Friday, December 29, 2006

New Digs


Like? not like?

Am sick, so in no position to judge. Or use pronouns.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Xmas Lovin'

With no permission given whatsoever:

12:26 PM
will do
luv u longtime
me: luv u longtime one dollar
Lala: cheap whore
for you twenty dollar
12:27 PM
me: ty
you too spensive for me
Lala: yw
someday you big spender, you afford me
12:28 PM
me: you classy lady, i make money, i come back for you
Lala: I not wait, but if you lucky, I brush my teeth that day
12:29 PM
okay okay, i come back soon, dont forget me preese
Lala: i don't forget you, happy christmas wench
me: messy kwesnus, slapper

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Messy Kweznuz

Right. I've just spent about a lifetime's worth of my download quota trying to get my template back up and running and I have to say "Blogger 1.1 easier MY ASS".

Off to the in-laws for their Griswald version of Kweznuz (which we do not celebrate, but have it forced upon us nonetheless) so things will just have to be unkempt until I get back.

In the meantime, some cuteness for you all and whatever it is that you do at this time of year, I hope it brings you joy.

From us lot to you lot, Messy Kweznuz.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Feed Me

The site feed is back up and set to short, so now you dont have to come here every day to check for more incredibly witty posts and be constantly disappointed. Now you can be disappointed from the comfort of Bl*glines.

Apparently the New! Improved! Blogger is now out of Beta, so I suppose I will join the other lemmings users and switch over. This might result in things going a little spastic around here while I grapple with technology and labels and such and such.

Bear with me.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Can I Just Say...?

That possibly the dumbest question you could ask someone who has dealt with infertility is "So, when are you having another one?"

Apart from that whole miscarriage-endo-pco-ugly-sperm-miracle-natural-conception-thing, which YOU may have forgotten but I havent, why do we need another? We havent even broken this one yet.

Friday, December 15, 2006

The Bitch Is Back

Seems to me that it pretty much sucks to be a girl.

Not only do I have to endure 3 days of labour to have a 9 pound person pulled out of my clacker, but the promised "cure" that having said experience was supposed to provide for my menstrual disorders does indeed seem to have been a load of baloney.

And as we all know, the only reason I had the Spud was to control my endometriosis.

And now... now, despite still breastfeeding (oh, another myth exposed!) my girlie troubles, my monthy friend, my Aunt Flo, the Crimson Bitch (yes, thats the one) has made a torrential return, announcing its arrival with explodey ovary sensations and leading one to consider (after 36 hours) that perhaps things arent going as well as they should. The good people at Tampax love me, I'm sure, since I have had cause to use every single one of their products in existence in the last two days.

Things were going SO not as well as they should that a brief chat with some weirdo Canadadian stalker yelled at me that convinced me I should perhaps be having a chat to the kind folks at my nearest ER.

Yesterday all three of us spent our morning in the ER while I was jabbed, poked, prodded, drugged and bleeding. The outcome? Unpregnant, unanaemic. Most likely a fibroid, see your doctor for an ultrasound. Go home, you're not dying.

So I went home and discovered three messages on my phone from aforementioned stalker and her sidekick and now the kind folks at the hospital think I have a sister in Canada and I'm kinda worried that I'm gonna end up with a horses head in my bed.

But you know, yay, because I've so missed regular wandings.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Panda 1: Fucktards 0

And so back to our regular programming.

In our last episode we had left our heroine bemoaning the fact that The Brother can’t take a hint even when it’s spelled out in interpretive dance. Since then, our heroine wrote her mother a very long (4 pages, single spaced, 12 pt font) letter explaining in great detail why this situation was a complete clusterfuck, why she no longer wished to acknowledge her brothers existence and why she would not be partaking further in the family’s game of “why Panda is a total fuckup and we’re all saints and do what I say or I’ll scream.”

In today’s episode we discover that The Powers That Be, when apprised of the facts of the situation and having to deal with The Mother themselves (“having difficulties with her being rather…um…assertive”), are quite capable of coming to the same conclusions that our heroine has been banging on about for the last 18 months. As amazing as it may seem to our regular viewers, Someone Else has finally recognized that a woman who has almost killed herself and her husband from neglect should not be allowed to go home and continue to be the carer of said husband. The Powers That Be conclude that the best place for The Father With Alzheimer’s is in permanent nursing care, and that the best place for The Mother With Fucking Selfish Bitch Disease is either at home on her own with extensive support or in assisted living with The Father. The Powers That Be will under no circumstances allow them to leave the nursing home and enter an situation which is unsafe.

The episode closes with our heroine feeling rather smug and flicking the bird towards The Brother.

Cue swelling triumphant music.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Its Creepy Because Its True

Especially # 3, though I suspect #8 would ellicit a little more than 7 years bad luck.

Ten Top Trivia Tips about Spudly!

  1. In Chinese, the sound 'Spudly' means 'bite the wax tadpole'!
  2. The porpoise is second to Spudly as the most intelligent animal on the planet.
  3. Spudly is incapable of sleep!
  4. Only 55 percent of Americans know that the sun is made of Spudly.
  5. By tradition, a girl standing under Spudly cannot refuse to be kissed by anyone who claims the privilege!
  6. Julius Caesar wore a laurel wreath to cover up Spudly.
  7. Wearing headphones for an hour will increase the amount of Spudly in your ear 700 times.
  8. If you break Spudly, you will get seven years of bad luck!
  9. The state nickname of Iowa is 'The Spudly state'.
  10. A bride should wear something old, something new, something borrowed, and Spudly.
I am interested in - do tell me about

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Hi, I'm Panda. And You Are...?

Now, I have nothing against lurkers. You want to read but dont feel like talking, thats fine. Maybe you feel you dont have anything to add to the conversation, maybe you're shy, maybe you cant operate a know, whatever. Its all cool.

But I kinda think its good manners that, if you like what you read so much that you spend 6 hours a day over several days going through my entire archives, you drop me an email and say "hey, cool blog" or "hey, I've really enjoyed reading your story" or even "hey, you're a total trainwreck, its been real."

So would the person from or near Rhodes NSW who uses as their ISP please just say hi. And please dont turn out to be my goddamn brother.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Yeh, Well You and Your Cat.

Its amazing how much people give away about themselves by attempting to defend their actions to complete strangers.

Someone seems to not have a very good grasp of the English language, judging by the continued text messaging after having received the "do not contact me again" request. Man-way-lah, bless her fired-up little heart, sent the Fucktard an email reminding him of my request. It was a short email. Polite. A couple of sentences. It required no response.

Unfortunately HeWhoShallBeIgnored felt that the appropriate thing to do was to explain himself justify his actions in many long-winded paragraphs that actually ellicited no new information other than the fact that he is incapable of proper use of commas, officious to within an inch of his life and unable to communicate in any way that does not involve some use of bullshit pseudo-legal power trip.

Seriously, in his writing as in his speech, all that is missing from his Police Prosecutor role is the "I put it to you...I put it to you."

He sent yet another email last night, again long-winded excercise in self-justification, coupled with the re-writing of history (he's the sensitive caring one and I'm the evil foul-mouthed one who's confused about what he was talking about) and a pinch of either my mother lied to him or he lied to me.

