Thursday, December 31, 2009

Last Post


31/12/2009 : Spent the day trying to shop today - failed dismally.

From up on high I bet we all looked like zombies - aimlessly wandering in search of something unknown; anything to briefly lift the tedium - hoping for a lack of buyers remorse: Failing.

As I wandered past the malls , shops and kiosks I recall how simple shopping once was - when the smallest of items purchased could bring so much joy - now IG and I look in vain, the only sound missing from the hustle and bustle of the throng is the fellow zombies calling BRAINS....BRAINS....

"It doesnt feel like new years eve", I muttered -

"Yes", said IG in muted tones.

"I suppose we expect too much", I commented cryptically.

"Yes", said IG in muted tones.

"There's something about cleavage and white sunglasses isn't there", muttered IG.

"What!", I said distracted somewhat.

"Did you miss that?", he asked

And for a second the sun broke through the clouds lighting our way past the shops toward home.

I wondered what I had missed, but IG was already thinking about a beer as we headed for the Octagon, and had already moved on from said cleavage.

"Yes", I said in muted tones.

2010 - You wont know what fucking hit you.....

Saturday, December 26, 2009

2009 - the year that "almost" was.

God - I miss my carbs :(

I've been reflecting on the wins and losses in 2009, and by doing so I've noticed an ironic pattern emerging.
It seems that in most areas of gain, their have also been losses.

Earlier in the year, paths crossed through unfortunate circumstances; someone I care for dearly lost someone close to them, and I was in the right place to help. We had a perfect day in the eye of that storm, and now our lives drift apart once again - to what end remains to be seen, perhaps yet unwritten. I am nothing but an optimist at times, although even my delusions have limits.

My work year has been the most successful yet - these twelve months I am not only a hero, but a legend as well (their words - not mine). Still though this all I am loving my job less and less: my passion abating. My job was my justification of my life as it was lived- now I need more, and I'm not getting what I need there.

On a more positive note I can now mention that I have lost thirteen kilograms (or about 29 pounds) in the last 8 weeks. I guess eventually the guy looking back at me in the mirror wasn't me anymore.
Change the things you can I said to myself - and i did.
By my reckoning I only have 4 to 5 kilograms remaining until my target weight is obtained (at 5' 8" I'm thinking 77kg).
I've come to realize how damn stubborn I can be about some things. Through all of this I have been uber-unbending. On an all expenses paid reward trip to Australia, with all the food and drink I could have wanted, I have stayed true to myself and steadily worked on my goal, unchanged in my resolve.
At the end of it all the HR director came up to me and said "Hi Mark - still have the weight of the world on your shoulders I see". Not understanding why I abstained from so many excesses around me, I eventually told him the secret I was keeping from everyone, including those closest to me.

When I arrived home for Christmas, people were surprised at my lesser self, although it's funny that many asked if i was ill - deep down i suspect they may have a point. :)

So - what do it want for 2010?

What I'm wishing for in 2010 is clarity. A clarity of vision, and direction - not just for me, but for the people who's lives touch mine as they pass. I'm sick of life's ambiguity and irreverence, and dammit - I want answers!

You never know - given my recent track record I may even be stubborn enough to get them.

Take care all - 2010 may be in for a bumpy ride !

Friday, December 25, 2009

80's salad with added egg

From wikipedia:

A double act, also known as a comedy duo, is a comic pairing in which humor is derived from the uneven relationship between two partners,..... Often one of the duo members, the straight man, feed or stooge is portrayed as reasonable and serious, and the other one, the funny man or comic is portrayed as funny, unintelligent or unorthodox. .....

Despite the names given to the roles, the "straight man" need not necessarily be humorless, and it is not always the comic who provides the act's humor. Sometimes, it is the straight man who gets the laughs through his or her sarcastic reactions to the comic's antics.....


Once again I suspect I must play the straight man to Niamh's foil....

It's a tough job but someones got to do it :)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Just saying


Thinking that 2010 I'm going to try on a few changes to see how they fit :)

Have a great Christmas guys - I'm flying down to Dunedin on the 25th, so my next post will have a southern spin to it.

Monday, December 21, 2009

So sad.



Another talented actress taken too soon.

I remember her part in Dont say a Word; she was sublime. Murphy moved from drama to comedy with a sense of grace and style; playing memorable parts she made her own.

She had a smile that would light up a room, I guess the world's just a little bit dimmer, now she's gone.




Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Man up



I really don't understand this whole serial cheating thing.

A workmate once explained to me that the reason famous men end up shagging other men is simply because when you can have any woman you want - you just don't want them anymore.

Nope - I didn't buy that either.

Woods is an idiot - not because he got lazy and got caught, but because he should have manned up and left his wife first. If you don't love who you're with, at least have enough respect for them to end the relationship first before moving on. I mean - how in love with your wife must you be to sleep with over 10 different woman?

And do you know what makes it worse ? I hear she's now thinking of staying with him for the sake of the children.

I'm betting the children will be just fine without him - and when they grow up I'm sure they'll respect their mother more for leaving his sorry arse in the gutter.

Update: I see she's not wearing the ring - so there's hope for her yet.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Dont buy the album

Sometimes you like a song, because it reminds you a certain time, person or place.

You buy the album, and then you find that it's all just too similar; it dilutes the essence of the original moment, making the overall experience less than what it was.

