Friday, July 31, 2009

Thursday, July 30, 2009

One Cold Vibe Won't Stop This Here Boogie



..
This is my friend, Graeme 'Bags' Stables. I met him last year at 'Merry Twistmas' which is our annual go go Christmas break up party. He and my friend,Vicki met there too and fell in love.
Bags has just had a bad turn of events as like me, went in for surgery to repair something and it's taken a turn for the worse. Thankfully, the lovely people at St Vincent's hospital appear to be sorting it out for him.
Get well soon Bags so we can see you behind the decks and on the dance floor where you belong.
As I discovered, it's a set back but not the end of the world. Just one of those curve balls that get thrown at you in life but it makes you realise that there is much to look forward to and best of all, how much you are truly loved.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Watch My Back!

This is my tattoo. It is an Angelique Houtkamp design with my slant on it-tango shoes instead of skulls. My ode to beauty and tango. This was done for me by the fabulously talented Sara Melder of Dynamic Tattoos in Richmond,Victoria, Australia.
I've had this for about 18 months and yes, I have plans for a couple more...

Monday, July 27, 2009

A Delightful Young Lady With A Truly Bizarre Pathology

It started with a cold.

It was December 2007 and I took the day off to go to the doctor so I could get a certificate and go home to sleep it off. I was snotty and tired and wanted to crash. My doctor asked if I had a thyroid problem and I responded no, not to my knowledge but she asked me to stay longer for blood samples.

Two days later, her office called and asked me to come in to see her in the first week of the new year. I discovered that yes, I do have a thyroid problem and I needed to be on medication to balance out my under active thyroid. She refers me to Dr Rosemary Wong, an endocrinologist who is meant to be one of the best in her field. I, of course, put this off and am reprimanded by my doctor when I go in for my next set of blood tests. I make the appointment and don't get in to see her till May. I should have believed my GP the first time when she said it's hard to get in to see her.Dr Wong asks me a series of questions and then proceeds with the usual poking and prodding. She comments that I'm 'lumpier' than I should be and that I don't breathe properly. She sends me for ultrasounds of my thyroid and lower body bits plus a chest x ray. The place they send me to is run by horrible, disgruntled technicians who really need to quit. I've seen solidiers with more compassion.

 The following week, I'm on Bridge Rd waiting for my tram to work when my mobile rings. It's Dr Wong's P.A asking me to come in straight away as she wants to see me. I ring work and tell them I'll be late and head to Cabrini. Results tell me I have a nodule on both my thyroid and my liver that concerns her and she wants further tests. I tell her all these tests are sending me to the poor house and she kindly bulk bills my consultation (normally $240.00!) and sends me to the Alfred for the tests.

A week and a half later, my gorgeous friend,Di picks me up and takes me to the Alfred Radiology Centre for my CT scan and needle biopsy. CT scan is fine but needle biopsy slightly invasive and not very pleasant. The staff at the Alfred are fabulous and they even send in a woman to hold my hand through the whole process. Three tries later, they collect enough cells to test and I'm free to go. I spend the weekend feeling as if I've swallowed gravel.

The following Tuesday evening, I'm on my way home on the tram and Rosie Wong calls me. Good news,she says. The biopsy is negative and the nodule on the liver is of no consequence. Woo Hoo, I say and feel relieved. "However" she says... oh no, not the 'however'.... "You have a large cyst on your ovary and your uterus is full of fibroids".
The next day I'm back to my GP. She sends me back to the Alfred for another ultrasound using a probe and this is no fun. No one wants a camera crew up the minge or for men, their bottom. Results are sent back to Dr Griffiths who is concerned by the findings. She arranges an appointment with gynaecologist, Dr Grant Saffer who is lovely. He sends me for another ultrasound with his people. Another camera crew up the minky which I get to watch on a plasma screen. The cyst comes up like the full moon.Fark, it's huge. I see all the fibroids. It's a bloody mess in there. I wonder if this is the body's revenge for not conceiving?

