Friday, July 30, 2010


This is an announcement of sorts. There are 3 items on the agenda:

1) We have decided to scrap music post Friday, because we discovered that we don't actually have that much stuff to say about music. It is what it is.
2) You should suggest what topics you would like m'colleague and I to discuss.
3) I have a stall at the Auckland Zinefest on August 14th. I made a zine consisting of entries from this blog which is aptly named People and Just People. That, along with a couple of zines Susie made, some other misc zines and of course the main attraction, Subject zine will be available. I don't know if we have any followers that live in Auckland, but if we do, you should come along and say hi. Here is a link to the event.

Now this:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Topic: Fears

#1 - Public Speaking

This semester I have two oral presentations. Every time I think about it I get knots in my stomach. I find it hard because I don't like being the centre focus, all of those eyes on me, I find it completely paralyzing. However, I am not one to want to exacerbate my FEARS, so I volunteered to go first for both presentations. It's not that I want to face my FEAR particularly, it's just that I know that I have to do it so I am brave and I do it. Maybe the word brave seems a bit dramatic, but in the context of my life and my FEARS, it is bravery.

#2 - Social situations

When I go to a social gathering, I experience a large amount of anxiety or FEAR you could say. Often it is quite consuming. It's strange because I know that it goes against all logic but I can't control it. It's almost automatic in a way. I feel like I should write more about this but once again FEAR is holding me back.

#3 - Spiders

This is common and boring enough, but isn't there something so sinister about a daddy long legs, despite the stupid name? This FEAR originated in middle childhood when I was in bed and opened my eyes to find a daddy long legs inches from my face. In hindsight, it could just have been a bit of fluff or something. Anyway, it was enough to start a life-long FEAR.

#4 - Being away from home

I like the feeling of home, which can be several places, and it can even be people. For me, it's my home, my parent's home, my sister's home, family, Sam, and Auckland in general. When I am away from these places, without these people, I usually freak out and, yes, FEAR is often involved.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Susan's babe index

This post was harder than I expected. Turns out I like a lot of pretty boys! Here's my five.

1. Will Sheff. He has this scrawny earnest thing going on, not to mention the fiery beard yet brunette coiffure.

2. Ethan Hawke. Reality Bites. Gattaca. Dead Poet's Society. Before Sunset. In so many of my favourite movies! I love him a lot. He's kinda sexy in that hopeless "change-me" type of way.

3. Alex Kapranos. When I saw Franz Ferdinand play at Falls Festival a few years ago, I was too drunk to remember what precisely went down, but I definitely remember yelling obscenities towards the stage.

4. Gabriel Byrne. He is just really classy and awesome. He plays a German philosopher and teacher in Little Women. I adore his character in that and I will never forget when he tells Jo to "write what you know" instead of her fairy stories. I guess he's not that unconventional, just oldish. Too old for Susans anyway.

5. John Cusack. Guess he's kinda normal looking too, but well. Whatever. He's great. See: High Fidelity, Say Anything (HE IS LIKE THE BEST GUY EVERRR!!!. I suppose those were his best movies. He's actually in some more eighties ones, but just as some sort of background dude.

Also I choose to add a sixth because.. well he was really hot in the eighties and I think he's still mighty attractive.

James Spader. Probably everyone thinks he is sexy after Secretary, but man, how things change..

Not even Zac Efron is exempt from the middle aged paunch.

Monday, July 26, 2010


I thought I would put this here because I'd like to know about the people who read our blog. The idea was inspired by the colour of my love for you. I (and probably Susie) would really appreciate it if you left a comment, and also because I (possibly we) have fears about no one responding, thus diminishing my (our) feelings of self-worth. Feel free to use anonymity if you feel so inclined.

1. Age/sex/location?

2. How did you come across this blog?

3. Are we friends? If no, do you know me at all?

4. Which posts do you like the most?

5. What is the meaning of life?

6. Have you ever been in love?

7. What makes you happy?

8. Recommend us a song?

9. Any other general comments or concerns?

philosophy class

an excerpt from my forthcoming zine!

My philosophy teacher
was nicknamed 'the Doctor'
and class was always
like therapy for me.

We rearranged the chairs
every lesson, to sit
face to face.

That semester I felt
so unlike myself.

A bunch of us
regularly had beers
after class.

I developed a crush
on this mythical man
known by his surname.

He told me he would
just get on trains
and go somewhere.

