Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Lounge - Worst Jobs In History

Hello everyone!

I couldn't let a Thursday roll by without joining up with my fellow Lounge Lizards for our weekly linkup.

This week the delightful Kim Frost from Falling Face First  is our host this week, and the topic is Work Woes, Crap Jobs, Career Blips, and so forth.

Kim has written amusingly about her forays into customer service jobs in her youth. I'm taking a leaf out of her book and retracing my steps through my various pocket money jobs back in the day.

In what is undoubtedly a fairly gutting admission for someone like me who basically likes to whinge and complain about everything, I am sorry to say that my youthful part time jobs  were actually mostly quite good.  Didn't stop me feeling bitter and resentful that I had to work over my Christmas holidays while my cousins could loll about and do whatever they pleased. You'd think I had been forced down a coal mine by my parents the way I carried on sometimes.

Anyway I am doing a hardcore last minute post due to bad time management and vomiting kid, so I will briefly run through the highs and lows of my early working life.

The Local Shop for Local People

My first job was as a 15 year old, working Saturday afternoons at our local corner shop. This job was randomly offered to me by the owner, we shall call him Len, for that was indeed his name, and his Len. Maybe Judy? Can't remember. I have my suspicions that he gave me this job because he had secret designs on my grandmother's beautiful old Ford Fairlane car. Once he had weaseled his way into our lives he did indeed purchase said classic vehicle from Nana so my thesis is sound.

Pros: I got paid for the first time, even if I did funnel most of my $5/hour wage back into the business with my regular purchases of bags of mixed lollies.
Cons: Regularly being harangued by well heeled elderly people for not knowing my sums when they said confusing things like "I've got the 25 cents, will that help you?". No it won't fucking help WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT YOU OLD GITS I'VE ALREADY RUNG IT UP ON THE CASH REGISTER HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO REVERSE THAT SHIT? It took me a good year to realize how to give change correctly.

The Clean Team

I left the local shop job when my school friends encouraged me to apply for a job on the Clean Team at the local cinema, where they were already lucky enough to be working. I was so excited at the prospect I could barely contain myself. I aced the interview and got the job, and was entitled to don the noble uniform aka a huge white tshirt emblazoned with "CLEAN TEAM", sneakers and black shorts. So hot right now.

Pros: SO many. Working with all me mates. 50c movies. Seeing the last 10 minutes of all the films showing at the cinema. Actually that was a con. Having money.
Cons: Um..the actual job. IT WAS CLEANING MAN! I am not built for that shit. One time I was called into a cinema during a movie. Some kid had spewed on the floor. I had to clean it up while her whole family sat there and watched me.

Sugar Sugar

I was promoted at one point on account of being so freaking hardworking and motherfucking diligent. I became part of the coveted Candy Bar team, and got to wore a much hotter uniform. A lime green pencil skirt, court shoes and a stripey blouse with a little tie. Cute right? It was the best job ever. I used to complain bitterly about it. UNGRATEFUL WRETCH! We used to make choc top ice creams, bag lollies, make popcorn. It was like working in bloody Willy Wonka's Chocolate factory.

Pros: Friends, money, cute uniform, 50c movies, access to lollies to nibble on.
Cons: Being yelled at by mental customers because it cost $20 for three popcorn kernels. Not my fault dudes, I was but a gormless youth who had only recently worked out how to give change properly. ALso, smelling of popcorn. Actually not a good thing. As well as my general resentment that I had to WORK to earn money. I've basically never shaken this feeling. NOT FAIR. I just want to LIE AROUND AND READ.

Library bitch - beginner level

I kept doing the candy bar job for a bit after I moved to Brisbane for uni, but got tired of going back home every weekend to work, so my auntie helped me get a job as a book shelving person at the uni library. In this glamorous position I got to wear black pants or skirt and a voluminous red polo shirt. Sex-ay. My job was to put ALL OF THE BOOKS away. Over and over again. Bloody science students and their bloody huge textbooks. Always USING THEM. It never ended.

Pros: Location, having money, peaceful nature of workplace. I did some extra work over Christmas once in the Engineering library. Turns out engineers don't use books. So I spent my shifts hiding in a corner of the library reading. Gave me a rather unrealistic impression of librarianship I have to say.
Cons: Heavy books. Working with librarians who are a I am a librarian now so I can say that. Also being regularly berated by one of the fulltime shelvers who thought I was really boring. He was a middle aged man whose main passion was playing in a folk music band. He interpreted my eye rollingness at all his tales from the 70s as "wowserism". As if. *rolls eyes*.

Cirque du Slapdash

At one point I got an extra job on top of the library work to save money for an overseas trip. It was with the...wait for it...Cirque du Soleil. NOT, I hasten to add, as a performer. More's the pity. No, I was hired by some Class A Bitchface Employment Agency Bitches to work the bar. They hated me from the word go because I had another job as well and was constantly turning down their offers of extra shifts. Also I burnt the popcorn once. And was a bit up myself and also a bit gloomy and depressed.