I wonder if tying up all those emotions in one "event" can have the same outcome in real life? Rather than fearing that possibility, I believe you need to embrace any potential opportunities before dismissing them out of hand.

Just don't expect them all to work out, no matter how hard you cross your fingers.

Friday, December 04, 2009


I kind of take it back.

This trip has been well planned and executed. The team of organisers have done themselves proud, and in doing so are legends in their own right.

One day I will be happy, people. And when that happens it will be due, in no small part, to efforts like theirs, along the way.

My failings are mine, and mine alone - but hopefully you already had that worked out about me :)

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Us



Spektor is sublime. Her style is unorthodox.

Of late I think I prefer to walk in the footsteps of people who live for their own reward, regardless of where that path may take them. You may not meet many along the way, but you'll always recognise those who you do cross as kindred spirits.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

I like - already


Someone with greater literacy skills than I once wrote, " Our fate lies not in our stars, but in ourselves".

In hindsight my previous posts could have seemed somewhat lacking in appreciation."They're not very appreciative", intoned my father on the phone. He has a point, of sorts… I guess...

In the last three days we have jet-boated, sailed, and swung in hammocks while the world turned around us. We have been wined and dined - puffed and pampered like precious primaddona's.

Yet.

Exactly.

I have to point out that I'm proud to work for a company that recognizes their staffs hard work. I'm even happy that during detailed chats with my company CEO, he insists on calling me Nick - hell I might even change my name lest he discovers his error. That way if he mentions me favorably in dispatches I'll get some credit instead of some other Nick fella :)

Today I went solo from the herd and got some serious roller coaster time in at a local theme park - it came a distant second to a massage from a short haired dominatrix on the beach yesterday, but the end result was the same - superficial bruising, de-stressed muscles and I smile when i remember just how much fun it was in the moment.

God she was vicious - but did I mention she was also very cute?

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Being Brutal


I struggled with my post tonight - I wrote and deleted it twice - it just wasn't enough.

Before going to bed I checked my phone and found a text from IG. I laughed aloud and immediately found the muse I needed to make my convoluted point.

IG: A legend say you - to me you are more of a tall tale.

ME: It's ironic; yet as much as I'm touted a Legend, this trip has made me feel more a failure than a success.


All this wasted energy. My firm may appreciate what I've achieved, but I still haven't got what I want - or perhaps, sometimes, as the song intones, even what I need.

The trick maybe accepting I never will. Maybe that's why I feel I really don't belong here….

Thanks for understanding me Ian, I hope the migrane headache after was well worth the effort :)

500 Days of Summer


Work social functions kinda remind me of high school.

You see - right now I'm on the Gold Coast of East Australia. One a year my company selects 26 or so "Legends" and takes them, and their partners on an all expenses paid trip to an exotic location.

So here go I; except I don't feel all that legendary.

As soon as we arrived the cools kids immediately sat at a table by themselves (just like high school), while the rest shuffled desperately not to be the ones left to last, lest they be seen as easy prey to the ever circling dingo's.

I watched from the sidelines, confused, angry and sad; noting that after all this time the dividing lines are just as strong, even as the playing field has changed so much in a quarter of a century.

I hated the cliques - and I still do.
[Although I shouldn't complain too loudly; at the moment the cool kids are still talking to me].

There's obviously still some shuffling left in this never ending ratings war. Trust me, there will casualties to come on both sides one suspects. The dingo's may not go home hungry...

The tone of this post was brought to you by "500 Days of Summer". I watched this on the flight over today, and I have to tell you that this film spoke volumes to me - especially in my own not-so-unique life(less) situation. Watch it and you'll see one of this years best films - period *.


I should have watched this movie over twenty years ago... it explains a lot.




*Shaw - if you rip this movie to shreds with one of your witty movie reviews - I'll be rather put out. You have been warned!!! :)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Constraints

I'm in the middle of a project I cant talk about yet, but within the project itself I've come to realise just how many constraints I put upon myself.

For years I've lived with self imposed boundaries and rules. Without hesitation I make the same decisions time after time, and I now understand that although all that is well and good, I may now not be able to break free of these ties that bind.

I guess I'd like to be a little more human, and make the odd social mistake that I wont necessarily regret....

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Freshmen

I think it's good to learn from our personal history; perhaps ghosts that remain guide us as we go, but it's equally important to know we cant change what we did or how we felt.

The thing I like about the past is our inability to change it; conversely our future is equally exciting for the opposite reason - change is always an option :)

It's never to late to do what you truly desire, or so I'm hoping.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Yep yep yep yep



I eat well these days; I tend to cook rather than take out more often than not.
I don't drink as much as I did, and I know what cholesterol and GI are
I'm buying a house.


Tonight I turned on the TV, looked at the shows on offer, and turned it off.
I had to work later tonight, and because i was wasted after a hectic 8 hours at work, I slept for 2 hours instead.

All these decisions may on the surface seem innocuous, but if you dive below the detail you come to realise its just you're getting to old for this shit...

And that depresses the fuck out of me :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Raindrops

I love this scene from Clerks 2.



Sometimes after a shitty day - doing something like this can really turn it around. This clip captures the emotions perfectly.

Kevin Smith was really on to something here. Better than in Butch Cassidy IMHO :)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

WRONG!


For three weeks my internet has been running at about a 1/4 speed.

The first time they went to to the wrong address, closed the fault off, and said there was no problem.