He questioned
my boring weekends.

I questioned
his baldness.

The one with the bulk bins

Little things make me lose faith in people.
I was at the supermarket by the bulk bins
and eight of the lids had been left open.
I closed them all in a rage
and exclaimed that it is the little things
that make us good people.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I don't want to live a small life

I don't want to live a small life. Open your eyes,
open your hands. I have just come
from the berry fields, the sun

kissing me with its golden mouth all the way
(open your hands) and the wind-winged clouds
following along thinking perhaps I might

feed them, but no I carry these heart-shapes
only to you. Look how many how small
but so sweet and maybe the last gift

I will ever bring to anyone in this
world of hope and risk, so do.
Look at me. Open your life, open your hands.

~Mary Oliver

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


1. Kjartan Sveinsson

2. Mike Kinsella

3. John Darnielle

4. David Tennant

5. I can't think of anyone else, but I think all of Sigur Ros are pretty unconventionally handsome (although Susie would agree that Jonsi looks a bit like Voldy).

babe index

This week's blog post idea thing is top 5 "unconventional" babes (ie people you think are sexy/attractive but aren't widely accepted as such). I know it's a bit lame, but as with most lame things, it is also quite fun. Please play along at home (a phrase which here means "do the same on your own blog") and leave us a link if you do. I might add that this idea was inspired by my chumette Shu Shu, who plays along rather diligently with most of our Wednesday posts.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sunday Morning

Sunday morning, there are street cleaners &
people are walking to get their coffee.
I am waiting for the first bus of the day,
with bleary eyes.
It is cold and people are hugging themselves.
Seven minutes until the 305.
Homeless people are drinking bourbon from cans
and trying to shelter from the rain.
I draw a picture of my hat in my notebook
for no reason.
A rainbow appears; despite everything today is a happy day &
I am cold but everything is nice.


Today I am going to talk about musical beginnings. When I was younger I basically liked the music my older sister liked, which as a child was mainly top 40 and progressed into hip hop and r&b (we call these the dark years, but it's not a racial thing). After this stage was the short-lived crappy rock stage, for example, Linkin Park, Evanescence, and other such unsavoury bands. Then, perhaps I was about 15, I discovered The Strokes, and this opened a lot of doors for me, even if I don't particularly care for them now. An important discovery that led on from this was The Velvet Underground. After that, the floodgates were open. It was hard in high school, because my friends did not have a lot in common with me and used to call my taste in music 'weird'. I was really big into CDs, and used to save every penny to buy them. Music really gave me a lot of joy through high school, because those were tough times. I recently found some of the first mix CDs I made, and I listen to them and remember what it felt like to be a 16 year old. I used to be so open to music and still experimenting. And here I am now, a person of 21 years of age, and I really know what I like and what I don't like. I don't know which is better.

the popular girls

orange monsters snarl,
hair ablaze, leering
                   with zeal.

               behind a lens.

(I obviously finished high school nearly three years ago, but these girls still post thousands of pictures of themselves beaming with giant white teeth, their eyes so completely vacant, still, on facebook. Some of them are nice enough, they are all pleasant I suppose and should I see them in the pub back home they and I will exclaim loudly when we see each other but that's about all it ever has and will be)

This is my photo and poetry post, double time!

Friday, July 16, 2010

the weakest sparrow

Over the past week I have not been able to stop listening to this one song by Pikelet aka Evelyn Morris. I saw her at this Jim Henson tribute concert I went to about a month back. She sang at the very end and then I ran into her in the bathroom. My toilet was lit with only a candle. The video is really awesome and I've kept it open in a tab literally all week (I don't turn my computer off. Does anyone? I just cover up the little breathing light).

Pikelet: Weakest Link from Laura Cashman on Vimeo.

Last night I downloaded *gasp* the Neko Case album Fox Confessor Brings the Blood. And have since been listening to the songs Star Witness and Maybe Sparrow on repeat. I've adored Neko Case since Stacey put two of her songs on a CD for me last year. Stacey has some kind of musical power over me - she was the one who introduced me to Incubus.. and responsible for my two year infatuation with them. I have often thought about whether it's a bad thing that I let people influence me like that but I suppose it just shows that I'm more open to music? But if the next CD contains Katy Perry and Justin Beiber then I'm gonna have to bow out.