Pros: Money. Kind of interesting I guess working out at a circus site. I had to sell popcorn in the Grande Chapiteau (aka Tent). This started out as a negative, but I decided to pretend I was part of the act and so walked around the stands yelling "POPCORN GET YOUR POPCORN" in a sort of DRAMATIC and ARTISTIC way and it became quite fun. I developed an excellent champagne bottle opening technique. I even had a callous! Cool.
Cons: Bitchface employment HR agency bitches. Weird hospitality industry co worker types who didn't like me and were always PARTYING ON afterwards when I was slinking home to be sad and depressed. General vibe of being disliked. Poo heads.

So there you have it, that's a brief wrap up of my youthful working life.  From it I think you can surmise that I am a lazy, ungrateful, fairly unlikeable snobbish wretch. I needed a smack on the bottom.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Popping tags over at The Shake.

Because I am a PROFESSIONAL, I still wrote my article for The Shake. I had a DEADLINE people, and I take that shit seriously.

It's me banging on about how good I am at Op Shopping. Do you op shop? Or not? Do you  prefer high end establishments like Big W? Or Hermes?

Do tell...check it out over here

Thank you everyone for your kind words about my recent post about GAD. Looks like basically EVERYONE has it. So funny. We are all mentals together.

See you soon.

Monday, May 27, 2013

I prescribe comfort reading.

Hello my dear readers. How I love and adore you all. Thank you for reading this blog. I haven't been posting much recently, I haven't been feeling like it.

I've alluded to feeling bad several times. I don't want to seem like I am "vagueblogging", a term I learnt recently that refers to people who drop vague hints about dramatic life events or personal torment to titillate their readership without going into too many details, in a sort of attention seeking and irritating fashion.

I also don't like being all earnest and issues-y. Look there's a time and a place and other blogging peeps rock the earnest genre but I'm not good at it, I come off moany and sort of emo, or like I'm hamming it up.

I thought I'd quickly be honest about things, in a way that suits me.  I want to quickly chat about stuff and then move on, and hope that it won't define me. I think it's probably good to mention things like this as part of a person but not to obsess about them. If we want to normalise being a bit crazy in the brain then we probably should treat it like any other chronic illness, like diabetes, and touch on it occasionally in a sort of matter of fact way without getting dramatic.  Sorry if I've offended anyone by saying that, and I hope nobody is getting too eye rolly about the whole thing.

Anyway the thing is I have rather a bad and sometimes debilitating problem with anxiety - in fact, I have GAD (Gad-zooks!) which stands for Generalised Anxiety Disorder.  I am sure I have had it my whole life but it is only in recent years that it has been formally identified.

At the moment, it is quite bad.

It doesn't really sound like a particularly debilitating thing, anxiety. It sort of sounds like you worry a bit about things, that you dwell on stuff, that if you tried hard enough to be POSITIVE you might be able to get on with it and just shut up.

It's not like that.  For me, over the years it has taken slightly different forms.

It's been with me as a sort of constant worrying and obsessive thought patterns, that when really bad caused me constant breathlessness and a never ending feeling of nervous butterflies in my tummy.

When P was a baby it developed into major depression. I took antidepressants and it was utterly life changing because I realised what it must feel like to be normal, there was an absence of something that had permanently dogged me.

At the moment I have sort of taken to thinking of my brain as a separate sort of spiteful entity that likes to torment me at random moments with heinous and frightening thoughts.

 I imagine my brain as the Samuel L Jackson character from Pulp Fiction, sort of torturing me and taunting me with ghastly thought patterns.

Suffice to say being regularly forced to relive stressful memories or walk through unbearable scenarios regularly and relentlessly is farking exhausting and leaves me at a low ebb, and it is quite tough getting simple things done, let alone commute to work and look after a family. I also get really run down and am constantly getting colds. The constant adrenalin running through my body renders me weak and depleted.

People with a genuine anxiety disorder can't just stop worrying, or keep calm, or whatever. They aren't "negative" or "whingers". If you are lucky enough not to know what it is like, then good for you, but you aren't more "positive" or "organised" or whatever, you just don't have this particular problem to deal with.

Props to you.

They have a brain that malfunctions. They have obsessive thought patterns that have worn a groove in the neural connections so deep it could be the doorsill at Westminster Abbey.

You can't tell them that other people have it better, it could be worse, first world problems, stop being so negative, think positive - because they know all that already. It's their arsehole psycho obsessive brains that don't get the message.

You can't change that overnight. 

There's plenty of things I can do to help myself and also people who I can and will engage to help me, I can't be bothered going into details but it's the old fish oil, exercise, psych, comfort reading Ladies Detective Agency novels blah blah.

Anyway, hey ho, this is me at the moment. I was toying with chucking the blog in completely because I am so tired all the time but I love it so I will just be a bit more relaxed and ad hoc about it, as suggested by my lovely Lounge Lizard colleagues.

I mean, when you feel like poo you just want to be miserable and talk about boo hoo topics and get all introspective and MOODY and frankly who wants to read that shizz - NOT ME AND NOT YOU I AM SURE!

It truly is a first world problem - I mean, obviously. I guess if I was living in sub-Saharan Africa I wouldn't have any time to be a mental I'd just be, you know, struggling to survive and avoid death from famine or war. But as it is I am a first world girl, living in a first world world, not getting enough exercise, running a busy stressful life and having a good old Celtic genetic tendency to be a mental.

At least I'm not an alcoholic. BONUS POINTS TO ME!

If you ever want to talk about this sort of thing feel free to email me about it.

