Thursday, December 31, 2009

Ode To Ruby

On my bed she sleeps
I come home, she is waiting
Marbles, toy of choice

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Oh man...so it wasn't the Dragon after all

Apparently the phone I wanted, the HTC Dragon, is not the Dragon after all but the HTC Nexus One.



However, technology comes out at such a fast rate. Since my last post, Google's phone (exclusively) is said to be released sometime in the first quarter of next year. What will that phone look like and will it be cutting edge technology?

I can't wait to donk off my roll to get a new phone early next year.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Hooray for Holidays!

The big perk for being a teacher is that you get 6 weeks of holiday during the Christmas break. Not sure what I am going to do yet. I have plans up until New Years but nothing beyond. A break was definitely need. It was such hard work because the school that I am teaching at is so full on. I was wondering if I was going to get attached to the kids because I am such a sentimental fool, but I was alright. The only time I came close to losing it, was during the kids prize giving. I felt so proud of them all.

I am looking forward to teaching the younger ones next year. I've already gotten my class list and everyone has told me what great kids I have for next year!

Hoping to blog a little more during the holidays and post some more book reviews.

Ciao

Saturday, November 07, 2009

There ain't no motive for this crime

Singles promote artists. Radios play a hot single over and over again...6...8 times a day is not too many. Singles generate a lot of money for the artist and their respective music companies but it also makes sure that the artists are constantly in the music charts.

With the digital age came the ability to buy/download a single and only a single (rather than buying a whole album or even a singles "tape/disk" which came with b-sides) which came (possible) unforeseen consequences.

Good: Music is more easily accessible
Bad: There are less album sales
Good: Those reduced sales are offset by increased single sales
Bad: Artists' non-single songs are not being listened to

That last consequence is what lead me to write this article. I love listening to albums. You get so much more from listening to albums. Don't get me wrong, singles are great but there are many hidden gems in albums. If you never listen to albums then you never get to listen to a 'Concept album'. These albums have songs that are unified by a theme. The band that put concept albums to the forefront were The Beatles with St. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Wall by Pink Floyd and more recently The Black Parade by My Chemical Romance. These albums show you a lot about the bands as artists.

By listening to only singles, you lose so much artistic impression. However I may be barking up the wrong tree. Perhaps what I've said in this post is only true of Pop music where concept albums are pretty much non-existent so those that buy only singles lose nothing.

Thats probably why I don't listen to pop music (not really true, I don't like pop music for many more reasons).

To show my appreciation of the bands I like and non-singles. Here is my top 10 (no repeated bands) list of non-singles.

1) Mayonaise by Smashing Pumpkins
2) What Sarah Said by Death Cab for Cutie
3) Jenny was a Friend of Mine by The Killers
4) Skyline and Turnstiles by My Chemical Romance
5) A Certain Romance by Arctic Monkeys
6) Under Control by The Strokes
7) Showbiz by Muse
8) Soft Shock by Yeah Yeah Yeahs
9) Burn by The Cure
10) Holiday by Weezer


Honourable mentions: Airbag by Radiohead, She's Electric by Oasis, I Could Have Lied by Red Hot Chili Peppers, Hey Johnny Park! by Foo Fighters, Relapse by Little Birdy

Can you come up with a list of non-single songs that you really like? It is harder than you think.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Digital Window Shopper

I've been looking at buying a lot of things on the internet lately without actually buying anything.

I've always wanted a cool phone since the first every iphone came on the market but could never justify the money to buy one, especially being a poor student at the time of its release. Lately I've been having a few other ideas and have been wanting the HTC - Hero which looks sexy as.

My friend James Farrier is also a big phone fan and we've been swapping url links to different sites. With him being in Australia, the phones are cheaper and they get the latest models. However there is a new HTC that will come out soon and I think I might get it. I recently got a $500usd windfall so that can help take a big chunk of that.


This is supposedly a leaked picture of the HTC - Dragon.
1GHZ Snapdragon processor
Android v2.0
4.3inch screen with 800x600 resolution

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Undie 500

The Undie 500 is an annual event that starts off in Christchurch (NZ) and ends in Dunedin. It is an event held by students who travel in cars worth under $500. Sounds fun? Yeah it does. However, every year police have arrested many people because of riotous behaviour. This year was no exception with 20 people being arrested but it was a drop from last years number of 50 so that is a positive.

Well that's what police thought...

Last night another 60 people were arrested after police faced a mob of 600 people. They used so much pepper spray that they had to call for more.

I understand mob mentality but what I don't get is why people would want to join the Undie 500 knowing that it ends in riots. What I really don't get it why people would want a second night of it. These people who start the riots are not known criminals (well I don't think so) but university students who are supposedly semi-intelligent.

There must be something seriously wrong down there in the South Island because this isn't an isolated incident but happens year after year. Police have said that any arrested don't get diversion because of the no-diversion policy for the Undie 500.

I hope they all get convictions. Idiots.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

10 things we hate to pay for....Yeah Right

Read an article about your top 10 things you hate to pay for. I agreed with some while others I think is just a big meh. Here is the top 10 with a few random comments thrown in.