The second time they said they found the problem - and did nothing about it for two weeks.

The third time my internet service provider sided with the subcontractors and said that the speed was as good as I could expect 5kilometers from the exchange. I tried to explain to them it was 4 times faster 3 weeks ago and my neighbours are all getting 5Meg downloads compared to my 1.4Megs!

I cant believe Vodafone's help-desk fuck-wit in Egypt just told me I was wrong.
I was (and am still) fucking livid.

In the meantime my internet is still woefully slow - all because Telecom/Visionstream cant employ staff that can fix a simple line problem - a problem they know exists, and told me about over a week ago.

Welcome to the new world - where techs are paid peanuts, and don't know or don't care about doing a good job because they don't get paid enough to care.

I am so angry I just want to take the lot of them down. I wonder what the head of Vodafone technology will say when I mention casually i had to move to Orcon because his wholesale subcontractors let me down...

I'll let you know.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Food for thought

Finally a philosophy I can buy into..


"Receive with simplicity everything that happens to you" - Rashi

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Ship of Fools?



The highest reward for a person's toil is not what they get for it,
but what they become by it.
- John Ruskin


I got call.

Another one of us was leaving.
"I'm driving a fork lift now", he said.

He sounded happy.

"I go to work at 8, I finish at five".
"I don't have to think about what I have to do tomorrow"
"I don't have to take my work home with me"
"I just drive a forklift now"

I often wonder if it would be enough;
I wonder if I'd get bored, and always want more.

By a strange twist I got voted a legend at last nights works dinner.
It's an honour given the company of those who have gone before...
Recognition from my peers - I was truly shocked

But through it all I couldn't help but remember that he sounded so happy -

And for him, so was I.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Windmills

I love the chord progressions within this song, and the ambiguity of the lyrics



An excellent slide into a blissful weekend. No work, no plans, just what will be :)

Missing the second bus.




I know my life is good.
I know I define myself too much by the work I do.
I know I get a lot of positive feedback from that part.

But

I know I'm lacking balance
I know I shouldn't think as much as I do
Especially about her.

I'm lucky that I'm free to do anything
But the truth is I do very little about that
I get too wound up in the moments
Then realize I miss my friends at the other end of NZ

I love that I can drop by there and feel welcome.
We can grab a beer or wine and watch a classic movie.
Leave conversations midstream for another shore
Bro-mance is a word I guess
I miss that here.

But today is a low day.
Two days from now I will look at this
pause, then maybe delete
wondering what i was thinking

But - not today.

Here they are catching the busses
Everyone is pregnant - or once removed
No one can play - even the husbands
Especially the husbands

And this is my second time around.

Monday, November 02, 2009

The bother with bathrooms


My parents have a story.
When I was a young lad, many years ago, it seemed I had a fascination with toilets. No sooner had I arrive in a new house, i would need to know where the bathroom was.
These days when I recall this information, I'd like to think it was because I always wanted to be prepared; that even as a five year old I didn't want to leave anything to chance. I'd like to think that.

Over thirty five years later, I may have to admit a deeper concern. I maybe a bathroom snob.

Today, I honestly have to say that the bathroom stall concept appalls me.
That line of stalls with the overriding concession to the cleaners, allowing them to easily mop the floors has eliminated any sense of privacy by removing the extension of the walls to the floor.

I don't know when it became ok, I wonder how this insidious design propagated, and why we sat by and created a new poop culture to cope.
See this page if you don't know what I mean.

It may be humor people - but I'm not laughing
I love my walls. I love my privacy.
And in so many ways there's a lot of that 5 year old still about.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Thinking of you.


Its amazing how many times a day i think about absent friends.
Some memories surface yearly, others monthly; weekly.
I like to keep in touch, but sometimes you cant help but drift away over time.

It takes a special bond to maintain some kind of equilibrium; an equal force of attraction that keeps people close, yet at a comfortable distance.
I wonder if merely thinking about the people you love is enough to maintain a delicate balance in the universe..

Some days I hope there are small amount of power in those thoughts of love; like they'd somehow made a difference in this 1+1=2 world. I hope the one I think of daily would know it somehow.

Then again, perhaps that where headaches come from... :)

Every now and then I need to remind myself the sweet is never as sweet, without the sour.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Acoustic harmonies

This clip has been doing the rounds lately. True talent exists regardless; sure you can dress something up to be something it isn't, but stripped down you just cant fake it.

Not to say (at all) that Miley didn't do a great job, but watch this and make up your own mind.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Not so much a violation

Just watched "He's just not that into you" with Deadly Jelly...

I'm thinking that if people were just a little more honest with each other all the CSI's would last about 15 minutes, and in real life a hell of a lot of people would be a hell of a lot happier, and some perhaps a hell of a lot sadder.

But at least what we'd be feeling a tad more satisfied we where at least where we belonged.

Personally I don't think there's as much of that, as there should be - but what do I know?



