I sobbed watching TV3 tonight. God that poor 9yr-old girl, raped and abused for 5 years, and then suicided. My god my god, it could have been me, I came so close so many times. That poor, poor girl. That poor kid. She left a note that said "I don't hate him, I hate myself", and that speaks so tragically for those who experience abuse and rape.
The sickening thing was the evil bastard that did this blamed her too. As if a nine year old kid would iniate it. No more than I did at six. But I blamed and hated myself for decades after, and my heart breaks for this kid. The evil that men do.
And you know what shouldn't matter, but does? My fat ugly stomach folds over on itself, and I just want to take a knife to it. I wish I didn't feel like this, and I wish I didn't look like this.
Two totally disparate things to cry about.
God that poor girl. That poor girl.
I hope that bastard gets raped and knifed in prison. I hope people spit on him and put razor-blades in his food. I hope he gets shoved down the stairs and pissed on in the showers. I hope someone stubs out cigarettes on his penis and turns his scrotum into a tobacco pouch. I'd roll a cigarette from in and shove the lighter up his fucking ass. Piece of shit. Rot in hell.
Guess what I got yesterday? A letter dated the 9th, a letter dated the 13th, and a letter dated the 16th. I also got my CDs. Both of 'em. The freaky thing is that: The letters weren't opened. The cd's had - but they were in the original post-packaging. It'd been opened with like a craft-knife or other sharp blade.
I'm thinking that this is probably someone who thought this flat was untenanted and was just picking up mail nosily. Anyway the threat of police involvement, or notification of my pissed-offedness, has done the trick.
Slightly unsettling. Why would you bother to keep the packaging so tidy? I would rip it.
Sock is dreaming. She's lying on the bed and her little paws are twitching. Every so often she says a quiet whine. I say to her 'good girl Sock' and she stops crying and the paws go faster. I wonder where she is? I hope it's a good dream.
I also hope I didn't just reinforce a terrible habit. She was probably dreaming about destroying something of value. "Good girl Sock". And I wonder why I have no underwear...
You know what's great? Tinfoil. I would really, really miss tinfoil if it wasn't available. You can make almost anything out tinfoil! Pipes, filters, replacement pieces of 'break in an emergency' glass, wine bottle lids, can lids in general, oven trays, cups and so forth.
Hail to Aluminium Foil. *Hail!*
You can also use it to make hats to hide your thoughts from satellites, make a house to hide your stuff from the government, and make a coffin to hide your baked-potato corpse after trying to live in your house through summer.
Quote from TV3 News: So what makes this adrenaline junkie go?
Well, presumably, adrenaline.
Yesterday Sock ate the front out of my favourite top. I'm going to have to repair it, somehow, which I suspect will take a lot of rather complex hand-sewing.
Today I've got my period which hurts like f*ck. It's really painful. Alas, I cannot afford to purchase any remedy, herbal, legal or not. Even a bottle of cheap crap wine. I can hear my liver rejoicing from here... I was a relatively good girl and paid some doctor and telecom bills this week.
Man, I really want a cigarette. I don't know why, but I always want a cigarette more when there is no probability whatsoever of buying any. I don't buy them, but somehow, having the power to do so reduces desire to do so.
I'm tired and TV sucks. NZ Idol is much worse than I remember. That's probably because I didn't watch it the first time around. They're down to the 6 finalists, and more than half of them are singing flat at least part of the time. I've come to the conclusion that if you're nervous, don't pick a song with a lot of sharps 'n' flats in it.
Sighhhhhhhhhhhh. Stupid period. Making me even more grumpy and irrational than usual.
I found this ad for Polo underwear. I think it's the first time I've seen a male model with love handles. It's rather odd.
Also, take a look at this excellent article on Clockworkfish.
I was talking with Deb, just the other day, about how the key to a good drug-smuggling ring in a small place like NZ was to get the job of teaching the dogs to detect drugs. My idea was to teach the dogs to alert to the substances - unless the people/case were wearing a specific scent, like cinnamon rubbed on their hands or an obscure but penetrating purfume. That way, everyone would get caught except my syndicate members, which is good for prices and profit.
And now, it seems, some bloody incompetent Aussie had to take it too far. There's no point if the dogs never alert to a substance, you're just helping out your rivals and sending up a screaming red flag to your boss! Dickhead.