 A week or so later, Dr Saffer calls me. He says despite further testing, he is none the wiser and wants a second opinion. He gives the name of 4 gynae's that he feels are the best with dealing with my problem. The first on the list is a Dr Tom Manolitsas. I ring him and get an appointment nine days from then which is pretty good considering the schedules these guys are on. I google him and find out he's on the board of gynae's of Victoria so I feel confident.

My appointment is early on a Thursday so I take the morning off. I fill in the necessary paperwork and wait. A tall, distinguished man enters the room and calls my name. He shakes my hand and introduces himself as Tom Manolitsas. I relax with him immediatly. He has a great manner and makes me feel secure and comfortable. I get the ubiquitous examination and then he gives me the news. He's studied my ultrasounds and has conferred with Dr Saffer and tells me I will be cut open and my left ovary,fallopian tube and the cyst will all be removed. I will require one week in hospital and six weeks recovery. Bugger, I think. I was hoping for keyhole surgery to remove the cyst, a day in hospital and a week at home. Big fat smelly hairy bugger.

But wait,there's more.He tells me he is also concerned with the fibroids and the fact that he can't even see my right ovary in the ultrasound. This can sometimes be nothing,he says and sometimes go away on their own if of no consequence. However, the cyst could end up being borderline which means we're only a suburb or so away from malignancy. Seeing this will be my second time being cut open for the same reason, I make a decision on the spot. I tell him if that's the case, take it all as I won't be coming back to be cut open for a third time. It's all decided: surgery to be conducted on October 31 at Cabrini. He'll send me the details in the post.

I walk to the tram stop and burst into tears. On one hand, I'm happy it's going to be dealt with but on the other hand, I didn't want all the hassle. I gave myself a metaphorical slap across the head and got on with it. Checked with my health insurance provider and discovered they stopped covering Cabrini as of October!! So my other option was Epworth Eastern in Box Hill as Dr Tom only performs surgery at those 2 hospitals. I rang his office and changed the date to October 27- same week, just a bit earlier.

The Friday before the big day arrives. My last day at work for 7 weeks. Normally this would fill my heart with glee but this time it filled me with some trepidation. I caught up with my friend,Andy for a few bevvies and dinner in Chinatown. The next night, I went to Tiki bar to watch a funk band and have my last boogie for a while plus a couple of cocktails. As of midnight, I was on a liquid diet. The next morning I drank the biggest soy latte I could find as I knew it would be my last for a while. I went to the super market and bought some clear juice and lemonade. These would help with the afternoon's activity of bowel prep. I had to drink three litres of this stuff called colonlytly over the space of 3 hours. The purpose of this is so you completely shit your brains out until you can shit no more. I told my house mate to leave the house and not come back till night time! The first litre went down okay, the next one had me gagging and retching,the third a struggle but I had the theme from Rocky in my head when I downed the last glass.

Twenty-something toilet visits, one roll of toilet paper and half a bottle of Dettol hand wash later, it was over. I felt stinky and exhausted. I got into the shower and scrubbed myself clean. I got into my jim jams and collapsed early. Tomorrow was a big day. I woke up early and drank a couple of glasses of water. As of 7am- nil by mouth. I dressed and then packed my hospital case. I got my room ready for when I got home from hospital; clean bedding, tidy room, vacuummed the carpet,etc. My family picked me up way too early as usual and away we went. We arrived at the hospital an hour before my admission time so they drank coffee while I watched them. I couldn't even have a glass of water and was dying! We went to admissions and waited till I was called. This involved a bit of to-ing and fro-ing. First I was called to have my tags put on my wrists,then to meet my anaethetist, Dr Mark Alter. I had an ECG,was weighed and blood was taken. I ended up sending my family home as I was certain it would be soon that I'd be taken to my room. Stupid bitch at the front desk 'forgot' about me and I didn't get my room till 5.30! I was meant to be sent there at 2.30- Dr Alter was horrified when I told him.

