually look for the coincidences you'll see them, and your mind erases all the crap in between.

You can find a definitive list of the Dark Side of the Rainbow events here, but here's a teaser of a few of my favourites:

# - the voice says "And I am not frightened of dying ..." as the tornado heads towards a house.

# - The song playing during the entire tornado scene and while the house is up in the air is The Great Gig in the Sky.

# - Glinda the Good Witch appears at the line "Don't give me that do-goody-good bullshit"

There's bucketloads of other coincidences, and the idea has sparked a explorations into what other movie/album combinations there may be. I've come up with a few of my own. They probably won't work, but it would be cool.

The Sound of Music with August and Everything After, Counting Crows
The Lion King with I'm Not Dead, Pink
Shawshank Redemption with August and Everything After, Counting Crows
Braveheart with Grace, Jeff Buckley
Dude, Where's My Car with American Idiot, Green Day
The Wedding Singer with Jagged Little Pill, Alanis Morrisette
Blazing Saddles with Use Your Illusion II, Guns 'n' Roses
Top Gun with Ten, Pearl Jam
Dirty Dancing with Nevermind, Nirvana
Reality Bites with Mellon Collie and the Infinte Sadness, Smashing Pumpkins

So here's the question of the day:
What album and movie combination would YOU try out for a synchronicity experiment?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

How to make a Beach Pig (with wings)

1 Cruiseydyke*
1 Gayman*
1 Vic*
1 generous portion of beach
Good weather

[* note: These ingredients are available in a prepackaged form marketed under the title "The House That Gay Built"]

Preheat weather to a medium-hot 28 degrees celcius.
Remove Cruiseydyke, Gayman and Vic from The House That Gay Built packaging. Marinate them in a car with no radio for two and a half hours. At this point add them to the generous portion of beach. Combine all ingredients and mix well.
Allow to bake for a while, and then cool in the ocean.

Pigs, Philosophy and People.

If you didn't care
What happened to me
And I didn't care
For you
We would zig-zag our way through the boredom and pain
Occasionally glancing up through the rain
Wondering which of the buggers to blame
And watching for pigs on the wing

Pigs on the Wing (part 1). Some say that this is a love song Roger Waters wrote for his wife. Somebody else at forum I was reading claims that zig-zag our way through the boredom and pain is alluding to marijuana and the apathetic lifestyle. It could also be a sentiment against powerful political figures - pigs. A revolution song of sorts. Could the entire album be loosely based on Goerge Orwell's Animal Farm?Some say that the pig on the wing is a reference to enemy fighter pilots, with zig-zagging being a reference to dogfighting. Interestingly, this can also be related to the acronym POW. Does it fit for Pigs On the Wing?

Another theory is that Roger Waters was referencing the philosopher Schopenhauer with the line zig-zag our way through the boredom and pain. Schopenhauer looked at what makes man less than reasonable, and believed that the human condition is like a pendulum in which there is this constant swinging between pain and boredom. This comes from his concept of The Will - the forces driving man, to remain alive and to reproduce, a drive intertwined with desire - being the inner content and driving force of the world. He believed that desire was prior to thought, and that existence was ultimately futile since it can be fundamentally characterized by a want of satisfaction that can never be attained. This want is otherwise known as happiness. Waters may have thought that there was an answer to the pendulum of boredom and pain. The answer he gave, if indeed this theory is true? People; as referenced in the lyrics "If you didn't care what happened to me,
and I didn't care for you." It is essential to care for one another, otherwise we would be ruthless or indifferent Animals, which happens to be the title of the album this particular lyric is from.

What I find fascinating in any written material – in fact any artistic material at all - is the myriad of ways it can be interpreted and argued. I simultaneously loved and hated high school English classes for this reason. It’s engrossing to find so many meanings behind a piece but sometimes I feel it is utterly pointless. I don’t really care what Roger Waters felt in writing these lyrics. Don’t get me wrong – the interpretations have opened up a whole new world of thought for me – but what I really care about is how I relate to the words. How I attach my own meaning to them, bringing them to life for my own reasons.

So in one way I relate these lyrics to my experience in Blogville. This world where I started out zig-zagging my way through my own boredom, and my pain. Living alone and sick of hearing my own post break-up thoughts. I came into Blogville to kill time and shout at the world. I had my rain, my insecurities, my blame. And I had my depression-induced fears, my pigs on the wing. But instead of shouting into the dark nothingness of bits and bytes, of zeros and ones and billions of pieces of meaningless information, I found people. Real people. People like Nina, Sinclair and The Captain who I’ve bonded with primarily through explorations of my sexuality, a bond which has led the way for these friendships to form on other levels as well. People like Terroni, amazingly positive and caring, not to mention witty and hilarious when the opportunity arises. Dive, the man responsible for my mantra –
”You are Vic.
You are the Groover”

as well being my partner in crime in such projects as this one – Pink Floyd week – and the Monday Melee lyrics editions. Blogville crosses from virtuality into the physical reality with Kate, who through the convenience of being not only on the same continent, but in the same state, I have had the privilege of meeting, and she has consequently become a major part of my life.