Talking of Australian stupidity (or is it just crafty selfishness?), compare the approach of Australia and that of Japan (I won't link to it since it takes registration, but it's from the nytimes.com website) to air-conditioning energy needs.
Australia is basically producing more coal to burn to run air conditioners.
Japan has a 'Cool Biz' initiative that demands office air conditioners be 27deg Celcius (*phew*!) and that men should not wear suit jacket or ties in the office, allowing them to keep cooler without turning on the air-con.
You know an ad that is annoying me at the moment? That Smokefree Day ad. A worthy cause, no doubt, but the text of the ad is drivel:
"I wish there was no gravity. I wish our feet knew no boundaries. I wish it rained gold. I wish we lived in a smokefree world."
- If there was no gravity on earth, we would die.
- If our feet knew no boundaries, we would probably have to adapt to walking on our hands, or possibly crawling on our knees, because feet would become rather unreliable. Either way, I'm pretty sure it would be bad for the economy.
- If it rained gold, we would all die and the earth would be utterly poisoned.
So excuse me if I don't want to take a risk with a Smokefree world.
I was in the library yesterday in Brighton and the library lady told me I owed them $2 for a CD. I said that I'd never taken a A/V recording out of the library, ever. She then said if one of my family might have used my card. No, no, they're in Wellington.
"Well, someone put this on your card."
"I'm really pretty sure they didn't. Are you sure you didn't process it from the guy before me?" (Who had checked out 4 CDs)
"No! That can't happen in this system. It's on your card. You owe us $2"
"Can I just see... (bending over desk to look at screen) ... um, according to your system, the CD was checked out here, today, about 3 minutes ago."
"What?! Where?" (Frantic searching through book pile)
Then she got her supervisor. It took, between the 2 of them, 10 minutes to make sure I hadn't pocketed a CD, there were no CDs in the books, and to remove it from my card.
Then I checked my receipt and said "Oh, Mawikai isn't on the list."
It took another 5 minutes for the supervisor to work out that book had been listed as lost. She tried to unregister it multiple times, then tried to re-register it, which didn't work because the number was already in the system.
In the end I had to leave without the book.
The most frustrating thing was, though, during that 15 minutes, I could see the screen. I'm not claiming to be an expert with library systems, but it sure was difficult to keep my mouth politely closed as I watched her miss, try after try, a little checkbox that said 'This book is lost'.
(I have a policy of only correcting one computer/user error per person. The first time is helpful, the second time is just gloating.)
April may be the cruelest month but I think autumn in general is more melancholy than winter. Autumn is an untidy dying, trees weeping leaves and the last flowers sadly waving fading tattered flags.
Autumn seems like a season of false hopes and promises. The weather is capricious, full of sweet breezes one day and stampeding with hail the next, yet you can sense the futily and downward trend towards darkness and cold.
Winter to me is more of a calm and mysterious pregnancy. Life is hibernating just below the surface, ticking along its own slow rythym. Winter follows a trail with fortitude, enduring the storms and the heavy burdens of snow because winter knows that spring will come, and then the long waiting brings life and chaotic youth to the world again.
So I kind of feel that in the list of seasons, winter is the first on the list, mother of the year.
RULES FOR NON-PET OWNERS WHO VISIT AND LIKE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT OUR PETS:
1. They live here. You don't.
2. If you don't want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. (That's why they call it "fur"niture.)
3. I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.
4. To you, it's an animal. To me, he/she is an adopted son/daughter who is short, hairy, walks on all fours and doesn't speak clearly.
5. Dogs and cats are better than kids:
A) They eat less, don't ask for money all the time, are easier to train, usually come when called, never drive your car, don't hang out with drug-using friends;
B) They don't smoke or drink, I don't worry about having to buy the latest fashions, they don't wear your clothes, and don't need a gazillion dollars for college.
C) And if they get pregnant, you can sell the children.
(From the email traps, thanks to TC!)
Someone is still stealing my mail. Only the CD-sized parcels (as far as I know) but I'm really pissed off. I'm now down a Fastcrew album and the new Christchurch The Music double. I put a notice up in the hall saying if it continues I'll involve the police. But what is more likely, is I'll just get parcels that I know are coming sent to Deb's address.