Also I realise I have been absent from this blog a bit, and I will do my post about photos soon, but I've been busy reading poetry by Albert Goldbarth, short stories by the Tao Lin crowd (how predictable!) and planning my radio show! [Link to podcasts to come!!] On Bear Parade, read Eat When You Are Sad - the whole thing!! - and a nice Goldbarth poem is The Sciences Sing a Lullaby. Uni starts back next week, so predictably I have started new projects that will distract me from absorbing myself in study. Thank god!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Milky joe

When I was younger I would sit and look through all the photo albums my mother had meticulously put together (in chronological order, with captions). I used to love looking at how things used to be, or how I used to be. When I look at those photos now I feel nothing but happiness. These photographs captured a happy childhood, yet I was a lonely, highly neurotic child. These are the things that family photos never really capture.

I love film camera. Digital cameras are great and all but they just embody modern life; that instant gratification, of wanting everything now now now. I love waiting to get my photos developed, and the fact that you cannot take pictures over again to get them perfect. Because things aren't perfect, and they shouldn't appear to be.

I own 6 cameras, but primarily I use two. One is my standard digital camera and the other is my Holga film camera. I have one ancient, now defunct film camera, one polaroid camera and two barely working film cameras. I like my holga camera because the pictures I take on it have nothing to do with skill and everything to do with luck. I never know how the pictures will turn out, and I like that. I am no photographer, but I do like to take photos. I like to go on mini adventures around the city with my camera. I think I'm just trying to do the beauty of the world justice, in my own daft way.

As for my storage of photos, I am very different from my mum. I have a shoebox full of photos at my parents house, from my teen years mostly, and then there are the rest which are on my computer. Many photos I suppose may be floating around the internet too. Even with my holga film I usually just get it developed straight to CD. We really do live in such a virtual age, physical things are getting more and more sparse. It's a shame, but I am a product of my generation.

I suppose that it's hard for photographs to seem special nowadays, but all photographs are meaningless, and like life, it's the meaning we put into them that counts.


This is the topic for this week. Go.

Monday, July 12, 2010

3 Cats

On my walk today,
I saw 3 cats.
One was black,
and was sleeping in the dirt.
One was brown,
and trotted along the footpath.
One was ginger,
and peered at me from a high perch.
I smiled to myself.

Friday, July 9, 2010


Well it is Friday and I've listened to the new National album so much that I couldn't bear to listen to one more second of it. Therefore I've been exclusively listening to podcasts this week, I know it's not music but it is semi related (but not really). The first podcast I ever listened to was The Ricky Gervais Show, and is quite hilarious. It opened up a whole new podcast-y world for me.

Currently in my iTunes under podcasts I have The Collings and Herrin podcast which I love to listen to whilst getting ready, internetting, or doing stuff around the house. It is basically Andrew Collins and Richard Herring talking for an hour about various things such as news, stories and anything that comes to mind. It is not for everyone, but luckily, it is for me.

Next is Comedy Death-Ray Radio, with Scott Aukerman. Every week he has a special guests (such as Sarah Silverman, Zach Galifianakis, David Cross, Greg Proops, you know that crowd) and usually features someone who is impersonating a well-known person, which often hilarious results. My favourite is Paul. F. Tompkins and his impression of Ice T (and to a lesser degree, the cake boss).

I have David Mitchell's soapbox which is a podcast in video form, and I've only seen one thus far; it's just him complaining about things or talking about a certain subject.

Next is a podcast I am very fond of called Doug Loves Movies. He has his comedian/actor friends as guests and they talk about movies and play movie-related games. Always a good listen, and often makes me look like an idiot on buses because I'm trying to hold back the laughter.

A podcast I just downloaded yesterday is Never Not Funny with Jimmy Pardo. I love Jimmy Pardo, I love his voice, humour and loud American-ness (I speak good England). He has guests which are similar to guests featured in Doug Loves Movies and Comedy Death-Ray Radio. It's amazing that most American comedians are all friends. It also has a video component.

Lastly, is the WTF podcast with Marc Maron, which is another recently downloaded one. It goes for about an hour, and he talks to guests, including Tig Notaro who is amazing.