Anyway, I feel better having said something about it, like I've unblocked myself again (and I don't mean digestively speaking, boom tish!).

Thank you for reading. When I get home this evening I will have a hot shower and do some comfort reading of the Ladies Detective Agency -  Mma Ramotswe and her endless talk of boiled pumpkin and Bush Tea are good for the soul.


Yours in mentalness


Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Lounge. Blogging Break.

I may be having a blogging break, but I'm still capable of delving into the Slapdash Mama archives to find something suitable for today's linkup at The Lounge.

This week it's at Rachel's blog! Go forth and read!

I'm linking up this old post. Remember? His name was "Pierre"

Hoping to be back to normal transmission soon dear readers. 

Grab button for THE LOUNGE

Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Shake Report - Budgetvision Edition

Bored by Budget 2013? Can't get enough of crazy Scandinavian pop music? You've come to the right place my friends.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

On being a bad sport - Part 2

Hello loyal readers and contributers to The Lounge! Today we are all over at Robo Mum's blog, sharing our experiences of  Hissy Fits. Tanties! Spitting the dummy! Pitching a fit!

EDITED TO ADD: Also linking up with Grace for Flog Your Blog Friday :-))

Well, once again we have hit on a topic that is close to my heart. *sigh*

I know it is hard to believe, new readers, but I am one of the great dummy spitters of all time. My loyal regulars might remember the series I started recently on my epic unsportsmanlike behaviour. You can read the first post again here! And who wouldn't want to read about it, hey?! In that piece, I dissect one of the more public meltdowns of my primary school years.

Today, for your delectation, I present to you a history of sibling directed spack attacks.

Part 2 - On Brothers and Sibling Rivalry and Losing Your Shit

My brother C and I have always had a RAMBUNCTIOUS sibling relationship. Ah, halcyon days. We used to chase each other round and round the house until one caught the other.  That unlucky soul would then have their face mashed into the Sega Master System (or in later years, the Nintendo) whilst being simultaneously beaten about the head with the handset.  The Mater would come over all vapoury and have to lie down in her room while we wrestled and screamed on the floor. Don't blame her I guess.

Here we are in happier times. Brother C is ROCKING a Ren and Stimpy shirt and flanno. 

Once, in a fit of girlish pique, I threw a steel paint removal brush at him - high spirited scamp that I was! He was left with a blood pricked imprint on his back. Mater and Pater were not impressed that day, and I was sent to my room to think about wot I dun.

Another amusing anecdote that the parentals and miscellaneous extended family like to bring out at Family Occasions is this one time, when the whole family (cousins and all) were playing cricket on the school oval in the summer holidays. I had locked myself in the car, tantruming about something, and was being summarily ignored by everyone as they Got On With The Game. Ignored, that is, until I unlocked the car, came streaking (not naked don't worry) onto the pitch, shrieking with rage. I ran past the fielders, making a beeline for my unfortunate brother. I proceeded to kick him solidly in the shins, whilst the Much Older Cousins looked on, bemused, and then ran shrieking hysterically back to the car, locking the doors behind me.


I should add in my defence here that my reputation as quite the SPITFIRE could probably be seen as a reaction to my mother's family, in which anyone who heats up beyond a sort of "What ho chaps I'm a bit annoyed at you. Better keep utterly silent about it!", or a "I say old thing I thought we were having proper custard not store bought. I might just roll my eyes and tsk about it for a bit!"  is classed as TOTALLY PSYCHOTIC.

But I digress.

Ah, but Brother C and I could press each other's buttons like nobody else.  As a teenager I took particular pleasure in preying upon him whilst he was lying sloth-like and vulnerable on the couch, watching Blackadder on TV. I would sidle up til I was almost standing on top of him, and then break into vigorous go-go dancing, so that the television was obstructed. This inevitably ended in the same result - he would punch me, shouting "Why don't you FUCK OFF AND DIE!".

The HILARITY! Good times, good times.

This sibling enmity lasted well into our adulthood, and it is with GREAT fondness I recall one particular incident, during a rather bleak period in my life in my early 20s where I had temporarily moved back home, jobless, licking my wounds after yet another relationship disaster. Brother C was lying prostrate on the couch, as he does, while I sat gloomily near him, probably weeping quietly to myself and moaning softly.

Brother C, roused by my gentle sobs, looked at me with disgust and said something like "God you just need to GET A JOB and stop being so awful and go out and find some friends you pathetic loser!". Or so it sounded to my sensitive ears.

His words only served to increase my misery. I glared at him, slumped as he was on the couch, lumpen and immobile, and it was then, reader, that my old companion the Red Fog descended.

I leapt from my seat, shrieking like a banshee, and launched at him as he lay inert on the lounge. I ran with arms flailing, screaming in rage. I set upon him with my fists, shrieking "I HATE YOU I HATE YOU I HATE YOU I HATE YOU!" as he tried to cover his face with his hands. I grabbed at the closest arm, and bent down, teeth bared, howling and wailing, and tried to bite a chunk out of him.

Unfortunately, over the years, Brother C has somewhat overtaken me, height and strength wise.

See? He is a LOT bigger than me. I'm wearing heels in this pic. Also am pregnant and therefore, despite appearances, not drunk. SO CLASSY. Invite me to weddings at your peril!  His bemused smirk belies the fact that he is undoubtedly still thinking "WHY DON'T YOU JUST FUCK OFF AND DIE!"

