Sunday, June 28

they're back!

The murderous impulses are back. Several times I caught myself, while walking along the street, muttering four-letter courses, mostly under my breath. I discovered a new understanding of people who run amok with guns.

The doctors tell me to try and make sense of the sudden spike in rage levels. Listing the reasons might help:

  1. I had dropped the blissage levels down to a quarter of a pill every two days. Everyone else seemed to giving things up, so I thought I would join in. Stupid stupid idea.

  2. The computer system at work decided to lose three weeks' worth of files. And to make things worse, the useless admin people kept saying they were working on recovering my files, but that was just code for "we're doing nothing about it - eventually you'll give up hope and just do the work all over again".

  3. I'm feeling unsettled because I have to leave my dog in the care of other people for a week, none of whom is as trustworthy as me. And it's all because I have to go away to somewhere sunny, to keep the partner happy. If it was up to me, I would stay home and turn the heating up. But no, we have to join the throngs of people in a hotel.

  4. A tooth nerve is dying, slowly and increasingly painfully. I rang the dentist, but it seems he's already away on holiday, for a month! So I had to see the partner's dentist, a guy with the appearance and demeanour of a Japanese POW guard. I was so appalled by his manner that I asked him to do a different tooth, a relatively healthy one that just needed a wee filling. The guy's a butcher! He drilled away ferociously for what seemed like 20 minutes, then told me proudly that he'd taken away two thirds of the tooth. It made me think - dentists pass one set of exams at age 20, and it gives them the right to do what they like to people for a lifetime. As long the guy never fiddles with the female patients' undies, nobody checks!

Unless I can find a dentist to drill the nerves out in the next few days, I'm going to be holidaying on painkillers and/or spending half the time with a resort dentist. Nothing good ever comes from stepping outside your nice comfortable blissful home life.

Saturday, June 20

slap on back

This is a video of the discussion Albert recently went to see. It's the Aussie writer Christos Tsiolkas, reading from and talking about his latest book The Slap, which Albert enjoyed immensely but he reckons it might not work so well outside Australia. A bit like when you take a bottle of Ouzo home after a Greek holiday, to find it tastes rank in a cold climate.

I haven't had a chance to view the video yet, to see if there are any audience reaction shots of Albert himself. He'd be easy to spot - the only person in the auditorium not sitting down. Shaggers back.

Thursday, June 18

on deifheidism and new work methods

Hotboy's flatheid problem is akin to the deifheid problem here in New South Caledonia.

Of all the indigenes of Jockoland I knew, I can't recall a single deifheid, yet almost everyone here is a deifheid. Does that mean there were no deifheids over there? More likely, I was smart enough when younger not to befriend anyone who couldn't listen.

Yesterday at work, things went well. A few students dribbled in over the course of the morning, and got on with their work with little intervention from me. So I was able to spend the time on the PC exploring some of the new skills I want to be able to cover next semester.

The afternoon class went even better - no students turned up. And the same thing happened at the evening class. Does that mean I didn't work? No. Does it mean I was all alone? No. Thanks to the internet, I was in touch with say about 30 students, reviewing their emailed work, fielding their questions, providing feedback, negotiating late submissions etc.

It was a cold rainy day, but because students were attending virtually, they were able to do it from home or from the bus, or for all I know from the pub. And I was able to listen to the pod, and occasionally lie down on the classroom floor for some yoga. The arrangement suits everyone. What a great way to work!

Of course, if the managers had walked in they would have complained, but I had my arguments marshalled and ready. And I'm upfront about my methods when I record each student's attendance as "10 minutes email" or "5 minutes phone" or "personal contact". If you document everything, you're covered.

Oh dear, that last bit sounds a bit blackshirt.

Talking about people interested only in covering their own asses, I'm relieved that Albert's no longer having to rely on his managers for security, now thatthe psychostalker has been banged up for life.