1 ATM fees

Using your ATM (Eftpos card) at a machine different from your regular Bank will cost you something from 75 cents to 1 dollar every time you use it. Banks make a lot of money this way because we are unsuspecting. However this has never really affected me as I have always been on a student account which means I don't have to pay those ATM fees. To other people who care...well you should planned to get money out before it was too late!

2 Movie tickets and refreshments

Totally agree with this one. I worked for Cirque du Soleil once selling popcorn etc and got abused by the customers because it was so expensive. $6 for a coke? $8 for Lion Red? Get out of town!

Carparking

The article talking about carpark parking (tournament parking) rather than street parking, which I think is WAY more annoying. When do you have coins? Sure you can use a credit card but they charge you 50cents just so you can pay them! Ludicrous

4 BYO at restaurants

Look, restaurants lose money when you bring in your own wine because they don't sell you any. They provide you with not only opening the wine (the only thing the article stated) but they have to provide you with wine glasses and that also involves cleaning them. So if they charge you a few dollars...why should you care?

5 Bottled water

Look your a sucker for buying it, and an idiot for complaining that you have to pay so much for it. Go buy yourself a sports bottle and fill it up from those metal thingee's in your house. I think they're called taps.

6 Holiday surcharges

"It doesn't change the fact it's annoying," said student Sara Blair, 22. "Why does French toast cost 15 per cent more? You're better off making it yourself at home."

The people who complain are the people who have a) never worked in the food industry or b) never thought about it. If a place makes $2000 a day. then 15% is only $300 extra. That place/cafe has about 5-7 staff that need to be paid 50% on top of whatever they already earn. Let's say they are all on minimum wage (unlikely because chef's aren't) then 6 (use the avg) staff; times 8 hours; times $12.50; equals 600. half of that is $300...the exact total of what they "make" extra. But remember kids I calculated everyone at minimum wage.

And anyways, wouldn't you kick up a fuss if every food place was closed on public holidays? Where would you eat?

7 Online ticketing

Buying an event ticket online is supposed to be a stress-free, comfortable way to gain access to an event. But is spending an extra $8 for a delivery fee or $5 for a "service fee" - even when you print your ticket at home - really worth it?

This one I totally agree with. There are so many expenses that these events don't have to spend on (printing, paper, staff, location), yet you have to pay MORE money when you take out those factors. What a joke.

8 Expensive dental fees

I'm surprised that this isn't higher in the list. They are only ever expensive because most of us don't go and get regular check ups.

9 Wedding surcharges

I have no idea because I don't have any experience in this area, but mention the word "wedding" to a florist, photographer or anyone and the price instantly jumps 4 fold.

10 Commodity price rises

Just about every time you head to the supermarket or petrol station, you're faced with a higher price. According to Statistics New Zealand, food prices increased 2.8 per cent in June - the largest monthly increase since a 3.8 per cent increase in July 1989, when GST was increased from 10 per cent to 12.5 per cent.

Electricity rates rose by 60 cents between February last year and June this year while petrol prices reached a peak of $2.11 a litre in June last year. And from October 1, we will be forced to pay an additional 3c petrol tax when we fill up.

Have these people not heard of inflation? It's been happening for quite a few years now...someone didn't get the memo.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

What the?

The government have recently said they can't afford $2.5 million dollars to fund therapy services for children with disabilities. Yet not too long ago the government (the same one) spent large sums of money bailing out Fisher & Paykel.

I don't get it...

Everyone should get a fair shot at life and those kids have got the short end of the stick so far and now the government want to poke them with it.

Sigh.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Guess Who's Back

I haven't had the internet for about 7 days now so I'm slowly catching up on things.

Started my new job on Monday and it was full on. It is such a difference to my last job. 9 kids becomes 34. A teaching staff of 1.5 becomes 40.

I'm waking up earlier 30 minutes before reasonable and going to bed much earlier than I'd like.

More work + earlier bed time = less time to do other stuff.

But it's good to have my own classroom again and have a routine.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Movement

A movement is a motion, a change in position. To judge if you are moving or not you have to have something to compare to, a constant.

You have the perception of moving...are you moving or not? I'll choose a tree as my constant. Now am I moving away from the tree or is the tree moving away from me? Dumb question, of course I am. Therefore I am moving.

Age is like movement, a very slow movement, very much like when you are in a revolving restaurant. You know you are moving but you can't feel it. The only way you know you are moving is because the scenary outside is going around in circles. However how can you judge your age moving? The crows feet by your eyes? The protuding belly? Is it really down to physical appearance?

Many people say that you are as old as you feel, appearance has nothing to do with it. A great example of this is ageing sports stars that continue to show the young fellas how it is done.

The other day, I didn't feel old but I did realise that I was getting old. I had spent two days in a year 2 class and the children had gotten to like me very much in a very short amount of time. They respected me, adhered to me and liked me for the way I teach and how I interact with them. They gave me lots of hugs at the end of the day.

What I felt at that moment was, that they looked up to me, I am there to protect them, to teach them and to have fun with them. All of those things combined gave me a feeling of feeling old because I had a responsibility to them even if it was only for 2 days. I've had friend's children that love me and I spend as much time as I can with them but to them I probably don't protect them or teach them because they have mum or dad to do that. Attaching the teacher tag adds another dimension to myself and because of that the children respond differently.