As I leant over with my bared fangs, he quickly placed his other hand on my forehead, and pushed me away. He held me there at arm's length while I shrieked and flailed uselessly in his general direction, until the Mater appeared from her room to see what all this jolly fuss was about, what ho!

An artist's rendition. And by artist, I mean, me. So perhaps it is more accurate to say an "artist's" rendition. Note please the hand on the forehead and the flailing arms. Note it I say!

I think I ran sobbing from the room and threw myself on my bed.  You know, in a LADY-LIKE WAY! And no doubt he didn't move from his position on the couch and continued on with his television viewing.

Anyway, such has been the tenor of our complex sibling relationship over the years. Me, flailing and go-go dancing and shrieking and crying; He, lying on the couch.

Long may it last, bro.

Do you have any siblings? Ever tried to bite them? Are you a mental? ME TOO!

I'm off to punch some walls in. Have a good day peeps.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Slapdash da Vinci needs YOU!

So I'm feeling a bit crook at the moment and had to have yesterday and today off work. DON'T PANIC MUM!

Even though I am feeling off it was still so completely fantastic to be at home and not to have to make the poo of a commute into the city.

I've been lying around and thinking about how good it would be if I could work from home.

Is it too much to ask?  I've been thinking about it and I reckon I've got a plan.

I need a patron.

That show off Leonardo da Vinci had the Medici family practically CHUCKING money at him, right? I mean when they weren't all becoming Popes and whatnot. I don't see what's so special about HIM. I'll give him Renaissance (Wo)Man!

Ole Catherine de Medici just patronising the HELL out of the arts BACK IN THE DAY

I can turn my hand to just about anything! Politics, art, science, poo, farts, bottoms, poo, literature and farts! And I do it all with a smile and some bright lippy! WAY BETTER than all those dreary old robes and floppy hats that he used to get about in.

UGH Leonardo, those floppy hats are so, like, 1500s! YOU NEED SOME POPS OF COLOUR!

See how freaking artistic I am? And take note Leonardo - pops of colour! BAM! I am dead set misunderstood.

I have so much to GIVE! Why won't my talent be recognised? If only some kindly sugar daddy/mummy of a patron would take me under his/her wing and ply me with money, booze, jacuzzis and booze. OK I'd settle just for the money, I am not an unreasonable woman.


And when I say give peace a chance, I mean give me some money.

As I've mentioned, I've got a lot to offer. I mean, for starters, one of the really FASCINATING things about me is that, unlike everyone around the traps these days, I HAVE NO TATTOOS! That's right people! I have PRISTINE UNTOUCHED SKIN! Acres of it. I am a fleshy ink-free zone! Totally deviant in this day and age. I mean, no tattoos are the new tattoos.

I could totally flog off my HIGH VALUE REAL ESTATE (ie body) to the highest bidder.

Give me money to write and I will tattoo your name/business/political ideology on my arm*. I'll get a freaking SLEEVE, baby! If Mitchell Johnson can do it then so can I.

Or I could, you know, approach it more traditionally and do some of those old faithful sponsored posts for my devoted patron.

I've got some targets in mind.  People with more money than sense (SHHH DON'T TELL THEM I SAID THAT OR THEY WON'T GIVE ME ANY).  Here's my list of possible Slapdash Mama Patrons and Sponsors;

Clive Palmer

Clive, I could write you the sponsored post to end all sponsored posts. I mean, you need some HELP, right? With your IMAGE. What with the new party and all? And the dinosaur park and shit? I CAN HELP WITH THAT! I've got some concepts I've been thrashing around, like "Clive Palmer: More than just a billionaire [SPONSORED POST]", or "Clive Palmer: The Man Behind the Dinosaurs Behind the Titanic Behind the Party Behind the Man [SPONSORED POST], or "Mining! It's Awesome! Let's do all the Mining! Yeah! Mines! [SPONSORED POST]. This could work. IT TOTALLY COULD!

Tom Waterhouse

Well, any of the Waterhouse family really. Well, whoever isn't in jail after all the More Joyous shamozzle. I could do a sponsored post with GIVEAWAY! Tom could giveaway some, you know, HORSE TIPS, to the winner of my competition! About, um, ahem, his mum's horses, and like, the ones that have limps and, erm...well...yeah anyway something like that, WE CAN REFINE THE DETAILS!

Gina Rinehart

I think I could ask Gina to write a regular column on the ole blog on PARENTING! Like, how to have an awesome relationship with your daughters and how to cope when they SUE YOUR ARSE? Either that or I could insinuate myself into her life effortlessly until she finally chucks over ALL her ungrateful children and WRITES ME INTO HER WILL! Her family have quite the tradition of this sort of thing I think you will find. Then I could be a lady of leisure and prattle on the internet to my heart's content. Ok, ok, so maybe she'd make me write the occasional post about how EVIL the mining tax is, how the carbon tax is the devil's work,  and also about how bad the mining tax is, BUT WHO AM I TO QUESTION MY PATRON? I'm flexible, people! Needs must!
Or I could just try and get a job with Fairfax, IT'S BASICALLY THE SAME THING THESE DAYS RIGHT?! Boom tish!