Grrr! I wants my albums! I'm too poor to buy music so I rely on radio-station winnings.
The grenade, initially described as a harmless dud or training device, was in fact a live explosive that someone threw while Mr. Bush addressed tens of thousands of Georgians in Tbilisi on May 10 with President Mikheil Saakashvili at his side, the American Embassy's legal attaché, Bryan Paarmann of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said in a statement. - nytimes.com
Seems like a serious security lapse to me. In the same week as they strip a pilot of his licence (and livelihood) for mistaking a no-fly zone that gets violated dozens of times a month, they let someone in Georgia, a known trouble spot boiling with insurrectionist, get within 100 feet of their president with a live ordnance!
On another topic entirely, the floods up north provides a timely reminder to make sure your CD supplies of stored water, candles, lighters, torches, batteries and food etc are current. Not that it will help a great deal if your house floats away or is crushed by a landslide... Maybe I'll wrap my CD gear in a lifejacket.
"Hey, I may be drowning, but the trail mix will live on!"
Goddam it, I'm so depressed. I'm going back to bed.
Last night I was merrily lighting a nicked-from-Deb cigarette when my Zippo flint abruptly ran out. I didn't have any spare flints, and the old Bic faithful sputtered out at the crucial moment (that's what it does faithfully).
So I managed to coax another light off the Zippo and lit a candle, which I nutured carefully throughout the evening. It made the candle holder all cool and drippy. The random hot wax splashes were enervating... all in all, I give this a stunning 6 stars out of 10. Go crappy Warehouse candles and complete lack of forward planning!
It is wet. So wet, in fact, that when I tried to let Sock out to the bathroom she took one look and trotted straight back inside. (The Driz-a-bone rocks, it keeps her heaps drier on walks.)
I'm glad I did those rust repairs before it decided to drizzle for days on end.
Tonight is Wednesday and that makes me happy. Wednesday goes like this:
4.30 - Malcolm in the Middle (re-run)
5.00 - Simpsons (re-run)
5.30 - Home & Away (cook dinner)
6.00 - The News (eat dinner)
7.00 - Campbell Live (swear and gesticulate)
7.30 - Simpsons (new episode, holy half hour of my week)
8.00 - Malcolm in the Middle (new episode)
8.30 - CSI NY (take meds)
9.30 - Medical Investigation (fall asleep)
In an article in The Press this morning, the head of the Hospitality Association Canterbury was talking about the pokies: He said revenue from gaming machines was down by millions of dollars. "In the long term, the community is missing out."
Yep. The community is missing out because fewer people (or at least, less money) is being poured into the black pit of manipulated odds called the pokie machine. Damn the ungenerous souls who are putting food on the table and clothing their children at the expense of gambling-funded charities!
If you want to raise money for charity, you can't beat teenage school-girls in wet, cold t-shirts.
I just hope the school has read this article in the Herald:The shock of hitting cold water caused a young man who jumped into a river to die of a heart attack, the Nelson Coroner has ruled.
I went to see Deb yesterday and we spent about 4 hours just talking about things. We are both in similar places at the moment; concerned over money, struggling to eat properly, struggling to function socially and just plain struggling generally. It's kind of good to know someone who is going through such similar stuff.
Food is preposterously difficult. It costs so much to eat properly, and add that to the fear etc and it's just an ugly situation. And it's not like a diet which I can say "I'll do this for 6 weeks and then stop". It's a road to nowhere, which makes it a treadmill.
A friend of mine from Ashburn killed herself on Friday. Poor kid, she was only 22. It makes me so angry that this happened. Over and over again I'm losing good friends, because they have been raped and abused by their families to the point of being spiritually broken beyond repair. And it frightens me too, because as Deb and I were saying today, there but for the grace of whatever goes us. Her story, my story, Deb's story, it could all be scenes from the same black film.
I hope wherever you are mate, that you find some peace now, because you've been in pain and torment for far too many years. It wasn't even a selfish act, because you didn't love yourself enough to be selfish. It was just the final, brutal, terrible step in a brutalised, terrible life. Be peaceful. I hope there are horses in your heaven.
I would like to reincarnated as a bird. I thought for a while about being a bird of prey. but they live pretty hard lives. So I've decided to come back as an albatross, or a blue whale.