I put my case down and lay down on my bed- I was pretty tired by this stage. Not long after, there was a knock on the door. A man entered and said he was Nigel the orderly and he was taking me to theatre. I was told to put on the gown he gave me and get into bed. I did as I was told and he returned with a nurse who took some details and then they both took me down to the pre op area of theatre. Everyone there was lovely. The nurse saw my tattoo and called everyone over to see how 'cool' it was! I had thick,elastic white stocking put on my legs to stop clotting and also to keep me warm during the surgery which was going to be around 2 hours in duration. Dr Alter came over to advise it was time for him to prep me. I was wheeled closer to the operating room and spotted Dr Tom.He asked how I was and to tell me why I was there. I said because I have a large cyst that needs removing along with the ovary and the fallopian tube. He reminded me of a possible hysterectomy and I said yes,that too. Okay, let's do it then, he says and I'm wheeled into theatre. I'm moved onto the table and I start to feel woozy- I didn't even feel the general being administered. I give my glasses to the nurse and then I remember nothing.....

 It's dark and I hear talking. I don't know where I am. I'm suddenly aware of intense pain and start muttering 'my stomach! my stomach!' My mouth is dry and it's difficult to speak-a result of the anaesthetic.I open my eyes and see sillouettes and hear a voice asking me on a scale of 1-10, what was the pain like. I replied 9 and a half. They start administering the morphine until I tell them it's down to a 2. I'm wheeled back to my room and it's all a blur. I manage to ask what the time is and I'm told 1.30am. I'm confused by this as I went into surgery at 6.30pm. I'm woken up every half an hour to have my vitals checked as per standard procedure. I'm tired and confused.

Suddenly it's daylight. I awake feeling pretty good. A nurse enters the room and says she'll be taking care of me for the day. I ask for a glass of ice cubes to suck as my mouth is horribly dry and she gets me some.My first visitor is my friend, Cathryn. She has a bunch of flowers and a bag full of goodies for me to have when I'm able-whenever that is! I'm on a saline drip and on self administered morphine. I have a cathetar and things on my legs to massage them. They are hot and annoying but necessary. She tells me that Dr Tom rang my sister after the surgery to tell me how it went and my sister called everyone else. She asks how I feel about everything and I say fine. It's done now and I felt pretty good (obviously the drugs were doing their thing). Dr Tom comes in and asks how I'm doing and then asks Cathryn to leave the room while he talks to me.
He sits down and tells me that when he cut me open, it was a whole different story. I had cysts and growths everywhere and he had never seen anything like it. He had one of the cysts tested immediatly and was found to be benign - he said it surprised him because it looked like cancer. He's also an oncologist so he would know. He said he had no choice but to perform a radical hysterectomy as there was no hope for anything in there- nothing could be saved. The reason he couldn't see my right over is because it was eclipsed with cysts. Fibroids were growing on top of each other- I even had a cyst growing on my bowel. My 2 hour surgery stretched to almost 5.He said he'd sent it all away to be tested and he would have the results at the end of the week and that he would check on me every day.
 I spend a week in hospital and everyday brings lots of visitors. I have good days and bad days but I feel extremely loved. My room is covered in flowers and gifts and I can't believe how blessed I am. The staff are all great except for Andy,the passive aggressive occupational therapist. If he thought I was hard going, how's he gonna go in a room full of women who have had caesareans? Toughen up,old bean!

Saturday rolls around and Dr Tom strolls in around 10. He's in casual wear instead of his snazzy Italian suit. Everyday he gets less nerdy looking and more handsome. Somedays I think I'm in love with him. He looks at me and says I look great and I say I feel great and I'm ready to leave. He says he'll check to see if my results are back and if they're okay I can go home. He comes back ten minutes later saying good news- all benign. Seeing I'm off the drips, eating solids, no cathetar and only needs tablets, I'm free to go. I ring my sister and give her the news. I'm picked up the next day and taken to her house. It's decided that I will convalesce there. She has a spare room and feels I'm not strong enough to look after myself. I agree but not willingly. Last time I stayed with my mum and she did my head in and I went home anyway. I'm glad I did so. I ended up getting a major infection in the wound and going back to hospital. Dr Tom opened me up again, cleaned the wound and had to pack it with gauze as he couldn't risk sewing me up again. The next day, I had something called a VAC dressing http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/cne/resources/clinical_skills_refresher/wound_vac_dressing_change/images/01b.jpg(see link for pic) attached.