And that is my podcast round-up. What are your favourite podcasts?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Poetry is what

I think that poetry is a special thing, I always have. Yet defining it can be difficult, especially when we talk about what constitutes poetry. Because what we call poetry now is different to what we used to call it. Think back to Shelley, Keats, Byron and the like, when all poetry was written with strict metre, now what has become of that cruel mistress we call iambic pentameter? Now, we are able to be a lot freer in how we use language and verse, wish I guess is why we are even discussing this. Has poetry become so without boundaries that we cannot even distinguish what is poetry and what isn't? Take this poem by Steve Roggenbuck for example, personally I love this poem and I would define it as poetry, but maybe another person would not?

i have two sunflowers wilting on my bookshelf. that’s it

i have two sunflowers wilting on my bookshelf. that’s it

that’s all. the poem is done, get out

I think that poetry is what we choose to make it, and if a person writes poetry and exclaims that it is poetry, then goddamn it, it is poetry.

"I have nothing to say and I am saying it and that is poetry." - John Cage

Unlike Susie, I wouldn't define myself as I writer, the way I write can often be disorganized and amateur, but I try. If things were different, I would have liked to study English, but things didn't work out that way. I often wish that I had a better command of the English language, and this often affects my poetry writing. After high school I completed a certificate in poetry, and whilst I learnt a lot about structure, rhyme, metre and all the technical stuff, I still lacked the tools to use this knowledge. I suddenly wish I had paid attention in high school English classes.

In reply to Susie's question about why we like the things we like, I could say that, in terms of poetry, there is sometimes a physiological response when I read a poem. When I read the Tao Lin poem that Susie posted, I felt quite melancholic, and that's how I know that I liked it. If a poem gets you to feel something, good or bad, then it's done it's job.

what is poetry

This week's task is a discussion.

I never really thought about what makes a poem before I joined the Voiceworks committee. I've only just started calling myself a writer (and sometimes I still question that!). So in no way do I think that I'm any sort of authority on the subject of poetry, more of an interested party. Stacey and I have been sort of discussing what makes a poem on another of our posts.

So I thought I would pose the question to the general populace.

What makes something poetry?

Trying to write feedback for people's submissions in Voiceworks is kind of hard (and I'm not sure how much I'm allowed to reveal here) because when a poem is bad, you can tell. The worst ones are mostly self indulgent and cliched. But then there are a bunch of them that are just middle ground. Just okay.

Reading Mike Ladd's musing on the subject helped me somewhat, but doesn't settle upon anything concrete. This reminds me of the religious brochures we get delivered to our house. They're those Jehovah's Witness pamphlets that purport to answer all the questions we may worry about during our lifetime - "Is there a god?" and "Life after death?" for example - and the inside columns say things like "comforting facts" and "true story". Religion's biggest advertisements are the comfort and "we-can-answer-all-your-unanswerables" factors. Anyway my point is that maybe we're trying to define the undefinable. M'colleague Stacey and our inner associates would agree that there are questions about life that we aren't able to answer. Perhaps I'm being too grandiose to suggest that poetry lies on a similar level. But perhaps not. As far as I'm concerned (and I hope I don't put off too many readers), the Bible is another work of fiction. That's a topic for another day though.

Going down another path less traveled (oh HA HA), we periodically spoke about the poetry of language in my philosophy classes. It was brought up that language in its is just an attempt to represent things we see in the real world. You know, all that deconstructionism stuff. I am summarising poorly here - see how I'm struggling! The Mike Ladd essay speaks about the general poetry of language, the way we use metaphor to describe things - he even struggles to explain poetry without employing metaphor and poetical forms, and this is a guy that probably makes a living talking about it!

Perhaps there's just a certain je nais se quoi to poetry. That you just know when you read it and you think.. this is it. You connect with it on a level that you can't really explain. Is that good enough?

I'd also be interested to know what some of our readers think. A lot of people shy away from poetry because it intimidates them. Perhaps because they're not really sure what makes poetry good. Maybe some people don't think in poetical terms? But what are poetical terms.. Lyrical, clever, funny, touching, pretty, annoying, something you can't get out of your head for days? Just ideas or lines..

Two of my favourite living poets are Tao Lin (read a poem written by a bear) and Josephine Rowe - I really want her book How a moth becomes a boat.

Sometimes you just have to think: what's so great about this? And perhaps this brings up the broader debate about why we like the things we like? Is there any reason at all? There's only so far we can come up with concrete reasons for stuff! Please help me out, I'm "not waving, but drowning".