Oh simple thing where have you gone
I'm getting old and I need something to rely on
So tell me when you're gonna let me in
I'm getting tired and I need somewhere to begin

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Why I shouldnt recommend films

Mulholland Drive

I loved it - IG thought I was mad....





from Wikipedia
Described as "the most original and stunning sequence in an original and stunning film",[26] Rebekah del Rio's Spanish a cappella rendition of "Crying", named "Llorando", is praised as "show-stopping ...except that there's no show to stop" in the sparsely attended Club Silencio.[35] Lynch wanted to use Roy Orbison's version of "Crying" in Blue Velvet, but changed his mind when he heard Orbison's "In Dreams".[12] Del Rio, who popularized the Spanish version and who received her first recording contract on the basis of the song, stated that Lynch flew to Nashville where she was living, and she sang the song for him once and did not know he was recording her. Lynch wrote a part for her in the film and used the version she sang for him in Nashville.[62] In the Club Silencio scene, before the song ends, del Rio collapses onstage although her powerful voice continues to ring throughout the theater. The song tragically serenades the lovers Betty and Rita, who sit spellbound and weeping, moments before their relationship disappears and is replaced by Diane and Camilla's dysfunction. According to one film scholar, the song and the entire theater scene marks the disintegration of Betty's and Rita's personalities, as well as their relationship.[26] With the use of multiple languages and a song to portray such primal emotions, one film analyst states that Lynch exhibits his distrust of intellectual discourse and chooses to make sense through images and sounds.[19]



Whether or not Lynch pretends to know what he's created, read between the lines. This is the scene where Betty/Diane's soul is taken and she understands - after she's already dead - how she's betrayed "Rita." The scenes following Club Silencio reveal the reality of Betty/Diane's homicide, suicide and other choices. dougeski- Youtube


I love David Lynch even if he doesn't understand himself :)

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Its my mind, and it will be as crazy as I want!

A few weeks ago my manager recommended that I attend a management workshop. She saw me as a litmus test for our team and wanted to know if I though it would be worthwhile. I have to admit I was concerned that she chose me first for a resiliency workshop, but I was open to improving my ability to deal with the pressure and time constraints I was dealing with.

As a part of the training I received a follow up meeting with the presenter. I had a good rapport with her so it was an enjoyable experience. She thought that I had a lot of potential as a people manager, and to be honest with you, although that wasnt necessarily an area I wanted to explore , I found the resiliance traing to be totally worthwhile.

She asked it I wanted to continue with the training, and explained her philosophy on where we would go from here; while I expected the extra sessions to focus on my work, It turns out that the approach she takes is whole-istic in nature and would cover my private life as well. She stated that resilience in life comes from our whole life and not just a part of it. What we do away from our work, the way we approach our lives, and every every facet of it contributes to the whole.

The more I think about it - the less I want someone knowing about my private life. I've come to realise I'm extremely selective about what I tell people - even when it comes to my closest friends. If I did start letting go - well then we'd probably have something like this actually :)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Rain - Patty Griffin

I listen to a lot of rock and pop; and depending on my mood some blues and a little jazz as well.

Some people dis Country. I feel sad for them; there is so much power in the genre. If you let it in, you're a grown up - and that's all I'm going to say about that.



Hope the rain stops soon Jaime...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Semantics - I guess


What came first, the music or the misery?
People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery and loss.
Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?
John Cusack - High Fidelity.


This quote has been running around my head lately. I think it applies to more than just music, but don't quote me on that.

Monday, September 21, 2009

The letter

Work - bah humbug :)



So we talked of our stories
Till the sun and the waves
Returned to...
We made plans for the next year
You were on my mind
All of the time

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The ghosts within


The subconscious is an amazing thing. I left this island when I was just 10 years old, yet there are events and people who remain stored in my memory (it seems now perhaps for all time).
Today I went to pay my respects to Mr and Mrs Emori Waka at their graveside. As is the custom here they are buried in a small crypt beside their abandoned home. Perhaps abandoned is the wrong word. The house is still full of furniture, but outside the padlock on the door points to an extended stay of absence. The house seems to be resting, biding its time to be reoccupied by their children or grandchildren at a later date. As I pause to think about it, the island seems to be so much about that concept. Foundations of buildings can be seen at the end of the bush line - houses waiting to be continued - perhaps never to be finished. The pace of life here is like a leaf upon a soft wind : watch it soar, watch the island breathe in and out - the moment is gone and we are long buried and gone.

My next stop was to the oldest church on the island to visit the grave of John and Mary Baxter. I was surprised to see he was born at Gravesend in the UK - I remember a thin man with a white shirt and white smile. Brown leathery skin, always carrying a lit cigarette - for some reason I always thought he was an American who stayed on after the war.
Anyway - Died far too young; I note he was only in his late 40's - early 50's during the era I knew him - not too far a stretch from my current age; enough to remember how old he seemed to me at the time.

My biggest regret is the grave I never found. For some reason yesterday I called Mum and asked her about a girl who died here in 1976. I knew her - I can even picture her vividly in my mind. I had no idea why my memory of her was so strong, until confiding in an older lady at the Aitutaki information center. She informed me that the girl in question, Janice, baby-sat us on occasion. Truthfully, I cant remember that, but i remember her regardless. She was an attractive girl with incredible eyes, and she was murdered by her father, because she spoke to a boy. I know for a fact that the father came from an important family on the island, and I'm pretty sure he wasn't arrested until after the funeral because he was there for it *. Sure - the Police eventually came for him and he did some time in a Rarotonga gaol, but I still recall the feeling of waste, and the sadness; a ten year old boy and a 33 year old memory that remains today.
Janice Henry, I will find you again, and we will talk of stuff and nonsense. Sixteen then and now, you have not been forgotten. Rest in Peace.