There's basically three habitats - earth, sea and air. I've gotten reasonably familiar with the old terrestrial habitat, so next time I'd like to try one of the others. And it seems to make sense to choose long-lived animals.
I went to the dentist yesterday and she did some work on my two upper front teeth. This involved two local injections up the top of the gum, which is about level with your nostrils. So when they put in the injections, it feels like they're pushing the needle into your nose.
It was rather unpleasant but I'm sure the drill would have hurt far more.
I've joined a community scheme at Te Whare Roimata that helps kids with their homework while their parents attend English as a second language classes. Mostly the kids are Somali, so they've often been through quite a lot in their short lives. Very active and a lot of work (I was with the 4 - 7 year old boys) but it was rewarding too - counting games, math sheets, reading and writing stories, colouring in. It's once a week on Thursday night for two hours during term time, which is quite a long time to keep kids doing educational things, considering they had to spend all day at school.
Over the last couple of days I have been taking the insides of car doors off and kicking the panels. This approach fixed a large dent in the RH passenger door and a broken lock in the RH front door. I have also been going nuts with the sandpaper and the filler/primer spray, fixing those rust spots before winter hits in earnest. I have fixed and repainted (it’s really fun to spray-paint things, I can see why yobs enjoy it) most of the spots, but I need to get proper filler to deal with the hole in the window column.
I am enjoying the slowly evolving relationship with my car as I get more involved in caring for it. There’s something satisfying about sanding and repainting your own car, and knowing that it’s going to actually preserve the life of the vehicle. The red “Jazz” spray-paint from the Warehouse is close enough to the colour of the car to satisfying a non-discriminating type like myself.
Today was the three-week personal anniversary of “doing better with food”. This has the unfortunate side-effect of me hating – physically revolting against – the body I’m. I hope, pray, rationalise, hopefully don’t self-delude, that this will get easier. Sometime. Eventually. It is just so so so so so so hard. It feels out of control and so do I.
Here is a lovely recipe:
1 piece of beef schnitzel
Slice everything up and put in a non-stick frypan on a low heat for about an hour. Stir sometimes.
God I feel sick, fat and disgusting. I hate this.
"Do you know what's in these?"
"No artificial colours, no artificial flavours, and 99% fat free"
... which of course, doesn't tell you what's in them, which is basically gelatine and sugar. Sounds less healthy when you put it like that.
"Do you know what's in these?"
"Don't chop the dinosaur Daddy! He's 1% fat full!"
Back from his first trip to Aceh since he was made head of the Government's new reconstruction agency, Kuntoro Mangkusubroto said he was shocked to find some people were still not getting regular food and angry that the Government had yet to release some of the $A800 million allocated for reconstruction.
[...] One deal he had signed with a consortium led by the Intel Corp company would make Aceh the first province in Indonesia to have broadband access.
Another article, also from the Sydney Morning Herald:
The international medical relief agency Médecins sans Frontières is tracking down hundreds of thousands of donors worldwide to its Asian tsunami appeal and offering them their money back.
Hundreds of Australians have asked for $93,000 of refunds after the charity told them it had four times the €20 million it needed to fund its response to the Boxing Day disaster.
They refused the charity's offer to redirect their donations to lower profile crises such as in Sudan or the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
An ancient curse finds its way into modern times. You gotta be careful what you're thieving, boys.
A seeing-eye dog leading a blind couple through a station fell over the edge of a platform with the couple Sunday, leaving one of them injured, officials said. - MDN
More ironic news from the same source: KONAN, Aichi -- A man was arrested after he drove his car into and killed a toddler as she played at a park dedicated to road safety here, police said.
I woke up this morning to find the Power Manager had run out of credit - ergo, no lights or heat. Makes one appreciate the flicking of a light-switch or the warming of water to defrost the car. One very cold trip to the ATM and service station later, and we have power once again. Bliss.
Spent most of my weekend asleep, which is very indulgent and lazy. It is also completely fantastic. Ahhhh, warm 'n' sleepy.