I had to wear this heavy thing for 4 weeks-not sexy and not fun! After I was well enough to go back to work, I was informed that I could claim a month of insurance. I needed letters from Dr Tom and he sent not only a letter and the completed form, but the transcript of both my surgeries,the results of my examinations and letters he had sent to Dr Saffer informing him of what had gone on. The letter which he explains the surgery was ended with 'I thank you for referring to me this delightfully young lady with a truly bizarre pathology.I've never been described in such a way before. Goddamn, I think I like it.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Lars And The Real Girl

I've only just seen this film over the weekend and I have to say I was duly impressed. If anyone saw the documentary on SBS a while ago on Real Dolls and men who have relationships with them, then this will be familiar subject matter. What impresses me is how the writer and director of this film dealt with the particular subject matter. The story is about Lars, a shy and extremely introverted man who lives in the garage of the home he grew up in with his older brother and his sister-in-law. He goes to work, he goes to church but seems to live a life of solitude. That is until one evening, he announces he has a 'visitor' and asks to bring her to dinner. The visitor is Bianca, a life sized doll. Lars begins living with her as if she is a real person, speaking for her and making sure she is looked after. Gus and Karin are at first shocked and overwhelmed but with the help of their doctor, Dagmar (the fabulous Patricia Clarkson), they begin to try and understand Lars and Bianca. The community embraces her and helps her assimilation as if she is one of them. This story could have gone down a few paths. The logical part of you starts laughing at the stupidity of it all but as the story moves on, your compassionate side opens up and you begin to see the kaleidoscope of colours that this film shows you. It shows you that men who adopt this pattern of living aren't necessarily scary and perverted, despite the strangeness of it all. It shows that people can be loving and understanding and show great compassion when it is really needed. The character of Lars is a combination of sad,strange,sweet and lovable. The film never once reigns any judgement on his or any one's character. I have to admit, I had a bit of a teary when the credits rolled. MM's rating- 4.5 stars. Me likey.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Brother Baba Budan

This is, in my opinion, the best coffee shop in Melbourne.
These people are serious about great coffee. Despite the queues of people spilling out onto the street, they are pretty quick getting your coffee to you.
The crew at BBB feverishly making their famous coffee whilst the punters await their fix The groovy ceiling at BBB Ahh there she is. My soy latte with 2 awaits me.. All gone. Sealed with a kiss and some coffee froth.

Los Zappatos Drogas

I've seen shoes strewn over power lines for some time now and thought it odd.
At first I thought people were hugely inspired after seeing the Tim Burton film 'Big Fish'.
I have since found out that this is a sign to let people know that drugs can be purchased around here.
Apparently, word of mouth or business cards aren't the norm for plying a trade of narcotics. You must tie the laces of your good sneakers and throw them across the power lines in certain areas to show those in the know that the Pusherman liveth nearby and will pass over the contraband once you've passed over the dosh. Incidently, these one's were photographed by my good self near the corner of Smith and Otter Sts in Collingwood.
Did a google search on 'shoe tossing'..found these;
Personally, I think it's a waste of a good pair of shoes.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Physical Graffiti

A few bits of graffiti around the Collingwood area that I found interesting. I always find it bemusing how people choose to express themselves when armed with spray cans.
The whimsically pretty
The social conscience message The complimentary And the boastful
(BTW,what's your phone number?)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ill Communication