* I'll update the post if I'm wrong in this

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Animals Lovers - avoid this post please



Disclaimer : I'm serious about the warning in the title. Proceed with caution.

Oh. My. God.


So here I am - riding my scooter around Aitutaki. Taking photo's of places I remember.


This place, for example, is where Muri Waka chopped the heads off those chooks on the wooden stump out the back of his house. Others had their heads still attached as Muri spun them over his head breaking their necks. We watched them run around with their heads in various states of disrepair - giggling out loud as we chased after them. Later we watched as his daughters Terri and Taina plucked them. Even later still, we had them for dinner.



At 8 years old we all understood exactly what was happening here; in order to eat and survive, something else must die - yes, even a stalk of celery Niamh.



Still, after all these years, I cant explain what possessed me to stop my scooter to look for that damn stump behind the long deserted Waka house. Maybe it was fate, maybe I just wanted so see if was real or just a thirty years old dream. Maybe, just maybe I was hungry. :)



Still, I did find out yesterday that Muri died three months ago back in New Zealand well into his 80's - I couldn't help but wonder when he passed if he was met by Saint Peter; surrounded by a shit-load of lopsided headed/headless chickens with axes at the ready, wanting revenge - still rueing their lack of opposable thumbs.



Let's just hope Muri wasn't hungry for some buffalo wings :)

Island wisdom - well kinda

The dark comes quickly here, and with no TV to distract you quickly make friends with a novel or two.

After the turning of pages no longer holds that certain je ne sais quoi, you can turn to a canceled TV show on your Macbook for enlightenment;

Love is simple - you have it or you don't.
Everything else is either delusion or self sabotage.

-The Middleman Season 1 Episode 9

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The story thus far

This island seems to know me.
This island seems to know what I need.

Every night back home when I go to sleep I play the sound of a tropical storm on my iPod. The wind and the rain lull me to sleep, and tonight I get the real McCoy here on Aitutaki.
When I first arrived here I was greeted by two cats owned by the resort - I'd see them from time to time as we crossed paths. Being the social animals they are they always say hello in their own manner before we go on our seperate ways. When the rains came one of them dropped by for a chat; sodden and miserable I invited her is, dried her off, and together we watched the palm trees strain against the driving wind and rain. As the day drew on we both fell asleep, content to be where we were in that time and place.

On a less harmonious note I can say that driving in to a tropical rain storm at 60kph on a scooter with no helmet makes for an excellent, if not stinging facial. Also an unfortunate accident with a malfunctioning underarm aerosol can has resulted in a partial (although slowly improving) loss of vision in one eye.

But Hey - maybe the Island has a reason for that too.

Me? I'm just rolling with it :)

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Sullivan Street - Counting Crows

I sincerely believe that August and Everything After would be one of my personal Top 50 CD's of all time.



Take the way home that leads back to Sullivan Street
Cross the water and home through the town
Past the shadows that fall down wherever we meet
Pretty soon now I wont come around

Monday, September 07, 2009

Paradise not so lost

Come Thursday I will be here;


It may be a consolation prize of sorts - but sorry, I'm taking it regardless :)

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Horror

I might have to forget about Mary.

I mean it's been since 1986 already, and lets face it she's on her third marriage and I haven't embarked on anything near as big.

Plus at the age of 43 she's finally having a child to the latest guy. I guess that says something about commitment.

Yep; thinking about it now, perhaps it never was Mary; perhaps it should have been someone else instead.



AS IF !

Mary rocks - and always will :)

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Being the spoon

I'm looking for a song to sum it all up.

I have to admit it isn't easy finding something that sums up my current days - but I'm still going to try, even if it's not quite right.
I've been hard lately - more than a little inflexible. I gave myself some rules that I had to follow. It really suits my Aries nature to be this way.
I've come to dislike the shades of gray, the shades of right or wrong. I want to keep it simple even when it's anything but.

The problem with simple, at least when it comes to music or life, is finding something simple to convey the subtle nuances. When color fights its way into the monochrome, threatening to wash away the black and whites, I get a little confused about the outcomes.

It's all a work in progress.
Dont deep dive the lyrics - it's always been more about the music with me - that and the sound and sway of the lyrics - never a literal translation.

Expect the video link to change as I lurch through my playlist. This task will not defeat me :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Uh-huh


In Dunnoz for a long weekend.
My cellphone may remain off - such is my disdain for all things work at the moment.
This is not a good sign, but I'm going for a radical turnaround - things will hopefully improve if i can just shake off the negativity.

Crossed fingers !

Monday, August 17, 2009

Play it loud!

Oh to be a bass player in the 80's :)

New skin

I watched Skins for the first time tonight.
It reminded me how important everything seemed when we were that age; the ongoing tragedies around relationships, and the search for yourself in time left between.

I recalled the drunken conversations, revelations and relationships long swept asunder, and behold, I saw that their problems, once taken out of their contexts, were pretty much the stuff we all went through when we were young. Except for the drugs and the clubs (OK - I kid)!

It wouldn't surprise me in the least if the writers of Skins were middle aged with mortgages; still trying to get to grips with life - albeit with new lo-cal cookie dough characters yet to be fully formed. Maybe this time they'll get it right - maybe this time....

As for me; I'll keep watching the box, hoping there's still something to learn. Like tonight - there is no normal, everyone fucks up - so everyone is normal.
The trick is - working out if you want to fit in. If you can abandon that; that that keeps you apart you can be just like everyone else; fucked up. :)
In this episode, it seems the perception of normality was enough - so hiding is a definite possibility.