Tuesday, June 16


I've been entertained by recent posts by my unfortunate blog pals, who have to lead more interesting lives than mine. After work on Friday I had to go for cocktails (in my case fruit juice) to the flat of some deifheids. On the plus side:

  • they're actually hardly deif at all

  • there were only a handful of other people there

  • only one of the guests was a profound deifheid

  • there were lots of interesting pictures to look at on the walls

  • it was all over within a couple of hours, so I still had the rest of the evening to play with the ipod on the 3-bus trip home, while the partner went to the theatre.

deifheids (pronounced deef-heeds) - people who are unable to listen to anyone else, because they're too busy talking about themselves. [from the Scots deif=deaf, heid=head]

Thursday, June 11

delusions of fitness

What a fantastic Thursday morning! After charging up on green tea and porridge, I did the one-hour dog bushwalk in record time. On the way back, I stopped to buy a 4-kilogram pumpkin, and picked up a chair by the side of the road. One of these adjustable gas-filled kneeling chairs, they cost about $500 new. I carried it home. At home I got the scales out, and worked out I had carried 14 kilograms for about half a mile, without doing my back in at all!

So since I was warmed-up, it seemed like a smart time to try running again, so I put on the old jogging shoes and went out. There was probably only 5 minutes of actual running in it, but that's more than I've run in the last ten years. I really felt the difference between walking and running - I can walk fast for hours on end, but the wee bit of jogging left me puffed.

But no joggers knee at the end of it!

Finally, I went to the gym in the back room. I've been doing regular gentle weights for weeks now. Of course it's hard to resist the temptation to pile on the bigger weights and end up tearing or spraining something, but the cautious build-up has paid off. I was able to do 3 sets of everything:
  • First set on silly easy settings.
  • Second set near my various injury thresholds (I keep a log).
  • And the third set just above my previous limit.
And there were no twanging or ripping sounds at all, and no pain. Oh the joy of not hurting! And it's still not even lunchtime.

I must ask hotters if he tends to feel cold too, about half an hour after a jog, or if it's just me. As you'd expect, it's balanced up by a rush of blood to the, well to the area formerly known as the fungal zone.

I'm going for a lie-down with a hot water bottle and some porn, and I may be quite some time. And to think that most people have to work today!

Wednesday, June 10


What are those Brits doing? Just at the point when they need to get organised for the pig epidemic, they're shredding their government. Dearie me! Is this really the time to be going all honourable over petty cash?

Here in New South Caledonia, politicians have no need to fiddle their expenses, since they're already doing nicely on fat salaries and back-handers from developers. And even when they get caught out fiddling something or diddling their secretary, no politician would ever dream of resigning.

And there's never any pretence that our politicians have any competence. If circumstances ever force them to do actually something, they just copy whatever Britain did 10 years before. So far this has worked well, letting Britain work the bugs out of each new initiative, before we eventually copy whatever works.

Unfortunately that won't work with the pig flu: it's summer in Britain, so they only have a few hundred cases as yet, whereas it's the flu season down here and we're awash with it. At last, something we can beat Britain at.

Friday, June 5

caledonian balance

The brother's boy is playing for Old North Caledonia in the Rugby Junior World Cup, being held in Japan. They narrowly lost the opening match against Samoa. I watched it live over the web. The Samoan team are living proof that you can be a fat basturn at the same time as a fit one.

New South Caledonia are in the tournament too, but in a different group. If they both do well, both Caledonias could end up meeting in the quarters or semis, in a moment of extreme balance that would test my loyalty, never my strong point.

Tuesday, June 2

dog art

I have been persuaded to start giving away all my possessions. To begin with I have donated a picture of the dog to the Art Gallery of New South Caledonia.

I was off work yesterday with a mega-cold. What a waste of a sickie! But it's my first cold since I went on the bliss pill programme, and I've quite enjoyed observing myself having the cold. It's what we in the pharmaceutical bliss community call detachment.

Another benefit of being off work sick is I've managed to kick the tea habit completely. Of course that means that on my first day back, I'll overdose on a single cup, and be gibbering. Everything balances up.