Just got the news that my favourite Beastie Boy, Adam Yauch-MCA- has cancer of the salivary gland.
First read it in the Age but my friend, Marlene sent me a link from undercover.com.au- here's the article;
Adam Yauch From Beastie Boys Diagnosed With Cancer by Paul Cashmere - July 21.
Adam Yauch from Beastie Boys fame has announced that he is suffering from a cancer. Yaunch made the announcement via a YouTube video, apologising to fans for having to cancel the upcoming Beastie Boys tour and postpone the release of the new album.
From his studio in New York, Adam said, “Unfortunately we are going to have to cancel a bunch of our shows and push back our record release because recently, about two months ago I started feeling this little lump in my throat like you would feel if you have swollen glands. I didn’t think it was anything but just recently when we were over in Europe I started to think I should talk to my doctor. So I called my doctor, this was about two weeks ago and he sent me to a specialist and they did tests and I have a form of cancer. It is in a gland called the parotid gland and it is also in a lymph node right in that area. So I am going to have to have surgery, probably next week and then after that have some radiation done”.
He says there is an upside to the news. It is treatable. “The good news is that they did scans in my whole body and it is localised in this one area and it is not is a place that effects my voice. It is a little bit of a setback, it is a pain in the ass, but it is treatable and in most cases they are able to get rid of it,” he said.
Despite the bad personal news, Yauch made an apologetic statement to fans for not being able to tour. “I apologise to anybody who has made plans and who decided to come to these shows. I apologise for anyone who has put themselves out with their schedules,” he said.

All the best Adam. You have the tools of buddhism to get you through mentally and a legion of long time Beastie Boys fans who wish you nothing but the best of health and happiness.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Fin De La Semana

How quickly Mondays roll around. The alarm goes off too soon and then my cat is whacking me across the head to get fed. Pity you can't snooze him as you can a clock or mobile phone. Shower,dress,coffee and out the door. Train commute (note to people who think it's perfectly okay to put your bags,etc on a seat whilst others are standing- STOP THAT SHIT AND GROW SOME MANNERS!) and the short walk to work from Southern Cross Station (thank you Ramones for the excellent companionship there) and here we are again. Which brings me to my weekend. Got home on Friday night tired. All I really wanted to do was eat,put my jarmies on and crash. However, loyalty to certain people got me out the door eventually so Trent and I glued ourselves together and headed the 5 minute walk in the night cold to the Bendigo Hotel. Not the night I was expecting. More like a family BBQ than the sixties extravaganza I was led to believe it was going to be. Ended up in the beer garden drinking and chatting most of the night which was good. Had a boogie at the end of the night when it was ending just to keep myself awake. I had to wait for Bags and Vicki so I didn't have to walk home alone. Bloody owner kept buying them beers to thank them so we didn't get out of there till 1.45! Me very tired by that stage so I went home and crashed. Saturday I caught up with an old AXA friend for breakfast at the fabulous El Mirage cafe in East Brunswick. Oh my Lordy- amazing food and a couple of the staff there are dead yummalicious too. It was great to see Caz and to hear that she's really getting her life together. Got home in the early afternoon to find Trent having a mime lesson with his mime instructor. I decided to use that time to leave the house and go for a cycle down to Brunswick St on his lowrider- I love the attention I get when I ride that thing. I'll post a pic of myself on it when I get one! When I arrived home, said mime lesson had concluded and I was free to do the housework that I'd come home to do. I caught up with another old friend in the evening. We went to see a local art exhibition and then went to dinner and caught up with what's been happening. We were both tired as she does St Andrews market on a Saturday which makes for a long day so we called it quits and I was home just after 9pm. I stayed up and watched Rage as Marky Ramone programmed it and it was chock full of amazing music. The Clash, Elvis Costello, a myriad of great punk/new wave tunes and of course, loads of Ramones. Heaven for this girl. I got up early yesterday morning, took a quick bike ride up to the bank to get some cash and back in time for my accountant. I'm getting a decent refund so I'm happy about that! After he left, I got ready and went into the city for breakfast and to buy some new headphones for the iPod before spending the day with my family. I got back to the ranch late and went straight to bed. Here we are again. I've just checked my calendar and I have ten days to pack up my belongings and move them out. I'm officially homeless on August 1. A week later, I'm off to Buenos Aires so I have just under 3 weeks of Argentina bliss before I have to think about where I'm going to call home again. I know I'll find it and it will be great.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Drag Queens A Go Go