I am sure that at different times in people's lives they will feel old. Different situations will make you feel old and you might not feel that way until you cannot sit down without groaning.

As to, did I like feeling older?

I very much liked the attention and the feelings that the children emitted to me. I don't mind feeling older as long as I can wake up in the morning without complaining.

Being around children gives you a lot of different perspectives but that is not to say children themselves are a good constant to gauge your age. I


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Whakarongo mai! Listen to me!

Today in the papers a pair of armed robbers held up a bank. They were apprehended soon afterwards. Not an unusual story, is has actually happened quite a lot recently in New Zealand (sad). However if you delve a little deeper into this story, it so happens that when the 'gunman' went up to the counter he had forgotten to put on his mask AND forgot his firearm (which was with his accomplice). He had to go back to where his partner was, get the gun and then proceed to rob the place.


No wonder it didn't take them very long to get caught since everyone in the bank saw his face!

What am I trying to get at?

The reason why these people are robbing banks is most likely because they are too stupid to probably hold down a steady job. In fact they are so stupid, they can't even rob a bank properly.

This then links to my next story. Perhaps something I wouldn't normally discuss in a public forum because I just don't like politics and I rather not discuss it but I find as I grow older and learn a lot more I find that I get passionate about more things and education is one of them. I have to speak up. Education is too important to let things slide by.

Peter Sharpels, a high profile politician for the Maori party who is advocating free entry into university. By 'free' he means that Maori are exempt from any prerequisites when entering university and not 'free' in terms of money. In retort, other MP's have rubbished his claim that this is setting up Maori to fail. Statements like 'they will pay 10 thousand dollars and not pass the course' 'they aren't normally qualified to get into university, let alone pass university.'

Now I'm not totally sure I agree with the above statements. I thought university helped me to re-find myself after my disastrous secondary school schooling. I said above that as you get older you learn more things, and if these Maori kids get the chance to go to university and they genuinely want to better themselves, then KA PAI! (good!) I hope they succeed in life.

However, that isn't what I want to complaining about. What I want to see are people like Peter Sharpels to stop thinking about the short term benefits. Think about the long term ones. Do you want lots and lots of Maori's failing at the 5-17 age group who will then fail in life? Do you just want them to get a free ride all their lives?

What about actually helping them at the lower level so they don't need that free entry into university? How about looking into ways of helping Maori whanau (families) and Maori tamariki (children) outside of the Te Kura Kaupapa Maori education system? (school's that are taught in Maori and have more understanding of the needs of Maori both physically, mentally and spiritually)

More additional help outside of Kaupapa Maori is needed.

MP's are too often looking for the instant gratification, that instant support of voters instead of thinking about New Zealand (their country) as a whole. Yes I know it is reality and all of them do it, but how can it change if people like myself just sit on their kumu (bum) and do nothing?

Kia Kaha Aotearoa! (Be Strong New Zealand!)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Anzac Biscuits FTW!

My girl made some awesome Anzac Biscuits today. It was the first time either of us had baked anything sweet so it was extra exciting. We had flat thin ones and small fat ones because we didn't know what shape was the best (the instructions didn't really say). In the end, the small fat one was the better one because it was softer (that's my preference) but if you like it crunchy then make it flat thin.

The darker ones are just the underside of the cookies

Here is the recipe and instructions on how to make them (this makes about 10-12 small biscuits)

  • 50g plain flour
  • 50g rolled oats
  • 50g coconut (flaked, dry)
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 75g butter
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

How to:

Heat the oven to 150C. Lightly grease two trays.

Sift flour, combine with other ingredients except the bicarbonate of soda, butter and golden syrup and set aside.

Cut the butter into small pieces, place with the syrup in a saucepan and melt together, stirring. Then remove from heat.

Combine bicarbonate of soda with 1 tablespoon of water and blend in with the syrup and butter mixture.

Gradually mix in dry ingredients, until you have a consistent texture, and spoon onto the tray in dollop sizes of your choice.

Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes. Cool slightly then transfer to wire cooling rack, and enjoy with a cup of tea!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

To read or not to read, that is the question

Finding it a bit hard these days to concentrate on reading. Its not that I am not reading, I am. However even when I am reading a really good book my attention will stray too quickly. I'll find something to do on the internet, troll through some forums or play stupid internet games.

I have written another 2 pages of my book tho. I think the word count is at something like 4K, another 900K to go. LOL

Also slowly getting a few hits on my site sleeping-with-books.blogspot.com

I think I need to start reviewing newish books.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Word of the Day #16: Bedlamite

Pronouced: Bed-la-mite

Meaning: an insane person, a lunatic

Example sentence: I bet that man is a bedlamite.

Luckily I don't live in America

Thursday, June 04, 2009

I ate a whole Zucchini!!!

There have been three recent moments that has had me thinking about food and the evolution of food. Not in the sense of how food has developed over the years but how cultural foods have had to adapt once taken away from their home country.

"That's not real Italian food" Marco said
"What do you mean? It tastes great to me and it looks like Italian food"
"When you go to a Chinese restaurant do you think it is authentic Chinese food?"