It's not that easy a game to play - this "life" lark.

Maybe this guy below will figure it out - Ladies and Gentlemen I give you RyderJ - born late last week. Another nephew - another chance to get it right.


No pressure little guy :)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Waiting


Waiting for the bee stings,
they tell me that success brings.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Come Undone

I'm constantly amazed at those who think they're incomplete because they are single.

I fight a battle with those people who think they've failed some life test. Ultimately only one person can guarantee you happiness in this world. And that person is you.

While I admire couples for their tenacity and mutual love fests, I think that it's always important to know where you end, and your partner begins. I wonder, if after a while, that line can blur more than a little.

I'm going on holiday soon. I'm planning on lying on a beach for over a week. I plan on reading at least three books, and doing as little as possible. I'm also planning to do this alone.
Not to say that I wouldn't entertain a thought of meeting someone, but now (as always) I don't feel the need to make it happen. I'm happy in the art of making myself happy.

We'll try to stay blind
To the hope and fear outside
Hey child, stay wilder than the wind
And blow me in to cry...

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Leaving Las Vegas

Classic Crowe - I never "got" the later stuff, but that's probably my loss not hers.

Life springs eternal
On a gaudy neon street
Not that I care at all

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

This is our destiny

On a less serious note - This is what Doug has been up to since his perm.

Humorously, I did drop by Wikipedia to see if Flamingo's actually do fly.... I recalled they did in Miami Vice but I never did trust that Michael Mann fella :)



We could all do with a little destiny every now and again - and dancing too obviously :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dunedin


Star Fountain - Octagon (circa 1983)


I wonder how it ends?
...so says the button on Natascha McElhone's jersey in the movie The Truman Show.

"You know I've always wondered myself" said Jim Carrey, in one of his more lucid screen moments, as he holds the button between his fingers.


It's coming up seven years in Auckland now. I know that things have evolved here; it just seems I've finally managed to paint myself into a corner. That bothers me.

I've had more than a taste of what I could be here - it's rewarding, stressful and challenging; all at the same time. My boss tells me I wouldn't be happy if things slowed down - I'd just once like to try it and see if she's right.

I've started buying lottery tickets again - I can honestly say it seems my only way out - I cant do this work where I want to live - it doesn't exist there. Everything else does.

I listen to the people I worked with in my old job - they contract back to the company I work for now. I hear the stories of their day's and I see it all as clearly as if it was yesterday - not seven years ago. The same old stories - the same old drama. I know I cant go back to that work life - I understand I'm on another journey of discovery; I just wouldn't mind living in that little Edinburgh of the south if I could just find a way to make it fit.

So , I wonder how it all ends?
You know, I've always wondered that myself.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Get a Perm Doug.

Winter is normally a great time for me - I can sit in my home for days on end complaining about the bad weather. After all - if the days were fine and sunny I would have to work harder at excuses not to go outside and be sociable.

I am between projects - which is a tragedy of sorts, because with boredom comes apathy. Normally I have something to inspire me through the winter months, but at the moment: not so much. I have noticed a disturbing increase in the amount of inane chatter I have been subjecting myself to when alone - that was until I stopped to listen to what I was telling myself.

No - it wasn't "Kill them all" :)

It was, in point of fact "Get a Perm". And it was from this;



So, even my subconscious is now telling me to live a little , and who am I not to listen. But I'm not going alone - I'm taking you guys all down with me....

So don't just stand there - Get a Perm !

I will post updates shortly with more instructions from the subconscious. Don't forget to remove your tin foil hats periodically to receive my updates :)

80's revisited

Did I ever mention I listened to too much Joe Jackson in the 80's? :)



Oz Crawl

Monday, July 13, 2009

Le fils de l'├ępicier


And it appears my love affair with the French countryside continues unabated.

I watched "The Grocer's Son" last night.
The love scene was a sublime mix of emotion and light.

Try and find it - hopefully you'll love it too :)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Dead wrong


Did I mention I was wrong the other day?

Well... obviously I'm often wrong on a daily or at least a weekly basis; so I guess what I'm hinting at here was some higher "degree of wrongness".

Having an elevated degree of wrongness provides that whole "it's nice to know every now and again when I err it can become a complete clusterfuck" kinda feeling .
It's also comforting to know that my errors are not always minor or trivial in nature. :)

OK - if I was to stand back and look at the situation through a less critical eye, I could probably admit it wasn't "that wrong", and that I was mostly "right" . But the fact I felt bad about the whole situation probably betrayed the fact I could have done better. I'd be lying to myself by making this picture too grey in nature.....

You know the one great thing about making mistakes? You live - you learn.
And maybe, just maybe, every now and again an old dog can learn a new trick.

Maybe :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Delays


A few things yet to come, including a post about mostly being wrong, and still having trouble admitting it.
Perhaps, yet another less interesting saga about the dangers of burnout, but not right now...

For now is just a short note to sing the praises of getting away from normal surroundings, and spending time with people you've known long enough to call family.

That and copious glasses of red wine...
Friends and wine mixed with laughter - 'tis the stuff worth living for.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

He said - She said


He:
I like how in some movies, the smallest gestures can say so much.

She:
Like?