Hallelujah- the weekend has landed! Anna's Go Go Academy (where I know how to pony like Bony Maroney) is holding a go go night at the Bendigo Hotel where I do my go go classes every Tuesday night. Off home now to eat, rest and get dolled up. Might even get the false eyelashes happening.. It's a go go extravaganza respendant with girls in cages, a drag queen(hmmm?) and pints o' cider. A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Pets Sounds,Brian Wilson and Moi

Monday morning and feeling a bit introspective. Woke up this morning feeling very uninspired. If it wasn't for Louie practically clawing my face to be fed, I may have made that phone call so that I could remain in bed doing nothing until midday. Decided Louie shouldn't suffer for my malaise so I got up and made a coffee after placating my cat with dead roo. I got dressed then sat down to enjoy my coffee and began thinking of everything that's going on at the moment. The panic I was feeling is beginning to subside. I'm still angry and hurt but it's simmering rather than boiling. My pot does not runneth over. I feel as if I'm glimpsing a universe that has possibilities and opportunities, rather than the usual feeling that life is against me and full of booby traps. I finally got myself out the door and strapped on the iPod for company. Flicking through the selections I settled on 'Pet Sounds' by The Beach Boys. Loving the twee beauty of 'Wouldn't It Be Nice' and 'Dont Talk-Put Your Head On My Shoulder' and the sublime 'God Only Knows', I really listened to the lyrics of 'I Know There's An Answer or Hang On To Your Ego; "I know there's an answer/I know but I have to find it for myself" Hardly a revelation I know, but it just seems fitting for my life at the moment. I know I could never compare my little life to that of Brian Wilson but I can relate to his opting out of life and just wanting to stay in his PJ's and not leaving his bed. I've spent time off work, staying in my jim jams and hardly moving off the couch due to a combination of fear and self loathing. Brian Wilson at least spent that time creating great music and it was during this time that he created the musical genius we know as the Pet Sounds album. I guess I've always hoped that someone would come along and solve all my problems for me. The older I get, the worse the problems get and it's become evident that that 'someone else' just isn't going to happen. I have a long road to travel and I'm taking no prisoners, just myself. I've set up the support system and it's all going to work out. This is my song at the moment... this song really speaks to me.. I keep looking for a place to fit Where I can speak my mind I've been trying hard to find the people That I won't leave behind They say I got brains But they ain't doing me no good I wish they could Each time things start to happen again I think I got something good goin' for myself But what goes wrong Sometimes I feel very sad Sometimes I feel very sad (Can't find nothin' I can put my heart and soul into) Sometimes I feel very sad (Can't find nothin' I can put my heart and soul into) I guess I just wasn't made for these times Every time I get the inspiration To go change things around No one wants to help me look for places Where new things might be found Where can I turn when my fair weather friends cop out What's it all about Each time things start to happen again I think I got something good goin' for myself But what goes wrong Sometimes I feel very sad Sometimes I feel very sad(Can't find nothin' I can put my heart and soul into) Sometimes I feel very sad(Can't find nothin' I can put my heart and soul into) I guess I just wasn't made for these times

Friday, July 10, 2009

Conundrum

Call me elitist but I don't think I like the idea of a Ramones/Quiksilver merger. Saw this as I got off the tram yesterday; Hey Ho... let's not go. Jetty Surf and the Ramones taste clumsy on my palate. Joey would be turning in his grave. However, Dee Dee would be grateful for the extra money for smack- if he hadn't already OD'd.

Louie's Latest Obsession

Evidently, one pink furry cushion is not enough. He goes at those things like John Shaft.
"He's a complicated cat and no-one understands him like his pillows..".