It doesnt matter of course. I'm merely writing this down so that when insanity the urge insanity strikes me and I feel like I should be getting involved in this clusterfuck again, I can come back and remind myself of how bad it really is.

And by "it doesnt matter of course" I mean it matters in that "jesustapdancinchrist where do you people get all this crap from and why am I suddenly the bad guy when I've done nothing to anyone and maybe I've always been the bad guy to you all and never realised it until now and how the hell did THAT happen" kinda way.

Its very noisy inside my head as I try to put all this to rest. My parents are in their nursing home. All their belongings that I am "holding on to" and "refusing to return" will be given back to them tomorrow by Monkey Boy. The nursing home has been made aware of the family breakdown and that HeWhoShallBeIgnored is now the only contact for anything to do with their care. Tomorrow, as the very annoying Craig David song said, I'm walking away from the troubles in my life.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

And The Winner Is...

Dont be silly. You didnt think there was going to be a winner in this situation did you?

You know things are going badly when the first words you write in a text message to your brother are "You chickenshit motherfucker".

Last night was the final act in Familius Horribilus Retardum. And by final, I do mean final.

Mum and dad had their Aged Care Assessment done yesterday, a four hour procedure which was painful to say the least. At the end of it the Assessor had the same opinion of the situation that I do; my mother is suffering from some form of mental illness and my father should not be going home with her, if indeed she should even go home. For now they are being put into a nursing home for at least 12 weeks, and they will both be assessed for their future needs towards the end of that time. Good, good. Ways to get a psych assessment done were discussed and were to be followed up on.

You know I talked to my brother about this. Well, that is to say, I tried. I really really tried. But the second that I said things he didnt agree with, and I mean THE SECOND, he got abusive. The Assessor spoke to him yesterday, and because she didnt mention the psych assessment to him, Brother thinks I'm full of shit and trying to manipulate the entire situation the get them both "put away to rot". He proceeded to blame me for everything that has happened, told me it was all my responsibility to do something about it, ("How many HOURS, Panda, how many HOURS have YOU spent looking after them? Why werent YOU doing something to care for dad's welfare if you were SO concerned?") and made further insinuations that I had done absolutely nothing and he's the big fucking hero who actually cares in this scenario. He even demanded to know why I hadnt informed him of the situation. WTF??? Does he not remember this or this and countless other emails I have sent him telling him EXACTLY the situation.

He then proceeded further to bring up every possible failing (in his mind) on my part for my entire life and use it against me PLUS said that mum told him that I was holding on to her bank books and credit cards and refusing to give them back to her (she'd given them to me for safe-keeping, at HER request) and that I was trying to get control of their bank accounts. I tried talking to mum yesterday about Power of Attorney for her to prepare for the situation when she's not able to sign anything herself or cant get to somewhere to take care of stuff and she twists this to make me look like a fucking villain. AND THEN after about an hour of this bullshit, when he's hung up on us twice, he goes for the jugular...

and god knows what relevance this has to anything, says that "well maybe we are just tired of getting phone calls from mum and dad about them having to go and pick you up in a state in the middle of the night..." to which I told him how dare you bring up my teenage years and whats that got to do with anything anyway and he responded that "oh no this was only a short time before you married MonkeyBoy." Oh yes...the night that I HAD BEEN RAPED.

Lets just think about that for a minute...everything to do with the totally fucked up situation our mother had wilfully got herself and dad into is completely and totally your responsibility to have done something about and your fault that it occurred and as an example of your total failure and fuckup as a human being lets just drag out that time that you were such a total fuckup that you managed to get yourself raped and then WE HAD TO HEAR ABOUT IT.

I absolutely lost my shit at him, MonkeyBoy grabbed the phone off me and lost his shit at him, and my throat is stillhoarse from me screaming at him that I had no fucking brother anymore and never ever contact me again Its 12 hours later and I am still shaking. I dont think I have ever cried like that before, I really dont. I have never been so angry in my entire life. We got in the car and came down to the in-laws at midnight (a 90 minute drive) just to have some sane company.

He insinuated that I had something to do with mum's enormous credit card debt and then he actually demanded to know how I WANGLED being second agent for dad's Medical Power of Attorney and why he wasnt on there as third agent and why I didnt consider what would happen since I was pregnant and could be in labour, or under a general or or or... Well, fucktard, a) i wasnt even pregnant when the POA was signed, and b) you can only have two agents listed and c) you're on the other side of the fucking country and d) MUM WANTED ME AS SECOND AGENT.

He talked to me like I was one of his bloody suspects in a police interrogation. I have never heard such viciousness directed towards someone before. Even my ex was never that vicious and he was an alcoholic violent unmedicated manic-depressive. My own brother...

The only end to a text message that started as above is:

"Do not contact me again."

***The End***

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Some Very Late Night Rhetorical Questions Because I Cant Sleep For Angryness

How the bloody fuck does a woman on an Aged Pension (ie Sod All income) qualify for 3 credit cards with the same institution all with a credit limit of $20,000 and then proceed to rack up a credit card debt of FORTYFIVETHOUSANDDOLLARS at EIGHTEENPERCENTINTEREST????

Why does a woman who has refused all medical attention for 18 months and brought herself and her husband to the brink of death even get the freaking OPTION of saying "No" to any medical test that will determine the true state of her health once she is in hospital???? I'm sorry, but you "WONT HAVE A CT SCAN BECAUSE YOU KNOW YOU HAVENT HAD A STROKE"?????? And you're not in the Psych Ward WHY?????

And excuse me, but if you can ring BENNY HINN MINISTRIES and give them money and ask to be put on the PRAYER CHAIN why the fuck can't you ring the doctor who is THREE BLOCKS AWAY?????

And why should anyone believe you when you say you realise you did the wrong thing and you should've listened to your family and you are a stupid old woman and now you'll accept any help you can get WHEN YOU GET HOME when you come out with crap like b) above. Will accept any help...wont have a ct scan because you havent had a stroke. Am I the only person on the planet who sees righ through this ridiculous charade?????

These and other unanswerable questions circle continuously through my brain at 2am. Stupid fucking caffeine.

Friday, November 17, 2006

In Which She Realises Her Life Is Coming Precariously Close To Being Described As A Trainwreck

Right, so back to the story....

Mum and dad both in hospital. Dad is doing as well as you could expect for someone with severe dementia, incontinence, lack of proper nutrition and a possible cancerous growth under his eye that wasnt there three months ago. He is very confused, doesnt know he's in hospital when he's talking to me and is so thin...SO thin... Mum...well they are testing her for all sorts of stuff. He electrolyte levels and blood chemistry were so screwed up it was life threatening. In fact she probably would have been dead within 24 hours if she hadnt been brought in when she was. Her legs are being treated with IV antibiotics and bandaging, her hip (from 16 months ago) is fractured (THANK.YOU!) and her knee is dislocated or possibly there is a torn ligament, they havent even looked further than "its not broken" at this stage. Today or Monday she will be given a CT scan to check for evidence of a stroke. She will have a dementia screen, be assessed by an Occupational Therapist, be given physiotherapy and (on my request) will be given a psych assessment. And then...then...if she has what they call Testimentary Capacity, which is the ability to make a decision EVEN IF ITS ONE THAT PUTS HERSELF OR OTHERS IN DANGER she is allowed to go home. Do I even need to comment on how I feel about this? Thought not.