This conversation (with my ex-Italian flatmate) was like an explosion in my head. How could I have not known? So simple....so naive!

"I ate a whole zucchini, I did well, I don't normally eat vegetables"

That is a quote from my friend Darryn who had dinner at my house one time. 

The next time I got thinking about this topic was at a recent dinner I had with some friends of mine. We were in a Chinese restaurant and it was packed...absolutely packed with.....Europeans. In my personal opinion, if the place's patrons are not at least half packed with Chinese people then that place is shit. But doesn't a packed house mean it has good food?

Sure, it has good food for Europeans, but why aren't their any (many) Chinese people eating there? The simple reason is because to survive (make money) in this industry the smart move is to cater to the majority rather than the minority. More Europeans equals more potential customers. 

It just won't do serving delicate subtle food. It just won't do serving exotic foods (such as stinky tofu, chicken feet or beef stomach lining). So therefore the Chinese foods have to adapt.

Sweet and sour pork is perhaps one of the most famous and well eaten Chinese dishes in New Zealand but is very rarely ordered at all by Chinese people. Braised pork, Braised lamb, Deep Fried Salt and Pepper and Fried Rice are on every Chinese menu in New Zealand. All these dishes have one thing in common.

Bold flavours. 

This thinking lead me back to the conversation I had with Marco. What are Italian dishes like in New Zealand? Pizza's from the chains aren't subtle, they have heaps of toppings, lots of cheese and sauces. Bold flavours. Pasta's are full of cream and heavy sauces. Bold flavours. 

When was the last time you went out for ethnic food that didn't have bold flavours?


Saturday, May 23, 2009

All a Matter of Perspective

I saw a man beat his dog outside my house the other day. He picked up his dog, slammed her back onto the ground, then with an open hand hit the dog in the face a couple of times and threw her into his van. 

I called the police, they found the guy and talked to him. They also took his dog to the vet to get it checked out. The vet found nothing wrong with the dog and said they were happy to let the dog go back to its owner. Because there was nothing wrong with the dog, they just gave the man a warning.

So we have a couple of different perspectives. The vet sees nothing wrong with the dog.
The owner of the dog probably knew how he could beat the dog without causing injury.

To me it looked like a very brutal act which shouldn't happen.
To another it was discipline without mid-long term harm
To another nothing happened.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Guns don't kill people. Nut and Dairy allergies do.

I remember when I was studying psychology at university one of the topics was about over diagnosing people with illnesses/syndromes. It looked at the trend that as time went by, the people being diagnosed with ADHD, Autism etc. etc. also increased dramatically. Doctors and researchers attributed this to...

People recognising their children having some sort of problem.
Their willingness to take them to a specialist.
The ability for doctors to diagnosis them with a condition more accurately.

The doctors had a guide to help them called "The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders". Over the years it has been refined, revised and has now reached to version 4. 

Alright. Let's say we give this some credit. Lets look at something I feel is on the increase and it has nothing to do with psychology.


ALLERGIES.

 

I'm 26, and back in my days no one had allergies. Some kids had asthma, but there weren't many.

 

Peanut allergies?
Diary allergies?
What are they?
The only allergies I knew of was from Bee stings (thanks ‘My Girl’).

However, everyone has allergies now. 

Friends of mine have kids that had both peanut and dairy allergies...death by peanut or death by ice-cream is not a good way to go out (not at the age of 2 anyways). 


Get your child one of these if they have any serious allergy. It can save their life.










Schools and day cares have pictures of people with allergies on the staffroom notice, on their duty jackets so they know which kids have it. There are just too many of them with too many different types of allergies to simply remember who has what.

My question is why? 20 years ago allergy testing was as good as it is now (though there are many more ways to test it now).

So Why?!

I am going out on a limb and say it is because of the food industry. 

The food industry has created a Probladox. While trying to keep up with food demands, they have made super chickens that grow 3 to 4 times faster than normal chickens, but not only that, they are larger than normal chickens. They inject animals with hormones to make them grow faster; they spray chemicals to make our vegetables safe from insects; they genetically modify crops to make them look prettier, taste better and grow faster.

Not only are our produce and meat affected, but things like mayonnaise, potato chips and the like are affected too.

 

An increase of allergies.

Food industry the causation? No, there have always been allergies.

Food industry heavily correlated? Yes

 

What do you think?

 

Friday, May 01, 2009

Book Porn: April Centerfold


In Hard Cover... YAY! Now my set is complete

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Walking contradiction

To do your job well, you have to practice what you preach. A priest who regularly sins (deliberately) would not be a very good priest. He would be a leader in his community and to show such disregard would not bode well for the community.

I read today that a British Nurse got her residency application declined by Immigration New Zealand because she was too fat even though we have a long-term skill shortage in the nursing department. She weighed 134kgs with a waist of 131cm. Her BMI score was 55.2, which puts her in the morbidly obese category.

I say, good on you Immigration NZ. There reasoning was that she would cost NZ tax payers $25,000 over 4 years for health care. 

I would rather think they denied her because she was a walking contradiction. How can she give health advice when  she herself is a walking cardiac arrest? She claims to be fit...but how can you be at 134kgs?