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Ginger Cookie Recipe


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup margarine, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the margarine and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then stir in the water and molasses. Gradually stir the sifted ingredients into the molasses mixture. Shape dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and flatten slightly.
  3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Seriously, these are so good. I just made a batch :)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

My Monday the 5th of July

My alarm went off at 7am, after a horrible night of not much sleep 0/10. I gave myself a half an hour to get ready before I left for my bus, so after throwing on my clothes, eating a piece of toast and a quick skype chat to Meliesha (who is in Italy!), I was off to work. It was freezing outside, but I was armed with ear muffs, a woolly scarf and gloves, take that winter! The bus was really toasty, and I listened to an old episode of the Doug Loves Movies podcast which featured Sarah Silverman and Brian Posehn 10/10. I arrived at work (the cattery) at 8am, there were a lot of cats in since it is now the holidays. I let the cats out of their cages and did lots of cleaning; one cat had diarrhea 2/10 (it's only 2/10 because I am now desensitized to cat poop in all its forms). There was a 20 week old siamese kitten called Lola who would not leave me alone, i.e. kept jumping up on my shoulders and purring; I wanted to take her home. I finished at 11am and caught the bus home, it was rainy and windy outside 0/10. When I got home, Sam and I went straight out again for lunch at One 2 One on Ponsonby Rd. Sam got a bagel with bacon, tomato and pesto, I got a roast vege salad with haloumi and aioli, and we shared a pot of English breakfast. The roast vege salad was 10/10 and so was the tea. After lunch we went to mag nation and I bought the latest issue of Frankie even though it was $13.50 4/10. Then we walked home in the rain because I forgot to bring the umbrella 0/10. A good part of the day was spent in bed watching various things such as this. Pretty much a lot of loafing happened 10/10. A bit later, I did some cleaning, then I watched The Simpsons and ate cereal because it was the only food we had in the house 8/10. Then we went grocery shopping, but stopped at Burger King along the way, I had a creamy mayo cheeseburger combo 7/10. During said grocery shopping, Sam and I had a minor disagreement regarding salt, he wanted to get rock salt and I wanted to get normal salt. We ended up getting both. After unpacking the groceries we watched the two new episodes of The IT Crowd which were 9/10. Then we talked a bit before going to sleep! Thus ends my Monday.

Monday, July 5, 2010

just a meme

Stacey did this on her blog, taken from this other blog, where it was taken from YET ANOTHER BLOG! My motivations for completing this meme are fuelled by discussions at the Voiceworks meeting tonight. We were talking about the best way to get discussions/interaction with your blog. People are now trying to find the quickest way to make a blog successful, but I think (and Angela Meyer backed this up at the meeting) that perseverence and interacting with other bloggers is one of the best ways to do this. Hence the meme.

1. What is your staple meal? (i.e. what meal do you cook most often, when you can’t be bothered to think of anything adventurous)
it's porridge. for breakfast.

2. What do you want to be when you grow up?
grown up

3. What book are you reading at the moment (if any)?
Mrs Dalloway, which I've been stagnating on for a few months. I need to finish it and gather some speed before the holidays peter out.

4. How do you relax?
My life is one big relaxation.

5. What colour are the interior walls of your home?
White/cream - are everybody's walls this colour? At mum's house all the bedrooms are painted really crazy BECAUSE WE OWN THE PLACE. My bedroom there is four colours (five if you count white polka dots on the cupboards)

6. What is your guiltiest pleasure?
I don't really have "guilty" pleasures, because I don't think it's healthy to make myself feel bad for things I enjoy. Maybe I sound dumb for saying that, like a nineties life coach or something. Basically I can often be caught eating too much and shopping at Sportsgirl, both activities I shouldn't be doing.

7. What time is bed time and getting up time?
At the moment I wake up around midday and go to sleep at about 3am. Roughly.

8. How long do you spend reading blogs (per day or per week)?
I don't know. A bit? A bit too much?

9. What never fails to cheer you up?
The sight of Stephen Fry

10. If you could live one day of your life over again, what would it be?
I agree with Stacey: what's done is done.

11. What do you like best about yourself?
My whining aggression.

12. What would you change about yourself?
I dislike the "would you" idea in this sentence. Why don't "you" just change? It's not like the "you" writing this and the "you" living are different. Just change right now!