OK, so this sounds like a plan. Of sorts.

OR....I could just decide to host some little ads on my blog and see if anyone wants to advertise on it.


YES! This whole rambling post in which I compare myself to Leonardo da Vinci and suggest that I ask Clive Palmer to patronise me, is a roundabout way of announcing I AM GOING TO HOST ADVERTISING ON THE BLOG! CALL ME!

Let's see how this goes, eh? Anyone out there with a small business, I CAN HOOK YOU UP WITH SOME GOOD SHIT! Well, some pretty good shit. OK, some average shit.

Do YOU have more money than sense yourself? Or a jacuzzi? Fancy yourself a bit of a highbrow patron of the arts type? Or maybe even your own mining company? PLEASE CONTACT ME! CLIVE PALMER I AM LOOKING AT YOU!

*I probably won't actually do this. You know, what with the pain and the kind of stupidity of the concept.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Katie 180 Recipe. And a song!

One of my absolutely favourite blogs is Katie Rainbird's Katie 180. I LOVE IT SICK! Katie is a nutritionist and writes about the ins and outs of healthy food, and is not averse to a bit of scatalogical humour. She is as funny a blogger as ever there was - but when I read her, not only do I laugh, but I am edu-ma-cated!

Her recipes are eminently cook-able and TASTY. 

Katie's blog has been shortlisted in the Top 100 for the Kidspot Voices 2013 - you should all go and check it out.

I begged her to do a guest post recipe type thing on my blog because I am SHAMELESS. And even though she is very busy and so forth she made a recipe available to me.

I had made another recipe of hers a little while ago, and naturally Instagrammed photos of it. It was a zucchini pasta sauce. Except using my mother's philosophy that all vegetarian dishes taste better with bacon (or similar), I added chorizo. This was met with SCORN by Katie herself, however I think I have infiltrated her psyche because LOOK WHAT RECIPE SHE SENT ME!


So, I actually got around to making it for din-dins the other night.

Here is photographic evidence.


Chorizo. What? It IS chorizo. You guys are SICK. KEEP IT CLEAN OK?

Child sized portion
Here's the recipe itself in the inimitable words of the lady herself...

From the esteemed desk of Katie180…

Dear Mrs Slapdash,

Please find one easy dinner recipe for your noshing pleasure.

Ingredients: (To serve two so multiply as needed.)
1 x good quality chorizo (please try to buy from a good deli rather than say, a supermarket one), finely sliced ~ as many thin slices as you can get.
1 x tin of organic diced tomatoes.
1 x Spanish onion, diced.
1 x teaspoon of raw sugar.
Baby spinach leaves, washed and shredded.
¼ cup of frozen peas ~ optional.
S&P to season.
Olive oil.
Pasta, whichever you prefer but I like to use long pasta.

Sweat onions in olive oil.
Add chorizo and crisp up a little then turn down heat. 

Stir through tomatoes and add the sugar, bring to a gentle simmer.
Reduce heat then pop lid on.
Cook pasta.
Once pasta is cooked, stir through spinach leaves and peas if using.
Season to taste.
Divide pasta between bowls and spoon over chorizo mixture.

This dish is one of my fall-back favourites, not for regular eating due to the use of processed meat, but I DO enjoy it when I make it and it is super quick and easy.

Chorizo keeps for ages in the fridge, so if you buy a couple in the groceries knowing you’re in for a busy week, they’ll be there in a few days ready to rock’n’roll.

Be sure to use lots of baby spinach as it reduces down considerably and it can kind of offset the naughtiness of the sausage!

If you’ve got kids who use their fingers not their forks probably best to use spirals or bowties.

Muchos love, Katie J

This was a great success, despite my usual slapdash approach, which meant that - 

a) I didn't buy nice chorizo from a nice deli and used some in a packet from Woolies, and
b) At the last minute I realised I had no spinach so I used extra peas and grated a zucchini in.

As I've said before to my critics, if I was more organised I'd have to change the name of the blog and we CANNOT HAVE THAT, now, can we?

In closure, I decided to write  adapt a song for Katie to express my feelings about this recipe. It is to be sung to the music of "Oh Mandy" by Barry Manilow. Or "Oh Margie" by well know songbird Homer Simpson.

Oh Katie,
Well, you came and you gave me a recipe,
For my little bloggie.
Oh Katie,
Well, you said to use spinach, I didn't
I hope you don't hate me!
Oh Katie.

Thank you so much Katie180. I wish you all of the good things! MWAH!

Thursday, May 9, 2013


Hello everybody! Welcome to The Lounge, open again for business this Thursday. Settle in with a drink and SPILL YOUR GUTS for all to hear.

Go on, tell your old Auntie Slapdash all about your fashion faux pas, your stonewashed denim, your harem pants, your flares, your clip on earrings. I WON'T JUDGE YOU and neither will anyone else. PROMISE.

Look, unfortunately, this topic is actually really HARD for me.  I can hardly think of ANY examples of fashion faux pas in my history! The thing is, I basically am just incredibly put together and stylish and I always have been. Since childhood, I have taken a keen interest in fashion, and take pride in my appearance as a matter of course. I rarely put a foot wrong, fashion wise, and......hey! Hey, hang on...what the...