To put it into perspective, a huge prop in Rugby would be about 129kgs. Big props would average 120kgs. Linebackers in the NFL are also around 115kgs (250lbs). Now these guys make a living from being big, they exercise, they drink protein shakes, they go to the gym, they eat 5-6 times a day....these guys are fit. 

So don't tell me you are fit. You are not fit. You are the antithesis of fit.

Would you want a dumb teacher teaching your kid? What about an obese doctor telling your son to lose weight?

On a lighter note, here is a poem by 19th century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche

I hate to follow and I hate to lead.
Obey? Oh no! And govern? No indeed!
Only he who dreads himself inspires dread.
And only those inspiring dread can lead.
Even to lead myself is not my speed.
I love to lose myself for a good while,
Like animals in forests and the sea,
To sit and think on some abandoned isle,
And lure myself back home from far away,
Seducing myself to come back to me.



Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Delusions of Grandeur

Goals: Something that we set ourselves to achieve. They can be short term goals or they can be long term goals. Short term goals consists of things like, doing well in an exam, playing a good game of footy or remember to write a blog post every week. Long term goals (a.k.a dreams) can consist of, owning a Porsche, going on a round the world vacation or setting up a business. 

Goals are there for us to strive towards. It motivates us and gives us a little bit of meaning to our lives. 

But I wonder about delusions of grandeur. Sometimes we can daydream. Maybe you daydream about doing something heroic. A bus crashes and you help some injured people off. A kid on a rugby field collapses and you are the only one that can give CPR. You score the match winning try for your team. You giving your boss his short comings.

Most of these delusions will never happen to a lot of us, but it won't stop us from daydreaming or subconsciously thinking about it. 

So my question is, is it healthy to be having these daydreams? Essentially setting unachievable goals. In the former instances, they involve people getting hurt because you can' be that 'hero' without them getting hurt first. Would you rather be the hero or not have anyone hurt in the first place? Is it bad your thinking about people getting hurt?

On the other hand, these daydreams make you feel happy, even if it is only for that moment in time. So is there anything wrong with it? Your not hurting other people, it doesn't cost you anything tangible.



Thursday, April 23, 2009

World famous in..........the Naki (Taranaki)

In March I got to go to an Iaido Seminar in New Plymouth. It was an awesome experience and will hopefully get to go to another one soon. 

Anyways, during the first day of the seminar there was a guy taking heaps of pictures of me. Not of anyone else....just me. Then I got interviewed for 'The Taranaki Daily' 

Here is the pic and I'll type out the article too......don't laugh too hard.

FENDING four enemies off with a flashing sword is hard work - even if it's all in your mind. Experts in the Japanese martial art of Iai-Do gathered at Woodleigh School in New Plymouth last weekend to showcase their craft. There were about a dozen Iai-Do fanatics putting their long swords into scabbards and donning black outfits at the school's hall as they performed their routines. The sport focuses on the teaching of forms and does not involve direct sparring. "It is like dance, except with a deadly influence," Chris Jones of the New Plymouth Iai-Do Association said. "It helps develop strong personality, strong mind, good character and strong moral fibre." Mr Jones said he had always been fascinated with Japanese culture and martial arts because it was such an interior challenge. "Your only opponent is yourself." Fellow enthusiast Enchante Chang, of Wellington, had only been in the sport for about a year. He said he enjoyed not worrying about other people. "You're just perfecting really fine moves. It's really subtle." But just because it was solitary, the sport should not be seen as easy. "If you're not sweating, you're not doing it right," he said.

Word of the Day #15: Sibilant


Short and sweet today (But double the pictures!)

Pronounced: si-bi-lant

Meaning: Hissing (words that end with s, cats, tables)

Example Sentence: His tone sounded sibilant.




Sunday, April 19, 2009

Let me introduce to you my friend, PAIN!

Pain. The signal that our bodies send to us that we are in physical danger. Some pain is of no consequence, others become injuries while others more so. Sometimes we blackout because the pain is too much. That is again another one of the bodies defensive mechanism's. When pain is too much the body makes us blackout to prevent us from experiencing more pain.

Because of Rugby, every week I am having a few niggles. My first week I hyper-extended my right ring finger and this week I rammed my knee into someone else's knee. He was bigger. My knee was smaller...I think even you guys know enough about physics to know the result. 

So I've been icing up these past few days and feeling just a bit like an old bugger.

Here are some pain quotes that I have remembered.

"It's only pain, it'll go away."

"Pain reminds us that we're still alive."

"Pain is just the bodies reminder to us to stop being stupid."


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Purgatory

When is time wasted? Some may argue that anything leisurely is time wasted. Using my blog as an example. It doesn't really serve any purpose. It isn't for charity. I don't get paid for it. It doesn't further my job prospects. What it does do is make me happy; that I get to vent/rant/debate. People reading this might enjoy it.

Wasted? Perhaps this one is 'eye of the beholder' example.

Using a better example is time spent at university. A lot of us (me included) spent a lot time at university doing nothing. Yes. nothing. Sure we got some goatskin document reading Bachelor of Something Useless. Sure it was at a  top 1% university in the world but really what I was doing and many other people were doing was wasting time.