13. What have you enjoyed best about blogging?
Sharing my inane thoughts with the void of the internet.

14. Who/what is your ultimate source of inspiration?
The outside world. Small moments that I happen to witness. FOR INSTANCE: today on The View they were modelling clothes for the Fourth of July (we are a day behind with American daytime TV, two on Mondays for the weekend obviously) and they had a family and there was this baby girl they brought out as a model (ick ick) but she was so cute and kept clapping and waving at everyone. Also today when I walked into a store they were playing a song I like, I thought it was a pretty obscure song too so I was happy. So yeah, Whoopi Goldberg and her associates.

15. If you could be anywhere in the world now, where would you be?

16. What do you daydream about the most?
Moving overseas. At the moment, living in an apartment in New York just like Carrie does in Sex and the City (okay that's my guilty pleasure). How does she afford that place??

17. What was your biggest fear when you were a child?
That dummy from Goosebumps.

18. Describe your dream dinner party (guests, location, food; bear in mind that in the question world you have access to a time machine).
I don't know. It would just be John Darnielle, Stephen Fry, David Foster Wallace, Bill Murray, Virginia Woolf, Jean Rhys (the latter duo on good days) and me wondering why in god's name I insisted upon this meeting. We'd go to some little town near Bendigo (okay country Victoria) because it's pretty there, something like Maldon where it's fancy and nobody would bother us. I'd also invite Scarlet Johanssen just to try my luck with her. As for food, I'm sure they can make their own decisions.

19. If you could live at any point in history, when would you choose and why?
Early nineteenth century in London. I would be in the Bloomsbury group.

20. Favourite time of the day?
I don't mind!

21. Favourite mode of transport?

22. What would message would you put inside a fortune cookie or on one of those small planes that drags messages behind them?
You're fucked!

This is a poem

I sit listening to the hum of the refrigerator,
and as I write the word refrigerator I realise
that I do not know how to spell refrigerator.
I am holding an open book of poetry in my open palms.
There is a poem by Janos Pilinszky on the page
and there is a particular line that makes me
stop everything,
“You lose and I lose.”
The hum of the refrigerator stops
and I hear my own thoughts as if they were being spoken to me.
Now I was changing tense,
and drawing lines through words.
This is not a poem.
This is not a poem.

Following along from the theme of last week's poem.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Saturday third of July in review

As per this week's task, I am reviewing my Saturday the third of July in the style of this guy David from Christchurch. My description isn't very enticing, but his blog is the complete opposite. So go look at it.

I woke up at about 11.56am yesterday because I heard my phone vibrating. I couldn't find it and I thought "why the hell is it always on silent and who is calling me"?? 3/10
The number was this girl Tamzin from SYN. I called her back and she told me I got a place on air to do my food show!! 10/10
I had to tell everyone about it so I updated my facebook where my friend Erin left me a message saying she noticed I didn't visit her at work last night. I called her and suggested we get coffee on Glenferrie road to make up for it. I met Erin at Mario's Coffee house and had coffee and lemon slice. The lemon slice was about 8/10, coffee probably 6/10. Erin returned my notebook and a black cardigan to me - 10/10!!! We chatted and did the hard crossword in the A2 with answers that always seem familiar but just out of reach 6/10. Then I needed to take Erin to homewares heaven aka The Works (basically a warehouse Bed Bath N Table) and we wandered around looking at lovely household items 8/10. Erin tried to find some new stuff to wear to work but couldn't find anything and then she had to go to work which was a lame 4/10. I went solo to Readings and looked at books and patted a really cute plush owl in the kids section for a bit 8/10 (it's amazing how much pleasure I get from simply looking at stuff).
Came home and wrote in the notebook that Erin returned to me for a good hour, tidied my room, edited a poem and organised my crate office 6.5/10. Made some sort of tasty burger concoction for dinner, 7.5/10. I watched Ratatouille (8/10 - totally awesome movie) and started to learn how to make granny squares with the help of the too cheery Pip Lincolne. I thank her muchly, but just wish she wasn't always talking in technicolour. Patronising demeanour gets 4/10, useful instructions get 9/10. I nearly finished one square by the time James Bond was finished and had to keep going so I watched Never Been Kissed and one episode of the Mighty Boosh to satiate my new crochet addiction 8/10. Then I couldn't sleep because I kept thinking of things I wanted to do so I had to keep turning my lamp back on to write down ideas even though I knew I needed to sleep and was very very tired 4/10

And so you can rate my early attempts at crochet, here are some pictures of what I have made so far!!

close up grannies

granny squares

Friday, July 2, 2010

music shame: the ethics of culling a collection

I'm sure we've all experienced at one point 'iPod DJ anxiety'. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and tell the reading several a secret. The skeletons in my iTunes, if you will. I'm not the kind of gal who cleans out her music collection. I've heard of a few people doing that with their iTunes and I just don't see the point. Sure, it would make for less embarrassing times when you offer up your device for the shuffling (cause when I say DJ that's really what I mean) in public, but what about the nostalgia?