This week has been hell.

This has not been helped at all by the following:

After running around like a headless chook and making numerous phone calls and having meetings with the appropriate doctors and social worker etc so that I actually know what is going on and have alerted the staff to the history, I get a text message from brother: "Mum very upset about U (his emphasis) putting her in a home. We should work towards getting them both home."

This particular message had Monkey Boy on the phone to the Fucktard letting him know exactly how insulted I was about this (since I'd never said a word to mum about this, and its up to the doctors anyway, apparently) and trying to make him aware of exaclty how bad the situation is. MB got exactly nowhere. HE thinks he can stick his oar in from 3000km away when he's seen them twice in the last 12 months and takes what mum says as the foundation upon which to base his assessment of their needs. Well you know what? If he thinks he knows whats best for them then let him deal with the ramifications of that.

Last night I had to take some things to mum from their house. It was 7.45pm. We'd been out all day. Spudly was tired, hungry, and in the car in the parking lot. With Monkey Boy of course. I was trying to get away as fast as possible but at 8.20pm when mum was still blathering about CRAP I said several times that I what else would one respond to that other than "forget about the baby, there are other things to think about besides the baby. It wont hurt him to let him scream."?

Did we get that folks?

Ignore the needs of your child and pay attention to me., actually. You can go fuck yourself.

And this...this is after she has repeatedly told anyone who will listen that she didnt call me to ask for help because she didnt want to bother me when I had the baby to look after.

I dont know why that comment came like such a kick in the guts, but it absolutely floored me. Not helped, of course, by the line "now you have two children to look after" as I left.

Well, that's where you're wrong, mother dear. I have one child to look after, who is the most important thing in the world. There is NOTHING more important than him. HE is my child, he is my responsibility. are a grown woman who has chosen to not be responsible for her own life anymore. You are not my child to look after, and I will not put my family through any of your bullshit just because you have decided to behave like a child.

Fucktardus Siblingii will be coming here at the beginning of December, at which point there will be a "Family Conference" with the entire medical team and mum and dad. Oh joy. A family conference. Duck and cover; this will be nasty.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Monday, November 13, 2006

Site Feed

A brief note to those of you who read this blog via RSS feeds:

I have turned off my site feed to stop my posts appearing on the Bitacle site. From now on if you want to read this blog you actually have to visit me. Sorry 'bout that.

Pop by anytime. We have lots of coffee in the house.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Crisis We Had To Have

My parents are both in hospital.

My mother fell AGAIN and very badly hurt her knee. Doctor was called. Ambulance was called. Doctor shocked at general state of mother aside from broken knee, ie ulcerated legs and general starvingness. I call friend. Friend goes round to make sure dad okay. Father extremely distressed at being left alone without only carer. Father chokes on food and vomits. Ambulance called. Father taken to hospital as completely unable to care for self.

Panda gets to hospital, barely recognises either parent.

They are skeletons. Its clear they havent been eating. My mothers legs are lumps of raw and rotting flesh. She says she hasnt been able to wash for weeks and hasnt slept for weeks either and looking at her its easy to see thats the case. My father looks like he's about a week away from dying. I spoke to her a week ago and all she said was that she had been sick with v bad gastro. With what I know now its obvious that it wasnt gastro, it was her body shutting down.

We were at the hospital til midnight last night. I've had three hours sleep. Its obvious that neither of them will be going home again. 3 months ago...3 MONTHS...a nurse at their doctors surgery was informed of the situation with them and an appointment was made for her to go around and attend to my mothers legs as a pretext for getting someone in the door to assess them. Its clear she never went. What the fuck is up with the health system that when the medical profession is informed of patients in dire medical need they do NOTHING???

I cannot get the smell of my mothers legs off my own skin.

I expect a phone call from the hospital saying that they have both died. And I think it would be a blessing for both of them if they did.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Scrape THIS Bitacle!

I intended posting on this issue today anyway, but something rather serendipitous has occurred to make this post even sweeter. I love a touch of irony in the mornings...

A couple of you may have noticed a little comment on the last post from a lovely visitor called Anonymous. For those who havent, let me publish it here:

Pero que puta eres, y tu hijo es un hijo de puta bastardo de mala madre.

The lovely Lioness happened to be online when I received this in my inbox this morning and reluctanctly translated it for me:

"What a whore you are and your son is a son of a whore, son of a bad mother."

Charming, innit?

Want to know who sent it?

Really guys, if you're going to centre your entire website around stealing other people's content, allow people to leave comments and then spam me with hateful abuse for daring to point out ON MY STOLEN BLOG that I dont really appreciate the fact that YOU HAVE STOLEN MY ENTIRE BLOG, then have then sense to cover your tracks when you visit my ACTUAL blog.

BITACLE, you scum sucking bastards, you may have blocked my IP address so I can no longer access your website from home, but you cant block every IP in the world. And have you really disabled the comments feature now so people cant leave comments on your website thinking that this is actually my blog? Since I cant access your website I had someone else do it for me. No comments feature anymore...gee wonder why??? But you're dumb enough to leave your email address up.

You're also dumb enough to scrape even this post and display it on your website WITHOUT MY PERMISSION.

Please, next time you wish to abuse me for asserting my legal rights get your facts straight first: I never charge for sex.

Stop Bitacle

Sunday, November 05, 2006

We Are SO Hosed...

One day shy of his 7th month, Spudly decided that crawling is for chumps and stands up on his own and beats his toy box to death.

We are so not ready for this. Arent they supposed to crawl for at least a few months, just to get you ready for the idea that your house is actually a death trap?

Send help. And possibly restraints.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Okay, Okay...

I will stop ignoring the Blogger Dashboard button on my browser as it sits there all silent and accusing, waiting for monumental inspiration (or at least three active brain cells) to give me the impetus to post something deserving of anyone's attention.

Sure, there's stuff happening. It just doesnt strike me as particularly interesting stuff. I mean, does anyone really want to hear about my monumental attack of Salmonella courtesy of a rather large portion of Blue Castello cheese, which left me with a fever and not one ounce of fluid in my body for 48 hours, or all the work I've done in my garden weed pit jungle backyard that means we can not only see soil but can also plant stuff like vegetables in it - vegetables that our vast collection of earwigs and grasshoppers enjoy snacking on overnight - or the fact that doing lots of work outside means that no work gets done inside and therefore there hasnt been a clean work surface in the kitchen for about two weeks and its driving me INSANE. See, its just not interesting.

But in a vain attempt to rescue this from being one of those posts where one blogs about having nothing to blog about....

We have a TOOTH! We have clapping! We have independant standing up! It must be his magical wizard powers...

Sunday, October 15, 2006


For so long I have said to myself "I really must do something with my photography again." And what have I done? Nothing.

No more! Lala alerted me to JPG Magazine, the website where amateur photographers can submit their best work for publication. After much tearing out of hair that my photos arent good enough, I submitted this shot of Spudly falling asleep at my boob for their next issue.

I sure would appreciate it if you'd go vote for my submission if you deem it worthy.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Still Alive But Trapped Under Something Small And Screaming

Yeh, good one. Blog about how you dont get to do anything that resembles your old life and all you are is a wiper of bums and noses and then not be able to do ANYTHING other that wiping bums and noses for three whole weeks.