I have a psychology degree. What did I learn? That I didn't want to be a psychologist. That I didn't like studying. I didn't like having no money. Essentially I was wasting my time. Why? Because at the moment I don't have much to do with psychology except for the every day kind. The one purpose my degree did was allow myself to enroll in a post graduate diploma in teaching, which takes one year (otherwise it takes 3 years). However, any degree would have been feasible. That means I could have done any degree, perhaps something that was more useful, something I would have enjoyed a lot more. 

Other people have done degrees and post graduate work in a certain field and have gone on to become a personal assistant. Done a diploma in teaching moved to another country and have not taught. 

Is this not time wasted? You can argue that every experience gives you some value. I can't disagree but how valuable is it? Was it worth 3+ years, stress, your money?

Yet without wasting our time, will we perceive time as such a valuable commodity?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Word of the Day #15: Friendship

A word we all know, but sometimes we take these things for granted because like all things we like are there at a moments notice.

I find things like friendship (and family) become more important as you grow older and if you have to live far away from them. Since my move, I have missed my friends and family a lot. 

You will get a lot of definitions of what friendship it and it has different meanings to different people, so is it really fair just to use the dictionary term?

Meaning: The state of being a friend; association as friends: To value a person's friendship

I really like this part from Wikipedia tho:

Value that is found in friendships is often the result of a friend demonstrating the following on a consistent basis:


Friendship is definitely a give and take relationship. I is taking because you need certain things from you friends, like companionship, advice, help you move house. But when you do 'take' you should have in mind that your friend is being altruistic. As a friend you should know not to take too much

On the other side, when you are the giver, you should be altruistic and help as much as you can within limits and to not expect something back. As soon as you expect something back it is no longer friendship and becomes an arrangement or alliance. 

So here is my own definition of a friend and friendship. Yours could be the same or it could be different.

  • A friend is someone you can rely on.
  • A friend is someone you can trust.
  • Friendship is something that is forged over a long period of time (not in a vacuum of time)
  • Friendship is not bound by distance
  • In time, hopefully you get a symbiotic relationship out of it

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Breaking the Cycle

I think when you have done something for so long you forget what that something else is like. A co-worker (chef) I used to work with in a cafe once worked 27 days in a row because they couldn't find a 2nd chef at that time. He quoted "It's been so long you've forgotten what good feels like."

Finding a job has been tough. Not having much money has been tough. But the hardest thing is the waiting, the doing nothing, and the worst of them, the no replies from schools. 

So it is a good thing I am going back to Auckland for Easter. See some famaliar faces, have some fun and forget my woes. Then come back with hopefully a slightly different perspective and slightly more luck.

See you soon guyz!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

The Dalai Lama is coming.....I think....

Just read that the Chinese government want New Zealand to not permit the Dalai Lama a visa into NZ. 

Apparently South Africa denied him a visa because they didn't want to harm relations with China.

Seriously...F you South Africa!!! So typical. Stop letting big brother push you around (God knows you've been through too many years of that). The Dalai Lama has no criminal record, does a lot of good for a lot of people around the world, and you won't allow this man to enter?

I am sure John Key will let him in, I will puke if he doesn't.

In a world where we want to promote peace and tolerance, China is among those that defy that. I am fine with China being communists because it can work well if the government does a good job for the people, but to go out of your way to stop people from Tibet travelling is ludicrous. 

I hope the Dalai Lama will come here. He will bring a lot of joy to people. 

Buddhism is a way of life, it isn't a religion.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Word of the Day #14: Tilt

The History of 'Tilt'

An interesting word and one that my friends and I use a lot.

To a lot of us, the word tilt has stemmed from poker. In poker terms it means to get angry/be annoyed. There are multiple ways to be "tilted" in poker notwithstanding: losing a hand on the river, folding to a big bluff.

But I asked myself the other day, where did poker players get this word from? The reason it has given me a bit of interest is because although the term is now used heavily around the word, it is still slang when referring to the word tilt as being angry. If you look up dictionary.com or a similar website you will get the usual meanings:

1) slope, incline
2) jousting
3) moving a camera up and down for photography






     The Earth is on tilt!


I have no scientific reasoning behind this but I am going to assume that the word tilt comes from Pinball.

In Pinball machines, there is a mechanism that stops players from cheating. If you move the machine too much or tilt it upwards, the game will freeze for that 'ball'. It will usually flash the word tilt on its screen. Now players who have played pinball enough should know this and won't do this anymore, but usually when 'tilt' comes up on the screen is when players get annoyed/angry at the machine (ball goes straight up and down the middle, misclicking, mis-timed shot etc) they will hit/push and will inevitably cause the 'tilt' mechanism to activate.

"Causing a Slam Tilt (by hitting or attacking the door to the coin vault or other *very* violent behaivour towards the machine) immediately ends the current game for you and anyone else currently playing and is hence considered very rude. " - Patrik Lundin










Surely the word tilt comes from a poker player(s) who played a lot of angry pinball.



Friday, March 27, 2009

Little girls break my heart

I recently went to an Iaido seminar in New Plymouth. Sometime before dinner time I asked my Sensei if he could only have one child, would he rather have a boy or a girl. Now the trick to this question for him was that he has had trouble having children and took him and his wife a while before they had twins! One boy and one girl even. He said that with all the trouble they went through and having both come at the same time, he couldn't possibly answer. 