Unfortunate experiences with liquids and computers have resulted in me using various programs to restore my music collection over various years (until I got me a hard drive) and I've lost bits and pieces along the way - things I'd downloaded at whim and forgotten about. Others have stayed with me from the first time I began an iTunes library - when my affair with the work of Steve Jobs began - right up to now. Some things are embarrassing and others I still listen to. Maybe I should delete them.. but I have the space and I don't see why I can't use it.

I promised skeletons, so here they are.

Bands I used to listen to and don't anymore
Muse, Incubus, Shapeshifter, Athlete, Kaiser Chiefs, Kings of Leon, John Mayer (I used to love him A LOT, but I suppose he got all arrogant now he dated some Hollywood gals), Oasis (my small town friends used to put on Wonderwall in the car as we drove around, a departure from Britney and the other top 40 songs that we indulged in together, always preceding it with "this one's for Suse". I was over wonder wall by 1999, I don't know about you guys), Kanye West (I developed a liking for him driving round in the car in those days, his earlier stuff was good!! Man he used to be good), New Young Pony Club, Architecture in Helsinki, Keane, Coldplay, The Strokes, Eskimo Joe, Snow Patrol (and okay for the last five artists we are talking their OLD stuff, like Is This It, Parachutes, Final Straw.. blah.. so old. I have favourite songs off these CDs that I don't skip should they come on shuffle. SHAME), Be Your Own Pet.

So some of them are embarrassing and I don't want to listen to them any more, but others I have favourite songs.. or they meant heaps to me at the time and I don't want to get rid of them because they are a source of comfort or something.

Bands I still listen to every now and then
Rilo Kiley, Josh Pyke, Arcade Fire, Radiohead, Bjork, Sufjan Stevens, Joy Division, Midlake, Spoon, Regina Spektor, Bright Eyes, Jamie Cullum, Feist, The Black Keys.. Cat Power I have had since I first got an iPod and she's stayed with me for that long and I have to say I listen to the Greatest and You Are Free a LOT still.

I might get rid of all that Muse. I literally have all their albums from before Knights of Cydonia (or whatever that one was) including some live thing I've never listened to before. I am a hoarder by nature!! But there's just no point in having it there! But Matt Bellamy used to be so sexy.. same with John Mayer. It's kinda like phone numbers. I've got old phone numbers of uni people in my phone. I don't text them or call them at all, but it's nice to know I could if I needed to.

As for what I listen to now, well you'll have to look at my for that business! Me and Stacey both have profiles, she is accomplishments and I pleskitt if you should wish to stalk our music tastes, questionable though they may be at times.

Carried in the arms of cheerleaders

Earlier this week, I finally gave in and downloaded The National's new album, High Violet, after hearing much about it from various credible sources. Suffice to say, I haven't really listened to anything else all week. It also made me re-discover how great the song Slow Show is, after I watched the following series of videos. If you are a fan, you should watch the whole set. Obvious favourites on the new album are Bloodbuzz Ohio, the first single, Sorrow and Everyone's Ghost. I also am quite fond of Conversation 16.

I also wanted to mention downloading music. When I was 15, I saved up money to buy CDs, and stayed up all night downloading 2 songs on Kazaa (sup, dial up speed). But I remember how special music felt to me then, because it was so hard to obtain and you cherished it when you found it. Currently, I don't buy CDs, and my large collection of CDs are sitting at my parents house gathering dust. I used to buy records, but haven't in a long time. It is far easier for me to download music, usually from a livejournal community called indie_exchange, or if I can't find it there I might ask Sam to find it on one of those torrent sites that I can't be bothered with. I think that this takes a lot of joy out of music for me, the fact that I can obtain it so easily. I've forgotten that the fun is in the chase. I don't feel morally corrupt because I download music, the way I see it, I listen to bands who don't care about money and just want their music to be heard. How do you folks feel about downloading music?