I have found a wealth of knowledge, hearts, emotions. Real people. Words that I will hold onto forever. And people who care what happens to each other. And I care for them too. I no longer zig-zag my way through the boredom and pain.

You know that I care
what happens to you
And I know that you care
For me too
So I don’t feel alone, or the weight of the stone
Now that I’ve found somewhere safe to bury my bone
And any fool knows a dog needs a home
A shelter from pigs on the wing

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Monday Melee: Pink Floyd lyrics version

This week heralds yet another take on the Monday Melee. Since it is the beginning of Pink Floyd week this version of the Monday Melee will be a lyrical one, and of course only containing lyrics from the aforementioned band.

1. The Misanthropic: Name something you absolutely hate.
There's a silence surrounding me
I can't seem to think straight
I'll sit in the corner
No one can bother me
I think I should speak now
Why won't you talk to me
I can't seem to speak now
You never talk to me
My words won't come out right
What are you thinking
I feel like I'm drowning
What are you feeling
I'm feeling weak now
Why won't you talk to me
But I can't show my weakness
You never talk to me
I sometimes wonder
What are you thinking
Where do we go from here

Keep Talking – The Division Bell

2. The Meretricious: Expose something or someone that’s phony, fraudulent or bogus.
Oh mother tell me more
Why'd you have to leave me there
hanging in my infant air – waiting

Matilda Mother – Piper at the Gates of Dawn

3. The Malcontent: Name something you’re unhappy with.
Are there any queers in the theatre tonight?
Get 'em up against the wall.

In The Flesh – The Wall

4. The Meritorious: Give someone credit and name it if you can.
Into the distance, a ribbon of black
Stretched to the point of no turning back
A Flight of fancy on a wind swept field
Standing alone my senses reeled
A Fatal Attraction holding me fast
How can I escape this irresistible grasp?

Learning to Fly – A Momentary Lapse of Reason

5. The Mirror: See something good about yourself and name it.
And if you don't mind
I'll spend my time
Here by the fire side
In the warm light of her eyes.

Biding my Time – relics

6. The Make-Believe: Name something you wish for.
Will some woman in this desert land,
Make me feel like a real man?
Take this rock and roll refugee.
Ooo Babe, set me free.
Ooooo I need a dirty woman.
Ooooo I need a dirty girl.

Young Lust – The Wall

Pigs On the Wing: A Week of Pink Floyd commences today!

It is time now for Pigs On the Wing: A Week of Pink Floyd to commence. Starting today, and continuing for the entire week through to Sunday 23rd, every post will relate in some way or another ot Pink Floyd.

If you want to join in, steal the logo and display it somewhere on your page. Leave a comment for me so that I know to look and read your take on the idea.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Quote of the Day

Gayman: Well I wasn't going to waste my tadpoles on her.

And yes, they were actual tadpoles.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Quote of the Day

A man, about seventy, came up to the counter of the fruit shop I work in holding two roma tomatoes. Nothing special. Until he says:

I'll have those two little dudes, thanks.

So I charge him for them and he says:

Cool. Seeya.

Dudes. And Cool.The words seemed completely natural for him - it wasn't in the vein of an old guy trying to get with the times, they were just a part of his natural speech. It made me think of the days where my sister and I corrected our mother all the time on how to say cool. She just couldn't get it to sound natural. It still doesn't sound natural coming from her, fifteen years after the event.

I guess some people progress more easily than others.

To Old Mate with the progressive speech:
Cheers mate, you made my day.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Happy Birthday

to a woman who I've had the priveledge of meeting through this bizarre little bogville world.

to a woman who can reduce me to laughter on the floor while mid-rant.

to a woman whose opinions and education I respect in the highest degree.

to a woman who has challenged my idea of gender identity and forced me to prove myself.

to a woman who has inspired me to step out of my comfort zone once again and confront the jewellery shop fear.

to an incredibly gorgeous woman, in many ways.

to a woman I feel the earth for.

Happy Brithday Kate. xox

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Monday Melee

Today's Monday Melee - brainchild of fracas - comes in the aftermath of the APEC Australia 2007 Business Summit. After having it shoved in my face for the past week, I might as well write about it.