Today's Lesson: Making a NO2 Bulb Piercier
(Note: If you are under 18, you didn't hear this from me. Go back to rotting your brain with humbugs and pennywhistles, or whatever you young folk are into nowadays)
Go to Mitre 10 and purchase a 30mm-long, 20mm-diameter piece of brass plumbing fitting. Also purchase a 20mm brass cap (outside thread) and a 20mm-15mm nipple fitting (outside thread). Then get a 15mm brass cap (inside thread) and take it home and drill 4 holes in it or ask the M10 helper to do it for you. Then superglue a small, pointy screw in the inside of the cap, so's the pointy bit's pointing down to spike your finger.
Combine the pieces in this order - 20mm cap, sleeve, nipple, 15mm cap. Tightly fit a plastic tube around the 15mm cap, so you can breathe through it without touching any metal with your lips (important).
Fit a nitrous bulb into the charger, and screw the top cap down and the bottom cap up until the point of the screw pierces the seal of the bulb. Inhale.
This will cost you about $11, far cheapre than the $50 they want for 'em in Cosmic Corner!
And lo, there is heat in the car for the first time in my ownership history. This morning the demister *actually worked*. This is an excellent development, since the only other effective option is to drive with the windows down and the long chill fingernails of Lois the Wind Bitch sliding down your neck.
Now Hannah The Shy-But-Eager-to-Please Heater Helper will fill my car with warm air and the scent of whichever artificial scent I buy (I plead novelty value).
Mmmmm. Unneccessary Hibiscus.
I wonder what a 'sort' of person is? Most often when someone declaims: I'm not that sort of person! they are denying a very narrow similarity.
I don't steal, I'm not that sort of person.
I don't drink and drive, I'm not that sort of person.
I don't hit my kids, I'm not that sort of person.
I don't have pets, I'm not that sort of person.
I don't take drugs, I'm not that sort of person.
A 'sort' seems to be a reference to our personal sterotypes. We associate behaviours into a cluster from which we derive our homogenous 'sort'. What I mean by 'sort' could be entirely different to your 'sort'. The sort of person I think of who doesn't take drugs is likely to be quite different to your idea of a non-drug-user. It depends a lot on whether you take drugs.
I'm an all-sorts of person. I've come to realise over my lifetime that there is actually very little that I wouldn't do in extreme circumstances - much of the ugly side of life is coming to terms with that in your head. I know that I would kill another human in self-defence. But I also know that there a bunch of nicer traits there as well, like loyalty and humour.
I have learned not to say "I'm not that sort of person" because that kind of statement will come back to bite you on the ass when circumstances change.
About the only sorts of people I know I'm definitely not is a paedophile, a torturer or a rapist. I would not knowingly force drugs, sex or misery on another person unless I were forced to.
In extremis, however, almost anything else is uncertain. I'm just that sort of person.
Since it seems that I am alone in my non-immunised polio status, I have put together a response kit. Feel free to borrow this approach if you are also feeling vulnerable.
(If this seems more random than usual, read yesterday's comments)
Scotland Yard issued a warning to airports about female suicide bombers with exploding bras. Apparently the bras are primed to go off while the bomber is being frisked at the airport.
I wonder how long it will take for someone to invent 'suicide dentures', which can be detonated by clenching the jaw. Or possibly, a poisoned needle concealed in an orifice (your choice of orifice). It would probably make the rubber-glove wearer a little more cautious. Defensive diaphragm usage, coming soon to a customs line near you...
In 2003, polio was contained to 6 countries. With a detected case announced in Indonesia this week, making it the 16th country to be re-infected, that total is 22 countries and spreading fast.
It is unclear how many cases exist, but their presence suggests widespread circulation of the virus, since only one case in 200 produces paralysis. Confirmation takes time; each requires two stool samples taken at least 24 hours apart and then shipped to a laboratory and cultured for days or weeks before testing. - nytimes.com
It may become wise to resume polio vaccinations in NZ shortly. Indonesia is not so very far away, and in a population that has been without the protection of a vaccine for many years, polio could spread very quickly.
I find it interesting that there has been no mention of polio in the New Zealand news, but every time there is a bird flu in Asia it's headlines all over.
I passed my full licence test! 9 years after my learner's licence, 5 years after my restricted test, I can finally carry passengers (legally).
I'm amazed that I passed. Not because I'm a terrible driver, but because I don't do well in tests, and having a strange man in the car just sends my anxiety levels though the roof. But he was very nice, it wasn't his fault, it's just my issues.