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Death By Chocolate

Found this story on the Hun website. What a way to go. DESPERATE workers battled in vain to save a 29-year-old man who died after falling into a vat of molten chocolate at a factory. Vincent Smith II was with three workers dumping chunks of chocolate into the simmering liquid when he somehow lost his balance and fell in. TV pictures showed one of his distraught colleagues standing outside the factory in Camden, New Jersey, his clothes covered in chocolate. He had apparently tried to rescue the man who had died by the time emergency services arrived at the scene ten minutes later. Jason Laughlin, spokesman for the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, said an investigation has been launched into the incident. "He somehow slipped and fell into the vat," he said. "Inside the vat, he was hit by a piece of equipment called the agitator that's used to stir, and that killed him." Mr Laughlin said the vat at the Cocoa Services Inc plant was around 8ft deep. "At this point there's no suggestion of foul play," he added. "It appears to be an accident. "This man unfortunately fell into this hole and passed away before anyone could rescue him." Cocoa Services employs another company - Lyons and Sons - to do the mixing at the factory.

A Month From Today....

Wow I can't believe that this time next month, I'll be in Buenos Aires. That's just too much for me to contemplate at the moment! Instead of becoming overwhelmed by what I need to do before I get on the plane, I'm allowing myself to think of the things I want to do and might actually do whilst I'm there;

  • Tango tango and more tango
  • Milongas most evenings
  • Private lessons during the day
  • Spending the days walking through all the different neighbourhoods
  • Cafe con leche and cake at Cafe Tortoni
  • Op shopping and hoping I'll snaffle great things like a faux leopard print coat in my size!
  • Shopping for the perfect pair(s) of tango shoes (comme il fait, Gretaflora,neotango,whatever!).
  • Meeting all sorts of people
  • Street tango in Camanito and San Telmo
  • Mass beef consumption
  • Sharing mate (pr MAH TAY) with porteƱos
  • Late lunches followed by a siesta
  • Spending a day at Recoleta Cemetary
  • Seeing a soccer match and embracing the chaos
  • Getting piropas in the street
  • Go to Uruguay or Mendoza for a couple of days

Above all, I'm looking forward to arriving there with no expectations and soaking in everything Buenos Aires has to offer. It will be good to be able to put this month behind me and enjoy the 3 weeks I'll have there.

May it give me the strength and inspiration I need.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

It's Automatic When I Talk To Old Friends

Miguel y Margarita
Yesterday afternoon I was at my desk at work contemplating what I might do with myself for the evening when I checked my phone and saw I had a missed call and a message. Checked the message- a number I didn't know. Opened the message and it said; "Guess who? I'll be at the Dickens between 5 and 8 if you want to catch up for a drink' I let out an audible WOO HOO! My dear old friend, Michael has finally moved back to Melbourne after many years living in Prague. Evening sorted! I caught the tram down as far as Elizabeth & Collins and walked the short distance to ye olde Charles Dickens Tavern and went downstairs. Nothing ever changes in that place and it's like sliding backwards in time whenever I go there. Incidently, I only ever go there when I'm catching up with Michael- he and the boys would always go there to watch the soccer. I used to go with them to perv on the English backpackers until I realised they had an IQ the same as their shoe size. Anyhoo, I wandered around the crowded room looking for my Mikey boy and couldn't see him or any of the group I assumed he had also contacted for a catch up when I felt a hand on my shoulder and there he was! We hugged for ages as we couldn't believe we were finally seeing one another again. Mikey is one of the most good hearted people I have ever met. There is no edge or meanness to him whatsoever. I've never seen him lose his temper or shout at anyone. I've seen him brooding and ruminating over things that have upset him, but have never witnessed him losing the plot.Mikey smokes a lot-perhaps he's found his peace and centre of the universe in nicotine. His version of 'in with love, out with anger'. Mikey is smart. He can speak on most subjects and is never boring. He has an amazing knowledge of history and can discuss most areas regarding this topic. His university asked him to do honors in history but he declined because 'he couldn't be arsed'. Hardworking,generous,kind and relaxed. I think deep down he's always been a great hero of mine. We met in 1988 at a club called the Beehive which was held at the Carron Tavern in West Melbourne and initially bonded over our love of independant music, mainly the Smiths and eventually a plethora of other bands which generally all hailed from the UK. Mikey's true musical love is Northern Soul and I lost him for about six months whilst he was trying to infiltrate the mod scene in Melbourne After purchasing an old Vespa, a tailor made Italian mohair suit,expensive shirts,shoes and pants, he gave up trying because "most of them were fucking tossers". He does look rather fetching in his mohair suit although I'm pretty sure his Vespa is probably still rusting away in his parents' backyard. He's now back here in Melbourne after a long time and I for one, am extremely happy. Knowing full well he's a man with wheels on his feet, it won't be long before he's thinking of where he wants to be next. He's talking about Africa and the work he's been involved with in the last year working with non government groups. He wants to go there and help start a school and teach english there. I can't help feeling a bit selfish and secretly wishing he'd find something here but you can't fault or deny his ambition and desire to go elsewhere. It's a good way to think and I hope his self belief and enthusiasm for higher places rubs off on me. A good night was had, drinking beers and catching up on what's been happening although it feels as if no time has passed and it had only been a couple of weeks rather than a couple of years. A few weeks ago, I caught up with another old friend, Jim and had the same experience. I guess that is one of the meanings of true friendship; time can pass and things happen but you can come together and pick up where you left off. I'm finding a great comfort in that.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Roll The Dice