1. The Misanthropic: Name something you absolutely hate.
"Our commitment to Iraq remains," pledged Howard, one of Bush's few remaining staunch war allies. "This is not the time for any proposals of a scaling down of Australian forces."

2. The Meretricious: Expose something or someone that’s phony, fraudulent or bogus.
"Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for your introduction. Thank you for being such a fine host for the OPEC summit." --George W. Bush, addressing Australian Prime Minister John Howard at the APEC Summit, Sept. 7, 2007

3. The Malcontent: Name something you’re unhappy with.
"As John Howard accurately noted when he went to thank the Austrian troops there last year..." --George W. Bush, referring to Australian troops as "Austrian troops," APEC Business Summit, Sept. 7, 2007

4. The Meritorious: Give someone credit and name it if you can.
"The Chaser's bogus motorcade of two black vans, a hire car, two very unofficial looking motorcycles and jogging security heavies remained undetected until Morrow and Licciardello got out of their car outside Mr Bush's hotel, where police grabbed them."

"The Government has made the point time and time again that we've got the most serious, the biggest security operation in Australia's history. We've got 21 world leaders arriving in the city at the one time and it needs to be taken seriously." - New South Wales Police Minister David Campbell.

Ahem. This is Australia. Any opportunity to take the piss out of something and we will.

5. The Mirror: See something good about yourself and name it.
I'm laughing at the circus that has been going on in this country this past week.

6. The Make-Believe: Name something you wish for.
"Firstly the need for a long-term aspirational global emissions reduction goal, and that is enshrined in the Sydney Declaration," Mr Howard said.

"Secondly the need for all nations, no matter what their stage of development, to contribute according to their own capacities and their own circumstances to reducing greenhouse gases."

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Blast from the past

My sister has been digging through some old things, and in the process, she came across a piece I wrote in highschool, scanned it and sent it to me. I don’t even know if I still had a copy of it, so it’s a blast from the past.

Looking down on modern life
and the corporate boil

On a mountain, water boils at a lower temperature. This is because there isn’t as much air pressure. Highschool Physics. Easy. Apparently we walk around carrying a tonne on our shoulders all the time. Just from the air. All this takes on a new relevance when I look down.

Have you ever stood on top of a building and looked over the edge? Have you ever looked at the people below? All you see is the top of a head and a pair of shoulders for each person. They all carry around their own sections of air. It’s numbing – every time you stand up, you’re lifting a tonne! And people have been doing it since people existed. Unless the air has suddenly gotten more dense – and I don’t think it has – nothing about the weight we carry has changed.

Boiling point: the point where water turns to steam because it can’t handle being hot any more. It makes sense; the higher up you get, the easier it is to lose tolerance of the conditions you are surrounded by. Logic. Think about it; you work hard, you stress, you rise a few floors in your building. You’re carrying less air on your shoulders but more of everything else and you lose it. You get agitated and bits of you start to evaporate. Your personality turns to steam and you become a corporate cup of coffee; a tasty wake-up that lasts for less than five minutes, but it might - and only by accident - leave a lasting mark on the table. A Ring Of Existence.

The Stone Age
You lived. You died. At the beginning of human time, the air was the same and you carried it on your shoulders, as always and ever. Your existence was nothing remarkable. But then business and space necessity developed the high rise – a space where you work hard for that reward, to rise a few floors so that you have the privilege of carrying less air around on your shoulders.

You forget. Does stress weigh anything? No. You can sit there and say “I stress about more than the people below me”. But you carry less air on your shoulders than they do. Every time you think that stress is a heavy weight, go to the top of that building and look down.

It might just keep you from boiling away to nothing.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Can't Be Stuffed Day

This is all you get today. Deal with it. It's Can't Be Stuffed Day in the world of Vic.

Therefore, I have spent all day being a fat lazy slob and it's not changing in a hurry.

Just go and be industrustrious or something. Without me.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

This old chart...

I’ve been going through my folders of charts. For me a chart for a bass or guitar playing gig in a band is a single sheet of paper, with the chords and general structure jotted out on it. All the rest – riffs, tempo, general style – it’s all from memory. Or made up as we go along.

Mostly they end up memorised and put aside. I’ve got an archive of charts that have been learned and knocked off the song list, or that have been learnt for a special occasion never to be played again. I’ve got a heap of duplicates in there also, where I’ve trusted myself to know the chart before a gig and left it behind – only to have a last minute Crap… How does it go? moment and a hastily copied chart from someone else. I got out of that habit in the last band, too. The guitarist and I worked well enough together for him to just turn and show me where he was going if I was lost.