He:
You know, like in that film "The Bridges of Madison County", when Meryl Streep's character is talking on the phone, and she quietly rests her hand on Cline Eastwood's shoulder. It's the first time they touch but it speaks volumes about their feelings for each other - in a simple way.

She:
She should have straddled him. (smirking)

He:
I give up!

Monday, June 29, 2009

People are always nice at Funerals

I hate it.

The same people who dissed him are now rushing to the stores to buy his albums. Do they seriously think they're going to stop pressing his CD's?

I liked the guys earlier stuff. I loved Thriller - and so did everyone in the 80's. The images from his latest releases - not so much.

I thought it was tragic he never had a childhood, and I didn't really buy into the media beat up. I ask you - where were those kid's parents? There was no real balance in the reporting....

Later I remembered the surgery, and Bubbles. I remember the calls for privacy; "Leave me alone" and "Scream". I never believed he'd be back - 50 concerts? I couldn't see it.

I remember the husk of the man he became, Peter Pan growing old.

I'm sorry, but I wont be nice at his funeral. He was a talented and flawed human being - but given the same upbringing who's to say any of us would have done any better. I know many of us would have surely feared much worse.

It's just sad he'll never really be remembered (so much) for songs like this;

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Making luck

Being an Apple fanboy - I cant help but admire the glorious leader. :)

I've recently come to understand the axiom, "make you own luck". It's a lesson that gives you an opening - a chance at happiness. What ever happens afterward, lies in as much with the gods, as with each other.

from gizmodo;


1990
About this time, Jobs meets Laurene Powell, when he speaks at a class at Stanford business school. They exchange numbers. Jobs had a business dinner that night. ''I was in the parking lot, with the key in the car, and I thought to myself, If this is my last night on earth, would I rather spend it at a business meeting or with this woman? I ran across the parking lot, asked her if she'd have dinner with me. She said yes, we walked into town and we've been together ever since.''

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Seconding emotions


I've just finished watching Flight 666, the documentary of Iron Maiden's 2008 World Tour.

I'll be the first to admit I've never been a big fan of the metal pomp and ceremony stage show - I love my metal - I just hate the costume drama that sometimes goes along with it.

This flick however, is worth a watch in my humble opinion. Rent it :)

If I was to pick one small part that got to me it would be the shot of a fan from Bogota who is obviously overcome with the emotion at the end of the concert. The guy, possibly in his early thirties, holds back the tears, before breaking down just a little.

I wondered what sort of life he had - why he clung on so hard to this event, and why it made a difference....I love that the music touched him and perhaps made his life a little better for a while.

Moments later he composed himself, and made the cross over his chest, before blowing a kiss to the heavens. I know this sounds cheesy, but my hat's off to him. Such genuine emotion is not often seen in public.
I hope to feel the same way one day, but I worry my jaded sense of perspective will only serve to get in the way, when I should instead be celebrating something truly special.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Get a room already - now with Haiku!


Gotta new amp now
My mistakes sound louder and
Never like Mayer

:(



for the war that's raging on inside
oh, everyone believes
from emptiness to everything
oh, everyone believes
and no one's going quietly

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Big Sick


I'm not often sick - in fact the last time i recall getting a cold was about three years ago.
I've been battling the onset of the flu for some time now; a scratchy throat here, a sniffle there. Hitting the vitamins, and a few early nights did the trick every time - until it didn't.

It wasn't the swine flu, but the aftermath of this particular flu was a lingering malaise eventually diagnosed as a sinus infection - a first for me.

It wasn't so much keeping Kleenex is business for three weeks; it wasn't even the chorus of Mum saying "I told you you should go to the Doctor" for two weeks - it was the complete change in me as a person.

It really wore me down, and at the end it was like I was inside my body controlling it through a complicated set of cables and levers - it was me, but decidedly not. Gone was the patience; slowly but surely I started to shut down. No email or cellphone text replies - I didn't want to see anyone. Like Garbo "I want to be alone"

Unfortunately I was on call at work last week. I actually told the guy who called me out for the umpteenth time that he had lost his call out privileges - that he had called me too many times and he wasn't allowed to call me again. He was in hysterics on the other end of the phone - he had no idea I was mostly serious.

Eventually I took a chill pill. Eventually I took some antibiotics.

Slowly but surely I am returning to normal, but I've got to tell you - for a while there I was terrified that the new me was as good as it was ever going to get. It was really starting to bother me.

It's nice to be wrong.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Gin Wigmore - These Roses




I'll sing you a sweet song if you say to
I'll write you the saddest of all words, rhymes and phrases
I will be your everything and I'll try give you anything back but I

Cannot give you my love
No I cannot give you my love

When I got fight in these roses
I still can't be scared
I got stones in my pockets
I still can be shared
I keep you in my heart
To make this all harder
I will stay addicted to you
I will stay addicted to you

Take me down to the garden
Let me lay with you
Hold my hand
Don't let go
If you feel like kissing me
Do
Now there's butterflies in me baby
And I just don't know what to do
You could stand up straight
You could be the best of my dates
But I still would not see you for I

Cannot give you my love
No I cannot give you my love

When I got fight in these roses
I still can't be scared
I got stones in my pockets
I still can be shared
I keep you in my heart
To make this all harder
I will stay addicted to you
I will stay addicted

I'm a stones throw from heartache
Hear me crumbling, tumbling down
Is it too late
To lose faith
In everything working out right
We can say forget
Or forgive
But I cannot do that to love

Saturday, June 06, 2009

The Shat Rocks!