Perhaps I should blog about how all I am is a lady of leisure with wads of cash.

So, you know, there's no time for tales of dering-do right now, because something much more important has come up.

The Spud has today reached the grand old age of six months. SIX MONTHS!!!! At exactly this time six months ago I was about to have the epidural inserted, having given up all hope of dilating all on my very own like a big girl, and it was still 13 hours to go before he was pulled out of my twat with the Salad Tongs From Hell.

Right now the Bestest Baby Ever can sit unaided, manipulate two objects at once, play independantly with his toys, babble incessantly but most importantly says "Mamma". He loves solid foods, adores avocado and should probably never again be given beetroot unless I particularly want all objects stained purple as it goes in or his butt stained black as it comes out.

In the first few weeks of his life, I kept wondering when my life was going to get back to normal. Oh the naivete! Now I know better: that this is the new normality. I cant wear dresses or flimsy tops that allow no access to boobs. I cant stay up past 9.30 or stay in bed past 6am. I cant eat all the cheese I want without there Being Consequences. I cant go to the movies without some major organising. I cant shop for new clothes because every time I go near Target he starts screaming. Dinner has to be eaten quickly or or god knows Someone will start crying and it will go cold. Long showers without worrying whats going on in the living room dont exist. The washing AND the dishes have to be done everyday because there is no time to stand at the sink for an hour catching up with every piece of cutlery we own. I consider where to go out for lunch based upon how baby-friendly their facilities are. I dont care if my clothes are covered in baby puke. I dont care that every decision I make has to take into account a small nuggety type person, and I dont care that I cant do all those things previously mentioned.

Right now he is sitting on the floor on his playmat looking at me and saying "Mamamamama" and smiling. Oh, okay, now he's straining. And now he's stinky.

Its normality. And I love it.

Sunday, September 17, 2006


Am feeling very despondent about my knee, which may or may not require surgery and we wont know for a month. If its no better then its scans and Orthopedic Surgeons and being shunted through the public health system. Yeh!

My life has become so much about looking after other people now that I’m starting to forget all the cool, not-so-cool, downright horrid and really wonderful things I used to do and be. Right now I’m a mother and a wife and a Minister For Everything and occasionally a real-life friend, but not often. My only way of re-connecting to the person I was pre-Enspudification is through my writing at this point. So here’s what I’m gonna do.

I’m gonna write a list of things about me, you let me know what you wanna hear about. Maybe one day Spudly will read this and find out that his mother was more than the ass-wipin’, spoon-feedin’, blower-of-noses and taxi service and was, at one point, quite cool.

1. My adventures in drug-taking.
2. Dodgy things I have done (other than point 1.)
3. How I met Monkey-Boy.
4. That time I took my university to the Supreme Court.
5. How I took on my bank over my mortgage contract and won.
6. Returning to finish high-school as an adult.
7. The real story of my battle with depression and anxiety.
8. My brothers’ suicides.
9. How I fucked up my back and spent 6 months not being able to walk.
10. Umm...there is no 10. Ask me a random question.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Because I Really Need This Right Now

So its not enough that Monkey Boy has one arm for the foreseeable future and I am Minister For Everything. I also have to go and get myself one of these.

Right knee.

Fuckin fuckitty fuck.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Its All About Me

Lala asked me to write her bio the other day, which I dutifully did. It got me thinking. What do people know about me from just reading this blog. What impression do I leave? And how much does that relate to reality?

Lala responded in kind with the following witty missive.

Married to my twin
by Lala

Wait, that came out wrong.

She's married to a wonderfully intelligent, sensitive and funny man that she has, in the past, referred to as my twin.

THAT'S what I meant to say but I had to sensationalize to grab your interest, right?

No? Well, now that I have your attention, may I introduce the stunning and Gorm-endowed Panda.

Loving mother to Spudly, tolerant wife to the currently gimpy Monkey boy, confidante to roving infertiles (be they from the East or West coasts of Canadia), lover of caribou, cats and candy.

She's a renaissance woman with a deep intellect and sharp wit but not currently in possession of window screens. Some of her many talents include button hunting and hat sewing. She's a licker of many stamps but best of all, she calls me her friend.

What about it folks? What do you know about me? Write me a bio.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Crikey! What Was That?

Well, a stingray, as it turned out.

We all knew it was going to happen at some point. Go around sticking your fingers up an animal's butt and one of them is gonna get a mighty pissed at some point.

A lot of people loved him. Some people here where mighty embarrassed by him. I think Steve Irwin was one of those rare people who walked the walk along with talking the talk. He brought conservation and wildlife preservation to the public, made it accessible, made it watchable. More than that, he put his money where his mouth was and bought up huge tracts of land and made sure that they would be preserved.

Despite his unbelievable celebrity, he remained a regular bloke who you can imagine having round to your bbq and drinking all your beer. His death is a huge loss to the wildlife conservation movement, and to this country.

We'll miss you, mate.

Sunday, September 03, 2006


Spring has officially sprung, and with temperatures of 26 degrees (78F) I'm a bit happy about that.

This unseasonal weather and record-breaking drought brought to you by Global Warming. Here's a tour of the freakish happenings in our garden...

This is our mystery fruit tree. It came up five years ago, and this is the first time it has had blossom on it. I think it might be an Apricot, and I'm going to name it after myself; Apricotus Pandelicious

This is another mystery tree that came up on its own. We tried to kill it and it came back. Turned out to be a peach. Bonus.

Here's our Wisteria, climbing over the outdoor dunny. This one came up on its own too. I even tried to dig it up and thought I'd killed it. It came back stronger than ever. This Wisteria WANTS to live.

And yes, that did used to be a lawn. I think we may find El Dorado when we slash it.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Getting To Know Your Spud

The Spud Meme

Woohoo! I've been waching my mum do this tippy-tapping thing for months now and finally she lets me have a go. The adorable Lily from 2 Pink Lines has this thing called a meme going. I like her. She's heaps cute and older than me, but only just. Apparently she can crawl now and I'm heaps jealous. Soon enough I'll be able to chase her though and then she'd better look out.

3 Things That Scare Me

That Other Baby. He's not the one in the mirror I like so much.

Loud noises. Whats with all the hubub?

When my breakfast is too hot. I dont think food is supposed to hurt you.

3 People That Make Me Laugh

My mamma.

My pappa.

Auntie Lealu.

3 Things I Love

Being nude. I can get to my toes easier then.

Waddles the duck. I like chewing his nose.

When mamma makes Cookie Monster noises on my neck. It tickles and sounds funny and I go all squealy.

3 Things I Hate

Those long boring shopping trips to some yellow and blue place that aint so versatile as far as I can tell, and to some other place with a bullseye out the front. That's really dangerous.

Some yellow mush that mamma tried to get me to eat that she said was yummy but wasnt and then she tried it and agreed with me. See! I know what I like!

Getting dressed.

3 Things I Don’t Understand

How I get from mamma's arms to my bouncy sleepy place.

Why I have to be strapped in so damn tight.

Why I have to wear pants.

3 Things On My Desk/Table (or play mat) (or baby jail)

Waddles the Duck.

My favourite rattle.

A bib covered in last night's dinner. I'm saving it for snacks.

3 Things I’m Doing Right Now

Planning the Revolution

Subverting the dominant paradigm.

Filling my nappy.