But back to organising the charts. The only projects on the go at the moment are acoustic duos, which demand mostly a different repertoire to the disco/funk/blues cover bands I’ve been in recently. So I decided to consolidate all the charts I’m not using into one folder, obsessively arranged into alphabetical order. The only ones I’m keeping out are the ones currently in use.

In going through these handwritten pieces of paper I’ve come across so many memories, so many laughs and moments to treasure.

One example is Burt Bacharach’s The Look of Love. Learnt one-off for a bridal waltz. Nothing special, but the wedding itself was of two cousins. The entire do was packed out with family and they all looked the same. Lovely people, but it was all a little creepy.

Another one I came across was Sophie Ellis Bextor’s Murder on the Dancefloor. This actually has a bassline that I really enjoy playing and there’s not too much wrong with the song. But the chart itself – it was written out at a time where I had to copy a whole heap of charts from the guitarist before a rehearsal. He already had them, so all I had to do was write my own copies, instead of work out my own at home. Since there was a heap, the singer decided to help me. Here’s where it truly is a funny chart to see. Take someone who has no idea of the meaning of all these symbols and get them to produce a copy of them. See, to a guitarist a letter, followed by a hash symbol, followed by a triangle and a number in superscript means one thing as a whole. A group of four notes with a specific meaning. To a singer, well… That’s four separate things to be made pretty. It’s a really cute chart, but not the most coherent you’ll see.

There’s a few charts for a fun cheesy covers band from years ago. It raised it’s head once for a muso’s club showcase and then disappeared entirely. Hell it was fun. We had acoustic bass, twelve string guitar, two singers, a squeezebox and a guy playing the spoons. And we played AC/DC’s You Shook Me All Night Long, with the guitar solo on the accordion. It was tongue in cheek at it’s best, and we called ourselves Slippery Kitty. It was fine until it became apparent that the muso’s club publicity guy had misheard our name. We were advertised as Slippery Titties.

Then we have some charts that I have memorised to the point that I know them so instintively I could fall asleep playing them. In fact I have, at one horror gig where I'd worked long hours all week and then knocked into a few beers. I sat on a speaker and kept on waking up midway through the songs.

Another autopilot chart is Dancing in the Street. The entire verse can be played without using the left hand, so I go nuts. It's my muck about song. I can skull a beer during the first verse while I'm using my right hand to keep playing. Then I can light a cigarette in the next verse...

There's always going to be pieces of paper holding these memories for me. I write new ones all the time. Some you just laugh at, some make you smile. Some make you think - hell, that's right. What a crap gig! - but they all hold something.

Sometimes it's the little stuff you hold on to.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007


It happens every time. I see all the hype, the advertising bullshit and controversial lead-up to Australian Idol and I think... What a crock. Not watching it this year. It's commercialised crap.

Take the judges. Not that I expect they perform a real function - they are just figureheads to buff out the program content. To make it appear legitimate, which underneath it all I don't think it is.

Who do we have on the panel? Let's see...

Judge #1 - Mark Holden, who apparently "enjoyed massive popularity with monster hits I Wanna Make You My Lady, Last Romance and Never Gonna Fall In Love Again", but appears to enjoy more notoriety as the man who declares a "TOUCHDOWN!" performance. It even has an action associated with it.
Judge #2 - Marcia Hines. The nurturer. This woman actually gives advice that is worthwhile - on occasion. But in the same show, any respect she gains from exhibiting this side is negated by the use of "You go, girlfriend" and the usual feigned indignance at the comments from the other judges.
Judge #3 - Kyle Sandilands has been described as a poor man's Howard Stern. He's a radio shock jock who has been cast as the asshole judge. The man who tears everyone down and leers at the women. I have to hand it to him - he plays the role of asshole well. I find myself feeling intense dislike toward him without a hint of respect.
Judge #4 - Ian 'Dicko' Dickson. This is an interesting one. This man played the asshole judge before, left the series for another network entirely and appears to have fallen flat on his arse at that. So now he's back.

Also, any show that has a voting poll via SMS just gives me the shits. Who does most of the voting? Kids who don't know any better. And what does that mean? Musically they don't really know any better either. It's all dreamy cute guys and whoever sang the song that is currently popular.

Really, I should be boycotting the show entirely - except I have two weaknesses:
Weakness #1 - The cover version with a difference. Occasionally - rarely, though - a really inventive version of a popular song will crop up. I am a sucker to hear a clever version of anything.
Weakness #2 - The loungeroom judging panel. Don't we all just turn into experts in our own loungeroom? From the safety of being on the recieving end of a one-way transmission we can tear those average performers apart. Suddenly we become experts on movement, intonation, song choice and costume. And I love it.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Getting the Groover back

It is time to find the Groover that has gone AWOL. That in control, happy, outgoing self that I allowed to get buried under some crap and bad health. So my mission for the next however long it takes is to do at least one thing that is different, special for me and/or bettering myself every day.