I retorted that if someone had asked me that same question 3 years earlier, I would have said definitely a boy. Now I would say definitely a girl. 

I think I have wanted a girl for about a year. My reasons are that boys are fun and great, but when they grow up you can't really act the same way with them. Girls, even though their physical appearances change a lot, their demeanor to you doesn't change too much. I would love to have a daddy's girl.

Working at some childcare centres has really confirmed this for me. A little girl called Nikki attached to me the first time she laid eyes on me. I'm not sure why she did but all my paternal instincts just come out when she holds my hand, asks me for a cuddle or just talks in that baby voice. She literally breaks my heart, but so do a lot of baby girls.

It breaks my heart that I don't have a baby girl now.
It breaks my heart because I will have to wait to have one (I need to have a stable income and way of life, otherwise it won't be fair on her)
It breaks my heart because I have a 50% fail rate of getting a girl (could be more, the male gene is strong in my family)
It breaks my heart because the pinhole in my heart cannot hold off the poring love.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Word of the Day #13: Gossamer

I think the sound of this word is very beautiful. It sounds eloquent and exotic.

I thought it was mostly used as an adjective but it is more of a noun.

Pronounced: Gos-sa-mer

Meaning: 
(Noun) Any thin, light fabric; a thread or a web of the substance.
(Adjective) Thin and light

Example sentence: The faeries had tiny gossamer wings that looked too delicate to hold them aloft.





Thursday, March 19, 2009

So much easier if it was causation

When I was younger I remember being at school and had messages like, keep it green and be a tidy kiwi. 

These days those same messages are being used but others that have seeped in are keep nz beautiful (a stolen phrase from Max clothing), reduce-reuse-recycle  (used at the latter end of my school years).

I am sure that there are quite a few of us out there that make a consciencely effort to at least not litter or recycle. But the matter of fact is that it really is 1 rotten apple spoils the lot. If 10% of the population litter then that is 10% too much. It is much easier to destroy than build. 

What amazes me is that New Zealand wants to be seen as this clean green environment but doesn't have big laws against doing the opposite of this. If you look at Singapore, there are heavy fines for spitting (I think like $500), chewing gum is banned (I'm totally for this), and littering is a huge fine too.

We have places like Wellington and Waitakere where rubbish bags need to be purchased so we can throw out our rubbish. My question is...why aren't wheelie bins used? Both require the use of a big truck to come and take our rubbish away but wheelie bins don't require loads and loads of plastic bags to be produced (isn't reduce one of the big R's?). Sure they could be biodegradable recycled bags but is recycle/reuse better than reduce?

It is easy to ignore a big faceless company (or city council) when they do things that in essence litter our country. But it is much harder to ignore it when people do this. I myself was a non-conscience litterer several years back and I was very embarrassed when a very good friend told me off about it one day, and I thank him very much for doing so. I now very consciencely try not to litter. 

The people that I really want to focus on is actually smokers. These people in my opinion are the biggest litterers in our society. How many times have you seen one of these people flick their cigarette butt into the gutter, the road, out of their cars...everywhere. Sure the butts are quite small but how many times do they do this per day. If they can consciencely do this, what about normal litter? I think that a huge portion of litterers are smokers. Could we ever prove this? I don't think so, smokers being litterers is only a correlation, it isn't causation because we all know that non-smokers litter as well. 

I'm just sick of seeing people litter....consciencely too!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Tiny Purple Orchids

"Do you believe in fate?"

I read on someone else's blog. I replied with a defiant "NO!"

Then today while I was off to dinner with gf and flatmate. My flatmate exclaimed..."isn't this yours?" picking up a dainty bookmark off the ground. 


Unbeknown to her...I had lost that bookmark not 1 day ago.... ZOMG...Like totally FATE.

However, I think it was through a series of luck and not so scientific explanation, I will break down the process.

* Yesterday was a very calm day. That means no wind....yes it is possible in Wellington.
* It was a Sunday, so trash pickers are probably not working.
* I lost it outside a non-child friendly cafe.
* The surrounding area to this cafe is also not child friendly and perhaps people around this area are not in to petty things.

Therefore with no wind, no people after petty things, no children and no trash pickers. It is only sensible to assume that the bookmark would not be more than 20 feet from where it was lost!

It is a bit scratched now (sorry Max and Ruby! I'll take better care of it this time I promise!) but I didn't hesitate to plonk it into my book.

Fate? 

Yeah nah

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hot n Cold: Katy Perry

I've always been asking people...rather be too cold or too hot?
I've never noticed but people actually answer this question wrong.

The typical cold answer is, oh I rather be too cold because I can just put on more clothes.
The typical hot answer is, too hot, because I don't like the cold.

First off, why doesn't anyone say...oh I rather be too hot, cause then I can go have a cold beer, find an air conditioned room and chill.

But my main point is people who typically answer I rather be too cold because I can just put on more clothes is actually not answering the question. 

Isn't the idea of the question, which one you could suffer more? Not what are ways you can get around being too cold/hot?