3 Things I Want to Do Before I Die


Stick my foot all the way in my mouth.

Have hair.

3 Things I Can Do

Stick my left foot in my mouth and chew on my big toe.

Play with two rattles at once. Two! Booya!

Get apple in my ear.

3 Ways to Describe My Personality



Chilled. (except when that Other Baby visits)

3 Things I Can’t Do

Sit up on my own, but I will. You just wait.

Talk so people understand me. I think they're a bit thick around here.

Fart without pooping. Jeez that's annoying.

3 Things I Think You Should Listen To

Jamiroquai. Thats some funky beats.

My daddy coz he makes funny noises.

Buena Vista Social Club, cos when I hear those latin grooves I just gotta wave my feets around like this...weeheee.

3 Things I Think You Should Never Listen To

Other babies screaming. Its so unsettling.

The cordless drill. Me no likee.

My mamma saying "no".

3 Absolute Favorite Foods




3 Things I’d Like to Learn

Where that yummy stuff is hidden.

Why there's an ouchy feeling when I shove my fist in my mouth and chomp.

How to escape the car seat, because then I wouldnt have to go to bloody Ikea all the time.

3 Beverages I Drink Regularly




3 Shows I Watched as a Kid

Big Brother: At first I thought mamma was getting a new baby. Why DO they call it Big Brother?

Bold & The Beautiful: their babies seem to grow up really fast. I hope I grow up that quickly.

The Simpsons: I'm glad I'm not yellow.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

New! Improved!

If you see me walking down the street today, you'll notice something different about me.

Its not my hair. Its not my confident stride. Its not the fact that I've had 8 hours sleep and dont make random grunting noises.

Its the fact that I am no longer gormless.

Thanks Ikea, for providing me with an incredibly Versatile Solution for my Storage Needs.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I got nothin'.

As Cherice pointed out in her comment on the last post, I am currently the Minister for Everything (which doesnt seem to include Minister For Eating All The Pies, sadly) in this house and Spudly is definately not making the job any easier. Whinge whinge cry, cry cry puke, whinge whinge gas, gas gas brake...

Anyway, I've finally got my shit together and updated my Flikr account, so if you click on the clicky think over there in the sidebar you can check out more photos of Sir Whingealot.

And here's one we prepared earlier; Spudly Does Solids.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

4 Months, Surgery and Why I Should Move Cities.

Lets start with the feel-good stories.

Spudly is now 4-and-a-bit months old. At yesterday's weigh-in he was 6.74kg and 64cm long. This explains why he is getting far to heavy for me to carry around, and why no matter how hard I try to stretch them, his cute little star suit and bunny onesie He's growing up, before my eyes, and while I delight in all the little achievements he's made, it just reminds me that one day he wont be a baby anymore. He'll be going to kindy and then school and dealing with Other Children and Other Adults and they wont necessarily think he is the most wonderful person on the planet and wont make him the centre of their universe. I KNOW! How is this possible? It just aint right.

Two achievements of the last week stand out. On Friday he discovered the joys of sticking out his tongue. Yesterday he discovered that if you stick your tongue out and then blow it makes FANTASTIC NOISES and sometimes even LOTS OF BUBBLES and this is the MOST EXCITING THING EVER!!!!! Today, in response to his increased formula intake, he has started on solids. Yes! Solids! Though why some bland mush is termed "solids" I'll never know. Spudly gave the appropriate facial expressions (what the hell is this crap and why are you putting it in my mouth???) but he did eat it. And then he opened his mouth for more. And more. And some of it went down his front but mostly it went in his gob and he didnt complain about it so I can only put that down as a Success.

Moving right along to My Role As Nursemaid... Monkey Boy now has two lovely incisions in his shoulder, a sling and a prescription for morpheine. I didnt really appreciate how much I rely on him for help with Spudly until he wasnt available anymore. Nor did I realise exactly how demanding Spudly is. He likes attention, does my boy. He likes attention and he likes it NOW. And no, I dont want to wait until you've gone to the loo and I dont want to wait until you come back into the room with my bottle, I want ALL MY PEOPLE HERE, RIGHT NOW! Monkey Boy will have the sling for another week, and will be out of action for another 4-6 weeks. By which time the rest of my hair will have fallen out.

And now for the number one reason why people want to leave this city, made only too obvious to me recently.

There may be one million people here but you can guarantee that there are only two degrees of seperation between them all. You cannot do a bloody thing without running into someone you know or finding out that someone you know knows someone else you know but through links you didnt know existed. And sometimes that person is someone you've tried damn hard to get out of your life for a long long time. And sometimes the person that knows them is family.

And so it was for me when we last had a family lunch with the rest of the Monkey Boy clan. Monkey Boys elder sister, Vegan Girl, mentioned in passing people she had brought down to the parents property in the country, people who'd hated it because there was nothing to do in the country. Then she mentioned their names. It was like a kick in the guts.

How do you know Skankface and Dr Evil? I asked. (and yes, thats their real names). She works with Skankface. Is very very VERY good friends with Skankface. Has a lot of RESPECT for Skankface. My sister-in-law. Respect. For the woman that almost 5 years ago took advantage of our friendship and my alchohol-sodden unconscious self and sexually assaulted me.

What does one do?

Well, first one freaks out totally and absolutely.

Then one gets home and gets on to gmail chat and freaks out to Lala who gives excellent advice.

Then one does the next hardest thing and goes to see parents-in-law and tells them the situation. Because a) Vegan Girl has to know that Skankface cannot under any circumstances know that VG and I are now related, where I am or that I even exist anymore. b) VG and her partner must know because the stories she was telling about Skankface made it abundantly clear that she had not changed her attitude to the appropriate/inappropriate behaviour distinction and they were therefore both at risk, and c) VG, being in the past prone to outbursts of uncontrolled anger, may not react at all well to what we had to tell her and therefore the inlaws had to be forewarned of the possibility of major fuckuppage as far as that relationship went.

The greatest fear for me was that VG would react the way so many of my friends did at the time of the assault. It took me a long time and a lot of therapy to accept that the way they handled it was unacceptable. You dont say to someone who has just been sexually assaulted by a friend "I cant believe that she would do that. There must be some mistake. Lets give her a second chance. Oh and by the way, we've invited both of you to the same parties so make nice and dont cause a scene." Okay no-one actually said that last bit, but it was still there, hanging in the air.

So while I was lunching with two internet buddies, Monkey Boy was lunching with Vegan Girl. Who not only took it much better than expected, but also wanted to know if we'd like to take out a contract on her. I dont want to know if she was serious. Not that I have the money anyway. But y'know... if you're a hit man with nothin to do...*

The truly worst thing about this is that I felt safe within the Monkey Boy clan. They are like a high wall protecting all within from the worst the world offers up. Until one of the worst things my world offered up to me managed to get inside, and now I know that no matter what I am not safe.

I'm thinking I might go build on my real estate on the Moon.

Erg. Heavy. Too heavy. Look at the pretty...

* I am joking. Dont come raid my house and arrest me n stuff.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Weekly Wrap-Up

Mamma still needs gin because she didnt get the birthday oysters on account of the fact that Someone wouldnt stop screaming in the car on the way back home for dinner, ergo straight to bed (him) without any dinner (me).