Today it is to bring out the drumsticks for some rudiments. When I first started playing I did daily rudiments exercises. I would sit at the coffee table of a morning with a steaming mug of coffee, a metronome, a pair of sticks and a practice pad. But that was at a time where I lived alone, didn't have to be at work at 6am and had no phone or internet connection. In short, life hadn't got in the way.

A little education for those who don't know what I'm on about:

Rudiments: A set of technical exercises covering the basic patterns and sticking techniques for drumming, especially snare drumming.

Practice pad: A rubber pad that imitates the natural rebound of a stick from a drum head.

Metronome: A device to set a constant unwavering tempo, which you can adjust higher or lower. I am a bizarre type who actually loves working with one of these. I love setting it higher and higher, seeing how far I can push myself.

Anyway, I got hold of a bunch of new sticks lately. Normally I use 7A sticks - they're lightweight, thin and easy to control, which is good because I've fallen out of the habit of practising. They're easy to fake with, basically. I saw these sticks on the cheap and had to have them - compared to my normal faking choice these sticks are like tree trunks.

What the hell does all that mean? Is this renewed practice bug because I've got prettier sticks and I want to use them? No. Well... I did buy them because I thought they were amazing, and now I have them I feel I should justify their purchase... But pulling them out for the first time highligted how badly I've let my technique slip into the realm of faking it. The tree trunks are way heavier, putting a lot more strain on my wrists. They highlight problems in my grip because the buggers bounce all over the place, not just straight up and down. Not only do I not have control over bounce direction but I don't have multiple bounce control - they're harder to lift and stop from hitting the pad more than once.

So today holds a big session of Vic, the practice pad, the metronome and the tree trunks. It will be rewarding.

The Monday Melee: Melee at the Movies

Today marks another spin on the standard Monday Melee, also dreamed up by fracas. It is the movie quote version this week, and I've been dreading it since the day it was announced.

1. The Misanthropic: Name something you absolutely hate.
"What does that have to do with your ability to place a comma in its proper place or put a period at the end of a sentence, hmmm?"
Professor Phipps, Higher Learning

2. The Meretricious: Expose something or someone that’s phony, fraudulent or bogus.
"I thought the purpose of education was to learn to think for yourself."
John Keating, Dead Poets Society

3. The Malcontent: Name something you’re unhappy with.
"One night there was something in my pants, like blood. My mom said, oh, hell, your period. This is where all the trouble starts. She was right."
Elizabeth, Prozac Nation

4. The Meritorious: Give someone credit and name it if you can.
"She has a secret lover? Who?"
Casanova, Casanova

5. The Mirror: See something good about yourself and name it.
"Well, I play a guitar and make funny noises with my mouth."
Tex Malinson, Arizona Days

6. The Make-Believe: Name something you wish for.
"Hug hug, kiss kiss, hug hug, big kiss, little hug, kiss kiss, little kiss."
Nacho, Nacho Libre

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Guess who!

Dearest Dive, my guitar weilding friend from across the world, who brightens my days with constant affirmations of "You are the Groover" and who I am delighted to find any opportunity to tease...

It appears that you are extremely interested in the latest Old Dead Guy series being brought to life by the fantastically gorgeous and talented Kate Isis.

Well, I have a secret.

Thunderbolt is supposedly buried in a town near mine. This whole area is wrapped in history with his name. Anyway, this town that is a short drive away from my own sports a monument to the local bushranger proudly, and in typical local council style, next to a storm drain.

I got a phone call yesterday telling me that it was a local football (none of this soccer crap - real footy here) grand final in Thunderbolt town. Nothing special? Well it seems the Old Guy got dressed for the occasion...

Just thought you might be interested.

With much love and hugs,

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Quote of the Day

Not long ago I taught the housemate CruiseyDyke how to play Backgammon. It's my number one favourite board game, which for an indecisive Libran such as myself, naming an outright favourite is a huge call. I've played the it for most of my life. Through the years I've taught virtually every person I've lived with to play this game. It's easy to learn and a relatively quick game, but it can be pretty strategic if you want to play nasty.

So we sit down to the board to kill osme time tonight and CruiseyDyke wins the first game. And then she has an amazing string of dice rolls that lead her to be a certain winner of the second game.

And the Quote of the day:
Oh my God! I beat Vic twice? That's a shirt over the head moment!!!