In fact I was so sure of failure that I didn't tell anyone before I sat it.
So hooray! I no longer fear the test, 'cos I sat it and passed it! It's been intimidating me for years. Now I'm going to have a pic of me with bright red hair on my licence for years...
Woohoo! Woohoo! Woohoo!
I think it brings my insurance premiums down, as well.
The pastor of the "mega-church" (more than 2,000 members) Christ Church, in New Jersey, commented on his travails in search of a new venue:
For the moment, Dr. Ireland is trying to remain optimistic that his church will eventually be able to build a new home in Rockaway Township. "I look at the Old Testament," he said. "You find Moses had a lot of trouble getting to the promised land." - nytimes.com
In fact, if you look at the Old Testament, Moses never made it to the Promised Land. He was allowed to look at it but he wasn't allowed in (Numbers 27:12, Deuteronomy 34:4) because of his lack of faith in the desert of Zin.
Reminds me of Milhouse: How could this happen, Bart? We started out like Romeo and Juliet, but it ended up in tragedy.
North Korea fired a Silkworm missile, and I'm reading a history of landmines at the moment, so Butterfly mines are in my thoughts. Why do we call weapons of destruction such cutesy names?
Operation Enduring Freedom could have been called something less cynical, too.
Today I went back to the wreckers (the guy is beginning to recognise me) and got a hard-to-find fuse for the heater that (fingers crossed) may mean I actually have heat in the car this winter. If the fuse doesn't fix it, I'll just have to rip out the dash again and examine the wiring.
I'm eating better at the moment, it's kind of excruciating. Not only do I feel like an ugly lump, it's also massively expensive to eat right. I'm spending over $120 a week on food, which seems to me a stunning sum. I used to be able to spend $40/week including dog food. But WINZ don't take "eating more" as a reason for "spending more".
I had a nasty (although familiar) experience in the supermarket today, essentially a 'panic attack', which is psychobabble for overwhelming anxiety. I think it's cos I only had $10 but I had to get something for dinner, so I was having to think about money and 'health' and deal with the screaming "god you're an ugly fat bitch" voices in my head all at once and I just kinda lost it. It's really embarrassing - shaking and crying and sweating in public is not my idea of a discrete and pleasurable shopping experience.
However, I managed to sweep myself up into a semblance of functioning adulthood and escape back home where it is safe... I hate the way this anxiety impacts my life. What kind of job am I ever going to be able to handle again when I end up in tears several times a day? I piss me off at times. I remind myself of a poorly written program that wasn't coded with any exception handling. If things go perfectly, it works just fine, but throw in an anomaly and the entire system crashes.
What kind of power tool would I use to screw a screw or punch a nail through a brass plumbing fitting? I need a super drill or something.
The Cardinal Newman Society, a group that works to keep Catholic schools Catholic, refers to the Vagina Monologues as the V***** Monologues on its website.
This may explain why they have trouble toilet-training their kids...
In other news, horrible spider story in the Guardian. It's called a Brazilian Wandering spider, is more venomous than a Black Widow, and is know for its speed and aggression. Unfortunately, the hospital released the spider into the gardens because someone thought it was a domestic species.
The comforting final paragraphs:
The trust said: "The spider was released into the grounds as it was believed to be a domestic species. The RSPCA and the trust's pest control experts have since confirmed that it would have died very soon after being released."
The spider, though, has already shown itself to be a survivor. Mr Stevens said that after being bitten, he knocked it into an open freezer before drenching it with boiling water. It emerged unscathed from both experiences.
Did you see in the Herald today about those 19 kids in the Far North who haven't been to school in 10 years?! Here's the article. I fail to see how Child, Youth and Family can possibly call these kids "safe".
Between the three families there are 19 children who have never been to school, including 18-year-old Faith Van Duin, who has started a new generation of children to be brought up outside the system with her daughter Rangimarie Twaddell, 3.
I don't think the living conditions of the family as important as that the children are essentially being forced into the parents' way of life. They live without electricity or running water and in an isolated spot, and that's fine; but the kids are being denied a shot at another kind of life because they don't even have a registered home school teacher, and their parents deny access to State academic assessors. Without any recognised qualifications at all, no record within the system, not even contact with kids from all different points of view, their futures are drastically curtailed.