I did have a very nice birthday, thankyou very much. I even got to be assaulted by a kangaroo

and stalked by a peacock.

In addition, Spudly, now being a Very Big Boy, graduated from the capsule to the car seat...

and on the day he turned 4 months old, he grabbed his left foot with both hands and shoved it in is mouth.

We're very proud.

The shit that had hit the fan has been dealt with but has left a godawful stench, which I am currently trying to overpower with patchouli. Okay, okay, its not patchouli, its red wine. Will write about this later, maybe.

Monkey Boy goes in for surgery on his shoulder on Thursday, after a 2 year wait. It will be wonderful when its healed and he can do stuff without pain, but until then I get to be the Nursemaid, Chief Cook, Bottle-Washer and Sole Parent, and Wont That Be Fun.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Happy Birthday To Me!

Today I am officially one year older and hopefully one year wiser. Certainly one year closer to 40, which just does my head in.

So today will be spent at our first Playgroup with some New Chums (toys! sandbox!) followed by a visit to a wooden toy factory in the shape of a giant rockinghorse because apparently Spudly needs blocks.

His mamma needs oysters and gin.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


From two people, and you can argue amongst yourselves about which one I actually stole it off.

There's been shit going on that I just dont want to write about at this point and cant activate my brain to write about anything else, so here's some bloggy "hold" music until the shit has been cleaned from the fan.

You can steal this too. Well, since I just gave you permission, it aint stealing. The things emboldified I'm admitting to. The things not emboldified I either havent done or wont admit to in public. You be the judge.

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said 'I love you' and meant it
09. Hugged a tree

10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Southern Lights [ed: adjusted for this hemisphere]
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby's diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower [ed: Leonid Meteor shower. truly awesome]
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was shit faced
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Posed nude in front of strangers
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie [ed: well, tv show. I think that still counts]
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an "expert"
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music.
87. Eaten shark
88. Had a one-night stand
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children (still working on this one!)
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. Created and named your own constellation of stars
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Petted a stingray
110. Broken someone's heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show [I think prizes should count too]
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Petted a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146: Dyed your hair
147: Been a DJ
148: Shaved your head
149: Caused a car accident
150: Saved someone's life

Sunday, July 30, 2006

You Knew This Would Happen, Right?

I had to visit my parents on Friday. So you know where this post is going.

First, lets get the bitching out of the way.

You may remember that my brother visited back in May for my father's 90th birthday. Since I didnt see him, he left a present for Spudly with the folks.

A slight detour to give the backstory: when I were a wee thing, I had a china Bunnykins bowl. I started eating solids from this bowl. I remember eating cereal out of it before I started school. With nary a thought that I may like to have it for MY kids, my mother gave this bowl to my brother when he had his first child. I have never got over this. Call me bitter if you like. You'd be right. The bowl had sentimental value to me, and none to him. Not to mention the fact that it is now worth a fortune. [She also gave his son my STAMP COLLECTION without asking me. MINE. I spent my whole childhood collecting those stamps. Gave.them.away. Yes. Bitter.]

Back to the other day: So what, therefore, could be the most ironic present my brother could give me? A Melamine Bunnykins set. MELAMINE people. Not MY BOWL. Some cheap-ass replica of my bowl. Harumph!

Now to the olds...

Mother had brother go get money from the atm for her back in May. 2 weeks ago, after stretching the money as long as possible on the food purchasing, she ran out. And ran out of food. Oh, well, except for 3 tiny tins of peas, half a cup of sugar, a dash of milk, a teaspoon of jam and a small wadge of cheese. What did she do? She had COFFEE WITH LOTS OF SUGAR IN IT when she felt hungry. Fuck knows what my father ate; probably nothing going by how much weight he has lost.

Mother has still not seen a doctor about her fall, despite this now being over 12 months ago. Still uses the walking frame, still cant get into her own bed, still in pain. More importantly, still cant wear her support stockings for her severe varicose veins and thrombosis, so her legs and feet are now massively swollen to the point where her skin is cracking. My fear is that she will end up with a clot in her heart or brain and that'll be that.

Monkey Boy asked if I said anything to her about this, but what's the point? Really? Nothing will happen except more banshee screaming, and who needs that?

If I think about it too long I will get very angry at the system that allows this to happen. My hands are tied, and the doctors will not get involved unless either my mother or father asks for help, despite the fact that they are both manifestly mentally incompetant to do so.

OH! AND! The local gp they saw to get a referral to the Geriatician? The one who never saw my mother as a patient? Continues to write scripts for her blood pressure medication and faxes them to the chemist despite NEVER having taken my mother's blood pressure.

How is this "doing no harm"?

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Reality Bites

Truth be told, I have never looked in the mirror and really seen my body. I, like so many other women, look and see what I think it looks like. It’s not true that I never had a weight problem. I never had an overweight problem. I had have a “body image problem”, an underweight problem, a…okay I have an eating disorder.

I never binge and then throw up food, nor do I think that every morsel of food that goes into my mouth is going to make me fat. I’ve only recently had it described to me as a form of OCD. My thing, that I didn’t even realize I did until last year in therapy, is that in times of stress when everything in my life seems to be going out of control, I stop eating. The only thing I can maintain any control over is what is going in to my body, so I stop putting anything into it. How fucked up is that?

For a number of months before I met Monkey Boy, I was so proud of myself for getting through each day on a glass of fruit juice and a toasted muffin with jam and cream. That was it. Oh, and the cigarettes that I chain smoked in order to conquer my appetite. I was 5’8” (173cm) and weighed 8 ¾ stone (58kg). My hip bones stuck out, my ribs were clearly visible. I fit into size 8 clothing. SIZE 8. (For you Time of Charlemagne types, this is the smallest adult dress size). I looked in the mirror and was not horrified by the skeleton before me; I saw large thighs that could use a few inches off them and a butt that was no longer pert.

I did gain weight once I was in a safe relationship. I went back to my normal size 12 and you could no longer count my ribs from across the room, but the disorder was still there. Much to my horror it remained even after I realized it existed. Apparently, knowledge of the existence of a problem doesn’t just make it go away. What’s THAT about? I was so sure that since I knew what the issue was and what the triggers for my hunger-strike were, I would just be able to recognize when I was doing it and stop.

Hmph. Seems it doesn’t work that way. Why not? is what I’d like to know. [Sidebar: yes, I have now accepted my status as a total control freak since I was angry I couldn’t control the eating disorder that manifests when I don’t have control.]

Let’s face it; having a new baby is probably the situation in which one is going to feel the least in control, but not even breastfeeding and needing to increase my caloric intake made me able to stop. I couldn’t even make myself eat properly for the Spud. I really scratch my head and wonder why I can’t choose to exert control over this disorder with as much willpower as I clearly have to control my food intake.

When I look in the mirror at 3 months post-partum I REALLY don’t recognize the body I see. Not only have I retained 6 kilos of pregnancy weight (that’d be the ├ęclairs) but the belly is all saggy baggy and definitely NOT about to be shown off in skimpy little midriff tops like it was when I was 30 weeks pregnant. Nor are my thighs ever going to see the light of day again. Actually, I’d prefer it if they never even saw the dark of day again: it’s just too horrendo. I think I’ll stay fully clothed at all times. I’m at the high end of the proper weight range for my height. It just seems like all that weight has now deposited itself between my navel and knees. I dislike the way my body looks now more than I’ve ever disliked it before, and I worry that not even upping the dose of Prozac [excellent OCD meds] will stop the hunger-strike returning.