My answer to my own question is I rather be too hot because I feel that the cold is more attuned to suffering, while being too hot is like the after effects of a big work out or sports, so I don't feel like I am suffering (tho if you put me in the middle of the Sahara.....)

Whats this to do with Katy Perry? 

nothing...

she's hot tho

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Word of the Day #12: Bucolic





A word that I will rarely use I think, but good to know.

Pronouced: bue-co-lic

Meaning: sugguesting of a rural life, pertaining a country life style



Example Sentence: I would love to have a bucolic lifestyle.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Who is your daddy and what does he do?

I wonder when a father stops seeing their son/daughter as a child (as oppose to seeing them as an adult). The thing is probably never.

Now you can look at it at the reverse and ask, when does a child stop being a child in their own eyes when their father is involved. I want my father to respect me and take pride in what I do. I also want to not present myself as a child and be reliant on him.

However I find my self wanting to sit a little lower in the car, so I can look up at my dad. I want to feel that nostalgia. When I get sick I want my dad to come and take care of me, to feel my head, to give some small words of comfort.

I'm not sure if others feel this way and I wonder when this 'want' will go away. Is it when I have children of my own? Will this also affect the way my father perceives me?

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Word of the day #11: Hitherto


Very interesting word in my opinion and another word I would never have come across until I read fantasy books. It sounds so knowledgeable to me when you say it.

Pronouced: hith-er-to

Meaning: up until now

Example sentence: Who knew hitherto, that I liked to book blog.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

India was last seen tapping two blue mana

I'm not too sure about the politics in the sub-continent. India and Patkistan have been at war since the time of stupid, and who knows what they are fighting about now. Most likely the conversation went something like...

"Hey my toes aren't fat!"
"Well my legs aren't chubby, Mohan said you said my legs are chubby!"
"..."
"arrrgghh, let go of my hair......"
"arggghhh my eye..."

But the fighting isn't just between those two countries, there is civil war in Sri Lanka and leaders are getting capped in Pakistan every year so it seems.

But one thing that all these countries have in common is that their number one sport is Cricket. The sub-continent is practically half the world's game and to think that anything to put that sport into jeoprady is insane.

Well the insanity has happened and a few days ago the Sri Lankan cricket team got shot at while en route to some venue. 

The problem now lies in, why did they target a cricket team? Do the terrorists want some retaliation? Did they disagree with an LBW decision during their innings on a sunday game? Are they anti-cricketers? Were they picked last in school every day? 

Monday, March 02, 2009

Word of the Day #10: Nice

Yeah...nice....like we don't know what that means.....your such a moron Enchante.

Thats what I thought! But I think we have a lot of misconceptions of this word. yes we all know that it means good or pleasant. 

Example Sentence: That was a nice hug.

But it also has other meaning. 

Pronouced: Nice (Rhymes with mice!)

Meaning: 
1) accurate
2) subtle

Example sentence:
1)That was a nice shot. 
The misconception we have here is that we think that nice here means good, like good shot. But what it actually means here is that it was an accurate shot.

2) That was a nice distinction.
The misconception here is that we think nice here again means good. Like that was awesome how you picked out that difference there. But what it actually means, was that it was a subtle distinction between say, two jackets with the only difference being the cuffs on them.

So you see, such simple words that we didn't know how to use properly!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Frozen Yoghurt, I call it Fro-ghurt

Being sick is ass. You feel terrible. (thats bad)

However, I don't have that guilty feeling of not having done anything today. (thats good)

You look terrible (thats bad)

You get to take pseudophedrine (thats good)

Gives me cotton mouth (thats bad)

I get to watch TV all day (thats good)

I don't get to read cause I can't concentrate (thats bad)


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ignorance is bliss

You are the fastest person at your school. Then you had to high school and you are the 7th fastest.
This was such an awesome meal of Vietnamese, then you go to Melbourne and everything tastes worse.
This is the greatest book ever, until you read more than 5 books.

Seriously, there have been so many times in my life where I say something which is seemed so meaning and/or passionate, but then days/weeks/years later I realise what a fool I had been. Bigger than a fool sometimes.

Other times I look back on life and how things were so much easier. Your days were a constant cycle of happiness. Eat, sleep, play, eat, shit, play, sleep, eat, eat, eat, sleep, shit, play.

Now I eat less, sleep less, play less but funny enough shit more. Sometimes it come from my mouth, ranting on about useless stuff that gets me into a bigger pile of shit.

Ok, should probably tone down the swearing. 

It is so much happier to be ignorant and yet we strive to make ourselves richer in both wealth and mind. We try to educate others to stop them from being stupid essentially. Yet are we denying them their happiness? Let crappy coffee taste good to them, don't take them for a real coffee. Let them dream of bad books and do not direct them to Borders or Amazon. 

We are dream killers, happiness devourers. One are the ones that bring the shit to the ignorant.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Word of the Day #9: Simulacrum


For so long I had thought this word meant robot or some sort. And perhaps the picture of this card misdirects us to think so. 

But actually finding the real meaning has made me appreciate the card even more.

Pronouced: sim-u-lay-crum

Meaning: 
1) superficial likeness
2) image or representation

Example sentence: This magic card is a simulacrum of Jens Thoren.