...HEY WHAT THE ACTUAL YOU GUYS? Where did THIS PIC come from? I mean, sheeesh. I was just a KID for goodness sake. I am sure tartan was ALL THE RAGE and I don't remember ever wearing it again. It was a ONE OFF!

Far out. OK, where was I? Seriously you guys that was below the belt.

Anyway, as I was saying, I rarely put a foot wrong, and poo-poo those who are slaves to fashion, preferring a more classic look, and.....hey. HEY HEY HEY WHAT THE?

Holy Haggis, batman, WHERE ARE YOU GETTING THIS SHIT YOU GUYS? UGH. Gah. OK well, so obviously I had a THING for tartan for a bit there. And I guess it seemed to last a few years. OK. Fair point. Look, everybody had off days as a teenager, right? I mean, what am I, like 14 in this pic? WHAT DO YOU EXPECT?

So, getting back to the post, as I was saying, being stylish and..........UGHHHHHH! What is THIS!?

Yeah, ok, we've all seen this pic before. Yeah yeah. I'm the one  on the far left. Yeah, yeah, crazy pants. How zany was I? I get the point guys, you are starting to embarrass me. I mean, I wear a pair of crazy pants like ONCE and I get a reputation?? Let's be FAIR HERE PEOPLE! Pardon? What do you mean?

FARRRRRRKKKK! OK, OK, so I wore them more than once.  PEOPLE can't you cut a girl some slack? I WAS ONLY A KID! 
SHINGS guys. Can we get back to the post now? THANK-YOU!

OK, so as I was SAYING, I am really careful to always remain on top of the fashions, and try to dress appropriately for all occasions, and I.....SHIT! SHIT WHERE ARE YOU GETTING THIS STUFF!?

This was a DRESS UP PARTY you lot. OF COURSE it is a fashion fail. OBVIOUSLY! I AM MEANT TO BE MARY POPPINS!

THIS IS A FREAKING DRESS UP PARTY TOO! I am getting pretty sick of this. UGH.

Right, that's it. I mean, I come here, I try to do a nice thing and host a linkup for you all, and you just sit there making fun of my tartan tights and my Traveling Outfit. SO WHAT if I was standing outside the White House? I WAS DOING LOTS OF WALKING THEY ARE SENSIBLE SHOES! And I was being SUN SMART. 
Frankly this is about just as much as a girl can stand. I'm trying to have a SENSIBLE conversation and you are RUINING IT FOR EVERYONE. 

SIGH! Over to you I suppose, IF YOU MUST. Everyone's a critic, I'm telling you!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The Shake Report

Hello guys! Confused about what's been going down, current affairs wise? Finger no longer on the pulse?
ME TOO! Doesn't stop me though...

Here's the latest Shake Report for your reading pleasure..

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The public v private debate, or "Daft Punk is for weirdos"

Recently, my semi-retired mother returned to work as a part-time high school teacher. For the first time in her life, she is working at a fancy pants private school. After a lifetime of channeling Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Minds (aka working at huge state high schools in low socio-economic areas), and championing the public education cause, she is wide-eyed in amazement at how the other side learns, and is loving every second of it. Loving it SICK. The traitorous wench.

She admitted to me the other day, "Oh darling, it was SUCH A RELIEF! I mean, I was really worried that somewhere like [insert name of my old high school here] would ask me to work there. Oh it would have been simply AWFUL. I am SO RELIEVED they didn't ask me to work at [insert name of my old high school here]."


It was a little unfair of me really, she has had a difficult* year and couldn't have coped with the stress of it all. She bloody deserves to spend some time teaching in a school where she's not working in a 20 year old demountable with the walls kicked in, and where the kids don't tell her to "Oy! Get FUCKED, Miss!"

"At [insert name of fancy pants private school here], the kids are ALLOWED TO GO TO THE TOILET DURING CLASS!" she told me in awe. "We used to have to fill out FORMS and PAPERWORK before a kid could do that at a state school! And they have a COFFEE SHOP! And a THEATRE! All the classrooms are AIR CONDITIONED!"

"Bastards," I said bitterly.

Ah, the public/private divide.  That old chestnut.  That old sausage. That old grey mare, she ain't what she used to be.

Most of my friends from primary school went to private high schools.  It was only a couple of us that went on to the local public high school.  I remember clearly, on the last day of Grade 7, we all cried and wailed in an embarrasing display of pre-teen hysteria.  As we sat in the middle of the oval, clutching each other and weeping, one of the private school destined friends said earnestly to me, "Sarah! Promise me you'll never EVER wear a short straight skirt with your uniform, or wear your hair hanging down your back. PROMISE ME!"

"I won't. I won't EVER!" I vowed, so sure then that short skirts and loose hair were the quick road to ruin.

HAHA! AS IF THAT LASTED! You know as soon as I got there I was begging Mum to take my skirt up to bum-skimming heights and was wearing my hair hanging loose round my shoulders like the public school hussy that I was.

So the years went by. We stayed in touch with our beloved friends but things changed a bit. They went on to win the Rock Eisteddfod, we went on to lose it. They went on to have an arse-kickingly good concert band that probably won the Fanfare competition, we went on to play gigs at the local shopping centre that involved standing up and shouting "Tequila!" in the middle of a song. They developed passionate interests in theatre and THE ARTS,  we developed unhealthy obsessions with the dudes from Green Day.