Consequently, there was a moment of serendipity today when I came across a blog called Shape Of A Mother, where women can post pictures of their pregnant and post-pregnancy bellies and their stories of how their bodies changed after childbirth. If “mommy blogs” are all about telling the truth about motherhood, about “keeping it real”, then this is the ultimate in reality checks. Saggy bits, stretch marks from hell, its all there. It was a relief, a real relief to see my body in the photos posted by other women and knowing that they all look in the mirror and don’t recognize themselves either. So it’s not just me. We all look like this. This is what pregnancy does. This is what childbirth does. This is what breastfeeding does. This is the price you pay for becoming a fully-realized mammal.

I’m guessing that the price you pay for being a mother is relinquishing control.

I’m also guessing Spudly is going to teach me more than I’m going to teach him.

Monday, July 17, 2006

I beg to observe, that, of all the boys in the world, I believe this is the best boy.

Paraphrasing Dickens, of course, but it's true. We have the best boy.

I wasn't really aware of how developmentally accelerated Spudly is until last night, when we visited his new friend who is 4 weeks old. New Friend is smaller than the Spud was at birth, but weight-wise not significantly so. But even now, at one month old, he looks like Spud did at 4 days. Its in the eyes, in the head control and in his interactions.

We had to double-check this by going through all our photos this morning. Spud stopped looking like a newborn and started looking like a switched-on little person at one week. The difference just blows me away.

I'm guessing that somewhere in the chaos of the last 14 weeks we've stimulated the right pathways in his brain, the ones that tell him the world is interesting and that people are great and he is safe and secure. He's the only baby I've ever met that loves...LOVES...everyone.

And look...look how much the formula agrees with him:

And just because I'm feeling like an exceptionally proud mamma today, some gratuitous cute Spudly shots.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Here's One I'll Probably Regret Later

Monkey Boy has warned me against opening up this particular can of worms, and just to give him an opportunity to say "I told you so" and be right, I'm going to ignore his advice. Love you honey.

I recently pimped myself to joined up with Blogs By Women, a directory of (obviously) women bloggers. I had a look at their own blog and found a link to BlogSheroes: The Feminist Bloggers Network. With nothing better to do than to waste my download quota for the day, I had a look. And a thought occurred to me: isnt the term "feminist blogger" somewhat tautological? How can a woman be a blogger and not be a feminist? Isnt the very nature of being a) female and b) having a voice courtesy of blogging and writing about our lives in an honest way a feminist act in itself?

Monkey Boy disagrees with the notion that a woman can not be a feminist. I cant fathom a woman who does not believe in equal pay for equal work, the creation of a level playing field, the right to vote, the right to say "no", the right to control her fertility, the right to be treated with respect. To me, being female automatically implies being a feminist. To Monkey Boy, "feminist" is as ugly a word as its male counterpart, "chauvinist", implying seperatist notions, male-bashing, and unshaved armpits. I agree that this view of feminism is indeed ugly (especially the armpits) and I have never felt comfortable with a group of women who wish to sit around bagging men and spelling "women" with a "y" and two "m"s. But I'm not convinced that this is feminism, or if it is, its a version that is as old as the ashes of the bras that were once burned. I'm also not comfortable with the women who say "I'm not a feminist, but..." Maybe I'm just not comfortable with women. And if that's the case, can I still be a feminist?

So what is it that defines a feminist? Is it blaming men for everything whilst striving so hard to be just like them? Is it believing all people deserve to be treated equally in some circumstances or to have barriers removed so they can participate equally in others? Is it about respecting each other's differences? If you're a married stay-at-home mother who took her husband's surname and makes killer scones are you a traitor to the cause?

I'm really interested to find out what it is that YOU think defines a feminist.

Happy Happy Joy Joy

While refraining from using the "c" word (congratulations) I will now indulge myself in proliferous use of the PREGNANT word and point you in the direction of a PREGNANT Manuela, who has just embraced her PREGANTNESS after the latest startling and very very PREGNANT BETA.

Here's a chick who deserves all the congratulations in the world, but I will restrain myself as she has requested.

I will, however, say I am so freakin' happy for her and Mr. P that I just want to burst.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Oozing Hip-ness

Spudly gets lots of attention when we do our regular grocery shopping, because he's carried around in the Hug-a-Bub sling and because he's so damn cute. So its no big thing to have someone staring at him when we're in the lift back to the carpark. Of course she's staring. This is the cutest baby the world has ever seen. Who could resist him?

Imagine my distress when I put the Spud into the car and discover that aforementioned woman was not gawping at my son's beauty, but at the volume of thick white PUKE he had expectorated all over my hip "I really do have a place in the world and can get dressed before twelve" outfit.

Baby puke: its the new black.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Fuck You Too, Blogger

You dumb-ass piece of shit, you swallowed half my template and spat it out your dumb-ass somewhere near the Orion Nebula.

Most of my links have gone, so please dont think I've just dissed you. I have to find you all again.



Well after FOUR FREAKIN HOURS I hope all the links are a) there and b) work. Let me know if you find a problem.

Cheers, and thanks for nothin, Blogger. Fix your goddamn bugs!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Shameless Self-Promotion

Since this describes me to a T (what IS that saying about? Do I look "T"shaped?) I considered it behooved me to join their Blogroll. Over there in the sidebar you'll find a big list of chicks who have a meaningful relationship with their computer.

Broaden your horizons and click on some of 'em.

Monday, July 10, 2006

In Which We Battle The Mucous...Oh The Mucous

You know you love your child when you have mucous secreting itself from (almost) every orifice, your ears are plugged up with something the consistency of road tar and your throat currently contains a rock covered in sandpaper and you still dont mind being up at 4am rocking him (hopefully) back to sleep. So this is parenthood.

As it turned out, he didnt go back to sleep. The 4am screamfest turned into a 5.30am breakfast snack and we're all still awake and arent we jolly about that.

Who are these morons saps people who think that having a child will help their (usually failing) marriage? What on earth would possess someone to think that having 2 adults sick enough to want to die and a baby with a temperature and some weird-ass cough thing going on who hasnt pooed in 3 days but continues to produce the MOTHER of all stinky farts and will NOT settle down and go to sleep is a sure-fire way of bringing you closer to your significant other? Because when the shrieking starts and drills through your head and your partner has to yell to be heard over the noise...then...then running away with Jack Sparrow looks like a Really Good Idea.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

The Second Post For The Day or I'm Not Really A Sellout If I Believe In The Thing I'm Promoting. Am I?

Normally I totally ignore all the stuff that comes to my inbox from the plethora of blog directories I pimped myself to signed up with. I dont even know why I bothered opening this one particular email this morning. The lure of 20 free credits certainly isnt usually enough to generate enough interest to double click yet again. Maybe it was because Mercury is in retrograde (thanks for pointing this out Kevin), maybe it was because I've been sleep deprived for several days now and my decision making capabilities are not at their sharpest. Maybe it was because I needed to read what was contained therein for the goodness of my soul.

I choose Mercury In Retrograde, thanks Bob.