I don't know if this is a tragedy, but I honestly believe that this is better that the Star Trek reboot I watched two weeks ago. And that's all I'm going to say about that.


Thursday, June 04, 2009

Know your rocks


I used to hate change.
There was something clean and simple in repetition, something I could measure and rely on... day after day after day after... well you get the picture.

Falling prey to the comfort of routine is something we can probably all attest to.
Comfort is a harsh mistress. Your daily "fix" of routines repeated; the comfort of a job done well, can mask the underlying evil that is very possibly controlling every aspect of your life.

Many years ago my goal posts were well and truly moved, and without even realizing it I raged against the dying of a light I should have extinguished many years before. When I left the field of play, I hadn't even realized although I'd won the battle, I'd lost the war.

Some time later, even after being made to watch "Who Moved my Cheese", I still really didn't get it. I hated the fact that someone else was force feeding me some Cliff Notes version on how I should live my life. How dare they!

I missed the point: I'll put my hand up and say it right now - I was wrong.

I now think change gives us all an opportunity to reinvent ourselves; to truly become who we want to be (whatever that may be). Unburdened by other peoples preconceived ideas of who we are, we can try and break free of the ties that bind, and the things that hold us back from our ultimate happiness.

As someone once said to me; "If the knot in your stomach isn't constantly reminding you it's there, you haven't taken a big enough step".

I look forward to my next challenge - and I hope it scares me shitless. :)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Next to Godliness


My house is spotless; spiderwebs that once wouldn't have raised my ire have been banished and my bathrooms smell ever so slightly of chlorine bleach.

My parents arrived last night.

After surveying all this "clean" in front of me I've decided that I need to invite people to stay more often.

Requests for catch-ups have already arrived on my cellphone. It appears my folks are in demand, and by association myself included (well hopefully) :-)

I'm taking a long weekend; there is much swanning around Auckland to be done, and so little time.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Mona Lisa Outcomes

This song has skirted around the edges of my subconscious for some time now.





Until you've seen this trashcan dream come true
You stand at the edge while people run you through
And I thank the Lord there's people out there like you
I thank the Lord there's people out there like you


I miss you NFG.

Friday, May 22, 2009

It's simple


I feel the need for a perfect beach
on a perfect day; not too hot or cold.
With a constant cooling ocean breeze
we jibe and tack amongst the kelp and driftwood
in search of something we had all along.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Rock Stars for a Day

At the end of the my eighth year at school I was awarded a Merit Award in Engineering.

You might think that such an award would do wonders for an awkward thirteen year old. You would be correct, but it was also a curse of sorts. You see - one had to collect the award in front of a full school assembly of 1200 students and board members.

I vividly recall the stairs leading to the stage; the trip wires and claymore mines to trap those who dared step in the wrong spot. I recall the practices for the junior students, so they wouldn't fall and ruin the look of the whole prize giving event. Such was their faith in us.

No matter how hard they instructed there was always someone who failed the test; someone who didn't follow the teachers instruction to the letter, someone who walked a little too quickly, or didn't watch where they were stepping and caught the wire. Many people died during the Taieri High School ceremonies over the years.... or so it seemed...

I believe it was fair to say that after that initial experience, I shunned any possibility of overachieving again during my school years - which was a pity, as I really could have done much better.

When I moved onto my career in Telecommunications I gravitated to working with the most intelligent technician in the group. He didn't suffer fools, which was unfortunate, as I was quite foolish in those days. I did, however, survive the process to become "adequate" by my "Sensei's" opinion - which actually meant I was immanently employable when my employer decided we were both no longer required.

I've grown in my current job - my second real job - in some ways it has taken time to step out of the shadow of my origins, and with a little help from a brilliant manager, given a voice that is finally heard.

A lifetime away from booby trapped stage stairs, today my name was called and a walked up the stage in front of my peers. The trip wires were gone, replaced by spotlights and television cameras. I shook the hand of my GM and CEO, and along with others, thanked for going the extra mile.

I'd like to say the horrors of the past were gone, and with them the fear of success; but upon reflection I've come to realise all those events have only contributed to the mosaic that is my life.

For better or worse I am who I am...

OK there were a few Bacardi's as well :)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Money

There are levels, and there are levels. I admit on most days that I can play a guitar well enough to get by, but when I see a guitarist playing a left handed guitar with strings upside down, and it sounds this good, I wonder if I shouldn't face reality and just give it all up.

I mean - hard as it is to find someone to teach you to play left handed, imagine taking that one step further to play all your chords upside down as well. No-one teaches that.

Look at the guy with the red guitar, and witness something unique. His name is Doyle Bramhall.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Beautiful World

I threw this on a cd last week, and heard it for the first time on my way to work....

It's a simple little song that doesnt take itself so seriously; a lesson we could all learn on occasion. :)



I'm not sure Youtube will do this justice: the song is sublime, and so me right now :)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Chocolately peace


Things must have been bad today - in the middle of a meeting I made an excuse, and left to fill a water bottle.

Once outside I seriously contemplated not going back.

In what must have been a weak moment I grabbed a Snickers bar out of the vending machine while I waited for my water bottle to fill.

So ashamed am I :)

I know; it's my cross to bear, but i keep reminding myself that that chocolate bar saved some lives today, even if the warmongers in that meeting had no idea whatsoever.