Towards the end of high school, I think it was Grade 11, two of the private school friends had a big party, and they invited us, the public school friends, to come. It was to farewell them as they headed off on year long student exchanges. We were to wear red and white, the colours of their host countries.

Because we were NERVOUS and TRYING TO BE COOL and it was THE NINETIES we decided the best idea would be to wear white petticoats, red and white football socks and Doc Martens. SO HOT! HOW COULD ALL THOSE PRIVATE SCHOOL BOYS REFUSE? They would never know that we were all DAGGY DORKS, they would be tricked into thinking we were HOT STATE SCHOOL REBELS MAN! YEAH!

This is us circa 1996/7. Not at said red and white party. At another party. I am on the far left. I've used this picture before. How good are my pants? They totes fit into the Fashion Fails themeing we've got going on for The Lounge this week, I will say that much.

We got there and to our shock a group of the COOL BOYS from our school were already there. Apparently they had part time jobs in the same place as our hosts. Our cover was blown. They looked at us in surprise, like they hadn't realised that we might exist outside school hours. We lurked in a corner watching everyone dancing to the actual live DJ who was there. He was, like, just dropping some BEATS and spinning some PROGRESSIVE HOUSE MUSIC or something.

We didn't recognise anything they played, until a Daft Punk song came on. Daft Punk was not our THING, man. We groaned, and rolled our eyes. "Ugh! I HATE Daft Punk!" we all said, wrinkling our noses.

All the other guests squealed, and ran excitedly onto the dancefloor. "I LOVE THIS!!!" they cried in unison. We watched on, incredulous, as they popped some moves. How could we be so OUT OF IT!? We shuffled uncomfortably and folded our arms, until it finished, and the next song came on.

It was that sexually suggestive R&B song "Pony" by one hit wonders "Ginuwine". Remember??? GHASTLY.

We squealed and clapped our hands together. "OH WE LOVE THIS SONG!" we shouted, running onto the dancefloor to join the other guests.  They all stopped in their tracks, announcing "UGHHHH. HATE THIS SONG! HATE IT!". They left the dancefloor as quickly as we joined it.

We danced a little more self consciously then. I started to realise how crass the lyrics were, and tried to dance IRONICALLY to it, but the jig was basically up. I felt the eyes of the room on us.

    Ride it, my pony
    My saddle's waiting
   Come and jump on it...

After the song finished, we slunk away. Our beloved friend, one of the hosts, L, said to us "OH! I just KNEW you girls would like that song! SO FUNNY!" she smiled and laughed, genuinely (or should that be "ginuinely") delighted. We laughed nervously and changed the subject but I still felt  embarrassed.

Anyway I'm not sure exactly what the point of this story is except that it sticks in my head as a defining example of the difference between private schools and public schools. Like;

Fancy theatre/no fancy theatre
Air conditioned classrooms/75 million year old decrepit demountables with holey walls
Long skirts/Short skirts
Rock eisteddfod winners/rock eisteddfod losers


File:Ginuwine wiki.jpg



SEE how crazy big the public/private divide has become??? SEE??? It's a bloody travesty.

I think that there is something in that for all of us.

What's that you say? This whole post is rambling and makes no sense and the parallels I am drawing are confusing and you're not sure what I am getting at?


*Understatement of the millennium

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Why aren't I better at routine?

Well, today's the big day everybody - the first day of our new linkie party, "The Lounge". If you don't know what I am talking about, check out my page here, it will tell you everything you need to know!
Today Tegan from Musings of the Misguided is our host, and the theme is - "Why aren't I better at this yet??" - please feel free to link up your own post and have fun!

I have to add the disclaimer that Brenda of Mumabulous fame has ALREADY WRITTEN A BETTER POST ON A VERY SIMILAR TOPIC for The Lounge this week! But I must press on...

Soooooooo......GUYS! Why the ever loving eff am I SO BAD AT STICKING TO ROUTINE? Particularly on the days I go to work?

It is a GOOD question.

Of course, one could cite the baby, small child, and husband as the obvious speedbumps on the road to ORGANISATION TOWN, but actually (and it pains me to say this) I must also take some of the responsibility. I know. Galling.  The words are STICKING IN MY CRAW YOU GUYS! UGH!

OK. Let's workshop it, people. Let's just deconstruct the shit out of a typical morning and GET TO THE BOTTOM OF IT ALL!

This is what should happen.

Night before: Tidy kitchen COMPLETELY. Put dishwasher on. Make and pack lunch. Choose work outfit and put that out. Tidy house more or less. GO TO BED EARLY DAMMIT.

5am: Wake before kids. S has walk. M has shower. (THIS SHOULD BE SWAPPED ON ALTERNATE DAYS SO WE BOTH GET SOME EXERCISE)
6am: Kids wake. S has shower, M puts breakfast on and unloads dishwasher.
6:30am: Everyone eats breakfast and engages in family discussions about art, literature, current affairs, Peppa Pig, poo and wee.
7am: P assists M by getting her kindy bag ready. M gets B dressed. S tidies up kitchen and puts a load of clothes in the washing machine.
7:30: We all leave the house. M takes kids to kindy then goes to work. I go straight to work.

This looks REALLY SENSIBLE AND DOABLE, right? Am I right? I'm right aren't I? Definitely right about this. The THEORY IS SOUND, reader.