Whatever. I come clean now and say that those nice people over at BlogExplosion lured me to this website with the promise of 20 free credits to my account if I would please visit aforementioned nice website and write a blog entry about it. Now, I'm not one of those hussies who sell their souls to the devil (unlike those A-list Hollywood types who do shameless product endorsement but only in Japan or Outer Mongolia). I have Principles. My opinion cannot be bought and sold. Despite this I took their golden carrot and ventured forth into the murky world of Cash-For-Comment.

Fortunately, I liked what I saw. It appeals not only to the armchair activist in me but also to the philosopher, the wanna-be-but-is-too-cynical-politician and possibly also the inner child that still asks "but whyyyyyy?"

We all have questions about the world, about our society and culture, that we'd like answers to. More often than not these questions seem so big and daunting that we cant think of them as anything but rhetorical. Can there ever be an answer to "why do we claim that everyone is equal and judge the next person we meet?" or Does freedom of thought really exist?

Dropping Knowledge is an international collective whose mission is to collect such questions from people around the world and present them at their Table of Free Voices event in Berlin on September 9.

From their website:

"dropping knowledge will bring together 112 inspiring individuals to drop their knowledge at 100 of these questions; the answers will be filmed, generating some 600 hours of footage. The "ask yourself" campaign, Table of Free Voices and other dk activities exemplify the practice of asking and answering questions. Together, these activities pave the way for participation in the Living Library. "

The Living Library is an initiative that, from what I can gather, will act as a cross between a database and a giant chat-room, bringing together differing viewpoints on issues of global importance and acting as a kind of brain-storming session to develop solutions to our most pressing issues.

As a philosophy graduate, I believe that one should never stop asking questions even if you dont get answers to them. It is the asking itself that is important, that changes mindsets, that opens up possibilities. Do I think that this Table of Free Voices will come up with any concrete answers to the 100 questions that will be posed? No, I dont. Even if they did, who would actually commit themselves to do what was necessary? After all, we know the solutions to global warming but we cant even get our own government to commit to Kyoto. Indeed, one of the questions that has been submitted is Are asking questions going to motivate someone to take action? (by Michael Pokocky , 51, Ste-Adele/Quebec, Canada)

I think that the most important role Dropping Knowledge will play is in the mere posing of the questions, perhaps encouraging people to consider issues that wouldn't normally even occur to them. Issues such as this:

The Baby Drop Box at Altonaer Children’s Hostpital, Hamburg, Germany, is an alternative to infanticide.

Maybe the key to changing the world is knowing which questions to ask.

What A Difference A Year Makes

One year ago today two people who loved each other very much did something most couples take for granted: they had sex for fun. I know. I KNOW!! They didnt think about propping hips, about the sperm-killing qualities of massage lotion or about having to "clean the pipes" beforehand. They didnt care about the time of the month. Can you imagine??? It wasnt so much that they had given up on ever being able to conceive; they were of thinking about these things all.the.time.

One year ago today, possibly the one remaining non-ugly sperm somehow managed to make its way past the massage lotion and the thickened cervical mucous (without falling out) all the way up to the fallopian tube to meet one of the eggs that had been released that month without going polycystic. They made polite small talk: possibly even asked do you come here often? Then, much like the people they belonged to, they decided straight away that they should get together and make a baby.

One year ago today the thing the medicos said couldnt happen, happened.

One year.

And we've gone from this:

to this:

And it blows me away every single day.

Monday, June 26, 2006

"They Wont Remember A Thing"

It's one of those ever-so-useful platitudes that people like to trot out whenever your baby is undergoing some painful procedure like immunisations or being made to dress up like a caribou. Like most platitudes it is supposed to be helpful, alleviate stress and/or guilt, reassure parents that they have done the right thing (well, maybe not the caribou suit) and make the person who said it feel better. Like most plattitudes, it does none of these things except the last, and it isn't true.

Here's the thing: they may not consciously remember their first needle or that time you spilled red wine on them (okay the time I spilled the red wine) or the fact that mum and dad were not getting along too well or the time you left them to Cry It Out, but you cant tell me that it doesnt affect (affect? effect? I never bloody know) them and leave some sort of mark upon their personalities.

Babies' brains are blank slates when they are born, and their earliest experiences shape the physical structure of the brain itself. The process of interacting with its people and its environment stimulates various parts of the brain, impacting not only on the number of brain cells and the number of connections between them but also the way in which these connections are wired. Over-stimulate the part of the brain that deals with stress responses and you will develop a brain that reacts as if a stress response is required even when it isnt.

When I understood this (for I didnt even realise this was the case until a few weeks ago) it had a profound affect on me. For two reasons. Firstly, the realisation that every.single.thing I do shapes Spudly's personality. Everything. Crying every evening because he was starving and we couldnt figure that out: some brain cells were stimulated and others died because of it. Holding him close for the better part of every day and responding immediately to his cries that mean "my butt's all poopy" "I'm gassy" and "I'm unsettled and feel like a grizzle" stimulate the warm and fuzzy pathways. On the whole, I think the warm and fuzzy pathways are winning out, but what a totally awesome (in the true sense of the word) responsibility. Obviously, I understood before that how we treat Spudly affects how he behaves in the world and how he feels about himself and others, but I didn't consider that how we treat him physically changes his brain so that he wont be able to respond differently to how WE hard-wire him. Fuck that's huge.

Secondly, it made me realise some things about myself. Since Spudly was born I've often ruminated upon what life was like in the House of the Mini Panda. My mother has told tales of being home after her 6 week hospital stay (following pre-eclampsia, 7 day labour, emergency c-section, baby born not breathing and not being able to see her for 3 days, and not having any milk to feed her) and being expected by the Husband and the Three Teenage Sons to pick up where she left off, i.e. her rightful position as their personal slave. She cried into the bucket of nappies on a regular basis from what I gather, and had to deal with not only the expectations of four less-than-enlightened males but also a baby who wouldnt stop screaming or go to sleep without the addition of Baby Valium (I shit you not). Knowing my father and brothers as I do, its not hard for me to picture the atmosphere in that house. The tension, the arguments, the screaming (not just from me) and more than likely the physical abuse. Is it any wonder that that baby grew up into a child and then adult with severe anxiety issues? Is it any wonder that she has suffered depression most of her life? Is it any wonder that a sudden loud voice, whether in anger or in fun, sends chills down her spine and does weird squidgy things to her guts?

For so long I put these things down to the things in my life that I could remember. The physical abuse my mother and I suffered from my father, the abuse I suffered from my mother, the violent relationship I ended up in with Fuckhead. The depression and anxiety disorder I put down to me being somehow weak or not made of strong enough moral fibre. I'm not denying the profound effect my remembered experiences have had on my personality, but what a shock it is to realise that the things I cant remember have had the biggest impact of all.

I'm not even sure how I feel about this. Relieved. Disturbed. Angry. Sad. Mostly relieved, I think. It goes a long way towards explaining why now that I'm in a loving, safe and supportive environment I feel like I'm out of my comfort zone and have to continually remind myself that this is a Good Thing. My comfort zone is that which was hard-wired into me in infancy. And its not a place I want to or should stay.

Speaking of the things they wont remember, here's some evidence for later court trials:

Mamma and Spudly do that 'net thing

Spudly says "Lemme see what you're doin..."

In case you cant quite read his t-shirt...

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