If you’re going to try, go all the way.
Otherwise, don’t even start.

 If you’re going to try, go all the way.
This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives, jobs
 and maybe your mind.

 Go all the way.
It could mean not eating for 3 or 4 days.
 It could mean freezing on a park bench.
It could mean jail;
 it could mean derision, mockery, isolation.
 Isolation is the gift;
all the others are a test of your endurance,
of how much you really want to do it.

 And you’ll do it
despite rejection and the worst odds
and it will be better than anything else you can imagine.

 If you’re going to try, go all the way.
 There is no other feeling like that.
You will be alone with the gods
and the nights will flame with fire.
 Do it,
do it,
do it.
Do it.

 All the way
all the way.
You will ride life straight to perfect laughter,
 it’s the only good fight there is.

 - Charles Bukowski

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Broooooooooce!

Snaps to Bruce Springsteen, who at the latest Glastonbury Festival,performed a cover of Joe Strummer's song 'Coma Girl' and dedicated it to Joe and his love of music festivals. Besitos mucho Brucie and Joe.. I will love you forever. Here are the lyrics in case you're not familiar with the song; I was crawling through a festival way out west i was thinking about love and the acid test but first i got real dizzy with a real rockin' gang then i saw the coma girl, and the excitement gang and the rain came in from the wide blue yonder through all the stages, i wandered oh coma girl, and the excitment gang mona lisa, on a motorcylce gang coma girl, coma girl The coma girl was beating with the oil drum gang some fast food fanatic was burning down a burger van somebody was waling off their head oh! Nobody was rippin the teen scene dead and the rain, came in from the wide blue yonder i thought you and me might wander... oh coma girl, and the excitement gang mona lisa, on a motorcycle gang coma girl, coma girl, on a motorcycle gang And then the nineteenth hour was falling upon desolation row some outlaw band, had the last drop on the go lets siphon up some gas!! lets get this show on the road!! said the coma girl, to the excitement gang Into action , everybody sprang and the oil drums were beating out, doolang, doolang coma girl and the excitment gang mona lisa on a motorcycle gang

"Have You Seen My Pussy?".. Farewell Mrs Slocombe..

Logged in to The Age when I got into work this morning - as you do- and noticed the latest in the line of deaths of famous people. Mollie Sugden, who is known mainly for her role as the fabulous Betty Slocombe in 'Are You Being Served'has died at the age of 86 after a long illness. I could copy and paste the whole article here but I won't. Vale Mollie-thanks for the memories. You were a bloody legend.