Here is a dramatic reinactment of ACTUAL EVENTS that occur on a typical work day at our house.

5am: I hear the baby stirring in his room. I squeeze my eyes shut and pretend to be asleep. I can feel M doing the same. The baby starts to squawk louder. I lie as still as possible until I feel M get up and go down the hallway, coming back with baby B. We all lie together in bed while he crawls all over us, until we hear P's footsteps in the hallway. She appears at my side, imperiously demanding that I "Move over!" and complaining that "Mummy your BREATH smells AWFUL!". M and I continue to lie with our eyes shut while they both squirm and crawl over us.  Finally M and I can pretend we are asleep no longer. We embark on a conversation along these lines;

M: Are you going to get up with them or have a shower first?
Me: I should really go for a walk. I need to do more exercise. I've put on so much weight. How do people fit in exercise? I don't think there's time this morning. Probably I should get up and then you should have a shower. Then I'll have a shower.
M: I think you should have a shower first.
Me: No you should have a shower first while I get breakfast and then I'll just have a shower and leave straight after.
M: OK.

6:30am: We finally get up. I take the kids out and start breakfast.  This is made difficult by the fact we forgot to put the dishwasher on the night before, so I have to wash out some things before I start. I can hear M carrying out long and complex ablutions in the ensuite. P and B pull a million toys out onto the floor. It all takes a really long time and sounds like this;

P: Muuuuummmmmyyyy I'm HUNGRY!
Me: I'm just putting the porridge on, darling, you'll have to wait a bit.
P: Muuuummmmyyyy Benji is taking my THINGS! *outraged screams from B as she takes her toys back off him*
[I interrupt my breakfast-making to intervene].
Me: P if you don't want B to take your toys then put them in your room.
P: NO!
Me: *Grr*
[I go back to kitchen and keep making breakfast. P disappears and appears wearing a different outfit].
Me: P! If you are going to get changed don't leave your PJs on the FLOOR! Take them into your ROOM! P! P! Are you listening to me! Hey! P! Oh FOR GOD'S SAKE I'll do it.
[I interrupt breakfast-making again to take P's PJs back to her room. While there I make her bed and chuck some things into toy baskets etc. before remembering I was actually making the porridge].

And so forth.

7:30am: I have finally finished making breakfast and we are sitting down, eating, I am wrestling with B as he desperately tries to shovel the porridge into his mouth with two spoons. It goes EVERYWHERE. Like EVERYWHERE. After we've finished, P runs off. B has smeared porridge all over his face and in his hair. I wipe him down and get him out of the highchair, and start cleaning the mess on the floor.

7:45am: M emerges from our bedroom showered and dressed. He channels a hobbit and has first breakfast and second breakfast too. General stuffing around and chasing of P and packing of kindy bags occurs. M remembers he hasn't made his lunch. I remember I haven't made mine either. M gets a whole lot of stuff out of the fridge and makes sandwiches and snacks and stuff.

8:15am: I am still in my pyjamas. By some miracle M and the kids are dressed and in the car. I wave them off.

8:20am: I race around tidying things, jump in the shower, decide there's no time to shave legs or wash hair. I get dressed, jump in car and begin my hour long commute.

But not before wasting time by taking a few selfies of my work outfit whilst doing dumb poses. SO IMPORTANT DON'T YOU KNOW!

9:30am: I race into the office, flustered, hungry again. People comment on how nice my hair looks. I reply "Oh it's probably because it's full of GREASE! Yeah I haven't washed it for like DAYS!". People look a bit less impressed after that.
5:30pm: I finally get to leave the office, because I got there so late, and race home.

6:45pm: I arrive home. Kids and M have eaten. Babysitter and M are bathing kids. I reluctantly counsel the young flibberdigibbit babysitter because her dreaders boyfriend said he'd marry her in ten years if they were still single but doesn't want to tell his friends they are going out together and she's quit uni to work for him YADA YADA YADA. Ugh. I hurry her out the door. She talks the whole time.

7pm: I put B to bed. M puts P to bed. B goes to sleep. P comes out a million times and finally stays in bed by 7:30 ish.  By this time we are exhausted, so shovel some food in, do a mediocre tidy of kitchen and slump on couch. I think about making my lunch but don't. I think about putting my clothes out for the next day but don't. You get the drift.

AND repeat!


I fly by the seat of my pants.

The idea of working more than 2 days GIVES ME THE HEEBIE JEEBIES! How would I do it? I want to have a lie down just thinking about it.



Or not. Look, I guess it's got me this far. Look at me! I'm a high flyer baby!* Maybe it's working for me? Maybe it's because I AM A CREATIVE GENIUS AND VALUE SPONTANEITY AND FUN TIMES AND CHILLAXING WITH MY HOMIES?

Who knows. It's hard to teach an old dog new tricks. And it's hard for a tiger to change its stripes. And you can't lead a horse to water. YOU FEEL ME?**

Now excuse me while I write out a new Family Routine and Meal Plan, put it up on the fridge, ignore it for a week, and carry on in the same freaked out fashion that I always do.

Until next time, adieu. Adieu. To yer and yer and yer...

*I may not actually be a high flyer.
**It's totally ok if you don't. Feel me, I mean. I don't really know what it means anyway.

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